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alexandra’s Sunday scrapbooking – You are the Tweestest!

January 20, 2018
Hello dear Friends! Welcome to another edition of scrapbooking with Penny Black inc. products. I’ve been churning these Valentines using the adorable stamp Tweetie. Please join me over @ art scrap & more. Thank You!



Runs with Scissors

January 20, 2018

Hello, friends. The coughing, sneezing and whining are finished and I have put on my running shoes and picked up my scissors once again. My thanks to Cooper for doing such a fine job sharing his Christmas experience with you last week. He has read all the comments and is basking in the praise. I’m a bit worried that Penny Black Headquarters may decide that Cooper is the more talented and should be the permanent host of Runs with Scissors. I may have to remind them that he does not have opposable thumbs and he needs my help with the cutting and pasting.

Speaking of opposable thumbs, I’ve put mine to work this week using the Love and Roses release to make more Valentines. It is a joy to work with hearts, butterflies and flowers along with adorably cute images. I found myself not even missing Snowy this week.

This Butterfly Heart Pop Out is among my favorite Penny Black dies. What a beautiful combination of a heart and butterflies! Here I’ve used the Snowflake Stitch Frame for my base. I love coloring white cardstock with my inks and blender. Jill Foster has a video demonstrating the best way to blend inks smoothly. As Jill says, there is more depth and dimension to the color than you would get with preprinted colored cardstock. Blending inks onto white cardstock is worth the extra time.

This adorable Bubble Heart image is so fun to color with markers. I love adding that Heart String die cut to available space on my Valentines. These sweeties remind me of Evelyn and Jack who are about this age. Since they are in charge of bringing the mail into the house and sorting it, I will be putting this in the mail as a surprise for them to find.

Designer paper is always a good background for diecuts. I’ve used the Love and Roses die set and added a heart from the Sweet Heart die set. I colored the heart and flowers using Distress inks and a blending tool. Valentines are the perfect place to showcase those pretty papers you’ve been hoarding. You can not go wrong adding hearts and flowers to your love.

Do It Yourself

When I met Mr. RWS more than thrity years ago, there were many reasons to love him. I confess that the day he showed up with his toolbox and some power tools my feelings were confirmed: he would make the perfect husband.

At the time we met, I owned a one hundred year old home and had been a single mom for a while. My do it yourself skills were limited to tightening an occasional loose screw and using duct tape as needed.

Shortly after we married, Mr. RWS tackled the drafty windows, the rotten porch boards, and the deteriorating shower surround of that old house and when that was done, he even built us a picnic table.

We tackled updating and remodeling several homes over the years, including installing ceramic floors and kitchen cupboards. Mr. RWS did all the painting and I tackled the wallpaper stripping. We worked well as a team and always left a house in better shape than we found it.

Over the years we have found ourselves less enthusiastic about “do it yourself”, instead opting for “call someone else”. This past couple of years, especially, we relied on professionals to install the new hot water heater, build a new gate to the back yard, repair the garage door springs and replace the attic pull down stairs. We recognized, finally, that there were some jobs best left to others. I need to insert here that one of us recognized that need much sooner than the other.

Getting conked on the head while attempting to hold up the pull down attic stairs while Mr. RWS was in the attic banging on the hardware solidified my decision that our do it yourself days were over. Sometimes a good conk on the head is all it takes to clarify a situation!

My beloved mailbox

I’ve written before about our mailbox. It symbolizes the gratitude I have for receiving mail every day. During our full time RV’ing years, we received mail approximately every ten days and I’ve not taken daily mail delivery for granted since.

Sadly, last week, the wooden post holding up our mailbox surrendered to the wood rot that had eaten through its base. (The car barely nudged it, I swear!)   Down went the mailbox! The mail carrier was due in our neighborhood within the hour; not enough time to purchase and install a new post. We had to find some way to keep that mailbox at the curb.

Necessity is the mother of invention

I am embarrassed to admit, this was my idea. The base is a step stool Mr. RWS rescued from the neighbor’s curb where it had been put with the trash. He repaired the bottom step and declared it “perfectly good”. Duct tape was briefly considered to hold the mail box in place, until I realized bungee cords would work and would leave no damage or sticky residue behind.

