You Are a Blessing Card Featuring the Fresh Peonies Stamps and Dies

Hi Everyone! This is Bev. Today we are welcoming the very creative Ana Anderson to our blog! I am so glad you are joining us. And you're going to be happy too when you see Ana's beautiful classic card and her step-by-step instructions! Take it away, Ana.


Hello friends! Ana here today, with a card created with the gorgeous new addition to Greenhouse Society Collection of flower stamps and dies.

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When I first saw this Fresh Peonies stamp set I couldn’t wait to color it with as many coloring mediums as I could think of. For today’s card I chose to watercolor this beautiful image with Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers.

To start I stamped the image with Versafine Onyx Black ink and chose the marker colors I would be using on it – Dark Pink and Light Pink for the flowers and Mid Green, Pale Green and Deep Green for the leaves.

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Once the image was colored I used the matching Fresh Peonies die to cut it out and started working on the background.

To create the frame, I used the largest Essential Stitched Labels die and cut a piece of striped patterned paper I had in my stash.

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Next, I dry-embossed a piece of white cardstock to add some texture and interest to my background.

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I stamped the sentiment (which came with the Fresh Peonies stamp set), trimmed it into a flag shape and then started assembling my card.

To my card base, I added a piece of black layering cardstock, then adhered the embossed panel in the center.

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To complete the card, I added the die cut patterned paper frame, my beautiful peony image, and the sentiment using foam tape.

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Thank you so much for stopping by today, and until next time I wish you Happy Crafting!


Thanks so much for sharing your project with us, Ana. I hope you all enjoyed seeing Ana's card and tutorial. If you'd like to see more of Ana'a projects, here'a link to her blog. Plus you can see more cards and tags featuring the Fresh Peony stamps and dies on our website!

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Masking a background for the Kind Cosmo flower.

Hello, Julie here. Today I am sharing a video showing you how to use masking to create a watercolor background on a flower card. (I've also made a step-by-step tutorial of the same project, in case you would rather read than listen.) I used the the Kind Cosmo stamp set for my card but this technique would work well with many of the stamp sets in the Greenhouse Society Collection.


Step-by-Step Tutorial

Starting Out

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To begin I stamped my Kind Cosmo image on watercolor paper with waterproof ink.


 

Marking the background

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First step was figuring out and marking where I wanted my background to be. I used a ruler that has a zero in the middle on one side, so I could keep things symmetrical. I decided that I wanted my masked background to be two inches wide. I centered the ruler at the top of the page, marked it at 1 inch on each side of the zero, and then I marked the same points down at the bottom. Next was the height of the masked area. I decided that the masked area should be 2.5 inches tall, and that it didn’t need to be centered top to bottom, so I centered the ruler vertically on the side, then looked at my zero and marked 1 inch below zero, and 1.5 inches above. I marked that on each side, and then used the ruler to find and mark where the lines intersected with little tiny pencil marks. I didn’t want those marks to be very big or dark, so they’d erase easily later.

Next was the masking part. I took my washi tape, and stuck it down just over those little marks, so that it barely covered them. This is so that when it came time to remove the mask and erase the lines, I wasn't erasing through paint. I put down all four sides and pressed the tape down to seal it. I sealed it well enough that paint couldn’t get under it, but not so well that when I removed it I tore the paper.


 

Starting the Gradation

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Once the masking was done, I was ready to start my painting. I wanted my background to be sort of a gradient from green to blue. I got my watercolors set up, along with my handy dandy water pen, and a piece of paper towel. I started out with my water wash. I didn't start out all that precisely, because it’s just open background space, but I did get precise when I came to around the edges of the flowers. I wanted them to be white, which is why I decided to do a background – so they’d stand out, and not look like I just didn’t bother to color.


 

Turquoise Next!

