Sunday, September 14, 2014

Ornamental Pine for The Paper Players

Backstory:  I knew it would happen some day. But I never dreamed it would happen on the road, 6-1/2 hours from home, in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.  My laptop has passed away.  I knew it had not been feeling well Friday evening, as I tried to get The Paper Players winners post written.  But I thought it would feel better after a good night's rest. However, it took a turn for the worse during the night. It would turn on...but that was it. I could not connect to a thing.  I could not access my pictures.  I could not access my blog. I could not even connect to my email. I could not resuscitate it.

"Why? Why? How could you do this to me!" I lamented. "I have a post to write. I have pictures to edit and upload. And it was a good card, too....."  Even Muffy got into the act, stepping on her latex fish and howling in anguish.

Feeling both helpless and hopeless, I went down to the front desk.  Why?  I don't know.  Did I think the sweet woman at the front desk was the IT Fairy,  who would wave a magic wand and make everything alright? Or maybe she would lay her hands over my laptop, and declare, "Computer, heal thyself". What was I thinking? Maybe I just needed a sympathetic ear.

"My laptop won't work, and I have to get a post done, and"...and that is when the tears started.  At that point, a young man who was waiting to check-in (and probably taken aback a wee bit by my mascara stained face and the fact that I looked like his grandmother) asked if I would like to use his laptop. With trembling lips, I said I couldn't possibly...and he said he insisted.  So we sat in the breakfast area of the motel, and through the tears, I began to write.

The pictures today are not the best.  I saved the one I had uploaded to The Paper Players before Muffy and I left Iowa, and attempted to edit it.  But you know what, I will never forget this post, and the young man who sat with me and helped me make the best of a bad situation.  There are still good people in the world today...and I met one in Manitowoc....

It's Sunday, and time to play with The Paper Players! This week, Anne Marie has a color challenge for us:  Blackberry Bliss, Baked Brown Sugar, Always Artichoke and Cajun Craze.  What a perfect quartet of colors! I opted to design a rustic holiday card using the Ornamental Pine stamp set. I hope you enjoy today's rustic creation.

The Stampin' Schach Design Tips
This finished card measures 4-1/4" by 5-1/2".
  •  Blissful in Blackberry!  Inked in Blackberry Bliss, the Ornament, from Ornamental Pine looks quite elegant...especially when sporting a single pearl!

  • Crazy in Cajun!  Cajun Craze makes a lovely ornament nestled within Always Artichoke needles.  Don't you love the little Linen Thread bow?
  • A little joy! The Joy sentiment, from Endless Wishes, is the perfect size to fill up the lower left corned of the card. I just LOVE the Endless Wishes stamp set.  It is absolutely perfect for the season!

It seems appropriate to end today's post with this single word, before I start weeping with joy because of the kindness of a stranger. As always, your comments are important to me, and I would love to read what you think about today's card. And remember, if you ever have a question about the cards I create or the techniques I use, I am only an email away. Until next time...

(Muffy Update:  Muffy earned 1 more point Saturday towards her grand!!!)

The Paper Players Design Team

Thursday, September 11, 2014

A Ray of Sunshine for Pals Paper Arts and The Muffy Chronicles

It's Thursday, and time to play at Pals Paper Arts.  This week is a color challenge:  Crushed Curry, Always Artichoke, Cajun Craze.  I bet you thought I would create a leaf card with these colors, but I opted to create a card using the Ray of Sunshine stamp set just to be different. I hope you enjoy today's card!

The Stampin' Schach Design Tips: Fun and Funky
This finished card measures 4-1/4" wide by 5-1/2" long.
  • Array of rays! I used the Stamp-a-ma-jig to help me place the Crushed Curry rays around this sunny orb. I then stamped and snipped a few Cajun Craze rays and interspersed them. The result is fun and different!
  • Feeling sentiment-al! The sentiment was stamped twice, once in Always Artichoke and once in Crushed Curry.  I then cut off the Crushed Curry "Sunshine" and popped it up on Stampin' Dimensionals onto the Always Artichoke one, just to add a little...dimension.  Don't you just love this sentiment? Wouldn't the world be a happier place if we did indeed bring our own sunshine.
  • Pearls! A ring of pearls were added to fill in the interface between the sun and the rays.  And since I am pearl crazy, I just could not pass up the opportunity to add pearls to the eyes.  Just call me the crazy pearl lady!
I had fun with today's card.  It really is not a style I would normally create.  As I was making it, it brought back memories from my college days.  I had the privilege of attending Monmouth (IL) College, which was nationally renowned in the 60's and 70's for its biology and chemistry faculty.   Dr. Berwyn Jones was one of those professors. Although I have long forgotten which Chemistry class I was taking at the time...I think it was either Inorganic or Analytical...I vividly remember trekking up the stairs to the Chem floor weekly to get help. Monmouth was small enough that the professors knew their students by name.  However, to Dr. Jones, my friend Debbie and I were his little "rays of sunshine".  "Ah, it's my little rays of sunshine", he would exclaim when we would appear at his open office door. "Do come in and grace me with your presence."  Dr. Jones helped me hone my critical, analytical thinking skills, and instilled within me a love for intellectual challenges...and for that I will be forever grateful.  Wherever you are, Dr. Jones..YOU were my ray of sunshine!