Thankfully, this disaster only remained in front of our house for 48 hours, the time it took for us to shop for and install a new post on which to mount the black metal box. Time was also spent convincing Mr. RWS that this was not an acceptable permanent solution.

The shopping became more complex than one would imagine as posts and mail boxes range in price from $30 up to $400 and more! We also had to find a way to install the post without the use of a posthole digger into frozen ground.

I would show you a photo of the new post, but it is almost as pathetic as the “do it yourself” mail box shown above. (It does not fall into the $400 category). It is too cold to paint and we can’t mount the house numbers until after the post is painted. The new cedar post may be ugly, but it is not nearly as outrageous as our temporary system. And cars no longer stop to gawk as they drive by.

Yes, since this seems to be the best we can do lately, it is good we are out of the “do it yourself” mode.

Here I’ve used colored cardstock along with three dies to make a quick and easy and pretty Valentine. The Heart Drops die makes a great background for any die or image you choose to add. If you are sending many Valentines, this is an easy to make, assembly line fashion, card. The Heart Drops diecut would be at home on wedding and anniversary cards, too.

The kraft, brown and pink color combination I used in this card reminds me of an ice cream sundae, which should make any guy happy. That kitty from the So Loved set is irresistible and fun to color. The Love and Roses release includes enough images and dies to make Valentines, and other “share the love” cards that please everyone from little kiddles to couples, to friends, and to all the men and women in our lives.

This time, it is kraft and white, another good color combo for the men. I’ve filled in some of the blank space on the kraft base with the leaf image from the Hope Shines transparent set. The Heart Butterflies have attached themselves to a strip of gingham ribbon.

Cooper has set aside his writing career for now and is spending more time with one of his favorite toys. It’s a hedgehog with a duck call implanted instead of a typical squeaker. The sound surprises him every time he manages to bite the hedgy hard enough.

Once again, my time in the Penny Black studio is up. I need to do a quick clean up and put away and then I will be off to the Penny Circle Flickr Gallery to enjoy the cards I find there. I appreciate all the good wishes you sent while I was dealing with my Christmas cold. It will be a few weeks, I suppose, before Cooper’s head returns to normal size after all the positive comments. Little does he know that I am planning to find a way for him to take over the vacuuming and dusting since he’s shown such willingness to help.

Ooops! I almost forgot to stow the scissors!

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

Card No. 1: 51-132 Flights of Fancy, 51-284 Filled with Love, 51-291 Butterfly Heart Pop Out, 51-315 Snowflake Stitch Frame

Card No. 2: 30-458 Heart You, 40-272 Bubble Heart, 51-022 Heart String

Card No. 3: 51-184 Sweet Heart, 51-397 Antique Frame, 51-405 Love and Roses, 80-009 Painted Blossoms

Card No. 4: 51-022 Heart String, 51-183 True Love, 51-298 Heart Drops

Card No. 5: 30-457 So Loved, 51-292 Just For You, 51-397 Antique Frame

Card No. 6: 30-455 Smitten, 30-432 Hope Shines, 51-297 Heart Butterfly


Double Die Cutting Inspiration

January 19, 2018

Let’s fill 2018 with LOVE! Join us over the next several weeks as our designers and crafty friends showcase stamps and dies from our newest collection, Love & Roses.

Today’s cards from Birgit are all about die cutting. Her first LOVEly creation makes great use of the bold sentiment and rose embellishments from our Creative Die set, 51-405 Love and Roses.

Design details: Birgit painted her background and die cut pieces using Daniel Smith watercolors. All were cut from Waterford High White HP watercolor paper. A highlight was added to the roses using a white gel pen. All pieces were layered onto her background panel and the roses were embellished with a twine bow.

Next Birgit has for us a purrfect card featuring our Creative Die, 51-407 Kitty Love.

Design details: Birgit first created her background by stamping the grass onto smooth white cardstock using green ink. She then added blue and green Distress Inks to the panel using an ink blending tool and a foam pad. Birgit hand trimmed her heart frames and layered them over the stamped panel, adding in die cut leaves and hearts to embellish. The cat die was cut from Waterford High White HP watercolor paper and painted with Daniel Smith watercolors. Once dry, a light layer of Black Soot Distress Ink was added to the edges of the cats and heart

One more thing… even more great inspiration from Birgit can be found on our Facebook page!

