Saturday, October 21, 2017

Beary Christmas Blog Hop

Welcome to our Close to My Heart Beary Christmas Blog Hop! About ten CTMH Independent Consultants are showcasing items they created using the Beary Christmas collection available in Holiday Expressions. You will find the collection on pages 34 through 44 of the Holiday Expressions Idea Book. The Beary Christmas collection, along with the other collections in Holiday Expressions, are retiring at the end of December.


If you are visiting from Erica Haskin's Dresses and Spurs then you are on the right track. Carol Loftus is our hostess and her blog is the beginning of our hop.

For our Beary Christmas Blog Hop I created this card


When I was looking at the Beary Christmas supplies I had, I was drawn to the whimsical animals in the Scrapbooking Stamp Set, so I used that inspiration for creating my card.

Before you visit ***Shirley Ross - the Rockin' heART Stamper***, the supplies I used to create my project are listed below.

All supplies are from Close To My Heart except where noted:
If you are not already working with a CTMH Independent Consultant, you may purchase all of the supplies I used at my Consultant Website.

If you have a moment before you visit ***Shirley Ross - the Rockin' heART Stamper***, please let me know what you think of my cards. I love to read your comments. I hope you are finding many ideas for using the papers the are featured this month.

This is our blog hop list; clicking the link will take you directly to each person's Beary Christmas Papers post.

Carol Loftushttp://carolloftus.blogspot.com/
Julie Scotthttp://craftwithjulie.blogspot.com/
RaNae Fennemahttp://grandmanaedesigns.blogspot.com/
Erica Haskinhttp://dressesandspurs.blogspot.com/
Brenda Lapp - you are herehttp://centralnyscrapper.blogspot.com/
Shirley Rosshttp://rockinheartstamper.blogspot.com/
Haley Dyerhttp://inkyscrapper.blogspot.com/
Kathleen Androlewicz http://bowlofstamps.blogspot.com/
Gerri Bakerhttp://gerri-ctmh.com/
Ramona Templehttp://ramonatemple.com/
Jen Rubiohttp://jenrubio.blogspot.com/

Thank you for taking the time to hop with us today!

Monday, October 16, 2017

Share a Smile Blog Hop

Welcome to the Share a Smile Blog Hop featuring items created with the Punny Pals stamp set. Our hop has almost 20 CTMH Independent Consultants. If blog hopping is new to you, we try to keep it easy: click on the link to the next blog (typically near the bottom of the post) to visit the next stop. Keep visiting the next blog until you reach the blog where you started.


You should have arrived here from ***Darlys Recker's Crafty Happy***. If you get lost along the way, Melinda Everitt keeps a list of participants on her blog at If You Bling It.

I started by creating a 3" x 3" card mostly following the instructions and this is how it turned out:


I think this card kit would be perfect for children to exchange at Valentine's Day or for parents to add to lunch boxes. Since I do not have any of those reasons for 3" x 3" cards, I thought about ways to create cards that could be mailed.


I used the same idea as the kit instructions, but modified the cuts to cover the front of a 4¼" × 5½" white card. I cut a 4" square from Thistle and Eggplant cardstock and cut it diagonally as shown in the kit instructions. Then I cut a piece of 1¼" x 4" piece from each and cut that into four 1" pieces (two for this card and two for a future card just like the triangles). I cut a ¼" strip of Gold Foil Paper to embellish the card. I used colored pencils on this card so I did not need to wait for the image to dry.

Before you head to ***Stampin' Maui by Jean McNulty***, the supplies I used to create my project are listed below.

All supplies are from Close To My Heart except where noted:

Be sure to visit to Close To My Heart Blog for a fun Thin Cuts Technique with Our Punny Pals. Who knows, maybe we will see a card inspired by this technique on the top today.
If you are not already working with a CTMH Independent Consultant, you may purchase all of the supplies I used at my Consultant website.

Before you leave I would be delighted if you left me a comment letting me know what you think of my cards. I hope you are finding many fun ideas for how you might use the Share a Smile items. Thank you for hopping with us! So you do not have to scroll back up, the next stop on the hop is ***Stampin' Maui by Jean McNulty***.

