Skip to content

TIMELESS 2019 Sneaks Continue…

February 6, 2019

Bold, bright, and blooming… if you love flowers then our new collection, Timeless 2019, is for YOU!

NOTE: Our new collection, Timeless 2019, will be available in our online store mid-February. And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more sneak peeks.

TIMELESS 2019: Sneak Peek Week Continues

February 5, 2019

Cheers to new stamps and dies coming soon!

Don’t forget to visit our Facebook and Instagram pages for even more sneak peeks. (If you are not on Facebook or Instagram, we will share ALL of the sneak peeks here on our blog on Friday. We don’t want to leave anyone out!)

NOTE: Our new collection, Timeless 2019, will be available in our online store mid-February.

And before you go, don’t miss this week’s cards on our SIMPLICITY site… click HERE to view.

TIMELESS 2019: Sneak Peek Week!

February 4, 2019

Join us this week here on our blog, Facebook page, and on Instagram as we share sneak peeks of our upcoming collection, Timeless 2019.

Be sure to “like” us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram for more sneak peeks all week long. (And don’t worry, if you do not use Facebook or Instagram, we will share a collection of all of the sneak peeks here on our blog on Friday. We don’t want to leave anyone out!)

NOTE: Our new collection, Timeless 2019, will be available in our online store mid-February.

Runs with Scissors

February 2, 2019

Wow! Did you see that cloud of dust? Or was that snow? January just whizzed by and left brand new February in charge for the next four weeks. It has finally become cold in my corner of the world (can everyone say Vortex?). Also, the days are becoming a little longer which means Cooper has to go to bed a little later each day. He is a firm believer in the “early to bed and early to rise” philosophy of life, but we encourage him to stay awake until it’s dark outside. We try, too.

This will be my last Runs with Scissors using the Happy Heart Day release to make Valentines. This release offers enough versatility, though, to use many of the stamps and dies all year long and I see no need to pack away all the cuteness.

Who am I kidding? I have no room in the closet to pack away anything. The closets in my home are all due for a major purging and reorganizing. I am waiting for a burst of energy to strike and then “watch out world” … major decluttering in progress! In the meantime, here’s what I’ve been up to instead of purging closets:

This sweet bunny from the Lovable set is enjoying time under the Love in Bloom tree. I’ve used Novu drops to fill in the hearts on the tree for added dimension. I placed blue cardstock under the Lovely Border cut out to match the blue sky around the tree. It was good to choose blue over red for a change for the accent on this card. I can’t wait to send it to one of the little people in my life.

That Big Love die is big enough to command the entire card face and there is room for the Special Friend to sit on a big heart letter. Red and kraft always complement each other and the tiny bit of white for the sentiment brightens things up a bit. The Big Love die can be useful when making cards for anniversaries, weddings, baby arrival, and birthday and even encouragement cards. Who doesn’t want to send and receive love all year around?

I’ve combined the Key to my Heart set with the stacked birds from the Happy Hugs set and added a sentiment from the Kisses and Wishes set to make this traditionally colored Valentine. I added clear Novu drops on the red hearts and the birds’ eyes. How cute is that? Winter would be almost unbearable without the fun of Valentine’s Day in February.

It All Began When …

… I was invited to a co-worker’s home for a demonstration of “stamps” and card making. I was intrigued because I had received a hand made card from a friend for my birthday and it was the cutest, sweetest thing ever! I didn’t quite get “stamps” and I wanted to know how she made it.

The card featured a stick-figured young girl in a cute dress stamped onto a small rectangle of white cardstock. Around the four edges of the cardstock my friend had stamped “happy birthday”, framing the girl image. This smaller rectangle was mounted on slightly larger black cardstock and that layer was mounted on patterned paper. And, as was the style about twenty years ago, a raffia bow finished the card. When I saw that card something went off in my brain and I knew I wanted to be able to do what my friend could do.

That first session at my co-worker’s home, complete with M&M’s for snacking, was a transformative afternoon. I remember moving from one station to another, first stamping our image and then moving on and adding color and layers. The last station was learning how to punch the side by side holes for threading the infamous raffia and making a bow.

Between doing all that and munching the M&M’s, I was on a high. I didn’t think anything could be better than what I had just done. And then we went from Stamping 101 to Stamping 201 … heat embossing.

The demonstrator stamped an image in plain black ink and then sprinkled the magic clear embossing powder on top of it, waved her magic heat gun over the image a few times and there it was … a dimensional and glossy sentiment.

That did it! I was hooked. I knew that I had discovered a form of art that was within my realm of ability. I was a mature grown woman at that time but felt like a school girl who had just discovered that art could be fun. Coming from a history of my art work being criticized and made fun of, this was a revelation, indeed. Those stamped images relieved me of the need to be able to draw and allowed me to spend time coloring as an adult. It’s called card making, but we are really making little pieces of art combining cutting, coloring and design skills.

