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P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Magazine Monday and day one of Paper Crafts Connection’s Blogiversary Celebration! Tomorrow, February 2, marks our official one-year anniversary, and I don’t about you, but time sure has flown by!

It was just over a year ago that I started building this blog, page by page and link by link. We knew we wanted it to be an extension of the magazine, and because we’re not limited to page count here, we knew we could give you more of everything you love about Paper Crafts. And because of its viral nature, we knew there was potential to reach paper crafters from all over the world on a daily basis. No pressure at all!

So, a year later, I’m sitting here trying to sum up 263 posts, which collectively contain 26,872 comments! And while certain posts are more memorable than others, in a way, all of them are like little babies that I’ve created and sent out into the paper crafting world for love and acceptance. And you’ve all embraced each and every one. Even the ones that were silly and lame and had nothing to do with paper crafting. Does anyone remember our Return of the Jedi Braid post? Like I said, there’s been some random ones!

That said, there’s also been some amazing ones. Too many to individually mention, but I went through our archives and pulled my favorites. In true Letterman style, I bring you PK’s Top Ten Paper Crafts Connection Blog Posts of 2009:

1. Happy World Card Making Day – Oct. 3, 2009 (Of course this would be my #1! So fun to celebrate this holiday with the whole wide world!)

2. Freebie Friday – Giving Back – Sept. 18, 2009 (You may think I picked this as one of my favorites because it features a scrumptious Johnny Depp card, but the real reason is because I so enjoyed giving my time to a wonderful charity. Brandy will talk more about our inspiring Creativity Heals campaign tomorrow!)

3. Magazine Monday – The Paper Crafts Office Tour – August 17, 2009 (As a request from one of our readers, I went around the office and took pictures of our lobby, break room and all of our individual cubes. It was a lot of fun!)

4. Freebie Friday – And the Gallery Idol Winner Is – July 31, 2009 (Oh happy day for Rae Barthel!)

5. Welcome Go-to Gal, Teri Anderson – July 23, 2009/Welcome Go-to Gal, Jessica Witty – July 21, 2009/Welcome Go-to Gal, Betsy Veldman – July 16, 2009/Welcome Go-to Gal, Maren Benedict – July 14, 2009/Welcome Go-to Gal, Kim Hughes – July 9, 2009/Welcome Go-to Gal, Kim Kesti – July 7, 2009 (July, 2009 was a very busy month in Paper Crafts land! In addition to the weekly Gallery Idol challenges and posts, we also welcomed six talented ladies to our family – the Paper Crafts Go-to Gals!)

6. Tickled Pink – June 23, 2009 (National Pink Day just happened to fall during our Card Creations 7 promotional week in June. In true girly fashion, Brandy spotlighted some pretty pink projects, gave away some pink-alicious product and then posted a picture of us in our finest pink garb.)

7. The Lone Design Man – May 7, 2009 (Matt, our lone man on the team, dishes secrets on what it’s like to work with seven hormonal women. He also shows some of his amazing openers that are featured in our magazine!)

8. Freebie Friday – Get Your Blinkies Here – April 3, 2009 (Here we showed readers how to upload their very own Paper Crafts and Moxie Fab World blinkies! If you still don’t have them on your blogs, what are you waiting for?)

9. Freebie Friday – The Big One – March 20, 2009 (This post related to our Stamp It! Cards promotional week generated more comments than any other to date. I wonder if this jackpot of a giveaway had anything to do with it!)

10. Happy Birthday, PK – March 12, 2009 (As a Coca-Cola fanatic, this post literally leaves me feeling effervescent!)

Can I tell you how hard it was to only pick 10 posts?! Luckily, we still have the rest of the week to touch on highlights from the past year. And since no celebration would be complete without presents, today I’m giving away three fun prize packages! Leave a comment telling me one of your favorite Paper Crafts Connection blog posts from 2009. I’ll pick three random winners to each receive one of our new “Betty” t-shirts, a Paper Crafts Connection button and Cosmo Cricket’s Earth Love collection. All comments must be received by midnight (MST) on Tuesday, Feb, 2.

Happy Monday!

P.S. We just launched our February Gallery Challenge today! Since it’s the season of love, we want to see your best Valentine’s Day projects. For inspiration, please turn to the Valentines for Everyone on Your List and Vintage Valentines features in our January/February 2010 issue. This three-week challenge will run through midnight (MDT) on Monday, Feb. 22. Click HERE for all the details! (January’s winners will be spotlighted next Monday, Feb. 8.)

