Crafting Travel List – Top 10

July 11, 2017

Do you like to craft while you travel?  I love to create no matter where I’m at, but it’s hard to know what to bring.  And your needs can change depending on your means of transportation, and who’s going with you.  I don’t always take everything in the list, especially if I know I’ll be busy, but here’s my top 10 choices for traveling:

  1. Plastic Sleeve – I love the protective sleeves that are used in 3-ring binders to hold paper.  I have one I use all the time with a piece of graph paper inside, and I use it at my craft space all the time to line up sentiments or center dies.  The plastic keeps my surface clean, which is great for messy projects like ink blending or watercolor.  It’s small enough you can take it anywhere.  And you can store extra paper and supplies inside the sleeve.
  2. Paper – I usually take watercolor cardstock, which is stiffer than standard cardstock.  It holds up great for traveling.  I cut the pages down to A2 card size (4 1/4 x 5 1/2).  Bristol Strathmore paper is what I use if I’m taking my Zigs, because it helps them blend the best.  Again, I cut it down to size.  Sometimes I take card bases, other times I just wait to finish the cards when I get home.  I love to stamp pages of images onto my paper before I leave, and color them on the road.
  3.  Zig Markers – These markers blend so easily, with or without water.  I love the vibrant colors!  I don’t need to take the whole pack, I just grab a handful of my favorites, a light and a dark of each color for blending.
  4. Watercolors – These also travel well, if you have a small palette.  They’re easy to use, more forgiving than other kinds of paint, and they dry quickly.
  5. Waterbrush – This makes painting easy, even on long plane rides!  Fill the barrel of the brush with water, and you’re ready to paint without a mess.  I use this with my Zigs, as well.
  6. Distress Mini Ink Cubes – These take up almost no space, and the new lids fit tightly, so they don’t pop open and dry out during transit.  Tim Holtz makes a tin, sold separately, to hold 12 cubes.  And I store my ink blending foams in the bottom of each cube, so if I grab an Ink Blending Tool, I can do all kinds of coloring techniques.
  7. Adult Coloring Books – When room is tight, these books are a blessing.  I can color away, cut them up when I get time, and turn them into cards.  Easy peasy.
  8. Colored Pencils – Many of the coloring books have thin pages, so watercolor and even markers can sometimes soak through the paper.  Colored pencils solve this problem for me.  I’m not an expert by any means, but it’s fun to practice.
  9. Tape Runner – This is a great adhesive for travel, because there’s no mess.
  10. Foam Tape – Almost every card I make has some dimension, so this is a must for me!  It travels well, it’s mess free, and it takes your cards to the next level.

Bonus:  Stickers and Adhesive Gems – I love embellishments, but I don’t want to mess with liquid glue when I travel.  This is my compromise:  All of the bling, and no drying time!

Storage:  I have a shoulder bag for my laptop, and I keep my supplies in there, too.  I always keep it close, so I don’t lose it, and because it doesn’t have wheels, it forces me to keep the weight to a minimum.

And that’s my top 10 items for travel.  I had the hardest time narrowing it down to 10 items, I want to bring everything!  You’ll notice I left scissors and liquid adhesive off the list completely, because they’re not allowed on airplanes.  Sequins and glitter tend to end up everywhere, so I save them for when I get home.  And as much I love my stamps, I’d hate to lose any, so I generally leave them behind.  Besides, I have to save room for when I go shopping.  I may come back with more supplies than I had when I left!

What do you bring when you travel?  Let me know in the comments, and I’ll see you next time!

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StampNation Sneak Peek

July 7, 2017

Hey, glad you came by today!  I’m on the StampNation Challenge Team, and this is my first SN challenge, all about summer.  Beaches, sunglasses, sunshine, picnics, popsicles, and time by the pool!  These challenges are a great way to stretch your imagination, and your supplies.  If you want to join us at StampNation, and post your card for others’ enjoyment, we’d love to have you.  Can’t wait to see what you create.

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Gelato Card

July 5, 2017

Hey, glad you came by today!  I’ve been over at StampNation, and we just finished a class about Gelatos, taught by Faber Castell.  The class is over, but we’re still celebrating, putting everything we’ve learned into making cards.  I didn’t have any Gelatos when the class began, but there are so many fun things you can do with them!  I finally caved and picked up an iridescent set from Hobby Lobby, and I’m so glad I did.

If you’re not familiar with Gelatos, they’re a creamy watercolor paint, and they come in a tube, kind of like chapstick.  I’m using them on black cardstock, cut to 4 1/4 x 5 1/2.  I temporarily adhered it to my craft mat with tape runner, and taped the Dotlets stencil (from Penny Black) over the paper with Post-It tape.  You can scribble straight over the stencil with the Gelatos, but this stencil is thick, and it kept catching the stick.  So I scribbled it on my craft mat and applied the color with a sponge dauber.

