Frugal Friday checks out Stampin’ Up’s “Artistic Etchings”…One stamp set two very different looks!

Hi All,

Welcome back to Frugal Friday.  Today I’m looking at a favorite set of mine that definitely fits the frugal bill in both price and utility.   To see a full list of frugally priced under $20 stamp sets and wheels check out the lists in my Scribd files or the links in the right hand side bar.  There is a list for the Idea Book & Catalog and a separate one for the Holiday Mini.

I’m a big fan of the new Vintage trend that Artistic Etchings represents.  Lots of possibilities for out of the box thinking and creating.  And when it comes to frugal stamping that versatility is a key factor.  When one stamp set that is moderately priced to begin with can be used in multiple ways for multiple occasions you know you have a winner.

Tip: When looking at new stamp sets I try to find at least 5 different ways to use a set.  If I can accomplish that goal then I know I’ve found a “keeper”.   I also make a point of creating projects (or at least sketching them out) with every stamp in the set when I get it so I can discover the utility of each image.

 Here are two very different looks created by my friend and Stampin’ Up partner Cheryl for some of our recent events.

First up: 

From our September Stamp Camp. Ignore the Kraft looking sheet in the background – I used that for contrast so the Very Vanilla Cardstock would show up on my scanner.

Stamps:  Artistic Etchings, En Francais,  Perfect Punches

Card Stock: Very Vanilla, Basic Black

Ink: Basic Black, Crumb Cake, Cherry Cobbler

Punches:  1 3/8”x 5/8” Oval Punch, 1 ¾”x 7/8” Oval Punch

Other: Big Shot, Vintage Wallpaper Embossing Folder, Sponge Daubers (for Crumb Cake ink), dimensionals

While the Thanks image looks like its a combination of stamps or Designer paper it’s really the one image from Perfect punches that creates the awesome background and text all in one image!   A little judicious antiquing with Crumb Cake (AKA – Kraft) ink adds to the dimensionality of the image.   Note:  The circle medallion image was stamped before the texturing with the embossing folder.   Some stampers at the Camp also included other images from the set (Crown, key, etc. some in Marina Mist) that added to the collage feel of the card.  They also had a choice of Embossing folders for different textures.

Note:  If you are looking for other ornament ideas the Crown and the “bar pin” image fit perfectly inside the Ornament punch shape and even the circle medallion looks pretty cool.   If you used an ornament punch shaped stencil you could create a fabulous background paper of scattered ornaments across the page with many of the images from this set.   The key even fits sideways!


And Second a very different look:

Artistic Etchings as a Christmas Ornament!   This particular card is a CASE of Ann Clemmer’s very inventive card – you can see her blog here.  Even though it’s quite simple it still packs a great deal of punch and was a favorite at this months Christmas Stamp a Stack.

Stamps: Artistic Etchings, Lovely as a Tree,  A Cardinal Christmas (greeting)

Ink: Riding Hood Red, Versamark, White StazOn

Papers:  Riding Hood Red, Cherry Cobbler, Sahara Sand,

Other: Modern Label Punch, 1-3/4″ Circle Punch, Silver Embossing Powder, Embossing Buddy, Heat Tool, Dimensionals, Scissors




Artistic Etchings

Clear Mount: #120573,  $14.95

Wood Mount: #118517,  $18.95

An old-world cathedral, a street café in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, the stately decorum of a royal palace—these are the types of images invoked by our Artistic Etchings set. Add its vintage look and feel to your cards and scrapbook pages to set a romantic, nostalgic mood. Available both in wood-mount and clear-mount.

Set Quantity: 6

Combines wonderfully with textured embossing folders like Vintage Wallpaper and Finial Press and many more.   I’ve even thought that the round medallion would work to approximate a Mandala (Buddhist mystic wheel image), a Sioux shield maybe placed behind the Buffalo from the In Wilderness stamp set.  The longer lacy image reminds me of one of my Grandmothers favorite pins.   And of course all the images will work alone or together to create wonderful One Sheet Wonders or background papers.

From simple to complex the possibilities are endless.