P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Freebie Friday and Paper Crafts latest installment of the trivia game I-Spy! If you’re a fan of the vintage look, then you’re going to love today’s giveaway!  

From frilly flowers and papers to bingo cards and pearl stick pins, this prize package will transport you back to Grandma’s cozy parlor. Get ready to play because I’m picking five winners this time! 

You must have a copy of our January/February 2010 issue in front of you. All questions will be directly related to this issue and this issue only. 


January/February I-Spy Questions: 

1. I spy designer Rae Barthel in our Paper Crafts Connection column. Name the five rounds of competition that earned her the title of 2009 Gallery Idol. 

2. I spy Cath’s Moxie Fabs column. In Stefanie Hamilton’s Everything I Am Card, what does the woman owe everything to?   

3. I spy our Paper Crafts 101 column. In one of Kim Hughes’ technique squares she braided floss to make sun rays. How many “rays” are there?  

4. I spy our brand new Color Play column. Name the four Bazzill cardstock colors Kim Kesti uses in her Groovy Love Card. 

5. I spy our Valentines for Everyone on Your List feature. What designer tip does Jo Kill suggest for her Love You Card? 

6. I spy our Marker Magic feature. Name the items hanging from the clothesline in Maren Benedict’s Let’s Hang Out Card. 

7. I spy at least three cards in our Vintage Valentines feature that incorporate stick pins. Name two of the cards. Hint: If they’re hard to spot, refer to the supply lists! 

8. I spy our 2010 Reader Survey. What prize will 20 random respondents win? (P.S. If you still haven’t completed the survey, you have until midnight (MST) on Saturday night!) 

9. I spy our Tips, Tools, & Techniques column. What increments do Marvy Uchida’s Mega, Giga and Extra Giga Punches cut? 

10. I spy our Simple Sentiments column and the quote: “When you are in love you can’t sleep because reality is better than your dreams.” Who said this?

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 75-76 for a closer look!) To play, please enter your answers in the comment field below this entry. All comments must be received by midnight (MST) on Sunday, Jan. 31

Five lucky people will win an assortment of this vintage product!

Good luck!

P.S. Did you know this little blog here turns one-year-old next week? Make sure you join us for our Paper Crafts Connection Blogiversary Celebration! We’ll be recapping some of our more memorable moments from the past year, as well as giving away some fabulous product. I did just return from CHA after all. Hope to see you all next week! 

P.P.S. It’s time to announce the winner of Maren’s Groovin With the Go-to Gals…at CHA post!  

Sandy Kay (Jan. 28, 3:58 p.m.) 

Congrats, Sandy! You’ve won some fun CHA goodies! I’ll be contacting you shortly to get your mailing address. Thanks to all who left comments!

Cath Edvalson

With Christmas a mere nine days away, you’ve got a Santa-sized list to make and check twice. I’m feeling your pain.  

That’s why we’ve made our Gallery Challenge elf-easy this month. The last thing we want to do is add another task to your list, so we’re focusing on a project you’re already working on—holiday cards. Since they’re already in the hopper, why not show them off?   

As a matter of fact, I’m super excited to show off these cards from our November/December issue as a way to get you inspired both to submit and to create, as the case may be.   

Jingle All the Way Card by Rae Barthel, p. 37

I love the way Rae has tied in the sheet music and the jingle bell to this card with a song as its title.   

Snowflake Happy Holidays Card by Patricia Komara, p. 41

Patricia’s gorgeous card has put a silver lining on all my Christmas dreams.   

Bright Be Merry Card by Wendy Sue Anderson, p. 38

Wendy Sue’s card puts the cute in Christmas!   

Whether you mailed your cards last week, and especially if, like me, you’re a procrastinator who hasn’t even started, we’d love to see your paper crafted holiday cards! Upload them HERE by Monday, Dec. 28 and you’ll not only be a contestant to win, but you’ll also see other inspiring cards that might get your juices flowing for those neighbor tags you still need to whip up, or for that special card for a certain someone you haven’t gotten around to just yet.   

Because at Paper Crafts, friends, inspiration is at the top of our list—and we’re definitely checking it twice!   

Good luck and have fun,

P.S. It may be Christmastime, but in Magazineland we’ve just concepted our July/August 2010 issue! Feel like submitting? We’re always on the lookout for fresh new projects from fresh new talent. Click HERE to see our exciting July/August 2010 Call for Submissions!