Friday, October 13, 2017

My Legacy™ Post-Bound Albums

The next time you purchase a My Legacy™ Post-Bound Album, you may notice a slight change. The Corporate Office released this information during our weekly update:

We have received feedback that many Consultants and customers prefer starting their album with a 1" post until they have enough layouts to need the larger 1½" post. Consequently, we have decided to include 1" posts in post-bound albums in place of the 1½" posts. Some album styles are already being shipped with 1" posts. All remaining styles will be updated to include 1" posts as soon as we have sold through our inventory of albums with 1½" posts.

Additional posts are available in both the 1" and 1½" size:
 Happy scrapbooking (and cardmaking)!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Stronger Together

About a month ago I told you about the Disaster Relief Stamp Set Stronger Together.

Stronger Together (C1716)
Consultants received an update via email last Thursday and I thought you would like to know how much has been donated so far.

"Your response to the Stronger Together stamp set has been phenomenal. Because of your generosity and support, we have donated over $44,000 USD to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, and over $9,000 CAD to the Canadian Red Cross British Columbia Fires Appeal. Because the relief efforts are ongoing, this stamp set will remain available for purchase for the foreseeable future."

Thank you!

Monday, October 9, 2017

Christmas Tunes - Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree

One of the comments I received during the SOTM Blog Hop (the post immediately prior to this) was asking about what my stamp looks like now that I cut it apart. Since I made my card for the blog hop I cut it again. I left room between the pieces so it is easier for your to see where I made the cuts.


After I made the additional cut I planned to create two cards, but ran out of time to complete both. This is the stamped image where I used two colors:


I am still trying to decide how to finish it. Since time was not on my side, this image will have to wait, but I did get one card finished:


It is hard to see in the photo, but the image is layered on Silver Foil. I really love this stamp so I did not do a lot to embellish the card; I didn't want to take away from the image.

All supplies are from Close To My Heart except where noted:

I hope this helps envision what I did when cutting my stamp. I admit, I find it nerve-wracking, but I was not able to achieve the results I wanted with masking and I am really happy with how the stamp looks when stamped in two colors.

Thank you for visiting today.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Christmas Tunes CTMH SOTM Blog Hop

Welcome to the October 2017 SOTM Blog Hop featuring the stamp set Christmas Tunes. This month there are about 25 bloggers sharing projects they created with the CTMH Stamp Of The Month. If blog hopping is new to you, we try to keep it easy: just keep clicking on the link to the next blog (typically near the bottom of the post) to visit the next stop. Our blog hop is circular so visiting the next blog will take you back to where you started.


You should have arrived here from ***Brandi Robinson's crzy4scrapbooking***. If you get lost along the way, Melinda Everitt keeps a list of participants on her blog at If You Bling It.


I really love this stamp set so I created two cards for this hop. I really wanted to use this "O Holy Night" stamp. I did not have a plan, I just tried different things until I came up with something I liked.


I used my fingers to shape the banner so it was raised in the middle and was flatter at the ends. I used 3-D Foam Tape to help it keep its shape.


The card below was inspired by a card on page 66 of Holiday Expressions. If you hopped with us for the Holiday Expressions New Product Blog Hop, you might recall I cut the "Christmas Tree" stamp apart to use it with Mistletoe Kisses (M1182). I fit the pieces back together on the block and removed the word "Christmas" before inking with New England Ivy. Then I fit "Christmas" back in, removed the other pieces and inked with Cranberry.


Before you visit ***Stampin' Maui by Jean McNulty***, the supplies I used to create my project are listed below.

All supplies are from Close To My Heart except where noted:

If you do not have a CTMH Independent Consultant, you may purchase all of the supplies I used on my Consultant website.

Before you leave I would be delighted if you left me a comment letting me know what you think of my cards. Thanks for hopping with us! So you do not have to scroll back up, the next stop on the hop is ***Stampin' Maui by Jean McNulty***.

October 2017 CTMH News

It's October?! When and how did that happen? I guess time flies when you are busy.

