Tuesday, 26 July 2022

Four card ideas using Stampin’ Up!®'s Splendid Day Suite


Splendid Day card ideas Stampin Up UK

The Splendid Day Suite from Stampin’ Up!® is for everyone who loves a bit of elegant glamour. The foil finish and leafy designs are truly beautiful and will add a touch of class to any project.

This is why I have chosen this Suite as the focus for my All The Trimmings Kit of the Month for August available to anyone in the UK. Please keep reading for details of this kit (or click here if you can’t wait that long).

But first, here are four projects made with the Splendid Thoughts Bundle and the rest of the Splendid Day Suite from Stampin’ Up!®. Eager Stampin’ Up!® fans may already have seen variations of these projects around the web already as they were made as part of a demonstrator day called Creativity Now in June. Yes it’s taken me this long to get round to sharing them with you!

At the time of making, I had almost no Soft Sea Foam cardstock so was forced to compromise. However, I find that compromising usually leads to creativity and often to a project that I prefer to the original plan. 

Splendid Day card ideas Stampin Up UK

For example, instead of Soft Sea Foam cardstock for this card I used one of the Soft Sea Foam card bases from the Sale-a-Bration brochure – and I think it adds a lovely extra feature to the project.

I also tweaked the background panel. The original asked us to use Stampin’ Blends to scribble a background but I wasn’t happy with mine so redid it using water painters and ink for a much softer effect. 

Splendid Day card ideas Stampin Up UK

One more change I made for this project was to use the foiled side of the Designer Series Paper. I just couldn’t bear to cover it up because it’s so pretty.

After die-cutting in Soft Sea Foam for the first card, I just didn’t have enough cardstock left for this one so found an excellent workaround. I stamped in black on Basic White cardstock and die-cut it into the leaf shape, then “stamped“ my Soft Sea Foam ink pad directly to the paper to turn it all green. It’s a little darker than Soft Sea Foam cardstock but worked a treat. 

Splendid Day card ideas Stampin Up UK

This is a really pretty card with lots of steps. I particularly love the Brick Wall background in Calypso Coral cardstock, with a touch of Craft White ink on top to soften the look.

When I die-cut the white leaves, I noticed that not all of the middle pieces fell out. I really liked this random effect so left it like that. But if you do this, remember you will need extra adhesive behind them to stop the pieces falling out at a later date. 

Splendid Day card ideas Stampin Up UK

This card is a fun use of the semi-circle die from the Splendid Stems Dies. I would never have thought to do this on my own, which is why Stampin’ Up!® events are so inspiring. They are also a great opportunity to get together with other demonstrators – albeit virtually on this occasion – to enjoy a shared experience. 

Splendid Day card ideas Stampin Up UK

This design would be a great way of using up scraps of Designer Series Paper. Mix and match packs – go on, I dare you!

Splendid Day card ideas Stampin Up UK

Finally, I wanted to recreate the beautiful card from the July-December Mini Catalogue but, again, I couldn’t bear to cover that gorgeous foiled paper, so left it shiny side up.

Making this card was a disaster – everything went wrong! But you’d never know from the finished project. 

Take a look at all the things that went wrong here

Splendid Day Kit of the Month Stampin Up UK

I know you’re going to love this gorgeous Designer Series Paper as much as I do, which is why it is the focus of my August All The Trimmings kit. Each month I hand selected coordinating products to create a kit featuring Designer Series Paper, cardstock, ribbons and more. I also send a PDF of project ideas. 

Plus, if you want to add on the stamp set and/or dies and let me know at the time of ordering, I will order these for you and include them in your kit at no extra shipping cost.

This is a really economical way to get coordinating projects without having to invest in full packs. The kits give you the confidence to try new styles and colours, without being left with lots of unused products. But you still get LOTS of projects out of the kit; my lovely customer Donna made more than 40 cards with her last kit!

Donna said: “I love Helen’s kit of the month! It’s a great way to try new products! It lets you try things you wouldn’t normally buy!”

