Saturday, October 18, 2014

Making the Right Impression: Tips for You

Good morning!  I had a customer write to me saying she is having trouble getting a clean impression with the Fabulous Frame stamp (stock is running low again by the way on this one, just FYI).  We have sold thousands of the frame sets now and this is the first inquiry of this nature, so I am certain it is not the stamp itself, but thought it definitely was worth addressing here for anyone else who could also use some pointers or might be receiving the set any day now, as well as highlight some videos where you can see what I am also going to write about, in action. As always, I am glad to answer questions about my stamps. :)

Fabulous Frame includes my first clear frame stamp, and it *is* a little different stamping it than the previous rubber frames mounted on cling cushion. It took a few times at first for me to get used to holding it,  after being so very familiar with my rubber frames which I've used more often than any other stamps in my collection the past 5 years! I have slightly modified the way I used to hold the block, and get good, consistent results and am thrilled with this frame. (Future ones will be clear as well. Yes, of course I will do more frames)  A little modification to holding the block is definitely worth it!  If you are used to my previous frames, the rubber with the added cushion has a higher profile than the clear stamp, so you can grip the block a little more around the edges. With clear you can’t hold it quite the same way, as your fingers (depending on your fingers) might hit the paper first and you could bobble the stamp.  So it can feel tricky to hold at first if you've never used such a large block or are used to the rubber. If you've watched my videos with this frame, I kind of make an “L” basically with my thumb and pointer finger (or middle finger) and right hand looks like backward L , so both thumbs are long on the bottom edge of the block of one finger on the sides, and then gently set it down. Can you picture that? With the rubber, you can hold it more like a fist with your fingers under the edges or like your hands are wrapped around a book and you feel the rubber hit the cardstock sooner than the clear stamp will.  Does that make sense?

Here is a video showing inking and stamping the clear Fabulous Frame, starting at 2:45. I show it in others, all near the beginning, but this was the first one I scrolled to.

And here is a video I posted recently where I show stamping a rubber frame (Festive Frame), also starting at 2:45 (boy, my internal "video clock" just tells me it's time to stop blabbing and get on with the stamping, doesn't it?), where you will also see some of the tips I am about to describe for inking and stamping in this post.

Now, if you've tried what I suggested above and it’s still difficult to hold, you can try putting the inked up stamp facing up on the block on your work surface and then lay the cardstock down the frame, gently smooth fingers over and carefully lift up. This is what Gina has always done with my frame stamps when demonstrating in her videos, like Arranged with Love.   You should get a clean image every time *as long as you are not sliding the cardstock around*. Hold in place with one hand while the others presses. I’ve done it both ways.  With the face up method you must be careful when inking, though, since there are some open spaces, particularly largest section below the oval, not to mash the cardstock down into a gap and get it inky.  I don't use this method with my clear frame however because I find it easier (and this is just me) to center my frame stamping it downward  since it's clear and I can see the rim of cardstock all around under the frame before stamping. 

Avoid getting ink in the open areas of your stamp by going slowly and making sure the pad is crossing two planes of the stamp's image, meaning, having the pad on the edge off the just one border side only makes it very easy to hit the middle of the stamp where you don't want or need ink.  I have lots of staining on my stamp that cannot be removed now because of frantic inking when it first arrived (must stamp with this stamp right NOW!) but I am more careful now that I have gotten some of that urgency out of my system, and thankfully the staining will not affect my stamping.

If you are pressing the stamp down onto cardstock to stamp your image,  and seeing ink transfer from open areas onto cardstock where it should not be, you also want to make sure your cardstock is on a completely flat surface.  Any little corner of another piece of paper lying askew underneath or small object (no matter how small, think of the pea under the mattresses) can cause an uneven stamping surface and therefor result in an unwanted ink hitting the inside of an image on the cardstock where the cardstock is closer to the stamp.