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 *** – Video  – video  – Video for another type of Ornament card


I hope you’ve enjoyed this look at a favorite stamp set.   Kudos to those original stampers who first saw an ornament in a crown and circle image.  I love the creativity of my sister Demo’s.

Hugs and Blessings – Jean

Frugal Friday introduces Bingo…Stampin’ Up style!

Hi all,

Looking for something fun for family and friends Holiday gatherings?   Don’t want to break the bank?  Create your very own Bingo game that will last you year after year.   And while you’re at it turn it into a family project.   Granted only the Bingo Card Background stamp  meets my usual definition of frugal since it’s under $20 but hey….its the holidays…and the coordinating stamp set Jolly Bingo Bits has many more uses than just creating Bingo Cards.  You could actually create all your holiday tags, Simply Adorned inserts, even Holiday Cards to send out all with this one set and a little imagination.    And if you check the links below you’ll see a few other games besides Bingo that can be created with these darlings.   And if that isn’t reason enough…how about this.   You get 24 stamps in the  Jolly Bingo Bits set!    At just slightly over a dollar a stamp you really can’t find a better deal than that.   If you’re a Stampin’ Up demonstrator or into sales of any kind you could even break up this fun set into its individual images and give them out as gifts.  Heck even non demos’ could use these as fun stocking stuffers!

At a recent Holiday mini Open House & Stamp Camp Event my partners Cheryl, Linda and myself (and of course our customers) had a chance to play Stampin’ Up’s own version of Bingo using the cards (and of course prizes) we created ourselves.   You too can join in the fun and start a new holiday tradition.  Check out our card and one of the prizes.  Anybody else notice we gave out Halloween themed prizes for a Christmas Bingo?  Don’t worry Linda had the Christmas ones covered – I was just feeling in a spooky kind of mood when I created these and was showing off Halloween cards at the event too!

Supplies Lists:

Bingo Card:

Stamps:  Bingo Card (background Stamp),  Jolly Bingo Bits

Ink: Concord Crush, Marina Mist, Soft Suede, More Mustard and various others

Paper:  Whisper White

Treat Holder:

Quick and simple.  Run the paper through the Big Shot with the Two tags die, use the Crop a Dile to hole punch a second corresponding  hole to thread the tinsel through.  Decorate with stamps, insert the chocolate and tie the wired tinsel.  Of course our 1/8″ ribbon works wonderfully for this as well.  Quick and easy.  I made over thirty in less than an hour.

Stamps: Extreme Elements, Tiny Tags (Boo stamp)

Ink: Cajun Craze, Daffodil Delight, Soft Suede

Paper:  Naturals Ivory

Other: Crop-a-Dile, Big Shot, Two Tags Die, Silver Tinsel Trim (Holiday Mini), and of course…Hershey’s Chocoloate!

Of course given the size of the Bingo squares many of our other smaller stamps will work so you can create your own Bingo cards for any season or celebration.  And like any traditional Bingo, numbers in the squares will work too!

For our game the stamp pieces did double duty.  We dumped them all in a bowl and called them as we drew them one by one from the bowl.  Since there are 24 images to match the 24 spaces ( the 25th one is marked as free) you don’t even have to call out the Bingo headings as is usual.  Just describe the image (that part got a little on the silly side as you can imagine with yours truly doing the calling!) and the game goes quite quickly.  Even little kids can get that one right.  One tip – don’t stamp each card identically or else be prepared for as many first bingos as you have players!  LOL!     Trust me it could happen!

We also inserted the cards into Stampin’ Up’s large cello bags (pg. 170 in the catalog) and used dry erase markers to mark each image as it was called.   One quick wipe at the end of the game and we were ready to start again.

Special Note:  Stampin’ Up recently announced that the two  stamp sets from the 2010 Holiday Mini Linda  used to create these cards will be carried over to the 2011-2012 catalog due out next July.  Yay!  We can play again and again!

One caveat to the carryover…Bingo Card and Jolly Bingo Bits are currently available in the Holiday Mini.  And once the mini sales period ends you’ll have to wait until July to purchase.   So if you’re thinking about a Valentines or Easter Version don’t forget to order from my Stampin’ Up Website before January (of course you can always call or email me with your order as well!).

