STAMPtember: Picket Fence Collaboration

Happy Hour, Friends! Tonight I am so happy to be sharing a special STAMPtember collaboration set between Picket Fence Stamps and

The Picket Fence collaboration set is called Happy Water, and it’s perfect for invites and girlfriend cards! Please don’t delay shopping if you think this set is cute, and who can argue it’s not!! These collaborations have been selling out FAST.

First, I stamped my cocktails in VersaFine Black on Neenah cardstock and colored with Polychromos Colored Pencils. This is such a fast image to color. With so much glass, I left lots of white space and swiped over it at the end with a pale blue marker to cover the glass.

After the images were colored, I went over the top of the glasses with a clear glaze Sukura pen to give them shine and a bit of dimension. It was really tricky to photograph, but it’s a simple way to give your cards a little polish.

Here’s a peek at the stamp and die combination. It bears repeating: these collab sets have been flying off the shelf, so please don’t delay if you like this one!

I can’t wait to see the other designer’s projects with this cute set! Hope you enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by!

Hero Arts Winter 2020 Release Blog Hop

Is it too early for Joy & Comfort? I think not!

I’m thrilled to be on the Hero Arts 2020 Winter Catalog Blog Hop today. This hop celebrates a beautiful holiday collection from a company that everyone loves! I think when you’ve had a chance to see all of the beautiful projects, you’ll agree that it’s time for Joy & Comfort!

I loved working with Stocking Bouquet from the new catalog. Loads of beautiful Christmas springs and florals to color and arrange. I had a car ride this week, so I packed up stamped images and my Polychromos Pencils for the long haul.

Then, I spent an afternoon mixing things up and adding them to a blended ink background for my first Joy & Comfort card.

Tip: my ink blended background is on Bristol Smooth cardstock. When I cut the scalloped white layer to frame, I also used Bristol Smooth. I do this so that the tone-on-tone of the papers is the same. Continuity in paper tones and texture gives your finished card a polished look!

I love sending Christmas cards, and usually send quite a few. So, one thing I try to keep in mind is design ideas that keep them flat for mailing to avoid the need for extra postage and/or damage in transit.

Christmas Rose Bold Prints was an instant winner in my book! Lots of beautiful, (but open!) detail for easy coloring. These panels quickly transition to full card front panels. With 6″ by 6″ of stamped space, there’s plenty of beauty to cut up for tags or smaller card elements, too!

First, I stamped the full background in Versamark on white cardstock and embossed with gold embossing powder. Then the image was colored with Polychromos Pencils and blended with Gamsol.

After trimming the colored panel down to allow for a slight mat to frame the images, I centred the panel on a white cardstock base. Finally, I added a small vellum banner with Merry Christmas embossed from Stocking Bouquet to complete the card front.

I appreciate you swinging by my blog today. It’s an honor to participate with this company and these incredibly inspiring artists. I hope you enjoy the hop, and I hope your day is full of Joy & Comfort!

See many other projects from the wonderful winter stamp collection and find lots of inspiration from the amazing artists below.  Be sure to leave as many comments along the hop as you can – Hero Arts will give away three $50 gift cards, drawn from the comments left across the hop. Enter by leaving a comment between now and Sunday, September 6th at 11:59pm Pacific, and the winner will be announced on the Hero Arts blog the following week.


Dare to Get Dirty 2020

It’s my favorite week of the card making year! From the Splitcoaststampers team and our fabulous design team alumna from 16 years of creative inspiration, we host Dare to Get Dirty! I’ve been a part of the Splitcoaststampers community since 2004, and the community is the reason I am still stamping today! The people have become wonderful friends.

Splitcoast is the largest single source of card making inspiration on the web with galleries organized by company name/brand, the largest tutorial library on the web with step-by-step and how-to videos,  immeasurable information on tools, style, design, industry, company  chatter, and more.  It’s basically the Library of Congress for stamping and papercraft.

Every August we host Dare to Get Dirty to celebrate the Fan Club members who support Splitcoaststampers. 99% of the Splitcoast content is free, but we roll out special content monthly for Fan Club members – with lots of challenges, chatter and prizes.  You can find information about our Fan Club and how to join HERE.

Fan Club members can join our Dare to Get Dirty challenges in our Challenge Forum.

