Saturday, February 28, 2009

Spellbinders Design Team 2009-2010

I really wanted to share this card with you today, tell you the story behind it, and share with you the inspiration I had when creating it. This is the card I made especially for my final submission project for the 2009-2010 Spellbinders Design Team. Sadly, I did not make the final design team, but I was selected to do something fun for Spellbinders over this next year instead. I can't really say much . . . I don't really know much. All I know is that it has something to do with their blog, and being a part of the guest blogger feature they are formulating. I will receive some dies from Spellbinders that I can create something with that they will share on their blog along with a little bit about me. Although I am still disappointed I didn't make the Design Team, I'm very honored to have been one of the 24 finalists, and to have an opportunity to have my work featured on their website!

I'm just loving these Spellbinder dies. I really like how they are so easy to use and how you can emboss with them to get a real finished look. I also love how easy they are to store and transport to all my stamping retreats and events . . . no more punches to lug around.

Now I would like to share the inspiration I had when creating this card. The day I made it was a very sad day . . . it was the birthday of my sweet little God Puppy Sophie. Sophie was a little black tea cup toy poodle who would have been celebrating her fourth birthday that very day. Tragically, Sophie passed away this past fall of a congenital heart defect. Sweet little Sophie changed my life the day I met her. We never had pets as I was growing up and I was never a dog person before . . . but that sweet little black puppy with all her love and kisses and her gentle soul made me fall in love with her instantly and I knew at that very moment that I needed a Sophie in my life. Had it not been for Sophie . . . I would have never known the love of a puppy and would have never been blessed with my sweet little Willow . . . whom you all know I love and adore! So this card was made in Sophie's honor because every time I think of her . . . I think of a sweet little butterfly flying off to the heavens and I will love her always. Rest in peace sweet little Sophie Girl . . . you will forever be loved and missed by me and your God Sister Willow.

Thank you so much for stopping by. If you have a story about a special puppy in your life, please feel free to share it.

I will be back soon with more projects, a Spellbinders prize, and a lot more fun stuff.

Big stamping hugs!

~ Pegi


Cardstock: Bazzill Basics Paper
Patterned paper: (Porcelain collection) Basic Grey
Rubber stamp: (Daisy) Sugar Nellie Stamps
Acrylic stamp: (Love Always from All Occasion collection) Hero Arts
Dye Ink: (Rich Cocoa and Tuxedo black) Memento
Color medium: Copic Markers
Accents: (Porcelain collection glazed brads) Basic Grey; (Crystals) Swarovski and Making Memories
Fibers: (Deep Straw satin ribbon) Yours Truly from Archivers; (Green vintage ribbon) Making Memories
Adhesive: (Stampin’ Dimensionals) Stampin’ Up!; (2 way glue) Zig Memory System; (Dot 'n' Roller Adhesive) Kokuyo
Dies: (Butterfly Reflections, Classic Scalloped Heart, and Labels One) Spellbinders
Punches: (Large Oval punch and Ticket punch) Stampin’ Up!
Tools: (die cut machine) Cuttlebug, (embossing mat) Spllbinders
Other: (Gelly Roll pen) Sakura

Monday, February 23, 2009

Puppies, Kittens, Spellbinders, and Blog Candy Winner!

Hello to all my very dear stamping, scrapping, cardmaking, and papercrafting friends. It is so good to be back at my blog again . . . reconnecting with lost friends . . . checking out all the fabulous new projects my dear friends are posting on their blogs . . . and shopping online for some of the wonderful new products that are available out there.

I just have to say this . . . I am so overwhelmed with the beautiful comments left on my "Basket of Basic Grey Bling Blog Candy" post. These beautiful women never cease to amaze me. One of our fellow crafters is a little down on her luck right now . . . and all these women have decided that it is more important to give than to receive. Cheryl, I am so terribly sorry about the loss of your sweet little Abby. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your husband during these hard economic times. I pray that he will find work soon and you will be able to get yourselves settled in again very very soon. I think it was unanimous that you should receive the basket of goodies. Please send me an e-mail with an address where I might send your basket to you. I know it's not much . . . and it doesn't even begin to take away the pain of the loss of your sweet little puppy, but please know that it was given out of love and friendship from your stamping sisters.

