Friday, December 30, 2011

Friday Funnies: New Year's Resolutions

Are you tired of making the same New Year’s resolutions that you never keep? Why not promise to do something you can actually accomplish? Here are some ideas to get you started:

1. Cut down on exercise.

2. Eat more chocolate, Big Macs, and ice cream. Reduce intake of fresh fruit and vegetables.

3. Gain weight, at least 30 pounds or more. (Easier to do if you follow #1 and #2.)

4. Lose your keys and cell phone on a regular basis.

5. Think of a password other than "password."

6. Read fewer books and watch more TV.

7. Spend more time at work surfing the Internet.

8. Frequently share your experience and advice with others, such as "I told you so!" and “Do as I say, not as I do.”

9. Don’t waste any more time reliving the past; instead, spend it worrying about the future.

10. Stop bringing lunch from home, and eat out more often.

11. Let hair grow on legs and underarms.

12. Over water or under water plants. Make them turn a pathetic shade of yellow.

13. Max out all your credit cards.

14. Lie about your age. Subtract at least eight years.

15. Procrastinate more. Starting tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Season's Tweetings

I realize the holiday season is winding down, but Tina Covington sent me this "tweet" little card yesterday and I wanted to share it with you since there are still a few days left to receive a FREE 11058SC Snow Birdies Clear Set as a gift with purchase on your order in December. (You can find the details here.)

Here's what she made:

Besides being really cute, this card has a unique opening that I've never seen before:

Isn't that fun? Of course, this layout could be adapted to any occasion...but if you're looking to get a real jump start on your holiday cards for next year, this is the perfect opportunity!

Thanks to Tina for sharing her great idea, and we're glad you visited us today. :-)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

"Try It Different" Tuesday: Juggling Snow

We've had an unusually mild December here in Minnesota...but, even so, it's still the "freezin' season" and I'm sure Jack Frost will be catching up with us soon!

Once those temperatures drop, this card from Lana Lepinski will help us embrace the chilly weather while warming someone's heart:

Lana used 0597H Juggling Snow and 0545D Snow Doubt to create her adorable greeting. The stamped and sponged edges of the image panel frame the image nicely, while the snowballs dusted with ultrafine glitter add a touch of sparkly goodness.

These super cute projects by Heather Nichols show a couple other ways to use the main image, in a kraft-based card and a fun little notebook:

And here are two more options, again by Lana:

The project on the right contains 4" x 4 1/2" cardstock pages that are bound "matchbook style" into an oh-so-handy notepad:

The bottom 1/2" of each page was scored to fit into the 4 1/4" x 10 1/4" holder, which was scored at 4", 4 1/2", and 9 1/4":

The above photo shows how the pages were bound into the holder with snowflake brads, although you could certainly use a stapler, as well.

We're "snow" glad you stopped by to view these projects. Hope you have a great day!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Monday Stamping With Marie Oberg: Live Dance Laugh

For this week's stamping session with Marie, we took a different direction from all of the holiday cards featured lately. I thought it would be nice to show a couple of all-occasion projects instead, so I asked her to use 11013SC Brushed Calligraphy #2 Clear Set.

I'm really smitten with this one, which I think is gorgeous:

Marie die cut a scalloped oval from the front of the card and adhered Clear Cardstock over the opening. She also added a few dimensional pearls for texture and visual interest.

For her overlay, she added a criss-cross diamond design using an embossing folder. (You could also use a Scor-it-All Board to achieve the same effect.) Then she die cut another scalloped oval in the same spot so that the openings lined up when she placed the overlay onto the card. That touch of purple marker around the edges really framed the sentiment inside the card (10102J Live Dance Laugh in the wood mounted version) nicely.

For another idea using the same stamp set, Marie made this pretty card:

On both cards, she colored directly on the flower stamp (10124J Coneflower in the wood mounted version) with waterbased markers and spritzed with a fine mister filled with water before stamping onto the cardstock. The purple cut-out flower in the first card was embellished with ultrafine glitter, and the pink ones in the second card were trimmed at the stem and arranged in the corners.

We wish to express our sincere thanks and appreciation to Marie for kicking off our Guest Designer series with a bang! I hope you've enjoyed reading more about this wonderful lady and seeing her fantastic projects.

In our next "Stamping With..." post, we'll be introducing a new designer for January, so keep your eyes peeled for more Inky fun!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Holiday Greetings

To our dear Inky friends, we wish you a very Merry Christmas! I'll be back tomorrow with our postponed "Sunday Stamping With Marie Oberg" segment. Until then, I hope you have a wonderful day full of love and good cheer!

Card created by Lana Lepinski. :-)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Friday Funnies: Santa

I can't believe Christmas is almost here. I'm not sure what happened to the month of December, which seemed to fly right by like Santa's reindeer! But now that I've got just a few (ha!) things left to do before the big day, I might have to pay a visit to the "star bucks" myself, LOL.

