Beautiful Butterflies

I suppose it's no surprise that I like to take one product and make many samples so I can show you how to stretch your dies.  Today I want to share with you many samples using two Memory Box dies:

Cascadia Butterflies


Leavenworth Butterflies

The good news about these dies is that you get a small, medium and large butterfly on one die.  However, the dies are all one piece meaning you cannot use one butterfly separately without cutting it out.  I have rarely found this to be a problem versus the advantage of having three size butterflies at my fingertips.

Let's take a look at the samples.

Dreams-Take-FlightDreams Take Flight

For this card I cut the Cascadia Butterflies from four colors of cardstock then stenciled each butterfly with a tone on tone ink using Memory Box stencils Mesh and Disperse.  The dotted border was die cut with Penny Black die Dots and Swirls and the sentiment  added using Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets.  I embellished some of the butterflies with silver Metal Decor dots from Hero Arts.  Design inspired by Deborah Nolan.

  You-and-meYou & Me

I cut the focal panel using Memory Box die Stitched Rectangles then cut two squares each from teal and light green cardstock (1.75") and rounded two corners on each square.  I positioned these in the upper center of the panel and adhered them using foam tape.  I  mounted the largest butterfly, cut from metallic gold cardstock, on top of the squares and die cut the sentiment from the same gold cardstock.  This is a cute and easy card and amenable to any color scheme and sentiment.

Lavender Butterflies

I love the colors on this card -- the lavender butterflies floating on the teal background with green dotted accents is so spring like.  The opening on the upper left corner of the card is cut with Memory Box die Distressed Baptisia Collage.  The greenery is cut with Memory Box die Tall Bamboo and the butterflies with MB Cascadia.  I added the sentiment with Penny Black clear stamp set Happy Snippets. Design inspired by Deborah Nolan

White-on-WhiteWhite on White

IRL this card is much more impressive -- it just doesn't photograph well.  For this card I cut several Memory Box Cascadia and Leavenworth Butterflies from white cardstock and adhered them to a white card.  I then cut the Cascadia large butterfly from pink, yellow and blue cardstock and adhered a large Leavenworth butterfly cut from white cardstock over them. You could embellish the card with the butterfly bodies or crytals if desired.  Design inspired by Lindsay Amrhein


I made three variations on this design.  I die cut the focal panel with Memory Box die Stitched Rectangles and sponged it with Distress and Memento inks.  Next I cut the Cascadia Butterflies from vellum and sponged them with ink (blue, pink or yellow) then sandwiched them between the Leavenworth Butterflies and butterfly bodies both cut from black cardstock.  The cards were finished with a sentiment from Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets stamped on black cardstock and embossed in white.  The word "Smile" was cut with the Impression Obsession die Instant Photo Frame (smile) and Penny Black die Hooray Words.  Design inspired by Jean Okimoto.


Please enlarge the photo to see the stitched border I die cut along the bottom of the green panels using Paper Smooches die Stitched.  I added one butterfly and a "Hello" sentiment die cut with Savvy Stamps die Hello.  Design inspired by Judy Tuck.


Make a quick shaker card with the Cascadia Butterflies by cutting them from white cardstock (die cut with Memory Box Stitched Rectangles) and from a piece of fun foam.  Stamp sentiment (from Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets) on the white cardstock before proceeding.  Tape a piece of acetate behind the openings on the white cardstock then tape the fun foam piece to the acetate.  Fill the openings with tiny beads, stars and glitter and cover the openings with a piece of scrap cardstock.  Center the shaker on green plaid paper and center this piece on flowered paper cut the same size as an A2 card.  A beautiful card for a lucky recipient.  

Sale ... Sale ... Sale

I pulled hundreds of items off the racks for the sale table so stop in soon and shop the bargains!  The sale goes on until everything is sold.

Just in Time for Father's Day!

Hello Friends.  Whether it's Father's Day, Birthday or just  appreciation, we all need masculine cards from time to time.  And I often hear customers say they have no ideas.  Well today I have some great ideas for you using new stamps from Impression Obsession.


June FREE Make It and Take It


The photo of this card is a little misleading.  The card is pictured on a white background with a black border so ignore those aspects.  The central image is called Roadster Grill which, along with the Gears background stamp and the You Are A Classic sentiment stamp, portrays a handsome vintage automobile.  The "Celebrate in Style" is a Hero Arts stamp from my stash.  Stop in the store anytime and make this card for Free!

Masculine Cards


Same stamps with a different look.  I stamped the Roadster Grill on kraft cardstock then watercolored it in red, finishing it with a spritz of water to make the ink run a little.  I embellished the card with gears, die cut with Memory Box Gearworks Border and Mini Gears dies, and a brad with a "screw top."  Design inspired by Dina Kowal.


Here's a third idea with these stamps.  OK I am really going to date myself now -- this roadster reminded me of the old movie (1965 -- yikes!) The Yellow Rolls Royce with Rex Harrison so I thought it would be fun to play with an unconventional color scheme.  I used a Diagonal Stripe background stamp from My Favorite Things and embellished the card with the same gears dies from Memory Box.  Design inspired by Laura Fulcher.


The other new stamp I played with is the Truck Collage from Impression Obsession.  I stamped it in black and colored the truck with Prismacolor pencils blending with Gamsol, an artist-grade odorless mineral spirit.  We sell Gamsol in a convenient, sponge-top dabber bottle that results in a pretty, almost watercolor-like look since it essentially melts the pencil's waxy lines and erases any grainy appearance. Simply color in a stamped image with colored pencils and apply Gamsol using the blending stumps. Note: this technique is for colored pencils that are waxy (like Prismacolor) not watercolor pencils. Our Gamsol Kit includes a 2 ounce bottle of solution, 2 blending stumps and a sandpaper pad for sharpening the paper stumps.  We also sell additional stumps.

