Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Sneek Peek Valentines Bundle Special!!!

How cute is this bundle! New paper, stamps, and a new heart punch that coordinates with the stamp set! And all at a 20% discount if you purchase the bundle! Get a head start on your valentines projects or finish that valentines scrapbook page you've been meaning to do from years past (hey, I'm right there with ya!)

The Valentines Bundle offer is good through January 31st!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Hangin' onto Christmas

Well, not really, I just posting these a few at a time, so it took me past Christmas!
The first picture isn't the best quality, I took it at night and didn't have good enough lighting. But you can at least get the idea of how it looks...

I made it with the Deer Friends and Best Yet sets. The paper was from last year, but can easily be re-created and substituted.
For the cardbase, I started with red cardstock, then stamped random snowflakes and 'sparkles' all over the card.
I then stamped the reindeer, filled in his nose with red marker leaving a 'highlight', filled in his eyes with a black marker, then punched out the image with a circle punch. The paper already had circles, so I put the punched pieces on there. I put the whole piece in brown cardstock.
Add a strip of patterned paper edged in brown to the cardbase, added the main image block on dimensionals, then stamped and embossed the sentiment in black, then added a button to the strip.
I don't know why, but this card reminds me of the Brady Bunch :)

The second card was one we did at my last class. Its another easy one, designed to be fairly quick, but to have a nice look. The stamp set is Snow Swirled (I think this is officially my favorite set this winter!) I substituted the sentiment that comes in the set for this one, which has the same feel. This one comes from A Cardinal Christmas.
To make this card, I started with Always Artichoke cardbase. I made a Mellow Moss panel and stamped it with the large and small snowflake in Mellow Moss (don't adhere it down yet, though!). On a Very Vanilla panel, I stamped the tree in Mellow Moss, then overstamped the sentiment in Black. I cut an Always Artichoke mat for the vanilla, then used the ticket corner punch on both before adhering them together. Cut a strip of Very Vanilla Grosgrain ribbon to go around the Mellow Moss panel. After adhering that, you can go ahead and adhere the mellow moss panel, then the image block on dimensionals. I like how this card kind of picks up the colors/feel of a nice tree.

I will be posting a few more Christmas cards, a fun new 'sneak peek' special, and some class info in the next few days, then it's on to valentines! so be sure to check back!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

BIg on Christmas cards!

Well, it's Christmas Eve! A Merry Christmas to everyone!
Here are two more Christmas cards I made with the Big on Christmas set. Both are VERY easy, and took very little time.
I stamped both images in StazOn black ink, then used a gray marker to 'shadow' the letters. I used a combination of markers, colored pencils and the watercolor technique with the images.
I used pieces of patterned paper for the backgrounds for both, and for the Snow card, I used glitter along the tops of the letters, and along the top of the 'snow' at the bottom of the card. The snow card was done on a white shimmer cardstock.

I sure do like this stamp set! I have gotten a lot of use out of it this Christmas, and will also be using it again to start my cards for next year!!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Gold on gold

Some of you may remember this card from my Christmas in July class several months ago, but I thought I would add this picture to show everyone how easy and fast it can be to make a beautiful card, even now that there are only 2 days left until Christmas! If you have this stamp set or one similar, you still have time to make a card like this for a friend or loved one, and if not, you can always get a head start for next year!

This card uses a retired set called Peaceful Wishes, but there are several current sets you can use that would look really nice with this card. A few examples are: Christmas Classics (pg 32) Snow Swirled (pg 32) and Holiday Trinkets (pg 35) Or you can use any set you like!

This card is very easy. You can either make the whole card out of the gold shimmer cardstock, or do as I did, and use a Chocolate Chip cardbase with the Gold Shimmer panel.