(BTW, I found the above cartoon in a high school newsletter, of all places.)

I'm not sure if you're a planner or more of a last-minute person like, but I'll keep today's post rather brief. Just thought I'd share a few tidbits of humor based around that iconic Christmas character with the red suit and white beard:

Yep, Santa visited our house yesterday! He made a special trip to see my sister-in-law's daycare kids, so I snapped a quick photo before he left.

That reminded me of the three stages of man:
1) He believes in Santa Claus.
2) He doesn't believe in Santa Claus.
3) He is Santa Claus.

And now for the riddles:

What nationality is Santa Claus?
North Polish.

How many reindeer does Santa have?
Eleven of them, named below:
Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen,Rudoph (the one with the red nose), Olive ("Olive, the other reindeer"), and Al ("then Al the reindeer loved him").

What do elves learn in school?
The elf-abet.

What do you call people who are afraid of Santa Claus?

What do you get if you cross Father Christmas with a detective?
Santa Clues.

Why does Santa have three gardens?
So he can ho-ho-ho.

If Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus had a child, what would s/he be called?
A subordinate claus.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

"Try It Different" Tuesday: Naughty Elves

The other night, a couple of "naughty elves" visited my stamping studio:

Steve and his nephew Tyler (who is eight years old "but will be almost nine soon!") decided to make Christmas cards using 0627K Naughty Elves:

Tyler quickly learned how easy it is to blend colored pencils with Gamsol, even for a beginner:

Once their images were colored, they sponged ink on the background:

Steve showed Tyler how to use the rotary trimmer:

He was also intrigued by the Scor-it-All Mini Board, which helped him make a perfect crease:

Instead of putting the Naughty Elves image on the front of his card, Tyler chose to place it inside. The little elves from Cube-0653 Lil' Holiday Helpers were carefully arranged on the outside:

Did you notice his sketch in the photo above? Tyler really gave this layout some serious thought!

Steve chose a more traditional card design, using the Bow-Easy to create an embellishment for his front:

Here are their results:

And the interior of Tyler's card, with 0256D Cool Yule thrown in for good measure:

I asked "the boys" to pose with their creations:

I didn't ask them to goof around for the camera, but you know how boys are:

Monday, December 19, 2011

Pictionary Congrats

Congratulations to Debb, whose name was drawn from our Pictionary blog candy entries. I'd asked you to guess what Terri drew here:

Debb said...
Going home for Christmas

While that wasn't actually the correct answer, I liked Debb's response even better!

Your guesses were a lot of fun to read. Several of you thought Terri was depicting a honeymoon (I can totally see that!), while others wondered if it was a boxing match, dodgeball game, line dancing, or something else.

Only one person thought she was showing someone getting frisked, which is the action Terri was trying to portray. (Great job, Sue!)

Debb's prize pack will include 11058SC Snow Birdies Clear Set, which is also a gift with purchase in December:

Thanks for playing, everyone!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sunday Stamping With Marie Oberg: Snowman Soup

In preparation for Marie's Guest Designer spot, I asked her several questions as part of an online interview so you (and I) could get to know her even better:

What’s your favorite beverage and/or snack (whether you’re stamping or not)? 
Besides wine, I enjoy salsa and chips with melted cheese and sour cream. Yum, yum, yum!

Describe your stamping style in five words or less, and explain how this style came about or why you feel you stamp the way you do.
My style is "outside the box." I tell my grandchildren that they should learn something new every day, so I try to apply that same same advice to my stamping hobby er, should I say addiction?). So whenever I sit down to create a card, I try to do something that is new and different for me. I try to work outside my "comfort zone. As they say on Star Trek, "Go where no, stamper...has gone before."

What have you learned as you’ve evolved as a designer? In other words, what advice or tips can you share with our readers for helping them improve?
As I have spent more time with this hobby, it has given me the confidence to try many different techniques. Don't be afraid to try something new. It is only paper...stop saving it for something special, dig into your stash, and create. If you use some of these saved items, it will give you an excuse to go shopping and buy more!

(Jackie's Note: Oh, Marie, that last part cracks me up. What great advice! Seriously, though, we really is just paper.)

What is one area that you are trying to improve in your own creative style, techniques, or process?
I try to be less critical of my designs and be more adventuresome. Being OCD, I try to be less of a perfectionist. Don't sweat the small stuff...chances are no one will notice the possible flaws but you!

(Jackie's Note: Isn't that the truth! We're always the most critical of our own work, and I try to remember that and be easier on myself, too.)

What’s your current favorite stamping technique?
My current favorite stamping technique is exploring different color mediums to use on Kraft cardstock. So far, Prismacolor colored pencils work the best. You can get awesome results using white colored pencil on Kraft cardstock. After you apply the white, you can add any color you desire [on top].