I applied Supernova first, which you can see is a bright orange.  But the color doesn’t show up on the black cardstock, so all you get is a gold shimmer.  Next I turned the stencil and added Blue Moon.  The last color I used is Lunar, which is white, but the shimmer is pink.  I love it!  If you don’t have iridescent or metallic Gelatos, you can still use whatever you have.  Try it and see what works!

For my sentiment, I used the Simply The Best stamp set from Catherine Pooler, and the Best die.  I added more Lunar Gelato to a scrap of black cardstock, and die cut the word from it.  It’s hard to capture the shine on camera.  I glued it to a piece of white cardstock that I die cut with the Stitched Rectangle Dies from Simon Says Stamp.  Then I stamped the rest of the sentiment around it with Versafine Onyx Black ink.

I trimmed the black panel with a larger Stitched Rectangle die, and attached it to a white card base with tape runner.  Then I popped up the sentiment with foam tape.  And this isn’t the best photo, but I was finally able to capture some of the shimmer on the sentiment.  It’s even brighter in person.

Have you ever used Gelatos?  The class at StampNation is still available, if you’d like to join us.  I’ll be back soon with another card.  See you again soon!

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July 2, 2017

Hey everyone, I’m glad you’ve come by.  I’ve just got a quick announcement to share, something I’ve been sitting on for a few weeks now.  I’m on the StampNation Dream Team!  I’ll be working with them for the rest of the year, and excited doesn’t begin to cover it.

What is StampNation?  Well, it’s a community of card makers from around the world.  We can share our projects, get feedback from others, make friends, take classes, and have a great time!  If you want to see the projects I’ll be making, you’ll have to join us there.

I did I mention how amazingly talented some of the people are?  Catherine Pooler, Maureen Merritt, and Ingrid Blackburn are just some of the fabulous people I get to learn from.

I hope you can join us over there, and take a MasterClass over the summer.  Oh, did I forget to mention those?  StampNation is hosting a series of MasterClasses taught by guest designers from some of the best in the industry.  We just finished a class by Faber Castell, and we had a great time.  The classes are never deleted, so you can still come join us.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and I hope you’ll come check out StampNation.  I’ll be back soon with another tutorial!


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Distress Ink Galaxy Card

June 30, 2017

Hey, thanks for joining me today! I’ve been working on this galaxy card, and I’m excited to share it with you. I saw a challenge at StampNation about a night sky, and I couldn’t wait to try it. There’s a meteor shower in the middle of August, and my husband and I try to watch it every year. I think I’ll give this card to him.


I’m using Fiskars’ Kapow! stamp set, but all I used are the tiny stars around the bubble at the top. I cut the stars off the stamp with scissors – don’t worry, it doesn’t hurt the stamp – and stamped it on my panel with Versamark. Then I heat embossed the stars with clear embossing powder, and heated it until melted. If you don’t have this set, look over your stamps and see if you have any small star images that will work.


I used a Mini Ink Blending Tool to blend Blueprint Sketch in 3 spots on the paper. Then I came in with Dusty Concord, and finally Chipped Sapphire.  You can see my ink blending is far from perfect, but I’ll fix it later. It’s better to blend lightly at first, while you figure out placement. I kept one spot near the center pretty light, for a highlight.

I switched back and forth between the colors until everything was blended and even (mostly). My last color is Black Soot, just on the edges. I like how this looks, but it needs more stars.


I’m using the smallest bowl I could find, white acrylic paint, and a Mini Mister filled with water and Perfect Pearls. I thinned down the paint with the water, and pulled out my secret weapon for splattering: the Distress Splatter Brush. This lets me have a little more control over the paint.


I put my panel in a box, to keep the paint from going all over my desk, and kept flicking the brush until I liked the spatter. If you’re interested in seeing this brush in action, Tim Holtz made a great video showing how it works. Then I dipped my stylus into undiluted paint and added a few more stars. If the spatter intimidates you, the stylus is a great option, because you have great control. It just takes a little longer.  Next I washed out my bowl in the sink, and clapped my wet hands over the panel for more texture. But you can see one of the drops was a little larger than I intended. Well, I know where my sentiment is going!


I heat embossed this Hero Arts sentiment from the Everyday Sayings stamp set with clear embossing powder. Next I pressed the Blueprint Sketch ink pad directly to the paper, and rubbed it into the paper with the Mini Ink Blending Tool. Then I cut it out with a Stitched Rectangle die from Simon Says Stamp.

I added a black mat behind the sentiment, and attached it to my card with foam tape. My panel is 4 1/4 x 5 1/2, which is the size of an A2 card base, so I decided not to trim it down. I added it to the card base with tape runner, and my card is complete. I could have added sequins or gems, but I kept it simple so the background would stand out. Thanks for coming by today, and I’ll see you again soon.


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