By The Bay Clean and Simple Inlaid Frame Card

by Joanne James18. January 2019 09:00

Yay - it's Friday, bring on the weekend! Today I'm sharing a card for the current challenge over at Less is More where I haven't played for a while:

I had a short window for a spot of crafting yesterday and thought I'd whip up another clean and simple card using a couple of new products that fits perfectly with their theme this week - take a look:


Here's the low-down on today's card:

By The Bay - The seagulls paddling on the shoreline that feature on today's card are reminiscent of the ones that featured in the much loved and now retired Wetlands set (anyone else remember that set?) albeit with a little more definition, and they are one of three line-drawn images that feature with three sentiments in 'By The Bay', one of the stamp sets that can be yours free with a purchase of £45 or more during Sale-A-Bration. Perfect for colouring the images are large enough to stand alone but also not so big that they take a long time to colour. I really like this set and you can be sure I will be using it more before the promotion is over. 

Another Way To Frame - To frame my image, I used a new favourite of mine, the Rectangle Stitched Framelits Dies, but this time to cute an aperture frame into my cardfront. I then adhered my watercoloured image behind this. I like the subtle added detail that this gives to a clean and simple card, without adding overt layers. 

Ways With Watercolour - I feel like I've been watercolouring a lot on my cards lately; I don't consider myself to be by any means an expert at watercolouring, but I think that's why I'm enjoying it so much; on watercolour paper, it's easy to build up colour without needing to be too precise in terms of the overall effect. It would take ages if I was to attempt to properly draw and paint the image to achieve omething like this, so I'm grateful that stamps, ink and an aquapainter enable me to produce something this good in a fraction of the time! I used a combination of blues, greys and sandy neutrals to colour my image.

If you like today's clean and simple card, by purchasing the key items used below, you can earn the By The Bay stamp set for free - perfect for creating your own watercoloured masterpieces.

Here is the visual summary of the key products used on today's project for you to pin for easy reference:

You can see all of my 'How To' summaries on my 'How To - Tips and Techniques' Pinterest board in case you've missed any. 

Enjoy your day - I have a monster basket of ironing to wade through but I'm hoping if I focus I might squeeze in a little stamping time before my afternoon school run, so I'm on a mission! I'll be back tomorrow with another project. Until then, happy stampin'!


Stampin' Up! Supplies Used:

Table built using Product Table Builder by The Crafty Owl - Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator.

Needle and Thread Florals for PP424

by Joanne James13. January 2019 09:00

Today it's Sunday and time for this week's new challenge over at The Paper Players! It's the turn of the fabulous Anne-Marie to host this week and she has a fresh colour challenge for you to work with that is perfect for Spring:


I decided some fresh spring florals were in order and using this week's Paper Craft Crew Sketch as inspiration, I decided to have a play with my new Needle and Thread bundle - take a look:


Here's the low-down on today's card:

Pins and Needles - The new Needlepoint Nook Suite is perfect for creating the look of handcrafted embroidery with much less effort and has stamps, papers, accessories and framelits that fit the theme. My favourite aspect of this suite is definitely the Needlepoint Elements Framelits Dies - I used the largest of the needlepoint patterns for the background element of my design and added the needlepoint border to a vellum piece that co-ordinates with the Pretty Label Punch. Such a pretty touch! 

Hand-Stitched Stamping - The floral elements in the Needle & Thread set are distinctive stamps that have the almost photographic appearance of embroidered flowers, as they appear on the Needlepoint nook designer series paper that can also be found in this suite. I used my yellow and grapefuit grove to create a bright spray of flowers and added in a few additional diecut pieces too. I used a simple heat embossed sentiment in white onto Night of Navy - my chosen fourth colour - on the front of my card and used one of my favourite sentiments from this set on the inside:


I also added some of the new gingham gala sequins and a few loops of the lovely Grapefruit Grove Organdy Ribbon to finish the front of my card; this is one of the items you can receive free with a Sale-A-Bration order of £45 or more - and who doesn't love a free gift?!

