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Hi there! Can you believe this..? It's been almost ten months since I posted last! where has the time gone?
There has been a lot of new happenings on in the paper crafting world, with wonderful new products, and some great new techniques and tips being introduced....but, I'm afraid I have not been posting to my blog...So, I've decided today is a good day to catch up, and let you know why I've been silent...and, No, I didn't win the lottery and move to some wonderful tropical country...(mind you, the way world politics have been going, I don't think there is a country I'd rather live in than Canada...but, there's nothing wrong with visiting, right!? (especially in the middle of winter when it's 20 degrees below zero...Celsius, not Fahrenheit!)
So, Here it is..My year, in a nutshell:
Autumn - Winter
I had some health issues last fall, which carried over into the winter months; but Integrity Designs Rubber Stamps and Paper Crafting Supplies was still in operation. We were still taking and shipping orders and answering product questions. By the time I finished with orders and updating my online catalog at the end of the day, I didn't want to sit at the computer...(now I know what my friends who work in offices mean when they say by the end of the day they don't want to look at a computer). I spent evenings either sitting in front of the television set or playing down in the studio. I'll be honest, I spent more time in front of the TV...it seemed that I had lost my card-making and scrapbooking mojo...(over 3,000 photos from holidays, still on camera cards, so it wasn't that I had nothing to 'work with'..., lol). I watched videos and releases from the Winter CHA show from Anaheim in January and drooled...There are always so many great new introductions!
One of my favorite times of the year...(anyone who knows me, knows that I love something about every season....and, I 'love most' whichever season I'm currently 'in'.....(but, I admit, I do have to think a little longer about listing great things about Winter)
Like other gardeners, I love spring and all of the promise it brings...but, this year was different...lots of promise...but, not so much 'action'. After the snow melted...I waited..and waited...My flower beds and yard still looked very sad, with gaping empty patches where some of my lovely perennials should be. I lost a few rose bushes and my 'wine-colored' clematis (which was my pride and joy) didn't come back to life...
There's nothing that whining and crying will accomplish, but I did discover something: There is truth to the old saying "Misery Loves Company" I was told by various staff at local greenhouses and nurseries that they didn't think there was a clematis that made it through the winter we had, AND many others lost perennials too. (After talking with other people shopping for new rose bushes, perennials and plants, I did feel much better. I wasn't the only person who lost so many plants! I'm not sure why, but felt somewhat better...it seems that...'Misery does love company'
...brought travelling and crabbing.
We had a busy first week in July. We went to Hinton Alberta for a family reunion! It was great! We camped at a great campground, and spent 4 days visiting family and it was wonderful!
We headed back home on July 7, and on July 9 we loaded up the motorhome and headed south, into the USA. We had spent our vacation last year driving down the Pacific Coast Highway 101, which was wonderful...but, there were a lot of great places we didn't get a chance to visit, or couldn't stay long at...So, we decided to go back this year, with our list of places we wanted to see and things we didn't get a chance to do....At the top of our list was Crabbing....Catching Dungeness Crab. Last year we bought them, this year, Gord wanted to catch our own tasty treats...That was on the top of our list....
We rented the traps, etc and did what had to be done...(and, we caught some, but, none of them were keepers)..They all had to go back; either too small, or they were females which couldn't be kept...sometimes it pays to be a female, lol .....Nothing from our trap could be kept and eaten....BUT, luckily for us...we could still buy them! It would have been a 'kicker', if we couldn't have eaten any because we didn't catch any big enough.......Thank goodness, there were places we could go to and buy fresh Dungeness Crabs that had just been caught and brought in within a few hours....not only were they super fresh...they were also cooked and cleaned!...Nothing wrong with that!!
We had fun, the weather was beautiful, scenery was great, and we met so many wonderful people.
We made it back home at the end of August, and back to reality...
We found that we needed to remove our large Amur Maple Tree, which broke my heart...It was huge! It wasn't supposed to get that big, and when we planted it in 2001, it was such a little 'charlie brown tree'......I'll be honest, we knew that it was ill, and that we were going to have to remove it eventually...be had no idea of how we were going to get it out of our yard without ruining the fence, concrete edging, and the side deck, (which it was planted next to). I wanted to remove it, roots and all, as I'd like to put another tree in the same area, as it gives us privacy, and shelters us from the harsh, West sun in the afternoon and evening.
