Technique focus – Page 2 – Miriam Thomas

Category: Technique focus

Mini Album Class

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Are you a scrapbooker looking to complete a simple album to give as gift? Are you completely new to scrapbooking and looking to make a start on a simple project? Are you a seasoned scrapbooker looking for a nice easy project to be re-inspired by?

This class sounds like the one for you!

WHAT? Mini Album (Explosion album/ Box Album)

WHEN? Monday 23rd November

TIME? 7.15pm

For this class you will be required to purchase a kit of items to make your mini album.
The kit will cost $70 and comprises of:
– YOUR CHOICE of Simply Scrappin’ Kits (pg 136- 138 of the catalogue)
– PLUS Full photo INSTRUCTIONS (Available from 23rd Nov)
– PLUS use of class tools (paper trimmer, punches,etc)
There will be enough supplies in your kit to make a second mini album OR several layouts AND/OR several cards. 
TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS CLASS AND ATTEND ON THE NIGHT IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT YOU CONFIRM YOUR SPOT AND PAY FOR YOUR CLASS KIT BY THURSDAY 12th NOVEMBER (Preferably BEFORE)   This will allow time for me to order your class kits.  I am unable to have spare kits on hand so you must order your kit BEFORE the 12th Nov.
If you are uncertain OR unable to make it along on the night- please feel free to order a kit regardless.  All customers who purchase the bundle of products will be supplied with full photo instructions that will allow you to complete the project at home in your own time!
More helpful information about this class 
You will need to bring along a selection of photos to complete your album.  It must be possible to crop the photos to 9-10cm square OR SMALLER.  You may need anywhere between 10- 25 photos
When making your choice of Simply Scrappin Kits (from pages 136- 138 of the catalogue) please be sure to select a kit that will suit the photos you have in mind. Just as a few examples- Either of the “Rock a Bye Kits” would obviously be perfect choices for a Baby Mini Album.  Petal Party would make a bright fun mini album about a special little girl in your life. Sweet Nothings has nice colours for a girl but also contains lots of statements suitable for Engagement photos or Wedding photos. You could even select the ‘I wish” Christmas kit and use a selection of Christmas photos!  
If you’re not sure what photos to include please take a look at the wording on the die cuts for your preferred kit.  They might provide the inspiration for the type of photos you will include.
To make your album ‘eye pleasing’ you will want to try and select photos that will work with the colours in your preferred kit.  If the colours in your photos won’t work- please considering converting your photos to black and white for this project. 
These albums would make great personlised gifts for the Grandparents! (and because you can make two albums out of each kit you will have enough supplies for BOTH sets of grandparents!)
(Please note that the bundle of products includes the Simply Scrappin Kits that are on the Christmas Gift Giving guide.  If you would like to add a further $48.05 worth of products from the gift giving guide you will be eligible to receive either a FREE scallop square punch OR a FREE Boho Blossoms punch- valued at $30.95)  
To order your bundle of products please use the paypal button- Or get in touch with me to make payment arrangements!

Choose your Simply Scrappin’ Kit

(Australian residents ONLY)

In a previous post I mentioned that my Dad is hard to buy for- One year on hos birthday my siblings and I all chipped in to purchase a voucher for my Dad so that he could do a tandem sky dive jump- complete with photos and DVD of the experience.  Well- I felt inspired to pull out some photos to create the layout.  Check it out over at the stampamemory blog.  Simply click on the preview below to see the full article.

I have also included some very basic tips for using your paper cutter.  Go check it out!

As promised here is the card I made that features the Build a Brad.  I just love how the “Build a brad” makes a great centre for a flower.  I love that you get to decide what the top of the brad looks like and the best thing is that you can make the centre match the rest of the card or layout.

