Chatting About Using Product Creatively

Hi! Just popping in to share something fun.

I was recently a guest again over on Paperclipping Roundtable. Basically, this is a recorded discussion between artists… and something that anyone can listen to. Fun, huh? This time we talked about how to use products creatively. Click HERE if you want to check it out. (You can also check out a few of my past discussions on markers and techniques with Tim Holtz.) It is perfect to listen to while working out! Or crafting. :)

See you soon!




I have probably ten videos I have shot to share with you. However, our spring break has started and family time is in full swing! This weekend? I am celebrating Colin’s 8th birthday, Audrey’s awesome school accomplishments and Lila going on the potty. :) I will be back sharing more in a couple days.

In the meantime, I wanted to give you a few bits of info:

  • You still have a chance to win Mini Ink Blending Tools HERE.
  • I have a fun giveaway coming up soon over on Facebook. Be sure to “like” me there if you want to catch it!
  • Our next Online Card Class is going to open for registration VERY soon. To be one of the first to know, be sure to sign up for the newsletter. (If you have taken a class in the past, you are NOT automatically on the newsletter list.) Here is a hint: The topic is something I have been sharing a lot of lately. Hmmmm….
  • Later this week I hope to share a few more Ink Swatch Downloads along with an editable Word file. (I am hoping it works for everyone.) Stay tuned.

See you soon! Happy stamping.

Video: Watercolor Greetings

Hi! Today I have a video showing how to create watercolor greetings

I love all the handpainted and scripty (is that a word?) greetings I am seeing out there lately. Love them! But I am terrible at creating my own. So I cheated. (Remember – cheating is accepted, encouraged and helpful in crafting!)

This technique worked really well with the stamp set in the current Studio Calico Card Kit Add-On. (More on this below.) I just stamped the greetings with Studio Calico Blush Crush (after stamping off once) on watercolor paper and traced with watercolor. Woot! I look like a real artist!

I used a watercolor that I have had for years, but you can use anything you have… even inks mixed with water. Mine is the Hero Arts Watercolor wheel. I like it because there are a lot of colors, it is compact and the price is good. Works well for me!

I added the watercolor pieces to Hero Arts notecards that I had stamped with the Impression Obsession Fishscales background stamp. It is a great one for tone-on-tone backgrounds.

As I mentioned, this stamp set is from one of the newest Studio Calico Card Kit add-ons. You can find more info HERE. This stamp set was a good one… so it looks like it has sold out already. Sorry! (I *highly* recommend their card kits. By subscribing, you get first dibs on great products like this.) However, here are some other stamp sets that would work with this technique: Mama Elephant Make a Wish, BasicGrey Life is Good and Hero Arts Fancy Basics.

Thanks for stopping by!


Below are the products featured above. To find them at Simon Says Stamp, click on the SSS below the thumbnails. For Ellen Hutson click on EH and for Studio Calico click on SC

Video: Mini Ink Blending Tool + Giveaway

Hi! I have received a lot of questions about the new Mini Ink Blending Tool. Here is a video showing how this product works…

[Supplies are linked in the thumbnails at the end of this post.]

When Tim Holtz first showed me the new Mini Ink Blending Tool, I did a combination of a squeal and a happy dance. (Ask him – it is true.) And now that I finally am getting the time to use the mini tools, my squeal has gotten louder and my happy dance has gotten even more fabulous.

Yes – I have switched over all my original Ink Blending Tools to Mini Ink Blending tools. Here is proof:

(And by the way… there is absolutely NO reason to have an inking tool for each color like I do. This is my job and I have issues. LOL. Instead, get one tool for each color family, like red, green, etc. Or get a couple tools – there are two in a pack – and lots of replacement foams. You can velcro a foam to the bottom of each ink pad. Easy! For more info on my storage here, click HERE.)

OK… so on to the cards. The first one? Super bright. Very Skittles-like. So I balanced it with a second, not-so-bright second card.

For both cards I applied Distress Inks with the Mini Ink Blending Tool over the Tim Holtz Latticework stencil on watercolor paper. The mini tool makes it easier to apply color in small areas. For the bright card, I applied a rainbow of Distress Inks. After removing the stencil, I misted it with water from far above (2 feet!) five times. This tiny bit of mist helps to blend and intensify the colors, while giving a slight texture-like look.