The October 2017 Stamp of the Month is Christmas Tunes


Christmas Tunes (S1710) is an exclusive D-size set of 7 stamps that is only available for purchase during the month of October 2017. The stamp set can be yours for $5 when you place an order of $50 or more in qualifying Close To My Heart products (and you qualify for additional sets at $5 for each $50 you spend). Alternatively it is available at $17.95. Recommended CTMH My Acrylix® Blocks for this stamp set are: 2" x 2" (Y1003), 3" x 3" (Y1006), 2" x 3½" (Y1009) and 4" x 5" (Y1012).

CTMH Corporate Artists created two cards using the Christmas Tunes stamp set.



I have already used the stamp a couple of times; on a card I created for the Holiday Expressions New Product Blog Hop and on a card created with the National Stamping Month From the Heart Card Kit.

If you would like a list of the products used to create the above items, you will find the information in the Recipes for Holiday Expressions, a PDF file that lists the products used to make the samples in the Holiday Expressions so you may re-create projects at home. I am participating in a Christmas Tunes blog hop this month; you will find my post here tomorrow. Please visit my CTMH 2017 10 Oct SOTM Christmas Tunes for additional ideas using the Christmas Tunes stamp set.

October 2017 —Share A Smile


The October monthly special will feature an exclusive set of Thin Cuts that will coordinate with our My Acrylix® Operation Smile™: Punny Pals stamp set (D1751). You may purchase the Thin Cuts on their own or as part of the Share a Smile Card Kit.

Operation Smile™: Punny Pals (D1751)

The exclusive card kit includes the Thin Cuts, card bases and envelopes, papers and instructions for you to create 32 adorable cards that are sure to brighten anyone's day. You may also purchase the card bases & envelopes on their own.

Item #Product Retail Price
D1751My Acrylix® Punny Pals Stamp Set$17.75
CC1340Thin Cuts—Punny Pals$28.95
CC1343Share a Smile Card Bases & Envelopes$9.75
CC1342Share a Smile Card Kit
Includes Thin Cuts—Punny Pals (CC1340), Share a Smile Card Bases & Envelopes (CC1343), and 10 paper sheets; stamp set sold separately
$48.69
Your price
$39.95

The Share a Smile Card Kit comes with 10 sheets of paper (1 cardstock sheet each of Bashful, Eggplant, Glacier, Lagoon, New England Ivy, Smoothie, Sweet Leaf, Thistle, White Daisy, and one gold glitter paper), 32 card bases and envelopes (3" x 3"), the Punny Pals Thin Cuts, and a color printed insert with cutting diagrams and instructions for 6 different card designs.


Every time you place an order and round-up to the nearest dollar, your round-up donation will go even further because Close To My Heart will be matching all round-up donations, up to $10,000!

Finally, this is something that should bring a smile to everyone. When you participate in the Share a Smile promotion by purchasing any of these special items or rounding up your order in support of Operation Smile™ you will automatically qualify for a chance to win a not-yet-released stamp set from the upcoming 2018 Seasonal Expressions 1 idea book! CTMH will be choosing winners throughout the month of October, so any time you place an order, you can be a winner!

There are ways to get the Share a Smile Card Kit for free. As a hostess when your Gathering reaches the third level of Hostess Rewards or higher or when you become a new consultant during October.

If you would like to create the cards as shown in the instructions, you may need some additional items if you do not already have them:
  • My Acrylix® Punny Pals Stamp Set (D1751)
  • Black Memento™ Ink pad (Z899)
  • Watercolor Paints (Z3132)
  • Waterbrush—Small Round (Z3224)
  • 2" x 2" My Acrylix® Block (Y1003)
  • Thin 3-D Foam Tape (Z2060)
  • Adhesive Runner (Z3372)
The stamp set was not included in the kit because some people may have already purchased it; by being available separate from the kit it preserves the $7 Operation Smile™ donation associated with the stamp set.

Disaster Relief Stamp Set: Stronger Together

Stronger Together (C1716)
As I posted on September 8, CTMH released this stamp set designed specifically to benefit those affected by disasters, such as the recent hurricanes in the United States and the wildfires throughout the US and Canada.

In order to be able to support multiple needs, the Corporate Office determined that proceeds from the sale of this set will be donated to the Red Cross, which provides relief efforts to multiple disasters, and which will allocate the funds to where they are needed most.