In this case I used the 1/2 inch circle punch to punch out a circle from the “Sweet Always” patterned paper.  In this example you can see that the patterned paper is an exact match for the stamp from the “Always” stamp set I used on the Chocolate chip background.   (However, I could have just as easily used a stamped image for the build a brad instead)

This card opens up to reveal a pocket where you could slide a gift card or little note












The flower itself was made using the scallop circle punch.  I love a punch that is versatile- don’t you? I have made my own paper flowers like this before using different templates but haven’t made any in a while and was reminded of the technique after seeing it on Gayatri (one of my downlines) blog recently and thought I would give it a go on this card.  The scallop punch is great to use to create a flower.  You simply……

1. Punch out the scallop circle using the scallop circle punch (page 153 of the catalogue)

2. Cut slits into the scallop circle using your paper snips.

3. “Dry emboss” on the back of the scallop circle by pressing the cardstock using a bone folder on a stampin up push pad (from the mat pack)

I can see myself using these paper flowers a lot more.  How convenient to be able to use the scraps from a scrapbook layout and then turn them into paper flowers that are perfect match for your layout. 

Are you interested in ordering the materials to make these paper flowers?  You can order a scallop circle punch for only $30.95.  The build a brad is great for the centre of flowers and is only $18.95.  They come in antique brass pewter and include 24 brads and adhesive acrylic bubbles.    Please don’t forget that all orders over $100 made before the end of July go into the draw to win a scallop square punch.

Today I have some Belly Band Birthday cards to show you.  Belly Band Birthday cards you ask?   I’m not sure whether that would be the official “cardmaking term” for the technique I have used but that’s what we’ll call it today. 🙂

Each of these cards has a band around the belly of the card.  One of the main reasons I included the band- aside from decoration purposes- was because each card also serves as a gift card holder.  I wanted to know that the belly band around each card would help to keep the card closed so that the gift card inside wouldn’t be lost by either the gift- giver nor the recipient.

The first belly band birthday card has been made using the Party Hearty Stamp set (page 43)

The front of the card has a piece of Pacific Point Cardstock attached to the real red cardstock.   The pacific point cardstock has been run through the paper crimper (page 155 of the catalogue)

TIP: My tip is to run the cardstock through the crimper TWICE.  I find that on the first go- no matter how hard you try to keep the cardstock straight-you don’t end up with nice horizontal lines.  When you feed the cardstock through a second time- you end up with a nice corrogated effect.   

The cupcake image has been stamped in real red, kiwi kiss and pacific point.  I stamped the icing part of the cupcake a second time, then cut it out using paper smips and attached it using dimensionals.  I then added a touch of Fine supernova glitter.  The stamped image has been mounted on Tangerine Tango cardstock.  Before attaching this piece to the belly band I added a real red circles (cut using the 1 inch circle punch and folded in half) and 1/2 inch pacific point circles with real red brads on the inside.  

TIP: Don’t use the end of the brad to pierce your cardstock- it often isn’t sharp enough to go right through the cardstock without putting pressure on the cardstock (sometimes causing it to buckle)  Instead I recommend that you use a mat pack push pad and a paper piercer to pierce a hold and then add the brad. 

As you can see in the next photo the stamped image is mounted on kiwi kiss cardstock that has been decorated using the row of party hats from the Party hearty Stamp set.  Most of this band is covered by the stamped image- but at least it adds a bit of decoration to the back of the band when it is removed from the card. 

The inside of the card has been folded and secured using sticky strip on three sides and then the Word Window Punch and the 1 inch circle punch have been used to create an area to hold the gift card in place.  As you can see there is still room on either side of the gift card holder to personalise the inside.

The other two belly band birthday cards have been made the same way, however I have used different stamp sets.

One with the hippo from “Pun Fun” (page 41) and Raspberry Tart Designer Series paper

and the other using the Cupcake tier from the “Crazy for cupcakes” Stamp set (page 44) and Bella Rose Designer Series Paper

and the inside of each card- to show you how the gift cards sit inside









Would you like to learn how to make a gift card holder like this? Why not consider hosting a workshop in your home and I can come and show you how.  I have a special opportunity during the month of July where you could win a scallop square punch- simply by booking a workshop with me during July.  So as not to exclude customers who live outside of KALGOORLIE- (and therefore cannot book an in-home workshop with me) all orders I receive that are $100 or more will also go into the draw.  Anyone who spends $100 on Stampin’ Up! products with me during July will go into the draw.  Winner will be drawn on the 31st of July.