I thought today would be a good day to post this scrapbook page I made especially for the Spellbinders 2009 Design Team Contest. This is one of the four projects I made that landed me in the finals. You have already seen the "stamped" project I made . . . the journal, and now I would like to show you my "page layout". Everyone that knows me knows that I am not a scrapbooker. You can only scrap your dog and your cat so many times. I do scrapbook for other people at times, and I have done a heritage book or two for the relatives, but I typically tend to make cards and "stuff" I can sell at the boutiques and craft shows. So when I saw that I needed to submit a page layout . . . I got a little nervous at first . . . and then ended up having the time of my life on this page. Everyone that knows me knows how much I love animals . . . so I found it only fitting that I use this picture of the beautiful little "Tabby" as my inspiration. Tabby loves to sit in the garden and watch the butterflies and the birds . . . so this special little page is in honor of sweet Tabby with the beautiful green eyes and the beautiful white wiskers and ear tufts.

I made my special page using Crate Paper's Mia collection. I cut the curvy pieces free hand and laid it all together to fit just right. The scalloped strips were cut with my good ol' fashioned Fiskars scalloped scissors and laid underneath the curvy pieces. The beautiful butterfly is Technique Tuesday's Boho Butterfly stamped on Mia dp and cut out and mounted with a dimensional to give it the look of flight. The Tabby letters are from Wilma by Basic Grey. I used Versa Magic ink to cover them. The brown butterfly and brown scallopy image behind Tabby's picture were made using rub ons from the Mia collection. The pewter brads are from Making Memories. I have a special tip for using brads on your projects. I hate to punch holes in my projects, and how do you mount a brad on a wooden frame since you can't punch a hole in wood? I use a small pair of needle nose pliers and bend the stem of the brad back and forth a bunch of times until it breaks off. Repeat with the second brad stem. And then I use a large clear glue dot, cut it in half, mold it into the brad, and adhere it to my project. It sits down tight on your project, doesn't move around in a punched hole, and you don't have any unsightly punch marks on your project. Give it a try sometime and let me know how you like it. I sure do use a lot more embellishments with this method. I should have invented nailheads (brads without stems) . . . I could have made a fortune. They are just now coming out, and basically I have been making my own nailheads with brads for years.

Thank you again for stopping by and for your continued support in my work as I continue to learn and grow in this wonderful world of papercrafting.

Big stamping hugs to everyone!!!


Monday, February 16, 2009

Basket of Basic Grey Bling Blog Candy!

I dare ya to say that five times!!! I have been craving candy all day, chocolate candy, so I decided to make up a little basket of "blog candy" to get my mind off the other kind. No occasion really . . . I just decided that it was time to have a little fun here at Bella Willow and see what all of my dear stamping, cardmaking, scrapbooking, altering, and papercrafting friends are up to these days. I took a long break from blogging due to a very hectic work schedule, but I am back now and I hope you will still come and visit once in a while, and say hello.

You all know what I have been up to . . . working, taking care of my sweet Willow and Isabella, stamping with my friends, and just enjoying life. So come on over to Bella Willow and tell me what you have been up to. Tell me about your latest paper crafting project, achievement, favorite stamp set, or just say hi and tell me what you would like to see more of here at Bella Willow. If you have a favorite place to shop that you would like to tell everyone about, or you own a company, let me know and I will add it to my recommended shopping list. If you have a blog that you would like us to know about, let me know and I will add it to the Blogs list.

