StampNation’s Dream Team!


Gayatri MuraliIn August, we had an amazing Guest Dream Team member, Gayatri.  I am so darned excited to say that she is becoming a regular member!  Buckle up, SN, because you are about to be INSPIRED!

Be sure to check out Gayatri's blog to welcome her and take a peek at her amazing creations.


This month we also have an amazing Guest Dream Team Member.  Alison Barclay has been a beloved StampNation Sistah for a long now and constantly WOWs us with her amazing designs.

alison“Hi! My name is Alison and I live in Brisbane, Australia. I have been a card maker for about 11 years and a Stampin’ Up! demonstrator for 3 years. I fell in love with stamping about 4 years ago when I realized just how wonderful and creative stamping is! My style is generally “clean and simple” and I like lots of white space, although sometimes other elements creep in!

My ‘other creative world' is music…my husband is a drummer and I work in the admin team for the Queensland Symphony Orchestra here in Brisbane. I'm also a loving mum to my beautiful two little sons. I am SO excited to be a on the Design Team for the StampNation this month – I hope to inspire you and be inspired in return by the projects you share!”

oooh, I KNOW you are going to inspire SN, Alison!  If you want to see Alison for reals, check out THIS VIDEO – you'll see her at the end.

Check out Alison's blog and give her a big welcome!

SN_button2-23374Welcome to these extremely talented ladies.  We are happy to have you on board!

If you haven't joined our amazing community yet, click here to learn more.



Favorite Designers and a Q&A with Catherine and Anna

CatherineGallery, Projects, Stampers' Q&A

I am honored to have been tagged by Allison Cope as a designer that inspires her.  SHE inspires me and if you hop over to her blog, you will see why!  We are blessed to have Allison as a Dream Team Member on StampNation!

Be sure to view the video – you'll get to see my new logo!  The whole new is coming SOON!  Like THIS WEEK soon!  WOOT!

I would like to tag Maureen Merritt and Jill Foster…check out their blogs and you will immediately know why!


Layered Card with Imagine Crafts sprays and inks & Inky Fingers!

CatherineBirthday, Die Cutting, Embossing, Gallery, Projects, Techniques, Videos

Layered Card with Imagine Crafts sprays and inks

If you want a laugh, be sure to watch this whole video.  Gosh, I made a TON of flub-ups in this one!  hahaha!  and if you stick around to the end, I'll show you the resulting mess.

When I was making this card, I didn't realize until I watched it later that I sprayed on a TON of that Goosebumps spray- more than I thought I had…THAT is why when I added the ink directly from the ink pad the color was so intense.   But, when I wiped it with the tissue or the dauber, the ink was being removed from where the Goosebumps spray was and the color got a lot lighter..  When the Goosebumps dried, it was shiny and resisted the ink.

Layered Card with Imagine Crafts sprays and inks

Hope you like today's card!

Have you seen the news?  A new look is coming – a friend wished me luck in my new biz.  It's not a new business, it's the same business with an updated, fresh look…easier navigation and MORE of what YOU have been telling me you like to see from me!

The launch is soon and as soon as we see that all is well, there is going to be a giant party.  I can't WAIT!

If you haven't subscribed to my newsletter yet, be sure to so you can be one of the first to know…(click the “SEND ME INFO” button at the top of the sidebar)




Stampin' Up Supplies:

  • Black and White Cardstock
  • Chevron Embossing folder
  • Sweet Taffy Designer Series Paper



a new


If you follow me on FACEBOOK and/or TWITTER, you've seen sneak peeks like this….


A new blog design for has been in the works for months.

The idea was born in February and I started looking for someone to work with right away.  I found my gal the following month, her name is Suzi…she is SO smarty pants and I have completely fallen head over heels for her!

I thought about it for all of about 5 seconds before hiring her and work began in the very beginning of June.

The moment we started working together, I knew it was a match made in heaven.  We're like oreos and milk.

We have a ton in common and share a lot of the same ideas and views.  When I found out she lives TEN minutes from my mom in Upstate NY, I couldn't believe it!  Crazy, right?  I even got to meet her this summer…I had some photos of us and ugh, looks like they got deleted.  RATS!


WHY a redesign?  One of our goals is to make everything that I do have a cohesive, pulled together look.  So when you see something from me, you know instantly that it's ME.  It's not uncommon for me to get emails from friends that I have confused because they don't know what is what….newsletter, StampNation, blog post, Definitely Sketches, WHAT!?

Another goal is to build this site so that it is easy to navigate and find things.  I hope we achieve these goals and you enjoy the site even more when it gets here!

After the site launch, there will be a PARTY.


How could I NOT throw a party to celebrate?  YOU are invited!  More details will be unveiled over the next couple of weeks, planning is still in process!

StampNation Members, click here for some behind-the-scenes info on the design and process.