If you haven't ever tried blending with Gansol, here's a link to a video that demonstrates the technique.  The houndstooth square is stamped with one of the new Mini Pattern stamps from Impression Obsession.  This card is based on one that Kathi Anderson designed.


Another sample with a tip:  I stamped the Gears background in dark brown ink on the corrugated paper then stamped it several times in tan ink in the corner.  This gives the sentiment stamp more depth and the card more interest.


The last card in our series features the Collage Truck stamp with a Gears border.  The sentiment stamp is from Tim Holtz Hashtags stamp set.

Here's another card I made using the Gears dies:


I used the same Memory Box gears dies and the Impression Obsession die set Greetings.

Retro Masculine Die

A must have die set for making masculine cards is the Retro Masculine set from Impression Obsession.  Look at all the pieces: mustaches, glasses, hats, pipe and ties!

Here are a couple cards made with this set:


For this card I embellished the stamped sentiment (My Favorite Things) with the Retro set.  The frames are from a frame in frame die from Impression Obsession.


Same Retro and Frame in Frame sets along with a thanks die from Paper Smooches.


This card was created by my friend and customer, Bea Mieckowki.  I love the mix of papers and square brad embellishments.  I am not sure if Bea inspired me or vice versa, but here's a somewhat similar card I made:


For this card I used dies from Paper Smooches (Frame 2 and Kudos Words) with the Retro Masculine set.

Just a few more samples that are classic masculine cards.  For these Bea and I used the Taylored Expressions set All the Fixings stamp and die combo set and the Pegboard die.





To see other masculine card designs, please visit The Stamp Act Gallery here.

Huge Sale Continues


Don't forget that our huge sale continues until June 18.  All Christmas, Halloween, Fall, Easter, Valentine and Graduation products are on sale 40% off.  Stop in and shop and make a free card -- Chloe and I would love to see you!  FYI:  Chloe is feeling great these days and although this isn't the best picture, I wanted you to see her fresh from being groomed.  Come say hello in person!  Have a great day!  

Cute, Funny and Punny

Hello Friends.  I hope you had an enjoyable Memorial Day weekend.  Chloe and I had a good time binge watching Downtown Abbey -- it's so good!

Today's samples are all cute, funny and sometimes punny!  I really enjoy these cards because everyone needs a good laugh from time to time.  As you look through the samples remember that to order anything you see on the blog, just contact Polly at 915-833-9500 or  I am happy to help you with anything you need!


Our first card features a cute frog die with a punny sentiment!  IRL the colors are much more vibrant and the background is a cloudy blue sky.  I drew the lilly pad then cut it our of white cardstock and edged it in light green ink.  One die that is a must have is a frame die -- this one is Taylored Expressions Frame in Frame die which includes four different frames.

Wart’s New – Art Impressions stamp Wart’s New; Cottage Cutz die Mini Frog; Taylored Expressions dies Frame in Frame, Cloud Border and Little Bits Sun and Clouds

Patchwork Animals

New from Impression Obsession are the Patchwork Animal dies.  These are very detailed dies (meaning lots of individual pieces to cut the ears, eyes, arms, etc.) and are meant to work with the new Mini Pattern stamps.  You can see the dies and the stamps on our What's New page here.  For these cards I stamped the Mini Pattern stamps (there are 4 sets of 3 stamps each at 2.75" square each) in colored ink on colored cardstock.  I chose a rainbow of colors and stamped away so I had a wide selection of colors and patterns to choose from when I started die cutting.  Even though I used 3 of the new Patchwork Animal dies for baby cards, they can be used for lots of other occasions too.


Hippo – Impression Obsession die Patchwork Hippo; Taylored Expressions dies Welcome Spring, Build-A-Scene Nursery, Love Confetti and Treat Toppers Baby; IO stamps Painted Stripes and Mini Patterns


Elephant – Impression Obsession die Patchwork Elephant; Paper Smooches die Cardbooking; Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo Love You More; IO stamps Mini Patterns


Sheep – Impression Obsession die Patchwork Sheep; Taylored Expressions die Block Party Love; IO stamps Mini Patterns; IO die Typewriter Alphabet Lower Case


This die is actually a gator but to me it looks like a dinosaur.  The sentiment is perfect for a "T-Rex" and adding the "brother" die cut word really personalizes your card.

Dinosaur – Impression Obsession die Patchwork Gator; Taylored Expressions stamp Punny Man; Spellbinders die Labels One; IO stamps Mini Patterns; IO die Plain Alphabet Lower Case; Cottage Cutz die Brother; Taylored Expressions die Stitched Frame Stacklets 1

TE Pocketful of Sunshine


This is a very versatile stamp and die combo set from Taylored Expression.  The image stamps all fit in the pocket which is stitched to look just like a jeans pocket.  The possibilities are endless with this cute little pocket and clever sayings.


Tip:  See the stitching on the circle?  How did I make the stitching continuous even though part of the circle is cut off?   Here's the tip:  First die cut a rectangle with a stitched die then die cut the stitched circle from this rectangle.  Easy yet very impressive!

Orange Sending Love – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; Lifestyle Crafts embossing folder; Memory Box die Stitched Circles and Stitched Rectangles; design inspired by Jean Manis


Denim Pocket – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; TE die Build-A-Bookmark; TE die Little Bits Love Confetti; design inspired by Shannon White


Braided Hoppy Day – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; TE embossing folder Braided; Memory Box die Stitched Scallop Circles; TE die Tag Stacklets 1; TE border die Zig Zag; design inspired by Kendra Wiestock


Frog Sending Love – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; design inspired by Joan Ervin

Don't forget to use your labels or stacklet die sets for backgrounds.  Here I used the Postal Stacklets set from Taylored Expressions.

