Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Love Ya Valentine Card with FSJ {CAS(E) This Sketch Challenge}

Good day, lovely friends! I decided to hop into the CAS(E) This Sketch challenge, and make a card for sketch #304. I'm not gonna lie, my crafty mojo has been tanking for a while. Art and crafting is a lot more of a mental game than one might initially think, and I am STRUGGLING.  The usual jumpstarts just aren't working for me, and almost every project is a fight. It will pass, and things will flow again - they always do, but in the meantime I'll just take the wins as they come. (Tell me I'm not alone in this weird crafty mental-game battle?) 

So here's the sketch for this week's challenge. Funky and fun, yes? I went with a pretty literal interpretation of this sketch, using striped paper from the Good Vibes Prints from Fun Stampers Journey.  (I love love love that paper pack!!!) I did add a scalloped circle into the sketch, and I love the way it turned out with the flowers and sentiment. The flowers were fussy-cut from printed paper from the 6x6 Follow Your Heart Prints . Cute, right!? 

I kept everything pretty clean and simple because that seems to be what works best, when I'm in a craft funk. I added a few enamel dots, a heart, and a splatter of Sparkle Silk to finish it off. (Oh, and did you notice the tiny bit of Journey Glaze on the flower centers?) 

 If you'd like to join in with a clean and simple handmade card for the  CAS(E) This Sketch challenge blog, stop on over there. There's a new sketch every week! I think I'll have to play along more often! Thanks so much for stopping by my friends - may your day be crafty and bright! xoxo

If this is your first time here in a while, I'd love to connect with you again! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest!

PS...my sweet friend and partner in crime, Mariana Grigsby, also created a card with this sketch! Stop by and visit her and see her take on this fun sketch! 

Looking for more Valentines inspiration? 


Monday, January 7, 2019

How to Add Colorful Watercolor to Valentine Cards

Hello sweet friends! 
I've been playing with the Follow Your Heart collection from Fun Stampers Journey - this is our Valentine's release and it is just DARLING. For today's cards I used the Valentine Pals and Hey Girl stamp sets. I also made a fun (and simple) watercolor background that I'll explain just how to create for yourself!

I made both cards using the same watercolor technique, so let me explain that first. You can use any liquid dye inks you'd like, but I used FSJ Liquid Colors in Watermelon Fusion, Bubble Gum and Rich Coral. 

Watercolor Background HOW-TO:


  • Start by adding a few drops of liquid dye ink onto a clear plastic sheet or nonporous surface. (You could also use the Gel Press.) 
  • Mist the ink with water - lots of water, until the colors begin to blend together. Flip a piece of watercolor paper (like FSJ Color Splash Sheets)  right down onto the puddle of colors. 
  • Play with this idea and see what happens when you adjust the amount of water and color.
The piece I used for the Purr-fect card had more water, so the colors are smoother and more blended. The sheet I used for the Galentine card had less water, so the color is more splotchy (but in a good way!)

Once my Color Splash Sheets were dry (I also left them under a book for a while to flatten out,) I die cut a large heart from one sheet to make the Galentine's Day card.
The second sheet, I left just as is - I just added a little bit of Black Licorice Silk and it was the perfect background for my kitty cat Valentine. 

The next order of business....thank you SO much to those of you that participated in last week's Seasons Givings blog hop! It was SO much fun to have lots of new friends stop by. I hope you'll keep on hanging out here as we create more crafty goodness in 2019! I'd also like to give a big shoutout to my giveaway winner: connie #2909

I emailed you Connie! Email or message me if you didn't receive it!

It was really fun to introduce so many of you to FSJ, who weren't familiar with it! I loved reading the comments and I hope that you'll take some time to check out what Fun Stampers Journey has to offer!

Find Spellbinders + FSJ on social media! 
Spellbinders on Facebook, InstagramPinterest and YouTube

And while you're at it, I'd love it if you follow me too! 
Laura Williams on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest 

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Seasons Givings Blog Hop with an FSJ Stamp of the Month Giveaway!