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I took the green about half way up, and then started in with the turquoise. I started with the wash, and as I went I took the opportunity to touch up a bit of the green that didn’t go on quite as smoothly as I would have liked. I overlapped the green a bit to get a smooth gradation, adding a little green to the turquoise. Once again, I went more slowly and precisely around the edges of the flowers. I spread the turquoise to about three quarters of the way up the background. I went back in around the edges of the flowers and darkened the color up just a touch to add contrast.

I kept an eye on it as it dried, since as I go back over previous colors, sometimes I end up with uneven spots. When that happens, I just go back in with my color and touch things up.

 


Dark Blue

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I started in on my darker, bluer blue next, beginning with the water wash before the blue. I got tired of adding blue slowly, so I added a bit more water to my blue paint block, and picked up a lot of color on my brush. Because I got my water wash in really well, I could just touch my brush to the page, and my extra intense load of color flowed from the corner beautifully. I may have put a bit too much color in here, but I just used my brush and clean water to pick up and spread it out a bit. If I had decided that this was too much color to spread around, I could have used a dry paper towel to blot it up while it was still super wet, and then started over again.

And because I had such an intense bit of blue here, I added a bit more of the turquoise to balance the intensity.


 

Yellow Centers

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Next were the centers. First the water wash, and then I went in to the centers of the flowers, adding a bit of yellow to each. As Bev has pointed out, cosmos come in all kinds of colors, but they all have a nice yellow center. So you can be pretty creative with the color of the petals, and as long as it has the yellow center, you’re good. I added a little bit of orange for some shading, and kept going on it. I went back into the colors, adding a bit more color, smoothing and spreading the color some more, and then darkened the color around the flowers for some extra contrast.


 

The Unmasking!

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Next I very carefully took off my masking tape. I went very slowly so I could stop if the paper started to tear, and I pulled it off at a very sharp angle, which seems to help avoid the tearing.


 

Clean Up

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After the tape was all off, I took a clean eraser (clean is important, as a dirty eraser can leave marks) and removed my little marks. The corner marks are most important, because I planned to cut the paper down to go on my card and would end up cutting off the marks on the edges anyway. I went around and erased all the marks.


 

Finishing

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As you can see, my example piece has been cut down to about 4 by 5.25 inches, and put on a 4.25 by 5.5 inch card front. My final piece is on the right. I really had fun with this project!

I hope you enjoyed learning a little bit about masking a background and that you can use something like this on your next project. Thanks for stopping by!



Friendship Cards with the Fresh Peonies Stamps and Crafting Dies

Happy Thursday Morning Everyone! This is Bev here with a quick introduction. Today I am happy to welcome Yasmin Diaz to the Technique Tuesday blog. Yasmin is an amazing card making artist. I know you will enjoy seeing her tutorial and the beautiful cards she made with the new Fresh Peonies stamps and matching dies!


Hi everyone, Yasmin here. Today I’m thrilled to be sharing these friendship cards that I created featuring the Fresh Peonies Stamp Set and Fresh Peonies Crafting Dies. They were so much fun and easy to make, so in today’s post I’ll be sharing with how I white heat embossed, and water colored them! Without further ado, let’s jump into the tutorial.

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To begin with I started by scoring two A2 standard size white card bases, and I set them aside while I started working on the card panels. For the first card I white heat-embossed the peony cluster directly on the watercolor card panel, and I water colored with coral and green tones. Then, to make it stand out, I added a touch of light blue to the background. Once the water coloring was dry I gold heat-embossed one of the sentiments, and to finish it off I adhered the back of it with double sided tape to one of the white card bases.

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For the second card I white heat embossed the peonies on a piece of watercolor paper, then I water colored it with orange and green tones. Once the water coloring was done, I set it aside while I ran though the die cutting machine a piece of gold mirrored card stock along with the Friend die included in the fresh peonies crafting dies, as I wanted to combine the ‘Friend’ word with one of sentiments from the stamp set. For the card layout I adhered the friend word in one of the lower sides of the card, and then I gold heat embossed one of the sentiments underneath it. Finally, I used the Fresh Peonies crafting die to die cut the peonies cluster. And to finish it off I adhered the peony cluster above the sentiment, and I adhered the card panel to the other white card base.