Hot Pink Hello – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; TE dies Hi Hey Hello and Postal Stacklets; design inspired by Joan Ervin


Add a little polka dot paper to the top of the pocket for an interesting detail.

Flowers Hoppy Day – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; design inspired by Shelly Mercado

Pink Sending Love – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; design inspired by Joan Ervin


Purple Hoppy Day – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine;  design inspired by Joan Ervin


You Make Me Smile – Taylored Expressions stamp and die combo set Pocketful of Sunshine; Impression Obsession dies Instant Photo Frame and banners and Tails; Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets; design inspired by Taylor VanBruggen

Tips on Storing Dies

As we consumers demand more and more detailed dies, our wonderful vendors are more than happy to oblige.  Pictured here is the new Patchwork Hippo die set with its 15 separate tiny dies!  Safely storing a set like this is critical which is why I just ordered a huge roll of magnetic "paper" so I could keep all those tiny little dies secure inside the CD Keepers that I use for storing dies.  The magnet is strong enough that once the dies were on it I could shake it vigorously and they didn't go flying.  I am selling some of the magnetic paper in packages of 10 (cut to 4" x 4.5") for $4.99 each.  Quantities are very limited so stop in soon for a free sample.


Big Summer Sale

I am out of room for new dies and the new Christmas and Fall releases will be coming out next month so I am having a huge sale starting June 1 through June 18 on selected merchandise including all Christmas, Halloween, Fall, Valentine and Easter products.  Every product in these categories is marked down 40% and when you spend $100 (excluding sales tax), you will get an additional 10% off your total expenditure.  There is too much sales merchandise to picture on the website so if you're looking for something specific, come in the store as soon as you can for best selection.  First come, first served!  Questions?  Please contact Polly at 915-833-9500 or  I am happy to help you with anything you need!

I hope to see you soon!









Welcome Little One

Hello Friends!  I hope you are planning an enjoyable Memorial Day weekend.  Today I want to share with you a variety of welcome baby cards plus a few other samples for get well and other occasions.  

Welcome Baby Cards


This card and the one below it are pretty straightforward.  I did sponge the background behind the Welcome die with blue or purple to give the die a little more presence.  You could easily turn this into a shaker card too.

Welcome Little One Boy – Taylored Expressions die Welcome Little One; TE stamp set Onesie Twosie with onesie die; design inspired by Jen Shults


Welcome Little One Girl – Taylored Expressions die Welcome Little One; TE stamp set Onesie Twosie with onesie die; design inspired by Jen Shults


Block Party Baby Feet – Taylored Expressions dies Block Party Baby, Treat Toppers Baby and Stitched Banner Stacklets; design inspired by Kerri Michaud



The star of this car is the Cable Knit embossing folder -- it looks just like a baby blanket.

Block Party Baby Safety Pin – Taylored Expressions dies Block Party Baby, Treat Toppers Baby and Stitched Banner Stacklets; TE embossing folder Cable Knit; TE stamp set Little Bits of Baby; design inspired by Kim Singdahlsen



Welcome Teddy Bear – TE dies Little Bits Teddy Bear, Welcome Baby and Build-A-Scene Nursery; Memory Box die Pinpoint Squares; TE stamp set Little Bits of Baby; design inspired by Courtney Kelley



Don't you love this little nursery?  Taylored Expressions has such clever Build-A-Scene dies!  See how the rug, curtain, lampshade and baby mattress match?  So cute! 

Nursery – TE dies Build-A-Scene Nursery and Build-A-Scene window; TE stamp set Little Bits of Baby; design inspired by Sankari Wegman


Get Well Soon

It's always a good idea to have a stash of get well cards so if you're going to pull out dies and stamps and papers to make one, go ahead and make several with the same design.  For these cards I used the Memory Box die Curved Get Well; Paper Smooches die Bandaids; and Taylored Expressions dies Mini Bloomers and Bloomers Greenery.  The papers are from Penny Black's paper pad Beau Jardins.  I chose the papers and matching cardstocks then cut flowers and greenery in every shade I needed.  I cut the bandaids from kraft cardstock then cut them again from coordinating cardstocks for the hearts.  Assembly was quick and I embellished with butterflies and sequins.   





Flower Portrait Frame

Penny Black's Flower Portrait Frame die is a very versatile frame with tiny openings all around.  The middle of the frame is filled with flowers.  I recently used this frame in a variety of different ways.


For this card, I cut the frame from white cardstock three times and glued them together to give the frame more heft and dimension.  Then  I removed the inner piece, sponged a background of greens and blues, sponged the flowers with red and green and arranged them around the dog.



Bring Me Joy – Penny Black clear stamp sets Man’s Best Friend and Happy Snippets; Penny Black die Flower Portrait; Impression Obsession die Banners and Tails; Taylored Expressions embossing folder Corrugate


Here the frame is sponged with orange and yellow inks.  OMG Mom – Penny Black clear stamp sets Man’s Best Friend and Happy Snippets; Penny Black die Flower Portrait; Taylored Expressions die Conversation Bubbles; Penny Black stamps Skyline and Dots in Space; design inspired by Therese Schaffer


For this card I die cute frame and removed the flowers while I sponged the grass and sky background.  I colored the flowers with Copic markers and reinserted them into the frame securing them on the back with tape.  I also inlaid the flowers centers in white.    Black-White – Penny Black die Flower Portrait; Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets


Remember in the cards above I cut the frame multiple times?  Well that meant I had a lot of "middles" left over.  I decided to sponge the middle (background) using Distress Inks Picked Raspberry, Wild Honey and Ripe Persimmon.  I mounted the background on textured white cardstock then mounted this piece on a white card with foam tape.  The flowers and stems are open except for the centers which I also sponged and inserted in the center of each flower.

