Top Five Reasons to….

Year-round Christmas cards. Yes! I try to make 5-10 Christmas cards a month. Why? Well, as most of you know the season for Christmas Stamps and Dies starts sometime in September. There are so many choices! I sometimes “over buy” for a year. I rarely send out cards that are identical. Additionally, I often found in the past that I would buy many Christmas theme sets and only pull them out once a year, if at all.

After a few years, some of the products I purchased didn’t even see the light of day. I only would use my Christmas goodies a few months a year. What a total shame.

When I was talking to my BFF (Golda)about this, she mentioned that she had some of the same frustrations. She told me she would make Christmas cards throughout the year. I can’t remember if she set a number, but I decided if I made 10 a month that’s 120 Christmas cards, or even at 5 that is 60 over the year. This struck me as a good plan mostly because I wouldn’t need to stress the already stressful season. I usually have some to spare and pass on to charity which is another bonus. I found also that I really enjoy the longer time spent as I can think about the people I am sending cards too. It makes for a much better year.

Maybe this is something you can start doing! Think of all the fun you will have. Also, the guilt doesn’t hit as hard on buying the latest and greatest when you have already been using your stamps from previous years! You know that over the upcoming year you will use them!

TOP FIVE REASONS TO MAKE CHRISTMAS AND HOLIDAY-THEMED CARDS YEAR ROUND

  1. I am not stressed about getting cards out
  2. I get to address 5-10 envelopes a month for Christmas cards (if they move a quick label fixes it) and have no need to have a marathon addressing session (Bonus: I also sometimes have time to add cuteness to the envelope that will be going out.)
  3. I get to use my product all year long
  4. I get exposed to the other things in my Christmas themes to use on everyday projects. I find that a lot of my Christmas theme stamps and papers can go with everyday goodies to make a fantastic pairing.
  5. It usually helps keep me in a holly jolly mood all year round

Color Play and a Happy Hello!

with an Ode to Sarah Renae Clark

To begin, with a “hello”! Today I am exploring some color fun with My Favorite Things & Sarah Renae Clark. (Seriously, I don’t work for MTF, I just love the product and the business practices of this company!) Now, I want to share with you about a product.

It is important to me that you know, it is a product I purchased, and I do not gain anything from sharing about it but the knowledge that I have passed on 1. a great product to like-minded peeps, 2. supported an artist! 3. a bit of fun


I am drawn to bright colors in pure forms (ROYGBIV) under many circumstances. I do, however, love all colors and recently I noticed my cards had been drawn to pure colors again and I stopped adventuring a bit into other color tones. I do love me some pastels, but they are not a go-to. Have you ever been like that? Well, with the release of the “color cube”(more on that in a minute) I was reminded to play more in the colors tones I love but aren’t my go-to colors. It’s a great way to get your mojo in a good mood. It’s all play. Play is important to creators. Mojo needs new ideas and new play often. Sometimes I forget about all the resources I have.

What is a color cube you speak of? First let me tell you about The Color Catalog. There is an artist I follow mostly because she is as silly about color as I am. I just love her. She is an Aussie and one day I really hope we meet for a coloring jam. She is remarkable and I recommend if you would like to learn a lot follow her on YouTube HERE.

She spent thousands of hours I am sure, creating a tool for people that like to color (adult coloring books and cards and what I would call fine artists) called the Color Catalog. When I purchased this product, it was for the color palettes as much as the conversions to Copic and various color pencils I owned. Let me tell you if you are stuck this is a remarkable tool to get you going! She even made a keyword search so if you are not sure what colors you want but you maybe know it’s a summer color you are going for you can find a color pallet that is keen for summer. ALSO, if you know you are using a say soft pink you can search by COLOR she really put a lot of thought into this product. I like the detail I like the detail!

Picture from sarahrenaeclark.com click for more information

I did use the Color Catalog to make the card from the Tall Hello Card I made with My Favorite Things Tall Hello Die and the Stitched Blooms.

She has now created a sibling to the Color Catalog. It is called the Color Cube (Vol 1 & Vol 2) I purchased them in a pre-order and don’t have my hands on them yet. but You can return here soon to see the review of what I think is to become a staple on my desk. As of this post, there is a special pre-order price which I think is going through October. So, if you are crazy about coloring like I am check it out.

Picture from sarahrenaeclark.com – click for more information

Hopefully, you can give Sarah Renae a peek and see what great things she is up to. DO yourself a favor and follow her on YouTube she puts out EXCELLENT content for artists!

Enjoy your weekend! It is World Card Making Day tomorrow so you know I will be back with more fun soon.

Keep Creating!

Blessings e

Monday Mojo – Reindeer Love

Reindeer Loves Poinsettias

Sometimes when I get a little stuck on what to use I just stamp many images out from my “recent purchases” basket and just color them in different mediums. Copic Markers, Color Pencils, or watercolor are my usual go to for this kind of project. Then I will put them in baggies and slip them in the stamp sleeve for future use or reference.

