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Betsy Veldman

Well, for the most part, the holiday craziness is behind us. The tree is bare, the gifts have been opened and the goodies have been eaten. Now it’s time to pause and take a moment to say thanks. 

When I was a kid, my mom would make us take some time during Christmas vacation to write out thank you notes for the gifts we had received. Somewhere along the line, that tradition has disappeared. So this year I decided to resurrect it. I think it’s important that my children learn to be grateful for the things they receive, and what better way to show it than to take a few minutes to write a little note! 

I decided to make it easy and send out some postcards. Postcards are nice because they are easy to mail, they don’t need envelopes and you’ll save on postage. You could very easily create your own from some cardstock and stamps. If you’re going to make your own, be sure to check on size requirements. I found this on the USPS site:

Postcards stamps are: $0.28

Size limits:

  • Minimum: 3-1/2 inches high by 5 inches long by 0.007 inch thick
  • Maximum: 6 inches long by 4-1/4 inches high
  • Additional postage required for larger postcards

Or you could make it really easy on yourself and do what I did. Visit http://www.premiumpostcard.com. It’s a service connected with the USPS where you can upload your own photo, add your message and select your addresses. You can customize each postcard for its recipient. And when you’re finished they will mail them for you! How easy is that? 

With this idea in mind, I snapped a few quick pics of my kids while we were taking our family Christmas card photo. The inspiration for the photo came from my good friend Becky Oehlers and her altered art photo in this post. I did a super simple version of the card by going completely digital and adding the little gifts digitally, instead of with a stamp. I love the way they turned out and hope they will bring a smile to the recipient, as well as show our gratitude! 

I’d love to hear your ideas for showing gratitude after the holidays and if you have any traditions similar to this. I’d love to hear about them! 

Betsy Veldman,
Paper Crafts Go-to Gal

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P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Magazine Monday! I don’t know about you, but here at Paper Crafts we’re in full Christmas countdown mode. Today we’re decorating our hot pink, lime green and ruby red tree for the Festival of the Trees, a fundraiser that benefits Primary Children’s Medical Center. Make sure you stop by the Paper Crafts Facebook fan page to see pictures of our tree in all its yuletide glory.

If some of you are still needing a little push to get you in the holiday spirit, I thought I would bring in an expert on all things Christmas. She had so many gorgeous cards in Holidays Cards & More, Volume 4, I just knew she would be the perfect designer spotlight for this most festive time of year.

Grinches beware…let’s get to know the talented Becky Oehlers!

Becky Oehlers

1. Where did you grow up? 

I grew up in Bryn Athyn, PA , which is right outside of Philadelphia.

2. Do you work outside the home? If so, what do you do?

I am a professional opera singer and sing in many ensembles both in Philadelphia and New York City. I am also on the voice faculty at Drexel University.

3. If a movie were to be made of your life, who would you cast to play the part of you?

Judy Garland, if she were still alive. 

4. What song would you choose as the theme song for your life?

This is a hard one for me…I love all types of music from Bach to Alison Krauss to newly composed music, but I would have to say that Beethoven’s 7th Symphony would be a pretty great theme song. 

5. What is one thing most people would be surprised to hear about you?

That I was a double major in college for both voice and french horn performance.

6. What/who inspired you to start paper crafting?

Nichole Heady. It was her blog that started it all. 

7. What is your biggest paper crafting challenge?

I think my challenge and my strength at the same time is trying to be innovative and really mold myself to the design of each stamp set that I work with. I try to let the style of the set dictate the art that comes from it.

Jingle All the Way Card by Becky Oehlers

8. If you were only allowed two items to create a card beside cardstock and adhesive, what would they be?

A well-designed stamp set and Copics. You are only as good as your tools.

9. What is your favorite occasion or holiday to paper craft and why?

That’s easy! Christmas. Definitely. I love getting the house all cozy and dramatic, and I think that comes across in the work I create. I think I always do my best work around Christmastime. 

Warm Winter Wishes Card by Becky Oehlers

10. How would you describe your style? 

Whimsical elegance

11. When is your favorite time to craft?

Very late at night. I have been guilty of staying up until 3 a.m. several times in my crafting life.

12. What sort of music do you listen to while crafting?

None. It actually distracts me. 

13. How does your family participate in your paper crafting passion?

My girls Emma (11) and Sophia (9) have often had card making sessions with me on the side. They have a little table in my studio. They even have their own small set of Copics!

My husband is too busy collecting his own stamps. He is a philatelist.

14. When it comes to calls and deadlines, how do you keep yourself organized?

This is a weakness of mine. I am learning to print out all assignments and keep them in a book. I have gotten much better, but organization is a learned task for me.

15. Do you remember what Paper Crafts issue your first project appeared in? How has your style changed since then?

Yes! It was Paper Crafting with Kids, 2008. I have become more consistent in my style since then.

Season's Greetings Card by Becky Oehlers

16. Have you contributed to any design teams in the past or present? If so, which ones?

I am currently on the senior design team at Papertrey Ink. I have also worked for Kitchen Sink Stamps, Starving Artistamps and Inque Boutique.

17. Name three designers whose styles you like and why they appeal to you.  

  • Debbie Olson – She is a true artist. My husband even says he wants to be like her when he grows up! 
  • Julie Ebersole – I really like her simple and playful approach to card making. That really appeals to me.
  • Jeffrey Rudell – He doesn’t stamp, doesn’t have a blog, but what this man can do with paper completely inspires me and blows my mind! Google him!

18. Do you have any advice/tips for someone who’s never been published or who wants to submit for the first time?

I think in any situation like this fear is the only thing that will hold you back. Don’t be scared. Submit and submit. If you never try, you will never succeed. The worst thing that they could say is “no”. Oh, well! Try again!

19. Do you have a blog or online gallery? If so, please provide the URL.

I do have a blog (www.hemidemisemiquaverdesignblog.com). Please hop on over!

Thanks, Becky! I’m definitely in the Christmas spirit now! Leave a comment for Becky here and one lucky winner will take home all of Becky’s Holiday Cards and More cards (pictured above), plus two other surprise gems! All comments must be received by midnight (MDT) on Tuesday, Dec. 1.

Happy Monday!
Kelly

P.S. Since we know all of you like a good deal, make sure you take advantage of our huge Warehouse Blowout Sale at ShopScrapandPaperCorner.com! From now until midnight tonight, save 60% off select product, PLUS get free shipping and handling (on U.S. orders only) if $25 or more is spent. (Hint: The delicious–and I do mean delicious!–Paper Crafts Gourmet cookbook is only $17! Buy one for you and one for a friend!)

P.P.S. It’s time to announce the two winners from my Black Freebie Friday post!

1. Chris S. (Nov. 27, 9:54 a.m.)
2. rap (Nov. 27, 7:40 p.m.)

Congrats, winners! You’ve each won a copy of Holiday Cards and More, Volume 4 and Making Memories Flowers stamp set. I’ll be contacting you shortly to get your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left comments!

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