Stampin’ Blends – new Alcohol Markers


November 1st, Stampin’ Up! is releasing a new line of alcohol-based markers!! 

I’m so super excited.  I pre-purchased ALL of these amazing markers.  And, I’m so, so happy that I did.  My crafty friends who attended October’s stamp camp had the opportunity to color with these amazing markers and they absolutely loved them.  I truly believe these new markers are a definite must-have crafting supply!  

What are alcohol markers?  They are artist-quality alcohol markers are shades of your favorite Stampin’ Up! colors:  Bermuda Bay, Calypso Coral, Cherry Cobbler, Crumb Cake, Daffodil Delight, Night of Navy, Old Olive, Pink Pirouette, Pool Party, Pumpkin Pie, Rich Razzleberry and Smoky Slate.  Each alcohol marker applies just the right amount of color where you need it.  Use the brush tip for coloring large areas, adding dimension or creating shadows.  Use the fine tip for adding details.  Every color (except Ivory and Bronze) has a light and dark shade. There is a Color Lifter to soften the colors, add texture, clean up edges and create highlights.

How to use these markers?   First, stamp the image using Tuxedo Black Memento ink.  (TIP:  To keep the image crisp, give the stamped images a minute or two to dry before adding the saturated color of the markers.) Color the selected area of the image with the lighter shade.  Next, add the darker shade for creating a shadow — adding line of color around the edges.  Then blend out the harsh, darker line using the lighter shade.  So, so simple.  You can also experiment with blending other colors of similar hues.basket of wishes catalog image

Here is a bushel basket for Basket of Wishes stamp set that I colored with the darker Crumb Cake marker and the Bronze marker.  First, I colored the whole image with Crumb Cake (it is lighter than the Bronze marker).  Then, I used the Bronze marker to create shadows because it was darker.  Then, I blended out the Bronze line with the darker Crumb Cake marker.  Quick and easy!  

After stamping the image in Tuxedo Black Memento ink, I quickly colored the basket with dark Crumb Cake.  Each stroke blends into the next stroke without streaking!

Next, I used the Bronze marker to color the basket horizontal bands and over top of the squiggly shadow lines in the image.  Then, I used the dark Crumb Cake marker to smooth and soften the Bronze marker lines.

basket of wishes 5

I dotted the Color Lifter pen to create highlights and enhance the overall look.  It is truly quick and easy.  And, if you happen to color outside the lines, the Color Lifter works beautifully!  These markers are a MUST-HAVE in your crafting supplies.  

These awesome coloring tools are available November 1st!  Click here to view to see a full color PDF version of the details on the kit, stamp set and Stampin’ Blends.

Click here to see a 1-minute video to see how simple these markers are to use!

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!




Stampin’ Up! offers many different types of adhesives because different paper crafting projects require different adhesives to create that polished look and to last!  As your crafting skills grow, you’ll need these adhesives to support your crafting needs.

Snail Adhesive – This is my go-to adhesive for applying controlled amounts of double sided adhesive to your cards and projects. It is acid free and refills are also available to order.  I keep two snail dispensers and one refill on my desk — so that I’m never without!

Mini Glue Dots – Fantastically handy and requires no drying time.  I use tweezers or paper piercing tool to pick up and apply these instant dots of adhesive exactly where I need it.  

mini glue dots

StampinDimensionals and the new Mini Stampin’ Dimentionals are double-sided adhesive foam dots.  They are great for adding height and dimension to your projects; while, Foam Adhesive Stripes are great for making shaker and spinner cards.

Stampin’ Up!’s Fine Tip Glue Pen is perfect for brilliant for projects with very intricate die cuts, as it allows you to add fine lines of glue where needed.  Also, when applied on top of an embellishment and allowed to dry, it provides a glossy finish.  

fine tip glue

Fast Fuse  is an acid free super-strength adhesive which is great for 3D projects.  

Tombow Multipurpose Liquid Glue  which has a super strong bond and dries clear, great for adding embellishments to your projects and for sticking down paper.

multi purpose glue

Tear & Tape – This strong adhesive has a tear-able paper backing for quick and easy assembly that is perfect for boxes and 3D projects.   Love it!

tear and tape

Washi Tape – What’s to love about washi tape? Everything! The designs and colors. The versatility. The simplicity—just tear, tape, and transform. While technically not an adhesive, it comes in lots of coordinating Stampin’ Up! colors.  It is great for attaching elements, matting, adding a strip of color or creating custom backgrounds. 

Multipurpose Adhesive Sheets –  This is a new item in the Annual Catalog.  It easily adheres to the backside of cardstock and is easily cut with your Big Shot and dies — so it is super easy to attach die cut embellishments!

multi purpose adhesive sheets

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!


Random Act of Kindness

random act of kindness is any action designed to offer kindness towards the outside world. The phrase “practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty” was written by Anne Herbert on a place mat in Sausalito, California in 1982.  Ten years later, Anne published a book, entitled Random Acts of Kindness, speaking about true stories of acts of kindness.

Today, RAKtivists are changing the world through random acts of kindness.   


