Archive for March, 2008


Jack of all trades C.C. Designs peek #3

Mar 31, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards, Home decor/3-D items, Tutorials

OOPS! I posted this early by mistake! OH WELL!

handyman-set.jpg My Handyman!

Now is this set not adorable??? I believe he is called Jack of all trades! He is being released by C.C. Designs on the 4th.

I so needed another cool guy set! I LOVE cutesy. You can’t have a cutesy handyman without a tool box right? I  love making boxes and gift items-with cards to match. I had SO MUCH FUN making this tool box :D It was perfect with my handmade hammer accessory, and my cool Lowe’s gift card holder tin. I almost altered that, but liked it as is.

Here is a close up

handyman-special-tool-box.jpg Handyman tool box

How cute would it be for your kids to decorate one for their dad? They can make/buy what they think should go inside of it?

 There is also a lined background coming out with this release and I used it on my toolbox. Can you see it? I stamped it in Walnut ink. I also used my Tim Holtz distress inks (my faves are linen, tea dye and walnut), and randomly rubbed them side to side on this for a woodgrain look. Added some screw style brads for that added “look” of a real tool box. I liked the pencil handle for a more handyman feel. The measuring tape ribbon was another cute touch.

I created the hammer just for FUN, as another thing to add to the box. It’s good size. Made with some punches. No biggie.

I made the tool box using a 8 1/2 X 11 sheet of Kraft cardstock.

Here is the template below-CLICK IT TO ENLARGE. Keep in mind Im NOT a pro making this-is just a little guideline to help you a bit, if you need a more visual idea. NOT a print and cut template!

Im no Paint Shop wizard. I recommend making any template with copy paper FIRST, that way you can work out any kink’s or question’s you may have. If you get it perfect first time, then you have a real template to reference in the future :D

THIS IS FOR PERSONAL USE ONLY PLEASE :D No contest or publication submissions.

tool-box.JPG

Directions:

1)Along the 11 inch side – score at 3 and 8. This will be the SIDE panels of your toolbox and will be LONGER than the front/back piece.

2) Along the 8 1/2 side – score at 2 and 6 1/2. This becomes the front of you tool box.

3) Trim along scored edges to center. In photo you will see a little extra left on either side of the 3 and 8 mark. That is so you have excess on your panels that adhere the ends together. Cut away the X’s-that is excess cardstock

4) Use tag corner punch on tool box sides. I also cut 2  pieces of cardstock 1 1/2 wide by 3 inches long. Use tag corner on those as well. Punch 2 holes large enough to fit a pencil through. Adhere to inner side panels-as seen in photo.

5) For front of box cut away from panel as you see fit. I just used my ruler and hobby blade for an even look.

Decorate as desired!

Now for the card :D

handyman-card.jpgMy Sexy Handyman

The little square at the top is suppose to be like blueprints. I stamped the bkgd going across, then up and down for a grid paper appearance. I then scribbled 1 2 3 4-for like steps in the project. Scribbled a picture too.

Just a fun card.

Well I hope you likey!

Thanks for checkin in with me here.

Till tomorrow.

Lauren

Butterfly-C.C Designs set prieview #2

Mar 31, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards

OK another “quickie” post for the new peek. Tomorrow I have another EASY template, so you won’t want to miss that :D

beautful-butterfly.jpg Beautiful butterfly

You know I LOVE butterflies. I have so many more ideas for this set, I hope I get time to implement them. Like I said my mojo was compromised in the creation of my first few samples, and time escaped me to make more “worthy” stuff. I did get BETTER, I promise!!!  We all have off days, and working with a headache, well just isn’t fun.

This is another peek at the butterfly set from C.C. Designs. It will be released on the 4th. The DT made a bunch of samples! PRETTY!!!!

You can enter to win a free set —->HERE<—-

The top card is paper pieced again using a slab by K & Co.

This next card is done using twinkling H20′s. You can’t tell much by the photo, but the 3D wings are very shimmery.

shimmery-butterfly.jpg Shimmery Butterfly

There is a Maya Road clear flower, and a Maya Road velvet flower in the corner.

Again both of these are very SIMPLE. Hope you like the new set.

Till tomorrow.

MFT Sketch 24 is Dino-Mite.

Mar 31, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards

Monday-HMMMM. Not fond of Monday. It’s a very busy day for me here. I dread getting everyone up, fed, teeth brushed, lunches packed, breakfast eaten, and all dressed in time for the bus, and ensuring they have all they need. After 2 days “off”, its always tough getting back into it. PLUS I always get to my coffee when it’s cold on Monday. NO FUN!!! Then it’s onto chores-dust, vacuum, dishes, laundry, feed/walk the dog….the list goes on. I am sure I am NOT alone in this. Weekend’s are just better cause Jay is home to pitch in. Did I say I don’t like Monday’s? :C

This week, I have so many new releases to share WOW! The first week of the month is alway’s crazy for me here. I’m still asking WHERE did March go? I really can’t believe it is the LAST day. Here in New England not a sign of Spring.

