Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Patterns & Textures: Layered Birthday Card

In preparation for our "Birthday Bash Blog Hop" coming this Friday, I've had birthday cards on the brain. I found a cute sketch over on Seize the Birthday, but I totally missed the deadline for linking up! Oh, well. I still ended up with a cute, colorful birthday card.

I love the patterns in this Summer Smooches DSP - and the colors!! The colors are just fantastic: Rich Razzleberry and Lucky Limeade. Add a quick cutout from the Labels Collection Framelits stamped with a "Bring on the Cake" phrase, and I was almost done. It just needed .... something. So I grabbed a clear Bitty Button and some Linen Thread, and voila! The card was complete.

Don't forget to come back for more Birthday inspiration during our Birthday Bash Blog Hop on Friday!

Card Details
Paper: Chocolate Chip Textured CS, Whisper White CS, Summer Smooches DSP
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Rich Razzleberry
Tools & Accessories: Labels Collection Framelits dies (Big Shot), Bitty Buttons, Linen Thread

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Hearts & Sparkles Notebook (and an announcement!)

During my impromptu Castle & Cards night last week, I wanted to make something Valentine-themed, and I had a few of these mini notebooks left over from my Christmas card  classes. So I flipped through my stash of DSP and found this adorable pink argyle pattern and my silver glimmer paper. Perfect! Combined with the Fashionable Hearts Embosslits and a simple, artistic phrase from the Word Play set, this makes such a great little notebook to write in -- whether you're writing love notes or making a grocery list!

And an Announcement! 

This Friday, my group of Stampin' Up! demonstrators is doing its next monthly blog hop. We're doing a "Birthday Bash" theme, and we have a ton of great ideas lined up for you to enjoy! Be sure to check back on Friday to see what we came up with!

Notebook Details
Notebook: From Target; pack of 2 for $1 -- what a deal! (not at all sponsored by Target - I just really love that store!)
Paper: Patio Party DSP, Silver Glimmer Paper, Very Vanila & Crumb Cake CS
Ink: Crumb Cake, Melon Mambo Stampin' Write© Marker (Primrose Petals would have been a better match, but Melon Mambo is what I had)
Tools: Fashionable Hearts Embosslits, 3/16" Corner Rounder punch, SNAIL adhesive, Dimensionals

Monday, January 28, 2013

Feeling Sentimental - Showing off Fun New Products

January is coming to a close, and that means it's time for Sale-a-Bration! Stampin' Up! is offering some pretty stinkin' awesome products for FREE during this promotion, so be sure you don't miss out! (See here for more info on how you can earn these awesomely free products.) So, to whet your appetite just a bit, I've created a few fun sample cards with some of the new stamp sets & tools, and I'll be posting about them over the next few days.

My favorite set from the SAB pickings is this one: Feeling Sentimental. It's such a great, general-use set with a gorgeous "vintage sketch" art style. I love how it looks stamped in black or brown, or colored in. It's a little hard to see here (enlarge the picture to see better), but I've added  a little tiny rhinestone in the center of the Ferris wheel. A tiny silver brad would also look great. I love that it adds just a little touch of "something special" without drawing attention away from the art itself.  And the "Celebrate" sentiment stamp? Love it! It's perfect for so many occasions!

The background texture is from the Honeycomb Textured Embossing Folder (from the Spring Catalog) and it's such a great compliment to the image and banner on this card. Definitely one I'm adding to my next order! (I borrowed it from my good friend Julie to make this card. She's so nice about letting me mooch off her! haha).

I haven't quite decided what I'm going to use this card for, but it might end up being one of the birthday cards (or even a general "hello" card) I send out during the Month of Letters challenge, which starts this week! Yay! I'm definitely looking forward to (I hope) getting some fun mail to look forward to, rather than just bills and ads.

There was another card I made with this set, but it's kind of supposed to be a surprise for one of my best friends. See, she's a huge Doctor Who fan, and this Feeling Sentimental stamp set happens to have an image that looks like a call box -- or a police box, if you're a Whovian. So I made this Doctor Who card with her & her husband specifically in mind and I don't want to ruin the surprise! I'll post pictures soon, though, don't worry!

