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July 2016

A Time When Dies were Young

Yes, Friends, there was a time when dies were new and we were just learning how to use them on our stamped cards.  Recently I was cleaning out my stamping desk and found a few card set-ups from February 2012.  This set included 3 cards using Memory Box stamps and papers and a few of their very first dies.  Fortunately I had instructions with photographs so I decided to find the stamps and make the cards.  It was such a delightful afternoon, stamping and distressing, that I thought I would share the cards with you.  Perhaps you have some of these stamps in your stash and can make similar cards yourself.

All stamps and dies are from Memory Box and background papers are from 7 Gypsies.  And all are long since discontinued.  

Butterfly Journey


The focal panel was created by stamping MB's Vintage Record in Versafine Sepia ink on the left then the right side of an off-white cardstock panel.  I then stamped Birch Branch Print in pink ink on the top and right side and the Elemental Damask in green on the left side.  I distressed the edges with Antique Linen.  The pink border on the left was created by die cutting the Bitty Scallop Border from white cardstock and coloring it with Worn Lipstick Distress Stain using the "Direct to Paper" technique. 

The butterfly (MB Wonderland Butterfly) was painted with Radiant Pearls, cut out and antennae fashioned from wire adhered to the back.  I added gold pearls to the body.

The word journey was stamped in Versafine Sepia ink on off-white cardstock and distressed with Antique Linen.

I assembled the background papers as shown, tearing a square of the 7 Gypsies paper in half for a "photo corner" look.


Eiffel Tower Valentine



For this card the tag frame is decorative paper from Memory Box.  I stamped the off-white cardstock panel with the Journey Collage (omitting the word "Journey") in Versafine Sepia ink then stamped Birch Branch Print in Memento Angel Pink on the top third of the panel and Fern Print in Memento Bamboo Leaves on right side of panel.  I stamped the Eiffel Tower in back and cut it out then distressed it with Vintage Photo ink.  The February Tag is from Memory Box paper.  I stamped the word Love and the tiny red hearts to complete this Valentine.  Background papers were adhered over a kraft card that was stamped with the Journey Collage stamp.


Chrysanthemum Frame Spring


For this sweet card, I started by stamping the Chrysanthemum Frame in Memento Black and coloring it with Copic markers.  Next I colored the frame with pink ink and die cut it with MB's Blank Ticket die. I die cut Nestled Bird and Ivy Tendrils, and distressed the edges of the bird with Memento London Fog before adhering it over the ivy to the top of the frame.  I punched a border (Martha Stewart lace punch) from dark pink paper and adhered it to a pink cardstock panel that I had stamped with Hero Arts Antique Flowers in Memento Angel Pink.  I next adhered the frame as shown over background papers and stamped MB's Spring Sings in Memento Rhubarb Stalk.  The sweet little girl's photo is from October Afternoon paper (Farmhouse Collection).  

 I hope you have enjoyed this walk down memory lane.  Get out some of your old stamps and created something beautiful!

If you're looking for something more up-to-date, stop in The Stamp Act anytime and see what's new.  Thanks!

Happy Birthday Cards


Hello Friends!  Is it hot enough for you?  I was so miserable last winter that I swore I would never complain no matter how hot it got this summer so I am trying to be good. 

Today it's all about birthday cards -- probably the number one reason we make cards.  Please enjoy these samples!

How cute is this little girl balancing the tall birthday cake?  Yes I cut her out which is not for the faint of heart, but not that bad either.  The dress is paper pieced and the rest of the girl and cake is colored with Copic markers.  See the next card if you're not into fussy cutting.

Tall Cake – Penny Black cling stamp Tall Cake; Taylored Expressions embossing folder Dotted Lattice; design inspired by Judy Jung


Tall Cake 2 – Penny Black cling stamps Tall Cake and Sprinkles and Stardust; design inspired by Kay Papaioannou

I stamped the Tall Cake image in black Versafine then embosssed it in clear.  I colored it with Copic markers and embellished it with dots of White Enamel Accents and glitter glue on the candles.


Star Balloons – Lil Inkers die Balloons; Penny Black clear stamp set Enamor; design inspired by Jen Willis

All the stars come from the balloon dies -- you just have to cut, cut and cut -- but I think the results are worth it.