What are your top 5-10 tools that you rely on most when you create (besides stamps, of course)?
I would be lost without my die cutting machine, embossing folders, white pigment ink pad, Sakura Stardust pen, Marvy gold Metallic pen, Prismacolor pencils, and Gamsol! Of course, a glass of Finger Lakes wine helps me to listen to my creative muse!

Name a few of your favorite Inky stamps (and what you like best about them, if you wish).
I can't narrow that list down to a few favorites; there are too many. The Inky Antics stamping universe is so varied that it is hard to pick favorites. Who can't relate to [the] My Friend Ronnie, Worldly Women, Girly Girls, or Well Seasoned [collections]? The Critters Friends, Furry Pals, and HoneyPop collections always bring a smile to the face of anyone who sees them.

What is the most recent stamping project you made, and how long did it take you to create it?
The "Snowman Soup" folder that I created was the most recent. It took me about 8 hours (with several revisions), before I was completely satisfied with the end result. Despite the number of hours spent, the creative process was very fulfilling. I was very pleased with the final project.

(Jackie's Note: I totally agree, it turned out fantastic! Inky friends, please see the bottom of this post for Marie's awesome project.)

Where do you find inspiration for your stamping projects?
Everywhere. I am constantly looking at everything around me. For instance, at a recent visit to a friend's home, I noticed the design around the picture on a picture frame that I thought would be great as a layout for a future card.

Jackie always has the greatest samples (and humorous jokes) that inspire me to try different things. Who would have known you could make a box out of clear cardstock or a photo album from clear envelopes? The organizational samples are invaluable...a card and coupon organizer, a password saver book, a date book, address book, memo pad, and the list goes on and on and's that for inspiration.

I have made photo albums for my youngest grandchildren's birthdays every year since they were born, the daughters have received card organizers, address books, date books and password saver books.

(Jackie's Note: Aww, that much praise makes me blush. I definitely can't take credit for all of these ideas, but it makes me happy to be able to share them with our readers.)

Is there anything else you’d like to tell our blog readers?
Feel free to's only paper...use can always buy more!!! Who doesn't love shopping? Don't be afraid to try something new. Look around you, study the Design Team's samples. Try might like it!

* * *

And with that last bit of awesome advice, I'm pleased to show you the project that Marie made for today's post. Although it's not quite as relaxing as a glass of wine, a mug of cocoa can be pretty, the featured stamp set for this week's Sunday Stamping series is 10936MC Snowman Soup Clear Set:

Marie used a CD literature folder as the base of her creation. (She said they're available in bulk at Uline, or you can get them in smaller quantities here.) This is the front cover of her folder:

Not only is the base double-matted with red cardstock and then a stamped piece on top, but the die-cut circular area is a shaker window. Marie used a process similar to this when making the shaker window, except she altered the shape and added a scalloped circle overlay to frame her window.

The shaker window was filled with glitter and teeny star confetti. If you click on the above photo for a close-up view, you'll also see how she placed individual small snowflake confetti pieces around the scalloped border and then adhered a sparkly red rhinestone on top. The teardrop cut-out areas are each filled with glitter, too. Now that is some super fancy detail work, and it turned out gorgeous!

Open the folder, and you're treated to more goodies inside...literally:

The right side of the CD folder has a built-in pocket that's just the right size for holding the dry cocoa mix and candy cane...or "snowman soup with stirring stick," as we like to call it.

I like how Marie repeated elements from the front, such as the scalloped circles and stamped background pieces, along with more carefully positioned snowflakes.

Did she forget the back? No way! It's lovingly decorated to match the rest of the project:

Thanks again to Marie for another terrific project. Here's wishing YOU a warm and cozy week!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Friday Funnies: Pictionary

Last Saturday, we went to the annual Wamhoff Christmas party at Auntie Terri and Uncle Gary's house. It's always a festive event, filled with eating too much food, catching up on news with the relatives, and singing carols (I know, isn't that so dang wholesome?!).

My favorite part of the evening was playing Pictionary in an epic battle of the boys vs. the girls! We had to persuade a reluctant Uncle Kurt to join us in the fun:

His sketch looked funny, but it got his idea across:

Cousin Matt's first drawing really had me stumped at first:

Can you figure it out? Yep, it's a tool chest!

Not all of the pictures were obvious, sometimes even to the players themselves. Uncle Gary had to consult his card to make sure he drew the right object:

It was a rattlesnake, which I missed. I didn't guess correctly on Matt's second drawing, either, but luckily the other women on my team "got the point" better than me:

Darts, anyone? Auntie Irene's drawing made more sense to me:

In fact, I guessed right both times:

That's right, bride and Florida. But I was a little confused by Auntie Terri's creation:

What's your guess? Not that I'm any better at drawing than guessing! In fact, I was lucky that Cousin Arlene is so good at the latter, considering what she had to work with:

Of course, it seemed obvious to me:

As you can see, I was thinking of 2031E Melty S'more the whole time I drew my marshmallow. Good thing for Inky that we work with real artists like Tammy, huh? Otherwise I'm afraid our stamp line would be pretty pathetic, LOL!