Happy New Year, my friends!! Welcome to the Seasons Givings blog hop. This annual blog hop is an extra special way for crafty bloggers to say THANK YOU to our readers and friends. Every single stop along the way will have a GIVEAWAY! How fun is that!?
I'm super excited because I also get to share the brand new FSJ Stamp of the Month Club. The January 2019 stamp set is called Key to My Heart and it is gorgeous! I have two cards to share with you today, featuring this beautiful new red rubber stamp set, and if you hang with me...you might even WIN this brand new stamp set!
For the first card I created, I sponged Cool Pool ink across the background panel, and then used the Heart Strip Die to just emboss the pattern into my cardstock. I stamped and die cut the key and wings, and rubbed on a little Gold PanPastel to add shading to the wings.
On the next card, I stamped and embossed the Vintage Notes Stamp in gold. Then I dabbed Gold ink across the Polka Dot Wall stencil over the top. This created a beautiful layered background. I didn't want it to distract from my main images though, so I overlayed a torn sheet of vellum on top.
I hope you like these two cards featuring Key to My Heart. And I hope you'll check out all the details about Fun Stampers Journey's monthly stamp of the month club. But I know, what you REALLY want is the GIVEAWAY!
One lucky winner will receive the Key to My Heart stamp set, as well as both of the handmade cards I shared today. (One for you, and one for a friend perhaps?!)
Here's HOW:
Comment on this post - I'd love to know if you're familiar with FSJ, or if you've ever been part of crafty monthly club. (Or tell me whatever you want to - but be sure to include your email address or some way for me to track you down if you win!) One random comment will be chosen on Monday January 7th. This giveaway is only opened to mailing addresses in the US. (I'm sorry, international friends!)
UPDATE: GIVEAWAY CLOSED, thanks for participating!!!!

Looking for more of ME!? Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest!
Alright my friends - you have a LOT of blog hopping to do, so get to it! Here's the whole list, so you can find your way! Thanks so much for stopping by!!!

Friday, December 21, 2018

Make a Festive Coffee Cup Wrap {Simple gift idea!}

Want to add a simple handmade touch to store-bought gifts?

Sometimes an everyday store-bought gift just needs a little personal touch to make it extra festive and fun! This gift idea is perfect for teachers, coaches, co-workers, neighbors. Anyone you want to shower with a little bit of semi-DIY love! Use printed paper, die cut shapes and twine to embellish everyday coffee tumblers. (And then add an extra surprise inside!!) 

Last year I picked up these coffee tumblers at Target in the after-Christmas clearance. I cannot pass up the amazing post-holiday sales for items I can use as gifts throughout the year! But I wanted to jazz this gift up with a handmade touch. 
I started off with a two-inch strip of patterned paper, wrapped it around the coffee cup and adhered it with two-sided tape. Then I did some quick die cutting with a poinsettia steel rule die from Fun Stampers Journey. (This die is retired, but any flower die would be perfect on this project - you could even change the colors and dies seasonally, depending on the occasion!)  A quick twine bow finished off the project. Seriously, THAT'S IT! You still have time to whip this project up as a last minute gift! 
I packed the coffee cups full of tinsel, candy, and a gift card. Clearly, a coffee gift card would have made sense, but for photography sake, Walmart was what I had handy! You get the idea. ;) My little guy took these in for teacher gifts today, before the winter break. I hope they like them!



It's a short and sweet blog post today because you know...tis the season! I hope your holiday week is extra special and filled with laughter and warm fuzzies. Breathe deep and find all kinds of joy in your day, no matter what! Thanks so much for taking a minute to stop by today! I'm grateful for you, my friends!!! xoxo

Supplies on today's project:
The poinsettia die I used is retired, but here are some other awesome flower dies you could use! 
Summer Bouquet Steel Rule Die (I use this die ALL the time for assorted projects!) 
Clover Bloom Die Set
Blooming Details Die Set (especially love the leaves in this set!) 
You could also cluster some premade flower embellishments, like these Poinsettia Burst Flowers.
Or, you could stamp some poinsettias - the Poinsettia Burst stamp set is my favorite!

Friday, December 14, 2018

How to Make Fluttering Hearts Mixed Media Cards

Hello friends! I've been playing with two of my favorite crafting tools - the Journey Gel Press and the FSJ Scoring Board, and I'm excited to show you the mini card set and coordinating box I made! This set has four cards, plus a coordinating box that the cards fit into, and both the cards and the box were decorated with Gel Press prints. 

This project began with two prints using not only the Gel Press, but also the Fluttering Hearts Gel Impressions Plate. The Impressions Plate is just like the Gel Press, but it has a raised heart pattern. You can use it on it's own, or along with the Gel Press. Today I'll show you how! 

The picture below shows the first print that I made. Here's how to create it:

  1. Drop dots of Re-Inker onto the Gel Press to make four lines, one of each color: Limeade Splash, Turbo Teal, Pool Play, Lavender Fusion. Brayer colors to blend and spread.
  2. Splatter Gel Press with Sparkle Silk. (of course!)
  3. Lay Fluttering Hearts Plate facedown onto Gel Press. Gently smooth hand over plate to be sure raised hearts make contact with the press. Carefully lift Fluttering Hearts plate and lay onto Whip Cream cardstock, like a giant stamp. (Or lay cardstock on top of plate and pull a print. Whichever method seems easier to you!)

