Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Today we received our Autumn Leaves order. It includes the Designing With 2008 Calendar that is a desk calendar with a separate page and new project for each day. Categories for this year's calendar includes: Miscellaneous, Two-Page Layouts, Cards, Layouts, Digital, Stamping, and Home & Gifts. As an added bonus, each Layout category page now includes a design sketch! This is a very hot item and sells out very quickly. I urge you to come in and get yours now before they're gone!!!

Also in the Autumn Leaves order was the Designing With Details book. This book shows you how to take your papercrafting projects (scrapbook pages to cards to home decor) up to the next level simply by adding small details. Remember, it's the details that matter!

We also got new clear acrylic cling stamps, and LOTS of Christmas embellishments that are PERFECT for cardmaking! Not too big, and not too little--just perfect in size. And the price is really cost-effective too, for cardmaking, starting at just $1.99! They have ornaments, gifts, and Christmas trees, and GLITTER RUB-ONS!!! (Remember how much I love rub-ons?!) The package of rub-ons consists of 6 pages, one page each of the following: stockings, dancing Santas with candy canes, Christmas words, alphabets, gold stars, and Christmas trees.

We also got new Christmas paper in, golf paper, a beautiful love-letters collection, horses, circus, popsicles and ice cream.

We had several costumed customers today who came out to take advantage of the 25% off their entire purchase. The first lady came as a Saints fan, and she eluded us as far as getting a photo, but the next one we managed to snap a photo of, and Felix will have her photo on the website shortly. Everybody shopping today got a new pink Karen Foster bag filled with goodies (paper, stickers, and candy, of course!) and we had a really great time. The people who came in today were all very happy and upbeat, and it was really wonderful chatting with them all. I am really looking forward to tomorrow. I will be opening the store by myself, as Emery has other commitments in the morning, and Felix just plans on sleeping late. My guess is that he'll roll in around 5:00 PM or so, stick around for about an hour and then head out to pool, like he usually does. I'll be working on a customer's book all day and evening, in between shoppers. I hope you get the chance to come by and visit with me.

Don't forget to get those Halloween photos developed, and remember if you took digital photos and want to work on them, you can always come by and use the Epson Scrapbook Central kiosk we have. You'll be able to crop, resize, edit, and print just the photos you want to work with, right there in the store. You can bring in your camera card, USB jump drive, or CD.

To create a safe surface to heat emboss on, wrap a magazine or thin catalog in foil, and place it on a clipboard. You can use the clipboard clip to hold your piece in place while you are embossing (look, Ma, no burnt fingers!) and the foil will reflect back the heat, helping your embossing powder to melt a bit quicker.

For those of you who have discovered how wonderful a foam stamping mat is, I HIGHLY recommend you DO NOT heat emboss on top of it!!! The heat will melt the foam (NOT PRETTY!!!) and ruin your mat.

If you do not have a clipboard and cannot use it to hold down your piece while you are heat embossing, you can still save your fingers from burning by using the tip of your bone folder to hold your piece down with. (Yet another use for this wonderful tool!)

Until next time, happy scrapping!


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Bayou Segnette was fantastic! Felix and I are not what you would call "outdoor" people, and we weren't sure how things would go, staying in a cabin on the bayou. I have to say, other than the first night where we almost froze to death, we absolutely loved it! We found out on Saturday that the air conditioner had been on (very, very cold) Friday which is why we were so cold! The rangers came to adjust the AC/heater for us, and after that it was quite comfortable. One of our customers had already climbed on top of a bunk bed and adjusted the thermostat with a coat hanger, but we had to get the Rangers out to re-adjust it. Thank you to the lady who climbed up there for us originally. That was very sweet of you!

The food was outstanding, and I think I actually gained a couple pounds with all that good eating. The cabin was cozy, and the space to display our merchandise was just right. Everything worked out so well for us, and we had such great support from everybody. It was almost too good to be true. We enjoyed the bayou, and got to see "nature" as Felix calls it, several racoons and rabbits, and goodness only knows what else were behind those glowing eyes in the underbrush. We had a great time and if you missed it, you really missed out on a very good time. But there's always next year. Maybe. Debbie is not sure if she is going to do the crop again next year or not, but if she does, she says it will be a bit different. We are waiting to hear her decision, and hope she would consider us as a vendor again if she decides to hold the crop again next year.

So, what's happening in the store, you might ask. LOTS!!! We have been getting orders in every day, and today we got in several orders. One of them was the new Inque Boutique stamps. Inque Boutique took over Sugarloaf Products, which was the company that made the See D's acrylic cling stamps. Sadly, they discontinued a lot of the See D's, but they also came out with many new ones. And, I am happy to say, we have some of them! We have coffee, Thanksgiving and Christmas stamp sets that would be absolutely perfect for cardmaking. After seeing these stamps in person, I think I'm going to order more of the same ones, because I want to make sure I get a set of each of them for myself!

