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The Lost Art of Letter Writing

In this fast moving digital age it’s easy to be a keyboard warrior – typing out smart remarks and pithy commentary. But such expressions are fleeting, lost too soon in the myriad comments that pass by like the floats in a parade – here one minute and gone the next.

There was a time I remember in the not too distant past when the preferred form of communication with far flung family and friends was a letter, written on stationary and mailed with a stamp. Send on a wild ride with a hope and a prayer it would reach it’s destination.

Last month, my sister gave our family a treasured gift – she made a book of letters our father sent back home to our mother during World War II. What a joy it was to see those letters, written in my father’s abominably terrible penmenship. The letters themselves span a two year time period, from 1944 to 1945 (with one random letter from 1942) and slowly reveal the sweet courtship between my parents. You see, when my Dad left to serve, he and my mom were not engaged or even going out. They had been co-workers and had friends in common.

Seeing these letters and reading through them reminded me how powerful it is to hold these items in your hand. They are a tangiable piece of your story and can become a treasured part of your family history for future generations. How sad indeed that we have fallen away from the beautiful art of letter writing and instead communicate with short, abbreviated texts or concise emails. Digital communication feels somewhat cold and detached when compared to the warm, intimate feel of a handwritten letter or note.

Dad’s signature sign off

That’s why I do what I do as a Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator. I want to help people create and send beautiful handmade and handwritten cards to family and friends. Connecting with people on a personal, more intimate level is ever so important in a world that is becoming increasingly divisive. A thoughtful, handwritten note is like a paper hug – it touches the heart.

I love to teach people how to create hand crafted cards – no two are alike. Something magical happens when you put an inked stamp on plain paper – you have elevated it and created something unique. A handmade card with a handwritten note is truly a gift from the heart that will be treasured. Let me show you how. I offer both virtual and in person workshops or I can design a workshop for your venue and event.

Check out my Crafty Klock YouTube channel for video tutorials and sign up for my mailing list so you will know when I have workshops and events you can join. Let’s bring back the lost art of letter writing! Together we can do it. Happy Stamping!

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Celebrate World Watercolor Month

Did you know it is World Watercolor Month? Well now you do! To celebrate I’m kicking off this month’s Lesson@Lunch videos with a quick and easy watercolor technique. This techique is great to create colorful backgrounds for your stamped projects. You can also stamp and die cut the image from the watercolor paper for unique one of a kind creations.

I love how just changing the color family creates a completely different feel with each card. When creating these cards, I used shades of yellow, green, and blue from each of the Color Families and got three completely different moods with each one.

For the first design I used Daffodil Delight, Granny Apple Green, and Coastal Cabana from our Brights color family. This combination just says fun and whimiscal so I paired with the Sale-a-bration Hippest Hippos stamp set. For the second card I used Crushed Curry and Old Olive from the Regals color family and Night of Navy from the Neutrals color family. This combination has a more serious feel and is perfect for the images from the Sale-a-bration Wonderful World stamp set. For the last card I used So Saffron, Soft Seafoam, and Pool Party from the Subtles color family. The soft colors from this combination are the perfect background for images from the Blessing of Home stamp set. (Note: During our Sale-a-bration promotion you get to select a FREE give with every $50 purchase.)

You can check out my YouTube video to see how I used our water painters with ink refills on Fluid 100 water color paper to create these backgrounds.

The Fluid 100 Watercolor Paper comes in 5″ x 7″ sheets. I just cut these in half to create two 3 1/2″ x 5″ pieces which are perfectly sized to add to your card. I used a standard A2 card base (8 1/2″ x 5 1/2″; scored at 4 1/4″) with a second layer measuring 4″ x 5 1/4″. Here’s a list of what I used to create the watercolor backgrounds. When you order everything on this list, you’ll qualify to get a free Sale-a-bration item too!

Product List

I hope you will give watercoloring a try. It’s easy and fun – hey if I can do it anyone can! I am not artistic at all – I can’t even draw a straght line without a ruler!). Be sure to post a picture of your project with the hashtag #craftyklock so I can find it. Happy Stamping!

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Splendid Day

It truly is a splendid day as the Stampin’ Up! 2022 July to December mini catalog is now live! This little catalog is jam packed full of beautiful new products for the holidays and beyond. On Tuesday, I gave a sneak peek of the Santa’s Delivery bundle (you can check out the blog post with links to my YouTube video) and today I am showcasing the beautiful Splendid Day Suite.

