Monthly Archives: July 2012

My Top Ten Tool Picks for Paper Crafting, Part 1



Today I am going to share with you some of my favorite paper crafting tools.  I have been scrapbooking, stamping and paper crafting for over 15 years and have wasted my hard earned dollars on many products that did not live up to my expectations.  But I have also wisely invested in several tools that have become must-haves for me.  So here is my Top Ten Picks for Paper Crafting tools.


  1.  Stampin’ Up! Tabletop Paper Cutter, Item #106959, $45.95                                                                                                  I am a bit embarrassed to admit that I have probably purchased more than a dozen paper cutters/trimmers.  I just could not find one that gave me a smooth, clean cut and fit in my craft space.  But my search came to an end when I bought the Stampin’ Up! Tabletop Cutter.  It is the perfect paper cutter for me!  I have had it for about 6 years and it sees near daily use.  It cuts beautifully and I love that it is slimmer than a full size 12×12 cutter, it takes up so much less room on my work surface.  It is a little pricier than some cutters, but well worth the few extra dollars!

    Stampin’ Up! Tabletop Paper Cutter


  2. Stampin’ Up! Simply Scored, Item #122334, $29.95                                                                                                                 I have owned several scoring boards, by several different companies.  The Simply Scored is my newest and also my favorite full size scoring board.  I love the sturdy feel of this board, as well as the 1/8 ” score lines.  Another great feature of this board is the place markers.  These little flags are especially useful when making multiples of the same measurement.  I also appreciate that the Simply Scored comes with a double-ended stylus for scoring, much better than the standard bone folders.  One more thing I love about the Simply Scored is the new Diagonal Plate, Item #125586, $11.95.  The diagonal plate sits securely right on top of the Simply Scored and makes beautiful diagonal scores every 1/8″, perfect for making envelopes, scored backgrounds and all kinds of 3D projects.  Honestly, I can’t think of anything I don’t like about the Simply Scored!

    Stampin’ Up Simply Scored

    Diagonal Plate












    3.  Stampin’ Up! Heat Tool, Item #129053, $29.95                                                                                                                      I have only owned 2 heat tools, but I have used several others in classes I have taken.  My first heat tool was an inexpensive one from a craft store.  I was never happy with it, took forever to heat up, took forever to emboss, with inconsistent results.  I purchased the Stampin’ Up! Heat Tool and never looked back.  The first thing I love about it is that it heats up quickly.  I am pretty impatient, so this is important to me.  It is also hotter than other heat tools I have used.  And I love that the new models have 2 settings and a safety guard on the tip.  Yes, I have burned myself  once or twice, so this is a must-have feature!

    Stampin’ Up! Heat Tool

    4.  The New Stampin’ Up! Stampin’ Scrub, 126200, $16.95                                                                                                   I have to admit that I was not a huge fan of the old Stampin’ Scrub.  Although it worked well, in my opinion, it was poorly designed.  The hinge did not stand up to regular use and the clips that held the pads in place broke easily. Because of this I had to replace my Stampin’ Scrub regularly.  I had high hopes for the newly redesigned Stampin’ Scrub and it did not disappoint, I really love the changes they made!  First and foremost, the hinges are vastly improved, much wider and sturdier.  The surface area of the cleaning pads are much larger, especially useful for cleaning background stamps and unmounted wheels.  The pads are also denser for easier cleaning.  Another huge improvement is the silicone feet that hold the Stmpin’ Scrub in place, love that feature.  I am so happy I decided to order a new Stampin’ Scrub, definitelty worth the investment!

    Stampin’ Up! Stampin’ Scrub

    5.  SCOR-BUDDY Mini Scoring Board, $19.95                                                                                                                           Next up is the Scor-Buddy Mini Scoring Board.  I really love this little board, it is the perfect size to keep on my desk and I use it for nearly all my card scores.  I also have the Mini-Mat, which I keep in my Scor-Buddy when not in use.  I use it all the time for quick measurements and to line up mats and card elements.  And I have to give a shout out here to Scor-Pal for their great customer service!  My first Scor-Buddy had a loose mechanism for holding the score tool, so I contacted Diana at Scor-Pal about getting a replacement mechanism.  Not only did she replace my Scor-Buddy, she sent along A Mini-Mat and extra score tool for my trouble.  How’s that for fabulous customer service!  I love my Scor-Buddy, a great product from a great company!


    Mini-Mat for Scor-Buddy




Extremely Hot Birthday! Apron Strings & Dare to Get Dirty Challenge Card #2


Extremely Hot Birthday!

