Saturday, December 31, 2011

Gingerbread Houses

Every Christmas we have a gingerbread decorating contest. My daughter and her friend Heather usually win. This year, my son Hunter and his friend Julian did a very nice job, though, so we called it a tie! Just thought you might enjoy seeing their handiwork. The house above is Haley and Heather's. I love how they took Jolly Ranchers and crushed them to make the stained glass windows. Only problem is, I'm stepping on little shards of Jolly Ranchers (OUCH!) in my kitchen, and once they stick to the floor, they're on there like concrete!
This is the entrance to their house. I gasped when I realized they used two of my Andes Mints - the wonderful peppermint bark candies that are only available during the holidays - for their door. Those candies come at a high premium during the holidays and they're difficult to find, but I guess since our gingerbread decorating contest is only held once a year, I'll let it slide........this time.
The house above is Hunter and Julian's. I like how they used jumbo gumdrops and licorice strings to build a fence around the house. Notice how the walkway up to the door is totally decked out with candies? Not bad, if I may say so myself!
The jumbo gumdrops on top of the Jolly Ranchers are supposed to be trees in the front yard, but we laughed about how they look like mushrooms instead! Gotta have a sense of humor when you're part of this contest! All said and done, I think they both did a wonderful job and our gingerbread decorating contest for 2011 was a huge success..........and loads of fun!

Friday, December 30, 2011

You Are Loved Card Samples

I'm in despair! I received both of these lovely card swaps while on the Founder's Circle trip last September and I was eager to use them for my Valentine's Day Camp Wannastamp in January; however, the "You Are Loved" stamp set is not being carried over from the Holiday Mini Catalog after January 3rd, so I won't be able to make them with you. Arghhh! The first card was made by Shelli Gardner and I love how she embossed the leaf image on the bird. It's such an elegant card and I couldn't wait to make it next month. The beautiful blue card was made by Natalie Travis using the same stamp set. Her card is so soft and soothing, and it was another great candidate for my Valentine's Day Camp Wannastamp. Oh, well, all is not lost! I still have great Valentine's Day cards and projects coming up for you in January, but it's a shame not to be able to use this beautiful set! If you would like to order "You Are Loved" before it's gone, the item number is 123777 for wood and 123779 for clear. You can visit my 24/7 online store at www.pennythomas.stampinup.net and click on "Shop Now." Have a super New Year's Eve celebration tomorrow and I'll stamp with you in January!
Made by Shelli Gardner
Made by Natalie Travis

Friday, December 23, 2011

Easy Events Home Decor Sample

Here's my little black dress for December. Hope you're not sick of this little vine and berry from Easy Events. I TOLD YOU IT WAS ONE OF MY FAVORITE STAMPS! What am I going to do when Christmas is over? It will kill me to put it away for a year! Go get yourself a little black frame and change it out every month. It just feels good! I'm wishing all of you a Merry Christmas. I thank each one of you for supporting me this past year, for rocking my stampin' world, and for making my Stampin' Up! business such a fun and successful endeavor. I love every minute I get to spend stamping and crafting with you at my house. You all have claimed a place in my heart and every single one of you is special to me. Some of you have been stamping with me for ten years! The friendships I have developed with you are rich beyond measure. What a beautiful Christmas gift that is to me from you! I know 2012 will be so much fun and I'm already looking forward to seeing you and stamping with you in January! MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR TO MY STAMPIN' BUDDIES!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas Domino Pin

