35 posts categorized "TUESDAY'S TERRIFIC TIP"

August 09, 2011



Bow Tutorial

Q: How do you tie great bows? I look at the catalogue and see perfect bows, but mine never turn out looking that nice. What’s the trick?

There sure are some amazing bows out there! You are right — there are a couple of tricks. First of all, there are many ways to tie bows. I’ll share a quick tutorial below with one of my favourite bows! Second, knowing which types of ribbons work best with certain bows is a big help. And lastly, once you’ve learned about the first two tricks, the last trick is just good old fashioned practice!
Picking the right ribbon for your size and type of bow is important. Our lovely 1-1/4" Striped Grosgrain Ribbon is ideal for bows on 3-D items, décor, and gifts. It can be used to make bows on cards that you intend to hand deliver, but is too bulky for standard mailing. Ribbons that are narrower and have a thinner, softer texture work best on cards you intend to mail. Ribbons like 1/2" Seam Binding, 3/8" Taffeta, 3/8" In Colors Ruffled, 1/4" Grosgrain, and 1/8" Taffeta make smaller bows with less bulk and work well for mailing. Ribbons like the 5/8" Satin, Crochet Trim, and 5/8" Organza can also work for cards you are mailing depending on the type of bow you tie. 

There are many different ways to tie bows. Some are basic bows like what you tie in your shoelaces, while some fancy bows can have double or triple loops. Some bows use a brad to hold the ribbon in place instead of a knot and other bows are tied around something, like fork tines, as a template. I’d be thrilled to teach you a variety of bow-tying techniques that you and your friends will love. One of the most popular I do at workshops is the “fork bow". 

It always gets “oh’s, ahh’s, and wows"! Book a workshop with me this fall and we can plan to include some great bows in the demonstrations and make 'n’ takes. You and your friends will love knowing how to make a variety of bows for cards, scrapbooks, crafting, and even basic gift giving! The Elegant Bow is one of my favourites because it is easy, flat, and looks like you know a secret bow-tying trick, which you will! I’ve included a quick tutorial for you below that I hope you enjoy! 

Elegant Bow TutorialRibbon Tutorial
To create an Elegant Bow, you will need a 5" and a 2" strip of ribbon.

1. Lay a 5" piece of ribbon out flat. Add a dab of SNAIL to the center.

2. Fold in the right end of the ribbon and adhere to SNAIL. Add a dab of SNAIL on top of the ribbon end.

3. Fold in the left end of the ribbon and adhere to SNAIL. Add a dab of SNAIL on top of the ribbon end.

4. Place one end of a 2" piece of ribbon over the center of the folded ribbon creating an upside down “T" shape. Add a dab of SNAIL on top of the ribbon end that is over the folded ribbon.

5. Wrap 2" piece of ribbon around the folded ribbon until it overlaps and adheres to itself. Pull ribbon snug so it is flat, but not so tight that it causes the ribbon to gather.

6. Trim off excess ribbon.

7. The Elegant Bow is complete. Press it flat or push the ends gently to puff it up a bit based on your preference. Adhere the elegant bow to your project alone or layered on a strip of

I hope you enjoy creating the Elegant Bow. I’d love to teach you and your friends a whole variety of bows, tips, and tricks that will really add that extra-special touch to your cards, scrapbooks, décor, and other crafting projects. Contact me today to book your workshop and we can decide what types of bows will “wow" you and your friends with!

November 16, 2010

Tuesday's Terrific Tip - Pop Up Cards

Here is a simple pop-up card that you can try at home.

Ornament Pop-Up Card Front 
The outside of the card was created using a Pallette of Riding Hood Red and Naturals Ivory Cardstock.  The Designer Paper is from the Love Letter Collection and the Regals Paper Pad. For embellishments I used the Wide striped Riding Hood Red grosgrain ribbon and the self-adhesive pearls.  The layout for today's card was inspired by this week's Mojo Monday sketch.

Ornament Pop-Up Card Inside
 I continued the same theme as the front of the card using matching colors and ornaments that were punched out of the designer paper and Riding Hood Red Cardstock.  For a great link for pop up cards go to:


April 27, 2010



Just wanted to point out that Designer Paper in itself is beautiful and full of color.  By itself it's certainly easy to co-ordinate perfectly with our matching card stocks.  Did you ever think about using your designer paper to stamp on?  It's really quite fun and easy to do. 


