Tuesday, May 31, 2011


The challenge at Just Add Ink this week is to use "fussy cutting" in a papercraft project.  Essentially, this means cutting around an image, or images .... the more intricate the better!  I haven't gone terribly intricate, but I did enjoy the bit of cutting I did to make today's card. 

Here's a close-up of my two favourite features of my card.  Check out the shimmer (can you see it??), and the gorgeous waffle pattern I created using my Stampin' Up! Crimper.  Both techniques are so easy to do, but really add a special 'something', don't you think?

Here is the card I made.  I'm loving these colours together, I must say.

Stamps: Because I Care, Silhouette Sentiments (both hostess stamp sets)
Card: Baja Breeze, Whisper White smooth and textured, Watercolour Paper
DSP: Rich Razzleberry Patterns Designer Series Paper
Ink: Jet Black Staz-On inkpad, Rich Razzleberry stampin' pad, Baja Breeze stampin' pad and reinker, Old Olive and Always Artichoke stampin' pads
Other: Aquapainter, paper snips, 1 3/8" x 5/8" Oval punch, Basic Pearls, stampin' dimensionals, Whisper White 1/8" taffeta ribbon, Crimper, mini glue dots, Tombow Multi glue, Frost White shimmer paint (mixed with Isocol to make shimmer spray)

Monday, May 30, 2011


This weekend Ethan, my youngest, is going to the 11th birthday party of one of his friends.  Of course,  a card is needed .... although Ethan's a pretty great cardmaker himself, he'd much rather spend his time watching WWE on tv (heaven help us), or playing PS3 with his brother (in those moments when they decide they really do love one another).

The colour combination put forward by Holly at Rubber Redneck this week is, I think, perfect for a boy's card.

I got out my Extreme Elements stamp set (I haven't used that for a while, have I?  Been getting too busy with butterflies on my cards, I think!).  It's THE best set for a masculine card.  I've also made use of my fabulous new Stampin' Up! crimper (that thing is seriously heavy-duty - love it!), and trusty Square Lattice embossing folder, to add a bit of texture.  The lightly distressed edges on the cardstock mats were achieved by running my fingernail along the edges.

Here's the birthday boy's card:

Stamps: Extreme Elements, Wonderfully Worn, Bring on the Cake
Card: Marina Mist, Whisper White, Cherry Cobbler
Ink: Marina Mist and Cherry Cobbler stampin' pads, Whisper White craft stampin' pad
Other: Sponge daubers, Star punch, Small star punch (retired), Neutrals brad, Crimper, Square Lattice embossing folder

Sunday, May 29, 2011


Phew - I've just scraped in with this week's Colour Q Challenge, which ends in a few short hours:

Tonight I decided to show some love to my had-to-have, but sadly neglected, gorgeous Owl Punch.  This little guy has been sitting on a rail, without being used, for some time.  Here is what I came up with, using these colours:

Stamps: Hello, You; Friendly Words jumbo Stampin' Around wheel
Card: Early Espresso, Whisper White, Real Red textured, So Saffron textured, Daffodil Delight
DSP: Play Date Designer Series Paper
Ink: White Staz-On Opaque inkpad, So Saffron stampin' pad, Early Espresso stampin' pad and marker
Other: Two-Step XL Owl punch, Mat Pack and Paper Piercing tool, Early Espresso 1/8" taffeta ribbon, sponge daubers, Scallop Edge border punch, Stamp-a-ma-jig, Real Red corduroy buttons (not available in Aus.), stampin' dimensionals, mini glue dots

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Today I am taking part, with six friends who are also Stampin' Up! demonstrators in Australia, in a blog hop.   You may have come from Ros Davidson's blog, but if you're starting here, that's okay too.  At the end of each blog post will be a link to the next 'stop', so just click on those links to make your way around all seven of our blogs.

Our focus for today's blog hop is Stampin' Up!'s handy-dandy tool called the Color Coach:

This is a fabulous tool to help with your creativity, and to stretch you outside of your comfort zone!  On the back of the swatches of card (in Stampin' Up!'s entire colour range), are suggestions of complementary colours, and of combinations that you probably never would have thought to put together!  My cards today are a case in point (of the latter).

As much of a 'green' girl as I am, I struggle to use Garden Green in my projects.  I was bound and determined to do something with this colour combination, suggested to me by the Color Coach:

Although I felt a bit uncomfortable at first, combining these colours,  I'm quite happy with the end results.  I have two cards to show you, so you can see these colours can actually work together (those gurus at Stampin' Up! really know what they're talking about!).