Jennifer Schaerer

Jennifer Schaerer

Even though Halloween is still a month away, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…at least around here in the Paper Crafts editorial office! Our November/December issue is now on sale, so if you don’t subscribe and still need to get a copy, click HERE to get one.

Better yet, just subscribe — you’ll save yourself 40% and get the issue in your mailbox before it’s available on the newsstand. A subscription also makes a great gift, and — psssst, don’t tell anyone — Christmas is just around the corner. Hee hee!

We’re so excited about this cover, too. When we choose cards for our cover, they have to have a certain, well, something. Maybe it’s a color combination, or a particular style, or a good representation of the cards throughout the magazine. It’s usually an agonizing process because we always have so many fantastic cards to choose from, and this cover was no exception. It turns out that Rae Barthel (our cute Gallery Idol for 2009) and Kim Hughes (newly minted Paper Crafts Go-to Gal) were the best of the best for this issue, because their cards (TWO from Rae!) are the shining stars of this cover.

We also freshened up our cover layout a bit as well — can you tell what’s different?

 Our November/December 2009 issue goes on sale TODAY!

Our November/December 2009 issue goes on sale TODAY!

Even though it’s Christmas in what we affectionately call “magazine time,” in reality it’s Halloween that’s up next. And we’re reminded of that every week when we have our team meeting, because we have an agenda item called Team Halloween Costume. You know that we take all festive occasions very seriously around here, and Halloween is one of the biggest — so of course it’s a topic in our weekly meeting.

This year we want to do something fun, because we’re a team of 7 women and one man. We’ve thought about cheerleader/football player (with Matt as the cheerleader…) and doctor/nurse (with Matt as the…nurse, of course!). But then we got to thinking that we could get a whole bunch of great ideas by asking our readers to toss in their collective two cents.

So whaddya think? Do you have a great idea for our group Halloween costume this year? Put it in the comments, and if we end up using your idea there will be a special something that comes your way from the Paper Crafts super stash of cool blog prizes.

Merry Hallowistmas to you,

P.S. Did I mention that we take Halloween very seriously? To give you an idea of just how far we take a theme, here’s a picture of us from Halloween 2008.

Are we a groovy bunch of hippies or what?

Are we a groovy bunch of hippies or what?

P. Kelly Smith

P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Freebie Friday! It may only be August, but I’m suddenly in the mood to decorate my Christmas tree while sipping eggnog and listening to Nat King Cole’s “The Christmas Song”.

Hmm… I wonder where this surge of holiday cheer is coming from? Oh, yeah, now I remember… We just got our crisp new copies of Holiday Cards & More, Volume 4! Get ready to join me in singing those carols!

Hitting newsstands on August 25, we’re bringing you another spectacular issue with 292 holiday creations bursting with paper perfection. Discover creative new ideas for holiday cards, seasonal home décor, gift wrap and festive party ensembles for Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year’s.

To coincide with its release date, all next week we’ll be giving you a sneak peek of our fourth (and my favorite!) volume of Holidays Cards & More.  

In addition to all the fun we’ll be having here, we’re partnering with creative editor Cath Edvalson and her Moxie Fab World blog. Both sites will be doing daily giveaways, as well as spotlighting projects from this festive issue.

Between today and August 28, you can buy Holiday Cards and More for 10% off. Click on the magazine image to reserve your copy today!

Between today and August 28, you can buy HCM, Vol. 4 for 10% off. Click on the magazine image to reserve your copy today!

Next week on Paper Crafts Connection:

Magazine Monday – Designer spotlight on the talented Jennifer Beason. We knew people would be talking about the unbelievably detailed nutcracker (seen on the cover), so we decided to go right to the source and interview the artist behind this masterpiece. We’ll also show two additional projects from the home decor section of Holiday Cards & More. And if you’re a fan of Pink Paislee (and who isn’t?), you won’t want to miss this fantastic giveaway!

Tuesday – It’s never too early to start on those holiday gifts! Editor-in-chief Jennifer Schaerer will spotlight three projects from the gifts section and give away some merry and bright product from Stampin’ Up!

With the Pros WednesdayPaper Crafts Pro Wendy Johnson will show you how easy it is to wrap your gifts in style as she features projects from the gift wrap section. Her adorable gift tag can literally be made in four steps! And you guessed it, there’s another fun giveaway up for grabs!