I started by swiping the panel with Embossing Buddy, which helps keep the embossing powder from sticking where you don't want it. I then used versamark to ink the stamps, stamped both images, then sprinkled gold embossing powder over the images. I tapped off the excess, then used my heat tool to heat the images. I adhered the panel to the cardbase, and that's it! You could get TONS of these done in no time, and they look so nice!
As an alternative, if you don't have the supplies to emboss, you can also do this simple layout with colored ink and white or vanilla cardstock!
So if you still have someone you wanted to make a card for, start stamping! You can do it!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Items from craft bazaar

*edited to add that this is a long post, and a lot of the text ended up at the bottom after the pictures, so if you want to read it all, make sure you scroll down far enough to read the whole post! Thanks!

Here are pictures of some of the items I had for sale. There were a few things that I didn't get photos of, but this was the bulk of the particular things I had.

First is the handmade gift tags. I made all tags inside and had roughly 14 in each bag. All tags were different, because I used nothing but scraps. (That is a great little tip - Utilize scraps to make gift tags of all kinds! I find the challenge of making something out of leftovers fun! It really exercises your creativity! )
I had not made too many of these, cause it can be time consuming considering each is different, but I made 4, sold all 4, and got an order for 2 more!

Next is a picture of the bookmark paperclips. What you see in the picture was all I had time to make, and I sold all of them. I also didn't want to make too many of them, cause I didn't know how well they would sell, but I know next year I will either double or triple the amount I made. They aren't difficult, but I do like to make them special and not just all the same. I am the kind of person that likes to make everything I do different.
I also made sure I had something for girls, boys, and something an adult might like. One lady bought two, and then another lady came by later and bought the rest. I did package them in little plastic bags with a sticker of my information on the back. I did this mostly to make them look "professional" and also to keep them protected.

The next picture is of the photo clips. These are made with a giant binder clip, with paper wrapped around it and some kind of fun little embellishment. When you tie the arms up with ribbon, it acts as a photo holder. These were a huge hit that day! Not only did the customers just love them, but the people at the tables around me were buying them too! I of course sold out of these and wish I had made more! Definitely next year!
For these, I had used chipboard flowers with white embossing powder in them, and misc. things like buttons, bling, and brads for the centers, depending on the style. I did have to end up hot glue-ing these flowers on, because glue dots and pop dots were just not holding them on like I wanted them to.

Now we come to the poop. As you can see, I made a version of Snowman/Reindeer poop. In my research, almost every blog, comment, etc., said that this was the hottest seller at their table! I sold ONE! And I only sold that one because the lady said her catchphrase is calling everyone "naughty" and it says that in the poem. I had made a whole bunch of these too! Nobody liked my poop! Oh well, now I know what my friends are getting for Christmas! lol!
As you can see, my version of these have chocolate and yogurt covered raisins in them. The original version has marshmallows, jelly beans, things like that. But I wanted to give people a little extra something in the bag besides marshmallows. Oh well, I guess next year I will only do like 5 of these, if any at all.

The last tow pictures are just a couple examples of the "Christmas Fudge" bars I made. If you don't know what those are, they are a giant Hershey bar wrapped up pretty with a poem on the front saying how you ran out of time this year so here is your version of homemade Christmas fudge. Its a cute little poem. There are a couple different versions out there, but I used the shorter one, so that it would fit nicely on the front.
I made about 9 of these, and sold out of them. They weren't selling at first, and a few people thought they were real fudge and I had to explain what it actually was, but by the end of the day, I had not only sold all of them, but got 2 orders for more! One lady wanted 5, the other 6!
I really like the way these turned out. They are very nice in person. I finished the others for the order just yesterday, and I REALLY like the way those turned out! I took pictures, but I wanted to post a few that I had for sale at the table first.

