January 28, 2014


I think the frigid weather we have been experiencing these past weeks has given me <creative> brain freeze. And, to  be honest, it's really bothering me. 

Sure, I've been doing my regular pinning on Pinterest, as well as perusing others' blogs, but nothing lately has thrilled me too much. At least, not enough that I had the urge to do my own take on anything in particular.

Until I saw this week's sketch challenge from the Paper Players! After looking through the samples the design team had created, I was positively EMPOWERED to do one of my own:

The colors, even though the photos don't show it accurately, are Sahara Sand, Soft Suede and Island Indigo, with the centers of the flowers being a bit darker by using an Early Espresso Stampin' Write Marker to give them a bit more definition.

Although I love the card "closed" as shown above, the sentiment on the little pull-out tag is really cute too.

Did you notice the row of three paper dots above the flowers? Well, I wanted to echo the dot look by adding one to the tag too:

I love how the dimension and texture show up so well on this photo:

Thanks, Paper Players, for giving me a much-needed kick in the pants!


January 25, 2014


A few days ago, I experienced something of a creative breakthrough. And I'm so glad I did! 

Totally out of the blue, I had this glorious idea. The timing wasn't great, however. I was scheduled to work some long days, and was unable to get down to my Creation Station to give my great idea a try until several days after the initial breakthrough. 

When I finally got the chance to bring this little seedling of an idea to fruition, I had a blast! Following are eight samples of the backgrounds I created:








What do you think? Do you like them?

Now, here is where you come in. I'd like you to solve a mystery: 

I'd like to make this a little contest. Important: DO NOT GUESS IN THE COMMENTS SECTION! If the guesses show up as comments, everyone (who reads the comments) will see the answers. Instead, email me your guess at lidna52@gmail.com. 

You will have until midnight CST on Friday, January 31, to get your guess to me via email (lidna52@gmail.com). 
Put "Background Guess" as your subject line.
On Saturday, February 1, I will gather all the correct guesses and choose a random winner. 
Along with your guess, also include which of the backgrounds is your favorite. 

The prize for the winner will be a card I created especially for you from your chosen background and a few other surprises.

I will announce the winner in my blog post that will be published Sunday, February 2. Also in this blog post, I will give you the correct answer, and will have a card created from MY favorite to show you.

Put your creative thinking caps on, and send me your guess: lidna52@gmail.com. I hope I hear from lots of you! Of course, I would love to get comments on this post also, but not guesses. OK? 

Oh, and one more thing: I would LOVE to have you follow Paper Seedlings in either Bloglovin' or with Google Friend Connect. Both buttons are on the right side bar of my blog. If you would like to get updates whenever I have a new post, usually twice a week, please sign up in "Follow by Email".


January 21, 2014


My Goddaughter, Marissa, turns 16 today AND takes her driver's test. A definite milestone day!

To honor this special time in Marissa's life, I decided to combine these two themes in her birthday card.

MDS to the rescue!

I wanted a jaunty-looking car for the focal point of the card. I found this cutie in the On the Go stamp brush set. The traffic signs were also part of that set. How perfect, huh? The wheels became extra fancy with the addition of the oversize star brads, retired from Stampin' Up!. I also cut out the car on a second print I made of the card background, and popped it up with Stampin' Dimensionals.

I added strings from the balloons from the Cake and Ice Cream set to all the traffic signs. See them? To make it really festive and BIRTHDAY, I added some of the balloons and their strings from the same set. I finished the composition with a happy neutral DSP for the background.

At my Creation Station downstairs, I completed the card. A black mat surrounding the image, then mounted to a bright yellow card base was the route I took. Route. Get it? Driving? 

A little happy birthday from the Bitty Banners set cut out with the matching Framelits and edged in bright yellow completed the birthday theme. 

Good Luck and Happy Birthday to you, my Marissa! 
I hope it's a 16th birthday you will always remember fondly.


January 18, 2014


I am a true proponent of using nontraditional, unconventional materials in my artwork.

A few years ago, someone online had mentioned the pretty tissue boxes that were presently on the market. I thought, "really?" I went and checked out the boxes I'd had on hand. Omigosh, I had been throwing away beautiful art supplies for years!

For my next Stamp-In workshop, I decided to take advantage of this "free paper". I cut up a tissue box once it was empty, and proceeded to see how it would work if used on a card. Huh. It looked like a tissue box used on a card.

I looked over at my Big Shot, sitting there all innocent, wanting so badly to help me in my dilemma. So, I opted to take Mr. Big up on his kind offer, grabbed a Stampin' Up! embossing folder, stuck my piece of tissue box inside, and ran 'er through. Hmmm. Now, it was an embossed tissue box. And it still looked like a tissue box used on a card.

My sanding block raised its grainy little hand, and cried, "I can help!" I laid the piece of embossed tissue box on my work space, and lightly sanded across it. And I had struck pay dirt!

