Sneak Peek - Karen Burniston February 2023 Release

Today we are starting a week of sneak peeks for our February 2023 release. We have a small but mighty release of six new dies that will start shipping to stores this week. For those without a local store option, the dies will be available for ordering from our website,, starting February 20, 2023.


Learn about these dies by watching the preview video here:

BeachBarBoth SeaLittleTwistPanelBoth
Throughout this week the Design Team will be sharing ideas for the new dies on their blogs. You'll find links to the designer blogs in the sidebar of this blog.

Next Monday we will have a blog hop that includes prizes for leaving comments and the new dies will be available for purchase from our website. 

Stay tuned for lots of ideas and videos this week!

Happy Crafting!

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Karen Burniston Designer Challenge 53: Birthday Cake!

Welcome to our January Designer Challenge with a theme of "Birthday Cake." I challenged the team to create a birthday card featuring cake or cupcakes. (Donuts are also acceptable!)

For my project and video I'm teaching how to double and shorten the Twist Panel Pop-up die set to fit in a slimline card.


This is a technique that I first taught as a Zoom class in 2021 and then received requests to create a YouTube tutorial. Learn the technique by watching the video here:

My card measures 8.5" x 3.5" when closed. I took full advantage of the patterned paper, an older design (Abstract Moments) by Vicki Boutin for American Crafts, to fill and decorate the majority of the card. I used our Crosshatch Long Rectangles and Crosshatch Circles and then added streamers cut from our Border Blends - Trims set. The slice of cake is from the Big Birthday Charms and the heart is included in the Twist Panel Pop-up die set.

Double Twist Panel Birthday Front

As the card opens the two Twist Panel mechanisms start to twist and open. The Happy Birthday greeting and the rectangle for signing the card are placed strategically to avoid creating catch points for the mechanisms.

Double Twist Panel Birthday Partial

Once open, the two panel sets are popped up and decorated with the Big Birthday Charms. The borders are from the Border Blends - Trims set.

Double Twist Panel Birthday Open

Ready to give this technique a try? Here are links to the dies and supplies used in the video. The papers are from my stash - American Crafts and Echo Park. Cardstock is My Colors.

NOTE: Amazon links are affiliate links where I receive a small commission on the sale at no cost to you. 

Now let's take a look at the awesome BIRTHDAY CAKE cards created by our talented design team. For each of these cards there is a full blog post, supply list and, for some of the cards, a video as well. Click the designer's name to visit the blog post, which will open in a new window.

Karen Aicken created an absolutely marvelous Coffee and Cake birthday card. The papers are so bright and happy. The Coffee Cup Pop-up is further embellished with a peeking cupcake and big Happy Birthday greeting. Click over to Karen's blog to see the card front. Stunning!


Sandy Diller cleverly repurposed the Flower Pivot Panels die set to hold her HB2U birthday greeting. I love the way she made a circle-edged card using the Crosshatch Circles die set and the addition of the Big Birthday Charms. Click over to Sandy's blog to see the card front. Super!


Lois Bak made a lovely Circle Tag Book for the challenge with little cupcakes from our original Birthday Charms die set. I love how Lois used the rickrack borders throughout the background and her pops of black. Click over to Lois's blog for a look at the card front with a great tip for how she created it. I also love how she used the cherries from our Tree Fruit die set on the cupcakes. Pretty in pink!

Cupcake Tag Book inside

Frances Byrne created a bright and lively Cupcake Pop-up card and also incorporated the new birthday candle from the Big Birthday Charms. This is really the perfect showcase of our brand philosophy to create timeless staple dies with new exciting decorator combinations to give them fresh looks. I love the colors Frances used for this card!


Fran Sabad followed a video tutorial I created for Designer Challenge 9 to make a side fold Cupcake Pop-up window card. I love how Fran was able to incorporate our newest dies for a fresh amped-up version of the card, adding extra pop-up balloons animated with our Mini Pops Pop-up die set. Love it!


Kelly Booth used our Cake Pop-up die set to make a lovely teal birthday card. I love how she incorporated the new Crosshatch Labels and added pops of yellow to the design. Click over to her blog to see the equally fabulous card front.

KB Birthday Cake 1

Kelly Booth mentioned that once she has a die set out, she'll often make multiple cards, especially for birthday cards. She created two additional Cake Pop-up Cards and while all of her cards follow the same basic measurements and layout, they each have their own personality by swapping out papers and embellishments. Amazing!