Here was another one of my fabulous creations:

Doesn't that look like a castle to you?

Want the chance to win a little BLOG CANDY? To enter our "surprise set" giveaway, please fill out the form below. On Monday, December 19th, I'll randomly choose the winner and post that person's be sure to come back and see if you've won!

*Update on 12/19: Entries are now closed*

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

"Try It Different" Tuesday: Sporty Penguins

This week's card on our main Inky site, created by Michelle Pearson, features 11004MC Sporty Penguins Clear Set:

These playful little guys would be a delightful addition to your holiday and winter cards. For a fun twist, you can use a non-traditional shape, like this one created by Marie Oberg:

Marie raised the light silver snowflake panel with foam tape, and she added Glossy Accents on the sides of the ice. She applied ultrafine glitter to the top of the ice and edges of the dark blue piece (which she'd stamped with snowflakes and embossed using sparkly white powder). Shiny rhinestones encircle the penguin and accent the edges of the word strips for a pretty finishing touch!

I think this card would also make a beautiful ornament, just by looping metallic cord at the top. You could leave it as is, or add a second card to the back and make it double-sided.

Marie used the same 0544G Sliding Penguin image on the inside of this card:

If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you may be able to spot the clear cardstock "ice." Marie die cut an oval from the lower portion of the card, adhered the clear cardstock over the opening, and then addded a torn paper panel (dry embossed in swirls, inked in powder blue, and glittered to resemble snow) on top.

Not only that, but she stamped the ice with tiny snowflakes using StazOn, sponged clouds for the card background, and decorated the landscape with torn paper pine trees.

My favorite part of this card is how she positioned 0548H Skating Penguin at the top of the ice so there was room to handwrite "Merry Christmas" inside and have it show through (in a swirly skating pattern, of course). How clever is that!

You can see how it looks from the inside, along with that other penguin I mentioned earlier:

Thanks to Michelle and Marie for sharing their "cool" ideas!

Monday, December 12, 2011

"Wrap It Up" Congrats

Congratulations to Dawnll and Bridget, whose names were drawn from our "Wrap It Up" Blog Hop entries. (Dawn and Bridget, please email me with your address.)

Dawnll - Dawn's Craft Place said...
This is so beautiful! Love the use of Gold
December 8, 2011 10:45 AM

Bridget says:
I love the Clear Pillow Box. Makes the perfect gift package. TFS!
December 8, 2011 at 6:28 am

Dawn and Bridget's prize packs will both include 11058SC Snow Birdies Clear Set, which Tex used on her hop project:

If you'd like to order any of the clear sets, wood mounted stamps, or accessories to make your own wrapping paper and decorative packaging, you can find them here. Thanks to everyone who joined us for this hop. We appreciate your participation!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sunday Stamping With Marie Oberg: Holiday Reindeer

For this week's Sunday Stamping session, I asked Marie to use 10912LC Holiday Reindeer Clear Set:

And, boy, did her card ever turn out festive looking! The wood mounted versions that she stamped for this delightful project were 0082H Enlightened Reindeer and 0011D Bright Season:

All her little details, such as popping up parts with foam tape, lining the tree edges with ultrafine glitter, adding Glossy Accents to Rudolph's light bulbs and nose, and creating a paper-pieced tree and skirt, make this card really special.

As you can see, they're all on a base layered with a scalloped border and die-cut oval, which form a great background. Of course, the string of Christmas lights really "pop"...I just love this embellishment!

In true "Marie style," however, she didn't stop there...look what happens when you take the exact same elements and just add a few folds:

Wow, it's been converted into a sidestep card! The measurements are shown here:

On the 5 1/2" side of her card, Marie made a vertical cut from 2" to 7 1/2" at the 2 1/2" mark. Then she scored on the right side of that 2 1/2" mark at the 2", 4" 5 1/4", 6 1/2" and 7 1/2" points along the 8 1/2" side. Once she folded alternating "mountains" and "valleys" on the score marks, her dimensional base was ready for all the elements to be adhered to it.

To store and present her sidestep card, Marie also put together this great card holder (also in wood mounted 0041G Gifted Reindeer, 0016D Picture Perfect, and 0030F Reindeer Circle):

The die-cut metallic gold paper pulls together the images and saying nicely, drawing your eye around the front.

The back and side show you how the width of her card holder:

Thanks again to Marie for an awesome job. Hope you enjoyed today's post and have a terrific Sunday, Inky readers!