A Well Written Tag Too - I often cut multiples of flowers or other elements when I'm making this kind of card as I decide on my finished design and this year I'm on a mission in my crafting to use up all the bits and pieces I get left over from a project as I craft, rather than putting them in my bits and bobs box to linger for months on end or eventually end up in the bin when I have a mad craft room tidy up! Today I made a tag with my leftovers, and added the word 'friend' from the Well Written Framelits set:


 This will make a great co-ordinating tag for a gift to go along with my card - and everything used up too! Here's one last photo of both items together:


Here is the visual summary of the key products used on today's project for you to pin for easy reference:


You can see all of my Product and 'How To' summaries on my 'How To - Tips and Techniques' Pinterest board in case you've missed any. 

Before you reach for your ink and papers, check out what our amazing team has created to inspire you this week:

Here's a quick recap of our challenge rules:
1.  Create a new paper project
2.  Upload your creation to your blog with a link back to us and provide a direct link to the post featuring your challenge submission.
3.  Please link your card to no more than four challenges, TOTAL.
4.  Have FUN!

You can see all of my 'How To' summaries on my 'How To - Tips and Techniques' Pinterest board in case you've missed any. 

Enjoy your day; I am hoping for a quiet day with maybe a little crafting too! I'll be back tomorrow with another project. Until then, happy stampin'!


Stampin' Up! Supplies Used: 

Table built using Product Table Builder by The Crafty Owl - Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator.

Sale-A-Bration 2019 Starts Today And The New Spring-Summer Catalogue Is Here!

by Joanne James3. January 2019 08:00


Hello everyone - I'm back! Following a longer than anticipated Christmas break (sometimes, family simply has to come first) the new year brings with it lots of Stampin' Up! goodness: it's time to shake off the January blues, today is THE day - yes, the highlight of the Stampin' Up! calendar, Sale-A-Bration is here! No more sneak peeks - the catalogue is available, the shop is live and from now until 31st March the benefits are yours for the taking. You can click on the catalogue on the right hand side of my blog page or below to access the Sale-A-Bration leaflet to download a copy or click on the icon above or on the right to go directly to my online shop to place an order - we are LIVE!


So what is Sale-A-Bration? For anyone who hasn't come across it before, it's Stampin' Up!'s annual promotion that is loaded with offers whether you shop, join or host:


Earn a free Sale-A-Bration product for every £45 you spend between 3 January and 31 March. There is also the opportunity to earn even bigger rewards with a £90 purchase. It's the perfect time to purchase those products you've had on your wish list and earn more products for free! 


It’s the best time of year to join Stampin’ Up! There are 2 fabulous joining options during this year's Sale-A-Bration promotion: Option 1, you can become a demonstrator for just £99 and choose £71 more of FREE products for your Starter Kit. That's an extra £40 worth of product in your starter kit when compared to the usual £130. Alternatively there is option 2: for £125, you can receive £170 worth of craft items and this exclusive Craft & Carry Tote to carry it all around in too! The tote bag is absolutely fabulous and a must have for all crafters - check it out in this video:


Isn't it just great?! Plus, the whole kit ships for free! There is plenty of choice and flexibility, whether you want to be a hobby demonstrator and just use your discount to enable you to purchase craft supplies more cheaply, or alternatively would like to build a flourishing direct sales business and sell supplies to others - it's entirely up to you. 


Earn an additional £20 in hostess credits when you host a party and have party sales of £200 or more (this also applies to individual orders). So for party sales of £200, that makes a whopping £40 of Stampin' Rewards - more freebies! What's more, you can even apply your Stampin' Rewards to a Starter Kit and become a demonstrator yourself - I would love to welcome you to my team!

If you would like to host a party, real or virtual, please do get in touch; my diary is filling up but there are still lots of slots available and I would love to share these great benefits with you. If you've ever thought about becoming an SU! demonstrator, now is a great time to do so - I would love to have a no-obligation chat with you about joining my team and the benefits.