I snuck another card in today between laundry and watching the Olympics.  This was a fun one to make, but a bear to photograph! Sorry for the glare, but I used Glossy cardstock and it was too dark to photograph without the flash.  This one was for the Dare to Get Dirty Challenge #2 and Apron Strings Pinterest Challenge #19.  Here is the Apron Strings Inspiration Photo:

Pinterest Challenge #19


Materials List

Stampin’ Up! Glossy Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Peach Parfait Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Only Orange Textured Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Real Red Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Whisper White

Stampin’ Up! Peach Parfait Ink

Stampin’ Up! Only Orange Ink

Stampin’ Up! Tangerine Tango Ink

Stampin’ Up! Real Red Ink

Stampin’ Up! Lucky Limeade Ink

Stampin’ Up! Basic Gray Ink

Stampin’ Up! Extreme Surf

Stampin’ Up! Itty Bitty Banners

Stampin’ Up! Framelits Bitty Banners

Stampin’ Up! Sponges

Sizzix Texture fades Rays Embossing Folder

Nestabilities Circle Die for Masking

Painters Tape for Masking




SCS Dare to Get Dirty Challenge Card, Two Ways



White Lattice with Jasmine

Here is my first card for this year’s Splitcoaststampers Dare to Get Dirty Challenge.  This is such a fun event and I am going to try to get them all done, but no promises!  With the Olympics on and no TV in the studio, I’m not sure how much will get done this week.  For the first version of this card,  I kept it all white and made Jasmine flowers.  We have a Jasmine hedge surrounding our pool screen enclosure that is in full bloom right now.  When I walked outside this morning to take the dogs out, the smell of the Jasmine flowers was incredible!

White Lattice with Frangipani

For the second version, I used the same 5 Petal Flower Punch, but sponged with a shades of yellow to make Frangipani flowers.  Frangipanis are one of my favorite flowers, I love the variation in colors and gentle fragrance.

Materials List

Stampin’ Up! Whisper White

Stampin’ Up! Shimmer White

Stampin’ Up! Sincere Salutations

Stampin’ Up! 5 Petal Flower Punch

Stampin’ Up!  Spring Bouquet Punch

Stampin’ Up! Large Pearl

Stampin’ Up! Basic Black Ink

Stampin’ Up! Yo Yo Yellow Ink

Stampin’ Up!  Summer Sun Ink

Stampin’ Up! Yo Yo Yellow Marker

Silhouette Cameo Asst Lace Backgrounds Cut File

Stampin’ Up! Mini Glue Dots

Birds on a Branch Inspiration Challenge


Birds on a Branch

Today’s Splitcoaststampers Inspiration Challenge IC347 is a neat Etsy jewelry store, BeautySpot.  There are lots of interesting pieces for inspiration, but I was drawn to this Birds on a Branch ring:

Birds on a Branch ring

I love the graphic feel of the birds in silhouette on the turquoise background.  I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut the birds and branch silhouette and Stampin’ Up! Pendant Park for the sentiment.


Materials List

Stampin’ Up! Bermuda Bay Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Basic Black Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Pendant Park

Stampin’ Up! Basic Black Ink

Assorted Perching Birds Cut File

Branch & Flowers Cut File






Technique Challenge Serenity Shells



Serenity Shells

I hve a fun technique for you today, the Splitcoaststampers Wednesday Tutorial – Distressed Watercolor Dry Embossing.   This card was made for the Apron Strings Pinterest Challenge #17.  Here is the challenge photo:

Pinterest Challenge #17

The colors reminded me of the beach, so I decided to use the Spellbinders Sea Beauty M-Bossabilities Folder because it gave me a good base for the Distressed Watercolor Dry Embossing Technique.  I used the PSX Serenity Prayer stamp and added the shell accents with Crystal Effects.


Stampin’ Up! Island Indigo Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Pool Party Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Whisper White Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Island Indigo Ink

Stream Distress Ink

Sailboat Distress Ink

Mustard Yellow Distress Ink

Sea Beauty M-Bossabilities Folder

Stampin’ Up! Clear Emboss Powder

PSX Serenity Prayer stamp

Nestabilities Deckle Rectangle Dies

Stampin’Up! Crystal Effects


Bundle Up! Color Challenge Card


Bundle Up! Color Challenge Card

Wow, today’s Splitcoaststampers Color Challenge was a challenge with a capital C!  CC385 Real Wonder IslandReal Red, Wisteria Wonder and Island Indigo was a real doozy!  The dessert option was a summer garden, but I just wasn’t seeing it.  As a matter of fact, these colors said winter to me.  They reminded me of a scarf set my son had when he was a toddler, so I went with that theme.  For my card, I used mittens and scarf by Lettering Delights and a Cuttlebug Embossing folder.  The sentiment is part of a stamp by Hero Arts.

