Sunday, 23 January 2011

Welcome to the Sale-A-Bration Blog Hop!


I'm so excited to be taking part in today's Sale-A-Bration Blog Hop! A huge welcome to all of you, and if you've just joined me from Caroline's blog - wasn't her project great?! Do carry on round the rest of the blog hop; there are lots more gorgeous things to see out there..

Here is my project for today. I hope you like it!

This little card uses the lovely Sale-A-Bration stamp set, "Punch Bunch", which has five stamps in it, each of them co-ordinating perfectly with one of the range of Stampin' Up! punches.

I love this stamp with the poppies, they're my favourite flower and lend themselves so well to this technique. I used the Stampin' Up! Watercolour Wonder Crayons (this card uses the "Brights" selection") to colour directly onto the rubber stamp itself, then using a little spray bottle I spritzed water gently over the stamp and waited for a second or two, before stamping down onto our new watercolour paper. This gives you a wonderful watercolour-painted effect, with no painterly skill needed. Because you colour directly onto the stamp, you can have several colours in the one image, without the need to mask parts off and stamp several times. I used Real Red for the poppies, with a little bit of Rich Razzleberry in the centre of the flowers, to hint at the darker section you get with real poppies, then Old Olive for the stems and finally Tempting Turquoise for the wording and the scalloped edging. The picture was punched out using the 1 3/4" Scallop Circle punch which, as you will see, matches perfectly.

Because the stamp is so beautiful, I wanted to keep the rest of the card very simple. The card base is Crumb Cake, with layers of Not Quite Navy and Very Vanilla cardstock, then a piece of Real Red patterned paper from the gorgeous Stampin' Up! Designer Patterned Paper Stack (Brights again).

This is the inside.

The sentiment is from the "So Happy For You" set of stamps, which is another of the exclusive Sale-A-Bration sets - ten stamps in this one. I love the font used here!

I'm sure you know by now, but just a quick reminder that you can only get hold of these stamp sets before the end of February. Place an order for Stampin' Up! products and for every £45 you spend (excluding shipping) you will get to choose one of these exclusive sets. Or, contact me to host a Stampin' Up! workshop party and, as well as earning stamps for every £45 you spend, if the total orders at your party are £300 or more, you get to choose another Sale-A-Bration stamp set too! The links are in the sidebar - don't leave it too late to get in touch.

Now you'll want to hop over to Jayne's blog, to carry on with the Blog Hop. I know you'll love what she has waiting for you there - enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by, come back soon..



Friday, 21 January 2011

Beginners' Scrapbooking Class

Where does the time go? Last Wednesday, I held my first Beginners' Scrapbooking class. It seems to me that a lot of people are scared of scrapbooking, because to them it seems so complicated, and I wanted to show that it really need not be.

Here are the three layouts I did in preparation for the class. They all use the same photographs and the same colours, but in different ways. I based them all on essentially the same sketch, just shifted it around a little for the layout that only has one photo.

Like most things, making a scrapbook (or a single scrapbook page) can be as complex and detailed as you want, or it can be absolutely simple and straightforward. The most important thing - emphatically the most important thing - is to enjoy the process! Scrapbooking is all about preserving a memory in a way that makes you smile, and makes that memory (whether it be an event, a person, a place or whatever else) accessible to others who see the page. It's a way of sharing your photographs and memorabilia with other people in a way that involves them, rather than making their eyes glaze over. Ever sat for HOURS looking through someone else's holiday snaps and felt like screaming while you have to be - oh ever so polite and interested? Well, that's exactly what scrapbooking ISN'T! Thank goodness!

In so far as there is a "standard" size in scrapbooking, it tends to be 12" x 12" pages. For a beginner that can be horribly scary, so for these classes I'm sticking with something much smaller - 6" x 6". That way, it isn't so very different from a card. And - to be honest - if you don't like the page when you've finished it, you haven't wasted as much stash either.

I loved doing this class - I do love seeing people's creativity blossom, and we had a great time chatting and crafting together. The ladies who came went away happy with their pages (none of them a direct copy of mine, which was fantastic), with a new-found confidence and enthusiasm to preserve their memories. I can't wait to see what they do next!

If you fancy coming along to the next one, or to any of my other classes, then hop over to my Classes and Events page for details. I'd love to see you..

