Day 23: a Story

For the past couple of months I’ve been participating in the FatMumSlim Photo a day challenge on Facebook and Instagram. At the beginning of each month, a list is published naming the theme for each day and participants post their interpretations of the day’s theme as the month progresses.

Today is Day 23 and the theme is “a story”. Here’s my photo and story.

So a month or so ago I noticed that there were some mighty fine Black-eyed Susans growing prolifically in the Highway medians all over East Texas. It’s summer. It’s hot and getting hotter with each day that passes. Lesser beings are wilting and getting crispy, but these beacons of beauty are growing and thriving in the most unattended place—the middle of the roads! Not just a few here and there...miles and miles of pretty flowers dotting the sides of the highways and medians. I tried several times to take some pictures of these flocks of black and yellow beauties but because of their precarious location, it’s was more than a little challenging. 

I studied them every day as I drove around—it became the highlight of the incessant miles I was driving. I noticed that there were many many ordinary Black-eyed Susans, growing in clusters, all about the same size and all at about the same point in their maturation as annuals. Each one pretty. Each  one bringing beauty to the rambling space along the roadside. Each is made more beautiful because it’s part of a collective of hundreds. 

And then I noticed the over-achiever Black-eyed Susans. The super-power flowers. The obvious rock stars. Once in a while, a small cluster of these special Black-Eyed Susans pops up, standing two or three times as tall as the ordinary ones, waving their heads in the wind. Their flowers are bigger, their stems are longer and presumably sturdier. The breezes seems to whip them about more but they keep on standing tall. 

Guardians of the highways and marauders of the medians
Untraditional beauties, raised up among the traffic and the occasional piece of litter
Growing tall, standing strong
Reminding anyone who notices that even in the thankless places and the haphazardness of a twist windy road, there is strength and beauty.

You persevere in the spring rain and the whirring wind storms
When others around you have settled with where they are, you grow taller and reach higher, spreading motivation and quiet hope just by being.
Your strength is your beauty, your example never to be doubted,
You contribute on a different plane than most everyone else,
Your taller and sturdier, you take on more than most and you stand with grace, waving in the wind, pointing the way. 


If you can make a card...

If you can make a card, boy do I have news for you!
You can definitely make a scrapbook page too!

I know, right!
I’ve heard it said and read it from crafty mavens on the Internet:
“I’m just a cardmaker. Scrapbooking intimidates me.”

If this is you, I’m here to tell you one thing: you’ve got this!

The skills used to make a pretty, handcrafted greeting card are the exact same skills needed to create an inspired scrapbook page!

In cardmaking, the first step is to choose a base and fold it appropriately. Some people choose to score before folding. Similarly, in scrapbooking, the first step is to choose a base. What are you going to build your page on?

In cardmaking, the next step is usually to choose a recipient and the occasion. Cardmakers apply a sentiment to specify the occasion the card is marking.  In scrapbooking, this would usually be the time to choose the pictures and a title.

In cardmaking, this is the fun part—the addition of embellishments! Guess what we are all lined up to do to the scrapbook page? Add the pretty! Embellish!!

In cardmaking, after the embellishment is added, and the card is finished, it’s time to write a personal note inside. In scrapbooking, we call this journaling.

See what I mean?
Exactly the same steps.
So no more complaining that you’re "only a cardmaker" okay?

But wait...there’s more!
Let’s put this to the test!

I shared this concept in a group of stampers about two years ago, along with the following examples.

Here’s the card:

Here's a scrapbook page:

Here's the card:

Here’s the scrapbook page:

Don't sell yourself short.
You are a creative and crafty person.
If you can make a card, you can definately build a scrapbook page!

Until next time,


So What’s the big Deal about Photo Safety?

There’s a rumor floating around the scrappy inter webs that Hobby Lobby has decided to produce a new sticker collection that does not bear the term “acid-free” on the packaging—a departure from their previous packaging design. Apparently some people are deeply alarmed by this.