Sponged Flowers – Penny Black die Flower Portrait; Penny Black clear stamp set Sprinkles and Smiles; design inspired by Therese Schaffer


One more sample:  I embossed the background with the Zig Zag embossing folder then added color to the embossing by holding my ink pad (Memento dye ink New Sprout) perfectly level and sliding it across the top of the embossing.  I die cut the frame several times then glued them together over the stamped flower image. 

Zig Zag Background – Penny Black die Flower Portrait; Penny Black clear stamp sets Enamor and Snippets; Taylored Expressions embossing folder Zig Zag; design inspired by Elizabeth Allan



I know these days many people don't need bookmarks as much because they read books on their tablet or e-reader, but bookmarks are still fun to make and give.  Taylored Expressions has a new die set called Build-A Bookmark and a new stamp set called Plot Twist that coordinate with their previously released Mark Your Spot Bookmark die and stamp set to create delightful bookmarks.



Tip:  Add a ribbon accent that's not bulky by threading ribbon through the die cut opening then tying twine or thinner ribbon around it into a bow.

Bookmarks -- Taylored Expressions dies Mark Your Spot Bookmark and Build-A-Bookmark; TE stamp set Plot Twist


A Few More Fun Samples

Memory Box has several Triptych dies.  Perhaps you remember I just posed this sample using the Dogwood Blooms and Stem Triptych dies. 


Today I have two samples using the tree Triptych die.


I die cut the tree triptych and the fence from decorative paper that is embossed with a woodgrain design (American Crafts).  To bring out the woodgrain, I colored the embossed woodgrain with a Prismacolor pencil (Dark Brown).  I glued the tree frames to green decorative paper and added pink flowers accented with tiny crystals.

Tree Triptych 1 – Memory Box die Tree Triptych; Memory Box stamp Seeds of Happiness; Poppy die Johnny Jump Ups; Taylored Expressions die Picket Fence; design inspired by Pam Going Postal


For this card I die cut the Tree Triptych from the front of a top folding card then adhered blue cardstock behind the openings.  I inlaid the tree frames and added little flowers, sequins and a sweet sentiment.

Tree Triptych 2 – Memory Box die Tree Triptych; Penny Black clear stamp set Happy Snippets; Poppy die Hydrangea Blooms small; design inspired by Michele Henderson


Switching gears a little, here's a very happy birthday card!  I cut the balloons from glitter paper (blue and white which I colored with a yelow Copic marker); cut the candle border from white cardstock then colored it with Copics; and cut the Best Day Ever from blue cardstock.  Cute card!

Best Day Ever – Impressions Obsession dies Rectangle Frame 6 in 1, Best Day Ever, Heart Balloon and Candle Border; Penny Black die Balloons; design inspired by Kittie Caracciolo


One more ... my friend Jane Smith made this funny gal -- isn't she hilarious!  I love the way Jane made her standing in the corner -- very cleverly drawn lines and coloring.  Thanks Jane!

Sylvia – Art Impressions stamp Sylvia; sentiment stamp unknown; card designed by Jane Smith

Have a great weekend and please stop by the Stamp Act soon!


Who Let the Dogs Out?

Hello Friends.  I sat down recently in my stamping studio with two Penny Black clear stamp sets featuring a lot of cute dogs and one fabulous duck!  Once I started I couldn't stop making cards so please enjoy them all.  My precious Chloe is struggling with old age right now so it was fun to play with these stamps and remember her younger days.  I am grateful for every day I have with her. 

Because most of the cards are self-explanatory, I will just list the supplies I used.  If you want more information or to order any of the supplies, please contact me through email or telephone (915-833-9500).

Here are the two Penny Black clear stamp sets I used for these cards.

Buddy-Duck   Man's-Best-friend-set
Buddy and Duck Cards


Buddy Balloon – Penny Black clear stamp set Buddy and Duck; Spellbinders die Petite Ovals; design inspired by Birgit Edblom


Buddy Cupcake – Penny Black clear stamp set Buddy and Duck; Spellbinders die Classic Ovals Buddy-Umbrella

Buddy Umbrella – Penny Black clear stamp sets Buddy and Duck and Sentiment Collection


Buddy Balloon Clouds – Penny Black clear stamp sets Buddy and Duck and Snippets; My Favorite Things die Round Banners; Poppy die Fancy Clouds; Taylored Expressions die Love Confetti; Memory Box die Mini Heart Collection; design inspired by Christine Drogt


Duck Hearts – Penny Black clear stamp set Buddy and Duck; Penny Black paper pad Painted Blooms; Spellbinders die Classic Circles; Memory Box die Stitched Circles; Taylored Expressions die Love Confetti; design inspired by Cathy Andronicou

Duck Balloon – Penny Black clear stamp set Buddy and Duck; Memory Box die Stitched Ovals; Impression Obsession die Greetings Edgers; design inspired by Judy Jung


Buddy Present – Penny Black clear stamp sets Buddy and Duck and Man’s Best Friend; Taylored Expressions die Frame in Frame


Duck Umbrellas – Penny Black clear stamp set Buddy and Duck; Penny Black die Feel Better; Memory Box die Puffy Clouds; design inspired by Judy Jung

Man's Best Friend Cards


Birthday Stars – Penny Black clear stamp sets Man’s Best Friend and Snippets; My Favorite Things die Brushstroke Greetings; Paper Smooches die Stars; design inspired by La Von Hall


Bring Me Joy – Penny Black clear stamp sets Man’s Best Friend and Happy Snippets; Penny Black die Flower Portrait; Impression Obsession die Banners and Tails; Taylored Expressions embossing folder Corrugate


Circle Clouds – Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend; Memory Box die Stitched Circles; Spellbinders die Classic Circles; Poppy die Fancy Clouds; design inspired by Debby 4000


Hello – Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend; Memory Box die Hello Balloon; My Favorite Things die Mini Scallop Border; design inspired by Debby 4000


Hi Hey Hello – Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend; Taylored Expressions die Peek-A-Boo Circles and Hey, Hi Hello; design inspired by Helen the Heffalump

Jumping Dogs
– Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend


Love – Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend; Penny Black dies Polaroid and Love and Joy; design inspired by Judy Jung

–This card may need an explanation.  My niece Emilee just graduated from veterinary college at Texas A & M University.  Yeah!  She and her 2 dogs will soon be moving to start work at a veterinary practice in Las Vegas, Nevada.  I thought this would be a cute congratulatory card to send her from her dogs!  Inside the sentiment "we did it!" would be appropriate!

