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June 2007

May 2007

Tutorial - Wedding Shower Card w/ Doodle This

Take the Stamp-A-Ma-Jig up a notch by combining stamp sets for a beautiful wedding card.
Stamps: Doodle This; Blooming with Happiness (Level 1 Hostess Set)
Ink: VersaMark; Cameo Coral
Cardstock: Barely Banana; Vellum; Whisper White
Accessories: Detail White Embossing Powder; Stamp-A-Ma-Jig; Tool Kit; Sponge; Basic Eyelets; 7/8" White Organdy Ribbon

Stamp the Doodle This image and the dress from Blooming with Happiness on your Stamp-A-Ma-Jig imaging sheet. Mask off the little curl on the top of the image that will be the skirt for your dress with a Post-It Note.

Line up your Stamp-A-Ma-Jig handle with the corner of the imaging sheet. Placing your stamp in the corner of the handle, take the imaging sheet away and stamp the Doodle This skirt.

Pour Detailed White Embossing powder on the image and heat until shiney. Detailed embossing powder is very fine and will heat up very fast - don't overheat.

Place the imaging sheet with the dress from Blooming with Hapiness over the embossed image. Place your mask under the imaging sheet to cover up the floral skirt.
Line up your Stamp-A-Ma-Jig handle and remove the imaging sheet - stamp the bodice of the dress. Stamp the phrase and emboss both.

Using a sponge and Cameo Coral Ink - sponge color on the back of the vellum.

Layer the vellum on the Barely Banana and Whisper White card base. Insert white eyelets in the top corners. I inserted them through all layers so I could insert the ribbon. I thought it would be too bulky to adhere to the card base if I only put them through the Vellum and Barely Banana layers.

Wa La - here is a close up of the finished card!

I love to decorate my envelopes to match my cards. Which bride-to-be wouldn't LOVE this card at her wedding shower???

Here's another card that I made using Iridescent Ice Embossing Powder - I don't like it as well.

I made this card with the intent of using it for my June Stamp-A-Stack class. It was a little too involved - definitely not for the beginner - a little too time consuming too. Have fun at home and give it a try!

Meet Gus!

Nice picture of the cat - heh? Look below to see why he's sitting here!

He's perched right under the birdhouse!

I'm not much of a "cat person" - really prefer dogs - but this is a pretty cool cat. He sits on top of our neighbors garage waiting by their birdfeeder too. Once my hubby caught him actually "laying in" their birdfeeder! He's a house cat - used to belong to my step-daughter, but then she moved out and the cat stayed. She started letting him outside at a very young age and if you know cats - once they get to go outside - they are impossible to keep in! He's about 7 or 8 years old and terrorizes the neighborhood. He's super smart - I watch him look both ways before crossing the street and he lays around like he's a dog. Right in the middle of the floor, all sprawled out like he owns the place! How did I get going on this.....I guess I just wanted to share a really good picture.....

Gift Sets

There's nothing more thoughtful than a handmade gift. I made several of these Altered Clip Boards for Christmas gifts. For my daughter and 2 neices - I made the clipboard and a matching Paper Bag Album that they could fill with their own pictures. I went back in my photo albums to when these girls were babies, on up to the present to get 6 pictures to put on them. I punched the pictures and put them in smashed bottle caps. One of my neices said it was the BEST gift she had ever received! Both of these stamps sets - Girlfriends & Pocket Fun are retiring - don't make me tear up again!!!

I made this for my cousin....he's 14 and he thought it was pretty cool. I made it with his school colors and put the mascot name on it - Warriors.

This was made for a Christmas gift for my adorable niece!
This was made by my downline - Rachael. It has more of a vintage look to it and I think it was a gift for her mom - LUCKY MOM! Don't you LOVE our designer paper???


Go to this link: to see a step-by-step tutorial on making your own Altered Clipboard!

And this link: to see hundreds of samples! Step out of the box - do something on the "WILD SIDE" and have some fun! There's more to stamping than making cards and scrapbooking - use your supplies to make some personal, "touch someone's heart" gifts!

Free Standing Pop-Up Cards

I was going through my online photos and found some more cool stuff that I wanted to share with you!

But first - this is a picture of my step-son, Steven and his "then" soon to be bride, Kelly. He surprised her by coming home on leave from Bagdad a day ahead of the schedule she knew about!!!! And he brought her roses! How sweet is that!

Now on to the less important - cool stuff! I made these Free-Standing Pop-Up cards for an SU seminar in Wausau. The chicken one was a make-n-take. The possum one I demonstrated for about 100 other SU demonstrators - now that's nerve racking!!!! And the prego one I just made for fun. All three of these stamp sets are retiring this year - BOO HOO! I'm really gonna miss my chicken set!

This is a magnetic memo board that my customers got to make at a Stamp Camp. They LOVED it. It is made with sheet metal that I had cut and bent by a sheet metal company. It is covered with designer paper. I used super duty magnets behind the buttons and business card magnets cut up behind the words that are from the Word by Word background stamp. Lots of these were made as gifts - my step-daughter made them up for her bridesmaids as thank you gifts.

