Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Operation Write Home Mail Call

I spent several days last week organizing and preparing my first major shipment of cards for Operation Write Home.

I love how the guidelines for creating and shipping are clear and easy to follow. You simply print out a packing slip, fill out, confirm that you've met the requirements by reviewing a checklist, and away they go!

I was (clearly) accumulating an overabundance of cards, and I was thrilled to see them go to some pretty amazing people--our American heroes serving in places where there are no card stores.

I sincerely hope they bring joy to our troops as well as the family members who will receive the cards back with a personal greeting from their loved one. Check out what they have to say about the cards they receive on this blog. It's pretty neat to be involved in this project!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Swinging From the Chandeliers!

Well, maybe not swinging, exactly. But I am stenciling.

I put together quickie video to show how much fun one can have with our gorgeous new chandelier stencil--released TODAY in the Club Scrap JR kit. If you've got five minutes to spare, take a peek!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Memorial Day Sketch Blog Hop!

Hey, OWH Hoppers!

Today's cards feature OWH card sketch #28.

True to form, I set up a paper cutting diagram so that I could use just three sheets of 8.5x11 paper to make three standard cards with interchangeable pieces. It's my policy to have as few scraps as possible, and this cutting formula is no exception!

Watch a how-to video with added tips and techniques.

Download your formula's cutting instructions here.
Stamps: "The Best Things In Life" -- Club Scrap Tahiti Unmounted Borders & Backgrounds
"Happier Than a Bird with a French Fry" -- Club Scrap Full Circle Unmounted Greeting

I'd love to see what you make with this fun formula. I know that the cuts can seem a bit challenging if this is your first time exercising those "measuring muscles," but it gets easier with practice. It's worth the effort. Try practicing the first round of cuts with some scrap paper until you've got the hang of it. Let me know how it goes!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

13.1 Miles in Titletown

There was a fair amount of drama encircling last Sunday's Green Bay Half Marathon. The unseasonal extreme heat forced the race director to close the course at 9:35am. Only ten elite runners finished the full marathon. I was lucky enough to finish the half marathon at around 9:15am, only 20 minutes before they completely closed the course.

Here's my race report. . .

This is what was hanging on the refrigerator door for twelve weeks--my Hal Higdon Half Marathon Training Schedule. Every box is now officially crossed off!

We always build a "running man" the night before the race. This ensures that you have the essentials. . . socks, shoes, Garmin, SpiBelt, shades, iPod, headphones, etc. It's hard to think clearly when the alarm goes off at 4am.

Tricia's "Running Man"
I pile into the car with Drew Ehlert, Cliff Morris and our awesome "fan man", Liz, at 5:15am. Right on schedule.

Drew, Tricia and Cliff
Off to the start line. Ahhhh--look at that beautiful stadium. Gotta love the Packers.

Isn't it beautiful?
The hot weather was a force to be reckoned with, for sure. Maybe I'm a little wimpy because I've been spoiled by cool, cloudy mornings perfect for those long training runs. But I had to dig deep--really deep--to finish this one. These were my goals for the race:

1. Achieve a PR (Personal Record) time of less than 2:07:54.
2. Run the whole thing.
3. Run, but walk through the water stations.
4. Finish.
5. Live to tell about it.
Pretending to feel awesome at Mile 11
Goal #1 was abandoned at mile 5. I started walking through water stations at mile 8. I spent mile 13 approaching the finish line party at Lambeau Field at a respectable and very determined "jog."
Coming in for the finish!
My eyes may have been leaking ever so slightly when a kindly volunteer put that beautiful football shaped medal around my sweaty neck.
Look at that COOL medal!
And then, I reunited with my running pals and enjoyed a 12 oz. cup of fabulously delicious 26.2 Ale made especially for this event by Titletown Brewing Company in Green Bay. I assigned everyone a bright, bold color so that we'll coordinate well in the final scrapbook. (Actually, that was a happy accident.)
My running pals: Cliff, Drew and Todd
Driving home from the finish, this was the temperature reading in the car.