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Here is a closer look on the die cutting and heat embossing along with the water coloring using the beautiful Fresh Peonies stamps and crafting dies.

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I hope you had a great time here with me, and most of all that you get a bit of inspiration from the cards that I shared today. Thank you and happy crafting.

Written by Yasmin Diaz. All photography provided by Yasmin Diaz.



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Tips and Project Ideas for the Build a Birdhouse Crafting Dies

Hi everyone. This is Bev. I have been having a lot of fun playing with the Build a Birdhouse crafting dies and I have so many tips I want to share with you for using them. You can watch the video, or keep reading to make sure you see all the project ideas and see all the tips too!


Tip 1: Don't Cut Apart Your Dies!

Now my first tip may seem a little odd. I recommend that you leave these dies connected. In other words, don’t nip apart the connectors between each of these dies. Here is why. First, some of these dies are small and easy to lose. Second, these birdhouse pieces are designed to be mixed and matched in a bunch of different colors. Since none of these dies are nested just leave the dies connected and make lots of die cut roofs, perches, and birdhouses. And don't forget that in addition to cardstock and patterned paper, these dies will cut out felt, thin chipboard, cork, thin wood paper, fabric, and more. Those unusual materials make great birdhouse parts!

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Tip 2: Keep All the Extra Die-Cut Birdhouse Pieces!

My next tip is don’t throw away the extra birdhouse pieces. Instead keep them together for future projects. Here at the Technique Tuesday offices, we keep the dies in a plain envelope and we keep all those pieces in that same envelope with the dies. Having all these extra birdhouse pieces in one place makes it easy to create a quick card, gift tag or scrapbook layout later.

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Tip 3: Use a Glue Pen or Fine Tip Adhesive Applicator!

Once you’ve picked out the pieces you are going to use for a specific project, you need to adhere them together. If you are working with paper, I recommend using a glue pen to adhere small, die-cut pieces together. I prefer this Quickie Glue Pen. A high-quality glue pen lets you add a small amount of glue right where you need it and dries clear too.

If you are working with more porous materials, like felt or chipboard, you’ll need a stronger adhesive and more of it. For these porous materials, I prefer this On Point Glue. Now the first thing I like about the On Point Glue is that it has a very fine tip that lets me get the glue where I want it to be. It also has a little pieces of metal, really a pin, inside the lid that slides down into the tip to keep it from clogging. And the adhesive is pretty strong so it will keep these heavier materials together better.

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Tip 4: Make the Entrances Look Dark and Shadowy!

Once you have those pieces adhered, you need to decide what to do about the hole in the front of the birdhouse. Now, one option is to leave the hole open. But I wanted it to look dark and shadowed, so here’s how I do that. I cut out a piece of black or dark shadow colored cardstock. Then I adhere it to the back of the birdhouse. Not only does this provide the shadow color, the dark piece is actually behind the birdhouse so it adds just a bit of dimensional interest too.

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Tip 5: Cut Down Your Birdhouses!

Another tip is that these die-cut birdhouses are designed to be cut down. We made them this way so that you could adjust the size to fit better on your specific project. Plus being able to make different sized birdhouses lets you make more visually interesting projects. To make different-sized birdhouses, just trim off the bottom of the one-hole or three-hole birdhouse die cuts. Then add roofs or perches!

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Tip 6: Cut Out Some White Pieces and Add Patterns!

My final tip is to also consider die-cutting out some birdhouse pieces from white cardstock or watercolor paper. You can use a fine tip pen to add a wood grain pattern or some other pattern to your birdhouses. Or use your favorite coloring medium to add shadows and highlights. For example, Tam used Copic markers to make it look like there are red shingles or corrugated steel on the roof of this die-cut birdhouse accent.

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I hope you enjoyed these tips and projects featuring the Build a Birdhouse dies. And I hope you are inspired to go make some cards, gift tags, or accents for your scrapbook pages using some of your own die-cut birdhouses.