As for wasted cardstock if you do not get a clean impression first try, I always suggest flipping paper over to do the other side first (unless of course the cardstock is thin and you can see goofed impression on the other side, no bueno)*, or, cut it out to mount on another base if the image is clean, but not centered. Never try stamping on folded cardstock, as it will pop up, that almost certainly will get you every time. Yes, I still test/break that rule from time to time in a hurry, deciding to add some little thing after I've folded the card up, and it never goes well.  Ever.) I will say, though, a folded card *will* be sturdier than a single layer if you try the stamp face up method and less likely to hit middle and possibly unwanted inked areas.  You could try that and might like that, I've done it before and it can work.  But don't say I didn't warn you . ;)

If only just a tiny edge is missing in the stamped image, I recommend using a blender pen to lift some ink off the pad you stamped with and dab onto cardstock to fill in border gaps. You can best avoid missing parts of the image by always inking with the stamp face up rather than down onto your pad, and then lift the block and tilt this way and that under your lamp or light at your work table, as all the inked areas will be wet and shiny and any uninked areas will be very noticeable, looking dry and flat.  Then you can go back and add ink to those areas before stamping.  Check again! Finally, you can huff on the stamp to reactivate all the ink if there has been a large amount of time from when you started inking to make sure it is nice and moist all over when you are ready to stamp.

The Misti system was called to my attention by a couple StampTV friends yesterday (thank you!) for stamping large stamps like this one, and while I have not tried the product, I watched the video demonstration after their recommendation.  It is a substantial investment, but if you have tried all the "free" solutions, and practiced, and are still not happy with the results, this might be for you.  It looks like a very clever idea and there seem to be a lot of really satisfied customers.  That product could be especially useful if holding such a large block for a stamp like that is just not comfortable for someone, or for mass producing a large quantity of one design using the frame stamp (or any other stamps for that matter if you are particular about the placement.)

I welcome all of you to ask questions or share any advice that I have not already suggested that may be of use to someone else, or something you changed about your technique that has helped.  There's really no "right" or wrong way to do this if what works for you works!

I hope a little experimentation or possible small ramp up time does not discourage anyone from getting sets that include these frame stamps and this post only gives you confidence that it is just finding what process works best for you.  The versatility of these frames and what they can add to your projects, as well as the ease and time saved (and saved cardstock, to get a layered look in one layer!) once you get the hang of it, make taking that time in the beginning "to get to know each other" well worth the effort. :)

Thanks for reading!

*Honestly, I still use this "goofed" cardstock.  Stamp smaller images or sentiments in the open, usable areas and then cut or punch them out for other cards.  Thrifty, but make it work!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Fabulous Holiday Fillers and Greeting Tips For You

Fabulous Holiday Fillers is now available for purchase!  It is selling even faster than the first two sets so far, as I'd hoped since so many of you have been enjoying the past two sets and know how much use you'll get out of this one! :)  Can't wait to see the first uploads of all your fabulous creations once the stamps start arriving!

This card above I made just before the party wanting to show something for the new set without the frame and the straight circle border.  It's a little busier than I usually get but I actually really like how this looks like some really joyful, out-of-control patterned paper!  I always feel I can get away with that a little more when I go with a rainbow palette, you know?  I stamped out the rows, shifting slightly back and forth to "nest" the circles into the previous row, stamping off each time to get the lighter shade you see between each color.   In the party I suggested doing these all in one coor with no fillers for more of a textured look, or even tone on tone with the same color ink as your cardstock or Versmark to look like a Cuttlebigged impression.  Wet emboss that pattern and wow, what texture!  (Think bubbles on blue, snakeskin on green, how fun!)  I am just lovin' these polka dots! The patterned circle fillers  were the last things I added to the set, but so far, and I've only been playing with it a week mind you, are quickly becoming my favorite elements in it to stamp with!  Such neat looks you can make!

Supplies: GKD Cherry Red, Wild Lilac, Sweet Mango, Prickly Pear, Grass Green, Blue Denim, Christmas Pine, Black Onyx ink pads, Pure Luxury heavy Baseweight White cardstock, adhesive rhinestones

Also, here are suggested uses for the different sentiments I created for this set.  There are other possibilities, of course!  (Refer to image sheet above, I did not type out the entire sentiment)

Hoping this holiday is your best ever... yep, any holiday!  (That's why I didn't say "Christmas"!)  With the majority of my family and lots of friends spread out all over, I can send that to most anyone because we don't usually see each other *on* the holiday!  (I don't know that I'd send that to someone for Halloween necessarily, but Easter, Thanksgiving? Sure!)