Next up, it'll be time to print my half marathon photos and make them a part of that permanent record. And that's where Club Scrap's fun Marathon Collection comes in. I love the prints because they have a framework where you can fill in your finish time with digital numbers. Way cool. 2:14:54.

Fill in the numbers to record the chip time. Nifty.
Are you training for anything? Have you caught the running bug? Some folks say I'm crazy. Last Sunday, I was only "half crazy." Can't wait to hear about what you've been up to. Pick up one of the last Marathon Collections from Club Scrap while they last!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Bookbinding Glue, You're Back.

Oh, how I've missed it. The feeling of dried CS® Bookbinding Glue on my fingers and on the side seam of my jeans. The wonderful substance spreading its way over an outside cover wrap with the help of my foam brush. . .

Sorry. Got a little caught up in the reverie.

In case you haven't heard. . . now that the cold winter is over and Bookbinding Glue can safely be transported around the world, it's finally back in stock!

First thing I did was make a bunch of notepads with paper scraps from various projects from around the warehouse. Here's how 'ya do it:

1. Stack the paper as neatly as possible on at least one edge.

2. Clip the papers firmly together with binder clips.

3. Brush a generous coat of CS® Bookbinding Glue onto the edge. Allow the glue to dry.

4. Repeat. Allow the glue to dry clear.

5. Remove the binder clip. The stack of papers is now a notepad!

Quick, go make some nifty notepads!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tony's Turkey

There is a spring turkey hunt here in Wisconsin. My brother-in-law is one of the most amazing outdoorsy types I've ever known. He is an avid outdoorsman and enjoys, well, pretty much any activity that you can do "outside". His wife sent me a digital picture of the season's successful hunt, so I decided to make a digital page and save myself the trip to Walgreen's to print the photo.

I used "The Lodge" digital kit. Had Tony's name written all over it, don't you think?

Monday, April 30, 2012

Welcome Home, Dad!

My dad is a "snowbird". He drives from Wisconsin to Arizona in November, and drives all the way home in late April. He made the journey home with my sister Ruth and arrived safely on Saturday night. And he's back just in time for his 75th birthday!

This is my Dad and my sister, Beth, when we were visiting Dad back in February.

With these AZ connections, I have a special place in my heart for the Adobe art style. Looks like I've got Dad's birthday card all set to go!

There are just a few Adobe items left at the warehouse. . . check 'em out here.

Dad, I'm so glad that you're home!!!!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Brayered Sunset Technique

I've never really been good friends with my brayer. But maybe it's fair to say now that we're pals. Doing these colorful brayered backgrounds is a trial and error thing. You've gotta have the right sort of paper, a bit of patience, great inks and images to work with, and a willingness to experiment.

Take five to check out this video so that you can see how it's done.

I took too long to add the Fuchsia ink, and the bright lights of the studio dried the Topaz ink too quickly, so it has a sort of sharp line between the two colors. But you get the idea.

Here's the other bummer. The stamps that I used on this demo have already sold out! But don't fear. . . for now, this sheet is still available, and it will work beautifully. And wait 'til you see the Club Stamp sheet coming out on the 20th!!! Oh, my, heavens.

Happy brayering! And happy stamping! And happy sailing!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Happy Circle Cards

The "Full Circle" collection has lovely, warm, rich colors. I adore them.

And the circular art is so very, very happy.

So I decided to make some happy cards with an infusion of brighter colors.

Each one is made with a folded 5-1/2x8-1/2" card and a 4x5-1/4" panel. Specifically, Welcome Red, Salmon and Aqua with Castaway Teal.

