Wednesday, March 31, 2010

April Stamp of the Month Blog Hop

It's here!  A new month and a new stamp set!

This Flower Pot stamp set is sooo cute!  This card is a design I made up for a Stamp of the Month swap and I think it turned out so cute!! I used the Caboodle Level 2 paper pack with some Desert Sand Textured cardstock for the flower pot.  A few sparkles in my flowers added the finishing touch!

Now hop on over to  Laurie's    blog to see what she's created!  If you get lost along the hop- visit Helen's blog as I believe she has a list of swappers posted!

Want to order this set for yourself?  If you don't have your own consultant- feel free to place your order here.

Have any questions?  E-mail me here.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Studio J preview

I finally had a chance a little over a week ago to play with the new Close To My Heart Studio J on-line scrapbooking system. 
I was skeptical at first because I LOVE to papercraft with "real" supplies.  But you know what- it was pretty cool!  I had specifically planned to use our 2009 Halloween photos (I think those are the only Halloween photos I had left to scrapbook) because I knew that there was a special paper pack in Studio J perfect for Halloween that isn't available as a regular Close To My Heart item.  It was awesome!!  It took me about an hour to design my layout (having NEVER even gone to Studio J before!) and the best part- I designed it in such a way that I could use the same layout for my book and both my kid's books... so I designed one layout and ordered 3 copies!!  I'm planning my next foray into Studio J today- the consultant preview period ends tomorrow and I want to take advantage of the discount I can get through then!
Studio J Facts:
- Customers will be able to access it from my website sometime in April (date has not been released!)
-You do NOT pay for ANYTHING until you want something printed.  CTMH does the printing for you!  It's $12.95 a 2 page layout but you don't pay for software, or upgrades, or digital papers, or digital embellishments, or storage programs to save your digital supplies or... ANYTHING... 
- CTMH will be adding the new papers to the system 3 times a year
- The system is pre-loaded with many of the patterns in our "how to" books- giving you a "quick start"

Why use Studio J?  Well- of course it's not for everyone... but a nice feature is the "try before you buy".  Have some awesome photos and can't decide on a paper pack?  Upload a few photos and try them with a few paper packs to see which one you should order.  Another reason...  some of your favorite, retired paper packs will be available in Studio J (Not sure how many will be there when it goes "live" to you- but they will continue to add stuff)

By the way- I've received my printed layouts- and they are AWESOME- the colors are vibrant, the photos are sharp and I am very happy with the quality!  Plus they are printed with an archival ink and paper system that will give long lasting layouts you can be proud of!

***Please note...  Studio J does NOT work with Dial-up connections... sad to say that I have one of those so I take my laptop to Barnes and Noble to use their free Wi-Fi when I want to use a faster internet connection.***

Watch for more info as we find out when YOU get to try Studio J!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

making new memories....

yep... that's where I've been.  I disappeared after posting that last horrible photo that HAD to be posted because my club members were waiting for it.  Then I disappeared because I was getting everything together for my daughter's dance recital that took place last night (yes!  my Monday nights are free again :)  and then today we took a family trip to the Frederik Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids, MI to see the Butterflies in Bloom exhibit. 

My daughter had seen an ad in a Michigan travel brochure (yes we do live in Michigan- but we are big into staycations :) that showed the "big horse" sculpture at the Gardens and we promised a trip this weekend if the weather was decent... and it was BEAUTIFUL.  It was raining and cold at our home but just an hour north it was perfect weather for a day outside.
Here are a few photos from the gardens today... gorgeous!

I thought I'd better show a little better piece of art on this post since the last photo was so crappy... this is a fun "checkbook cover" that we made at the Spring Stamp and Scrap class that I taught with my downline.
Check back throughout the week as I give you a peek at the first Studio J layout that I created (the printed version is BEAUTIFUL!! I am quite pleased) as well as a preview of the April stamp of the month set!!
Thanks for stopping in.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Enjoy Every Moment

I'm catching up on projects I should have posted already :)  This is a club project from February and those that couldn't make it received their class kits this past weekend.  All of the Feb. projects had been posted except this one.

I just realized the small green band near the bottom is kind of washed out looking but with over 1200 photos on my camera card... I think I'll just post this one instead of taking a new picture!
This card was made using the Veranda paper pack, Crystal Blue, Sweet Leaf and White daisy cardstock, Noted Background Stamp and Enjoy Every Moment Stamps( the flower), Colored pencils, chocolate brads

The Noted Background stamp (particularly the stamp with words) was randomly stamped along the Crystal Blue with C. Blue ink- it barely shows but because I know it's there I can see it :)
The Sweet Leaf cardstock is sorta folded back onto itself and the folds are adhered to the cardstock and attached to the card front with adhesive before the brads are added.  I always build my card fronts completely before adding them to bases so my brads don't show through. 
This is one of those cards that would benefit from a photography "box" thingy for photo taking... I may have to buy one.  I've seen where you can make one yourself... but it's cardboard and doesn't fold- I think I want a "real" one since they fold down..   Well- that's it for now- I've got plenty more to show so come back soon!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A little bit of Easter...

wow... I'm usually the one posting holiday projects after the holiday is already over!  This month my clubs are making some Easter themed items.
These all use the Caboodle paper pack which I didn't really like at first... now though- It's one of my favorites!! Very girl AND boy friendly thanks to some fun bright colors.
The layout uses the Easter Egg stamp set and the Building block alphabet.  I added some fun Just Blooms flowers and some coordinating buttons.