Stamps: Motorcycle, Extreme Elements, Occasional Greetings, Pocket Silhouettes
Card: Garden Green, Tangerine Tango, Whisper White
Ink: Jet Black Staz-On inkpad, Garden Green and Bashful Blue stampin' pads, Tangerine Tango and Basic Gray markers
Other: Blender pens, Stampin' Sponges, Crop-a-dile, Jumbo Pewter Eyelets, Top Note die, Square Lattice embossing folder, Scallop Oval punch (for mask to create clouds), paper snips

...... and one for a younger boy:

Stamps: Pun Fun, Extreme Elements, Seeing Stars, On Your Birthday
Card: Crumb Cake, Whisper White, Bashful Blue, Tangerine Tango, Garden Green
DSP: Tangerine Tango and Garden Green Patterns Designer Series Paper
Ink: Jet Black Staz-On inkpad, Crumb Cake, Bashful Blue, Tangerine Tango and Garden Green stampin' pads
Other: Word Window punch, Modern Label punch, 1 3/4" Circle punch, sponge daubers, Mat Pack and Paper Piercing tool

I also had a play with another colour combination.  I'd decided I wanted to use Cajun Craze, but not with the usual my autumnal-toned 'suspects'.  Here's the challenge I took up, from the Color Coach:

My first card turned out like this:

Stamps: En Francais, Friends 24-7, Trendy Trees
Card: Very Vanilla, Always Artichoke textured, Perfect Plum, Watercolour paper
DSP: Cajun Craze and Perfect Plum Patterns Designer Series Papers
Ink: Jet Black Staz-On inkpad, Always Artichoke and Perfect Plum stampin' pads
Other: Blender pens, Beautiful Wings embosslits, Crochet Trim, Word Window punch, sponge dauber, Whisper White taffeta ribbon (coloured with a Cajun Craze marker)

Before I show you my last card, I'll just issue a "purple alert"!  My usual tactic of subtle background stamping just flew out the window with this one.  Here is the second card I made using the same colour combination of Cajun Craze, Perfect Plum and Always Artichoke:

Stamps: Love & Care, Because I Care (both hostess sets)
Card: Perfect Plum, Always Artichoke, Watercolour paper
Ink: Perfect Plum stampin' pad and marker, Always Artichoke stampin' pad and marker, Cajun Craze stampin' pad and marker
Other: Beautiful Wings embosslits, Eyelet border punch, Basic Pearl, Scallop Oval punch, 1 3/4" x 7/8" Oval punch, sponge daubers, water spritzer

If you don't already own a Color Coach, I'd encourage you to get one; it has helped me out of many a 'slump', and I have had a lot of fun using colour combinations that at first seem a bit unusual.  It costs $28.95, and if any of us on the 'hop' today is your usual Stampin' Up! demonstrator, we'd be happy to help you out.

Now it's time to hop on over to my friend Kristine's blog.  She will no doubt have something gorgeous to show you!  If you lose track of who to visit, you can check back in here, as I've listed below all of the participants in today's hop.  Thanks for stopping by!

Ros Davidson


Christine Blain  (that's me)

Kristine Thompson
Di Dunk

Judy May

Alisha Watson

Margaret Knoops

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I've managed to cross off my "to do" list a few things that had to get done today, so decided I'd whip up a quick little card to give myself a break from the chores.

I am really pleased I've had a chance to play along with this week's Inkspirations Colour Challenge, as I'm in a bit of a "purple patch" this week ..... just loving using purples on my projects.  (Tune in on the weekend for more, when I'll be joining in a blog hop focussing on Stampin' Up!'s Color Coach!)

 .... and here is the 10cm square card I made, using up little strips of Designer Series Papers in Blushing Bride, Perfect Plum and Sahara Sand:

Stamps: Because I Care (hostess set)
Card: Very Vanilla, Perfect Plum, Sahara Sand
DSP: Perfect Plum, Blushing Bride and Sahara Sand Patterns Designer Series Papers (including hostess pack)
Ink: Sahara Sand and Perfect Plum stampin' pads
Other: Beautiful Butterflies Bigz die, Very Vanilla taffeta ribbon, Modern Label punch, Basic Pearls, sponge dauber, Finial Press embossing folder

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I must admit I found this week's Color Lab challenge a real challenge!!  (Surely that's a good thing?!)