Ok friends, let’s just breathe.
And think this through.

Acid-free is a buzzword. There’s no regulatory commission checking to see if the products marked “acid-free” are actually photo safe. Let’s face it—any product manufacturer can slap an “acid-free” label on their products that are being marketed to scrapbook enthusiasts because they know that’s what we are looking for. There was a time in Scrapbooking history when people were rabid about products being labeled “acid-free”. The idea that “acid-free” is the be all, end all seems to have been propagated primarily by Creative Memories (a direct sales company) in order to differentiate their products from others on the market. In some ways, it was a fear-inducing sales tactic. It was not uncommon for Creative Memories coaches to even refer to products from other manufacturers as “contraband “.

On a personal level, I had one Creative Memories consultant inform me years ago that she had no doubt that my scrapbooks that were filled with all that contraband would crumble and disentigrate within five years.

Yeah. That didn’t happen. I’ve been a scrapbooker for 25 years now. I’ve been cautiously optimistic about using all kinds of product—both products meant for Scrapbooking and also random bits and pieces of memorabilia from my actual life beyond just photographs. Remember—we are scrapbook creators. A scrapbook is a compilation of pieces of life. Remember, not all of life is neat and tidy. There are ways to include authentic scraps of life in your scrapbook without compromising photo safety.

Fortunately, with the advent of digital imaging, “acid-free” is just not a factor to be feared anymore. If something damages a photo, we just reprint it, right?

However, if you do care about photo preservation, there are, in fact, many contributors to the degradation of photos—sunlight, humidity, off-gasing from wood veneer, proper storage, etc. If you truly care about photo preservation, you should really read the paper items preservation page by the Library of Congress (the true experts) for best practices.

My albums have been stored properly however, I’ve never been brand-loyal or even deeply aware of that whole “only acid-free” brouhaha. My albums show no sign of any degradation any where.

But let’s go a step further. Whatever happens in the future, these books represent my life experiences, my thoughts and dreams and the things that I think are worth remembering. If they age gracefully, I’ll be a happy girl. If the edges get a little yellowed and the pages crumple a little, I’ll call it character and still be happy. Life is not polished and shiny for me. I have scars and struggles. I don’t mind if that’s reflected in my scrapbook alongside my memories.

A bit of yellowing or brittleness certainly doesn’t negate the value of a scrapbook. If anything, those qualities are indicative of life.

Not too long ago my mom loaned me the only scrapbook she’s ever made so I could have some of the photos from her wedding reproduced for my siblings. This notebook-style album was purchased fifty years ago. My mom filled in the particulars in her beautiful handwriting and attached the requisite newspaper articles and announcements. She claims to not be a scrapbooker but this is a special piece of our family history and folklore among the daughters. I certainly do not love it any less because it’s showing it’s age a little bit.

Scrapbook your life. Don’t be constrained by buzz-Words and fear.

Until next time,


Layout Share: Cake and Pocket Scrapbooking Cards

Please note: I'm in the process of migrating the content of my stamping blog to this page. This post was originally shared over there. All the no-longer-relevant links have been removed. We are all just here for the pictures anyway, right?! :)

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood,
A beautiful day in the neighborhood,
Won't you be mine, won't you be my neighbor?

They have many names--Project Life Cards, Project My Life Cards, cards, pocket scrapbooking cards, 3x4 journaling cards...whatever you call them, I think most paper crafters are familiar with the concept of using small, printed cards as accents and enhancements on handmade cards and scrapbook pages. There are so many ways to incorporate these small cards into your crafting--I thought I would take a few minutes and demonstrate a few of those ways for you today.

These pocket scrapbooking cards usually come in collection packs and include multipe thematic designs. Some are lined--ostensibly for journaling, some are decorative. You can choose to slide the cards into pocket pages along with your photos for easy pocket-style scrapbooking or you can also use them in a more traditional way by incorporating them as elements on a card or scrapbook page.

