Carpe Diem

Life moves pretty fast.
If you don’t stop to look around once in a while you could miss it.
~From Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Good Day

I think Ferris Bueller would like the sentiments from this new stamp set, Chalkboard Greetings. He’s a Carpe Diem, Sieze the Day kind of guy.


If  you’ve never watched the move, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, you must seize the moment Right Now. Here’s the 1986 trailer.

Danke schön, right?!


Tips & Techniques

I created this black panel with a little adjustment to the chalkboard technique.

Good Day Panel

If you want try the chalkboard technique with just a hint of color, here’s the trick.



You’ll need:

  • white pigment (craft) ink,
  • white embossing powder,
  • embossing buddy,
  • heat gun,
  • sponge daubers,
  • chalks,
  • dark cardstock, and a
  • paper towel.

Chalkboard Technique Supplies

    Step by Step

  • Wipe your cardstock down with your embossing buddy. Stamp the sentiment with white pigment ink, coat with white embossing powder and heat set. (Sometimes it sets more evenly if you point the heat gun from the back side of the paper.) Set it aside until it has a chance to cool down and is no longer sticky.
  • Selectively stamp the sentiment again. (I just stamped the words Day and Good) with the white pigment ink.  Shift the design just slightly to the right for a shadow effect.
  • Twist a sponge dauber in the chalk and then dab it over the offset, stamped image quickly, before it dries. Keep adding chalk to the wet ink until you think you have enough color.
  • Use your paper towel to wipe off any access chalk. It will not remove the chalk that was applied onto the wet pigment ink.
  • To add some chalk “dust”.  Use another paper towel and blend some more of the white pigment ink onto the background — around the sentiments or in the corners.

Chalkboard Greetings

Almost makes you miss the classroom, doesn’t it?

My Favorite Things Teaser TimeIt’s another fun day of teasers at the My Favorite Things blog. This Chalkboard Greetings stamp set and Insert It 3″ x 4″ Notepad Die-namic are just a couple of toys being revealed today. Be sure to stop in at the My Favorite Things blog to see what other crazy fun things are happening.

Here are all the supplies I used. The links for the newest toys from My Favorite Things will be functional after the release on May 7.

Finished size: 5-1/2″ by 5-1/2″. Additional Supplies include Stampin’ Up! Whisper White Pigment (Craft) ink, Stampin’ Up! white embossing powder, Stampin’ Up! Stampin’ Pastels (Bashful Blue), Stampin’ Up! black brads, Fancy Pants Designs 6″ x 6″ Paper Pad Etcetera, My Mind’s Eye twine.

Good Day


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More Apple Orchards and a Tutorial

A seed hidden in the heart of an apple
is an orchard invisible. ~ Welsh Proverb

PI Little Gardner Thank you so, so much for your very sweet comments about my apple orchard of projects during the My Favorite Things Teaser days (here: Noble Apple). Because so many of you asked, I have a tutorial on how to make three-dimensional apples. But first I have a new little card to show you, just because this Pure Innocence Little Gardner set is so stinkin’ cute. Pure Innocence Little Gardner Do you dig it?! (Sorry, bad pun I just couldn’t resist.) I thought this little doll would fit in perfectly in the Farmer’s Market, carrying her precious find. Here’s the clean and simple inside. PI Little Gardner CAS


PI Little Gardner Copics

Finished size 4-1/4″ by 5-1/2″. Other ingredients: Memento Dye Ink, Crate Paper Farmhouse 6″ x 6″ paper pad, Ranger Rock Candy Distress Stickles.   Apple Orchard I’m adding another apple to the orchard today, a whole, unsliced apple. 3D Apple Here are instructions on how to make a whole apple, followed by instructions and what other supplies you might need to make a half, sliced apple.  


  • Red Delicious Die-Namic
  • Red or Green cardstock to make the apple (1 sheet of 12″ x 12″ for a half-apple)
  • Scraps of Kraft or Green paper for the leaves.
  • Scrap of paper for tag
  • Hemp Twine
  • Kraft Button
  • Stick
  • A wet glue that dries clear

        Not included in the photo:

I like the look of corrugated paper for texture, but you can use plain card stock and/or run your card stock through a paper crimper.

