Cricut Country Life Cartridge Project #1


I have to say, that I love my Cricut!  I love its ease of use, and I love all the wonderful cartridges available for it.  I have to say, that I own quite a few!  That is why I have decided to feature a  cartridge every month.  I want to give eveyone  a chance to see how very versatile this machine, and these cartridges are!  So this month I will be starting with the Country Life Cartidge, and I will show one every week for the month of April.  The following month will be a new one and so on. 

So I chose Country Life because it is all about farms, and growth, and brings to mind warm weather.  The Lord knows how desperate I am for warm sunny weather.  It feels like Winter in Ontario, Canada is to long, and hangs on and fights to the bitter end.  So for today I created a card using these gorgeous beets/radishes? .  The background frame was from an exclusive Circle Cartridge, but can easily be replaced with any Spellbinder or Cricut lace cut cartridge.  The inside greeting was also cut from the Country Life, and the bee is a stamp from Lockhart.Hope you enjoy!


  • Paper:  Cool Carribean*, Cherry Cobbler, Rose Red, Whisper White, Basic Black CS, Old Olive DP, Kiwi Kiss DP* (Stampin’Up!, * denotes retired product), October Afternoon DP
  • Ink: Broken China, Aged Mahogony, Fired Brick, Vintage Photo, Tea Dye, Peeled Paint, Pine Needles Distress Ink (Ranger Industries), Black (Stewart Suprior Hybrid ink)
  • Stamps:  Lockhart
  • Coloring mediums:  Copic Markers
  • Cartridges:  Cricut Country LIfe, French Manor (Circle Exclusive)
  • Other:  Sponges, Sponge Daubers, Stickles, White gel pen, Black gel pen

“Isn’t It Time We Got Together” Vintage Card

One of my favorite stories as a child was Alice in Wonderland, so when I saw the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party Rubber Stamp Collection at the Oshawa Scrapfest in the fall being sold by Bizzy B (a local stamping and scrapping store), I just HAD to buy it!  There’s actually three stamp sets that are a part of this collection, and of course I just HAD to buy all three LOL.  I’ve been admiring them since then, but hadn’t actually gotten around to using them until today.

I used a variety of fun techniques to put together this card.  I die cut the frame for the image out of a lightweight chipboard with my Spellbinders oval and scalloped oval Nestabilities and my Grand Calibur.  I then covered it in Matte Accents and sprinkled on Champagne Vintage Glass Glitter.  I had forgotten to precolor my frame, so afterwards, I covered up any little bits of white with my Gold Acrylic Adirondack Paint Dabber.  Since the color of the gold paint was so different from the color of the glass glitter, I ended up painting directly over the glass glitter with some more gold paint – I didn’t totally cover it though.  In order to carry that same gold theme onto the rest of the card I brushed a little of the paint across the designer paper (which is from Stampin’ Up!’s newsprint collection), I also used the dabber top to brush some along the edges of the matted DP.  I also used the gold paint to paint over the Brushed Gold CS, because once the Brushed Gold was on the card, it didn’t quite match everything.

Here are the supplies I used:

Stamps: Mad Hatter’s Tea Party (TJ Designs Rubber Stamps)
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black (Tsukineko), Gold Adirondack Metallic Paint Dabber (Ranger)
Paper: Very Vanilla CS, Brushed Gold CS, In Color Patterns Paper Stack, Newsprint DP (Stampin’ Up!); Sprout CS (Bazzil Basics Paper)
Accessories: lace (unknown), Ruban Ribbon & Trim (Chatter Box); Champagne Glass Glitter, Stampin’ Dimensionals (Stampin’ Up!); Fabri-tac (Beacon Adhesives); Matte Accents (Ranger), paintbrush (dollar store) 

Sweet ladybug fairy

I had this cute image already done up from one of the watercolor with marker video’s, so I figured that now was a great time to use it!  I made the card simple, which is for me, the perfect way to set of a pretty image.  The stamp is a Hanglar & Stanglar stamp, and the great thing is that this company is re-building their website, and will soon be shipping internationally!