There is so much to love in this suite from the artsy stampset to the gorgeous speciality designer series paper. On Thursday night’s Facebook live video I used this suite to create a simple stamping card and a gift bag CASED (copy and share everything) from Stampin’ Up! employee Cindy Schuster. Cindy demonstrated how to make these beautiful bags during the Creativity Now event and I just knew I had to share it with all of you.

To be honest with you, I wasn’t that impressed with the Suite when I first saw it. Once I opened it and started to play with it I just fell in love! You can check out the video tutorial on my Crafty Klock YouTube Channel

Here are the measurements for the two projects:

  • Simple Stamping Card
    • Petal Pink cardstock 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2″; scored at 4 1/4″
    • Basic White cardstock – 1 piece at 4″ x 5 1/4″ (for inside) & 1 piece at 3″ x 4″ for front of card
    • Splendid Day Speciality DSP 4″ x 5 1/4″
    • 12″ – 15″ inches ribbon
  • Gift Bag
    • Speciality DSP – 2 pieces cut to 7″ x 9 1/2″ & scored as follows
      • With the 9 1/2″ side at the top of the scoring tool score at 3/4″ & 8″
      • With the 7″ side at the top of the scoring tool score at 1/2″, 5 1/2″, & 6 1/4″ (at the 6 1/4″ score line only score down to about the 7 1/2″ mark)

Here’s a list of all the products I used to make these projects.

Product List

I hope you give these projects a try, especially the gift bag. It’s easy to make and I know you will find many uses for it. When you post a picture of your project be sure to use the hashtag #craftyklock so we can all see your beautiful cards and gift bags. Happy Stamping!

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Santa Express is Rolling into Town

The 2022 Stampin’ Up! July to December Mini Catalog goes live on Friday, July 1st. One of my favorite new suites is the Santa Express! There’s just something about Santa and trains that make Christmas magical. While Christmas is Santa’s busiest time of year, sometimes he finds time to celebrate other holidays! Like the 4th of July.

All American Santa Express

For this week’s Lesson@Lunch video, I demonstrated how, with just a few small color changes, you can use this set beyond the holidays. Change Santa’s suit to blue, color your train in red and blue and voila! You now have Santa celebrating the 4th of July. Here are the measurements of the cardstock:

  • Sweet Sorbet card base – 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2″; scored at 4 1/4″
  • Starry Sky cardstock 5 1/4″ x 4″ (die cut oval from center of this piece – hole will be covered by top layer)
  • Soft Suede 1 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ for railroad track die cut
  • Basic White cardstock 5″ x 3 3/4″ (for top layer on outside
  • Basic White cardstock 5 1/4″ x 4″ (for inside)
  • Basic White cardstock 5 1/4″ x 4″ for stamping and die cutting train cars and penguins
  • Basic White cardstock 1″ x 2″ for sentiment

You can watch the video tutorial on my Crafty Klock YouTube channel (thanks for subscribing!)

You can purchase all the items used to make this card from my Stampin’ Up! store. The Santa Express Suite (#159597) is not available for purchase until July 1st. Here’s a list of the other products I used to create this card.

Product List

I can’t wait to see what you create with the new Santa’s Express Suite! Be sure to use the hashtag #craftyklock when posting pictures of your projects so we can easily find them. Thanks for reading and happy stamping!

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Let’s Set Sail

I love the Let’s Set Sail bundle from Stampin’ Up! It’s the perfect set to use when creating masculine themed or summer vibe cards.Tuesday on my Lesson@Lunch series I used this bundle to create a quick and easy card suitable for almost everyon on your list.

Let’s Set Sail using the new Tahitian Tide Cardstock and Designer Series Paper

While this card uses the layering diorama dies to create the focal point, you could substiute a 3″ x 4″ rectangle of basic white to keep it in the realm of a simple stamping project. Check out my video tutorial to see how easy it is to create this card.

Here are the measurements for the card:

  • Tahitian Tide cardstock 8 1/2″ x 5 1/2″; scored at 4 1/4″
  • 2022-2024 In Color Designer Series Paper (DSP) 5 1/4″ x 4″
  • Basic White cardstock 5 1/4″ x 4″ (for inside)
  • Basic White cardstock 3 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ for die cut
  • Scrap of Basic White cardstock for sentiment

The Let’s Set Sail bundle is one of two I am featuring for my August Workshop. I couldn’t decide between between the Let’s Set Sail bundle and the Sweetest Cherries Bundle so I decide to use both. The card designs will be suitable for either bundle.

Here is the list of products I used to make the Let’s Set Sail card.

Product List

I can’t wait to see what you create today! Be sure to use the hashtag #craftyklock when you post a picture of your project so we can all find it and see your beautiful work. Happy Stamping!