Noble Apple Suppies


  Step by Step

Step 1. Using the Red Delicious Die-namic, cut out 24 to 30 apples out of the red or green cardstock. The more apples you cut out and adhere together, the fuller your apple will be. Also cut out four leaves, two from each of each size provided with the Red Delicious Die-namic set. Step1 Step 2. From the four leaves you cut out earlier, adhere the leaves back to back, so you have two, two-sided leaves, one small and one larger. Leaves Step 3. Sponge craft ink along the edges for extra dimension. Sponge Leaves Step 4. Score the apples in half on your scoring tool. Since the apples are 3″ wide, you can score at 1-1/2″. Step3 Step 5. Fold the apples in half so that the side that will be showing when your apple is finished is on the inside of the fold. For my apples, the corrugated side of the apples are facing inside. Fold Apples Step 6. Add glue to one half of the folded apple and adhere another apple half on top. Glue Apples This is what it looks like after you’ve adhered two of the apples together. Glued Apples Step 7. Adhere half of the apples together and then set it aside. Apple Half Step 8. Start from two apples again. Adhere the rest of your apples together. Now you have two apple halves. TwoAppleHalves Step 9. Adhere your leaves inside one apple half. Glue Leaves to Apple Step 10. Coat the stick with wet glue starting from one inch from the top of the stick, all the way around and to the bottom of the stick. I used a glue gun because the glue is positional and dries quickly. Stick Step 11. Moving quickly, adhere the second half of your apple to the first half of the apple and pinch the papers around the stick, so that each fold touches and is adhered to the stick. GlueApples Step 12. Embellish your apple stem with hemp cord, a Kraft button, and a tag made with the Blueprints 2 Die-namics and Birthday Celebrations sentiment, Sweet. Three Apples   And now . . . . for sliced apples. 2 Sliced Apples


For a Half, Sliced Apple, you’ll need the same supplies as above except:

  • Only one sheet of 12″ x 12″ red or green paper instead of two
  • A scrap of at least 4″ x 4″ of Kraft, Natural or other light-colored paper for the apple slice.
  • Scraps of Navy, Brown, Black or any dark paper for seeds.
  • Paper-piercer
  • DMC Embroidery Floss and needle
  • Ranger Antique Linen Distress Stickles

  Step by Step

Step 1. Using the Red Delicious Die-namic, cut out at 12 to 15 apples out of the red or green cardstock. Also cut out four leaves, two from each of each size provided with the Red Delicious Die-namic set and one apple out of the Kraft, Natural or other light-colored card stock. 2nd Cut of Apples Steps 2 through 6. Follow Steps 2 through 6 above. Adhere the leaves together and ink them with Kraft ink. Score and fold the red or green apples in half. Adhere all the apples together to make half of an apple. Do NOT score and fold the light colored apple. Apple Half Step 7. Embellish the light colored apple anyway you like.

  • Use a paper piercer to pre-punch holes and then hand-sew a seam around the inside of the apple with two strands of DMC embroidery floss (Ecru).
  • Add Distress Stickles to the outer most edge of the apple.
  • Add seeds using the template below (resize them as needed).

Apple Seeds 2nd Supplies Step 8. Adhere your leaves inside one apple half. Glue Leaves to Apple Step 9. Coat the stick with wet glue starting from one inch from the top of the stick, all the way around and to the bottom of the stick. Stick Step 10. Adhere the natural-color, embellished apple slice to the half apple, lining it up with the edges of the other apple slices. Half Apple Glued Step 11. Embellish your apple stem with hemp cord, a Kraft button, and a tag made with the Blueprints 2 Die-namics and Birthday Celebrations sentiment, Sweet. Sliced Apples   Be sure to visit the My Favorite Things Blog to see the new feature, “Release Rewind” . . . one more review of all the Brand Spankin’ New toys being released this month with amazing projects created by the designers. NewRelease_BlogTitle

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Read All About It

Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend.
Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.
      ~ Groucho Marx

Pure Innocence Read All About It

I discovered a hot new trend at the Indie craft fairs in Chicago and Austin this past year: framing with embroidery hoops!