What stamp sets or other products are you most wanting from the Sale-a-Bration list? So many good options! You can't go wrong no matter what you pick.

Card Details
Paper: Crumb Cake, Cherry Cobbler, Very Vanilla CS
Ink: Black StazOn 
Stamps & Tools: Feeling Sentimental stamp set (from SAB), Honeycomb Textured Impressions Embossing Folder (for the Big Shot), Basic Jewels Rhinestones; dimensionals & Snail adhesive, as usual

Sunday, January 27, 2013

FMS70 - Happy Birthday!

This last week, I had planned a Valentine-themed card class. It turned out to be a total FLOP! Only one person came (my neighbor), so it really just turned into us watching Castle and making whatever sounded good -- so I guess it wasn't a total flop; I still got cards made. Anyway, during this impromptu Castle & Cards night, I decided to take a stab at this week's Freshly Made Sketches challenge.

So, knowing that I have a lot of birthdays coming up, I decided to make a birthday card. It started out as a more masculine card, but once I found that gorgeous Daffodil Delight DSP and punched it with the large scallop circle, I knew my delusions of masculine card crafting were out the window. In the end, though, it didn't turn out too girly, I think. (Right? Tell me if I'm crazy.)

It's a little hard to tell from the angle in this photo, but I (once again) decided to make the banner "wave" by curling it a bit. The ends stick up off the card, and the center of the banner is raised as well.I love the dimension and movement such a simple little trick can give a card!

The layout, like I mentioned earlier, came from FMS70. Here's their sketch:
I love the butterfly! And I was pretty tempted to use it, except that I was going for a more masculine look, and evidently butterflies aren't masculine. (I guess that's something they can't fix!)

Card Details
Paper: Soft Suede, Cherry Cobbler, Whisper White CS; International Bazaar DSP
Ink: Soft Suede; Daffodil Delight & Cherry Cobbler Stampin' Write© Markers 
Stamp Sets: Bring on the Cake
Tools & Accessories: Perfect Polka Dots Textured Embossing Folder, Large Scallop Circle punch, Paper Snips (scissors), Dimensionals, SNAIL Adhesive.

Monday, January 21, 2013

3 Challenges!

Hello, all. Today is a day of multiple blog posts, so make sure to catch them all! I've already posted about Sale-A-Bration -- which starts tomorrow!! -- so make sure to get the details. Later this week, I should be posting about at least one other card -- a sneak peak for Valentine's Day. Then with this post, I'm proud to show off a card I made over the weekend combining THREE different card challenges! I Think that's a record for me!

Ta-da! I love it. Here's the info:

Colors come courtesy of The Fab Friday (Fab Fri 10) challenge: 
I used the Cherry Cobbler, Pool Party, Very Vanilla, and Crumb Cake. As you may remember, I don't really like pink and red together very often, so I decided to leave the pink out, though in this color scheme it would have worked. I just think it would have been too much for this little card to handle.

The layout comes from this week's Create with Connie and Mary challenge (CCMC235) - a sketch! 

As you can see, I've flipped the sketch around a bit,
and used a banner instead of a bow. Great layout!

And finally, the theme comes from this week's Friday Mashup (FM93): "Make a Wish!" The challenge was:
  1. Make a project with a "Birthday Theme."
  2. Or Make a project using "Brads."
  3. Or "Mash it Up" and create a "Birthday project with some brads."

As you can see, I chose the third option and used the itty bitty tiny Silver Mini Brads to add delightful touches. 

And once again -- again! -- my "Butterflies fix everything" motto came through. The silhouette flowers needed a pop of color, and I needed to tie in the gorgeous Pool Party seam binding ribbon (isn't it fantastic?!). So out came the Beautiful Wings Embosslit yet again to save the day! Aren't they just the perfect touch on this lovely birthday card?