Family Photo Collage

This is a photo collage that I made to hang in my laundry room. I stamped up the matte with craft ink and embossed it with clear embossing powder. I purchased this frame at Sears last year on clearance for $9.99 - and YES - it sat in my laundry room between the washer and dryer all this time! I finally took the time to get it together - with the help of my darling daughter. I had her go on the computer and download photos to Walgreens for development - needed a little help in the "time" dept there! LOL.

Anywho - don't you love my paint job on the wall???? This is my favorite "remodeled" room in my big old house! I bought the wallpaper border and then used wide painters tape and rotated tape and wall...tape and get the idea. Then I took the bright colors from the border and sponged them in between the tape. I wanted this room to be really bright and colorful - it also doubles as the bathroom for the pool. Here's a close up of the same picture - because I know I would want to see this puppy in detail! This is most of my family - my daughter (Hailey), step kids (Steven, Stephanie & Anna), daughter-in-law (Kelly), hubby (Steve), our dog (Rudy), my grandbabies (AJ & Andi) and my parents. I think I will change the pictures in here every year to update! Well - based on how long it took me to get this together....maybe every 5 years or so - that's more realistic! LOL

Here's another one I made for my daughter-in-law as a going away present when she moved to Georgia. My step-son - Steven - served a year in Bagdad and came home to marry his sweetheart! I went around town and took pictures of people, signs and places that were a part of Kelly's life. She LOVED it!!!! And YES - there is a second set of Kelly & Steve Achesons! It's very confusing.

Big Blooms Class

The big blooms class was GREAT fun! All in attendance really enjoyed the cards and said they definately learned some new techniques and layouts - that's what I strive for! The Emerging Color was a BIG hit and Michelle said the Triangular Tri-Fold card was a lot easier than it looked!

Thanks to all in attendance - I couldn't do it without you ladies! Special THANKS to my downline Rachael who took over for me when my daughters' soccer tournament scheduled a Friday night game at the last minute!

These class cards are pictured in a post a week or so ago - below. We made a bookmark card using the perferator from the Cutter Kit; an Emerging Color technique card; a card that stands up like an easel; a triangular tri-fold card and a diorama card.

Strategic stamping by Amanda - did she get it just right?....YES she did!

Cheryl's always happy stamping!

Pat & Jean had a GREAT time!

Stampin' Divas Michelle and Lori hard at work!

Rubber VS. Acrylic

This is some of the best information I've received from a fellow stamper on the difference between acrylic(clear) and regular rubber stamps. I copied and pasted this from - they sell both kinds and give this information to help their buyers decide what to get. I know that a lot of clear stamp users store their stamps in CD cases - I wonder if they realize this actually contributes to the hardening process because of the light exposure. I'll take clunky wood and rubber any day!

Clear stamps are great tools, but they are not quite like rubber stamps. Here are some differences and tips for getting the best image and longest life out of your clear stamps.

*It is important that you condition clear stamps before your first use. Some people suggest using a fine grit sand paper but I find that using a standard pink eraser to scuff the surface is the best way to help your clear stamp hold ink. In their new state, clear stamps want to repell ink and you can actually see it pooling into little drops on the surface when you ink them. I've shown an example below to show the difference between an image stamped with a rubber stamp, an image stamped with a new polymer stamp and an image stamped with a polymer stamp that had been conditioned with a pink eraser.

Clear stamps are not designed to last as long as rubber stamps. Rubber stamps can last a life time if taken care of. Polymer stamps tend to either get gooey or harden as time goes on. This problem is exacerbated by sunlight, indoor lighting, oil based products, acetone and bleach.

Store your clear stamps in a light-free container, such as a cardboard shoe box. Even indoor light will discolor and eventually harden your clear stamps. These stamps are made of a light sensitive material because they are developed using a light process.

Using and Cleaning
Solvent based inks, such as StazOn, aren't the best choice to use with polymer stamps. The ink is very hard to clean off without their special cleaner. The StazOn cleaner can damage your polymer stamp. Baby wipes are a great method of cleaning polymer stamps. You can also use mild soap and water or alcohol. There are also cleaners made specifically to be gentle enough for use with polymer stamps.

Because polymer stamps are created using a developing process rather than created by pressing them into a mold, they can't be created with as much detail as rubber stamps. You won't notice much difference with bolder or simple stamps but there can be a considerable difference with highly detailed stamps. If you click on the image above to view it in more detail you'll see a very slight difference in detail on the zig-zag stitch stamp. The X stitch stamp is virtually the same.

We've had to modify some of our images when submitting the artwork to make clear stamps. You can easily see the difference in this high-detail floral stamp (below). The small detail dots in the rubber image couldn't be picked up by the photopolymer process so we had to enlarge all the lines on this stamp, make the stamp bolder and darker than the original.

All of the samples on this page were stamped using dye based Adirondack ink. The difference between a conditioned and unconditioned stamp would not be so obvious with a pigment ink such as VersaColor inks.

*Note: Some rubber stamps also need conditioning when new. Fine grit sand paper seems to work a little better than the pink eraser method for rubber. The stamps most likely to need conditioning when new are shiney and have a release agent left on them that needs to be sanded off.

Personal note from me - I have never conditioned my SU rubber stamps - they are of very high quality and I've never had a problem with them.