Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Dinoroar Birthday--#tgifc247

The theme challenge this week at TGIF Challenges is "Happy Birthday".  It came at a great time because I am working on a banner for a very special birthday coming up next month.  Easton, my grandson, is turning 1.  The theme is dinosaurs because he has a lot of them to love on and a lot of cute dinosaur clothes.

This is him at five months with a couple of dino friends:

I'm still working on the banner, but I made a dinosaur birthday card  for this challenge.  

The background is Dinoroar designer series paper (# 149589) covering the Whisper White thick card stock base.  The embossed layer is Pool Party card stock embossed with the new Coastal Weave 3D embossing folder (#151503). Over (and around) this layer are arranged three stamped and die cut palm branches, two stamped and die cut dinosaurs and one flying dinosaur (I guess I'll have to learn the names of these guys in the near future) die cut from the Dinoroar paper.  The stamps are from the Dino Days stamp set (#149406) and the coordinating dies from the Dino Dies die set (#149636/bundled with stamp set, #151139).  The "happy birthday" was die cut from Pretty Peacock card stock using the Well Written dies (#148534). I cut three of each word and layered them together for the card.

Here's a photo of the inside:

The greeting is stamped in  Pretty Peacock and the dinosaur die cut from the Dinoroar paper.  Tip:  The dinosaur dies do not cut the ridges on the dinosaur images. For the stamped dinosaur on the front of the card, I stamped the ridges, die cut them with the coordinating ridges die and adhered them to the top of the die cut dinosaur.  For the inside dinosaur, I die cut the dinosaur image from the Dinoroar paper, then snipped out the ridges from the paper, retaining the bottom edge that was remaining after dinosaur was die cut.  Then I placed the ridges edge to edge with the dinosaur body and attached them on the back with Tear & Tape adhesive.   

I am having fun playing with the Dinoroar Suite for Easton's birthday.  I'll share more later.

In the meantime, check out all the birthday projects over at the TGIF Challenges blog here.

Have a great day!--Sara Nell

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

My True North--#tgifc246

When I saw this week's TGIF Challenges sketch challenge, I immediately thought of the Sailing Home stamp set.  Usually, that does not happen.  I like to think about what stamp set I'll use with this kind of challenge.  Even though I had to flip the sketch and move some of the elements around, I stuck with Sailing Home:

I used several products in the Come Sail Away Suite on this card:  Sailing Home stamp set, #149457; Smooth Sailing dies, #149576; High Seas 3D embossing folder, #149577; Come Sail Away designer series paper, #149481; Night of Navy/Sahara Sand baker's twine, #149483; and Sail Away Trinkets, #149482.  Actually, that's the entire suite except for the Come Sail Away Memories & More Card Pack (#149552, which is awesome, by the way).  I added Whisper White thick card stock for the card base, a Silver Foil layer and Night of Navy card stock to complete the card

You can see how I changed up the sketch a bit to fit my stamp set choice.  Challenges are all about inspiration, though, and my card definitely shows the inspiration from this sketch.  See more projects using this sketch over at the TGIF Challenges Blog here.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!

--Sara Nell
Psalm 27:1

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Poppy Sympathy Card--#tgifc245

This week's TGIF Challenges color challenge is Blackberry Bliss, Rich Razzleberry and Very Vanilla.  It took a little thought for me to decide how to use these colors. It is kind of an elegant and subtle color combination to me, so I decided to create a sympathy card to have on hand.

The Peaceful Poppies Suite of stamps and dies was perfect for this card.  I chose to layer a Blackberry Bliss/Rich Razzleberry patterned paper from the Peaceful Poppies designer series paper pack (#151324) over the front of my Very Vanilla card base.  The polka dots on the paper were Whisper White, so I colored them in with the Rich Razzleberry Light Stampin' Blends (#144583).  

I stamped the sympathy greeting from the Peaceful Moments stamp set (#151595) in Blackberry Bliss on my very vanilla card stock layer.  I also stamped the large splatter image from the Painted Poppies stamp set (#151599) on the card stock layer.  I stamped it randomly in the left-hand corner using Rich Razzleberry ink, stamping it off twice before stamping on the card stock.

On a scrap Very Vanilla card stock, the poppy outline images from Painted Poppies were stamped in Blackberry Bliss, then the "filler" image was stamped over them using Rich Razzleberry ink, stamped off once for the smaller poppies.  These were die cut using the Painted Labels dies (#151605; bundled with Painted Poppies stamp set, #153827).  The poppies  were arranged on the card front with three Old Olive leaf images die cut with the Poppy Moments dies (#151594; bundled with the Peaceful Moments stamp set, #153824).

The Very Vanilla stamped layer was layered over a piece of Blackberry Bliss card stock and then adhered to the card base with Stampin' Dimensionals. 

