Wednesday, December 31, 2014

January Stamp of the Month Blog Hop

Welcome to our Stamp of the Month Blog Hop!
We are featuring January's Stamp of the Month - called This is jammed packed with 12 individual stamp images.  If you have come here from Lilian Yeh's blog, you are on the right path! The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here... with me and work your way all around.  If you get lost along the way, you’ll find the complete list of participating consultants on Melinda’s Blog - simply click here.
This month we have over 60  Close To My Heart Consultants sharing their creations featuring this month's Stamp of the Month combined with lots of other wonderful Close To My Heart products. Be sure to check out all the fabulous art work everyone has to share - just click on the link at the end of this post to begin the journey!

While the sentiments and images featured in this month's Stamp of the Month may primarily have you thinking of all things love and romance.... they showcase so much more versatility than that...and with that in mind, I decided to share 2 very different cards with you - one that follows the theme of love and this card that takes the path of something a little more generic.

For this card design, I used the large circle (target) image to create a form of scallop edging. I stamped multiple images with Hollyhock Ink then fussy cut each one using my all-time favourite Micro-Tip Scissors. The images were then cut in half and arranged across the centre of the card. The "Hello" sentiment was then stamped in Lagoon Ink and placed across the circle/scallop arrangement. This scallop arrangement makes quite a bold statement, therefore I decided to keep the card design fairly clean and simple, with just a little added sparkle.... in the form of 2 thin strips of Teal Glitter Paper and a single red heart from the Stuck on You Puffies.

My daughter thinks the scallop arrangement created with the stamped circle images resembles a Celtic Knot in it's appearance - what do you think??

My second card features not only the This Moment - Stamp of the Month but also many of the "heart" related Close To My Heart products - the Heartstrings paper pack, complement stickers and assortment embellishments, the Paper Fundamentals Enchantment Assortment and Lagoon Heart Washi Tape. They all compliment this project beautifully. The Lagoon coloured arrows and  Ruby "Straight from the Heart" sentiment are also fussy cut stamped images...I love how precise my trusty Micro-Tip Scissors helps me cut!! The scallop border on this card was created by using another favourite tool of mine - the Scallop Border Punch

Thanks for visiting my blog and taking a "peek" at my card projects..... and if you haven't already been there?? -  now is the time to "Hop" on over to Angela White's  blog and see the art work she has created for you... don't forget to visit all the other Consultants at their blogs to view some great crafting inspiration and fun ideas! Remember, the Stamp of the Month is only available until the 31st of January!  Contact your Close To My Heart Consultant (or click here) to see how you can purchase this stamp set and receive a discount!....order now and receive it in time to complete your Valentine Day Projects!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Celebration Time

I have been "out of action" this past week recovering from knee surgery but I am happy to report that I am on the mend and looking forward to saying goodbye to the pain that has been a big (and yucky) part of my 2014!! I was cheered up immensely this week with the arrival of a little surprise package from Close To My Heart, containing an exciting stamp. Sticky Boy is an iconic Close To My Heart My Acrylix® stamp - click here to read "his story" and find out how very special he is!

In honour of Sticky Boy's 10th Birthday I created this card of celebration combining him with a cute kangaroo image from the Hoppy Birthday Stamp Set.

.....and there is nothing like a bit of therapeutic colouring when you are laid up and incapacitated. I love how vibrant the ShinHan Markers are and how well they co-ordinate with the Close To My Heart paper range....especially the new Hopscotch and Heartstrings collections.

ShinHan Touch Twin Markers - Colours Used:
Cherry Pink -  Z2450
Tender Pink - Z2464
Turquoise Blue - Z2465
Peacock Green - Z2461Light Orange -  Z2455
Barely Beige -  Z2445

Pastel Peach - Z2460
Pastel Green - Z2459
Golden Yellow - Z2452

The card is very simple in design and finished off with some of my favourite embellishments - Teal Shimmer Trim and some sweet puffy stickers...from the Chalk It Up Assortment and the Stuck On You Puffies.