As if that wasn't enough, today also sees the launch of the new Spring-Summer catalogue - full of gorgeous new products:

Just click on the image above or in the sidebar on the right to browse the catalogue online, or contact me on 07773 421446 if you would like a paper copy posted out to you and you don't already have a demonstrator. If you are as excited as me and just can't wait, here's the link to my online store - everything is available to purchase from today!

If you would like more information on any of the above, please don't hesitate to get in touch! 

Thanks so much for popping by - it's always nice to share good news! Back soon with lots of projects showcasing products from the new catalogue. Until then, happy shopping!

Stampin' Up!'s Black Friday-Cyber Monday Online Extravaganza Begins Friday!

by Joanne James21. November 2018 22:11


For savvy shoppers everywhere, this time of year is a dream come true. Some of the biggest sales of the year are happening, which means some of the biggest savings are, too! Stampin Up! hopes you are ready to save big, because we’re throwing a spectacular six-day promotion with exclusive, limited-time deals. Get ready for Online Extravaganza!

Stampin' Up!'s Online Extravaganza will run for six days. During this time, we’ll be throwing three, 48-hour sales featuring a selection of products from the 2018–2019 annual catalogue—all at 10% off! Each 48-hour sale will feature two product categories (e.g., paper, stamps, ink, etc.). When one sale ends, the next sale begins; this cycle will continue until Online Extravaganza is over. By the end, nearly every item from the annual catalogue will have been on sale!

23–24 November


  • Bags
  • Brads and Buttons
  • Cards and Envelopes
  • Cardstock
  • Designer Series Paper
  • Embossing material
  • Glitter
  • Ribbons
  • Twine
  • Specialty Paper
  • Tags
  • Washi Tape

25–26 November


  • Stamp sets (clear-mount, wood-mount, and photopolymer)
  • Project kits
  • Card kits
  • Kit refills
  • Memories & More
  • Punch box kits

27–28 November


  • Adhesives
  • Applicators
  • Cleaners
  • Cutting tools
  • Embossing folders
  • Framelits and Thinlits
  • Ink Pads
  • Ink refills
  • Markers
  • Punches
  • Scoring Tools
  • Stamp blocks and cases



Ordering Deadlines

  • Phone: 23 November, 14:00 (GMT)
  • Online: 24 November, 22:50 (GMT)









Additional details to note are as follows:

  • Item quantities are limited.Depending on inventory levels, discounted pricing may or may not be available for items featured in the promotion throughout the entirety of each 48-hour sale.
  • If an item is turned off during a 48-hour sale, it will be made available again at its regular price within 36-hours of its 48-hour sale ending.
  • Discounted pricing for items featured in this promotion will be available only during each allotted 48-hour sales period. (e.g., discounted cardstock will available only during the Paper & Embellishments sale; discounted ink pads will be available only during the Tools & Ink sale.)
  • Click here to see the list of items that will be excluded from the Online Extravaganza.

 I will be posting reminders both here on my blog and on my Facebook page each day; each sale begins at 12.01am each day and with limited quantities available, you would be wise to shop online sooner rather than later during each 2 day period to ensure you aren't disappointed. Remember to add the current host code to ensure that you receive a personal thank you from me. Back tomorrow with a creative post; until then, get out those wishlists and be ready to enjoy this online extravaganza!




Beautiful Blizzard Christmas Card

by Joanne James7. November 2018 07:00

Today I'm sharing a card using last week's sketch over at the Paper Craft Crew:

I have a technique class featuring the Beautiful Blizzard Bundle next week and having designed the cards for my class I wanted to create another card in a similar colourway to demonstrate the versatility of this set and this sketch was perfect - take a look:


 Here's the low-down on today's card:

Beautiful Blizzard - This is such a pretty stamp set; the splodges, spots and wisps make it easy to create lots of texture in detail with minimal layering. I stamped the background behind my sentiment oval in a combination of Balmy Blue and Night of Navy, stamping some of the images full strength and stamping some off first to create depth. I also added a little touch of snow to the inside too:


Frosted Shimmer Snowflakes - I used a couple of the snowflakes cut with my Blizzard Thinlits Die to embellish my sentiment oval, liberally sponging each with Frosted White Shimmer Paint for a wonderful soft shimmery finish.