KB Birthday Cake 2 KB Birthday Cake 3

Have you had a chance to check out my business partner Tanya Kostynuk's creative ideas on the Stamp and Scrapbook Expo's virtual @home events? She's been showing fabulous projects using our dies. Here is her latest, which works perfectly for the Birthday Cake theme, so I had to include it for the challenge. Tanya has combined the Cupcake Pop-up with Border Blends - Trims, Big Birthday Charms, Crosshatch Ovals, Happy Birthday and Happy Birthday Shadow. You can watch Tanya explain the ease of this card's assembly on Saturday, January 15, 2022 on the SSBE Facebook and YouTube channels at 11:50 am, CST.

Karen Burniston Project photo Jan 15

Well I hope you feel inspired to make some birthday cake cards of your own. Join us next month on February 2, 2022 for our next Designer Challenge with a theme of MOD VALENTINE'S DAY. We'll be making Valentine's Day cards in unexpected color schemes.

We started our Mission Poppable hashtag way back on Designer Challenge 45 and have been delighted with the projects posted each month. For the December challenge our winner (by random draw) is Gail Jean, who posted several wonderful mod holiday cards using a teal color scheme.

Each challenge will bring a new mission and you have a month to complete it. You are welcome to post more than one card for the mission, which will increase your chances to win by random draw.

JAN 2022 Mission Poppable

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to make your own card following this month's challenge theme of "BIRTHDAY CAKE" Make sure your card features some sort of cake, cupcake or donut and uses our die(s) heavily. Post your card on Instagram using the hashtag #missionpoppable OR on our Facebook Group Karen Burniston Pop-up Peeps OR both. If posting in the Facebook group, please add it to the photo album for this month's challenge, which you'll find in the Media section of the group. You have until the next Designer Challenge date (February 2, 2022) to complete your mission. This message will not self-destruct because I don't know how to do that.

We will choose a winner by random draw from all the cards for a $25 credit to our website. The winner will be contacted via messenger or e-mail. 

Make sure if you're posting on the Karen Burniston Pop-up Peeps Facebook Group that you follow the rules of the group. Outside product is allowed, but not for the pop-up portion of the card. Cards posted on the group must heavily feature our brand. You can find us on Instagram @karenburnistonbrand and also my personal account @karenburniston

Happy Crafting!

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Karen Burniston Designer Challenge 43: Black & White and a Pop of ???

Happy March!

For our challenge this month I asked the team to make cards that are primarily black and white but feature a "pop" of any other color. The cards are spectacular as ever so be sure to scroll down to see the images and links.

For my card and video I thought the color scheme lent itself well to a birthday card for John. I chose red as my "pop" color.


This card uses one of our staple pop-up dies from our first release, the Twist Panel Pop-up. Decorating as a side-fold card instead of top-fold creates a different look to the die set. The panels end up being landscape instead of portrait. I also incorporated some of our newer die sets, including the Slim Frames, which fit on the Twist Panel perfectly, Mini-Pops Pop-up and Gnome and Santa. Learn how to make this card by watching the full YouTube tutorial here:

This card measure 5x6 in the closed position and can easily be mailed in an A7 envelope.


The wonderful thing about making cards with dies is that they're so easily duplicated into any other color scheme. Here's the same card front in different colors/theme:


Open the card to reveal the Twist Panel. Spirals from the Mini Pops set are used to create more interactive elements.


Here's the alternate color scheme, where instead of a birthday card it's a "happy day" card.


The spirals add more whimsy to the cards, expanding as the Twist Panel expands. For the birthday card I also used the smaller angled platform from the Mini Pops to animate the numbers.


On the alternate card I didn't use the angled platform but did add hearts to the spirals.


Want to give this card a try? Here are the supplies used. In both cases I just used patterned papers from my stash.

Ready for some additional black/white and pop inspiration? Our talented design team is hear to inspire you. Click on their names to go to their blog posts, where you'll find additional photos, supply lists and, in some cases, videos.

Sandy Diller used one of my favorite pop-ups, the Paper Frames Pop-up, for a striking birthday card with black/white and a pop of red. The star motif is perfect for any recipient and I love the way the white elements pop against the other colors. Super!


Frances Byrne created a stunning Fancy Label Accordion in a wedding theme. The black/white/gold color scheme is so elegant and perfect for the occasion. I love her choice to add a solid panel as the final panel. So pretty!