Happy Birthday Balloons – Lil Inker Designs dies Balloons and Balloon Strings; Lil Inker Designs stamps Balloon Builders; Impression Obsession die Edgers Everyday; Impression Obsession stamp Scrolls and Stars; design inspired by Laura Fulcher


Shaker Card Blue – Memory Box die Stitched Happy Birthday Rectangle; Paper Smooches die Stitched; design inspired by Lindsay Amrhein

Here's a shaker card made with a great die from Memory Box.  I die cut the stitches on the card front to add interest.Shaker-Blue

Shaker Card Balloons – Memory Box die Stitched Happy Birthday Rectangle; Penny Black die Balloons


Faux Metal Textured Blue – Taylored Expressions embossing folder Dotted Lattice; Impression Obsession die Happy Birthday

These cards were created using a fun technique called Faux Textured Metal.  I masked off a rectangle (use any shape you want), sponged the open area with Distress inks then painted the inked area with Perfect Pearls mica powders.  Next I embossed the card front with various embossing folders and added a large die cut words. Honestly, they are quick, easy and sparkling!


Faux Metal Textured Silver – Taylored Expressions embossing folder Zig Zag; Memory Box die Happy Birthday


Be sure to check out our updated Class Page (see navigation bar at the top of the page) and join us for a fun class!  Stay cool and stop in and shop soon.

Zinnia Bouquet and Butterflies

Zinnia Bouquet

It's flowers again!  With so many flower dies I could blog a different one every day!  Today I am spotlighting the Memory Box dies Zinnia Bouquet and Zinnia Bouquet Background.  The background die makes it easy to cut matching background papers for each flower.



Zinnia Gold Mirror – Memory Box dies Zinnia Bouquet, Zinnia Bouquet Background and Stitched Squares; Memory Box stamp Seeds of Happiness; design inspired by Jean Okimoto.

I wish you could see this "in real life" -- the shiny gold mirror paper really catches your eye.


Zinnia Pink Orange – Memory Box dies Zinnia Bouquet and Zinnia Bouquet Background; Impression Obsession die Cutwork Border; Penny Black clear stamp set Happy Snippets.

This card is similar to the one above with the addition of a border die and ribbon.


Zinnia Hello – Memory Box dies Zinnia Bouquet and Zinnia Bouquet Background; Savvy Stamps die Hello; design inspired by Louise Charlton.

Add some rhinestones and a die cut greeting for a quick card.


Zinnia Bright Orange – Memory Box dies Zinnia Bouquet, Zinnia Bouquet Background and Stitched Rectangles and Stitched Squares; Memory Box stamp Happy Day; design inspired by Jean Okimoto.

For this card I embossed the flower die (tops) on white cardstock by using the tan rubber mat with my die cut machine.  Then I watercolored each flower and adhered them over the green stems.  I added Wink of Stella glitter pen to the centers.

Now for the Butterflies

Here are the Impression Obsession dies I used on the following cards:


Butterfly Block

Square Ornate Frame

Butterfly Block White – Impression Obsession dies Butterfly Block; Lifestyle Crafts die Nesting Rectangles; design inspired by Kitty Caracciolo.

I cut the Butterfly Block from white cardstock then cut a frame using the nesting rectangle dies.  The picture does not show it well, but I cut the butterfly again and popped it up on top of the first butterfly for added dimension.


Butterfly Block Painted – Impression Obsession dies Butterfly Block; design inspired by Kitty Caracciolo.

Wow -- lots of color!  I colored the Butterfly Block with Copic markers and then to add more interest, I took my Versacolor embossing ink pad and "sponged" ink all over the image and heat embossed it in clear.  This really makes the color shimy and vibrant.  Butterfly-Block-Painted

Square Ornate Frame – Impression Obsession dies Square Ornate Frame and Butterfly Block; Memory Box die Stitched Squares; design inspired by Kitty Caracciolo.

The Ornate Square Frame (which I did not use on this card) comes with an ornate corner piece.  I created a frame using the Memory Box Stitched Squares then adhered the corner pieces to the underneath side of the frame.  The butterfly is from the Butterfly Block die.

And a Few Miscellaneous Cards

Here are some more samples I made recently ... I hope they give you some inspiration:

Forest Birthday – Impression Obsession dies Forest and Greetings Edgers; IO Cover-A-Card stamp Bark; design inspired by Kitty Caracciolo.

Super easy card and great for a man's birthday.  I stamped the kraft card front with the Bark stamp (6" x 6") then cut the trees (all one die) and sponged them with Vintage Photo Distress ink.  I adhered the trees to the card with scor tape rolls (see Tip below).  The Impression Obsession Edgers dies cut the top of the word out but leave the bottom attached.  I cut the bottom edge to about 1" and adhered the edger word to a strip of brown cardstock.  This strip was popped up with mounting tape.

