Ribbon Shares

Just a quick invitation to anyone who is looking to go into a ribbon share.  I rarely advertise my ribbon shares because I often have customers ready to go into a share.  Recently thought I have had some emails from customers asking me if I do shares so I thought I should put it here on my blog.

Ribbon Shares are great if you want to buy a variety of colours in a ribbon style but don’t want to buy whole rolls.  My ribbon shares are done between four people at a time so you get a quarter of a roll of each colour ribbon of your choice.

Just email me if you’d like to put your name down for a Ribbon Share and I’ll see if there’s room in a current group or I’ll start a new group up for the ribbon you’d like.  You can see the variety of Stampin’ Up! Ribbons by clicking here to see the catalogue online and turning to pages 138 & 139.

 

Sponge Daubers tips & ideas

Sponge Daubers are my little secret… but not any more!  Thank you to Fiona for your question about what you can use sponge daubers for, I’ve finally sat down and put my thoughts together in one place.  Also, Kim B you asked about pastels, you might find some more ideas here.  Karyn, you asked whether I use Sponges or Sponge Daubers, I much prefer sponge daubers – to get the colours blended in well I start with only a little bit of colour and work in small circles while adding more colour as I go if needed.  I love sponge daubers because before them I couldn’t get nice smooth and blended sponging, no matter what I used plus they’re so versatile.  These little beauties are always within arms reach on my desk.  So what can you use sponge daubers for? Here’s a list of Sponge Dauber ideas to keep you busy:

Sponge Dauber Ideas:

poppin

Poppin’ Pastels.  Stamp with Versamark then use the sponge daubers to dab colour onto your stamped image and make your image pop.

chalking double-poppin

Double Poppin’ Pastels.  Sponge pastels/chalk onto the cardstock first, then stamp your image with Versamark then use the sponge dauber to add the same colour on top.

stenciling

Stenciling.  Use your sponge daubers with an inkpad and stencil to do stencilling.

rainbow-background fresh-rainbow

Pretty rainbow background.  Use your sponge daubers with a variety of coordinating onto glossy cardstock to give a dreamy background then stamp your image over the top of the background with dark ink.  Somehow I can’t photograph that stamped one to show the colours that well but I used the background in the first photo and stamped over it, so the background is green/blue/purple.

trees-chalk

Basic Colouring.  Stamp in a dark ink (black/navy/chocolate) then use sponge daubers with chalk to add colour to your image.

evening-trees

Colouring Emboss resist.  Stamp in Versamark, emboss in any colour and then add colour to your image with sponge daubers loaded with ink from your inkpad.

dotty-background

Fun Background.  Load the sponge daubers with chalk then use that to make a ‘dotty’ background.  Do that by pressing the dauber onto the cardstock then giving it a little twist. (that idea from my 11 year old daughter Jade, this photo is of Jade making the background in her favourite colour-combo: Pink Passion and Green Galore)

rubon close-up-of-chalk-rubon

Make customised coloured rub-ons! Apply white rub-ons then use a sponge dauber and chalks to add colour to the rub-on to change it from white to any chalk colour you like.  Use a small brush to dust off any excess chalk and an eraser to erase chalk from areas you don’t want it to be on.

Vintage Cards esme2

pocket-thanks1

Softening Edges of your cardstock. I use this method a lot!  I love the look of sponging around cardstock, either with a neutral cardstock like white or vanilla or sponging the same colour ink as the cardstock I’m using.  The cards and scrapbooking layout in the photo above all have sponging around the edges, in this case I’ve used three different colours to create a depth and interest. In the second card I’ve sponged blue cardstock with brown but only very lightly around the edges to soften the hard lines.  And in the third card I have sponged Olive ink on Olive cardstock then Ruby Red ink on Ruby Red cardstock to give the card some warmth.

ink-heart two-toned-heart

Multi-Coloured Stamping. You’ve got to try this, it looks absolutely awesome and nothing but Sponge Daubers will give you this smooth and blended look… trust me, I’ve tried many other ways!  Not sure if you can see the grading of colour in the heart but it’s really fabulous.  Ink up your stamp in one colour as usual, then use a Sponge Dauber to add a different colour around the edges to give a two-toned effect.

Sponge Dauber Tips:

sponge-daubers

*  I keep one sponge dauber for each colour I use and label it so that I can use that same sponge dauber with either the chalk or inkpad of that colour.  The daubers are then all stored in a plastic Stampin’ Up! container that used to contain little stamps (I gave those stamps away).