On this Crushed Curry paper from the Razzleberry Lemonade Collection I stamped a silhouette from the Dream Garden Stamp Set.  It really stands out in the Basic Black ink.  To really make it pop I then added complimentary card stock mats also in the Basic Black and Crushed Curry.

MOJO 124

In this instance I stamped the greeting on the designer paper which is Kiwi Kiss in color.

Nouveau Chic Card #1
This is the Bride Specialty Designer Paper and for this paper which is a white on white design, I brayered it with Sage Shadow and completely changed it's color!  This will only work with papers that have a foil or embossed finish on them.  The metallic and the embossed surfaces resist the ink while the rest of the paper absorbs it.

You can also create your own metallic patterns on regular designer papers by stamping them with a Versamark Pad and then embossing them with Silver or Gold Embossing powder.

Believe me that's just a few things you can do with your designer paper.  Love to hear your ideas and how you use it so be sure to leave a comment!


April 06, 2010



As a little girl I always thought it was so fun that my Mom could make little round donuts with the hole from the middle of the donut!  In Canadain language we would now call them Tim Bits!  LOL

What do you do, with the remaining  pieces of paper,  when you have cut out a die cut shape with your Big Shot?  Sometimes I come up with all kinds of new ideas with those left over "holes"!  I just look at that big gaping shape and say hmm... what can I do with this?

Here's one of my latest half cut creations:

Fancy Flower Thank You Card

If you can leave a comment and tell me where it is, and how I did it I'll draw a name of the comments left and one lucky person will win a free pass to my Online Sweet Pea Class! 

Time is running out to sign up for my SWEET PEA ON-LINE CLASS which starts on April 12th!  Click on the Blinkie below for full details!



February 02, 2010



For today's post I created a little gift box with four 3 x 3 gift cards inside.  I was experimenting with a new technique I learned over at Ustamp with Dawn & Friends.  It's pretty simply really to accomplish this look.  What you do is cover the card stock with Versamark Ink, then coat it completely with Clear Embossing Powder.  Before you heat set it you go ahead and make lines through the powder with the tip of a bone folder.  This drags the embossing powder off of those lines.  Now go ahead and heat set this for a fabulous look.  It actually turns out the best when you use the darker colors of card stock.  On Friday I actually created a little Lovely Lilac Purse for my grand-daughter using this technique and the alligator technique seemed to show up better on that color.

Here are some more pictures of the completed projects:



 Once again I was using products from my retired stash so the color palette is Kiwi Kiss, Tangerine Tango and Whisper White.  See you all tomorrow!

January 14, 2010


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Today I have a little tip for you regarding embossing.  Usually you can only emboss with Craft or Pigment based inks because they have a longer drying time.  However, I have discovered an exception to the rule when you use Glossy Cardstock as your base.  You can actually emboss on Glossy cardstock using Classic inks.  The key is to make sure your ink pad is really well inked and that you emboss and heat set immediately after stamping your image, before the ink has a chance to dry.  That slight delay in drying time gives you just enough time to get it embossed before the ink dries.  This is great to know because now you can embossi wth your In Colours!

Here's the project I did trying out this technique as well as using a Versamarker to color and emboss with:

Razzleberry Love Valentine

I love how rich the ink looks once it has been embossed, making a striking contrast on the Glossy White Cardstock.  If you would like to try this card at home you can download the full instructions here:

  Download RLV WORD 2003 Word 2003 Format

  Download RLV WORD 2007 Word 2007 Format

  Download RLV WORD PDF   PDF Format

Hope you enjoy trying this card!  I certainly had fun designing it!


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

October 13, 2009


The Movers & Shakers die allows you to cut out and score a card that measures 4 - 1/4" x 11".  The fun thing is that half of the die is magnetic and allows you to place a magnetic shape die, which will cut out a shaped window from the front of the card.  The wonderful thing is that this shape can be placed wherever you like so that you can choose where you place your window; top, bottom, center or any corner of the card front.  The main die is found in the 2009-2010 Idea Book & Catalogue and comes with the shaper of the Curly Label Punch. 

