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After almost (but not quite!) 40 years of living, I’ve met a lot of amazing people. And after living in a total of five states, I’ve left friends behind that impacted my life greatly. It’s sad to let go, but sometimes we lose touch.
On a particularly long road trip not too long ago, I came up with a little game that not only helped pass the time, but it also called up memories of those long ago friends. The object of the game was to think of a woman or girl’s name (first or last) that I have met for every letter of the alphabet. It was such fun to call up memories that had been buried for far too long. Granted, coming up with someone for every letter wasn’t easy, but I substituted names for some of the tough letters. I loved this little exercise so much that I even blogged about it here so that I could remember it.
Indeed, I was so inspired, I even made a layout paying tribute to what I dubbed My Sweet Sixteen. These were the 16 ladies that I felt had most influenced my life – from childhood friends, to influential teachers, to college roommates, and colleagues. Though I didn’t have a picture for each person, I was still able to put down thoughts about her in a little pocket so that I can remember her forever and how much she meant to me.
If you want to see the journaling or the supplies for this project, you can look here.
What about you? Do you have friends who have gone out of your life that you cherish dearly? Have you reconnected through Facebook? What if you sent her a handmade card today to let her know how special she is to you? I can guarantee that she’d love to hear from you!
P.S. You are invited to join us on Facebook as a Paper Crafts fan and in the Paper Crafts Facebook group. And while you are there, why not hunt down some of your long lost friends? You’ll be glad that you did!
Welcome to Magazine Monday! Today we’re going to meet our new design intern Brynn Lillywhite and take you behind the scenes of one of your favorite columns in the magazine – Simple Sentiments!
Simple Sentiments is managed by our fabulous managing editor Brandy Jesperson. She strives to pick quotes that either tie into one of our features or appeal to the seasonality of that issue. Once she selects the quotes, she turns them over to our amazing design team (Stace, Matt and Brynn), who then plug in the graphics. Once designed, Brandy goes home to her little craft room and makes a card to feature in the magazine. Here’s the super cute card she made for May/June’s Simple Sentiments column:
So today I just happened to spy Brynn hard at work on our July/August Simple Sentiments column. If you look to the left of her monitor, you can see she’s tack up a first draft of images on her computer. She’ll use these for inspiration and tweak them until they’re absolutely perfect and ready to be published.
Interested in getting your hot little hands on our May/June Simple Sentiments? Click here to download each and every one of them! And make sure you stay tuned for our next issue where Brynn will debut her fabulous sentiments for all the world to see!
P.S. According to our 2008 reader survey, Simple Sentiments is the third highest ranked column in our magazine. In fact, 77% of our readers say they use their computers to either print or search for sentiments. How’s that for a fun little factoid!
P.P.S. Thanks to all who left comments in last week’s Freebie Friday – Meet SIStv’s Jeanette Herdman post. After 80 comments, these gals are the six winners:
Two tuitions to SIStv’s Scrap In Style Home: Decorating On A Budget class: Lorraine (March 27, 1:01 p.m.) and Kim Marie Leach (March 28, 9:14 a.m.)
Two tuitions to SIStv’s Bling Out Your Blog 2.0 class: Rachael Wood (March 27, 5:19 p.m.) and Steph (March 27, 1:50 p.m.)
Two $15 gift certificates to the SIStv Boutique: Casey (March 27, 11:00 a.m.) and Amber (March 28, 12:55 p.m.)
Ladies, SIStv will be e-mailing you directly, so make sure to check your inboxes!
Welcome to another Freebie Friday! Today we’re pleased to have with us Jeanette Herdman, founder of Scrap In Style. She’s going to dish about her growing (and immensely popular) online community, her favorite SIS product and tell us why she has the ultimate dream job.
For today’s giveaway, Jeanette’s agreed to donate four SIStv online class tuitions (see descriptions below), as well as two $15 gift certificates to the SIStv Boutique!
Are you ready to learn more about Jeanette and Scrap In Style? Here we go!
What exactly is SIStv?
SIStv is “Scrap In Style TV,” a magazine style web TV show that my husband and I created and produce that is centered around memory keeping and the paper arts. ScrapinStyletv.com is the web site that we developed to help build our viewership as well as the brand Scrap In Style.
How did you come up with the idea of SIStv?