And that my friends, is your first print. A portion of this print will be adhered to the cover of your box.
Next, we still have that beautiful Gel Press sitting there covered in ink. 
  1. Pull a print from that, and it'll show something similar, but almost opposite of your first print. It'll have that gorgeous blended color background, with just a hint of the heart pattern. 
  2. Trim this print into four 3x3 pieces, and attach them to 4 mini 3.25x3.25" card bases. 
Cute, yes? And remember, you can use ANY four colors you want. Think about how the colors will blend into each other though - choose colors that will blend happily together. (That's why I didn't put green next to purple...it would have turned into mud!)

The box was EASY peasy to make because the FSJ Scoring Board has all the instructions right there on it. Just follow the instructions for the 3.75x3.75 envelope-box and then adhere a piece of that first print you made, right onto the front. So fun!

And of course you know there's a reason I'm posting THIS project today. TODAY only, this fabulous FSJ Gel Press Bundle is on sale. It includes everything I used to make today's prints, plus a few additional colors of Re-Inkers! Check it out over on the FSJ website! 

Looking for more inspiration with the Gel Press or the Scoring Board? Look no further! I got ya!





Supplies Used on Today's Project:


Wednesday, December 12, 2018

How to Make a Festive Christmas Banner with Die Cut Letters

Okay you guys. Today's crafty goodness. 
It's a darn cute one. 
(If I do say so myself...) 
And it's a darn simple one. 
So would you mind, for a moment if we pause to talk about the REAL showstopper here? 
It's not the Ho Ho Ho garland. 
(Although it IS cute. And simple. And we'll get to that.) 
And it's not the Willow Tree nativity which is the first holiday decoration to go up, and the last to be put away each year.
No. 
It's THIS PIANO.
Do I play the piano? 
No, no I do not. 
But do I LOVE this piano? 
Well, yes. Yes I DO.
This piano has been in my parents' house for as long as I can remember. Prior to that, it lived in the restaurant my dad owned when I was a little girl. And before that, it belonged to the restaurant's previous owner - who used this piano during his time as a Vaudeville performer. WHAT? So much history in this sweet old piano. I love every single scrape and blemish, and there's no way I'm repainting it. It hasn't been tuned in about a million years, (but we've already covered the fact that I don't play the piano, so I wouldn't know if it was in tune or not.) 

Okay. Thank you for indulging me as I ramble about my piano. I wasn't expecting it to come live at my house when we went home for Thanksgiving. But somehow my parents tricked us into taking it....parents are sneaky like that. But I'm thrilled to have it here now. (And it's RED! HELLO.) 
Plus, bonus - my nativity looks amazing on top - AND I had a darling place to display today's super fun and simple craft! (See, I told you we'd get back around to that.) 

To make this banner, I used FSJ's Alpha Bold Steel Rule Die. This die set is AMAZING to have in my stash. We've used it for banners, and Science Fair projects, to make personalized gift tags - all kinds of things. The set comes with three platforms to accommodate the whole alphabet. (These are the thick dies, like what teachers use at school for bulletin boards!) 

Here are the simple steps to make a HO HO HO garland: 

  • First, trim red and green cardstock into pieces about 3x3.5 in. Lay them just onto the letters you want to diecut, (in this case, H and O) and run through the die cutting machineTIP: You can die cut quite a few layers of cardstock all at once, which makes this really fast! These steel rule dies are POWERFUL! 
  • Adhere each H and O pair together using one or two small foam adhesive squares. 
  • Punch a hole in the top corner of each H and O and then string together onto twine. TIP: You could easily add a die cut star or heart in between each, but I forced myself to keep this REALLY simple! 
  • Find a fun place to display your darling creation! Easy peasy! 

Alright friends. If you've made it through this blog post, kudos to YOU. Your prize, should you choose to accept it is this...
Today and today ONLY all of FSJ's steel rule dies are 50% off. 5-0. Fifty. FIFTY. That is an AWESOME deal. This alphabet die set is an investment, but it's 50% less of an investment today! And you might just find you use it for all KINDS of things! (I hope a cutie patootie Ho Ho Ho banner is project number 1!) 

Every day this week FSJ and Spellbinders each have an awesome Daily Deal that you won't want to miss. So tell me...what will YOU create with this Alpha Bold Steel Rule Die? And what other steel rule dies do you have your heart set on? You can find all the steel rule dies in the FSJ shop! 