So don't be shy . . . leave a message for a chance to win this most fabulous basket of Basic Grey bling blog candy. This cute little wire basket is full of all kinds of goodies for your stamping and papercrafting enjoyment. You will receive a stamp set from Rhonna Farrar, a spool of ribbon, a little book to embellish, a book from Kaisercraft, some bling, some brads from Making Memories, and . . . . drum roll please . . . a brand new 6 x 6 pad of paper from Basic Grey in the much anticipated Porcelain line. It is absolutely gorgeous. Archiver's just got it in a few days ago and I bought two so I could share one.

I will be randomly picking a name on Wednesday evening and announcing the winner. Good luck everyone!!!

Thank you for stopping by and thanks for your posts.

Big stamping hugs.

~ Pegi

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Sugared Shadow Box

Hello my dear friends! Just a very quick post here this evening to say hello and show you this little shadow box I made for a dear friend who is having a baby girl in a few months. How many of you know that Basic Grey is my favorite paper line? I fell in love with Basic Grey a few years ago and have been hooked ever since. I just love how it has that vintage shabby look and how all the patterns coordinate so well. Any quilters out there? Basic Grey's paper reminds me of fabric you could make a quilt with . . . which reminds me . . . they do make fabric now and the Sultry line is due out very very soon. Right now I am just counting the days until my Porcelain 6 x 6 paper pads arrive from Embellish It! and waiting anxiously for the release of the beautiful line Wisteria.

Speaking of Embellish It! . . . I ordered my paper pads very late last night . . . and they were already shipped today. Such great service, and I will definitely order from them again.

Now let me tell you about my little Sugared Shadow Box. If you click on the photograph, you can see the detail and read the verse a little easier. Anyway, I was snooping around at my local Goodwill store where you can find the best picture frames, little boxes, and containers to alter. I found this little shadow box that had some circa 1980 sea shore stuff inside and I knew right away that with a little tearing apart and cleaning up and I could make it totally new. So . . . I cleaned it up really good and started with a naked empty shadow box. I then used the pink paper from the Sugared line and my ATG gun and adhered it to the front, top, sides, and bottom of the frame, sanded it down with one of those big black emery boards, and then chalk inked the sides. I set that aside and made a square card that would fit perfectly inside the shadow box . . . and there you have it . . . a handmade altered baby gift that my friend can either hang on the wall or set on a shelf in her sweet little baby girl's nursery.

Thanks again for stopping by, and I hope you are all having a good week.

Big stamping hugs.

~ Pegi

Shadow Box from the Goodwill
Designer paper from the Basic Grey Sugared line (6 x 6 pad)
Rub-ons from the Basic Grey Sugared line
Brads are Basic Grey Sugared Glazed Brads
Pink Swarovski Crystals

Monday, February 9, 2009

Spellbinders and Fancy Pants

Many of my friends and family have encouraged me to take my paper crafting to the next level this year, and have suggested that I try out for a design team, sell my items on Etsy, try to get my papercrafting projects in some of the magazines, and of course to blog more so they know what's going on with me.

My Etsy site is up and running (I just need to finish adding all my new creations that I have been working on), my blog has been redesigned thanks to the fabulous work of Stewart Goodwin of Goodwin Media, and I was blessed to have one of my cards published in Ready, Set, Create magazine.

It doesn't get any better than this I thought . . . and then came the call for the Spellbinders 2009 Design Team. Oh my gosh . . . you know how it is when you go blog visiting and you fall in love with the stamp one of your fellow papercrafters used on her card and you just gotta have it . . . well that is how I felt when I saw the notice for the Design Team. I love Spellbinders and especially love all the new fabulous products they are putting out.

So . . . to make a long story short . . . I made four items especially for the competition, and I just found out today that 24 very talened paper crafter extrordinaires were chosen to move on to the finals . . . and I'm one of them! Stacey Caron who is the owner of Spellbinders called us all "Paper Crafter Extrordinaires". Wow . . . I love it!!!!

