Monday, 11 January 2021

Sale-a-Bration 2021: Darling Donkeys and Flower & Field Designer Series Paper

Darling Donkeys Flowers Field Stampin Up

Sale-a-Bration is now well under way and, as predicted, this Darling Donkeys stamp set is proving to be a winner. Who could resist these cute images? And you know me, I don’t normally fall for cute stamp images. 

Darling Donkeys Flowers Field Stampin Up

I showed off this project at my Twixmas Party in an interactive demonstration. Guests could vote via the Zoom polling feature on which image I should stamp, which DSP I should use and which cardstock. The above card was the result, with a Bumblebee cardstock layer and a frame created with the Layering Circles Dies

Darling Donkeys Flowers Field Stampin Up

However, I had this one ready made to show them how the card could have looked if they had made different choices, such as a Granny Apple Green cardstock layer. This image fits better in the Layering Ovals Dies, which I had cut in advance. Yes, I guessed what they’d choose and made the opposite – seems that I do know them quite well!

I can’t lay claim to the project idea, which was originally created by Diana Gibbs. It's such a lovely design that I just had to CASE (Copy And Share Everything) it. I particularly I love the use of the In Good Taste DSP with the Flower & Field DSP.

Darling Donkeys Flowers Field Stampin Up

I coloured the images using Stampin’ Blends after falling in love with these all over again recently. Crumb Cake for the body, Smoky Slate for the hooves, Granny Apple Green for the grass and Pool Party for the sky.

The “hee haw” greeting is hand cut from cardstock, simply following the lines of the curvy image. 

Darling Donkeys Flowers Field Stampin Up

The Darling Donkeys stamp set is one of six stamp sets you can choose as your FREE Sale-a-Bration item when you place a qualifying order during January and February 2021. Darling Donkeys can be earned with a £45 order.

The Flower & Field Designer Series Paper is one of four packs of paper in the brochure and that, too, can be earned with a £45 order. I love the bright colours on the dark backgrounds; some of them remind me a little of traditional canal art, while others remind me of mille-fleurs tapestries.

It’s gorgeous paper and I will be using it at my Crafty Friday Zoom class this week, when we make a fancy fold card and a mini desk calendar.

Want to earn your own Darling Donkeys stamp set or Flower & Field Designer Series Paper? Or do you have your eye on something else from the Sale-a-Bration brochure? Please head on over to my store and, if you use the host code YK2NNMYW, I’ll send you a little thank you gift in January!

 


Monday, 4 January 2021

Best Suite ever? Dandy Garden featuring Dragonfly Garden and Garden Wishes

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes

When I say the Dandy Garden Suite is my favourite of all time, I do not use those words lightly. I have been a Stampin’ Up!® demonstrator for 13 years now and this is honestly the most gorgeous suite I have ever seen. I’ve liked plenty of suites in the past and loved many of them a lot... but none has spoken to me like this one.

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes

Last week I held my annual Twixmas Party, albeit this time on Zoom. In fact, the Zoom format worked so well for this event that I think this one will definitely remain on Zoom in the future, even when we are allowed to meet again. Nobody had to worry about the weather, and guests could celebrate with a glass of fizz if they wished.

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes

We had games, prizes and demonstrations. For this demo I used the Zoom polling feature so the guests could choose what I made. This was the winning design; guests voted for the Dragonfly Garden stamp set, the Blackberry Bliss colourway and finally to embellish with a die-cut bee from the Dandy Wishes Dies set rather than a dragonfly using the new Dragonfly Punch. Of course, I had some variations to show them afterwards, too, so everybody got to see their choices in the end, even if they didn’t cast a winning vote.

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes

I took the opportunity to demonstrate the gorgeous new Blending Brushes which feature in the new January-June Mini Catalogue (p70, £11.25 for three). These are SO luscious and so easy to use. Even my 20-year-old son – who normally shows zero interest in craft supplies – picked one up and said “why are these so nice?”

  

They look like sponges in the catalogue photo but are actually very dense brushes with the softest bristles. You can rinse them under the tap when you’ve finished and because they are synthetic, they dry very quickly, although having three in a pack means you can switch between colours without risking getting water on your project.

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes

It was also the first public outing for my Mini Stampin’ Cut & Emboss Machine, nicknamed Little Roland. This fits the Greenery Embossing Folders perfectly and is more than adequate for the vast majority of our dies, including the Stitched Nested Labels Dies I’ve used here.

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes

Little Roland and the Dandy Garden Suite all go live tomorrow with the launch of the January-June Mini Catalogue, which is when Sale-a-Bration goes live, too!

Here are some tips for shopping wisely:

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes

The Blending Brushes give you a soft, natural-looking background which offsets these images perfectly. The wildflower image requires very little colouring, so giving it a hint of a background allows the image to stand out.

Stampin Up Dandy Garden Dragonfly Wishes


Thursday, 31 December 2020

Happy New Year


A tentative Happy New Year wish to you all. Here’s hoping it brings some much-needed normality back into our lives. Here in Derbyshire we have just gone into Tier 4, which is another way of saying ‘lockdown’. Hopefully there will be an end in sight soon – but meanwhile, there’s always crafting!

Thursday, 24 December 2020

Merry Christmas

 

Just a quick post to wish you all a very merry Christmas. 

It won’t be the same this year but I hope you can make the best of it. Thank you all for your support over the past year, for your comments and shares, for attending my classes and for shopping in my store. I’ll be back with some more projects for you soon.



