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P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Magazine Monday! Today we’re kicking off our exciting Go-to Sketches Week here, on Moxie Fab World and each of our Paper Crafts Go-to Gals’ blogs. 

All week long we’ll be taking you inside the pages of our new special issue Go-to Sketches. We started with 66 sketches and then let our designers go to work in creating 282 unique projects. Who knew one sketch could have so many possibilities? We were blown away by all of the different interpretations and couldn’t wait to share them with all of you! 

Click on the cover image to order your copy today!

Today we’re going behind the scenes of one very “colorful” photo shoot. By now you probably know we work 6-7 months in advance. Hence our current call for submissions for Holiday Cards & More, Volume 5. So because of this strict production schedule, it was last September that we were concepting Go-to Sketches. Fortunately, our yearly editorial board meeting just happened to fall around this time. With our six Go-to Gals flying in for the meeting, we decided to make the most of our 48 hours together and threw in a photo shoot. 

I think this is my favorite picture from the photo shoot.

But I love Kim Kesti's laugh in this one!

And the cute playfulness of this one! I think they like each other!

We knew Matt had an all-white theme planned for this issue, so we told each Go-to Gal to come dressed in a bright, vibrant color. The editors were removed from this conversation, but apparently there was much discussion between them about who would wear what color, how they would wear their hair and just how big they should go with the accessories. (From Jessica’s post last week, we know her philosophy on this topic: the bigger, the better!) 

To see more individual and group outtakes, make sure you visit each of the gals’ blogs. They’re also talking about the photo shoot from their own perspective, so I’m sure it will be interesting and full of juicy details! (Hopefully they’ll be kind to us editors…especially since we were all in the background saying things like, “Smile, Kim! Turn your head, Teri! Stop giggling, Maren!” 

Wanna win a copy of Go-to Sketches? Go visit their blogs and then come back here to tell me your favorite juicy detail revealed. From your comments, I’ll pick three people to win a copy of Go-to Sketches! All comments must be received by midnight (MDT) on Tuesday, April 6. And check back with us tomorrow when Cath announces the Go-to Gals & Friends Blog Hop. There will be lots of inspiration and lots of chances to win more copies of Go-to Sketches

Happy Monday!

P.S. We just launched our April Gallery Challenge! Since diamonds are a girl’s best friend, we want to see your projects that incorporate bling, glitter and anything else that sparkles. For inspiration, please turn to the “Shimmer & Shine” feature in our March/April 2010 issue. This two-week challenge will run through midnight (MDT) on Monday, April 19. Click HERE for all the details! And don’t forget…today is the last day to enter our Go-to Sketch Challenge #1! All entries must be submitted by midnight (MDT) tonight! 

P.P.S. It’s time to announce the three winners from my Countdown to Go-to Sketches Week post! 

1. Le Anne (April 2, 7:03 a.m.)
2. Sonja (April 3, 4:46 p.m.)
3. Tami (April 2, 2:20 p.m.)

Congrats, winners! You’ve each won some fun goodies from the Easter Bunny! I’ll be contacting you shortly to get your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left comments!


Susan R. Opel

We’re getting close to one of my favorite days of the year…Easter! Roll springtime, resurrection and pretty pastels all up into one day, and you’ll find me smiling from ear to ear! 

Hopefully by now you’ve had the chance to drink in all of the springtime goodness in the March/April issue. Did you SEE the eggs that Kim Kesti created in Tips, Tools, & Techniques? Talk about wowie-wow! I simply asked Kim to come up with some creative ideas of how to use her paper crafting supplies to decorate eggs, and away she went! 

The six eggs that appeared in the magazine are pretty inspiring. I mean, who is brave enough to even attempt stamping and embossing on an egg shell? Kim is, and look at the awesome results! Kim also used acrylic paint, rub-ons, finger paint, paper flowers, patterned paper, adhesive pearls and glitter to dress up half a dozen simple eggshells. Aren’t these simply gorgeous?   