While I'm on the subject of stamps, we also got in the other day some stamps from My Favorite Things. One of them is the most adorable pregnant belly I've ever seen. There's another set for Breast Cancer Awareness, a beach set, a Halloween set, and a Christmas set we've already sold out of. These are all clear acrylic cling stamps.

Another order today was from Penny Black--beautiful foil script background papers. Very elegant, and very versatile. I could easily see these used for weddings, anniversaries, Christmas, and general cardmaking. I actually have a card sample made with it and with Impression Obsession's CL92 set up on the wall. So many people have asked for this specific paper, and we're glad it's finally in.

The rest of our Prima order finally arrived. Beautiful clear "bulbs" with glittered poinsettias inside. Small jars filled with printed posies. Lace flowers in ivory and black. Collections of silk and metallic flowers. We're overflowing with flowers! And just in time for all those Holiday cards!

New Karen Foster collections--Military, Baptism, and a bunch of others I cannot recall at the moment (sorry, it's late and I've processed so many orders today I can't remember everything).

New Moxxie Halloween collections. Also, some really nice bowling papers.

Tip of the Day
How do you use your tools? Do you really get your money's worth out of them? Be creative and think for a moment of what you already own, and how you can make it work for things other than what it was mainly advertised for. One handy tool that I absolutely love, is my bone folder. Not only does it give me crisp, clean fold lines, but it also works great for applying rub-ons, burnishing chalked pieces, and scoring in the 12" trimmer. For those of you who do not know how to score in the 12" trimmer with a bone folder, here's the scoop. Take your blade out of your trimmer so you won't accidentally cut your paper. Measure where you want your score to be, just like if you were going to measure to cut. Using the bone folder, run a score line straight down the track where the cutting blade would normally go. (Yes, I know, they make scoring blades that work the same way, but not everybody has a scoring blade!) If you have a rotary blade trimmer such as the Cutterpede, simply run your bone folder along the edge of the plastic guide, scoring your paper.

Another useful tool is the stylus. Not only can you use it to dry emboss, but you can use it to apply rub-ons (I love rub-ons, can you tell?!) and punch out pre-scored holes for brads/eyelets. You can use it instead of a pen or pencil with your Magic Matter or Puzzle Mates. It will make a nice clean impression that you can easily follow with your scissors. Some people use their stylus to tear handmade paper by scoring the paper first with the stylus. This eliminates the need for using water. It also works well when tearing circles or shapes. Just use the stylus in your stencil or template, and then tear along the impression.

So be creative. Come up with other uses for your tools. You'll be surprised at what you can do with just one tool. Please e-mail me with your other uses for the tools you use. We all would love to hear.

Until next time, happy scrapping!


Friday, October 19, 2007

Bubble Wrap

This Saturday coming, October 20th, Karen Guillot is coming in from Houma to teach two classes. The first one will be at 11:00 AM and the second one will begin at 2:00 PM. These are the two minibooks she created, a Halloween Squash Book, and a Princess/Once Upon A Time Star Book. They are both really adorable, and the cost is only $15 for each class ($30 for both). With Halloween coming up, either one would work if your little girl is going to go with a princess theme. And don't forget that Disney has lots of princesses, so if you wanted to showcase highlights of your trip to Disney this summer, the princess book would work for that, also. The Halloween book speaks for itself. It is ghoulishly fabulous, and you have lots of space to include those (hopefully) once in a lifetime pictures as your children grow up. If you don't have children, you may want to include photos from a Halloween get-together or party that you attend, or give it as a gift to someone--maybe even the host(ess) of the party. Be sure to check the website (go to the Calendar and click on the date) to see what all you need to bring with you to class. Seating is limited and we already have people signed up, so call now to reserve your spot. If you call and we cannot answer, leave your name and phone number on the answering machine, along with which class you want to attend, and we will reserve your spot for you, first come first served.

The rain today was horrible, and I think a lot of people's plans for the day were washed out. I had a Basic Stamping Class tonight, and just when I thought nobody would show up, my students got there later, due to the rain. I can't wait for this wet weather to be over with. I hate driving in this stuff, and it gets my laptop wet when I carry it in or out. I know it's not fun to shop in the rain either, but if you come by, we'll have a nice, hot, fresh pot of coffee ready to warm you back up and get you feeling peppy again. By the way, the coffee is a gourmet blend of French Vanilla and Mocha mixed. You really need to try this smooth-flavored coffee. It's to die for. Felix and Emery know how to make it, which they do, if I'm not around. We have Splenda (Yay!), Sweet and Lo, Equal, and good old-fashioned sugar! Come help yourself.

