clean and simple sunday no. 137 ~ jingle all the way

I’m very happy to be back today for another clean and simple Sunday, sharing a card I made using the last Monthly Collection from A Muse Studio, the November Collection
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This card was made using a sentiment and two of the snowflakes out of the Jingle All the Way stamp set. I used seattle and winter sky ink for the snowflakes and cherry ink for the sentiment.

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I used a bit of the cherry baker’s twine and a few clear, white and star sequins to embellish. I think every snowflake card needs a little sparkle!

Every year around this time I start talking about handmade Christmas cards and what joyful tradition this has become over the years in my own holiday prep. I think it’s because I’m hand-making each card individually and it feels like with each card I send out, I’m sending a little handmade gift. Handmade gifts are my favorite–both to give and receive. I will be making some of my gifts this Christmas and can’t wait to share them with you here.

This is a very simple card design and uses minimal supplies so it fits perfectly in the “easy to mass produce” category. I hope you will consider making some of your Christmas cards this year!

You can order all of the supplies to make this card in my little shop right HERE, through November 26th. After November 27th, sadly, A Muse Studio will be closed for business. If you have questions about what you’d need to make any number of these cards, please leave me a comment, I’m happy to help!

A Muse Studio July 2016 Collection + Great News!!

The latest collection from A Muse Studio is as lovely as a summer day! You can check out the most recent flyer right HERE and if you wish, place an order through my secure webstore, right HERE.

I thought you might enjoy a few stamped samples using these wonderful new sets, but first a few updates!!

A Muse Studio National Conference was held this past weekend in Pigeon Forge, TN, home of the great smokey mountains! I was so excited to attend and brought home some fun news to share with you! Here are the highlights:

Bigger Monthly Collections coming | A Muse Studio realizes that YOU LOVE NEW. Who doesn’t, right?! It’s always fun to see what’s new and rolling all of that NEW product out in one big annual catalog is great, but within a few weeks, it’s all old news and then its another year until the same excitement builds again. Instead of rolling out a new annual catty with lots of new stamp sets at once, A|S is going to continue the Monthly Collections making them bigger and better than ever, every month! There will always be something fresh, new and fun to look forward to in the A Muse Studio Monthly Collections. The August Collection will feature some wonderful new Halloween stamps, dies, sequins, card stock and some new colored Wink of Stella pens in purple and green…yippee!

New Dye-based inks |  We know you love our pigment inks for their smooth, chalky texture and great coverage, but we also know how much you love techniques that incorporate dye-based inks. A|S is rolling out brand new dye-based ink in all of the colors of our current palette and adding two new colors every month. Each month within the monthly collection, two of our current colors will roll out as dye-based ink pads and two new colors will also be revealed. You can build your collection slowly and add these great new ink pads to your stash! First up— lily pad, a beautiful emerald green to add to the color palette and creamcicle, a gorgeous peach!

We’ve Gone Digital! | We’ve received consistent positive feedback on the digital brochures for the Monthly Collections! With so much inspiration on the internet between Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube, product catalogs are not the main source of inspiration anymore. Catalogs, although they are nice to hold, cost a ton of money to create, print and then ship, and they are practically obsolete before the ink is dry on the paper! Our annual catalog is set to be revealed on Monday, July 18th and it will be completely digital, absolutely free and ready for you to download onto your computer, kindle, iPad, cell phone or any other digital device for reference! You can go to my website on Monday, July 18th to download your free copy!

Incidentally, there will now be TWO annual catalogs—one that incorporates all of the stamps and dies from the past year, including many prior Monthly Collection sets that made the cut, as well as a catalog incorporating all of the essentials – card stock, inks, ribbons, sequins, tools, etc. to make your crafting fun! These digital catalogs have a nice index to help you find what you’re looking for in a flash!