Little things like this domino make me happy! It's only 1-1/2" long and 3/4" wide, and it has colorful Christmas ornaments stamped on it and the tiniest little "noel" greeting. I LOVE IT! I sanded the top of the domino to rough up the surface so ink would stick to it better. Then I stamped the ornaments in our Basic Black ink and let it dry. I then sprayed the lightest coat of acrylic sealant on top of it. If you spray it too thick, the black ink will run, so I just kind of lightly dusted it with the sealant. When that dried, I used our markers to delicately color in the ornaments. The colors didn't run because I had sprayed it with a sealant and the colors kind of grab on to that sealant. After the marker inks had all dried, I sprayed the lightest coat of acrylic sealant on it again to set the inks. Once the sealant was good and dry, I sprayed a much thicker coat of acrylic sealant on it to set all the inks in place for good! I hot-glued a pin-back on the back so I can proudly wear it through the holidays. Love how it turned out! This stamp is from a set that was offered by Stampin' Up! many, many years ago, but it's still a goodie! Noel, my friend, noel!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Tags Til Christmas and Medallion Card Sample

This card is a "Mary Fish" case, but I changed the colors to make it more Christmasy. This card uses the Tags Til Christmas ornament with the ornament punch; the middle pieces are from the Medallion stamp and our 2-1/2" and 1-3/4" circle punches. Makes such a beautiful Christmas card! The colors are Always Artichoke and Cherry Cobbler. The card base is Very Vanilla. The greeting is from Curly Cute and it was embossed with Cherry Cobbler Embossing Powder. An Antique Brad finishes it off! Hope you're having fun during the holidays!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Origami Christmas Tree

This origami Christmas tree is one of the projects we've been doing at some of the home workshops I've done during the holidays. Isn't it fun? It's a great way to use your designer series paper scraps and it's really easy to do. Anytime I hear the word "origami," I kind of cringe, but this origami fold is actually quite easy! The top photo uses the Beau Chateau Designer Series Paper and the Elegant Lines Embossing Folder; the bottom photo uses the Frostwood Lodge Designer Series Paper and the Snow Burst Embossing Folder. When we had our Annual Demonstrator Retreat in October, I did a quick demo of how to make this tree. I hope the video tutorial below will help explain how you do it! You just need four squares measuring 3 X 3, 2-1/2 X 2-1/2, 2 X 2, and 1-1/2 X 1-1/2. To order these great products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.penguinstamper.blogspot.com/ and click on "Shop Now." MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU! video

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas Carolers at My Door!

Last Friday night our doorbell rang, and when we opened the door, this choir of young girls in Santa hats started singing Silver Bells. I've never had carolers come to my house before! I had already gotten ready for bed and I was in my pajamas (how embarrassing!), but I wanted to hear them, so I stood there anyway. It was the sweetest sound I have ever heard and, of course, I was moved to tears. One of the little girls was looking at me like, "Why is that lady crying?" One day, she'll understand! She had no idea that while she was singing, it was filling my heart with happiness! It reminds me of the stamp we have that says, "Do your little bit of GOOD where you are. It's those little bits of GOOD that overwhelm the world" - a quote by Desmond Tutu. For a moment while those little girls were singing, everything was right with the world, and everything was perfect. I hope they come back next year!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

December 2011 Calendar

Here's a cute little December calendar to make you feel merry! We met back in January and made a calendar for each month of the year. If you visit my January 2011 posts, you'll be able to see each month. December makes me feel happy, except that now I'm out of calendars! I'm ready for Santa to come - and I've been good! Have a super day!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Punch Pals and Merry Winter Gift-Card Holder