Back on Sunday with something very exciting - I'm taking part in a Blog-Hop to celebrate the current Stampin' Up! promotion, Sale-A-Bration. There will be loads to see, and some real inspiration to be had. I look forward to seeing you then!

Thanks for looking.



Monday, 17 January 2011

"Share the Love" Class Cards


We had a lovely time on Saturday at this month's class - playing with the gorgeous Watercolour Wonder Crayons and the "Love You Much" stamp set. I have a great group of ladies at these classes, they're all great fun and I enjoy my self so much every time, so a huge thanks to all of you for making my day!

Here are the cards we made:

Well, three cards and a sweet (literally!) little treat pouch with an After Eight (R) in it. We used several different techniques with the Watercolour Wonders  - they're just so versatile! - as well as getting to grips with some of the gorgeous brads and buttons that Stampin' Up! offer. Because the weather has been so horribly dreary and grey I decided we needed a Serious Colour Injection and went for the Brights Collection - fantastic! Much more cheerful than the gloomy January that is still sitting outside my windows..

Here are close-ups of the projects, and if you'd like the instructions then I'll be putting a link up in the sidebar.


 All of the ladies who came to the class bought the class bundle - which meant they got the stamps, the watercolour crayons and embossing powder without paying the usual shipping fee - and they only paid £3.00 for the class itself! That's just £1.00 per hour! If you'd like to join us, pop over to my Classes and Events page and have a look at the class programme for yourself.

Next month is Stampfest, on 20th February, so I'm not running my normal class then. Instead, come and join us for a fantastic full day of crafting for only £55.00, including at least £50.00 worth of Stampin' Up! goodies AND a free stamp set - it promises to be a brilliant day and Bekka and I would love to see you there. Book by clicking the link in the sidebar.

I'll be back soon to show you the scrapbook pages we made at Wednesday's Beginners' Scrapbooking Class. See you then - thanks for popping in!



Monday, 10 January 2011

Please Join Me In Welcoming....


This week has been a very exciting one for me and I am delighted to introduce you all to the very first member of my Sunshine Stampers team: the very lovely and talented Helen! I am thrilled to welcome Helen on board as a new Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator and I know she will have a brilliant Stampin' Up! career ahead of her.

I first met Helen at the very beginning of my own Stampin' Up! journey, when I held my first event, an Open House in June of last year. Helen hadn't stamped before, and I'm sure she won't mind me saying she was a little nervous. Talent will out, though, and she has blossomed as a crafter - her cards are absolutely gorgeous and you can see them on her blog, here. Helen, I'm so proud to know you, and feel really blessed that you have chosen to join my team. I wish you all the best for your future with Stampin' Up! and look forward to helping you achieve all that you want to.

When I joined Stampin' Up!, my lovely SU mummy (Bekka), gave me a little welcome pack. I was so touched by what she gave me that I decided then and there that I would do the same for the members of my team when the time came. This is what I gave Helen:

First, a little notebook that I'd covered using gorgeous Elegant Soiree DSP and the stamp that I bought at Convention:

Next, a folder containing swatches of all the current SU colours of cardstock:

I didn't take photos of the actual swatch sheets. I loved playing round on Publisher to get something I was happy with, then punched a spot of each colour out using the 3/4" circle punch. Looked fab - why on earth didn't I remember to photograph them?!

The last thing I made was this little card. It uses one of the current Sale-A-Bration sets, "Sweet Summer", which I love. This is the only SAB set I have at the moment. The rest are on their way and should be with me by the end of the week (yippee!).

Did you see the little pen in the notebook photo? It's one I bought at Convention, and they're not easily available. It matches the Baja Breeze in the Designer Paper perfectly! I have a few of these, which I'm adding to the welcome packs for the first few of my team. I also have a couple more of the gorgeous PlayDate Shoppers (again, not readily available). These, again, I bought at Convention to give to my new team members. Isn't this just fab?!

If you've been thinking of joining Stampin' Up!, but haven't got round to it yet, then there is no better time than now to take that step. As well as the welcome pack I put together for Helen (and there is one here for you if you choose to join my team!) and the fantastic Starter Kit, which will be winging its way to her in the next few days, Helen got to choose an extra stamp set from the current Stampin' Up! Idea Book and Catalogue, absolutely FREE!!

