Thursday, October 27, 2011

OWH MWT- Polka Dota and Hambo Hoedown #39

This card satisfies two challenges for this week. OWH Stars and Stamps asked us to make cards with polka dots, specifically with miss you, thanks, or birthday themes. Hambo Hoedown asked us to use their Newscaster digi to make a card that incorporated newspaper and one of their sentiments.

Patterned paper- KI memories
Punches- EK Success border, Armada corner rounder
Coloring- Bic Mark It

Remember, if you join Hambo's progressive digi, you'll get a new digi and sentiment set each week. It's a great way to collect awesome digis and keep making cards! This particular digi is perfect for my dad. He loves the news and the political talk shows on MSNBC, CNN, Fox News, and the like. Too bad his birthday won't be coming up for another 9 months or this would be the perfect card for him! Thanks for this one, Hambo!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I'm so happy to have my tutorial posted on OWH Stars and Stamps blog today. What a thrill! If you've come from there, thanks for coming to check out my blog. I love having visitors! If you haven't been to Stars and Stamps yet, please take a moment to go check out my tutorial on woven hearts.

Here is another card to share using the same heart technique as in the tutorial. For this card, I used the smaller size heart. I finished the card with matstack papers from K & Co's Americana line, a paper flower from Making Memories, a brad from Colorbok, ribbon from Offray, and a sentiment stamp from Studio G.

Here are two other cards I made for OWH that both use the same layout. The top card uses the "Performance" matstack from DCWV. I think it's the most masculine love card I've ever managed to make.

The patterned paper on this card is from an old DCWV Spring Stack (from 2009, I believe).
I can't wait to see the wonderful heart cards you are all going to create for OWH! Don't forget to go link them on the Stars and Stamps blog!

Remember, with the deadline for Christmas cards on October 31 just a few days away, it's now time to start thinking about making plenty of love cards for the Valentine's Day season. :)

Thanks so much for checking out my blog. If you like what you saw, please become a follower so we can stay in touch. :)

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Create with TLC Halloween contest

Allison provided a link to Create with TLC's Halloween contest. I should have been grading papers, but I saw it on FB and decided I could take a break after over two hours straight of grading projects. My eyes are tired!

Here's my 25 minute card using their free digi. Isn't the digi cute? The patterned paper is by Pebbles Inc and the sentiment is from Studio G.

Back to grading!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642


Some photos of storage solutions I like.

I really love these cubbies. Each one holds a large Paper Shaper perfectly! I got a great deal when I bought these a couple of years ago at Big Lots for about $3 each. I wish I had gotten more than 4.

Here's a wider view. You can see how my SU sets are stacked on shelves in the corner. OK, but not quite organized enough for me. I think I need a bit more space for them so they're easy to get to.

Crooked picture, sorry, but this is how I store my other wood-mounted stamps. I like this set-up a lot. Each drawer is lined with the grip shelf liner so the stamps stay in place when the drawers are opened and closed.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642

Sketch #92

It's Sunday, which means it's time for another sketch with OWH Stars and Stamps.

If you haven't read my last post about ways to help OWH with shipping costs, please click here. I rounded up my top ten tips for finding some extra funds in your budget that you could donate to OWH. I titled the post "Small Sacrifices" because we know that our heroes and their families are the ones making big sacrifices. Skipping a movie rental, that's a small price to pay for safety and freedom! :)

Here's my card for this week's challenge. It uses a card base from Colorbok, some generic black cardstock, patterned papers from DCVW All About Boys and Pebbles Inc, stamps from Studio G (sentiment) and SU Riveting (circles), and a sticker from the dollar store.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642

Small sacrifices

As you may have heard by now, the wonderful organization Operation Write Home is in need of donations to cover the cost of shipping boxes of beautiful handmade cards overseas for heroes to write home to their families during the holiday season. The projected cost is $13,000! Many people are on a tight budget and find it hard to give as much as they would like to. Here are a few suggestions of ways we can allocate just a little more to this special cause.

1. Donate via check instead of PayPal. Don't get me wrong, PayPal is a great way to handle transactions online in a secure, expedient way. I use it frequently. There are fees associated with that transaction, however, and these fees mean that a small percentage of what you donate won't make it to OWH. To avoid this, write a check. Better yet, check out your online banking. My bank allows me to designate a check recipient and choose an amount online and the bank will write the check and mail it for me at no cost. That means I use less of my checks (which are rather expensive), I don't have to pay postage, and OWH gets every cent of my donation.