*  You might prefer to keep one sponge dauber for each colour ‘group’ such as one for greens, one for yellows, one for reds, etc.

*  Sponge daubers can be washed with a little bit of dishwashing liquid and warm water.  That’s a bit of a hassle for me though which is why I keep one for each colour.

Okay that’s it.  I’m tired now after all that but feeling good that I have a heap of little bits and pieces of stamped and sponged cardstock that I have ready to turn into cards.  I hope you’ve enjoyed my Sponge Dauber ideas.  All the products I’ve used in this post (apart from the one feather stamp) are from Stampin’ Up! and are available for purchase through me at angelasargeant@gmail.com.  Email me now to get your own pack of Sponge Daubers!

Using Heat & Stick Powder

Thank you to everyone who has entered my competition so far!  I figured instead of just answering the questions that I’d also make a card to go with them.  So the first question I received was from Gabbie, asking about how to use Heat & Stick Powder.  Thanks Gabbie!  I’ve been meaning to make a card using Stampin’ Up!’s new Supernova glitter with the Heat & Stick Powder but hadn’t gotten around to it as yet so your question prompted me to make this card.

heat-and-stick-flower

This is why I love love love Heat & Stick Powder!  Because unlike glitter glue, you can get lovely fine lines and the glitter looks printed on to the card rather than traced over your image.  It’s what I call “The Hallmark Look”… which always gives me a giggle considering I don’t have the need to ever purchase Hallmark cards. LOL.

Okay, so how to use it…

Just consider Heat & Stick powder to be the same as embossing powder with the difference being that instead of it finishing smooth and glossy, it finishes sticky so you can add glitter.  Here’s step-by-step instructions:

swipe

1.  Swipe an antistatic pad over your cardstock to help keep heat & stick off the areas you don’t want it.  The reason why this happens is because the natural oils on our fingertips sticks to the cardstock which makes the heat & stick powder (or other embossing powders) stick to it.

stamp

2.  Stamp your image on the cardstock using Versamark inkpad.  For those who don’t know what Versamark is, it’s a clear inkpad that’s slighly sticky… it stays wet on your cardstock long enough for heat & stick powder (or embossing powder) to adhere to it.

cover-with-powder

3.  Pour the Heat & Stick Powder over your stamped image then funnel the excess powder back into it’s container.  I do it the other way around though… I emptied out a couple Heat & Stick powder pots into a plastic container and keep it there permanently as I prefer to dunk the cardstock into a large container – it keeps my desk free of powder.

heat

4.  Heat the image with a heat gun so that it melts… same as you would with embossing powder – you’ll be able to see it ‘change’ from powder to a kind of sticky substance.  This only takes seconds to do.

dump-glitter

5.  Immediately pour your glitter over the melted Heat & Stick powder.

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6.  Funnel the excess glitter back into it’s container then give the image a quick shot with the heatgun again just to set the glitter.

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7.  Use a soft brush (I just use a cheap make-up brush) to dust off any excess glitter.

So that’s it. It’s quite quick to do and very worth the small amount of effort.  Hope you liked my mini-tutorial. :D

What else have I used on this card?  Here’s a list of the Stampin’ Up! products that I’ve used:

Fifth Avenue stamp set
Chocolate Chip cardstock
Chocolate Chip inkpad (to stamp the flower all over the cardstock to make it look like background paper)
Certainly Celery cardstock
Whisper White cardstock
Ribbon Originals Valet (spotted ribbon)
Photo Corners punch (I just used the small corners, applied them with a 2-way glue pen then dumped chocolate glitter over the top)
Anti-Static pad
Heat & Stick Powder
Versamark inkpad
Supernova Glitter
Heatgun
SNAIL Adhesive
Stampin’ Dimensionals

Sparkly sparkly Glitter!

Something different today!  I recently bought the Sticky Cuts Letters and was very pleasantly surprised.  I thought they’d be like Jac paper (which I’ve used in the past and enjoyed) but it turns out they are made from the same stuff as Sticky Strip is made from which is a very strong adhesive.  So basically it’s two sheets of very sticky adhesive that’s cut into the whole alphabet plus a few extra things like the brackets and heart as shown in my card.  If you have an Australian Stampin’ Up! catalogue then you can see this on page 145 (if not, email me for your own copy).