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PS: The Build a Birdhouse dies are part of our Fresh Cut Studio Collection of Crafting Dies which are all less than $10. And if you become a member of the Fresh Cut Studio auto-ship program, you'll pay even less!

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Life at Home Layout Tutorial Featuring the Love Home Stamp Set

Hi Everyone! This is Bev. I am so excited to welcome Ashley Horton to our blog today. I have admired Ashley's traditional scrapbook layouts and Traveler's Notebook projects for a long time. When she agreed to be a Guest Designer for us, I knew we would see some awesome projects. I hope you enjoy Ashley's tutorial!



Ashley-Horton-30079345_175526506432994_5259319270793281536_nHi there! I’m Ashley Horton, and I’m so excited to be a Guest Designer with Technique Tuesday during the months of March and April. Today, I am sharing a layout in my Traveler’s Notebook, using the Love Home Stamp Set . I love working with stamp sets, because they are so easy to use for any project you are creating, whether it’s Traveler’s Notebooks, cards, scrapbook layouts, etc.




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I started my Traveler's Notebook layout with a large photo and paired it with a Pie Chart patterned paper in the TN insert. In the center of the Pie Chart, I stamped the "Life at Home" sentiment as the title of my layout. Sentiments in your stamp sets, can easily be used as the title for your project, and I love that you can use them over and over again. Then I added a little bit of journaling and embellishing to complete the left-hand side of the layout.



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I thought it would be fun to include some stamping on the photo, so I used the Oval & Rectangle Stitched Label Dies with a rainbow patterned paper. I loved that the rainbow patterned paper coordinated with the Pie Chart colors. Then I stamped two sentiments in black ink, from the Love Home stamp set onto the die cut pieces. I placed one at the top right-hand side and one at the bottom left hand side of the photo. Placing the two stamped sentiments this way, helped to add great balance to my TN layout.



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And I just couldn’t finish this TN layout, without using the cute bird house image from the stamp set. I knew it would be great to use it to create a fussy cut embellishment. I stamped the bird house in black ink on two different patterned papers. Next, I cut out the pieces and trimmed away the bottom portion of the bird house on one of the patterned papers. I adhered the roof to the other part of the bird house and then placed it at the top of the Pie Chart.



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I hope you’ve found some inspiration for using the Love Home Stamp Set on your upcoming projects. And try mixing the stamps with the Oval & Rectangle Stitched Labe Dies to add some extra interest to whatever you’re working on!



I hope you all enjoyed Ashley's tutorial and Traveler's Notebook project as much as I have!

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PS: If you'd like to see more project ideas for card makers, memory keepers and general paper crafters featuring the Love Home stamp set, don't miss the Introducing the Love Home Stamp Set Video!

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Tips and Project Ideas for the Love Home Stamp Set

Hi everyone… this is Bev here. Today I am going to share some tips for using the Love Home stamp set. I hope you enjoy seeing all the projects and hearing about all the tips in the video! (Or you can just read the tips below.)


When we were designing this stamp set, we were thinking about scrapbookers, pocket page crafters, folks who are doing traveler’s notebooks, and really anyone who makes memory keeper projects. So in the video, I'll start with those projects. But we have also been using these stamps to make cards, gift tags, and some home décor projects, so I’ll show you some of those too.


Tip 1: Make photo captions ahead of time.

While I have a stamp set out, I like to make some extra accents and embellishments. I have found that using neutral colors or a rainbow of my favorite colors works best. The neutral or rainbow-colored photo captions and embellishments coordinate with lots of different photos and are ready to be used immediately in a traveler's notebook or on scrapbook pages.

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Tip 2: Use stamps to make journal card prompts.

Often stamp sets designed for memory keepers make great journaling card prompts. And the Love Home stamp set seems to be especially well suited for that. Using this stamp set, I made a deck of journal cards for my friend to use to document life in her new home.

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Tip 3: Use a photo caption to hide something.