Supplies -- Penny Black clear stamp sets Man’s Best Friend and Happy Snippets; Penny Black die Flower Portrait; Taylored Expressions die Conversation Bubbles; Penny Black stamps Skyline and Dots in Space; design inspired by Therese Schaffer


Paw Prints – Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend; Memory Box die Pinpoint Squares; Paper Smooches die Dog Icons; design inspired by A J Bodine  Smile

Smile – Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend; Penny Black die Doodles; design inspired by Therese Schaffer


Thinking of You – Penny Black clear stamp set Man’s Best Friend; Spellbinders dies Classic Circles, Scalloped Circles and Petite Scalloped Circles; design inspired by Helen the Heffalump

 Thanks for reading the blog today.  Please stop by the store soon to see these and many more samples in person!


Fun New Products

Hello Friends.  I hope you had a good weekend. Today I'd like to share with you several samples that I recently made with new products that have arrived at The Stamp Act.  You can see all the new products on our What's New page here and see these cards and more in our Gallery here.

The Mad Rider from Art Impressions

Mad-Rider-Green  Mad-Rider-Green-Inside
A friend of mine lives in a senior community and recently traded in her car for a golf cart.  I thought this stamp was a perfect way to commemorate the occasion!  I stamped Mad Rider, colored her with Copic markers then cut her out.  I drew the sidewalk and mounted it at the bottom of the cute house paper.  One thing I love about Art Impressions is that they always have really cute sentiments to go with their stamps.  The sidewalk sentiment is sold separately -- Mad Rider comes with the "Born to be Wild" sentiment (see below).  Design inspired by Diane Zechman.



For this version I stamped The Mad Rider and die cut it with Memory Box Pinpoint Squares.  Where the two papers met I added a Ric Rac Border die from Taylored Expressions.  The retirement sentiment is also by Art Impressions.  Design inspired by Tammie Koehnen.

To Go Please by Art Impressions



Who hasn't had a day like this?  I think I am having one today because I took my car in for maintenance and the service rep just called with the price to fix the driver's side window -- Wowza!  I think I need that special cup of coffee! 

For this card, I die cut Penny Black's Love Cup die from orange, white and kraft cardstock and glued it together.  I added the bright pink heart and the straw cut from striped yellow paper (both are part of the die set).  The background is green cardstock punched with the EK Success Binding Edge Border punch; I added the stitched line with one of the dies from the Stitched die set by Paper Smooches.  The notepaper is white cardstock stamped with an Impression Obsession Grid Stamp.  Embellishing this piece are some yellow and white twine and a little strip of bright pink, polka dotted washi tape.  The sentiment (Art Impressions To Go Please) was stamped and die cut with Memory Box die Stitched Ovals.  The final embellishment was a scattering of coffee beans die cut with Impression Obsession Coffee Set.

The inside sentiment is Bad Day by Art Impressions.  I stamped it then die cut it with Memory Box Stitched Squares.  The cute little coffee cup is Memory Box die Coffee to Go Small.

Triptych Dies from Poppystamps

Triptych Stem Triptych Dogwood Blossoms
These are the new Triptych Stem and Triptych Dogwood Bloom dies from Poppy dies. 

For this card I die cut the Triptych stem from green cardstock and the Triptych Dogwood Blooms from white cardstock and glue the white frames over the green -- they were designed to match perfectly!  Then I die cut the Stems Triptych from blue cardstock and inserted these pieces on the back to form the background.  Finally I die cut the Dogwood Blooms from yellow cardstock and inserted the flower centers.  "Spring" is die cut with Poppystamps die
Freehand Happy Spring.  A really clean and simple Spring card.


Jumbled-Alpha-insideDid you know this is Teacher Appreciation week?  I made this card for my niece Jennifer who teaches high school geography in Central Texas.  She will be honored at an awards ceremony this week because one of her students wrote an essay about how she inspired him to succeed in his studies.  That makes the blackboard quote above especially appropriate for her.  For the front of the card I used Memory Box die Jumbled Alphabet and inside I used Taylored Expressions stamp set Make the Grade and the TE die Blackboard.


I love this die.  It's very graphic and makes a very quick and easy card that is appropriate for lots of occasions including "guy" cards!  I used Poppy die Mod Hex Background and Poppy clear stamp set Hope and Thanks.  Design inspired by Irena Kowalczyk.


The last card I will share with you today is made with Penny Black's stamp set Totally Fabulous.  I have three good friends with black poodles and I know they will love this card.  I stamped the elegant lady and colored her and the dogs with Copic markers.  The sentiment stamp comes with the set.  Fun!

Please stop in soon and see all the new fun products!  Thanks!


Sweet Samples With Penny Black Stamps and Dies

Hello Friends.  I hope you had a good weekend and are looking forward to a great week.  It's spring which means lots of wind in El Paso, but since that and a little dust are about as bad as the weather gets here, I don't mind it.  It is annoying that the wind shakes a storm of little twigs out of my mature elm trees all over the back yard, but compared to the massive floods my brother has had in Houston and the upcoming tornado season in my sister's hometown of Dallas, I will take a few little twigs.  I hope the weather is pleasant where you are.