Thursday – Creative editor Cath Edvalson will join me in dressing the Christmas tree as she spotlights our ornaments section. If you’re feeling the pinch of the economy, we’ll show you how to make your own beautiful ornaments that you’ll treasure for years to come. And to aid you in your quest, we’re giving away some very cool product!

Freebie Friday – With over 100 fabulous card designs in this special issue, I’ll share some of my favorites! So whether you like to stamp, you’re into shabby or the clean and graphic look, I’ll give you a little taste of our diverse cards section. And since this is our fourth volume of Holiday Cards & More, I will award three winners a pretty fantastic prize package. But if random integer happens to draw your name as my fourth winner, well let’s just say that Christmas will be coming a little early for you!

So, are you ready for a little holiday cheer in August? I guarantee you’ll be humming along to Nat King Cole by week’s end!

Here’s to Holiday Cards & More Week!

P.S. If some of you simply can’t wait for Monday, here’s a sneak peek at two cards that both feature My Mind’s Eye Snowed In collection.

Julia Staintons Merry & Bright Card

Julia Stainton's Merry & Bright Card

Rae Barthels Birdcage Seasons Greetings Card

Rae Barthel's Birdcage Season's Greetings Card

Like what you see? Leave a comment telling me your favorite thing about the holidays. I’ll pick two winners to take home this versatile collection from My Mind’s Eye and a copy of Holiday Cards & More, Volume 4. All comments must be received by midnight on Sunday, August 23. I’ll announce the two winners on Monday when we officially kick off Holiday Cards & More Week!

P.P.S. It’s time to announce the three winners from Sue’s Prepartion Meets Opportunity post! Here they are in no particular order:

1. Scrapcandy (August 19, 11:07 a.m.)
2. Jen Madsen (August 19, 9:21 p.m.)
3. Christine (August 19, 12:19 p.m.)

Congrats, winners! You each win a copy of Card Fashion! I’ll be contacting you shortly for your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left so many comments!

P. Kelly Smith

P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Magazine Monday! Today we’re spotlighting our fabulous 2009 Gallery Idol winner Rae Barthel! Just announced last Friday, the shock of it all is still sinking in, but Rae certainly had a mouthful to say on her own blog. I think my favorite expletive of hers was “holy guacamole”. Pretty much the two greatest words ever uttered. And now I’m hungry for Mexican food! When’s lunch?

Besides a talented card maker, Rae has always been one of Paper Crafts’ biggest cheerleaders, so it’s a huge honor for me to return the favor and wave my pom poms high in the air for the one and only

R-A-E  B-A-R-T-H-E-L!

Shall we get to know our newest Gallery Idol winner a little better?

Rae Barthel

Rae Barthel

1. Full name: Rae Ann Barthel

2. Hometown: I grew up in McHenry, Illinois, a far northwest suburb of Chicago. Our family relocated to Huntsville, Alabama five years ago.

3. Do you work outside the home?

No, unless yard work and coaching sports counts. 😉

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

Well, first I would have to convince Janet Evanovich to write the screenplay, then I would cast the smart, yet quirky, Sandra Bullock to play the lead.

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

Forever Young” by Bob Dylan

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

I am a VERY picky eater; there is a growing list of foods that no longer agree with me, and many that I don’t agree with!

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

My passion for paper crafting was born out of necessity… six years ago my husband was deployed to Iraq. I had a newborn, a toddler, a six-year-old and zero patience for browsing through the greeting card aisle at the store to select cards for our large extended family. The light bulb went on when I cut apart my nephew’s birthday invitation and repurposed it as his birthday card; “A-ha”, I said to self, “you can tailor cards to suit the recipient, how cool is that?!” And then I discovered patterned paper…

8. What is your biggest paper crafting challenge? 

Can you say supply hoarder? Yep, I’ve got it BAD. I buy the stuff, and then am afraid to use it because I’m always worried that there would be something else that I would want to use it for. I even started the Use It! Challenges blog to try to convince myself and the many other guilty parties out there, that it’s “okay” to use those hoarded supplies!

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

All I need is double-sided patterned paper and scissors! I love creating embellishments from patterned paper, such as flowers, ribbon or fussy cutting a design from the paper to use on a card.

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

Birthday cards are my favorite cards to create because I can design them to suit the person that I am giving them to. {have you ever tried buying a birthday card for a teen boy?! ’nuff said.}

Raes Tweet Party Card won BasicGreys Fifth Anniversary Challenge!