For this C-size stamp set, it is recommended that you use My Acrylix® blocks 1" x 1" (Y1000), 1" x 3½" (Y1002), 2" x 2" (Y1003), 3" x 3" (Y1006) and 2" x 3½" (Y1009).

CTMH Physical Cartridge Cricut® Collections to Retire

In case you do missed the news, the physical cartridges are retiring because Provo Craft has made the decision to discontinue production of physical Cricut® cartridges.

Cricut® Artbooking Collection
physical cartridge (Z3169)
Cricut® Artistry Collection
physical cartridge (Z3167)
Cricut® Flower Market Collection
physical cartridge  (Z3285)
Cricut® You Are Here Collection
physical cartridge (Z3389)

The CTMH Corporate Office has been able to secure enough inventory of the You Are Here collection to last through the duration of the Annual Inspirations 2017–2018 idea book, but effective immediately, all Cricut® Collections that include a physical cartridge are available while supplies last.

Of the above collections, all have a digital option except Artbooking. The Corporate office is working on tutorial videos to help us learn more about how to use Design Space and the newer Cricut® machines. Watch the Close To My Heart YouTube channel for the videos.

Holiday Expressions


The idea book has been valid for one month and the cover is generating quite a bit of talk. For those of you who would be interested in creating a village like on the cover, I have good news. The Corporate Office is working on instructions for creating a similar village and will post them on the Make It From Your Heart blog. Unfortunately I do not have an estimate when they will be ready.

If you are ready to place an order or would like to read more about a product, the Shop Now button will take you there.


If you have any product or promotion questions, do not hesitate to email me. You will also find me on Facebook at Brenda's Paper Crafts. Thank you for visiting today.

Friday, September 29, 2017

CTMH Physical Cartridge Cricut® Collections to Retire

Provo Craft has recently made the decision to discontinue production of physical Cricut® cartridges. The CTMH Corporate Office has been able to secure enough inventory of the You Are Here collection to last through the duration of the Annual Inspirations 2017–2018 idea book, but effective immediately, all Cricut® Collections that include a physical cartridge are available while supplies last.

The Cricut® Collections that include a physical cartridge are; all have a digital option except  Artbooking:
Close To My Heart understands it can be challenging to learn a new system so tutorial videos are in the works that will help Consultants and customers learn more about how to use Design Space and the newer Cricut® machines. With the challenge of learning a new system, there are benefits that come from using the newer machines, including greater control over the creative process and increased flexibility in working Cricut® shapes into your artwork. Though CTMH is sorry to see physical cartridges go, they are excited about the possibilities available with our digital collections. Recently, CTMH started to include image numbers in artwork recipes to make it easier to locate images in Design Space.

I know change can be hard, but I have been using the Cricut® Explore (the original green one) since it made its debut on HSN in February 2014. I fully expected to hate it. I had recently had a bad support experience with my Expression 2, so I took a week off from work right after my Explore arrived so I could put it thought its paces while I was still within the HSN return period. In my opinion the Explore is a great improvement over the Expression and Expression 2. Since I purchased the Explore I use my Cricut machine and cartridges more than ever.

I am not a Cricut® expert, but if you have any questions or problems, I will try to help you. You can use the comment form to the right to reach me.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Feel So Blessed with Falling For You Paper

This month the CTMH Corporate Artists created some wonderful projects using the SOTM, Feel So Blessed, and the featured paper, Falling For You.


This artwork is in addition the artwork published in Holiday Expressions. The Corporate Artists created a layout, journal and card.

If you would like to create something similar, the needed supplies are:


Please click on the image if it is too small to read; if you would like a PDF of the recipes, you will find it here. I was inspired by the card.


I did not have any of the Fern zip strip remaining so I created my own with Fern cardstock and the Leaves embossing folder. I used a nail file to sand the raised images to expose the white core of the cardstock. I also choose to not fussy cut leaves from the patterned paper and instead used the Falling for You Cardmaking Bundle. The recipe does not list what was used to color the images so I choose the ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Markers.