Tip:  And of course I can’t let you go without pointing out that the Jolly Bingo Bits are the perfect stamps for creating Holiday “Inchies”.  What’s an Inchie you ask?   Any image stamped onto a 1″ square is an Inchie!  And yes before you ask a 2″ stamped square is a Twinchie!   Both are perfect for creating some fun and quick cards.  Make up your Inchies in advance then just drop them onto a card or tag and you’re good to go.

Tip: The Bingo Card stamp can also be used to create faux postage squares or blocks of squares.  And they are the perfect size for our Simply Adorned Jewelry inserts.

Bingo Card – Background Stamp

#120851,  $17.95

Size of stamped image approx. 4-1/2″ x 5-3/4″

Inside square measurement approx. 7/8″ x 7/8″ (just under 1 inch square)

Stamp your way to some serious bingo fun with this functional background stamp. Combine it with our Jolly Bingo Bits set to create an unforgettable Christmas family game time, or use it with any variety of stamp images to create a whole lot of bingo fun for any occasion. Available in wood-mount only.

Set Quantity: 1


Jolly Bingo Bits 

Clear Mount – #121187, $ 26.95

Wood Mount – 120857, $37.95

With enough images to count down the days until December 25th, our Jolly Bingo Bits set not only provides darling bingo pieces for the holiday season, but can be used in countless ways to spread cheer and love across all your Christmas projects. Be sure to use them with our Bingo Card background stamp for a heartwarming good time at this year’s Christmas family party. Available both in wood-mount and clear-mount.

Set Quantity: 24

Perfect also for creating Christmas Countdown Calendars too!


Fun links showing you what else people are doing with this  Background stamp and its coordinating set of images: – Merry Match Game

Tutorial for Merry Match Game Box –


Hope you’ve enjoyed this Holiday edition of Frugal Friday!

Hugs and Blessings – Jean

P.S. Did you know today would have been John Lennon’s 70th Birthday!  Wow – Beatles as Senior Citizens – shocks the mind.   Not to mention aging my coolness factor considerably – LOL!

Frugal Friday Training alert: Stampin’ Up’s My Digital Studio 1st Tutorial

Hi All,

Still recuperating so thought I’d do a quick digital share for this Frugal Friday….

Stampin’ Up! has released a new video featuring an introduction and some basic training for their digital design software – My Digital Studio.    I’m hoping this will be the first in a series.   If you have other questions after watching this please feel free to give me a call or send an email.

Adding to the Digital Fun:  

The last couple of weeks Stampin’ Up has been busy releasing quite a few wonderful new downloads.  To see all that’s available to add to My Digital Studio or to download and use with other graphics based software check out my online store and select Shop Now then Digital Crafting then My Digital Downloads then  Newest Downloads.  There is something there for every taste and every budget.  

Tip #1: Downloads of some retired or no longer available product is an excellent way to find items you missed out on.   You can print the images or papers out to use in your traditional stamping projects or you can design and print your digital project.  Can’t beat the price of the downloads either.

Tip #2:  Single layer images including the punches can be easily added to emails, word processing documents, flyers and other basic programs that come free with your computer.  So even if you haven’t purchased My Digital Studio yet you can still enjoy and use the frugally priced downloads.   Heck…you can even add them to your own blog!

Tip #3: When you look at the Designer Paper downloads don’t forget to click on the more images button then on each design so you can see what each full sheet looks like page by page.  Here’s my current favorite of the new paper downloads –

This new Summertime Splendor says it all in its name.

Fun Fact:  Did you know that the Presto Patterns paper contains a quote from Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Nights Dream and the Night and Day Paper has a quote from Shakespeare’s The Tempest?  Yup!  Stampin’ Up has gone literary!  Both these papers are available as digital downloads.