Today's blog is all about Penny Black stamps and dies.  Penny Black is known for her gorgeous floral images and her dies are just as artistic and unique.  For the cards I will share with you today I used new dies, but per usual there are even newer dies coming soon!  Be sure to check the What's New Page  to see all the dies and stamps in stock and on their way!



Sweetest Sound -- Two sweet little birds sitting on a branch take center stage on this card (Penny Black die Sweetest Sound II).  I die cut a circular frame from two Spellbinders Classic Circles dies and mounted it over a background stamped with the music score from Penny Black's clear stamp set Footnotes.  The large flowers were cut with Penny Black die Pinwheel and the smaller flower with PB Tweet Things. I also used two Memory Box dies: Create Art and Tender Leaves.  The card's design was inspired by Jill Foster. 


Playful Posies – Penny Black die Playful Posies is so sweet and it includes three more flowers that I did not use on this card.  I stamped the background with an old Notebook paper stamp from Hero Arts (it's so old they just reissued it in their latest stamp collection!)   The notepaper edge is punched with EK Success Binding Edge punch.  The cute little H.e.l.l.o. sentiment is from Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets -- if you don't have it get it -- it's been extremely popular and Penny Black just released a new set called Happy Snippets (see it here.)  Design inspired by Jill Foster.


Butterflies – This butterfly flew out of the store as soon as I made this card!  But good news:  he's already on his way back! The solid butterfly comes from a set (Penny Black Flights of Fancy) with several other smaller butterflies in different poses.  The overlay butterfly (appropriately called Swirling Wings!) is a perfect match.  I die cut the background greenery with Taylored Expressions die Bloomers Greenery and added the sentiment using Penny Black die Doodles.  Design inspired by Heather Telford.


Petal Power – Yes you've seen this flower before.  It's from Penny Black clear stamp set Petal Power, a classic set with lots of flowers, leaves and sentiments.  Speaking of sentiments, the happy sentiment on this card is from a new Penny Black clear stamp set called Sprinkles and Smiles.  Design inspired by Marion Vagg


Birdhouse – This birdhouse from the Penny Black clear stamp set Fly High makes a colorful house for all the birds of spring!  I stamped the birdhouse then colored and cut it out.  The background was stamped with Penny Black stamp Letter; to get the "splotchy" look, ink the stamp, dab off areas with a baby wipe then stamp on background.  I distressed the background with Distress Inks Brushed Corduroy and Walnut Stain and colored in a patch of green using Copic markers.  Next I made an oval frame using  Spellbinders die Classic Ovals and popped it up with foam tape.  To complete the card, I die cut the feathers (Taylored Expressions die Fine Feathers) and sponged them with two colors of yellow ink.  The birdhouse was popped up over the frame and the cute little sentiment was stamped on the wonky frame (both are in the Fly High stamp set), cut out and mounted over the feathers and a messy thread nest.  Design inspired by Jill Foster.

 Penny Black Medallion


Blue and White – The new Penny Black die Medallion is so stunning.  I die cut it from blue cardstock and cut the separate center medallion from yellow cardstock.  The Cricut Cuttlebug embossing folder Rebecca forms a perfect frame for this handsome die.


Love – Look how different the medallion looks as a background image.  I die cut the Impression Obsession die Boy with Flowers from dark grey cardstock and a rectangle to mount him on using Memory Box Pinpoint Rectangles die from lighter gray cardstock.  The sweet "love" die comes with the Medallion. The pretty papers are from Penny Black paper pad Beau Jardin.  Inside the card I die cut Happy Mother’s Day using an Impression Obsession die and mounted it on a background die cut with Paper Smooches die Notebook Basic.  You can see the inside of the card in out Gallery here.


Purple Medallion – For a quick and easy card for just about any occasion, die cut the Penny Black Medallion and mount it on a background embossed with Taylored Expressions embossing folder Dotted Lattice.  The sweet little bow was cut with Paper Smooches die Baby Bow.  Add a few gems and you're done!

 Penny Black Pillow Box


Pillow Box – The Penny Black die Pillow Box includes a die to make the pillow box and the little stitched label shown above.  In addition it includes dies to cut the Happy Birthday Ice Cream Cone shown below, plus decorative little stars, hearts, button and another smaller stitched label.  The pillow box is just large enough to hold a gift card.  To complete the pillow box above, I die cut Penny Black Leaves and sponged them with inks then mounted them behind a butterfly (Memory Box die Cascadia Butterfly 3) and the label stamped with a sentiment from Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets.


Ice Cream Cone Striped – Penny Black die Pillow Box; Taylored Expressions die Label Stacklets 2; design inspired by Elizabeth Allan


Ice Cream Cone Plaid – Penny Black die Pillow Box; Memory Box die Pinpoint Squares; design inspired by Judy Jung


Va Va Voom – Isn't this the cutest card?  I stamped the new Penny Black cling stamp Va Va Voom in black ink and colored it with colored pencils.  The sentiment is from the Penny Black clear stamp set Sentiment Collection and the clouds are from two sets (both retired) Memory Box die Puffy Clouds and Poppy die Fancy Clouds.  Design inspired by Judy Jung who has a precious bichon named Cooper!

New Make and Take

It's graduation time and our free make and take card this month is perfect for any graduate.  We will be using special die cut paper from The Paper Cut and a boy or a girl graduate die from Impression Obsession.  Please stop in any time and make a graduation card.

And speaking of graduation, we have everything you need to make or decorate graduation cards, party favors or other paper crafting projects. Stop in and see our selection.

Have a great week and I hope to se you soon! 





Fun with Art Impressions Stamps

Hello Friends!  Today I want to share with you some funny cards using stamps from Art Impressions.  Some cards are decorated with a die cut here and there, but the real stars today are stamps and coloring.  OK, I can already hear you saying "I can't color" or "I don't have time to color."  For me coloring is therapy time - just me, my markers and the TV or radio.  I lose myself in the pretty colors.  And speaking of colors -- choose what you like best: Copic markers, watercoloring with water-based markers or inks, colored pencils -- whatever you have on hand and enjoy.