Remember, pocket scrapbooking cards are all about the POSSIBILITIES! You can do so many things with them!  I like to use them as accents on regular 12x12 pages. That's what I did today.

Instead of having to cut into a full sheet of polka dot patterned paper for this layout, the polka dot pieces of paper is actually two pieces of a single 4x6 pocket card. The small strips of pink on each side of the photo are a single card that I ripped into three pieces, which you can see here:

If you hang around people who use pocket-style scrapbooking products, you know that a huge topic of conversation among them is the state of the corners. The looming question is always "do you prefer rounded corners or square one?"

I can go either way. For this particular use, I chose to round the corners of the pink pieces.

One final look at the details:

I also used a horizontal card as the base of my title. I don't do vertical designs very often but I do love them.

Remember, pocket scrapbooking cards equal POSSIBILITIES!

This incident is one of my first memories. I was at my maternal grandmother's house and this cake just proved to be too much temptation. I remember that green table so clearly--it was so smooth and cool to the touch in the hot summertime.

This is one of the pictures that I got from my mom. I was so disappointed that it was kindof tarnished by years of handling so I took a picture of it using an iphone, edited it a bit to clean it up and had it reprinted. I dont have the patience to spend too much time editing and such, so I kept it super easy and I am very happy with the result.

If you have pictures that are deteriorating, try taking a new picture of them and reprinting.

Until next time,

Layout Share: MARTA and Using a Sketch

Please note: This artwork was originally shared on my stamping blog last year. I'm currently in the process of migrating all the stamping blog posts to this page and removing the links that are no longer relevant. Sometimes that means just keeping the artwork. :)

Close to my Heart offers an idea book filled with sketches for scrapbook pages called Make It From Your Heart Volume III. Previous editions of Make It From Your Heart have been for cardmaking, so Volume III is very special. Each sketch is a double page spread (which I almost never do) and has two full-color example spreads included. Volume III includes sketches for 36 double page spreads. There are cutting guides and measurements included as well. 

These sketches are designed to be used with the most common photo sizes such as 4x6 and 3x4, and include 4 to 8 photos on each spread.  (You know I never use that many photos, so I adjust as I go.)  As you might expect, 100% of the supplies used in the page designs shown in Make It From Your Heart are manufactured by Close to my Heart but it's fairly easy to substitute supplies from other sources.  

As you probably know, sketches are simple recipes for design that can be copied exactly or used simply as a jumping-off point. 

Let’s just be totally honest here—I have a very difficult time following directions of any kind when it comes to scrapbooking, so I tend to use sketches as a jumping off point. I don’t look at the number of photos in a design because I use only 1-3 photos on a page and I basically never create a 2 page spread. So you might ask, do I actually use and like this book?

In a word, YES! Using a sketch as a jumping-off point insures that I know where I’m going creatively and helps me know when I have have arrived. I’m not a literalist...a sketch showing 7 pictures and only a few sentences of journaling in the book can magically and easily feature 1 or 2 pictures and a ton of story on my page. I find that starting with a sketch enhances my creativity by giving me a basic framework from which I can invision my finished page, while allowing me to enhance it with other items I have chosen, such as patterned paper, story, title and embellishments. 

For this layout, I used Pattern 27 from Volume III,  the left side.

This layout features flowers cut from the Gimme Some Sugar paper and the Marker Alphabet Stamps! I went with the flowers to convey the princess-y feel referenced in the journaling. The card in the upper right corner is the actual MARTA ticket.

Never let your design be locked up by the sketch. Instead, make it your own by:

  • Flipping it around. 
  • Changing up the number of photos. 
  • Adding extra journaling. 
  • Making the page larger or smaller. 
  • Using just the left or just the right side of the design. 

Using a sketch is like wearing a little black dress. You can wear the perfect little black dress 100 different ways because in truth, it’s not about the dress--It’s all about the earrings, necklace, bracelet, shoes and the handbag! Am I right? 😁

Thanks for stopping by. 
Happy sketching,

Patterned Pumpkin Love

Please note that this post originally appeared on ,y stamping blog. I'm currently in the process of migrating all the stamping content to this page. All links that are no longer relevant have been removed.

