Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Sale-A-Bration, My Paper Pumpkin, Stazon ink tips And Cool Kid Watercolor Layout -Using Stamps in Scrapbooking

Stampin' Up's Biggest Sale of the year is going on NOW!!!!
For Every $50 you earn FREE....yes FREE items!!!
Check out all the details at:
I LOVE this time of year!!!
To celebrate, I am sharing a layout using some of the new Stampin' Up items from the Occasions Catalog.  My goal this year is to use my stamps MORE!!!  One way to do that is to use them for embellishments and titles in my scrapbooks!

I loved these photos of my youngest.  Jesse has such wild hair and his hair looks so pretty here!!  Can you say a boy has pretty hair? Must not have been humid at all that day!!  LOL!!!  He is my little weather gauge!!!  This is the new WaterColor Wonder DSP...isn't it pretty!!!??  
This picture shows what can happen when you scrap 12X12 layouts.  I really wanted my strip to be in Smokey Slate cardstock.  But Smokey Slate is only available in 81/2 X 11 size.  This shows how I made it work!  Once my heart framelits embellishment goes over never see that this isn't a full 12" across strip!!!

What a fun cat stamp!!!  I have been loving this stamp set!
This stamp is from one of My Paper Pumpkin kits!  I take all MPP stamps and store them in one of the Stampin' Up DVD cases together.  These are some great stamps that are included in the kits!  I used Stazon ink to stamp directly on my photo!
To find out more information about the My Paper Pumpkin kits:

Here is a tip for your stazon ink....the plastic cover should be stored with your ink pad for the life of the ink pad- this adds in keeping the stazon pad from drying out quickly.  To keep the plastic lid easily, I used Stampin' Up dimensionals to adhere it to the inside of the lid!  Now I never lose it!!!
Easy fix!!!

My pin embellishment came from the Stampin' Up Pretties kit that I got on clearance! I love that these include the safety peace for the end of the pin!  

I'm not a huge fan of my handwriting but I know that in years to come, my children will like seeing it, so I normally hand write all my journaling.  Don't be scared that your handwriting is not pretty enough- I promise, it will be treasured in years to come!!!



This is how I store all my exclusive stamps that I get in the My Paper Pumpkin kits!  These have included some really fun stamps!!!!  They are ONLY available in the MPP kits each month!!!  Have you signed up???  See the above link for more information!!!

 Items Used- click the link for more information on any item:
 Thanks for stopping by and visiting!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Sewing on Cards or Scrapbooks with the Janome Sew Mini Machine

A new year, a new SHOCKING me!!!  Yes, that is a sewing machine, in MY house!!!  It is the Janome Sew Mini. 
I love the look of sewing on cards and scrapbook pages, but I have ZERO sewing ability!  Seriously....ZERO knowledge.  In researching and asking on forums, I found the Janome Sew Mini was a pretty basic simple machine.  Well, sign me up!  But wait, I still had no idea where to start or how to start.  Literally my skills ended at taking the machine out of the box!
I found some tutorials on Youtube from Gina K- that went step by step- from taking the machine out of the box to sewing on a card.  I watched several times.  It didn't look that hard.  It kinda looked.....dare I say, easy???
So, the first thing I did was buy the Janome Sew Mini machine.  I bought mine on Amazon.  Okay, machine bought.  With Amazon prime, my machine arrived VERY quickly!  Okay, if I didn't start at some point, I never would.  So I took the machine out of the box, set it on the table with my laptop- and started to rewatch the tutorials again, step by step, I watched, and then tried to follow the directions.  I had to pause and give myself time to do the steps, had to replay a couple parts of the video until I understood it completely.  But I was able to do it, She went slow enough, clear enough, good directions....I threaded my machine!!!!!  Yes!!!!  Mini celebration!!!!
The next step was to watch the tutorial number 4 and start sewing on a card.  I didn't expect perfection.  I just wanted stitches on paper.  Playing, getting used to sewing.  Keep in mind, I have NEVER sewed so everything was a first. 
This was my first test run sheet.  I used a piece of basic black cardstock so my white stitches showed up on it well. The thread came from a sewing kit that my mom bought me for my first Christmas after I got married.  I guess she thought I was married now, so I would sew.  Weird logic to me!!!!  LOL!!  I had to dig the kit out of the back of a closet and  dusty it off.  But the kit did have white thread in it.  If you don't have any thread, order some when you buy your machine.  White and black work well for beginners and can be used on a lot of projects!
I wanted to see the different stitches the machine offered.  Play with locking my stitches.  Oh, the errors are many....but do you SEE.....I actually sewed!!!!  There are stitches on paper!!!  Goal accomplished!!!!
I had to rethread my machine a couple times, see where one line, I had no thread....yup, it happened.  But I do have to say, I am good at threading the machine now!  I am sure, with practice, those errors will lesson.  I will get better.  Practice, Practice, Practice!!!

