Thursday Tips (11)

Here is a collection of the Thursday Tips (and others) which have been sent to the OSA mailing list. Many of these can be found under the Techniques section as well.

2008: November, December
2009: 1st Page, 2nd Page
2010: 1st page, 2nd page, 3rd page, 4th page
2011: 1st page, 2nd page, 3rd page
2012:
1st page

  • For deeper embossing:
    If you’d like a deeper embossing impression, you can…
    1) You can shim your embossing stack: add a piece of cardstock (or 2 or 3) to your plate stack/sandwich.
    2) Use thicker cardstock – I’ve had great results with Strathmore 100lb Bristol Vellum paper
    3) Or spritz your cardstock with water or alcohol & emboss it while damp.
    If your embossing is tearing, you can…
    1) Emboss two pieces of cardstock at once to prevent rips. Sometimes one will still tear but you’ll have a good piece to use.
    2) Spritz the cardstock with water & alcohol to make it less brittle.
    Lori Auge-O’Hara
  • When using mizuhiki cord I find it easier if I do the knot using just one strand of cord.  This allows me to get the pattern right (I hope).  Then I thread the other cords to follow the original.  I find if I try to do all of them at the same time I have difficulty keeping them flat and in order.  Plus if you screw it up you’ve only mangled one piece of cord instead of a bunch.
    Cheers, Linda B
  • I feel like an evil genius today, I figured out how to perfectly stamp my largest, most finiky stamp using something from around the house! I stuck my stamp to a large glass jar candle and used it like a rock-a-block. Perfection! You can see the 2 minute video of how I did it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1uE20JmM-c
    Also, not so much a tip but a “how to” if you want to make an easy trat box I have a 5 minute video on making “sour cream packets” witha  4th of july flair here: http://thefrugalcrafter.wordpress.com/2011/06/26/quick-easy-usa-party-favors/
    Lindsay
  • This technique was demonstrated at the Carson Rubber Stamp Convention awhile back and it popped up on SCS this week.  It is a simple technique that requires a bit of patience and creates great results for fore- and backgrounds.
    Dry emboss the cardstock using a brass stencil, a Cuttlebug folder, or whatever tool you have that suits.
    Use baby powder to dust the entire surface if you do not have a Static Bag.*
    Swipe the bag across the embossed cardstock or dust lightly with the talc taking care to get into all of the nooks and crannies.
    Tap off the excess talc.
    Place the cardstock under the stencil if you have used a stencil.
    Place the cardstock in the open Cuttlebug folder if you used a folder.
    Gently brayer clear embossing liquid onto the raised areas.
    If you do not have a brayer, paint the raised areas with the liquid.
    Heat emboss clear.**
    *Make a static bag with the toe of recycled pantyhose or a sock.
    Pour a few tablespoons of baby powder or talcum powder into the toe.
    Tie off the top with a knot or string or a bit of ribbon trimming.
    Store in a plastic baggie for future use.
    **Using talc will allow the stray bits of embossing powder to release from the cardstock more easily before heating the embossing powder.
    Annette “:O)
  • I discovered this tip while doodling at work. If you want a batiqued (spelling?)look on a card and don’t have the right stamp, draw it with Liquid Paper or White Out.Use Liquid Paper or White Out in pen form. Since I am in the USA, I’m not sure what other countries call this product. Draw whatever you want, then let it dry. It shouldn’t take long. Then go over design with dye based marker or highlighter. Rub off excess marker and you have a batiqued design. Much like using Versamark and clear embossing powder and dye inks, or a dry embossed design that you have sanded or distressed. Obviously I was having a lull in my concentration at work. LOL.
    Kim M
  • Oftentimes, people receive presents in gift bags. These gift bags come in different colors and textures. This is an excellent source for unique background paper. If you don’t have a dry embossing machine such as the Cuttlebug and Big Shot, you could get those embossed backgrounds by recycling gift bags that have texture and look embossed.
    Sonia
  •  I like to have a supply of birthday & sympathy cards on hand to
    use when needed. The images can be colored while watching TV, sitting by the pool,
    or waiting in the doctor’s office.  Time will fly by and you will have a batch
    of cards ready to use when needed.
    Chris B.
  • Hi all.  I have some pretty sticker strips and some clear
    tags and used these to make some really pretty tags. I
    took the clear tags and positioned them over the strips,
    cut them out and have some really pretty designs on these
    tags.  You can use the plastic coverings that come with some
    of the items you get and these work great really.  Try it you
    might make up some pretty tags.  Marge
  • This easel is collapsible and uses up scraps of matboard, bits of decorative papers if you wish to decorate it, and travels flat!
    Take a peek at the attachment.  The dimensions are included with super simple directions.  It takes about fifteen minutes start-to-finish to complete.
    One option is to cover the matboards with tidbits of washi or other stamped decorative paper if the matboard needs a bit of attention.
    Consider making these easels as gifts for OSA members when you meet up at conventions.
    Or send the precut matboards inside RAKs with a picture of the easel assembled.  It will give your recipients a reason to check out Panda Express for chopsticks the next time they are out for lunch with a friend.  Used chopsticks can be washed in soapy water and are good as new.
    Bare wood chopsticks can be sealed with paste shoe polish, painted with acrylic or house paints, or coated with floor wax (paste or liquid).
    Just be sure that the chopsticks are never used again with food.
    Annette “:O)
  • If you travel this summer be sure to grab the free tourism maps that you find in hotles and resurants. In addition to giving you ideas of what to do you can also use the maps as background pages for your cards and scrapbooks. I just returned from New Hampshire and I brought back 2 maps (one to uses as a background for my scrapbook) as well as brochures from laces we went. I will add a pocket on my SB layout and place in the extra map and brochures as well as recipts from the trip-it is fun to look back and see how much things cost! Scraps of the maps can be used in tea bag folding (you can easily fold them into photo cormers) or to decorate stationary.
    Button storage tip. I recently repainted my kitchen and decided that I only needed one spice rack so I took the extra and cleaned it up and gave the splices to my kids so they could play Harry Potter and make potions in the back yard and I made them promise to return the bottles to me. I washed the bottles and lids then sorted my buttons by color in the jars. they are so pretty to look at and I can always find the color button I need! You can store all sorts of goodies in spice jars and you can find spice racks cheap in yard sales this time of year!
    Lindsy
  • I have another storage tip for you today!
    Written Instructions:
    1. Trim 1/4″ from each end of the folded file folder so you have a 9″x11″ folder and punch holes to fit in your 3 ring binder. Round corners if desired.
    2. Adhere index sheets to the folder, or you can simply stamp each stamp on the folder for indexing purposes.
    3. laminate the file folder with clear Contact paper. Or you can use a laminating machine if you have access to one.
    4. Re-punch the holes. You covered them when you laminated it.
    5. Stick your clear stamps over the indexed folders. Your clear stamps will cling to the laminated sheets and because they are indexed you can tell at a glance where the stamp you want is or if any are missing.
    6. Place folders in a  3 ring binder and enjoy your newly organized stamps!
    Lindasy
  • Jacquard (and probably some other manufacturers as well) sells small plastic bottles like the one pictured below that can be fitted with a metal tip available in several different tip sizes.  They are sold as accessories for silk painting, and are probably available in your local art stores or possibly even well-stocked craft stores.  I keep a small bottle with a narrow tip close at hand.  It holds PVA, Sobo or other liquid adhesive – fill it with whatever you like to use.  With the narrow tip, you can “draw” lines of adhesive into designs to create cool textures that will dry with a raised surface if applied properly and left to dry completely.
    BUT, I use it regularly to apply tiny bits of glue to those places that need tightening down (like those corners that pop up just when I thought everything was finished) or to apply small dabs of glue to beads, fibers, or small embellishments.  I throw away the plastic cap and attach the metal tip, then cap it with a long, stainless steel, ball-tipped straight pin stuck inside the tip.  To keep the ball tip from sticking and pulling off, I don’t insert it all the way.  When I need glue in a hurry and in little bits, this is the best thing since sliced bread!  The pin keeps the tip open and the metal tip lets you put glue exactly where you want it.
    This tip is not original with me.  I learned it from Gail Russakov, a collage artist, who is a retired high school art teacher.  She KNOWS about needing to keep glue under control!
  • Stamp positioners are a great tool to use when we need to place an image in an exact spot.  Stampers without a positioner can create an “L” (a right angle)  with two medium to heavy weight books of the same thickness and adjust the cardstock so the image can be stamped in the perfect place.  Just fit the acrylic or wooden handle into the 90 degree angle and stamp the image.
    When stamping multiple cards that must be identical, consider using a larger acrylic mount and putting 2 or more images on the single mount.  Be sure to place the images exactly where they need to be to give the desired result.  Stamp on scrap or newspaper and adjust the image(s) until they are perfect.  Then ink the images and stamp.
    Annette “:O)
  • Recently I purchased a grab-bag of stamps, about half of them were of silly animals and very cutesy and although not my taste they were perfect for my kids. I Use Aleen’s Tack it Ove & Over on my UM stamps and use them with clear blocks but that is too much responsibility for my kids to handle so I came up with a cheap (heck it was free!) way to mount them using Formica Chips, Rubber Cement and clear sticker paper (Safmat by Letraset). Here is how to do it:
    Step 1. Trim around the rubber image (die). Paint a thin coat of rubber cement on the back of the die and the back of the Formica chip. Let dry completely.
    Step 2. Press the two rubber cemented sides together.
    Step 3. To index the stamp ink up your newly mounted stamp with dye-based ink and stamp it onto Safmat (this is an ink-jet printable clear sheet that can also be stamped with your regular dye based inkpads. Safmat is made by Letraset). Let the ink dry and cut it out and stick to the front of your formica chip.
    The Formica has a bit of flex to it so you can press the image down well to get a nice crisp impression. You can see step by step photos here: http://thefrugalcrafter.wordpress.com/2011/06/08/a-cheap-way-to-mount-stamps/
    Lindsay
  • my tip for the week is, about ALERGIES….
    we have discussed before about perfumes etc on cards going to people and to check if they have or haven’t got allergies.
    However, I was talking on another group and one members’s daughter has Anaphylaxis from Beeswax.
    I use Beeswax quite a lot now, and this never crossed my mind. I knew people could after a bee sting. but not the wax itself.
    thats my tip..
  • With summer and high humidity on the way I thought I’d share a tip about paper. If you find your paper wants to tear or snag when you try and punch it, or bend when you try to cut it try this: blast you paper for a few seconds with your heat tool then try and punch or cut it with your fancy-edge scissors. 9 times out of 10 it wil work! Even the slighest bit of moisture in your paper will make it tear and snag when punching, save your paper and blast it with heat before punching to avoid wasted sheets!