Hope you are having a good week and your Christmas preparations are well underway!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Friday Friend Feature #12

With "Activity Week" commencing in most Primary Schools across Victoria next week... we are certainly on the countdown to the end of another School Year. My crafting friend Alicia has come up with a cute little appreciation gift idea for your child's teacher that I would like to share with you. A handmade gift is a perfect way to show your gratitude and this project is ideal for those of you who may have left it until the "last minute" - it is simple, quick and very economical.

Alicia followed this tutorial to create her sticky note holders complete with a co-ordinated and conveniently attached pen. Alicia has used Cranberry Cardstock, the chevron patterned cardstock from the Paper Fundamentals - Adventure Assortment and the sweet Red Enamel Hearts to piece together the project. The stamp set she has used is aptly named Teacher Appreciation.

I used the same stamp set to create this Thank You Card which would also be the perfect card to accompany your gift.

This is one of my favourite stamp sets it features 13 individual stamps including 7 different sentiments....and it can be used throughout the whole school year. Having lots of school teachers in our extended family I know that receiving a card of appreciation at any time from a student or a parent truly warms their heart. The Teacher Appreciation set retails for $27 however, during Close To My Heart's Deal of the Decade promotion in December you can purchase this set for only $10 - a huge saving of $ find out more, simply click here. The Deal of the Decade runs right through until the 31st December and not only can you purchase this set for $10, you can also choose any of our C or D size stamp sets for the same price with a qualifying order. Visit my Online Store to view all the stamps available to you.

If you are wanting help with Christmas gifts not only for teachers but for the crafty family and friends in your life - don't hesitate to contact me. I have an array of goodies for immediate delivery or if your prefer a gift voucher, I can help you there too!!

Have a great weekend!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Seasonal Expressions #1 - Blog Hop

Welcome to our Seasonal Expressions #1 Blog Hop! 
This blog hop is featuring  products in Close To My Heart's "inaugural & brand spanking new"  Seasonal Expressions Idea Book/Catalogue - whatever season you are experiencing in your life - birthdays, weddings, are in the right place to find the perfect artistic tool for preserving and celebrating your memories. The Seasonal Expressions products debuted on the 1st Dec and are available right through until the 31st March 2015.
If you have come here from Lauren Moore's Blog  you are on the right path! The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here...with me and work your way all around. If you get lost along the way, you'll find the complete list of participating consultants on Melinda’s Blog – simply click here.
This month we have almost 40 Close To My Heart Consultants sharing their creations featuring these new products combined with other wonderful Close To My Heart products on their blogs. Be sure to check out all the fabulous art work they have to share - just click on the link at the end of this post to begin the journey!
The Seasonal Expressions is jammed pack with so many adorable goodies that I found it difficult to decide which one to feature today. However, being a huge fan of the Picture My Life™ collections I decided to show you just how great and versatile these collections are. The new Picture My Life™ Heartstrings Program is a condensed version of the previous collections containing 20 – 4" × 6" Cards (2 each of 10 designs) and 36 – 3" × 4" Cards (2 each of 18 designs). While the cards are designed for pocket style scrapbooking the condensed collection does not include Memory Protectors which of course reduces the cost. The cards are an ideal accompaniment for traditional scrapbook layouts, card making and papercraft creations....and packaged this way provides ease of use for these type of projects.

 I used 3 of the 3" x 4" inch cards in this layout (commemorating our 32nd Wedding Anniversary) that was subsequently framed within the Designed Decor Black Shadow Box. One was used as the title, I cut a heart shaped embellishment from another, then resized the third, cutting it into a narrower shape and rounding the corners with the Corner Rounder tool. This layout was created using a variety of new papers and embellishments along with die cut shapes and an additional title from the Cricut® Artbooking Collection. The diamond look sparkle seen in this layout is White Shimmer Trim , one of 2 new additions to the Shimmer Trim range.

I created the card below with one of the 3" x 4" cards and a resized 4" x 6" from the Picture My Life Heartstring Scrapbooking Program combined with papers from the Heartstrings Paper Pack. I love how the new Seasonal Expressions products co-ordinate with existing products from the Annual Inspirations Idea Book/Catalogue. The cute Stuck on You Puffies, Brushed Flower Assortment and Aqua Dots worked a treat all mixed together. This card was finished off with some faux stitching done with the Marvy® Uchida® LePen™ Journalling Pen.