I personally added a wing on to my dentist's office so I feel like I do deserve a crown!  I colored this lady in Copic markers and cut the crowns from sparkly cardstock using Poppy die Regal Crowns.  I created the background by sponging ink (Distress Spun Sugar) with a Jumbo Dauber through the My Favorite Things stencil called Cow Print. As with most of the AI sets, the sentiment is included with the main stamp.  Design inspired by Karen Day

Celeste-front Celeste-insideI used the same stencil on this card with the "Celeste" stamp.  Love the sentiment inside!  Design insired by Amy Rysaa.



I used Art Impressions stamp set "Picture Perfect" for this card, colored with Copic markers.  Other supplies include Taylored Expressions dies Film Strip Border and Skinny Mini Borders 1; Tim Holtz stamp set Hashtags; and Simple Stories paper pad Daily Grind.  Design inspired by Cheri Burry.


Same stamp set (it includes three sentiments!) and a different layout using Taylored Expressions die Picture Perfect Hello/Smile frame set.  The decorative paper is from a Doodlebug paper pad called Day to Day and the design was inspired by Karen Day.


And here's one more using the Picture Pefect set.  Design inspired by Tammie Koehner.


For this card I stamped Art Impressions stamp Rockin’ Ruby on white cardstaock, colored her and cut her out -- yes a little tedious but so cute!  For the card I created a reverse mask by cutting a piece of masking paper (slightly self adhesive) the same size as my card front(4¼” x 5½”) then die cutting a circle in the center of this mask with Spellbinders die Classic Circles large.  Once this mask was adhered to the card front, I sponged the background using Memento inks Pear Tart, Summer Sky and Bahama Blue.  Next I removed the mask, adhered Rockin' Ruby to the card and stamped the sentiment.  Design inspired by Judith Gowdy.



Art Impressions has really cute guys as well as girls!  Here's a card I made with stamp set "Old Guy's Club" and single stamp Happy Birthday Ole’ Geezer.  Design inspired by Karen Amidon.


This longhorn is from the brand new Art Impressions collection called Texas Zoo Crew!  The longhorn and the sentiment are in a set called Long Horn (I guess they don't know how to spell longhorn in Oregon!).  For a perfect masculine birthday card I stamped the longhorn and colored him with Copic markers and cut out the panel with Memory Box die Pinpoint Layers Square.  The background "wood" decorative paper is from Authentique and the rectangle on the left is from Prima -- it looks and feels like leather!  I added a few embellishments and some twine.  Inside the card I stamped the longhorn again in brown ink and the sentiment in black ink.  Design inspired by Reneé Matarese.


Same stamp set, different layout.  I love the Dymo labeler "Hey!"  Art Impressions stamp set Long Horn; design inspired by Diane Zechman.



Here's a fun birthday card with a signature Art Impressions Back and Front stamp set called Maturing.  I stamped the front and the back images on cardstock, colored them with Copic markers then cut them out with the matching dies.  For the card I adhered the decorative paper inside and outside the card then cut all three layers at once with a Spellbinders Circle die.  You may have to run it through a couple times to cut through all 3 layers.  Next adhere the front image to the front of the card; the back image will fit perfectly over the front image inside the card.  Finally stamp the sentiment in two places so only part of the image shows through the opening.

I just placed a big order with Art Impressions for more funny ladies and gentlemen -- be sure to check them out on our What's New page here.  To reserve or order any item, just email Polly at or call me at 915-833-9500.  I tidied up the Big Sale page so browse through it here.

Happy Stamping and paper crafting.  Stop in soon and shop!








Accent on the "Negative" ... Die Cuts!

Hello Friends.  Today's post is all about turning the negative space left from die cutting a shape into beautiful cards.  Using the negative space is easy if you keep a few tips in mind.  First, choose dies that look recognizable in the negative.  Second, plan the card's design and spacing keeping in mind what will be placed behind the opening.  And third, keep any small pieces cut out in case you need to reinsert those to complete the design.  Finally, make the negative space pop with colorful cardstock, decorative paper, washi tape or sponging inks.  Let's look at some samples.


For this card I used Taylored Expressions die Hey, Hello and it illustrates the importance of spacing the design before cutting.  I cut the three words out of the white cardstock panel initially cut with Memory Box die Pinpoint Rectangles leaving room to add the telephone on top of the panel.  To highlight the words, I mounted colored cardstock behind each opening then matted this panel on black.  For a cute embellishment I created a telephone cord using Taylored Expressions Skinny Mini Borders 2.  This card's design was inspired by Kim Singdahlsen.


For this card I cut the Taylored Expressions Silhouette Stems 4 die three times from turquoise cardstock being careful to keep the small pieces cut out so I could reinsert them to complete the flowers.  I sponged a piece of white cardstock with an ombre effect using dye inks of light and medium yellow and light and dark orange.  Other supplies used on this card are TE stamp set Free Spirit, TE embossing folder Leafy Vines and Penny Black die Polaroid Frame.  The design was inspired by Jean Manis.


Here the negative space of the pot is filled with decorative paper while the leaf and the flower are filled with colored cardstock.  Again planning the design before cutting is crucial.  I used Taylored Expressions dies Bloom Where You're Planted, Various Vases and Frame in Frame to cut the openings and orange panel.  Notice that the leaf is actually a positive and a negative!  The negative leaf shape in the orange cardstock panel is filled with a positive leaf cut from green.  To finish the card, I added a tiny butterfly (Memory Box die Mini Butterflies) and a Smile sentiment (Penny Black die Hooray Words).  This card was inspired by Joan Ervin.