    That said some paper is just to “soft” by nature to punch but for most a blast from your embossing heat gun will do the trick;)
    Lindsay
  • I was looking at Annette’s beautiful cards today and when I saw her challenge card, a tip hit me right between the eyes.
    If you saw her challenge card, she had her 3 bunny images with the main background stamped with bunnies and a water decoration.  The leaves of the water decoration appeared on top of the center bunny image.
    I know on occasion it’s difficult to line things up before you stamp them on exactly where you want things to appear on your card.  And I’m not sure how exactly Annette layered her card because on-line doesn’t give us a side-ways peek.  But so you can look at her card again as I “talk”, here is the link:
    Now, normally we would stamp the water image, mask that image and stamp the center bunny over the mask.  OR stamp part of the water image on the paper we are going to stamp the bunny on, mask it, and stamp the bunny and then try to line that up on the water plant image.  All that seems like too much work to me.  How about stamping the water image, doing whatever we want with the bunny images, and then stamping the water image again and cut out just the part that has the water coming out, the post behind it and the tree behind that and mount them with foam – OVER the bunny image?  That way you can line up the bunny wherever you want without having to worry about lining up the plants.
    But with that said, Annette probably did some very simple way that I’m making into a bigger deal than it really was.  But by stamping a second image and raising it over whatever is behind it, you can get away with not using a mask.
    And for my second tip, I’ve been busy making cards for Kazuko for the victims of the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear accident in Japan so I didn’t want them to all be the same.  When you stamp an image a number of times, try to make each card just a little different by changing the backgrounds, adding a little something, embossing one but not the other background, get in your scrap pile and pull out different pieces of paper to add to the card.  I have lots of paper that has a fold in the middle (I buy bulk card stock on occasion at Fred Meyer for $9.99 and it’s pre-folded.  So when I want to use it for an upper layer, I always have those small pieces with the fold in the middle).  Place a piece of gold strip stick-on over the fold and use it on a card.  If the fold is off to one side because you needed a smaller piece for something, then match the other side with another fold and use the gold strip stick-on.
    That black strip is from my scrap bag.  And under the gold strip is the fold.
    Rli
  • As I was finishing up some mineral powder makeup, I was looking at the container and realised that it would be a great thing to use for mica powders and such. It has a brush, a lid, a container and a sieve like top over the container.You could shake out the mica powder onto the sieve like top and use the brush to put it on Versamark or other mediums. Of course washing it all before you put mica powders in is necessary.
    Kim McKinney
  • Stamping out-of-doors in summer weather is tempting because it keeps the mess outside and can be cleaned away with the garden hose.  Outdoor creating also allows us to try techniques that we would not dare to try indoors without a lot of excess work preparing the stamping area from possible disaster.
    Grab those paints, sprays, stamps, and cardstock and go outside.   Take a spray bottle filled with Listerine to use as a bug repellant so that bugs do not land in your paints.  Spray the mouthwash around your working area before you start to create.
    Several sources online read that Listerine is a natural bug repellant.  At least one scientific source concludes that the eucalyptus oil in Listerine is the actual repellant.
    Whatever the reason, Listerine mouth wash, the medicinal kind, any flavor, when sprayed around areas where people wish to be free of flying insects, will repel them.
    Listerine is nontoxic, so try it.  Dollar stores and department stores sell Listerine at reasonable prices.
    One recipe I found online includes a combination of tobacco juice (soak chewing tobacco overnight in 1 quart of water and drain), 1/2 cup Listerine, and 1/4 cup of Dawn dishwashing liquid.  Pour the mixture into a spray bottle and spray wherever you wish to be free of bugs.  The tobacco repels biting bugs, the Listerine repels flying insects, and the Dawn makes the solution ‘stick’ where you spray it and also keeps the tobacco juice from staining.
    The other option is to have your Significant Other build you a screened house in the backyard.  Listerine is cheaper, faster, and smells good.  lol
    Annette “:O)
  • I had piles of small stamps loose in my oriental stamp boxes. I found that I could put them in the two inch pockets of a jewelry bag that hangs. I put a stamped image in front of each. Some pockets have two or three stamps but now I can see them immediately. This bag is two sided and believe it or not I have most of both sides full!! Now I don’t have to say, ” Which box is that tall skinny geisha in? ”
    For those sayings that are one line long on a rubber sheet, I ink only the one I want with a dew drop or color box tiny stamp pad. Otherwise, I would be going crazy figuring out which was which. I initially inked the entire rubber sheets and and made a cover sheet for them so I can find which saying is which on the sheet and ink the right one.
  • This idea I got from another stamping site Split Coast Stampers. I got a cast iron floor lamp with two arms for 5.00 at an auction. .Took the paper off the lampshades and hang embellishments and ribbons on them with little hooks and clips I get at Joanns.  I can’t get them in the store I get them on line. They are called Dangler clips and the sku number is 1969-99. You can get two layers on a shade. The little hooks with clips will also hang on a regular hanger.
  • This is a tip for newcomers to stamping, those who do not have a lot of storage space or have limited disposable income. Simply, use some of your inkpads for colouring and making background papers! I don’t have many pads or papers and get very frustrated when I cannot team together colours or find the colour I need for an image. Use your old fading inkpads for this tip as well as your fully inked and juicy ones!
    To colour an image, choose a water soluble dye or pigment inkpad. I like the Brilliance inkpads for this! Tap your ink onto an old CD, plastic palette or Clingfilm-wrapped piece of scrap card.
    Pick up the colour with a moist paintbrush, check the colour and wetness on scrap first, add more water if necessary, and apply to your image. Voila!
    For backgrounds, there are several techniques you can use. The simplest is the direct to paper technique. Simple use take your pigment pad and lightly swipe onto your card. You can use applicators, such as sponges and brushes to apply colour directly as well. Another way is to use a baking sheet or craft mat, dab your inkpad onto it in 2-3 places, apply another colour, spritz with water and then blot your paper or card onto it. you can repeat this process 2-3 times with the same piece of paper but check to make sure it doesn’t go muddy with too many overlapping colours. There are many more techniques to get different looks, but just using your inkpad to colour some card can save you time, money and hassle!
    Remember, if things don’t go right, and we have crafting times like that, just chuck it and check out the chocolate!  I have spent more frustrating hours and lots more materials trying to salvage a piece than it would have taken to start a new one over again! Most importantly, have fun and get really inky!
    Anne :O)
  • OSA members come and go over time, and we have many new members who are unfamiliar to some of us.  I always appreciate so much the comments people leave on my posted work, but sometimes I don’t know who the people are who are kind enough to take the time to comment.  Since I really like to send my challenge cards to people who like them enough to write, it’s frustrating to see an id on a comment that I do not recognize.  So – here’s my tip.  If you have one of those id’s that doesn’t show your name, please sign your comment!  It’s really nice to know who is writing.
    Bonnie Belk
  • I have quite a few polymer/acrylic stamps and it seemed quite difficult to get any ink to stay put on the stamp to be able to actually stamp on paper!  It just seemed to separate into little globules with big gaps inbetween.  The image was not crisp and clear.  So I used a thin sanding pad and gently rubbed the shiny surface of the stamp, just enough to give it a ‘key’ to grip the ink better.  Hey presto, the images stamp much clearer.
    This is especailly good to use on ‘solid’ images, rather than line art images.
    Alexis S
  • For deeper embossing:
    If you’d like a deeper embossing impression, you can…
    1) You can shim your embossing stack: add a piece of cardstock (or 2 or 3) to your plate stack/sandwich.
    2) Use thicker cardstock – I’ve had great results with Strathmore 100lb Bristol Vellum paper
    3) Or spritz your cardstock with water or alcohol & emboss it while damp.
    If your embossing is tearing, you can…
    1) Emboss two pieces of cardstock at once to prevent rips. Sometimes one will still tear but you’ll have a good piece to use.
    2) Spritz the cardstock with water & alcohol to make it less brittle.
    Lori Auge-O’Hara
  • When using mizuhiki cord I find it easier if I do the knot using just one strand of cord.  This allows me to get the pattern right (I hope).  Then I thread the other cords to follow the original.  I find if I try to do all of them at the same time I have difficulty keeping them flat and in order.  Plus if you screw it up you’ve only mangled one piece of cord instead of a bunch.
    Cheers, Linda B
  • I feel like an evil genius today, I figured out how to perfectly stamp my largest, most finiky stamp using something from around the house! I stuck my stamp to a large glass jar candle and used it like a rock-a-block. Perfection! You can see the 2 minute video of how I did it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1uE20JmM-c
    Also, not so much a tip but a “how to” if you want to make an easy trat box I have a 5 minute video on making “sour cream packets” witha  4th of july flair here: http://thefrugalcrafter.wordpress.com/2011/06/26/quick-easy-usa-party-favors/
    Lindsay
  • This technique was demonstrated at the Carson Rubber Stamp Convention awhile back and it popped up on SCS this week.  It is a simple technique that requires a bit of patience and creates great results for fore- and backgrounds.
    Dry emboss the cardstock using a brass stencil, a Cuttlebug folder, or whatever tool you have that suits.
    Use baby powder to dust the entire surface if you do not have a Static Bag.*
    Swipe the bag across the embossed cardstock or dust lightly with the talc taking care to get into all of the nooks and crannies.
    Tap off the excess talc.
    Place the cardstock under the stencil if you have used a stencil.
    Place the cardstock in the open Cuttlebug folder if you used a folder.
    Gently brayer clear embossing liquid onto the raised areas.
    If you do not have a brayer, paint the raised areas with the liquid.
    Heat emboss clear.**
    *Make a static bag with the toe of recycled pantyhose or a sock.
    Pour a few tablespoons of baby powder or talcum powder into the toe.
    Tie off the top with a knot or string or a bit of ribbon trimming.
    Store in a plastic baggie for future use.
    **Using talc will allow the stray bits of embossing powder to release from the cardstock more easily before heating the embossing powder.
    Annette “:O)
