Fabulous Finds Friday — Tidbits from CHA

The Craft & Hobby Association Show (CHA) has come and gone in Chicago. Sadly, I was not there. Sigh. But tidbits of news are flowing in and I want to share some of what I’ve found.

Hero Arts has some new partnerships, including new stamps to coordinate with BasicGrey and Studio Calico. But … I think the partnership with Sizzix will be my favorite!

First is the Stamp & Emboss collection  — background cling stamps that match Sizzix embossing folders. You stamp the image then slip it into an embossing folder, run it through your machine, and the image is raised! How cool is that? The Stamp & Emboss  collection includes stylish Hero Arts designs such as Birds ‘n Trees,  Silhouette Vines, Artistic Fern and Holly Background. An easy, fast way to add dimension to your stamping.

The other nifty new product is the Stamp & Die Cut collection. These cling stamps match Sizzix’s FrameLit cutting dies and make it super simple to cut out stamped images using a die cutting machine. Designs include frolicking reindeers, chairs and chandeliers, labels and tags, flowers and butterflies.

Here are some links to videos:

The Hero Arts-Sizzix products will ship in early September, the Hero Arts-BasicGrey lines will ship in early August and early October, and the Hero Arts-Studio Calico products ship Aug. 5.  You can also check out the new Hero Arts catalog at http://www.heroarts.com

Spellbinders has also released several wonderful dies — come back later for a look!

No Post Today

Sorry, Friday is not so fabulous today.

Please come back next week — I’ll have news on the hot new products shown at the Craft & Hobby Associaton trade show!

Meanwhile, say hello to one of my dogs:


Thanks for stopping by — see you next week!

Bon Jour!

This week sure got away from me! Yesterday was Bastille Day, so bon jour to all you French fans.

In honor of Bastille Day, here is a quick card:

Not terribly elegant, but fast.

And a random card made quickly and sent to a friend who needed a little cheer:

(Pot image from Michael Strong; green plant is a decorative piece from my last sushi meal! Envelope pattern background by Hero Arts)

That’s my short and sweet entry for today! Thanks for coming by.

Awash in Washi

Need to make a few cards, FAST? Yeah, me too. So I pulled out some washi tape, a few images and washi viola! So easy — the tape does all the design work. Just tear and stick, tear and stick — how much easier can it get?

Check ’em out:

(tape: Happy Tape; image: Technique Tuesday — note:  this stamp is perfectly sized for a Spellbinders’ Nestabilities die. Cool, huh?)

(Image: Hero Arts)

Now… to make it even easier … use stickers!

(Stickers: EK Success; sentiment: Hero Arts)

Thanks for coming by!

Fabulous Finds Friday — Dies, Details and the Imperfect Stamper (Me!)

My latest article for Crafts ‘n things magazine is all about die cutters — from manual to electronic to computer-based. Oh, the choices! It is almost overwhelming. (Do check out the article — it’s in the August issue of Crafts ‘n things, on news stands now. And the issue sells out quickly.  I know, I know. I hear you gasping — the AUGUST issue is out now? June has barely given way to July!)

Anyway…. one thing I found in my research is that many stamp companies are making dies that coordinate with stamps (and vice versa.) Companies include  Heartfelt Creations (coordinating stamps/dies), Technique Tuesday (stamps made to match Spellbinders’ Nestabilities), Prickly Pear (dies/stamps), PaperTrey Ink (dies/stamps), Gina K Designs, Layers of Color, JustRite Stampers and others. Hero Arts and a few others contribute designs for the Silhouette.

Check out this cutie from Prickley Pear. Can you imagine how tedious it would be to cut out this birdcage? Not to mention the little bird and owl hiding in the corners.

The only problem is, I am an imperfect stamper. I can’t seem to properly line up my stamp, even though it is clear.  (Maybe my depth perception is off???) See how it’s wonky?

But I still wanted to use the little birdcage …. so I hid the flaws beneath a layer of Zing (by American Crafts) apricot colored embossing powder:

(wreath, Hello: Hero Arts. Parrot: Prickley Pear.)

Oh, I was so pleased with myself!!! (Grin.) I love Zing powder because it is smooth, opaque, and melts evenly — it gives great coverage, and the colors are yummy.

But I shouldn’t get too cocky. I fared a little better (just a little — I need more practice!)  with my stamping on the next cut out, but messed up the card itself.

Can you see that the bottom of the damask print decorative paper is too short? Sigh.

I fixed it by trimming with a scallop edged scissor. And when I added the little bird and the Prima flowers, it wasn’t too bad:

And there you have it — the Imperfect Stamper strikes again!

Thanks for joining me on my die cutting adventure, warts and all. And if you have any tips for getting your stamps to align with a die cut, send ’em in!

Happy Independence Day to my U.S. buddies.