I love using these colors together for a winter wonderland scene! With a little snowman peeking through the snowy window, we just need to have hot cocoa! Adding the Silver Glimmer Paper to mimic ice and snow, I had to remind myself for a minute that I live in Houston, Texas! This is as close as I'll get to ice and snow! This gift-card holder unfolds to reveal a gift-card at the bottom, making it super-fun! All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up!, with the exception of the clear wrapping tape. The recipe is below. To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now."
Recipe:
Paper: Pool Party - 11 X 3-3/4; scored at 2-3/8", 5-3/8" and 8-1/4"; Pool Party - 3-3/4 X 2-3/8 (for the inside top of gift-card holder - it covers up the back side of the Silver Glimmer Paper trim); Silver Glimmer Paper - 3-3/4 X 1-1/4; Certainly Celery scrap; Pool Party scrap; Basic Black scrap
Stamps: Punch Pals; Merry Winter; Season of Joy; Jolly Bingo Bits; Winter Post
Inks: Basic Black; Pumpkin Pie Marker (for the snowman's nose)
Miscellaneous: Sticky Strip; Scissors; 1" Circle Punch; SNAIL Adhesive; Stamp-a-ma-jig; Scallop Trim Border Punch; Scallop Circle Punch; 1-1/4" Circle Punch; 3/4" Circle Punch; Clear Wrapping Tape; Dazzling Diamonds Glitter; Stampin' Dimensionals; Punch Pack (the flower); Mini Glue Dots; Basic Rhinestone Jewels; 2-Way Glue Pen; Certainly Celery Ribbon - 13" long; Scissors

Holiday Stocking Die Gift-Card Holder

Lorri Heiling
As soon as I saw the Holiday Stocking Die for the Big Shot, I knew I had to have it! I love how this gift-card holder turned out. The stocking has such a narrow opening at the top that it stops the gift-card from sliding down too far. I have seen so many beautiful stocking samples, it was hard to pick one, but I settled on this one. OF COURSE - IT'S VANILLA ON VANILLA - MY FAVORITE THING TO DO! With the first stocking, you sponge the embossing so it stands out. For the second stocking, you ink up a brayer with Crumb Cake ink, brayer it onto the debossed side of your embossing folder (the top side), and then run it through the Big Shot for a totally different look! Since there is no ink in the debossed part, it keeps the image Very Vanilla! Either way, it's beautiful! All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up! The recipe is below. To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now." Recipe: Paper: Very Vanilla - 8-1/2 X 5-1/2 (you'll need two of these for the front and back of the stocking); Very Vanilla - 3-1/2 X 1/2" Stamps: Teeny Tiny Wishes Inks: Crumb Cake (brayer the front side of your embossing folder to make the embossing stand out in white); Soft Suede Miscellaneous: Big Shot Machine; Holiday Stocking Die; Square Lattice Embossing Folder; Northern Flurry Embossing Folder; Stampin' Sponges; Sticky Strip; Scissors; Double-Stick Tape; Stamp-a-ma-jig; Vanilla Taffeta Ribbon - 15" long (retired); Victoria Lace Trim - 6" long; Antique Brads; Mini Glue Dots

Punch-Art Santa Gift-Card Holder

Here's a great way to use an envelope. Fold the envelope in half. Cut the flap where the crease is from the fold. Seal the left-side flap, but leave the right-side flap unsealed to slide your gift-card into. Isn't he a cutey? Man, he looks real and I can hear him saying HO HO HO! All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up! The recipe is below. To order these great products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now."
Recipe:
Paper: White Envelope; Cherry Cobbler - 4 X 2-1/2; Silver Glimmer Paper - 3-3/4 X 2-1/4; Old Olive - 3-1/2 X 2; Cherry Cobbler - 4-1/4 X 2-1/2 (to glue-dot your gift-card to); Whisper White scrap; Cherry Cobbler scrap; Pink Pirouette scrap; Silver Glimmer scrap; Basic Black scrap
Stamps: Christmas Greetings; Tags Til Christmas
Inks: Old Olive; Cherry Cobbler
Miscellaneous: Double-Stick Tape or SNAIL Adhesive; Sticky Strip; Scissors; 1/2" Circle Punch (for his hat); Large Oval Punch (for his face); Wide Oval Punch (for his hat and rim of hat); Owl Builder Punch (for his eyes and nose); Bird Builder Punch (the wings of the bird for his mustache); Ornament Punch (for his beard); 2-Way Glue Pen; Stampin' Dimensionals; Big Shot Machine; Snow Burst Embossing Folder; Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder; Stamp-a-ma-jig; 1-3/8" Square Punch; 1-1/4" Square Punch; 1" Square Punch; Cherry Cobbler Polka Dot Ribbon - 15" long