The things I had that I don't have pictures of, are a couple beaded pens, and some peppermint patties, sold individually, with a cute little scallop punch medallion of various Christmas stamps on them. I only sold one of those. In my chart below, I list cards and premium cards. I sold my regular cards at $1 each, or 6 for $5. That seemed to be the trick, as everyone went for the 6 for $5 deal. The $1 cards were just basic cards, nothing fancy, and came with plain envelopes. The premium cards were mostly birthday cards, were quite a bit more elaborate and fancy, and came with matching envelopes and were packaged up really nice. Those were the ones I had on the card rack and sold them at $2 each. I sold a few of those.
For the cards in general, I found that people went mostly for the Christmas and Birthday cards. I had a couple people really looking for masculine birthday cards. I do have to say, that is a tough one! Its hard to come up with them! I will have to really concentrate on doing a lot more guy cards for next year and double up on the Christmas cards! I pretty much sold out of all my Christmas cards! That made me happy! I really was just mostly thrilled people seemed to like my stuff! That makes me feel good!

This wasn't a strictly Stampin' Up booth, because I have been a scrapbooker for 15 years, and have accumulated 15 years worth of various papers and scrapbook stuff! I have been really trying to use up what I have, so I used some of everything while making my items. I had to come up with a name for my little "business" and I settled on "With Love" creations. So that is what I represented myself as. I did make sure though, that my cards had the special stamp on the back with the Stampin' Up copyright on it. :)

Ok, So here is a breakdown of what I had and how many I brought/sold:

-----------------------brought--------- sold
cards: .................................108....................60
premium cards:..................35......................7
photo clips:..........................8........................8
gift tags package:................4.......................4......orders for 2 more
homemade fudge:...............9.......................9.......orders for 11 more!
beaded pens:........................4......................0
peppermint patties.............20....................1
snowman/reindeer poop...24......................1

Seeing as the table fee was only $2....yes, thats right, $2, I think I did pretty good! It was a great learning experience, and if my mom still works there a year from now, I will do it again for sure! I will say, the preparation was a little stressful, but seeing as it was my first one, I wanted to make sure that I had planned properly and hadn't forgotten anything. I'm completely happy with the outcome.

My next posts will be some Christmas cards I have made recently. Hope you'll like them!


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Craft Bazaar!

Ok, I am finally posting about the craft bazaar from last week!

These are just a couple pictures of the table after I got it most of the way set up. This was my very first time doing anything like this, and had NO idea what to expect. I went for a simple approach, with no fancy frills or anything. I kept the 'background' basic and black. Black table cloth, black baskets, black shelf for some height. I did this to make the products pop, and to keep the distractions to a minimum. this helped bring attention to the products.

Thats my wonderful mother sitting behind the table. She helped me SO much that day! This bazaar was put on by the people where my mom works. She is funny, she is a great person, but she never smiles for the camera! She makes me laugh! Sorry for the poor quality of the pictures, They turned out dark and I had to lighten them up a bit.

I was able to borrow a card rack from a lovely person in the group I belong to. It sure came in handy! I would eventually like to get one of my own, but that will be a long way down on my priority list unless I become serious about the craft fair circuit, but I don't see that happening any time soon! Everything you see on my table was the culmination of about 9 months worth of work! I really didn't have a whole lot of stuff, but since this was my first time, I just went with a few things to kind of get an idea of what sells and what doesn't. If I do it again next year, I may add a few things.

I will be posting pictures of some items I sold in the next few days. I thought I would start with pictures of the table so you can see that.

When I was initially planning for this, we were told that one person backed out so we would have 2 tables, but upon arrival, found out that wasn't the case, so we only had the 1 table to work with, which was ok, but I would have liked just about a half a table worth of a little more space.

In the end, I consider that day to be a complete success, as I sold over half of my cards, sold out of a few things, and sold at least one of every type of item I brought. I made a decent amount of money from it, way more than I had anticipated. I'm not saying I made a fortune or anything, but I can say that my expectations were low and I exceeded that by a lot!

I will however say that I sell my items for a lot less than what I have seen others sell their items for when I was researching craft fairs. I priced them to cover the cost of materials and tax, (they made us charge tax) and then settled on a fair price after that.
There were a few other people selling cards there, and at first I was a little worried, but I figured that I know they wouldn't have the same designs as me, so its not like we are selling the same exact product, so it was ok. I went over and visited with the other card maker tables, said hello and got to know them a little, and took a look at their cute cards. I didn't happen to see what they were asking for them, so I don't know what the price comparison was. But it was nice to talk with them and see their work!

