Friday, April 24, 2009

Mother's Day Card, Birthday Card, Techniques, and more!

I have a couple cards to show you today...I've been busy! This first card is the Mother's Day card we're making at JoDawn's party tonight. It's general enough that it doesn't have to be for mother's day, but definitely works...and the colors are perfect for the occasion! There are a few techniques used here: cluster stamping (put several smaller stamps on one acrylic block); embossing (the sorbet flower); and rock 'n roll stamping (see tutorial below).

I used several different stamp sets for the words, and the branch and flowers are from aspiration. The matching paper is from the Unforgettable paper pack.

If you wanted a stamp set with all the love words you would need, Priceless Love (D1348) is a perfect one. Your focal point could be one of the larger stamps, use the star and heart as images, and there are several great words to add as well.

There's a great video using this stamp set and these techniques on my CTMH website.

To Rock 'n Roll stamp:
  1. Choose 2 ink colors to use.
  2. Stamp your image in the lighter color
  3. lightly stamp the edges of the same image in the second color.
  4. Stamp onto your paper...viola! You have a duo-tone stamped image!

This next card is a bright and cheery summery card! It uses the stamps from the Tickled Pink special going on now. (Read my previous post to see how you can get it for free.) I random-stamped the background, added some cardstock and a stamped focal image, some brads, and you're done!

Colors used: Watermelon, Sunflower, Ocean, Citrus Leaf

The "happy birthday" stamp is from the Happy Birthday stamp set (C1257). This set sure comes in handy. I didn't think I'd ever need so many birthday stamps...but I think I've used just about all of them for different projects!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Cardstock Desk Caddy

This posting is not only a tutorial and artwork, but a SNEAK PREVIEW from the new summer catalog!!! How cute is this idea? My friend Mandy gave me the instructions for this desk caddy, which originally came from another CTMH Consultant, Pamela Wallace. Special thanks to you girls!


(1) 12x12 cardstock
(2) 12x12 B&T Duo paper, two patterns
(2) 18 inch strips of ribbon

Score the 12x12 cardstock at 4 inches and 8 inches. Turn and score again the opposite direction at 4 inches and 8 inches. Your cardstock is now scored into 9 squares.

Score the corner squares diagonally, from point towards center of paper.

Cut four 3-3/4 inch squares of B&T Duo paper. Mount on each of the four solid squares.

Cut four 3-3/4 inch squares of (contrast or, optionally, same pattern) B&T Duo paper. Cut each diagonally to form triangles. Mount on the diagonally-scored squares.

Punch holes in each of the four points.

Center square leave plain.

Embellish as desired.

Fold on all score lines.

Fold up, folding diagonally-scored squares with crease toward center.

Thread one length of ribbon through two points diagonally across caddy. Thread other the opposite direction. Hold both pieces of ribbon together and tie in bow.


Note 1: you may choose to spray with craft sealer before adding ribbon to give the caddy some protection
Note 2: placing something heavy in the bottom can help keep the caddy from tipping over when filled unevenly -or- about 3/4 inch deep of dried beans or peas can help pens stand upright in the openings

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Why Scrapbook?...Why Journal?...And Techniques for Doing Them!

My mom has recently shown an interest in beginning to scrapbook with me. I can't tell you how EXCITED this makes me!!!!! Not only would she be good at it (I get my eye for color and placement from her), but I have always wanted to see her pictures from BK (before kids) her and my dad's wedding! But not only that...she led such an interesting life, and I've only heard stories. She was the drummer in a rock band in college and traveled around the country; she was a magician's assistant for many years and had a regular show at Knott's Berry Farm, plus traveled. She may not have a lot of pictures from these experiences, but she can still tell the story. One picture or one piece of memorabilia is all it takes!

I don't remember how old I was when I started asking her about their wedding, and when she and dad were first married, but I remember I did. She told me it was a small wedding and the pictures were put away. She got out a couple at one point, but I STILL would LOVE to see all of her wedding pictures...and pictures of her and my dad BK :)

I think it would be so cool to see what your mom and dad's lives were like before you came see that they weren't always just your MOM and DAD. I would have loved to see a scrapbook of my grandparents' lives...and their parents' lives. My grandma (my mom's mom) started a scrapbook before she passed away, but it never got finished. I started to work on it, but I had to keep asking my mom who people were and what some pictures were from. I still have it sitting in a box, unfinished, hoping my mom can help me with it someday.