Santa Suit Gift-Card Holder

Hey, Santa, I'VE BEEN GOOD! Woo Hoo - I love this Santa suit! Using our Silver Glimmer Paper for his belt buckle adds lots of bling, which doesn't show up very well in this photo. With a gift-card tucked inside, you'll make someone feel jolly! All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up! The recipe is below. To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now." Recipe: Paper: Real Red - 6-1/2 X 4-1/4; scored at 1" and 3-3/4"; Whisper White - 2-3/4 X 2-1/2; Basic Black - 9-1/2 X 3/4"; Silver Glimmer Paper scrap (use with the 1-3/8" Square Punch); Basic Black scrap (use with the 3/4" Square Punch - retired) Stamps: Many Merry Messages (for the greeting inside) Ink: Basic Black Miscellaneous: Sticky Strip; Scissors; Stamp-a-ma-jig; Big Shot Machine; Snow Burst Embossing Folder; Scallop Edge Border Punch; Double-Stick Tape; 1/8" Hole Punch; 1-3/8" Square Punch; 3/4" Square Punch (retired); Stampin' Dimensionals; Slot Punch (retired); Mini Glue Dots

Punch-Art Angel Gift-Card Holder

I can just hear this precious little angel singing Oh, Holy Night! Maybe I should have put a 1/4" circle punch as her mouth so she'd be singing! That would be cute, too! I love doing punch art. Using my punches to create adorable things like this is lots of fun and another great use for my punches! All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up! To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now." Recipe: Paper: Whisper White - 6-1/2 X 4-1/4; scored at 1" and 3-3/4"; Whisper White - 9-1/2 X 1/2" (for the belly band); Whisper White scrap; Pink Pirouette scrap; Soft Suede scrap Stamps: Petite Pairs Ink: Early Espresso Miscellaneous: Sticky Strip; Stamp-a-ma-jig; Petite Pennants Builder Punch (for her dress); 3/4" Circle Punch (for her face); Cupcake Builder Punch (for her hair); Owl Builder Punch (for her eyes); Butterfly Punch (for her wings); Stampin' Dimensionals; SNAIL Adhesive; 2-Way Glue Pen; Big Shot Machine; Vintage Wallpaper Embossing Folder; Basic Pearls; Paper Snips

Punch Pals Money Holder

Here's an elegant and fun money holder for you! Using our punches and the Big Shot together, you can create so many beautiful things! Who wouldn't love to find this beauty tucked into their stocking with a 50-d0llar-bill inside? After spending the money, I'd still be admiring the money holder it came in! All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up! The recipe is below. To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now." Recipe: Paper: Very Vanilla - 8-1/2 X 7; scored at 2-3/8" and 5-1/2" on the 8-1/2" side; Very Vanilla - 5-1/2 X 4-1/4 (for the Top Note Die); Old Olive scrap; Cherry Cobbler scrap Stamps: Contempo Christmas; Punch Pals; Winter Post (for the "To" and "From" on the inside) Inks: Basic Black Miscellaneous: Big Shot Machine; Finial Press Embossing Folder; Top Note Die; Paper Cutter; Stampin' Dimensionals; Stamp-a-ma-jig; Scallop Circle Punch; 1-1/4" Circle Punch; 3/4" Circle Punch; Punch Pack (the flower); Mini Glue Dots; Basic Rhinestone Jewels; Paper Snips; Very Vanilla Satin Ribbon - 21" long; Scissors; Sticky Strip

