cardmaking · papercrafting

Amazing Paper Grace December 2021 Kit

Hello friends! Today I have some brightly colored inspiration for Spellbinders Amazing Paper Grace December 2021 Die Cutting Kit. The detail on these dies is just beautiful and I found the dies are so versatile! The three cards I made are all A2 sized, but the dies could easily make bigger cards too.

As many of you know, I love to create my own colored papers to use in my projects. On my first card, I created a panel by adding shimmer powders (I used Tonic Brand) to watercolor paper. The result was bold colors with a bit of subtle shimmer.

Shimmer Powder Panel

My Process:

  • I made three panels, one for each curlicue die cut plus smaller panels for the floral elements. One panel was shimmer powder on watercolor paper and the rest of the panels were watercolor on watercolor paper. For the watercolor, I applied the color, dried and then applied a second coat for a more saturated look. Prior to applying color, I did tape the watercolor paper to a hardboard to minimize warping.
  • For two cards, I die cut the curlique backdrop from the colored panels. For the third, I die cut it from white card stock and placed it over the aqua water-colored background. I like the card both ways! The backdrop was then adhered to the card with foam tape for lots of beautiful dimension.
  • Next, I die cut loads of flowers, leaves and greenery. I added a few extra die cuts from the Petite Floral Potpourri die set.
  • The sentiment is Sugar Coated Sentiments, which I heat embossed on black cardstock.
  • I used a wax tip embellishment wand and Bearly Glue to adhere white gems to the flower centers. I have tried a lot of liquid glues and found for small die-cuts that Bearly Glue is the best. The flowers were attached to the card with foam tape.
Closeup of the lovely detail on the die cuts.
This card has the colored panel behind the die cut.
This card was die cut from watercolored panels.
Watercolor Panels

I am so happy you stopped by to see my projects.


cardmaking · papercrafting

Altenew  Washi Tape Explorer Blog Hop + Giveaway 

Hello and welcome to Altenew’s Washi Tape Explorer Blog Hop! Washi tape is a beautiful way to add interest to your papercrafting projects and Altenew has 40% off on ALL Washi Tapes from 11/10/2021 until 11/16/2021 at 11:59 PM EST. Take a look at Altenew’s Collection of Washi Tapes.

Using Washi Tape for a Background

 Washi tape can make a very dramatic background. For this card, I ink blended my circle die-cut with Warm Sunshine using my  Large Ink Blending Tool.  I  added two additional layers of ink around the outer edge to darken the perimeter.  The background is the  Many Dots Washi Tape adhered at an angle.  

Using Washi Tape as an Accent

For my second card, I added my favorite Painted Grid Washi Tape along two sides of the card to partically frame my flowers. The flowers are Altenew’s Paint-A-Flower Clematis stamp, which is GORGEOUS and so fun to create with. I finished the card off with a couple of pearl grey New Day Enamel Dots.

Giveaway Prizes

$200 in total prizes! To celebrate this occasion, Altenew is giving away a $100  gift certificate to 1 lucky winner and a $20 gift certificate to 5 winners! Please leave a comment on the Altenew Card Blog and/or each designer’s blog post on the blog hop list below by 11/17/2021 for a chance to win. Altenew will draw 6 random winners from the comments left on each stop of this blog hop and announce the winners on the Altenew Winners Page on 11/19/2021.


Altenew Card Blog

Norine Borys

Jaycee Gaspar

Erum Tasneem


Bridget Casey

Rebecca Sogn 

Colleen Balija

Katrina Howe

Irina Fonina

Natasha Davies

Amy Hill

Nancy Souza

Rachael Shedeed

Annemarie Caister

Neha Aggarwal

Karen Brown You Are Here!

Nenette S. Madero 

Nandini Karmarkar

Sande Woodson 

I am so glad you stopped by….happy crafting!


cardmaking · papercrafting

Spellbinders November 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Kit

Spellbinders Amazing Paper Grace November  2021 Die of the Month Christmas Tree Die Kit.