Rae's Tweet Party Card won BasicGrey's 5th Anniversary Challenge!

11. When is your favorite time to craft? 

I am an early morning crafter. I seem to create the best during the day when the kids are at school (no interruptions!), and with natural lighting. 

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

Nothing better than crafting with reruns of Law & Order {& its myriad spin-offs) playing on the TV in the background.

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

We’re definitely a paper craftin’ family. My husband raids my stash to make my birthday cards (on my birthday, of course); my oldest son loves coming into my craft room when working on his school projects (I call him the “king of distressing”) and he is a fellow font junkie; my daughter is often caught stealing my “bling”; and my little guy just likes to cut apart patterned paper (and leave lots of itty, bitty pieces for mommy to clean up!).

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

Sadly, I am not very organized when it comes to deadlines/calls… I just have the info stored in my ol’ noggin, or refer to the calls/deadlines on my computer. {Note to self: devise a better way to organize this information.}

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

The March 2008 Paper Crafts issue was my first ever publication; I had three cards published in that issue. I honestly don’t feel that my style has changed much since then; guess I’m sort of a status quo kind of girl.

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

I have been too chicken to try out for many design teams, although, I did try out for and was chosen to be on the fabulous 2 Sketches 4 You design team for the Winter 2008 term.

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

  • Teri Anderson makes “simple” seem so, so easy; huge fan of the “less is more” philosophy.
  • Roree Rumph has such an amazing eye for detail; her stitching is perfection; her cards are layered just right and never over-embellished; and I admire her use of bold color and pattern.
  • Melissa Phillips is my shabby idol. As much as I try, I can never, ever, do shabby chic like she does. Seriously, have you seen the magic this girl can do with a discarded piece of corrugated cardboard?!

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

Start by doing a little bit of research. Look through the magazine(s) that you would like to submit to and see what types of projects they are publishing. Invest in some current product; remember that a publication call is for a magazine that will be published six months in the future, and therefore your product will also be six months older. Stay true to YOUR style. And most importantly, don’t give up! 

19. How would you describe your style?

Somewhat all over the spectrum, as I LOVE patterned paper, and allow it to guide my card making designs. I suppose my work could be considered clean and simple with an occasional touch of whimsy.

Heres another card Rae submitted to our Open Auditions round of Gallery Idol!

Here's another card Rae submitted to our "Open Auditions" round of Gallery Idol! Love that bright, yellow flower!

20. What did you enjoy most about the Gallery Idol experience?

Winning! {just kidding} I greatly enjoyed being challenged week after week. Would you believe it if I told you that as soon as I read the new theme, an idea immediately popped into my head, and I knew that I couldn’t stop until I turned that exact idea into a card. I loved the anticipation of Monday morning, waiting to see how my talented fellow contestants interpreted the theme, and the anticipation of Friday morning, nervously reading through the names of those moving on to the next round, hoping to see mine listed. I have to shout-out a HUGE thanks to the many manufacturers who supplied the prizes for this contest. I am overwhelmed by your generosity! And thank you Paper Crafts for this wonderful experience, which proved to be the perfect distraction for me this summer; something {other than my three active children} to keep me busy and my mind occupied while my husband started his deployment in Afghanistan.

Thanks, Rae! So glad our little contest was a fun and creative distraction for you. And just like us, I’m sure your husband is very proud of you. Even in Afghanistan, I know he’s cheering you on!

May only good things keep coming your way!

P.S. It’s time to announce the four winners from my And the Gallery Idol Winner Is… post and the two winners from Jennifer’s Get Spooked with our September/October issue post! Here they are in no particular order:

My winners:

1. TishSch (August 2, 8:55 p.m.)
2. Jenny McGee (July 31, 8:08 p.m.)
3. Jess (August 1, 7:57 a.m.)
4. Roxanne (July 31, 9:47 a.m.)

Jennifer’s winners:

1. Valerie Durham (July 28, 8:40 p.m.)
2. CoreyW (July 28, 11:37 a.m.)

Congrats, winners! I’ll be e-mailing you shortly to get your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left comments!

P. Kelly Smith

P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Freebie Friday! I know it’s been a long, tortuous week for our Top 5 finalists, so I’m not going to make them wait, sweat or twitch any longer. (Belinda, Lizzie, Rae, Shanna and Tessa – are you all sitting down? Good. Now take a deep breath and slowly exhale. Now let’s get on with the results!)