For more projects created with this elegant color combination, head over to the TGIF Challenges blog here. 

So happy you stopped by today!  Happy New Year!
--Sara Nell

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Creation Station January Blog Hop--Resolution Solution

Welcome to the Creation Station January Blog Hop!  I'm glad you've stopped by either via Kerstin's great post or by starting here.  This month our theme is Resolution Solution.  We hope to inspire you in this New Year (and new decade--where has the time gone!). Be sure to click on the "Next" button at the end of each post to see all the design team has created for you.

This year, I have changed up my resolution and intention setting strategy.  I have given myself two overriding goals from which everything else I hope to accomplish will flow.  The first is to grow in faith and knowledge of God and my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:3).  I read my Bible and devotions on a regular basis but find I am just reading and not thinking about the words.  To  "think on these things"  (Phil. 4:8) is my goal.  The second is to find joy in the everyday.  I've experienced lots of joy this past year when spending time with my new grandson and family, but I have also struggled a lot with stress and anxiety.  I want to turn that around by seeking joy in little things.  "As [s]he thinketh in h[er] heart, so is [s]he" --Proverbs 23:7. 

Writing in a journal has never been my "thing", but a journal is a great solution to help me with the resolutions I have made.  Lucky for me, Stamping Up! has created the Pressed Petals Journal (Item #149588).  It has great gratitude prompts and many blank but decorated pages on which to write my thoughts as I read and study.  I chose to decorate my journal with the Peaceful Poppies designer series paper (#151324) because it makes me smile--Poppy Parade is one of my all-time favorite colors.  I added a circle die cut out of Vellum card stock using a die in the Painted Labels dies (#151605); a pair of poppies die-cut from Peaceful Poppies Elements (#151327); sequins from Peaceful Poppies Sequins (#151325); Pearls Basic Jewels (#144219); and Poppy Parade 1/2" textured weave ribbon (#147813).   "Here's to always finding joy" is a part of a sentiment from the Path of Petals stamp set (#149383)--it says it all, doesn't it! 

My little joy banner is a reminder I'll hang on a shelf in my stamping room.  It will be the first thing I see in the morning when I bring my coffee in to start the day.  I die cut the letters in Basic Black card stock using the Hand-Lettered Prose dies (#149550), then I dipped them in VersaMark and heat embossed them with Clear Stampin' Emboss Powder (#109130).  I used the same paper and more labels from the Painted Labels dies for my banner.  The Basic Black twine is from the Country Club Twine Combo Pack (#151318).

Now click below to hop over and see Denita's resolution solution.

Here's to always finding Joy!
--Sara Nell 

Monday, December 30, 2019


If you had told me last year about this time that I would be using a lot of Petal Pink and fall in love with a stamp set with an Eiffel Tower image now, I would have said, "Not.  A. Chance."  I would have been wrong.  When I first saw the Parisian Blossoms Suite in the new Mini Catalog, I was inexplicably drawn to it.  I loved the cherry blossoms, I loved the Eiffel Tower, I loved the designer series paper (which has a lot of Petal Pink in it) and I loved the pretty Petal Pink metallic edged ribbon.  I must being going through a Paris and Petal Pink stage. I don't know.  Maybe it was all those pretty pink pillows with Eiffel Towers on them and the Parisian themed accessories that I saw while I was shopping in several neat little boutique shops in Charleston this Fall.   The Eiffel Tower and Paris themes are on trend right now, that I know.  But why am I drawn to it, that I do not know.  I didn't think I was even the Paris or pink type.   I'm just going to go with this feeling, though, and stamp a lot of Eiffel Towers and cherry blossoms this Spring.

The TGIF Challenges product spotlight this week is fancy foil.  When I saw it, I immediately pulled out my new Parisian Beauty stamp set (#153778, available 1/3/20) and the coordinating Parisian Dies (#151463, available 1/3/20),  I knew an Eiffel Tower die cut out of Champagne Foil (#144748) would be stunning. After playing around with some ideas for a thank you card (my thank you stash is depleted), I ended up not even stamping on my card.  The Parisian Dies were all I needed to create a monochromatic Petal Pink thank you card with Champagne Foil and Champagne Rhinestones (#151193, available 1/3/20).

The card base is Petal Pink card stock layered with Champagne foil and a Petal Pink pattern from the Parisian Blossoms designer series paper (#151192, available 1/3/20). I die cut 5  "merci"s out of Petal Pink card stock and arranged them diagonally down the paper.  Then I adhered my Eiffel Tower over them and add the Champagne rhinestones to complete the card.  

I love using our foil papers on projects!  They seem to give a card a special little something.  You'll see what I mean by checking out the projects over at the TGIF Challenges Blog here.