(08) 90917655

So many people say to me “Where do you get your ideas from?” 

I am inspired by lots of different things.    Sometimes I draw inspiration from colour challenges or sketch challenges.  Sometimes I browse the idea book & catalogue and adapt…..or there may have been a card that I seen that really grabs my attention and I make my own variation of it using different colours or different stamp sets.   Most of the time I just pull things out and move them around until I like the way they look.  Generally I try to make things my own- even if I am following a sketch I tend to tweak it and change it to make it my own.  

I find people are interested in the process I go through- so I thought I would show you step-by-step.  Please feel free to make your own cards like this but bear in mind that in the process I learnt that there are many ways you could adapt the size and design to suit your needs.    I wouldn’t necessarily recommend using the measurements I used for the card which I will explain as I go through the steps I followed.

I made a card for my Mum for Mother’s Day- A flower pot card.   I had seen other examples of flower pot cards like this so the concept is not my original idea but without a template to follow I just set about making one and hoped for the best.

Most cards I make start out as 1/2 an A4 sheet of paper …..    Either cut in half along the shortest side OR cut lengthways.  The reason I start with this size is that when folded it makes a card that fits nicely into Stampin’ Up!s C6 envelopes.  In this case I cut lengthways into a piece of Chocolate chip cardstock

But……….. by the time I added the flowers the card didn’t fit into a C6 envelope so in hindsight I could have made the base part smaller (so that when finished it would fit into the envelope) 

If I am not posting a card I will sometimes give the recipient their card without an envelope so if I wasn’t bothered about whether the finished product fitted in an envelope,   alternatively I could have made the same type of lengthways cut into the A4 cardstock but made the cut wider so that the pot base was wider and would have fitted a larger strip of cardstock inside.  Hmm! I’m probably not making sense, please read on and hopefully this will make more sense soon! (I did warn you that I am explaining the ‘process’ I go through! 🙂 )

Anyway, I then scored and folded this piece of cardstock in half. On the fold I measured in 2.5 cm (1 inch) on both sides.  I marked a point and cut from that point until the edge of the open end. 

This what it looked like closed…….

and open…..

This chocolate chip base was to form the flower pot but it seemd to be too tall.  I could have cut the top off a little but instead I opted to score the edges at about 2.5cm (1 inch) and folded the edges over creating a ‘rim’ on the pot. As you can see in the photo below I create a score line using the bone folder and the tracking on the Paper cutter (page 155).

I then used a technique that Nicki Tidbold shared at Convention.  I must warn you it is a very technical technique- nah just kidding- It is such a simple idea that Nicki called “Thump and Bump“.  You literally pick up the ink pad and hold using the finger grips and thump and bump the ink pad all over the cardstock.  Nicki recommended this as a simple but effective technique for male cards or layouts.

In this case I thought it would also look very effective to use one of the background stamps such as “Weathered” or “Sanded” (page 109) but I didn’t have one of those on hand at the time.

To seal the sides of the flower pot base I used Sticky strip. (page 154)  This is a heavy double-sided tape that is wonderful for assembling things like boxes as the sticky strip holds a good grip! Very durable stuff!

I thought that the flower pot looked a little plain- so I used the Eyelet Border Punch (pg 153) to punch an edge of Kiwi kiss cardstock.  I then trimmed this strip so that it was the same size as the rim on the flower pot.


