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October 2011

Sizzix Fresh Vintage Blog Hop: Fringed Flower

It's Fresh Vintage Blog Hop day! Today's die is the Fringed Flower, by Eileen Hull.

I should start by explaining that my first set of fabric flowers had black satin on top and some cream lace sandwiched inside. I was showing the card to John when Karl strolled by and took a look.

ME: What do you think of this? It's for the Blog Hop on Thursday.

JOHN: I like it. Very classy.

KARL: What's with the black flowers? That's pretty morbid, isn't it? 

ME: No, it's elegant. John, do you think it needs anything at the bottom here?

JOHN: No, it doesn't need anything.

KARL: Yes it does need something. It needs an apology across the bottom that says "Sorry for the black flowers of death!"


Of course I couldn't stop thinking about the black flowers of death, so I ripped the flowers off the card and re-did them with burlap on top and the black satin sandwiched inside.



ME: Look, Karl - is this better?

KARL: Yes, it's much better, but you didn't have to redo it - that was just my opinion.


So let me tell you what I created. I wanted to use my new Pull Tag die, which (as the name implies) has a TAG that you PULL to raise up a decorative frame. For this card, though, I thought it would be fun to let the card do all the pulling. I added an extension to the end of the Pull Tag that is then connected to the bottom flap of the card. When you open the card, the extension pulls the frame up for you! 


For the Fringed Flower, which is the star of todays' Blog Hop, I used the die to make the burlap/fabric flowers as well as the center buttons, which are die cut from shrink plastic and fused together.

01 Closed

Supplies Used:

Other supplies (not pictured): Beaded Chain (Creative Impressions), Key charm, heart charm, beads (Michaels), Magnets (K&J Magnetics), Inks (Versafine, Ranger Distress), Burlap & Satin fabric, rhinestones

02 Side View
  • Create a 5x7 card from brown cardstock that has a 0.5" spine at the bottom and a 9/16" spine at the top. My top flaps are 3" and 6" in length.
  • Add strong magnets to hold the flaps closed. Then cut papers to fit each panel with a small border of brown showing.
  • Punch a hole in the top flap and string a beaded chain through it. Hang a key charm and a stamped layered sentiment onto the chain.

03 Partial Open

  • Assemble the Pull Tag die according to the package instructions. Hang a decorative heart charm inside the frame. Stamp a greeting on the end of the Pull Tag.
  • Die cut a second tag and trim the length to 4". Fold the trimmed tag at 1.5" from the top (decorative edge) and then glue the tag behind the Pull Tag with the fold lined up with the end of the tag and the decorative edge at the bottom.
  • Adhere the base of the Pull Tag inside the card approximately 1.75" from the first bottom fold. 
  • Collapse the Pull Tag flat inside the card with the foldover extension folded flat on top of it. Add a strip of strong adhesive behind the decorative edge of the foldover extension and carefully close the bottom flap of the card, attaching the decorative edge to the bottom flap of the card in the correct position.

04 Open

  • To make the Fringed Flowers, first die cut two of each size flower using three colors of Shrinky Dinks and shrink them using a heat gun, allowing the fringed edges to stick and overlap others as they shrink.
  • Set the smallest flowers aside (in my case, the brown ones) and make two layered stacks of the other two flowers in a glass baking dish. (In my case: black on the bottom, cream on the top) Fuse the pieces together in a hot oven (450F). After removing from the oven, immediately press the small (brown) flower to the center of the fused stack. Add a rhinestone to complete the button.

06 Flower Close up


  • For the burlap/fabric flowers, each flower will need four burlap and four black satin flowers. (I used the largest flower size on the die) Place a black flower over a burlap flower and fold the stack in half and then in half again, making a layered corner. Arrange four of these corners into a circle and stitch or staple them together. Cover the center with a Shrinky Dink button. Repeat for the other flower.
     05 Close up
  • Adhere one finished flower to the front flap of the card and the other to the Pull Tag inside the card. To elevate the flower higher than the frame, add a scrap of cardboard or matboard behind the flower and secure it just to the front of the frame. Also die cut two Scroll sets and glue them to the sides of the frame. Embellish with rhinestones.

Ready to see some more projects using this die? You can find links to the other projects on Eileen Hull's blog post. Also make sure you check out the Oh My Crafts blog, where you can enter to win a Flower Layers #9 die! (Valid only during the blog hop dates, September 27-November 3, 2011)

Spooky September: Jack-o-Cupcake Card!