Words can't express all that's in my heart...sympathy, encouragement, get well, fill in the blank with what you care about so much but I simple sentiment just won't say it all.  (Usually with Sympathy just isn't enough, you know?) This is also great on a tag for any 3d items, gifts, food stuffs you make.
I love you more...  Valentine's Day, anniversaries,  encouragement, child's, spouse's or parent's birthday

You make me so proud... graduations, encouragement, achievement, child, spouse, Mother's Day father's Day, Grandparent's Day etc.

Celebrating your special day...birthday, wedding, shower, birth, achievement, anniversary, graduation, retirement, etc.

Lifting you up in thought and in prayer...get well, encouragement, sympathy, anything that needs prayer!

For all that you've done... thank you, teacher, coach, spouse, caregiver etc

For my... husband, son, daughter, mom, dad, sister, brother

To an amazing... couple, mom, dad, lady, sister, brother, husband, son, daughter
Finally, please let me know if you have requests for how to use certain images in this set or things you would like demonstrated in a video.  I will be posting a tip sheet soon but wanted to address all these greetings today! And, thanks again very much for only having positive things to say about last week's video boo boos.  I came so close to re-shooting the whole thing, you don't even know.  You all are the best!

PS We are blazing through the original Fabulous Frame stock and Fabulous Frame Fillers (yes, again, I know we just put it back in stock!), so don't forget to add these to your order if they are still on your wish list.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

You're Invited! Gina K. Designs Release Tonight

Great news! Many of you have asked, Fabulous Frame Fillers *will* be back in stock tonight at 7 PM CST when we release our new sets! This means all the "Frame" stamp sets will be in stock at once, woo hoo! (Fabulous Frame doesn't have quite as many as the others, though, so don't wait too long if you are wanting that one and don't have it yet)Thanks so much for all your wonderful advanced feedback on the new Fabulous Holiday Fillers. You are going to have so much fun with them!

I hope you can join us for contests and samples with the new sets from our design team in the StampTV Release party forum tonight, as well as a new Gina K. video!  I can't wait to see what everyone has created, as well as chat with you!

See you tonight!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Video: Introducing Fabulous Holiday Fillers

 Good morning!  Here is an introduction to my new set Fabulous Holiday Fillers from Gina K. Designs, releasing Thursday, October 16th, 2014.  This is a companion set to further customize the Fabulous Frame* set for virtually any season or holiday, with new greetings, borders and accents and more (50 stamps!!)!  This can also be mixed with Fabulous Frame Fillers, or used on its own.  This video shows two versions of a winter holiday card, using these brand new circle borders and how you can two step stamp patterns form the set into them.  Imagine this design with different patterns, color and a sentiment from the set for any occasion. And very minimal supplies!  Please enjoy!

Apologies for some user error in this video of not getting good impressions a few times. I assure you they stamp beautifully just as you see on the image sheet, but I was trying not to get in the way of the camera and didn't use the best technique holding and stamping with the blocks. The result is a little shabby chic.  I will work on this!  (I always get better results when I am looking down directly over the block, just easier to apply pressure all over, hope this helps!  Also, Also, it would have been better not re-ink the belly band when I realized the middle part didn't come out on the left side.  Just press it back down like I did on the straight border when I left off the bottom. I was just a little flustered since I was so far in recording!)


Gina K. Designs Fabulous Holiday Fillers and Fabulous Frame stamp sets

GKD Pure Luxury White cardstock

GKD Black Onyx, Grass Green, Cherry Red and Warm Cocoa ink pads

Spectrum Noir markers EB6, DG3 (Copic alternatives: E57, G29)

Are you as excited as I am about this set? (I think I said "excited" in this video 4 times, that might be a record. ;)  Are you excited for this Thursday??

* Don't forget to throw Fabulous Frame in your cart if you don't have it already!  These sets are amazing together! :)

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Happy Belated World Cardmaking Day!

 Sorry I missed posting on World Cardmaking Day, did you have time to get crafty? 