No Quarterly Sales Quotas! |  Yes, you read that correctly, A Muse Studio is doing away with the whole quarterly sales quota requirement. Starting August 1, 2016, you can purchase the kit and sign on with A Muse Studio as a Creative Consultant, enjoy all of the perks of that designation (20% discount on product, free training and support, access to the back office where you can connect with fun, crafty ladies who share your interest, the idea gallery for consultants, the ability to make A Muse Studio as much or as little as you want it to be in your life, early looks at all of the Monthly Collections (a month in advance of customers), plus the option of attending the annual A|S National Conference and Creative Retreat!) with none of the pressure to sell! If you decide to buy some products yourself and sell to a few friends and your total annual sales reaches $900 or more in sales volume before your first anniversary with A|S, your renewal fee is waived, otherwise just pay $49 to renew and continue to enjoy the benefits of being a consultant! Its that simple! Who would like to join me on this fun, crafty adventure?!?!

I am actively building a team and would love to have you along!  Please contact me in the comments for more information on becoming a consultant with A Muse Studio!!  It could truly be one of the best decisions you make for yourself.

And now that I have updated you on all the great news from A Muse, I want to share a few cards I made using the Monthly Collection stamp sets for July, 2016…

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Above,  I paired the new RHINO Alphabet with the Birthday Balloons stamp set for this graphic, simple celebration card.

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In this card above, I combined the Hey Cupcake stamp set with a sentiment and flower from the new Sweet Summertime set.

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These two samples above and below pair sentiments from current sets (above: Happy Thoughts and below: Bee Happy)
with the new Bouquet of Love set… one of my favorites from this collection!!
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This card above is also from the new Bouquet of Love set, using the single flowers + a sentiment from Essential Sentiments Too…

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This final card duo I made using the new Seashells Remind Us set. The card on the right pairs one of the sentiments with a stamp set of feathers that has actually discontinued.

Such a fun collection of stamp sets with so much versatility. I hope these cards have inspired your creativity today!

I love your comments and would love to hear any feedback you’d like to share on the news from A Muse! Enjoy the new collection and please contact me if you have any questions on joining the fun with A Muse Studio. If you know you already want to join me, you can sign up online by going HERE and clicking on START A BUSINESS. Hooray!!!

 

 

A Muse Studio-June Collection 2016…

I’m back!!!!  I know it’s been a while, but I promise I haven’t forgotten my little blog or any of you faithful readers and I certainly haven’t stopped stamping! I’ve been stamping more than ever! 🙂 Today I actually have some A Muse Studio news and I can’t wait to share…

JUNE MONTHLY COLLECTION

The last few months have brought wonderful monthly collections and this month is NO EXCEPTION! I’m really tickled by the June Monthly Collection and have some fun samples to share… you may have already seen some of them, maybe on (CEO) Linda’s Blog?!

 

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These are some 3×4 inserts for pocket-style scrapbooking projects but you could stick them on the front of a base card and send as a lovely greeting, too!

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Flamingo and pineapple images are everywhere this Spring!! They are on pillows, bathing suits, t-shirts, and tote bags and A Muse Studio is right on trend, bringing you these same images in sweet, versatile stamp sets…

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So there are a few card samples using stamp sets from our June Monthly Collection. For more inspiration, you can view and download the flyer right HERE. You can order items from the June Monthly Collection or the Annual Catalog & Idea Book right HERE.

Speaking of the Annual Catalog & Idea Book, it’s almost time for the new catalog reveal, and to make room for new stamp sets some of our old favorites will be retiring…

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The list this year is quite small, but if there’s anything you can’t live without, get it while it’s still available because these products are only available while supplies last! The new catalog will be coming soon. National Conference and Creative Escape for A Muse|Studio Consultants will be held July 8-10, 2016 in Pigeon Forge, TN and I’m thinking the new catalog will be available soon after! I’ll keep you posted!!

The National Conference & Creative Escape is the highlight of the year as an A Muse Studio consultant. I love seeing old friends, working with the new products, getting a first peek at the new annual catalog and hearing all about what’s new with A Muse Studio. This is a fun little business and I’d love to have you join my team! The last share I have for today is the latest JOIN promotion…

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New Consultants can join A Muse Studio by purchasing a Deluxe Kit for only $69. This Deluxe kit includes three Consultant-only exclusive sampler stamp sets, essential business supplies and TEN A Muse Studio Pigment ink pads. The retail value of this kit is over $159! This offer is valid through July 17th, 2016.