  • Stamps:  Hanglar & Stanglar
  • Paper:  So Saffron, Cherry Cobbler, Daffodil Deilight, Basic Black, Certainly Celery, Whisper White, Kiwi Kiss DP (Stampin’Up!), White CS (Papertrey), Unknown DP, Cold Press 140 lbs watercolor paper (Canson Montval)
  • Color Medium:  Tombow markers, Stampin’Up! markers, Copic markers
  • Ink:  Broken China, Tea Dye, Vintage Photo, Shabby Shutter
  • Dies/Punches:  Grass (Martha Stewart), Aquarious Alphabet, small flower (Quickutz), Large Scallop rectangle, Deckle edge rectangle (Spellbinder), Scallop border punch (Stampin’Up!), Bee die (Cuttlebug)
  • Other:  Stampin’ Sponges, Large eyelets, Stampin’ Dimensionals (Stampin’ Up!), White poster paint Sharpie, Big Shot, Glue, Tweezers

Hero Arts Butterfly Card with Microbead Nestabilities Frame

I absolutely love butterflies – both in real life and in stamped images.  The Hero Arts butterfly set I used, called Antique Engravings is probably my favorite butterfly stamp set ever.  It has such a wonderful selection of butterfly images and they look so real!

Today’s card is a 5 1/4″ x 5 1/4″ card which I created using a bunch of different products (which I have listed below) and some fun techniques. The frame was created using my Nestabilities dies and the new Grand Calibur machine (loving this machine!), and then decorated with microbeads.  In order to give it rigidity to hold the weight of the microbeads, I first cut the frame out of a lightweight chipboard and then layered on top a frame I die cut out of Basic Gray designer paper.   The butterflies were colored using Distress Inks and my ink applicator tool.

I’ve filmed videos on the Grand Calibur and how to use it, how to create the frame, working with microbeads and how to color the butterfly – which we’ll be uploading to the Paper Crafter’s Library this week. 

Stamps: CL383 Antique Engravings, CL511 Sweet Threads Thank You (Hero Arts)
Ink: Jet Black StazOn (Tsukineko); Scattered Straw, Spiced Marmalade, Rusty Hinge Tim Holtz Distress Inks, Lemonade Adirondack Dye ink (Ranger); Basic Black Craft (Stampin’ Up!);
Paper: Dusty Durango CS, Basic Black CS, Whisper White CS (Stampin’ Up!); Red Rock (Bazzill Basics Paper); 6″ x 6″ Marrakesh Paper Pad (Basic Gray); Lightweight Chipboard (other)
Accessories: transluscent orange microbeads (other); Stampin’ Dimensionals, embossing buddy (Stampin’ Up!); Heat-it tool, Matte Accents, Claudine Hellmuth Multi-Medium Matte (Ranger); orange rhinestones (dollar store);

Tent Topper Card

It’s Monday once again…. and it definitely came to soon.  I had a wonderful time this weekend, what with Andrea visiting with two of the kids.  It was quite the chaotic place here this weekend, but it was defintely fun!  Can’t wait for the weekend to come again!  So for today’s card, I decided to work on another fun style of card, which is called a tent topper card!  It is essentially like a standard card, but with the image popped over the top.  Mine would need a custom envelope, but you can easily make one which will fit a standard envelope size.  The video for this one, along with the Swinging C-fold card, and the Gate fold card will be featured in the Library this week, along with some other fun stuff.  The decorative watermelon accessories is featured in a Scrapbook page which should be featured in the Library soon, and the background is the TP background which can already be found in the Library.  Hope you enjoy!


Paper:  Early Espresso, Melon Mambo, Very Vanilla, Old Olive, Pretty in Pink (Stampin’Up!), Hot Press Fabriano Watercolor paper
Stamps:  Friend by definition (Stampin’Up!)
Ink: Vintage Photo, Broken China, Walnut Stain Distress ink (Ranger Inc), various re-inkers, Certainly Celery, Melon Mambo Classic ink (Stampin’Up!)
Dies/Punches:Spellbinder Scallop Circle, 1 3/4″ circle punch, 1 1/4″ Circle punch, 1″ Circle punch, Harvest Quickutz Alphabet
Coloring Mediums:  Stampin’Up! re-inkers, Twinkling H2O’s
Other:  Distressing tool, Old Olive stiped grosgrain ribbon, Vanilla Shimmer Smooch Spritz, Stampin’ Dimensionals, Mini glue dots  (Stampin’Up!), Fabric glue, Big Shot

Altered CD tin Notepad Holder

Today’s project involves altering a cd tin to create a note  pad holder.  All of the parts are created using dies and punches.  I have to say that I am a huge fan of dies, and simply love every opportunity that I have to use them.  The tin is simple to create, and does not require a ton of time.  The note pads are the ones that Andrea was selling on her blog awhile ago, but any pad that fits can go inside.  Hope you have a fantastic tomorrow!