Thanks for stopping by today!--Sara Nell

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Merry & Bright--#tgifc243

The TGIF Challenges challenge this week is to create with our favorite products from the Holiday Catalog.  Tough challenge!  I have lots of favorites from the Holiday Catalog. However, as I wrote my Christmas cards this year, I saw lots of cardinals and "Christmas Greetings" from the Toile Christmas stamp set (#150469). So I pulled out that stamp set and coordinating die set, Christmas Cardinal dies  (#150640), and decided to make a card without a cardinal or wreath made with the leaf dies  and without the "Christmas Greetings" stamp.

Most of my Toile Tidings designer series paper (#150436) is gone, too. Instead, I used a fun technique for my background.  I saw this technique on a card created by one of the Stampin' Up! concept artists and featured in a video that came out shortly after the Holiday Catalog went live.  It took me three tries and a now sorry looking Brick & Mortar 3D embossing folder (#149643) to get the background right on the first card I made with this technique, but I think it was worth it.

To create the German Schmear look on the background, I dotted the inside of the Brick & Mortar 3D embossing folder with drops of Snowfall Accents Puff paint (#150691) before placing the Real Red card stock inside and running it through the die cutting machine.  Then I hit the card stock with the Heat Tool as soon as it came out of the embossing folder to bring out the puff paint.  The first card I made with this technique was with Crumb Cake card stock and it looked great, but I wanted something different this time around.  I tried it on Cherry Cobbler and it looked good but was just too dark for this card. Learn from my trial and errors:  Do not try and spread the puff paint around on the folder--it will turn out ugly.  Just dot the paint on and dot it on more of the surface of the embossing folder than you think you need--when I first tried to be conservative with my puff paint, I ended up with glaringly blank spaces around the edges. Don't try to fix anything once it's out of the folder.  Be happy with an imperfect look (I know I have a problem with this one myself!)

WARNING:  Either have a tub of warm soapy water next to your die cutting machine to immediately drop the embossing folder into or be resigned to a cruddy looking embossing folder.  That puff paint does not come off after it dries--I found that out the hard way.  It still works, though.  The puff paint sometimes leaks out onto your cutting platform and plate--so wash those quickly, too.

I arranged two of the berry branches over the background.  They were stamped in Soft Suede and colored with the Cherry Cobbler combo, Old Olive combo and Soft Suede combo Stampin' Blends, then die cut.  The greeting was stamped in VersaMark on Old Olive card stock and heat embossed with White Stampin' Emboss Powder. It was die cut and adhered to the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals.

You are going to see lots of great projects over on the TGIF Challenges Blog this week.  Everyone is working with their favorites!

Wishing you a very Merry & Bright Holiday Season!
--Sara Nell 

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

A Christmas Package--#tgifc242

My daughter and I just came back from our 2019 Mother/Daughter Adventure.  Little grandson, Easton, came along for the fun.  We went to Waco, Texas to visit all of the Magnolia sites, the Waco Mammoth National Monument (I highly recommend it--great guided tour to the dig site), and the Cameron Park Zoo (where Easton got to feed a giraffe and we saw a serious rhino confrontation which included growling and horn clashing).  Needless to day, I came home with some neat Christmas gifts.  I used this week's TGIF sketch challenge as my inspiration for this Christmas package:

I created the gift box with a Crumb Cake card stock bottom and a top out of the Garden Green gingham pattern from the Toile Tidings designer series paper pack (#150432).   The finished size of the box is 4" x 9-1/4" x 1".  The box decorations were all added to a 2-3/4" wide Garden Green card stock belly band.

First, I die cut several pine boughs using the Beautiful Boughs die set (#150661).  They were cut from Garden Green and Granny Apple Green card stock and Gold Foil, then arranged on the belly band.  Next, I die cut the Crumb Cake label using a Stitched Nested Label die (#149638).  I stamped the label with the snow image from the Peaceful Boughs stamp set (#150541) in VersaMark ink and the greeting from the Dashing Deer stamp set (#147728) in Garden Green ink.  I added more die cut boughs and an acorn to this piece.  Two deer from the Dashing Deer stamp set were stamped in Soft Suede on Crumb Cake card stock and die cut using the Detailed Deer dies (#147915).  I sponged  some Champagne Mist shimmer paint (#147044)  on the two deer before adding them to the label. 

I am going to hand the gift to the recipient, so no need for a "from and to" tag.  Maybe she'll recycle the box next year!

This week's sketch is a terrific one for cards, too.  See more entries and the design team's take on this sketch over at the TGIF Challenges blog here.

Hope your Christmas is Merry!--Sara Nell


Dinoroar Birthday--#tgifc247

The theme challenge this week at TGIF Challenges is "Happy Birthday".  It came at a great time because I am working on a banner fo...