I was going okay with the three main colours, having chosen to make a simple card using one of my new favourites, the Create A Cupcake stamp set.  However, I had a hard time figuring out how to incorporate a touch of Perfect Plum.  I have a lot of trouble pairing Perfect Plum with Concord Crush!!  In the end, I managed to add a tiny touch of plum, using little heart punchies to highlight the sentiment.  Here's my card:

Stamps: Create A Cupcake
Card: Pear Pizzazz, Concord Crush, Pale Plum, Whisper White textured and smooth
Ink: Versamark inkpad, Pear Pizzazz, Concord Crush and Blushing Bride stampin' pads
Other: Stamp-a-ma-jig, 1 3/4" circle punch, 2 3/8" scallop circle punch, 1/16" hole punch, Build A Cupcake punch, Word Window punch, Two-Step XL Owl punch, Blushing Bride ribbon, Mat Pack and paper piercing tool

This is one of the cards we'll be making in my Autumn-Winter Mini class this Saturday.  I have one spot left in the class, if you'd like to come - just email me at stampwithchristine@gmail.com!

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Love, love, love the colour challenge over at ColourQ this week.  Take a look:

I must admit that the combination of greys, with brown, threw me a little, but I am pleased with how my little (10cm square) card turned out:

Stamps: Apple Blossoms (hostess set), En Francais
Card: Peach Parfait, Sahara Sand textured, Basic Gray, Chocolate Chip
DSP: Peach Parfait Patterns Designer Series Paper (hostess pack)
Ink: Versamark inkpad, Peach Parfait, Sahara Sand and Chocolate Chip stampin' pads
Other: Beautiful Wings embosslits, Jumbo brad, Spiral punch, Chocolate Chip taffeta ribbon (retired), sponge daubers, Stamp-a-ma-jig

JUST ADD INK #68 ... and MOJO MONDAY #191 ..... and SUO CHALLENGE #19

I had a really rewarding couple of hours in my craft room last night.  Since returning home from Stampin' Up! Convention, my head has been so full of ideas that I've been unable to sit still and FOCUS!  I've really missed playing with my stamps, though, so was pleased that a bit of inspiration came my way last night.

I absolutely love the colours in this week's Just Add Ink challenge; I've not used them together before, but WOW - how gorgeous do they look?!

I've combined these scrumptious colours with this week's Mojo Monday sketch; this is my first EVER entry over at Mojo Monday, which is pretty exciting (for me, at least!).  I decided this sketch worked beautifully with my new stamp set that I was itching to ink up.  Here's the sketch I worked from (although I opted not to add a square under the scalloped circle):

...... and here's the result, that I am also entering in the current SUO Challenge, to use flowers in a project.  Tulips are my all-time favourite flower (well, peonies come a very, very close second).  I had white tulips as my wedding bouquet, just in case you like reading a bit of personal trivia :) .......

Stamps: A Flower For All Seasons, Occasional Greetings, Confetti
Card: Crumb Cake, Whisper White, Perfect Plum, Pear Pizzazz, Baja Breeze textured, Watercolour paper
DSP: Pear Pizzazz Patterns Designer Series Paper
Ink: Versamark inkpad, Jet Black Staz-On inkpad, Perfect Plum, Pear Pizzazz, Baja Breeze and Crumb Cake stampin' pads, Peach Parfait marker (for the bird's tiny beak!)
Other: Blender pens, Two-Step  Owl Punch XL, Circles #2 die, 1 3/4" circle punch, 2 3/8" Scallop circle punch, Square Lattice embossing folder, white embossing powder, Itty Bitty Shapes flower punch, Neutrals brad, sponge daubers, Whisper White organza ribbon

I really love this card; it makes me happy.  Hope it does the same for you :)

Thursday, May 19, 2011


Are you ready to see some more photos from Stampin' Up! Convention that was held in Melbourne last week?  I really should be going to bed (still haven't caught up on lost sleep from those exciting few days!), but thought I'd much rather share a photo-heavy blog post with you!!

The absolute highlight of this year's Convention was the people.  I have made so many wonderful friends since I discovered my life's passion (that'd be stamping, in case there's any question in your mind!).  Unfortunately we're spread far and wide across Australia and New Zealand, so don't get to see each other all that often.  Convention was three days full of laughter and hugs, and time spent with great friends; I just can't wait to do it all again next year.

Almost all of the gorgeous talented women in my photos have blogs, but I am a little tired to link to each one as I type this .... please, contact me if you're unsure who any of them are, or just want to visit their corner of cyberspace.  Let me share some of these friendships with you:

Heavily laden with bags galore, here are (L to R): Nicole, Tina, Kathryn, Judy, Rachel and Kristine - all ready for the first day's general session!

Jodene (one of my gorgeous W.A. friends), and me (not sure what I'm doing with that odd photo face)

Judy (one of my lovely 'roomies') and me

Kerry, Elaine, Toby and Sue (my other lovely 'roomie')

Genna, Tina, Sue, me and Nikki ..... 5/7 of the "Helping Hudson" team (we missed you, Jo and Gardenia!!)