Other My Digital Studio Training and cool tricks from around the web: – 3×3 cards with new DSP and a tutorial here – – an entire series of tutorials – excellent set of quick tutorials from Patty Bennet – how to import and use clip art you already have into My Digital Studio – Layering 101 & – creating a card 101 – opaque effects – importing other graphics


I hope you’ve enjoyed this quick look at a wonderful product.  For those with limited space or limited means or just a desire to extend their crafting into the digital realm My Digital Studio provides an amazing wealth of possibilities for the price.   On last fact to share.  Though many of Stampin’ Up’s familiar colors are disappearing with the new Color Renovation all of them currently available in My Digital Studio are there to stay for you to play with and print out as needed for years to come.

Here’s a single layer image I downloaded and colored with another program already on my computer to use in my Valentine emails as I suggested in the above tips. Image is from the Greatest Moments II download set. 


Hugs and Blessings – Jean

Frugal Friday: Itty Bitty Background stamps & wheels

Hi All,

In the background – the little guys add to the fun but get so little of the credit.

These little stamps featured today pack a lot of wallop for such tiny background stamps.   And some like the itty bitty background set has become such a must have its been kept in the Stampin’ Up Catalog for more than 10 years.  Originally it started life as a hostess stamp and then was brought back by popular demand – not to mention because of its awesome utility.

Designed to add interest and texture to the backgrounds these stamps can be used in a variety of ways.  And all of them, given their low price, will spare your pocketbook any trauma. 

Click on the picture to see a larger image.

W = wood    CL  = Clear Mount   IBC = Idea Book & Catalog (main catalog)

Itty Bitty Backgrounds – #114996, $14.95, pg. 132 IBC

Don’t have a Spritz tool?  You can replicate that spatter look with images from this set.  The little open circles also works for underwater fish bubbles or falling snow. 

A true workhorse that rarely gets full credit in galleries and blog details and a great way to add interest to otherwise plain pages and projects.


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Boho Backgrounds – #114940, $17.95, pg. 123 IBC

A couple of background stamps, a couple of sayings, borders and one larger image make this set a wonderful bargain.   The one block with words and borders can either be inked selectively with markers or cut up into individual stamps.

Perfect for use with Emboss resist technique among others and of course this set coordinates with a number of  other Boho style stamps, wheels and embellishments.


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Sprinkles – #115076, $14.95, pg.   IBC

From hearts to flowers to butterflies and little funky images this set has it all.  Create beautiful background papers for spring or add a “sproing” to the background of a Lots of Bots stamped card.  Or when you’re not sure just what that is coming out of the sky on a cloudy winter day perhaps the little funky image stamp would work for that kind of weather too – LoL! 

After stampin you can then decide whether to color in the images or leave them plain or even emboss with clear or metallic embossing powders for an even different look or as part of a resist technique.  Though other small backgrounds have retired.  Stampin’ Up has kept this one in the line up for the last few years because (I think) of its versatilty and popularity.


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Delicate Dots – Jumbo Wheel – #115622, $8.50  pg.

The Delicate Dots Jumbo Stampin’ Around wheel coordinates perfectly with the Enjoy Every Moment stamp set. Ideal for making borders, backgrounds, and embellishments, this wheel is just what you need when you have to make a large quantity of cards quickly.


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Hearts O’ Plenty – Standard Wheel – #115621, $6.50, pg.

Not just for Valentines…use anytime you want a small background that shows your love.  As always with any wheel perfect for creating your own background papers, belly bands and adding image texture to any blank page.   Perfect too for creating frames in scrap pages to let someone know at a glance how you feel about the frames contents.


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If you enjoyed all of the above small elements there is a newer set as well that meets this same function –    Though it doesn’t meet my Under $20 frugal test it’s still well worth a look.

Extreme Elements – #115181, $26.95, pg. 81 IBC has flair and drama and a modern edginess to it that makes it well worth it’s somewhat higher price than my usual recommendations.  It coordinates with many of our teen stamps while also working with many grown up sets as well.  Many samples I’ve seen add a definite cool factor when combined with our many SU stencils and stamps.   

And if price is a factor this cool set is also available as a brush set – download for My Digital Studio (MDS)  or other graphic software at the very reasonable cost of $1.95!!   Order #119099 in the online store.