Journaling in your Scrapbook

I love that scrapbooking tells a story...that's why journaling is so important! I wanna see my mom's whole story...I wanna see the pictures to go along with the stories I've heard over the years...and I want the stories to be retold so I never forget them!!! Oh man, I'm starting to get emotional :)

I didn't always journal. I thought it ruined my page to have something handwritten on it. But when I started forgetting the story behind some of my older scrapbook pages, I realized how important it is. Plus, with computers so readily available nowadays, you can type your journal spots. (I've since gotten over the fact that my handwriting ruins a I design my journal spot into the layout!) But not only is journaling important for YOU, but someday you will not be around and your grandkids will still know what happened in all your pictures! And they will be able to read funny little stories to go along with them. Regular photo albums are just pictures, but scrapbooking also adds your personality into it.

Put YOU Into Your Artwork

Don't forget to take pictures of yourself

When I have kids, I want them to see that I'm not just their MOM, I was once like them! As a scrapbooker, it's easy for me to make sure I take plenty of pictures to document a vacation or event, but it's also easy for me to forget to make sure I'm IN some pictures! You want to be sure you are telling YOUR story as well as your family's story.

Scrapbooking subjects

Scrapbooking your family vacation to Hawaii or your son's graduation will never go out of style. But you can also tell a lot about yourself in unconventional ways. Mix some layouts in your scrapbook that focus on one subject. Maybe you have a thing for purses or, like me, SHOES. Take pictures of your favorite purses and shoes and make a layout of them. Explain how each represents you or how you wore them to death. Or take a picture of each room in your house. Explain what each room's purpose is, which you spend the most time in, why you decorated it the way you did. The options are endless!

I PROMISE if your kids (well, daughters) are anything like I was growing up (and still am), they will eat this stuff up. Especially if you begin scrapbooking before you have day they will see that you were just like them.

Purposeful scrapbooking

Another way to make sure YOU are in your artwork is purposeful scrapbooking. Make a layout of something difficult you went through, maybe a loss, or struggling with an illness. Or make a layout of something very the adoption of a child. Focus on one single experience rather than trying to tackle your whole life. Purposeful scrapbooking isn't necessarily just pictures. Add a picture or two, but add lots of journaling. What were you thinking, feeling, experiencing? How did this experience make you grow, how did it make those around you feel, what was your weakest or highest point? It's all about honesty.

Art + Feelings = The Big Picture. Become part of the layout so your voice is heard. It doesn't have to be about sad things that can be about happy things...but our lives are not always honky-dorey. We all go through rough patches...let's document those as well. It will help your kids and grandkids to understand the circumstances that shaped who you are today.

Here's to YOUR scrapbook!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Expressions of Love for Mom

The new Art & Soul video is up on my CTMH website! For those of you who haven't watched an episode of Art & really should! I always learn something new every episode! Learn how to do this using the stamp 'n roll technique...

Get this featured stamp set at a discount at the end of the show! (Click the image below to watch the video on my website!)

NEW Idea Book Release Parties

The NEW Idea book, with lots of great new products, comes out on May 1st!

I'm having TWO Idea Book release parties in May. There will be RAFFLES for lots of FREE product from the new Idea don't want to miss out!! Look below for a COUPON and how to earn your raffle tickets!

San Diego
Where: Ashley's NEW house in San Elijo Hills
2525 Rockdale, San Marcos, 92078
Saturday, May 2
Time: 11:30am-2:30pm (give or take)
Project: Mother's Day card

Where: Infinity Arts
29377 Rancho California Road, suite 104
Temecula, CA 92591
Date: Sunday
, May 3
Time: 2:00pm-5:00pm (give or take)
Project: Mother's Day card

* I will be hosting the Temecula party with my fellow CTMH Consultant, Mandy Leahy. It will be a great time if you're in the area!

How to Earn RAFFLE Tickets:

  • 1 ticket: RSVP for either party by Saturday, April 25
  • 1 ticket: Show up and fill out a contact form
  • 2 tickets: Bring a friend (18 or over)
  • 2 tickets: Place an order over $50
  • 3 tickets: Place an order over $100
  • 3 tickets: Book your own party
  • 4 tickets: Join my CTMH team!

In addition to my special offers and prizes, Close to my Heart always offers incentives as well. The Stamp of the Month for May is SUPER cute (sneak preview below) and is FREE when you order $100 or more; or discounted with just a $25 order. You can also get the Tickled Pink Kit FREE! (See details in my last post.)