I then set about stamping the flowers for the top of the flowerpot.  I used “Petal Pizazz” (page 98) but other sets that would work include

– Eastern Blooms (pg 76)

– A beautiful thing (pg 76),

– Flower Fancy (pg 80)

– Fifth Avenue Floral (pg 82)

– Embrace Life (pg 83)

– Scribble This (page 84)

– Playful petals (pg 86)

– Pick a petal (pg 96)

Alternatively the Flower Fusion Felt Flowers (page 144) would also look lovely (especially if you used a smaller flower pot base) or also the flowers from the Pretties Kit (pg 149)

I used the in-colours Pacific Point, Tango Tangerine and Riding Hood Red stamped on Whisper white cardstock.  I find that with large bold stamps like this it is best to make sure that you “Smoosh” the pads gently into the ink pads and then tap gently on top of the ink pad to get a nice even coverage of ink.  I also tend to hold the stamps in place a little longer than I might normally to allow the ink to transfer well to the whisper white cardstock.  After stamping I then cut out the flowers using my paper snips.  

I was hoping to achieve a more decorative look so stamped some more flowers and used the circle punches to cut out circles to use as centres on the flowers

Even this didn’t seem enough so I added some dazzling diamonds glitter and fine supernova glitter (page 145) to the flower centres using 2 way glue (pg 154)  

I also added some doodling using the white Uni-ball gel pen (ph 156)  on the main flowers.  I was inspired by the Planter Box Rub-ons on page 139 which features a doodled section which look great on the largest flower from Petal Pizzazz but I wouldn’t have had enough rub-ons in the pack  so used the white gel pen to create the same design instead. 

I then set about using Stampin’ dimensionals (page 154) to assemble the parts of the flowers and to stick the flowers onto a strip of Kiwi Kiss cardstock that would go inside the flower pot.

As you can see the strip of Kiwi Kiss cardstock is only about 3 or 4cm wide.  This strip is the part that goes inside the flower pot and is the part I planned to write my greetings on.  When it came time to write on the strip I had to turned it sideways and also write on the back of the strip.    If YOU were to make the same type of card I would recommend making this strip wider and shorter OR adjusting the size of the pot to make it wider to accommodate a wider strip.    If your message was short and sweet then the strip would probably be fine too!

As I was making this for Mother’s Day I wanted to add the “Happy Mother’s Day” Sentiment from the Occasional Greetings Set. (page 112) This card could just as easily be made into a Thank you or birthday card by using a different sentiment. 

I had originally considered adding my sentiment to the Flower pot base but couldn’t get it to look right so I added it to the section where the flowers were.  I found that when trying to add the sentiment it ‘need something more’ so I used the Eyelet Border Punch to create decorative corners on the sentiment.  The following picture shows how I positioned the cardstock to achieve the decorative corner.


To finish off the card I added a piece of Ric Rac from the Pigtails Ribbon orginals pack (page 150)

and this is the end product!

If I can help you out with ordering supplies to make a card like this- please do not hestitate to get in touch with me! I can’t wait to hear from you! E-mail OR Phone (08) 90917655 or Mobile 0419 947 047 .  You can view the catalogue by clicking on the catalogue cover on the right hand side.  Alternatively I can pop a copy in the post for you for only $12.95.

Mega Blog entry


Thanks for your patience everyone.  I finally have some things ready to show you and to make up for my lack of entries lately I am going to make this a mega blog entry with lots of photos for you.

One of the reasons why I haven’t had much time at the computer was because we celebrated our baby’s FIRST birthday yesterday with a small party in the afternoon.  It is so hard to believe that Luke has been a part of our family for a whole year- but at the same time we couldn’t imagine life without him.  We celebrated with a little gathering of family and friends at the park up the road.  Each party guest got to take home a little lolly bag that I made using the Sale-a-bration set “Yummy”

Here are some of the lolly bags.