I was SO excited when I opened The November 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Kit! When I saw those lovely Christmas Tree dies and the assortment of gift boxes I knew the projects would be just stunning and I couldn’t wait to get started. One of the first things I do when planning a card is to think about the colors I want to use. Traditional green and red would be so beautiful but I decided to go with teal and pink. Since it is Christmas, I also wanted to add some sparkle so I used some festive glitter cardstock as accents. In person, the glitter cardstock just shimmers and shines.

Spellbinders Amazing Paper Grace November 2021 Die Cut Christmas Tree Card.

I have been looking for a good glue for small die-cuts and I just purchased some Bearly Glue and it is a game-changer! The nozzle offers precise application and doesn’t seem to clog like other applicators I’ve tried. I used Bearly Glue for the first time on this post.

Products used on Card 1:

Spellbinders Amazing Paper Grace November 2021 Trio of Christmas Trees + Glitter Cardstock Card

I just love the swirls on the smallest tree die so I made a second card with a trio of trees.

Products Used on Card 2:

To organize the smaller die-cuts, I put the components for each element in a little dish.

Wishing you a happy holiday season!


cardmaking · papercrafting

Altenew Educators “Alphabet Name Game” Blog Hop, Linky Party + Giveaway

Altenew Mega Alphabet K + Ink Smooshing Technique

“K” is for…..Karen! I was inspired to make an initial notecard for Altenew’s “Alphabet Name Game” Blog Hop. I love to make my own paper so I started by coming up with a color palette. I wanted a bright happy card so I selected aqua, green, yellow, pink and tangerine.

Ink Smooshing Technique

I started by making three inked panels.  Here was my technique:

  1. I liberally inked an 6×6″ acrylic block with Altenew Inks.  I wanted an ombre gradient look so went in rows across the block.
  2.  I very liberally sprayed the inked block with water 
  3. “Smooshed” the block onto a piece of watercolor paper
  4. Weighted the ink/block with a book for 5 minutes
  5. Uncovered.  If the ink pooled, I dabbed with a paper towel.
  6. I made a “second generation” panel for the background by taking a piece of Bristol Cardstock and soaking up the excess ink on my work space. 

Panel one and the background were made with Seashore Mini Ink Cube Set (Lagoon & Volcano Lake), Rainbow Prism Mini Ink Cube Set (Parrot & Warm Sunshine).  Panel two was Coral Berry and Orange Cream.

I let the panels dry overnight and then I started my die-cutting. The “K” is from Altenew’s Mega Alphabet Collection and the grid background uses Altenew’s GardenTrellis Cover die, which is a favorite of mine.

Altenew Garden Trellis Cover Die + Ink Smooshing Technique.

Here is a closeup of the card.

Ink Smooshing Technique


$200 in total prizes! Altenew is giving away a $35 gift certificate to 2 lucky winners and a $20 gift certificate to 5 winners! Please leave a comment on the Altenew Card Blog and/or each designer’s blog post on the blog hop list below by 10/09/2021 for a chance to win. 

There’s MORE! What’s a hop without YOU?! We have included an Inlinkz at the Altenew blog for you to enter your gorgeous Altenew “Alphabet Name Game” creations. We will pick 2 of our favorite handmade creations from those who joined the linky party and they will each receive a $15 Altenew gift certificate!

Altenew will draw 7 random winners from the comments left on each stop of this blog hop and announce the winners on the Altenew Winners Page on 10/11/2021.

Hop list:

Altenew Blog

Virginia Lu

Joylita Dsouza

Fiona Duff

Michelle Ochoa Murray

Irina Fonina 

Penny Pynnonen

Anna Patricia Mahtani

Kari VanNoy

Bridget Casey

Rachael Shedeed

Ann Taylor

Neha Aggarwal

Annemarie Caister

Helen Kalb

Sandra Woodson

Nancy Souza

Nandini Karmarkar

Pam Boedeker

Eva Bussom 

Terri Marie Koszler

Karen Brown (You made it to the end!)