  • I discovered this tip while doodling at work. If you want a batiqued (spelling?)look on a card and don’t have the right stamp, draw it with Liquid Paper or White Out.Use Liquid Paper or White Out in pen form. Since I am in the USA, I’m not sure what other countries call this product. Draw whatever you want, then let it dry. It shouldn’t take long. Then go over design with dye based marker or highlighter. Rub off excess marker and you have a batiqued design. Much like using Versamark and clear embossing powder and dye inks, or a dry embossed design that you have sanded or distressed. Obviously I was having a lull in my concentration at work. LOL.
    Kim M
  • Oftentimes, people receive presents in gift bags. These gift bags come in different colors and textures. This is an excellent source for unique background paper. If you don’t have a dry embossing machine such as the Cuttlebug and Big Shot, you could get those embossed backgrounds by recycling gift bags that have texture and look embossed.
    Sonia
  • I like to have a supply of birthday & sympathy cards on hand to
    use when needed. The images can be colored while watching TV, sitting by the pool,
    or waiting in the doctor’s office.  Time will fly by and you will have a batch
    of cards ready to use when needed.
    Chris B.
  • Hi all.  I have some pretty sticker strips and some clear
    tags and used these to make some really pretty tags. I
    took the clear tags and positioned them over the strips,
    cut them out and have some really pretty designs on these
    tags.  You can use the plastic coverings that come with some
    of the items you get and these work great really.  Try it you
    might make up some pretty tags.  Marge
  • This easel is collapsible and uses up scraps of matboard, bits of decorative papers if you wish to decorate it, and travels flat!
    Take a peek at the attachment.  The dimensions are included with super simple directions.  It takes about fifteen minutes start-to-finish to complete.
    One option is to cover the matboards with tidbits of washi or other stamped decorative paper if the matboard needs a bit of attention.
    Consider making these easels as gifts for OSA members when you meet up at conventions.
    Or send the precut matboards inside RAKs with a picture of the easel assembled.  It will give your recipients a reason to check out Panda Express for chopsticks the next time they are out for lunch with a friend.  Used chopsticks can be washed in soapy water and are good as new.
    Bare wood chopsticks can be sealed with paste shoe polish, painted with acrylic or house paints, or coated with floor wax (paste or liquid).
    Just be sure that the chopsticks are never used again with food.
    Annette “:O)
  • If you travel this summer be sure to grab the free tourism maps that you find in hotles and resurants. In addition to giving you ideas of what to do you can also use the maps as background pages for your cards and scrapbooks. I just returned from New Hampshire and I brought back 2 maps (one to uses as a background for my scrapbook) as well as brochures from laces we went. I will add a pocket on my SB layout and place in the extra map and brochures as well as recipts from the trip-it is fun to look back and see how much things cost! Scraps of the maps can be used in tea bag folding (you can easily fold them into photo cormers) or to decorate stationary.
    Button storage tip. I recently repainted my kitchen and decided that I only needed one spice rack so I took the extra and cleaned it up and gave the splices to my kids so they could play Harry Potter and make potions in the back yard and I made them promise to return the bottles to me. I washed the bottles and lids then sorted my buttons by color in the jars. they are so pretty to look at and I can always find the color button I need! You can store all sorts of goodies in spice jars and you can find spice racks cheap in yard sales this time of year!
    Lindsy
  • I have another storage tip for you today!
    Written Instructions:
    1. Trim 1/4″ from each end of the folded file folder so you have a 9″x11″ folder and punch holes to fit in your 3 ring binder. Round corners if desired.
    2. Adhere index sheets to the folder, or you can simply stamp each stamp on the folder for indexing purposes.
    3. laminate the file folder with clear Contact paper. Or you can use a laminating machine if you have access to one.
    4. Re-punch the holes. You covered them when you laminated it.
    5. Stick your clear stamps over the indexed folders. Your clear stamps will cling to the laminated sheets and because they are indexed you can tell at a glance where the stamp you want is or if any are missing.
    6. Place folders in a  3 ring binder and enjoy your newly organized stamps!
    Lindasy
  • Jacquard (and probably some other manufacturers as well) sells small plastic bottles like the one pictured below that can be fitted with a metal tip available in several different tip sizes.  They are sold as accessories for silk painting, and are probably available in your local art stores or possibly even well-stocked craft stores.  I keep a small bottle with a narrow tip close at hand.  It holds PVA, Sobo or other liquid adhesive – fill it with whatever you like to use.  With the narrow tip, you can “draw” lines of adhesive into designs to create cool textures that will dry with a raised surface if applied properly and left to dry completely.
    BUT, I use it regularly to apply tiny bits of glue to those places that need tightening down (like those corners that pop up just when I thought everything was finished) or to apply small dabs of glue to beads, fibers, or small embellishments.  I throw away the plastic cap and attach the metal tip, then cap it with a long, stainless steel, ball-tipped straight pin stuck inside the tip.  To keep the ball tip from sticking and pulling off, I don’t insert it all the way.  When I need glue in a hurry and in little bits, this is the best thing since sliced bread!  The pin keeps the tip open and the metal tip lets you put glue exactly where you want it.
    This tip is not original with me.  I learned it from Gail Russakov, a collage artist, who is a retired high school art teacher.  She KNOWS about needing to keep glue under control!
  • Stamp positioners are a great tool to use when we need to place an image in an exact spot.  Stampers without a positioner can create an “L” (a right angle)  with two medium to heavy weight books of the same thickness and adjust the cardstock so the image can be stamped in the perfect place.  Just fit the acrylic or wooden handle into the 90 degree angle and stamp the image.
    When stamping multiple cards that must be identical, consider using a larger acrylic mount and putting 2 or more images on the single mount.  Be sure to place the images exactly where they need to be to give the desired result.  Stamp on scrap or newspaper and adjust the image(s) until they are perfect.  Then ink the images and stamp.
    Annette “:O)
  • Recently I purchased a grab-bag of stamps, about half of them were of silly animals and very cutesy and although not my taste they were perfect for my kids. I Use Aleen’s Tack it Ove & Over on my UM stamps and use them with clear blocks but that is too much responsibility for my kids to handle so I came up with a cheap (heck it was free!) way to mount them using Formica Chips, Rubber Cement and clear sticker paper (Safmat by Letraset). Here is how to do it:
    Step 1. Trim around the rubber image (die). Paint a thin coat of rubber cement on the back of the die and the back of the Formica chip. Let dry completely.
    Step 2. Press the two rubber cemented sides together.
    Step 3. To index the stamp ink up your newly mounted stamp with dye-based ink and stamp it onto Safmat (this is an ink-jet printable clear sheet that can also be stamped with your regular dye based inkpads. Safmat is made by Letraset). Let the ink dry and cut it out and stick to the front of your formica chip.
    The Formica has a bit of flex to it so you can press the image down well to get a nice crisp impression. You can see step by step photos here: http://thefrugalcrafter.wordpress.com/2011/06/08/a-cheap-way-to-mount-stamps/
    Lindsay
  • my tip for the week is, about ALERGIES….
    we have discussed before about perfumes etc on cards going to people and to check if they have or haven’t got allergies.
    However, I was talking on another group and one members’s daughter has Anaphylaxis from Beeswax.
    I use Beeswax quite a lot now, and this never crossed my mind. I knew people could after a bee sting. but not the wax itself.
    thats my tip..
  • With summer and high humidity on the way I thought I’d share a tip about paper. If you find your paper wants to tear or snag when you try and punch it, or bend when you try to cut it try this: blast you paper for a few seconds with your heat tool then try and punch or cut it with your fancy-edge scissors. 9 times out of 10 it wil work! Even the slighest bit of moisture in your paper will make it tear and snag when punching, save your paper and blast it with heat before punching to avoid wasted sheets!
    That said some paper is just to “soft” by nature to punch but for most a blast from your embossing heat gun will do the trick;)
    Lindsay
  • I was looking at Annette’s beautiful cards today and when I saw her challenge card, a tip hit me right between the eyes.
    If you saw her challenge card, she had her 3 bunny images with the main background stamped with bunnies and a water decoration.  The leaves of the water decoration appeared on top of the center bunny image.
    I know on occasion it’s difficult to line things up before you stamp them on exactly where you want things to appear on your card.  And I’m not sure how exactly Annette layered her card because on-line doesn’t give us a side-ways peek.  But so you can look at her card again as I “talk”, here is the link:
    Now, normally we would stamp the water image, mask that image and stamp the center bunny over the mask.  OR stamp part of the water image on the paper we are going to stamp the bunny on, mask it, and stamp the bunny and then try to line that up on the water plant image.  All that seems like too much work to me.  How about stamping the water image, doing whatever we want with the bunny images, and then stamping the water image again and cut out just the part that has the water coming out, the post behind it and the tree behind that and mount them with foam – OVER the bunny image?  That way you can line up the bunny wherever you want without having to worry about lining up the plants.
    But with that said, Annette probably did some very simple way that I’m making into a bigger deal than it really was.  But by stamping a second image and raising it over whatever is behind it, you can get away with not using a mask.
    And for my second tip, I’ve been busy making cards for Kazuko for the victims of the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear accident in Japan so I didn’t want them to all be the same.  When you stamp an image a number of times, try to make each card just a little different by changing the backgrounds, adding a little something, embossing one but not the other background, get in your scrap pile and pull out different pieces of paper to add to the card.  I have lots of paper that has a fold in the middle (I buy bulk card stock on occasion at Fred Meyer for $9.99 and it’s pre-folded.  So when I want to use it for an upper layer, I always have those small pieces with the fold in the middle).  Place a piece of gold strip stick-on over the fold and use it on a card.  If the fold is off to one side because you needed a smaller piece for something, then match the other side with another fold and use the gold strip stick-on.
    That black strip is from my scrap bag.  And under the gold strip is the fold.
    Rli
  • As I was finishing up some mineral powder makeup, I was looking at the container and realised that it would be a great thing to use for mica powders and such. It has a brush, a lid, a container and a sieve like top over the container.You could shake out the mica powder onto the sieve like top and use the brush to put it on Versamark or other mediums. Of course washing it all before you put mica powders in is necessary.
    Kim McKinney