One of the biggest selling features of the Sizzix Pop-up Dies is their versatility.

Sure, they make the cool thing pictured on the package . . .

... but with a little creativity you can also alter/cover/rob-the-mechanism and make them into something completely different.

And now for something completely different. 


My Spooky September card for today uses the Pop-up Cupcake die as a mechanism/platform to pop-up a giant jack-o-lantern.

  01 Card Closed

While perusing the Fresh Vintage Blog Hop projects for today I gasped in delight when I saw Jen Goode's project. I was thrilled to discover that I could purchase a digi stamp of her amazing illustrations from her Lil' Goodies online shop and promptly did so. 

02 Side View
For the front of the card, I first colored the digi stamp with Photoshop brushes, added a colored border and printed it on glossy photo paper. I also printed the "Boo" stamp. I used a thick needle to stitch a crooked random border using gorgeous baker's twine from The Twinery

03 Card Open

The card itself is made from two 6x8 pieces of Sizzix matboard, covered on the outside with a 8x12 strip of black cardstock and the inside with Bazzill patterned paper. 

04 Fence Close up

I die cut two of the pumpkins from orange cardstock and scored one of them for folding in the approximate center. Then I cut off the right side of that pumpkin about 3/8" away from the fold. After assembling the Pop-up Cupcake according to the package directions (you can also watch an online video class on this die here: OMC Pop-up Cupcake Class) I glued the left half of the pumpkin to the left half of the cupcake top, aligning the folds. I used the right side of the second pumpkin glued to the right half of the cupcake. I also die cut some fences from brown cardstock and glued them to the base.

05 Top View

From a top view you can (sort of) see how the pumpkin halves are attached to the cupcake. The important thing to remember is that everything on the right side (that slides behind the left side) has to be flat. Both button eyes are actually attached to the left half of the pumpkin. The bigger button is attached on its extreme left side using a glue dot. (the twine in the button holes is merely decorative.)

06 Partial closed

As the card closes the right side of the cupcake/pumpkin slides behind the left side and lays flat. The portion of fence glued behind the cupcake on the left side will raise up with the cupcake base and also lay flat.

Supplies Used:

Sizzix Fresh Vintage Blog Hop STARTS TODAY!

Today is the start of Eileen Hull's blog hop featuring all twelve dies from her new Fresh Vintage collection.

Here are the dates and the dies that I am assigned to:

Thursday, September 29, 2011:
fringed flowerFringed Flower


Tuesday, October 4, 2011:

butterflyScoreBoard Butterfly


Thursday, October 6, 2011:

flower layers #9Flower, Layers #9


Tuesday, October 25, 2011:

suitcaseScoreBoard Suitcase


Tuesday, November 1, 2011:

caddyScoreBoard Caddy

FAQ about the Fresh Vintage Blog Hop:

How do I hop around to see ideas using the current featured die? 

Every Tuesday and Thursday between September 27-November 3, 2011 there will be a new Sizzix Fresh Vintage die featured on 6-10 of the 75 participating designers' blogs. The navigation buttons for "Hop Back" and "Hop Forward" will allow you to easily hop around and see projects featuring whatever the current die is, since those buttons are programmed to navigate only to the blogs that are participating for that die. On the next Tuesday/Thursday, the buttons will automatically reprogram themselves to navigate to the blogs that are signed up for the next featured die.

What if I start at a designer's blog that isn't one of the 6-10 signed up for that die? 

No problem! Simply hit either the "Hop Forward" or "Hop Back" button on the Fresh Vintage navigation widget from any blog's sidebar and you'll automatically advance to one of the participating blogs. 

Can I go back and view the ideas for a previously featured die?

Of course! Go to Eileen Hull's blog and find the "Blog Hops" link at the top of the page. It will bring up her blog posts where you'll find direct links to each participating blog along with a thumbnail image of the project.

Where can I buy the Sizzix Fresh Vintage dies, by Eileen Hull?

You can visit to find a local and online retailers for Sizzix products. Also be sure to visit Oh My Crafts, one of this blog hop's sponsors, (between the dates of September 27-November 3, 2011) and enter for a chance to win a Flower Layers #9 die! 

The Blog Hop has ended and the navigation widget is no longer in the sidebar. How can I see the ideas?

Go to Eileen Hull's blog and find the "Blog Hops" link at the top of the page. It will bring up her blog posts where you'll find direct links to each participating blog along with a thumbnail image of the project.


