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Archive for the "Online Greeting Cards" Category

I found this website that I think is the most heart felt site that I have seen. It is called Operation Write Home.  It is an organization that takes handmade cards that we the card makers make and send them to our troops, so that they can write to their family and loved ones at home.  They recently changed their name from Cards for Heroes.

When I went to the site and saw the pictures of our military men and women holding up cards from “us” with such smiles on there faces, it really touched me like never before.  I guess I have been in my little world enjoying my freedom, but not remembering why I am free.  It’s because of all of our military out there in the middle of nowhere or should I say “hell” fighting for my and our freedom.
It might sound crazy but now I feel that I have a small part in helping them connect with there families by being part of Operation Write Home.

operationwritehome

I am in the process of making a lot of cards to send to Operation Write Home so they in return can mail them out to our troops.  And I am going to say this to all of you so you can hold me accountable, I will continue to make/send cards till all of our troops are safely home with there families.  There I said it and now I have to do it.  And it’s not like I don’t like making cards, that is my passion and now my passion has a cause behind it.

So you may be asking yourself, why is Joan writing about this? Because if you are a card maker like me and want to help our soldiers stay connected with there families and loved ones, take part in this great cause.  Remember, there are no Hallmark stores for them to get a card.  Consider yourself the piece of the puzzle that get our soldiers connected to home.

Go and visit the site now, and get all the details.  I hope you feel as good as I do, and join in on this wonderful good deed and help send Cards for Heroes.

For me it all started with these rubber stamps.  That’s right this cute little butterfly art stamp and this set of alphabet stamps.

originalstamps

I can remember my first rubberstamps.  My brother gave them to me for my birthday.  It was a butterfly art stamp, and set of alphabet stamps, that was 15 years ago.  I can remember thinking to myself “what am I going to do with these rubberstamps”?  Boy did I find out what to do with them.  I made cute little butterfly note cards and I remember coloring them with a colored pencil (since that is all that I had back then or crayons), then with the alphabet stamps I stamped my family and friends name and of course finished it with a butterfly.   Holy crow, he is the one that created my obsession with art stamps, and I am so happy that he did, thanks Mike.

What can I say; I Love Rubber Art Stamps and all the rubber stamping supplies that go along with them.  Take a look at just some of the art stamps that I have.  I have labeled each drawer and bin so I kind of know what is inside.  I also have a few scattered around my craft studio on shelves.  I told you that I Love Art Stamps.  Now do you believe me?

stampstorage

Rubberstamps have come a long way.  There are a ton of manufacturers for Art Stamps, depending on what you are looking for.  A long time ago the only kind of art stamp that was available was the red rubber stamp mounted on a wood block.  Now, those stamps are still available but there are also clear un-mounted art stamps that you take off of a cling sheet and adhere to an acrylic block.  When you are done you just clean the stamp and take off the acrylic block and out back on the plastic sheet or in a clear plastic CD case.

acrylicblock

The great thing about these art stamps is that you can see exactly where your image will be stamped on your card stock.  This gives you less room for error (even though there is never an error in art, it just makes a different masterpiece then you expected)

What I love about the acrylic block rubber stamps is when you are working with alphabet stamps.  The reason is you can have the correct spacing between each letter and word.  When I have used alphabet stamps that were wood mounted, I usually had crooked words and phrases on my card or scrapbook page.

Another cool thing about these clear un-mounted rubberstamps is that they do not take up so much room as the original wood block art stamps.  So if you do not have a lot of space to store your rubberstamps then this is the ideal way to go.  I have two ways that I store my clear un-mounted rubberstamps.  One is in a 3 ring binder, and the other in my Crop in Style Stamp Store tote.  The stamp store can hold hundreds in the drawers.

clearstamstorage

There are also red rubber un-mounted stamps that you can purchase.  They are cheaper than mounted rubberstamps.  You can then mount them any way that you want; either on a wood block or use the ez-mount foam system (I will explain that in a near future article)

unmountedstamps

The last kind of rubberstamps that I can think of is the pre-inked art stamps.  I have some art stamps that are pre-inked wheels.  They are great for backgrounds or borders.  All you do is insert the small cartridge of ink into the handle of the rubberstamps wheel, insert the wheel and away you go.

stampwheels

Well, as you can see I have A LOT of rubberstamps.  And with all these art stamps I do not have any duplicates and I can honestly say that I use or have used each and every one.

Make it a Great Day and don’t forget to leave time to Craft!

Ya gotta love the Cricut Expression machine.  I had to make a birthday card for my niece.  I knew that she was making a dollhouse with her mom, so I wanted to make this handmade greeting card special.  After finding out her colors that they were painting the dollhouse, I decided to use the same colors for the handmade card.

Using my Cricut Expression and the Wild Card Cricut Cartridge was the perfect choice for my cricut card idea.  All of the samples showed this Wild Card Cricut Cartridge being used for moving/change of address, but I decided to make it a dollhouse instead.

I set my Cricut Expression to cut the card at 7″ and it was a great size since I wanted to embellish this handmade greeting card with some cute card and scrapbooking embellishments that I have.

I used a pink rhinestone for the door handle, I had a 3D EK Success sticker of a white picket fence that I cut down to size and also some fun stickers of palm trees to accent the front door.  I finished it with a pink butterfly 3D sticker again from EK Success.

For the inside I went trough all of the rubber stamps that I have (and that’s a lot of rubber stamps, good thing that I have my rubber stamping supplies organized in containers that are labeled) but what I decided was to make the inside of this handmade greeting card very simple and just used a rubber stamp that said Happy Birthday.

dollhousecard001500

I love the way that it turned out.

Wishing Riley a Very Happy Birthday!

Make it a Great Day and don’t forget to leave time to Craft!

There is one bug that you don’t want to call an exterminator for.

That is the bug you will get when you purchase a Cricut Expressions Machine!

The Cricut Expressions Machine has got to be the best die cut machine on the market.  With other machines you usually have to do a lot of squeezing, turn a crank, or slide something back and forth, and all you end up with is a cut piece of paper.  The Cricut Expression Machine does all this work for you.  All you need to do is pick out the image you want, pick the size that you want that image to be, add the paper to the Cricut cutting mat, then press the CUT button on your keypad and the Cricut Expressions Machine starts cutting your image.

Now, if that’s not super easy to do then what is?  In minutes or should I say seconds, you have the perfect size, color, image that you want.

Let’s say that you go to your local craft store looking for a die cut of a pink cat.  Most likely you’ll not find it, and if you do is it the right size? The right color pink?  With the Cricut Expressions Machine you pick out the paper color you want, the size that you want from .25″ to 23.5″, and the image of a cat from one of the many Cricut Cartridges.

Don’t Hesitate – for the best in all your crafting desires – go get one now!

Well, I’m all done with all of my 70 hand stamped Christmas Cards. I went to the post office this afternoon to mail them all. So now it is safe for me to show you my 2008 Christmas card.

handmadechristmascardwithstampinupstamps

The stamps that I used are from Stampin’ Up!   Santa’s beard is fluffy. I used white flocking powder. It feels velvety soft. The sun is applied to the card with a round adhesive dot for dimension. All the coloring in was done with Marvy embossing pens and stamp-n-stuff clear embossing powder.

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Fantastic 2009!

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