  • Stamping out-of-doors in summer weather is tempting because it keeps the mess outside and can be cleaned away with the garden hose.  Outdoor creating also allows us to try techniques that we would not dare to try indoors without a lot of excess work preparing the stamping area from possible disaster.
    Grab those paints, sprays, stamps, and cardstock and go outside.   Take a spray bottle filled with Listerine to use as a bug repellant so that bugs do not land in your paints.  Spray the mouthwash around your working area before you start to create.
    Several sources online read that Listerine is a natural bug repellant.  At least one scientific source concludes that the eucalyptus oil in Listerine is the actual repellant.
    Whatever the reason, Listerine mouth wash, the medicinal kind, any flavor, when sprayed around areas where people wish to be free of flying insects, will repel them.
    Listerine is nontoxic, so try it.  Dollar stores and department stores sell Listerine at reasonable prices.
    One recipe I found online includes a combination of tobacco juice (soak chewing tobacco overnight in 1 quart of water and drain), 1/2 cup Listerine, and 1/4 cup of Dawn dishwashing liquid.  Pour the mixture into a spray bottle and spray wherever you wish to be free of bugs.  The tobacco repels biting bugs, the Listerine repels flying insects, and the Dawn makes the solution ‘stick’ where you spray it and also keeps the tobacco juice from staining.
    The other option is to have your Significant Other build you a screened house in the backyard.  Listerine is cheaper, faster, and smells good.  lol
    Annette “:O)
  • I had piles of small stamps loose in my oriental stamp boxes. I found that I could put them in the two inch pockets of a jewelry bag that hangs. I put a stamped image in front of each. Some pockets have two or three stamps but now I can see them immediately. This bag is two sided and believe it or not I have most of both sides full!! Now I don’t have to say, ” Which box is that tall skinny geisha in? ”
    For those sayings that are one line long on a rubber sheet, I ink only the one I want with a dew drop or color box tiny stamp pad. Otherwise, I would be going crazy figuring out which was which. I initially inked the entire rubber sheets and and made a cover sheet for them so I can find which saying is which on the sheet and ink the right one.
  • This idea I got from another stamping site Split Coast Stampers. I got a cast iron floor lamp with two arms for 5.00 at an auction. .Took the paper off the lampshades and hang embellishments and ribbons on them with little hooks and clips I get at Joanns.  I can’t get them in the store I get them on line. They are called Dangler clips and the sku number is 1969-99. You can get two layers on a shade. The little hooks with clips will also hang on a regular hanger.
  • This is a tip for newcomers to stamping, those who do not have a lot of storage space or have limited disposable income. Simply, use some of your inkpads for colouring and making background papers! I don’t have many pads or papers and get very frustrated when I cannot team together colours or find the colour I need for an image. Use your old fading inkpads for this tip as well as your fully inked and juicy ones!
    To colour an image, choose a water soluble dye or pigment inkpad. I like the Brilliance inkpads for this! Tap your ink onto an old CD, plastic palette or Clingfilm-wrapped piece of scrap card.
    Pick up the colour with a moist paintbrush, check the colour and wetness on scrap first, add more water if necessary, and apply to your image. Voila!
    For backgrounds, there are several techniques you can use. The simplest is the direct to paper technique. Simple use take your pigment pad and lightly swipe onto your card. You can use applicators, such as sponges and brushes to apply colour directly as well. Another way is to use a baking sheet or craft mat, dab your inkpad onto it in 2-3 places, apply another colour, spritz with water and then blot your paper or card onto it. you can repeat this process 2-3 times with the same piece of paper but check to make sure it doesn’t go muddy with too many overlapping colours. There are many more techniques to get different looks, but just using your inkpad to colour some card can save you time, money and hassle!
    Remember, if things don’t go right, and we have crafting times like that, just chuck it and check out the chocolate!  I have spent more frustrating hours and lots more materials trying to salvage a piece than it would have taken to start a new one over again! Most importantly, have fun and get really inky!
    Anne :O)
  • OSA members come and go over time, and we have many new members who are unfamiliar to some of us.  I always appreciate so much the comments people leave on my posted work, but sometimes I don’t know who the people are who are kind enough to take the time to comment.  Since I really like to send my challenge cards to people who like them enough to write, it’s frustrating to see an id on a comment that I do not recognize.  So – here’s my tip.  If you have one of those id’s that doesn’t show your name, please sign your comment!  It’s really nice to know who is writing.
    Bonnie Belk
  • I have quite a few polymer/acrylic stamps and it seemed quite difficult to get any ink to stay put on the stamp to be able to actually stamp on paper!  It just seemed to separate into little globules with big gaps inbetween.  The image was not crisp and clear.  So I used a thin sanding pad and gently rubbed the shiny surface of the stamp, just enough to give it a ‘key’ to grip the ink better.  Hey presto, the images stamp much clearer.
    This is especailly good to use on ‘solid’ images, rather than line art images.
  • Alexis S
  • We all know that we should clean our paint brushes immediately after using, but if you’re using acrylic paint, turn off the hot water. Heat sets the paint, making the brush hard to clean. The most effective way to clean a brush is first to rinse it under cold, running water to remove the excess paint. When most of the paint is gone, wipe the bristles across a bar of mild soap, then rub the bristles in the palm of your hand. Rinse and repeat the soaping and rinsing until the brush is clean.
    Elinor
  • My tip is for using unmounted stamps. Given a choice, I would like all my stamps mounted on cling foam such as ‘EZ Mount’ and hopefully one day I will be able to do that. To pass on a tip for using such a foam mount, I have been told, but never tried, to use a ‘hot knife’ which is like a piece of wire heated up. Apparently you can buy a little tool for this or an attachment for a dremel. This cuts the foam like butter, is clean, quick and easy. If anyone else knows what this is called, please let me know!
    1) OSA member Joanne/’Craft Addict’ has an excellent bilingual video clip on how to use unmounted stamps on an acrylic block. http://www.youtube.com/user/frenchstamper
    2) Cover your block with removable vinyl book covering and use it several times. To clean, peel off the vinyl and throw…no messy washing after using eachstamp!
    3) If you need to stamp on a hard surface, cut a piece of craft/funky foam to fit the stamp. Use a glue stick or double-sided tape to attach to the reverse of the stamp. Glue to the block as usual. you can now stamp on a hard surface. Normally you would need to stamp using a mouse mat or wad of paper under your project.
    Anne :O)
  • When you’re using double sided foam dimensionals (pop dots, foam tape, etc.) to help get the backing paper off, press the centre of the dot or whatever with your fingernail.  That will raise the edges of the backing a bit and so, easier to pick off!
    Diane Young, Victoria, BC
  • Hi all and don’t know if this has been sent in before but here it is
    If you use clear stamps these can be stored in photo binders/albums
    and you can see which set or one stamp you want.  I had an extra
    album and tried this out and it works fine. I also use an album to
    store my cards received and everyone can see them very well.  Hope
    this helps.  Marge
  • Embellisments:
    a)  Collect natural materials.  Twigs, pebbles, sand, small seashells, feathers, leaves, etc.
    to bring texture to your cards and crafts. (I was told recently that these items
    should not be sent overseas.)
    b)  Adding a unique ribbon to a simple card is a quick way to
    make a card elegant.
    c)  A label maker makes adding a word or greeting quick & easy.
    Chris B.
  • Most stampers have bottles or tubes of acrylic paints on a shelf or in a drawer waiting to be used.  Many of us grab markers or watercolor pencils and chalks before reaching for acrylics, but with a little practice, acrylics can be added to our art to create even more choices for color.
    Acrylics are water based, so the paints can be thinned with water and used to create washes as watercolor washes are achieved.  Acrylics dry fast, so keep a water mister handy to apply moisture where it is needed.  Acrylics can be wiped clean with a damp cloth after they dry, but they are no longer water soluble after they dry.
    One of the best tips when using acrylic paints on paper is to wet the paper first so you have more time to work for the best results.
    Remember to squeeze only a wee dollop of paint onto your palette so the paint does not have a chance to dry before you can use it.  Plastic palettes work best for acrylics, but a mat board dampened with water before adding the dollops of paint will slow down the drying process.
    Once you have played with acrylics and have some backgrounds, stamp some bold images onto the backgrounds and add splashes of color for a bright bold effect.  Allow the paints to dry while you clean the brushes.
    Dried acrylics on paintbrushes are next to impossible to remove, so wash up as soon as you are finished painting.
    Acrylics work as well as Sharpies on dominoes, mah jongg tiles, and other plastic game pieces.  Stamp your images using Staz-On inks or pigment inks that you have handy.  Heat emboss to create a raised edge.  Paint the areas using acrylic paints and allow the paints to dry.  If the paints have overlapped the embossing powder, reheat the embossing and the paint should allow the embossing to reappear.  If not, then you will have a serendipitous event!
    Acrylics also work well on glass and plastic transparencies for stained glass effects.  Stamp your images and color in areas to your heart’s content.  The colors are translucent, so the stained glass creations can be hung in a window or outside.
    Experiment and see how much fun you can have!
    Annette “:O)
  • Acrylic blocks can be used for more than just mounting a stamp!
    1) Use it as a palette to mix water-based inks and paints.
    2)Use dye ink directly on your block and then stamp onto your card for a background effect. Mist with water for a different effect and try giving the block a little twist as you ‘stamp’ with it.
    3) Apply 2-3 distress inks or other dye inks, spritz with a little water and dab your card on top. Repeat until you are happy with the effect. This is known as the ‘wrinkle free’ technique from Ranger Ind. but unfortunatley it doesn’t work for ones complexion in quite the same way….
    4)Use the thinner blocks as a template to tear paper around the edges to make layers,(matting).
    5)use the block over a large image to highlight the part you want to cut around.
    6) ink up your block with dye or pigment ink,and swipe over a dry-embossed image. Keep your card in place on the embossing folder or plate so that there is support underneath your embossed image.I find this can be more successful than using a brayer.
    7) Using a permanent ink in a thin nibbed pen, draw a straight line/s on one side of your blocks. Use this to line up word stamps.
    Hope you find something of use from above!
    Anne :O)
  • Many stampers use molded paper clay* embellishments to keep down weight and thickness when posting RAKs.
    The majority of us paint and/or color the white dried molded items to coordinate with our art.
    Consider coloring the paper clay before molding it.  Making ducks for a baby card?  Color the paper clay mixture yellow before placing the dampened clay into the duck-shaped ice cube tray** or the duck mold.  When the paper clay is dry, the ducks will already be yellow and a quick swipe of an orange felt pen or orange acrylic paint will take care of the duck’s bill and feet.