My card for the challenge I am hosting was created with my new Sketchbook Florals and background from the Field Notes Kit (currently sold out!) from Taylored Expressions. I’ve  embossed the flowers in gold and colored with Polychromos colored pencils. The larger single blooms on these cards allow for detail, but still a clean and simple card design.

You can see all of the entries for my challenge HERE. FIFTY FIVE Beauties when I checked this morning!

This is my card for Mary’s challenge from yesterday! I watercolored a wreath with Daniel Smith Watercolors – from Lydia’s Daniel Smith Split Group (Facebook)  on Arches Cold Press. The sentiment is from a very old Stampin’ Up set in my archive bin – the ones I’ll never part with! Love seeing all of the different takes on the challenge ideas!

Let’s end my post with adorable cuteness from Waffle Flower – the Be a Unicorn die for Lori McAree’s challenge! LOVED this one! The sentiment was created with Be Bright Building Blocks Stamp and Die from Taylored Expressions. So cute. All of the samples for this challenge can be seen HERE.

Lots of inspirational ideas to be found! LOTS OF PRIZES to give away! I hope you find time to join us. Forty-one challenges are open between now and September 4th. 🙂  See you there!

Sketchbook Florals with Field Notes

If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, it’s not a secret that a sketchbook with watercolor or pencils has become a hobby-on-the-go. Business trips, vacations, or close to home – it’s very relaxing to me.  And, while landscapes are fun, I always seem to circle back to flowers.

It’s also no secret that I’m a long time Taylored Expressions fan, and today those worlds collide! Eep! 

My sketchbooks are full of flowers… and today, I’m excited to share that a few of my favorite florals have made their way into a brand new set called Sketchbook Florals in the August Taylored Expressions kit called Field Notes!

When it comes to florals in card making, I love simple blooms with depth and beauty in a single stem that allow for effortless card design, and simple blooms are what you’ll find here. Each is large enough to stand alone on the card-front and easy to color.

Taylor hit all the buttons with the additions to this complete stamping kit to include a beautiful, Rough Draft Background stamp, Frayed Edge masking stencils (the masking stencils are the genius brainchild of my friend Laurie Willison!), stamped sentiments and accessories that remind you of sketchbook accents like date stamps, grids, and swatch boxes… all easy layers behind beautiful blooms, without overpowering. And, it would not be a Taylored Expressions kit without beautiful coordinating stickers and envelopes.

First I stamped the coneflower in a very light Toffee ink on watercolor paper and added no-line watercolor. One of the neat things about no-line watercolor with these images is that they will be a bit forgiving. Just follow the basic shape image! The background was created with my Blender Brushes and splatters of color off of the paintbrush.

For my next card, I used the Frayed Edge stencil on my panel in Confetti Cake ink, embossed the blooms in Gold Embossing Powder on separate cardstock and watercolored before clipping with the coordinating die. I added the perpetual calendar and ‘birthday blessings’ from the Birthday Simple Strips. I’ll just circle the date for my special friend when I get ready to send this through the mail.

For the last card that I’m going to share today, it’s another no-line watercolor bloom, the panel is layered on vellum, and then layered on the toffee card stock with the grid background stamped in toffee ink. At the end, I added a little bit of splatter to both visible layers for interest!

Field Notes is available today from Taylored Expressions. The kit includes:

  • Sketchbook Florals Stamp Set
  • Sketchbook Florals Dies
  • Field Notes Stamp Set
  • Rough Draft Background
  • Masking Stencils – Frayed Edge Rectangles
  • 6 Custom Envelope Seals
  • 6 Colored Envelopes (Blue Corn, Lavender Glaze, Salt Water Taffy, Sprinkles, Sweet Basil and Toffee)

I know the TE Design Team has been busy creating so many beautiful samples. I’m going to check out all of their inspiration by hopping over to the Taylored Expressions Blog. I hope you’ll join me!

a PIG DEAL from Taylored Expressions

Something fun from Taylored Expressions today! Love this adorable and limited  Farm Fresh kit that releases today. Each kit includes:

  • Gingham Check Background Stamp
  • Farm Fresh Stamp Set
  • Farm Fresh Critters Stamp Set
  • Farm Fresh Critters Dies
  • Set the Scene – Grass Stencil Strips
  • 6 Mini Wobble Springs
  • 6 Custom Envelope Seals
  • 6 Colored Envelopes

I had so much fun pairing my cute farm critters with Karin Brushmarker PRO. I have a whole herd of critters to show you today! A few of them are pig deals!  😉

As soon as my kit arrived, I got busy coloring images with Karin Brushmarkers, then the cards came together lickety-split! These quirky chicks are adorable, and I kind of feel like they are crafty chick friends hanging out together, because look at their fun rainbow banner for their chicken coop!