GOOD NEWS! My body is adjusting to lack of caffiene and my headaches are no more :D My mojo on the other hand is still not feeling so well.

OK back to the card stuff-sorry, you know how I just ramble on & on.

 This week I was determined to use an OLDIE-but GOODIE, amongst my new stuff.

If you didn’t know Cindy post’s a MFT Sketch challenge every week, on Monday. So I guess not EVERY aspect of Monday is awful right? You can find it by going into theMFT Forum on SCS. I rarely get to play, but I totally got it done this week! My take varied a little bit.

For you newbie stamper’s out there, as I have said before, the MORE sketches/challenges you participate in, the better you get!

Doing this week’s challenge gave me chance to use my first MFT set called Dino-Mite .

 dino-mite-day.jpg

 I so love this set. I can never just color the dino-I have to cuttlebug him, or paper piece him. I don’t know WHY, I just do. I think its more fun that way.

Dawn’s card inspired my circles on the bottom of this card. I {heart} her! She is just so great.

I used my super AWESOME Simple Alphabet by PTI, to spell the “happy” on my circles. They are the 3/4 size. The paper that inspired the colors-is by Scenic Route (love it). The metal charm was a Target find.

I’m missing some ribbon on this! I didn’t want to OVER do it, so I left it off. Poor naked card :C

Anyway I hope you like it. It was a fun sketch. Pretty simple.

OK I’ll return later with the C.C. Designs  peek, after my errands.

Till then!

Chickies- C.C. Designs set preview 1

Mar 30, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards

fashionably-late.jpg Fashionably late

Hey I promised I’d be back today to share a peek at the first of five sets releasing on the 4th from C.C. Designs. No chatter, cause I’m on a stamping mission!

If you want to see MORE samples- and enter to win a free set go—>HERE<—!

Cheery Chic

sunny-chic.jpg

All the paper in these samples are done using Scenic Route.

Paper flowers are a Punch a Bunch flower punch.

Sorry my MOJO is really not happy with me :C but the DT made some great things, so check it out.

I’ll be back tomorrow with another C.C. Designs peek, and the MFT Sketch Challenge, using an oldie but goodie set.

Till tomorrow

Lauren

Queen for a day

Mar 30, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards

ACK!!! It’s the 30th ALREADY?

OMW! I really need to kick it into high gear, and get my NEW Release peeks done! So many ideas, so little time. I have a few things done, just not all of it. Today is THE day to get it finished. You don’t realize how much NOT stamping for a week can set you back.

 I found a couple goodies on my shopping excursion-more to come! You can all be proud of yourselves-I talked with one of the workers at Stamping Memories  and she is WAY sold out of the Paper Garden books-and then some. I need to start charging advertising fee’s or something-or heck get a commision! Maybe even a credit! LOL!

I would LOVE to see what you do with your books/punches when you get them! Shoot me a link or an email.

Speaking of books I got another new book!! Oh wait till you see what I do with that :D There’s and added goodie to this one. SO EXCITING!!!

My mom’s b-day is the 8th so I have to get my hiney in gear for her gift, and I haven’t found the stuff I want to make the Wedding invites for my Aunt to be :C BLAH!!!!

Now onto the card for today-

mytime-queen-for-a-day.jpg Queen for a day

I had to create another card with my (Amber) Lily set (the Billy set is on sale today!!  and goin in my cart).

This is just like my little Queen. Adding all her little accessories is REALLY easy! Im quite impressed. Its like a super cool version of Paper Dolls. Please tell me you know what those are! LOL!

This is a “butterfly fairy princess”-per Amber’s request. I used the SU! Rub-on’s along the side, adding punched flowers for dimension. I then tied on the acetate tag, that is stamped with a set from SU! saying Queen for a day.

Now if YOU were Queen for a day-what would you do?

I would :

1) Sleep in past 8am

2) Have some home-made waffles with raspberry caramel sauce (from tastefully simple), and my steamin hot cup of coffee, IN SILENCE!

3) Have a shopping spree

4) Oh and get a massage, and pedicure.

5) Have a nice date with my hubby, followed by #6

6) Take the kids to see the light parade at night-like we saw at Disney world (if you go there this is a MUST see)

See nothing out of reach right? Love to hear your idea of a perfect day fit for a queen!

Well thanks for checkin in. I got to get inking. I hope to check in later with a peek at another C.C. Designs set :D

Till then

Lauren

Get sentimental. Saturday Sketch

Mar 29, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards, Saturday Sketch

sketch-42.JPG

Saturday Sketch time!

Well thanks for waiting. My camera batteries are all charged now! It always seems when I’m behind they DIE ON ME! I can’t believe we dont own another camera battery.

Sorry for my YUCK-O photos, I told you before my photo lightbulb broke and I cant find a new one. SO bummed.

C.C. Designs has 5 new sets coming out! They are being released on the 4th-with a new set previewing each day, starting on the 30th!

