Wednesday, September 4, 2013

OWH/Unity Blog Skip

Welcome to my stop on the Operation Write Home Blog Skip featuring Unity Stamp Company.  If you've come seeing the awesome work on Dixie's blog, you're in the right place.  If not, you might want to start at the top of the hop so you won't miss any of the blogs!


I've been a fan and collector of Unity stamps for a couple of years now, so I am very excited that they're partnering with OWH for this skip.  Here are two AnyHero cards I've made using a few of Unity's patriotic stamps, which are very affordable at just $1.79 each.

Stamp available here.  While the tags appear shiny, please note that this is metallic paper and not glittered paper which would pose a safety risk to our heroes.  Nothing rubs off of this paper, so it is safe. 
Update: Several people have asked about the metallic paper.  It's by Making Memories and is several years old, but I was able to find it here.   It is possible to stamp on it with an ink such as Staz-on.  I just chose not to as I wanted the attention to focus on the sentiment.  Rub-ons or stickers should also work OK.  I didn't use a specific punch to make the tags.  I just cut a rectangle about 1"x2" and used a corner rounder and hole punch to finish the tag. 

Stamp available here.  This sketch by Nancy was part of the Labor Day Virtual Card Making Party. 
For many people, designing the AnyHero cards is easier than writing inside them.  Here's what I tend to write inside in case you would like some ideas.  First, I start out with "Dear Hero" and thank the hero for serving our country.  Next, I tell a little bit about myself.  Sometimes I mention my family's history of military service.  My grandfather and all five of his brothers served; between them they served in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam and their service is something that my family is very proud of.  Other times, I'll talk about my job as a teacher and how I see our heroes' sacrifices safeguarding the freedom of the children I teach.  In other cards, I've talked about the freedoms I enjoy that are made possible by the military protecting us.  Then I finish by thanking the hero again and expressing my hope for their safe return home.  If you find it hard to get started writing AnyHero notes, photo cards like this one are great because they prompt you to tell a story about the picture you took.  Just be sure to use you own photos to avoid copyright issues. 

Next up on the skip is Paula.  I'm always impressed with Paula's designs, so hurry over to her blog and see what she has to share! 

Thanks for visiting! 
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Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 651 blank and 236 AnyHero (as of 4/28/13)
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

67 comments:

  1. Kathryn, Your cards are great! But I especially appreciated your words of encouragement about writing Dear Hero letters. I have difficulty knowing what to say and you have given great advice. Anyone would love to et the letters you write. Thank You!!!

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  2. Kathryn... awesome cards! Thank you for sharing your tips about writing in Hero letters. blessings ~ Pam

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  3. Thanks for the ideas on any hero mail. When I write in them, I don't think about telling anything about myself, so very much appreciate the ideas. I also really like the idea of using metallic paper for tags. I realized the other thing you can do is emboss the back of a label sticker with silver powder. I've done this before and it works really well.

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  4. I am still loving that sketch by Nancy with the inchies! I need to get busy with my Any hero mail so the tips are appreciated.

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  5. Awesome cards, Kathryn! I love that you made your own dog tags, how clever! Thanks so much for participating in our skip today, and for all you do for OWH!

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  6. I love the dogtags, so simple yet effective!!

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  7. I like your shiny dog tags and you star punching on the bottom of the first card. The second card is so cute and I love the sentiment and your placement of it.

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  8. Thank you for the tips on writing Any Hero mail. I am trying to write more of them! I love your metallic dog tags, so a great detail! Great cards!

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  9. Very impressive cards, the shiny dog tags hanging are great and I love the sentiments.
    Writing hero mail is tough, thanks for the helpful hints.

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  10. Great cards! I like the metallic dog tags and embossed stars on the first one and the great sketch on the second.

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  11. Both cards are wonderful - I especially love the paper dog tags on the first card (and I have the perfect punch and paper to make those). Love the layout on the second card - I need to make some of those!

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  12. I like the blank dog tags on the first card and your version of the VCMP card.

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  13. I like how you did the dog tag card and your use of the paper since glitter isn't allowed (super idea!). I appreciate your ideas on the Any Hero cards. I feel a little awkward writing to someone I don't know and want to write cheerful notes to our heroes. Thanks so much.

