Monthly Archives: March 2010

Beginner Stamp Kit

Beginner Stamp Kit

Bonus Items In Beginner Stamp Kit

To see the items in the First Ever – Message In A Fold – Stamp Set, click on the photos to enlarge and get a better view of what you will receive.

This kit sells for $30.  The bonus items are things I have picked out especially for you as a Thank You for placing your order through Message In A Fold.  Also included for your $30 purchase is a DVD with full instructions in mounting the rubber stamp, cutting the paper into card size, scoring the paper to create the card, and step by step instructions to create four Birthday cards from this kit.

You can check out the items at my Stampin’ Up! website and see the actual cost of these items.  The DVD is not for sale at my Stampin’ Up! Website, nor anywhere else except through Message In A Fold.

This kit, along with my instructional video, will get you started in making cards for your family and friends.  The Whisper White card stock included in this kit is enough to make 80 cards.  There are envelopes in the kit to mail or hand deliver 40 cards so you will have plenty of material to work with.

Once you make your first few cards you will be well on your way to creating your own designs with the kit.  If you have other papers and inks in your stash, feel free to use them also in your creations.

These are the cards you will make in this kit by following along with the instructional video.  After you have made all four of these cards you can switch things up with all the techniques I show you to begin making your very own designs.

Stamp Off Technique

To get a larger view of this card, simply click on the photo to enlarge it.

Once you have gone through all the techniques I’ve shown you in this kit you can change the Birthday cakes from all black and gray to some black and some Summer Sun by using the Stamp Off Technique and the Marker To Image Technique you will learn.

Do you like glitter?  There is enough glitter to completely cover all of the four cards I show you how to make – and then some.  The 2-Way Glue Pen can handle all the glitter and glam you want to throw at the card.

Marker To Image Technique To see this card in more detail, just click on it.

This technique is called “Marker To Image”.  You will use the Summer Sun Stampin’ Write Marker to ink the Birthday cake and stamp your image.  Using the Black Classic ink you will make balloons out of the “Happy Birthday” sentiment.  Drawing ribbon tails with a black pen and the Summer Sun Stampin’ Write Marker, create the bow with the marker and you have a cute card that any young child would love to receive.

Watch the instructional video to learn this “Marker To Image” Technique.

Marker To Image Technique #2Click on this photo to see the details of this card.

Using the Black Classic Ink you will stamp the cake image approximately in the center of your card front.  Using the lid of the glitter container you will cover the stamped cake and stamp the “Happy Birthday” sentiment in Classic Black ink then follow that up with the Summer Sun Stampin’ Write Marker.

Full instructions are on the video.

Faux Ribbon Technique

Click on this photo to get a more detailed look at the “Faux Ribbon” on this card.

All of the instructions are included in the video.  Measuring and marking the placement of the cake in the lower right hand corner,  measuring and marking the placement of the sentiment, measuring and marking the placement of the “Faux Ribbon”, and finally the measuring and marking of the placement of the three cakes at the top.

Once again, after you complete all four of these techniques you will be able to design your own cards.  Want to do something different with this card?  Make the center cake at the top Summer Sun by using the Marker to Image technique.

This is just a starting place for you as a new stamper.  There is a limited amount of these kits so get yours today.  After you have mastered this one and are ready for a bit more detail and up your skills a bit, there is another set coming in the next couple weeks.  This one will be “Thank You” and you will be learning some new skills to get you going in the right direction.  You will be working with colored card stocks to add dimension to your cards.

The next kit will help get you on the way to having a stash of supplies at your disposal to get creative.

So, head on over to Message In A Fold today and place your order for this first kit.


Quilting Mini For A Friend

I am desperately trying to use up my older papers.  Family gifts are what these papers are being used on.  Beautiful papers, I don’t want to throw them out just because I’ve become a Stampin’ Up! demonstrator.  I may get in some trouble here, but I really like the way this came out.

I’ve used a mixture of fabric, paper, alcohol ink, glitter glue, chipboard pieces, brads, and way too many flowers.  The book won’t close because of all the flowers.

Quilting Friend's Mini Album

Vintage Labels (Stampin' Up), punches, and brads

A big paper clip

These are just a few of the pages in this book.  If you want to see the whole thing, tags, brads, stamping, and all then you can see it in this video I’ve put up.

This was really fun to make.  The chipboard vintage pieces I got from my local scrapbook store, and the vintage brads also.  The flowers and metal flower centers I got from my local craft/hobby store.  The dress trims are from my local fabric store.