Happy shopping my friends! (I am truly sorry to enable you...but I would be remiss to not have shared this great deal with you!!!!) ;) xoxo

Monday, December 10, 2018

How to Make a Merry Pink Reindeer Card for Christmas

You guys know I LOVE pink and aqua for Christmas crafts! And this reindeer is SO cute stamped on pink cardstock - I'm pretty sure it's the only way I've made him so far. I just can't stop stamping pink reindeer! 
To begin this card, I added strips of black and white printed papers to a Watermelon Fusion panel of cardstock. These papers aren't even from a Christmas paper pack - don't be afraid to dig through your papers and see what might work on a seasonal project! Then I attached it to a black card base. (TIP! Add a panel of white cardstock on the inside of the card to write your message!)
I embossed our reindeer friend in black - i love the shine and dimension that the embossing creates, with the cool texture of the stamp. 

I thought I'd share this card today because each day this week Spellbinders + FSJ is offering a DAILY DEAL, and one of today's deals is PAPER! 12x12 FSJ paper packs are 50% off today! So grab some gorgeous printed paper at an amazing deal today! Below you'll see all the deals - there's an FSJ and a Spellbinders deal for each day this week. 


I'll be back on Wednesday to share the SWEETEST and EASIEST (seriously SO easy) Christmas home decor project using FSJ's steel rule alphabet dies. I can't wait to share it with you! In the meantime, check in with Spellbinders + FSJ's social media channels so you don't miss a thing during the Daily Deals! Which deal are you MOST excited about!? Leave me a comment and let me know! 

Don't miss a thing:
Find Spellbinders + FSJ on social media! 
Spellbinders on Facebook, InstagramPinterest and YouTube

Supplies Used on Today's Card:



Monday, December 3, 2018

All You Need is Love (and Handmade Goodness!)

All you need is love... and maybe an amazing sheet of patterned paper. When I saw this piece of paper from the brand new Follow You Heart collection from FSJ, it pretty much had me at HELLO. Hearts and polka dots? YES, please. And that gorgeous Haystack color that I'm more in love with every day that goes by. And I love me a Valentine with a non-traditional color palette. Really, this doesn't even HAVE to be a Valentine. It would be a great anniversary card too!

This card is so simple, but the patterned paper (and that white embossing) just make it shine. 

The Follow Your Heart collection is available NOW! To celebrate, FSJ hosted a fantastic and fun online launch party full of demos, games, tips, and techniques. It was so much fun! Have no fear, if you missed it you can still enjoy it all on YouTube!  Don't miss it!!!


Want to check out this fabulous Valentine-themed release of rubber stamps, dies, and SO MUCH MORE!? Head right on over to the Follow Your Heart collection on the Spellbinders + FSJ website! 

Thanks so much for stopping by today! Want to stay in touch?! Find me across social media by clicking those buttons right up there on my sidebar! xoxo 

Supplies on today's card:




Friday, November 30, 2018

Christmas Is the Time for Coffee and Cards!

 Coffee and Christmas are pretty perfect together, don't you think? I'm excited to check out the Fall/Winter Coffee Loving Cardmakers Blog Hop this week because it's sure to be filled with fabulous crafty inspiration that combines coffee and winter!
For today's card, I combined two sweet stamp sets. I started with the Cup of Tea stamp set from Fun Stampers Journey. This red rubber stamp set is part of a card making kit filled with supplies to make four darling cards, bright and cheery and full of fun. But for today's card I wanted to take those stamps and give them a cozy, warm Christmas spin. 
After embossing and die cutting the coffee pot, I paired it with a sentiment from the Deck the Halls stamp set. Perfect, right?! I added some die cut leaves, some "berry" buttons and a twine bow and this card came together just like I wanted - warm, cozy, and perfect for Christmas! 
After I finished the card, I wasn't quite ready to be done playing, so I pulled out one of FSJ's DIY Hoops - it's a darling little faux embroidery hoop, all ready for customizing with paper and embellishments. I added the same gorgeous buffalo check printed paper for the base, and then I added another stamped coffee pot and cup. The sentiment is from the All Roads stamp set (it's one of my favorite Christmas stamp sets!!)
This little embroidery hoop will be a darling Christmas ornament with a little loop of thread attached behind it - and the card is all ready to go with it! What a sweet and simple gift for a coffee-loving teacher, friend, or coworker, right?! 
Be sure to stop by the Coffee Loving Cardmakers blog hop this week and check out all the caffeinated crafty goodness. You can even join in with your own winter/coffee card - and you might just win a PRIZE! FSJ is offering up the Cup of Tea stamp set and card making kit for a lucky participant, plus there are a BUNCH of other amazing prizes up for grabs too! Thanks so very much for coming by today! I'd love to connect with you again! Find me on social media, using the links above in the sidebar. 

Looking for more inspiration? Check out some more coffee-inspired crafting here on my blog! 


Supplies for today's projects: