March 2021 - Volume 1, Issue 2
Greetings! Welcome to my newsletter. Thanks so much for dropping by. Click any bulleted item to jump directly to an article. Here's what you'll find in this issue:
Upcoming Holidays and Important Events
Spread a little love by sharing a card or other handmade item with someone else. Here are some upcoming opportunities:
National Colon Cancer Awareness Month
Women's History Month
Youth Art Month
2 - Stampin' Up! Butterfly Bouquet sales period begins (through 3 May 2021)
8 - International Women's Day
10 - Last day to subscribe to March Paper Pumpkin kit: Here's to YOU
14 - Daylight Saving Time begins; "spring forward"
15 - Eastern Orthodox Lent begins
17 - St. Patrick's Day
20 - Spring begins
27 - Passover begins at sundown
28 - Palm Sunday
31 - Final day for my monthly card sketch challenge
Photo credit: Flash Alexander from Pixabay
March Host Code (good through March 31): P2J7UACG
How it works: Place a Stampin' Up! product order for $50-$149.99 (before tax and shipping) using
my Stampin' Up! shopping link, enter the code in the host code box on the order, and I'll send you an
additional reward! If your product order totals $150 or more, Stampin' Up! will offer you host rewards, and you should not enter my host code. I'll still reward you, though. Simply email me at email@example.com to request your reward from me!
Note: The host code is for a Stampin' Up! order only. It does not apply to orders through Paper Pumpkin or Karen's Online Store. I can serve USA customers only.
Die-cutting is a specialized fabrication process that uses a die-cutting machine (Stampin' Cut & Emboss, for example; bottom right photo), and a specialized piece of metal-tooling, called a die. A piece of paper, or other material such as foam or fabric, is used with the die to cut out a unique shape or pattern. The word "Always" at right, and the white background behind it, were both cut using the Always dies that coordinate with the Forever & Always stamp set in the Jan-June 2021 mini catalog; dies shown below card.
In card-making terms, this means to use a piece of foam adhesive on the back of an image or other element to make it "pop up" off the surface of the paper. This creates a focal point that calls attention and adds visual interest.
On this card (top photo at right), the flowers are popped-up with Stampin' Dimensionals (foam adhesive) to make them a focal point. The large die-cut "Always" is also popped-up and sits atop the flower beneath.
Tip of the Month: Packaging Your Cards for Donation or Sale
If you find yourself making more cards than you can mail or give, you may want to consider donating them to a worthy cause or selling them online or through a local shop. Whatever the case, you'll want to package your individual cards to keep them in good shape through repeated handling.
I have had excellent results with resealable cellophane food bags. These are thin, transparent bags that allow me to insert an open card, tuck in an envelope, seal the bag, and then fold in half, so that anyone can see both the inside and outside of my cards.
The resealable bags I buy come in various sizes, but my preference is the
6" x 9" size, excluding flap. These allow me to insert my cards laying flat (8.5" wide x 5.5" high) so that the inside and outside are visible. Then, I can add my envelope on the side with no content (inside front) and fold the whole package in half (bottom left photo).
To see a brief demo (5:10) with additional details, see the video link below on What's New on My YouTube channel.
March Card Sketch Challenge
One of the easiest ways to make cards is to CASE them or have a card sketch to use for design. This month's card sketch challenge is a great way to use up some of your paper scraps! Submit through March 31 for a chance to win! If I have at least five subscribers submit one or more cards to this monthly challenge by the deadline, I will use a random generator to select a prize winner!
Here's the sketch for this month:
From bottom layer to top (colors are for illustration only):
Solid, dark green layer = cardstock base (5.5” wide x 4.25” high)
Black layer = additional cardstock mat (5.25” wide x 4.0” high); use DSP if desired
Diagonal color strips = ½” high (top two together; bottom two together; slight 1/8” to ¼” gap between)
White strip = sentiment; width and height to fit your chosen greeting
Yellow circle = Focal point; decorative element; size to fit your element (2.25” here)
This layout is for placement of elements only. Use what you have. For example, these circles could be actual circles, or they could be decorative elements, such as flowers.
All measurements are approximate. Colors used here have no purpose except to show placement of elements. Use your imagination to make it your own!
Use the card sketch as the basis for your design. While you should stick to the "spirit" of the sketch, you may alter your design in a few ways:
All colors in the sketch are illustrative only; you may change them to anything you wish!
You may change the orientation to make either a portrait or landscape card, but keep all design elements from the sketch.
