Stamping Tips

Totally Gold Card with a Unique Background

I need to create a wedding card and found I didn't have a background that I liked so I created a Totally Gold Card with a Unique's the card. Note: I know the photography is was the best I could do with all that shine and sparkle!Butterfly in gold1

Do you recognize the background? Bet not! The fun part of this background is that I did it about 4 times and each time it had it's own character!  So by now you know it's not a Stampin'Up! embossing folder and it's not a Designer Series Paper, right?

Take a closer look:  Partial

OK, I'll tell you...I used the biggest clear block, Versamark ink, and gold embossing powder. It's probably the easiest technique I've shared with you. I'm going to give you the directions below---you'll want to try this out yourself because you will have such a great time creating unique backgrounds you won't want to stop! Then I'll give you the supply'll want to use this month's Hostess Code (Z9DFJV4T) when you order online so you'll get your name in the drawing for a $50 Stampin'Up! product gift certificate!

Here's how to create this card

1. Cut Very Vanilla cardstock 8 1/2 X 5 1/2, score the long side at 4 1/4 (card base).

2, Cut Gold Foil paper 3 3/8 X 5 1/8; adhere to card base front with multipurpose liquid glue.

3. Cut Very Vanilla carstock 5 1/2 X 4 1/4 lay your cardstock on the piercing mat (item #126199) Note: you may want to cover the mat with a paper towel to keep the ink from staining the mat.  Ink up the entire surface of Block F with Versamark and "stamp" this on the cardstock surface---pressing well over the entire block. Lift the block and sprinkle gold embossing powder over the surface of the cardstock and heat with the Heat Tool until shiny gold. (What a WOW look, right?). Cut this piece to 3 3/4 X 5"--select the portion that you like best. Adhere this piece to the card front with liquid glue.

4. Cut a large butterfly (Butterflies thinlets) from Gold Glimmer paper; adhere to the card front with glue dots (item #103683).

5. Rub embossing buddy on Very Vanilla cardstock, stamp "For the Newlyweds" in Versmark ink on Very Vanilla cardstock, sprinkle with gold embossing powder, heat with heat tool until shiny gold. Punch with the Classic Label punch (item #141491) and adhere to card front with dimensionals.

Gorgeous, right?

Here's the supply list, use the Order Now button to order your supplies:

Scratched Foil Sheets When Die-cutting

 Do you ever encounter this problem - scratched foil sheets when die-cutting?  If you use your Big Shot and your framelits/thinlets/edgelits a lot like I do, your cutting pads will quickly get etched with the cuttings of those dies. Then if you use those pads when cutting a piece of foil, the etchings may cut into your smooth foil and look something like this.

Scratched Foil sheets from die cutting

There is a quick and easy solution for this dilemma --- use this Big Shot sandwich:

Big Shot, Magnetic Platform, cutting pad, foil paper, framelit, tissue paper, cutting pad

Then when you roll it through the Big Shot it will look like this:

Using the tissue paper method


The transfer of the etchings to foil usually happens when your cutting pads get "bowed" from extended use or when you forget to flip them over each time you use them to help keep them flat over time.  Using these pads with the Precision Base plate often quickens the bowing effect.

You can often straighten the cutting pads by doing this..

Cookie sheet, aluminum foil, cutting pad (curved side up), very heave casseroles (use more than one to make it heavy).  Place this  ensemble in the oven at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.  When you remove it from the oven, leave the casseroles in place until the cutting pad reaches room  temp.

One more thing, in the above pictures, did you notice I am using the Stitched Shape Framelits that were introduced last fall and went to "unorderable"?  Well, they are back in stock now and you can place your orders for them now!  The information is in the supply list below. 

Here's  the supply list for the above products, use the Shop Now button at the top of the page to place your order:

Easy Organization of Stamping Supplies - Take Two

If you are like me you are always looking for Easy Organization of Stamping Supplies, right? If you follow my blog you saw on October 4th the first great idea..if not, check it out.