Obviously, how the end result looks varies depending on which Embossing Folder you use, which tissue box design, and how much sanding you do.

The next time you use that last tissue, confiscate the box, cut it apart, and give it a try! I love the look!

I must admit that I have quite the collection of cut-apart tissue boxes, just waiting their turn at being recycled into something new and beautiful!


January 14, 2014


Have you heard yet of Stampin' Up!'s monthly subscription service, Paper Pumpkin? It is truly Happiness in a RED BOX!

created in MDS

Each month's Paper Pumpkin comes complete with all product, except glue, needed to create the featured project(s). Paper Pumpkin is a 30-minute creative escape. Just enough time to get away from the daily grind and enjoy the gentle satisfaction of creating something wondrous. Really: SMILES GUARANTEED!

And., you ALWAYS have something left over for future projects: for example, the Stampin' Spot and 2-4 stamps that come with each kit. 

I've been a member of Paper Pumpkin for several months now. And, I can tell you, once I get the email that my Paper Pumpkin is on its way, I am practically stalking the Post Office until my red box finally arrives!

Check out this postthis postthis one, and finally, here, to check out what I've had to say about Paper Pumpkin in my blog. 

Anyway, NOW would be a particularly GOOD time to jump 
on the Paper Pumpkin bandwagon to experience 
just what all the hoopla is about. 

BECAUSE, from now through February 20, 
each NEW SUBSCRIBER will receive 
a free set of 2012-2014 In Color Stampin' Write Markers ($14.95) with your Welcome Kit.

Head on over to My Paper Pumpkin to get yourself subscribed. A N D, DON'T FORGET TO NAME ME, LINDA KILSDONK, AS YOUR DEMONSTRATOR. Tell them Linda sent you! :>)


January 11, 2014


I know I just showed you a "quilt" card a few days ago. And, even though the weather is much warmer than it had been when I wrote that post -- and we desperately needed the warmth of a <paper> quilt -- I have another intriguing paper quilt card I'd like to share with you.

This quilt is created with 1/4" wide strips of contrasting Designer Series Papers.

When I had this card as one of the projects to be created at a Stamp-In workshop, I drew out the following diagram to aid in the placement of the strips. (I apologize for the brown spots on the drawing; they are obviously chocolate.) 

Obviously the longest pink line was my first strip. That divided the long edges into two unequal portions. The add the green strip, coming off the pink strip perpendicularly. Repeat with the blue strip on the opposite side of the pink strip. That is your basis, and you are ready to proceed. 

In my drawing, I ran alternating colors of strips parallel to the original pink strip and perpendicular to the blue strip. Continue alternating the colors until you have that complete area covered. You will need to trim the strips as they overhang the edges of the base cardstock. 

Once that first section is finished, move on to running strips parallel to the blue strip, and perpendicular to the pink strip until you fill up that quadrant. Do you understand what I'm saying?

Here is a close-up of my card. Let's discuss how I did this.

My first strip on the blank cardstock was the green polka dot one that runs from the left side of the top long edge to the right side of the bottom long edge. See it? (Part of it runs under the sentiment.)

My next base strip was the striped one that runs from the green strip to the lower left edge of the left short side. My other dividing strip is the blue one that comes off the green strip to the right and ending close to the top of the right short side. 

If you compare the close-up and the drawing, hopefully you will understand how the strips are laid down. I think that once you get going, you will see what you will need to do naturally.

Here is a close-up of my card. Let's discuss how I did this.

My first strip on the blank cardstock was the green polka dot one that runs from the left side of the top long edge to the right side of the bottom long edge. See it? (Part of it runs under the sentiment.)

My next base strip was the striped one that runs from the green strip to the lower left edge of the left short side. My other dividing strip is the blue one that comes off the green strip to the right and ending close to the top of the right short side. 

If you compare the close-up and the drawing, hopefully you will understand how the strips are laid down. I think that once you get going, you will see what you will need to do naturally.

I added matching strips to the bottom of the envelope. You can see this in the first photo.

To continue with the snuggly feeling of a quilt, to the card, I added a bow created from some of the retired Stampin' Up! sweater trim, and I dug out an appropriately "warm" sentiment. The sentiment is embossed with Wild Wasabi Embossing Powder. 

Now, don't you feel warm and cozy already?


January 7, 2014


The weather experts had been predicting arctic cold for our area for several days. I was so glad I could stay in my cozy house the first of the two days, Sunday and Monday. When I complained about these frigid predictions, my husband's response was, "Well, it IS winter." My response: "Yeah, but this is Wisconsin, not Siberia."

This morning as I drove to work, the lovely temperature was -22 F. Brrr. On the way home, we were experiencing a heat wave: -5 F. But terribly windy.


In an attempt to bring all of us some warmer feelings, I thought I'd present this paper quilt card.

If you'd like to try to make your own paper quilt -- which, by the way, is not nearly as warm as a fabric quilt, but cute anyway -- here is a tutorial to walk you through the steps.