But, we did it, we got it out, (with no damage to our fence or decks...)and, after two days of digging, cutting with an axe and working hard, Gord managed to dig down 24 inches, and get all of the roots out..and new dirt put in. We had dug out my Daylilies, Asiatic lilies and perennials that were in the bed under the tree. They are now back where they belong, divided and healthy... We would have liked to replace the tree this fall, but, there were very few trees at the garden centers...and I don't have a clue what to plant. I'm definitely going to have to do some researching online this winter...
Autumn is here!
And, what a gorgeous autumn is is! With my yard work done, now it's time to play. It doesn't matter if you are indoors or outdoors...there is so much to do when the weather is this lovely! (for those of us who want to work on our cards and pictures indoors, it's nice to look outside and view the gorgeous fall colors, and use them for inspiration!..
For many of us, autumn is the time we start getting ready for Christmas and the holiday season. Shopping for and/or making gifts, making cards, getting vacation pictures into order for albums and more. What a wonderful time of year! Full of anticipation and excitement....
The past few weeks I've been looking through my supplier's emails, WOW, so many companies releasing new dies and embossing folders, new inks, (and, of course, Tim Holtz and Ranger have been busy, introducing new Distress Spray Stains (Yippee! I'll tell you more later about WHY I am so excited about the new product...)..AND, they have finally brought back the Matte Glue n Seal adhesive, in both 1 oz and 3.5 oz jars..(with the built in brushes) I still haven't figured out why they discontinued it in the first place; it was one of my favorite adhesives and sealers!
if you've never had the chance to use it, check it out, I think you will like it!
Glue n Seal is an adhesive and sealer in one! it dries with a non-sticky matte finish. It's the perfect choice for a project that needs an adhesive undercoat, and a matte finish, non sticky top coat! Glue n seal comes in two sizes, 1 oz and 3.5 oz, and both sizes come with a brush (attached to inside of lid).
Exciting news- Tattered Lace dies-and now more...!
Before I close for now, for those of you who like using cutting and embossing dies,I've got some exciting news. The British company, Tattered Lace, who is known to make the most detailed and intricate dies available has branched out and expanded their product line. Since January they have also been publishing a monthly magazine about dies and die cutting. In this magazine as well as sample cards and projects, free decorative papers and templates and tutorials, they've included something very special...a FREE DIE! Not just a little rinky-dink little cheapo die...Nooooo...The included die in the monthly magazines are beautiful intricate dies that, in most cases, would cost more if purchased separately than you are paying for the magazine!! A few months ago, the retail value of the die was $31.00 and purchasers paid $21.00 for the magazine!
What I also appreciate, is that in the magazine are several samples and tutorials that use the included die! Can't go wrong with that, right?!
Tattered Lace has introduced their new Christmas dies (available soon)and the Tattered Lace Christmas Special magazine is available to order. (Should arrive in November )
On the main page of our online catalog, along with new products available, you will find information about the newest upcoming issue of the Tattered Lace magazine, including a picture of the free die, shown on the cover. These can be pre-ordered, by emailing me, and I will make sure one is reserved for you. Best of all...At this point in time, we are lucky, and Tattered Lace has some copies of the back issues #1 to #10. Issue #11 is now becoming available, and we are all excited about the newest upcoming magazine, their Christmas Special Issue! Even though it is a special issue, the price will be the same, $21.00, and it will include the Christmas Rose Free die!
I've been going through my suppliers' websites, checking out the new Christmas and winter products...WOW, New dies and coordinating stamps from 'My Favorite Things', new dies from Cheery-Lynn...., Next week new dies from Poppy Stamps/Memory Box will be available!! They can be seen in my online catalog in Cutting dies - Memory Box and Poppy Stamps I'm glad to see that many companies are not only releasing holiday dies and stamps, but they are also introducing new general dies, great for Birthdays and everyday occasions.
It's a gorgeous day today, and I told myself I would not go outside until I posted this. (I have a little more work today outside, but on such a lovely day, I can't call it work). My suppliers have been introducing new products and companies that who have great new products, and I've been putting them in Integrity Designs Rubber Stamps and Paper Craft Supplies online catalog
I hope you get a chance to check out our online catalog, and the new dies, embossing folders, rubber stamps, inks and glues that are now available, or coming soon. If you have any questions, please email me. You will find ordering information on the main page, in the NOTES: (email me to order)
Karen Burniston + Elizabeth Craft Designs = Versatile Card Dies + More!
When you take a top paper crafting designer and a company who makes high quality products and dies...what do you get??? ....Definitely some interesting dies that have got the paper crafting world buzzing....