I got SPECIAL permission to use this card sample EARLY, for my sketch challenge today-THANKS Christine!

This is THE CUTEST Itzy Inkies birthday set  called : It’s My Birthday! I am in LOVE with this set. I think its my most favorite of her’s thus far-that is how much YOU NEED IT! If you love cutesy you’ll LOVE this set. I also like that it is gender neutral! I can do boy/girl, depending on the colors I choose.

I actually whipped out 5 boy themed cards using it-with the color combo’s you all suggested in a previous post!

Many suggest red, and choc chip with a green or yellow! I found this ribbon in my stash of American Craft’s ribbon, and thought PERFECT!!

Laura Albertson suggested THIS SITE for inspiration of color combo’s! OMG! I think I spent an HOUR just in awe of it! You can bet Im going to visit regularly!

Here is the card sample

side-dots-celebrate.jpg Birthday Celebration!

Well MANY of you said that mixing colors and patterned paper was hard for you to do! Well I figured this sketch *may* help! Color blocking is a great way to add colors and patterns to your design.

Feel free to omit the circles if you like. I felt it added to the PARTY theme! I used different sizes, of punched circles for this one. I love how they were layered behind the image.

I also think MANY of us have sentiment’s that may go IN cards, that we rarely see or use! So take them out! That is the biggest challenge today!

This sentiment is from Papertrey’s Birthday Basic’s and It’s a Celebration

So I hope you like the sketch! Feel free to alter it to suit your needs.

If you do get the chance to play, send us a link in the comment’s section.

ONE MORE PEEK!!!!!

Here is the card Noah chose to give to his friend today, who will be 6! I gave him the choice between 5 different ones.

monkey-b-day.jpg

Is this not so ADOARBLE? He LOVED this monkey.

Another color combo suggestion from my very bestest blog readers-ever!!!

The card base is white, with a vellum layer that is embossed with the NEW! Number Collage folder. The sentiment was PERFECT!!! It is from Lizzie Anne’s —>High Hellos.

I got this paper from Paper Salon. How cute is that-with clouds and airplanes! I forgot I even had it!

Anyway-Im off to shop with Amber :D Yes, its a Saturday ritual for her and I. Gotta love a girl who likes to shop. This could be bad when she gets older.

Thanks for reading.

I’ll fill you in on any yummies I find OK!

Till tomorrow :D

Yes, I survived the preschool fieldtrip

Mar 28, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards, My family stuff

bag-inspired-card.jpg Celebrate a warm up

Oh what a day!

I edited the top of this before I printed it because I realized most of this, OK all of this is just BLAH- BLAH -BLAH about my last few days-feel free to skip it :C I go into quite the rant. Sorry to be a downer.

I so appreciate the concern from many of you, with me being absent today.  Long story-short, today the kids had no school due to more snow :C I think they will be in school through the summer if this keeps up-and I spent about 4 hours at the orthopedist with Alexa-who is now no longer going to be caring for MY daughter-ever again!

Yes I said a total of  4 hours!! With 3 kids! MISERY!!!!!!!!

He didn’t listen to me when I took her for her compalints of joint pain 2 years ago-which as you know turned out to be Leukemia, he said she was just complaining for nothing-despite my persisitence she NEVER complains, and something had to be wrong. Anyway today I realized my distaste for him wasn’t unjustified! He proved to be the same arrogant, and RUDE person I remembered.

I wont go any further, trust me.

Well I want to end today by saying thank you for all the concern and well wishes re: my headache’s. Each one hasn’t been a migraine, but pretty bad, for the most part.

Many mentioned caffeine-and cutting back. THIS IS KILLING ME.

You know what is funny (since that is typically true) I have cut down to ONE cup of coffee a day and increased my water intake. Im talking like 12 cups of h2o, in the bathroom every half hour. I am exhausted, and definitely withdrawing from it! LOL!

Im so exhausted.I have been exercising everyday as well. I am determined that by May 3rd-I will look and FEEL great. I have a goal and I know I can do it. I lost weight after Alexa, and Noah, and even Amber. So it will be WORK-saying NO to bad stuff, or just treating myself to a LITTLE bit, in place of a lot . Deprivation is NEVER a good idea, cause you eat EVERYTHING else to avoid that one little piece of whatever-only to then end up eatting that thing anyway!

Jason always say’s I’m perfect (as he should! LOL! ) but “I” want to be in SHAPE for ME! Plus I have more than a few pounds that crept up on me over the last few months that I want GONE. I only started Monday and already lost enough to NOT have to do a funny “squeeze into my jeans dance, because Ill be darned if Im going UP a size”! Today they went right on, no muffin top! LOL!

Its amazing what cutting back on sugar and soda will do-actually eatting breakfast, nothing past 7pm and and exercising can do!! I have a 20 min boxing video I love called Turbo Jam. You can lose 10 lbs and 10 inches in 10 days-seriously it works! BUT you will hurt in places you didn’t know you had!