All supplies I used to create this card are from Close To My Heart:
I started to create a Gratitude Journal, but the reality is that it probably will not be finished before the end of the month, so I am sharing my Cricut® Design Space file in case you have some free time and would like to create the journal. You will need the Cricut® Artbooking Collection physical cartridge (Z3169) linked to your Cricut® account. The Cricut® cuts are:
  • Small Page Cutout ― #M4607A ― page 38 ― height 5″ ― Shift+PhotoMat2 <!> ― I used the slice, weld and hide contour features in Design Space to make the binding holes closer together and move them to the other end of the page and to add a score line
  • Circle ― #M46F6E ― page 38 ― height 1¼″ ― Shift+Border <TeamWork>
If you create a Gratitude Journal, please share photographs. I hope you enjoy these additional projects.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

National Stamping Month Ends Next Saturday

One week from today, at 11:59pm MDT, National Stamping Month ends and the From the Heart Card Kit will no longer be available (if it has not already sold out).


I previously shared this assembly video, created by CTMH Corporate, with you: I am sharing it again in case you missed that post.



Close To My Heart recently shared some additional videos on the Corporate Facebook page. This video is by Mayline Jung.



Mayline posted this video (and another) on her blog, CTMH “From The Heart Kit” – with HOW-To Videos [National Stamping Month]. Be sure to visit her blog for photos of the completed cards and to watch her second video where she watercolors a card.

Also shared on the Close To My Heart Facebook page is this video by Nicole Nowosad:



Nicole also shares a photo of her cards at Card Cafe Thursday + Nicole Nowosad + a process video! on Scrapbook & Cards Today: The Blog. I love her idea for adding patterned papers with this kit and coloring the sentiment inside with watercolors. Be sure to follow her advice for using as dry a brush as you can since the card was not created with watercolor papers (or add a piece of watercolor paper inside).

I found several additional ideas for using the card kit from watching the videos and I hope you do too. I love to see the different ways people think to use the same products. It makes crafting even more fun.

I hope you enjoyed your visit today and found some new ideas!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Holiday Expressions New Product Blog Hop

Welcome to the Holiday Expressions 2017 New Product Blog Hop. Today we are featuring products that you will find in Holiday Expressions our latest thinner Idea Book. We have almost 25 bloggers participating in this blog hop. If hopping is new to you, we try to keep it easy: look for the link to the next blog (typically near the bottom of the post) to visit the next stop. Our blog hop is circular so visiting the next blog will take you back to where you started.


You should have arrived here from ***My Scrapbooking Blog by Wendy Kessler***. If you get lost along the way, Melinda Everitt keeps a list of participants on her blog at If You Bling It.

I was waiting for an appointment, flipping through Holiday Expressions looking for ideas, and it struck me how well the words "warm wishes" from Mistletoe Kisses and "Christmas" from the October 2017 SOTM Christmas Tunes coordinate. So I did a little stamping and this is what I came up with.


At first I tried masking, but the images were so compact, especially on the Christmas Tunes stamp, that I decided to cut my stamps apart. My hands were shaking, but I managed (I did gently pull on the stamp to make it easier to get my scissors between the icons/words).

I had several ideas swirling in my head, but work and family obligations just would not cooperate and give me some free time. I have several more projects started, but did not get a chance to complete so please come back in the coming days. I shared a Halloween card created with Cats & Bats and a Grateful card crafted with Falling for You last week. Please visit my September Featured Papers post if you would like to see them.

Before you head to ***Jean McNulty's Stamping Maui***, the supplies I used to create my project are listed below.

All supplies are from Close To My Heart except where noted:
If you are not already working with a CTMH Independent Consultant, you may purchase all of the supplies I used at my Consultant website.

If you have a moment before you visit the next blog I would be wonderful if you left me a comment letting me know what you think my card. Thanks for hopping with us! So you do not have to scroll back up, the next stop on the hop is ***Jean McNulty's Stamping Maui***.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

CTMH September Featured Papers Blog Hop

Welcome to our Close to My Heart Featured Papers Blog Hop! This month there are two featured papers: Cats & Bats and Falling for You. Eight CTMH Independent Consultants are showcasing items they created using the Cats & Bats and/or Falling for You collections available in Holiday Expressions 2017. You will find the Cats & Bats collection on pages 10 through 19 and Falling for You collection on pages 20 through 31 of the Holiday Expressions 2017 Idea Book. Both collection are only available until December 31 or while supplies last.


