Bloom & Grow for All Stampers

Bloom & Grow is a stamp set in the Stampin’ Up! annual catalog that has gorgeous floral sprays, bold sentiments, and you can also get matching dies. The amazing thing about this set is that it can work well for any stamper no matter where you are in your crafting journey. I have four projects for you today each one a little bit more advanced than the last and all of them beautiful. I’ll walk you through how I created each one.

Simple Start

Paper, ink, and stamps. That’s all you need for this card. And some way to cut the paper. I started with a half sheet of Thick Whisper White card stock and scored it down the middle. The thicker paper gives this clean and simple design some weight to it. I used two colors of ink, Highland Heather and Gorgeous Grape, but the same “two color” effect could be achieved by using second generation, or stamping off, the floral images. I used a 1-1/2″ strip of scrap paper to create the white space for the sentiment. Then I stamped the largest floral spray in the set on top and on the bottom of the masking strip, so the image cuts off. I removed the mask and stamped the sentiment. That simple for a beautiful card.

Paper Pumpkin Alternate

If you’re a Paper Pumpkin subscriber, you have lots of material to work with already, but may not feel confident in making alternates with the cards. This one is slightly more advanced than the simple starter but not by much and you can make it even simpler than I did. I used the stamp from the kit on one of the postcards and heat embossed several images with silver embossing powder. A dark color ink (Night of Navy, Gorgeous Grape, Black) would work well too for the firework images. I heat embossed the sentiment from Bloom & Grow with black embossing powder. Again, black ink would be just fine. I added some epoxy embellishments for a final touch. The card base is Night of Navy, but Whisper White would work just as well. This would be a great card for a man’s birthday. One bold sentiment can create a dramatic card with little effort.

Avid Crafter Card

This card is the next level of crafter. It uses a label punch, ribbon from my stash, and Stamp n’ Write markers in Purple Posy, Highland Heather, Gorgeous Grape, and Just Jade. I started with a layer of Purple Posy card stock to coordinate with the marker I was going to use. I cut a layer of Whisper White 4″ x 5-1/4″ and stamped one of the floral stamps all over the paper, rotating the image and making sure it stamped off the edges, using Staz-On black ink. When working with the markers, it’s better to use Staz-On because then the image won’t smear when you color it in. Notice my coloring isn’t perfect. It doesn’t have to be to make a pretty card. Flowers have variations in their color. And it’s a handmade card. Enjoy the process and just relax.

The card doesn’t need much more with such pretty handmade designer paper, but I had some Gorgeous Grape striped ribbon in my stash so I added two strips before I adhered my stamped card to the base. There are several ribbons in the catalog that would work just as well with this color combination, or create your own color scheme that works with your ribbons. The sentiment from Bloom & Grow is stamped in Highland Heather and punched out with the Everyday Label punch. Lastly, I added two rhinestones to the sentiment and popped it up on Dimensionals for some interest.

Advanced Card

This card takes advantage of the matching die set that is available. I also used multiple colors of card stock and ink as well as Stampin’ Blends. But, I started with a base of Heavy Whisper White. Not only is the heavy good for basic cards, but it’s also really helpful when you plan on adding a lot of layers. Which I like to do.

The next layer is Purple Posy card stock cut to 4-1/8″ x 5-3/8″ and stamped all over in Highland Heather ink with the smaller spray of flowers. Over this, I added a layer of vellum cut to 4″ x 5-1/4″. I like the frosted quality it gives to the stamped background. Next, I stamped the floral spray four times on Whisper White card stock and several of the single flower and leaf images. Using Magenta Madness, Highland Heather, Purple Posy, Daffodil Delight, and Just Jade Stampin Blends, I colored the images in. I always cut more than I need when I do a card like this so that I have plenty to work with. Like a florist, I add pieces until the display is to my liking, knowing I’ll use the leftovers on something else. When you’re going to color with Stampin’ Blends be sure to use the Memento Tuxedo Black or other ink that won’t smear with alcohol-based ink.

Next, I set all those aside and worked on the sentiment banner. It’s Whisper White stamped in Magenta Madness. I added to strips of Highland Heather card stock cut with the edging dies. I glued those to the back of the Whisper White and set it aside to dry. Then I began to add the flowers. The first sprays are added directly to the vellum one facing up and the other flipped below the sentiment banner. I added them first so the sentiment banner actually overlapped the edges of the flowers.

For the layers, I cut apart the last two sprays by fussing cutting out the rose in the middle. It created three pieces (for a total of six) I could work with. I tucked the previously connected pieces under “their rose” and glued them in place. I added them to the card using Dimensionals. Next, using glue, I inserted a few of the single flower and leaf die cuts to add more interest and dimension. The final touch was the Magenta Madness enamel dots on the sentiment banner.

For me, the two biggest hurdles to making advanced cards are tools and time. Because most of us live in the real world of jobs, bills, and budgets, we have to add to our stash over time. Also, it takes time to make complex cards. But when I have the time to create a truly special card, I love to get out all my stuff and get crafty because the results are so much fun. Each of the cards I shared today is beautiful and shows how one great stamp set can be so versatile. Meet yourself where you are in terms of tools and time, and just enjoy your creative process. Happy crafting.