Here is another card I made with the new Stamp Out Cancer set and papers Fight Like a Girl.  I pieced the different patterns into my Fabulous Frame that I stamped and colored the borders black.
 I stamped the ribbon and bra image, and pieced pieced the little bra and popped it up and accented with a little pearl. I only had to cutout the cups with the image stamped on the white cardstock underneath first. I am pretty low on dimensional embellishments right now, so I just cut out some of the hearts from along the edge of one of the patterned papers.  This is a great way to use your papers for perfect coordination, with both colors and style!  Finally, I wanted to little more red on this card, so I added two shades of red with my Spectrum Noir makers to some of the tiny black outlined hearts on the bra and middle section, on the pattern print they are pink inside.

Look for a very CAS card made with more of this paper and a tip for how to use it on my blog later this week.

Hope you are having a good weekend!  Ours is busy, but in a good way. :)

By the way, I am having so much fun playing with my new set for our next release!  I can't show you yet, of course, but an intro video to walk you through the set will be posting soon.  Can't wait!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Gina K. Designs Stamp Out Cancer Blog Hop

Good morning, and welcome to a very special Gina K. Designs Blog Hop! We are so happy to share this new stamp set and patterned paper pack, Fight Like A Girl, designed by Gina! Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, we are kicking off the first week with this release and a full week of challenges on StampTV. Each challenge has a prize giveaway! Also, Gina will make a donation to American Cancer Society for every stamp set sold in the month of October, so don't delay! (Both products will still be available for purchase, however, after October) Please enjoy the hop and then watch for a new challenge every day in the Stamp Out Cancer Forum on Stamp TV!

 Aren't these stamps super cute?

Isn't this paper yummy?

Here is a card I made with the set and the designer paper.  I have some others I will be sharing during our challenges this next week more in line with the specific theme of cancer support and cancer survivors, but I wanted to show how this set has a lot of other uses, and not just in October.  Thankfully, I don't really have any one close in my life at this current time (but that could change) who is battling this terrible disease. But I know about 500 people who could always use "a little something". ;)  
I stamped the butterfly in GKD Black Onyx ink on this gorgeous pattern (this is probably one of my favorite patterned GKD packs to date) and stamped it again on GKD Pure Luxury White cardstock and cut out the wings only to mount over the first stamped image (no need to fussy cut antennae or long body this way).  I thought the curving cut banner was perfect to go with the delicate, floating butterfly.  Finish with adhesive rhinestones.

Spectrum Noir colors: PP2, DR3, DR6
Pure Luxury Cherry Red base and Black Onyx mats

More cards from me with this set later this week!

Enjoy the inspiration from our Gina K. Design Team:

Gina Krupsky

And our special guest designers:

Have a fabulous day!  Thanks so much for hopping with us and helping support cancer research!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Video: Stamping Striped Backgrounds with Fabulous Frame and Fillers

Hello!  So sorry for no video last week, I am playing catch up! Today I will show you a simple way to fill your backgrounds with the curved and straight borders from Fabulous Frame Fillers, whether you are creating your own patterned papers, single layer card bases or adding to the Fabulous Frame stamp (back in stock! woot!). This is a very festive card that is easily mass produced for the holidays with no or very little layering, requiring minimal cardstock and no extra postage!  We’ll do some stamping off to create the two colors of stripes and a little masking.  This design can be adapted to other holidays by switching up the border, belly band fillers and colors.  Coloring flower takes 4 minutes. Stamping the striped pattern begins at 9:00 minutes in and takes about 4 minutes.  This is a quick but detailed card!

Supplies: Gina K, Designs Fabulous Frame and Fabulous Frame Fillers stamp sets
Gina K. Pure Luxury White or Ivory cardstock
Gina K. Cherry Red and Dark Chocolate ink pads
Spectrum Noir markers: DR3, DR7, DG3, BG3, GB8
Copic alternatives: R29, R59, YG95, YG99, Y28, W-3
Scissors for trimming frame, sticky notes for masking

Optional: Gina K. gold cording, adhesive pearls, punch for tag, Cherry Red or Cranberry Tart cardstock for base

Apologies, I realized after I finished the video that I forgot to add the shadow to the flower with the BG3 marker! (Doh!) Refer to card photo and trace underside the flower and leaves.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Video: Watercoloring with Ink Pads

Hello! In today’s video, I show you how to easily transform the wintery frame from the Festive Frame stamp set into one perfect for all your fall cards by just the way you color and embellish it with one of my other popular sets, A Year of Leaves.  I’ll be sharing some technique tips for masking, sponging, and watercoloring with your pads and reinkers as well.