Movers & Shakers Die

You can purchase other moveable shapers in sets of 4.  In the main catalogue there is the Punch Windows set.

Punch Windows
 Of course the advantage of these compared to punches is that the can be placed even in the center of a card or mat where a punch cannot reach.  There is also a brand new 4 piece set in the Holiday Mini catalogue: Holiday Windows.

Holiday Windows

In this set the ornament window is the perfect mat for our ornament punch.  The Circle works perfectly with the Sweet Treat cups, which I featured in yesterday's project and it is this weeks challenge if you'd like to enter.  Here's an elegant card I made using the dove window and the Bride Specialty Paper.  Although I created a Christmas Card with it I think the colors would also make a great wedding card if you just changed the greeting.

Peace On Earth Card 

Supply List:

Cardstock: Crusthed Curry, Bride Specialty

Stamp set: Four the Holidays

Embellishments: White Organza Ribbon, 4 Swarovski Crystals

Ink: Crushed Curry, Uniball Signo White Gel Pen


September 28, 2009


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 I borrowed a stamp set from my friend Lynn.  Can you imagine it?  I borrowed a stamp set because I didn't own it?  Ha Ha.  Before you think I have totally lost it, I had it on order and it arrived today!!!  So you see I haven't lost it after all.  Lost what, you say?  I haven't lost my edge on owning all the stamps in the Stampin' Up! catalogue!

Here's the Cold & Cuddly stamp set:

Cold & Cuddly Stamp Set

A polar bear with a stocking hat, a cup of cocoa, and a fishing pole? Now that’s Cuddly!  An ice glacier and a north pole sign, that equals cold!  Thus the name of the set: Cold & Cuddly

This is a perfect set to use masking with.  The tip for masking is you have to stamp the image you want in the foreground first.  Then stamp the image again on a post it note or thin piece of paper. Apply re-positional adhesive, like Dotto and protect the first stamped image.  In this project I stamped the polar bear first and then protected it with a mask.  I then stamped the ice glacier.  To give the bear a 3-D look I stamped his leg the second time and cut it out.  I dimensioanlized this so it looked 3-D.


Color palette is Night of Navy, Bashful Blue and Whisper White.  Since the stamp set is cold I decided to keep the colors cool as well.  For embellishments I added a little White Organza bow and some crystals to make the snow flakes sparkle.  The loyout is from this week's Mojo Monday challenge.

This is such a sweet stamp set.  I love how cute the images are and how you can mix and match them with the different hats and other elements.

You can purchase any of these items at my online store.  Don't forget that if you spend $25 you will automatically enrolled in the Cyber Club for this month and receive all the freebies.

September 22, 2009


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I have noticed that many of the embellishments I have seen lately in the craft stores have fan fold designs and they are pretty pricey!  Just so you know what I'm talking about here's a card with one in the center.


Here are some easy instructions to follow so that you can make these with any of your designer papers.

  • Cut a 12" by the desired widith of designer paper (Mine was 1-1/2")
  • Score this strip at every 1/4"
  • Fan fold the entire strip...one fold in and one fold out all the way across
  • Adhere the two end pieces together with right sides together
  • Place this on a flat surface and flatten all the folds towards the center until there is just a small circle left in the center of the piece
  • Place a large pop dot on the center to keep the fan in place
  • Cover with a a cardstock circle and any other embellishment you might like to add
  • Turn the piece over and once again add a Pop Dot to the back and adhere it to your finished project

If you scallop the edge of your piece before fan folding you will end up with a cute little flower.  For a complete tutorial and video for the scalloped ones here's a great link on Splitcoast Stampers.


Card Supply List:

Stampset: Wandering Words from the Holiday Mini

Cardstock: Always Artichoke, More Mustard, Ruby Red

Designer Paper: Autumn Traditions

Embellishements: Theater Ribbon, More Mustard Buttons, Chipboard

Ink: Soft Suede

Tools: Scoring Tool, Scallop Edge Punch, 1" CIrcle Punch, Bigz Clear Circle Die, The Big Shot

You can purchase any of these items at my online store.  Don't forget that if you spend $25 you will automatically enrolled in the Cyber Club for this month and receive all the freebies.

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

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