The wobble heads included in your kit make for fun interaction without any extra fuss. LOVE THAT!

For my next card, I paired the cute cow with birthday elements from Big Grumpy Birthday. BOOM! They are scaled perfectly for these critters! I used the kit grass stencil and a cloud stencil with my Taylored Expressions Blender Brushes for a fast and easy  background. The whole scene is mounted on a stamped gingham (LOVE!) background panel.

While you are shopping at TE, check out the Karin Brushmarker PRO collection. I am loving these markers for ease of use and beautiful blends.  I love the look of these pens and how they feel when you hold them. I love the vibrant ink colors and the see-through barrel. The ink is a liquid technology that allows you to see and use every drop of ink in the barrel. No waste!

The pig deal sentiment cracks me up! I already know exactly who I’m sharing this card with! Chuckling as I think about that because he tells us frequently, in jest, that he’s kinda a big deal. LOL

I’ll be making lots of cards with this set, and I love the addition of the fence! Great little anchor for cute scenes! I paired this scene with the cute sun and cloud dies from Taylored Expressions. All elements are cut from watercolor paper and colored with Karin.

My last card today features the horse. I always wanted a horse when I was growing up, and my grandpa always told us, “nope. horses are hard on fence.” LOL I have no idea if that is true or not, but there was zero percent chance he was adding horses to his herd of Black Angus.

I hope you’ve enjoyed a little tour around the farm today! Please stop by Taylored Expressions and snatch the Farm Fresh Kit up. The kits loaded with fun and in limited supply. I kept thinking about all of the ways I’d mix and match each element in my everyday crafting. So fun!



Over the Rainbow! Taylored Expressions Kit!

Happy Tuesday, Friends! It’s been dreary here in the midwest, and the best thing about this Tuesday is the Somewhere Over the Rainbow Kit that is launching today from Taylored Expressions!

Can we talk about the RAINBOW goodness!

  • Two adorable rainbow stamp sets,
  • Super cute Over the Rainbow Die
  • Rainbow Cloud Duo Dies
  • Over the Rainbow Masking Stencils with alignment guides
  • Super fun and BIG RAINBOW sticker
  • Envelope with super cute seals and an adorable carry all pouch

For my first card, I used almost the whole kit with a pastel palette of inks to create this super soft rainbow explosion. The colors used here are:

  • pink champagne (warmer tone of the champagne pairs perfectly with the peaches and cream and pineapple rings below it!)
  • peaches and cream
  • pineapple
  • mint julep
  • confetti cake
  • lavender glaze

The awesome thing about the Masking Stencil – Rainbow is the double set with the rainbow inserts. The alignment guides (an original, creative brain genius idea of my friend Laurie Willison!)  allow you to switch back and forth with perfect line up. The included inserts help you keep sections clean as you cover and mask only on color at a time!

Tip: Be sure to clean your stencil in between colors with a cleaning cloth. 🙂 



After masking your rainbow stripes, the adorable rainbow accent stamps allow you to finish off. My stamped colors for accent between the blending were Peaches n Cream and Mint Julep. LOVING THIS COLOR COMBO! 

My clouds are spritzed with TE Liquid Watercolor Shimmer. All of the cardstock is Sugar Cube, but the shimmer makes the clouds stand out just a bit!




I loved crafting with this kit! Next,  I used the rainbow die-cut pieces and the negative pieces to create the 7 ring rainbow. I’ve paired it with puffy clouds. The flat bottom clouds in your Somewhere Over the Rainbow kit will be perfect to hide the ends of the negative snipped rainbow pieces when you create something similar.

My panel is cut from Petite Scallop Stacklets – put these on your wish list – and splattered with a little white paint. Rainbow set in the clouds for a wispful vision and finished off with the cute oh happy day sentiment from the kit!

My last card came together so quickly! Again I grabbed the Petite Scallop Rectangle Stacklets with Twinkle background and simple sentiment. You’ll love who easy these cards come together with a perfectly curated kit!

The entire Somewhere Over the Rainbow kit can be found here in the Taylored Expressions store. I’d suggest you hurry because this one will be a sell out!