That is how this card was started. My Favorite Things order was in the “recent purchases” basket and I couldn’t wait to color the poinsettia so I had the previous night colored them using my Faber Castelle Polychromo Pencils. In the morning I had decided to use the Reindeer Love (MSTN-011). I used my Copics as I was in a marker mood.

One of the things I love when companies put out challenges that I have those ideas knocking around in my brain. When these ideas are milling around I tend to have the OHHH I know I can use Sparkle or I can use an interactive die. Often marrying many challenges unintentionally. This particular card was born from this process. It met two challenges but also a personal challenge. (I keep a list of ideas of things to try when I am in a rut.) The challenges were 1. Simon Says Stamps (Sparkle) 2. My Favorite Things (Out of the Box – Winter Scene) and my personal list (Mix Coloring Mediums)

I still had the Pretty Poinsettia (DBD-002) on my desk while coloring the Reindeer Love (MSTN-011) and it surprised me how much I liked the two styles together. Not only are they pretty different styles but they also were colored with different medium. The be Merry die (MFT-2383) was already cut in white and sparkle so I went with it. I added some fun color cardstock Next thing I realized is I had hit on three challenges and I had a card done! Mojo returned!

All this to tell you that just reading challenges can help you find a missing mojo.

I also wanted to point out that the sentiment on the card has snow which was done with at fantastic white paint pen.

(Link on photo)

OH yeah one more thing. I used the Outside the Box Level Up Set for the Card (MFT-1874) but replaced the backing of the card with the new Elegant Stitched STAX (MFT2398) and really loved how it looks. All the items with the item number is new from My Favorite Things Septement release – Check it out because it is a fantastic release.

My Favorite Things New Collection

FYI don’t miss out on Spellbinders Current Sale. There are some really awesome deals

Spellbinders Fall Sale

STAMPtember is almost done and I should have a lot of fun new goodies to play with I did link it here because there are a few left of some of the items. Most are sold out.

Have a crafty week my friends I will be back soon with more.

Mask Painting

As I live in a desert, I obviously fell wildly in love with the My Monthly Hero August 2022 card kit. The kit came with fabulous stencils and some die cuts to use alongside.

One of the things about desert dwelling is the stunning sunsets. I was playing around with making a background to use with my stencils and after layering several sky colors on a sheet of watercolor paper, I had that little light bulb go off.

I love the stencils, but I noticed that the dies would cut a desert stack and a nice cactus. So, I cut them from some Gina K Masking paper and mixed some watercolor to create the desert scene in this card.

Use the cut-out negative edge to create the shape of the landscape and the cactus. I was worried that the watercolor would seep through and leave a blob. I am happy to report they did not. While the lines aren’t “crisp” that’s okay because watercolor rarely is “perfect lines”. I was really WOWed by how this masking tape both maintained the integrity of the masking paper but also how it came off the watercolor paper without any tears.

Start by taping off a frame on your watercolor paper. I used Canson XL paper. Once it was taped down spray water on the paper and allowed it a few moments to soften the water. Using a reference photo I added the sky and land to a horizon.

Once I paint the sky and horizon line I was able to place the negative cut masking paper and adding the first layer of color to the mountains in the image. I added the mountains with the masking paper by placing it on the paper after I had put down my sky. (Which is more than half of the cut paper.)

Following that, I added the cactus in the same manner.

I then slowly layered the colors up by drying the layers between each application.

I brushed on some watered-down glue (2:1 ratio) and sprinkled on the bronze Pearl Ex for a nice textured border.

Once I had all this done, I added the white flowers using Dr. Martin’s Bleedproof White and did a little touch-up to the shadows.

I hope you are inspired to try this fun technique.

You can use the product links which helps me out a little as it is an Affiliate Link (full disclosure).

Let me know if you have any questions.

What the HEX?

Dies & Stamps: Concord & 9th Friendly Florals Hot Foil Plate: Pink Fresh Lush Vine, Foil: Spellbinders Silver

Hello, my Lovely Friends! Don’t you just love color? I do! I also love Concord & 9th’s August 2022 release (Check it out here). I love it when companies have matching cardstock and ink options. I absolutely love the Concord & 9th colors too! (see the full-color range here). This leads us to the “What the HEX?” topic of this post.

I am always looking for ways to make fun color combos. I have color-swatches all my cardstock for assorted brands of cardstock in my stash. (Which is way too many, says no crafter ever.) Using planner disc attachments has made it easy for me to be able to remove the samples and make color combos while I am working on a project.

However, there are many times I see a color combo on card samples, other crafter’s and artist’s work, nature, advertisements, etc. That I really love and want to preserve. What better way than to document these combos in my inspiration book (Currently a Catherine Pooler journal). As I use my paper the question is always what to do with the scraps! I will often punch out as many pieces as I can then throw them in a small bag or bowl. When I see a combo I love, I usually will scribble down a color combo and later add it to my book using the scraps. For this demonstration, I made a few pages in my book with color combos I really like. Feel free to click through the slideshow below and browse these combos and use any you like.

It is my hope that this little organization/scrap usage idea will inspire you today.

Have a great day & may blessing fall on you in abundance!

e