I find that tone on tone stamping works fabulously with this collection of papers and stamps. Here, Club Scrap's Ruby ink on the Salmon paper is pretty happy. The quote is a thought-provoker, too, don't you think? I keep forgetting how old I am.
Oh, heavens. I LOVE this big circle image. If I wasn't already married, I'd marry it. Club Scrap's Lagoon ink looks great on the Aqua paper. But you have to make sure that you stamp off the edge of your paper panel, or it looks goofy. (Not happy. Goofy.)
Oooh. . . THIS quote. Another fave.
More happy circles! Stamp twice without re-inking. Then you get two layers of happiness.

So, if you would happy have these stamps, you can get them here at Club Scrap.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

I Like These Cards

Every month when the unmounted stamp samples arrive at Club Scrap, I get busy making cards with them. Eventually, these cards find their way into our online newsletter, on display at open houses, and then finally into my stash of cards that I can mail to friends and loved ones.

Just thought I'd show you two of them from the versatile Full Circle collection:

I like the combination of colors added to the Yellow background paper. Faber-Castell watercolor pencils (included in the Full Circle kit) were used to add color to random stamped circles. The background was made with just one stamped image.

Here's the unmounted sheet. LOVE that big guy on there. (Had to use my 8x8 Acrylic Grid Ruler as a mounting block.)

This card is so uniquely sweet. It makes me smile. Nothing complicated here. . . just some stampin' with the Club Scrap Art Nouveau unmounted sheet and a few circular die cuts.

The sheet has the image, and the reverse image, a quote, and an accent image. Lotsa potential here!

OK. . . go make something if you can get away.

Follow Me on Pinterest
So, I went to Pinterest to copy the code for the "pin it" button. Thirty minutes later. . . UGGGGHHH.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Desk Blotter Tip #1

The title implies that there will be a Desk Blotter Tip #2. Don't let me forget!

I love my desk blotter. I've sort of become a work surface snob. Add that to my paper snobbery.

The blotter makes my stamped images look better, crisper. And I always have a fresh work surface when I want/need one. But it was those curling corners that were getting the best of me. Here's my efficient fix:

This is how you can get the goods.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Case 'o Candles

I frequently find myself getting sucked into the vortex of Pinterest. I found some "Pinspiration" again. . . an adorable card with some "hand rolled" candles. I suppose that surfing Pinterest for a few, uh, minutes every day should result in some creativity of my own!

Here's my version of the candle card:

The kicker? I remembered that I had this awesome stamped quote about birthday candles from the Concrete Jungle UM Stamps. And this rockin' sheet of unmounted images is still available!!! For now. Wahoo!

Take a 5.5x8.5 Tan paper and fold in half to make a 4.25x5.5" card. Trim a piece of Culinary Burgundy to 4.25x5.5 and tear away all four sides.

Stamp the torn panel with the images of your choice. I used the postage stamp images from the 2011 Club Scrap retreat. Don't attach the panel to the card quite yet.
Next, gather up some double sided tape, hemp fiber, a wooden dowel, and a 2.75x2.75 piece of text weight paper (I used the Just Dandy Golden Text.)
Check for the grain direction of your paper square. We're gonna roll this paper, so you want to roll it in the direction of the grain so that it doesn't look all pathetic and crumpled when you're done. Place some double stick tape on the edge of the paper, and add a 1" piece of hemp to the end to make your faux candle wick.
Roll, baby roll. Roll the paper right around the dowel. End with the double stick taped edge. Slide the rolled paper off the dowel. At this point, you'll know if you had the grain direction figured out correctly!

Stamp that silly UM candle quote onto a piece of paper with black ink and tear away the bottom edge.

As long as you have that hemp fiber handy, tie a bow and staple the whole works onto the card panel. Attach your candle to the card with that wonderful stuff called CS® Bookbinding Glue.

Write your "happy birthday old guy" on the inside of the card, pop it into an envelope, and hand deliver that gem to someone who will get a good laugh out of it.

Enjoy the pinspiration! Now, go forth and efficiently make one of your own.