Tip:  To pop up a very skinny die like the trees on this card, cut a 2" to 3" piece of Scor tape (double sided tape).  I use 1/2" wide or 1" wide Scor tape.  Adhere this tape to a non stick surface like a Craft Mat or your desk surface.  Working with the length of the tape, use your fingertips and roll the tape into a roll.  You can adhere this roll to the back of the trees cutting it to any length you need.

Mountain Birthday Wishes – Impression Obsession dies Boy with Flowers, Mountain Landscape Layers and Puppy Set; design inspired by Harriet Head and Darlene at darscraftycreations.

I wish you could see the card Harriet made using the same paper and mountain die set.  It is truly awesome!  The paper is the Believe collection from Bo Bunny and one of the papers contains all these colors (and more).  The Mountain die set has three mountain profiles so you can "build" your mountains in any number of ways.


Paint Strokes – Paper Smooches clear stamp set I Heart Art; Paper Smooches die Paint Strokes; design inspired by Michele Boyer


Rush Arrow – Poppystamps die Rush Arrow; Penny Black clear stamp set Happy Snippets; design inspired by Jeanne Jachna

I love this very graphic die.  I used the same Bo Bunny Believe paper for the backgrounds behind each arrow.  Another idea for this same layout would be to stamp sentiments in some or all of the arrow openings.  Be creative and have fun!  The die also comes with a skinny arrow die.


Boddington Treescape – Memory Box dies Boddington Treescape, Puffy Clouds, Auto Parts, Tiny Village, Stitched Circles and Butterfly Delights; sentiment stamp by Amuse Artstamps; design inspired by Jeanne Jachna

My friend Molly recently moved to Virginia and this is the card I sent her to welcome her to her new home.  I embellished the Boddington Treescape scene with cars, houses, sun, clouds, butterflies and a sentiment.



Wedding Cake Card – Impression Obsession dies Wedding Cake and Love Doves; Spellbinders label die

Here are the dies:



Wedding Cake Card – Impression Obsession dies Wedding Cake and Love Doves; Spellbinders label die

 I am sorry there is a shadow on the middle and top of this card. 


Adhesive Tip:  Adhering the two trim pieces on each cake layer can be very tedious and messy if you use glue.  White shows every imperfection -- ask me why the my first card took forever to complete!  So my tip is to use Stick It Adhesive Paper.  Take a piece of cardstock, white in this case, and adhere it to one side of a Stick It double sided adhesive sheet.  Cut the cardstock away from the Stick it sheet and die cut the trim pieces from this now self adhesive paper.  Important: Be sure to cut the cardstock side so the adhesive side is the back of the die cut.

Now all your tiny trim pieces are self-adhesive and easy to apply to your cake layers.

If that's not clear, stop in and I will show you how to work with Stick It.  It is sold in a packet of 5 sheets (8" X 12¼").

Dimension Tip:  It is hard to tell in this photo, but the cake layers are curved.  To do this I put a double layer of  foam tape behind the center of each cake layer.  I also added dimension to the wedding couple by die cutting three extra couples from chipboard, gluing them all together then coloring the sides of the chipboard black. 

I added dimension to the doves, the cake layers and cake stand by die cutting these pieces from fun foam and gluing the cardstock die cuts to the top of the foam.

Here's another card made with the same Wedding Cake die.  This one also features the Impression Obsession dies Ornate Frame Rectangle and tiny flowers.


Sunshine Birdhouse – Taylored Expressions die Little Bits Birdhouse, Picket Fence and Picture Perfect – Sunny Days; TE embossing folder Walking on Sunshine; Memory Box die Marshmallow Clouds, Resting Birds and Mini Heart Collection; design inspired by Jean Manis.

Just a happy and colorful card that anyone would love to get.


I know it's hot and you are probably burrowing into your air-conditioned home, but should you decide to pop out and shop at The Stamp Act, you will be rewarded with a FREE make and take card that's perfect for summer.  I would love to be relaxing in a hammock with a cool glass of lemonade, a good book and a powerful fan! 


Stop in soon!



Happy 4th of July

Wishing you a very happy 4th of July and peace to our nation.  My friend Jane Smith made a couple of patriotic cards that are perfect for today:


Kids Parade – Taylored Expressions die Marching On; Taylored Expressions embossing folder Fireworks; card by Jane Smith


Kids Parade Foil – Taylored Expressions die Marching On; card by Jane Smith


Thanks Jane. And Happy Independence Day to all of you!  The Stamp Act will be open this weekend on Friday and Saturday then closed Sunday through Tuesday.