Also during May this is one of the stamp sets whose purchase earns you a free set of brads – check out the May special flyer in my sidebar

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** – Extreme Elements – MDS version


Hope you’ve enjoyed this latest edition of Frugal Friday featuring stamps and wheels under $20.  For a full listing of the stamps and wheels that qualify check out my righthand sidebar.  There are lists for the IBC and for the Summer mini.  Also don’t forget to check the continuing product flyer as well.  Lots of great bargains to be found there as well.

Hugs and blessings – Jean

Frugal Friday: Use one set several ways and….phenomenal blog alert

Hi All,

This Frugal Friday is not the usual.  For one thing it’s getting posted on Sunday (though truly most of it was written on Thursday)!!   I’ve had a very skewed week so thought I’d show you another kind of frugal.  Some CAS (Clean and Simple) – well sort of anyway – cards and a gazillion ways (okay more like several – hee, hee) to use one stamp set and its coordinating Impressions Folder – Manhattan Flower Folder.    And since that stamp set – Fifth Avenue Floral also happens to be on sale for just a few more days it seemed just right to put this together so you’ll have some ideas for what to do with it when you buy it (easy to do by clicking on my Online Store button at the top of the sidebar).


Phenomenal Blog alert!!

Run do not walk (we’re talking typing speed here folks) to Lisa Young’s Blog – Add Ink and Stamp .  This is one talented lady!  I was putting together my weekly newsletter (one version for demo’s with lots of SU links and proprietary stuff and one general version with lots of SU Links and tips) and blog pick lists and realized that I had linked over 10 of her’s in one sitting.  Wow!  Like I said talented.  So wanting to share the goodness I raced right here to drop in this plug for Lisa.

One note:  I’ll be revisiting these cards one by one over the next week  with details on how to make them so today it’s mostly a look and see with the supplies list.

I have a confession to make…after almost 4 years of acquaintance with Stampin’ Up colors and a general indifference bordering on disdain for Cameo Coral as a color I’ve done one of the dumbest things ever…I’ve fallen in love with it…and it only has 2 months to live!  WAHHHHH!  So in an ecstasy of destruction I’ve spent most of the last 24 hours using up all the Cameo Coral I have on hand.   Then the next question is…do I go cold turkey or do I restock before it goes away for good??  Good thing there’s 40 colors in the new Color Restoration that I can learn to love just as passionately.    I must admit I’ve already found a possible substitute in the new Cajun Craze and the returning Tangerine Tango.  Not the same shade at all but a similar feel so perhaps they’ll work for me as well when I go to CASE myself – lol!

Manhattan Floral Tent Card

Stamps: Fifth Avenue Floral

Paper: Shimmer Paper, Basic Black & Cameo Coral Cardstock

Inks: Versamark, Gold Encore Pad, Versamarker

Other: Gold Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Big Shot, Manhattan Flower Impressions Folder, Black Grosgrain Ribbon

Manhattan Fifth Avenue Floral Trifold

Stamps: Fifth Avenue Floral, Teeny Tiny Wishes

Paper: Shimmer Paper, Cameo Coral & Whisper White Cardstock

Inks: Versamark –  Reinkers used – Blush Blossom, Rose Red, Cameo Coral, Regal Rose 

Other: White Embossing Powder, Gold Embossing Powder,  Heat Tool, Big Shot, Manhattan Flower Impressions Folder, Scallop Trim Border & Corner Punches, Paper Snips, White Taffeta Ribbon, Craft Knife

Fifth Avenue Floral Monochromatic


(Just waiting for the right sentiment to be added.)

Stamps: Fifth Avenue Floral

Paper: Shimmer Paper, Very Vanilla Cardstock

Inks: Versamark – Reinkers used – Blush Blossom, Rose Red, Cameo Coral, Regal Rose 

Other: Gold Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Big Shot, Top Note Bigz Die, Manhattan Floral Embossing Folder, Kraft (soon to be Crumb Cake) Taffeta Ribbon, Craft Knife, Paper Snips

Manhattan Golden Glaze

Stamps: Short and Sweet

Paper: Cameo Coral & Very Vanilla Cardstock

Inks: Versamarker, Versamark

Other: Gold Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Gold stretch Cord (retired), Gold brad, Scallop Trim Corner Punch, Crystal Effects

Fifth Avenue Floral Shimmer Lily Tent Card

Stamps: Fifth Avenue Floral

Paper: Shimmer Paper, Basic Black, Kraft (Crumb Cake starting in July) Cardstock

Inks: Versamark, Versamarker

Other: Gold Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Scallop Trim Border Punch, Kraft Taffeta Ribbon, Big Shot, Non SU Textile Impressions Folder, White Gel Pen


Of course you’ve already seen this one on an earlier post here.