Here are some fun ways to dress up some eggshells!

One thing you probably don’t know is that Kim actually decorated three more eggs that didn’t appear in the magazine. Yes, she blew out THREE MORE yolks which really isn’t all that fun! If you go to her blog here, you can get a full insider’s look at how she went about creating all of the eggs. And here’s a look at the other three eggs that she created: 

Don’t be afraid to try glimmer mist, stickers, gems and ribbons on your eggs.

So as you head into Easter and are trying to think of a fun craft to do with the kids or for yourself, consider all of the pretty pastel goodness that you can find in your craft supplies, and scramble up some egg decorating fun! 

Would you believe that Kim is willing to part with these beauties? Leave me a comment telling me which egg is your favorite (and why), and one lucky/randomly chosen commenter will be sent the six eggs that appeared in the magazine (no guarantees that they’ll make it there in one piece – but it could happen!). All comments must be received by midnight (MDT) on Sunday, March 28. 

Here’s to an egg-citing Easter!

P.S. We just posted our next call for submissions! If you feel like getting in the Christmas spirit, we’re looking for projects for Holiday Cards & More, Volume 5. Click HERE for all the merry details!

P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Freebie Friday and Paper Crafts latest installment of the trivia game I-Spy! Just in time for spring (the first day is tomorrow!), today’s giveaway is all about lovely, blooming trees!  

Get ready to play because I’m picking five winners this time! (Each winner’s prize package is literally growing right before my eyes! If you win, you will not be disappointed!) 

You must have a copy of our spring-infused March/April 2010 issue in front of you. All questions will be directly related to this issue and this issue only.  


March/April I-Spy Questions:  

1. I spy Jennifer’s Editor’s Note. She mentions that there are 19 first-timer designers in this issue. Name the three designers whose last names begin with the letter “S”. 

2. I spy our Paper Crafts Connection column. In honor of World Card Making Day, how many international bloggers participated in Cath’s World Tour of Card Making on the Moxie Fab World blog? 

3. I spy our Go-to Sketches column. How did designer Aly Dosdall create the sun rays in her UR My Sunshine Card? (It’s pure genius!) 

4. I spy our Color Play column. How many green pearl accents are on Layle Koncar’s Spring Card? (Look closely!) 

5. I spy our Shimmer & Shine feature. How did designer Kimberly Crawford get her rhinestones to perfectly match the yellow umbrella in her Cheer Up, Buttercup Card? 

6. I spy our Thanks & Congrats feature. Name the two designers who each have three-step cards in this feature. 

7. I spy an ad for our 2010 Stamping Royalty Card Contest. When must entries be postmarked by? (Hint: There’s still time submit!) 

8. I spy our Designer Challenge Your Choice: Pick Any Three feature. What three supplies did designer Maile Belles use to create her Thank You Button Card? 

9. I spy our Lovely as a Tree feature. What quote is featured on Go-to Gal Maren Benedict’s Plant Hope Card? (BTW, this Unity stamp set is up for grabs today!) 

10. I spy our Tips, Tools, & Techniques column. Paper Crafts Go-to Gal Kim Kesti paper crafted six REAL eggs – just in time for Easter! Name two of the six techniques shown in the column. (To find out how she achieved this eggscellent look, click HERE!) 

Five random winners (who answer five or more questions correctly) will win a selection of product we feature in this issue’s Product Parade and Sweepstakes columns. (Just turn to pages 80-81 for a closer look!) To play, please enter your answers in the comment field below this entry. All comments must be received by midnight (MDT) on Sunday, March 21.  

Five lucky winners will receive an assortment of this tree-licious product!

Good luck!