As for the play place-it was AWESOME!! The kids I had in my group were great, and all of them were well behaved. It was actually fun. Now I want to take my own kids there. I told the teacher’s I want the same group, every field trip! LOL! It did totally wear me out and I attempted a nap after.

OK that was WAY long winded. Sorry!

I haven’t had much ambition to stamp due to my head aches, so tonight is SIMPLE!! A warm up card, since my mojo decided to go on vacation, without notifying me! So I apologize I got nothing earth shattering-till tomorrow.

I got inspired by a $1 gift bag from taget, and made this in like 5 minutes. Took longer to photograph.

The set is by Inkadinkadoo, and the celebrate you is from Simple Wishes by Papertrey Ink.

I do have a couple cards I made using suggestions for color combo’s from all of you!! YOU ALL ROCK! I printed all the comments so when I need a masculine combo!

So tomorrow-mid morning-Ill have my sketch posted, using a soon to be released set :D

Stay tuned-and thanks for listening to my rant-

Lauren

Pretty in Pink

Mar 27, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Cards

Well today will be a fast post. I had ANOTHER headache yesterday (grrrr) and got nothing done.

Today I’m off to a field trip with Amber’s Pre-school class (and bringing Noah because I would not be home in time to get him from school), to a play center, about 40 min away. I will be taking 3 extra kids.

I think in total there is like 25 kids. Now if that doesn’t SCREAM headache, I don’t know what does! LOL!I am going for the JUMBO coffee today at the Dunkin’s Drive thru! LOL! I am going to need the extra caffiene today

I have another GIRLY card for you.

I need to get out of girl mode, because Noah has a b-day party this weekend, and I want to make a card for him to bring.

THAT IS WHERE YOU COME IN!

I haven’t stamped hardly at all this week-so am looking forward to it. I got some new MFT (to be released stuff) and new C.C. Designs- WAITING patiently to be inked! YEAH!!! I think I may use of of C.C. Designs new-to be released sets for the card!

I would LOVE some cool  color combo options here, if you have a great idea for a boyish color combo!!

Leave me a comment and let me know! I’ll pick one from here and make a card to post for the Sat. Sketch!

I have another card to share with the Once Upon A Time set-How I LOVE that set! Do you know those Princess frames my friend made for the girls room’s were based off that image :D

Anyway here is my card.

pretty-pink-princess.jpg Pretty Pink Princess

This one I just focused in the pink!

I colored my Bridal Confetti sparkly flower with my makers. If you can see the outer embossed edge is a little darker. Love that look.

Well that is it-sorry, nothing earth shattering-so thanks for stopping by!!

Wish me luck on the field trip! YIKES!!

Lauren

Just like Strawberry Shortcake-gift tin

Mar 26, 2008 Author: mytime | Filed under: Home decor/3-D items

What’s in your tin?

That name reminds me of the “What’s in your wallet?” the Chase Credit card commercial. At least I think its Chase! LOL! Too funny.

Anyway, I only got Melanie’s- What’s in Your Tin II set, and am so wanting What’s in your Tin I. They really do go hand and hand. Im slapping myself on the forehead right now! SERIOUSLY!

Anyway-I love her set cause it got me using my GAJILLION Hinge tins I’ve had forever,and NOT used.

I am admitting I have issue’s with purchasing alterable’s in insane quantities for NO reason other than I panic if I use ONE! I know-its a disease.

Im now on the HUNT for cool things to put inside. YEAH!

Well yesterday at Target, I stumbled  upon some super cute Strawberry Shortcake goodies!

strawberry-shortcake-contents.jpg

Now if you don’t know, Amber is OBSESSED with Strawberry Shortcake-even more so with lipgloss and jewelry! I scored these items from the $1 section!! YEAH!! As well as about $60 of other $1 spot goodies.

I think these items really makes a great-”just because mommy is thinking of you” surprise! Dont you think?

I made the ring holder myself, using the Key tag punch, and slit punch!! Cute eh?

I had to decorate the tin to match-so keep reading!

OK now onto MORE fabulous finds.

Speaking of Amber…………….

amber-2.jpg Here she is- and if I could make Amber into a stamp set……………….

This is what she would look like —–>Dress Up Lily<——!

 I got this ROCKIN set from Pink Cat Studio. Is it not the cutest thing ever? OMG! I’m so in love.

So I ordered it like a week ago. She emailed me SHORTLY after, telling me when it was to ship. She told me it would take 2 weeks to get to me FROM Canada-to- New Hampshire-No big deal. I expected at least that. Well, let me tell you-7 Business days!!! THAT’S IT!!!

Her communication and service ROCK!!!! THANKS MELISSA!

Before she sent me the set I put in a note telling her that I loved the set, she looked like my 3yo daughter Amber, and blah, blah, blah……………..I went on to say I almost named her Lily! Which we ended up naming the cat instead-LOL!

Anyway, so my set arrives………….and READ the title!

ambers-set.jpg 

She printed Amber’s name on the set for me in place of Lily!!!