Creating the show was actually my husband’s idea several years ago. He has been in the entertainment industry since the early 90’s and thought producing a cutting edge show that featured scrapbooking would be a great niche. It took some time for me to catch his vision. Once I got on board, I dove in head first and found out that producing and hosting a show about my favorite hobby was like my dream job.
What do you want our readers to know about your growing online community?
The most important thing I want people to know about our online community is that it’s a place where scrappers and paper crafters of all levels can really engage in the process of becoming better at what they love to do. The idea of “community” is that everyone has something to offer that will benefit the other members. And when a person joins the Scrap In Style community, I sincerely believe that they will learn, become inspired, interact with people all over the world, and (hopefully) give back. In the end everyone grows. Okay, I’m feeling the need for a disclaimer: I’m talking about paper and glue here people…
One of your big pushes on the site is education. You actually offer a lot of online classes on paper crafting, photography, sewing, blogging, etc. How have these been going?
Our classes have been going really well. I think we’ve really started to hit our groove with what we’re offering in the way of content and classroom environment. I love that people always seem to have that hunger to learn new things, and it only seems to grow as we get older. I tell ya, education is wasted on the young… what I wouldn’t give to go back to the 5th grade!
Tell us a little bit about your two classes Scrap In Style Home: Decorating On A Budget (A six-week course beginning April 13) and Bling Out Your Blog 2.0 (April 20-May 1). By the way, thanks so much for donating these classes to our readers!
These two classes are especially exciting to me because they are both incredibly relevant. We came up with Scrap In Style Home: Decorating On A Budget because I believe crafting and home decorating really go hand in hand. I don’t think it’s a stretch at all for a scrapbooking web site to be offering a class on home décor. Crafters are especially good with repurposing, whether it’s an old clock or their scrapbooking supplies. Most people in today’s economy have had to cut back in some area, and where a lot of people wouldn’t dream of redecorating at a time like this, we’re showing people that it’s the absolute BEST time to do it because you really get to use your creative “chops”!
Bling Out Your Blog 2.0 is another class that will be of tremendous help to people. Writing and reading blogs has become one of the world’s favorite pasttimes. It’s like the ultimate in Internet Grass Roots Marketing (is that an oxymoron?). People are starting to really utilize their blogs in a variety of ways, many of which go well beyond the idea of keeping family and friends up to date on who they’re dating or on Little Jimmy’s first steps. In order for a blog to stand out in the crowd, it requires top form and function in its design and content. When people get done with this class, they will be able to create top notch blogs that will keep their readers coming back day after day.
SIStv actually has its own product line. What’s your favorite?
MODsheetsTM (short for Multi Optional Design Sheets) are papers that offer classic style but with versatility and value. Each sheet is modular in design (get it, “MODsheets”… ah, so clever are we!). Various patterns are included on each sheet in standardized sizes that are perfect for paper crafters. Each color coordinated line has three sheets and each sheet has between two and five patterns, in sizes ranging from 8″ x 12″ down to 2″ x 3”. You can use the sheet whole if you like as a background for your layout, knowing that the proportions of each pattern create “safe” design elements, or you can cut each pattern out and use it in a variety of ways, which is great for card makers. Over the last couple of years in the “paper biz” I have noticed that people really gravitate toward those classic patterns: houndstooth, polka dots, brocade, plaid, etc. because they want their projects to have a timeless look to them. Don’t get me wrong–I love an owl motif as much as the next guy–but ten years from now, nothing will say “2007” more to me than layouts made with owl paper. And that’s totally okay for some of your stuff, but you don’t want everything to look dated. It’s like with clothing… each season you want to get a few items that are really on-trend but for the most part it’s best to buy stuff that will really last you, items that you will be able to use with those trendy pieces a year from now. I just believe that offering customers variety and value… you know really give them some bang for their buck is where it’s at right now.
The gaffer tape is incredibly utilitarian and aesthetically pleasing all at the same time. It’s one color and features a classic pattern. It’s the most fantastic stuff. It’s low-tac, somewhere between masking tape and duct tape, so it doesn’t ruin something you’ve put it on when you pull it off. Also, it’s super easy to tear through, which is really nice. I use it for everything – file folders, labels, my kids’ school projects… I’m seriously addicted to it. I wish I had it in every color and pattern… hmm… maybe someday I will!