L to R: Judy, me, Toby, Nikki, Sue, Nicole and Tina ..... having a ball doing "Make and Takes" with gorgeous new (secret!) products!

Love this picture of Nikki and Nicole

L to R: Sue, Tina, Toby and Nikki, with me and Judy in front

Most of the super-special "Just Add Ink" team (with a couple of ring-ins!)
L to R at rear: Me, Kim, Tina, Bron, Jo, Mae, Nikki, Jodene
L to R in front: Moana, Paula and Delys

Alisha and Kris

Me with Kirsty (so rapt she was there, against all odds) - hilarious friend

and, last but by no means least, a photo of me with Bonnie and Shannon - two of the warmest, happiest, most gorgeous women from the U.S. Home Office of Stampin' Up!  We just love that they come down every year to share Convention with us.  Shame Bonnie's eyes are closed, but we get only one chance for a photo when adoring fans are queuing up to be next!

And that, my friends, wraps up my account of Convention this year.  I will have further tidbits and information about promotions, coming up, but lots of the details we were told are under wraps for now.  I hope you've enjoyed seeing who I hung out with for most of the time at Convention.  I am one blessed girl.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Hi folks!  I'm back home from Convention, still coming down from the high ... and trying to catch up on sleep!  I had a fabulous time, catching up with lots of dear friends and totally immersing myself in all the excitement.  The enthusiasm of Stampin' Up! staff, and other demonstrators, is so infectious; Convention really is a magic time.  This year we were treated to LOTS of sneak peeks, of new product that will come out in our new catalogue in September ..... but, I won't be sharing them with you until much closer to the time - you'll just have to be patient!  I promise you won't be disappointed.

I would like to share with you, though, a few photos.  I have so many to go through, that it'll take me a little while, but I wanted to show you at least a little of the fun.

My four nights staying in Melbourne were spent sharing an apartment with Sue and Judy.  Both of them gave me lovely gifts.  Judy gave us each a sampler of some gorgeous SU! papers that are not available in Australia (yet ... I'm hopeful they will be).  Sue had made some gorgeous little "Convention Survival Kits" for her team members, and thoughtfully made extras for Judy and me.  Take a look at the cute decorated Mini Lunch Sack, and the contents:

I finally got to meet, in person, my gorgeous friend Nikki.  She is such a creative, warm and funny person; I'm looking forward to more frequent catch-ups with her, now that we know how close to one another we live!  Take a look at this stunning gift she gave me (Chamomile & Grapefruit Soy Melts), presented in a typical Nikki way .....

Is it not divine??!!  Even the paper bag containing my gift was stamped beautifully (it just got a little scrunched in my bag, so a photo wouldn't do it justice).

At Convention, lots of demonstrators attending take part in swapping, of card fronts or other little items made using Stampin' Up! products.  It's a fabulous way to share ideas and techniques, and I have to say that the beauty of the swaps this year just blew me away.  It was pretty cool to share 3 days with 450 creative women!  Here is the swap that I made (only made it to 60 before I was unable to go on - I was thoroughly sick of the sight of it!):

... and here are the swaps I came home with:

All of my class attendees (and anyone else who'd like to come visit!) will get to look through these, to fully appreciate them 'in real life'.

I have lots more to share, but this will have to do, as the first instalment!  It's good to be home (I missed my boys), but I have so many happy memories from this year's Convention.  I look forward to sharing more with you in coming days!

Thursday, May 12, 2011


I've scheduled this post to go up when I am at Stampin' Up! Convention here in Melbourne; I'm away from home from Wednesday night until Sunday morning - three full days of fun, fun, fun!

I am sharing an apartment with two lovely friends, and am so looking forward to a few days of stamping and friendship.  I have no computer access while I'm away, so I will fill you in on the happenings when I am back home!