Be sure to visit the Taylored Expressions blog for lots of rainbow goodness and inspiration, and I recommend a fast-grab if you like these adorable rainbows. I think they’ll be around about as long as the occasional rainbow beauties in the sky!

May My Monthly Hero

So excited to share the May My Monthly Hero kit with you today.  Definitely a few things to “lift” our spirits during a crazy, crazy time. Look at all of the goodies included in this kit:




So much cuteness for cards and decorative envelopes! And, I’m partial to the Karin DecoBrush Metallic markers for handletterings, splatters and a few fun faux-foil techniques. This kit of adorable sweetness is AVAILABLE TODAY. If you are new to the My Monthly Hero kit, please know they tend to sell out quickly. Do not delay.

Get all the May Add-ons HERE!
Kit Contents:
6 x 8 Clear Stamp Set
7 Coordinating Frame Cut Dies
7 Envelope Art Icon Fancy Dies
3 Karin DecoBrush Metallic Markers
5 White A7 Envelopes
5 White A2 Envelopes


There are additional adorable products included as add-ons in the full collection focused on sending love, uplifting others, and the power of a handstamped card. You can see all of the goodness on THIS PAGE.

Hero Arts is estimating that shipping for the MMH kits will begin on May 15, and continue until all boxes have shipped. Thank you for your patience, continued support for Hero Arts, and your kind wishes during this time.

I loved the little hot air balloon image, and I paired it with the Karin Metallic Gold DecoBrush for a faux-foiled sentiment and matted layer. This is a trick I use often with heat embossing, and the markers make it a much easier step to color the edges of a matting layer for metallic pop! The sentiment was created by applying the marker color direct to the stamp instead of an inkpad.  If you have the Karin Brushmarker PRO, it’s important to know that the DecoBrush Metallic are a pigment cousin to the watercolor Brushmarker PRO. Beautiful, rich metallic colors!

There is always a rainbow at the end of every rain! To make the rain splatters, I simply scribbled the DecoBrush markers on a piece of acetate and flicked with a wet paintbrush.

I’ve colored my rainbow with Graphit Twin Alcohol Markers and given the whole cardfront some metallic splatters. It’s like finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow! Love this sweet rainbow image and die. I’ll be using it over and over!

Look at this adorable airplane! Super sweet ‘hello’ and I’ll tuck a gift card “inside for happiness”!  The gold ink was perfect for metal accents.

Another favorite image… hello RAINBOW! I colored this with Polychromos pencils and added spatters a clean and simple love note.

I appreciate you stopping by for the My Monthly Hero blog hop this month! I hope you’ve enjoyed the inspiration.

GIVEAWAY! Visit my friends, and be sure to comment as ee will give away one $50 gift card, drawn from the comments left across the hop. Enter by Sunday, May 10th at 11:59pm pacific, and the winner will be announced on the Hero Arts blog the following week.

Your next stop on the hop is my good friend,Lydia Fiedler. 

You can find lots of inspiration here:

HHero Arts
Amy Kolling
Channin Pelletier
Daniel West
Debi Adams
Heather Nichols
Ilina Crouse
Janette Kausen
Jennifer McGuire
Jen Shults
Jessica Frost-Ballas
Jill Hawkins
Julee Tilman
Laurie Willison
Libby Hickson
Lori Craig
Lydia Fiedler
Michelle Short
Nichol Spohr

Picket Fence: Beauty in Song

More Picket Fence Studios today. I loved coloring this bird from Beauty and Song. The main image is stamped here and embossed with gold embossing powder and colored with the Karin Brushmarker PRO. I use a simple waterbrush to blend the colors.

The Karin Brushmarkers blend effortlessly – directly from the pen or from a palette. Therapeutic and easy. The embossing and stark contrast gives it a bit of elegance. I finished my colored image with a thick sentiment strip and sequins for a clean and simple card that is the perfect pick-me-up to someone you love and easy to mail!

If you want to talk about simple wow cards! Stencils for the WIN! Here I’ve used the new Picket Fence Studio Flower in Heart Stencil.  I applied pink ink with a blender brush, paired it with sentiments from the new Seriously Literally sentiment set. and added a few crystal drops.