Amber saw it and thinks someone created a stamp to look like her! LOL! Is that not the sweetest little thing for the owner-Melissa, to do? I had NO idea, till Amber noticed it had her name! (Yes she is very observant and recognizes her name on anything, since we have to label all the girls stuff so we know what, belongs to who)

Anyway-I am a happy customer. I definitely recommend them.

Now onto the COVER of the tin!

I colored her to look like Strawberry Shortcake!

strawberry-shortcake-inspired-tin.jpg Not bad huh?

I wanted to have the words on the front, so I masked the rest of her body.

I think its way cute, and Amber will LOVE it!

The hair is all glitterfied! The paper is by Scenic Route, and was PERFECT!!! Who needs a Strawberry Shortcake stamp when I have this right?

I wasn’t expecting this to be my FIRST thing with this set, so I guess Ill have to play again today! You just never know where inspiration will hit from and when.

I love all the accessories she has too. I don’t know what to use NEXT!

Well that is all for today my friends.

Hope you enjoyed, and check out that company-they are also coming out with a “Billy” set that I see in my future!

Till tomorrow!

 Sorry this is SOOOOO late. Another migraine day.

Here is the WINNER!!!

Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:

104

Timestamp: 2008-03-25 23:47:51 UTC

104. LouAnne |

Lauren, your blog is the highlight of my day.
I get so many great ideas from you, and your sketches are alwys super.
I keep all your stuff together in a file, and go there whenever I need inspiration-WHICH IS ALWAYS!
Believe it or not, my biggest challenge is getting enough CS cut and folded, so that I can buckle down and get creating. I guess we’d have to call that LAZINESS, right????
I would LOVE to win this set, as most of my cards go to my church family, and I love to find new scripture stamps.
These would be wonderful for men as well as my lady friends.
Thanks for sharing so much of yourself with us.
Love, in crafting,
LouAnne

—————————————————————————————————–

Thanks LouAnne! I will email you for your address so Kelley can grace you with that beautiful stamp set.

In response to your comment’s about your own personal challenges-I decided to take the time to provide some advice or helpful hints, to the MANY  “challenges” you all face regarding stamping/creating.

Why ask you what your challenges were,  if I weren’t willing to help with some insight/advice right?

Well here are hopefully some solutions to the most common challenges. I am generalizing the responses, and chose the MOST common to answer.

This was done to be fun, and entertaining.

Let me know what you think, and if you have a problem/question you want answered.

Here we go from A-Z

———————————————————————————————————

All my stuff!

Many of you said you can’t keep track of what you have. You re- buy things you already own .

Now I too, as organized as I am , forget I have bought certain things, but have never double-bought anything! THANK GOODNESS.

When you have alot its easy to forget about a cool thing you got last year! I suggest you go through your stuff every 3 months. Thats what I do. It will also help you see what you DO have.

Make a note to remind yourself to use a certain embellishment.

Well I guess I don’t need to tell you to get organized! LOL! It really is worth the time.

I love clear tupperware bins! OR better yet ON SALE after Christmas storage!!!

I label mine and keep all my things separate! I know for some space is an issue, and that makes it really hard. Do what you can to keep things together!

Eyelets, brads and bling-each have their very own bin. That way if Im looking for something, its easy to find. Ribbon-all together

I also organize my stamps by company-StampinUp! MFT, C.C. Designs, Papertrey, ACWP, Rubber Romance, TCP, Lizzie Anne, Green Grass, Gina K………………whatever it may be-they are ALL together. Then I can quickly look through the company sets and assure I have or do not have something.

BOWS-I’m not happy with my bows-HELP!

WOW! So many of you have a hard time tying bows!!!

I always told my SU! customer’s “Feel the ribbon”. They use to crack up. But over time they “got it”. Don’t force the ribbon to tie in a way it doesn’t want to go.

OK I sound weird but its true.

Also when you make a knot or a bow, you want to pull the left side more, it will give you a flat knot. Often time you just have to mess with it.

For bows, if its not what I like, I pull the tails to loosen it up, I then re-tighten by pulling the ears, in attempt to perfect it.

PRACTICE! There are lots of “cheating methods” as well.

Like make a bow, and add it to the top of your strip of ribbon, with a glue dot! Or punch holes through your card layer and tie it through those.

LOTS and lots of cheats. Find what is best for you. Again PRACTICE.

COLORING-I can’t blend my copic’s, or watercolor well

I think this was the most common challenge!

OK the un-fortunate truth in this is you really have to PRACTICE!!!None of us got descent without alot of it. I do recommend you watch a video tutorial on a method YOU perfer, and just keep at it. Maybe take a class!

U-Tube has a ton too.

Google a search!!

I am challenged and don’t think my blog lets me load a video, like that. Not sure. I also don’t think I could figure it out if I tried! LOL! Maybe I should “google” that.

It really just takes time to get a feel.

I know I’m still practicing. Its a never ending work in progress! I’m OK with that.

COLORS-I am SO challenged when it comes to putting color together. I just don’t know what looks good.

Well if you like the colors in that patterned paper you are holding, why not use them in a card?