Thanks for visiting my blog and if you haven't already been there?? -  now is the time to "Hop" on over to the lovely Lela Norris's Blog  to see what she has created...and don't forget to visit all the Consultants at their blogs to check out some great crafting inspiration and other fun ideas! 

Monday, December 1, 2014

December Stamp of the Month Blog Hop

Welcome to our Stamp of the Month Blog Hop! 

We are featuring December's Stamp of the Month - called Cutie Pie...a  super sweet set of 11 stamps.  If you have come here from Jacquelin Green's blog, you are on the right path! The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here - with me and work your way all around.  If you get lost along the way, you’ll find the complete list of participating consultants on Melinda’s Blog - simply click here.
This month we have over 60  Close To My Heart Consultants sharing their creations featuring this month's Stamp of the Month combined with lots of other wonderful Close To My Heart products. Be sure to check out all the fabulous art work everyone has to share - just click on the link at the end of this post to begin the journey!
I am very excited to be participating in this blog hop group for the very first much so, that I thought I would share "not one but two" cards with you...and "not one but two" new paper packs - Heartstrings and Hopscotch ... that have just been released today!
I have used the same card design for both cards and coloured my cupcake images with ShinHan Touch Twin Markers. I stamped multiple cupcake images on White Daisy Cardstock with both Archival Black Ink and VersaMark Ink  ( combined with White Embossing Powder ) then fussy cut the different sections of the images with Micro-Tip Scissors. These individual sections were then pieced and layered together on the card using Bonding Memories Glue.

Card #1 - ShinHan Touch Twin Markers - Colours Used:
Cherry Pink -  Z2450
Tender Pink - Z2464
Turquoise Blue - Z2465
Peacock Green - Z2461
Warm Grey 4 - Z2467
Warm Grey 7 - Z2468
Light Orange -  Z2455
Barely Beige -  Z2445

Colorless Blender Marker -  Z2469

This next version of the card design uses 3-D Foam Tape behind the sentiment panel and the cupcake image to add a little more variation and dimension.

Card #2 - ShinHan Touch Twin Markers - Colours Used:

Cherry Pink -  Z2450
Tender Pink - Z2464

Turquoise Blue - Z2465
Light Orange - Z2455
Barely Beige - Z2445

Pastel Green - Z2459
Pastel Peach - Z2460
Colorless Blender Marker - Z2469
This is the sketch I used for the card design which was just perfect for the great smile phrase/sentiment in the Cutie Pie stamp set.

Thanks for visiting my blog and if you haven't already been there?? -  now is the time to "Hop" on over to the lovely Adeline Brill's  blog to see what she has created... and don't forget to visit all the Consultants at their blogs to check out some great crafting inspiration and other fun ideas! Remember, the Cutie Pie Stamp of the Month is only available until the 31st of December!  Contact your Close To My Heart Consultant (or click here) to see how you can purchase this stamp set and receive a discount!....this is one set you will most certainly want in your crafting collection! 


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Paper Christmas Tree

I thought I would quickly share another Christmas Craft Project...this time made with the gorgeous vintage look Yuletide Carol Paper Pack - this cute little Christmas tree is perfect to adorn your Home or Office during the Festive Season and is very easy to put together.

I started with a DecoFoam/Polystyrene cone shape and covered the base with one of the B&T Duos™ Papers from the Seaside Paper Pack then slowly built the shape up with folded 2.5 inch squares from papers from the Yuletide Carol Paper Pack. I then resurrected an old floral ornament and some red ribbon from my craft cupboard to add the finishing touch. I attached them with Bonding Memories Glue and Liquid Glass my absolute "can't do without" adhesives!!

I'd loved to hear what you are creating this holiday season and what Close To My Heart products you just "can't do without" - leave a message in the comments section below or visit my Facebook page.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Christmas Craft Time

My favourite part of preparing for the holiday season is the sharing of recipes and gift making ideas. I don't fancy myself as a cook however, there is something about the festive season that sees me spending a lot of time in the kitchen!!... I love trying out new recipes from my friends especially gingerbread and chocolate treats! Then the fun part begins...packaging these treats up in little boxes and bags to pass on as Christmas gifts.

