Friday, September 30, 2011

October Stamp of the Month Blog Hop

Welcome to the CTMH October Stamp of the Month Blog Hop!
October's Stamp of the Month is called.....
****Holiday Magic****

The blog hop makes a circle so if you are starting here just continue until you make your way back and you will have made it through them all.  If you have already started and are coming from Katy Donaldson's blog, "An Inside to My Heart - One Scrap at a Time", then you are on the right track.

I had several ideas of how I wanted to use this stamp set.  I had thought about using the triangles to create a pennant on a scrapbook page.  I also thought about using them, or even the ticket looking images, to create a border for a scrapbook page.  However, since I've made over a dozen layouts in the past month and not one card in that time, I decided to go with a card.  I needed some inspiration for a jumping off point, so I checked out this week's Mojo Monday Sketch #208 (see below).  After selecting my paper, the card just kind of fell into place.

I am really, really pleased with how it turned out, especially with several of the elements.  The first element I'm pleased with is the random stamping of the ticket-looking image (stocking cuff).  I random stamped on White Daisy cardstock two different ways: one in a brick pattern, and one in more of an interlocking pattern, which is the one I went with.

The second element that I really like is the random stamping of the sleigh base (I'm sure it has a proper name, but hey...I'm from Florida...I don't have a clue what they are called).  I stamped on a piece of Crystal Blue cardstock with chocolate ink in first and second generation, then with white pigment ink.
My favorite element was actually a happy accident.  Don't you just love happy accidents?  I wanted to create a cuff for the socks, but I didn't want to use the polka dots, as I felt it would be distracting with polka dots in the corner and a snowflake print on the socks.  So I turned the stamp over, with the intentions of inking it in Twilight ink (so there would be a solid color) and then stamping the small snowflake stamp onto the inked surface to remove some of the ink and leave a snowflake image on the solid image (Does that make sense?).  However, before I could finish stamping the snowflakes, the ink puddled up on the image, which really annoyed me at first.  But when I stamped the try it again...I liked it!  It kind of looked woolly to me, so I went with it and absolute LOVE it!
Another couple of techniques that I used and that you can see in the photo above, includes rubbing White Daisy pigment ink directly onto the papers to create a distress, but kind of snowy effect.  I also used my Cricut Art Philosophy cartridge to cut the snowflake (Snowflake #2-Shift-Layer).  I then used my waterbrush to pick up some Grey Flannel ink off the inside of the stamp pad lid and lightly applied it to the left side of each snowflake "petal".  Next, I picked up a generous amount of Twilight ink with my waterbrush and then splattered the snowflake.

Here are a couple of more pictures...
Gotta add a little bling. :)
I created dimension by embossing and sanding the 5 3/4" x 5 3/4" panel and using foam tape to adhere it onto the 6 x 6 card.  I also popped the top sock and only adhered the center of the snowflake and gently bending the "petals" up.
 Supplies used (all CTMH unless otherwise noted):
Other: Sponge, Micro-tip scissors, 3D Foam Tape, Glue Pen, Liquid Glass, Sanding Block, Waterbrush, Scoring Board (Martha Stewart), ATG Adhesive (Scotch)

Here's a look at the entire stamp set.
And here's a look at this week's Mojo Monday Sketch
Remember, if you love what you've seen so far along your SOTM Blog Hop journey, and you want your own "Holiday Magic" stamp set or want to get it for the amazingly low price of $5, be sure to contact your Close To My Heart Independent Consultant.  If you don't already have a consultant, I'd love to be yours.  You can find details on the "Stamp of the Month" here on my blog, or by clicking on the "Stamp of the Month" tab at the top of the page or by clicking on the "Shop with Me" link near the top right.  Of course, if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.

If you have time, take a moment or two to check out the rest of my blog.  If you enjoy your visit, then please consider "Following Me", signing up to receive blog updates, and/or leaving a comment (we all love comments...the nice ones anyway), then be sure to continue along on the hop by heading over to  Paige Dolecki's blog, "Paige's Paper Paradise" and check out her creation.

If for some reason you get lost along the way, you can always find a list of all this month's CTMH SOTM Blog Hop participants on Helen's Onulak's blog.

Be sure to come back on October 1st for news on a how to enter to receive your own Cricut Art Philosophy Collection for free!