What’s seems to be the most popular section of your web site?
Hmm… I would definitely have to say the SIStv Webisodes or the SISter’s Portfolio, which is our main gallery. We just started season two of Scrap In Style TV, and the response has been great so far. We had been in “reruns” since August because my husband who does all of our video production was diagnosed with a stage 4 squamous cell carcinoma of the tonsil in July (did I spell all of that correctly? Those are real long cancer-y words… I’m pretty sure I got “cell” right). He just got a clean bill of health about three weeks ago, so we’re getting back to normal… well, if you consider having two belly buttons normal (he has a pretty deep scar from where his feeding tube was).
The SISter’s Portfolio has lots and lots of eye candy, and great ideas are uploaded there every day. It’s hard to keep up with it sometimes, so we have a feature called “Favorite SISters” where you can put another member on your “Favorite SISter” list and on your profile when you sign in, you will see links to their latest layouts. It’s really cool because the main gallery moves really fast.
Now that you have a loyal following, how do you keep people coming back for more?
That is something that can be really challenging to be honest, but we have a really loyal following. In fact, I think it’s something like more than 50% of the visitors we had in 2008 have visited the site more than 100 times since we launched in May of 2007. The numbers are pretty incredible, but I know that we must continually improve the site content and its features if we want to stay in the game. I don’t want to go down in Internet history as some flash in the pan web site.
What’s the most rewarding aspect of your job?
The absolute most rewarding thing is when I hear someone say that SIS has changed their life. (And yes, I have heard that on more than one occasion.) It’s completely humbling. Not that I was a direct part of it, but knowing that something that I had a hand in creating was a part of something big in a person’s life is amazing.
What piece of advice would you give to someone who’s just getting started in paper crafting/scrapbooking?
Simple… don’t let yourself get overwhelmed. It’s not an all-or-nothing hobby. You can invest as little or as much time and money as you want, and it will be rewarding either way. Find someone (or somewhere, like a web site, cough cough www.scrapinstyletv.com cough) that will help you get started by easing into it… none of this “spending $200 to get you started” business, okay? Promise me! Promise!
Jeanette, thanks so much for being with us today! Like we mentioned before, Jeanette has graciously donated two tuitions to her Scrap In Style Home: Decorating On A Budget class and two tuitions to her Bling Out Your Blog 2.0 class. In addition, two lucky winners will each receive a $15 gift certificate to the SIStv Boutique. Leave a comment telling me what advice you would give a brand new paper crafter. All comments must be received by midnight on Sunday, March 29. I’ll announce the six winners on Monday, March 30.
P.S. Our fabulous editors Brandy Jesperson and Susan Opel participated in a live chat with SIStv members last week. Along with a few Creating Keepsakes editors, they answered questions on how to get projects published. If you’d like to read the complete transcript, click here!
Hey there…fancy meeting you here! I bet you’re wondering about the winners from the Stamp It! Week Challenge we tossed out as part of all the fun last week. The five categories (stamp kissing, build a scene, creating patterned paper with stamps, adding color with markers and adding color with dye ink sprays) yielded hundreds of entries and we sure did have a tough time choosing winners. Luckily, we split the challenge between our happy home here at Paper Crafts Connection and over at Moxie Fab World with Cath. Yay for us and double yay for the double set of winners!
STAMP KISSING: Parker Laine
BUILD A SCENE: Pam Smerker
CREATING PATTERNED PAPER WITH STAMPS: Ashley Newell
ADDING COLOR WITH MARKERS: CatDidIt
ADDING COLOR WITH DYE INK SPRAY: Linda Beeson
A great big cheer of congratulations to all five of these talented ladies! Email me at jschaerer (at) ckmedia.com so I can send each of you a prize package that includes five stamp sets from some of our favorite manufacturers as well as a copy of Stamp It! Cards. I hope each one of you also sent the card to us for our annual Stamping Royalty Contest so you have a second chance to win!
Wrapping up a happy Stamp It! Week,
P.S. If you’re anywhere near Louisville, KY this weekend, go visit our own Susan Opel at the Creating Keepsakes Convention there! Pssssst…she even made cards to swap at the Paper Crafts Card Swap class!
I know this post will appeal to those scrapbookers we have in our audience. But, I’ll bet even the most hard core card makers have extra photos lying around. I know I do. Why not use a few of them in your card making adventures?