If this is something you like to do too? - why not join me this week for a Christmas Craft Night? - this is a great opportunity to make your Teacher Appreciation Gifts or something a little more personalised for your Work Place Kris Kringle  - see details below.....YOU MUST RSVP!

I have all sorts of Crafty Fun to share with you -  you can make Holiday Treat Bags, decorate Bon Bons, sample the Cut Above Christmas Card Kits, fashion some Base & Bling Wearable Craft and/or create ornaments, tags, bags and boxes from my pre-prepared kits. Here is an example of some of the creations we will be making, all put together with the lovely Snowhaven range of papers.

All these ideas have been shared with me by fellow Close To My Heart Consultants and I look forward to passing them onto you - a great big circle of creative love!! My favourite creation was the paper pine cone I did however, decide to go "big" (10cm) and make this a home décor piece rather than an ornament for my Christmas tree. It was a little more time consuming but the result was so worth it...imagine a bowl of these in different colours on your table at Christmas! The Close To My Heart art department created this gorgeous bowl of paper pines cones from the Pathfinding Paper Pack - simply select a Paper Pack of your choice and you will be well on your way to creating your own home décor masterpiece in no time at all.

Thanks for visiting my blog today - looking forward to the "paper play-time" with some of you on Friday but wherever you may be - I wish you a fun crafty week!!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Friday Friend Feature #11

While I may have been "missing in action" this past week, I can assure you I have still been adding ink & scissors to paper and creative activities have been oozing all over my craft room LOL! - so stay tuned, I have lots to show you over the coming weeks....but in the meantime, I want to share with you some fabulous cards made by my friend Alicia.

School is almost over for another year and I know many of you are looking at making thank you cards and gifts for your child's teacher... these cards designed by Alicia are just perfect for this. They were created using Close To My Heart's Teacher Appreciation stamp set - click here for a preview of the 13 images included in this set.

Alicia has a real flair for combining different themed paper packs together and these cards are no exception. These cards use papers from the following collections - Scaredy Cat, Paper Fundamentals Adventure Assortment, Seaside and Snowhaven and they have certainly come up a treat. Speaking of "treats" here are a few more ideas to help inspire your homemade gift giving...simply add your stamped images to boxes, tags and other creations from the Cricut Artiste Collection and your gift will be made in no time at all.

If you would like to order the Teacher Appreciation stamp set or need Papers & Embellishments to complete your end of year teacher gifts? - you can add your order to the gathering listed as "November Orders" at my Online Shop... all you need to do is click on the "join" icon at the bottom of the page and list the items you require.

Have a great crafty weekend and be sure to take a peek back here in a couple of days when I start sharing the projects I have been working on.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Mini Christmas Album

Today I wanted to share a little project that makes the ideal December Daily style of album. Never heard of a December Daily Album? - I like to think of this style of album as a combination of the "Photo-a-Day" and "Smashbooking" opportunity to capture the spirit of the season in the 25 days leading up to Christmas.

The Mini Christmas Album project I have designed uses the Designer Creations Short Stack Album. It takes 1 hour to complete and if you would like to create one ready to commence recording your memories come the 1st December  - then contact me today or join a workshop event  - simply drop me a message at to find out more.

This is a wire bound album with 10 – 5" × 7" Kraft pages and a Kraft printed hardcover. Adding Flip Flap Memory Protectors to the album ensures there is plenty of space to preserve every photo taken during the month of December... and the journaling cards from the My Crush Holiday Happenings Assortment mean that every memory can be recorded too!

Here is a little preview of some of the pages - I love the "olde world" look of the My Crush Holiday Happenings Assortment. ...and no Christmas project would be complete without some "sparkle & shine" and I used Gold Shimmer Trim, Gold Sequins and Bitty Sparkles to add this festive look.

Looking forward to sharing and creating this project with you and don't forget you can pre-order the Album & Accessories from my Online Store - you can even add your order to the November Orders Online Gathering ...found at the bottom of the home page.