Thanks for stopping by!


cardmaking · papercrafting

Elegant Shaped Sympathy Cards| Spellbinders APG October Kit

The October 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Die of the Month is both beautiful and elegant.

Navy and Gold Sympathy Cards

Navy and Gold is such a classic color combination and I thought it would work really well for my pair of sympathy cards. I started by diecutting the border overlay from navy cardstock. I wanted a shaped card so I made a 5 x 7″ white cardbase and then I taped the top of the outline die just above the fold of the card so the fold would stay intact.

Navy and Gold color combination for elegant shaped sympathy cards.

Next, using the the border die again, I die cut the filigree from Brush Gold Metallic Cardstock. I think the brush gold is very elegant and I like that it is not as shiny as mirror gold. I carefully saved the small die-cuts so that I could do a partial inlay and I saved the gold border overlay for card #2. I then die cut the middle oval filigree from navy and the oval outline from Brush Gold Metalic Cardstock.

Next, I assembled my card using liquid glue and added four inlay pieces to each corner. I gold embossed a sentiment and mounted it using foam tape.

Elegant Die Cut Sympathy Cards

For card #2 I used the gold die-cut filigree over a navy base with cream accents.

Amazing Paper Grace October 2021 Die of the Month

I also cut floral accent pieces from the dies included in this months kit. The two cream leafy branches in the bottom corners were the only components that aren’t included in the kit and they are from Amazing Grace’s Petite Floral Potpourri.

Spellbinders Amazing Paper Grace October 2021 Die of the Month.

I am so pleased you stopped by today. If you have another moment, I’d love to hear which card you like best.


cardmaking · papercrafting

Spellbinders: Susan’s Garden Party Geranium Basket

Spellbinders Geranium and Antique Wooden Bucket from Susan's Garden Club

Hello friends…happy Monday! I spent part of my weekend creating with this lovely geranium and antique bucket die set designed by Susan Tierney-Cockburn. I’ve always loved geraniums so this was an especially fun project for me.

Card Details

I wanted a lot of color variation in my geraniums so I started by “ink smooshing” four panels of watercolor paper.

  • I liberally inked a 6×6″ acrylic block with Distress Inks.  I wanted an ombre gradient look so went in rows across the block.
  • I very liberally sprayed the inked block with water then “smooshed” the block onto a piece of watercolor paper.
  • I weighted the ink/block with a book for 5 minutes.
  • Next, I uncovered the panel and If the ink pooled, I dabbed the excess ink with a paper towel.

For the geranium buds, I used two shades of red on the top half of the panel and two shades of pink on the bottom. The colors mixed and mingled and gave me the color variation I was looking for. Panel #2 for the basket was done with a light tan and brown. Panel #3 for the leaves mixed three shades of green. And the background panel was created with Tumbled Glass Distress Ink.

Die cut with Ink Smooshing panels

Once my panels were dry, I started die-cutting with the dies from Spellbinders Geranium and Antique Wooden Bucket from Susan’s Garden Club. I used brown, pink and green watercolor markers to go around the edges of the bucket, blossoms and leaves. I then gently shaped the leaves and buds. To finish the blooms I added a dot of pink glimmer lacquer to the centers.

For the background, I used longtime favorite Spellbinders Essential Rectangles Etched Die on my blue background panel for a little subtle interest. I then mounted my bucket with foam tape and then glued on my leaves, blooms and sentiment,

Die Cut Geranium card with hand crafted papers.

This geranium die set is beautiful, artistic and very versatile. I can see using it for birthdays, Mother’s Day, Sympathy cards, Thank You Notes etc.

Thank you for visiting today!


cardmaking · papercrafting

Spellbinders: Holiday Flora Collection

Spellbinders Holiday Flora Collection

Flowers + Die-Cutting….one of my favorite combos! Susan Tierney-Cockburn created the most delicious collections of holiday dies and I had so much fun playing with them!