When I printed out this picture of my cousin's travel trailer, I was mostly focused on the beautiful sky and green landscape. But when I actually sat down to scrapbook my dream of going RVing with my husband, I realized there were some RV hookups in the lower, right corner of the picture. Somehow they weren't part of my RV dreams. I think one of those pre-made photo captions is the perfect way to cover those up!

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Tip 4: Make a gift tag.

Although this stamp set was designed for memory keeper projects, I've found several occasions recently to use them for other things. For example, I've had several friends who recently moved into new homes. And don't forget about gift tags for babies who are just coming home from the hospital.

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Tip 5: Make cards for any homey reason.

So yeah... this is kind of obvious... you can use these stamps to make cards for your friends who just moved in together, who just bought their first home, or who just had a baby. But I think these stamps can go even further and help you celebrate all the people who help make your house a home. Hopefully my husband doesn't read this blog post because on our next date night I am planning to give this card to my husband to let him know how much I appreciate the love he brings into our home!

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Ok... I have one more confession. For awhile I've been feeling kind of blah about my scrapbook projects. But this new travelers notebook format and the pre-stamped photo captions and journal cards have me feeling excited about memory keeping again. I hope you have found a system that lets you capture your memories in a way that makes you happy too!

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PS: Are you a Memory Keepers Studio auto-ship member? We will start shipping the Love Home set to members tomorrow. When you get them I hope these projects inspire you to get out your new stamps and make something!

Not a member? You can pre-order the Love Home stamp set now. Or if you'd like to save 25% on the Memory Keepers Studio stamps, join the auto-ship program!

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Five Fresh Peony Project Ideas

According to the Farmer’s Almanac, peony flowers are outrageously beautiful and will take your breath away. Today, I am sharing some cards featuring the Fresh Peonies stamp set and dies. I hope these projects will take your breath away and inspire you to make some flower cards and tags!


The Fresh Peonies Ideas and Inspiration Video!

I know some of you like to watch videos to see the projects and hear tips. Other people would rather read about them. So you get to choose! The video includes the same projects and tips included in the rest of this post.


Keep Things Simple - Don't Add Color!

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When we were designing this stamp set, I never imagined the peony flowers without any color. But check out this card by Dana Kirby. It is simple and oh so stunning! So, if you are short on time, just let the flower image and sentiment be the stars on your card!

Want to learn more about how Dana made this card. Here's a link to her blog post!


Use Colored Pencils and the No Line Coloring Technique

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Wow... I can honestly say this card took my breath away! Dana Joy used a light-colored ink to stamp the peony flower image. Then she used pencils to add color to her peonies and leaves, and created this gorgeous card!

If you would like to get the exact pencil colors that Dana used, hop on over to her blog post!


Frame Your Sentiment with Peonies

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I can't seem to find very many words to accurately describe how much I like this card by Emily Leiphart. She used Distress Ink to color two peony images, and then die cut them out. She stamped her sentiment, and used the Essential Stitched Labels dies to cut it out. But here is where Emily got super creative. Look at her card front. She used that same label die to emboss shapes and texture into the background of her card. I think that is so AWESOME!

Want more information? Check out Emily's blog post!


Make a Trendy Coral Colored Peony

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Often peonies are white, pink, or red. But they also come in shades of coral, purple and bright yellow. One of the trendy colors this year is called living coral. So I was so glad to see this beautiful peony card by Yasmin Diaz. In addition to using copic markers to make the lovely coral peony, Yasmin die cut out the word Friend (which is included in the set of Fresh Peonies Crafting Die) to help finish her card.


Stamp a Patterned Peony Background

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Last month I participated in a challenge where I colored a stamped image every day. I used several different kinds of pencils, crayons, and markers to make peonies in nearly every color in the rainbow. To make this card I stamped the peony image all over a 4 x 5.5 inch piece of cardstock. Then I used yellow, orange, and red makers to color in the flowers. (I used Zig Clean Color light pink, orange, and carmine red along with a water pen.) Although it took me awhile to color all those peonies, I really enjoyed doing it. I think that coloring stamped images is relaxing!