To RSVP for either of these parties, email me at

Friday, April 17, 2009

Get Your Tickled Pink Scrapbooking Kit for FREE!

May is National Scrapbooking month, and Close to my Heart always has a great special for celebrations like this. From April 15-May 31, when you purchase $60 or more in stamp sets (excluding personalized stamps), you will get this Tickled Pink scrapbook kit for FREE! Or you can purchase it for $34.95. I got my kit this week and took step-by-step pictures as I put it together. Enjoy!

Here is a picture of all the contents of the kit:
  • (2) 12" x 12" designer papers (1 each of 2 patterns)
  • (2) 12" x 12" glittered designer papers (1 each of 2 patterns)
  • (6) 12" x 12" textured cardstock (1 crystal blue, 1 blush, 4 white daisy)
  • (1) 12" x 12" textured cardstock die-cut shapes
  • 1 My Acrtylix "I am" Stamp Set
  • 1 Mini-Medley Accents white daisy
  • 1 foam tool
  • 1 instructional brochure
(click any picture for a larger view.)

This instructional brochure is 8 pages with step-by-step instructions for cutting, stamping, etc. to put together 2 layouts (4 pages)!!

The first page tells you exactly what dimensions to cut each paper so you can get all the cutting out of the way. Here are all my cut pieces.

Here are all my leftover scraps. Plenty to make several cards!!

These are all my die-cuts punched out.

The stamps in the stamp set coordinate perfectly with the die-cuts. Here are the die-cuts once they're finished being stamped. There are a few leftover die-cuts too.

And here are my finished layouts! I strayed a bit from the recommended layouts...I always have to make them "my own." But I used the layout as a guide and it helped make the process much faster!

Once you have your kit and create your artwork, you can win prizes from Close to my heart! As another fun way to celebrate this special month, Close to My Heart has created a website,, that you can visit to share your artwork and win Close To My Heart products.

Place an order for Close to my Heart products! Remember, this kit is FREE when you purchase $60 or more in Stamp sets!! Or you can host a party and get it for free when your party sales reach $400 or more.

Contact me at with any questions or to book a party!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Two Days at the Scrap Inn!

Earlier this week I got to spend 2 days and 1 night at the San Diego Scrap Inn! Myself and 4 other ladies from my Close to my Heart team had a great time scrapbooking all night Tuesday, then went to bed and did it all over again on Wednesday. It's such an awesome feeling to wake up and walk in the other room in your jammies and get to craft! And it's so inspiring to be with other creative ladies. I got a LOT of scrapbooking done, plus planned/prepped one of my May parties. Here is some of what I accomplished (I was 1 year behind on my own scrapbook, and am still very behind)...

(click any picture for a larger view.)

This is the card we're making at Michelle's CTMH party. She loves pink and glitter, and wanted to learn how to use fun flock (on Mr. Elephant's ear).

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Scrapbook Layouts made Beautifully Simple!

Reflections is just one of the 5 how-to books that Close to my Heart offers. Even as an advanced scrapbooker, I get so much out of this book!

It features step-by-step instructions, simple patterns, and detailed dimensions for creating scrapbook layouts. Each page in the book is a do-it-yourself guide to building pages from scratch. It gives you sample layouts, complete with cutting instructions so you can easily recreate the layout on your own! A must-have for beginners and seasoned crafters!

Everyone needs to give cards to people...and Close to my Heart makes it easy to make your own! WOW your recipient with your own handmade card using the Originals book. It includes 99 patterns with exact dimensions, fold placement guides, blueprints, and step-by-step instructions. Also includes a CD-ROM with patterns. The gorgeous, full-color artwork is inspiring for every level crafter.

Buy Reflections now! $21.95
Buy Originals now! $29.95

Both books are hardcover spiral-bound

If you want to learn additional techniques not shown in these books, host a party! I'll not only show you more ideas, but you'll earn FREE product, get to make a project, get a hands-on demonstration of the exclusive and AWESOME Close to my Heart products, AND have a fun girl's night (or day)! Email me at

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Another Frame is Born

This is the "What's in a Frame" I did for Tad...he and Ali are expecting Emily in early May! Shhh...this is a surprise for Ali! What a sweet hubby :)

Supplies used...
From Close to my Heart: More to Adore paper pack, Just Blooms paper flowers, Mini-Medley Accents Collection in Autumn Garden and Winter Cozy, blush ricrac, sparkles. (Cherish and organdy ribbon, and photo clip are retired.)
Other supplies: shiny cardstock flowers from Michaels, the letters were cut out using double-sided sticky paper on my Cricut, then coated in Brownstone glitter from Martha Stewart. I love Martha's's so sparkly! Oh who am I kidding...I love Martha!