I was lucky enough to travel to Paris with my daughter and my mother (wow – three generations) and, of course, I took a TON of photos. After scrapping a lot of them, I found myself with extra photos of, um food. I’m not sure why, but I was fascinated with taking photos of our food.
I especially loved the coffee in Paris. Maybe it was the atmosphere of sitting outside in one of those lovely cafes, but there you go. Instead of throwing my extras away, I created this card.
Here’s a close up in case you can’t read the cute little sentiment.
So, next time you are in a little card making slump, turn to your photos. Check out these ideas:
- A cupcake photo for a birthday
- A vintage photo for Mother’s Day
- A photo of an old car for your Dad
- Any kind of floral for “thinking of you”
- A beach theme or cruise photo for “Missing You”
The ideas are endless, really! Have fun!
Kim, Paper Crafts Pro
P.S. Make sure to check back here tomorrow when we reveal the five winners from last week’s Stamp It! Week Challenge!
I know you’ve all been anxiously waiting to hear who won the fabulous prize package from last week’s Freebie Friday – The Big One post. Well, the wait is finally over! You can put away the rabbit’s foot, uncross your fingers (and toes!) and take the voodoo pin out of the doll you’ve fashioned to look like me.
Because fate has chosen a winner and she is…
Pam Davis (March 22, 10:27 a.m.)
From one Pamela to another, congratulations!
Pam, you’ve won this grand prize package including: Cropper Hopper Stamp Station, Copic Basic Brights marker set, six Close to My Heart exclusive dye inks, two background stamps and the Butterfly Beauty set from Unity Stamp Company, Teacher’s Apple and Spiral Bouquet stamp sets from Papertrey Ink, and the five stamp sets we featured in the “Say it with Stamps” section of Stamp It! Cards. And a copy of Stamp It! Cards autographed by all the Paper Crafts editors. Whew! Did you get all that?
Pam, while you go grab a brown paper bag, let me announce the five additional winners who have won this prize package including: five clear stamp sets and idea book from Adornit Carolee’s Creations and a copy of Stamp It! Cards.
Congrats to Kerry J (March 20, 8:41 a.m.), Melissa (March 20, 11:01 a.m.), Jen Solak (March 20, 1:59 p.m.), cgargus (March 20, 5:29 p.m.) and Analyn (March 20, 9:05 p.m.)!
Ladies, I’ll be contacting you shortly for all of your mailing addresses. A big thank you to everyone who participated in Stamp It! Week and left so many great spring quotes (a whopping 760 comments!). Even though snow is currently falling in Utah, I know that spring is right around the corner.
Know what else is right around the corner? Our new and improved web site! Paper Crafts has been working hard behind the scenes to renovate our web site and bring you a better user experience. Taking feedback we’ve received over the past few months, we’ve combined what you enjoy about our site with suggestions for easier access to articles, downloads, etc. to give you the best of both worlds. These changes will go into effect this week.
Like any improvement project, we plan on this being a seamless transition from our current site to our updated model. But, like any improvement project, we understand the importance of being cautious, which is why we’re updating you ahead of time. Please know that your user name and password will remain the same and the content you’ve uploaded will still be available to you.
Since the goal of this project is to provide you with an optimal online experience, we invite you to send us your feedback on the changes after the new web site has launched. Please send any questions or comments to our webmaster at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s to spring and a brand new web site!
Every issue of Paper Crafts magazine is stuffed full of some of the most amazing paper crafted projects. Once we choose which projects we are going to publish, designers from all over send in their projects so we can photograph them. Once the process of writing, editing, and designing the magazine is completed, we’re left with hundreds of projects that need to be returned (with complimentary issues of the magazine) to the designers.
When I was first given the assignment to return the projects from the March/April issue, I didn’t think it would be that big of a deal. I thought wrong. (Sounds eerily similar to how I reacted to the writing assignment, doesn’t it? Maybe from now on I should start overestimating the amount of effort things require…) It wasn’t that the work was particularly difficult, it was just rather time consuming.
I completely take over the break room when I do returns. Because we have so many talented designers who have multiple projects in an issue, I will first sort through all of the projects and arrange them in piles according to designer. This makes it easier when stuffing envelopes, because that way I don’t have to shuffle through bins and folders in order to find a particular designer. These piles of projects are spread all over the break room tables.