After eight weeks and five rounds of nail-biting competition, you the Paper Crafts online community have chosen the grand prize winner in this third season of Gallery Idol. And she is… (drumroll, please!)


Congratulations, Rae! Your “Make a Wish” card received the most votes in the last and final round, therefore Paper Crafts magazine is proud to name you our 2009 Gallery Idol!

Let’s take a look at the five winning cards that propelled Rae to “Idol” status:

Open Auditions: Make a Wish Card - Birthday Theme

Top 20: Congrats Card - Wedding Theme

Top 20: Congrats Card - Wedding Theme

Top 15: Sweet Dreams Card - Around the House Theme

Top 10: Wish Big Card - Button Theme

Finalist 1: Rae Barthels Make a Wish Card

Top 5: Make a Wish Card - Humor Theme

I think this girl has a thing for pink and black! It obviously worked! In addition to the Cosmo Cricket, American Crafts, BasicGrey and K&Company prize packages, Rae will also receive this grand prize from Making Memories:

Gallery Idols grand prize winner will receive all of this!

Many thanks to Making Memories for donating all of this fabulous product!

As the grand prize winner, Rae will also receive these special perks: 

  • Winning cards published in the January/February 2010 issue of Paper Crafts
  • Name added to the exclusive Paper Crafts designer list
  • Free selection of special issues
  • Official grand prize winner certificate (our version of the golden ticket)

Prizes aside, a big round of applause goes out to all of the finalists who have stuck with this competition week after week, round after round. Your creativity, passion and dedication to excellence have really made this little contest bigger and better than we could have ever imagined! We hope to see you back next summer for Season 4!

In my very best Ryan Seacrest voice,
Kelly Out

P.S. If you would like to see how Rae reacts to this BIG announcement, make sure you hop on over to her blog. Last week she was “floored, flabbergasted and freaking excited” to have made it into the Top 5. I can’t wait to see what words come out of her mouth this week! (And make sure to check back here on Monday when Rae is our designer spotlight. She hasn’t agreed to this yet, but I’m hoping to twist her arm with that Making Memories Slice!)

P.P.S. I almost forgot today’s giveaway! It is Freebie Friday after all. I hope you enjoyed reading Cath’s farewell post to our art director Stace Hasegawa. Since Stace LOVES the color black and tattoo art like skulls, wings, guitars, etc., today’s giveaway incorporates all of her favorite things! (The only thing missing is Johnny Depp in the flesh!) To be entered to win, leave a comment telling me a few of your favorite things. It can be anything at all. I’ll pick four winners to receive an assortment of metallic papers from Rusty Pickle’s Brass Knuckles collection, as well as black chipboard and stickers from GCD Studios. All comments must be received by midnight (MST) on Sunday, August 2.

Four lucky winners will each take home this black-tastic prize package!

P. Kelly Smith

P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to Magazine Monday! I so enjoyed reading your priceless kid quotes over the weekend. Many of you referred to them as “gems” and I couldn’t agree more! Here’s some of my favorites:

Summer Braxton: “The funniest thing I’ve heard from a kid was on the first day of school. A seven-year-old student of mine asked if he would get in trouble for bringing guns to school. After seeing my shock, he slapped his biceps and said, ‘Cuz I have to bring these with me every day.’ I then knew who my class clown was for that year.”

Tasia: “When I was pregnant with my youngest child, we were told several times over that we were having a girl. Of course after all the preparation and planning HE decided to be a boy. My daughter (two at the time) came in the delivery room just after I had him, looked him over while they were weighing and such, and said, ‘Mom… She has a little bitty tail!'”

Tami Mayberry: “One day I was pushing the grocery cart through the store with my then 5-year-old daughter in it. We walked past a display of instant potatoes and she pointed to a box of Betty Crocker Au Gratin potatoes. ‘Mommy, what kind of potatoes are those?’ ‘Oh, those are Au Gratin potatoes. I don’t think you have ever had those.’ ‘Eeeeewe’ she exclaimed… ‘why would you want ‘all rotten’ potatoes!'”