The Muffy Chronicles

Alas...Muffy did not win on Sunday.  For those of you keeping track, we remain at 11 points, out of the 25 needed, for our Grand Champion title.  Now it becomes critical that we get points every weekend she is out, or she will not earn her title before she retires to have puppies. Here is a peek at her ad that will be published in the Boxer Daily magazine and in Dog News:

We are preparing to head to Manitowoc, WI...a trip of nearly 6-1/2 hours, not counting puppy potty breaks.  She will be right behind my seat.  She loves to travel, and I will put in a movie for her.

I will be sure to keep you posted on her adventures!  Thank you so much for your patience as Muffy and I continue on our quest to build memories to last a lifetime...

As always, your comments are so very important to me.  Won't you let me know what you think of today's card? I hope it brought a little sunshine into your life today! Until next time...

Stamp Sets:  Ray of Sunshine, Gorgeous Grunge; Inks: Always Artichoke, Crushed Curry, Cajun Craze; Designer Series Paper: Regals Designer Series Paper Stack; Card Stock: Very Vanilla, Cajun Craze, Always Artichoke; Tools: Big Shot, Finishing Touches Edgelit, Stamp-a-ma-jig; Glitz and Glam:  Linen Thread, Pearls Basic Jewels

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Happy Fall for The Paper Players

It's time to play with The Paper Players!  I am excited to be the host of our theme challenge this week:  Happy Fall, Y'all!  Fall is my favorite time of year.  I can feel it in the air! I love the crisp temperatures... the turning cider! I love it happy fall, y'all! Let's celebrate with a quick and easy Fall Fest card!

The Stampin' Schach Design Tips
This finished card measures 5-1/2" wide by 4-1/4" long.
  • When the frost is on the pumpkin! I love the trio of pumpkins from Fall Fest...and I like to switch up the colors. Some are inked in Tangelo Twist while one is inked in Cajun Craze.  Always Artichoke stems were snipped out and adorned with Linen Thread bows. Of course, a little distressing was in order, so I used Soft Suede and a Sponge Dauber to ink the edges.
  • The colors of fall! A trio of Leaves, once again from the Fall Fest set, were inked in Hello Honey, Always Artichoke, and Cajun Craze.  The stems were camouflaged with pearls, and the edges were distressed like the pumpkins.
  • Hello fall! What a perfect sentiment for this challenge! I inked the Hello Fall sentiment from For All Things twice...once in Soft Suede and once in Cajun Craze.  I then cut out the Fall part and overlayed it.  In retrospect, I think I will re-do the sentiment and use Stampin' Write Markers and selectively ink. But as they say, "Hindsight is 20-20!"

The Muffy Chronicles

I am actually writing this post in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin where Muffy and I are staying while she attends the Kenosha Kennel Club dog show in Wilmot.  Muffy had a wonderful day in the ring Saturday, winning Best of Opposite, losing only to her half-brother, GR CH CH Happy's Tails Kit Kat Saves the Day and Stealsaheart, who won Best of Breed.  My guess is that the results will be the same for today...especially since Muffy was stung by a bee Thursday night.  Prednisone brought down the swelling on her face, but she still has a few hives.
However, she had so much fun at the show.  After she was done, we "meeted and greeted" people.  She is such a great ambassador for the Boxer breed.  Oh...and in case you ever wondered, she LOVES motels.  However, she is a pillow hog.  Seriously, you really need all FOUR pillows?
She always travels with her own sheet.  I never let her lay on the bed spreads at hotels.  I'm funny that way...and so is she.  She always waits for me to spread her sheet.

I hope you enjoyed today's card!  I am not happy with the sentiment, so I can't wait until I return home to change it.  I will be interested in knowing what you think? Won't you let me know in your comment today? Your comments are important to me.  And remember, if you ever have a question about the cards I create or the techniques I use, I am only an email away! Until next time...  

The Paper Players Design Team

Stamp Sets:  Fall Fest, For All Things, Gorgeous Grunge; Inks: Tangelo Twist, Cajun Craze, Always Artichoke, Hello Honey, Soft Suede; Card Stock: Very Vanilla, Always Artichoke, Cajun Craze; Tools: Big Shot, Woodgrain Textured Impressions Embossing Folder, Sponge Dauber, Paper Snips; Glitz and Glam: Linen Thread, Pearls Basic Jewels

Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Stamp Review Crew: Mosaic Madness Edition

Second post of the day...
Welcome back for another round of inspiration from the Stamp Review Crew This week we are featuring Mosaic Madness. I am #7 on the hop. You may have just left stop #6: my good friend, the incredibly talented Mike Funke. If so, you are in the right spot. 