A Snowflake Trinket - To finish my card, I added one of the new snowflake trinkets too - because you can never have too many snowflakes!

Here is the visual summary of the key products used on today's project for you to pin for easy reference:


You can see all of my 'How To' summaries on my 'How To - Tips and Techniques' Pinterest board in case you've missed any. 

Enjoy your day; I've a busy day in my craft room today catching up following a busy day yesterday. One big thing achieved though - finally got the last bits in the kitchen finished so I'm all set to decorate the week after next then I'll be able to share some pictures! I'll be back tomorrow with another project. Until then, happy stampin'!


Stampin' Up! Supplies Used:

Table built using Product Table Builder by The Crafty Owl - Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator.

Autumn-Winter Catalogue Items Now Available Only While Stocks Last and Dashing Along DSP To Buy!

by Joanne James5. November 2018 05:00

I'm just popping by with a quick post following an update by Stampin' Up! with regard to stock levels on certain products. Sales for a number of products have exceeded forecast and are continuing strong and due to their popularity might not be available for the entire catalogue sales period. The products in question are:

147816: Joyous Noel Specialty Designer Series Paper 
147890: Festive Farmhouse Elements 
147811: Santa’s Workshop Enamel Elements

I am definitely responsible in part for the first two items above; I used both at my recent Creative Escapes Craft Retreat and the ladies present got to both create with them and take some of each home in their goody bags. I just adore this paper - it is so beautiful!

In order to provide another holiday-themed option,the lovely people at Stampin' Up! have decided to make the recent promotional Dashing Along Designer Series Paper (item 149903) available for sale for £10.25 a pack. This beautiful, 12" x 12" (30.5 x 30.5 cm) traditional Christmas paper has a festive, eclectic feel and is perfect for layering. Coordinating colours are Cherry Cobbler, Garden Green, and Whisper White.

Here is a card I made at my recent Dashing Deer Technique Class that features one of the papers as a border of the central panel:

Here is the visual summary of the key products used on today's project for you to pin for easy reference:


You can see all of my 'How To' summaries on my 'How To - Tips and Techniques' Pinterest board in case you've missed any. 

You can see other samples showcasing these gorgeous papers here.

Enjoy your day and I'll be back later with another project. Until then, happy shopping!


Stampin' Up! Supplies Used:

Table built using Product Table Builder by The Crafty Owl - Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator.

Snowflake Showcase Pillow Box Creative Retreat Gifts

by Joanne James2. November 2018 19:00

As promised in my earlier post today (you can read that here if you missed it), today I'm sharing something a little different that I gave a sneak peek of on my Facebook page the week before last - a 3D project! Today is the perfect day to share it since it coincides with the launch of the Snowflake Showcase product suite yesterday - you can read all about that here.

The weekend before last I held my second residential craft retreat this year. I love these weekends: they are a great opportunity for me to spend quality time with my customers, some of whom I see at my regular classes but for many who follow my blog and shop with me online and for whom this is an opportunity to get away from it all for some quality crafting time amongst friends. I am grateful that they choose to spend a weekend with me crafting and as such in addition to their goody bags, they receive lots of little pillow gifts and table favours throughout their stay as a token of my appreciation. When they leave at the end of the weekend, I like to gift them a key ring that is unique to that retreat as a reminder of the fun time that they've had. It has to showcase some fabulous Stampin' Up! product too, both on the keyring and the packaging so for this one I just had to feature the limited edition, exclusive Snowflake Showcase products that went live on sale yesterday. So first up here is the packaging for my gift:


I dressed up one of the kraft pillow boxes available in the annual catalogue with some silver-trimmed ribbon and added a sentiment banner stamped tone-on-tone with the border stamp and then heat-embossed my sentiment in silver over the top. I then added the fabulous string of snowflakes diecut to the front of the box for a real 'wow'.