Happy hopping!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Peek-a-boo...I see you

Don't you just love playing that game with a little one?  It brings so much joy to hear your child...any child really...break out into the giggles.  That's what this layout is all about.  My daughter found a great place to play peek-a-boo...behind my drapes.  I don't have those drapes any more, and that's a good thing.  I still have my little girl (she'll always be my "little" girl), but she'll be 15 in a few days and she doesn't play peek-a-boo with me anymore...and that's a sad thing.  I guess I'll just have to wait for grandkids...and I'm willing to wait a long, looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong time for that. LOL

I put this scrap kit together last weekend at SDV (see previous post).  The kit is from a company called Keep It Simple Scrapping (K.I.S.S.) and they make some really adorable kits.  The title is my own and was made using one of my friends Cricut cartridges, but I didn't take note of the name...sorry.  
Supplies: K.I.S.S. Scrapbooks Kit "About a Girl", CTMH Chocolate Ink

Thanks for stopping by.  Be sure to stop by tomorrow night for the October Stamp of the Month Blog Hop.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Time flies when you're having fun

This past week I spent three and a half wonderful days at the annual SDV in Orlando.  For those of you unfamiliar with SDVs, let me educate can thank me later. ;)  SDV stands for Scrapper's Dream Vacations and I've been going to them for years.  They are held in various east coast cities, from Florida to New Jersey, and are essentially retreats that include non-stop cropping, classes, shopping, hotel stay, and meals.  There are different packages to select from, so there is usually a price range to fit anyone's budget.

This has become an annual get-away for one of my best friends, a good friend of hers and myself.  We usually arrive the night before the event begins so we can set up our tables early, as well as relax and enjoy a cocktail...or two, um, or three.  Hee-hee.  Generally, the SDV begins on Friday at 9 a.m. and ends at 3 p.m. on Sunday.  The room stays open the entire time, so you can crop as late or as early as you want.  They even provide a security guard to help guard your supplies at night.  In the past, they've had a die cut and punch station, but this year they provided a digital library with a large selection of Cricut cartridge for check out, as well as Cricut machines to use.  It was even nicer this year (though I missed the usual Disney location), because every table had power.  I brought my Expression, my friend Stacy brought her laptop and Ott light and her friend Teresa brought her laptop to work on Digital pages, so having our own power source was nice. 
A panoramic view of the crop room.  Sad to say, this was the smallest turn out that I've ever seen. :(
My bff Stacy.

Teresa taking a break from digital scrapping to alter some large chipboard letters.
You have no idea how long it took me to get her to smile. LOL
I have to tell you, there was an infestation of bugs, though.  The room was full of Cricuts!  They were everywhere!  I ended up taking a class on how to use the Gypsy.  Melanie, the teacher and a designer for the vendor Kit-a-licious, loaned me a Gypsy so I could participate.  I wanted to take the class to see if I really want to buy a Gypsy.  Well the answer is a definite yes!  In fact, I've placed a bid for one on Ebay.  Hopefully, I'll win it.  I won't know until tomorrow.  Anyway, after the class, Stacy told me that she had a Gypsy up in the hotel room, so I ended up getting it and playing with it until 5 in the morning!  Wanna see what I exciting....
I used the Cricut Art Philosophy cartridge to cut the banners and adhered them to the coordinating Dimensional Elements.  The letters are also cut with a Cricut cartridge, but I can't remember which one, as it belonged to my friend, Stacy.
I used the Gypsy to create my very first custom design.  Pretty exciting for me.
Design Note:  The paper that I had planned to use, just didn't work.  So I went shopping with the vendors, but I had a hard time finding the right colors in the right theme.  I was able to find some papers with the right colors, but the pattern paper was a large tropical floral print...not really the theme I was going for...toddler on a farm in Tennessee.  LOL  However, I ended up taking that pattern paper and cutting 1/4" strips and then selected strips that would allow had different pieces of the pattern.  This allowed me to use the color, but lose the print.

I'll be posting some other layouts that I completed at SDV over the next few days, as well as the Stamp of the Month Blog hop on Friday night.  Also, be sure to check back on Saturday for information on how to enter for a chance to win a Cricut Art Philosophy Collection for free!

Now off to bed I go. Until next time...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

September's CTMH Spotlight Blog Hop

Welcome to the CTMH Product Spotlight Blog Hop for September!
This month we're spotlighting.....

The blog hop makes a circle so if you are starting here just continue until you make your way back and you will have made it through them all.  If you have already started and are coming from Adeline Brill's blog, "Welcome to My Creative Space", then you are on the right track. 