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  14. Thanks for the tip on writing to Any Heroes! The dog tags on your first card look so real just like shiny metal. I also like how you used the VCMP sketch to make your second card, it turned out gorgeous.

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  15. Two terrific cards Kathryn! I love what you did with Nancy's VCMP sketch...perfect for Any hero cards because it's so neutral, bold and graphic. The shiny silver paper is perfect for the dog tags too!

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  16. My first reaction to your great cards was "she used the sketch from the VCMP challenge". Both of these are great & I love that you used the metallic paper for the dog tags.

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  17. Wow...I love those dog tags with metallic paper. How wonderful.

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  18. Love those dog tags in metallic paper! I also like the embossing and the border too. Using the VCMP sketch from Nancy was a brilliant idea. It's such a fun sketch and it really makes a perfect Any Hero card.

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  19. Both cards are so great! I love the dog tags and the sentiment!

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  20. Kathryn, I will be CASE-ing your second card. I love the shiny dog tags! What a wonderful idea! I also really love the papers in the 2nd card - what a great use of that sketch......and scraps!

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  21. Love your interpretation of the sketch on the second card. I have that printed out ready to give it a try. I also appreciation your tips for writing Any Hero cards.

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  22. I love the little patchwork pieces...I don't think I could have lined them up so well! I like the dog tags, but would you have been able to stamp a sentiment on them? I like the placement and other sentiment. Nice work! Radloff jen at cableone dot net

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  23. The dog tag card is a great way to use the silver metallic paper and the little stars really pop. You used a nice assortment of papers and the stripe embossing works well for the second card. Thanks for sharing ideas about what to write in the Any Hero cards. Appreciate your help because I usually draw a blank.

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  24. Great idea using the metallic paper. Love your take on Nancy's challenge - neat papers.

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  25. Great cards! I love the simplicity of that first one with the plain silver dog tags!

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  26. Kathryn, I love the way you rocked Nancy's inchie's challenge. I was thinking at the time it could make a good any hero card. Thanks for showing how well works for either gender!

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  27. Two terrific cards. The metalic paper really does make the dog tags look real. Interesting patterned paper layout for the second card.

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  28. Kathryn,
    Great cards-love the embossing and cut out (punched?) out stars at the bottom on the first card. Metallic paper is great for the dog tags ( and nice to know it's safe).
    The second card really appeals to me as a quilter and I will make some today using this design!
    Thank you for sharing the cards as well as the tips on writing any hero cards. I used to have to just pick a highlight of the day for my husband and start there. It gave me a spark...
    Lyn

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  29. While I really like both cards, the one that appeals to me the most is the second one because of the variety of patterned paper. The ones you use are patriotic without being the standard bright r-w-b and are more geometric in design rather than girly. After the inspiration of the VCMP this past weekend, the inchies are addictive!

    I stand in awe of the number of cards you've sent over the years. I just remind myself that although my efforts are tiny in comparison, with so many participants, we've reached over two million!

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  30. Great Cards, that metallic paper works great for the dog tags,thanks for the idea. And I love how you used the VCMP sketch for the 2nd card, the paper is perfect!

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  31. Absolutely LOVE the metallic dog tags--awesome idea. Definitely had to go to Unity to pick up the second sentiment you used-- must borrow your idea! So love it!

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  32. The inchies look great as a patriotic card. Nice choice of design and sentiment.

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  33. I really like your inchies card. The pattered paper is perfect for it.

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  34. Kathryn,

    It's so good to see cards from you after your summer of travel, PD, and curriculum development! Hope the school year has gotten off to a great start.

    I especially love the clean design of both cards. You've really made the sentiments pop!

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  35. Both are just beautiful cards, Kathryn! I really like the shiny paper for the dog tags. It's always fun to add some safe shine to our OWH cards. And I just love the second card with the fun variety of patriotic papers. I still haven't had a chance to play with that sketch yet, and yours is great!

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  36. Thanks for sharing the great tips for writing to Heroes. I agree, it's easier to make the cards. Ha! You made 2 terrific ones. I love the bold red showcasing the tags. That sketch from Nancy is a winner. Thanks for posting!

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  37. Your cards are great Kathryn but I really appreciate the tips on writing any hero cards. I have a really hard time deciding what to write. Your comments give me some ideas

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  38. Both your cards are super fantastic, but I must say I really love that sketch one you did. The papers you chose are just wonderful for that design. And thanks for the tips for writing to our heros. That was extra sweet of you.