Hope you’ve enjoyed this virtual walk along Fifth Avenue.  And don’t forget that the Occasions Mini and the Two Step Stamping Promotion end on April 30th.   Downloads and details for both are available in the Sidebar.  And for more links to inspiring Fifth Avenue Floral check out this previous post –

Hugs and Blessings – Jean

Frugal Friday & the Occasions mini celebrates Mother’s Day

Oops!  Frugal Friday has slipped over into Savings Saturday…..  

Hi All,  

Life, time sense and knowing what day of the week it is have slipped just a bit so do me a favor and pretend it’s still Friday okay….LOL!  

With Mothers Day on the horizon I started looking through our catalog and the Occasions mini in particular to feature here on Frugal Friday.  Of course with this being a Frugal Friday post I concentrated on stamp sets under $20 and also looked at sets not previously featured.  Of course any of the last few Frugal posts sets would work as well – in particular the Spring and Easter sets featured here – & here –  

The second of those links also feature the Well Scripted set that has the perfect texts for most occasions including Mothers Day and Fathers Day.   

While looking I was talking about the Occasions mini with a friend the other day and they were bemoaning the fact that there was only one Mother’s Day stamp set in it….say what!!!!!!….I don’t know about you but I’ve found that it’s possible to use almost any stamp set to create a special  Mother’s Day card.  All that’s required is a bit of imagination.  After all Mothers come in all shapes, sizes and are pretty generally creative people.  And as all you mom’s out there know they also pretty much always love anything a kid gives them that tells them they are loved and thought about and appreciated.   With that in mind the following sets were my special picks for use in creating Mothers Day cards.  

W= Wood Mount, CL= Clear Mount

Several if not all of these sets are available in both wood and clear mount though for purposes of my frugal under $20 definition several I’m featuring are only shown with the clear mount option.   I still can’t get over saving $4-$8 per set with this option.  Adds so many more stamps to my possibles.  In fact I have yet to see a Clear Mount stamp set that isn’t under $20!  I might add that for those of you hooked on digital there are even better deals to be found.  Vintage Vogue is available for $3.95 as a digital download.  Can’t get better than that now can you?

Stampin’ Up sample creations from the online store:  



My Matryoshka – #115213 (W), $14.95 – #118583 (CL), $11.95

Russian nesting dolls were the inspiration for this unique stamp set; use it with the clever sentiment, or to make your own Russia-inspired projects. Available in both wood-mount and clear-mount.

Set Quantity: 4

Something about this set caught my eye when I first saw it in the Occasions mini.   Reminded me of my trip to Russia back in the 1960’s when I was 8 years old.  Stampin’ Up did a great job of capturing the look and feel of these traditional dolls as well as the Slavic feel of the floral images.  Perfect for those who like to color with pencils, watercolors, markers, etc.   Seemed perfect for Mother’s Day as well since after all we were all of us hidden under our Mothers heart before we were born.


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Messages for Mom – #118580 (CL), $18.95, pg. 29 Occasions mini

Let your mom know how you really feel with the Messages for Mom set. Perfect for Mother’s Day–or any day of the year! Available in both wood-mount and clear-mount.

Set Quantity: 8

So many different greetings that are perfect for Mom’s, Dad’s, friends and really anyone you want to make feel special.  The Mom letters also coordinate wonderfully with our Wild West Alphabet and if you stamp this MOM upside down you get a very fun WOW!


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I {Heart} Hearts – #118571 (CL), $18.95, pg.14 Occasions mini

Who doesn’t {heart} hearts? Especially the hearts in this delightful set. You’ll love them even more when you discover they coordinate with our heart punches! Available in both wood-mount and clear-mount.

