Independent Stampin'Up! Demonstrator!

Hey friends!
I've been a demonstrator with Stampin'Up! since 2011. I'm located in Bozeman, Montana, but have customers all over the country. I have a very fun and active downline called "Big Sky Stampers" and we get together in person and online to share what we love. My blog posts feature what I'm up to recently and I try to share new product information, tips and tricks and creative inspiration. You can shop from this site or find out more information about our products and becoming a demonstrator! Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Some Favorites!

Hi stampers!
Well, today is the last day of the 2017 Occasions Catalog!  It has been a fun ride these past 5 months and while I'm sorry to see some of it go away, I'm always looking forward to what is coming next!  I decided to share some favorites with you today, no special reason, other than I think I haven't shared these on a blog yet. I hope I inspire you to find your creative mojo. Tomorrow is the new CATALOG!

I'll be back tomorrow with all the links and details!  If there's a last minute something you need or want from the retiring list, check out this link: (Today's the last day to order!)

Occasions Catalog Retiring List!

Until tomorrow,

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

You're a Genius!

Hi stampers,
I'm rediscovering my love of a stamp set that came out with last year's preorder, the "Painter's Palette" set!  I love the frame on the easel and that almost anything can go inside it.  The card I'm featuring today was not intended to showcase this set, but rather was for a technique class on different inking methods. We used natural sponges to sponge our background!  Here's the card:

I'm still exploring the new In Colors so chose three of them to sponge with, Fresh Fig, Tranquil Tide and Lemon Lime Twist. I also grabbed the coordinating ribbons (one of the best things about Stampin'Up! is our product coordination across color lines!) and attached a little flare of them.  Here's a closer look at the process:

To sponge, I held a sponge between my thumb and first finger, inked it up directly from the ink pad and blotted it on the card. You would get a completely different look if you rubbed it or swirled it. I just blotted, re-inked and blotted some more. It was fun and as you can see, I used a different sponge for all three colors. Best news, the ink washes out of these sponges and after drying, they are ready to use again!

I was pretty happy with the final result on what began as a sponging experiment. I hope you are able to try this technique too. You can find sponges like this in any craft aisle at a big box store.

Thanks for stopping by!  One more day until June 1st and the big new Annual Catalog reveal!  You have a little more than 24 hours to still order from the Occasions catalog so don't let that deadline slip by if there's still something you wanted!

Happy Stampin'!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Fun with Donuts and Paper Pumpkin!

Hi stampers!
Are you a Paper Pumpkin fan? If not, you should be!  There's alot of fun to be had in each month's surprise kit of crafting supplies and goodies!  You can always make the kit as suggested, but you can also do your own thing and there are plenty of leftover supplies to help you out!

In May, we received a really cute donut-themed card kit. I decided to cut mine up a bit and make twice as many cards. I mounted them on card stock and added some fun of my own. Here are my results:

Using some random sentiment stamps, flowers, pearls and string, I was able to make some fun cards that go way further than the original kit would have.  I love the surprise factor each month and in the meantime, I'm getting quite the stock pile of stamps and small ink pads that come with each kit!  


If that isn't enough to entice you, how does 25% off your first three months sound?!  You can subscribe to Paper Pumpkin at this link and you'll get your first kit after June 10th!  This special offer is for new subscribers only so don't miss out on the fun!

And here's a great video to show you what a kit looks like and what you can do with it right out of the box:

Take a minute and sign up today!  You won't be sorry!
Happy weekend!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Popsicle Fun

Hi Stampers!
It's Memorial Day weekend and while that means parades, ceremonies and remembering those who have served our country and fallen, it also signals the beginning of summer most of the time. We take things a bit slower in Montana and so it can still snow, but hopefully will be in and outta here before you know it!  I decided to feature a great summer treat today...Popsicles!  here's my card:

This stamp is from a great summer-themed set in the Occasions catalog and you can only purchase it for one more week, then it's gone!  Check out the stamp set itself and you'll see it features "all things summer"!

I don't live anywhere to really snorkel and I've never seen a starfish or dolphin in the neighborhood, but everything else screams summer fun! This would be such a great set to have on hand especially for kid-related projects.  A clear mount set is only $19.00 (#142261)!