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  39. Both of your cards are awesome. While I know I am going to have to get those dog tags, my favorite was the second card with the patterned paper from the VCMP. I loved that sketch and tutorial. All you ladies are so inspiring.

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  40. Super nice cards...The first is perfect simplicity! Thanks for the inspiration!

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  41. Cards are fantastic!!! I like the metallic look of the dog tags on the first card!! Now if there was a way to stamp on them or make it more personalized!!!!

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  42. Love the stars and the homemade dog tags on the first card. I am blown away by how many cards you make for OWH.

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  43. Your dog tag card is Fantastic!
    Plain tags really add a punch to the sentiment.
    The embossed stars & border stars add just the right touch.

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  44. Your cards really rock - they are great!

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  45. I just love the second card in your series. The VCMP this past weekend had this sketch and I love it! You rocked that sketch as a masculine card too. Thanks for sharing your work.

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  46. The metallic paper is perfect for the tags! And I love that you made a card from Nancy's VCMP sketch-- that is one awesome sketch! Thanks for the tips for writing a hero card- very helpful!

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  47. Fabulous projects. Our solders will be honored to receive them.

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  48. Great idea to use that metallic paper! I wondered how everyone was creating the tags and remember there being a punch at one time that did that. Thank you for the instructions which make this very easy!

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  49. Luv, luv, luv the star edge punch!

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  50. The dog tags are genius! Love the first card the best with the simplicity of it and the bright patriotic colors. PLUS, that is one of my favorite Unity sentiments. Love it!

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  51. Great cards, Kathryn! That metallic paper is perfect and it really centers your focus on the sentiment. Nice job!

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  52. Kathryn... in your comment on my blog you asked if my husband send me OWH cards while he is gone. He actually sends me cards that I have made and sent to our battalion. During this deployment all my cards have been going to our battalion. I have one last box to send and from then on they'll start going back to OWH. I am doing an event tomorrow here on post and I have a box of Hero Mail cards that I am taking so that those attending can write a note inside. blessings ~ Pam

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  53. Thanks for sharing how to make the dog tags!

    I admire your patchwork look! I can never get things straight!

    WOW! Over 3000 cards to OWH!

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  54. I love these two cards! The paper you chose for the second card works great together. Love the patterns. Also think your dog tags are super cool!

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  55. Your cards are beautiful! Those metallic dog tags are inspired and I love your explanation of what you write in the cards/

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  56. This is my first visit to your blog and I am truly inspired. And impressed by the amount of cards you have sent. Impressed isn't really the right word, it's much greater than that. I will be starting with AnyHero cards and your tips are very helpful. I especially love the pattern paper card. Thanks so much!

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  57. Beautiful cards Kathryn! I love how the metallic dog tags compliment the sentiment. Great idea to add the row of stars on the edge. Love what you did with Nancy's VCMP sketch. It's perfect to showcase Unity's sentiment. Great choice of papers too. Thanks for participating in the skip!

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  58. Great cards Kathryn! I love the shiney dog tags on the first one and your inchies on the next one!

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  59. I loved seeing this design over the weekend and love what you did with it even more.

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  60. I love the shiny dog tags... at first I thought, oh, that would be neat if you took a pencil and "embossed" them, but then I really liked your idea of the sentiment being the focus.

    Love your take on the sketch. Beautiful :)

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  61. I love the colors, the embossing and the border punch. They come together to make a beautiful card. Thanks for sharing.

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  62. I am really digging those dog tag's. I'm gonna have to check into getting those for myself for my cards. I think it is awesome what you guys do

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  63. Love both of your cards and the papers you used. What a great way to make the dog tags. Thanks for sharing your cards and what you write inside.

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  64. I love how you used Nancy's sketch with patriotic papers. Very nice!

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  65. Kathryn, first of all, thanks for the thousands of cards you have made for OWH. You must be the top contributor. The metallic paper made great dog tags. I like the patchwork design of the second card. Thanks for the hints about Hero Mail too.

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  66. I like that the way you arranged the dog tags resembles a cape - coordinating perfectly with the sentiment. The embossed stars work well with the punched border, too. Nice job with the sketch on the second card!

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