I used three of her new kits on my cards:

Die Cut Papercraft Amaryllis

Spellbinders Amaryllis

Amaryllis are always a favorite of mine, so I was excited to create a project. For my card, I made all my own papers using a gel press. I made six monoprints for my die-cuts: dark blue, medium blue, light blue (background), green and yellow-green (stamins) and tan.

Once the panels were completed, my card came together very quickly! The buds were very easy to shape for a lovely 3D effect. Both of my cards are 5 x 7″.

Mixed Media card using Gel Press Die Cut Prints

Susan’s collection is for the holidays, but I think the flowers are so versatile! I made the Amaryllis into a lovely birthday card by heat embossing my sentiment on the basket.

Die Cut Christmas Cactus Holiday Card

Die Cut 3D Christmas Cactus Card

I have a Chistmas Cactus that is 25 years old so I really wanted to create a paper twin using Susan’s kit.! I have no idea how old cacti can live my mine is still hanging in there.

I again made my own gel press prints for this Christmas card. I made a blue panel for the background + two green prints, a pink coral and used the other other half of the tan monoprint for my basket. I added some pink glimmer lacquer to some of the tips for my buds.

Die Cut Christmas Cactus Card.

I love both of these cards and can’t decide which is my favorite! Thanks for popping in to take a look at my post.



Spellbinders Vintage Cash Register

Amazing Paper Grace 2021 September Die of the Month Kit

Hello and welcome! I just returned from a wonderful road trip to The Pacific Northwest. My husband and I had a great time but we are back home and I was excited to get back into my craft room.

My first project was this Amazing Paper Grace September Die of the Month! Becca always creates such fun dies and this month is a beautiful vintage cash register.

Cardmaking Using Gel Press Prints

Spellbinders Vintage Cash Register Card

To keep the vintage feel, I decided to create my own papers using a gel press. I really enjoy making monoprints so I got to work making a assortment of prints. For this card I used six: dark turquoise with hints of brown and green; light turquoise; white with leftover blue, green and purple(background); copper; plus two green panels.

I die cut my components and used foam tape to adhere to my backgound. I distressed the die cuts a bit more with brown watercolor markers around the edges and around the buttons. The cash register buttons are flat clear jewels.

My card is a 5 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ square. To finish my card, I added a bit of greenery from Spellbinder’s Petite Floral Potpourri.

Die Cut Card using Gel Prints.

September’s kit was lots of fun to play with and there are so many lovely details. I think you will enjoy this die kit.

Thank you for stopping by!


cardmaking · papercrafting

Spellbinders Amazing Paper Grace August 2021 Die

Spellbinders Amazing Paper Grace August 2021 Die of the Month cards
Spellbinder’s August 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Die of the Month

Hello, I am so happy to see you! I’ve had a fun weekend creating three cards with Spellbinder’s August Amazing Paper Grace Club Kit.

Spellbinder's August 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Die of the Month card in Kraft and Aqua.
Card Details

My inspiration for this first card came from color. I was laying out different color palettes and really liked this khaki and aqua combination. I started by cutting the lacy components from white cardstock and the two background accent pieces from Waterfall cardstock. I also cut a 5 5/8″ background square from Neenah Dessert Storm. The white card base is 6 x 6″. The brown embossed Make A Wish from Sugar Coated Sentiments fit perfectly in the center square.

I die cut three flower buds from Lagoon cardstock. Then using The Tool ‘n One with Quilling Tip, I spritzed the die cut with water, slipped the outside end in the slot and rolled (pretty side in). I adjusted the tightness of the curl to make three blooms of differing sizes for variation in my design. I glued the blooms to flower bases cut from Petite Floral Potpourri etched dies and then added enamel dots for the flower centers.

Assembly went quick! I added die cut leaves, Patootie Burst Paper Flowers, and four pearls for embellishment.

Die Cut Octagon Grid Companion Card
Spellbinder's August 2021 Amazing Paper Grace die cut octagon tile card in Kraft, Aqua, Brown and Pink.