2. Use coupon savings. Everyone loves a coupon and who among us hasn't cashed in at JoAnn or Michael's with one? Earmark your next coupon savings, whether at the grocery store or craft store to OWH. While you're at it, include any cash back you get for using your own bags at check out, such as the 5 cents Target gives. Do this even once a month, and you'll have a nice sum for OWH.

3. Skip the new supplies. You really want that new stamp, pack of paper, or punch. A lot. Put one thing back on the shelf and put that money toward shipping. You'll be proud of yourself and the heroes will have more cards at their disposal.

4. Ship in quantity. I start my cards way, way ahead of the deadline so I know I will be able to fill a large box before I ship. I usually ship boxes of 300 for $15, so it costs 5 cents per card to get them to my shipper. At Mother's Day, there was a plea for more cards. I mailed 10 for around 2.25. That's 22.5 cents per card. If you can send larger boxes and make use of the flat rate shipping the post office offers, you will save shipping funds which you can in turn send to OWH. Ask the post office clerk when you send the flat rate box what it would cost if it weren't flat rate. Last time, there was a $7 difference in my large FRB and the cost of shipping that same box priority.

5. Skip the movie rental. Instead, check out a movie from the local library (even in my itty bitty town, they have a great selection), watch one streaming from a site like Hulu, or borrow a DVD from a friend. Put the $1 you saved by not going to the kiosk in your next OWH donation. There's also a link to a site called "Swap a DVD" on my sidebar where you can trade in DVDs you don't want any more for different ones.

6. Make a pizza at home. Skip the delivery pizza and make your own. Have kids? Get English muffins and let them make their own pizzas with fun faces. You'll be a star and the money you saved can help OWH.

7. Pack lunch. Yours, your spouse's and your kids'. If your family decides to pack lunch one day (or one week, or all month) instead of buying, figure out your savings and use that to support OWH.

8. Yard sale/eBay. At your next yard sale, consider offering some or all of your profits to OWH. Make signs letting people know that your yard sale is supporting this great charity and have AnyHero cards and coloring sheets for kids. (People might stay longer and buy more things, and it's a great way to get kid letters.) Be sure to talk up OWH, especially if you are selling craft items- you may find a new card marker for OWH. You can also have your kids help by manning a bake sale table with profits going to OWH. If you feel a desire to clean out your craft room (or any room, for that matter), you can designate your earnings on eBay for OWH. Make this clear in the listing and people may bid a little higher!

9. Set aside change for OWH. Not that we use cash much anymore, but if you do, consider emptying extra coins from your wallet into a jar for OWH. Count them up every few months and see how much you can donate!

10. Budget for your donation. Even if you make a donation that is small in your eyes, it will help cards get overseas. Remember, it costs about 5 cents per card for OWH to ship a card to a hero. Try to donate the equivalent of 5 cents per card for the cards that you donate. For example, if you send 100 cards, try to send at least $5. That will cover the shipping, and any additional you can give will cover the other associated expenses. If you want to place a monthly donation into your family budget, go for it! You can use tip #1 to set it up so checks are automatically mailed to OWH on a schedule that works for you.

Do you feel inspired to give now? You can donate via PayPal here or mail a donation to any of the three shippers whose addresses are here. If you want an embroidered OWH patch, be sure to include an AnyHero card with your donation of $10 or more and a note stating you'd like a patch. One more suggestion: KnK Designs is selling special digi bundles through 11/1 and the entire purchase price minus PayPal fees goes to OWH. Check them out here.

By the way, OWH is in no way responsible for the content of this post. These are just my own thoughts, tips, and suggestions. I hope you will find one of these ideas useful as you look for ways to support OWH's financial need while being mindful of your own budget. If you like what you read here, I would appreciate it if you would link others to this post from your blog. Thanks!!!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Under the Sea

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642


Over the summer, I picked up these puffy dino stickers and I finally got around to using them today. Aren't they darling? I tend to make really simple cards for kids. If figure there are less parts to come off if the cards are really well loved and carried around like I've heard sometimes happens. These cards, as simple as they are, really make me smile because of the happy dinos!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642

Hambo Hoedown #38

This week's Hambo Hoedown challenge was to use their sketch to make a card. I used the free "Zombie Bunny" digi and accompanying punny sentiment that they sent me for participating in last week's challenge. I've been into what I'd consider "Crayola" colors recently and this card reflects that! Go check out Hambo and play along!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 10/20/11): 1642

Friday, October 21, 2011

Some random cards

Here are some more cards I've made in the past week.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325
I love DCWV's Green Tea stack. I know it's one stack I'll actually finish at some point! I used all of the small Prima flowers from the bottle of blue flowers I got recently. Now, it'll be time to use the larger ones.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325


Here are some cards I made last night for OWH. The midweek throwdown challenge was to create thank you cards. I really surprised myself on the first card. Fun, easy, and very graphic.
The beautiful textured Bazzil just had to take center stage on these cards.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Monday, October 17, 2011

Easy winter cards

The deadline for winter cards for OWH is Halloween. Gotta get the Santas and snowmen in the mail soon! I have more space in my box, so I'm seeing what I can do to totally cram it full before I send it off this week.

