Happy Sunday morning everyone! I hope you all have had time to stamp this weekend! I had my open house, but I've been super busy so sorry for the Blog-out. Get it - blogout - like blackout?
But I have to share something SOOOO scary with you. I'm two hours into my four hour walk this morning when I see something SO disturbing I just HAVE to share!!
Now, there are some companies that have mastered iconography. They make little pictures of things that immediately communicate something. Other companies, some of which make road signs, unfortunately, have not achieved communication nirvana and found a way to put warnings or just information into a little pictograph that means something.
See if you agree with me that the following is an example of the latter.
If a person is walking along minding her own business and sees THIS, what she immediately thinks is that that sun from the Raisin Bran commercial has gotten rabies and is going to leap out from the bushes and poke her in the belly until she falls down!!!!!!!!!!
If said girl could not read she would forever be TERRIFIED by cereal which is really pretty tasty and benign!!
I don't care for this picture ONE BIT.
Oh yeah, open house... I knew I was here for a reason. So on to stamping!
We did three quick projects yesterday, two from the Art from the Heart CD from Convention, and one from my beloved new Sizzix!!
The first was very quick and simple. The stamps are all from the Flights of the Butterfly Stamp set. We stamped the inside flowery part first in Real Red and then used the stamp positioner to stamp the butterfly outline with black. The little flower on the Sahara Sand card base are from the same set and are stamped in Craft white. Then just a little striped Real Red Grosgrain and we were done!
Very crisp, fun card.
Then, back to a fave from Inspired by Nature. I LOVE this grass stamp.
To make this card, stamp the greeting FIRST in black on your white cardstock. Then stamp the grass in VersaMark and emboss with clear embossing powder. Then just brayer over the whole image with More Mustard until it's saturated to your liking! The black dots are punched pieces of Basic Black cardstock, adhered with a mini glue dot. This is a very striking and simple image.
Hopefully that scary rabid Raisin Bran Sun isn't hiding in the grass somewhere!!
Now a few questions I need to answer from some of you.
First, someone asked "why Sizzix" - especially if you already own a cuttlebug? This is a great question, and you can trust me here because I do already have a cuttlebug. So I will share some pros and cons.
The Sizzix, believe it or not, is much easier to crank than the Cuttlebug.
The dies for the Sizzix are much more sturdy - my cuttlebug cutting dies - the long thin ones - warp the first time I run them through the machine. Some warped so badlly they did not cut the second time. Not so with the Sizzix.
The Cuttlebug and Sizzix are equally easy to use in terms of sandwiching, in my opinion. The advantage goes to Sizzix though for their base plate which is tabbed and contains all the instructions for all the different types of dies. I have never seen a product like this with the instructions integrated into the product itself - it's sheer brilliance.
The dies that came with my Sizzix are more my style than the CUTTING dies of Cuttlebug, which are a little cartoony. The Sizzix dies are very elegant, and of course the ones that are exclusive to Stampin' Up! is another bonus in a long line of coordinating products we now have. The ones that are coming out in the mini catalog will really seal the deal for a lot of you who are on the fence, I'm sure. One of the things I love most about Stampin' Up! is the coordination of color, paper and images. This is just a home run with die cutting and embossing added to that.
The envelope die you will see in a moment is cut, SCORED AND perforated - all at once with the Sizzix. WOW. This got a wow out of my girls also.
The Cuttlebug is easier to store because the platforms fold up. They do not on the Sizzix.
In my opinion, the Cuttlebug's forte is embossing, whereas the Sizzix has always been geared towards die cuts. However, I read that you can use your Cuttlebug embossing folders in the Sizzix. I have not tried this myself and will let you know when I do. Either way, the Cuttlebug was a fabulous purchase and I'm not the least bit sorry I purchased it or my eight million embossing folders. :)
However, I will say overall, that the Sizzix is sturdier, better made and far superior for die cuts. Stampin' Up! dies are icing on the cake of a beautiful well made product that tipped the scales for me. If you add up the cost of the dies that are included with their special starter kit, the "cheaper" deals people are finding for the Sizzix elsewhere aren't really cheaper. But if you do find a great deal and you are trying to decide between the two, I would go with a Sizzix.
If you already own a Cuttlebug, like me, I would also tell you to try a Sizzix with your demonstrator or a friend - I really think you will pretty much have to have one after you use it.
I hope that helps.
At open house, for just a blazing fast project so that the girls could drool over their catalogs, we took some hoarded DSP and zipped it through the Sizzix to make the adorable teeny scalloped envelope you see here. And to answer the second question, yes, sadly, this paper is retired.
Wouldn't it be great if none of their beautiful papers ever retired???
The card is Very Vanilla, and we stamped in River Rock. Then we took the thin end of my Always Artichoke marker and added a shadow to the bottom of the branches. We added Stickles in the center of the flowers.
If you want to see some adorable projects done with the other Sizzix dies, visit the lovely and talented Patty at Pattystamps. Such cute things.
Finally, I needed some cards to send out, so back to the Art from the Heart CD I went for this quick and easy card. The white flowers on the chocolate chip card base are from our demonstrator bulk rub ons package that coordinates with Eastern Blooms. I LOVE these rubons.
I stamped the flower image in Bashful Blue and then just used my chocolate chip marker to go over the stems and the flower centers.
I used two different papers from the Prints for the edge, and tied the ribbon (cutting a slit in the spine of the card) into a knot. I sponged the edges of the white panel before adhering.
Fun color combo, yes?
Finally, I can't help but add a note about the Olympics.
The Olympics should be the purest expression of human achievement and common purpose. Not politics. So it saddens me that much of it has been tainted, in my view, with people's political opinions. We all have them, right? Sometimes it's just best to keep them to yourself in the interest of observing things that are beautiful and good. And the Olympics are beautiful, and good. And if there was ever an expression of the beauty of an unthinkable number of people doing something in complete harmony and creating an absolutely incredible artistic experience, it was that opening ceremony. Inventive, peaceful, heartstopping and awe-inspiring it was. Best ever, MHO.That show was created by, and performed by, people who love light and art and color. Can't we agree that we all have that in common?
Hope you have a great day. I think I might have time to post some more tonight! Off to edit my TV show!