This month's product focus my opinion...the greatest edition to Close To My Heart's product line since the introduction of My Acrylix® Stamps....the Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection.  I've played a LOT with the new cartridge.  In fact, it has brought new life into my machine.  However, it was a short-lived life.  I retired my original Personal Cutter to make room for my new Cricut Expression®  that my wonderful hubby bought for me.  I'm so excited about all the possibilities, now that I can cut larger images.  Don't feel sad for my little ol' 6" Personal Cutter, though.  It's not really retired, more like a job transfer. :)  I took it to school, so I can use it for bulletin boards and other various school projects in my classroom.  It will actually be kind of fun to make my non-paper crafting colleagues ooh and ahh over what it can do.  Let's see if they make fun of me now!

The only thing on this project that I didn't cut from my Cricut®...the waxy flax and ribbon. :)  That's right, every piece of paper in this piece was cut using the new Cricut® Art Philosophy Cartridge. It features Tag4 on page 60, the Layer on page 60, Square4 on page 53, Circle1 (in various sizes) on page 21, and Branch1 on page 43.  After cutting the various circles, using Roxy Level 2 paper, I crumpled and uncrumpled them and then sponged them with both Smoothie and Cocoa inks.  As for the leaves, I simply pinched the leaves slightly to create the dimension.  Finally, I stamped the layer with one of the coordinating stamps that is included in the Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection, using foam tape to adhere it to the tag.

Supplies used (all CTMH unless otherwise noted):

Here's a closer look at the Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection. 
If you would like to see the shape index for this cartridge, click here.

This collection is such an amazing deal!  Seriously!  There are 700 shapes on this cartridge!  Yes, you read it right. in a 7 with two zeros attached.  And that's just cutting each shape out in one size!  AND that's not even considering all of the negative pieces you get, which by the way, I have discovered can be as interesting and as beautiful as the intended shapes.

"How much is this amazing cartridge, Tamytha?"  (you might ask).  "Surely, it's got to cost a lot more than the average Cricut® cartridge."'s certainly worth a lot more than the average cartridge.  However, this cartridge, my dear reader, isn't the average Cricut® cartridge.  This cartridge is part of a powerful collection of tools that will take your art to the next level.  This EXCLUSIVE CTMH collection includes the cartridge (of course), but it also comes with three...I said THREE...D-size stamp sets (a $53.85 total value!) that were developed to work with shapes found on the cartridge.  If that wasn't enough, CTMH also included three of the new 9 x 12  Dimensional Elements sheets, including one each of Tags, Mixed Shapes and Banners (a $14.85 total value!), which also coordinate with the stamps and Cricut® shapes.

"But Tamytha, you still haven't told me how much?  Will I have to beg, borrow or steal to get my hands on it?"

Absolutely not, though I'm not personally above begging (and batting my eyelashes a little). :)  It got me the Cricut® Expression. LOL  But serious, this collection is an excellent value for only $99.00!  With the value of the other items, it's kind of like getting the cartridge for $30.30!

But that's not all.  There are three ways you can get an even better deal on this Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection.
  1. If you purchase this by September 30th, you will also earn this month's National Stamping Month promotion.  CTMH's first time ever, double stamp set for FREE (a $35.90 value)! 
  2. Host an online gathering, or a home gathering, and with sales of $250 or more, you will qualify for at least one half price item.  That item can be the Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection.  Imagine.  The collection for $49.50.  Now that's really an amazing deal.  
  3. An additional way to get the Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection at a tremendous deal...come back on October 1st to learn how great a deal.  All I'll tell you for now is that this deal can't be beat and is only being offered on my blog (not a CTMH promotion).
If you would like your own Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection, be sure to contact your personal Close To My Heart consultant or go to her/his website to order one now.  However, if you don't already have a CTMH consultant, I would love to be yours.  Simply click on one of the 5000 Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection links in this post (well, maybe not quite 5000) to order one...or (it would make a great gift...hint, hint) or call my home number at the top of the Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection web page.  **Hee Hee...more links.** :)

If you have time, take a moment or two to check out the rest of my blog.  If you enjoy your visit, then please consider "Following Me", "Follow by Email", and/or leave a comment (we all love comments...the nice ones anyway), then be sure to continue along on the hop by heading over to Wendy Kessler's blog, "My Scrapbooking Blog" to see her creation.
Happy hoppin'!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

What a nice surprise!

I came home today after a long day of inservice and sat down at the computer to take a little "mind" break.  What a nice surprise to find this lovely comment, "Beautiful as always, love your blog! I have given you a blog award. Check out my blog to see it."  I can't tell you what a nice gift this was.
Liebster is German for "favorite" or "beloved".  So essentially it translates into "Favorite Blog".  The award is sent to blogs that have fewer than 200 followers.  It recognizes the "little blogs" out there and helps to draw more followers...something every blogger wants.