Susan R. Opel

Last month while teaching at a Creating Keepsakes Convention in Kentucky, I had the opportunity to meet Windy Robinson, a talented card designer who’s been published in Paper Crafts magazine. She told me an inspiring story about how she became the paper crafter that she is today, and I knew that I wanted to share it with all of you! So, read on for Windy’s story…

Windy’s story: Every year my best crafting buddy and I attend a CKC event. We’ve been fortunate enough to attend CKC-Louisville just two hours from our hometown of Cincinnati for the past two years, but I’ll admit that we’ve gleefully driven 5-6 hours to hit CKC-Nashville. You just can’t beat a weekend of quality crafting time with your girlfriends, abundant new products to buy and new things to learn by taking great classes from the pros.

It’s amazing what can happen in a very short period of time. I say this because it’s hard to believe that it was only a little over a year ago when I made my first card…ever! I entered it in the Paper Crafts Card Contest at CKC-Louisville.

Windy created her You Make Me Smile Card using product she bought at the CKC vendor faire last month.

Prior to making my first card, I was die-hard scrapbooker. I made my first scrapbooks over 12 years ago when I was in college, with magnetic albums and construction paper–yikes! After making that first card and taking a few classes at CKC, I instantly became addicted to card making. This addiction has been one of life’s little surprises for me. I never would have dreamt that I’d be a card maker, but what I hadn’t realized was that card making and scrapbooking naturally go hand in hand.

I began a blog where I shared cards that I’d made from the remnants of my scrapbook pages. Within a few months of sharing my work, seeing others’ inspiring work and playing along with the challenges at Paper Crafts Connection and Moxie Fab World, my card designs started to take over as the inspiration for my scrapbook layouts.

Windy’s classy and elegant style often includes a big dramatic silk ribbon.

As the months progressed, I started developing my style as a designer, submitting my work to Paper Crafts for publication, and building fabulous relationships with paper crafters from all around the world. The end result is that now I am a die-hard card maker (who scrapbooks), and I’ve even been asked to join the design teams for GCD Studios and Piggy Tales Academy

I love to share and learn, and this wonderful craft enables us all to do that on so many levels. Better yet, I have learned how to define my scrapbook designs, and I’m loving my layouts even more now. The moral of this story is that you can surprise yourself, but only if you give it a shot. So submit, share and most importantly, don’t stop creating!

Windy and I pause for a photo after the Paper Crafts Card Swap at CKC-Louisville.

Thanks for sharing your story, Windy. And to think that it all started because of a fun and crafty weekend with her girlfriends!

Have you ever attended a CKC event? Follow this link and see if there’s one in your neck of the woods. It might well be a weekend you’ll never forget (for all the right reasons!). 

Join me in giving Windy some Paper Crafts love!

P.S. You can see more of Windy’s cards in our current issue, as well as our May/June and July/August issues. Her projects will also be appearing in our upcoming special issues – Go-to Sketches (on sale March 23) and Card Creations, Volume 8.

Cath Edvalson

In the March/April issue of Paper Crafts magazine, we always feature both babies and brides. Springtime is a good time to be thinking about new beginnings and whether it’s a baby just coming into the world or a bride and groom starting their lives together, these events are some of the most important milestones in our lives.

In addition to finding an entire feature on this topic in the magazine (see pages 48-57), we thought you would also enjoy showing off baby and/or bride projects you’ve created yourself.

Join us in our March Gallery Challenge where you can submit cards for brides and grooms, babies, and new moms and dads. But your creativity doesn’t have to stop there! We’d love to also see shower ensembles, décor for the nursery, gift bags and tags, gift card holders and any other non-card projects you’d love to whip up! Click HERE for all the details on how to enter and scroll down for some heartfelt inspiration straight from the pages of the magazine:

This card by Kim Hughes makes me grin from ear-to-ear. What a super cute way to say congrats to the happy couple!

I love the pun in this card, don’t you? Thanks for the cutie-pie chuckle, Angie Hagist!

I love the simplicity of this card by Linda Beeson. Only three quick steps to gorgeous!

The airy lift in this card by Danni Reid is so baby--and so hip! What’s not to love?

We can’t wait to see what you’ve got up your sleeves for this challenge! You’ve got until Monday, March 22!