You may use different shapes for your focal point and greeting; i.e. you may change a circle on the sketch to a shaped flower or other design element.
You may change dimensions (measurements) slightly to fit your desired design.
The card sketch challenge gives you the freedom to use whatever card stocks, colors, and stamps you may already have.
Once you complete your card, please email a jpg/jpeg to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, with subject line Card Sketch Challenge, before midnight EDT on March 31. Your submission gives me permission to share your design on my website blog at my discretion and also to enter you in the prize drawing! No other compensation is offered. If you win the prize, you'll need to provide your physical mailing address to receive it.
Host Your Own Stampin' Up! Zoom Party
You supply the guests, and I'll supply the technology! I'm missing my friends and family! How about you?
I personally get together with my best friend on occasion for the sole purpose of crafting together. We have such a great time! We recently did this on Zoom because of the social distancing restrictions but, honestly, we could do this even when the restrictions are lifted. We live 20+ miles apart, so we could get together online in bad weather or any time. We can see and hear each other on-screen, share our creations, and give each other ideas.
There are several advantages to hosting a Stampin' Up! Zoom party!
Earn Stampin' Rewards. With just $150 in sales, you can earn great
Stampin' Up! host rewards to stretch your crafting budget or earn an exclusive host stamp set. If your guests are
already crafters, they're going to get supplies from somewhere. Why not from you? If they're not, perhaps this can
be a new hobby they'll love!
You can see friends and family - near and far. The online world allows you to get together even when you're far apart! All you need is a connected device with a camera. That could be a desktop or laptop computer, an iPad or tablet, or even a smartphone.
You spend less time preparing and more time having fun! There's no house to clean up, snacks to provide, or driving in bad weather or after dark. Just hop online and craft your heart out!
Just like in-person Stampin' Up! parties, you can customize content to match the skills and interests of your guests. Are they crafters? Do they have supplies to join in at home? Ask me about options!
What's New at Paper Pumpkin (a subscription service of Stampin' Up!)
Paper Pumpkin is a monthly subscription service through Stampin' Up! Subscribers have two options:
A monthly subscription is currently $22,
which includes shipping. Once you subscribe, a new Paper Pumpkin kit is shipped direct to you on or about the 11th of each month.
These kits are packed with everything you
need to complete projects from the box.
They're especially great for beginning crafters who don't have a lot of tools and supplies. Even better, if you aren't loving the monthly offering, you can suspend your subscription for the month and pick back
up the next month! Subscribe at https://www.paperpumpkin.com/en-us/sign-up/?demoid=2243574.
The March Paper Pumpkin kit, called Here's to YOU, features a stencil kit and sponge. Stencils are a TON of fun, and they can be used over and over and over.
About the kit:
The kit contains enough supplies to create 8 cards - 4 each of 2 designs - and coordinating envelopes. The kit's contents include printed card bases, die-cut paper pieces, embellishments, adhesive, and more!
Card size: 4-1/4" x 5-1/2"
Envelope size: 4-1/2" x 5-3/4"
Coordinating colors: Bumblebee, Calypso Coral, Old Olive, Petal Pink, Pretty Peacock, and Seaside Spray
Coordinating ink spot (mini stamp pad)
Exclusive celebratory Here's to You Stamp Set
Bonus: four free stencils and a stamping sponge!
Current Promotions from Stampin' Up!
Back by popular demand for a limited time: Hey Chick stamp set. This stamp set first appeared during Sale-a-bration 2017. It was so popular that Stampin' Up! has brought it back from February 2 to June 30. And now, there are even more coordinating products! The Hey Chick stamp set (left) was originally a standalone; now there are matching dies. Order the bundle (10% discount), just the stamps, or just the dies.
Hey Chick Bundle: Item 158627; $44.00 US
Hey Chick Stamp Set: Item 158190; $17.00 US
Chick Dies: Item 158199; $32.00 US
But don't let the fun stop there! If you're about "all things chicken," Stampin' Up! has a brand new coordinating set called Hey Birthday Chick!
The Hey Birthday Chick Bundle shares the same style as the Hey Chick Bundle. It has brand new images and sentiments, as well as its own set of matching dies. Both of these sets have a whimsical, country feel and can be mixed and matched with other stamp sets to create a wide variety of cards and projects.
Hey Birthday Chick Bundle: Item 158631; $43.00 US
Hey Birthday Chick Stamp Set: Item 154464; $21.00 US
Birthday Chick Dies: Item 158200; $27.00 US
The images below are a few completed projects using these amazing bundles! Visit my Shop/Host Code tab on this website to order.
Butterfly Bouquet - Available March 2 to May 3, 2021
Butterflies are a favorite among card makers and paper crafters. As of March 2, you can order the new Butterfly Brilliance Collection.
Butterfly Brilliance Collection
Item number 159408 - $71.25 USD
Instead of ordering each product individually, get the Butterfly Brilliance collection. You'll get one of each product at the best prices. The collection includes the Butterfly Brilliance bundle (stamp set and dies), the Butterfly Bijou Designer Series Paper and the Natural Touch Specialty Paper. This collection is only available during the Butterfly Bouquet promotion and while supplies last. Read on for additional ordering opportunities.
Butterfly Brilliance Bundle - 10% bundled savings!
Item number 155821 - $54.75 USD
The Butterfly Brilliance Bundle includes the cling stamp set and Brilliant Wings dies. This is an early-release bundle from the 2021 Annual catalog and is available during the Butterfly Bouquet promotion.
Butterfly Brilliance Cling Stamp Set
Item number 155092 - $17 USD
This Butterfly Brilliance Cling Stamp Set (below left) consists of one (1) cling stamp that can be used as a background image - or as six separate butterflies when cut with the Brilliant Wings Dies. Add color with your choice of coloring technique, or apply different colors of ink to the stamp before stamping to create a unique look. Design options are plentiful!
Brilliant Wings Dies
Item number 155523 - $44 USD
This set of 12 dies (right) also offers a lot of design options. Use the detailed cut-out butterflies, place them on a solid background die, use them as a swarm or a background, make a focal point or accents, or whatever you wish!
Butterfly Bijou 6" x 6" Designer Series Paper (DSP)
Item number 156824 - $11.50 USD
This exclusive DSP (bottom left) is available only during the Butterfly Bouquet promotion and while supplies last. Choose from beautiful butterfly patterns in shades of aqua, pink, and yellow, or water colored patterns that coordinate beautifully. You'll be delighted to see that at least one sheet of this exquisite paper matches exactly with the Brilliant Wings Dies. Have a set of six die-cut butterflies in a single pass!
Natural Touch Specialty Paper
Item number 156825 - $5 USD
This exclusive specialty paper is non-porous and versatile enough for any project and any time of year. You can stamp on it, emboss it, and use it with dies. It can serve as a background or as accents.
This item contains two 12" x 12" sheets.
A Pleasant Personal Experience with Stampin' Up! Corporate
In mid-February, I had a question about the marketing support materials for the March Paper Pumpkin kit. I was a little unsure of what actually came in the kit and decided to call Demonstrator Support. This is a dedicated phone line for those of us who sign on as independent (hobby or business) demonstrators for the company and is housed in Utah at corporate headquarters. This is a much different experience from the "normal" customer service line!
When my call went through, I received a greeting that said most demonstrator support personnel were working from home because of the pandemic. It asked for callers to please understand if we heard children, pets, or street noise while on the call! I was impressed, and while I actually had no such "distractions," I would have understood if I had.
Meanwhile, I was told my wait time was about 18 minutes. (This line has been VERY busy this spring, so that was actually not too bad!) I could schedule a call-back or just wait. Now, I have a headset for my phone, so I could carry on with other activities while waiting, and I decided to sit it out. What happened next was astounding! Stampin' Up! has its own customized wait-time music! I heard a pleasant song about Stampin' Up! and being a demonstrator. It's quite a catchy, upbeat tune, and I found myself actually listening to the words. I instantly felt valued as a part of the company.
When my call was put through, I talked with a lovely person in Utah who patiently listened to my questions, sought answers, and went to great lengths to see that I had what I needed. She even said the answers to my questions would help her on future calls!
This type of exceptional service is heartening when it seems that there is a decline in service in multiple arenas these days. That's why I love being a part of Stampin' Up! They are there for me, just as I am here for you.
If you are interested in becoming a part of my team, I would love to talk with you about this incredible company. There is no obligation to sell a product - EVER! A majority of demonstrators join Stampin' Up! just for the instant (20%+) discounts and early access to new products. Stampin' Up! welcomes hobby demonstrators. There's a quarterly minimum, but active crafters tend to buy craft supplies anyway. And, of course, if you want to earn some extra cash (even to feed your crafting habit), you can become a business demonstrator, as well. Either way, signing on means that you get early access to new products, weekly updates from corporate, support from fellow demonstrators, and more. If you'd like to explore the possibilities, feel free to email me at email@example.com to set up a good time to talk by phone. I'd love to hear from you!