Wednesday, March 30, 2011

52 Weeks of Wonder

"I love the beautiful, professional look embossing brings to any project, and today's 'reverse' emboss, also known as an 'emboss resist' is a longtime favorite. Start with a color palette you love—I've chosen sweet spring tones of Amethyst, Blush, Garden Green, and Pansy Purple. Then, turn to your Versamark ink pad and clear detail embossing powder and get ready to make some watercolor-like magic!

When used on light paper, the outline appears light with soft color surrounding it. When used on darker papers, you get a soft muted contrast with deeper tones." Jeanette Lynton

Jeanette's blog has detailed steps to create the embossed resist effect. She also shares a gorgeous 2-page 12"x12" layout and an additional card that features this embossing technique.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Digital Srapbooking with CTMH's Studio J

Tresa Black
is a phenomenal fellow consultant who created a short movie about CTMH's Studio J. Her video says it best, so I won't bore you with the details. Just take a few minutes to watch.

And if you haven’t tried online scrapbooking yet, click here to check out Studio J. It’s not a replacement for traditional scrapbooking, it’s just another way to share your stories and document your memories. "Studio J is FREE online design software that allows users to create custom-printed two-page layouts for 12" x 12" albums. There is no software to purchase and install; instead, simply log in to Studio J and start designing your layouts. You can create and immediately purchase your layouts, or you can save them for later completion and purchase."

What are you waiting for? Try Studio J now for free.

Monday, March 28, 2011


The much-anticipated, thrilling conclusion of the worldwide bestselling Inheritance cycle - scheduled for release on November 8, 2011. My daughter is counting the days.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Paper Flower & Easter Egg Garland

I found this adorable DIY garland over at HappyClippings and just had to share. It's super simple and most crafters have the supplies on-hand already. I'm pulling some spring paper from my stash and the girls and I will be creating one this afternoon. Think SPRING!

Friday, March 25, 2011

52 Weeks of Wonder

"One of the great things about working with My Acrylix stamps and clear blocks is that you can cluster multiple images on a single block. Not only can this save time, but it's also a fabulous way to create designs that are uniquely you. This straightforward technique can be a quick way to add a 'wow' design to just about any project.
To create a multicolored focal image, first decide the size of your cluster and choose a block close to the same size as the paper you will be stamping on. This makes it easy to construct the correct size of cluster. Arrange multiple stamps on the block. (You might want to 'test stamp' your cluster in a single color first on scratch paper just to ensure it looks as balanced and proportioned as you envision it. This will also give you a 'template' to refer to as you add stamp images to your project with each different color you add.)

This easy, adorable technique is one you'll love playing with again and again—and possible only through the magic of clear stamps, thanks to My Acrylix!"

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Hope for Japan

"We've all been reeling with the images of tragedy and devastation in Japan. If you're looking for an easy, real, practical way to help relief efforts, then I invite you to contact me today! Typically, our A-sized sets retail for $7.95, but the "Hope for Japan" set will be available through April 30 for just $5 ... CTMH will be donating 100% of the profits to the American Red Cross to benefit relief efforts in Japan. If we all do a little, together we can do a lot. Let's show our support and together, provide real HOPE for Japan!"

I will be placing a bulk order next week specifically for the "Hope for Japan" stamp set. If you'd like to save on the initial shipping cost from CTMH (with pick-up directly from me), send me an email with your order by March 30th. Out-of-town customers can still take advantage of this offer, just contact me directly to arrange for secondary shipping to your location.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Simply Sophisticated

“'Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,' said Leonardo da Vinci, and who could argue with that great artist? The seeming simplicity of the My Acrylix® Fill In the Blanks stamp set is what makes it such a perfect—and perfectly versatile—addition to any stamper’s toolbox!

The words and outline images that make up this set really lend themselves to a variety of looks and techniques. Let’s take a peek at some artwork!

The butterflies on this card are stamped tone-on-tone using the small butterfly image from the Fill In the Blank set, and then we took word stamps and stamped them in first and second generation to create our own patterned paper.

We’ve also used the small butterfly stamp on this layout, but can you guess what other stamp we used from the set? If you guessed 'flower,' you’re right! Since our My Acrylix stamps are flexible, we’ve scrunched up the flower stamp in different ways to get these cute cloud images. We stamped them on B&T Duos® paper to give them a subtle pattern.

For this card, we cut out the large butterfly stamp image a few times and then layered it to make it dimensional. Here are the steps so you can make it yourself:

~ Stamp butterfly with Desert Sand ink on Colonial White cardstock. Using a craft knife, cut along wings, leaving body intact. Mount cardstock piece on Cocoa cardstock and Bamboo B&T paper. Pop up wings using 3-D foam tape.
~ Stamp butterfly again on Crystal Blue B&T paper. Cut out entire image, omitting body. Mount on Colonial White butterfly using 3-D foam tape.
~ Stamp butterfly a third time on Sweet Leaf B&T paper. Cut out entire image, including body, and mount on Crystal Blue butterfly with 3-D foam tape.
~ Accent body with Opaques Mocha adhesive gems.