They were so easy to make.  I started by cutting a 4 inch strip of patterned paper from a 12 x 12 piece of designer series paper.  This meant I could get 3 strips from each sheet of paper.  Positioning the paper lengthways I simply scored at 5 inches, 5 1/2 inches and 10 1/2 inches using my bone folder (as pictured) (Note the great Stampin’ Up grid paper in the background- I love this stuff for the protection it provides to your work surface but also the fact that it has measurements on it to help keep things lined up nicely)


I applied sticky strip to the inside of the flap and at the other end I stapled a medium sized Stampin’ Up Cellophane Bag to the opposite end.  I folded the cellophane bag a couple of times prior to stapling to keep the lollies sealed and fresh. 

 It was simply a matter of folding the patterned paper strip around the lolly bag and securing the flap at the back using sticky strip.  The great thing about the position of the flap is that it covers the staples used to hold the lolly bag in place.    In this case I decorated the side without the flap- but would have also been possible to make a feature out of the flap- perhaps by using something like the the scallop edge punch.  The little half inch section at the bottom just allows the lolly bag to sit nicely inside the package.  I wanted to use brightly coloured patterned paper for my creations but it would have also been possible to make them out of cardstock.  If the base was made slightly wider (instead of only 1/2 an inch) I imagine you would be able to stand each lolly bag up. 

The kids really seemed to love the little lolly bags.  For some little ones- the wrapping on the outside served as a bit of a distraction and they weren’t able to access the lollies easily.  Some Mums reported that it kept the kids distracted all the way home trying to work out how to get to the lollies inside (although I did notice a few kids who ripped the home made packaging off right away- obviously they thought the lollies inside were far nicer than the pretty paper 🙂 )

I also managed a scrapbook layout to share with you.  This page is Jared (my oldest) as a baby.  I think the Real Red and Night of Navy were the perfect choice of colours for this layout to match Jared’s outfit.  I wanted to team it with some white Stampin’ Up Rub-ons.  I was inspired by a page that Claire (my upline) had created using these “Anchored” Rub ons.  I haven’t used a lot of rub-ons by Stampin’ Up! and I was absolutely delighted by how beautifully they rubbed onto the cardstock.  I felt the page really needed an additional colour so I added a touch of Kraft pockets and pieces (with the anchored rub-ons also applied to these)  I enjoyed using my cropodile to add some Pewter Jumbo eyelets.  The Cropodile went right through the On Board Simon Chipboard letters like butter. (I inked directly on to these before adding the jumbo eyelets)






and finally….. Here are a few cards.  The first one is made using some of the retiring “In Colours” and “Friendly Flowers” which is in the Summer Mini and unfortunately this stamp set didn’t make it into the new catalogue.  The second card is made using retiring paper- but fortunately the Scallop square punch and “Say it with scallops” Stamp set have appeared in the new catalogue.  The final card is made using the hostess set “Infinite goodness


Well I am off to relax a little before heading off to bed this evening.  I am hoping to have an early night.  I know I will probably have a restless night dreaming about placing my first order from the 2009/2010 Catalogue which officially commences tomorrow!

Here’s card I made that features some heat embossing.  It is a versatile technique used by scrapbookers and cardmakers alike!

and a little closer


For those unfamiliar with the technique you will need an ink like Versamark or Stampin’ Up! s whisper white craft ink, some embossing powder and a heat tool.  The reason why you need versamark or the craft ink is because they are slow-to-dry and give a surface that the embossing powder will stick to.   

The following card has had Heat embossing used in FOUR places. 

1. For the background I have used the POLKA DOT background stamp, Versamark and CLEAR embossing powder.

2. For the word ‘friend’ (from the “Friendly Flowers” stamp set) I have used white craft ink and white embossing powder 

3. For the chipboard accent I have covered the entire piece of chipboard in patterned paper (sanded off the edges) and covered the entire surface with versamark and a coat of clear embossing powder and

4.  I even managed to change the colour of the brads in the centre of the flowers by heat embossing!

If you would like to try out some embossing for yourself- I can help you to order some products that will allow you to include some heat embossing on your scrapbook pages, cards and other projects.  If you live locally I am more than happy to demonstrate heat embossing at a workshop in your home.   Please just get in touch with me (My contact details are available on the “contact details” page)