I want to thank Spellbinders for this most awesome opportunity, and I want to wish the 23 other amazing women who were chosen good luck! The names of the finalists are published on the Spellbinders website and the competition is stiff. There are some fabulous women on that list and I am so honored to be among them.

I have one more design challenge to submit for the final round and then the winners will be announced on February 25th. I want to thank my dear friends Tami and Judy for encouraging me to try out for this most prestigious design team. My final project will be in your honor.

Okay . . . so on to today's featured project . . . my Spellbinders Fancy Pants journal. I've been making journals for the craft shows and boutiques for the past few years, and realized that I've never made one for me. I never make anything for myself . . . so this journal was made especially for me and the goals that I have set for myself for the year.

I used Fancy Pants paper for the entire journal. The fun colorful wording on the front of the journal was part of the paper collection. I love using tabs on things and have always wanted to make tabs on one of my journals. Did you know that those tabs are really the Spellbinders Labels One dies cut in half? I love it. I have seen the Labels One die stamped on a lot, but I loved the versatility of the die by being able to cut it in half and make a label out of it. I then thought of five categories I would like for my journal and hand stamped the words with an alphabet set by Hero Arts. Instead of chalk inking the edges of the journal like I usually do . . . I opted for a more raggedy look and distressed everything with one of those big fat black emery boards for your fingernails. I finished it off with fat red ribbon and used the very best buttons from my button stash to put the finishing touches on. This was one of the projects I submitted to Spellbinders for the design competition.

Thank you again to all my dear friends and family for all your encouragement and support as I continue to grow as a "Paper Crafter Extrordinaire" and big hugs to all my other dear Paper Crafter Extrordinaires who continue to inspire and amaze me.

Big stamping hugs

~ Pegi

Composition Journal from Staples (Grid paper)
Fancy Pants paper from The Daily Grind line ("Chalkboard" for the journal, "Notebook Doodles" for the 2" band, "Cards" for the saying, and an 8 x 8 paper pack for the tabs)
Spellbinders Labels One Dies
Hero Arts Alphabet Stamp Set
Ribbon from Archivers
Buttons by Foo Fa La
Black Ink from Momento

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Bittersweet Valentine's Day

Leave it to Basic Grey to come up with yet another beautiful line of paper just in time for my favorite card making holiday. Bittersweet is the name of this latest creation from Basic Grey. The rich fabulous shades of reds, pinks, browns, and hints of lavender are used in beautiful patterns of stripes, big florals, mini florals, dots, and swirls that give it that famous funky vintage shabby Basic Grey look. I prefer the 6 x 6 pads of paper because the patterns are shrunk down and perfect for cardmaking and altering items.

At the suggestion of many of my dear friends and family, I decided that I would like to try and get one of my cards published this year. I am very excited to let you know that I submitted one of my Valentine's for publication in Ready Set Create magazine, and it was chosen for the February/March issue. Ready Set Create is a beautiful online magazine and the February/March issue will be out soon and has more than 60 cards in it. I am so honored that they chose my card and I can't wait to see the magazine.

Thank you everyone for coming back to BellaWillow after my long absence. It was so nice to read all your comments and doggie stories. Judy was the winner with her cute little poodle story and has won the card. Please send me your snail mail Judy and I will get that out to you.

Thanks for stopping by and I will see you again soon with some new creations.

~ Pegi

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Bella Willow Got A Makeover!!!

Hello to all my dear friends and family. It was quite the busy year for me in 2008, which left no time for some of the fun things in life . . . like stamping and blogging . . . but after so many requests from all my dear wonderful stamping friends, co-workers, customers, and family . . . I'm back! And . . . with a brand new look! BellaWillow got a new blog banner and some other fun stuff and we are loving it! I hope you like the new look.