The Splendid Day kit will contain:

✂️ Half a pack of Splendid Day Speciality Designer Series Paper (sheets cut to 6"x12")
✂️ 2 each of Pool Party & Soft Sea Foam Cards & Envelopes (while supplies last, first come, first served)
✂️ 5 Open Leaf Trinkets
✂️ 2m Soft Sea Foam Seam Binding Ribbon
✂️ 2m Rose Gold & White Striped Ribbon
✂️ 3 sheets Petal Pink A4 cardstock
✂️ 3 sheets Soft Sea Foam A4 cardstock
✂️ 3 sheets Pool Party A4 cardstock
✂️ 3 sheets Sahara Sand A4 cardstock
✂️ 1 sheet Thick Basic White A4 cardstock
✂️ 1 sheet Basic Black A4 cardstock

Don’t miss this limited time offer. I am only taking reservations until 5th August. 
If you are in the UK and would like to order, please visit my store and, if you use NEW July/August 2022 host code ZPZ3ZRHC, I’ll send you a thank you gift in the following month.

Does your wish list come to more than £99? Please get in touch and I will help you get more for your money and unlock discounts all year round.  

Tuesday, 19 July 2022

Tree Lot Dies summery cards – and how to pack your craft supplies like a pro

Tree Lot Dies Stampin Up card ideas
Do you take your craft supplies on holiday? Summer holiday season is upon us and I know many of you take your Stampin’ Up!® supplies away with you so you can take the opportunity of some downtime to enjoy your crafting.

Several of my Stampin’ Up!® customers are campers, enjoying breaks in their caravan or motor homes. They often tell me they like to craft while away, so I had these ladies in mind when I created these projects. I wanted to thank them for providing me with some invaluable tips for packing to craft on holiday – and you can read their tips below.

But first the projects... 
Tree Lot Dies Stampin Up card ideas

I love this cute little retro caravan, which is made entirely from the Tree Lot dies, which are FREE during Sale-a-Bration with a £90 order. In the catalogue they are designed to go with the Trees For Sale stamp set and all the samples are Christmassy.

I don’t know about you but I think it’s too hot to be thinking about Christmas just yet. Instead I gave these caravans a pastel look to create a retro feel. I couldn’t decide between pink, blue or green, so made them in all three colours!
Tree Lot Dies Stampin Up card ideas

The body of each caravan is cut out of Very Vanilla cardstock. I coloured the tyre using a black marker and the hook-up and door handle using a Light Gray Granite Stampin’ Blend.

The roof and skirt are cut out using the die you see at the top of the photo. This creates both pieces in one go which is clever and convenient. 

Tree Lot Dies Stampin Up card ideas
Behind each caravan body I placed a piece of vellum for the windows, and attached the curtain frill on top. I think there’s one where I attached the curtain behind but I decided that was unnecessarily fiddly and pedantic. 
Tree Lot Dies Stampin Up card ideas

I don’t have the Trees For Sale stamps from the Stampin’ Up!® July-December Mini Catalogue but I still wanted trees – you know me, I always want trees! – so I used the tree dies to create a set of stencils. Through these I applied Pear Pizzazz ink using a Blending Brush. A light touch for the pale trees, more ink for the darker trees. 
Tree Lot Dies Stampin Up card ideas

I also made a couple using the Soft Sea Foam Cards & Envelopes from the Stampin’ Up!® Sale-a-Bration brochure. These already have a leafy design which I thought fit in well. On these I created my trees using Soft Sea Foam ink. 

And now here are some great tips for packing to craft while on holiday. 

Crafting on holiday? Here’s how to pack like a pro 

Many of us like to take a little something to do in case of poor weather or a quiet moment. Indeed, for some of us, a holiday is the only chance to have time to ourselves!

But we’ve all been there, ready to craft but forgotten something vital, so I turned to the camping and caravanning contingent for some tips for packing like a pro. These ladies are experts in packing light and many of them, like Sharon, rely on the Stampin’ Up!® Kits Collection.

Sharon said: "The kits are brilliant, they've got everything in them you need. If I made my own up I would probably end up taking too much stuff!"

Heather is another big fan of the kits: “I love taking the Stampin’ Up!® card kits away in the caravan as they have everything in them to make some cards and don't take up much space. I don’t always take the kits but it’s much easier when I do because they are quicker to sort. When I pack my own kit I always find there’s something I want but have left at home!”

Sue R, a long-standing member of my Stampin’ Up!® team, has this advice: “It’s all about planning. I take Designer Series Paper and matching cardstock, or use In Colors as there are only five in each set, so they take up less space.”