  • Paper:  unknown DP, Real Red, Kiwi Kiss, Basic Black, Whisper White, Close to Cocoa, Certainly Celery, Night of Navy CS  (Stampin’Up! retired), other unknown DP,  White (Papetrey), Unknown Bazzil CS
  • Ink: Tumbled Glass, Peeled Paint, Spiced Marmalade, Tea Dye, Walnut Stain, Aged Mahogany Distress ink (Ranger Industries), Versamagic Cloud White
  • Dies/punches :  Exclusive apple and worm die, Paperdoll Alphabet, Tag (Quickutz), Labels1, Daisies (Spellbinder), Grass punch (Martha Stewart)
  • Other:  Multi-purpose adhesive, Stampin’ Dimensionals, adhesive, tweezers, Stampin’ Sponges, Sponge daubers, Note pad, Sticky Strip, Sponge painters, Crystal effects, CD tin

Stampin’ Hugs,

Mixed Media Butterfly Card

I’ve been trying to figure out what the best approach is to introduce the art of mixed media to those of you that want to learn about it.  After all, as I mentioned in my post on “She Found Her Inner Artist“, for me it’s been a 2 year process – reading, taking classes, practicing, experimenting.   I discovered that it’s one of those things that looks harder than it really is.

I remember the first time I took tole painting (folk art painting). I was overjoyed to discover that you don’t NEED to know how to draw, you don’t NEED to have prior artistic training or ability  – I followed a pattern, I learned about colors and I learned the brush strokes and techniques.  Once I learned all of those things, I then learned how to put it all together to create beautiful finished works of art. 

Mixed media is kind of the same thing.  You learn  about the materials, you learn the techniques, and then you put it all together.   The key is, that when you start putting it all together, you need to start small, and you need to start with something easy. 

For the longest time, I was afraid to put paintbrush to canvas because I just didn’t know where to start.  It was part of that “need to be perfect” that I told you about.  I didn’t want to “waste” my canvas…and what if I didn’t like it?  When I decided that I’d start by painting on a piece of chipboard, my fear lifted.  After all, if I didn’t like it, I could just throw it away.  It was less intimidating to start on chipboard – I think first off, because it was free (I got it from the back of a package of DP).  But I think it was also because in my mind a “canvas” was for an “Artist” and I didn’t feel like an “Artist”.

Today’s project is a perfect example of starting small.  It’s a card-sized canvas. The card itself is a bit of an odd size – 3 1/2″ x 6 1/2″ – I settled on it based on the size of my starting “canvas” which was 3″ x 6″. 

This is going to be the first project I’m going to teach in a new online class I’m starting which I’m calling “Mixed Media for Paper Crafters”.  Other than a few essential supplies that you will need to purchase if you don’t already have them, it’s going to be a “work from your stash” class.  This class is going to be about getting started in mixed media – learning about the basic supplies, and learning & practicing some of the basic techniques. 

 I’ll be sharing more details later, but Paper Crafter’s Library members will be getting this online class for free as a benefit of their membership.  If you’re not a member, and you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of Paper Crafter’s Library membership please visit

Bella Teapot Gatefold Card

Well I am finally back in the studio in a more regular fashion.  March break means that the kids are home, and we are galavanting a lot.  Between a new dog in our home, and our trips , we have been very busy indeed.  So today’s card is very simple.  I did not want to stress out with a overly intricate card today, as I have a lot of things to catch up on.  So I took this beautiful Stamping Bella image, and colored it using Color pencils and Gamsol.  It gives a softer look then my more intricate full color pencil imges.  I made it into a gate card, as I am starting to introduce some different folds into the library.  The card also features a TP Background which is already featured in the library.  The overall design is clean and simple… the way I aspire to be…..but know will never happen lol.


  • Stamps:  Stamping Bella (image), Say it With Style (Papertrey & Ink), Friend by Definition (Stampin’Up!)
  • Paper: Aqua Mist (Papertrey), Whisper White, Poppy Parade, So Saffron CS (Stampin’Up!), Bristol Vellum
  • Color Medium:  Prismacolor pencils, gamsol, blending stumps, Faber Castel color pencils
  • Ink:  Stewart superior black ink, Broken China, Vintage Photo, Linen, Tea Dye Distress Ink (Ranger Industries), More Mustard (Stampin’UP!)
  • Dies/Punches:  Label 11 (Spellbinder)
  • Other:  dimensionals, toilet paper, copper brads, 1/16″ hole punch, Stamp-a-ma-jig, Stamping Sponges (Stampin’ Up!), Red Pepper Dimensional Pearls Adirondack (Ranger Industries)

“She found her inner artist” Mixed Media Canvas

Every since becoming a blogger – the side of me that you’ve known and seen has been my paper crafting side – card making, scrapbooking, and 3D projects.  I think that today, I’m finally ready to start sharing with you all an aspect of my art that up until now I’ve kept on the private side – and that’s my work in mixed media and art journalling (click on any of the pictures for a close-up view).

