Thursday, July 17, 2014

Card Sets Using Small Rubber Stamps

Today I want to share a couple card sets that I made as gifts recently. I was happy to find a way to use some of my smaller rubber stamps on these cards. I bought a lot of sets that included small stamps, because they were so cute, and never really figured out what to do with them to "feature" them. I can't remember which card (either in a book or online) that I saw that sparked this idea of using small stamps, but I am grateful for it!

The first set was made for a fan of Mary Engelbreit. The only ME rubber stamp I had was cracked (also the only stamp to do so in my collection) and so I debated whether to order a new one for this project, or see if I could use what I had in a Mary Engelbreit-ish way! Her colors are bolder than I am used to, and this card set was certainly a stretch for me, but I enjoyed the end result. I used some little stamps I had ordered from "D.O.T.S." (which is now "Close to my Heart") which were as close as I could get to Mary Engelbreit's style. So besides finding a new use for small stamps, I also found a new way to use some old stamps!

The cards in this set were layered with colored card stock, scrapbook paper, ribbon, and die-cut ovals.

"My Friend"

The inside of each card had a coordinating image stamped. Cherries are very Mary Engelbreit, I think!

"You're my cup of Tea"

"Sew glad we're Friends"
(The photo of the inside of this one didn't turn out, it was a little heart with a needle and thread)

"Thank You Berry Much"

I hope the recipient had fun mailing these to her friends. 

The next card set used a "Victorian" rubber stamp set that I bought from Inkadinkado about 20 years ago! To make it an ocean-themed set, I added a little shell and starfish from my collection.
 The cards in this set were layered with colored cards stock, an embossed piece, ribbon, and die-cut ovals.

A hat from the "Victorian" set.

A rowboat ride from the "Victorian" set.

Little Shell,


The inside was layered with colored cardstock. This is one of those cases when a (cough!) mis-measurement called for the necessity of a border stamp to "decorate" the leftover space at the top. 

The one thing missing from these cards was that little bit of "bling," but I did not have time to add glitter. I think the red set was fine without it, but the ocean set would have been lovely with some glitter. 

On a card-related note, here's a pretty "Chocolate Box Bow" tutorial I found recently, which is useful not only for cards but for other applications! I hope to try this out soon.

Friday, July 4, 2014

4th of July!

The Glorious Fourth with American Flag
The Glorious...

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Happy Independence Day! One of my favorite holidays. 

While researching music for the 4th of July, I came across some fascinating information on songs of  the Revolutionary era. We all know about Yankee Doodle, but there were more songs that were being sung at the time, sung from the British to mock the Colonists and then turned around again from the Colonists to answer the British! Sort of a war of words-- in song. 

Along the way, I learned some new tunes, and some history hitherto unknown to me.  For instance,  I don't recall reading the document of the Continental Association of the First Continental Congress in my history books-- but it helped me understand why fish were mentioned in some of those songs.!

I haven't had the time to compile this into a smooth study, but  here are the links in case one of my readers would like to use them to make their own study:

Article about music of Washington's time (extensive):

Rabbit trails from the above link: Pachabel in America?:

Contiental Association original document:

Music for the tunes mentioned in the article: 
YouTube for "Heart of Oak"

Maggie Lauder sheet music:
Original tune Maggie Lauder (by the Corries-- just to hear the tune, but maybe to hear the Corries, too!)

The World Turned Upside Down music YouTube:

More music selections (lyrics)

Links to songs of the time:

Declaration of Independence United States of America Art Poster Print

Declaration of...

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Thursday, July 3, 2014

Lewis Carroll's Letter Writing Advice

Boy Posting Letter 1887

Excerpts from "Eight or Nine Wise Words about Letter Writing" by Lewis Carroll 

§ 2. How to begin a Letter.

If the Letter is to be in answer to another, begin by getting out that other letter and reading it through, in order to refresh your memory, as to what it is you have to answer, and as to your correspondent’s present address (otherwise you will be sending your letter to his regular address in London, though he has been careful in writing to give you his Torquay address in full).
Next, Address and Stamp the Envelope. “What! Before writing the Letter?” Most certainly. And I’ll tell you what will happen if you don’t. You will go on writing till the last moment, and just in the middle of the last sentence, you will become aware that ‘time’s up!’ Then comes the hurried wind-up—the wildly-scrawled signature—the hastily-fastened envelope, which comes open in the post—the address, a mere hieroglyphic—the horrible discovery that you’ve forgotten to replenish your Stamp-Case—the frantic appeal, to every one in the house, to lend you a Stamp—the headlong rush to the Post Office, arriving, hot and gasping, just after the box has closed—and finally, a week afterwards, the return of the Letter, from the Dead-Letter Office, marked “address illegible”!
Next, put your own address, in full, at the top of the note-sheet. It is an aggravating thing——I speak from bitter experience——when a friend, staying at some new address, heads his letter “Dover,” simply, assuming that you can get the rest of the address from his previous letter, which perhaps you have destroyed.
Next, put the date in full. It is another aggravating thing, when you wish, years afterwards, to arrange a series of letters, to find them dated “Feb. 17”, “Aug. 2”, without any year to guide you as to which comes first. And never, never, dear Madam (N.B. this remark is addressed to ladies only: no man would ever do such a thing), put “Wednesday”, simply, as the date!
That way madness lies.

§ 4. How to end a Letter.

If doubtful whether to end with ‘yours faithfully’, or ‘yours truly’, or ‘yours most truly’, &c. (there are at least a dozen varieties, before you reach ‘yours affectionately’), refer to your correspondent’s last letter, and make your winding-up at least as friendly as his; in fact, even if a shade more friendly, it will do no harm!
A Postscript is a very useful invention: but it is not meant (as so many ladies suppose) to contain the real gist of the letter: it serves rather to throw into the shade any little matter we do not wish to make a fuss about. For example, your friend had promised to execute a commission for you in town, but forgot it, thereby putting you to[Pg 22] great inconvenience: and he now writes to apologize for his negligence. It would be cruel, and needlessly crushing, to make it the main subject of your reply. How much more gracefully it comes in thus! “P.S. Don’t distress yourself any more about having omitted that little matter in town. I won’t deny that it did put my plans out a little, at the time: but it’s all right now. I often forget things, myself: and ‘those who live in glass-houses, mustn’t throw stones’, you know!”
When you take your letters to the Post, carry them in your hand. If you put them in your pocket you will take a long country-walk (I speak from experience), passing the Post-Office twice, going and returning, and, when you get home, will find them still in your pocket.