Yours in celebrating babies and brides,

P.S. Speaking of babies, the Paper Crafts team gets to meet baby Cooper tomorrow! Stay tuned for this much-anticipated love fest!

P.P.S. It’s time to announce the two winners from Susan’s Tips, Tools, & Technique Trivia post!

1. Anita Young (Winner of the i-top, punches)
2. Lori Beseke (Winner of the glitter package)

Congrats, winners! Susan will be contacting you shortly to get your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left comments!

Susan R. Opel

It’s time for another edition of Tips, Tools, & Techniques trivia! Open your gorgeous copy of the March/April 2010 issue of Paper Crafts magazine (a breath of fresh air!), turn to pages 94-96 and answer the following questions for the chance to WIN (and who doesn’t like to win?): 

  • Take a closer look at the brads that I created using the i-top from Imaginisce. A photo of my parents appears on one of the brads. What are they doing in the picture?
  • Which Go-to Gal had the headache-inducing task of blowing the insides out of eggs for this issue?
  • Tell me – what does heat & stick powder do?
  • Fill-in-the-blank time! I say that Doodlebug Design’s Chunky Glitter could be classified as “_______________ in a ________.”
  • What idea is your favorite from this issue’s Tips, Tools, & Techniques column, and why?

Now for the fun part. Two winners will be randomly selected to win: 

  • The i-top Brad Maker and the Small, Medium and Large Punches and Brad Daddies from Imaginisce shown on page 94.





Now doesn’t that sound fun? There’s not much more to do before you are qualified to win! 

  • Send an e-mail with your answers to Put “TT&T Blog” in the subject line of your message. Please leave a comment on the blog, and let me know which prize puts a spring in your step!
  • Entries are due no later than midnight (MST) on Monday, March 8th. From the correct entries received, two winners will be selected at random and contacted via e-mail. Note: Due to the number of e-mails received, I’m unable to respond to each message individually. Please know that I do read your comments and totally appreciate your participation. Thanks!

So…What are you waiting for? 

Can’t wait to see your answers!

Holly Mills

2009 may be behind us, but the prestige of being a winner of our World Card Making Day Card Contest lives on. Since we just announced the winners in our new March/April 2010 issue, I thought I would take the opportunity to spotlight these talented card makers once again.  

With 936 submissions, narrowing the field to 20 winners in five categories was a huge challenge. Kudos to these ladies for making the final cut. We’re proud to publish your winning cards in the magazine (p.82) and honor you here.  

Let’s roll out the red carpet for: 

Birthday category: 

  • Terri Davenport (Toledo, OH)
  • Ann Marie Pultorak (Romeoville, IL)
  • Debbie O’Leary (Dingmans Ferry, PA)
  • Cindy Holshouser (Edgewood, VA)

Hello/Thinking of You category: 

  • Jenny Harper (Bear Creek, NC)
  • Lynn Kirby-Griffith (Blairsville, GA)
  • Crystal Birr (Cincinnati, OH)
  • Rachael Burdick (Portland, OR)

Thank You category: 

  • Katie McCullough (Tulsa, OK)
  • Kristie Larsen (Valhalla, NY)
  • Susan Mangum (Danville, CA)
  • Cathy List (Peotone, IL)

Love category: 

Season’s Greetings category: 

I just loved the diversity of styles in the winning cards from our Hello/Thinking of You category: 

Great job Jenny, Lynn, Crystal and Rachael!

Congrats, winners! For those of you wondering about this year’s World Card Making Day, mark Saturday, Oct. 2 on your calendars. We’ve got some fabulous ideas up our sleeves for our fifth annual celebration. And look for details on the 2010 World Card Making Day Card Contest in our upcoming September/October 2010 issue. Until then… 

Keep smiling,

P.S. Speaking of fun contests…for those of you who aren’t afraid to get a little ink on your fingers, don’t forget to enter our current 2010 Stamping Royalty Card Contest.  