When Soph and I lauched our Artist in You online class this past fall, one of the things I shared was my lifelong yearning to be creative and artistic. One of my biggest personal struggles – in pretty much all areas of my life – has been this intense need for perfection. To the point of putting myself down, doubting my abilities, criticizing my accomplishments, and sometimes not even trying something I really wanted to do, for fear of failure, or simply because I felt as though I just wouldn’t be “good enough”.

Despite spending years involved in sewing and tole painting (folk art painting), scrapbooking and card making…despite dabbling in pottery and clay art, I was always reluctant to call myself an “artist” – for a lot of reasons, but I think the biggest being that I didn’t see my work as being up to the same caliber as the work of others that call themselves Artists. 

It wasn’t until I started getting involved in mixed media work that that perception of myself really started to change.  Over the last year and half to two years I’ve been reading books and taking traditional and online art and mixed media classes and just playing around with my stuff.  It’s been so fun, and so freeing – but at the same time, it’s been a very personal and very intense journey as well.  It’s really been about the evolution of my self-perception and finding my inner artist, so to speak.

Because it’s been so intensely personal, I’ve been really reluctant to put my work “out there”.  So I’m starting with baby steps. 

Today’s project is based on Christy Tomlinson’s She Art Girls.  The techniques I use to create the background are ones that I’ve learned from a variety of different sources (so not specific to one place), but the style of the girl is totally based on Christy’s She Art Girls – which I’m so in love with.  So you’ll probably see a few of these before I start showing you some of my mixed media work that is totally my own take (that’s why I told you I’m taking baby steps LOL).

I’ve put together a list of the supplies I’ve used and tried to be as comprehensive as possible – as you’ll see I used so many different things that it’s hard to remember them all:

Stamps: CL383 Antique Engravings, S4878 Old Letter Writing (Hero Arts); Pattern Pieces stamp, Nursery Letters Jumbo Wheel (Stampin’ Up!)
Color & Mediums: Jet Black Staz On ink (Tsukineko); Fluid Acrylics, Heavy body acrylics, Glaze, modeling paste (Golden); Tim Holtz Distress Stickles, Claudine Hellmuth Acrylic Paint, Claudine Hellmuth Multi-Medium Matte, Adirondack Paint dabbers, Matte Accents (Ranger), professional acrylic ink (Liquitex), Stampin’ Pastels (Stampin’ Up!), Pitt Brush Pens (Faber-Castell) Red Copic Marker (Copic)
Paper: heavy weight chipboard (Stampion’ Up! – from the specialty DP packs), Newsprint DP (Stampin’ Up!); vintage book pages, sewing pattern tissue paper (other); red patterned paper (Papertrey Ink); Lemonade collection DP (Basic Gray)

Accessories: Summer Love & Hidden Garden Rub-ons, White Pearls (Stampin’ Up!); brown wool felt (Giant Dwarf Etsy Shop); Lace, sequin flower center (Prima marketing), silver punchinella (Len’s Mills fabric store), shelf liner (dollar store); paint brushes


Strawberry Lockhart card

Our posts this week are definitely a little eratic, what with our March Break going on!  So anyways, we have been very busy, and today, the new additon to our family arrived.  She is a 4 month old Bouvier des Flandre Puppy, and she is so sweet and gorgeous!!Her name is Juno (after the Roman Goddess of Hearth and Home).  She has the sweetest disposition, is very gentle with the children, and is so friendly and personable.  We are all absolutely in love with her!!

Ok, so now back to the card lol.  I colored in this strawberry Lockhart image with my Prismacolor pencils.  There is some gamsol blending, lots of layering and a ton of colors lol.  The card itself was kept pretty simple so that it could show off the image better.  I just love how the image pop’s out, and of course that is aided by the gorgeous scalloped rectangle Spellbinder die cut.  I love how I can use it as a stencil, and preserve that pristine white border while shading the inside in.  Hope you like it!

Oh, and as a side not, just to let everyone know, that the Turtle Easel card and stone background has been uploaded to the PCL  video library today.


  • Stamps:  Lockhart
  • Ink:  Tea Dye (Ranger Distress), Black Stewart Superior
  • Paper:  Swiss Dots DP (Bo Bunny), Kiwi Kiss, Early Espresso, Kiwi Kiss colored DP (Stampin’ Up!), White CS (PTI), Bristol Vellum in white
  • color medium:  Prismacolor pencils, Gamsol
  • Dies/Punches:  Spellbinder Scalloped Rectangles, Martha Stewart border punch
  • Other:  Stamping Sponges, basic rhinestones, Rub-ons (retired) (Stampin’ Up!), Liquid Pearls (Ranger Inc), ribbon (May Arts), Stampin’ Dimensionals, Sakura glitter gel pen