If you want the stamp sets I used from Stampin’ Up!, they are:

Tiny Tags – #118091 (wood mount) and #118592 (clear mount),

Vintage Labels – #118392 (wood mount) and #119122 (clear mount).  These are in the Sale-A-Bration catalog and are free with a $50 purchase.  Time is running out on getting these.  You have until March 31, 2010 to get these.

Round Tab Punch #108340,

Scallop Circle Punch #109043

Curly Label Punch #112208

You can get these products at my Stampin’ Up! website and they will be shipped directly to your home.

This mini was so much fun to make.  Especially the flowers, even though I got a bit carried away with them.

Acetate, Acrylic, and Plexiglas

Scrapbook making, cards, and gift items continuously change.  As does the products used to alter these pieces.

Most any product you would apply to acetate, acrylic, or Plexiglas can be removed or cleaned up with a bit of elbow grease and alcohol.  Just plain rubbing alcohol from your pharmacy works wonders.

Because the surfaces of acetate and other plastics are non porous, inks of any type remain only because of surface tension, or some other scientific explanation.  Products, once applied, stick pretty good to these plastic items and are fairly durable and long lasting.  The things you can think of to put on these plastics to make them beautiful, colorful, and exciting are innumerable.

If you spend a couple hours watching YouTube videos of things people have created using acetate or acrylic can be a bit intimidating.  Especially if you are new to this crafting world.  The finished products displayed by the craft person can, and often does to me anyway, send you scurrying to your local craft/hobby store to give it a try.

Because acetate, acrylic, and Plexiglas are transparent any and all mistakes are visible from the front side and the back side.  There is no hiding boo boos on these.  This may be the number one factor a lot of crafters stay away from these items.

Well, let me coax you into giving these products a try.  Keep some rubbing alcohol on hand to fix any mistakes you make and just let your experimentation take flight.  I have a video showing just exactly how easy it is to work on these plastics.  If you don’t like what  you have done then just clean them up and start over again.  Acetate, acrylic, and Plexiglas are really forgiving.  Except if you take a lighter or torch (and not a flashlight) to them.

When you are cleaning up after having a bad go around with the heat embossing, keep in mind that a paint scraper will damage the surface of these plastics and leave scratch marks.  The green scraping pad on the backs of kitchen sponges will mar the surface also.  Just us alcohol and cotton balls or paper towels to rub at the product.  Some things come right off with the alcohol others need a bit of work to get the job done.   If you have a seriously huge mess on your hands from heat embossing, a product known as “Goo Gone” or “Goof Off” will take the heated embossing powders right off and won’t damage the plastic surface.  Just be aware that both of these products – Goof Off and Goo Gone – are highly flammable and they are skin and eye irritants.  As long as you work safely and smartly you will have excellent results.

In my video I’ve used alcohol inks, Staz-On ink, a Sharpie marker, and heat embossing.  You can watch as I apply each product to the plastic surfaces then you can watch as I remove these products easily and quickly.  So, don’t let your concern over making an unsightly mess stop you from enjoying acetate or acrylic in your crafting fun.  Go explore.

An Experiment In Homemade Glimmer Mist

Recently, I’ve seen lots – and I do mean lots – of videos on YouTube featuring a “Glimmer Mist” or a “Shimmer Mist” product being used on many things and in many ways.

Last week, during my trip to my local craft/hobby stores, I asked if “Tattered Angels Glimmer Mists” were available in each of three stores I went to.  Two of the major craft store personnel had never heard of the product and was sure their stores didn’t sell it.  The third store was out of the entire product line and it will be 10 days before they get more.

I follow RoxyCar11 on YouTube and seemed to remember a video she did on “Shimmer Paint” and another one on “Glimmer Mist”.  I did a Google search for anything to do with homemade Glimmer Mist and the results were not as many as I thought there would be.

I did find three blog entries on the subject.  One result is, another is, and the final one is  The recipes varied in their content as well as the “recipe” itself.

Well, getting a chance to play with some of my husband’s toys while he was away and wanting to see for myself how easy it is to make this stuff, I decided to just jump in and do it.  Please keep in mind, the “recipe” I used was for a 4 ounce bottle.  If you choose to do this with the “Mini Mister” bottles then the quantities of all products added to the water will be considerably less.  I can’t say how much less, but I would think it would be safe to say the shimmery powder you use will be cut in 1/2 from what I use in this experiment.

First attempt

The Glossy Accents was something I already had on hand.  I purchased the Liquitex Cerulean Blue Hue Ink and Pearl Ex from Hobby Lobby.  Information gathered from my three sources I read that Perfect Pearls has a “binder” in it that does not require any kind of glue agent added to the mix, while Pearl Ex does require a bit of a glue agent.  Just not as much as I used.