FREE ink pads included with the kit are:
1. Orange
2. Lime
3. Ocean
4. Navy
5. Papaya
6. Bubblegum
7. Blueberry
8. Pebble
9. Sage
10.Currant

This Deluxe Starter Kit will include 8 catalogs, 15 customer order forms, 3 hostess order forms and brochures and 50 Workshop invitations.

Please note: Gorgeous marketing materials are heavy, an additional $8 shipping charge will be added to the cost of the kit.

I hope you’ll consider having a little business (or a big one!) of your own… it’s tons of fun and you can make it fit your life—you set your schedule, you decide how much extra money you want to earn and have some fun along the way!  Please email me at 27checkerberry(at)gmail.com if you have questions. If you’re ready to get started click here and then click START A BUSINESS to purchase your kit and join my team!!

More watercolor fun with A Muse Studio and Peerless Watercolors

I’ve been continuing my exploration of watercolor and stamping, using my Peerless watercolor palette…

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I created these birthday cards by using a die cut balloon as a stencil. I used one of the A Muse Studio balloon dies and cut a balloon shape out of a scrap of card stock. I then took a very light pencil and traced some balloons onto watercolor paper.

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I used my Peerless watercolors to color in the balloons, being careful to let each color of balloon dry before moving onto the next (to avoid any unwanted blending of colors.) To speed up the drying, I used my Milwaukee heat tool.

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I used a pencil and a t-square ruler to draw in the balloon strings and Copic markers and twinkle stickers to add some “confetti” to this version of the card. For the blue/green version of the card I used sequins to add “confetti”.

I really enjoyed working on these two cards and I’m sure I’ll use this technique for creating birthday cards in the future. If you have any questions I’d be happy to answer, just leave them in the comments!  Thanks for having a look today.

New February Collection from A Muse Studio!

I love sharing the monthly collection flyers from A Muse Studio, and although we are now down to the last few hours we can order from the January Collection, the February Collection begins tomorrow, February 1st!

You can find the February Collection flyer from A Muse Studio right HERE.

This is a card I made using the Gnome Other stamp set from this new collection

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That little gnome is so cute and perfect for Spring! I’ll be sharing lots of ideas for using stamps from the February Collection in the coming weeks.

clean and simple sunday no. 135 + treat idea

Last day of January and your last chance to pick up some cute Valentine stamp sets from the January Collection!

This last Valentine I have to share is sweet and simple and sends a hug and a kiss to the recipient…

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Using the From the Heart stamp set (again) to create this simple card design. I started with a cherry card base, added a sugar fish tail flag and popped that panel up with some foam adhesive. I stamped the XOXO in cherry ink and then the little sentiment below in Seattle ink. I added a few twinkle stickers and sequins to finish it off.

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These cards are very easy to mass produce and I think it would be fun to make some and send to friends to brighten their Valentine’s day!

I also thought it would be fun to share with you a little card set I made using the One in a Melon set from the January Collection. I used this set to create these cards, plus a little treat idea below…

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These cards are size A1 or 4Bar and measure about 3.5×5″ with a left-side fold. I colored in the fruit images with some new Zig clean color real brush markers that I got for Christmas and stamped the outlines and sentiments with Ranger Archival Black ink so the outlines wouldn’t smear.

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These were VERY quick and simple to make. I used one of the stitched circle dies offered by A Muse Studio to cut the round panels. I die cut the fruit shapes and popped them off the panel with foam squares. Can’t wait to send these out!

I was also thinking these would be fun to use to create Valentine treats for little ones to send to school, or even co-workers… who wouldn’t love to come in to work and find this on their desk! 🙂

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Very easy to put together using the Tag Bundle Die Set, a stitched circle die, some Pebble Petite Hex card stock and a little Valentine lollipop. These were just generic store brand lollipops that I picked up at Stop & Shop. If you have any specific questions about how I made these, please ask me in the comments. I’m happy to share.