    Making colored paper clay is a simple time-saving step.  Use food coloring, diluted acrylic paint, or reinkers.  Pigment reinkers will allow for heat embossing when the item is removed from the mold.  Mix the paper clay according to package directions and add the color.  It really is that easy.
    Need molds?  Make your own.  Leftover polymer clay (FIMO, Sculpey, et cetera) will make reusable molds for free.
    Choose items to mold: rubber stamps, coins, jewelry, grandchildren’s hands, leaves, or anything else you have in mind.
    Children’s hands can be pressed gently into clay rolled out to .25″ – .5″ thickness depending on the depth you prefer for the finished piece.  Add the paper clay mixture gently to the mold and bake according to package directions.  The finished pieces can be placed in shadow boxes with signed photos of the children at that age and can be given as gifts to unsuspecting parents during the holidays or for special events.  These results of A Day at Grandma’s House will become keepsakes.
    Leaves and other flatter items work well to create polymer clay molds.  Roll the polymer clay to flatten it, place the item(s) on the clay and roll with a soup can or rolling pin to impress the leaf’s veins into the clay.  Leave the leaf in the clay and bake or remove the leaf and bake.  Both methods seem to work equally well when creating molds.  However, if the leaf is left in the clay to bake, coat the leaf with clear pigment ink before baking so it will release easily after it is baked.  Always follow the package directions for baking.  Use a dedicated toaster-type oven or wrap items in aluminum foil before baking in your kitchen’s oven.
    Using jewelry and coins is super simple, too, to make molds.  Warm the clay to make it pliable.  This can be achieved by rolling the leftover clay bits in your hands, by placing it on your chair and sitting on it for a few minutes while reading emails, or by placing it in the sun for 5-10 minutes.  Do not place it in the oven to warm it.  The oven will bake it and the result will be a hard piece of clay that will never be pliabe.
    Coat the coins and jewelry with pigment ink and press each piece into its own ball of clay.  Set the molds on a flat surface and press gently so the bottoms of the molds are flat.  Leave the coins and jewelry in the clay and bake according to package directions.  Allow to cool after baking.  Wash the coins and jewelry in warm soapy water to remove any residue of clay and ink.   The molds are now ready to use again and again.
    Coat the insides of your molds with clear pigment ink.  Use paper clay or polymer clay to create your own custom embellishments.  Bake.  Voila’!  You’re done!
    *Paper Clay comes in plastic bags at hobby stores and some discount stores.  It is oftentimes found in a hanging display in the clay aisle.
    **Ice cube tray “molds” can be found at discount stores, Tuesday Morning-type stores, and gourmet cooking stores.  Look for molding trays after each holiday for an assortment of options.  The trays are usually more than 50% off and are reusable for food when washed in hot soapy water or run through the dishwasher.
    Annette “:O)
  • I’ve attached the two challenge cards I posted yesterday because Annette asked me if I would share the technique for making the wavy lines I used on these cards.  It’s really easy to do, and makes a really nice impact.  I’ve taken some photos of the process, and I’m following this e-mail with an invitation to view the album in Picasa.  If you have any trouble opening the link, please let me know and I will attach all seven pictures here.  The pictures have captions describing what you are seeing in each picture.
    Our newbies may find this interesting – many of you already know all about it.  Let me know if anything is unclear.
    Here are another couple of tips for our newer stampers.
    You can also get this effect with torn mulberry paper or other oriental papers with lots of fibers in them.  To tear that paper, take a wet paint brush or a water brush and draw a line where you want the tear to be.  When it is fully wet, begin pulling it apart.  You’ll get a nice fluffy edge that you can use for layering with other pieces or behind images.
    When you are coloring larger areas (I used Tombow markers on these cards), you’ll get a better result if you color in small circles rather than in straight lines. Going around and around lets you fill in spots and have variations in color without leaving streaks in your coloring.  I sponged in inks in some places – again going in circles.
    When you are using a stamp that fills in some of the image with your base ink but you want to add a little color anyway, color over the area as if it were blank.  There will be some gaps in the ink that even a bit of color will fill in.  When the base color is solid (the black vines in the bird picture and some of the leaves), use your colored marker just as if you were coloring it anyway, leaving just a teeny colored edge outline the line from the stamp.  You won’t actually change the color of the line, but the tiny edge will give the impression of color.
    Watch for the Picasa invitation, and let me know if you have any trouble with it.
    Hope this makes some sense!
    Bonnie Belk
  • You probably know how fond I am up upcycling boxes from Sam’s Club into craft storage, well, I just finished up a container of Organic Spring Salad mix from sams club and I was looking at the clear plastic tub it came it and relized that it would be perfect for storing loose ribbon. So I washed it and the label came right off so I have a crystal clear shoebox size storage container for free!
    So, my health tip is eay more salad! At 15 calories a serving, 2 grams of protien, 20% iron and calcium and 100% vitimam A (to help your eyes see those tiny seed beads better LOL) you can’t go wrong!
    Eat salad and stamp, how is that for a Thursday tip;)
    Lindsay
  • When you trim cardstock and washi paper, it’s a good idea to save the strips you
    trim off.  It looks great when  you weave it together for the background layer.
    Your card will have a unique background and it will also add texture.
    Chris B.
  • I made some cards with a Crane and used a sponging technique around the outer parts to get a nice soft color. Annette asked me how I did it… I used sponge DAUBERS (the little sponges that fit on your fingers) >> Sponge Daubers – by Stampin’ Up!
    If I want a nice swirly soft color with sponging, I’ll use DAUBERS and I start OFF the edge of the piece of cardstock, swirling the dauber into the area I want colored… this way if you have a lot of color on the dauber, it won’t come off as very heavy…. and you’ll get a more even coat of the color.  Here’s a couple of the crane cards I made,  using the daubers.
    crw8.jpg
    Connie Smith, SR Supv SU Demonstrator
  • This simple technique turns your dye ink pads into pigment inks so you can heat emboss using your embossing powders.
    First stamp the image on a Versamark pad* and then on the dye ink pad.  Stamp the image and heat emboss as usual.
    *Or apply a thin coat of glycerin on a piece of aluminum foil large enough to fit the image.  Glycerin is found in the pharmacy.  It comes in bottles in a variety of sizes.  To avoid sticky shelves, store the glycerin bottle in a plastic bag.  Glycerin is used in hand and body lotions, so it is nontoxic.
    Give your pigment ink pads longer life by adding a teaspoon of glycerin to the pad and rubbing the liquid into the pad.  Add more glycerin as needed.  This technique can add years to the life of your pigment ink pads.
    Annette “:O)
  • Hi all and I use a lot of tissue papers along with other very
    thin papers that do not punch well. I have strips of very thin
    cardboard or cardstock and put my paper over the cardboard,
    etc. and punch my design out.  I came across the backs of greeting
    and other cards I had removed from cards and these are just
    perfect for using with thin papers.  So, another use for old cards
    rather than throwing them out for no reason.  Hope this helps.
    Marge
  • Recently I went to a paint store and got  2 True Value paint samples because I wanted to paint a bookcase.
    After I decided what color I wanted, I used the 2 paint samples to make cards.  (I used the whole card
    they gave me instead of just the color sample which is glued to the card because the background and
    layout was new and different.)
    Attached you will see the 2 paint samples and what they looked like after I made the cards.
    My tip this week is to use paint samples instead of throwing them away.
    They make lovely cards simply by adding a few images.
    Chris
  • I made a Beachparty card for a challenge in the MichaelStrong group and wanted to have it look like a beach-surf shack.
    Used the woodgrain-background technique on the card ( swiping a white inkpad over the card)
    But I wanted to add woodlines, not by useing a ruler, so I put several rubberbands around an acrylic stampblock and put inkt on it.
    Tried it out on a piece of paper and this was the look i wanted…voile..just with a few small rubberbands.
    Punched out the abc-letters from cheap foam and put them mirrorwise on also an acrylic block with double sided tape and stamped the ‘surf words’ with it.
    Tip – stamp from foam.jpg  Tip – stamp from foam front.jpg
    So 2 tips for one that does not cost a fortune  :o))
  • Hi all. Redoing my refrigerator door items and found some last year
    magnetic calendars. Rather than throw them away I covered them
    with some card fronts I had received from the group and now have
    some gorgeous artwork for my refrigerator.  So, don’t throw away
    the old magnetic items and just redo them with something you love
    such as photos, kids artwork, pretty papers, a note someone sent you
    don’t want to discard, etc. Gosh, I miss my house.  Marge
  • Me again.  If you have old, outdated stamp/scrapbook catalogs,
    check through them and cut out cards/photos on pages and make
    a collage to put up where they can be seen. This way you always
    have ideas for cards, etc.and some pretty artwork for your walls.
    Marge
  • I couldn’t get enough stamp mount yesterday and I wanted to use a couple of my new stamps from ARt Accents. So I put the raw rubber on two stacked mouse pads image side up. Inked them and pressed the paper on top. Got excellent images.
  • I wanted to color some birds on a kimono white and didn’t have a white Tombow or Stampin up marker so I used a white eyeliner pencil which was 98 cents at Rite Aid. It goes on oily and keeps the other colored markers from marking on it. I had been using it to put whites in eyes of some little atom characters I am writing about. That’s a long story.
  • If you are making your cards and you make an error, you can place a layer of double sided tape over your picture (it comes in 8 x 11″ sheets and other sizes), right onto the stamped and colored images, and then peel of the protective coating on the other side and dip it in your clear glitter.  It will make a nice frosted look.
    This also works wonders on Christmas cards to give them a nice looking-through-a-frosted-window look.
    Rli
  • You can create any color you want in vellum by simply inking the back side with a  brayer.  Dye Inks work best.  It takes 15 minutes for the ink to dry.  Colors will appear muted so bright colors work best.  Once it is dry you can stamp your pattern or emboss.
    Chris B.
  • I have a few tips today;) There was an interesting diet book I checked out of the library called “This for That” and basicly it showed you how you could get the same amount of calories in 5 french fires of 3 bowls of stemaed veggies, it was quite interesting however I thought I could do a “this for that” and reccomend substutions for hot crafting supplies;) Here we go:If you don’t have shimmer spray you can paint on irreseccent watercolors, you can even get them in the kids art supply section of craft and department stores for cheap! For an added bang try embossing the paper while it is wet!