It really annoys me when I need to find a stamp set and I have to dig through a couple of shelves (well, ok, a bookcase full) of stamps to find it. Then, if I need to be sure that it's currently in the Stampin'Up! catalog, I have to find my catalog which is always somewhere in that mountain called "What needs to be done today."

So after seeing my post on October 4th, I've been hearing about other systems that my stampers have put into place to help with decreasing the "hunting" time and increasing the "stamping" time.

Today, I'm sharing with you another great idea for tracking your stamping supplies at a glance. One of our stampers, Nancy Cunningham, has shared her system for identifying retired items as well as for classifying them for easy finding. Check out the stamp sets below--see the colored labels... Labels

She uses 1/2 X 3/4 Avery colored labels and to maximize thriftiness, she cuts them in half.  You can find these labels in any office supply store or at big stores like Walmart.  Here's her simple coding system:

Pink labels are used for general stamp sets
Orange labels are used for verses, words, sentiments
Green labels are used for Christmas and Winter stamp sets
Yellow labels are used for are Stampin'Up! Textured Impressions Embossing Folders


Labeled stamp sets

So using Nancy's system, you can see at a glance and zero in on your favorite stamp sets by focusing on the color of that category! Notice she places the label down at the bottom of the stamp case spine so that you don't cover up the set name or the images.

I love it when a plan comes together! So, thanks, Nancy, for sharing with us.

If you have a great organization idea..share it with us! Leave me a comment and I'll chat with you about it!


How to Use the Stampin'Up! new Cable Knit Dynamic Textured Impressions Embossing Folder

If you have devoured the Stampin'Up! Holiday Mini catalog then you've seen the new Cable Knit Dynamic Textured Impressions Embossing Folder, right? Dynamic---what does that mean? Well, this little beauty makes an impression (dry embossing) in the cardstock that is about twice as deep as the regular textured impressions embossing folders. It gives a vey distinct and intense impression. Because of it's thickness, you need to know how to use it so that you don't damage your folder or your Big Shot!

Here's the folder we are talking about  and a piece of cardstock we'll talk about below: 10-14-16 Cable Knit Folder and cardstock

Here's a card we created  using this folder--gorgeous, right? 10-14-16 Cable Knit folder Card

I'm going to give you the step by step process to use with this folder.  I cut a piece of Real Red cardstock 4 1/8 X 5 3/8:

Center this cardstock in the folder--note which direction you want the cable to run--you can see how I placed the cardstock to get the cable to run vertically. Since this is a 6 X 6 folder, you can have the cable running in either direction for your own  card design--that's a terrific advantage for the 6 X 6 folders. 10-14-16 cardstock in folder

Now, here's how your sandwich is made for this folder--Big Shot, Big Shot Platform,  folder with cardstock inside, one standard cutting pad on top. Note: there is NOT a standard cutting pad underneath the folder....this would add too much thickness and possibly damage your machine and/or your folder. Be sure to place the folder with the open edges out and the folder spine going into the machine first. 10-14-16 One cutting pad on top 10-14-16 Cranking through big shot

Here's your final product---gorgeous! 10-14-16 embossed cardstock

It's a very simple process but you want to remember the directions above--use only one standard cutting pad on top and make sure the folder spine goes through the Big Shot first.

Let me know if you have any problems!

Here's the supply list for the card shown above. You can use the Shop Now button above to order the supplies you need today.

Tips & Hints for How to Use the Floral Affection textured impressions embossing folder

If you are like me, when you use the smaller Stampin'Up! textured impressions embossing folders, you tend to get some  tiny crinkles in your cardstock. Today I'm going to give you some tips & hints and show you how I minimize those crinkles.

This is the new Floral Affection folder we'll be using today: 10-11-16 Affection folder

Here's a recent card we made in class using the Floral Affection folder: 10-11-16 Affection Folder card

Pretty, right? It's not perfect but we've minimized the little crinkles so they are hardly noticeable.

