Happy Cacti Anniversary Card (and 2 products worth mentioning)

Happy Cacti Anniversary Card (and 2 products worth mentioning)

On our recent trip to Arizona this past winter, my husband and I visited the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum in Tucson.  This is primarily an outdoor museum which includes walking trails, a zoo, an aquarium, a natural history museum, botanical gardens of desert plants… and this happy couple!

As soon as I saw these cacti which appeared to be standing arm in arm, I immediately thought they’d be perfect on an anniversary card for my husband.  I added a computer generated greeting, matted the photo, and called this done!  …a super quick card and a great memento of our trip!

Two products worth mentioning:

The photo and mat on this A2 sized card were cut with dies from the “Infinity Rectangle Dies” set from Hero Arts.  I am loving that these 16 dies are perfectly sized for A2 layering with 1/8 inch borders from one die to the next. If you struggle cutting panels and mats to size with a trimmer, these dies are just what the doctor ordered! And I prefer using a die to cut a photo (or stamped focal panel) instead of a trimmer because I can frame/position the image to my liking and see what my finished panel will look like before it is cut.

I also used a Sizzix crease pad to cut my photo and mat in place of one of the clear plates in the Big Kick cutting sandwich. The crease pad is intended to create subtle fold lines on die cuts meant to be folded, but it also happens to eliminate the indentations you often get around the edges of your photo or panel when die cutting. HERE is a video (1:53 mark) showing how to use the crease pad to die cut. (Important – do not cut into this pad. You position this pad against the flat side of the die and NOT on the cutting/blade side.) While the crease pad also works with other machines like the Spellbinders Platinum machine, it unfortunately is a little too wide (measuring 6 1/16″ across) for the Cuttlebug.

Thanks for checking out my card project!

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Great for Adhering Intricate Die Cuts…

Great for Adhering Intricate Die Cuts…

Un-du

Do you struggle with making panels straight or positioning die cuts on your projects?  Do you find it challenging to stack multiple die cuts to create thicker elements for your cards?  Check this out…

Un-du is a non-greasy sticker, tape & label remover that works great for positioning die cuts (with non-liquid adhesive) to your projects.  When applied, it temporarily neutralizes the adhesive allowing you to move the die cut around until you have it positioned to your liking.

First, you apply adhesive to the back of your die cut or panel by either backing the card stock with sticker paper before cutting (great for intricate die cuts) or by applying two sided tape/adhesive to the back of the die cut/panel after it was cut.  (Un-du will not work with liquid glue.)  Then, apply the un-du to the surface on which you will be adhering your die cut/panel.  Place the die cut/panel on the treated surface and position as desired.  The un-du makes the adhesive temporarily “un-sticky” so it is easy to move the die cut/panel around.  When first applied, your surface will appear wet, but in about 30 seconds, the un-du will evaporate and completely disappear from view, and your die cut/panel will now be stuck in place.  You can also use it to move or remove something that you already stuck down, and it’s great for getting the sticky residue off of your scissors, punches, etc.

Check out this video (at the 10:25 minute mark) to see it being used.  Here is another one (at the 10:25 mark).  (Creek Bank Creations now sells un-du on their site as well.)

According to the product label and the information in the above videos, this product is acid free, photo safe, and is safe on most surfaces (including surfaces that have been inked, stamped, etc.), but I think it’s always a good idea to test the product on the material on which you plan to use it to be sure.

Thanks for checking out my post!

This content uses referral links as described in the disclosure policy on my sidebar.

Goodbye Sassy Cheryl’s – Snowman Wiper Card (and some other sites to find digital stamps)

Goodbye Sassy Cheryl’s – Snowman Wiper Card (and some other sites to find digital  stamps)

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Happy New Year!

Digital stamps are images you download and print from your computer to use on your cards/projects.  You can color them (just like with traditional line art image stamps), but since they are digital, you can also size them to suit your needs.

The snowman on the wiper card above is a digital image from an online shop called Sassy Cheryl’s (that, sadly, just closed down).  What I loved about the images on that site (besides that I thought they were adorable) is that most were also available as pre-colored illustrations so if you didn’t want to color the images yourself, you could just print them in color and use them as is.  The image used on the card above is the pre-colored version of “Fa-la-la-la Snowman” and was “traced and cut” with my Silhouette electronic die cutting machine.  And while this site is no longer operational, there are lots of other companies/shops that offer digital stamps (some pre-colored).

Etsy is a great place to begin looking.