I just love how this turned out!  Without all my explanation, it is a 10 minute card!  Thank you to whomever wrote recently requesting this technique, I can't remember who it was, but I enjoyed doing it.  Hope it was helpful!

Gina K. Designs Festive Frame and A Year of Leaves stamp sets
Gina K Pure Luxury Warm Cocoa, Honey Mustard, Heavy Baseweight Ivory or White cardstock
Gina K. Charcoal Brown, Warm Cocoa, Honey Mustard, Grass Green, Cherry Red, Sweet Corn ink pads
waterbrush or watercolor brush, sponge dauber, adhesive and pop dots, scissors, scratch paper (if masking is desired)

Warm Cocoa card base, 4 14” x 11, scored at 5 ½”
Honey Mustard mat: 4 ¼” x 4 ¼”
White mat trimmed to 3 7/8” x 5”, after stamping

Monday, September 8, 2014

Clean and Simple Stamped Wreath

Hello!  Hope you had great weekend! In today’s video, I’ll show you how to stamp up a simple wreath just using the oval and leaf stamps in my Fabulous Frame Fillers. Wreaths are perfect for so many holidays cards, whether open, framing greetings or small images, and can be embellished with punches, pearls or rhinestones or other small stamped images.  The dotted oval adds detail but also is a placement guide for the leaves.

Gina K. Designs Fabulous Frame Fillers, Fabulous Frame (for greeting) stamp sets

Gina K. Designs Pure Luxury White cardstock

Gina K. Tomato Soup, Dark Chocolate Ink pads

Gina K. Tomato Soup Twisted Twine

Gina K Wooden Leaf embellishment

Spellbinders Nestabilities Standard Oval die (2 3/8” x 1 ¾”), die cutting machine

Adhesive foam

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Inspiration Hop, Day 2: Always Autumn and The Simple Things StampTV Kit

Good morning! The Cast and Crew for Gina K Designs welcomes you to another fabulous Inspiration Blog Hop! Gina, along with the Cast and Crew, will inspire you with many beautiful ideas, and as you hop through the blogs, make sure to leave a comment on each of them because we will choose a few random comments and those stampers will each win a grab bag of Gina K. Designs products! To see the full list of winners check the Big News Forum at StampTV a few days after the hops.

First, here is a card I made with Theresa's set Always Autumn, using her gorgeous pumpkin arrangement and sentiment.  I used my Fabulous Frame Fillers set to create the framing around the pumpkins, stamping the flourish three times in Gina K. Dark Chocolate ink, then adding the fleur-de-lis to the middle of each, stamping some clusters of leaves at the corners and around the words, and finally stamping the scalloped border on either side of the sentiment.  I love how it turned out, and it is so fun just getting creative with these stamps and making up what works for your layout as you go!  These hand-drawn elements coordinate so nicely with Theresa's hand-drawn images.
Supplies: Spectrum Noir markers: CG2, DG3, GB3, CR10, GB9, OR1, TN6, TN9, BG3 (Copic: E07, YR04, YR07, YR18, Y17, Y15, YG97, YG95, W3)
Gina L. Pure Luxury Fresh Asparagus and Ivory cardstock (from the StampTV kit)

Next, another card with the new StampTV Kit The Simple Things. I am especially loving how well they coordinate with my Fabulous Frame Fillers set, I am so set for Fall! I shrieked a little when I found that both my oval borders fit into this gorgeous label in the kit *and* on the new Vintage Cuts. Eek!

 Cardstock is Gina K. Pure Luxury Tomato Soup and Ivory, both included in kit.  Stamping is done in Gina K. Tomato Soup and Dark Chocolate inks. Stitched line goes across the bottom and top with no masking, but add a sticky note to each end when doing the long sides, stamping the border twice on each side.
Spectrum Noir markers: TN6, TN3, FS3, EB5, BG3 (Copic: E35, E08, E95, E49, W3)

Ready for more awesome creations?! Just click on the links below for more inspiration!!