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8 posts from November 2009

November 24, 2009


Here are 2 more cards I created this morning to complete the set for the Hostess Club projects on Friday night.  Again both cards feature Nature's Nest Stamp Set.




November 23, 2009


I had wanted to create a calendar for my grand-daughter using clip art that would be very 2 year old friendly so I decided to do a bear theme.  Here's what I came up with.




November 16, 2009


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All the rage these days seems to be Easel Cards which are perfect for those special cards. The beauty of them is that you can display them so beautifully as they stand up on their own because of the placement of the brad. Please note that once you have cut and scored the bottom piece the front piece is only attached on the top scored edge only. The card below shows the Easel View where the card is on display and then how it folds flat and closed. The sample cards measure 6 X 6 when closed.

 Poinsetta Peel Off Easel View

Poinsetta Peel Off Front Closed

6 X 6 CARD

  • Cut Piece A card bottom and easel to measure 12" x 6". Score this piece at 3" and 6"
  • Cut Piece B card front to measure 6" x 6"
  • Place brad to create the easel at 3" from the bottom edge and at 3" in the center


Standard A2 Card 5-1/2" x 4-1/4"

  • Cut Piece A card bottom and easel to measure 11" x 4.25". Score this piece at 2.75" and 5.5"
  • Cut Piece B card front to measure 5-1/2" x 4-1/4"
  • Place brad to create the easel at 2-1/8" from the bottom edge and 2-3/4" from the left or right side.

4 X 4 card

  • Cut Piece A card bottom and easel to measure 8" x 4". Score this piece at 2" and 4"
  • Cut Piece B card front to measure 4" x 4"
  • Place brad to create the easel at 2" from the bottom and 2" from the left or right hand side

As with any card you can add layers and embellishments as desired to the card front and the inside. Keep in mind that it is even more important that your inside and outside of the card will need to be color co-ordinated since both are visible when the card is displayed in the easel position.

Here are some more samples all created in the 6 x 6" size.

 Ornaments Easel View

Ornaments Front Closed View

Pointsetta Card Front Easel View

Pointsetta Card Front Closed

Pointsetta Side View

 Santa Easel View 

 Santa Card Front Closed

November 11, 2009


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Shimmer Paint is actually a pigment ink with a touch of shimmer! It comes available in 3 gorgeous colors: Platinum, Champagne Mist & Frost White. The Champagne Mist and Frost White are translucent so you can wash them over your project and you'll get a delicate layer of shimmer. The Platinum is opaque so you will get complete coverage and better used as an accent color. To apply this wonderful product you can use a Stampin' Sponge or Dauber to apply it directly to paper or to your actual rubber stamp. Since it's pigment ink you can stamp with it just like our Craft Ink. It dries very quickly so you won't need to heat set it.  Since Shimmer Paint is PIGMENT INK you can do anything you could usually do with Craft Ink. Also the translucent colors are beautiful when mixed with a few drops of Classic Ink Refills! You can turn any of our colors into a beautiful shimmer paint. It works well on many different mediums including, cardstock, paper, chip board, wood sheets, fabric, leather and more! This wonderful product can be found on page 27 of the Holiday Mini Catalogue and will only be available until January 4-09.

Heer are a few Ideas & Tips for you to try at home:

  • Apply it directly to your stamps with a sponge dauber or sponge and stamp with it
  • Using a ratio of 3 drops of shimmer paint to 2 drops of re-inkers and create your own gorgeous shimmer paints. Combine more than one color of re-inkers and create your own!
  • Mix up your shimmer paint and re-inkers and use it as a paint with a small brush to color in your stamped images
  • To create a stunning stencil,mix it with alcohol and re-inkers in a spray bottle and mist away. Ratio should be about 1 ounce of alcohol to 15 drops of shimmer paint to 15 drops of re-inker. The alcohol keeps the paper from buckling.
  • Use it as an overlay, over one of your stamped images. Beautiful on winter scenes, snowman or larger shaped images
  • Use it on fabric and then heat set it to make it permanent.  Wash and wear as usual.

Each of the bottles of shimmer paint contains 5 oz. which believe me goes a very long way! This wonderful product retails at $ 8.95 + Shipping + Tax. Order some today and get your SHIMMER ON!


November 10, 2009


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This is an article that I receive from Mircrosoft Home RSS FEED.  I thought you might enjoy it.

What's the problem with holiday photos? All too often, they fail to capture the feeling of the season. Most holiday pictures look interchangeable. Your photos of family members lined up and smiling look the same as those of every other family.

So why not turn routine holiday photos into unique works of art with just a few simple techniques?

81608_145x90_photo-tips_F 1

Plan ahead

The classic problem with holiday photos is that they have to be taken weeks in advance so you can send out cards and mailings beforehand. Some decorations like live trees aren't available, and you might not want to take the menorah or other holiday items out of storage so far in advance.