Busy crazy times at the moment- but I couldn’t resist hopping online to add an entry telling you all about the Fantastic Marker Promotion that commences TOMORROW!!
Usually Stampin’ Up markers are sold in packs of colour families.  Through the month of November, purchase single Stampin’ Write™ markers for only $4.95.  Stampin’ Up!’s® versatile, dual-tip markers have never been offered individually before, so be sure to take advantage of this special, limited-time offer.
Please check out the flier to see available colours    


Stampin’ Up’s Markers………

– are versatile tools with two tips- one thick and one fine- to suit the task!

– Can be used to stamp images by colouring directly on the rubber stamp, “huffing” (breathing heavily onto the stamp to re-moisten the ink) and stamping

– Can be used to add different colours to one stamped image using the technique above

– Can be used to omit sections of a stamp- just colour the areas you want to appear (this would be far more difficult to achieve using a Stampin’ Pad)

– Are great for adding colour to an outline image.  Either colour directly using the markers or for a watercolour effect use the markers with a blender pen or aqua painter (the last few cards in previous entries have been coloured this way)

– Can be used to correct any little mistakes when stamping.  Simply go over the areas that may not have appeared on the stamped image.

– Are fantastic for adding journalling, writing and doodling or other hand drawn features to cards and scrapbooking pages.

If you would like to order some markers- please send me an E-mail at and I will happily pop in an order for you!

Although I started scrapbooking about 9 years ago, I am new to using Stampin’ Up! supplies.  When I placed my first order I was tempted by all of the gorgeous products and one of my problems was that I just couldn’t decide which ink pad colours to get.  I wasn’t sure which would be most used colours and obviously could not affort to buy every single colour.

I ended up deciding to buy a set of markers instead as they come in colour families and it gave me the opportunity  to sample the different colours.  I must admit that initially I was quite surprised by the price of $57.95 for a set of 12 pens and then later realised that the markers were actually a multi-purpose tool- and given the fact the markers could be used in so many different ways- the price wasn’t so bad after all. 

You see, each marker has two ends- one end has a fine point that can be used for writing or colouring and the other end has a thick tip.  I have been using the thick tip and colouring directly onto the rubber stamps rather than using an ink pad.   This is useful because if there are parts of the stamp that you don’t want to appear on the stamped image then you simply don’t ink up that part of the stamped image.  Think of stamps that may have an image and then writing underneath- you could simply colour the image and omit the writing (and perhaps even substitute the writing for a sentiment in another stamp set)

You can also use different colours on the one stamp as I have done in the following two cards.  On this Christmas card I have used mainly Purely Pomegranate ink but felt that it needed a contrasting colour to separate the writing from the images. 

I have used the same technique on this second card- so that the flower tips and stems can be different colours.

I was chatting with someone recently about how I excited I was waiting for my Starter Kit to arrive from Stampin’ Up!  (It is silly really as I have more than enough Stampin’ up! goodies to ‘play’ with until it arrives)

This person was a non-scrapbooker/ non-stamper/ non-cardmaker and I realised that she probably couldn’t relate to my feelings of excitement.  I apologised for being overly enthusiastic and she said it was completely fine as she wished she could enjoy a hobby like stamping but felt too overwhelmed by all of the choice.

This conversation inspired me to post a SUPER simple card using only two colours and no tricky techniques whatsoever.  For the following card I stamped on the Whisper White background using a flower stamp from the Always set .  I overlapped on the edges where required.  I then used the same Pixie Pink ink to stamp onto a strip of Pixie pink cardstock using the smaller flower stamps from the Always set.   The “Happy new baby” sentiment is from the “For a friend” Hostess Stampin’ set.  The card was finished off with a bit of a distressed adge and some ‘faux stitching’ for interest.  It doesn’t get any more simple that that!

pixie pink happy new baby

pixie pink happy new baby

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