This cute milk carton is made with CTMH supplies and a new Stampin Up die that I love!  You'll see that the treat container is very simple and made to go with the card below.  It's filled with yummy jelly beans.
The card and milk carton use the Springtime stamp set.  Those little chicks (are they ducks?) are so darn cute.  My Just Blooms flower is colored with the Sunkiss Yellow marker.  I had fun designing these cute projects- hope you like them!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

whew! another Stamp and Scrap class over!

I have to say... planning the Stamp and Scrap classes my downline and I put on is one of the things I love about getting 3 new Idea Books a year with Close To My Heart!  The ideas start rolling with my first glance through each new book!  Yesterday was the Spring 2010 installment of the class- and again- we ended the day with rave reviews!

Here are a few of the projects- I'll post more in the next week...
Pardon the lighting on my photos... I typically only have time to take photos late at night and the best area for taking photos surface wise... is the worst lighting in the house!!  Hopefully that will be addressed as I work on my basement over the coming months. 
This first project uses the new My Creations Journal (Z1268) , Topstitch Paper Pack (X7120B), Bitty Sparkles (Z1263), Irresistables Lots of Dots Color- Ready Alphabets (look at those awesome polka dot letters!!), Soft Suede Pinwheel Flowers (Z1270) and the fun new Tiny Tabs (Z1271). 
Details:  Place your color ready alphabet stickers on wax paper and sponge with ink to match your project (you can also use other methods of coloring...such as markers- I used my Chocolate Stamp Pad)
With the mini-tabs...   I pried off the cute epoxy stickers that came on the tabs- with a piercing tool.  I printed out my alphabet on printer paper using a CTMH Typewriter font and made them small enough that a standard hole punch will cut the entire letter grouping out.  I adhered the hole punched letters with Tombow adhesive and filled the tiny tab with Liquid Glass and allowed to dry- It created an epoxy style finish similar to the stickers that originally came in the tabs.

The next project used the same paper pack... It's a 2-page layout.  The title is "Moments to Cherish" and uses most of the same materials as the address book.  Also added in the mix are 2 white Just Blooms flowers from the Big Pink collection and 2 Antique Copper ribbon slides from the Antique Copper mini medley(Z1275).  The Lots of Dots stickers were originally sponged with Heavenly Blue ink but it seemed too light next to my flowers which were colored with the H. Blue marker... so I lightly went back over them with the Crystal Blue ink.  I didn't retake my photos after that but it was much better!    The pink strips threaded through the ribbon slides are Baby Pink cardstock cut in between 1/8 and 1/4 inch.

One thing I love about teaching classes is seeing what changes customers make to their projects.  One alternate use for this layout that I saw was in making it an Easter cute for that purpose!

All right- last project for today:  Happy "Bee" day
The Petite Perks stamp set was used to create this card but the sentiments didn't really do anything for me so I printed the sentiment using the CTMH font volume 2 CD.  The bee image is stamped once on the white torn panel and once on a scrap.  The "scrap" bee is colored with Creme Brulee marker and then prisma glitter on the wings and cut out.  The cut out bee is Pop dotted" over the uncolored image.  The sentiment is designed to look like a banner and is also pop dotted.  It makes a cite birthday card!  This paper is from the Veranda Level 2 pack.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Blog Update and some art

Well- I added a new blog header and changed some colors... a whole lotta green .... I am Irish you know! lol.
Here's a layout I made back at the weekend retreat I went to in January... I think it's finally the last one I photographed from the weekend.

All Supplies by CTMH except a couple stickers

Paper:  Boom di ada
Hollyhock ric rac
Big Pinks Just Blooms
corduroy brad from Autumn Mini Medley
Color Ready Alphabet Stickers.
Hope you are having a great weekend... I have sick kids... again!! Please Spring... come soon!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

My 2 kids

oh... how I love them!

I've been making a point to scrapbook more this year..  I've already scrapbooked more photos in 2010 than nearly all of 2009!  Both kids photos were taken last fall.

The lighting on the page to the right is pretty bad... had to shut the flash off for that one.
Colors:  Topiary, Desert Sand and White Daisy.  Used Topiary buttons for my flower centers.  Irresistables Lots O Dots alphabet stickers for the words (doesn't show well but the stickers are embossed with polka dots that show up when you sponge ink onto them.  The white photo corners on Kaden's photo are rub-ons.  All supplies by CTMH.