I hope you enjoyed seeing all the different ways you can color your stamped peonies. If you are a member of the Greenhouse Society auto-ship program, we'll be shipping the Fresh Peonies to you soon. I hope these projects inspire you to get out your new stamps and make something! If you aren't an auto-ship member, you can pre-order your peonies now.

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New projects, a new video and the March blog hop!

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Hip hip hooray... it's reveal day! That means it's time to share some fresh flower cards, a cute new raccoon, and memory keeper projects that celebrate what it means to be home.

To kick things off, I'd like to invite you to watch this quick, 3-minute video. In the video, I'll show you each of the new stamps & dies, and a project idea or two for each new product.

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Plus, Don't Miss Today's Blog Hop!

Our creative team, plus several guest designers, have a bunch more projects that they are sharing, too. I hope you'll visit each of their blogs and leave some comments for them along the way!

 

Technique Tuesday
Amy Kolling
Ana Anderson
Dana Joy
Dana Kirby
Daniela Dobson
Emily Leiphart
Kymona Tracey
Yasmin Diaz


I hope you enjoyed watching the video, and seeing all the projects along the blog hop. If you saw some new stamps or dies that you like, you can order them now. I've included the links below!

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March Memory Keepers Studio Stamps & Fresh Cut Studio Dies

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It's the last day of sneak peeks, so today you get a two-fer. This month's theme is House and Home for both the Memory Keepers' Studio stamp set and the Fresh Cut Studio dies

Like all the Memory Keeper Studio sets, the Love Home Stamps are designed to help you make great scrapbook layouts and project life pages. This brand-new set is perfect for recording and celebrating the place you spend most of your relaxing time - home! You'll find so many ways to use the hand-drawn images and phrases to create accents for your photos, or to make journal cards. The photo captions and embellishments you make will be perfect for projects about your current home, your childhood homes, grandma's house, or even your favorite home away from home. Plus make sure you watch Bev's release video tomorrow to see how these stamps can be used to make amazing cards too!

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Are you a member of the Memory Keepers' Studio auto-ship program? We'll be shipping this stamp set to your home-sweet-home in March.

Not a member? Not to fret, you can pre-order your set starting tomorrow, March 1st. You may also want to look into becoming a member of the Memory Keepers' Studio yourself.


The Fresh Cut Studio dies for March are named The Build a Birdhouse Crafting Dies. They're super-cute on their own, but why stop there? These dies also pair beautifully with the Love Home stamp set. These are the kind of cute little birdhouses you don't need to get out your hammer and nails to build!

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We will ship the Build a Birdhouse Crafting Dies to the homes of all Fresh Cut Studio members in March. If you're not a member, don't worry, you can pre-order starting March 1st. Or check out all the benefits of becoming a member of the Fresh Cut Studio yourself.

I hope you enjoyed the last day of the March Sneak Peeks. That means tomorrow you get to see the whole shebang. See you here for the big reveal and the new release blog hop!

image from techniquetuesday.typepad.com



March Animal House Sneak Peek!

image from techniquetuesday.typepad.com

There's a new cute critter peeking out of the Animal House. Her name is Robbie. She may look like a trash panda but she is a real sweetheart! Robbie is also a Kon-Mari enthusiast. Her punny phrases and cute, hand-drawn imagery will help you make projects that spark joy for you and for the lucky person receiving your projects!

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Robbie is rather shy so all you are going to get is this little peek for now. Come back tomorrow to see more sneak peeks and on Friday you'll see more of Robbie during our new release blog hop. Or even better... subscribe to our RSS feed to automatically get the sneak peeks and information about the blog hop too!

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PS: If you are an Animal House member, you'll find Robbie in your mailbox with your March auto-shipment.

Not a member? You can pre-order yours on March 1. Or if you would like to save 25% on cute animal stamps and dies each month, check out the Animal House auto-ship program. Members enjoy discounts, exclusive special offers, plus free shipping their add-on orders.