“Like” our page on Facebook for exclusive inspiration by Birgit Edblom!

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

51-405 Love And Roses
51-407 Kitty Love
30-455 Smitten
30-417 Delicate Silhouettes

Scenic Stroll

January 18, 2018

Let’s fill 2018 with LOVE! Join us over the next several weeks as our designers and crafty friends showcase stamps and dies from our newest collection, Love & Roses.

Where are Jack and Ginger (40-585) walking today?

It looks like they are strolling down a tree lined path, enjoying the view, each other’s company, and a beautiful bouquet of flowers. What a great idea by Birgit to pair them up with our Slapstick/Cling stamp, 40-497 Wintry Trail.

Design details: Birgit first created her background by stamping the scene onto smooth white cardstock using light brown ink. She then added blue and green Distress Inks to the scene using an ink blending tool and foam pads. The main image was stamped using Archival ink onto Waterford High White HP watercolor paper, painted with Daniel Smith watercolors, fussy cut, and then adhered to the background. The flowers and hat were embellished with Liquid Pearls.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

40-585 Jack and Ginger
40-497 Wintry Trail


Sweet and Scenic

January 17, 2018

Let’s fill 2018 with LOVE! Join us over the next several weeks as our designers and crafty friends showcase stamps and dies from our newest collection, Love & Roses.

There are so many design possibilities with our Slapstick/Cling stamp, 40-584 In Love.

Birgit has given this sweet pair a beautiful scene to gaze upon by stamping her background with our transparent set, 30-450 Peaceful Winter.

Design details: Birgit began by stamping her kids using archival ink onto Waterford High White HP watercolor paper and painting them with Daniel Smith watercolors. Birgit masked her focal point image and then stamped her background scene using water soluable green ink such as Distress Ink. She then painted the background with Daniel Smith watercolors, allowing the background stamping to bleed and blend with the watercolors. On a separate piece of paper she stamped and painted the balloons and fussy cut them out.   A white frame was cut using from Paper Accent textured paper using a basic circle die and the edges of the image (feet and balloon strings) were stamped onto the frame. The frame was layered over the main image and the fussy cut balloons adhered to extend beyond the circle frame.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

40-584 In Love
30-450 Peaceful Winter


Really Really Love You

January 16, 2018

Let’s fill 2018 with LOVE! Join us over the next several weeks as our designers and crafty friends showcase stamps and dies from our newest collection, Love & Roses.

Birgit has given our Slapstick/Cling stamp, 40-511 Crimson Blush, a vintage style on today’s romantic card.

To add even more interest to her background, she partially inked and stamped the music notes from our miniature transparent set 30-454 Hearty Note. And who can resist that sweet sentiment (30-455 Smitten) embossed in white?

Design details: Birgit stamped her roses using Archival ink onto Waterford High White HP watercolor paper and painted them with Daniel Smith watercolors. She also painted the background. Once dry, a light layer of Distress Inks were added to the upper left hand corner and side using an ink blending tool and foam pads. Birgit added the partial music note stamping by inking her stamp and then removing some ink with a paper towel before stamping onto the background. Once dry, the sentiment was heat embossed using white embossing powder.

And before you go, don’t miss this week’s card on our SIMPLICITY site…

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

30-455 Smitten
30-454 Hearty Note
40-511 Crimson Blush


Love and Roses with Birgit

January 15, 2018

Let’s fill 2018 with LOVE! Join us over the next several weeks as our designers and crafty friends showcase stamps and dies from our newest collection, Love & Roses.

This week we feature the stamping and die cutting of the one-of-a-kind Birgit Edblom!

Birgit created a pair of charming cards featuring our miniature 3 x 4 inch transparent sets, 30-459 Love You and 30-458 Heart You.

Birgit’s neutral color scheme with pops of red, give these cuties a clean and simple style that is also oh-so-fun.

Design details: Birgit stamped her characters using Ranger Archival Ink and painted them and the backgrounds with Daniel Smith watercolors. Her stamping was done on Waterford High White HP watercolor paper. To create the dimensional frames, Birgit trimmed a rectangle from white cardstock, scored along all sides and folded along the score lines. Textured cardstock from Paper Accent.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

30-459 Love You
30-458 Heart You