I decided to create a quick and easy holiday card using this set, and I am thrilled with how it turned out. Doesn't it truly "sparkle"?  I hope you enjoy today's hop!

The Stampin' Schach Design Tips
This finished card measures 5-1/2" wide by 4-1/4" long.
  • Trio! Three identical Mosaics were inked in Lost Lagoon and stamped onto Whisper White card stock.  In the blink of an eye, they were punched out using the Mosaic Punch.  They were "popped" up on Stampin' Dimensionals against two banners created from All Is Calm Specialty Designer Paper and Dazzling Diamonds Glimmer Paper.  Of course, Rhinestones seemed to be the perfect embellishment.
  • Blinded by the light! Nothing says dazzling like Dazzling Diamonds Glimmer Paper.  The image panel was originally straight...but I decided to put it at a slant to really accentuate the dazzle!
  • Sparkle! With a card with "sparkle" as its theme, how could I not use the "Sparkle" sentiment from Good Greetings.  After a few Lost Lagoon speckles, courtesy of Gorgeous Grunge, and a single Rhinestone accent, the end result is a confection of sparkly delight!
I hope you enjoyed this quick and easy card.  You all know how tough it is for me to do something quick, so I hope you like the result.  If you would like to see another card made with this set, here is one from the archives:

Once again, it is quick and easy! Details about this card can be found HERE.

And finally, before you visit the uber-talented Beth Beard, #8 on our list,  won't you let me know which version of this card you like...Angled 

or Straight.  

If you get lost along the way, visit The Stamp Review Crew blog for a list of all of the hoppers!  Until next time...

Stamp Sets: Mosaic Madness, Glorious Grunge, Good Greetings; Ink:  Lost Lagoon;  Cardstock: Whisper White, Lost Lagoon; Specialty Paper: All is Calm, Dazzling Diamonds Glimmer Paper; Tools: Mosaic Punch, Hexagon Punch; Glitz and Glam: Rhinestones

Stippled Blossoms for The Paper Players

Happy Sunday everyone! It's time for a little Tic-Tac-Toe fun with The Paper Players.  I hope you have as much fun with this challenge as I did.  Although I was aiming for Patterned Paper, Ribbon, and Purple, I also ended up with Embossing, Green, and Birthday.  What fun! I hope you enjoy seeing my old friend, Stippled Blossoms, again!

The Stampin' Schach Design Tips
This finished card measures 4-1/4" wide by 5-1/2" long.
  • Purple! The Blossom was stamped in Blackberry Bliss, which was stamped off three times.  The stippling was done with "full-strength" Blackberry Bliss. The leaves were stamped in Old OliveOf course, Pearls were added to the centers.
  • Ribbon! A double bow was fashioned out of Blackberry Bliss Stitched Satin Ribbon, for a touch of elegance.
  • Birthday! The Birthday Wishes sentiment from Four You was inked in Blackberry Bliss and stamped onto Very Vanilla card stock.

Unfortunately I selected a Designer Paper which did not photograph well.  This happens to be Very Vanilla Dots from the Neutrals Backgrounds Designer Series Paper Stacks. I loved its creamy color against the Blackberry Bliss flowers.  In person, it is stunning. But the contrast between the dark purple and the light vanilla really did not agree with my camera. I started with my light tent then moved to the porch...

then to my neighbor's fence...

and on to the rickety bench...

and finally to the evergreen bush outside my front door...
only to decide that the first picture looked best.  Maybe one of these days I will learn to avoid using non-photogenic paper!

I hope you enjoyed today's card.  After looking at my photographic failures, I actually like it better after I removed the birthday sentiment. What about you? Won't you let me know in today's comment? Of course, if you have any questions about the cards I create or the techniques I use, I am only an email away.  Until next time...

(News Flash:  The next Lesson of the Month will be in September, after I return from Founder's Circle.  I am working on 113 swap cards, so I definitely have my hands full! Plus...September is Muffy's Month of Shows. It looks like Muffy and I will be doing some motel stamping!)

The Paper Players Design Team

Stamp Sets:  Stippled Blossoms, Four You; Inks:  Blackberry Bliss, Old Olive; Designer Series Paper: Neutrals Backgrounds Designer Paper Stack; Cardstock: Blackberry Bliss, Smoky Slate, Soft Sky, Very Vanilla; Tools: Big Shot, Ovals Collection Framelits, Woodgrain Textured Impressions Embossing Folder, Paper Snips, Stamp-a-ma-jig; Glitz and Glam: Pearls Basic Jewels, Blackberry Bliss Stitched Satin Ribbon;

Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Holiday Catalog is LIVE!

Here it is...the BEST Holiday Catalog ever!

If you would like your own paper copy of this catalog, and you do not have a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, please email me at! I would LOVE to be YOUR Stampin' Up! Pal.  Until next time...