That's right! If you join during Sale-A-Bration (before the end of February), your Starter Kit (which costs just £119 and is already worth around £230) could contain Stampin' Up! goodies worth more than £270!!  What reason could you possibly have for waiting any longer?!

My own team of Sunshine Stampers is just beginning, but because of the way Stampin' Up! works, you don't just have to rely on me, when you join my little team. I am lucky enough to be part of one of the most (if not THE most!) successful Stampin' Up! team in the UK - and as a Sunshine Stamper you get access to all that experience and inspiration as well. I love the fact that none of us has to "go it alone", (unless we want to, that is). My direct Upline, Bekka, and her Upline, Monica, have been a tremendous help and support to me, and it's great to know that they are there for my team as well.

This is absolutely the best thing I have ever done, (other than marrying my lovely husband) and it's the best job in the world. Come on, join my team of Sunshine Stampers - we'll have a fantastic time together!

Thanks for stopping by.



Sunday, 2 January 2011

Share The Love - January Class Bundle is Now Up


Well, it is time to get back into the swing of things, after a really restful Christmas and New Year - I have been soooo lazy, it's been lovely! But now I'm full of new year vim and vigour and raring to get to grips with all that I need to do. Alan has been helping me to tidy up our tiny and very cluttered craftroom (what a scary job!!) and it is gradually turning into the restful, creative haven that I want it to be, instead of making me want to scream and stamp(and not in a creative way!) every time I venture through the door. I've been bringing my projects downstairs to work on them, which sort of defeats the object of having a dedicated space, so with the New Year comes a "keep it tidy" resolution.

One of the casualties of our very lazy Christmas break has been my blogging, and I'm embarrassed to say that I completely forgot I hadn't put the Class Bundle up for my January class! I've rectified that now (and have extended the booking date because of my forgetfulness), so if you click on the Ipswich Classes tab at the top of the page, you will be able to see all the details. It's a fantastic bargain, because as well as getting the class itself at a hugely reduced price (£3.00, rather than £15.00) if you order the Class Bundle by 7th January, this month's selection of products entitles you to choose one of the fabulous Sale-A-Bration stamp sets absolutely free as well!

I'm trying something new out, to make it easier for you (okay, and to make it easier for me as well, if I'm honest!) to book onto the class. There is a paypal link in the sidebar, and if you click on it you will find options for you to order the Class Bundle or just the class itself, whichever suits you best. Places are limited, so book now to make sure you don't miss out.

Back soon. Thanks for popping by!



Saturday, 1 January 2011

New Year, New Stamps!!!

Happy New Year!! 2011 is here already - can you believe it? I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas and enjoyed wonderful New Year celebrations last night. Isn't it amazing how fresh everything feels on the first day of a new year, full of hope and promise. I hope this year will bring you all you hope for, and that in a year's time you will be able to look back on three hundred and sixty-five days lived to their utmost.

With the New Year comes a really exciting promotion from Stampin' Up! Sale-A-Bration is here, with its promise of free stamp sets for everyone who comes into contact with Stampin' Up! Could you wish for a better start to the year?!

So what's this all about? It's amazing! Up until the end of February, you can get FREE stamp sets by doing any of the following:


You'll receive a free Sale-A-Bration stamp set when you spend £45 on Stampin' Up! merchandise (product sales before shipping and handling). There's no limit—for every £45 you spend, you can select another FREE Sale-A-Bration reward!


You'll receive a free Sale-A-Bration stamp set when you host a workshop of at least £300 (product sales before handling and shipping)— and this is in addition to all of the regular hostess benefits!


During Sale-A-Bration, anyone who joins as a demonstrator can choose any stamp set—a value of up to £44.95—from the current Idea Book and Catalogue!

The picture at the top of this post is a composite of all four of the fantastic free stamp sets available to earn during Sale-A-Bration. Here is a closer look:

This first one is "Bliss" - isn't it gorgeous?

Then there's "Sweet Summer" - so versatile!

"So Happy For You" gives you all these brilliant sentiments, as well as useful little decorative elements.

 And finally, here is "Punch Bunch". Each of these stamps is designed to match one of Stampin' Up!'s range of fabulous punches. What? We don't have an owl punch, I hear you say? Well, we will have soon!!!! When we get our new Mini-Catalogue in April, we will be getting the gorgeous two-step Owl Punch. I'm so excited about this, and you'll love, love love it!

See you soon!