If you are visiting from Crafting with Carol by Carol Loftus then you are on the right track. Carol is also our hostess and her blog is the beginning of our hop.

For our Blog Hop I created this card using Cats & Bats and the Cricut® Artbooking and Artistry Collections. I know that some people enjoy using your Cricut® to create cards more than you like to stamp so this may be a good choice for you.


Except for the White Daisy I used for the ghost, all of the papers are from Cats & Bats. I am thrilled that the Shimmer Brush on some papers is showing in this photo. I used it on the top layers of the bat and ghost. I just used a piece of scrap behind the bat's eyes, but duplicated the ghost and used hide contour to to create the black layer. It is cut the same size as the white, but I off-set it a bit when layering to create a shadow effect.

I used the idea in this video I found on the Close To My Heart Facebook Page, to create my own ink pad for stamping the leaves from the Falling for You Cardmaking stamp. I do not have all of the re-inkers that coordinate with the papers yet, so I selected from other colors that looked like they would work, played and then choose the papers that coordinated the best. This is a messy technique, but it was a lot of fun and I love the results.


I was not planning to layer the circle, but changed my mind about the background paper so I decided to pop the sentiment by adding the scalloped circle behind it.

All supplies are from Close To My Heart except where noted:
If you are not already working with a CTMH Independent Consultant, you may purchase all of the supplies I used at my Consultant Website.

Before you visit ***The Inky Scrapper by Haley Dyer***, please let me know what you think of my cards. I love to read your comments. I hope you are finding many ideas for using the papers the are featured this month.

Here is a copy of our blog hop list; clicking the link will take you directly to each person's September Featured Papers post.

Carol Loftushttp://carolloftus.blogspot.com/
Brenda Lapp - you are herehttp://centralnyscrapper.blogspot.com/
Haley Dyerhttp://inkyscrapper.blogspot.com/
Gerri Bakerhttps://gerri-ctmh.com/
Kathleen Androlewicz http://bowlofstamps.blogspot.com/
Cheryl Arbohttp://thearbofamily.blogspot.com
Jen Armstronghttp://scrapshackdesigns.blogspot.com/
Erica Haskinhttp://dressesandspurs.blogspot.com/

Thank you for hopping with us today!

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

National Stamping Month Blog Hop

Welcome to the National Stamping Month Blog Hop featuring items created with From The Heart. Our hop has over 15 CTMH Independent Consultants sharing projects they created with the National Stamping Month stamps and/or card bases. If blog hopping is new to you, we try to keep it easy: click on the link to the next blog (typically near the bottom of the post) to visit the next stop. Keep visiting the next blog until you reach the blog where you started.


You should have arrived here from ***Melissa Robinson's My Heartfelt Sentiments***. If you get lost along the way, Melinda Everitt keeps a list of participants on her blog at If You Bling It.

I am so thrilled my photos turned out well enough to share. I took the photos just before placing the cards in envelopes to mail.

My first card was inspired by the blue monochrome card you may have seen when visiting your Consultant's website. It is the card on the far left of the "Cards Made From the Heart" photo that rotates. I also used the September SOTM for the sentiment on the card front.


I used the Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pads: Almond, Toffee and Espresso.

Time flies! The second card I am sharing was mailed a month ago. I mailed this card to arrive before an event on August 24th. Where does the time go? I created this card using masking. I used a stamp that typically is shown inside the card (under the pull insert), at least in all of the promotional photos I have seen, on the card front.


To create my masks I stamped the images on scrap white cardstock. I tried to cut the scraps in squares or rectangles just large enough to fit the stamp on the cardstock. Before cutting the images apart I scored down the center and penciled in a line following the score line. This helps me center the images on the cardstock pieces I stamp on. The masks I created look like this.


If I re-make the masks, I will stamp them in a darker color so they are easier to see through the stamp and block. I really love this stamp set. The sentiments and flowers are something that I will use over and over.

Before you head to ***Crafty Happy by Darlys Recker***, the supplies I used to create my project are listed below.

All supplies are from Close To My Heart except where noted:
By the way, if you prefer to watch videos rather than read instructions, Corporate created this video showing how to assemble the cards. If you would like to see larger photos of the assembly photos from the guide, check out the Step-by-Step Instructions: From the Heart Card Kit post on the Close To My Heart Make It From Your Heart blog.