This kit has so many interesting dies and I wanted to show you how versatile the components are. To me, the small octogon die looked like a tile and I thought it would be fun to die cut “tiles” from designer paper. I noticed that my design would fit perfectly in one of my all time favorites, Nestabilities Essential Rectangles so I used that for my background.

I really like how this card turned out.

Companion Card
Spellbinder's August 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Die of the Month Card in Kraft, Pink and Aqua.

I noticed that the half circle curlicues looked like a flower pot so that was the inspiration for my second companion card. I die cut two curlicue elements and a khaki half circle from the August kit and then die cut flowers and leaves from Spellbinders Variety Cardstock using The Petite Floral Potpourri Etched Dies. I used Patootie Burst Paper Flowers for the center of the blooms. The Happy Birthday is from Sugar Coated Sentiments and I again used Nestabilities Essential Rectangles for added interest on the background.

I wound up with three very different cards all using the August 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Dies of the Month.

Spellbinders August 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Die of the Month cards

If you have another moment, I would love to hear which card is your favorite.



Spellbinders July 2021 Club Kits of the Month Blog Hop

Hello friends and welcome to Spellbinder’s July Club Kits Blog Hop! 

I think these are probably the most adorable papercrafting projects that I’ve ever made!  These little pop-up houses are created using the July 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Die of the Month and they are just so cute!  

July 2021 Amazing Paper Grace Die of the Month

Karen - Brown - 2021 - July APG Club Kit - Blog Hop - Trio

Home Sweet Home Pop Up 3D Vignettes

I adore papercrafting so I really enjoyed creating this Pop Up Die Cut House.  The assembly is straight forward and the house was easy to put together.  
The house is designed to flatten for mailing.  I tested this, and mine “popped up” just fine after being in an envelop.  

Karen - Brown - 2021 - July APG kit - Blog Hop - 2-WMI used Lagoon cardstock for the eaves, windows and doors and Graphite for the roof.   I love the contrast of these colors against the fresh white of the house. The door knob and flower center are enamel dots.Karen - Brown - 2021 - July APG Club Kit - Blog Hop - with cardThe body of the house is designed to hold a tabbed card (or three). I left mine blank as I plan to hand write a note to include when I send.  Karen - Brown - 2021 - July APG kit - Blog Hop - 2-WM

To celebrate this release, we are giving away a $50 gift certificate to 3 lucky blog readers – selected from the comments on our blog. Giveaway closes on Sunday, July 18th, 11:59 pm MST. The winner will be announced in this blog hop post the following Tuesday. The winner is responsible for shipping costs, duties, and taxes.

Please note, store credit (gift certificate) cannot be applied to Club Subscriptions. Store credit can be applied to shop past Club products, Club extras and regular releases.

Blog Hop:  You are currently at Karen Brown’s Post ( and your next stop is Tanya Boser

Spellbinders Blog
Becca Feeken
Tina Smith
Bibi Cameron
Annie Williams
Becky Roberts
Yasmin Diaz
Jennifer Snyder
Kathy Clement
Hussena Calcuttawala
Marie Heiderscheit
Jill Hilliard
Laurie Willison
Ilina Crouse
Virginia Lu
Emily Midgett
Jean Manis
Sheri Holt
Sandra Nagel
Joy Baldwin
Rosemary Dennis
Henriëtte van Mierlo
Betty Wright
Melody Rupple
Jenny Colacicco
Emily Leiphart
Vera Yates
Tracy Ware
Gemma Campbell
Alanna Moses
Michelle Starcher
Deborah Jenkins
Erin Thompson
Birgit Norton
Michelle Sheler
Sandhya Iyer
Jennifer Kotas
Jessica Vasher
Olga Direktorenko
Karen Brown
Tanya Boser
Martha Lucia Gomez
Amy Kolling

Ready to shop? You can find all the Club Kits HERE.

I am so pleased you stopped by!