KISS Cards with Imagine Crafts irRESISTables

CatherineBirthday, Die Cutting, Gallery, KISS Cards, Projects, Videos

 KISS Card with Imagine Crafts irRESISTables

You might know that I make the birthday cards for the teachers at Sycamore Creek Elementary school, where my kids (well, only one of them is left!) go to school.  Evidently, they are low on cards, so I needed to get busy.

KISS Cards – Keep It Simple Stamper – are the perfect way to make a bunch of cards at once.   These four cards were quick and easy to make and super fun, too!

View the video to see how I made them quickly and easily:

I used irRESISTable Texture Sprays from Imagine Crafts to make this fun splattered look…THAT was easy!

The die from My Favorite Things was another quick and easy element to add to the card.  Paired with the fun “Birthday” from Papertrey Ink's Movers & Shakers Stamp Set, this card became super trendy and fun.

KISS Card with Imagine Crafts irRESISTables

A few tweaks to get different looking cards….

KISS Card with Imagine Crafts irRESISTables

KISS Card with Imagine Crafts irRESISTables

Fun?  I think so!

If you don't like the splatters, or don't have sprays like this, try some background stamps, or a big flower, or heart or what about a snowflake and a Christmas greeting?  Friends, this design is VERSATILE!

KISS Card with Imagine Crafts irRESISTables


On Thursday, we'll take the same supplies and a few more and take this design up a few notches.

Here's a peek!


If you follow me on FACEBOOK and/or TWITTER, you've seen sneak peeks like this….more details coming soon!


A year’s worth of inspiration…


At the end of 2013, I took all my most popular projects and newsletter projects, made ten PDFs and put those PDFs into a convenient CD.  I only offered this Compilation CD through the end of 2013.

Since then, I've gotten emails asking me if this was going to be available again.  As we are getting ready for the 2014 Compilation CD, I decided to offer the 2013 CD once again, at a discounted price.

Learn more and place your order here.

As always, let me know if you have any questions!

Alcohol Inks Background Card! Part two: video tutorial

CatherineEmbossing, Floral, Gallery, Techniques, Videos

alcohol inks 2

This summer, Anna and I went to a 3 day workshop with Wendy Vecchi from Ranger and learned and played and had a ball.

We used Alcohol Inks, which I had seen before, but never played with.  Let me tell ya, friends…friggin' crazy stuff you can do with these little bottles of amazingness!

On Monday I played with them and made a few backgrounds.  Click here for that blog post.

Now let's take that piece and make it into a card….

What do you think?  Will you give this fun medium a try?

OR, can you use this idea with products you already own?

What about the color combination?  It's very different for me, I hope you like it!

alcohol inks


After a few days of this card sitting on my desk, I decided I wasn't a huge fan of the black and white and what is that banner doing anyways?  I felt like it needed to go the other way….

so I went back to the stamp table and changed out the white for crumb cake and cut the banner the other way.


I like it.

alcohol inks3


I hope you enjoyed today's video and are inspired.

Stampin' Up Supplies:

  • Ink:  Melon Mambo, Real Red, Garden Green
  • Cardstock:  Glossy, Basic Black, Whisper White, Crumb Cake


Inspiration Nation Week #3


august 20

All month long at StampNation, we have been inspired by amazing photos.  I know MY mojo has been kicked into high gear, and at the looks of this sneak peek graphic, the Dream Team has been, too!

If you are looking for inspiration, hundreds of written and video tutorials, and a great community of like-minded crafters to hang out with, StampNation is for YOU!

Click here to learn more.

Alcohol Ink Background with Stencils Video Tutorial: Part One

CatherineGallery, Projects, Techniques, Videos

I've been having a BLAST playing with Ranger's Alcohol Inks!

Be sure to check back on Thursday for the video tutorial showing you what I did with this background…

Here's a tiny peeksie at it!


Click here to view the Hot Air Balloon card and video tutorial I showed you in the video.

Thanks for being here today!

Watercolored Flowers Birthday Card Making

CatherineBirthday, Embossing, Floral, Gallery, Projects, Techniques, Videos

winnie and walter 2

We've been so excited that have Winnie & Walter sponsoring us at StampNation this week!  I love the Big, The Bold and The Extras stamp set so much that I made three video tutorials – two went up on StampNation yesterday!

View the video to see how easy it is to get this watercolored look.

What do you think?  Easy?  Fun?

yes and yes…

winnie and walter


Winnie and Walter collage!

Here's a quick peek at the StampNation Dream Team samples for this week's challenge.

SN_button2-23374Want to join in the fun?  One lucky challenge participant is going to win a $30 Gift Card to the Winnie & Walter store!!


  • over 450 video tutorials that are exclusive to the site
  • 30+ Lessons in Clean & Simple Design
  • Spotlight on Trends articles
  • an online gallery with more than 20,000 samples

Click here to learn more and begin your membership!



StampNation and Winnie & Walter!


Winnie and Walter collage!

The StampNation Dream Team is using fabulous stamps by Winnie &Walter for this week's challenge (sneek peeks are above!) and you guessed it…there is a prize!