Here are three simple designs to share:
Cut a crooked triangle into strips and place on a long brown strip to make this country shabby tree, perfect for Charlie Brown.

I couldn't believe that I only had two decent snowflake stamps in my entire collection. I improvised with some flower stamps that could go either way! I popped a couple of the snowflakes for a little dimension.

I distressed the edges of the patterned paper and embellished the stamped snowflake image with half pearls made for manicures.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Elves and Snowflakes, oh my!

So, I finally found the necessary motivation to make some decent Christmas cards. This is sort of the eleventh hour for OWH, so it's a shame that it took until the middle of October to want to make Christmas cards since the deadline is October 31. Now I just hope this motivation will be there when I have to make Christmas cards of my own.

On Friday night, I made the embossed cards in the last post. They made me very happy. I think it was a combination of having the right paper and punches. I got a little carried away and ended up making 44 of them! I hope that isn't too many of the same design.

Yesterday, I found some wired ribbon that I loved at the Dollar Tree. I've used wired ribbon before to make cards and I really love how easy it is to add a pretty strip to a card. The candy ribbon worked well with the elf stamp I've had from Studio G for a while. These cards came together simply but coloring still does take a while. The ribbon (9 feet) was enough for 21 of these cards, which also made it a cost-effective embellishment at 5 cents per card. Check out that holographic edge!

Then, I used Sunday Sketch #91 from OWH's Stars and Stamps blog that was posted today. I wanted to make some more winter cards and I remembered a paper pad from last winter. I used those papers to make 16 of these "hello" winter cards.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Friday, October 14, 2011

More Christmas Cards!

This week, I got a bunch of new EK Success punches from my contest prize. I really love the "real estate sign" punch that I used on this card. It layers nicely with other punches I already own, such as the 2" scallop circle, the 1.25" circle, and the 1" circle. I layered all these punches together after stamping the smallest circle with a SU sentiment from the Riveting set. To finish the card, I embossed a background of Bazzil cardstock and tied on a ribbon.

I made enough punches to make 44 cards. We'll see if I have the stamina to do 44 ribbons!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Hambo Hoedown #37

Hambo's challenge this week asked us to use the mummy digi and one of its sentiments to make a card using the colors black, green, orange, and purple.

I went for a geometric design and wrapped up some sections of my card with ribbon, just like the little mummy is wrapped up.

Thanks, Hambo, for another great challenge!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

OWH MWT- Masculine Cards

OWH is always in need of masculine cards for all occasions. I, like many crafters, have a harder time making such cards than in making girly, frilly cards. As luck would have it, my order from EK Success came today and it contained a masculine border punch! (Remember back in the summer when I kept posting asking for votes for my card? Well, I won 6th place and a $50 gift certificate for their website. I'll be matching that $50 for OWH.)

I got right to work with that border punch. I'd seen someone use it like a filmstrip long ago, and I wanted to do that myself. I'm sorry I can't give credit to the person from whom I got the idea, but I've long since forgotten who posted the card I have in mind.

I colored the set of SU Wonderful Woodcut stamps, punched them with a square punch, and layered them on the film strip. The senitment from Hampton Arts is layered on two punches, and the card has a vellum background overlaying a bold patterned paper from American Crafts.

For those of you who love Tim Holtz and Core'dinations papers, take a minute to enter this contest. You could win a signed stack of the paper from Tim.

Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Breast Cancer Awareness Card

Here's a card I made for a challenge posted on the blog for Ellen Huston.

I made the flower out of twelve breast cancer awareness pink ribbons. I thought this was a subtle way to use the pink awareness ribbon. Stamp by Stampin Up, patterned paper by Colorbok.

Thanks for visiting!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

CASE of Sandy's tree

Kate offered a set of four different Christmas tree designs on today's Tuesday Tutorial on OWH Stars and Stamps. I'm so excited and honored to say that she featured two of my card ideas! (You can see the original post here.) I cannot wait to see how the OWH crafters improve on my ideas!!!