My next step was to try and sew around an edge, like I would sew around an edge of a card.  As you can see, I made errors, I wasn't good, but it is passable....kinda like sewing!  I forgot to change the stitch type so the first half was a straight stitch.  I didn't want this because it can just cause the paper to rip perforate.  I changed it.  And stitched on!

Here is the front of the layers.  Not perfect but I accomplished my goal!  Sewing on a card!!!  I am super excited to play and practice more.  I think until I get better, I am going to do my sewing FIRST in case I mess up, my whole paper project won't be messed up!

Here are the tutorials that helped me:  (Part 1- setting up the machine) (Part 2- Threading the bobbin and machine) (Part 4- sewing around the edges)
As always, all current Stampin' Up items can be found on my online store: 


Items Used on this project: 
I had to include a picture of all my mess up threads!!! 
Thanks for stopping by!  Off to practice sewing!!!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Kiwi Lane Design Templates Challenge Using Retro Fresh Designer Series Paper and Brother Scan N Cut machine

I have had my Kiwi Lane templates for a couple of years now.  I enjoy using them.  They make some really fun layouts.  Even though I have had them for awhile, I have never competed in one of the Kiwi Lane  Challenges.  It's a new year, and I challenged myself to true new things in my crafting!  So here I am with my Kiwi Lane Challenge:

This challenge was based on this sketch:
Isn't this sketch wonderful?? 
Here are all the details on the Kiwi Lane Design blog:

I used the new Designer Series Paper, Retro Fresh, in the Occasions catalog.  I really liked this paper line.  It includes  the Baked Brown Sugar color - this is one of my new favorite neutrals! 

Isn't that sequin trim wonderful???  I walked into the kitchen this morning, all the lights were out.  This layout was still on the table, and that trim was Divine!  It was glowing!!!  I caught the light out of the corner of my eye as I walked by and had to stop.  It just made me smile!  So pretty!  The great thing about the new trim is you can use it as a ribbon as I did on the second page or you can cut the trim and pull off the sequins and use them individually like I did here as well!
For my title, I used the new Starburst Sayings stamp and framelit set.  This is my favorite set in the new occasions catalog.  The framelits themselves are SO handy.  They feel nice and thick, they cut wonderfully!  I love them!!!  For the camera embellishment, I used the On the Film Framelits.  I inked up the camera die and cut it out! 

I didn't have any of the circle templates.  I pulled out my Brother Scan N Cut machine.  I picked a circle from the preloaded cut files on the machine.  I was able to stack one circle on top of a smaller one to cut out a circle frame.  Quick and easy!!!  

This was my first attempt, just cutting a basic circle. 

Here is where I stacked the circles.  Just as easy to move one circle on top of another one!

I also used my Brother Scan N Cut to cut out the star shape.

This was a fun layout!  I see myself doing more of these challenges!  As always, you can visit my online store for any of the Stampin' Up items:
Items Used:
 Thanks for stopping by and visiting!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Amazing Family Scrapbooking Layout- Using Stamps in Scrapbooking

I wanted to share another scrapbooking layout using stamps.  Many stamp lovers make cards, but never think about pulling out their stamps when they scrapbook.  PULL THOSE STAMPS OUT!!!  Stamps can make excellent titles, journaling, and embellishments for your scrapbooks.  The best part of using your stamps in your scrapbooking, other than getting INKY ;), is that you can use those stamps over and over.  The color ink changes the look.  How you use them changes the look.  The possibilities are endless.  And the bonus....they were a sticker or embellishment that I used once and was stamps were an investment in my crafting!  Get the most out of your stamps!  I challenge you to dig your stamps out, and use them for a layout!  How many stamps can you use?  How did you use them?  
These were some fun pictures that I really wanted to play with and have fun with them.  I pulled out the Amazing Family stamp set and added the bow tie as an embellishment....right on the photo!  I think this really makes it pop!!!  
I also used the stamp set to make my title as well.  If a part of the stamp doesn't work for you, consider fussy cutting it and changing it!

The bow tie is great, but the shoe comes in a fast second! To cute!!!

Silly photos turned into a cute and wonderful layout!

Thanks for stopping by for a visit! 