Karen Aicken used pink for her pop color and this Cupcake Pop-up card has such a vibrant and modern feel. I also love her choice to use the cupcake in a thinking of you card instead of birthday. Cupcakes for any occasion is a firm yes! Love it!

Card_KB_MiniSlimCupcakePU_5 copy

Kelly Booth used her favorite color, teal, as her pop color. Using zebra stamps (MFT) was a great choice for the theme and I love the mix of polka-dot papers with the stamps and dies. The pop-up die on this one is the Circle Tag Book, a great choice for showcasing stamps. Such a fun card!


Fran Sabad chose gold as a pop color and made this gorgeous Upsy Daisy Pop-up card. I love her choice to color her background stamp in shades of gray except for the occasional "pop" of gold. She also incorporated die cut flowers on the pop-up. Lovely!


Lois Bak made this card in honor of a friend who passed away a few years ago and loved the color scheme of black/white/red. I love Lois's choice to honor her friend with such a sweet and meaningful card. The slimline size is perfect for the Cupcake Pop-up, especially when paired with angled Mini Pops platforms to animate the smaller cupcakes. What a wonderful tribute to her friend.

LB_Red  White  and Black Birthday

Join us next month on Wednesday, April 7, 2021 for our next challenge with a theme of YUMMY! We'll be incorporating sweet treats into our cards.

Happy Crafting!

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January 2019 Sneak Peek Week - Heart Pivot Panels

Happy Tuesday!

This week we are showing ideas for our upcoming January release, which will show up on our website for pre-order on Monday, January 21, 2019 with shipping starting January 31st.

You will find some great ideas from our talented design team (clickable links in the left sidebar) on their own blogs. On my blog this week I'll be sharing the assembly videos for the new dies to help people understand how they work.

Today's post is introducing the Heart Pivot Panels. (All new release die links will start working on January 21st)


The Heart Pivot Panels will work exactly like the Evergreen Pivot Panels and the House Pivot Panels and, just like those two die sets, the decorator pieces can be used independently on other projects. The pop-up can be installed inside a card OR, as an option, coordinates with the Twist Panel Pop-up, Tag Book Pop-up and Circle Tag Book Pop-up. Watch this assembly video to learn how this die works.

This die will work well year-round for any type of love-themed card, from Valentines to wedding, anniversary, pick-me-up, congrats, thank-you, Mother's Day, Father's Day, birthday, sympathy, get well . . . pretty much any theme! HeartPivotPanelsBoth

Some dies that coordinate perfectly with the Heart Pivot Panels are the Border Blends- Argyle, which can be blended to create heart-shaped borders. and Word Set 9 - Love. For greeting panels, our nested crosshatch shape dies work wonderfully.


Pivot panels can also be used with our Twist Panel Pop-up die set to add even more pop-up action to the twist panel. 

To up the "cuteness" factor of the Heart Pivot Panels, consider pairing it with some of our animals and accessories sets. This card uses the new Feathered Animals and Tiny Accessories 2 to add the heart-shaped glasses and heart-shaped candy box.


Check back tomorrow for another assembly video of our new release. If you missed the summary video of the release, here it is:

Karen Burniston January 2019 Release Sneak Peeks

In just two short weeks we will have 18 new die sets available at and at many of your favorite local and online retailers.


Check them out in this preview video:

This is a SNEAK PEEK blog post, so you won't be able to order these dies from our website until they are opened up for pre-order on January 21, 2019 with shipping starting on January 31, 2019. However, we are taking store pre-orders starting later today, so if you have a local store in your area, please encourage them to log into their wholesale account and order this new release. It's so important that we support our local stores whenever possible. 

I am plugging away on assembly videos and will be uploading them over the next two weeks as I complete them. The Design Team has been making AMAZING cards with the dies and they are free to start posting their cards on their blogs today, so definitely check out those blogs (there's a clickable list in the sidebar at left) and I also suggest "liking" our Facebook Page. Also feel free to join our super fun Facebook group, the Karen Burniston Pop-up Peeps, where you can share your creations using our dies as well as connect with other enthusiasts.

I love this release and am looking forward to sharing lots of ideas!

Happy Crafting,

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"Meow" Twist Panel Pop-up Card

Yesterday I spent a great day at Croppin' Bug for their annual retreat and education event. In between my morning class and the evening Make 'n Take event I got a chance to join the croppers and make something JUST.FOR.FUN! (I know!)