It didn't end there; I continued the snowflake theme inside with a keyring, that had a snowflake tree, a teeny-tiny sentiment and one of my craft retreat logos all stamped onto shrink plastic and reduced in size, along with one of the gorgeous snowflake trinkets that are also part of this suite. I made them in two colourways, Pool Party and Balmy Blue:


Here's a picture of them both together - gift and packaging. What do you think - cute enough to hang your keys from? 

I received such lovely comments from the ladies who attended my retreat, who all said they felt truly spoiled all weekend. Here's one of the pictures I shared over on my Facebook page of us at dinner on the Saturday evening, with some of them sharing another of their table gifts:


Christmas crackers, what else?! I will have more projects using the fabulous Snowflake Showcase in the coming weeks so look out for those and meanwhile do get in touch with me directly or via my online store to order yours whilst supplies last.

Equally, if you would like to be similarly spoiled and enjoy a fabulous crafty weekend away from it all, there are still spaces available on my March 2019 retreat which will be held in the West Midlands on 2-3 March - you can read more about it here and I would love it if you could join me! The dates for next October will be released soon and I already have a waiting list for this event, so if you would like to be one of the first to receive the details as they are published then do get in touch with me via [email protected] to register your interest as spaces are likely to be snapped up quickly!

Enjoy your evening and I'll be back tomorrow with another project. Until then, happy stampin'!


Stampin' Up! Supplies Used:

Table built using Product Table Builder by The Crafty Owl - Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator.

Snowflake Showcase Exclusive Products - Available Until 30th November Or While Supplies Last!

by Joanne James2. November 2018 07:00

Happy Friday everyone! I've had continuing blog and website issues to contend with this week, so all of my carefully scheduled blog posts have gone awry and you haven't heard from me in the timely manner I had hoped this week! This one should have gone live yesterday, but I'm pleased to be able to publish it finally because this is news of the release of an exclusive limited time collection of products called 'Snowflake Showcase' and trust me you are not going to want to miss it!

It seems following the success of the Blended Seasons stamp set and co-ordinating framelits a few months ago that you love an exclusive, limited offer - so here's another one: two stamp sets, one for Christmas and one all-rounder that both co-ordinate with the Snowfall Thinlits dies - available now until 30 November or whilst stocks last. What's more there are some co-ordinating Snowflake Trinkets and White Velvet paper sheets too. Here's a close up of the products in more detail:

I'm sure this set will be popular and I've taken orders for a few already having given the customers in my Facebook VIP Customer Group a sneak peek a few weeks ago (do get in touch if you would like to know more about the benefits associated with belonging to this group), so don't delay in placing your order - I wouldn't want you to be disappointed. Don't forget if you are placing an order online to also include this month's hostess code RW3QD6VN to receive a free thank you gift from me too! 

For more information on this set, please see today's second post here, which also includes a 3D project made using this gorgeous suite.

If you have any questions on any of the above, then please do get in touch - I am always happy to help!

Back shortly with my second post of the day; until then, happy shopping!


 Links to purchase the above items in my online store:

Table built using Product Table Builder by The Crafty Owl - Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator.

Stampin' Up! 30th Birthday Stamp Sale - 24 Hours Only!

by Joanne James22. October 2018 21:00

I have had a rare day off today following my hugely successful Creative Escapes Craft Retreat this weekend but wanted to pop in with a quick post to let you know that It's Stampin' Up!'s 30th birthday and to celebrate there will be a 24 hour sale from 22.50 tonight, Monday 22 October until 22.50 tomorrow night, Tuesday 23rd October when you can receive 15% off selected stamp sets. How about that? Here is a list of the stamps that will be on offer:

The discount applies to individual stamp sets (not bundles) and can also be used in conjunction with a starter kit. Place your order here through my online store or by clicking on the shopping bag icon in the menu on the right hand side - don't forget to include the current hostess code for an extra thank you from me. 