    If you do not have embossing folders (but you had a manual die cut machine like big shot or cuttlebug) you can make your own textures, just place items such as lace, flat buttons, burlap, bobby pins, poker chips, string…whatever really, arrange the items on the die cut space plate and cover with a sheet or two of rubber gasket (plumbing section of the handware store) and then put one cutting pag on top, crank it through for a unique design!

    If you don’t have an airbrush but want a fine spattered look on a card then mix up some watercolor and pick it up with a toothbrush and run your finger across it to make a fine spatter, try it on a scrap first to make sure you have a fine enough spatter. More water=bigger spatter droplets.

    Lindsay

  • This trick is a great way to use washi, patterned papers, and even wrapping papers.Kimonos, geishas, and other Oriental images can be stamped on patterned Oriental papers using black pigment ink and clear embossing powders, then cut out and attached to the identical stamped image so the faces and hands are visible in the finished project.

    Lacking washi or other patterned papers, simple shaped cosmetic sponges can be utilized, direct to paper, to creat backgrounds that are interesting and complement your art.  Simple ink the sponge and stamp it onto cardstock, any colors,  and see the surprising results.

    Annette “:O)

  • To make a simple flower press, cut two squares of hardboard, cut 6 squares of blotting or watercolour paper to fit and use 6 wide elastic bands to hold in place. Place your chosen flowers between the paper leaving 3 sheets each side and sandwich between the boards. Microwave for a few seconds, apply elastic bands and leave for an hour. Pressed flowers for your cards! Maybe not Oshibana quality but still a quick way to make a pretty embellishment!
    Amicalement
    Anne :O)
  • My tip is to check out your quilting shop to see if they have any oriental themed fabric. Yesterday I found some cards at the local thrift store that had been made by simply cutting out fabric images, that I suspect had been backed with fusible web so they didn’t fray, and sticking them on the card front.
    I’ve attached a photo.
    Cheers, Linda B.
  • Before I attempt any new card template, I make a first ‘draft’ one out of white  lightweight printer card. Not only can I see how things all fit together, but I can make adjustments and note it on my template, (hence white card!). This really helps me work things out especially if I don’t make that type of card often.Attached is a waterfall card which is my second attempt at this type of design.
    Amicalement
    Anne :O)
  • Oh, I am so excited. Guess you can tell my brain is in high gear again.  I was working on the new Martha Stewart stamps set and realized I have tons of acrylic, see through stamps now and dug some of the smaller ones out and voila I can use them in the new section where her stamps go.  I have waited all week to tell you all this.  (I don’t know if they are on the store shelves yet as HSN mentioned these are exclusive to this co.) Hope anyone who has these new sets will try their own acrylic stamps now.  This is great as the stamps stay positioned and if you don’t ink enough or want to do more than one time the stamps stay in place.  Yay for Martha Stewart. She was in Seal Harbor, ME for a festival and I didn’t go but should have as she was there and everyone seemed to have a good time with her there.  Marge in cool Bar Harbor, ME
  • When sending to another country or when the weather is bad here in Holland, I like to put the card in a cellophane-bag.I had to sent some items in a large enveloppe and yesterday I bought some A4 size stickers and again lightning hit me…I could use the cellophane that the stickers were in as a protected bag…..so time for another TIP- addiction ladies…..SAVE your cellophane-bags!!!!

    When putting the items and c.-bag in the enveloppe there is always a bit of air in the bag left that most of the time will not get out.

    Use a needle to make a tiny hole, press the c.-bag and voila it is flat and ready to sent, but you can leave the air in ofcourse it will be a air cushion  :o)

    Carla

  • Hi stampers,I have been going through my craft room getting ready for my first yard sale and seeing if I can part with anything (ha ha, good one, right?) and I came upon a drawer full of 15 Speedball line cutters and blades. I have so many because I used to run an Art Camp program and I needed all the sets for students. The bearings were so stiff from lack of use that I couldn’t unscrew them to change the blades so I thought I’d have to toss them but then I remembered a bottle of sewing machine oil I had and went to work oiling the metal parts, I let them sit a few minutes then tried to unscrew them and the tightened and loosed like butter! I remembered some little packets of silica gel had come in my kid’s new lunchboxes and my daughter found be a packet and I tossed it in the sealed plastic drawer I store them in (I always keep sharp tools in a hard to open sealed plastic tote so my kids won’t get hurt, they know if it is something is difficult to open it is not for them LOL!)

    The reason I even thought to oil them at all was because my MIL gave me her old 1956 Kenmore sewing machine and cabinet that hadn’t been used in years. I had to try it out immediately and after a few stitches if started to run really hard so i looked at the manual and liberally oiled it and ran it rapidly with no thread, good as new. Come to think of it I have never oiled my modern White sewing machine so I think I’d better!

    So, my tip for today is oil your tools!
    Lindsay

  • Here is a fast and easy way to make background paper.  This method is called Kiss & Twist.You can use any background stamp — I like to use a daisy image.

    Ink the image and lay it on cs and twist the image onto your background sheet.  You can

    use one or many colors.  This method looks good on glossy cs and am always happy with the results.

    Chris

  • Hi Everyone,Whether tenting or stamping in the backyard, a quick and easy way to heat emboss without electricity takes 3 items and a match.

    Place a fresh roll of toilet paper, flat sice down, inside a metal can large enough to fit the roll.

    Pour a bottle of rubbing alcohol into the center tube of the roll.

    Cover with the plastic lid that came with the can.

    When you are ready to heat emboss, place the can on a nonflammable surface,  light the alcohol, hold the cardstock far enough away from the flame to keep the paper from catching fire, and heat the EP until it melts.

    Store with the plastic lid (allow the ‘heater’ to cool first) for future artwork, S’Mores, or to warm your hands and feet when ice skating this winter.
    Happy stamping,
    Annette “:O)

  • The Victorians used to make hearts out of scrap printed papers. Simply glue torn edged scraps onto thin card leaving the edges unglued so that you can tweak them to how you want, then glue down all edges; cut out a heart shape and wrap some decorative thread around your piece to finish off. Take this idea and use it to create background layers or even backgrounds to stamp on using up odds and ends of washi, patterned or self-designed papers. Use can of course your dies or just hand cut any shape you want as well. happy snipping!Anne :O)
  • My tip is using wax paper to make pretty background paper.Take some wax paper and crumle it into a ball.  Open it and put between 2 sheets of cs.

    Cover with scap paper and heat set with iron.  The wax from the crumpled wax paper will melt and make a design on your cs.

    Remove wax paper and sponge or brayer ink on your cs and the background will appear.

    You can use more than one color of ink.

    Chris

  • Hi Ladies,
    When you have spent a bit of time on a stamped piece and then you royally screw it up it can be heartbreaking. I was scene stamping (I do not do it often and I am not that good at it) today and made a cute little Halloween landscape. Oh, it had potential! And then I started to color…I decided to DTP the background with petal point dye inkpads (really I wanted to use my airbrush but I was listing to an audio book-Stephen King’s Cujo-to get in the Halloween spirit and all LOL!- and my air compressor is too dang loud) and it was looking OK. I was too lazy to do any fussy-cut masking so I tried to sneak in some chalk pastel around my foreground subjects, that did not go well, so I pushed on with more ink. Some markers, colored pencils and 20 minutes later I had a mess! I was ready to toss it but decided that it couldn’t get ANY worse so I grabbed my watercolors and wet down the background and painted over it thereby liquifing the chalk and softening the ink-pad ink. I let it dry and walked away.A couple hours later I came back to the project and it looked a lot better. I redid some of the original colored pencil but most of it was OK since the wax in the pencil repeled the application of watercolor and added a few shadows for depth and perspective. I think it turned out so well I’m going to submit it to the Halloween call at Vamp Stamp News!

    So my tips for today are:
    1. When all is lost be daring and try a bold technique on your card. Hey, if you are going to throw it away anyway why not do something unexpected.

    2. Walk away and let the stamp fairies do their magic. It always looks better when you return. I like to imagine little elves hard at work in my craft room…now if only they would clean up their mess before they leave, I know I am not that much of a slob!

    3. Remember, it’s only a piece of paper, what have you got to lose?

    Happy crafting!
    Lindsay

  • For an inexpensive source of corrugated paper use the inside of light bulb boxes.  You can add color by brushing an ink pad across the paper. I once placed yarn between to grooves for an interesting effect.  You can also add glitter.Chris
  • HI All,
    Here’s the first of my tips.If you are scanning your cards in, you might want to make sure your glass is clean to start with.  Otherwise you’ll be saving images with speckles and white marks all over them that you really didn’t want there.  It can make your beautiful art work look less that the piece of perfection that it is.