I will post a list of the items I had, how many I sold of each, and a few pictures on my next blog. For now I should head off to bed, as it is getting late......
Until next time!

Friday, December 12, 2008

One layer Christmas card

Ok, I said I would post another card similar to the last one I posted, and here it is! I LOVE the way this card turned out! It was so simple, but really gives the feeling of winter. It doesn't look like much in the picture, you can click on it to get a better view, but in person it is super cute!

I started by using the adorable snowman from Jolliest time of the Year set and stamped him in Basic Gray on a really light gray cardstock. I then stamped with the large splatter from Itty Bitty Backgrounds in White Craft ink randomly around the card. I then did the same with the small snowflake from Snow Swirled. I used colored pencils to give the snowman life, then stamped the sentiment from Cardinal Christmas in Basic Gray using my Stamp-a-ma-jig (couldn't have gotten it straight without it!) and lastly, I highlighted the snowdrifts with Crystal Effects and Dazzling Diamonds glitter!
My mom wanted to re-create these as part of her Christmas Card set. We were able to make 10 of these in about an hour, so not only is it a fun little card, but pretty quick and easy too! No cutting, measuring, or adhering!

On a personal note, the craft bazaar was this last monday, and I want to blog about it, but this week has been busy (again!) Hopefully I will get a chance to write about it soon! I will have pictures too! Check back in a couple days for that!

In the meantime, don't forget about the great specials happening right now! Check out the last post for details!


Sunday, December 7, 2008

sorry I've been away!

I know I promised to have this months sales posted a few days ago, but I hope you will forgive me for not having them up yet! I don't know what in the world happened to the hours/minutes of the last few days, they seemed to have disappeared! As I am typing this (in a frenzy, making tons of mistakes!), I am already terribly behind on something I need to finish before I go to bed tonight. I am actually booked solid until about 5pm on Monday night! I am participating in a craft bazaar on Monday, which is what I need to finish preparing for tonight because Sunday will be crazy busy, but I am really looking forward to the bazaar! I will post about it later, along with the specials this month, and also maybe a picture or two! So don't give up on me just yet! I see there are a few new people visiting my blog! Hi there! Its really nice to have you here! And thank you so much for your lovely comments!
Allrighty, bear with me a few more days, and I will update you all as soon as I am able!


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Happy December!

Welcome to December everyone! Gosh, where in the world has this year gone! 2 months from now will mark my 1 year stampiversary as a demonstrator!

Todays card I know is a little late for Thanksgiving, but I have been so busy with lots of this and that, I haven't had much time to work on cards, let alone photograph them and upload them!
As you can see, i used the colored pencil on colored paper technique again. I was on a kick for a while, cause when I start using a new technique, I tend to use it a lot for a while, kind of to get used to it and kind of see what effects I can get with different paper/colors/etc. The one in the background is the envelope, I actually did that with the watercolor technique because the pencils were a bit too harsh on the white for the look I was going for.

I started with More Mustard carstock, then stamped the 2 larger pumpkins from the Autumn Harvest set with Chocolate Chip ink. I colored them with pencils, adding highlights and shadows. I then stamped the little gourd on a separate scrap piece of summer sun, colored it, making sure that I toned down the brightness, cut it out, and adhered between the pumpkins. I then just used my pencils to fill in any gaps and give the image a finished look, and lastly, stamped the Happy Thanksgiving from the Holidays and Wishes set in Chocolate Chip.

I have another card that I am just dying to post, but I want to save it for next time. It is basically the same technique and has the same simplicity as this card, but it is a Christmas card, and I want to get Thanksgiving out of the way first. I will also be posting this months specials by tomorrow so you can start checking off your personal stamping wish list! There's been so many specials going on the last few weeks, some of which ended Monday, I want to make sure that I post all the current deals.

Ok, unitl next time, keep stampin' away!