This card, featured in the Spring/Summer 2011 Idea Book on page 96, also shows the stamping on B&T paper technique. This time we used the bird stamp, and the background pattern is much stronger. To give visual variety, we stamped the bird’s wing on a complementary piece of Grey Wool cardstock. Then, we stamped three different sentiments with Grey Wool ink, then highlighted one of them by stamping over it in Goldrush ink. This brings in a third color and makes the 'friends always' sentiment stand out as the main message of the card.

Does this card look familiar, too? It’s also from the Spring/Summer 2011 Idea Book on page 96. Check out the Hollyhock cardstock on the sides. We stamped the flower on it in a repeating pattern to make an abstract, subtle patterned paper. Notice how the petals overlap in various spots? This gives the flower image a whole new look!

And here’s a final technique for you: using the stamp set as a cutting guide for negative space then filling it with a patterned paper to give visual interest. To create the stars you see in this layout, follow these steps:

~ Stamp three stars on top of your layout, overlapping paper pieces and photos.
~ Use a craft knife to cut out the center, leaving a 1/8" border, and distress the edges with a stipple brush dipped in Desert Sand re-inker.
~ Stamp three 2 1/2" × 2 1/2" pieces of Colonial White cardstock with words or phrases, using Cocoa ink and first, second, and third generation.
~ Attach the cardstock pieces to the back of your layout so the sentiments show through.
~ Accent each star with a pair of Opaques Mocha adhesive gems to give them even more zing!

Have you created a fun project using the My Acrylix Fill In the Blank set?" Post it here for all to admire - I’d love to see it!

Friday, March 18, 2011

52 Weeks of Wonder

"This series is all about stamping techniques—from the simple to the advanced. Today's 'WoW' moment focuses on a fun fact of My Acrylix stamps: they have a front AND a back…and you can use BOTH sides to create incredible stamped images. Now, I know what you're thinking: 'Huh?'

Here's where My Acrylix stamps prove yet again their superiority, versatility, and uniqueness. Of course, every stamp has a "front," a design in the polymer, be it a sentiment, texture, or icon, elaborate or essentialized. Everybody knows you ink the fronts and stamp away. However, stamps also have a "back" that's solid, and many of the stamp images have great solid shapes ideal for stamping as well, from hearts to horseshoes to paisleys or poppies."

Check out Jeanette's blog for additional artwork (3 gorgeous cards), and detailed instructions for creating the unique dimensional clover shown above.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Knit Eggs

Aren't these the cutest eggs! I love the Purl Bee website and have found a ton of cool projects there. I'm running to my local yarn store tomorrow to stock-up on supplies to make a bunch of these adorable eggs. The color combinations and embellishing options are endless!

And while creating these beautiful eggs, I get to learn knitting stripes in the round and duplicate stitching. Although I never quite got the "eggs hanging from a tree" look, these eggs might just push me over the edge. Anyone know where to get a tree form?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Thought I'd pass along this great site I use for finding FREE Kindle books. is a website for Amazon Kindle users and is devoted to offering a smart and easy way to Kindle. makes your Kindle experience easier in a few different ways:

~ Advanced Kindle Search: Search for Kindle books by keywords, author, title, subject, publisher, reader age, language, publication date, percent off, price range, customer review and/or whether or not they are in the Public Domain. These search options are all available on one simple form, and will redirect you to where you will get a set of filtered results.

~ Free Kindle Books: A list of all free books available on This list is updated twice daily, and does not include public domain books or Breakthrough Award Winners. We will also send you these free listing via email if you subscribe in the "Get Notified When Free Titles Are Added" section above.

~ Kindle Price Drops: Get notified by email if the price ever drops on a Kindle book. Sign up by entering your email address and the ASIN or URL of the item you want to watch. If the price ever drops, we will notify you via email. This page also includes lists of recent price drops, recent additions, and most watched items.

~ New to Kindle Watch - Get notified by email if a paper book is ever converted to Kindle format. Sign up by entering your email address and the ASIN, ISBN-10 or URL of the item you want to watch. If it is ever Kindlized, we will notify you via email. This page also includes lists of recently Kindlized books, recent additions, and most watched items.

~ Kindle Accessories - Search for Kindle accessories through a convenient interface. Add items to your cart, and checkout on Also add this page to Firefox for an even more convenient way to search for Kindle accessories.

Monday, March 14, 2011

This is the coolest site for unique personalized gifts! In their own words ... the world's favorite place to find or make unique T-shirts and gifts. Check-out cafepress here. Now I must decide which one of these I want on a new mug.