For those of you looking to change things up a bit in your stamping, consider this. Take a scrap of bubble wrap (small or large bubbles, it is your preference) and wrap it around a small wooden stamp or acrylic block. Secure the ends together on one side with a tight rubber band. Yep, you guessed it, use the bubble wrap as a stamp! It comes out looking really cool, with lines in the bubbles that make it look like pebbles. You can create a unique background with this, for a card or a scrapbook page. Just choose your paper you're going to stamp on (white or colored cardstock will work fine), and the color ink you want to work with. I prefer to use the dye-based inks because they dry very quickly and you won't smear your images. If you want a bold background, re-ink the "stamp" after every time you stamp on the paper. Otherwise, if you want a softer look, ink the "stamp", stamp once on a scrap piece of paper, then stamp on your background paper several times. You should get at least four or five stamps out of that one inking, in a softer, lighter image. And remember, as with anything, have fun and just play with it. You can use just about anything you can stick to an acrylic block or the back of a wooden stamp, to stamp with. Remember to use repositionable adhesive though, so it won't stay permanently.

Until next time, happy scrapping!


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

We have the new Peek-A-Book board books that everybody was asking for in Pensacola. Felix put them on the online store, and you can order them directly there or call to place your order, or just come on in and get them. I will be doing classes with this great little book in November, and we have some extras on hand, too. For those of you who are unfamiliar with what I am talking about, this is a heavy chipboard-like "board book" with pullout sections on which you can put hidden journaling or include extra photos. I made a Halloween-themed one in Pensacola, which made everybody go crazy asking for the book. It thrills me that I can find things that tickle others as much as they do me. I love this little book, and I'm sure you will, too. You can use it for a child for a book to teach colors, numbers, or the alphabet, or you can use it as a brag book, or you can use it as a mini-album for any occasion. It has just the right amount of surfaces to place things, yet is not so big as to be overwhelming. Come by and see it, and decide for yourself. You may just want to take a couple home.

Sherry from Scrapbook Hardware in Baton Rouge will be teaching a class for us on Saturday, November 3rd at 11:00 AM. It will be two Chrismas layouts, and Felix promises he'll have pics of them up by Friday so you can see what they'll look like. The cost is only $25, and you'll be working with several different techniques, so it's sure to be great fun. Along with the pics, I'll have Felix post the items you'll need to bring with you to this class--it won't be just a paper trimmer and adhesive! Sherry's going to make you work for these layouts, and we're going to have lots of fun doing it. Please call and reserve your spot early, as space is limited.

Here's something fun that Felix found on the web. Click on this link and check this out. It is absolutely amazing. I see her going one way, and Felix sees her going in the opposite direction. How can this be???!!! It's a lot of fun, either way it goes.

Now for today's tip. This is one I want you to experiment with and e-mail me your findings. I read in a Creating Keepsakes book that you can create your own raised "pebbles" over letters by doing the following. Put a pop-up glue dot on top of a small stamped letter or sticker (one dot on top of each letter in a word). Pour clear embossing powder over it to entirely coat the dot(s). Tap off the excess embossing powder. Heat it with your heat gun, like you would in regular heat embossing. The result will be a raised "pebble" over your letter. I haven't tried this myself yet, but it sounds like it would work. Let me know your results.

Until next time, happy scrapping!


Tuesday, October 16, 2007


The Girl Scout Leaders Camp was definitely an experience! Felix and I had not been camping since childhood, and being out "in the woods" was an eye-opener after many years of city-living! It was so beautiful out there, but it was a big change for us. We taught 3 Basic Scrapbooking classes and made lots of new friends. We were in a Unit House, which had a large room where the tables were set up, a bathroom, and a kitchen. We had everything we needed, and they were kind enough to serve us lunch, too. We hope we helped give inspiration to these leaders who attended the classes, to perhaps begin working with their troops on their scrapbooking patch and introduce their girls to the wonderful world of papercrafting. We brought with us many different examples of papercrafting, not just the scrapbook layouts. We brought paperbag books, cards, stamped candles and tile coasters, a starbook, a maze book, etc. There's so much you can do with paper, and we wanted to showcase it all. We're really looking forward to working with the Girl Scouts again at the Hornets game in November. Stay tuned for more details on that!

We have a Basic Stamping class coming on this Thursday, October 18th, at 6:30 PM. It is only $15 and everything you need is included in the class fee. You only need to bring a paper trimmer, microtip scissors, a bone folder, and good adhesive. If you have purchased a couple of stamps and given up on stamping because you never seem to be able to get a good impression or you think you can only do one thing with that stamp, you really NEED to come to this class. I will show you how to get a great, clean impression EVERY time you stamp, and I will show you several different things you can do using the same stamp. I will also teach you how to heat emboss, which so many people love. It is not too early to start thinking about Christmas cards, and once you learn how simple and rewarding stamping can be, you will probably never purchase pre-made Christmas (or birthday, anniversary, thank-you, etc.) cards again!