Negative space is perfect for a clean and simple look.  To create the opening I cut two of the feathers from Taylored Expressions die Fine Feathers one at a time overlapping the tips.  For the background I sponged Distress Inks Twisted Citron and Peacock Feathers.  I added a tiny twine bow to tie the feathers together and a sentiment from TE stamp set Free Spirit.  This card's design inspired by Courtney Kelley. 



Colorful and whimsical, this card shows off Taylored Expressions dies Bloomers Greenery, Mini Bloomers and Bloomers 1 as well as the TE stamp set Free Spirit.  IRL you can see the white panel is popped up with foam tape so the colorful negative spaces really pop.  The flowers are embellished with sequins with tiny rhinestones in the centers.  Design inspired by Charmaine Ikach. 

For the final card today I cut Taylored Expressions die Silhouette Stems 1 from an oval white cardstock panel (cut with Spellbinders die Ovals Petite).  This panel is mounted to a vellum oval just a bit larger then to a vellum panel cut with TE's Bold Lace Background.  The white card is sponged with Distress ink Squeezed Lemonade and Memento inks Rosebud, Tangelo and Morocco.  I colored the seam binding with Distress Stains Squeezed Lemonade and Picked Raspberry, tied it into a bow and mounted it to a paper flower. This card's design was inspired by Julia Stainton.

I hope you've enjoyed learning more about stretching your dies by using the negative space.  Be sure to check our updated Class Calendar here and stop in soon to shop.  Have a great weekend!


















Negative die cuts will be our class this Saturday, April 2 at 10am. For more information, just click here to go to our class page.  Let me share some samples with you.















Masculine cards and other samples

Hello friends. Today’s post is going to be a compilation of miscellaneous samples starting with a few cards suitable for the men in your life.  March means birthdays for my brother and brother-in-law so I always have to scramble for guy cards.  Here’s what I came up with:

Masculine Cards

Mustache-Bday-2Mustache Birthday 2 – My first mustache card and I must say I like it. I didn’t have one of the cute mustache joke stamps so I made my own using various stamps and dies. 


Supplies – Paper Smooches die Mustaches; Memory Box die Pinpoint Rectangles; Paper Smooches stamp set Sentiment Sampler; Impression Obsession stamp set Sentiments 2; Memory Box die Classic Alphabet U/C and Numbers 


Mustache-Bday-1Mustache Birthday 1 – This is a simple version that you can make lots of and keep on hand for male birthdays. Switch the sentiment for other occasions.


Supplies – Paper Smooches die Mustaches; Memory Box die Pinpoint Rectangles; Paper Smooches stamp set Sentiment Sampler; design inspired by Jocelyn Olson




Hoppy-BirthdayHoppy Birthday – My brother grew up loving all animals; he even had an iguana in college! So a card with a frog jumping across is perfect for him. 


Supplies – Poppy die Pond Frogs; Memory Box die Stitched Rectangles; Impression Obsession die Plain Alphabet; Taylored Expressions stamp set And Many More; design inspired by Stephanie Serrano




Numbers-B-DayHere's an easy card perfect for any man's birthday.  I cut a strip of the numbers paper and then cut it in 2 pieces (the reverse side was a perfect match!) and rounded the ends.  I added two brads, wrapped natural twine around the brads and tied a bow.  Add a sentiment and a balloon and you're done!

Supplies – My Favorite Things die Brushstroke Birthday sentiments; Penny Black die Uplifting


 Diamond-BorderDiamond Border – I love this card! The new diamond border die from Penny Black cuts the solid and the outline diamond borders. Choose a color scheme and cut 2 of each from both colors.  Glue the outline borders on top of the solid borders.  Cut a strip of cardstock 1” x 5½” and adhere the middle border to the middle of this strip.  Then adhere one border above and one below, leaving a little space between the borders. Finish the card with a sentiment die cut from same colors and adhered slightly off set.  I plan to make this same card in a variety of different color schemes and sentiments.

Supplies – Penny Black die Diamond Border; Paper Smooches die Quote Tag; design inspired by Elizabeth Allan


Brevilla-HillsideWelcome – The die does all the work for this card. I cut the die from white cardstock and mounted it to blue cardstock.  Then I cut the same die from green and inlaid the hills.  Next I cut the houses and trees from various colors and glued them over the white version.  I added cloud above and a sentiment below. 

Supplies – Poppy die Brevilla Hillside; Taylored Expressions Stitched Clouds; TE stamp set Welcome Home



Ironwork-Window-BirdIronwork Window Bird – It’s easy to spot a Penny Black die! I stamped the background with a PB stamp then cut the window in the center of the stamped panel. Next I cut the window again from white and glued it on top of the stamped version.  The bird was mounted behind the window.  Finally I die cut the finished piece with the Memory Box die Pinpoint Rectangles to add some more textural interest.


Supplies – Penny Black dies Ironwork Window and Perched Bird; Taylored Expressions stamps and dies Many Minis All Occasions; Memory Box die Pinpoint Rectangles; Penny Black cling stamp Star Ivy; design inspired by Jean Manis 


Ironwork-WindowIronwork Window – Quick and easy. Cut the window from white and glue it over yellow cardstock. Add a few red hearts, a sweet sentiment and an embossed background and you’re done!


Supplies – Penny Black die Ironwork Window; Taylored Expressions embossing folder Leafy Vines; TE Little Bits die Love Confetti; sentiment stamp from Printworks; Memory Box die Pinpoint Rectangles; Penny Black clear stamp set Snippets; design inspired by Jean Manis


I hope you've enjoyed these cards to day.  Be sure to click over to the classes page to see the samples for the Negative Die Cutting class coming up Saturday, April 2 at 10am.  And stop in soon to shop.  All Easter stamps and dies are 40% off until April 9!