‘RAKtivist’ is short for ‘Random Acts of Kindness activist’ – a kindness ambassador who inspires others with hope, kindness and generosity through their actions.   RAKtivists are everywhere.  The stranger who stops to hold the door open for a young mother with her hands full.  The commuter who offers their bus seat to an elderly passenger.  The person who leaves behind painted rocks for others to find.  The crafter who sends cards to brighten someone’s day.   Yes, you are a RAKtivist!

Recently, I received two RAK cards from other Stampin’ Up! demonstrators.  These are ladies that I have never met – but they choose to send crafting hugs to me.  I literally did the happy dance at the mailbox.  I couldn’t wait to open a crafting hug to me!

This card uses the “Crafting Forever” stamp set.  

crafting forever - Sept RAK

And this card uses “Oh So Eclectic” bundle.

RAK - 2017-09-01

World Kindness Day – November 13, 2017

While we should probably celebrate kindness every day, the official day is Monday, November 13th.  So mark your calendar & get ready to spread lots of kindness!

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!



Spooky Night Product Suite

Now that September is finally here, Halloween is just around the corner.  The Spooky Night designer series paper is perfect for making party favors for Halloween night.

xx spooky night dsp sampler

And paired with treat tubes, mini clear treat boxes and mini pizza boxes from the new Holiday catalog, you will be sure to please any ghosts, goblins or witches that come a calling.

If you would like to learn make this card and other stamping techniques, please contact me to attend one of my stamp camp classes at  All of these products are available from my online store – just click on the tab above.

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!


Special Treat Bags for You

Would you like to give someone a sweet treat this holiday season?  Try these striped treat bags from Stampin’ Up!  These fun bags with gold foil stripes can be used plain or dressed up with die cuts, ribbons and other embellished or customized with stamps, brayers and other techniques to create a special treat for someone special.

Here is a treat bag that I made recently to attach on the outside of a plain white gift bag to hold a birthday card.  I simply die cut the large butterfly from the Butterfly Thinlits and the “for you” sentiment from the Mini Treat Bag Thinlits using the gold foil sheets.  

xx striped treat bags

Here, some designer paper is used to create a festive belly band.  The treat bag is held closed with some linen thread, mini tassels and tags.  This is just so simple to make.

xx striped treat bag sample idea

And how about… just adding some Large Number Framelits and this treat bag becomes an adult version of an advent calender with gold mini sequin trim and Santa’s Sleigh Thinlits.   

xx striped treat bag sample idea 2

This just goes to show that there are lots of creative possibilities for using these striped treat bags – especially when a package contains 10 bags, each 4.5″ x 7″.  All of these products are available from my online store, just click on the tab above.

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!


Technique: Fussy Cutting

Fussy cutting is a quick and an affordable way to create your own pretty embellishments and to add simple depth and dimension in your craft project. 

But, what is Fussy Cutting? 

It was originally a quilting term to cut pieces of fabric to center and feature a particular section of the design.  In paper crafting, this term is applied when using a good pair of scissors to trim a stamped image from cardstock or printed motifs from designer paper.

It just takes a little patience and a little practice to perfect this technique.  To learn this technique, first start with a simple, straightforward pattern.  Before you know it, you’ll have the confidence to try a more intricate and detailed pattern.

Here are a few tricks for incorporating fussy cutting in your stamped projects:

  1. Relax your hands and take a deep breath.  You’ve been using scissors since kindergarten.  Try not to over think this.  Yes, it really is that simple!
  2. Use Stampin’ Up! paper snips. These are very sharp, micro-tip scissors. The shorter the blade, the easier it is to maneuver the paper.  The smaller the tip, the easier it is to snip out those tight corners.
  3. Begin with a rough cut of the image you wish to fussy cut.  This will give you a smaller piece of paper to handle and the ribbon of trimmed paper won’t get in the way while you cut out the details of your image.
  4. Use the fulcrum of your scissors, not the tips!  This will improve your maneuverability and it will result in clean-cut edges while you trim the image.
  5. Make long, slow cuts rather than quick snips. Quick snips result in choppy edges.
  6. If you encounter tight corners, pass by it during the long slow cut. Then go back later and snip those pieces out using the tip of your scissors.
  7. Always move and turn the paper, not the scissors, as you cut.  Keep your scissors pointed straight ahead.
  8. Always cut the piece of paper all the way to the paper edge, instead of ending your scissor cut too soon and having to tear the paper and possibly ruining your cut.
  9. For a finished look, sponge the trimmed edge or run the brush tip of a color marker around the trimmed edges to hide any rough cuts or untrimmed bits of paper.
  10. For depth and dimension use Stampin’ Dimensionals, Stampin’ Mini Dimensionals and pieces of Foam Adhesive Strips to pop up your fussy cut images.  If you want less height, try stacking two Mini Glue Dots.  If you want more height, add more layers of images and dimensionals.

Fussy cutting is a great technique to have in your back pocket especially since most stamps sets do not have a coordinating die.  And, there are times when your design calls for a cleaner edge than the white border obtained with die cutting.