My technique involved rolling a wet wipe up into a tube, about 4" long, then placing some drops of 3 different reinkers along the spine of the tube and swiping the wet wipe across the white card stock. One wet wipe inked up would probably yield 4-6 pieces of card stock before you would need to reink!

Take the time to check the Occasions Catalog out one more time and make sure you're not missing anything you wanted!  It's all gone after May 31st!

Happy Stampin'!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Eastern Beauty

Hi blogger friends!
Did you know that the exquisite "Eastern Palace" Suite is available as a special preorder bundle until June 1st!  It is an excellent opportunity to buy some great items in this suite at a special bundled price. After June 1st, all the products will be available to purchase individually and not at the special price. I'm enjoying my creative adventures with this fun, out-of-the box set of stamps, thinlets and embellishments!  Here's my latest creation:

The thinlets take a little time to get used to. Some of the edges cut and some don't. They don't always work the way you think they will so my tip is to try them first on some scrap cardstock and see what they do, how you can combine them and what ideas they conjure up!  There are two bundles available, one with just about everything and one with a little less!  Here are the details:

English Bundle: 147196; French Bundle: 147198
Eastern Beauty Photopolymer Stamp Set$60.50 USD/ $77.75 CAD
Eastern Palace Specialty Designer Series Paper
Eastern Gold Vinyl Stickers
Lemon Lime Twist Classic Stampin’ Pad (New In Color!)
Tranquil Tide Classic Stampin’ Pad (New In Color!)
Fresh Fig Classic Stampin’ Pad (New In Color!)
Very Vanilla Note Cards & Envelopes (New!)FREE!
English Bundle: 147207; French Bundle: 147208
Eastern Beauty Photopolymer Stamp Set$103.50 USD/$134.75 CAD
Eastern Palace Specialty Designer Series Paper
Eastern Palace Cardstock Pack
Mini Tassels Assortment
Eastern Gold Vinyl Stickers
Lemon Lime Twist Classic Stampin’ Pad (New In Color!)
Tranquil Tide Classic Stampin’ Pad (New In Color!)
Fresh Fig Classic Stampin’ Pad (New In Color!)
Eastern Medallions Thinlits Dies
Very Vanilla Medium EnvelopesFREE!
Very Vanilla Thick Cardstock (New!)FREE!
If you can't wait, or want to save some money, go online and order your preferred bundle today!  You'll soon be on your way to some Eastern Elegance in your creative endeavors!

Thanks for stopping by and taking a peek at my blog!
Happy Stampin'!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Eastern Palace Sunflower

Hi there stampers!
I am guessing if you have been on Pinterest in the last month or two, you have seen alot of cards featuring the "Eastern Palace Suite"!  It's a bold, geometric, somewhat nontraditional set in Stampin'Up!'s lineup in the new catalog, coming out June 1st!  I've struggled a little with figuring out how to use it but have had some fun and success so far. Here's the unexpected card... a sunflower!

I used one of the thinlit medallions and cut two of them, one in So Saffron and one in Crushed Curry. I darkened the edges with some brown ink and a dauber, and also daubed my brick wall background a tad.  The stem is a branch from another set and the sentiment features a new punch and stamp set coming in a bundle.

As with all these cards I'm posting which feature new product, I will be bringing the card back again after June 1st, in the weeks and months ahead and sharing my techniques and supplies. For now, it's just a sneak peek!

Don't forget the retiring list is about to expire, May 31st!  There are still many great deals to be had and once it's gone, it's gone!

Have a great evening!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Happy Birthday!

Happy Friday Stampers!
I'm glad to see the weekend get here, aren't you?!  Our subdivision is having a garage sale tomorrow so we've been cleaning out some nooks and crannies to see what we can part with. My husband and I downsize in small baby steps so it isn't so painful - haha!

I have an amazing, simple card for you today. One of the new products is a great, large Happy Birthday greeting thinlit that you can cut out with your Big Shot.  So the greeting would really stand out, I cut two of them, one in white and one in Calypso Coral to place behind and slightly to the left of the white. I think it really helps the white greeting standout and gives more of a 3D effect. What do you think?