For today's tip, I want to talk to you about using WordArt in Microsoft Office Word. While the tip I'm going to give deals with one specific type, please play around with it and experiment, and see all the wonderful different things you can do with this tool. If you have questions about it, feel free to e-mail me or if it is during store hours, call me and I will walk you through what you are working on. It really is easy, just take your time and play around with it.

You can create a title that looks matted by doing the following: In Word, select VIEW on the main toolbar, then select TOOLBARS from the drop-down menu. Another drop-down menu will pop up--go down to the bottom and select WORDART. When the new WordArt toolbar pops up, click on the tilted "A" on the left of the toolbar, and then just click OK. You don't need to select anything, just leave the selection that comes up first. Type in your title, then select the font you want to use, and the font size. Making sure your text is still highlighted, select the icon that looks like a little paint can and brush. If it is grayed out, your text is not selected. Simply highlight the text, or click on the text block, and the entire toolbar should come back available. Once you click on the paintcan and brush, a screen will open up giving you options for FILL and LINE. The FILL is the actual color of the text. Select the color of the text you want. The LINE is the size of the "mat" around the text. This will be in black. You can thicken your line by increasing the points on the line weight. Play around with it a little bit until you have it where you want it. You can redo it as many times as you need to, until you're satisfied, as long as the text is still highlighted. When you are satisfied with everything, click OK. Another thing you might want to keep in mind is that you can specify the size of your text by clicking on the SIZE tab after selecting the fill color and line weight. Again, play around with it a little bit until you're satisfied. The result will look like you have matted your text/title, and you can either print it on vellum or cardstock and either leave it in a rectangular shape or go ahead and use an Exacto knife and trim around the outside of the letters to cut it out. Have fun!

Until next time, happy scrapping!


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

More new items in today and yesterday!!! LOTS of different colors in Stickles. LOTS of different Halloween embellishments, especially a bunch from Jolee's. New baby sleep-time paper. New Fall and Thanksgiving paper. Restock (already!) of the latest Halloween papers. More of the giant fleur de lis and crown white chipboard (12x12), and more of the large metal fleur de lis and crowns from Creative Imaginations.

The Scrappy Sisters crop in Pensacola was lots of fun! We want to thank everybody that visited and shopped with us there. We also want to thank the Scrappy Sisters (Mary and Karen) for allowing us to be a vendor, and for including us in the goodies and lunch. I managed to get a Halloween Peek-A-Book done, as well as a chipboard tag book. For the make-and-takes (FREE!), I had 6 different Basic Grey Matchbook Albums available. The customer got to pick which collection they wanted to work with, and I showed them how easily the books came together. I think everybody really liked them. They are the perfect "brag book" size and will fit in just about any purse you might have.

This weekend coming we will be at the Girl Scouts' Leadership camp, teaching Girl Scouts leaders about scrapbooking. We have everything ready, and are really excited about going and spreading the word about how wonderful and fun scrapbooking is.

At the end of this month we will be the vendor for the Bayou Segnette crop, and are pretty excited about that one, too. We've never been to a Bayou Segnette crop, but have heard many great things about it. I'm not sure how many spots are left (if any), but if you want more info on this upcoming 3-day crop, please e-mail Debbie at They do not have a website for this crop.

What do you do with all your scraps? Have you ever heard of Serendipity Paper? If not, or if you've forgotten about it, I'll describe how to make it.

Save ALL your paper scraps, plain cardstock, vellum, and patterned papers. Take a piece of plain cardstock, any color, and use this as the background for your paper you're going to create. Take all those scraps you have, and tear them down into different sizes. It doesn't have to be strips, it can be odd shapes (actually, the odd shapes work best). Run these scraps of paper through your Xyron "X" to put adhesive on the back of them. Peel the scraps off the Xyron backing sheet and place them down in a random fashion on the cardstock, covering the entire sheet. You don't have to worry about colors clashing or not matching patterns. Just put it down in a completely random fashion. When you have the page covered completely, cut it down to fit a Sizzix die (or whatever brand dies you have), and punch different shapes out using this newly-made Serendipity Paper. The result is stunning. If you want to see a sample of this, we have one on the wall at the store. I cut a pocket out of the Serendipity Paper and put it on a piece of patterned paper that looked like denim jeans. It came out adorable. E-mail me pics of what you've created with this. I'd love to see them!

Until next time, happy scrapping!