Since I’m in a humorous mood today, I thought we would start the week off with some more laughs. Gallery Idol’s Top 5 finalists spent the weekend creating their humor cards – the theme for this fourth and final round of competition. I know all of them would appreciate some love (in the form of votes, mainly), so I’m spotlighting them here today. Here they are in alphabetical order:

Finalist 1: Rae Barthels Make a Wish Card

Finalist 1: Rae Barthel's Make a Wish Card

Finalist 2: Lizzie Jones I Love You... Punchline Card

Finalist 2: Lizzie Jones' I Love You... Punchline Card

Finalist 3: Belinda Chang Langes Do You Want Fries With That Pocket Card

Finalist 3: Belinda Chang Lange's Do You Want Fries With That Pocket Card

Finalist 4: Shanna Vineyards Girls Are Like Cell Phones... Card

Finalist 4: Shanna Vineyard's Girls Are Like Cell Phones... Card

Tessa Wises Crappy Day Card

Finalist 5: Tessa Wise's Crappy Day Card

Way to go, Top 5! You certainly had me giggling! If you’d like to show your support, please vote for your favorite humor card here. (If you haven’t already registered with our contest tool, you’ll need to create an username and password.) Voting will run through noon (MST) on Thursday, July 30. The grand prize winner will be announced on Friday, July 31. Make sure you check back here to see who takes home this fabulous prize package, courtesy of Making Memories!

Gallery Idols grand prize winner will receive all of this!

Gallery Idol's grand prize winner will take home all this fun!

May the queen of funny reign supreme!

P.S. It’s time to announce the three winners from my Freebie Friday – Gallery Idol Top 5 post! Here they are in no particular order:

1. Deanna (July 24, 6:39 a.m.)
2. Mary Ann T (July 24, 2:02 p.m.)
3. Julie Overby (July 24, 10:12 p.m.)

Congrats, ladies! You’ve each won Inkadinkado’s Tell it Like it is stamp set, You Stand Out Kid Quotes stamp and BasicGrey’s Offbeat collection. I’ll be e-mailing you shortly for your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left so many humorous kid quotes!

P. Kelly Smith

P. Kelly Smith

Welcome to another Freebie Friday! Well, we’ve finally announced all six of our Paper Crafts Go-to Gals! We hope you’ve enjoying reading their spotlights and getting to know their individual styles and voices. You’ll be hearing A LOT from these talented ladies… not only in our future magazines, but right here on this blog. So start thinking of questions you have for them. No paper crafting subject is off limits!

In fact, if you happen to already have a design question, feel free to start e-mailing them at We can’t promise they will all be answered, but if we select your question for an upcoming column or blog post, we’ll definitely be in touch. These six Go-to Gals are ready to instruct, inspire and knock your socks off with their boundless creativity!

Speaking of creativity… did everyone see this week’s Gallery Idol entries? Who knew you could do so many things with your average, ordinary button? I want to commend the Top 10 for really stretching their imaginations and thinking outside the box with this theme. Truly amazing! Sadly, we must bid farewell to half of you, but five of you have made it to the final round of this competition. And you are (in alphabetical order)…

Finalist 1: Rae Barthel’s Wish Big Card

Finalist 1: Rae Barthel’s Wish Big Card

Finalist 2: Lizzie Jones’ Christmas in July Card

Finalist 2: Lizzie Jones’ Christmas in July Card

Belinda Chang’s Catch Some Rays Card

Finalist 3: Belinda Chang’s Catch Some Rays Card

Shanna Vineyard’s Give a Hoot… Don’t Pollute Card

Finalist 4: Shanna Vineyard’s Give a Hoot… Don’t Pollute Card

Tessa Wise’s Button Tree Card

Finalist 5: Tessa Wise’s Button Tree Card

Congrats, ladies! You’ve made it to the fourth and final round of Gallery Idol! By making it into our Top 5, you’ve each won a free copy of Paper Crafts Gourmet and this fantastic prize package, courtesy of K&Company!

Top 5 Prize Package: Amy Butler Scrapbooking Tote Bag, Lotus Faded China collection and copy of Paper Crafts Gourmet.

Top 5 Prize Package: K&Company's Amy Butler Scrapbooking Tote Bag, Lotus Faded China collection and a copy of Paper Crafts Gourmet.

Top 5, are you ready for your final theme? Round 4’s theme is… humor! We want you to make us laugh! Feel free to incorporate jokes, riddles, quotes or your own funny bone! The one finalist who clearly conceptualizes, designs and posts the most humorous card will be crowned this year’s Gallery Idol winner. The deadline for submissions is next Monday, July 27 at 9 a.m. (MST). All “Humor” cards must be posted to our gallery by this time. Voting for Round 4 will begin at noon!