I used some fabulous new Designer Series Paper that is coming out in the new catalog (June 1st) and some of the new In Color ribbon, Tranquil Tide. Did you notice the cute little bow?  These are In Color embellishments that are also going to be in the new catalog!  I don't care how good your fine motor skills are, you couldn't tie a bow that cute on your own!

Speaking of Big Shots, do you have one?  If not, you should consider it!  This fabulous embossing and die cutting machine steps your papercrafting up multiple levels and is indispensable for me. I use it multiple times a day and rarely make a card without it.  Check out the store (along the right side of the blog)  for more information. I also have some ideas on how to get one for a reduced price by hosting a party or pooling some orders with your friends. I've never had anyone purchase one that wasn't glad they did and frankly wondering why they didn't sooner!

Hope you have a great weekend!
Happy Stampin',

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Speaking of chairs....

Hi Stampers!
I gave you a sneak peek at a great chair framelit yesterday and have another one that just screams relaxation today!  Here it is:

Aren't these great!  You can do so much between cutting with different colors of paper or stamping with different colors of ink. For this card, I focused on another new In Color, Berry Burst. It is a gorgeous, bright magenta that is so pretty.  The cute little bow is another product that is coming June 1st, in all the In Colors. The background paper is out of a huge paperstack of all the in colors!  There is a lot to look forward to and I hope you are enjoying my sneak peeks!  Stay tuned for more!

Happy Stampin'!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Just Breathe....

Hi there Stampers!
I am so excited about the new catalog, I'm bursting with ideas!  I realize it is a couple of weeks away before I really go crazy, but thought I would whet your appetite just a tad. There are lots of new products, especially stamp and framelit bundles that are sure to spark your creative imagination. It's also drawing closer and closer to summer when a comfy chair, tall lemonade and warm sunny day seems like heaven.  Here's my card:

I think this looks like a place I could sit for quite awhile... The only thing else I would need is my Kindle and the day would be perfect!

The catalog is out and I can get you one if you need one!  You will be able to look at it online in June 1st, so watch my blog that day for all the links. There is a lot of excitement and fun coming including a bonus gift for hostesses who would like to host a party of their own. June is wide open so contact me if you would like me to bring a party to your home. You supply the friends and goodies, I'll supply the fun!

Meanwhile, don't forget about the Clearance Rack and Retiring products. You can see both categories under "shop now" to the right on this blog!  Check out the discounted framelits for sure... some really good deals are waiting to be snatched up.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Florals on the Fence with the 2017-2018 In Colors!

Hello Friends,
I'm getting a slow start this week after a wonderful, memorable and bittersweet weekend in our former home of Casper, Wyoming. We celebrated the life of an incredible man that meant so much to our family. For some reason, my brain is a bit stuck in the past and I feel kinda foggy this morning, sorta like, "what's next"...  

After giving it a little thought, I think it's time to look forward to the new catalog, even though the debut is a couple of weeks away. I've been able to preorder some things and am enjoying my time playing with new products. That relaxes me, excites me and gives me something to look forward to many days!  I have a fun card for you today that combines a stamp and framelit bundle that were introduced last year, but are carrying over into the new catalog. It also shows off some of the new In-Colors including Fresh Fig, Tranquil Tide and Lemon Lime Twist. Here's my card:

I decided I really wanted to show off the flowers and create some dimension, so the front of the card is only a half card. I stamped it with the favorite "Hardwood" stamp that we use all the time to create a fence look. I then stamped and cut flowers, leaves, berries etc from mostly new In-Colors with a splash of Sweet Sugarplum. The products I used are from the "Falling Flowers" bundle, #142329. which you can still purchase as a bundle until May 31st and save 10%. After May 31st, the stamps and framelits will be available, just not as a bundle with the extra savings.

I've got several events coming up the rest of the month and most will feature sneak peaks at what is coming in the new catalog. If you would like your own copy of the catalog, contact me and I'll get one to you! It's always fun to start with new products and see what ones will tap into your creative juices. I think 2017-2018 is going to be a very good year!