Here are some other sites to check out:

Whimsy Stamps (This site actually has some of Sassy Chery’s designs)

Jan’s Digi Stamps

Graciellie Design

Bugaboo Stamps

Di’s Digital Stamps

Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps

Imagine That Digistamp

Power Poppy

Beccy’s Place

and

The Artsystamper Shop

… to name a few!  (Google Digital Stamps for more options.)

The digital paper I used is called “Snowflake Background – Snowy Paper” by SBdigitalDesigns from Etsy.  The “Festive Mini Expressions – Warmest Wishes” die from Creative Expressions was used for the pop-up greeting.

The following sample (previously posted here) shows how the wiper element works on my snowman card above and features another of Sassy Cheryl’s designs called Once Upon a Star Santa.

Practicing_for_the_big_night_wiper_card

I colored this image myself and used a reindeer image from the “Reindeer” stamp and die cut set (#657780) from Hero Arts/Sizzix (retired) in place of the star in the original design.

Thanks for checking out my card project and post!

*I am not affiliated with any of the above sites, was not asked to promote these sites, and will not be compensated if purchases are made from these sites.  I was just looking for digital stamp sites for myself and thought I’d share my findings.

Fall Leaves Center Easel Card (and a word on Movers & Shapers Dies)

Fall Leaves Center Easel Card (and a word on Movers & Shapers Dies)

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I had shared a center easel card (along with a template for how to create one) a while back.  I decided to try another one with fall themed paper and embellishments.

The patterned paper is called “Fall Leaves” (#676908) from the Paper Studio.  Heavy weight ivory and kraft card stock was also used.

To create the leaf embellishments for the center of the card, I used my Uchida Corru-Gator paper crimper to add some texture to the leaf cut from the kraft card stock, some American Crafts paper backed burlap for additional texture, a piece of ivory ribbon, and a piece of gold cord.  Since I was cutting burlap (in addition to the plain card stock), I thought I’d get a cleaner cut using a steel rule die instead of a wafer thin die so I used one of the Sizzix “Movers & Shapers Mini Tattered Leaves” dies by Tim Holtz.

movers and shapers mini tattered leaves

A word on Movers & Shapers dies:  The small insert dies (like these leaves) can not be used by themselves in a standard die cutting machine with standard plates.  They were designed to cut shapes from the larger Movers & Shapers base dies (steel rule dies), and as a result, are not the proper thickness to be used alone.  If you don’t have a base die that accommodates the insert die, they now sell a Movers & Shapers Shuttle which is a 6 inch wide magnetic plate that is the correct thickness for these Mover’s & Shapers dies.  (This shuttle was designed to be used specifically with these insert dies and in the Sizzix Big Kick machine; I am not sure if it fits in other machines, like the Cuttlebug, because I do not own one of these plates.  I used one of my base dies to cut the leaves for this project.)

Below is a photo of one of the base dies called Postage Stamp Frame.  It could be used alone to cut the postage stamp shape.  (The little magnetic square in the center is removable and does not actually cut anything but is used to make it easier to release the die cut from the die after cutting.  Don’t throw it away; it is not trash!  It keeps the paper a little higher than the die itself, and without it, the die cut may get wedged inside the die and is hard to get out.)

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In this next photo, I replaced the little square with one of the magnetic leaf insert dies.  Now, the leaf is cut along with the postage stamp frame.

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So, in order to use these insert dies, you either need one of the available base dies  or the shuttle adapter.  Personally, it makes more sense to me to purchase a base die because then you have an additional die in your collection.  The shuttle adapter has no other use than to be a carrier for the small insert dies.  Plus, if you choose a base die that is narrow enough, you can use other die cutting machines.  The die above, for example, fits in the Cuttlebug.  Just a thought….

Thanks for checking out my card project!

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Basic Paper Crafting Supplies

Basic Paper Crafting Supplies

craftsupplies pic from google

A friend, considering getting into card making, recently asked me for a list of the basic tools and supplies she might need.  Some of the items on my list are consumable and/or project-specific, and some are “necessities” that I use all the time.  I also included some of the tools needed for a few of my favorite techniques.  While I am NOT suggesting that a beginner should go out and buy everything on this list, I tried to come up with a list of things I use often.  Consider your needs and buy accordingly, and if you live near me, consider taking a “test drive” with my stuff before buying anything at all!

I’ve included links (in red) on some of the items below so that you can see samples and/or the specific brands I use, but these are by no means the best and/or only choices.

LIST OF BASIC PAPER CRAFTING TOOLS AND SUPPLIES… Continue reading