Friday, February 24, 2012

A Couch Stamped With His Name On It

My apologies! This week I was meant to be bringing you some Distress Stain tips, as suggested, and then promised by me on my Facebook Page, but unfortunately I've been too busy this week!

To make it up to you, I'm re-posting an article written by John Gladden that a friend posted on her blog. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

A couch stamped with his name on it

I am worried about my wife. More so than usual, I mean. Let me tell you, spending a few cold nights on the couch gives a guy plenty of time to think. It's during those times I've learned many valuable lessons about life. For example, never, ever discuss your wife's hairstyle, cooking, driving or housekeeping in the newspaper.

Sure, it may seem hilarious at the time, but in the end, telling several thousand readers about the time the pizza exploded on the kitchen ceiling can be very bad for your back. Just a little hard-earned advice for those of you considering starting a newspaper column of your own.

But this time, it's a matter so serious I can remain silent no longer. I think she may be involved in a cult. The clues are everywhere. Late at night, when I'm lying half awake in bed and our children are snuffling softly in their dreams down the hall, I can hear her downstairs, engaged in some sort of peculiar ritual. "THUMP! Tap, tap, tap. THUMP!" Over and over.

I slip out of the covers and creep to the top of the stairs, expertly avoiding the squeaky floorboards that comprise our home security system. I used to do this when I was little, I think to myself, as I sprawl on my belly on the landing and peer through the balusters. This is how I used to watch "Saturday Night Live" when I was 10. And I see her, hunched over her desk in the parlor of our old house.

The room is dark, except for the blazing desk lamp. She takes a little block of wood in one hand, taps it on some sort of ink pad, and thumps it down on a piece of paper. "THUMP! Tap, tap, tap. THUMP!" Then she holds up the paper, looks at it with an expression of satisfaction, and pulls out a device I can only call a "chooker."

She takes the paper, which is folded like a greeting card, slides it into the chooker and squeezes hard. "Chooka, chooka, chooka." When she removes the card from the jaws of the chooker, it leaves behind strange and intricate symbols. I told you this was weird. 

But wait! There's more. On some evenings and Saturday mornings, she's been going off to what she eagerly refers to as "Stamp Parties." She marks them on the calendar far in advance.

As near as I can figure, "stamp" stands for "Spending Time And Money Prodigiously." She comes back all aglow -- and it's not from the anticipation of arriving home to the waiting arms of her one true love (that would be me) and her cherubic little children. No, no, no. She comes waltzing into the house, flush with excitement, a stack of greeting cards in her ink-stained hands and a yellow order form for about $50 in new stamping merchandise.

"These are beautiful, dear," I say, sincerely, as she shows me the cards. "But you are aware we can buy greeting cards at the store for about $2.95 each, $5.49 in Canada?" She looks at me sweetly but amusingly, the way she looks at our 4-year-old when he dribbles purple Kool-Aid down his chin. 

Near as I can tell, the members of the group -- which seems to be comprised exclusively of women -- keep in close contact through an ingenious network of postcards. These are mailed out every couple of weeks, apprising each stamper of the time, date and location of the next gathering. 

They take turns assembling in one another's homes, where they first listen to some kind of stamping message. There is a great deal of praise, testimony and evangelizing. Excitement builds. A sacred book, dog-eared with study and hard use, is passed around the room. They are mesmerized by its glossy pages.

When the fervor has reached its climax, the leader takes up the collection. Credit cards, cash and checkbooks are whipped out with a fury that would make any man tremble in fear. Afterward, they linger a while, chatting over cookies and coffee - so they could very well be Methodists. I'm not sure. Always, they discuss how to reach potential new members with the message of stamping.

Sure, there have been other groups that have tempted my wife over the years -- the Scrapbookers, the Kitchen Gadgeteers, the Basketites and the Candleans -- but nothing like this. We go visit friends under the pretense of having dinner and spending time together. As soon as the children run off to play and the men get engrossed in a conversation about "The Simpsons" or the benefits of double-insulated windows, the woman of the house turns to my wife and says, "I have your stamp order for you!" They exchange knowing smiles and slip quietly out of the room. 

This "order" will become part of the steady array of hardware my wife keeps hauling home and storing in the laundry room. She knows I never set foot in there. Though some of it I've seen on her desk when I'm rifling through it for coffee money in the morning before work. I've seen sparkly stuff, cutters, rollers, punches, and, for the love of heaven, a heat gun! 

I plan to keep this under investigation, for the good of my wife and family. And I'm thinking from my vantage point on the couch tonight, I should be able to get a really clear view of the chooker in action. I'll let you know.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Enamel Accents

While today's card is similar in so many ways to the previous cards this week (Brown Sugar, punched flowers, stamped sentiment and patterned paper), I wanted to focus on Enamel Accents. The similarities on the cards this week all go to show how you can create different cards with just a few supplies. With a good range of sentiment stamps, a couple of punches, some paper and card bases, you can do quite a few cards!