Here is a little (11.5cm square) card I made for Sue, who is a lover of blue:

Stamps: Bella Toile, Just Believe, Music Notes wheel
Card: Baja Breeze smooth & textured, Crumb Cake, Confetti White, Glossy White
Ink: Jet Black Staz-on inkpad, Crumb Cake stampin' pad and marker, Soft Suede stampin' pad, Pretty in Pink and So Saffron markers
Other: Beautiful Butterflies Bigz die, Tasteful Trim XL Bigz die, Word Window punch, Modern Label punch, Baja Breeze striped grosgrain ribbon (retired), Basic Pearls, Finial Press embossing folder, Frost White shimmer paint, sponge dauber

....... and the card I made for Judy, who is a "pink" girl through and through:

Stamps: Bella Toile, Just Believe, Music Notes wheel
Card: Pretty in Pink smooth & textured, Crumb Cake, Confetti White, Glossy White
Ink: Jet Black Staz-on inkpad, Crumb Cake stampin' pad and marker, Soft Suede stampin' pad, Pretty in Pink and So Saffron markers
Other: Beautiful Butterflies Bigz die, Tasteful Trim XL Bigz die, Word Window punch, Modern Label punch, Pretty in Pink satin ribbon, Basic Pearls, Finial Press embossing folder, Frost White shimmer paint, sponge dauber

Saturday, May 7, 2011


Check out the beautiful colour combination put together by Barbara over at The Color Throwdown this week:

I have used these colours in the card I've made also for Just Add Ink's sketch challenge:

My starting point for this card was to stamp various images from Stampin' Up!'s gorgeous Nature Walk stamp set, to create a collage background on Confetti White card.  I spritzed some Early Espresso ink over the panel, distressed and sponged the edges.  I love how it turned out.  Don't you think this birthday sentiment (from the fabulous new Bring on The Cake set) is perfect for a vintage-y card?

Stamps: Nature Walk, Bring on The Cake
Card: Blushing Bride, Confetti White, Crumb Cake, Baja Breeze
DSP: Elegant Soiree Designer Series Paper
Ink: Baja Breeze, Blushing Bride, Crumb Cake stampin' pads, Early Espresso stampin' pad and marker
Other: Color Spritzer tool, Beautiful Butterflies Bigz die, Beautiful Wings embosslits die, Antique brad, Metallic brad, Decorative Label punch, Boho Blossoms punch, Itty Bitty Shapes punch, stamping sponge, sponge dauber, stampin' dimensionals

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Things have been a bit quiet around here lately, haven't they?!  I've had a pretty full-on week, working full-time and attempting to juggle all the usual after-school commitments of the kids; the usual stuff we do to keep our families going.  I just don't like not being around for the boys after school - I miss them.  Thankfully, today was my last day of work for a few days, so I relaxed tonight by making a card.  It's been almost a week since I stamped, and I've missed my creative outlet!!

I am scraping in for this week's ColorLab Challenge #39, to use the following colours together:

I have just purchased Stampin' Up!'s Cottage Garden stamp set (on special this week, for only $19.77 for 7 wood mounted stamps, or a mere $14.97 for clear mount).  My mission tonight was to use it on the card for this challenge.

Here is what I made .... night time, indoor, amateurish photography and all!

Stamps: Cottage Garden, Silhouette Sentiments
Card: Pumpkin Pie, Rich Razzleberry, Whisper White, Old Olive
DSP: Sweet & Sour Specialty Designer Series Paper
Ink: Versamark inkpad, Pumpkin Pie, Rich Razzleberry and Old Olive stampin' pads
Other: 1 3/4" circle punch, 2 3/8" Scallop circle punch, Circles #2 Bigz die, Beautiful Wings embosslits, Brights brads, Word Window punch, Pumpkin Pie satin ribbon, Top Note die, Mat Pack & paper piercing tool, mini glue dots, corner rounder punch

It's now only one week until Stampin' Up! Convention for us Aussies and Kiwis.  I can hardly wait!!  I will try to have more cards to share with you before then, but things are getting a little hectic in the lead-up to Convention, so I won't make any promises.  I'll be back to share more as soon as I can :)

Monday, May 2, 2011


Today is my friend Lee's birthday; I was really pleased with the card I made her, but I realised well after daylight had gone yesterday that I hadn't photographed it.  So, please forgive the dull indoor photography!

I have just got Stampin' Up!'s Style Beautiful stamp set ..... have had my eye on it for ages, and I just love it.  I've inked it up for the first time on this card, to create a 'flourishy' base for the butterflies.

As the card base is such a dark colour, I've used one of my favourite techniques on the inside of the card, to make it easy to hand write a message.  Stampin' Up!'s Top Note die is perfect for this - take a look:

Stamps: Style Beautiful, All A Flutter, Create A Cupcake
Card: Concord Crush, Crumb Cake, Confetti White
Ink: Crumb Cake and Concord Crush stampin' pads
Other: Blender pen, Top Note die, Word Window punch, Tasteful Trim Bigz XL die, Antique Brad, Concord Crush stitched-poly ribbon, stamping sponge, Framed Tulips embossing folder, Beautiful Butterflies Bigz die, Vintage Wallpaper embossing folder

Happy birthday, Lee!  Hope you like your card as much as I liked making it :)