The first step, naturally, was to go shopping. I spied an adorable piece of paper from Doodlebug's "Kitten Smitten" collection and knew it would work perfectly with the Twist Panel and Cat and Dog die sets.

This card is a 5" x 6" top fold card. 



To make the cat looking to the side instead of forward, I simply moved the die over and used the built-in stencil feature to draw in the face off-center. I added a pair of sassy spectacles to the middle cat, using Tiny Accessories 1.


I made the wavy borders using the edge die that comes with the Twist Panel set. You can learn how to use these die sets by watching the assembly videos below:

Here are shopping links for the items used in the card:


Paper Pros Challenge - GREEN Twist Panel birthday card

Our monthly no-pressure for-fun Paper Pros challenge has a theme of GREEN. This could only mean one thing . . . frogs!



I decided on a 4.5" square side-fold card and the Twist Panel die set. I went stash diving to find a couple of frog stamps and the greetings. I colored the frogs with colored pencils and fussy cut them out. The frames and banners come included with the Twist Panel set. The "Celebrate" word is from Word Set 2.


As the card opens the panels start to lift and twist.


Because I chose a side-fold card, the panels end up as a vertical stack in the open position. 


The rubber stamps are all old ones from my stash. The large frog is Bullfrog, by All Night Media (1982). The small frog is Froggie, by Hook's Lines & Inkers, (1993) and the Wart's New is Art Impressions (1996). The Happy Birthday is a clear stamp from Pebbles. To highlight the scalloped frame I used a gel pen to add stitch lines connecting the dots.


Here is the assembly video for the Twist Panel die set:

Make sure you check out the blogs of the other Paper Pros who are participating this month to see more GREEN inspiration.

Save the Crafty YouTubers Video Hop

We are proud to be a sponsor of the Save the Crafty YouTubers Video Hop. 

Sponsor Post YT

A huge thanks to Justine Hovey for organizing this huge event. She explains it so well:

"Our Save the YouTuber hop was put together in order to help out the many crafters that are affected by new YouTube rules that require a number of views and subscribers in order to earn money. Some of the biggest names in the industry, along with some companies, have come together to help those in need and to bring YOU, the audience, some amazing new tutorials from artists you may have never seen before. After you are finished watching each video, you can click the link in the YouTube video description to check out the next person on the list. The more videos you watch and comment on, the better your chances are to win 1 of over 120 prizes!”

For my video I show a fun combination of the Twist Panel die set and the Coffee Charms die set. If you leave a comment on the YouTube video (click to watch and comment on YouTube, not here on the blog) by February 26, 2018, you are entered into a drawing to win the two die sets I used in the video, or a $25 Simon Says Stamp gift certificate, or two Catherine Pooler Designs ink pads. (Note - the ink pad prize is for US residents only.)

Now because the hop is so huge, we were instructed to create shorter videos of around 6 minutes. As you can imagine, it was hard to teach all the parts of this card in that amount of time, so if you end up winning or purchasing these dies you'll probably want to watch the full assembly videos, which can be found here:

This card measures 4.25" x 5.25" when closed, so it will fit nicely in an A2 envelope for mailing and plan on the extra ounce stamp because of the thickness. To make the coffee rings I used a plastic cup and brown ink. The rectangle window and frame were cut using pieces from the Twist Panel set. The coffee cup and hearts came from the Coffee Charms. This is also my card for the Paper Pros February "Love" challenge as I love, love, love my coffee!


As the card is opened the panels start to twist and open. You can see how the coffee cup is attached to the back of one of the panels so it is visible in the closed position, but then disappears as the card is opened.

 To decorate my panels I dangled Coffee charms from frames cut with the pieces that come in the Twist Panel die set. (There are 15 dies included in that set, so you have everything you need for decorating!) I used strips of washi tape around the transparency window pane and added a rectangle at the bottom as a place to sign the card. The patterned paper is an old piece of Little Yellow Bicycle (FLH-107) from my stash.


The Catherine Pooler Designs Inks are so vibrant - they worked perfectly to color the Coffee Charms. The coffee stamp came from Hobby Lobby.


If you are just getting started with hopping I suggest you start on Justine's post here: Save the Crafty YouTuber Video Hop

Karen Burniston die sets are sold at independent and online stores throughout the world. As always, we encourage you to ask for the dies at your local stores. If you are sadly without a local store, you can always shop on our website OR at Simon Says Stamp.


Have fun on the hop!