Pop-up Spotted: Wendee & Tara


Wendee Deal sent me links to her upcoming October Paper Engineering Class at All About Pictures, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

  Wendee snowflake

 Tara Noel has created a Magic 8 Ball that has gone rogue with its answers! Too funny!

Tara 8 ball teaser

Here are the dies that Wendee and Tara are using:

Do please send me links to your creations using my Pop-up Dies from Sizzix and I will "spot" you here on my blog. Thanks for sharing, Wendee and Tara!

Spooky Twist Cube Card

One of the best parts of my recent teaching experience at Creative Escape was the opportunity to hang out with the other instructors, some of whom I had not met prior to the event. I feel like I have a new friend in Janet Hopkins, and I happened to see one of her tweets this morning about a Halloween art print for sale on her blog.

The print, which is amazing, (and a steal at only $1.99) will be framed and hanging in my house for Halloween. I also asked Janet if I could use the print on a project and she said yes! So I printed five smaller ones to create a spooky twist cube for today's Spooky September offering.

Halloween Cube Card

Supplies Used:


Other supplies: Pewter Luminarte paint (on spider), Glossy Accents (on spider), Creative Impressions orange stitched ribbon (as cube pull), Staz-on black ink, Stampin' Up! orange ink

General Craft store items (source unknown): trim, chain, charms, clear cording, transparency, magnetic closure, beads


  1. Cut a 6x12 strip of Bazzill black cardstock and score it for folding at 7". Cut two 6x7 rectangles of black cardstock and sandwich the 5" section of the card between them, creating a 6x7 card with a triple-layer back. 
  2. Use the second-largest Rounded Tag Framelit to die cut a tombstone-shaped window in the front of the card, located toward the right side. Use the largest and second-largest Framelits to create two thin black frames. Sandwich a piece of transparency between the hole and one of the frames on the front of the card. Add the other frame inside the card. Stamp the edges of the transparency with the web stamp in Staz-on ink.
  3. Print five 4x6 versions of the Janet Hopkins Halloween Art Print on glossy photo paper. Die cut the prints using the Twist Cube die, by following the picture and/or video instructions, both of which can be found on the product page. (Click the picture of the twist cube in the supply list to go to the product page) Assemble the cube in the normal fashion, using cardstock for the bottom square of the cube, which won't be seen.
  4. Die cut the largest Scalloped Square Framelit from black cardstock. Also die cut four 1.5" scalloped squares from black cardstock, using the Framelits. Use the Square Framelit set to die cut four photos to fit the scalloped squares. Layer the photos over the black scalloped squares and attach one to each side of the cube, avoiding the folds and letting the right edge hang off the edge of the cube. (There should be no adhesive behind the hanging sections!)
  5. Attach the finished cube through the large black scalloped frame using a brad so the cube will spin. Add a 6x6 piece of Phantom paper inside the card and then adhere the finished cube/scalloped square, located so the cube is visible through the window. Add some charms on chains to the top of the cube, attached to the ribbon.
  6. Add a strip of Phantom paper to the front of the card, next to the window.
  7. Create the beaded magnetic closure by first stringing the magnetic closure onto two lengths of clear cording. Push both ends of the cording through two decorative beads and then secure the ends down to the back of the card and to the front in a location that will later be covered by the calendar.
  8. To finish the front of the card, ink the edges of the calendar journaling spot and highlight October 31 with orange ink and glossy accents. Stamp the web in the upper right corner. Pierce through the top of the calendar with the decorative pin accent. Attach the finished calendar to the card, covering the end of the closure.
  9. To finish the inside of the card, add decorative trim to the left edge and a journaling spot from the Meadowlark cut-out sheet. Die cut the spider and paint him, front and back, with pewter Luminarte paint. Once dry, add Glossy Accents for dimension and glue him inside the card.

Here is an animated look at this card:



Hey Kansas City - I'll be teaching how to use the Twist Cube die (among other dies/folders) in the Machine Mania class at The Scrapbook Page in Shawnee on October 8, 2011. You will get to die cut your own photos to make a personalized twist cube brag book while learning all the tips and tricks for using Sizzix machines. Samples will be in the store next week if you want to stop on by and sign up! I'd love to see you!


Spooky September - Gh-Gh-Gh-Gh-Ghost!

If you're looking for a great all-around pop-up die that can be used year-round for any character, look no further than the Pop-up Snowman die. He makes a great snowman, of course, but with a little creativity, you can turn him into anything! 

In honor of Spooky September, I thought I'd give him a costume and send him out Trick-or-Treating! 