"Welcome to the internet's best place to find unique personalized gift ideas! Find inexpensive yet unique and creative gift ideas perfect for any holiday or occasion. Make a statement with the gift you buy that will surely create an impression that lasts forever. Browse through thousands of unique designs on over forty different products. Shop around and find many unusual gift ideas with funny or cool graphics or even make your own personalized gifts. From photo gifts, custom gifts, thank you gifts, to even wedding anniversary gifts, we have it all! Shop now and enjoy fast delivery, gift wrapping options and 100% satisfaction guaranteed."

Sunday, March 13, 2011

DVCTA at Laurel Hill

Haley participated in her first dressage schooling show of the season and had two great rides. Her scores today were high enough to count towards qualifying for the DVCTA Year End Awards. Thor and Haley work well together and make an awesome team.
She received great feedback from her trainer and the judge, along with some welcomed constructive criticism. With just four weeks to clean-up some performance requirements before their next show, Haley and Thor will be spending a ton of time together. That's like winning the lottery for Haley!

Friday, March 11, 2011

CTMH's Perfect Paper Pinwheels

CTMH makes accenting your artwork fast and easy! Take a peek inside the Miracle Workshops on the Go™ projects with this video. Find out just how easy it is to create the adorable pinwheels on the cards and layouts!

Click here to purchase the Miracle Workshop on the Go kit or any other CTMH products.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

52 Weeks of Wonder

Double the Fun!

"If you're looking for luck this St. Patrick's Day, let me suggest a stamping technique guaranteed to deliver more richness than a pot 'o gold. It's double stamping, and it's a great way to deliver richer color that will have you clicking your heels in delight.

Double stamping simply involves stamping an image, then reinking and stamping AGAIN right over the original image. Think of it as a second coat of paint—adding intensity and pop to virtually any project. You'll immediately be able to see how vibrant and deep all the colors of my stamped images are, thanks to double stamping. It's such an easy way to get rich color, but it would also be impossible with the "old" way of stamping using wood-mounted or opaque rubber stamps—you just can't see the original image beneath the double-stamped image well enough to line them up! Let's take a closer look at my "Good Luck" tag, which has the pennant stamped in Topiary using an Exclusive Inks Pad."

Check out the rest of Jeanette's gorgeous artowk on her blog. Just cick on her name above to see additional artwork and more details of the double stamping technique.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Banners, banners & more banners ...

Banners are hot right now. These trendy creations make sassy d├ęcor for any room. They are a cinch to freshen up by switching out a couple of pennants, making quick work of all your decorating needs. Combine CTMH's new My Creations® banner with any of our gorgeous paper packs, and it's easy to create stunning banners like those shown here.

Want more? Here’s a smattering of clever ideas for satisfying your banner urge:

~ “word” banner: spell out a word putting each letter on a different pennant, e.g., BIRTHDAY, JESSICA, EASTER, FAMILY, PARTY, LOVE, etc.

~ “wish” gift banner: include a different wish you have for the person receiving the banner, e.g., good health, long life, happiness, your dream trip, good grades, caring friends, etc.

~ "theme” banner: focus on one person, pet, event, or theme and include pictures, quotes, and other memorabilia that represents the theme

~ “family” banner: Give each family member a pennant of their own to decorate in a way that represents them, and then hang them together

~ “timeline” banner: Depict an event or a person over time, starting with early photos at one end and later photos at the other

Ideas could be photos of building your new home, your child's first day of school, getting ready for prom, carving pumpkins, etc.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

TSC All-Star Cheerleading

We had our final cheer competition this weekend in Toms River, NJ and it was a blast. TSC's Kinetic Youth Level 1 squad had their best performance of the season. Here are a few of my favorite shots from Spirit Sports at The Ritacco Center.

Caitlyn and Kristen loved their first year of all-star cheerleading. All-stars is completely different than cheering for a local recreational program, but both girls easily switched gears. We tested the all-star cheer waters with a half-year program at Tri-State CheerNastics (TSC) and couldn't be more impressed with their staff, facility and philosphy.

"Youth 1 is on the floor
who could it be,

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Fresh collections from CTMH

SOPHIA (Blush, Goldrush, Hollyhock & Pear)

BLISS (Bamboo, Chocolate, Grey Flannel & Vanilla Cream)

MIRACLE (Bamboo, Crystal Blue, Heavenly Blue & Sweet Leaf)

SWEETHEART (Baby Pink, Black, Cotton Candy & Tulip)

WINGS (Black, Juniper, Sweet Leaf & Vineyard Berry)

MAYBERRY (Cocoa, Honey, Olive & Smoothie)

LUCKY (Desert Sand, Olive, Outdoor Denim & Sunset)

FANFARE (Cranberry, Pacifica, Sky & Sunny Yellow)

There's something for everyone! Gorgeous color combos to inspire your scrapbooking, stamping and papercrafting, plus fantastic new embellishments to coordinate with your choice of paper packs. Contact me to place your order from the new (larger) Spring/Summer Idea Book from CTMH.