Everyone is trying to avoid the problem of taking too much stuff or leaving something vital behind and one of my lovely customers, Sue F is a seasoned motorhomer who has experienced both issues.

She had these three main tips for you:

1. Plan

“One of my main things is to plan well ahead what I want to do while I'm away so I can then think about what I need to take. I’m going away again soon and will probably do some Christmas stamping and take along my colouring tools so I can sit in the sun and colour.”

2. Prepare

Put together a box of supplies that you can leave in the caravan or motorhome so you always have the essentials. On one trip I took loads of supplies but when I got it all out I realised I’d forgotten my scissors. The kitchen scissors did the job but weren't the best.

3. Pare down

Don’t take too much stuff with you. I’ve done that before and been too overwhelmed to make anything.

💡 Remember, when you pack one of our lovely Stampin’ Up!® kits, you will need to add scissors and, if it’s a Paper Pumpkin kit, a clear block for your stamps.

Thank you so much to my crafty campers who helped with this advice. Do you take craft supplies away with you? If so, please let me know in the comments!

And if you are in the UK and like any of the products you see here, please visit my store and, if you use the NEW July 2022 host code ZPZ3ZRHC, I’ll send you a thank you gift next month.

Does your wish list come to more than £99? Please get in touch and I will help you get more for your money and unlock discounts all year round.  

Tuesday, 12 July 2022

Watercolouring blog hop: Three cards using Stylish Sketches Sale-a-Bration stamp set

Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea

Did you know it’s World Watercolouring Month? Or #WorldWatercolorMonth to be more precise? So I am delighted to be taking part in a blog hop celebrating this fabulous technique. 
Watercolour watercolor blog hop
Please read on for some tips and tricks for watercolouring using Stampin’ Up!® supplies and some inspiration using the new Stylish Sketches stamp set from the Sale-a-Bration Brochure.

I love creating watercolouring techniques using my Stampin’ Up!® supplies. Plus, messing around with ink and water is ideal in this hot weather as everything dries quickly so you don’t have much waiting around.

The three cards you see here are made with Stylish Sketches, a gorgeous rubber stamp set which is free to Stampin’ Up!® customers who spend £45 during July or August. It was one of the first SAB items on my shopping list because, as you’ll probably know if you’re a regular visitor, I love wildlife images. 
Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea

My first tip for watercolouring using Stampin’ Up!® stamps is to say that proper watercolouring paper will get you the best results. 
Always use a permanent ink such as Stazon. This stops your black outline ink from bleeding and ruining the effect.
 However, stamping onto watercolour paper is tricky because of the texture. This is where the Stamparatus comes into its own; simply hold your paper in position with the magnet provided and you can stamp in the same place three or four times for a really crisp image.
Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea

The first card I made uses the gorgeous fox, which I painted using Cajun Craze ink. The background is created using Balmy Blue and Granny Apple Green ink. You can paint with Water Painters, which contain water in the barrel so you can squeeze out more as you need it, or a traditional paintbrush.
Watercolouring with Stampin’ Up!® classic ink pads is a really cool way to get fully coordinated projects – plus you have lots of colours to hand without having to buy any extra equipment. 

Method 1 - squeeze the closed ink pad

This can be tough with the new-style Stampin’ Up!® ink pads, so hold the pad upside-down. The base is softer than the lid so this makes it easier.

When using your ink pad as a palette, it’s so important to dry them off fully before closing again. You also need to dry them fully before squeezing to add more ink. But for quick, on-the-go colouring of small areas, this method can’t be beaten. 

Method 2 - ink a clear bock

This method is for you if you:
  • don’t like getting your ink pads messy
  • have trouble squeezing the ink pad hard enough
  • are inking a larger area, or lots of images.
Simply press your clear block into the ink pad (or vice versa). If you use a big block you have a large palette where you can add lots of water. You can add more ink if required by pressing the ink pad onto a dry corner of the block. 

Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea

When colouring an image such as this with watercolour techniques, it’s important to allow each colour to dry before applying a different one – which is why it’s ideal for summer crafting in warm weather. In winter you can speed things up with a heat tool or hairdryer.
For this project I have added a touch of glamour to an otherwise simple design with a strip of the gorgeous copper from the Splendid Day Designer Series Paper pack, which I think picks up the Cajun Craze of the fox nicely.   

Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea
My second fox card has a more earthy feel thanks to Happy Forest Friends Designer Series Paper. I’ve cut out the image using Stitched Rectangles dies. 
Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea
As you can see there is much more shading on this fox. I know it sounds obvious but this is achieved by adding more water to get paler areas, or more ink for darker shading. 
Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea
Behind the sentiment label is nothing fancy; just a torn strip of Cajun Craze cardstock to pick up the colour of the fox. The “weight” of the sentiment strip is balanced by the linen thread bow positioned diagonally opposite. 
Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea

Finally, my duck card steps things up considerably, with a Diorama Dies border and some fussy-cut fig leaves. After saying I always use proper watercolour paper, I confess here that I didn’t for the fig leaves because fussy-cutting thick watercolour paper is hard work. Instead I kept the water to a minimum and used standard Very Vanilla cardstock. 
Stampin Up Stylish Sketches card idea

Also after saying you should allow your colours to dry before switching, you’ll see here that I didn’t do this because I wanted to get this washy effect, To achieve this look – which is called wet on wet watercolouring – make sure you add your new new colour while the old one is still wet. It’s really effective when you want a more dreamy blended background. 
Please visit the other blogs in the hop to see lots more watery inspiration!
I hope you are inspired to try some watercolouring techniques. If you are in the UK and would like to order any products to help you in your watercolouring adventures, please visit my store and, if you use the July 2022 host code F3TW47TV, I’ll send you a thank you gift in August.

Does your wish list come to more than £99? Please get in touch and I will help you get more for your money and unlock discounts all year round.  

Tuesday, 5 July 2022

Woodland-themed projects with FREE Rings of Love paper, and Ringed With Nature stamp set

Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas

Do you love free products? Even after nearly 15 years as a Stampin’ Up!® demonstrator, I still get excited to earn free cardmaking products.

The free product I want to show you today is Rings of Love Designer Series Paper, which is FREE with a £45 purchase during Sale-a-Bration in July and August 2022.

I love the woodland-themed designs so this pack of gorgeous patterned paper is exactly the sort of thing I love. I had fun making three pretty cards using the paper, along with the coordinating Ringed With Nature stamp set from the July-December Mini Catalogue.

Sale-a-Bration and the new Stampin’ Up!® Mini Catalogue both launched on Friday and are now available to crafters in the UK.

Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas

The first card I made with this gorgeous paper was this simple oak leaf-themed design. Here the paper does all the work and I’ve used the beautifully autumnal oak leaf paper with a strip of subtle leafy paper on top. 
Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas

I’ve finished off with the Label Me Lovely punch, stamped with a greeting and topped with a couple of acorns stamped with the coordinating Ringed With Nature stamp set. 
 Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas
My second card is ideal for World Watercolor Month ... without even getting a paintbrush wet. This design of paper perfectly mimics the look of one of my favourite watercolouring techniques, which uses salt crystals to create this beautiful effect. 
Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas
Similar to the first card design, this again uses a strip of paper on top but this time I’ve used the more subtle piece as my main design with the more detailed bird design to provide a focal point.
Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas
I stamped the log slice, house and sentiment using Ringed With Nature and placed them all on a torn strip of Night of Navy cardstock to provide some grounding. 
Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas

Finally I made a card without the Designer Series Paper, concentrating on just the Ringed With Nature stamp set. I created a backdrop using the Brick Wall embossing folder, which I softened using white ink.

The irregular shape is cut using Diorama Dies and then I went to town stamping and fussy-cutting all those lovely woodland elements; toadstools, leaves, berries and acorns. 
Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas
Want to know something really clever? the stamp which creates the toadstool tops also makes the acorns – just turn it upside down. 
Rings of Love Ringed With Nature Stampin Up card ideas

I hope you like these woodland-themed projects and are as taken with the Rings of Love Designer Series Paper as I am. If you are in the UK and would like to earn this paper FREE, please visit my store and, if you use the July 2022 host code F3TW47TV, I’ll send you a thank you gift in August. 

Does your wish list come to more than £99? Don’t place your order! Please get in touch and I will help you get more for your money and unlock discounts all year round.  

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.