Set Quantity: 8

These Hearts aren’t just for Valentine’s.  There’s a design here for everyone and several coordinate with punches!   Some images coordinate with the Heart to Heart Punch, small heart punch (new design), and the Large Heart Punch and the Movers and Shapers Heart shaped die.   From casual to vintage elegance there’s a heart here for you.

Also available in French #118638 (CL) & Spanish #118653 (CL)


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I {Love} Love JumboWheel – #117084, $8.50, pg.15 Occasions mini

Coordinating Wheel to I {Heart} Hearts stamp set

This wheel is perfect for unmounting and cutting up into a variety of smaller stamps or use as is.  It’s even possible to use markers to highlight different sections in different colors before carefully rolling.   Use as a full strip or roll and cut out the section you want to use.


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With All My Heart – #118134 (W), $17.95 –  #118623 (CL), $13.95 – pg. 12 Occasions mini

Set Quantity – 6

With a bit of a retro pop art feel this set is only limited by your imagination and creativity.  From friendship to Valentine’s to Mother’s and Father’s day and beyond the possibilities are truly “far out”.

The brackets around the word friend can be inked individually and used with any text or alphabet set.  Wonderful images to create your own background papers you can go simple or complex as far as techniques used.  I’ve seen quite a few with a wonderful resist technique that blew my socks off.  Also this stamp set coordinates with the Occasions only Specialty DSP Sending Love.  Lots of built in glitter on that paper gives you a few ideas for using this set with shimmer and glitter as well.   The two together could really bring a shine to your Mom’s eyes don’t you think!


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Vintage Vogue – #118598 (CL), $17.95, pg.26 Occasions mini

Stampin’ Up told demonstrators a few months ago that this is one set that will be in the new July catalog for sure.  Makes it all that much more of a deal since you know that there will be papers and other embellies that will work with these images.   Also a go to set for any occasion.  With the multitude of images it’s truly a good deal and if you only buy one new set this year this is probably the one!

What SU has to say about it…..

If you love vintage clothes, vintage movies, or vintage art, you’ll love the Vintage Vogue set! Use it to express love, thanks, or appreciation. Available in both wood-mount and clear-mount.

Set Quantity: 8

Also available as a digital download for My Digital Studio or other graphic software – Vintage Vogue Stamp Brush Set – Digital Download – #121062, $ 3.95

Now you can create many of the same designs shown below digitally!

Also available in French Version #119109

French somehow lends another layer of elegance to this already classic set.


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Very Vintage Jumbo Wheel – #117693, $8.50, pg.27 Occasions mini

Coordinating wheel to Vintage Vogue though it stands alone beautifully.

Perfect for giving your creations that unique antiqued look – not to mention a favorite with the shabby chic’ers among us!   You can attain a true vintage look by lightly coloring small sections of the flourish and butterfly with muted pastel tones.  Stampin’ Up Watercolor Pencils are perfect for this then run a quick blender pen over it for the watercolor look.


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Another though though perhaps on the wacky side….If you want to go  all Jettson’s or other world for your Mothers Day card you might consider using this years new catalog sets Greetings Earthling or Lots of Bots.   When I saw the alien with the bubble helmet and ray gun (or is it a drill for fixing things around the house) I immediately thought Mom (okay I also thought about the Jettson’s too).  On the other hand the alien with the eye stalks might also be a mom since she can see from all directions with those eyes!  And doesn’t the wide eyed kid alien have that perfect “who me”? expression mothers all over the universe know so well.     Of course the Robots have lots of potential too…since most kids have a screw loose here and there…but as you’ll notice even robot kids know to bring flowers for their Mom’s.   

Another set to consider though not featured here today is Happy Together (catalog pg.72) with the Momma Quail and babies and the flower there are lots of possibilities.  

The set Friends Rock also caught my eye for a modern style card with a bit of retro to it as well.  After all Mom’s Rock! so why not tell them so!

And of course sets like All Holidays and Teeny Tiny wishes contain Mother’s Day and other much used greetings.  While priced considerably over my usual $20 limit their value lays in the number of stamps in the set and the wide ranging use you’ll get from them.  Teeny Tiny Wishes at $36.95 sounds expensive until you realize that you get 24 separate greetings in the set!  That’s only $1.54 each…talk about a bargain!