No matter if someone's blog has a small following or a large one, I'm sure we all have something in common.  Many of us are obviously trying to build our businesses and communicate with our customers.  However, we also want to share our "babies" (so-to-speak) and ultimately bring pleasure to our viewer, and hopefully, inspire.  Occasionally, confirmation is received with a kind comment or an email, but I know we're all busy.  So often we just skim through the blogs, taking in as much as we can in as little time as we have to spare (which often isn't much), and therefore, don't take time to leave comments.  I totally get it.  Completely understand it and am also guilty.  But sometimes, it leaves you wondering if you really are achieving your blogging purpose. 

This blog award from Leanne is special for multiple reasons.  For one, there are hundreds (if not thousands) of well-deserving blogs out there...probably way more deserving than mine...that she could have bestowed this honor upon.  Secondly, I've never received a blog award before.  Finally, Leanne's blog is one of the first blogs I started following.  I love her work (be sure to check out her blog).  So to be recognized by her is really a cherry on top.

Unfortunately, there's a price for this award.  I now have to select five blogs that I love.  Five?  Only five?  I follow quite a few blogs, so I had to give myself some parameters, otherwise, I would never have been able to limit it to just five.  The first limit was already given to me...less than 200 followers.  I also selected blogs that I visit quite often, are updated fairly regularly (feeling a little hypocritical on this one), and that inspire me the most. In no particular order....

Tamara's Crafty Paper Creations  Tamara is a friend of mine, but I'm not giving this to her for that reason.  I chose to give Tamara this award, because her art is truly inspiring.  Tamara received the coveted Consultant Choice Award for Best Album at the past CTMH Convention.  She is crazy talented, but like many of us, doesn't give herself the proper credit.  I'd love nothing more than see her following increase, so go check out her blog.  (If her "Follow Me" link isn't working, be sure to bookmark her blog.)

Jen's Jewel Box  I found Jen's blog around the same time I found Leanne's blog.  I love her creations.  I also have to confess that I was tickled pink when I accidentally discovered that she had my blog listed in her blog list. :)  Jen's work is always beautiful, top quality, and always inspiring.  However, you need to go see for yourself.  I'm sure you won't be disappointed and you'll want to be her next follower. ;)

Stamp. Scrap. CreateNow Brenda almost didn't qualify, as she's knocking on 200 followers.  She's only been a CTMH consultant for just over a year and has had her blog for even less time, but man, has she come on strong!  When you see her blog (if you haven't already), you'll know why.  She is well known for her flower creations and offers numerous photo tutorials on her blog.  Just phenomenal stuff! You've got to check her out and help her reach 200 followers.  I'm sure it won't be long.  By the way...Brenda is also ubber sweet!

An Inside to My Heart - One Scrap at a Time.  I love Katy's style.  Katy's style is broad, in my opinion.  She makes She can come up with unique ideas that often make me think..."Wow, I would have never thought to do that!"  She has a great sense of when "enough's enough".  I have to say, though, my favorite style of hers are her CAS (Clean and Simple) cards, like this one and this collection.  Also, Katy got married a few months ago and made some beautiful wedding the satin flowers.  So go check out her blog to see for yourself and while you're there, be sure to follow her blog.

Sara Batkin's Legacies of Love  I only recently discovered Sara's website.  I "discovered" her website when I took a class from her at Extravaganza during the past CTMH Convention.  I can't say enough about Sara.  She is HILARIOUS!  I wish I could attend her workshops, as I'm sure they are a riot.  Her humor is matched by her creativity.  Insane creativity!  Completely out of the box!  The woman made a hat out of a pennant piece!  It was fabulous!  You have to check out her blog and if you're not already following her, you've got to fix that!  Seriously!

As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, I know we are all busy and often breeze through blog posts, but I hope you will take a few moments out of your busy life, to check out these blogs and choose to follow them....maybe even leaving a comment to brighten their day!

Thursday, September 08, 2011

September Scrap Workshop - Sonoma

Sonoma is such an elegant paper line. It's obviously perfect for heritage photos, but it's beautiful for so many other themes, as well.  I've seen it used with family photos, friends, weddings, and more.  In fact, there are enough greens and browns/neutrals in this paper line that it could even be used for masculine cards and layouts.

