Chocolate Box Swaps

I didn't just take general swaps. I was too slow to get in to an organised swap, but there was a meet-up with some of the top American demos arranged for the international demonstrators attending. I have to say a big thank you to Becky Roberts for all the organising. I wanted to take something special for some of the demos that would be there, as they have given me so much inspiration over the last few years (and have been amazingly generous in blogging and sharing it all!). This is what I came up with:

Chocolate box

It's very simple, and perhaps too simple for such inspiring demonstrators! There are a couple of mini bars of Green and Blacks inside – I wanted to share some of my favourite chocolate with them. This is the first time I have used the Naturals Ivory cardstock, and I can't believe I have overlooked it so far. The box flap was cut using the Deco Lables framelits, and the ribbon and butterfly keep the box loosely closed. I didn't want this to end up like my never-opened swaps, so made the closure really simple.

I hope they liked it, but more importantly I hope they enjoyed the chocolate!

stampin' supplies

Stamp Sets: Papillon Potpourri
Cardstock: Basic Gray, Naturals Ivory
Ink: Whisper White Craft Ink
Tools: Big Shot Die-Cutting Machine, Deco Labels Framelits
Elegant Butterfly Punch
Finishing Touch: Basic Gray ¼" Stitched Grosgrain, Stampin' Dimensionals

 

 

 

 

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Convention Swaps

I've just got back from the most amazing holiday. Not only have I finally been to New York, but I was also able to go to the Stampin' Up! convention in Salt Lake City! As it was the 25th anniversary convention and we were planning on being in the USA anyway, it seemed a shame not to make it part of our trip. I was able to share the wonderful experience with my upline, Michelle Last (incentive trip winner, so this was all her fault really), Lynne Fahey and Nicky Whittall. They are all really amazing friends that I would never have met if it wasn't for Stampin' Up!

So, how about I share the swaps I made? I'm very much a last minute person – I had all the pieces stamped and cut for me to assemble on the plane. I thought that would be the perfect distraction (I hate flying far too much for someone who loves to visit new places…), but then my carry-on was stashed right at the back of a locker way at the back of the plane! Luckily I really struggled with the changing time zone, so my insommnia meant I could finish them at the hotel.

Happy day with blushing bride

My first swap used Blushing Bride and Basic Gray. With hindsight, maybe there were a few too many elements on this one! 

I also made the same design with Soft Sky and Smoky Slate (I said this was my new favourite colour combo, didn't I?):

Happy day with soft sky

I really hoped everyone I swapped these with liked them. The swaps I received in return are amazing!

Check back tomorrow to see my other swap design. For such a special event I couldn't just go with one design now, could I? 

stampin' supplies

Stamp Sets: Happy Day, Label Love
Cardstock: Basic Gray, Blushing Bride, Smoky Slate, Soft Sky, Whisper White
Ink: Basic Gray, Smoky Slate
Tools: Big Shot Die-Cutting Machine, Chevron Embossing Folder
Artisan Label, Bitty Butterfly, Hexagon punches
Finishing Touch: Stampin' Dimensionals

 

 

 

 

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Origami Box Tutorial

Here is the template for the box I shared for the Blog Hop – I was hoping to post a video, but technical challenges have got the better of me. Watch this space as I do hope to add one soon. I've called it an origami box, mainly as it always takes me a couple of tries to close it properly!

Download the template for the origami box here

Start with an A4 piece of cardstock, and cut at 7¼" along the short edge (so you keep the whole length of the A4 piece). Score as shown in the template. Once you've done the horizontal score lines, you'll have a tiny piece to trim off one of the flaps to make sure that they are the same size. It's easier to trim it off once you've scored rather than trim the A4 at the start.

To decorate the box, cut a base piece of cardstock 3" square, and layer and decorate as you wish. Then once you've got the box closed, attach this to the outside of the box. Only put adhesive on the outer-most layer of the closed box otherwise you'll stop it opening. Repeat this with a panel for the other outer side of the box. 

Cut holes in the top of the flaps to thread ribbon through. I try to cut through both of the flaps at the same time with the box closed so that they match up perfectly.

I hope that is easy enough to understand for now! 

 

 

 

 

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Hello, Hello Single Stamps!

I never thought we would get these stamps and have been very jealous of the US demonstrators… but there are now some special single stamps available for purchase! I think my favourite of the lot is Hello, Hello, but I am sure I will find reasons to buy and use the whole collection. You can download the single stamps information here.

The challenge over at "Less is More" this week is a colour challenge, and we have to take inspiration from the colour of our front door. Now, I would never use less is more to describe my style, and seeing as I don't particularly like the colour my door is painted this was really a challenge for me! It's painted dark blue, and Night of Navy seemed to be the closest colour. The inside is definitely Very Vanilla, so that gave me my colour combination. Here's what I came up with:

Hello hello

What do you think? The paper piercing around the window frame cut-out is not very clear, but my poor photography skills are to blame for that. I think I have still got a lot to learn about that, and about clean and simple stamping! I really had to hold back from reaching for my ribbon…

Stampin' Up! supplies

Stamp Sets: Hello, Hello (132675)
Cardstock: Night of Navy, Very Vanilla
Ink: Night of Navy
Tools: Big Shot Die-Cutting Machine, Window Frames Collection Framelits, Paper-Piercing Tool
Finishing Touch: Pearl Basic Jewels, Stampin' Dimensionals

 

 

 

 

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Paper Pleating with Tea for Two

I can't believe it's Tuesday again already. I honestly don't know where the days go.

The Simply Scored scoring board makes paper pleating easy. So much so, that I am sure to share more variations on this technique in the future! I wanted to make a sweet mini card for a friend, and the sentiment from Friendly Phrases was perfect. 

Paper Pleating with Tea for Two

I'm not a fan of Calypso Coral, but maybe I'm starting to change my mind. I'll really know if I've been converted if I catch myself making it the main colour on a card though, and that's probably a way off yet.

The paper pleats in this panel of Tea for Two DSP are created by carefully scoring paper at set intervals. I say carefully as many a strip of DSP ended up in the scraps pile while I was perfecting this technique and this card! As a general guideline, you reduce the width of your paper just under half. This example is 3" wide, and my original DSP strip was 7" to give me a bit extra. Start by scoring at ¼", then you score at intervals of ¼", ½", ¼", ¾" and repeat that pattern all along the paper. Once you get to the end, you need to have another ¼" of paper left to help stick it down. I recommend using Tombow as it gives a bit of flexibility, but as mine ran out this morning (how can I not have a spare, I hear you cry!), I can say that Sticky Strip works very well but is a bit trickier to handle.

The Lucky Limeade piece was cut with the Adorning Accents edgelits, and embossed with the matching folder to create a bit more interest and texture. The top of the pleating isn't particularly messy, but I think it benefits from being 'finished off'. It reminds me of the way you put a waist band over the pleats in a skirt!

Even though I missed the exciting Stampin' Up! regional training last weekend, I have been reliably informed of the amazing things we have to look forward to over the next few weeks. All I can say is watch this space…

 

 

 

 

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