Winnie & Walter is a super cool company run by Julie and Shay who are amazing, talented and so darned sweet.  AND they have amazing stamp designs to boot!  Is there a better combination?

If you are not yet familiar with W&W, please go check them out and tell them I sent ya…you won't be sorry!


oh, you want to know about the prize?

One StampNation challenge participant will win a $30 Gift Card to the Winnie & Walter store! Entries must be made by 11:59 on August 27th. Winner will be announced on August 28th.

StampNation Members – brace yourself…you are going to be WOW'd by the DT creations!  I have a video (or maybe TWO) for you as well…once I started stamping with these fabulous stamps, I couldn't stop.

So if you haven't started your StampNation Membership yet, what are you waiting for!?  Click here to learn more and view our fun video with a peek behind the scenes!

sneak peek catherine

Here is a sneek peek at the video I have coming tomorrow!

I will see you then!

Sunflower Patch along the Neuse River Trail

CatherinePooler Shenanigans

The end of May through mid-July were so busy for us that I couldn't see straight.  Our summer has now slowed down and I'm coming close to being able to balance working AND spending time with the kiddos before my Bigs head back to school in two weeks.

Here's one bit of fun we had last week…apparently there is an amazing patch of sunflowers along the Neuse River Greenway Trail.

My friend Lisa and I packed a few of our girls up (you know I have three…well, Lisa beats me with FOUR!) and headed out in search of the famed Sunflower patch.

We were looking for this….


We found this….


yeah…..not exactly what we were in search of.

Seems that we were just about a week too late and the sunflowers were all dried up.  Oh, well.  Note to self:  Next year check it out by the end of July!  Will you remind me?  lol!

I hadn't ever heard of said Sunflower Patch before until Lisa mentioned it to me.  What “hidden gems” do you have in your area that people might now know about?  Our earth is an amazing place…isn't it?


I couldn't end the day without a selfie…I can't resist taking them to make my kids laugh and roll their eyes.  haha!

Now that the summer is winding down, we have been in full planning mode for the fall and we have a couple things for you to put on your calendar:

First week of September oh em GEEEEE!!!!!   I've been working on a project since MARCH and it's almost ready to launch…there will be a big PARTY here to celebrate.  I hope you will join me!

Weekend of October 3rd World Card Making Day!  This is our very favorite celebration all year long.  It's the best opportunity to celebrate StampNation and our members in 24 countries around the world!

We'll be having fun stuff here on the blog, but the biggest party of all will be happening on StampNation.  Stay tuned.

End of October  Our “A Very Trendy Holiday” class was so popular last year that we are doing it again with updated trends and fresh designs.  We have amazing designers lined up, so you will be treated to all kinds of awesomeness with this class!

It's going to be a fun and exciting fall – I can't wait!

Flower Patch – Simple Card to Make

CatherineFloral, Gallery, Projects, Videos


Today's video is a pretty Clean and Simple card with lots of fun stamping with the Flower Patch and Dotty Angles stamp sets from Stampin' Up!  I really love these two stamp sets….

As I mentioned in the video, I was inspired by a card I saw Chupa do a while back…she stamped a big, fun flower over a border/background stamp and I thought it was SO COOL!

If anyone knows the card I'm talking about, leave a comment here.

UPDATE!  Leave it to Kristie!  StampNation Members, it was for the One Layer Card Challenge, click here to view it!



I'm using the very same supplies for my newsletter project – the next one goes out THIS Wednesday!

If you are not subscribed yet, CLICK HERE to do so and on Weds. you'll see what I came up with!

  You'll also get my exclusive video series, “The Top 10 Things Every Stamper Needs to Know”.

See you on the other side!


Stampin' Up! Supplies:

Flower Patch Stamp Set, Dotty Angles Stamp Set

Cardstock:  Whisper White

Ink:  Pumpkin Pie, Basic Grey, Melon Mambo

Accessories:  Rhinestones

A to your Q! Stampin’ Up! Inks vs. Distress Inks – Penny Black Dazzlers

CatherineEmbossing, Gallery, Stampers' Q&A, Techniques, Videos

Stampin' Up inks vs. Distress Inks

The moment you realize you can't find the cards you made!  WHAT!?  

yeah…. just happened to me.  I JUST cleaned out my stamp room – like THREE trash bags were shown their way out the door.

So where are they?  I haven't a clue…so a screenshot from the video of these cards will have to do.  Forgive me?

Today's video answers a burning question that many of you have been asking me.  So buckle up and come along for the ride as I experiment to find the A to your Q!

 So what do you think?  Have you compared these ink pads?  Leave your comments below and tell me what differences YOU have found!


Cards for Him

Before I go…just a quick note that some bonus content has been added to the Cards For Him classroom!

Once you register, you get lifetime access to this exclusive class which will have you overflowing with masculine card ideas and inspiration.

Stampin' Up supplies:

  • Ink:  Bermuda Bay, Old Olive, Tempting Turquoise
  • Cardstock:  Whisper White, Basic Black
  • White Embossing Powder, Rhinestones