To purchase your own customized frame, email me at

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Birthday Card for a 4-year-old boy

I made this card for Chris's cousin's 4-year-old son. I knew he wouldn't care about the card...he would just want to play with his new batman car! But the mom would appreciate it :) She did (and he didn't). Haha. But it turned out pretty cute I think. I used the Nursery Bash stamp set from Close to my Heart and got to use my copic markers for the first time!

What's in a Frame?

What do you think of my new name/logo for the artwork I've been making? (Click here if you don't know what I'm referring to.)

Tad is a soon-to-be new daddy who ordered a baby name frame from me. I knew he was a clever and witty guy so I challenged him to come up with a name for this artwork I've been creating. "Baby frame" just wasn't descriptive enough...especially since I am going to start doing wedding frames!

I love his play on words, but we were still concerned that people wouldn't get it. That's where the idea of a logo came in...where "frame" is emphasized and the tagline makes the nature of the product very clear.

"[This name] promotes the fact that it is only the limits of the customer's (and your) creativity that can stop what can be included within the frame!... And (by the way), you're really talented...I was seriously blown away when I saw them (and all the other stuff you do)." -Tad

Aw shucks...thanks Tad!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Using a blending pen

I'm the type of person who doesn't just get into something, I get all into it. This especially goes for crafting. My most recent favorite product has been the blending pen. Once I started using it I was hooked! It's like turning every one of your stamp pads into a marker.

Take this Easter card, for example...

The butterfly is stamped in black, and every color you see on him is colored with the blending pen. I used my ink pads. Here's what you do...
  1. While still closed, squeeze the top and bottom of your ink pad together.
  2. Open it up and you should see some ink on the lid. Leave the lid open.
  3. Dip your blending pen (which is essentially a clear marker) very lightly into the ink and swirl it around.
  4. Once you see it pick up some of the ink, color it onto your paper. I like to start out light, and you can always go darker if you'd like.
  5. When you're done with one color, use scratch paper to wipe off all the excess color from your blending pen. Your pen may stain, but as long as you don't see any color coming off anymore, you're ready to go to the next color.
  6. Viola! Instant marker in any color!
If you use your pen a lot like I do, you may want a few of them to use for different color families.

Here are some more shots of the card...

To make the 3D effect, I first stamped the butterfly on the card itself. Then I stamped the butterfly on a separate piece of paper and cut it out, adhering it with 3D foam. Stamping the butterfly on the card first did a couple things:
  1. It helped give the 3D butterfly more depth.
  2. I didn't have to cut out the antennae because they're stamped on the paper - HUGE time-saver, plus it looks better!
You can also use the blending pen WITH your markers. First color with the marker, then color with the blending pen. It will help to give the marker a softer, almost watercolor look. Use with a couple colors...for example, if you're coloring a leaf green and the flower connected to it in purple...use the blending pen to blend the green and purple together and make it look more cohesive.

I hope this inspires you to try the blending pen. I promise you will LOVE it!

Supplies for this card:
Cardstock: Sunkiss yellow and Coloniel white
Stamp sets: Butterfly wings (March SOM) and March Word Puzzle
Inks: black, sunkiss yellow, key lime, amethyst, heavenly blue, baby pink

Coupon for Jo-Ann Craft Stores

Here's a coupon to use at Jo-Ann Craft Stores for an extra 20% off your entire purchase...even on sale items! What a deal! I like to get my adhesives, buttons, and Cuttlebug die-cuts/folders at Jo-Ann. Don't be tempted to buy stamps or stamp pads's a waste of money...Close to my Heart My Acrylix stamps and inks are THE best you will ever use. Hands down. The stamps are CLEAR so you can see where you're stamping them. I've gotten rid of the hundreds of dollars of other stamps/inks I had invested in because I don't even want to use them anymore after using CTMH stuff. Check them out here.

All that said, book a party with me and you will learn a ton about crafting and the CTMH products, plus have a great time! I promise.