Now let's get on with the tips and tricks--here's the equipment you'll need...the Big Shot, the Big Shot Platform and 2 standard cutting pads 10-11-16 Equipment

Cut a piece of thick Whisper White cardstock 2 1/2 X 4 1/4: 10-11-16 Cardstock in folder

Center this in the Floral Affection Folder....notice the black arrow I've markered on the folder? 10-11-16 Cardstock in folder

Arrange your sandwich as follows--Big Shot, Big Shot Platform, standard cutting pad, folder with cardstock enclosed with the arrowed edge pointed toward the Big Shot roller, and the second standard cutting pad. 10-11-16 Rolling through the Big Shot

Hint: ROLL VERY SLOWLY--so crank your sandwich through the Big Shot--go slowly

Here's the final product---note, it is not perfect but we have significantly minimized the crinkles that normally  occur when we use the standard Whisper White cardstock and crank through at our normal rate. 10-11-16 Completed

Give it a try and let me know if you have found any other terrific tips or tricks that will help us use our folders better.

Here are the supplies I used for creating this card. You can use the Shop Now button at the top of the page to order what you need today.

Another stamping tools organization tip

Monday we talked about a couple of really great time-saving tips for organizing our stamping tools.  Today I have another one for you.

Have you ever been ready to place an order and can't remember if you have a Stampin'Up! punch. Or have you wanted to know if that new stamp set  you want to purchase will coordinate with one of the punches in your stash?  Well, one of Sandi's Stampers, Jackie Silvestri is using a really great system that will help you track your punches, help you determine if it coordinates with a stamp set and, best of all, it is portable--so it can come with you to class or you can keep it near your catalog for easy reference.

Here it is...she purchased a package of the plastic sleeves that kids use to protect their sports cards (e.g. baseball cards). She cut a piece of cardstock that slips into the sleeve and uses her punch to punch out the image from the cardstock. Now tuck this piece of cardstock in the card sleeve. Some of these come with a hole already punched in the upper corner--some don't.  If yours doesn't,  punch a hole in the upper corner and store these on a 3"diameter key ring.

Here's what one looks like.... 10-7-16 washi punch

And, here's another one... 10-7-17 blossoms punch

Now if you are trying to see if the stamp fits inside the punched image--just h0ld the  punched cardstock over the stamped image and see how it fits.

If you are getting ready to purchase a punch and can't remember if you ordered it previously--scan through the cards on your key ring and you can tell at a glance whether or not you have it!

Isn't this a great organizational too! And, it's quite will save you tons of time!

If you have a great organizational tool that you'd like to share--email it to me with a picture or two--I'd love to see what you are doing.

Easy organization of stamping supplies...and more!

Each time we coordinate a card swap I hear several complaints about how much trouble it is to know which stamp sets are current and can be used for the swap. I also did a quick survey a few weeks ago and one of the recurrent topics was how to be more organized with stamping supplies. Well, I have a great suggestion for you to keep you current and to help you be more organized.

BTW, if you follow me on Pinterest-- you'll see that I have a new board for organizing craft rooms and craft supplies--check it out after you check out my current organizing tip.

OK, back to our topic. I'd like to say that this tip was my idea--but I'm better and finding good ideas than generating them! LOL. This idea comes from Angie Gittles--one of Sandi's Stampers.  She explained her very simple system of tracking her current stamp sets---she purchased an inexpensive pack of colored dots from the office supply store and puts a colored dot at the bottom of the stamp case spine...check out the picture below.

Now, this doesn't have to be an overwhelming chore even if you have 200 stamp sets on hand. You only need your current catalog--turn to the index and look for the first stamp set on your shelf...if it's there....just go to the next stamp set and look it up. If it's not there, put a dot on the case.  10-4-16 organizing crafts supplies

How simple is that?

Now, you can do this with all of your stamping tools! You can put dots on your embossing folders, your framelit packs, your punches and your ink pads--you can even put them on your Stampin'Write markers!

If you have shelves for your cardstock--put a dot next to the color if it is retired.  If you don't have shelving--here's a great storage hint (this one comes from Diane Flayhart)--purchase a pack of the WIDE page protectors from the office supply store. These are designed to hold up to 40-50 pages of copy paper and will hold a full pack of your Stampin'Up! cardstock. So put the colored dot on the sheet protectors.