I make little “squares” of inspiration. (see photo below in- inspiration)

It helps me see what really looks good together, and I can reference it later, if I don’t use it!

The important thing to remember is use color in small doses. If one color is too over powering, add it in a smaller version.

Again, look at fabric, ad’s, and LIFE to pull color combo’s from. You would not believe the things that I get my inspiration from.

DECIDE! How do I decide when to use what color for stamping my main image?

This is a great question.

What she is saying is How do I know when to use say brown, or gray for the main image, in place of black.

Well I say, go with the colors you are choosing for your overall design, and how bold do you want thew image to be.

Brown is a nice choice when using vanilla card-stock for your base, or when there is no need for the main image to be stamped in black.

If you are using earthy tones, maybe you want a more subtle contrast in your main image.

Gray-I like to stamp in this color is I want a VERY soft look. Like when I did my Baby Onesie cards. Black ink would be too BOLD.

Black is not the only option, so just be open to it.

If you aren’t sure what color your image would look best in-use some scrap to test it out! Its fun to mix it up every now and then.

EMBOSSING! I have such a hard time when I use embossing powder. It makes spots all over my paper.

First make sure you are using a moist ink. If your ink is drying out then the powder won’t stick well!

It sounds like you need a little thing called an Embossing Buddy! This is a little powder filled pouch that takes the static off you paper.

You rub your card-stock FIRST. Stamp with your ink of choice, apply powder, tap off excess, then emboss away.

Brush off excess powder AFTER image is embossed and cooled.

To catch excess embossing powder I have a tray. You can use pretty much anything you want, but this works best for me. I just remove the nozzle stopper, and pour back into the container.

HINT: You can use a sock filled with cornstarch or a dryer sheet and it will work too.

When I emboss why does my paper discolor and warp?

That is EASY! You are holding your heat gun TOO close to your card-stock! Don’t hold it so close, and heat set with a small back and forth motion. Don’t keep the gun in one spot. That is when card-stock warps and over heats, causing color changes.

FINISH getting things done-I can’t ever finish a project. I have so many unfinished cards/projects.

HELP! I can get stuff Im suppose to done.

Well these 2 problems are one in the same.

DON’T move onto another project until you complete the first one! ONLY if this is a habit you have. Sometimes I stop in the middle cause I get another spark of creativity. But I always finish what I start. Sometimes I just jot down the next idea, then quickly finish up what I started.

MAKE A LIST! You need to stay focus if you have a lot to do, so write a list! Along with ideas for what you want to do!

Example

Make mom a b-day card by Tuesday using hummingbirds to go with the bird-feeder idea

Finish Lauren’s class party invites by Sat. I will do 3 each day. Need to be done by Friday.

This helps you stay focused and get it all done. It feels great to cross stuff off.

HOARDING! Help I can’t stop hoarding my stuff. How can I stop?

A little at a time! You bought this stuff to use it right? What good is it doing in a box in your stamp room?

When I LOVE buy 2 or more :D Then you have enough to use some of it.

IDEAS-I have great ideas, but when it comes time to stamp I have no creativity left!

I said it before, I’ll say it again-carry a notebook! They sell CHEAP ones, everywhere! I even take photos with my phone if I really want to remember details! LOL! I really don’t care if I look crazy-in a way I am!

When you get an idea WRITE IT DOWN! I am constantly sketching layouts from commericals, color combo’s, ideas from a pattern I saw on some random woman’s skirt! 

sketch-book.jpg Here is a page from my sketch book (I know its messy but Im always letting it flow) You can also see how I get an idea for my colors. I made lots of little square swatches to test color combo’s I think up!! (this is what I was talking about in color’s section) Then if I don’t use it, I have an idea for another time.

Or take that magazine and book mark the page of inspiration.

Or if I just have a cool epiphany-jot it down!

Then when you DO go stamp, you have plenty of jumping off points.

That is how I get so much done.

JUNK ALL OVER MY DESK-I can never find anything I have stuff all over my desk.

Well I find this problem can be helped if you make the time to clean off your desk after each time you stamp.

It will also make you want to go back to stamp again because you aren’t dreading the mess you have to clear up after several inspirational stamping sessions. AND its like having a clean slate each time.

KEEP IT REAL!! Help I can’t do simple cards,  or I can’t use X images.

The important thing is you acknowdlege what you are/aren’t great at. No one is stellar at EVERYTHING.

Many of us have our limits. Some of you expressed  a hard time with a particular style, or area of stamping. You know what-its OK! Stay true to yourself! You have your own stlye, and things you like or are good at. Nothing wrong with that. Try to focus on the good.

I talked about my own struggles like this many times here, and I accept it.

I do like to try to step out of my comfort zone, but I am aware at what Im good at and what Im not.

That mean scrapbooking NOT HAPPENING, and I’m OK with that.

LINE UP! I can’t ever get my 2 step images to line up, or my sewing stitch stamps. What am I doing wrong? It’s very frustrating!