While I don’t love pumpkin spice beverages, (gasp, I know)  I do love pretty pumpkins! And that’s how it came to be that I held onto this retired stamp set from Close to my Heart called Autumn Wishes. The pumpkin is just so special with all those doesn’t even need much embellishment. 

I made this card recently using the pumpkin from Autumn Wishes. I wanted to share this with the Heart 2 Heart Challenges group for the Pumpkin Spice Challenge!


The sentiment is a tiny little wood-mounted rubber stamp by A Muse Art Stamps, now known as A Muse Studio. I love it because its an appropriate sentiment for so many occasions. Unfortunately, A Muse has undergone several reincarnations since I purchased this stamp and it seems that while they do still offer a very limited selection of wood-mounted stamps HERE, this particular one is retired. :(

Until next time,

To All the Stamps I've Loved Before

Please note that this post originally appeared on my stamping blog last year. I', in the process of migrating all the stamping content to this page and all the links that are no longer relevant have been removed.

The Heart 2 Heart Challenge for this week is to create something that is “inspired by nature”. This challenge is wide open to interpretation—those are the kinds of challenges I love most!

This is my entry—

I’m mixing up all the stamp companies this time—because that how I ike to stamp! #allthestamps

This card was made using a border stamp and a sentiment stamp from Close to my Heart and a wood-mounted stamp from Impress Cards and Crafts that I have loved for years! It’s called Savy Line Flower Cluster. You can see it here.

That skinny stamp of checked border has been my go-to lately...I’m seriously loving it. It’s in a Close to my Heart set called “Holiday Borders” and is now retired. (Retired stamps is a concept I'll never understand. I get so attached to the lovelies.)   I stamped it out in about six different colors and cut them out at a recent crop night. I find hand cutting or “fussy cutting” as some call it, very soothing and relaxing.

In addition to the challenge card, I also created one more card, using the same collection of stamps. That little torn bit of the checked stamp acts like a piece of washi tape holding things together at the top.

Until next time,

Christmas Card Color Dare Chaallenge

Please note that this blog post originally appeared on my stamping blog last year. The links that are no longer relevant have been removed. If you see a product you need, send me an email and I will help you source it.

is to create using to following colors:
-New England Ivy
-Candy Apple

Here’s my answer to the challenge:

I stamped the stripes for a tone-on-tone look. I’m really taken with stamping my own stripes right now and I love that because this stamp isn’t a straight line, I really can’t mess it up. No precision needed.

I used a tiny piece of plaid ribbon for balance as well as a strip of sheet music from a discarded music book.

I love red and kraft together...don’t you?

Happy Stamping!


Why Does It Work?

Do you ever get on a creative roll and really really feel like you have this thing we call scrapbooking handled like a boss?

Typically, when I experience this feeling it’s because I’ve been dedicated to my crafting process with regularity and have really pushed myself to finish certain projects.

This is one of those layouts—it just works for me. It makes me feel like I have this scrapbooking thing under control!

So let’s ask...
Why does it work?
What is it about this particular design that makes it work for me?

1-The color scheme. Chocolate brown, birdegg blue and lime green sing for me.

2-The title is funky but readable and is unique. I love a title that makes the reader want to know more and I feel like this one does that. I also love a stamped title.

3-There's a specific memory on this page. I love scrapbook pages that capture a memory that I don't think anyone else (namely the boy in the picture) will automatically recall later in life. It's not a monumental moment--it's a quiet memory that could easily be shoved into the background of life unless I write it down. It speaks to who this child is. I like that.

4-This page utilizes a unique accent--a Post it note. That small square of paper with the quotation marks on it is a Post-It note. I love being able to incorporate everyday things (especially office supplies) into my scrapbooking.

5-This page is 8.5x11. I love this size.