So here’s the card I made

sticky-cuts-heart1

It’s too bad you can’t see how sparkly and yummy the chocolate glitter brackets are – I’ll try to take another photo in the morning when it’s not dark and overcast like it is now.  So what I did was to peel off the backing from the shapes I wanted then stick them down then peel off the top protective layer and pour over the glitter.  Here’s some tips for you if you’re going to use this product:

*  Pop out the whole shape from the sheet of Sticky Cuts

*  Peel off the white backing paper first then stick the shape down onto your cardstock, or whatever you are going to stick it onto (a candle, picture frame, glass, whatever)

*  Run your finger firmly over the whole shape and you’ll see the red protective cover on the Sticky Cut get a bit darker – this shows it’s really stuck down well.

*  Peel off the red protective cover then pour your glitter over the shape.

* Run your finger over the shape to press the glitter in (not essential but I do that).

* Funnel glitter back into it’s container then cust off any excess glitter off your card.  You might even want to use an anti-static pad first over the cardstock to help the excess glitter pour off the card easier.

So that’s all I did.  I stuck the shapes down and glittered them up.  First the chocolate brackets then the pink heart.  Layered the card onto some Chocolate Chip cardstock then Pink Pirouette cardstock.  Added the felt flowers and rhinestone brad.  That was then mounted onto the base card (with the patterned paper) using Stampin’ Dimensionals so the whole centrepiece pops off the page.  I didn’t bother with a sentiment for this card because I figured the heart said it all. ;)

Here’s a list of the products I’ve used.  All products by Stampin’ Up! and available for purchase through me at angelasargeant@gmail.com

Letters Sticky Cuts
Supernova Glitter
Whisper White cardstock
Chocolate Chip cardstock
Pink Pirouette cardstock
Bella Rose Designer Series Paper
Flower Fusion Too (chocolate and pink felt flowers)
Clear Rhinestone brad
SNAIL Adhesive
Stampin’ Dimensionals

Taking Care of your Rubber Stamps

stamp-sets

I’ve been moved to write up an information page on taking care of your rubber stamps due to the near heart attack I’ve suffered by seeing rubber stamps treated in all sorts of weird ways… especially in scrapbooking magazines.  Why are stamps stored in weird ways in Scrapbooking magazines? I’ve seen them shoved into jars and tossed into colanders to name a couple of stress-inducing examples.  So here’s a nice and easy “dos and don’ts” list, I hope it helps you to take care of your stamps so that they last you a lifetime.

Things you should do to look after your rubber stamps

*  Always clean your rubber stamps before storing away

*   Clean your stamps with a reputable rubber stamp cleaner.  I like to use Stampin’ Up!’s Stampin’ Scrub and Mist.  The Stampin’ Mist cleans and conditions your stamps, simply spray it on one side of the Stampin’ Scrub and then rub your rubber stamp over it.  After cleaning, dry your stamp by rubbing it on the dry side of the Stampin’ Scrub.

*   If you do not have a Stampin’ Scrub and Mist and cannot invest in one right away, then at the very least use an old washcloth.  Wet the washcloth and wring it out so that it is just damp and clean your stamps with it.

*  Store your rubber stamps flat or upright.  Stampin’ Up! rubber stamps come in clear storage boxes that are perfect for stacking.  If you do not have Stampin’ Up! stamps then I recommend that you keep them stored flat in shallow cardboard or plastic boxes, or drawers.  If you like to have your stamps on display then you can have them standing up on a shelf as you would any other ornament.

*  Store your stamps in room-temperature.

Things you should NOT do to your rubber stamps

•   Please please please do not use baby wipes to clean your rubber stamps.  I don’t know who started this idea but after years of listening to this wrong advice I have found my stamps that I was using baby wipes on for 5 years have become pale, dry and brittle.  It doesn’t matter whether the baby wipes you use are non-alcohol based or non-scented they still damage your stamps over time.

•   Do not wash your wood-mounted stamps under running water.  Washing your stamps under a tap will loosen the adhesive between the foam and wood and you risk your stamps falling off the wood.

•    Do not store your stamps in trendy but weird ways.  Storing your stamps in a colander, lolly-jar, wicker basket or any other way in which the stamps are pressing against each other or or pressing against metal, wood, etc.  This will leave dents in your rubber stamps which will then given you a gap in your stamped image.

•  Store your stamps away from direct sunlight to avoid them becoming brittle and cracked.

•   Microwaving your rubber stamps.  I ripped the rubber off about 20 of my wood-mounted stamps years ago and never again.  I know some people are happy to do this but I hated using my stamps unmounted.  If you really want to do this and need to loosen the adhesive in order to take the rubber off then microwave for only 5 seconds.  If the rubber isn’t coming off then try another 5 seconds.  Do not microwave your rubber stamps in 10 or more second blocks just in case the rubber melts.