The stamps sets featured in today’s post are only available through midnight tonight! You can check out the A Muse Studio January Collection flyer HERE and place an order by going HERE.

That’s it for today’s clean & simple post, however I WILL be back later today with details and a flyer for the new FEBRUARY COLLECTION from A Muse Studio, and of course, another cute card!

 

Watercolor Valentines

I promised some watercolor Valentine cards and wanted to share what I’ve been working on over the last week or so…

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These Valentines feature products from A Muse Studio, including the From the Heart stamp set and Scallop Heart dies out of the January Collection. These items are only available through January 31, 2016, but you can still get them HERE while there’s time.

So lets have a look at each card and I’ll describe how I created the watercolor background for each, using my Peerless Watercolors, which I talked about in more depth earlier this week in THIS post.

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For this Valentine, I started with a panel of watercolor paper & a mask. I cut a panel of regular copier paper the same size as my panel and cut the smaller heart from the Scallop Heart die set out of the center of the copier paper panel and taped it down over the watercolor panel. I then applied a layer of rubber cement over the heart shape in order to mask off the heart-shaped area. I removed the copier paper and once the heart-shaped rubber cemented area was dry I proceeded with the watercolor wash.

I took a square-ended brush and wet the area that I wanted to watercolor, then dipped my brush into some paint colors I’d arranged on my paint palette. I brushed these colors over the rubber cemented heart and let them blend naturally, starting with pink and using warmer tones as I moved toward the bottom. I like the free-hand, organic edge to the background created by wetting the area without a taped edge.

Once the background was dry, I rubbed off the rubber cement with my finger and used an archival black ink stamp pad to stamp the sentiment which is from the From the Heart stamp set. For the word “you” I just took the “You Make My Heart Happy” sentiment and only inked up the “you” before stamping it onto my project. I used some twinkle stickers and sequins to add a little bling.

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For this Valentine, I cut a small panel of watercolor paper and using Versamark ink + a background stamp image from the A Muse Studio Mod Backgrounds 2 stamp set I stamped the background and heat embossed it in clear embossing powder. I then taped the panel to a clip board (so I can move it around, instead of taping it to the desktop where I can’t move it) and washed over it with a paintbrush and some clean water. I then added some various blue watercolors to the wet area and the heat embossed design actually resists the color and shines through the background.

Once the panel was dry I cut some hearts using the Scallop Hearts dies, cut a sentiment strip and arranged these pieces on the panel. The button and twine + a few tiny sequins finish off the card.

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This last background was really fun to make!  I taped a panel of watercolor paper that was larger than an A2 card front (so that I could cut it down later for my card panel) to my clip board and wet the entire piece with my brush. I then dabbed on blue and pink paints, allowing the color to blend and puddle on the paper. Once I decided the panel had enough wet color, I placed a stencil I had from Hero Arts, on top of the wet watercolor and taped down the edges of the stencil to the clip board to hold it down. I allowed this to dry and when I came back to it a little later I pulled off the stencil and this background was the result. I love how it sort of fades to nothing toward the bottom.

To finish the card, I used that scallop heart die again to cut a white heart and the same stamp set, From the Heart, for the sentiment, stamping it in Ranger Archival black ink. I made a little nest of gold string I had in my craft stash and stuck that down on my project with a dab of adhesive and then using foam tape, attached that white heart over top. I finished it off with a few tiny sequins and twinkle stickers.

All of the cards in this series were created with neutral colored card bases to help the watercolor panels pop! I’m having fun exploring this watercolor medium and particularly love the Peerless watercolors. I have a few birthday cards coming up that showcase more watercolor, and another technique, which I will feature in a future post!

If you have any questions about how these cards were made or have comments on the cards please let me know in the comments! Would you like to see more? What about a card video? I’m thinking about creating videos of my card-making process and if this is something you’d like to see please let me know.

Until next time…