Twenty years ago card making did not involve as many choices or opportunities as we have now. There were companies that marketed their stamps through home parties and there were brick and mortar stamping and scrapbooking stores. If you wanted to share your hobby, you invited other stamping friends to your home or went to theirs. I was fortunate that several of my co-workers took up stamping and scrapbooking and we would gather weekly to share our stamps, ideas and pizza. We would proudly take our creations to work the next day and show them to our nonstamping friends, who could always pick out my cards due to my inability to stamp straight sentiments or even mount layers evenly. I definitely was artistically challenged.

I’ve read someplace that in order to be good at something, you have to spend 10,000 hours working at it. I know that I’ve invested many more than that over the past 20 years and I don’t think of any of those hours as working at something. Stamping has always been a source of pure joy. (How quickly I have forgotten the failures!)

When we retired and sold our home and belongings and moved into our 35 foot 5th wheel, stamping was almost the only thing that remained the same in my life. At the time, my entire collection fit under the lift up mattress of our bed. I was fortunate that the RV park in Arizona where we spent the winters had a stamping group and we met weekly and shared our stamps and supplies. Those evenings soothed my homesickness and gave me a feeling of community that one misses when full time RV’ing.

After settling here in Alabama after five years of traveling and spending winters in Arizona, we bought a PC to replace our ancient bulky slow laptop and I discovered a website with weekly challenges. I was so excited but also tearfully desperate because I had no idea how to participate! It took months for me to figure out how to post a card photo or join in the chatting. Eventually I shed more tears, but this time tears of joy. May of 2008 was the first time I posted a photo to Flickr of my very primitive card – it was frog-related if I remember correctly.

I have spent quite a bit of time trying to remember the first time I noticed Penny Black on the computer and don’t exactly remember how or when that happened. I believe I fell in love with the Mimi little girl stamps. I do know once I discovered Penny Black I abandoned other companies and began my monogamous relationship with my all time favorite company. I do remember in 2013 I won five wood block Penny Black stamps and made a card with each stamp to post and thank Penny Black for the happy surprise. I remember I shortened a rather long neck on the Mona Lisa image! It’s a wonder Penny Black ever talked to me again!

Mona Lisa 4302K

I do remember vividly the day I received an email from Penny Black’s social media director, Jill Foster, asking me if I would like to be a member of their first ever Stamp Squad. Jill had selected five of us to receive Penny Black stamps to be used to demonstrate ideas for using them. At the end of our six month stint, we were each asked to do one last posting by writing a blog post pretending we had taken over the Penny Black blog. My posting date was December 31, 2013 and I had fun with that assignment. Little did I know what it would lead to.

While I was still learning to live with the sadness that my Stamp Squad days were finished, I received another email from Jill Foster asking if I would like to continue on as a contributor to the blog, posting on Saturdays. I am sure weather watchers around the world saw seismic activity as I screamed for joy over that email! I assumed it would be another six month assignment and always breathed a sigh of relief when those deadlines came and went. I’m wondering if they’ve forgotten about me? Shhh, don’t say anything.

How the stamping world has changed in these twenty years! So many companies, so many releases, so many new products and techniques. Penny Black withstands and overcomes the competition by providing incredible art work and styles to fit any taste. The designers provide such inspiration that I am humbled to share space with them. There are enough releases to keep things seasonal and fresh, but not so many that you become overwhelmed and disappointed that you can’t keep up.

My accumulation of products over the years has tamed my addiction to purchasing more and more and the latest and greatest. I have learned that there will always be new items to replace or improve the older ones. There will be new techniques and tools. But I don’t have to have them all. I used to tease Mr. RWS that buying new golf clubs was probably not the solution to improving his golf game; that applies to my hobby, too. Oh, and I still do my best work with a bowl of M&M’s nearby!

*Thanks to Vicky S. for suggesting the topic for this week’s Runs with Scissors. I am grateful for all your suggestions and welcome even more.    

I have hoarded some glossy red and glossy black cardstock for almost fifteen years. While living in Arizona, I attended a huge stamping expo that included representatives from multiple paper suppliers. At one time I had entire reams of various glossy papers. I remember being nervous about sharing with Mr. RWS how much money I spent that day!   I used a red sheet for my card base and die cut the Love Train from a sheet of the glossy black. I’ve made the card suitable for any friend or family member, but I know a little boy who would love that train!

That black glossy paper was so dear to me that I couldn’t bear to throw away the negative cut out from the previous red and black Love Train card. That cut out would look good on any color of cardstock, but I went for the dramatic look and paired it with gold cardstock. How great is it that you can make two cards from one diecut? That saved so much time that I could make a sixth card!