Monday, 21 December 2020

Christmas or not? Coming Home

Coming Home Stampin Up

The Coming Home stamp set is not just for Christmas. Sadly, you can no longer buy this versatile set as it has sold out in Europe but if you have it, don’t put it away until next winter, you can use it all year round. 

I don’t normally show retired products but, frankly, I have nothing else I can show you right now as all my other creations are under wraps until my Twixmas Party on 30th December! Got to leave some surprises for my ladies!

 


So here are two projects I made with Coming Home, using the same design to create a Christmas card and a new home card. I coloured the images using Stampin’ Blends and created the background using the new Blending Brushes from the upcoming Jan-June Mini Catalogue. 

Coming Home Stampin Up

I’m really enjoying my Stampin’ Blends lately. They are definitely something worth pursuing as practice is key. For these cards, I used Petal Pink for the house, Pool Party for the door and windows, Crumb Cake for the roof and Mint Macaron for the tree. 

Coming Home Stampin Up

For the new home card, I used Pool Party on the roof, too. In fact, if you have limited supplies, you could even colour the trees in Pool Party, so you then only need two colours of Blends.

The background is ‘sponged’ using the new Blending Brushes. These are fab.u.lous – they look like spongy pads but are actually very fine but dense brushes which make beautiful soft backgrounds. I’ll be demoing them at my Twixmas Party which is free to attend and open to all my customers and team. 

The Coming Home stamp set may have sold out but there are still plenty of other bargains to be found in the Year-End Sale and Clearance Rack. Please head on over to my store and, if you use the host code SX4NGWRH, I’ll send you a little thank you gift in January! 

To make it easy for you, please shop using this link. 

 



Friday, 18 December 2020

Sneak peek Friday - Berry Blessings Sale-a-Bration stamp set

Sale-a-Bration sneak peek Berry Blessings Stampin Up


I had a berry nice time (sorry) creating these cards using the brand new Berry Blessings Sale-a-Bration stamp set and the Sweet Strawberry set from the Jan-June Mini Catalogue.

This set is part of a larger bundle which includes some fabulous Designer Series Paper. Sadly, I couldn’t bring myself to cut this up for these projects so just stuck to the stamps for now.

Each of the images has a background and a foreground so you can use the much-loved ‘two-step stamping’ method, stamp the outline and colour in, or simply stamp with the bold images. 

 

Sale-a-Bration sneak peek Berry Blessings Stampin Up

For the blueberry card, I got so carried away with my stamping that I ended up with enough for two. I stamped in Granny Apple Green and Pacific Point, then immediately regretted it as I couldn’t find any ribbon in my stash to match! But I think this Seaside Spray and Linen Thread goes pretty well, don’t you?

Sale-a-Bration sneak peek Berry Blessings Stampin Up
Sale-a-Bration sneak peek Berry Blessings Stampin Up

A variation on the blueberry card uses just blueberries in the background, with a few cut-out leaves and blueberries on top of the greeting, which is die-cut with the ever-popular Tasteful Labels dies. 

Sale-a-Bration sneak peek Berry Blessings Stampin Up

Sale-a-Bration sneak peek Berry Blessings Stampin Up

For the raspberry card, I played around with a few colour combos before settling on Melon Mambo for the background images and Rich Razzleberry for the outline on top. Again, this left me with a ribbon issue, but I compromised with some Magenta Madness and linen thred. It was a little bright so I toned the card down with a Blackberry Bliss base and greeting (which is taken from the co-ordinating Sweet Strawberry stamp set from the Mini). 

Sale-a-Bration sneak peek Berry Blessings Stampin Up

What do you think? Will these be on your wish list for January and February? I think they provide a welcome splash of summery colour for the dark winter days. 

Did you know? Stampin’ Up!® demonstrators get an extra month of Sale-a-Bration, when we can earn free DSB stamp sets and Designer Series Paper on our December orders. This is just one of many perks of being a demonstrator. You don’t have to run a business; it’s all about getting the best value for your money, so why not get in touch using the info at the top of the page, or via my website, and I can answer any questions you may have.


Tuesday, 15 December 2020

Cat card using Summer Days host stamp set

Stampin Up Summer Days host hostess stamp set

 
Today is Cat Herders’ Day apparently. Who knew we get a whole day to ourselves? I spend a lot of time herding cats and it’s time we had our futile efforts recognised.

To celebrate, here’s a cat-themed project using the Summer Days host stamp set. Yes I stamped all of these and coloured them in using Stampin' Blends. It was quite soothing actually. Unlike herding cats!
 
Stampin Up Summer Days host hostess stamp set
 
This stamp set could be yours FREE if you host a party or place an order which comes to £150 or more. Please get in touch about hosting as I am now taking bookings for virtual parties in the New Year. 

Stampin Up Summer Days host hostess stamp set

Stampin Up Summer Days host hostess stamp set

If you’re in the UK, please shop online using the December host code SX4NGWRH (unless you're spending over £150!). And as a thank you for using the code, I will send you a handmade card and a thank you gift.


 


The small print

This is my personal blog and my sole responsibility as an Independent Stampin' Up!® demonstrator. All images are © Stampin' Up!® All content including photographs, projects and text are © Helen Read, unless otherwise stated. Please feel free to copy my ideas for your personal use and inspiration - if you are a SU demonstrator you may use these ideas for your events but please give credit where it is due. Please do not use my ideas for monetary gain, competitions or publication. The images on this blog - including blog buttons - should not be copied and used elsewhere on the internet or on CDs.