Card Details
Cardstock: Very Vanilla, Cherry Cobbler, Crumb Cake
Ink: Crumb Cake, Pool Party (including sponged onto the Very Vanilla butterflies)
Accessories: Silver Mini Brads, Pool Party Seam Binding ribbon, Glue Dots
Stamp Sets: Teeny Tiny Wishes, Just Believe
Tools: Big Shot, Beautiful Wings Embosslits, 3/16" Corner punch, 1/16" Circle Handheld punch (for making holes for brads), Stamp-a-majig (to line up the saying on the banner)


It's time for Stampin' Up!'s BIGGEST promotion of the year! Sale-a-Bration starts tomorrow, January 22, 2013.  And there are three amazing ways to PARTY during this annual celebration!

At your party, you'll get to:
  • create fun, beautiful projects to show off to your friends (or on Pinterest)
  • earn fabulous freebies
  • enjoy time with friends
Once you have gathered your friends, you will:
  • get a free pack of Silver Glimmer Paper AND $25 hostess dollars! (with a qualifying party order)
If you invite even MORE friends:
  • get free pack of Silver Glimmer Paper AND $65 hostess spending dollars AND free Sale-A-Bration product bundle AND 50% off any full priced item! (with a qualifying party order)

Do you have a wish list?  If not, go here to get one started!
  • For EVERY $50 you spend, you receive one FREE product from the Sale-A-Bration catalog!

What you'll get when you join my SU! team during SAB:
  • 25% more free product in your COMPLETELY customizable kit.  (That means $156.50 worth of product for on $99!)
  • 20% off all product -- all the time!
  • Access to Stampin' Success -- the exclusive Demonstrator magazine
  • Opportunity to pre-order items before they are released to the public.

Contact me today to host, shop, or join!

Monday, January 14, 2013

"Hello Baby" Card - Subtles collection colors for FMS #68

It seems like everyone I know is pregnant right now! Seriously, in the last 3 weeks, I've found out at least 9 people are pregnant. Maybe it's just because I'm in that early-to-mid-20's age group in the Provo area, but wow, are there a lot of babies showing up on my Facebook news feed! So chances are, soon enough I'm going to need a lot of "Welcome, Baby!" cards for my friends and neighbors. With this in mind (and kind of being inspired by this week's Dynamic Duo pastel color combo), I decided to start building my stash with this sketch challenge card:

Close-up of the cute details on this card:
Subtles Collection Designer buttons, a "hello baby" banner,
Edgelits design, and a bitty bow on the rattle.

This is possibly the first time I've taken a sketch so literally. No, really, check out the sketch provided by Freshly Made Sketches this week:

With such a great layout, how could I go wrong? As soon as I saw the sketch, I knew that I wanted to use my Button Buddies set to fill that blue space, and some buttons (of course) for the details to the left. So I set to work (again at 11 pm.... that really needs to stop!) and came up with my adorable card a little while later. I love the soft color combo, and the polka-dot background (thanks to the textured embossing folder for the Big Shot) is such a cute addition, too! Overall, I'm very happy with this card -- and it goes back to the bolder, cleaner style that I used to stamp (like this post here).

Now to find out which of my friends is having a girl....

Card Details:
Paper: Crumb Cake, Soft Suede, Pretty in Pink, So Saffron, and Whisper White CS
Stamps: Button Buddies, Pennant Parade
Ink: Pretty in Pink, Soft Suede 
Accessories & Tools: Subtles Collection Designer Buttons, 3/16" Corner punch, Finishing Touches Edgelits (Big Shot),
     Perfect Polka Dots Textured Embossing Folder (Big Shot), Linen Thread, Glue Dots, Dimensionals

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Paper Pumpkin -- Your personal "Fairy Creativity Godmother"

Click image to visit!

Introducing Paper Pumpkin

Starting Monday, January 14th: Paper Pumpkin comes to your door each month (a fully decked-out creativity carriage) that will help you to escape your life with some paper fun. It comes in a sweet box, but you'll really love what you find on the inside: All the stamps, ink, paper, and accessories to create fun, Pin-able projects. Create things like cards, journals, decor,  and more! Paper Pumpkin by Stampin' Up! is a new monthly kit program that anyone (even you) can enjoy!

 It's so easy to get started.   