    And my second tip is the following.  In the past I gave a tip about taking a piece of bubble wrap and cutting a hole in the middle of a number of layers to protect a raised image on your card.  Today my tip is, if you are out of bubble wrap, take an old used envelope that has bubble wrap on the inside of it, cut it up and use that instead.  Don’t ask me how I came up with this idea!! LOL

    Sincerely,
    Rli

  • Hi Stampers,Masking is a great way to make a stamped image apper as if it is in the forefront of a design but what if you do not have the stamp you used on hand? Nowadays we use digital stamps or sometimes a friend stamps us a few images so we do not have an actual stamp to mask with. What to do? You can easily mask these images by sticking a post it note over your stamped or printed image (the neon post it notes are plenty transparent, use a light box if need be) then trace around the outline of the image, cut it out and stick it over your image on the cardstock and then you can ink, stamp or spray the background with no worries! To see an example of this, although not oriental, check out the halloween card here on my blog: http://thefrugalcrafter.wordpress.com/2011/08/31/im-batty-40-off/

    Lindsay

  • hi stampers,Want a new way to use little chinese coins and charms on your cards? Try poking a stick-pin through the hole and then poke the pin through a knot of ribbon. I got these Asian charms from Sky Blue Pink but they are also available at jewelery supply shops. All of the stamps I used are from About Art Accents/Art Neko.

    Want to add drama and save time when coloring an image? Just color a portion of it as I did with the lovers in this card, by only coloring the skin I gave the card a sence of romance.

    When was the last time you used a stencil? Stencils make quick work of making backgrounds and you can use them with inkpads (as I did with the envelope) spray ink or chalk.

    When you make a card make or stamp an envelope to match. If you want to be really fancy  you can glue a scrap of matching paper to the inner flap of the envelop to make a liner (one less scrap you have to file away and forget about!)

    I have attached photos of the card these tips are from, to read more plese visit this blog post: http://thefrugalcrafter.wordpress.com/2011/09/01/best-day-anniversary-card/

    Lindsay

  • I have a tip for those of you that use water color pencils. You may have to sharpen your pencils.
    Take a piece of any heavy weight sandpaper and rub the tips of your pencils on the grit. Add a bit of water to the color and it makes your own color palette. Do not use it all put it away and add water the next time and it works again. No waste!
    It really works.
    Big hugs, Nancy
  • Another…. NO WASTE…. I  often use when a small area needs colouring in…..just go with your waterbrush over the tip of the pencil, pick up some colour as much as you want – lighter or darker – and use it  right away on you paper.This too works nicely and cheap  :o)
    Carla
  • This tip is one I used in my dorm room at college because my budget was sparse and I did not own a hammer.  My shelves were 12″ high and 12″ deep each, so it could store books, papers, and art supplies for ease of access.Materials:

    Newspapers to protect the painting surface

    6 concrete blocks with equal dimensions (12″ x 12″ x 4″ worked for me, see the concrete block scan)

    Spray paint in whatever color suits your mood

    3 pieces of plywood 12″ by no more than 6′

    Directions:
    Paint the concrete blocks and wood planks if desired.

    Place two blocks flat on the floor about 4′ apart.  My shelving unit was against a wall and about 2″ out from the wall.

    Lay on one plank and center it over the two flat blocks.

    Place two more blocks upright on the plank so the next shelf will be 12″ above the first shelf.

    Repeat with two more blocks and another plank of wood.

    The end result is 3 shelves with supporting concrete blocks.

    Going any higher may be a hazard in earthquake country.

    I attached a picture of a shelf unit that I found on the internet.  Be aware that using the tall cinder blocks does make the bookcase less stable.  That is why I suggest using square blocks.  They are safer in earthquakes or when roommates stumble into them in the dark.
    Annette “:O)

  • Hi Everyone,Most of us have card/art magazines or books we have purchased over the years. May have even done a project or two we saw inside. Now they sit on the bookshelf collecting dust. Here’s a tip/challenge for you:

    Grab a book or magazine, go through it from cover to cover and try every card idea, or technique you haven’t tried yet or need a refresher on. You don’t have to do it all in one day but challenge yourself to do each one you  like until you’ve finished with that book/magazine. Then pick up the next one and do it again.

    Take those sketches and designs and flip or rotate them. See them from all angles and see what you can create.  You can even go back through the OSA weekly card sketches and do the same thing. Try them upside down or reversed. Move some of the elements and see if you can create an entirely new sketch design.

    You would be surprised at what catches your eye now that didn’t appeal when you originally viewed it or what a different version will produce.

    And while you are being budget friendly by using the resources you already own, don’t forget to dig through your stash, use up your scraps, find that stamp you haven’t used in years and give them a whirl. If you don’t use it now, you may never use it and that’s a crying shame.

    Take a stamp or set and see if you can create 3 entirely different looks or designs with it.

    Challenge yourself in new and different ways. Refresh your creative spirit, think outside your normal comfort zone.

    Be creative, give your budget a break, dig into your beloved supplies and see what beauties you can design.

    Then brighten someone’s day with a smile and a RAK.
    Ruth

  • If you have a rubber stamp that will not stamp an entire image because it is uneven, try putting your cardstock on a mousepad and then stamping. The soft surface enables the stamp to touch the entire surface of the card. I do this all the time & get a better image.Chris
  • Hi Everyone,Gaining a different perspective:

    Have you ever come to a place when creating a card where you do not know what to add next?  You know that something is needed to complete the design, but you do not know exactly what it is?  Join the club!  Sometimes a wee image in a corner, a small medallion, a button, an overlay of vellum, or a wisp of ribbon can do the trick.  Other times, our eye needs some help.

    After working for an hour or more with a piece of art, our eyes can become used to what we think we are seeing and it makes it difficult to critique the design.  Consider taking a break from the work and coming back to it later.  This tip almost always works.  Coming back the next day or even a week later, your eye will have a new perspective and be able to assist you in deciding how to complete the item.

    However, if you are facing a deadline and cannot take a break, there is a simple solution that is free.  Hold your artwork up to a mirror and view the art in the mirror.  Your eyes instantly have a completely new view of the item and can help you discover what is needed.

    Lacking a mirror, turn the art upside down.  View the art in progress and adjust your creation to suit your esthetic values.

    Annette “:O)

  • Lately we’ve had several weekly challenges that feature small images.  Sometimes we have just the right little square or rectangle.  Sometimes we would like to use a larger stamp image cut into a specific smaller size.  Sometimes, for scrapbooking, collage, or just artistic preference, we need to find a part of an image that makes a big impact.  I’ve always kept a drawer with premade mats in different sizes (black and white) to use to try to find the best part of an image to define my crop.  But sometimes we need a size that a mat doesn’t match.  You think you know how to crop something, so you cut it – and oh no!  That would have looked better if I’d included a little more of the picture.  The image you are looking for might be narrower, wider, longer – or on an angle you didn’t even think of.I learned a trick a few years ago in a class with Jane Davies that I’ve recently been using in working with collage.  It lets you find just the part of the image that makes you say “WOW!”    I thought I’d pass it on.

    Take one of those mats – and cut it into two pieces.  Two L-shaped pieces.  You can cut it out of cardstock if you don’t have a mat to spare. This simple little tool is your viewfinder.  By maneuvering it in different configurations, you can  try different dimensions, angles, inclusions – that you might not have thought of just looking at a piece.  Once you find the perfect image, you can cut.  You’ll add pizazz to your art – and you’ll be able to use the stamps you have in new and different ways.   I know it’s heresy to say – but you don’t always need a new stamp!  You just need to look at what you have differently.

    I’m attaching some scans below to show you what I’m talking about.  If they are in order, the first shows how to cut the mat, and the second two show how you can find different shapes to guide your cutting.  Cut one and then look at some magazine pictures to see how many different possibilities there are!  Once you decide you can’t live without this tool, it helps to put it somewhere where you can find it!  I probably have four of them floating under piles, and now I have five.  Also, there are spots on the scans.  Someone left the lid off the scanner cleaner.  sigh. . .
    Bonnie

  • Last night I was making a Bookatrix card for a wedding.  It’s made up of layers that look like book pages.  I cut out the middles of the 2 front pages to attach vellum with double-sided tape.  However, due to the page shape, there were small patches of DST that were outwith the vellum edge underneath.  As I didn’t want the page layers to stick together, I dabbed talcum powder on the offending sticky bits!  It worked a treat!  No more sticky-icky bits!N.B.  For anyone who is wondering about the Bookatrix, try Googling it, or The Glitter Girls/Keepsake website.

    Alexis Smith

  • Hi Stampers!Well I did it! I mounted all of my small sentiment stamps and stored them in a printers tray I got at a yard sale last week and I love it! All of the larger UM and clear sentiments I put in CD cases by theme. I bought a set of generic “Jenga” blocks ar Big Lots for $5 for 48 and they worked great, I attached them with rubber cement. Have a look at my blog to see more photos: http://thefrugalcrafter.wordpress.com/2011/09/08/new-stamp-storage-and-mounting-idea/

    Lindsay

  • I don’t remember if I posted this tip recently but I recently did it.  Normally I put all my scraps in whatever zip lock bag I have handy until one bulges and then go on to another.  So when I need a small piece of paper, I am sifting through each and every zip lock until I find the one I want in the color I want.  All the colors were mixed up and it was time-consuming to try to find not only a color I want but a shade or pattern as well.This week I finally got around to sorting through all those scraps.  It took me 4 hours of laying them out on the floor and sorting.  I didn’t go into different shades of colors – just colors – red, blue, green, yellow, orange, purple, brown, black, white and tan.  And then I have 2 zip lock bags – one containing patterned paper and the other stamped images.

    Since I’ve done that it’s soooo easy to put a card together using my scraps.  All the blue with it’s many shades are in the same bag so I can choose which one I want to use on my card.

    So, my tip is, even though it looks time-consuming to sort through your scraps, it’s well worth it in the long run because it really cuts down, not only on time, but also on using up your scraps, before you cut a new piece of card stock.

    Rli

  • As an addon to this:I keep half-sheet & quarter-sheets and larger scraps in one accordion folder, sorted by color; and I have another with the much smaller scraps. Then I have a third with an assortment of full 8.5×11 sheets (sorted by color, natch), so that I don’t have to keep on going through my tupperware tubs containing all the REST of my cardstock, sorted by color! Yeesh!