On Friday, September 30th, we'll be creating two 2-page layouts using the Sonoma Workshop-on-the-Go Kit and an additional embellishment pack.  Both layouts utilize stamping (WOTG stamp set and Bohemian Alphabet), Mini-medley Pewter Accents, Heirloom Assortment (LOVE these!), zip strips and a corner rounder.

NOTE: Stamped titles and sentiments are only suggestions.  I always make the entire alphabet stamp set available, so attendees can customize their titles. 

Layout #1 - This layout is the featured project in the Workshop-on-the-Go Guide.  (Click on any image to see it larger and in more detail.)
Scanning such a dimensional layout created shadows.

Layout #2 - The second layout is based on a pattern from the Magic How-to book.   (Click on any image to see it larger and in more detail.)
Scanning such a dimensional layout created shadows.


Here's what you need to know for the Sonoma Scrapbooking Workshop...

Class Date and Time (be sure you have your space reserved and order to me no later than Monday, September 19th, as I'll be out of town from the 22nd-25th.)

* Friday, September 30th - 6:30 am - 9:30 pm

If this time does not work for you and you would like to get a group of friends together, I would be happy to add a date to the schedule that works for you and your friends. Just give me a call or send me an email to reserve your date.

Remember, in order to attend you must at least purchase the paper pack. Other consumable items (i.e., Mini-medley Pewter Accents and Heirloom Assortment) are recommended, but you can choose to forgo them. You also need to bring your own adhesives (i.e. tape runner, glue dots, foam tape), paper trimmer and scissors.

Shopping List
I provide you with a list of everything I used. I give you the ultimate flexibility to pick & choose what works for your style of scrapbooking. Paper only or…all the bells and whistles – the choice is yours! Any Workshop Kit order will include my cutting guide for the second layout (The cutting guide for the first layout is included with the kit).

Basics for Workshop
Both layouts are done using the Workshop Basic Kit.
* G1028 Sonoma Workshop-on-the-Go and
* Heirloom Assortment

Included in the Workshop Kit:
* Sonoma Level 2 Paper Pack
* Sonoma Stamp Set - exclusive to this kit
* Mini-medley Pewter Accents
* Round Sponge
* Full-color brochure with instructions for layout #1. You'll also get my cutting guide for the other layout.
* Heirloom Assortment (Not included in the WOTG Kit.)

Ala Carte – Pick & Choose the Pieces You Want...

Paper Used...
* X7143B Sonoma Level 2 Paper Pack (must have this to participate in the workshop)

Accessories Used...
* Z1487 Mini-Medley Pewter Accents
* Z1635 Heirloom Assortment

Inks Used...
* Z2147 Smokey Plum Ink Stamp Pad
* Z2137 Olive Ink Stamp Pad
* Z2114 Cocoa Ink Stamp Pad

Stamps Used (not including WOTG stamp set)...
* E1019 Bohemian Alphabet Stamp Set

Tools Used...
* Z697 Round Sponge
* Z534 Micro-tip Scissors
* Z1114 Piercing Tool
* Z578 Corner Rounder
* Z338 Paper Trimmer
* Z1151 3D Foam Tape
* Z1772 Glue Dots
* 1514 Tape Runner

How To Book used to create the artwork
* 9034 Magic™ Interactive Scrapbook Program

If you would like the kit, but cannot attend the class, simply order the items off of my website (just click on the hyperlink) and send me an email requesting the cutting guide and instructions for the second layout (you'll receive the cutting guide for the first layout with the kit) and I will email them back to you.

Want more page options?  I made the following two layouts with my left over Sonoma Paper and using the Magic™ Interactive Scrapbook Program (with a slight cutting modification) and the following additional items:
* X7143C Sonoma My Stickease® Assortment
* Z1333 Opaques Mocha Adhesive Gems
* Z1316 Designer Ribbon Rounds™ Cocoa Collection
* Z1686 Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection (used for the scalloped circles)
* X5912 Dark Neutral Cardstock Shade Pack  (used 1 sheet of Cocoa)
* X5901 12x12 Colonial White Cardstock (used 4 sheets)

Want to make cards? You can use Originals Card Confidence Program™ in conjuction with the cutting guide and supply list found on the Close To My Heart Corporate Web Page to create the following cards.

If you'd like to join in the fun, just call or email me to sign up for the class and to place your supply order no later than Monday, September 19th (321-795-8220, Remember I'll be out of town from the 22nd - 25th, so if you are unable to get your order to me by the 19th, you can order your supplies on my website anytime. However, please call and let me know you are coming, so I know how many spots to prepare for. :)

Hope to see you there!

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