I am also offering this album project as a "mail-out class" similar to my card club.  The "mail-out class" comes with cutting instructions & full colour photos to make this an easy class for you to complete at home. To take advantage of this offer, please email me at



Sunday, November 9, 2014

Studio J - Digital Scrapbooking

This weekend I took a break from my inks and entered the world of Studio J Online Digital Scrapbooking. Studio J helps you easily create two-page layouts using Close To My Heart's foundational scrapbook patterns, exclusive colour palette, and themed designs all delivered in 12" × 12" custom prints ready for your albums. Now is the perfect time to trial the benefits of this form of scrapbooking... and here is why?

 Happy Anniversary, Studio J®!

November 2014: Lucky 5
November marks the five-year anniversary of Studio J®, and that means it’s your lucky month, with five amazing ways to win through Studio J® and Close To My Heart social media!

First, throughout the month of November, all layouts purchased in Studio J are $5! That is a savings of over 50% off of retail! - making it $2.50 per page - AMAZING!
Your second chance to win big is by LUCK alone: every fifth order placed in Studio J during November receives a FREE surprise Close To My Heart accessory in its shipping box! The accessory has a retail value of $5 or more.

If luck doesn’t smile on you in that way, you might stumble upon it by finding a little extra something in your Studio J® box. Five “golden tickets” will be sent out during the month of November with randomly selected Studio J® print orders! This “golden ticket” is redeemable for one of Close To My Heart’s new D-ring Albums loaded with 10 Top Load Memory Protectors™.

For a fourth way to win, simply create new, gorgeous layouts in Studio J, select your favourites, and then post pictures of them on Close To My Heart’s Facebook Page  using the hashtag #ctmhlucky5. After the 30th November, five lucky winners will be selected from the entries based on their artistry and creativity and each of these winners will receive their own D-ring Album loaded with 10 Top Load Memory Protectors!

And there is one last way to win: take your new Studio J artwork and post a picture of it on Instagram using the hashtag #ctmhlucky5. Just as it is with Facebook, after the 30th November, five lucky winners will be selected from the entries to receive their own  D-ring Album loaded with 10 Top Load Memory Protectors!

How "easy & fabulous" is all that??..I created 5 layouts in next to no time at all over the weekend using some of the Express Collection layouts - this collection of layouts have all the art work done for you - you simply add your photos! I also loved the fact that even though I chose this option I was still able to personalise the layouts by editing the page titles, adding extra photos and embellishments. I could even change out colours if I was very cool! Here is a little preview of what I have created.


It is important to remember that Studio J layouts are processed and not printed - using a silver-halide process considered the highest standard in the photo developing industry... the silver-halide process yields “100-year+ quality” that has long been tested and used by the top photo labs in the world.

What are you waiting for? Enter the studio now to discover the fun of creating beautiful memories in Studio J!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Friday Friend Feature #10

Today the Friday Friend Feature has reached a milestone - can you believe this is post number 10 already?!!  I hope you have enjoyed seeing the creations made by my Crafty Friends as much as I enjoy bringing them to you...but stay tuned because there is so much more to come. Alicia has been sharing lots of formulas for "quick & easy" card making over on her blog and today she is sharing with us some cards created with the Babycakes Picture My Life Scrapbooking Program. Don't be fooled by the name of this product - while it may have you thinking all things baby and scrapbooking this is not necessarily the case! The 122 cards that come in this collection are so versatile and they make perfect greeting cards for all occasions.

The 5 1/2" X 4 1/4" Daisy White Value Pack of Cards was used as the base to create these cards and to keep them consistent in design with the Picture My Life Collection Alicia used the Corner Rounder taking the cards from square to round in an instant! Many of the cards in this collection come with great sentiments and designs but every so often a little extra "something", just finishes them off. Alicia has chosen to add ribbon but also added some stamping and embellishments. The cards below feature the Have a Happy Day stamp set along with Gold Sequins and Gold Bling Gems.