Old Olive cardstock
Tangerine Tango cardstock
Whisper White cardstock
Your choice of three small DSP prints

Always Artichoke Stampin' Write Marker
Old Olive ink
Daffodil Delight ink

Stamping Sponge
Big Shot
Sweet Button Embosslits
Stampin' Dimensionals
3/4" Square Punch
Paper Snips

Fold a 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" piece of Old Olive cardstock in half, creasing it well with a bone folder.

To create the quilt, you will need 10 squares of the main color, in this case, green. Cut 6 of these squares in half diagonally, leaving the remaining 4 whole. You will require 4 squares of the secondary color, the orange. Cut all of these in half diagonally. The 2 squares of yellow you need also will be cut in half diagonally. Punch all these squares from your chosen DSP with the 3/4" Square Punch.

Run squiggles of green glue all across the top of a 3" x 3" square of Whisper White cardstock, so you're covering about 3/4" down from the top. Working as quickly as you can, start "quilting" with the first of the 4 whole green squares as your corner in the top left. Gradually, using my sample as a guide, work your way across the first row. Repeat this process for the remaining four rows of quilting. (I timed myself. This took me approximately 11 minutes to do. But, I need to report that, during my Stamp-In, the workshop girls managed to do it in less time.)

Once you have your quilting finished, trim off any excess edges so it is a neat square with no white showing. With the fine tip of the Stampin' Write Marker, draw in the quilting lines.

Mount your quilt onto a 3 1/4" x 3 1/4" square of Tangerine Tango cardstock. Adhere it to the card front with a Stampin' Dimensional in each corner and one in the middle.

In Old Olive ink, stamp sentiment of choice on a 1" x 2 3/4" piece of Whisper White cardstock. Sponge all edges in Daffodil Delight. Adhere this to a 1 1/8" x 2 7/8" piece of Tangerine Tango, then to the card front.

Use the Sweet Buttons Embosslits with scraps of Tangerine Tango in the Big Shot to create two matching buttons. Attach each button alongside the sentiment with a piece of Stampin' Dimensional.

Wishing us all warmer quilt weather. After all, it IS winter. 


January 4, 2014


Do you remember me ever mentioning a Stella in my blog posts? OK. I am being facetious. My little granddaughter, Stella, is the star of many of my posts. And a stellar part of my life. (See how perfect her name is?!?)

A week ago, my little honey turned six years old. I turned to ol' faithful, MDS, for the image I used on her birthday card. The darling elephant comes from Patterned Occasions, one of the sets from last year's Sale-A-Bration.

In MDS, I colored him as I wanted him to look, printed him twice, then headed downstairs to my Creation Station, and proceeded from there. From the second print, I cut out the ear and the flower, and attached them with Stampin' Dimensionals to the original print. 

Great. Now what? <head scratching>

Using the scalloped circle from the Circles Collection Framelits, I cut out the image. I STILL didn't know exactly where I was headed. 

I selected the largest of the Floral Frames Collection Framelits, and it looked like it would be a good fit size-wise as a frame around the scallop circle. I cut it from yellow and adhered it to the back of the elephant piece. Cute. 

Hmmm. Now, do I add this to a large square card? B-o-r-i-n-g.

No! I'll make this my whole card. So I cut another yellow piece with the intention of adding a hinge between the yellow "flowers", and calling it finished.

As I laid the pieces together to see how this would look, they slipped a bit. 

Serendipity!! A happy accident!

Instead of lining up the flowers together, by alternating the peaks of the flowers, I created more of a sun. Which in my eyes was simply adorable for a six-year-old's birthday card. Especially such a sunny, happy six-year-old like my Stella. 

I added a simple little hinge to create an opening card. I then added a second flower, this time the second largest one in Whisper White to the inside of the card.

It looks kind of cute standing open. The peaks of the flowers separate towards the bottom, revealing how it would have looked with only the first yellow flower behind the elephant piece. But at the top of the card, the second layer of flower shows.

I stamped a happy girly sentiment inside the card. Because I had added yellow dots to all the scallops on the elephant piece, I carried that same idea to the inside of the card. The dots were created with a gentle touch of the brush end of a Stampin' Write Marker. 

In this photo you can see how the two yellow flowers come together when the card is closed. Cute, eh?

Since this was not a standard-sized card at all, I turned to my beloved Envelope Punch Board to create a custom envelope. I measured the finished card, and looked on the chart of the Punch Board to see what size paper I would work with and where I should do my first punch/score. I added a layered flower with temporary adhesive on the back to "seal" the envelope. 

So, this is a perfect example of how I need to plant my OWN creative paper seedlings. 

All I knew when I started was that I had a pink patterned elephant to work with and that I would do some popping up of elements. 

After some thinking, trial and error, and blessed serendipity, I was happy with my special birthday greeting for my precious little Stella.