Not only can you impress your family and co-workers with your royalty status, but winners will each receive an amazing prize package of the latest stamping products (valued at more than $250)! So look into your creativity mirror and say, “I am the fairest stamper in the land.” Did I mention the 15 winners will each receive a sparkly tiara as well?

Susan R. Opel

Yep, Fat Tuesday (also known as Shrove Tuesday), and no, I’m not calling you fat!

Protestants around the globe are preparing for the beginning of Lent tomorrow on Ash Wednesday. Fat Tuesday is known as the traditional last day of decadence before the 40 days of fasting associated with Lent.

Many associate this day with Mardi Gras in New Orleans complete with King Cakes, parades and beads. Back in 2005, my sister and I took an amazing Spring Break trip to New Orleans, and though we missed Mardi Gras, we were still able to capture the vibe of one of the coolest cities in the country!

One of the highlights of our trip was eating authentic New Orleans cuisine Emeril Lagasse-style!

My sister, Beth Opel, created this layout about New Orleans after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.

You can see more New Orleans layouts from our trip here and here.

But I digress! When I was growing up as a little Lutheran girl, my mom liked to celebrate Fat Tuesday by serving pancakes for dinner (yummo!). You see the word fat is in reference to the idea that all of the remaining sugar, fat and eggs needed to be used up to herald the fasting of Lent. That’s not to say that we fasted, but an excuse to eat pancakes for supper? Count me in!

Another yummy Fat Tuesday tradition in my family came from the large Polish Catholic community in my hometown of Bay City, Michigan, (let’s just say Krzysiak’s was one of our favorite restaurants in town). Paczki (pronounced punch-key) are deep-fried pastries much like a jelly doughnut. There was nothing like licking the dusty powdered sugar off my sticky fingers.

A pile of paczki. Do you see what I’m saying?

And so, after all of those calories and all of that fat and gluttony, Lent begins. You may know of the tradition of giving something up for Lent. It’s not a requirement for Lutherans, but I often choose something. It’s a good lesson in self-control, ya know? And that certainly never hurts. And then, once those 40 days are done, the ultimate is here! Easter! And hopefully full-fledged spring!

My What I *heart* About Easter Sunday layout as seen in Creating Keepsakes magazine, April 2009.

Speaking of spring, today the March/April issue of Paper Crafts magazine hits the newsstands! Dig inside for amazing ideas to bring abundant fresh air into your February life!

Click on the cover image to order your copy today!

Giving you permission to eat paczki and pancakes today!

Betsy Veldman

Did you know that today is Umbrella Day? You didn’t? Really??? Well, you do now! Good thing I’ve got your back ‘cuz it’s a day you wouldn’t want to miss, right? Let’s make it a celebration, shall we? I’m always looking for an excuse to celebrate. So today, umbrellas it is! 

I did a little research and was pretty surprised at how many different kinds of umbrellas I found! There are umbrellas for the rain, for the beach, for golfers and I even came across…(and this is just for Cath!)…umbrellas for your dog! Yes, siree. 

Photo courtesy of

There are upscale umbrellas made from fine fabrics and bejeweled handles…

Photo courtesy of

Umbrellas for brides, complete with the couple’s monogram…

Photo courtesy of

You can even visit, where all you have to do is input your zip code to find out if you’ll need an umbrella today. 

And if you’re up for a feast for the eyes, just do a Google image search for “colorful umbrellas” and prepare to be wowed by glorious images and colors!

So…I know what you’re thinking…how does this all relate to paper crafting? Well, umbrellas are trendy and they’re popping up everywhere, from patterned papers to stamps to die cuts and more! They’re fun, colorful and happy! We need something to brighten us up on those rainy days, don’t we? 

So here is a paper crafting project for you, using a fun umbrella die cut image from Provo Craft’s A Child’s Year Cricut cartridge. 

It also features one of my favorite techniques…paper piecing! Umbrellas are just perfect for this technique! Umbrellas need to be colorful, don’t they?