A Paper Pumpkin membership is $19.95 per month (and shipping is included!).Simply sign up for the program starting Monday, January 14 by visiting (or click on the button in my sidebar) and click Get it. Every month, a new surprise project kit arrives at your doorstep. Just think of the anticipation of creating a fun project to pin, showoff, and share with your friends and family every month! You're automatically set up on an auto-renew system, but you can cancel or even just skip a month at any time.

Contact me, Michelle Stoll, if you have any questions, and don't forget to choose me as your demonstrator!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Sketch & Colors

Tonight, I held my first of what (I hope) will be a monthly tradition - an "open stamp night." I put on a movie, got out my stamp stuff, and invited anyone who wanted to come to join me. I had my eye on a couple of sketches to get my creative juices flowing, and this was the (rather bold) result:

The bold color combo isn't something I'd usually go for, but this week's Dynamic Duo's color challenge picked Melon Mambo and Island Indigo. (Those color names just make you want to dance, don't they? ... No? Just me, then. Okay.) The colors are great together, and I decided to just jump in with both feet and go all-out with them. 

The layout comes courtesy of Retro Sketches (told you I love their sketches, so expect to keep seeing them!). Retro Sketches #45 is just a nice simple plaque-and-banner layout, so the Memorable Moments stamp set was a perfect match! I needed a little something to embellish with, and once again, butterflies fixed everything. Add in some little pearls on the Melon Mambo butterflies, and we were good to go.

This is my favorite little detail: one of the Embosslits butterflies
embossed with Melon Mambo flowery swirls.

I was really happy with how this card turned out. The layout, the trail of fluttering butterflies, the circle-covered background, and especially the colors. What are some of your favorite color combos?

Card Details
Stamps: Memorable Moments, Tiny Tags (butterfly detail)
Colors: Melon Mambo CS, Island Indigo (from Summer Smooches DSP), Whisper White CS
Tools & Accessories: Labels Collection Framelits, Beautiful Wings Embosslit, Basic Pearls, Melon Mambo Embossing Powder (with VersaMark ink)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

CCMC233 - Butterflies fix everything

Recently, I've been getting bursts of creative energy around 11:00 at night. While I love it when I actually feel creative, it could definitely come at a more convenient hour. Here's my latest midnight creation:

I based my card on this week's Create with Connie and Mary sketch challenge (CCMC233). Their layout is fun and inspired all sorts of fun ideas. Here's the sketch:

After looking through my stash of stamp sets, I decided (once again) to go with the Everything Eleanor set, and the words from My Friend seemed to fit well with the swirly elements. I got the panels and the green stripe in place, and got the little banner placed just so, and it looked AWFUL! It was totally bland and boring and not at all cohesive.

It needed something to tie in the Old Olive from the "Hello" stripe. Something small and cute, something that fit with the swirly elements going on in the background. But what? I thought of using the bird from the Everything Eleanor set, but it just looked funny wherever I placed it. So I dug through my supplies and tools, and I found my Beautiful Butterflies Embosslit. Aha! Eureka! I cut some cute little butterflies out of Old Olive cardstock, found the one that was the best size for this card, and added a little touch of a pearl in the middle. I love the way the Old Olive with the pearl just ties everything together and makes the whole card make more sense.

What are some of your favorite ways to tie a color scheme together? Buttons? Die cuts? Ribbons, jewels, or other "bling"?

Card Details:
Stamps: My Friend, Everything Eleanor
Ink: Soft Suede
Paper: Old Olive, Soft Suede, Crumb Cake, and Very Vanilla CS
Tools & Accessories: Finishing Touches Edgelits, Beautiful Wings Embosslits, Dimensionals, Basic Pearls

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Hello, My Friend -- FM91

Today, I wanted to create. I sat down at my craft space (aka: my coffee table), stared at the blank paper in front of me, and thought, I got nothin'. I'm drawing a total blank! So I took a tip from my friend Julie and found a sketch challenge to get my brain flowing. Enter: The Friday Mashup (check it out here: FM91). Here's the challenge:

Here is the "Mashup" Challenge:
  1. Make a project using the "Sketch."
  2. Or Make a project featuring "Hearts."
  3. Or "Mash it Up" and create a project using the "Sketch and Hearts."