Back about a squillion years ago we framed our needle crafts with embroidery hoops – proving once again that I am vintage – but not antique!

My talented daughter picked up on this hot trend, screen printed her designs onto fabric and put them into embroidery hoops. They flew off the virtual shelves of her Etsy store. Well, you know what happened next.


Pure Innocence Read All About It

I put a paper craft project into an embroidery hoop. So cute! Yep, I'm such a trend setter.


My Favorite Things Creative Challenge

The My Favorite Things (MFT) Design Team Creative Challenge is a monthly feature, where we're challenged to explore our creative side using a specific theme, product, or technique. This month the boss lady challenged us to create with our Circle STAX Die-Namics.

Pure Innocence Read All About It

The Circle STAX Die-namics were perfect for framing a project into an embroidery hoop.

I cut out a 4.25 inch circle from Black Licorice card stock with the largest die from the Circle STAX Set 1 and then just glued that onto the inside ring of the embroidery hoop.

With the 4 inch diameter die from the Circle STAX Set 2 I cut out the paper with the newsprint background to layer on top of the black circle. Then, I added some shading and hand sewing inside the newsprint circle.

Here's a little trick I used to add some fun shading.

(If you bought your Circle STAX a while back, you'll need to first remove the clear plastic back that came attached to them. These were originally included as part of the manufacturing process, but they're not needed.)

Shading with Die-Namics Step 1

You'll need a Circle STAX Die-namic, ink, and an art or make-up sponge.

I used bolder colors than I would normally use in this demonstration so you could see this clearly. Keep in mind that Less is More. Use soft colors and a soft touch. For the most subtle but lovely effect, use an ink that closely matches the paper you're sponging – it will just give a little dimension without being distracting.

After you cut out your circle, leave the paper inside the Die-namic. So you can see this clearly, I cut a circle out of white card stock.

You can tape the Die-Namic to your work surface (my beige paper, in this case) to keep it from moving around, but you should also hold onto the Die-namic tightly during the next step.

Shading with Die-namics, Step 2

Starting from outside the circle, sponge ink working from the outside in. This will remove some of the ink from the sponge and give you a softer look.

Shading with Die-Namics Step 3

Continue sponging from the outside of the circle toward the center of the circle. When you lift the Die-namic, you'll have beautiful, framed effect.

Shading with Die-namics Step 4

To add a little hand stitching you'll need a piercing needle, circle shaped plastic canvas (you can find them for about $1.50 in the craft stores near the yarn), and a mouse pad to protect your work surface.

Papier Piercing with Plastic Canvas

Line your plastic canvas up against your newly shaded circle die cut.

Paper Piercing with Plastic Canvas

Use the grids in the plastic canvas to guide where you pierce your holes. You can then use the holes you pierced to guide your sewing.

I used three strands of six-stranded DMC Embroidery floss. Do not knot your floss or thread behind the paper when you start or finish your sewing because it will leaves bumps on the surface. Instead, just secure the back threads with tape.

And, finally, I added a tag with the new Labels and Tabs Die-namic.

Read All About It Tag

Here are all the ingredients I used to create my embroidery-hoop project.

Other ingredients: 4" wood embroidery hoop; Colorbox Fluid Chalk Ink; Memento Tuxedo Black Dye Ink; Copic Markers (G82 for shoes and heart; YR21, YR24, YR31 for hair; E00, E000 and E30 for skin); DMC Embroidery Floss in Ecro; Round Plastic Canvas; Embroidery Needle; My Minds Eye 6 x 6 Sunshine Designer Paper Pad from the Lost and Found series. 

Be sure to check out the MFT Blog for a list of all the designers who have a project to share with you today for our Circle STAX Creative Challenge. I've had a few sneak peaks, and I'm telling you – you won't look at circles the same way again.

Pure Innocence Read All About It

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