Until next time,


The Pretty Pie Stamp

(This post from Thanksgiving of last year originally appeared on my stamping blog, which is being retired.)

It’s Thanksgiving here in the US...time to acknowledge the good things in life and take a day to thoughtfully embrace gratitude. The  Heart 2 Heart Challenge for this week is to build on the theme of “a thankful heart”.

Here’s my entry into the challenge:

My husband is all about the pie at Thanksgiving. This year we are having an abnormally quiet Thanksgiving at home so I made this card for him. (Paper pies are the only kind I make but I did stop by the bakery and pick up his favorites yesterday.)

I hope your Thanksgiving is filled with pie too!
Until next time,


A Hot July Moon

I am not a girly girl but every month a black and white striped box of mostly girly scrapbook supplies from Felicity Jane shows up on my doorstep and inspires me to let the super girly crafty flag fly!

This layout is one of those!

I'm very much in love with those puffy black alphabet stickers--they are so striking and yet, easy to read. I prefer a title thats easy to read.

Part of my recent revival of the blog is a rededication to keepng the story in my pages. To me, a good scrapbook page involves a picture, a title that draws the viewer in, a little bit of pretty and a whole lot of story. That doesn't necessarily mean that the story has to be long or arduious. Indeed, not. The story can be a simple thought or a poingnant quote--as long as the story is there.

In this particular page, I documented the story on the journaling card that's hiding in the glassine envelope.

Until next time,

Spotlighting Techniques--Vellum

To spotlight something is to draw attention to it. 

There are many techniques that paper-crafters use to draw attention to a certain element on a card or scrapbook page. In this previously-shared blog post (from 2018), I have demonstrated spotlighting using velum to create a lightweight visual frame around the element of a card.

Vellum has been a staple in paper-crafting forever and is an easy-to-use specialty paper. It has a variety of uses but perhaps the most obvious is as a frame to give the eye a transitional avenue around something exciting. I use vellum quite often in this manner.

I had to give the Spotlight On Challenge at Heart 2 Heart Challenges extra thought. This is why I enjoy participating in challenges—doing so takes you places creatively. It stretches those crafty muscles.

This time I went super clean and simple using vellum to spotlight the decorative band across my kraft card base. The vellum layer is soft but adds visual weight. I enjoy the impact of repeating images, especially if the color combo is complimentary.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Choose the Blues

This post was previously shared on my stamping blog for a stamping challenge at COLOR MY HEART in 2018.

The  COLOR MY HEART COLOR DARE #319 is to feature the color blue. Can’t go wrong there. Blue comes in so many delicious shades and variations—what’s not to love? I choose blues quite often.

I went with a delicate blue and a basic dark blue to create this stamped card. Blue is my preferred color pallet and I love this pairing. Do you often choose the blues?

Until next time,

All About the Blogs

So I recently had the opportunity to sit down and chat with The Scrap Gals about the state of scrapbooking blogs and where we see blogs going in the future as a scrapbooking tool and also as just one more form of social media. Its always nice to spend a little time chatting with Tiffany and Tracie about topics we care deeply about and have opinions on.

I've been blogging since 2003, mostly about scrapbooking and cardmaking, with a few family adventures thrown in for some fun. The world of scrapbooking and scrapbook marketing is changing rapidly(and has been for a while) and I have felt for a while that blogs just aren't the prime media outlet that they once were. So many--ok almost all the blogs I used to read regularly have gone inactive or been removed.

 I did a little bit of research in preparation for the show and it seems that crafty blogs surged in proliferation about 2004-2010. Since that time, with the influx of additional avenues of marketing via all the different social media platforms, its become apparent that in order to move forward, there are several questions that have to answered by bloggers:

1. Is my blog just a landing pad or a place to store my extended content? Or is my blog my online home where people who want more of my offerings go? Is my blog to be considered the "fall back place" or is it the "primary outlet"?