I’m getting wrapped up to leave for CreativeWorld in Frankfort, Germany on Friday. I’ve not been to Germany before, and though I don’t expect to see much outside of the tradeshow, I’m hoping I’ll have pictures to share on my Facebook page – Lori Craig Designs. Please join me there!

Thanks for stopping by! Stay warm, friends!

Picket Fence 2020 Creativation Release

What!? What? I’ll tell you what!I’m thrilled to be guest designing for Picket Fence Studios to celebrate their Creativation release today! So many cute things in this release, and I have several projects to share with you today! If you like to color, you will LOVE these sweet new designs!

My first two cards feature Piper and Peach Checking the Post! I’ve stamped my images in Fade Out from Ink on 3 on to Taylored Expressions Sugar Cube paper and used the no-line watercolor technique with my Karin Brushmarker PRO pens.

Here’s a close up of card number 2 with the set Piper and Peach Checking the Post and the Loads of Mail background. I had so much fun with these images! The die cuts leave the perfect white edge in my opinion, and I used green Karin markers to color the clumps of grass separate before cutting. This could be an addicting watercolor technique for me!

Two weeks ago I set aside the weekend to work on my design projects for this release, and I had invited a few friends over to stamp – girls who live in fairly close proximity to me. Imagine my surprise when Laurie Willison showed up with Jill Hawkins tucked into her car! Jill lives a plane ride away, and I will never forget how special and magical it was to have someone fly in to surprise me for a weekend. #treasure #craftyfriendsarethebestfriends. Jill sat next to me that weekend, and she couldn’t resist playing with the Loads of Mail background stamp.  The image is embossed in white and watercolored with the Karin Brushmarkers and an aqua pen. The sentiment is from the fun new set, Absolutely. Seriously. Always.

Crafty Squad – Laurie Willison, Jen Shults, me, Jill Hawkins, Nichol Spohr, and Caren Bartholomew

Here’s a picture from our impromptu stamping weekend! I’m truly grateful for the beautiful people in my life because of stamps and ink.

I’ll be back in the morning with more of my favorites from this release! Thanks for stopping by!



I hope the weekend brings you time for stamping and relaxation!

This is My Happy Face

Am I right? I do get accused of a having a grumpy face sometimes, to which I say, “if I’m grumpy, you’ll know it!” LOL None-the-less, I love Big Grumpy at Taylored Expressionsand his ! So much that the new Big Grumpy Valentine sayings arrived on my doorstep this week – can’t wait to make a few loving cards with those. LOL

A week or so ago, I found a YouTube watercolor tutorial done by Jessie Banks through a mutual Facebook group. I loved the layered, dreamy look of her vibrant color, and knew I wanted to give it a try!

YouTube Preview Image

Isn’t that video fun to watch? (Please leave Jessie some YouTube love and a thumbs up!) Trust me, it was even more fun to paint!!

Like Jessie, I masked my images with masking fluid. I love this Moltow Masking Fluid Pen, and unlike others I have bought and tried through the years, this one doesn’t gum up on me between uses. I didn’t cover my entire image with masking fluid – just about a 1/2″ border to keep him clean.  You can see on the left side of the sign that I got thin coverage in a few spots, but I was really pleased overall. Lifted clean after sitting on my watercolor paper for several days.

The background was painted with Daniel Smith Watercolors that I purchase from my dealer, Lydia Fiedler’s Watercolor Split Group on Facebook in convenient half-pan splits! It’s a great way to purchase beautifully curated collections of top-quality, beautifully granulating color. Above is the mixing chart created with my Janes Split from Lydia. Look at all of the color created with 15-16 colors! Gorgeous color in a tiny palette!

Big Grumpy and the sign were colored with a fairly new watercolor, the Karin Brushmarker PRO from Marker Universe. I love the vibrant color and fluid ink flow from these pens. You can use the color straight from the nib for watercolor or hand-lettering or create a palette. They blend beautifully straight from the nib with a watercolor brush, but I do prefer to paint with the grays from a palette I just scribble on a piece of plastic or acetate.

For the white gauche step, I used  Winsor Newton white gouache. love the rich, opaque look. If I’m being super lazy, I use the liquid Dr. Ph Martins Hydrus in a bottle. It’s great for quick and easy splatter.

Can’t wait to try this technique again and improve my “clouds”, but overall I love how this turned out. Let me know if you try it!

I’ve been busy prepping for a guest release spot that I’ll share on Saturday, so stop back by! Have a fabulous Thursday!