Here is a card that I made using the fussy card technique by cutting sea shells from the So Many Shells stamp set. 

xx so many shells

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!




Holiday Tags with Everyday Label Punch

As we approach the month of September, time seems to fly.  The holidays are upon us before we know it.  Now is the time for some quick and easy craft projects to avoid scurrying around at the last minute.  

These tags are quick and easy and will add a special touch to your holiday packaging – present, gift bag or wine bottle, and within a few minutes you can make 45 or 50 tags.

Merry Little Christmas tag examples

Supply List:

  • Snail adhesive
  • Dimensionals
  • Banner Triple Punch (138292)
  • Scallop Tag Topper Punch (133324)
  • Everyday Label punch (144668 from holiday catalog)
  • Labels to Love stamp set (144967 from holiday catalog)
  • Merry Little Labels stamp set (144795 from holiday catalog)
  • Archival Basic Black ink pad
  • Cherry Cobbler ink pad
  • Old Olive ink pad
  • Cherry Cobbler cardstock (2”x4”, 1”x4”, ½”x4”)
  • Old Olive cardstock (2”x4”, 1”x4”, ½”x4”)
  • Very Vanilla cardstock (2”x3”)
  • Merry Little Christmas designer series paper (144621 from holiday catalog) 
  • Ribbon or Twine (5 inches long)
  • Season of Glitz mini bows (144635 from holiday catalog, comes with 45 bows)


  • Select the 2”x4” piece of DSP or cardstock as your bottom layer; punch one end with the Scallop Tag Punch and the other end with Banner Triple punch
  • Stamp the sentiment on Very Vanilla cardstock piece with solid color ink and punch with Everyday Label punch (or use markers and the huffing technique to color sections of the stamp before stamping the Very Vanilla cardstock piece)
  • Using snail adhesive, attach additional layers of DSP or cardstock to the tag
  • Using dimensionals, attach the very vanilla piece to the tag piece
  • Embellish with mini bows
  • Add the ribbon or twine to the tag top

Merry Little Christmas tag punches

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!


Background Bits

The delicate floral themes of the Background Bits Stamp Set lends itself to elegant themed cards and projects. Perfect whether the stamps create your background, your focal point, or anything else.  Background Bits stamp set is a host stamp set.  They are exclusive, time-limited (based on the catalog sales period) and an exceptional value!

Below, I used Berry Burst, Emerald Envy, Crumb Cake to design a tag for a gift bag and a coordinating note card to dress up a plain white gift bag.

background bits 3 bag and tag

Although host sets were designed to encourage you to host a party and invite your friends over to stamp, here are two options for earning these wonderful stamp sets without hosting a party.

Option 1:  Place an order of $150 in Stampin’ Up! products and automatically earn Stampin’ Rewards just as if you had hosted a party!  You will earn 10% of your purchase in Stampin’ Rewards and have your choice of products from in the current catalog, including the exclusive host stamp sets.  Or,

Option 2:  Book an on-line party with me.  I will provide you with a host code and shopping instructions to share with your friends.  It usually it only takes one or two small orders — in addition to your own — to reach that magic $150 mark and earn those Stampin’ Reward benefits!

However if you like the social aspects of hosting a party, we can do it at your house or at my house!  Just let me know how you’d like to earn those benefits.

Host sets come in an array of styles – so there is something for everyone.  Host sets can be found on pages 219-223 in your catalog.

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!


CASE-ing Birthday Blooms

CASE – Copy And Share Everything or Copy And Selectively Edit

In the world of paper crafting, there is no shame in copying.  In fact, Stampin’ Up! encourages it.  As the card designer, you can copy a project exactly or you can change some of the elements to adapt it.  For instance, you could substitute a different stamp set, use different colors of inks and cardstock, change the layout (portrait or landscape orientation) or relocate images (from bottom-right to top-left).

And, the best place to look for inspiration is your catalog!  Here is the card image from page 70 using Birthday Blooms stamp set.

For the background, the floral image is stamped twice with Crumb Cake ink on Crumb Cake cardstock.  The floral image is them stamped on Thick Whisper White card stock using Crumb Cake.  A blender pen or aqua painter was used to apply Old Olive to the leaves.  The floral image was fussy-cut and popped-up on dimensionals with the sentiment stamped in Soft Suede.


Using the above catalog image for inspiration, I created the background piece as described above and added a birthday sentiment from the same stamp set.  Next, I made a design decision to heat set the floral image using gold embossing  powder on Thick Whisper White cardstock to create a raised gold outline image.  I used my aqua painter to color the image using Melon Mambo and Old Olive.  I also used my watercolor pencils to deepen the color when necessary.  I then fussy cut the image, adhered it to the background piece and matted it with Melon Mambo cardstock.

birthday blooms for megan

And when I was done, I had a lovely birthday card for my wonderful daughter!

With CASE-ing, you can take an idea from any kind of project and create something completely different.  For example, the method used to create the card background above (Crumb Cake ink on Crumb Cake cardstock) can be used to dress up a plain paper gift bag with a similar or contrasting ink color.  

Until next time, sending you crafting hugs and inspiration wishes!