Happy Stampin'!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Shadow Stamping

Hey Stampers!
Yay, it's Friday!  That usually means a weekend of fun... usually!  I know there's always some chores to catch up on but I think my lifelong love of weekends came when I started school in kindergarten!  Hope you have some fun plans!  A big thing on many people's calendar is the season of graduations. Lots of us travel to see our loved ones graduate and it's nice to bring along a special card to mark the occasion.   Here's one I recently made:

This card was quite simple because the stamp set does the shadowing part for you. Those are actually two separate stamps, one with black ink and one with red. I stamped the black image first, then lined up the red and stamped on top of it. It is quite easy as the stamps are made of photopolymer material and so they are completely see-through and easy to line up.  I stuck with our local high school's school colors of black and red but this could be adapted for any school colors. It's bold, fresh and clearly states what it's all about!  I want to draw your attention to the base layer. It's a fun printed window sheet "paper" that we carry. The designs are gold metallic on one side and silver metallic on the other. These sheets are perfect to use for so many ideas including Christmas cards, wedding cards, graduation, etc. Just to make sure the metallic element wasn't to subtle, I added my silver sequin strand! That always says "party"! All my supplies are listed below if you are interested in recreating a card like this. Just a note, this stamp set is retiring so you need to get it before May 31st if you're interested!  Here's a closer look at it:

Hope you have a good weekend on tap!
Happy Stampin'!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Beautiful drawing, hint of color

Happy Thursday Stampers!
I'm back today with a little different example of my work. Usually, color is a big part of my design. If I'm using Designer Series Paper, it automatically suggests the color themes to be used in a project. Among my papercrafting passion, I've been an avid crafter my entire life including working with bazillions of shades of color in DMC thread for cross stitch projects, nuances of color with yarn for the many sweaters and afghans I've knit and every color under the sun in fabric for years of quilts and table runners, wall hangings. All of this has developed a good eye for "what goes together" and what doesn't as far as color goes. I also had an extremely fashionable mom who could differentiate between 4 shades or more of navy blue.

Therefore, color is my favorite design element most of the time. Today, I set that aside and focused on two sketch-type stamps that I love and added just a hint of color. Here they are:

What do you think?  They were fun to do as the sketch speaks for itself. I kept the other elements simple in order to draw attention to the sketch. I like the effect, especially the background stamping on the door card, on my underneath layer.  It's fun to challenge yourself to some parameters and see what happens!  It's easy to add everything we like to a project and pretty soon, it is overwhelming and the eye doesn't know where to look or what is the feature.  I've often realized that many times, it's about knowing when to stop and what to leave off a project, right?!!

These stamp sets are available now and will be continued into the new catalog so if you want to try your hand with some pretty sketched stamps, you can contact me directly or order online!

Happy Stampin'!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Up, Up and Away

Hey Stampers,
With the coming of spring, I've already seen our resident hot air balloon up in the sky a couple of times recently!  I still haven't ever tried that but think it might be a thrill I'd enjoy!  We will see some day....

Our Occasions catalog introduced a fun Hot Air Balloon stamp and framelit set that has alot of coordinating pieces. It's fun to experiment with. I have a few cards for you today that feature this set. Some of the paper I've used is no longer available but the stamps and framelits are!

With the different sentiment choices, I made a thank you, general and congratulations card. I thought the congratulations one would be a perfect graduation card too!  There are lots of options so if you haven't picked up this set yet, do so before May 31st to take advantage of bundle pricing!. It will still be in the new catalog coming up in June, but not as a bundle.  Here's a closer look at the stamp set:

As you can see... lots of choices!  I will be coming back to this set often!

Hope you have a great day in which you have time to be creative!
Happy Stampin'!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

To An Amazing Mother

Hi Stampers!
Well, we successfully watched and participated in the great celebration that is college graduation for our son!  What fun and what joy!  My weekend was full of smiles and laughs and even a couple tears as I thought back on his life and all he has accomplished. Whew!

I am back to another love... all things paper!  My decor and cards were a big hit and added so much festivity to the day. It was all fun to make and fun to use from the napkin holders to the posters to the banner, to the pictures on the table cards.  I ended up giving a lot of it away to the guests so they could have some mementos from the day.