I hope you have found this article informative.  If you would like any more information on this topic or anything else to do with rubber stamps or cardmaking please feel free to email me at angelasargeant@gmail.com

You wanted Single Markers, you got it!

One thing I’m often asked for by my customers is the wonderful Stampin’ Up! markers in single colours rather than in packs of 12.  Now, from the 10th to the 30th of November is your chance to purchase these markers individually for only $4.95.  I’m truly amazed at the price because I remember about 5 years ago I used to purchase markers for stamping for at least $2 more than that.

But wait!  There’s more!  Being Stampin’ Up!’s 20th Anniversary, there’s a double promotion this month.  Rub-ons are 20% off with purchases of $20+.

Anyway, I needed to make a card today for one of my daughter’s friends who is moving overseas for a while, so I challenged myself to make a card using my Stampin’ Markers and Rub-ons but no ink.  Here’s my card:

The big white flower is a rub-on from the ‘Perfect Day’ rub-ons and check it out! it fits perfectly into the Scallop Punch.  Want to talk about coordinating???  That black circle in the middle of the flower is the 1 1/4″ circle punch and it fits exactly over the white centre of the flower.  More coordinating?  The little heart in the middle has been stamped using the Passion Pink marker which is the same colour as the cardstock, but the part that really impressed me is that the heart in the circle it only part of a stamp (hence me using a marker instead of an inkpad), yet it still fits perfectly into the 1/2″ circle punch!  The greeting “bloom where you’re planted” is also a rub-on and the black strip down the bottom that looks like printed ribbon is actually just cardstock with a rub-on border.  Finally… the little dots in the white scallops on the right are done with the fine point of the Passion Pink marker.  So there you go – coordination overload using cardstock, punches, a marker and rub-ons. LOL.

Hope you enjoy and if you’re feeling tempted, email me and I can fix you up with your own markers and rub-ons today. ;)

Inkpads and Storage

So what do I like doing other than buying stamping/art stuff and creating papercrafts? Apart from reading industry magazines (Stamping & Papercraft, Somerset Studio, etc.), I absolutely love sorting all my toys. :D Actually it’s probably more correct to say I have an on-going love affair with storage – and my lovely Tupperware lady (hi Kim!) would no doubt agree. LOL.

Lots of people have asked me about my storage preference, especially for inkpads and ribbons, so here’s a photo of some of my inkpads (some being the operative word). Note that the locker has been photographed open, there’s two slide locks on the doors to open close and they slide into the side of the locker when not being used, which is why you can’t see the doors in this photo.

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Note how wonderfully the Stampin’ Up! inkpads (only $9.95 ;)) fit into this great Inkpad Locker. Actually I have two of these inkpad lockers and I’m looking to buy a third one as they also fit Versamark, Brilliance, Adirondack, Memories and Tim Holtz inkpads too (you can just see the Adirondack pads up the very top of the photo in my second inkpad locker). The cool thing is in the top section of the locks there’s two trays which fit two packs of the Stampin’ Up! markers perfectly.

So where do you get it? I bought mine from Craftainers and if you look carefully on the right hand side of the photo you’ll see that I also have the ribbon locker too. The shelves on the ribbon locker are adjustable so you can use any size ribbon spool you have. Very cool. :D

Did I tell you I love storage? One day I might show you my shoes and boots storage. ;)

Anyone else out there with a storage fetish?

Edited 2 years later to add:  Please note that the manufacturering of this storage locker as ceased.  It’s been over a year since I’ve seen this inkpad locker sold in the shops.

Watercolour Crayons

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Don’t these little beauties look absolutely yummy?  I love them!  Oh I umm’d and ahh’d about buying them and whether I should or not (after all there’s so much else in the Stampin’ Up! catalogue that I also wanted to buy) but boy am I now glad I did buy them .  They’re extremely versatile and I keep finding myself going back to them every time I want to colour.  You can make watercolour backgrounds with them so you can then stamp your image on top and not have to colour it; you can colour directly onto your solid stamps with them then spritz to get a dreamy watercolour effect; for vivid colouring you can colour with them directly onto your stamped image then blend with an Aquapainter or blender pen; or you can pick up the colour directly from the crayon using an Aquapainter or blender pen and then colour your image for a more muted effect.  There’s heaps of ideas!  Just e-mail me on angelasargeant@gmail.com for more ideas or for more information on the Watercolour Crayons and keep coming back here as I’ll have some card samples using the Watercolour Crayons up soon.  Don’t forget!  These crayons are also wonderful for your scrapbooking.