Easy Events Gift-Card Holder

Here is a super idea for a gift-card holder. Just use our white notecards and envelopes! Seal the envelope and then cut off 1/2" from one side. Using a circle punch, punch out half a circle from the open side to make it easy to pull the gift-card holder in and out. Use Mini Glue Dots to hold the gift card inside the notecard. It makes a wonderful gift-card holder! All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up! The recipe is below. To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now." Recipe: Paper: White Notecards and Envelopes Stamps: Easy Events Inks: Basic Black; Real Red Marker; Old Olive Marker; Basic Black Marker Miscellaneous: Paper Cutter; 1-3/8" Circle Punch; Real Red Satin Ribbon - 14" long; Scissors; Stamp-a-ma-jig; Basic Pearls; Paper Snips

Bright Hopes Money Holder

I always need gift-card holders and money holders during the holidays - and I like to make my own. Here is a very simple, but elegant, money holder. All supplies used and shown are from Stampin' Up! The recipe is below. To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at http://www.pennythomas.stampinup.net/ and click on "Shop Now."
Recipe:
Paper: Very Vanilla - 8-1/2 X 7; scored at 2-3/8" and 5-1/2" on the 8-1/2" side
Stamps: Bright Hopes
Inks: Crumb Cake; Cherry Cobbler
Miscellaneous: Cherry Cobbler Quilted Ribbon - 21" long; Scissors; Stamp-a-ma-jig; Basic Pearls; Paper Snips; Sticky Strip

Friday, December 9, 2011

Easy Events Christmas Card Sample

Isn't this sweet? I just love this little vine and berry from the Easy Events stamp set! It's stamped in Basic Black ink on Very Vanilla card stock and then I used the fine-tip side of the Old Olive and Real Red markers to color it in. Just add three rhinestone jewels for BLING and you've got a great Christmas card. I also used Old Olive and Crumb Cake card stock for the rest of the card. The embossing folder is Petals-A-Plenty. Red Satin Ribbon just finishes it off beautifully! MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Well Worn Designer Series Paper Card Sample

Here's a beauty for you! I used pieces from the Well Worn Designer Series Paper, which I punched out with my 1-1/4" Square Punch, and adhered them to a piece of 5-1/2 X 4-1/4 card stock. I then ran it through the Big Shot Top Note Die. Then I embossed it with the Big Shot Finial Press Embossing Folder to get a nice vintage look! Then I took a sponge and inked it up with Early Espresso ink and swirled it around on top to pull out the design of the Final Press Embossing Folder. Love the old-timey look of this card! To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at www.pennythomas.stampinup.net and click on "Shop Now." HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Lattice Die Card Sample

More snowflakes? YES! Maybe I'm wishin' we could have some snow down here in Katy, Texas! I saw this beautiful card sample on Stampin' Connection and it spoke to me! I used Blushing Bride, Whisper White, Pink Pirouette, and Basic Gray card stock. I also used the Big Shot Lattice Die and the Big Shot Northern Frost Decorative Strip Die. To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at www.pennythomas.stampinup.net and click on "Shop Now." You'll be snow glad you did - and so will I! HAPPY WINTER!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Snowflake Punch Card Sample

Bashful Blue card stock has really had an appeal with me this Christmas! Maybe it's because I usually use a snowflake with it - and I LOVE snowflakes! Here's another great card that I saw on Stampin' Connection that I just had to make! It makes me merry! I used Bashful Blue, Real Red, and Whisper White card stock. The ink is Real Red. Enjoy! To order these products, visit my 24/7 online store at www.pennythomas.stampinup.net and click on "Shop Now." That will make me very merry!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Beautiful Butterflies Die Card Sample

Isn't this nice? It just softens you and quiets you down when you look at it -and sometimes I need that! I got this card idea from Carolyn Gray, a member of The TOPICS! When she made her butterflies, she used clear embossing powder, but I used white embossing powder. Either way, it comes out so nice. You emboss your butterflies with white or clear embossing powder, then sponge whatever colors you want on your butterflies. The embossed part resists the ink so it stays white there. You can wipe away any excess ink on the embossed parts to make it show through even whiter - and it just turns out so nice and soft. You can make the butterflies really bright simply by changing your ink color choices, but I like the soft pastel look of this. Hope you like it, too!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Snowflake Punch Card Sample

Jen Sannes
Here's an adorable card we made at Susan Green's home workshop! It was a big hit! How can you go wrong with snowflakes, rhinestone jewels, and silver glimmer paper? You can't! The colors are Bashful Blue, Whisper White, and Pacific Point. I love this card and it just makes me feel good to look at it! I hope you'll enjoy it, too!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Fun Making Christmas Cards!