I have a great Mother's Day card idea for you today.  I wanted to use the "That's the Tag" set again, as I had previously for a mother's day card. There are some love cut outs that can be used on the card itself or on a tag. I used both here:

I stuck with a simple color scheme of Watermelon Wonder (retiring May 31st) and Smoky Slate.  I used some silver foil paper and ribbon from the Sale-A-Bration freebie lineup to make my card sparkle a bit more. I particularly like the sentiment on this card because it can be used for any mom in your life... your daughter, your aunt, your friend, etc.  So many of us don't have our moms to send a card to any longer, but we still know some great ones!

Today is a fun day for me and my customers!  I'm hosting a New Catalog Open House  where you can stop by anytime from 4-7 p.m., grab a catalog, make a bookmark for your catalog featuring the new In-Colors and see some cards and product that I purchased during the preorder. If you are near Bozeman, I hope you can attend!  Contact me for more details!

Thanks so much for stopping by to take a peek!  I recently passed the 50,000 views point which just blows my mind!  I'm honored and very humbled that so many people are interested in my ideas and projects. Being a Stampin'Up! demonstrator has certainly opened up a brand new world of friends, creative endeavors and fun!  You should consider it!  There's more information at the top of this blog, on the right!

Finally, here's a picture featuring the culmination of all the fun and celebration on Saturday!  Montana State's tag line has been "Mountains and Minds" and we have both in abundance here. Congratulations Sam and Kristin!

Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, people standing, outdoor and nature

Until tomorrow,

Friday, May 5, 2017

Everything paper for a party!

Hi friends,
We are excited around our house!  Tomorrow, our youngest child is graduating from college!  We are so excited and proud of him on many levels. He's accomplished many of his dreams and plans. He has become independent, responsible, faithful and true. He still loves us and we love him. No more tuition !!  Obviously there is a lot to celebrate!

I have been having fun getting ready for the big day! We are hosting a small family get together for him and his girlfriend, an equally remarkable young lady, who is graduating as well with her Master's degree.  They both are loyal Bobcats from Montana State University and so Blue and Gold are the mandatory colors!  Here are some of my creations!

I'll be adding balloons and blue and gold paper plates, napkins, etc and I think we are ready to go. I also have a banner, but don't have it up yet. I'll try to post some pictures of the actual party after tomorrow!

I hope this inspires you to use what you have in your crafting stash and make your celebrations all the merrier with custom themed/colored decor!  It's super fun and actually pretty easy!

On to the rest of my chores!  Go Cats!!


Thursday, May 4, 2017

Fun Folds #4 - Box card!

Hi stampers!

Today I'm bringing back an old favorite!  I first discovered this Fun Fold design when it "exploded" across Pinterest about 4 years ago. I made a bunch, then set the idea aside and hadn't come back to it until now. It is so fun to make! Here it is:

Believe it or not, this all collapses down and fits in an envelope ;)  The box construction is not difficult with just some cutting and scoring in all the right places.  Adding the decorations is a little tricky as you have to align them to stay within the boundaries of the folded up box in order to fit into the envelope.  Maybe someday I will make a video about how to do this!  I know most of us are visual learners and this is a design that lends itself to a demonstration!  Here are my directions that my class received:

Card in a box template

1. Cut one sheet of cardstock to 8-1/4" x 9"
2. Place 9" side along top of score board and score at :  2-1/8", 4-1/4", 6-3/8", 8-1/2"
3. Turn 90 degrees (8-1/4" side is at top of score board) and score at :  2-3/4"
4.  Place card stock on trimmer with 2-3/4" edge on left. Cut entire piece at 6". Save cut off piece.
5. Put leftover piece on trimmer with 1/4" scored tab on left. Cut at 3-1/8".  Cut this piece in half  lengthwise.
6.  With original card stock piece, cut off one 1/4" short sided tab and discard.  Apply sticky strip to long 1/4" tab.
7.  Cut all score lines to 2-3/4" score mark on short tabs to form box flaps.
8. Remove film from sticky strip and make box.
9. Fold three top flaps down but leave back flap up for back of box.
10.  Make Z folds out of the two small pieces of card stock at the score lines. These form the inside brackets to support your box and to adhere the decoration pieces to.
11. Measure flaps, sides, etc and decorate with DSP, etc. Make a long piece for the back for writing on.  See measurements below.
12. Add box decorations.  Be sure they can't be seen when box is folded up. This can be tricky! Keep folding box the same way as you add pieces to make sure they aren't outside the box edges.