Well-the EASIEST stamps to line up are the clear acrylic/polymer one’s.

If you have a rubber set, then 2 step stamping, and faux stitching stamps will definitely be harder to line up.

You should use your Stamp-a-ma-jig (aka SAMJ)

This is a tool that allows you to line your stamp up on a clear sheet first. Once you determine WHERE you need your image to be, place the sheet down, then place SAMJ there, remove the plastic sheet, and stamp your image!

Perfect.

You can view the direction’s with your product. I find this extra step with the SAMJ, alleviates a lot of that frustration of attempting numerous times (or ruining a project) in attempt to line things up or place them where you need/want it.

MAKING 3D STUFF!! I can’t ever do any 3D items-how can I get started?

Well this was another area people seem challenged with.

They are often intimidated by 3D items.

DONT BE!!

I know there are SOOOOO many templates out there you can try. Some you can even purchase. I know I feature MANY here as well.

Print and follow the directions!

Dont “design” your 3D items first.

Use scrap, and do a rough one first.

Walk yourself through the directions FIRST! Once you feel you know/understand them, then concentrate on making your finished design.

If you get stuck start slowly from the begingin. Ask yourself WHY you are stuck.

If you need, to ask for help from the creator.

NEW STUFF!! I have too much new stuff or want too much new stuff! How can I be satisifued with what I already own?

OK if I ha the answer to this my husband would be so happy!

There is ONE thing I LOVE more than stamping, and that is SHOPPING for stamping supplies! :D

 IF you have come here, more than once, you realize you are talking to the QUEEN of NEED IT ALL!! BUT I do use what I have!

I’m sorry I can’t help you to NOT want it all. This is the wrong blog for you LOL!

But I admire all of you deeply.

OVER EMBELLISH! How do I know when to stop?

Well this is a personal thing again. Some people can embellish and layer like a pro. Other times it just is too much.

When in doubt- DON’T! Let it sit before you add something permanent. There is such a thing as too much, or a product taking up the focus of your card.

You can always attempt to add something without actually making it permanent.

Try a removable adhesive, or make it sit there while you go onto something else. When you are ready-take another look. If you don’t like it-remove it.

No harm done.

PATTERNED PAPER! Help Im PP challenged! I can’t ever use it, or mix patterns!

I was so surprised at how may people have this problem!

I say start by using it in small amounts. Paper piece things, or layer your image onto a PP piece instead of plain card-stock.

Put it behind a clear button or page pebble!

Make a box or envelop from the paper instead!

DON’T be afraid. Its just paper. You just need to play around.

Start small and as you get more comfortable work it on.

Remember mixing patterns isn’t that easy, so if its not for you, then hey-you are saving yourself some $$! LOL!

Try layering pattern’s together and see if you could make it work on a card.

ROAD BLOCK-

Many of you say that you often hit a road block. Then what?

Try a sketch challenge or color challenge. Or get inspired by ONE item. Maybe the pattern in your paper!

If you still feel STUCK-Step away and take a break. The LAST thing you should do is browse a gallery or blog. It can clutter your brain. Read a book or go through a magazine.

DON’T over think things, and do a “warm up card first.

SIZE of layers?

How do I know what size layers to cut?

Well for WOOD mounted stamps-I measure my wood block, and cut my piece for the stamped image that size! Its always perfect!

For a layer I add 1/4 inch to the measurement! Depending on how big/small you want your matt change that amount you add to the main layer. Just make sure you add the same to both cuts so it is even. For more layers continue to add!

CLEAR AS MUD?

EXAMPLE: image wood block 2 1/4 X 2 1/2 (that will be the size of the piece I am stamping on). Now a mat for that I would measure 2 1/2 X 2 3/4! You can now get perfect mats, every time! 

Another GREAT product is Layer Ease! Its 2 ruler’s the edges are grooved to be certain sizes. You adhere your main layer, to the mat you want, then take your ruler (with desired mat size) and push it against the layer. Then using a hobby badae cut a straigt and even mat.

I personally find it easier to just figure out HOW to use your paper cutter. But this is still a great tool

How do I get even/straight layers?

 You can use the Layer Ease

OR

Make sure the top of your paper is snug against to top of your cutter, and your paper doesn’t move as your slide your cutter across it.

Secure the paper with one hand, cut with the other.

Carefully layer the 2 pieces.

TIME-I don’t ever find the time to do any stamping!

 How can I find time. 

You literally have to schedule it in! Just like any other appointment!

First thing is first-

GET YOUR BUTT OFF THE COMPUTER (after you read my blog first of course :D ), CLEAN THE HOUSE LATER (like after dinner), THROW DINNER IN THE CROCK POT (or order it :D ), and STAMP!!!

Got kids? NAP TIME!!! OR, do an activity with them FIRST, then plan on an activity the kids can do while you stamp for an hour or two. maybe even a movie. Its good for them to have some free play time, and if you have spent time with them BEFORE you stamp they are more happy to let you do that.

PS Make sure they already have full drink cups, and a snack-it will save you another trip to help! LOL!