If you're like me, you're surprised by the sight of holiday decorations at the mall when most people are still wearing shorts and flip-flops. It seems too early to drag out once-a-year decorations just so you can take a holiday photo before the snow flies. But it's never too early to think about the perfect image to accompany the annual "year in review" letter that describes your nearly perfect family.

The solution: Go generic. How is such a thing possible? Find an object that says "holiday."

For ideas, check out the Office Live Clip Art Web site. Do a search for "holidays" or "Christmas" and browse through the results. Find subjects that are festive and non-denominational: for example, an ornament, a sprig of holly, a poinsettia plant. Then you can use these festive clip art pieces in your holiday photos rather than having to get out your actual decorations so far in advance of the holidays.

Less is more

If you are taking photos for a card or other holiday mailing, you might want to get personal. Often, you need to connect with diverse sets of people—business clients, neighbors, community members, and family.

Keep it simple. Save family photos for your family. For a non-family card or mailing, consider a straightforward, evocative image. For example, freshly fallen snow on ornate stone buildings and oak trees suggests the beauty of the season. If you don't have fresh snow on hand, gargoyles on buildings and other architectural ornaments are compelling, too.

And don't be afraid to get up close. Most people see a beautiful nature scene, say "Wow!" and snap a shot of the whole landscape. Don't settle for this canned shot; zoom in on the details. Almost every camera has a magnify or macro button that lets you get close and create a much more interesting photo.

Cardinal_revised 2


This cardinal offers a pretty way to evoke the holiday season for non-family cards or mailings, and by using your camera's magnify feature you get something beyond the typical nature landscape.

Get candid

There's nothing wrong with pictures that are posed, but create some variety by including candid shots at family gatherings. Get people in conversation or reacting to opening a gift. Keep your camera batteries charged up and your camera nearby so you can catch spontaneous moments.

Light the way

In ideal situations, use available light to eliminate problems like flares and the dreaded "red eye." Also, don't take photos in front of windows or other back lights; the foreground will come out too dark unless you use fill flash. Light the scene from several different directions. Don't point bright lights right at people's eyes. Light the space around them and diffuse the light if possible.

Keep mirrors, glass, or other reflective surfaces that can cause distracting light flares away. And ask your subjects not to look directly at the camera to prevent red eye. There are also several helpful tips for lighting as well as tips on printing, editing, and organizing digital images in numerous articles on the Windows Vista and Windows 7 Web sites.

Find a new angle

This is something I learned from my days as a reporter: looking at rows of people staring at the camera and smiling at you head-on is a bit boring. If you do want to take a photo of your family, simply changing the angle and looking at a familiar scene from a new perspective can liven it up considerably. For example, get up on a ladder and look down; get down on the floor and look up.

Another option is to fill the frame for dramatic effect. By tilting the camera down about a third of a frame, you can create a much different effect. Look carefully at the picture you're framing before you click the button. Experiment by moving the camera up and down, side to side. Tilt the camera to various angles and see what it shows you. Fill the frame with the object that interests you most. If your digital camera has an LCD screen, you can use it to improve your sensitivity to the entire scene.

Edit your images

Even the pros don't get it right the first time. Professional photographers know that the best way to get the perfect image is to take several hundred that are imperfect. Some of the best photos only emerge after careful editing.

Windows Live Photo Gallery, which comes with Windows 7, and Windows Photo Gallery, which comes with Windows Vista, are convenient yet powerful tools for editing images.



 Perfect your photos by editing them using tools like Windows Live Photo Gallery.

You can also use Microsoft Photosynth, which transforms regular digital photos into three-dimensional, 360-degree experiences. This new service changed the way you experience and share photos. Please note that a download is required to use and/or view photos within the Photosynth experience.

Photo editing programs allow you to combine black and white and color in one image, as well as apply other cool effects. With many of today's digital imaging software packages, like the ones on the Microsoft Professional Photography site or Adobe Photoshop Elements, you can apply amazing effects to your photos that used to be available only to professional photographers.

Hint: Before you start, make a working copy of your original image by saving it with a new file name. You can do this by opening the image and typing a "bw" at the end of the filename when you save it to differentiate the working image from the original. For example, if the image file name is "Leaf," save the image as "Leafbw." By doing all your work on your working copy of the image, you can always start over with a fresh copy of the original if you don't like the results.

You can easily convert color photos to black and white by using your favorite image-editing program. With some camera models you can even do this in the camera before downloading the image to your computer. Once the image is on your computer, you can use your image-editing program to adjust contrast and brightness to create a photograph that's reminiscent of an Ansel Adams composition.

Hint: Silhouettes look terrific in black and white, as do old buildings. The effect adds drama. But be sure to reserve this technique for landscapes or buildings. Photos of family members in black and white may not be as warm as you want them to be.