If you like the look of paper piecing, be sure to keep an eye out for the PC 101 column in the March/April 2010 issue of Paper Crafts. Here I explore nine different ways to use paper piecing in your projects. It’s coming to a newsstand or mailbox near you soon! 

Wishing you clear skies…or should that be cloudy?

Paper Crafts Go-to Gal,
Betsy Veldman

P.S. In honor of Umbrella Day, Prima has graciously donated three prize packages that feature what else…their new Umbrella collection! To be eligible to win, leave a comment by midnight (MST) on Thursday, Feb. 11.

Three lucky winners will take home items from Prima's new Umbrella line!

Cath Edvalson

Cath Edvalson

How was your World Card Making Day? No matter where you were or who you were with, I hope it was fun memorable!

Here at Paper Crafts, we are overwhelmed with the response to our fourth year celebrating this amazingly connective holiday. From manufacturers and online companies who were sponsoring events, to grass-roots blog hops and challenges, to individuals posting cards on their blogs, to groups of gals who gathered to make cards for charity, to those of you who really did get a jumpstart on your holiday cards, there was a lot going on as Oct. 3 worked its way around the globe.

Speaking of the globe, in the World Tour of Card Making that took place in the Moxie Fab World last week, we spotlighted 42 different designers in 17 countries. There were a total of 8,470 comments made–many of them in different languages–and 347 international bloggers joined in on the tour as well!

On the World Card Making Day web site, there was a blog tour for discounts on products in our online store and 383 other card makers did something special on their blogs for World Card Making Day, linking them on the site as well. Here’s some of the great cards that were featured on this tour:

Stinkin’ cute Boo Card by Becky from the Becky & Stacy Blog:

Fun Christmas Blessings Card by Lynn Miller:

Beautiful Blue Butterfly Card by Brises from Poland:

Cutie-pie Thanks a Latte Card by Michelle Woerner:

Fun Trick or Treat Card by Jona Panesa from the Philippines:

…and from what could be our youngest blogger in World Card Making Day history, this For You Card by eight-year-old Rebecca Ledlow:

Our Go-to Gals – Kim H., Maren, Teri, Betsy and Jessica were busy teaching classes at five winning retail stores around the country, while Kim K. was promoting the holiday at CKC-Glendale. Click their names for their takes on their experiences.

It was certainly a busy day, friends – but believe it or not, there’s still more fun to be had. If you live in the U.S. or Canada (except Quebec), you can send your Birthday, Christmas/Season’s Greetings, Hello/Thinking of You, Love and/or Thank You cards in to our World Card Making Day Card Contest to win a fantastic prize AND a spot in our March/April 2010 issue. But you need to hurry! Entries must be postmarked by Oct. 12! Click HERE for all the details!

What did you like most about World Card Making Day? My favorite part was the connections that I made with paper crafters from all over the world. With the click of the “translate” button, I was able to make friends with people I would never have met otherwise. Here’s hoping that the World Card Making Day spirit is alive within us all throughout the coming year until it’s time to celebrate again in 2010 on Saturday, Oct. 2!

I’d love to hear what you liked most about World Card Making Day and am prepared to thank you with a chance to win some fun embellishments from American Crafts. Just be sure to leave a comment by midnight (MDT) on Wednesday, Oct. 7 and I’ll draw three random winners!

Basking in the sisterhood of World Card Making Day,

P.S. I now get the privilege to announce the grand prize winner of Kelly’s Happy World Card Making Day post! This lucky lady is taking home this giant jackpot of a prize:

Congrats to Deanna for winning this WHOLE prize package!

Congrats to Sherry for winning this WHOLE prize package!

 Sherry (Oct. 3, 3:56 p.m.)

“Happy World Card Making Day from Iowa! I’ve been looking at the web pages and gathering lots of inspiration and reading blogs while putting together a few cards! Oh What Fun!!!”

Well done, Sherry! Kelly will be contacting you shortly to get your mailing address. Thanks to all of our 408 commenters! We loved hearing how you spent your World Card Making Day!

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