This whole great adventure started after my cards were featured in a special Valentine's Day issue in my local newspaper. I then had a very successful 2008 craft show and boutique season. I sold a lot of cards, journals, picture frames, and altered items at three craft shows in my area and I sold over 200 items at the Holly House Boutique which went for three weekends during the months of November and December. That was a lot of fun. A lot of my friends and family kept asking me to send them pictures of what I had made. I have to tell you though . . . it was such a busy year for me . . . there was no time for picture taking. At one point during the year I was working 60-70 hours a week at the bank . . . and trying to find time to keep up with my crafting, taking care of sweet Willow and Izzy, and cleaning my house. I'll let you in on a little secret . . . my house is still kind of messy . . . but we're getting there! Oh yeh . . . . I had a horrible bronchitis/pneumonia during the months of October, November, and December, all while I was trying to make things for the boutique. After three rounds of antibiotics . . . I am just now getting over this horrible cough.

And then when I didn't think crafting could get any better, and after many special orders throughout the holiday season, I decided to create my own Etsy site so I could sell my crafts year round. So . . . after much research as to what all I was missing . . . an Etsy banner, business cards, a new matching look for my blog, a ditigal signature, and some other fun graphics . . . Stewart Goodwin of Goodwin Media designed all these beautiful new things for me. I still can't figure out how to get the digital signature, watermark, and cute "Supplies" graphic to work, but hopefully someone out there in blog land will come to my rescue . . . hint . . . hint!

Stewart Goodwin was awesome to work with. I had a vision of what I wanted, and he totally gave us all that and more when he designed Bella Willow's new look and all the accessories that go with it. He has designed websites for many famous clients including Donna Downey and Rhonna Farrar. Thank you Stewart!!

So here is my featured card for today. I made this card for all my dog loving friends using a stamp from Stamping Bella and coloring it in with my Copic markers. The paper is from DCWV and the ribbon is from American Crafts.

I would love to give this card away to one of my dear blog readers. So leave me a comment about your favorite dog, or a cute little dog story, or just a comment on how to use my digital signature and blog supplies graphic, and I will randomly draw a name on Monday, January 12, 2009 and send someone out there the little doggie card.

It's great to be back, and thanks so much for stopping by!

Big stamping hugs!


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

"Hey Sugar" Picture Frame and Matching Card

Hello to all my dear stamping and blogging friends. Thank you everyone for all the beautiful e mails congratulating me on being featured in the "This Week" newspapers. Kara Hildreth did an absolutely outstanding job of putting together such a great piece. Thank you Kara for the fun experience and the beautiful story featuring me and my cards. I can't wait to send a copy to my Grandma who just had her 101st birthday this past Saturday.

I am starting to branch out from my normal cards and journls into a little "home decor". Lori from My Eyes . . . My Heart has asked me to alter a few home decor items to sell in her beautiful store.

When Lori first asked me to design some "altered items" for her store, I had no idea what I was going to make, but I knew I wanted something really special that she would be proud to show off to her customers.

I actually went to my local Goodwill store and found many many fun wooden frames and little boxes that I thought would look great with a little paper, ribbons, rub-ons, buttons, etc. to try and create a work of art that someone may enjoy displaying in their home.

My first project was designed using a flat wooden frame that I put paper on and then added rub-ons and finished off with a chipboard ornament. The paper is from the Hey Sugar line designed by Cosmo Cricket, and the ornament is from their Buck Naked chipboard collection. I finished the frame with some brown rub-ons and then inked the edges with Sahara Sand Versa Magic chalk ink. I also made a matching card using all the same Cosmo Cricket products.
I hope you are all having a great week, and I will be back again this week to share some more fun projects I have been working on.

Big stamping hugs.

~ Pegi

Thursday, February 7, 2008

For You!!!

Hello to all my dear friends, family, co-workers, and especially my stamping sisters. I want to thank you all for your e mails wondering where the heck I am, and for your continued support as I continue to settle into my job at the bank. I am absolutely loving my job and business is really starting to pick up for me. It cuts into my stamping time though . . . and my time with Willow and Isabella . . . but I'm learning to deal with that. Even Willow is really learning to entertain herself and of course Isabella is content to just be snoozing somewhere out of the puppy's way.