Well that’s all for this edition of Frugal Friday (no matter what day it is when you actually read this :D).   I hope this look at some non traditional Mother’s Day possibilities has given you some ideas and shown you the versatility Stampin’ Up! builds into all their designs.

Hugs and Blessings and TGIF! – Jean

Blog Break Announcement


Sandycat is Keeping an Eye on You!

Hi All,

I just wanted to let you know I’ll be taking most of this week off (and maybe a bit more) from blogging.  Sandycat, my darling kitty I’ve shared stories and pictures with you in days past, is very ill and not likely to survive much longer so I’m trying to spend as much time cuddled with her as possible and to make her as comfortable as possible.  She’s still being funny and sweet right up to the end.  As I shared with my newsletter readers a couple of weeks ago….

Boy do I wish I had a working camera or video equipment.  A few nights ago Sandycat spent 10 minutes trying to get comfortable sitting on a tiny plate the size you put a tea cup on! (eta: a kind reader reminded me that’s actually called a saucer – lol!  Thanks Sharon!)  It was hilarious as she tried to balance without tipping the plate.  Trying to get all 4 paws under her inside the little indentation for the tea cup!  The only attraction I can figure out is that the plate was sitting under a lamp that puts out a nice bit of heat from the bulb and it was a chilly, chilly night!  Either that or she just wanted to cheer me up.  She finally gave it up as a bad job – the sitting not the cheering – and jumped down looking just a trifle embarrassed.  Hmmm…might have to post this story on my blog under the heading of crazy cat antics……
Sadly life had gone from that to (also from my newsletter)….
I’m afraid this listing is just a bit on the short side this week.  Besides increasing seizures of my own my Sandycat has taken a turn for the worse and it’s looking like she won’t be with me much longer so I’ve been trying to spend more time with her as cuddling and sleeping seems to be mostly what she’s up for.  A few weeks ago she started throwing up more than usual but otherwise seemed fine so I figured she had gotten into something and just needed to work it out of her system as has happened in the past and then just in the last week or 10 days she slowly stopped eating.  Her spirits are still basically good though a tad grumpy and she’s able to drink some water but she’s dropped over half of her previous 15 pound weight and is getting weaker and weaker.  After almost 10 years together it’s hard facing the idea of losing her.  More than any of my other furry friends over the years we are something of alter ego’s for each other though some might say she’s picked up some of her craziness from me I of course contend that it’s just the opposite – lol.  She’s also probably one of the smartest and most interesting cats I’ve known.  Very mechanical and interested in people stuff in unusual ways and very expressive. I’m never in doubt about what’s on her mind.  If I can’t read her mind she’s very good at showing or acting out what it is she needs.  She’d have made a fortune on Drew Cary’s show doing charades!  Though a feral cat by birth we’ve been housemates and heartmates since she was 7 weeks old and for a feral she’s quite domesticated.  Unlike most cats she’s mastered the art of compromise – an amazing trait all on its own!  Though Wicket will still be with me, and of the two she’s a wonderful little nurse cat who watches over me very carefully, my heart is already breaking at the idea of loosing my naptime buddy who’s willing to let me be me and who manages to make each day fun and funny.
I’m not sure if I’m going to be up to getting a newsletter out this week so there may be a short hiatus.  I’ll try to keep it brief and get back to collecting goodies as I’m able.  Blog posts may be a bit light as well. 
Well that’s the “skinny” as they say (yeah I know bad pun…but as I learned on the Cancer Ward  what else is a girl to do if she’s not going to sit and cry)  and I’ll be back sometime soon. 
Thanks to all of you who’ve been kind enough to write, email or call.  Your encouragement has meant a lot!
Hugs and blessings (and don’t forget to hug the one’s you love) – Jean
P.S.  Though I won’t be blogging for a bit I’ll still be able to help you with any orders or questions you might have or you can place your orders directly through my online Stampin’ Up! store.  Just click on the icon in the upper right corner or send me an email or call and I’ll get it done for you.  Hugs – J.
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