If you do not have a CTMH Independent Consultant, you may purchase all of the supplies I used on my Consultant website.

Before you leave I would be delighted if you left me a comment letting me know what you think of my cards. Thanks for hopping with us! So you do not have to scroll back up, the next stop on the hop is ***Crafty Happy by Darlys Recker***.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

National Stamping Month — From the Heart Card Assembly Video

Hello. I'm back with two more cards created using the From the Heart Card Kit and a video to assist you with assembling the cards (do not worry, they are easy to put together). This time I was inspired by a Christmas theme. Before I share my cards, I would like to share this assembly video with you:


The CTMH Corp. description of the video National Stamping Month—From the Heart Card Kit is "Make 12 interactive cards with beautifully detailed stamping using the From the Heart card kit, only available from Close To My Heart. Talk to your Close To My Heart Consultant about how you can get this card kit FREE during our National Stamping Month special in September."

Be sure to watch the video to the end where you will see some unique and non-traditional, but still beautiful, color combinations.

If you would like to see larger photos of the assembly photos from the guide, check out the Step-by-Step Instructions: From the Heart Card Kit post on the Close To My Heart Make It From Your Heart blog.

This was the first Christmas card I created. I used the My Acrylix® stamp set Short & Sweet (A1189) on the card front and Warmest Wishes (B1559) "inside" the card.




I used the following Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pads: New England Ivy (some second generation and "inside" sentiment), Pomegranate, Ruby and Pewter (front sentiment).

I also created this second Christmas card. I used My Acrylix® stamp set Short & Sweet (A1189) on the card front and Christmas Tunes—October Stamp of the Month (S1710) "inside" the card. I created a mask so I could stamp just the bottom of the Christmas Tree in the set.




I used the following Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pads: Charcoal (front sentiment), Pewter (second generation in the flower), Espresso, Willow, New England Ivy, Ruby, Pomegranate, Canary, Saffron, Crystal Blue. When I stamped the flowers, I stamped Ruby first, then Pomegranate and on the bottom flower second generation Pewter.

If you would like to purchase the any of the National Stamping Month — From the Heart choices, please visit the National Stamping Month — From the Heart promotions page on my Consultant website.

I have additional cards to share on the National Stamping Month Blog Hop on September 13. I hope you will hop with us then. Thank you for visiting today.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Disaster Relief Stamp Set: Stronger Together

As I mentioned in my monthly newsletter, Close To My Heart released a stamp set that was designed specifically to benefit those affected by disasters, such as the recent hurricanes in the United States and the wildfires throughout the US and Canada. The stamp set is Stronger Together (C1716).

Stronger Together (C1716)
This stamp set is now available for purchase. In order to be able to support multiple needs, the Corporate Office determined that proceeds from the sale of this set will be donated to the Red Cross, which provides relief efforts to multiple disasters, and which will allocate the funds to where they are needed most.

Update 09/10/2017 - I learned that this stamp set does not count toward a qualifying total to purchase the SOTM for $5. So that the maximum proceeds go to the Red Cross, it appears to not raise Gathering totals either. As soon as the FAQ and Flyer for this stamp set is posted, I will update this information as needed.

For this C-size stamp set, it is recommended that you use My Acrylix® blocks 1" x 1" (Y1000), 1" x 3½" (Y1002), 2" x 2" (Y1003), 3" x 3" (Y1006) and 2" x 3½" (Y1009).

If you would like to subscribe to my monthly newsletter (typically one message each month unless there are special flash sales), please reach me using the contact form to the right.

If you are able, please help us help those whose lives have been impacted by disasters. Thank you!

Monday, September 4, 2017

National Stamping Month — From the Heart

Happy Labor Day! I hope you were able to enjoy some craft time today. If not, I hope you were surrounded by family and friends on this weekend that is traditionally referred to as the "last weekend of the summer". My morning was spent putting away the fans and taking the air conditioners out of two windows in preparation for colder weather. Not fun, but a necessity.