For me, with 16 years of content already stored right here, I see my blog as my primary outlet. Lets face it--I'm wordy. I enjoy Facebook and Instagram but I have come to realize that I really do prefer the space to show all the pictures and write down all the words and thoughts. I think I got sidetracked as of late because both Facebook and Instagram offer one thing that blogging seems to lack--instant responses.

2. What does it take to remind people to make the leap from a social media platform such as Facebook or Instagram over to a blog page?

To be honest, I'm not 100% sure. I read a ton of scrapbook message boards and Facebook groups and the general answer to this quandary seems to be "entice me". It seems that a blog will only survive and grow a readership if all the other social media platforms used by that writer are pointing potential readers to the home base and dropping crumbs of inspiration for them to follow along the way. Let's be honest--social media users tend towards a very short attention span. (Myself included!) Where it used to be that people were in the habit of going to individual blogs on a regular basis--now it seems that the habit is completely broken and as a blog writer seeking readers, you have to reach out and almost drag people into your blog space. and you definitely have to make it worth their while with usable content and top-quality ideas.

3. Is my blog a marketing tool for my business or a personal pursuit?

Obviously, this is an easy question to answer. I am not selling anything on my blog--its completely about the passionate pursuit of memory keeping and the paper-crafting life. I'm not marketing a creative business, although I do believe that blogging is an obvious and excellent tool for doing so. I'm a student of marketing in general and yes, blogging is a fascinating way to capture stories and share creative content the on the web with people who are like-minded and searching for creative inspiration.

I think there is great value in being a single voice with a blog offering continuity of style and topic. However, for those who are interested in the use of a blog for marketing a creative business, the team approach to content creation seems to be a very popular option that yields productive results. Obviously, having a steady stream of content from multiple creators (each bringing their own following to the fountain) will enlarge one's reach and do exactly what social media marketing was designed to do--expand the reach of everyone. Its simple math.

I have quite a few friends who are direct sales marketers for crafting organizations. The decline in blog readership doesn't seem to have impacted them the way it has the single-voice blog writers. I think perhaps its because they are finding ways to support each other. If all the Close to my Heart demonstrators are participating in a certain blog "hop", then they are all reading each other's pages and yet none of them will be gaining new customers as a result of their efforts...but big high readership numbers make them feel like they are investing their time into something that "works".

4. What exactly is my goal in blogging?

Certainly there are as many possible answers to this question as there are bloggers in the cloud. I see my blog as a tool to log experiences in paper-crafting, document creative pursuits and have a digital record of the things I've done with paper. If blogging is in fact old enough to have an "old-school" style, that's what I want to do.

One voice, one unique experience.
Documented on the internet, with pretty pictures and all the words needed.

In my chat with The Scrap Gals, I was reminded that there is an intrinsic value to having an online, easily-accessible journal of sorts. If something malicious happened to the physical scrapbooks in my home, I will still have the digital format to fall back on. I like that idea imme

The episode of The Scrap Gals podcast will air in a few weeks. You can subscribe for a tiny monthly fee at

So where does that leave me?

--Still believing that blogging (for me) is a contribution to the creative universe in which I participate as a maker and a writer.

--Still wanting to preserve memories and crafty pursuits and watching others who are also doing so.

--Combining all my blog content into one single page. This includes the most recently written content that was shared on my stamping blog over the past year. Links that are no longer active will be removed but the creative projects will still be shared.

Welcome to the reboot!


Stand Up Pages and Cards

Just a quick post about displaying cards and scrapbook pages vertically. I think this easel die by Sizzix and Tim holtz is the most undersold and uber-useful die around!

I’m showing it here with a page layout, but it also works perfectly with cards too.

I use cereal boxes to cut the easels.

Add a strip of adhesive to the narrow spine. 

Expose the adhesive and attach to the page protector. 

When you are looking for an easy way to display a card or layout, the Tim Holtz small easel die is the perfect tool for the job.

Until next time,

(PS This post originally appeared on my stamping blog last year. I hope you find it useful.)