Thanks for stopping by today - don't forget to add a comment before you leave and whatever you are up to this weekend I hope there is a little time for some crafty play!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Gift Giving Ideas

If you are looking at creating personal and exclusive handmade gifts for your family and friends this Christmas??... be sure to check out Close To My Heart's "colour-ready" My Creations range in my online shop - there are some great goodies to choose from... mini albums, boxes, bags, and frames just to name a few. In my last post I shared one of the Hip Pics Mini Album with you and today I wanted to show a Pennant Frame that showcases one of my favourite photos of my youngest daughter.....a gift for her Grandma.

Decorating this frame was a quick afternoon cricut machine cut out all the pieces and I just pieced it together! The frame, flowers and leaves were all cut from shapes found on the Art Philosophy Cartridge and the title and overlay (decorative edge around the photo) are featured on the Artbooking Cartridge. It was all adhered together using my favourite adhesive - Bonding Memories Glue. This all-purpose glue is perfect for safely bonding photographs, artwork, and more. It is acid free and creates both permanent and temporary bonds. I was really happy with my flower centres which came together when I applied Black Epoxy Bubbles on top of Gold Bling Gems - it really made the flowers pop and how great does the variegated paper from the Brushed Paper Pack look, made up as flowers??? - very effective! I love, love, love! this paper pack!!! I also have a pack to send to one lucky reader of my be in the draw, simply leave a comment below or add your name to my followers. I will randomly chose a winner and announce it here on Friday the 14th November.

Over the next few weeks I will be conducting Christmas Craft Classes full of "create & take" type projects such as this, along with decorative boxes for your Christmas baking treats and many more gift giving ideas. If you would like to attend one of these classes or schedule a gathering to create these projects, with your friends and family - please feel free to email me at I'd love to "show you how".

Thanks for stopping by today - don't forget to leave a comment and be sure to pop back on Friday and see what my crafty friends have been up to.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

November Stamp of the Month - It's the Little Things

It's the first day of a new month and with it comes a brand new Stamp of the Month to showcase. While today's project maybe all pink & pretty it still follows on from the Christmas themed posts of the past few you ask?...well, this time around I'm not creating Christmas cards or decorations but making personalised gifts for the special people in my life....and what could be better than unique "one of a kind" Mini Albums. Close To My Heart's Hip Pic Albums are raw kraft chipboard style albums with 16 blank pocket pages... perfect for customising to suit the personality of the recipient....and this month's Stamp of the Month has an array of floral images, ideal for decorating these type of projects.

This was such a fun stamp set to "play" with...I simply chose my favourite Ink Colours and randomly stamped the floral images over sheets of White Daisy Cardstock Then one at a time I cut out each image. I did this while sitting back watching a movie with my my telly time but I can't sit idle. Although some of the images are quite small, my Micro-Tip Scissors make the job so easy and allow me to cut in and around all those intricate little areas. Next I added embellishments to the centre of each flower...choosing a mixture of Flamingo Dots, Black Epoxy Bubbles and Bitty Sparkles and then layered some of the smaller images onto the larger ones. The leaf images were also hand cut and then layered onto some other leaves cut from the Art Philosophy Cricut Collection. I cut these leaves from Sweet Leaf Cardstock and then randomly stamped Pear Ink all over the top using the rose image from the Pick a Posey stamp...this added some depth & texture. This rose image is a fantastic way to add background texture to small areas. After everything was cut and layered it was just a matter of arranging the stamped images onto the cover of my album. I thought this album would be a great little book to place those one-off candid snap shots that don't have a home in larger album projects.

Here is a little peek at some of the pages...I have decided to follow the same pink & black colour scheme throughout the whole album... and embellish each page with more floral images found in November's Stamp of the Month...I'm a fan of consistency LOL! I have also added some of the metal charms from the Wanderful Assortment - these charms have great captions such as "snap-shots", "laugh" and "explore"...and sort of became the "icing on my cake"!

When you place an order of $75 or more in Close To My Heart products here in my Online Shop you can purchase this D-size stamp It's the Little Things set valued at $27 for just $5 — that’s over 70% off retail! ( available for one month only ) and with 15 images that is amazing value for money!

If you have stopped by blog today to follow my art work or simply stumbled here by accident I would so "love" you to leave a would really make my day!