I decided to give Sandy's a try. I used some scraps of green papers and topped the tree off with a silver star. The design would be easy to replicate if you wanted to make many cards.

I made a card similar to Raeanna's for my last card party. I never photographed it, but I had the materials left over to make more, so here's my triple triangle tree card.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Monday, October 10, 2011

Elegant Thinking of You

Have you ever taken a patterned paper out of context? By this, I mean have you ever used a seasonal paper for a different season, used a child-themed paper on an adult project, or something similar? I used a sheet of paper from the Rockstar stack by DCWV on this elegant card.

I cut the greenish patterned sheet into wedges and layered them on a coordinating shade of green cardstock. The sentiment from Studio G is stamped on cardstock cut with Nestabilities and decorated with a swirl stamp by Autumn Leaves. The ribbon is from JoAnn and was a great clearance steal at 50 cents for a whole spool!

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Blow out the candles

This idea popped into my head tonight and I had to make it work! I wanted to make a birthday card where you could "blow out" the candles. I've never made a card with a slider like this before, but I decided to give it a try.

First, I cut three narrow slits in the green background paper and threaded narrower strips of yellow paper through. I attached the flames (made from a heart punch cut down) to the yellow strips. When pulled, they will stop because the slit is narrower than the widest part of the flame. I covered the flames with the candles which are popped on dimensional adhesive. On the back, I attached the three yellow strips to each other with some scrap cardstock and added the tag with the sentiment stamps from Studio G.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

OWH Sketch #90

There were some lovely sample cards by Pam T. on the OWH Stars and Stamps blog today. I love Pam's style and often find myself CASEing her cards or trying to mimic her style when I make cards.

The card I made uses K & Co patterned papers and JoAnn cardstock for the solids. The brads are from Cloud 9. I need to play with this sketch more because I don't love it yet. It might just be my paper selection.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Feliz Navidad

I haven't been in the Christmas card mood. I have no idea why, but they're my least favorite cards to make. I have to make my own still, too!

Here's one I made with a great free digi from Dustin Pike. He has a free digi on his blog each Wednesday (or sometimes Thursday) and they are great. Mostly, they're perfect for little boys because he does a lot of dragons and monkeys.

I don't know if I'll send this to OWH. I'm not sure it's really appropriate to send them. I know they've said they only want cards in English because they wouldn't know who would need cards in other languages (though I am fairly certain everyone knows "Feliz Navidad" thanks to the popular song). What do you think? Should I send the card?

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Miss you beary much

Well, I'm officially into digis. For a girl with well over 1500 stamps, that's not necessarily a good thing, since it will mean my real stamps will get used a bit less.

I started playing in Hambo's challenges a couple of weeks ago and had a good time with my cards. Here's yet another Hambo digi stamp, the camouflage bear. It was a freebie one time for Operation Write Home and is now available for sale at the Hambo store.

I found the camo paper a few months ago on clearance at JoAnn and knew I needed to get some for OWH cards, even if this isn't the camo pattern that our heroes are wearing. I made the sentiment look like dog tags by using a corner rounder and silver metallic paper. The green cardstock is embossed with a Fiskars embossing plate and my Cuttlebug.

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Hambo Hoedown #36

K is for…

Kraft paper

KI Memories patterned paper



This week, Hambo Hoedown challenges us to use their wonderful new flower monster digi to make a card that contains something that starts with the first letter of our first name. I lucked out with a fairly easy letter. The poor Xaviers of the world will have to pull out a Xyron and get to work, for there aren’t many things that start with X.

In addition to the "K" items, I used paper flowers from Making Memories, orange Studio G ink, and brads from JoAnn.

As an added bonus, let me show you the card I made with Hambo’s mummy digi and sentiment. This one was mistakenly sent out yesterday instead of the monster. Thanks, Hambo, for this bonus image! I set right to work sponging the area around the mummy. I could have sponged a background and cut the mummy out to glue on top, but instead I cut out a scrap mummy for a mask, stuck it to my good image with painter’s tape, sponged the whole thing, and removed the mask. I like how the sponging turned out. I used the same three colors (pale lime green, pale orange, and electric greenish-yellow) on the sentiment. I have no idea what the colors are called because the inks are from Studio G. The patterned paper is from Pebbles, Inc. The spider punch is also Studio G. This was the first and last spider I got from the punch because it broke when I punched this out. :(

Cards shipped to OWH (as of 9/12/11): 1325