Back panel (for writing on):   5-7/8" x 2"   (need one)
Outside bottom panels:   3-1/8" x 2"   (need three)

Top flap panels:  2-5/8" x 2"  (need four)

I hope I've explained things well enough in case you want to try it!  Tomorrow I have a special treat for you... I've been busy making all kinds of party decor for the college graduation of my son and his girlfriend from Montana State University. I will be featuring a banner, some napkin rings, cards, table decor and photo displays that have kept me busy this week. It is so fun to use your papercrafting skills for a party!!

Until then, happy stampin'!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Fun Folds #3 - Center Step card

Hi stamper friends!
I'm continuing my series on Fun Folds cards. They are a little more time consuming to make but oh, so fun!  There are many variations of today's card. In fact, once you understand the mechanics, it would be relatively easy to design your own and move the "steps" around a bit!  Here's the card:

Here are the step-by-step directions:

1. Cut card stock to 8-1/2" by 5-1/2".
2.  Cut from 3-1/2" to 7-1/2" on the card stock, with a 1" margin on both sides. 
3. Place the card horizontal with the 3-1/2" section on the left. Score the middle section of the card at 4-1/4". This is the top of your card.
4. Score the outside margin pieces at 3-1/2", 6-3/4" and 7-1/2".
5. Fold on score lines and use bone folder to make firm creases.

6. Decorate with DSP and stamping

Describing these directions with words is always a bit challenging!  I highly recommend you practice on a piece of card stock first and even write on it where all your cutting and scoring lines are. Then, keep this one as a sample to refer to in the future!

Don't miss the next couple of days!  I'm ending my blog posts this week with a BANG!  I have some really special Fun Folds for you to see!

Have a great, creative day!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Fun Folds #2 -Triangle Fold out!

Hi friends,
I have the 2nd Fun Fold card from my recent class here today. I don't really know what to call it so settled on Triangle Fold Out!  Here's the card:

And here are the step by step directions:

1. Cut card stock or DSP piece at 12" x 4".
2. Score at 4" and 8 ".  You now have 3 square sections.
3. On the outside sections (not the middle one), score from the SW corner to the NE corner.
4. Fold the top triangle to the outside.

5. Decorate with DSP, stamping, etc.

While this card was made with an overall dimension of 4"x 4", this would be super easy and fun to make at 2" x 2" or 3" x 3" and place it on top of another card base. Two cards, so to speak!  The ladies really enjoyed the WOW factor of this card that was actually quite easy to make. The main tip I have is to make sure you get your diagonal scoring correct. The scoring is the same on both sides, it is not mirror image!

I just put in a big preorder from the new catalog... today is the first day we could do that!  I will start creating as soon as Mr. Brown (UPS) shows up!

Thanks so much for checking out my blog!  I'm at 50,000 views and so excited!  I love it!
Have a great day!

Monday, May 1, 2017

Fun Folds Class #1

Happy Monday Stampers!

I recently held a fun folds class for some women and boy did we have fun!  It's amazing what can be done with a piece of paper, a scoring tool and a cutting tool!  What looks complicated and intimidating can often be pretty easy when you understand the design and break it down into small steps.  I thought you would like to see our examples!  Here's the first one:


This is an easy but striking card because it is made with Designer Series Paper rather than cardstock. the reason for that is because both sides of the paper are seen and plain card stock would be boring!

1. Cut DSP or Card stock piece    12" x 5-1/2".
2. Score at 2", 4", 8" and 10"
3. On both 5-1/2" sides, make a small mark with pen or pencil at the halfway point which is
2-3/4" from either edge.
4. Cut on the diagonal from top of  4" and 8" score marks to the 2-3/4" marks on both sides. You are cutting off a triangle piece on each side of the card.
5. Glue the triangle pieces to front of the card, bottom corners.

6. Fold card along score lines and finish with stamping etc.

I think this would be gorgeous with Christmas or other holiday DSP paper and very pretty with some dark, contrasting colors on each side. 

Check back tomorrow for more Fun Folds... they really are fun!
Happy Stampin',