Halloween Ghost Card

Products used:

Not Pictured: White fabric, Orange/green ribbon from my stash.


  1. Cut a 5.5" x 11" strip of black cardstock and fold it in half, making a 5.5" square card.
  2. Cut two 5.25" x 5.25" squares of Meadowlark paper and use the blending tool with both colors of Distress ink around the edges of the paper to distress them. Adhere them inside the card.
  3. Die cut the six body parts of the Pop-up Snowman die from white cardstock. Also die cut the base piece from white cardstock. Assemble the Snowman according to the PDF picture instructions or the YouTube video instructions, both can be found on the product page here: Pop-up Snowman die.
  4. Attach the finished snowman inside the card, with the base piece located about 1.5" from the front of the card (ish). In addition to a strong adhesive, I recommend using the Tiny Attacher to staple the base piece onto the card, locating the staples as close to the outer folds as possible. 
  5. Cut some scraps of black cardstock and glue them to the snowman's head in the approximate position of the eyes. 
  6. Cut a piece of white fabric for the ghost costume (Mine is roughly 6" x 6") and drape it over the snowman. Determine the location for the eyes and snip some holes, roughly, with scissors. Add some glue along the top of the snowman (avoid the mechanisms) and press the fabric to it, so it is now glued to the top of his head.
  7. Play with the card by opening and closing it to determine if the fabric needs to be trimmed, and/or tacked down. Mine is tacked down on the front of the snowman, near the bottom, and on the back of the snowman, near the bottom, leaving plenty of slack for the snowman to open and close underneath the fabric. (This step is truly a "wing it!" type of step!)
  8. Stamp the greeting and spider/web using black ink.
  9. For the front of the card, first add a Basic Grey magnet to the front of the card. Add another to the back of the card to keep it closed. (You may have to stack a second magnet on the back to increase the hold)
  10. Trim the 6x6 piece of Phantom paper to 5.25" x 5.25". Use both colors of Distress ink and the blending tool around the edges. Tie a coordinating piece of ribbon around the left edge of the paper before gluing to to the card.
  11. If desired, add a piece of paper to the back of the card to cover the magnet(s).
  12. The finished card can be mailed in a 6x6 envelope.

Here is an animated look at the card:



What other costumes could the snowman wear? I'd love to see what you can create with him!

The Pop-up Snowman die was featured on the Sizzix blog yesterday, so check out A Snowman for All Seasons to see even more ideas for using this versatile die!

(P.S. Gretchen surprised me yesterday with the 6x6 House of 3 Phantom paper pack, which made me squeal in delight! I could hardly wait to use it! Thanks, G!)

Spooky September - Introducing Rene Crow!

Shortly after I moved from Colorado to Texas, Bonnie met Rene and found out that they had paper crafts in common, including a passion for die cutting. It was not long before we recruited Rene into our team of pop-up enthusiasts and I was honored to have some of Rene's work on display at the last couple of trade shows.

Sadly for Bonnie, all of her crafty friends keep moving south. Rene now lives here in Texas and I am hoping, once the dust settles from her move, that we can meet in person!

What a thrilling mail day yesterday! Rene surprised me with some pop-up cards and gave me permission to photograph them and put them on my blog. She will have her own blog soon, but in the meantime I get to post her stuff here! Yippee!

Rene Halloween Spider
Rene's Halloween card features the Pop-up Spider/Web die, and I love how she made the web and spiders glittery! 

Gretchen got me hooked up with InLinkz to do those cool picture supply links like she has, so here is my first post using them:

I have been talking about how the Pop-up Bat and Pumpkin dies can be used for so much more than just bats and pumpkins. I love how Rene illustrates that with her homespun Thanksgiving card, using the Pop-up Pumpkin die as the body of the turkey and using those iconic "kid prints" as the feathers. So smart!

Rene Thanksgiving Card
The brown swirl accents are cut using the pumpkin vine, which is also on the die. What a great alternate use, Rene!

Here's the link to the pumpkin die:


Moving on through the holidays, Rene's final card uses one of my favorite dies from my first collection: the Spinning Platform. This die is completely generic and simply "spins" up an embellishment (or photo, or gift card) into a hovering position over the card fold, but without any folds in the embellishment. 

Rene Christmas Card
Rene decorated her card with medallions from the new Crown, Medallion & Scrolls Sizzlit set and they are delightfully sparkly in real life! 

Here are the links to the dies:

Thank you Rene for your awesome cards and for rocking my Sizzix Pop-up Dies!