Now aren't these two ideas simple and inexpensive? And how nice will it be next time we organize a swap and all you need to do is check out the stamps and tools that don't have a dot and you are ready to participate!

Speaking of SWAPS--our next SWAP is due to me by noon on Halloween (10/31/16 at noon). The only rule is all current Stampin'Up products must be used. You can provide the recipe if you want. Just send 10 card fronts to me and you are IN!  My address is 313 Esther Drive, Forest Hill, MD 21050. Swaps will not be returned or swapped if they don't meet the current Stampin'Up! products rule. It's not too late--you still have nearly 30 me if you are not currently signed up to let me know you want to participate--I will be making a little thank you gift for you (

 Do you have a really cool supply/tool organization tip that you'd like to share with our stampers? Email it to me with a picture of what you are doing--we all need help with our limited space and getting our supplies in a ready state so when we have a few minutes--weáre ready to stamp

Let's make a sandwich!

Do you get confused  about what kind of sandwich you need when you are using your Big Shot? Does it get confusing when you try to figure out what base to use, what pads to use, do you use one or two or none? 

We were discussing this at one of the classes and I promised to blog a sheet sheet to help when you get ready to use your Big Shot.

Platforms--which one do I use?

The old hinged style and the new Big Shot Platform have the same function except the hinged style has 2 flaps on hinges that you use depending on whether you are using embossing folders or framelits (metal dies).  Since all the new Big Shots are being shipped with the new Big Shot Platform, we'll discuss that one. 142802_Big_Shot_Platform_and_Thin_Dies_Adapter-435

The advantage of the new platform is that it is humped in the center to provide even pressure when going through the Big Shot where the greater pressure is exerted on the edges. With the hump in the center, you no longer need to worry about moving dies to the outer edges since the pressure will be the same in the center and on the edges.

The new Big Shot  Platform is shipped with a shim in case you want to use it with framelits--it needs a bit of extra height to use with framelits.

Magnetic Platform is used with metal dies--framelits & thinlits. It helps hold these die in place (unless they have a gremlin in certain spots and they decide to repel--if this happens--just move to a different area on the platform. ) 130658_magnetic_platform-78

Precision Base Plate is used when doing framelite or thinlits that have intricate designs...the Precision Base Plate is very hard and will provide a very good cutting surface for those tiny cuts. 139684_precision_base_plate-79

Die Brush comes with it's own foam pad and is used to brush out the tiny cut waste pieces when using an intricate thinlet such as the butterflies, hearts, and florals.  One thing to remember is if you put the back side of the glimmer paper up the dies will cut through the backing first and when you use the brush, it will not damage the glimmer. Sometimes this isn't possible--like when you are cutting words--the glimmer needs to be right side up to get it to read correctly. But when you can, you  may want to give it a try. 140603_big_shot_die_brush-80

Sandwiches....I have prepared a sheet with the various options so that you can print it out and place it near your Big Shot for reference. After awhile you'll have it all in your head (or not, LOL) but in the mean time you can have this nearby to refer to. So click here to see the cheat sheet. Download Big Shot Sandwiches  (or if you need a pdf file: Download Big Shot Sandwiches  When the chart indicates Standard Cutting pads--they look like this: 113475_Replacement_Cutting_Pads-269

Here's the list of tools we discussed today. Use the Shop Now button at the top of the page or order the ones you need:

DIY Colored Cardstock

I needed a quick cute card and decided to use Stampin'Up! new set called Bella and Friends. I love the new In Color Designer paper and wanted some polka I cut the Peekaboo Peach polka dots DSP for the bottom section, layered it on white cardstock cardbase and placed the stamps on the top portion to get an idea of how it would look....and this is what I saw...ok, but kinda blah! Right? 7-8-16 Planning

So I decided I needed to spiff up the top  background--but didn't want to use the Peekaboo Peach cardstock--that would be really dark and I'd lose the puppy in there... so I got out my Peekaboo Peach classic ink and my new sponge brayer and started applying color in a random pattern:

  7-8-16 brayering

Here's my final brayered background: 7-8-16 Completed Brayering

Then I added the puppy stamp, the verse, colored with the aqua painter and added 3 of the new In Color enamel dots. Tied a ribbon around the middle and here's the final result:

7-8-16 Bella & Friends

I love the way it turned out. So next time you find you need to spiff up th background but the cardstock will be a bit too intense, try your brayer and some ink--you can make it as light or dark and you want for your design.

