June 2021 Paper Pumpkin: Expressions of Color

The June 2021 Paper Pumpkin kit, Expressions of Color, featured cards with a quietly joyful and serene feel to them. The flowers are not too frilly and the color palette is soft without being sickly. The kit included all the supplies to create the cards pictured above (three each of three designs). The kit includes the 11-piece photopolymer stamp set pictured below and two mini ink pads, one in Bumblebee and the other in Evening Evergreen. Stampin’ Up’s Paper Pumpkin kits usually only come with one mini ink pad, so the additional one was a special treat.

I love creating alternative designs with my Paper Pumpkin supplies and I offer a monthly workshop featuring that month’s kit. The class favorite alternative design for the month of June was the one in the following picture. I made this card with minimal additional supplies, a white card base and a Blackberry Bliss sponged onto the back of the vellum with the word Thanks on it. The center tag is cut using Stampin’ Up’s Stitched So Sweetly die set, but the card would also look great with a rectangle cut from the designer paper as well.

Here’s a slideshow of a few other cards I made, some of them inspired by other cardmakers’ creations.

The last project at my Paper Pumpkin workshops always features a card that doesn’t use any of the other design elements in the kit. It’s something to make after you’ve used up everything in the kit and are just left with stamps and ink. I like this card because it has a whimsical feel to it.

Additional Products

Check out my blog post on what simple supplies you can keep on hand to easily make the most out of your Paper Pumpkin kit.

Subscribe with me so you can enjoy your own Paper Pumpkin, a monthly subscription paper-crafting kit by Stampin’ Up.

Attend one of my workshops, which found on MeetUp.com in the Bellevue/Redmond Cardmakers group.

Au Revoir: 2019-2021 In Colors & Those Cute Umbrella sets

Not only is May 4th Star Wars Day, it’s also when Stampin’ Up’s 2021-2022 Annual Catalog will debut. Unfortunately, a new catalog means retiring product, and one of those products is the 2019-2021 In Color collection. As we bid adieu to these colors, I have a set of cards to share with you that feature these outgoing colors in addition to the Under My Umbrella and Pretty Parasol stamps sets, also both retiring. Don’t miss out on these Last Chance Products, some of which are on sale right now. When they’re gone, they’re gone, as they say.

The 2019-2021 In Colors were:

DISCLAIMER: These designs are adaptions of cards I’ve seen on Pinterest and other areas of the web. I’ll try to acknowledge my sources when possible.

Rococo Rose

This card is an almost exact replica of this card by Sharon Burkert. All I did was change up the colors using the 2019-2021 Designer Series Paper Pack.

Terra Cotta Tile

This is one of those cards that I don’t remember where I found my inspirational jumping off point. I used the Ornate Garden DSP for both the umbrella and the background layer.

Pretty Peacock

Pretty Peacock and Seaside Spray tied for my favorite colors from this collection. My creation is based on a darling yellow version of this card by Cindy Fodor. I used the Ornate Floral embossing folder for the background layer and the Stitched With Whimsy dies. The images are colored with Stampin’ Blends.

Seaside Spray

I couldn’t help myself from changing the black and white umbrellas on this card to Seaside Spray. I added in a smidge of one of the 2020-2022 In Colors, Misty Moonlight to two of the umbrellas.

Purple Posy

This Purple Posy card is an adaptation of this card by Kathryn Ruddick at katlodesigns.com. The background paper for this card is from the Playing With Patterns suite.

Here’s a slideshow of other cards I have previously made that feature the 2019-2021 In Color collection. I’m sad to see these colors retire, especially Pretty Peacock and Seaside Spray, but I’m excited to see the debut of the 2021-2023 In Colors on May 4th, aka Star Wars Day.

Retiring Stamp Sets, Coordinating Punch, & In Color Product List

February 2021 Paper Pumpkin: Bouquet of Hope

Deep confession: I don’t really like this kit. Not at all. It’s not the stamp set that bothers me, it’s the cards. They remind me too much of Mrs. Walowitz’s house on the Big Bang Theory with too many floral patterns clashing with one another. The fact that this kit doesn’t float my boat doesn’t make me angry and is only mildly disappointing. Stampin’ Up can’t please everyone all of the time.

The February Paper Pumpkin, Bouquet of Hope, includes all the supplies to create the cards pictured above, a Mossy Meadow mini inkpad, and the stamp set pictured below:

When I receive a kit that I’m not keen on, and after processing my the initial dislike, I bolster myself with two positive ideas. Sometimes a kit may not suit my tastes, but it there’s probably someone in my life who will find it perfectly perfect and enjoy the card as is. Secondly, I’ve been given an opportunity to practice creativity and transform the elements into something completely different than the original projects.

To begin this creative process I mentally deconstruct the cards and sort the supplies into two categories.