DO NOT USE THE AMOUNT OF GLOSSY ACCENTS I SPECIFY IN THE VIDEO.  I plugged up my sprayer something fierce and had to throw the whole thing away.

Well, that is what experimentation is all about anyway – isn’t it?  Finding what works and what is best to be left out.  You will never know until you try it.  While it worked, for a short time, I had some spectacular results.

Second AttemptFor my second try I used Faded Jeans Distress Ink and Perfect Pearls was added to the water I had in the spray bottle.

This worked well.  The bottle didn’t stop up, as it had with the Glossy Accents.  I thought the color would have been more dark since the Faded Jeans is a dye ink while the Liquitex Ink I used in the previous test is an acrylic base ink.

Now keep in mind all of the quantities were exactly the same in each experiment.  The only thing that might have been off just a bit was the amount of water in each bottle.  I tried to keep them all the same amount.

Third Attempt

For this one I used Scattered Straw Distress Ink and a gold colored Perfect Pearls along with the water.

The contents in the bottle, once “twirled” was beautiful.  The gold coloring of the water and the shimmer that was going on with the swirls was very eye catching.

Both of the Distress Inks are dye based and will stain your hands and clothing if you get any on you.  I’m sure that it would be safe to say that the Liquitex Acrylic based ink would also stain if you got any on you.  So take precautions when working with these inks.

Fourth AttemptI had to try this one over again.  This time with hairspray instead of Glossy Accents.

All of the amounts remained the same.  I just substituted the 1/8th teaspoon of hairspray for the dreaded Glossy Accents.  Results came out the same so I was not displeased.

This entire experiment cost me a total of $24.50 for the paper flowers, two bottles of Distress Ink, one bottle of Liquitex Ink, one bottle of Pearl Ex, and three empty bottles.  This comes to over $8 a bottle for the three tested here.  I have three bottles of ink I may never use again and I have a big bottle of Pearl Ex I, also, may never use again.  Was this experiment in DIY cost effective for me?  In my opinion – No.

I can purchase – right now – from another YouTuber named Roxyfur 4 bottles of already prepared and factory measured product in what looks like 6 ounce bottles for $27.  That comes to $6.75 a bottle as opposed to my over $8 a bottle DIY product.  When I purchase this from Roxyfur I don’t have left over product I don’t know what to do with and my color guessing game is solved in the already color coordinated packs she sells.

Okay, now for the comparison of Pearl Ex versus Perfect Pearls as applied to their paper flowers.

Pearl Ex, Liquitex, & Glossy Accents

Perfect Pearls, Faded Jeans Distress Ink

Perfect Pearls Gold, Scattered Straw Distress Ink

Pearl Ex, Liquitex Ink & Hairspray

As far as shimmer goes, the Pearl Ex is by far the most shimmery and I like the looks of the flowers more.

I may be keeping the Pearl Ex, ordering the Glimmer Mist from Roxyfur, and adding just a touch of the Pearl Ex to the spray I get from her.  Not sure what I’m going to be doing with the Distress Ink.  I do have one offer of a home for them in the comments of my video on this experiment, you can see it in Part 2 of this series.

Metal Embossed Die Cuts

Wednesday, while out on errands, I went to three of my local craft/hobby stores.  I was on a mission to find something that I could make in kit form for my Sister and some of her co-workers.  I did find a couple things, but I mostly got sidetracked.

I had a list, of sorts, and stuck strictly to the list.  That is until I came upon one store that was new to me, a real scrapbook store with an area for classes.  While I was browsing and walking the aisles I overheard a conversation between four women.  They were excitedly talking about a product they had been using.  Telling each other what they made with it, often giving tips on how they handled a particular technique.  Okay, I could not help myself.  I had to find out what they were talking about.  So I made my way to their aisle and peeked around the corner to see what they were huddled around.

Ten Seconds Studio puts out a line of metal sheets and tools for crafting.  My thoughts went back to a Summer School project I had to do that involved a bit of metal and embossing it with wooden tools.  That was not a pleasant experience for me.  I remember the simple flower pattern I was given along with the piece of metal approximately 3 inches square and a bit of carbon paper to transfer the design to the metal.

To make a long story short, I cut myself quit badly on the metal and was unable to turn my project in at the end of the week.  I failed the class.  Failing an art class is pretty hard to do unless a person is unruly and distractive, which I was not.

Anyway, back to Wednesday, as these women told about the success they were having with the product I thought I’d at least listen to what they were saying.  Mustering my courage I asked if the metal could be used with a Big Shot.  There was a chorus of unanimous “Yes”, then each one told of her experience with dies, texture plates, and embossing folders.  I got swept up in their enthusiasm.  Up to the register I went with my items, which now included a packet of the metal to test out at home.