Sunday, January 12, 2014

My first paper pumpkin box!- My Paper Pumpkin Welcome Kit

Updated: 1/12/14
With the new My Paper Pumpkin deal- Free Marker set with any new Sign up- I though I would repost my first Paper Pumpkin box.  This is the welcome kit.  Everyone who signs up - gets this kit first.  The following month, you receive whatever monthly kit is that month.  The welcome kit is wonderful get the D clear block.  I have said many times how wonderful the Stampin' Up clear blocks are.  If you have never used one, this is a great way to try one- get it in your hands and see how comfy they are!!! 
With the new FREE marker promo- this is a great time to try out My Paper Pumpkin!!!  Have you ever tried Stampin' Up markers?  This are great!  You can color directly on your stamps- give a little huff and stamp on your page- Your stamped image is colored wonderfully!!!

Stampin' Up is  offering new Paper Pumpkin subscribers an incentive. When customers sign up for a new Paper Pumpkin membership between January 11 and February 10, you'll get a FREE set of 2012-2014 In Color Stampin' Write Markers--that's a $14.95  value!

The Fine Print
Customer Promotion
  • This special offer is only valid for new subscribers.
  • Customers must sign up at  (Please select Michelle McGraw, Concord, NC as your demo!!!)
  • The markers will be sent with the subscriber's Welcome Kit.  No coupon code is required. Anyone who signs up for a Paper Pumpkin membership during the promotion dates will get a set of 2012-2014 In Color Stampin' Write Markers

I have been MIA for awhile.  Spring time- yes, even though it is cold, I believe it is officially SPRING, is a hard time.  I had a great trip to Vegas!  But that three hour time change is rough.  Top it off that is was daylight savings weekend too!  Geesh!!!!  I am finally rested up and back into the groove of running the kiddos around again!  Spring time also brings soccer, flag football team, and scouts.  Kids going in every direction!!!  With the busy time of the year, my first Paper Pumpkin box couldn't have come at a better time!!!  Don't have time to do a done of crafting?  Paper Pumpkin can help!  Everything you need is in the box for a fun quick craft!!!!  I am loving this!!!

If you don't know, My Paper Pumpkin is a monthly subscription box.  The first box you receive will come with a clear block to use your stamps that come with the box each month.  Each box will have everything you need to make the craft for that month.  The craft will be different each month!!!  This month's box is cards!  These boxes are perfect for people like me, that are busy but want to make some projects still, first time crafters, and season crafters too!  If you are a season crafter, you might think WHY do I need to get a box each month? The projects are cute! Fast and quick!  AND....if you are a season crafter, you can step up these projects with your extra supplies you already have!!!! 

Some of the boxes are coming in a kraft box this month, but all will later change to the red box later on.  I like kraft so this change up doesn't bother me at all!  I am sure I will love the red box as well too!  I will plan to repurpose my box!  I will cover with Designer Series Paper and reuse!!  The front does come with a shipping label on it but since I will cover with DSP, it won't matter.

This is a first peek in the box!  Very nice presentation! 

This card tells you about the clear block that you receive with ANY FIRST order that you get!  You keep the block to reuse each month.  This is a big plus for me.  I am a HUGE fan of Stampin' Up's clear blocks.  I don't think there are any ones better!  They are very comfy in your hand!  I love these blocks!  It is a great way to try a SU block and see for yourself!!!

Here you see the clear block, this month's stamp set and a ink spot.

This month's color is Basic Gray.  I love Stampin' Spots.  They are great to pack in your to go bag for crops and retreats.  They are great to use for direct to paper techniques.  Since I have most of the Stampin' Spots already, I will pass this spot onto my niece.  She will love getting some ink for her stamps!!!  Spots can be used in the same way as a full pad.  Turn that stamp upside down and pat the ink spot on your stamp!  EASY!!! 

All stamps that come with the monthly box are clear mount.  If you have never tried clear mount, this is a great way to try them out!  I ordered some extra stamp cases from Stampin' UP, so I will store them in the case.  I will be able to store a couple of month's boxes in one clear case!

This is the package that contains the project.

First time crafter?  Don't know where to start.....don't worry, they have it covered!!!  Each box comes with a picture of the project!!!

And EASY to follow directions!!!  You are ready to create!!!!

This set contains enough to make four  COMPLETE cards- including envelopes.

Overall, I think this is a great box.  Are you interested in getting a month craft box delivered right to your door?  Head over to
Follow the easy sign up steps!  Once you go through the process, it will ask you for a demo- I am Michelle McGraw, Concord, NC.  (we get credit for all monthly subscriptions)
Paper Pumpkin can be cancelled at anytime!  Are you trying My Paper Pumpkin???
Thanks for stopping by!!!!
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