I just recently had my Christmas Card Workshop where we made 2,000 Christmas cards over a four-day period! It was so much fun and I enjoyed being with all of the wonderful people you'll see in these photos! They make what I do so much fun and I love every single one of them! They are special people and I always look forward to seeing them and stamping with them every month!
In the picture above is Ann Lyons, proudly showing off her beautiful Christmas cards! She did a fabulous job! Pascale Hoxha is next to her working feverishly on her cards!
The wonderful gal above is Gracie Myers! She is concentrating and trying to remember to remove the double-stick tape from her stamp before she stamps it on her card!
The happy lady above is Chrystyna Bryndzia! Chrystyna can make me laugh like no one else can! She loves the Christmas Lodge card - and she did such a great job on them!
This is Brooke Long working at the Big Shot! Brooke made 100 Christmas cards and she has been very busy finishing them over the last several days!
The happy gals above are Cindi Dimon, Jeannie Godschalk, and Julie Comardo. They made some beautiful cards at this table and they were having fun stamping!
This is Tammy Minney enjoying some of the goodies everyone always brings to share! We love to exchange recipes and it's always fun to see what everyone has brought to share!
This is Melissa Johnson and Chris Noble. They are working on the Christmas stocking card that has a lot of little pieces to put together. I'm glad they're still happy! Once they see the final results, they'll be REALLY happy!
This is Debbie Gaul, gluing those little stocking pieces together! It's tedious, but boy is it sure cute!
Here are my newbs: Sharon Haney, Kathleen Drungle, and Anne Bauman! They were absolute troopers, coming to my house for the first time to make mega Christmas cards! They sailed through it beautifully and I'm hoping they'll come back! They were loads of fun!
Here is Carol Young and Judith Buelow, paying very close attention to their Christmas cards! They both made beautiful cards and I enjoy these gals so much!
I think everyone had a great time! I know I did!
Here are two FABULOUS gals: Lori Pfeffer and Susie Schubert! I consider these gals to be my cheering section! They always manage to lift my spirits and encourage me on! I love that about them!
This is Gina Sones, one of the sweetest gals you'll ever meet. Gina is, well, just really, really special to me. I just love her and I appreciate her attending my events year after year after year!
This is Terri Bray and Corrine Drom! These two gals ALWAYS put a smile on my face! I love it when they attend my events! They brighten my spirits every single time they come!
Aren't these ladies gorgeous? This is Karen King and Martha Pope. They LOVE to stamp and they are the friendliest gals! Their enthusiasm for stamping is contagious and I love being around them! They make me happy!
This is Elaine Capers! If I am having a stamp camp when she is in town visiting her sister-in-law, she'll come! I'm happy that she was able to attend my Christmas Card Workshop. It's always a pleasure to have Elaine here! Wish you lived here, Elaine!
These happy gals are Sharon Brock, Debbie Taylor, and BJ Alvarez. They look really happy to me! The Big Shot can make you happy, you know - and so can making Christmas cards!
This is Christina Stewart! LOOK AT THAT SMILE! I think she really likes that card! You are adorable, Christina!
This is Carlyle Thompson and Cleo Thompson! These two ladies are, undoubtedly, two of my favorite people in the whole wide world! When I see Cleo and Carlyle, I just get happy - they have that effect on me! Looks like they are trying to get the hang of the notorious "fork bow."
Thanks to all of you gals for making my 2011 Christmas Card Workshop a huge success and so much fun! It wouldn't be the same without any one of you! Let's do it again next year!