Kraft cardstock isn’t just for the guys anymore. Here I combined it with pink for a more feminine look. The Hearts Galore diecut is backed with pink cardstock and the Neighborhood Love houses each have a tiny pink heart window. The little pup from the So Much Love set is enjoying the view as he floats at the end of his balloon bouquet. I don’t know what I would do without that Silver Linings die set … I love to add clouds when I can.

I took this photo a few years ago, but since I still have that wooden heart and I still have Cooper, a new photo wouldn’t look any differently! Cooper is sending some of the love from his love-filled heart to all of you. He thanks you for caring about him and being interested in his doggie life. I love sharing Cooper with all you!

I have chatted far too long and now must make a quick exit. Thank you for the ideas you mentioned in your comments last time. I will be depending on them for sure! I also depend on your inspiration in the Penny Circle Flickr Gallery, so please share your work with us. Oh, and I’ve stowed the scissors until next time.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

Card No. 1: 51-484 Lovely Border, 51-491 Lovable Cut Out, 30-522 Love in Bloom, 30-529 Lovable, 30-534 All My Love

Card No. 2: 51-422 Stitched Square and Circles, 51-488 Big Love, 30-536 So Much Love, 30-531 Special Friend

Card No. 3: 51-352 Birds and Banners, 30-523 Key to My Heart, 30-528 Kisses and Wishes, 30-524 Happy Hugs

Card No. 4: 51-487 Love Train, 30-532 Love Sentiments

Card No. 5: 51-487 Love Train, 51-484 Lovely Border

Card No. 6: 51-033 Silver Lining, 51-492 Hearts Galore, 51-293 Neighborhood Love, 30-526 So Much Love



Let’s Get Social: GIMME 5 Video

February 1, 2019

Did you know we frequently share new videos on our YouTube channel? Be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss any of the inspiration we share like this inspiring GIMME 5 video from Therese Calvird.

Watch directly on YouTube HERE.

And before you go, don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube for even more inspiration.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

30-532 Love Sentiments
30-358 Happy Snippets
30-526 So Much Love
30-402 Furry Hugs
30-524 Happy Hugs
30-529 Lovable
51-491 Lovable Cut Out
51-484 Lovely Border
51-488 Big Love
51-494 Love & Miss You
51-487 Love Train

Anything but a Card: Decorative Matchboxes

January 31, 2019

Looking for a fun Valentine gift idea? Elizabeth Allan joins us today with a set of adorable decorative matchboxes created to hold a specific size lip balm.

Elizabeth wanted each box to be different, yet have similar elements. To streamline making multiples, she made all the matchboxes from white cardstock and covered them with our designer papers. Note: For matchbox templates, simply google “paper matchbox templates” for loads of ideas.

Elizabeth kept her die cuts and stamping in tones of red, black, and white, making it easy to mix and match her stamps and dies (exact supplies listed below) as she embellished each box.

For the insides, she used two different layout ideas and repeated them for the rest of the boxes.

Ready to create your very own Valentine matchboxes? The stamps and dies from our Happy Heart Day collection are perfect for customizing your gift giving.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies

80-009 Painted Blooms Designer Paper Pad
51-489 Heart Charms
51-493 Heart Balloons (the bird)
51-486 Stitched XOXO
51-490 Which Way to Love
51-484 Lovely Border
51-494 Love & Miss You
51-485 Hearts Around
30-523 Key to My Heart (Just for You)
30-524 Happy Hugs
30-526 So Much Love (Valentine)
30-528 Kisses & Wishes

Critter Cuteness Overload

January 30, 2019

If you loved Sherry Hester’s elegant love-themed cards on Monday, you are in for a treat today as she explores the creative possibilities with our cute critters.

We’re certain you will be smiling as you scroll… ready, set, go!

for the products featured on the card above

30-529 Lovable
51-491 Lovable Cut Out
51-485 Hearts Around
30-525 Words Sweet
25-020 Petite Blossoms

for the products featured on the card above

30-523 Key to My Heart
51-495 Key…Cut Out
25-007 Dotlets
51-181 Love is Growing

for the products featured on the card above

51-440 Elegant Stitching
51-484 Lovely Border
30-523 Key to My Heart
51-495 Key… Cut Out
51-488 Big Love
51-494 Love and Miss You

for the products featured on the card above

51-409 Ribbon Stackers
30-529 Lovable
51-491 Lovable Cut Out
30-525 Words Sweet
25-017 Trailing Vines

Do Sherry’s cards have you critter crazy? She’s certainly made it easy for YOU to do some critter crafting as well. Just click HERE  for detailed supplies and instructions for each card. And see more furry friends by viewing our complete Happy Heart Day catalog.

And before you go, don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube for even more inspiration.