If you read my first post of the month, September 2017 CTMH News, you know that it is National Stamping Month and Close To My Heart created a From the Heart card kit. If you would like to know more about what is in the kit, please check out my September 1 post or visit my Consultant Website.


When you receive your kit there will be a 12" x 12" cover page with the four photos above. On the back of the cover page there are diagrams showing the four pieces needed to create this card and there are assembly photographs with some written instructions under the photos. Do not worry. The cards look complicated, but the directions are very clear and are easier to assemble than they look.

I created a few cards using this kit and I have a few bits of advice. My first tidbit. Throw the idea of perfection and symmetry out of the window. Seriously. My blog name, "Crafting for sanity? Or insanity?" is mostly because I was always striving for perfection and it just is not realistic. And it was driving me crazy and making crafting stressful. I am a struggling perfectionist for more than 8 years (probably longer, but I was not blogging when I was taking those sewing classes). Look at nature. Yes, most of the leaves on a tree look similar, but there are those that did not form quite right. The same holds true for flowers. And let's not talk about how insects will also alter the look of things. Yes, you want to create something that looks nice, but how many times do you want to start the same card over?

Another tip is to save the scraps after removing the die cuts from the sheet:


There is enough paper left over to cut a new C shape if you are unhappy with the stamping you started on the original card front. Or you can use it for a practice sheet. In addition, if you want some gold foil to show at the base of the easel when the card is open, you can cut a new D shape with gold foil on the long side (example below).



This Thank You card was made mostly following the instructions. I tucked the D shape inside the left and right edges so it does not cover the gold foil on the sides of the card; on the sheet that comes in the kit, the two cards that are pictured on the left and "open" look like this piece is left outside and on the cards on the right and "closed" look like the D piece is tucked in.




I used the following Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pads: Lemon, Tangerine, Bashful, Raspberry, Crystal Blue, Peacock, Safforn, Flaxen, Fern, New England Ivy. I stamped "Thank You" in Charcoal. I stamped the inside sentiment long enough ago that I am not certain which color I used. I suspect Charcoal, but cannot be certain.

Do not stamp the inside sentiment too centered top to bottom because it requires the "pull out" to be pulled almost all of the way out for the full sentiment to be seen. Also, one of the wonderful things about My Acrylix® stamps is you can "bend" them to make the image "flow" another way. If you do this, remember that the stamp designed to coordinate with that stamp, e.g., a stem with leaves, also has to be "bent".

Another tip, while I did not color the inside sentiment with ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Markers, I would avoid doing so unless you plan to cover the back of the card. The ink would bleed through enough that the back of the card would not look very neat.



For this Thank You card I cut a new "D" piece. I hate that we cover the gold foil at the bottom of the "slider", so I cut a new "D" using the scraps leftover after punching out the card pieces so there would be a gold strip at the bottom of the "slider". The gold strip is thinner, but still has that framed look.





I used the following Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pads: Linen, Heather, Fern, New England Ivy, Thistle, Eggplant, Lemon, Safforn, Pixie, Smoothie.

I found it easier for me if I stamp the sentiment on the front first. On this card I stamped the sentiment after the flowers and leaves. Having the other stamping around made it harder to place the sentiment; my eye was getting tricked with placing the stamp. I used a piece of scrap to re-stamp the sentiment, dovetailed it and used Thin 3-D Foam Tape to attach my new sentiment. Mistake hidden.



For this card I trimmed the width of the C piece to 2⅞" so it would not be wider than the slider and the gold foil would show on either side. I also trimmed the D shape to ¼" so it would not cover the foil on the slider. The ends of the trimmed D shape were also tucked in.




I used the following Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pads: Pewter, Fern, New England Ivy, Thistle, Eggplant, Lemon, Safforn, Blossom, Pomegranate.

I think the thinner C and D pieces do not compromise how the card functions and I love having the gold foil frame on my card front.

While all of these changes are very subtle, I hope you enjoyed seeing some of the things you could do differently with this kit. Perhaps you see a way to make the cards uniquely your own.

If you would like to purchase the any of the National Stamping Month — From the Heart options, please visit the National Stamping Month — From the Heart promotions page on my Consultant website.

I created other cards using this stamp set which I will share on the National Stamping Month Blog Hop on September 13. I hope you will be able to hop with us then.