Metal embossed die cuts

This is the result of my experimentation with the metal and Stampin’ Up! dies, embosslets, and impression folders.

I have a video on using this metal with Stampin’ Up! dies, embosslets, and impressions folders.

This metal is easily cut with scissors and paper trimmers.  Using this metal with the Top Note die was just as easy as using paper.  Clean cuts with no hang up at the points.

The embosslets popped right out.  The raised embossing was clean and crisp, no punctures through the metal.  I had one problem with the Beautiful Wings embosslet.  One of the butterflies did not cut all the way through the metal as the others had.  I did not want to take the chance of tearing it with all the pulling and prying I was doing so I just stopped.

I used a Snowflake Sizzlits die from the set of Stampin’ Up!  I had the same problem of getting the image cut cleanly through as I had with card stock.  I could have a faulty die.  It did take some work to get the snowflake released.  The results were a bit wonky and misshapen.

The most impressive, in my opinion, was the Manhattan Flower Impressions Folder used with the Top Note die.  That was amazing.  I used a foam core sanding block to sand off the paint from the embossed image.

As far as cost goes, I paid $9.99 for four sheets of this metal.  However, the ease of use and being able to cut it with scissors and my paper trimmer is a factor that makes the price not so dear.

According to the ladies, extolling the virtues of this metal, it can be stamped on with Staz-On ink, for those who like alcohol inks the results are stunning on the plain silver finish.  Flower dies or stamped images can be used on this metal.  It is easily manipulated to create the curves and folds of flowers or leaves.

This product can be added to your stash for card making, scrapbooks, or any other craft you pursue.

Anticipating Spring

I am so ready for Spring.  Flowers blooming, trees filling out with leaves, grass turning green, and butterflies.  Warmer weather, gentle rains, and unfortunately – tornadoes come with the Spring season here in Oklahoma.

Butterfly embellishments

I must confess.  I’ve been a bad girl.  I made a trip to Michael’s and Hobby Lobby today.  Leaving both stores with various products.  Among my purchases was alcohol ink.

I’ve seen many YouTube videos on using the alcohol ink and the items turned out quite beautiful.  So I grabbed a pack and came home to play with them.

I have a two-step stencil to create these butterflies in my stash of stuff.  I’ve been playing with it the last couple days with my Soft Subtles Stampin’ Write Markers.  On vellum they make pastel butterflies that turned out fairly good.  At least after the 15th attempt at making them even resemble butterflies since I could not get a handle on proper use of the stencil.  One of the things I tried was heat embossing since the marker remains wet longer on vellum than it would on standard card stock.  Pretty awful results I have to say.

It took four tries with the alcohol ink to begin getting decent results.  They got better each time I tried to be less heavy handed with the product.  I found that less product applied to a cotton ball, since I didn’t purchase the blending tool and felt pads, was the key to getting a good application.  The use of my Basic Black Stampin’ Write Marker brought out the real beauty of this butterfly and I was excited with the results.

A bit of Cosmo Glitter in places made these, already, beautiful butterflies more delightful.  I now have color stained fingers and nails, something I belatedly found out, and five absolutely beautiful butterflies.  These are now posted for sale in my Etsy shop.  All five butterflies are sold together in one set.

I may be in hot water with Stampin’ Up! but I’m immensely thrilled with these results.

“Dream” Wall Hanging

Now that you have taken a few hours, or a few days, to get your rubber stamps unmounted from the wooden blocks have you sighed a huge groan.  Or said “Now what do I do with all these blocks”?

As you look at the pile before you are you inspired or overwhelmed?  Are you caught between the desire to chuck them in the trash, head to your nearest recycling center, or are you eying your fireplace and wondering how much heat they will provide?

Can I be of some assistance?  Would I be able to get the dread out of  your  head and have the creative sparks pinging around in your brain?

DREAM Wall Hanging

I’ve used two of the wooden blocks and suspended them from a chipboard word with 1/4 inch grosgrain ribbon with small screw eyes.

I had to get my husband’s cordless drill and the smallest diameter drill bit I could find.  Once I determined the bit was spinning in the right direction – not reverse – I was able to drill a hole in the center of each block at the top.  I went in just deep enough for the screw eyes to fit snugly at the top of the block.

Chipboard word

One wood block

The other wood block

If you would like to see how I made this check out my video for this project.  If you would like to forgo the work involved and would like to have it now – well practically now – it is for sale at my Etsy Shop.

I will have another idea showing up in the next few days.  That power tool thing wasn’t too bad, I just might have to give it another try.