Elizabeth Craft Designs
Elizabeth Craft Designs, are known for their lovely high quality, American made dies, high quality stickers, Glitter stickers, Shimmer Sheetz and velvet adhesive backed sheets)
ECD have been producing some gorgeous dies over the past year or so that have been so popular! I love their Sentiment and Greeting dies, which are made in different sizes, so if you have a small 4.25 x 5.5" (A2) card, or a 5x7" card or larger scrapbook layout, there is a size perfect for you!
They also make dies that can be layered, for three dimensional effects, such as lady-bugs and flower dies whose pieces can mix and match to make totally different looking flowers out of one die set! (that's what I call getting your money's worth)
+ Karen Burniston
Introduce the artistic talent and great designs of Karen Burniston to Elizabeth Craft Designs...the combined talents of both promise to create cutting dies that are dynamic, interactive and definitely versatile!!
Karen Burniston who has designed many great interactive card dies for Sizzix, (I'm a Big fan of hers) has joined ECD and they've developed interesting interactive card dies that give us a quick and easy way to create these special cards with one pass through your die cutting machine!
Elizabeth Craft Designs decided to go one further....As well as making high quality card dies, they decided to make them more affordable! They've included coordinating decorator dies to use with your card die! That means More dies for the same price as you would pay for dies from other popular companies!! which we could all use around this time of year!
When I was adding them to our online catalog, I was getting so excited, I can't wait to play with them...AND, they will be in my hot little hands next week! (February 3m 2014)
To view all of the dies available, visit my online catalog in the Cutting Dies- Elizabeth Craft Designs section
POP IT UP Pivot Card Dies
Pivot cards and Pop up cards, with the perfectly sized decorator dies that will provide the perfect size mats and embellishments for your projects! (and, of course, these decorator dies can be used in other projects you do!) Very versatile! With Valentines day and all the weddings that will be coming up this spring....I thought the Heart Pivot Card ECD775 would be the one to show. With POP-IT-UP Heart Pivot Card you get 7 dies in the set! The heart dies fit in the pivoting hearts of the card.
I think this would be perfect for invitations or Wedding cards...or, just to say I Love You!
ECD has also created a set of Edge dies, (the one shown on this card is Agatha Edges #782, which has two different edge dies, and a flourish embellishment to to match.
POP-IT-UP Accordion Dies
The Accordion cards with various shaped openings can be embellished with the coordinating Frame dies that fit around the openings to decorate your card. Even better, many of these frame dies can be put together in a couple of ways to create different sizes of frames....Use just the short side of the frame, (cut 4), and you will have a frame that fits a different card! OR, cut 4 of the longer side of the frame, and voila! a different sized frame to fit a larger card!
POP-UP Card dies
As I was putting them into my online catalog, I was so amazed at all of the thought that must have gone into making this winter release of dies...As well as Pivot and Accordion card dies, Elizabeth Craft Designs has also introduced Pop-Up card dies which also come with extra decorative dies. The Garden Bench POP-UP die set (shown) comes with Grass and Snow drifts to embellish your card with as well as the card die with the pop ups!
There are many more card dies, with more pop-up, accordion card and pivot card die sets as well as coordinating dies such as All Season Tree, Butterfly Accessories, and the Agatha Edge die set, which I mentioned before. For the Accordion cards, you will find frames that can be used with the card dies.
I had a heck of a time choosing which dies to show you, these are only a few of the POP-IT-UP card dies and coordinating dies. You can view all of these dies in my online catalog atIntegrity Designs Rubber Stamps & Paper Crafts in the section Cutting Dies- Elizabeth Craft Designs.
Not only has Elizabeth Craft Designs released these great new POP-IT-UP dies...They've also designed some lovely new individual dies! I'm currently uploading the individual dies to my online catalog.
Because I'm still uploading new dies and products, when you return to my website to visit, Please Refresh / Reload your page button on your browser to make sure you see the newest additions to the catalog, not a page you viewed before)
To Order any of the new dies, or pre-order / reserve any other products that aren't in stock yet, please email me at: integritydes at gmail dot com
The dies from Elizabeth Craft Designs are thin metal dies. This means they can be slipped into an envelope and mailed for low, letter-mail prices. We do not charge handling fees, you will be charged the price of the stamp that is necessary to mail the envelope!
If you have any questions when you visit Integrity Designs Online Catalog, please email me.
These dies are now in Canada, and I've ordered from my supplier. I expect them to arrive at the beginning of the week...(about Feb 3, 2014)