Don't forget presentation

Anyone who's ever wrapped (or unwrapped) a present knows how important presentation is. Once you have the perfect image captured and edited, you can turn it into a gift by printing it on a card yourself. You can do so by creating cards using a variety of Microsoft Office products.

With PowerPoint, you can assemble a multimedia greeting card, including festive images and sound clips of your family singing their favorite holiday songs.

Jump start the process by using one of the greeting card templates. Since one picture is worth a thousand words, if you’re a Windows XP user consider weaving your holiday photos into a narrative, complete with music and your own commentary, using Photo Story 3 for Windows.

Share holiday moments

You've collected your best picks of cookie decorating, ice skating, carol singing, and present opening. Now what do you do with them all? Windows Live Spaces is a blogging and social networking site that's available to anyone with a Windows Live ID. Windows Live Spaces lets you share photos with friends, family, or the world at large. You can upload as many as 500 photos per month.

Photo collages celebrate important events and themes in our lives. Pick a folder, press a button, and in a few minutes Microsoft AutoCollage presents you with a unique memento to print or e-mail to your family and friends. You can learn about even more innovative ways to make the most out of your photographs on the Microsoft Professional Photography site.

You can also use your photos to tell a story. Check out Tell vacation stories with photos for an example of creating a story with your pictures. The concepts in the vacation article can easily be applied to your holiday events to create and share an experience your family and friends will cherish for years to come.

Author Bio: Greg Holden

Greg Holden has been taking photos professionally since his days as a reporter for his hometown paper in suburban Chicago. Many of his more than 30 books on computers and the Internet deal with editing or taking photos, such as Complete Idiot's Guide to Photoshop Elements. His books on eBay, including How to Do Everything with Your eBay Business, discuss taking digital images to accompany auction descriptions. He lives in Chicago with his two teenage daughters.


© 2009 Microsoft

November 09, 2009


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Today I was playing with the stamp set that we will be featuring at this week's hostess club.  Nature's Nest is a beautiful stamp set with some great imates.  Each of these imates is perfect for all kinds of watercoloring or blending techniques.  See for yourself:


Here are two of the cards we will be making at the Hostess Club this week.  The turtle was colored with Markers and then blended with our Aqua Painter.  Very fun card to do and I love how the turtle pops off the background.

Nature's Nest Card 2

The second image is the bird's nest and I blended the colors in this using drops of ink from the ink pad that I used as a paint palette and then blended with a Blender Pen.

Nature's Nest Card 1

 These are 2 of the 4 cards we will be creating at this month's hostess club on Friday, November 13-09 at 7:00pm.  Our hostess of the month is Anne Dorey.  Guests can join us and just make the cards for a cost of $10 or place an order that night and receive the projects for free, as the regular members do. 

For more information regarding the details of the hostess club go to:


November 07, 2009


It’s beginning to look a lot like the Holidays. Let’s face it, the holidays seem to appear earlier every year. They also have the uncanny knack of showing up when we are at our busiest. We have holiday gatherings and parties. We have places to go with the kids. Presents that need to be bought. So many things that just have to be done.

Wouldn’t it be nice to have creative ideas delivered to your inbox? 12 days full of great holiday help. These ideas will cover gift giving, decorating and card making. They will be packed full of inspiring ideas. Just when you need the inspiration and the ease of great projects I'm available to you, ready to help you though the busiest time of the year.

The holidays are a time of sparkle and wonder. Handmade gifts and decorating add to that in a way that is uniquely your own. Having inspiration for great projects, that are simple and easy to do, can be a jumping off point that will spark your creativity. Adding that little bit of your own personal touches to decoration, cards and gifts really does show that you care enough to go that extra step.

Sign up for the 12-day Holiday Helper. Set to be delivered to your inbox every morning starting November 15-09.  This is available to Customers Only.  Please no requests from Stampin' Up! Demonstrators.


Email Cindy to Request Your Copy Today

Once you have made your request you will receive a confirmation email and be sure to take advantage of the 20% Coupon that will be included in that email.  Details in the email.

November 06, 2009


Hello everyone!  I know it has been a very long time since I have posted...but I've been ill with a very bad flu.  So much so that I have not done any classes, workshops or blog posts since the middle of October.  OOPS!

Also just so you know, I've had to withdraw as a participant in this weekend's Sackville Craft Crawl but hoping to host another day for a sale before Christmas.  If you would lile to be invited for the new date simply drop me an email or leave a comment on this post with your email address.

Today's post is a little fun I had making a Christmas Advent Calendar from the Kaiser Craft MDF calander.  What fun it was to complete this delightful gift idea.

The color palette I used for the project included:


Here's the finished project:

  • Please feel free to email me if you have any questions on stamping or scrapbooking, or just need more information.

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