Materials List

Stampin’ Up! Real Red Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Wisteria Wonder Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Island Indigo Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Whisper White Cardstock

Stampin’ Up! Island Indigo Marker

Stampin’ Up! Real Red Ink

Stampin’ Up! Wisteria Wonder Ink

Cuttlebug Embossing Folder

Lettering Delights Mittens and Scarf Cut File

Stampin’ Up! 1 1/4 inch Circle Punch

Stampin’ Up! 1 3/8 inch Circle Punch

Stampin’ Up! Scallop Circle Punch





Pretty Pink Baubles Christmas Tree


Merry & Bright Baubles

My friend Bexx from the 100 in 100 Card Challenge and our new Card-a-Day Blog Group told us about a fun Pinterest Challenge on Apron Strings Designs, so I decided to play along with Pinterest Challenge #15 this week.  Here is the inspiration photo:

Pinterest Challenge #15 Inspiration Photo

I am also submitting this for The Crafter’s Cafe Challenge #6:  Christmas in July – Non-Traditional Colors, Stampin with the Dragon Christmas in July Challenge, and Creatalicious Challenges:  Christmas in July.  The photo reminded me of the Tinsel Christmas Tree we had when I was growing up.  One year , my mom decorated the whole tree in pink, white and silver ornaments.  And that reminded me of the little translucent bubbles that were all the rage a few years back.  I still have several colors of them in jars on my shelf, so I grabbed the pink ones and went to work.  At first I was going to use Stampin’ Up! Snow Swirled for my tree, but then I remembered the Memory Box Winterland Tree Die and decided to try that instead.  I used Stampin’ Up! Brushed Silver for the tree, glued it to a piece of Stampin’ Up! Shimmery White Cardstock, matted in Brushed Silver and used glue dots to adhere the bubble ornaments.  I embossed a piece of Blushing Bride for the background and sponged it with Raspberry Ripple. I stamped the sentiment in Raspberry Ripple, punched with the Stampin’ Up! Lg Oval Punch and matted with the Stampin’ Up! Scallop Oval punched in Raspberry Ripple.  I mounted the sentiment on a piece of Stampin’ Up! Basic Gray Taffeta Ribbon and attached it all to the Raspberry Ripple card base.  I think it is a pretty good representation of that old tinsel tree!


Apron Strings

The Crafter’s Cafe

Stampin with the Dragon

Creatalicious Challenges

Sailing Hello


Sailing Hello

It’s Inspiration Challenge day on Splitcoaststampers, my favorite challenge!  Today’s challenge is IC346 ~ Rellique, a very interesting website with lots of vintage and repurposed items.  I chose this Repurposed Vintage White Sail Hand Soap Can Lamp as my inspiration for my card.  I used this coloring page for the sailboat and cut it with my Cameo.  The waves were cut from a download from the Silhouette Online Store and the clouds were cut with a Memory Box Die.  I stamped the sentiment from Stampin’ Up! Pendant Park in Midnight Muse, using my Stamp-a-Ma-Jig to position it on the cloud die cut and mounted all the pieces on a Midnight Muse card base.  I am having a ball with my new Cameo, just wish I had more time to play!

Rain Boots and Sunshowers


Rain Boots and Sunshowers

Today’s challenge on Splitcoaststampers is the Friday Free for All Challenge F4A126…Weather or Not?  The challenge is to make a card showing your weather.  Well here in South Florida we are in our typical summer weather pattern, lots of rain and lots of sunshine, sometimes at the same time!  I found this cute welly rain boot coloring page and used the print and cut feature on my new Silhouette Cameo to cut them out.   I colored the boots with Stampin’ Up! Yo Yo Yellow and Pool Party Markers and mounted them on a Nestabilities die cut in Gable Green.  I used Gable Green for the card base and a DCWV Summer Mat Stack paper for the background, matted in Pool Party.  I stamped the sentiment from Stampin’ Up! Lots of Thoughts in Basic Back, punched with the Stampin’ Up! 1 1/4 inch Circle Punch, matted with the Stampin’ Up! 1 3/8 inch Circle Punch in Gable Green and a Stampin’ Up! Scallop Circle Punch in Yo Yo Yellow.  The ribbon is a scrap that was on a gift, I just knew I’d find the perfect use for it!

Beach Bum Silhouette Cameo Card


Beach Bum

I am so excited, my Silhouette Cameo arrived on Tuesday!  This is the first chance I have had to play with it and I gotta tell you, I am loving this thing!  It is everything I have been looking for in an electronic cutter and more.  It cuts very small, intricate designs beautifully and the Silhouette Studio software is intuitive and easy to use.  The first thing I wanted to try with my Cameo was to import a digital stamp and use the Print and Cut feature to create a die cut effect.  Today’s challenge on Splitcoaststampers is the Ways to Use It Challenge WT384 ~ Hit the Beach, so I did a quick Google Image search for beach digi and found this cute Beach Butt Digi on Leigh’s Paper Creations.  Isn’t it a hoot!

For my card, I started with a Green Galore card base and a yellow polka dot background paper from DCWV.  I colored the image with Prismacolor Pencils and mounted it with Stampin’ Up! Dimensionals.  I printed the computer generated sentiment and triple matted it in Basic Black and the yellow background paper.  I cut the Memory Box Clouds in Whisper White and sponged the edges with Pool Party for this quick and easy card.  This was my first time using a digi stamp, I definitely see more digis in my future!