I have so many wonderful things to share with you all. The little store that I used to teach at in Farmington sadly went out of business, but a new and even better store opened up in it's place. The name of the store is My Eyes . . . My Heart . . . The owner's name is Lori Brausen and she is absolutely awesome!!! She contacted me right before she opened up her store and asked if I would like to sell some of my cards and altered items, as well as teach again. I felt so honored and was very excited to accept. Lori is not only getting a lot of new merchandise for the scrapbookers, but she is going out of her way to make us cardmarkers happy too. She got a whole new shipment of Technique Tuesday stamp sets in and a lot of new paper and embellishments. She carries different iventory than Archivers, so it is fun to be able to shop at both stores. If you live anywhere near Farmington, please go and check out Lori's beautiful store.

Okay . . . now some even more wonderful news. I was contacted by a reporter for the This Week newspaper who wanted to do a feature story on me and my cardmaking. They are putting together a special Valentine's edition and wanted to feature me as an artist of the week. I don't consider myself an artist by any means, and I was so honored that they even thought my work was worthy of putting in a newspaper. So they came and took a lot of pictures of my cards . . . Valentines especially . . . and sat down and interviewed me. I had never done anything like that ever and although I was a little nervous at first, I had such a nice time. The reporter was awesome and my story will be in the newspaper this weekend. I will have to let you all know how it turns out.

The card I am featuring today was made for my fabulous boss for her birthday. Since her birthday is so close to Valentine's Day, I decided to use that wonderful new Basic Grey Two Scoops paper that I recently picked up at Archivers. I also inked up my new Stampin' Up! One of a Kind stamp set for this card. The ribbon is from American Crafts and the brads are from Basic Grey.

Thank you for stopping by today and I promise I won't be a stranger. I have been working on some wonderful projects, and I am very excited to share them with you.

Also, I want to share a picture of my sweet little Willow with you. She recently discovered a new spot to hang out . . . the wicker chair in the loft. She thinks she is a big girl now and very proud of the fact that she can jump up into the chair just like "Kitty".

Thank you everyone for stopping by!
Big stamping hugs!
~ Pegi and Willow

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Thank You To My Secret Santa!

Hello to all my dear stamping and blogging friends. Life has been hectic, as usual, and it seems my stamping and blogging has had to be put aside for awhile as I continue to settle into my new position at the bank. I am still loving my job, although I do missing stamping and blogging and working from home. I miss spending time with my sweet little Willow but she is always waiting at the top of the steps for me . . . tail just a wigglin' . . . when I get home from a long day of work.

Now I have to tell you all about this awesome Ten Days of Christmas we have going on at work right now. For the past nine days I have been receiving special surprise "treats" everyday in my office from my Secret Santa. On the tenth day I will receive my gift and Santa's true identity shall finally be revealed. Whoever has my name is certainly spoiling me. I have received a lot of chocolates, cookies, chocolate covered peanuts, Frescas, Caribou gift cards, chap stick, and this Chatterbox designer paper. Hey . . . how did they know I can't resist some great designer paper??? LOL . . . I guess they all know I'm a card maker.

So for this card I decided to make it a thank you card for my awesome Secret Santa. I used the beautiful Chatterbox designer paper and I dug out my SU Delight In Life stamp set because I thought the flowers would match the paper perfectly. I loved the rich chocolate chip and blues and greens in this beautiful paper and tried to coordinate my ribbons to bring out that beautiful brown in the paper.

I also wanted to show you some pictures I took last weekend when my sweet little Willow had a sleepover with her best friend Izzy. Look how cute these two are together. Don't let that cuteness fool you though . . . those little girls were wild!!! They love to play together. I can't believe I could get them to sit still long enough for these pictures. Look at those little cuties!!!

I hope everyone is having a great week and getting excited for Christmas. Thanks for stopping by and I will see you again soon!

Big hugs!!!

~ Pegi