Then, once I have the projects organized, I will stuff envelopes or package boxes, depending on the size and amount of projects in one package. Cards are by far the easiest. I can fit quite a few cards in one envelope, and that means I don’t have to go searching through the warehouse looking for the right sized box.
The first time I did returns, it took me a full eight-hour shift. It was a good thing I had my handy-dandy orange iPod. Music made returns go a lot faster. Music makes a lot of things go faster. I often listen to instrumental music while I work on my writing assignments. (I’m actually listening to “The Village” soundtrack as I write this.)
Who knew that working at Paper Crafts magazine would require so much manual labor? But it just goes to show how much work goes into putting out this publication. The staff puts in an incredible amount of time and effort, but it is all worth it.
Your Paper Crafts intern,
P.S. Brandy wanted me to announce the winners of her Maximize Your Stamps + MORE FREEBIES!! post from last week. After a whopping 507 comments, the two lucky winners are #25 (Carol, March 19, 10:07 a.m.) and #171 (Tammy Reagan, March 19, 4:00 p.m.). Congratulations, ladies! We’ll be contacting you shortly for your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left comments and played along. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s big announcement on who won the amazing prize package from Kelly’s Freebie Friday – The Big One! post. (BTW, we’re still accepting comments until midnight tonight (MST), so keep them coming!)
Welcome to Freebie Friday! I hope you’ve enjoyed Stamp It! Week just as much as we’ve enjoyed bringing it to you here and on the Moxie Fab World blog. (Judging from our page hits and your wildly enthusiastic comments, you’ve had a mighty fine time! And all the free product doesn’t hurt, right?)
For those of you just joining us today, make sure to read all of our stamptastic posts this week. From a wonderfully candid interview with designer Teri Anderson to Susan Opel’s “green” confession to an inspiring tutorial on dye ink sprays from PC Pro Alisa Bangerter, we’ve truly been favored by the stamping gods. And a special thanks goes out to all the manufacturers who’ve donated their fabulous product for our daily giveaways – especially yesterday’s! You’ve made a lot of people very happy!
So should we get on with the giveaway? I told you it was going to be a BIG one. I believe my exact words were “the crème-de-la-crème of all stamping prizes”. I’m hyperventilating right now just thinking about and I don’t even get to take it home. Take a deep breath, ladies. Now let it out. Okay. Here. We. Go.
One random winner will receive this grand prize package including: Cropper Hopper Stamp Station, Copic Basic Brights marker set (MSRP $70.00), six Close to My Heart exclusive dye inks, two background stamps and the Butterfly Beauty set from Unity Stamp Company, Teacher’s Apple and Spiral Bouquet stamp sets from Papertrey Ink, and the five stamp sets we featured in the “Say it with Stamps” section of Stamp It! Cards. And, of course, a copy of Stamp It! Cards autographed by all the Paper Crafts editors. Whew! Did you get all that?
And because I’m feeling very generous, five additional people will each receive this prize package including: five clear stamp sets and idea book from Adornit Carolee’s Creations and a copy of Stamp It! Cards.
Are you officially drooling? Good! Then I’ve done my job. Since today marks the first day of spring, leave a comment telling me your favorite spring quote. It can be from a song, a poem, a movie, etc. All comments must be received by midnight on Monday, March 23. I’ll announce the winners on Tuesday, March 24.
All in all, I’d have say there’s a lot of stampers out there who are beyond passionate about their craft. One common thread I picked up from all of your comments (yes, I read every last one!) is there are endless creative possibilities when it comes to stamping. And when there’s no limit to creativity, that’s when the real fun begins!
Thanks for making Stamp It! Week so much fun!
P.S. Our Stamp It! Week Challenge is still going on! Wanna play? To participate, create a stamped card featuring one of the following techniques:
Build a Scene
Creating Patterned Paper with Stamps
Adding Color with Markers
Adding Color with Dye Ink Sprays
Upload your stamped card here from now until Monday, March 23. We’ll pick 10 winners (two per category) to win a fabulous prize package. Five winners’ cards will be shown on this blog and five will be shown on Moxie Fab World. AND once you upload your card, you can turn around and mail it into our Stamping Royalty card contest!