The 15% discount will run from 10:50 p.m. (GMT) Monday 22nd October to 10:50 p.m. (GMT)  Tuesday 23rd October. Don't forget to add the current hostess reward code RW3QD6VN for an extra little thank you from me; this will also ensure you receive a copy of the new Spring-Summer catalogue and Sale-A-Bration leaflet which will be on its way within the next couple of months!

I'll be back tomorrow with more news and pictures from my retreat and a little creative project with a sneak peek for you but in the meantime this is a 24 hour event only so you have to act fast to benefit from 15% off these amazing sets so time to go shopping - don't miss out! 

Tags: , , , , ,

Promotions | Shop Online | Shop Stampin' Up! Online | Stamping

World Card Making Day Promotion and New Stamparatus Accessories

by Joanne James1. October 2018 13:00

Hello everyone! I'm starting the week with a couple of news items for you.

Firstly, for papercrafters everywhere, to celebrate World Card Making Day on 6th October Stampin' Up! has a number of products that are available on offer from 1st-7th October with 10% off:

With discounts on cardstock and adhesives, it's a great opportunity to stock up on your cardmaking essentials. There are also some great offers on kits and stamp sets too - why not treat yourself and save a few pennies into the bargain? These offers last for just one week until Sunday 7th October, so get your order in today!


The second piece of news to start off October is that the first wave of Stamparatus accessories is here! The case/bag won't be available until later in the year, but for now you can purchase additional plates, magnets and foam pads, along with new custom-sized grid paper. Here's the complete list:


If you would like to know more about any of the above or would like to place an order, then please do get in touch.  I'll be back tomorrow with a creative post; until then, happy shopping!

2021-22 Annual Catalogue


Click on the catalogue for a full list of current SU! supplies - if you would like to order any of the items featured, please drop me a line at [email protected] or give me a call on 07773 421446 - I'd be happy to help.

Connect, Craft and Collect!

From 4 May–14 June 2021, qualifying orders will receive our generous Stampin’ Rewards PLUS additional rewards! Click here to find out more.

Shop Online

Access my online shop 24 x 7, 365 days of the year:

Current May hostess code:


Shop Online

Join My Team

It’s a fabulous time to join Stampin’ Up! From 4–31 May, new team members get even MORE FREE products in their customisable Starter Kit: new team members can get £130 £154 worth of products for only £99 + free business supplies + free shipping + all the fun being a part of Stampin’ Up!

Stampin' Up! has something for everyone: join my growing team and benefit from my support to enjoy Stampin' Up! however you choose.

If you're interested, call me for a chat to understand how I can help you realise your goals. Alternatively, if you have already decided to sign up and you just can't wait, please click here for the link to the online form where you can sign up and order your starter kit right away! 

About Me

Hi I'm Joanne and live in Northampton and when I'm not looking after my husband and two beautiful children, am an avid crafter with a passion for all things Stampin' Up!

I must confess that I have never been a big rubber stamper - until I discovered Stampin' Up! that is. I love the fact that I can get such great results with co-ordinating stamps, inks, papers and punches - the possibilities are endless! Join me on my stamping journey as I share the things I love and be inspired to create amazing things yourself!

January-June 2021 Mini Catalogue

The new Stampin' Up! January-June 2021 Mini Catalogue is here - click on the image to download your copy!

Paper Pumpkin Is Here!


The latest global Paper Pumpkin kit 'Bouquet of Hope' is now available! Read all about it and order yours here.

Follow Me

Monthly Newsletter

Box Builder

Click the button above to use Box Buster to create your custom box design using the Envelope Punch Board!

Now Available!

Stampin Cut and Emboss

The Mini Stampin' Cut And Emboss Machine Is Here!

Crafting has never looked this good! Contact me to get yours today. 

I Design For




Stampin' Up Stuff

This is my personal blog and is not endorsed by Stampin’ Up! I hope you find it a plentiful source of ideas and personal inspiration but please don't copy my designs for contest submission or use for classes, publication or sale without express permission.