I used the new Mama Elephant Speech Tri die to cut a word bubble border and a Mama Elephant Everyday Greetings stamp for the greeting. And check out the black sparkle embossing powder I used from Ranger. Isn’t that touch of shine fabulous? I will be using this in a future video too. I also used the Mama Elephant Confetti die to create inked hearts around the greeting.

Now it is time for my not-as-bright version of this card. I used the same overall design with some small changes.

This time I added small circles of Distress Ink color over the stencil. So easy. I also used the new Memory Box Urban Lowercase alphabet dies for the “hello” message… and covered it with black sparkle embossing powder.

I hope this video gives you a better idea of how to use the Mini Ink Blending Tool and why I think it is so stinkin’ fabulous. It has sold out of most stores, but is currently available at Simon Says Stamp and Ellen Hutson for two for about $7.


  • Tim Holtz Demo – Here is a video of Tim using the mini tool. No one demos as well as he does. (Start around the 1:00 mark.)
  • Ink Storage – This video shows how I store my Distress Inks and Ink Blending Tools. (I recently replaced my original Ink Blending Tools with the Minis.)
  • Distress Ink as Watercolor – Wowsers this card card by Donna is gorgeous and uses Distress Inks.
  • Distress Ink, Ink Blending Tools and Water – This video shows a fun technique you can do with these great products.


Want to win a pair of Mini Ink Blending Tools? For your chance, leave a comment here by 11:59pmEST on 4/1/14. Good luck!


Below are the products featured above. To find them at Simon Says Stamp, click on the SSS below the thumbnails. For Ellen Hutson click on EH







































Video: Generation Stamping + Notecard Set

Hi there! Today’s video shares generation stamping… which I used to create a set of notecards. I also show how to create a notecard gift box…

[Supplies are linked in the thumbnails at the end of this post.]

I honestly don’t think I have ever had cards come together as quickly as these did. Wow. Yay for generation stamping! Studio Calico Color Theory Inks happen to work *really* well for generation stamping. (I haven’t had nearly this much success with any other ink for this technique. And good news! I have a discount code for the SC inks below.) Stamp once and get a dark image. Stamp again – without cleaning – and get a medium-shade image. Stamp a third time and get a light image. Bam! Only one ink needed… but it looks like three.

I used butterflies and greetings from the Clearly Besotted Elegant Butterfly stamp set. I liked the silver stamping that I did last week so much that I did it again for the sentiment- a combo of Hero Arts silver ink and Perfect Pearls pigment powder.

I used a variety of Studio Calico inks to make a set of cards…

I then created some matching envelopes and put them in a glitter paper box I made with my We R Memory Keepers Punch Board.

Gotta love a gift that comes together quickly!

Here are some links that may be helpful:

Have you tried generation stamping? Would love to see links to anything you have done with it.


I know many of you have purchased the new Studio Calico inks and have mentioned you love them. Yay! If you haven’t gotten them yet, I have a discount code for you. Use the code “JMSHIP” for free shipping when you buy all 12 colors of the Studio Calico Color Theory Inks all at once. Code expires 3/31/14. (Just put each ink in your cart – not the bundle.)


Below are the products featured above. To find them at Simon Says Stamp, click on the SSS below the thumbnails. For Ellen Hutson click on EH and for Studio Calico click on SC

Even More FREE Ink Swatch Downloads

Hello! I am back again… with even more Ink Swatch Book free download shares. Today I am adding WPlus9, Amuse, Fresh, Colorbox Chalk and Memento. I also fixed the Hero Arts Shadow Inks Download 2 (it had a repeat) and the Papertrey Ink 1 (it had a misspelling). See below for my full list.

All you have to do is download the files (click DOWNLOAD for each) and print on your favorite white cardstock. (I printed mine on Neenah since that is what I use most.) Some inks have more than one page since there are so many colors. (The last link is an editable file so you can do other inks. You will need PS or PS Elements to edit it.) For info on how to use these, click here.

I will soon be adding Versafine, other Hero Arts, Close To My Heart and Ranger Archival Inks. If you have any other requests, please leave a comment. Also, let me know if you see any boo boos. Thanks!

See you soon with another video!