It is wonderful to have all the new In Color products at your fingertips--I have a club that you can join for 5 months--you will receive one set of all the new In Color products for a single color each month---at the end of 5 months--they will all be yours including the 12 X 12 Designer Paper we used in the above card, the Enamel dots plus--a freebie from me--a package of the In Color family of cardstock which can be viewed as approximately a 5% discount. Here's the brochure for joining the In Color club  Download In Color Club

I'm going to give you step by step instructions to create this card and then I'm going to give you the supply list.

1. Cut a piece of thick Whisper White cardstock 4 1/4 X 11, score the long side at 5 1/2 (cardbase). Cut a piece of Peekaboo Peach polka dot Designer Paper 4 1/4 X 2 1/2--hold this for a bit.

2. Brayer the upper half of the cardbase using the sponge brayer and Peekaboo Peach classic ink--move in random directions and keep re-inking the brayer until you have the depth of color that you like.

3 Adhere the designer paper to the bottom of the cardbase using multipurpose liquid glue

4.  Stamp the dog (Bella & Friends stamp set) using Archival Black ink; stamp the verse "Just for You" (same stamp set) in Archival Black ink. Use your aquapainter with Cajun Craze classic ink to color the dog. Use Cherry Cobbler to color the  collar and the heart.

5. Adhere 3 Peekaboo Peach Enamel hearts to the left of the dog.

6. Tie a 14"piece of Peekaboo Peach ribbon around the card middle and tie in a knot--use a glue dot to hold the knot in place.

Your card is completed--isn't it cute? Join the In Color club now and get all those great new In Color products!

Here's the supply list to  create this card--use the Shop now button to order your supplies:

Stampin'Up! Enamel Dots--DIY filing system

Do you have any of the new Stampin'Up! Enamel dots?  Are they not absolutely astounding for adding the little extra to your projects. I (of course) have a pack of each color--you get tons of each color (e.g. for each In Color--there are 40 dots--one sheet) or the regular colors you get 20 of each color (one color per sheet).

7-5-16 Label 7-5-16 Enamel dots

If you are like me, you just can't be caught without the right color or metallic--and this means that you will have 67 little acetate sheets fluttering around your crafting area. Yesterday, I opened the Regals--and was admiring each color--10 of them. 7-5-16 Sheets

I got interrupted and my area got scrambled before I got back. And, if you know me, you know I can loose something that's in my's true..if you've been in class here, you've observed it firsthand. So when I went to work with the dots, yes, you guessed it--I was missing one of the acetate sheets. After a lengthy search, I found it on the carpet. I thought--this just won't do--I'll drive myself nuts if I have more than one pack of these open at one time. So I thought about those huge key rings I gave you at the catalog debut with the In Colors on them--well, why not add the enamel dot sheets to them!

So I took my Stampin'Up! 1/8"handheld punch and punched a hole in the corner of each acetate sheet. I cut the color name from the packaging and  punched a hole in the corner of that also. 7-5-16 Punch

Then popped them all on the key ring (along with a couple of other sets I had already opened). Now I can access each color without removing them from the ring and I can tell which color family they are in by checking the name that precedes it on the ring!  7-5-16 Ring (2)

Awesome organization, right? Most of you already have the key ring--if you don't, call 410 836 8016 or email me at and I'll get one in the mail to you or you can pop by and pick one up anytime!

If you organize yours--let me know how it goes!

Here is the supply list for the dots and for the punch--order yours today and get organized!