    I have the accounting 12-pocket folders with white (and transparent vellum), cream, yellow, orange, red, purple, blue, green, brown, black, silver, and gold.

    Have I mentioned that I’m from Switzerland, lately, land of the VERY organized? *giggles*

    Heather
    =)

  • When working with colored pencils, you get those waxy bits flaking off and they make stray marks on your paper.Use an old make up brush to brush away your pencil crumbs! It’s soft and won’t grind them into the paper like other brushes do.

    Carole P.

  • Okay guys, It must be Thursday in US now.
    I fell upon this tip today.after sheer and utter frustration, of trying to get paper to stick to Grunge., yes I was using glossy accents, but I had used distress inks, on the grunge..
    So I blasted it with the heat gun making sure all the ink was dry and voila my paper stuck to my grunge.

    I am now a happy grunger.

    Mary Waspe xx

  • I always keep one clean cutting mat for my Big Shot to use only for embossing…that way I don’t get any the cut marks showing on my paper.Also I always use the same recipe to cut my dies – that way my bottom cutting mat stays clean. When my top cutting mat get too bad (even after flipping it over each time I cut to help keep it flat), I discard it and replace it with the cleaner bottom cutting mat – now to be used as my top cutting mat. You thereby only having to replace the bottom cutting mat…if you use both to cut into, you will have to replace both cutting mats much sooner!

    Jan Castle

  • was talking to Anne over in FRa. and mentioned Paper Salad… she didn’t know what it was, so thought some of the rest of you might not know.
    When prepping for classes, I have a lot of “cut off pieces” … these are pieces that are left over after cutting the card bases, mats, stamping image pieces,etc.
    They are all shapes and sizes.  We put these pieces in a little baggie and give it away to any stamper who would like to have it… it’s called PAPER SALAD.
    Many of the pieces are big enough to stamp on, create a border, put through punches for lacy boarders, flowers, dragon flies, etc.
    I have one stamper who is very artistic and asks…. “do you have any of those paper pieces for me” ? .. I guess I’ll have to tell her it’s Paper Salad!So next time you have a lot of pieces left over from cutting up card designs.. don’t toss them, put them in an envelope and give them to someone else to create something beautiful with. I have also taken these pieces and sat and punched out all kinds of flowers and shapes, then put them in little plastic boxes and put on the table for the girls to decorate their cards with when they come over. I must admit… it takes time, but many pieces are big enough to make many beautiful flowers and shapes.

    Connie Smith,

  • Embossing paste is great to use with stencils on cards. If you run out of embossing paste, you can make your own using baking powder and school glue.  Just add enough baking powder to the glue until it is thick.  I think spackling paste from the hardware
    store can also be used.  Glitter can be sprinkled on top before it dries.Chris
  • Thanks Connie for letting us all know those pieces are called paper salad.  I have a number of envelopes that only contain the strips that are about 1/4 inch wide and once a year I sit down with a piece of white card stock, cover it with double- sided tape, and add strips at different angles.  I try to put a pattern next to a solid but that’s the only difference I make.  I don’t normally look for only blue or only pink, for instance.  I do all colors at random.  Here are some sheets I made with that technique.  I’ve shared it with you all before:Since that is an old tip, I’ll include another oldie I did last year as well.  When you emboss your paper to add texture to your card, you can bring out the pattern of the embossing by sponging the image.  Here I have a picture of 3 steps I did with an embossed piece of card stock so you can see what the sponging does.  The background on the left is just dry embossed without adding any extra color.  The middle one has been embossed across the image only and the one on the right is embossed with another color as well onto the background.  You can see it here:

    Rli

  • Rubbings have been around for centuries.  School children use crayons and newsprint on rough surfaces to view textures.Take this technique a step farther and create your own raised background to make visual textures.

    You will need scrap papers, dregs of white glue, and a template of your choosing.

    I have attached a butterfly template that I drew freehand in case you wish to use it.  There are 2 sizes: card front or using a full sheet of cardstock

    Create the butterfly so it is symmetrical.  See scan.

    Drizzle white glue around the perimeter of the butterfly.

    Add dots, circles, and squiggles on the left wings and duplicate them on the right wings.

    Allow to dry.

    Once the glue has dried, place a sheet of cardstock over the template and rub oil pastels, an ink pad, crayons, or chalks over the surface to reveal the texture.

    Taping down the template and the top sheet can avoid unwanted smears.

    Save the template in a plastic sleeve for future use.

    Quoted From Wiki

    Brass rubbing was originally a largely British enthusiasm for reproducing onto paper monumental brasses – commemorative brass plaques found in churches, usually originally on the floor, from between the 13th and 16th centuries. The concept of recording textures of things is more generally called making a rubbing. What distinguishes rubbings from frottage is that rubbings are meant to reproduce the form of something being transferred, whereas frottage just desires to use rubbing to grab a random texture.

    Brass rubbings are created by laying a sheet of paper on top of a brass (actually called “latten” – an alloy of brass and nickel) and rubbing the paper with graphite, wax, or chalk, a process similar to rubbing a pencil over a piece of paper placed on top of a coin. In the “old days” rubbings were most commonly made using the equivalent of what we would call “butcher’s paper” [a 22–30-inch-wide (560–760 mm) roll of whitish paper] laid down over the brass and rubbed with “heelball”, a waxy glob of black crayon once used to shine shoes.

    Nowadays most brass rubbers purchase special paper rolls of heavy duty black velvety material, and the crayons are silver or gold (and other colours). Sometime after the early 1970s the authorities[specify] decided that you could no longer rub the original brasses since they were being worn away by the rubbing process, and the lack of care on the part of some individuals. Brass rubbing centres had already appeared around the U.K. and now they became the prime source for rubbings. It is important to note that one now rubs a replica brass, not the original. Replicas are often not the same scale as the original so a prospective buyer of a rubbing should investigate to see whether a rubbing is of an original or a replica. Miniature versions of brasses are also being offered for sale without specifying that they are not created to the original scale.

    Annette “:O)

  • I think I have a tip that may help most of you,  especially when making multiple cards at once.Fold your cardstock before you cut it to size.  That way, your corners will always match up and you only have to cut once instead of twice per piece of card stock.

    I like the corners to match, so for those of you like me, this makes it easy.

    Linda Isham

  • For a little different embellishment in your flower centers, try using filigreed bead caps. They are found in the jewelry section of your craft stores, they come in various sizes and shapes, are very inexpensive, and on sale much of the time. If you are unfamiliar with them, they fit around the sides of beads used in a necklace, bracelet, etc. for an added embellishment.I have found them in gold, silver, and copper, but they can become any beautiful color you wish using alcohol inks. Carefully flatten them completely – the larger they are, the more difficult to flatten without distorting them – and then reshape slightly and attach to your flower center, making sure that the more, “finished,” side is up. Beads, brads, or gemstones may be added to the middle for some extra sparkle.

    They can also be used alone as individual flowers with the tiny ones acting as, “buds.” I have enclosed a photo – but it is my first attempt at doing this – so if I have done it improperly, please let me know.

    So, first of all, go check out all your old, unused jewelry and see what fun you can have experimenting!

    Hugs from Barb W. in sunny Iowa

  • To create great flower centers experiment with Ground coffee
    Course salt
    fine sand
    saw dust
    dried herbs
    uncooked rice
    small dried beans
    Lentils
    Dried veggie soup mix
    egg shells-dried
    Scrunched small
    colored-AI or
    reinkers
  • Do you remember Joyce Haden from ASITH?  She huffs on stamps.  Candice’s tip (garnered along the way from someone else, perhaps) involves the same idea, but uses steam instead of your own breath.  Both tips use up all of the ink on a stamp and wastes none.From Joyce:

    Ink the image with waterbased colored markers.

    The first inks will dry before you are finished coloring.

    Color the image completely.

    HUFF on the stamp with your breath (as you do on glasses lenses to clean them) and moisten the entire image.

    Stamp the image.

    HUFF again and stamp a shadow image slightly askew from the first stamped image or stamp the image on a clean piece of cardstock to create a background paper for another project.

    HUFF again and stamp the image again.

    Repeat until all of the ink is gone from the rubber.

    Candice’s Steam Idea:

    Use the same technique as Joyce’s, but use steam from a simmering pot of water or tea kettle instead of huffing.

    Be careful to keep your fingers away from the direct steam or wear a kitchen glove to protect your fingers.

    Whichever technique you employ, all of the ink will be used up.  Waste not; want not.

    Do try this technique.  Think about it.  You will not need to clean your images after stamping.  You will have huffed/steamed away the ink.

    Happy stamping,
    Annette “:O)

  • Hi Ladies,This tip was shared this week with me at the store. If you like the gathered ribbon or ruching  look of ribbon on your cards, look no further than the stitched ribbon you may already have on hand. Just pull up the thread or threads and instant gathered ribbon for your cards, no fuss or hand stitching or pleating yourself.

    Ruth

  • I was working on a card that needed a triangle.So I made a so called background-triange-mat and then I wanted to use a part of a stamp on top of that mat.

    After cutting up several pieces of cardstock and not getting it right…again lightning hit me….hahahaha.

    I took a cellophane bag (the ones in which you put a card in to protect the card)

    Cut out a square in the right size I needed.

    Cut this square in half to get the right size-triangle and used this as a ‘see-through-template’ on the stamped image to get the right part that I wanted to have/use.

    And this is my tip!

    This way you can make any see-through-template in any size or shape you want to get that right piece of stamped image you want to use.

    Hope I make any sense and that you will understand it  :o)

    Maybe one day I will make a photo of it.

    Carla

  • Carla’s tip reminded me of a swap I was in years ago.  It was for a corner book mark
    made from folded card stock and folded then the corner was cut into a triangle.
    Along side the triangle a small piece was cut, folded onto the back of the triangle and
    that was folded and glued to the back of the triangle.  Had some cute book marks and
    even kids got into the act and made images on the front of the triangle. So cute.  Marge
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