UN-ORIGINAL-I can’t seem to come up with my own layouts/ideas.

This was another BIG one.

Does it REALLY matter?

So, you got inspired by using someone’s sketch! You made it your own.

Did you have fun? Did it inspire another creation of make you enjoy your new X (insert new stamp set or product name)? Did it help you create something that will make someone else smile? That is all that matter’s.

Also the MORE you stamp, the more your OWN ideas will flow. AND even if they don’t, if stamping makes you happy, then that is why we all do it isn’t it?

It’s OK if you don’t re-invent the wheel. Some people’s brains just don’t go “out of the box”. That doesn’t mean they are less of a crafter.

Take pride in your hobby, and yourself. HAVE FUN!!

The more sketches you do and challenges the better you get. I swear!

V-Vigilance! OK NOT a question, but a word every crafter should know!

I think it takes this to excel, and learn.

Noun 1. vigilancevigilance – the process of paying close and continuous attention; “wakefulness, watchfulness, and bellicosity make a good hunter”; “vigilance is especially susceptible to fatigue”

alertness, watchfulness, wakefulness

attention – the faculty or power of mental concentration; “keeping track of all the details requires your complete attention”

jealousy- zealous vigilance; “cherish their official political freedom with fierce jealousy”-Paul Blanshard

2. vigilancevigilance – vigilant attentiveness; “he keeps a weather eye open for trouble”

weather eye, watchfulness

attentiveness – the trait of being observant and paying attention

WHERE to start?

Many of you asked WHERE do I get started?

Do I choose image, or paper first? Maybe ink, and ribbon.

There really is NO right answer. Don’t overwhelm yourself, and be free to switch gears.

Quite honestly that depends on what has inspired you, or what you have set out to do.

Do you have a card for an occassion to make, were you inspired by an outfit and you have a similar stamp?

“I” personally go by my mood and inspiration. Sometimes I just want to use X paper or X ribbon, and I build it from there. Sometimes I just got new stamps, so that is my starting point.

EXAMPLE: If I just bought a new set-say butterflies, then I KNOW that is what I want to use. Same goes for birthday card, get well…………….whatever you are doing. Be inspired by ONE thing-then build from there.

I then will say well, what color do I want my “butterfly”? Maybe I will then seek out some paper and matching ribbon.

Lay a few options out for yourself, to pick and choose.

Make sense?

X-:perience-Help I’m new and don’t know anything!

Well we have ALL been there! Don’t think you can’t do something because you are new! The ONLY downfall to being new, is you may not have a built up supply to do what you want.

Don’t be afraid to try, and keep at it till you get it.

If you don’t know something-LEARN!! Everything I know I had to LEARN a some point. I read the direction’s for things and use message boards/blogs to help with what I don’t know.

Ask questions! Another great way to find out info.

The MORE you stamp, the more you learn, the better you get. Just like with anything.

YUCK! My ink is running when I color it!

Why is it when I color my ink runs?

I just want to say if you are coloring the image-make sure it is a waterproof/permanent ink, that is appropriate for use with the medium you choose. If in doubt-do a test piece FIRST!!! 

AND make sure your ink is DRY before you test it.

I LOVE Palette ink, Adirondak ink, Brilliance graphite black, StazOn, and versafine. SU! Also has a permanent brown & black!

Z-Zip through projects. It seems like my cards/projects/ideas take forever to complete! Why can’t I just zip through them like some people?

Well this question takes me back to the above!

Sketch ideas, go in with a plan, have fun, be organized and the MORE you do something the better/quicker you get.

If you dont get to stamp regularly then Im not suprised it takes time to warm up or get an idea. Its not easy. I zip through stuff cause my brain is forever in stamp mode. When I don’t get to stamp for a week, you bet your rubbah, it takes me time to get back into gear.

BUT if you have a plan or sketch it will flow faster.

If you like the end result, and enjoyed doing it, then it doesn’t matter if if took 2 minutes, or two hours.

———————————————————————————————————

Well that is it for today! All this typing makes me want to go stamp!

As always, thanks for reading. I hope some of it was fun for you!

Till tomorrow! I hae another altered tin using a stamp from a SUPER cute company. ENABLER ALERT!!

My Etsy

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Owner/Designer of My Time Made Easy* My Timeless Templates © by Lauren Meader for Papertrey Ink* SCS Dirty Dozen-past* A Chemistry With Paper-past* All That Scraps-Senior Designer - past* Green Grass Stamps-past* Gina K -Stamps for a Cause guest designer* Lizzie Anne Designs - past* My Favorite Things-Senior Designer -past* Our Daily Bread Guest Designer-past* Papertrey Ink - past* Pink Cat Studio- past* Reporter for Craft Critque-past* Say it with Letter Guest Designer* Stampavie -past* Storage Ink & More Guest Designer* Team Member for Scor-Pal*Su Ink & More-Past* Unity Stamps-past* Smile Box Avaitor-past*Numerous guest designer positions

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