Thursday, August 18, 2016

Stepping it up for August!
That's right - we are stepping things up this month. What does that mean exactly? Well, we decided to really challenge ourselves and do three projects using the same stamp set. But, the twist was to start simple and then get more involved with each consecutive project.

Here's how we described it: " Project one: The simple, “I’m in a hurry” card. Project two: A look at the same card, stepped up a bit, “I have a bit more time to fuss” version. Project three: The same card again but this time totally stepped up, “Let’s see how fancy I can make this card” version."

If you've already visited Marsha's blog, you saw how perfectly she met the criteria.

I chose to use a stamp set in the new Holiday Catalogue that will be going live September 1 - just around the corner! As a Stampin' Up Demonstrator, one of the perks we get is being able to see and order from the new catalogues before they are available to you.

My first card uses 1 stamp set: Father Christmas, 1 cardstock: Very Vanilla, and 1 ink colour: Tip Top Taupe. Oh, and it is also a 1-layer design and has a bit of sponging. Doesn't get much easier than that.
I just love the Father Christmas stamp set. It makes me think of a song on one of Nana Mouskouri's Christmas albums - Old Toy Trains. I used to have several of her albums and have seen her in concert twice.

My next card is still pretty simple using the Father Christmas stamp set again. This time I stamped the images in Almost Artichoke onto Very Vanilla.  In the top right-hand corner I embossed some very fun pine boughs using the aptly-named Pine Bough Textured Impressions Embossing Folder, also from the Holiday Catalogue.

To get the colour on the pine boughs, I used a sponge and Almost Artichoke ink and lightly sponged over the embossed area. The image panel is mounted onto an Always Artichoke card base.

To further step it up, I cut a frame from the oh-so-lovely Copper Foil Sheets, and popped it up on dimensionals.
And for my third and final project, this is Father Christmas all blinged-out!
This stamp set has 6 images in it and I used 4 of them on this card. And the banners at the top and bottom are really sparkly in real life because I used a brand new product from the Holiday Catalogue - Glitter Stampin' Emboss Powder. That's right - embossing powder with glitter in it! And it comes in Real Red and Emerald Envy.

Now, I do have to say I found it a bit tricky to use. It is difficult to tell when it has melted. As you can see in the bottom left hand corner, it was not totally melted and some of it rubbed off when I glued the image panel to the cardstock. But - that just means I need more practice with it, right?

Father Christmas and his bag of gifts were stamped onto Whisper White cardstock using Archival Black ink. I used many, many markers to colour - and there is a lot to colour in these two images! Some clear Wink of Stella makes his beard glisten like there are snow flakes in it, and the trim on his robe is done with a white gel pen.

The bag of toys was fussy-cut and popped up with dimensionals. But, first, I added some extra embellishments to it. I attached a piece of the new Craft Rope Trim around the bag using mini glue dots.

Then I had a brilliant idea! Or so I thought. Another fun new item in the Holiday Catalogue is Mini Jingle Bells in silver and red. Warning: they really are mini! My idea was to use some Copper Metallic Thread to hang them from the Craft Rope Trim. Easier said than done. Took me the better part of half an hour to thread the almost invisible metallic thread through the barely visible hole in the mini jingle bell and tie said almost invisible metallic thread in a knot to hold the very mini jingle bell!

I love the mini jingle bells - but think they will definitely work better in shaker cards. Here's a closeup of the bag of toys - and the jingle bells:
This is a stamp set that will stay in my collection. It is timeless!

I had a lot of fun doing these projects, and I hope you have fun seeing what all of the Watercooler Blog Hoppers have done with our theme this month.

Now it's time to visit Priscilla who has some more amazing projects for you. Just click  on the 'Next' button to continue your journey.


  1. As I'm looking at your first two beautiful cards and how your were "stepping up" the second one, I could hardly wait to see your final card. LOVE it! (love all three!!!)

    1. Thanks Marie. This was fun to do. Thinking it would be good for a class - if I did classes!

  2. All three cards are lovely, each in their own way. The simplicity of your first is classic and classy. Number 2 is pretty with the copper frame. But your third card is gorgeous! Love the glitter embossing powder (how did I miss that?--back to the catalog!) and the beautiful coloring. And yes, the work it took to add the mini jingle bells was worth it! Just the perfect touch! A lovely, lovely card.

    1. Thanks so much Priscilla. That glitter EP is beautiful. Page 7 BTW. I only got the Real Red so far, but thinking I need the Emerald Envy too.

  3. I totally missed the blog hop or even thinking about sad. I am in love with this stepped up card design. And three times, WOW! Great set of stepped up Christmas cards. Guess I need to add this set to my list too!

    1. Thanks Libby. Too bad you missed getting in on the hop. Yes, you do need this set!

  4. Simply stunning, Gail! I fell deeply in love with that stamp set the moment I set eyes on it. The style of drawing really appealed to me. The way you've used it in the first card makes me think of a card one might find in a trunk in the attic. Very simple. Very vintage. Very elegant. Stepping it up with a copper frame and using the Almost Artichoke for your second card---brilliant. But your third version is my favourite. The card looks as if it could have come out of a children's Christmas book. Your colouring is perfect. Simply a work of art.

  5. Such a great Santa stamp and I love your colouring on your third card.

  6. I know what you mean when you say this stamp set will be in your stash for a long time. It's truly classic and you have done a marvelous job taking it through the three stamping steps to finish with your wonderful coloured Christmas card. This final card is so sparkly and well designed, and what a terrific job you've done on the colouring. Thanks Gail for showcasing this awesome stamp set.

  7. I love all 3 cards, Gail - each one has such a different feel to it. You did an amazing colouring job on the final one - this set is on my list! :)

  8. Lovely projects, Gail! Father Christmas is one of my favorites for this Christmas. Can't wait to ink mine up. You've given me some great ideas.


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