P.P.S. Congrats to Jazy Girl, Kerry and Suzy! You’ve each won the Tattered Angels prize package from Wednesday’s Dye Inks Sprays Rock post. I’ll be e-mailing you shortly for your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left comments and played along!
I fancy myself to be quite the bargain hunter. I’m always on the lookout for a great deal and I love repurposing objects as a way to maximize their usability. This is precisely why I love the Stamp It! 3 Ways section of Stamp It! Cards. This section shows how to create three totally different cards using the same stamp set. Honestly, can it get any better than that?!
Actually, it can. I’m going to give two lucky winners ALL the stamp sets from Stamp It! 3 Ways! That’s right. Leave a comment telling me how you’ve managed to use one stamp in a variety of ways and you’ll be entered to win all of the following stamps:
Wow, I’m giddy just thinking about the piles of cards I could make with these stamps! To help jump start your creative motor, here’s a sampling of cards made using the Art Declassified Admit One set. Check out how easy it can be to get Miss You, Birthday, and Congratulations cards all from the same stamp set.
After you’ve left me a comment, make sure you swing by the Moxie Fab World blog to be entered to win ever more fabulous freebies.
Yours in giveaway gladness,
P.S. Congrats to Kelly Jean! She won Susan’s Green Hi Card, Rusty Pickle’s Lucky collection and a copy of Stamp It! Cards from Tuesday’s I’m Kind of Green at This Stamping Thing post. Thanks to all who left comments and played along!
I love using dye ink sprays. In fact, I totally think they rock! I find myself reaching for and using my dye ink sprays over and over again. You can create some really cool effects and the possibilities are endless. Some sprays are rich, vivid and bold, and some shimmer and shine.
Some of my favorite ways to use the sprays include:
- Color washing patterned paper, fabrics or trim to create a new look.
- Color washing over wax or embossed images creating a resist.
- Spraying two or more colors close together or on top of each other to create cool blending.
- Spraying over mask or stencils to create cool images.
- Letting the ink drip onto cardstock to create cool splotches of color.
- Diluting sprays with water to create soft and light washes.
- Using dye ink sprays to make a project look antiqued, vintage or old and worn.
- Adding shimmer or sparkle to silk flowers.
- Spraying my stamp directly to create a watercolor effect.
Here’s one of my recent projects using dye ink sprays. It’s featured in the “Techniques from the Pros” section of the new Stamp It! Cards.
SUPPLIES: Rubber stamp: (Damask) Inkadinkado Dye ink: (black) Stewart Superior Corp. Specialty ink: (Graphite, silver, Cherub Pink, Sea Glass shimmer spray) Tattered Angels Cardstock: (black, grey) Accents: (red heart die cut) Fancy Pants Designs; (black buttons) Jesse James & Co. Rub-on: (love) Cosmo Cricket Fibers: (black/white ribbon) Pebbles Inc.; (red scalloped ribbon) Cosmo Cricket; (teal crochet trim) Making Memories Adhesive: (foam tape) Other: (chipboard) Finished size: 5 1/2″ square
1 Make card from cardstock. Apply shimmer spray. 2 Create stamped element, following figures 1-3; adhere. 3 Adhere ribbon and trim. 4 Apply shimmer spray to ribbon; tie knot and adhere. 5 Adhere heart die cut to chipboard; trim and adhere with foam tape. 6 Apply rub-on. 7 Adhere buttons.
- When spraying the cardstock with shimmer spray, it is fine to have some large droplets. This will actually add to the interest of your design.
- After stamping and applying shimmer spray, your cardstock may begin to fold. Iron the cardstock with a dry iron to flatten it before adhering it to the card.
So my challenge to you is to pull out your dye ink sprays and try something new. If you have never tried dye ink sprays, you are in for a real treat and will love the creative possibilities they offer!
P.S. Tattered Angels was oh-so-kind to donate three fabulous prize packages in honor of Stamp It! Week!
Leave a comment telling me if you’re intrigued by dye ink sprays. All comments must be received by midnight on Thursday, March 19. Kelly will announce the three lucky winners in her Freebie Friday blog!
P.P.S. Congrats to Oralia! She won Teri Anderson’s gorgeous card set and a copy of Stamp It! Cards from our Magazine Monday post. Thanks to all who left comments and played along!