Onto Enamel Accents! So far, I don't think I've used the Enamel Accents to it's full potential! Having said that, it is still one of my favourite products at the moment! I love the effect it gives when used to decorate flowers, and to doodle on projects. It's easy to use, and the white is a lovely bright white! I think on some projects it could replace your white gel pen! The black too, is lovely and vibrant. The glossy finish really gives a professional look - all while being safe to use with your projects! If you haven't used Enamel Accents yet, I encourage you to give it a go!

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Okay, okay, I admit it! I am in love with the Crop-A-Dile! It's not my fault though, I swear! It's not my fault that it's so easy to use, or that it's so lovely and quiet, or that it will punch two different sized holes, and set eyelets (all without hammering, banging and waking my husband up when I'm up crafting late at night)! It can punch through a huge range of materials including paper, chipboard, cardboard and heaps of other stuff that I haven't even tried yet! Yes, the Crop-A-Dile is a must-have!

Have you noticed a little trend this week? Yes, the Brown Sugar A5 card! And of course, it makes another appearance in today's project - a Thinking of You card. Again, I've used the Jumbo and Small Flower Punches, and some Lily May (1694) paper. The stems of the flowers are stamped in ColorBox Fluid Chalk Ink in Chestnut Roan (71003) using one of the stamps from the Stitched Borders Uncut Set (4117KM). For the centre of the flowers, I've used some White Enamel Accents (GAC27355). Another product I just can't seem to get enough of at the moment!

But now onto the Crop-A-Dile! Down both sides of the Lily May piece of paper, I punched holes spaced evenly apart. Well, as evenly as I could! I set the Crop-A-Dile so it punched a certain way in on every punch, and did this on both sides, making sure that the holes went in a zig zag pattern. Then, I threaded some ribbon through going first down one way, then back up the other to create the pattern you see here. A little bow up the top finishes the card off, and gives it a feminine touch. For added interest, I could've attached eyelets to the holes after I'd punched them, but liked the rougher look of just the holes!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Journal Pockets

Can I admit that when I first laid eyes on the Journal Pockets (5223), I was hooked? They are designed to fit in the 120x170mm Journal (5222), but the cardmaker in me could see the possibilities as envelopes, and I loved the idea! They have a cute little closure on the back which make them just adorable!

For today's project, I created a 'Thinking of You' card for one of my customers. I used the Journal Pocket as the envelope. The card base is made from an A5 piece of Brown Sugar (which I had to cut down to fit in the envelope). I used Jordan Belle (1695) paper for the front, and a piece of Vanilla (1060) cardstock for the stamped sentiment. The flowers were punched (using the Jumbo [4847] and Small 4841] flower punches) from scrap bits of paper I had in my stash.

The edges of the card base, layers, and the Journal Pocket envelope were brushed on using the Adirondack Paint Dabber in Mushroom (AED22602).

The Journal Pockets make great little envelopes when you want to give your card that little something extra. Stamp on the front, or attached a punched image as I've done here. The customer who received this card in the mail was delighted! Her family thought it must've been a wedding invitation because the envelope was so fancy!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


A happy Valentine's Day to you! To celebrate the day, I thought a love themed card was in order! This simple card isn't specific to Valentine's Day however. With only LOVE as the sentiment, it could easily be used as a wedding card, an anniversary card, or for anything else you can think of.

Following on from yesterday's post showcasing the new January release, today's card uses Distress Stain and some of the new papers, specifically Bygone Era (5224), which has to be one of my favourites! Here, I've used both sides of the paper. The middle scalloped strip, and the sentiment piece were punched using Vanilla cardstock, then tinted using Old Paper Distress Stain (TDW31093). The Distress Stain makes the Vanilla cardstock look a little more antique than it actually is, without changing the colour too much.

I hope you like today's card, and enjoy your day, whatever you may be doing!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Jungle Jewels Card

It's been a month since my last post here! A lot has happened in a month! Undoubtedly the most exciting was the release of our new January products! I love it when Kaszazz release their new products! It's like Christmas three times a year (well, four if you actually include Christmas)! Each time new products are released, my wishlist doubles in size! Despite the blog being so quite over the last month, I've been busy playing with some of the amazing new products, so this week, I want to share my little projects with you! Each day, I'll post a project that has used one of the newly released products. I hope you enjoy looking over what I've created as much as I've enjoyed creating them!

The first project I want to share with you, is this masculine birthday card. 


On this card, I've used the new paper, Jungle Jewels (5230). The card base is Brown Sugar (1098), which is now available in packs of A5. From the moment I first got my hands on Brown Sugar, I loved it. The A5 pack has taken my love affair to a new level! Along with White, Black and Vanilla (which has also been released in A5 - yay!), I would consider Brown Sugar to be a staple for all cardmakers! It seems to go with just about everything, and is perfect for masculine cards like this one!

The A5 Brown Sugar was folded in half, with the two longer edges touching. Jungle Jewels was cut to fit the front of the card, with a small border showing, and the edges were Distressed using Forest Moss Distress Ink (TIM2133) and an Ink Blending Tool (IBT23616). Chocolate (1058) cardstock was then Punched using the Border Scallop (1357), and attached to the card. The sentiment is stamped on a scrap piece of Bazzill I had in my stash, and then I added a brad to the side. This piece was also Distressed with Forest Moss.