Christmas Cards by Panera

So I’m always on the lookout for extraordinary materials that can be incorporated into my cardmaking hobby and not too long ago the artwork on a paper bag from Panera caught my fancy. I snapped it right up!

After cutting the bag open and laying it out flat...

I made a template with an opening the size of a standard card front so I could see what area would be included on each one. (I just used a piece of plain cardstock to make the template window.)

After moving it around to see how I could get the most number of well-composed card fronts out of the one bag, I made pen marks to use as cutting guides on the bag and then cut them out roughly with scissors. Cleaner, more precise cuts were done on the trimmer.

I managed to get six cards out of the one bag. Here are a few:

There are a few strips leftover for another project. I have long been a fan of red on kraft but now I am totally drawn to green and white on kraft as well.

Thanks Panera Bread for these awesome and useful paper bags!

I'm including this in the December 3 Three Amigos Blog Hop Challenge (#21) featuring the Christmas/Winter/Holiday theme.

Happy Upcycled Cardmaking!

PS This post was originally shared on my stamping blog. I'm consolidating everything to one blog now and removing the links that are no longer relevant. If you see something you just can't live without, send me a message and I'll try to help you source it out. :)

Retired Stamp Love

Stamping has been a part of my life for more than twenty years. (Do I say this too often?) While I understand the need for our favorite stamp companies to retire stamps and move on to new things, it's always difficult for me to move on, leaving the sets I've come to enjoy creatively or sometimes even parting with them in order to keep my stash manageable. New designs are fun, of course, but saying goodbye-- not so much. 

So with this in mind, I'm going to do something here that I have never seen another consultant do(but how I wish they would)--I'm going to do a regular feature called *Retired Stamp Love* where I go back and create with sets that are retired but still loved. 

For the sheer love of stamping. :)  

Sometimes I'll pair up retired sets with things that are currently available. Usually retired sets can still be acquired on eBay, or through the many Facebook groups that exist for buying and selling second hand craft items. 

Today, in Retired Stamp Love, I'm playing with the stamps from the Sugar Rush Cardmaking suite by Close to my Heart. This set of stamps and matching dies was available

 Can't go wrong with cute donut stamps, right?

This is the Sugar Rush Cardmaking stamp set made by Close to my Heart back in 2016.

The Stamp images that are outlined in blue are the ones that have coordinating dies. As you can see there are several wonderful, universal sentiment images in this set--that "Happy Birthday" is a great size for making paper ribbon. More on that in a moment. 

I paired the Sugar Rush suite from last year with the Silver and Gold suite that is also retired.

--The two lighter brown donuts are created using second-generation stamped images. This is a good technique to use when you need a lighter color of ink that you don't have. (This happens to me often.) To achieve this look, simply ink up your stamp, stamp the image on cardstock, then immediately without re-inking, stamp it again. The second image will be much lighter than the first. 

Frosted donuts can be made in many color combinations. For the above card, I skipped the stamping steps and just used the dies with cardstock. I did use the sprinkles stamp to jazz it up a bit. 

I happen to think the sentiment in this set that says "Happy Birthday with sprinkles on top!" is just perfection. I really like the font that Happy Birthday is written in. It's perfectly sized for carding and can be added to any card design. 

For convenience, I performed a bit of stamp surgery on this image and separated the Happy Birthday from the rest of the sentiment. They can be now be used together as shown above or individually as shown below.

I wanted to make it easy to incorporate this Happy Birthday sentiment into some future projects, so I took just a few minutes and stamped out some paper "ribbon" strips using the Happy Birthday repetitively. Each paper ribbon is about 1/2" wide and 11" long. When I use these sentiment strips, I will add a matching colored gem or sequin in between each phrase. 

So there you have it.
Retired Stamp Love.

Until next time,

PS This post originally appeared on my stamping blog, which is also now being retired. All no-longer-relevant links have been removed. :) If you see a product you like, email me and I'll try to help you track it down.