So, after a brief brainstorming session -- and some fantastic arrangement advice from my husband -- this is what I came up with:

Isn't it adorable? I love how clean and simple this card is. The colors are some of my favorite that SU! has to offer: Old Olive, Rich Razzleberry, and Melon Mambo (all from the Brights collection). Throw in some great neutrals (Soft Suede and Crumb Cake) and you get a nice, balanced color scheme. I got the main images all laid out following the sketch challenge, then realized that the background was missing something -- especially that upper right-hand corner. So I took the second element of the Mashup -- hearts -- and decided to try a trio of cute little clear, heart-shaped Bitty Buttons to fill it in. Ahh, just what it needed!

I was really happy to get back into this style of design -- bold colors, solid images, clean lines. I've been loving the vintage look lately, but it's always nice to know I can come back to different styles, too. What's your favorite style when it comes to crafting? Are you more vintage? Bright and cutesy? Over-the-top dramatic? Or a little bit of everything?

Card Details
Paper: Crumb Cake (base), Rich Razzleberry, Whisper White, and Old Olive CS. Brights Collection DSP.
Stamps: My Friend, Button Buddies
Ink: Melon Mambo, Soft Suede, Rich Razzleberry
Accessories: clear Bitty Buttons

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Memorable Moments & a color challenge

This week, I decided to try a new kind of challenge: a color challenge! Instead of being given a sketch or an inspiration photo, you're given a set of colors to make your project with. Here's what I came up with!

 I chose the Create with Connie & Mary challenge (CCMC232), and they gave me these gorgeous colors to work with:

Most people in this challenge made wintry, snowflake cards, but I'm pretty much done with snow. (Unfortunately, Utah doesn't agree with me on that! We've gotten SO MUCH SNOW this last week, and it's only the beginning of winter!) So I decided that I wanted to make something beautiful and elegant and not at all winter-related. The numbers on this one are only put on there temporarily, until I decide whose birthday this is for. Then I'll go back and stamp the appropriate number in this gorgeous Pool Party color and attach them.

Card Details:
Stamps: Memorable Moments
Ink: Black StazOn permanent ink, Pool Party
Paper: Pool Party CS, Whisper White CS, Silver Glimmer Paper
Tools & Accessories: Manhattan Flower Textured Impressions Embossing Folder, Labels Collection Framelits, Bitty Banner Framelits, Vintage Faceted Designer buttons

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

"Love is in the Air" Blog Hop (and RS#44)


Welcome to 2013! And welcome to our second monthly Blog Hop! We've chosen for our theme "Love is In the Air" and were told to just run with it. So here's what I came up with -- an elegant card perfect for Valentines Day, or just because you care:

Now, I have to give a little background. I don't really "do" Valentine's Day. It just isn't my thing. I don't particularly like the over-the-top romantic gestures, and I really am not a fan of pinks and reds and whites being thrown all over the place (not my favorite color combo). So when our group of Demonstrators decided to go with what first struck me as a VERY "Valentine's Day" theme, I was a little worried that I wouldn't like my project or that it would feel too "forced" or even too "cutesy."

But I love this card! I was inspired on the color palette by this card by Amy White. In fact, I set out to pretty much replicate her card - it's just so cute! But then I realized: Oh yeah, I don't really "do" the whole Valentine's thing. Which meant I didn't have any heart stamps, or any lovey-dovey stamp phrases, or even a heart-shaped punch! So instead of CASE-ing her card (Create And Share Everything--stampin' up lingo for ya), I took her idea and made it my own -- combined with this week's Retro Sketch Challenge. And the result is a card that I absolutely LOVE!

This week's Retro Sketch layout.
I just did mine sideways and flipped horizontally.

Be sure to check out the rest of our "Love is In the Air" blog hop! 

Hop Back: Julie Davidse 
Hop Forward: Kris Kilkenny

Thanks for visiting my blog! Feel free to stay awhile and check things out. As always, I love comments, so let me know what you think of my card and the blog hop!