Best of luck, Top 5!

P.S. Since it’s Freebie Friday, it’s time for knock knock joke!

-Knock, knock!
-Who’s there?
-Water who?
-Water today’s prizes, Kelly?

(I know… better stick with my day job!) To go along with Gallery Idol’s next theme of humor, I’m giving away three prize packages featuring Inkadinkado’s Tell it Like it is stamp set, You Stand Out Kid Quotes stamp and BasicGrey’s Offbeat collection (which features peas, among other things). I just love these stamps with the kiddie quotes! They don’t mean to be funny, but kids sure say the darnedest things sometimes. To be entered to win, leave a comment telling me the funniest thing a child has ever told you. All comments must be received by midnight (MST) on Sunday, July 26. I’ll announce the three winners on Monday’s blog.

Three lucky winners will each take home this prize package!

Three lucky winners will each take home this prize package!

P.P.S. It’s time to announce the five winners from Sue’s With the Pros Wednesday – The Baby Bunny Buggy Baggy post! Here they are in no particular order:

1. Jennie Harper (July 23, 2:27 p.m.)
2. Alicia (July 22, 8:16 a.m.)
3. Linda C. (July 22, 6:26 p.m.)
4. Carleen (July 22, 7:35 p.m.)
5. Roseanne (July 23, 8:04 a.m.)

Congrats, winners! Each of you will receive one of Sue’s Bliss card-making kits (valued at $19)! I’ll be contacting you shortly to get your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left so many blissful comments!

P. Kelly Smith

Okay, friends! I know it’s a bit delayed but we finally have the list of the Gallery Idol Top 10! As always, it was a close race but these 10 gals received the most votes in our around the house-themed card challenge. Here they are in no particular order:

Finalist 1: Jo Kill's Sometimes Life Sucks...Card

Finalist 1: Jo Kill's Sometimes Life Sucks...Card

Finalist 2: Rae Barthel's Sweet Dreams Card

Finalist 2: Rae Barthel's Sweet Dreams Card

Finalist 3: Heidi Van Laar's Party Card

Finalist 3: Heidi Van Laar's Party Card

Finalist 4: Lizze Jones's Right at Home Card

Finalist 4: Lizzie Jones' Right at Home Card

Finalist 5: Tessa Wise's The Right Pair of Boots Card

Finalist 5: Tessa Wise's The Right Pair of Boots Card

Finalist 6: Carla Peicheff's Kind, Loving, Hugs Card

Finalist 6: Carla Peicheff's Kind, Loving, Hugs Card

Finalist 8: Debbie Nicholas' U Make My World Go Round Card

Finalist 7: Debbie Nicholas' U Make My World Go Round Card

Finalist 9: Belinda Chang's Thanks Laptop Card

Finalist 8: Belinda Chang's Thanks Laptop Card

Finalist 10: Chris Severs' Hello from the Heart Card

Finalist 9: Chris Severs' Hello from the Heart Card

Finalist 10: Shanna Vineyard's Mixed with Love Card

Finalist 10: Shanna Vineyard's Mixed with Love Card

Congratulations, ladies! By making it into our Top 10, you’ve each won a free special issue and this fantastic prize package, courtesy of BasicGrey!


Top 10 Prize Package: BasicGrey's June Bug collection, plus free special issue.
Top 10 Prize Package: BasicGrey’s June Bug collection, plus a free special issue.

Top 10, are you ready for the next theme? Round 3’s theme is… buttons! Whether you create borders, layer them or fashion beautiful button flowers, we want to see your creative and unique uses for BUTTONS! The deadline for submissions is next Monday, July 20 at 9 a.m. (MST). All “Button” cards must be posted to our gallery by this time. Voting for Round 3 will begin at noon!

Best of luck, Top 10!

P.S. Since it’s Freebie Friday, I simply can’t blog without giving away a prize. To go along with Gallery Idol’s next button bonanza of a theme, I’m giving away an assortment of fabulously colored buttons from Papertrey Ink. To be entered to win, leave a comment telling me your favorite use for buttons. All comments must be received by midnight (MST) on Monday, July 20. I’ll announce the five winners (each person will receive two bags of buttons) on Tuesday’s blog.

Five lucky winners will recieve an assortment of buttons from Papertrey Ink.

Five lucky winners will receive an assortment of buttons from Papertrey Ink!

Paper Crafts Calendar

July 2020

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