Things I liked:

  • Stamp set
  • Black Sequins
  • Mossy Meadow
  • Tags with black accent
  • Thinking of You sticker
  • Envelope lining

Things I didn’t like:

  • Rococo Rose
  • Gold Doily
  • Gold
  • Vellum (its tricky to attach without the glue showing through)
  • Too many flowers

The first thing I did was try and figure out what to do with that crazy gold doily. I put washi tape on the gold side of the doily and taped it to the center of a 5.25″ x 4″ sheet of white paper, thereby creating a mask. I sponged on Mossy Meadow ink, entirely covering both the doily and the white paper. I carefully removed the doily and set it aside for a different card.

Next, I added some 7/8″ black ribbon and used the sequins on the tag. By adding the thick ribbon and orienting the card in landscape vs. portrait direction, the tag doesn’t seem out of proportion from the doily.

Remember that Mossy Meadow doily I made earlier? I mounted it on the floral Merry Merlot card base. Instead of attaching the oval tag, I placed the large flower bouquet in the center, which reduced the busyness of the doily and was more appropriately portioned. I attached the I’ll always be here for you sentiment on the long horizontal tag to the bouquet, added some sequins, and voila, an improved card!

Vellum. I have a love/hate relationship with vellum. I love how it looks and I hate that it’s difficult to attach without adhesive showing through. In order to conceal the adhesive, you can only apply it behind parts of the card that are in front of the vellum. I felt that the card design in the kit didn’t have enough of these hidden areas to secure the vellum adequately. Instead, I adhered the Thinking of You sticker to a piece of patterned paper (reaped from one of the envelopes and one of the card bases), and mounted it in front of the vellum. On the Rococo Rose card, I flipped the vellum over so you saw white vines instead of gold. On the Just Jade card, I left the gold, because as much as I dislike gold color, I think it looks really cool paired with jade.

In my efforts to change the look of this kit, I ended up making nine different cards. Here’s a slideshow of the ones I didn’t feature in this post.

Monthly Paper Pumpkin Tip: Sacrifice Your Envelopes

If you’re not familiar with what a Paper Pumpkin is, it’s a monthly subscription for an all-inclusive paper crafting kit made by Stampin’ Up, and one of my favorite things to receive in the mail. You can learn more about Paper Pumpkin and subscribe for the kit here.

This month’s tip for extending your creative options with your kit is to sacrifice your envelopes. Sometimes the cards in the Paper Pumpkin kit come with matching envelopes. Don’t be afraid to flay those envelopes open and cut them into mini-sheets of coordinating designer paper. Here’s an example from the July 2020 Paper Pumpkin Summer Nights add-on kit, which consisted of extra card bases and coordinating envelopes.

First, I used my paper trimmer to cut along the edges of the envelope where the white from the envelope meets the pattern on the inside of the envelope.

Next, I splayed open the envelope and trimmed the white part from the bottom of the pattern.

Finally, I cut the envelope at the crease between the flap and envelope.

After that, I cut the pieces into strips, applied them to a Night of Navy card base, and created the card pictured below using the stamp set and pieces from the Summer Nights kit.

Here’s a small slideshow of other cards I have made using the interior designs on the envelopes as elements on the front of the card.

Of course, you’ll need a replacement envelope, so keep a package of extras on hand. See my Monthly Paper Pumpkin Tip: A Little Product Supplement Goes a Long Way for information about basic supplemental supplies.

January 2021 Paper Pumpkin: Sending Hearts

Paper Pumpkin is an all-inclusive monthly subscription paper-crafting from Stampin’ Up and I look forward to receiving it every month. The January 2021 kit is called Sending hearts. The kit included all the supplies needed to make the cards pictured above and the photopolymer stamp set pictured below. It also included a Poppy Parade mini ink pad. The coordinating colors are Poppy Parade, Basic Black, and Petal Pink.

Today I’m sharing a few alternative designs that I made using the kit and supplemental supplies.

On this card, I repeatedly stamped the XOXO stamp on a white card base. I also added a piece of Petal Pink vellum and metallic edge Petal Pink ribbon from my stash of retired paper products.

For this card, I stamped the top portion of a white card base with the Love stamp. The bottom red panel is cut from one of the card bases included in the kit. The scalloped black border is punched from a border punch I have, but you can just as easily piece together two of the scalloped black strips from the kit. I offset a square of white vellum behind the front panel to give it more emphasis.

This next card utilizes the cute little snail stamp. I used a technique to reverse the stamped image so the snails could be facing one another. The reverse technique is very simple. Stamp the image on a silicon crafting mat and place a piece of cardstock over it, lightly pressing down without wiggling the paper. If you don’t have a silicon crafting mat, a silicon baking mat can be used instead.

Happy stamping and Happy Valentines Day!