Summer Nights Paper Pumpkin Alternatives

The Summer Nights Paper Pumpkin kit would have been perfect for party invites if we weren’t all locked down due to the health situation. But that didn’t stop the kit from being fun, gorgeous, and filled with things to reminds us how good life is even when it’s not perfect. Fireflies, lanterns, fireworks—love them all. And the backgrounds are so stunning, they are calling for creativity. If that wasn’t enough, there was an add-on kit available with card bases and lined envelopes. I was inspired by other crafters and dug into my stash including past Paper Pumpkin scraps to come up with some great ideas to hopefully inspire you.

Side note: Because these are postcard style cards, you may be tempted to mount them all on a card base like I did with the carousel card, but you don’t have to. They have an envelope, so pen a quick note to someone you’ve missed seeing and drop it in the mail. They will love getting it!

Sparkling Alternative

This alternative is easy and fun. I used some white sparkling embossing powder with the stamp from the kit. The invitation lines became the sticks. I used Highland Heather ink for the sentiment. The super cute stars were the perfect final touch.

Repurposed Bag

For this next alternative, I cut down one of the bags to a 3-1/4″ square. I used a piece of Pineapple Punch card stock cut just slightly smaller behind it. Any yellow, glitter paper, or your favorite color would work. I added several star images stamped in Calypso Coral and the sentiment from the kit in the same color. For a couple of final embellishments, I added the pre-punched stars from the kit on Dimensionals and a gold faceted gem.

Birthday or Congratulations

I loved the tags in this kit. If you love them too, check out the Tasteful Labels dies in the annual catalog. This card focuses on the elegant tag. I used my retired Birthday Jubilee stamps in Highland Heather and the Floral Essence stamps and punch to create the flower. It’s all tied together with the color palette. For the final touch, I used a Dark Petal Pink Blends marker to color the pearls.

Holiday Card

Last one for this post—a Christmas card. I love making holiday cards all year round. I have a fantastic stash ready to send on December 1 and I’m often surprised by the variety and get to revisit my year of crafting. This card uses pieces from our last holiday Paper Pumpkin boxes back in November (which feels like 82 billion light years ago – but was only months). I used silver heat embossing for the sentiment. The star is from our current kit. If you don’t have trees or dies or stamps to create trees, use ornaments or snowflakes. Anything you add to these backgrounds is guaranteed to be gorgeous.

And if you aren’t subscribed to Paper Pumpkin, you’re missing out. It’s super easy to sign up with the link in the sidebar. You can try it for a month if you’re not sure. And as always, ask me questions and let me know what paper crafts you’re working on. Happy crafting!

Tasteful Textures – Two for Tuesday

Texture is one of my go-tos for making beautiful cards, so, of course, the In Good Taste suite in the new catalog drew my eye. The suite includes the bundled stamps and dies. The stamp set has a beautiful flower and a nice sized feather along with a spray of leaves. It also has two unique background stamps and four general sentiments. There are ten different dies, perfect for layering and cutting out sentiments. There is also a cool 3-D embossing folder called Tasteful Textile and wood embellishments. But the thing that captured my attention was the beautiful paper: wood textures, tiles, stacked stone, textiles, and paint. A totally versatile suite that will make card making a snap. Let me show you two I did to show off the pieces in this suite and demonstrate how easy it is to shine it up or keep it simple.

Simple Card

For this card, I used Gray Granite for my ink and paper. There is a layer of cardstock under that piece of gorgeous textile paper to give it some structure so I could add the piece of Faux Suede Trim. The trim actually goes on top of the base banner cut with one of the dies and some of the wood grain paper that came in the In Good Taste DSP pack from the suite.

I also die cut the sentiment with a different die from the Tasteful Labels dies. See how well they layer? I dabbed a bit of Gray Granite around the edges to give it more dimension and popped it up on Dimensionals. The feather, from the stamp set, is so easy to fussy cut that it’s almost not fussy. And doesn’t it look great with that handwriting font? For a final touch, I added three of the wood elements which are much less shiny than pearls, but just as festive.

Shiny Card

This card is a similar construction to the one above. It has a base of Whisper White and a layer of Rococo Rose underneath the gorgeous paint effect DSP. But then, I ran a small piece of Rococo Rose through the Embossing folder to add that rich texture.

I stamped the flower in Gray Granite on Rococo Rose paper. After I fussy cut it out, I dapped on a bit of Frost White Shimmer Paint into the center. I also added the paint to two of the wood embellishments. The set is called In Good Taste Elements and it has these sprays, the wood pluses above, a larger leaf and some small hexagons.

I heat embossed the sentiment, a stamp from the suite, on to the DSP, and die cut with one of the label dies. I lifted the flower on Dimensionals so it could “float” over the wood sprays. For a final touch, I added some clear epoxy droplets. This card could do duty as a birthday, thank you, or thinking of you card depending on the inside message.