May 29, 2021


It seems that in cardmaking one of the biggest challenges is that of creating a masculine card. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's the abundance of flower stamps and/or cutesy stuff. But the masculine type card often seems to be elusive to many papercrafters.

I have a card here that, for several reasons, would fit the bill as a good masculine card. First of all, it's the color palette -- neutral. Secondly, it's the theme -- nature. Third, it's not at all cutesy. Masculine.

However, I personally, would be thrilled to receive this card. I love every element of it.

The nature theme comes from the beautiful stamp set, Enjoy the Moment, which can be found on page 26 of the new Annual Catalog. Paired up with simple neutral colors, I think we have a winner.


Follow along for a tutorial on making this fairly simple but effective card.

Crumb Cake cardstock
Black cardstock

Enjoy the Moment stamp set (page 26, Annual Catalog)

Black ink
Soft Suede ink

Paper Snips
Stampin' Dimensionals
Black Rhinestones or Basic Rhinestones colored black with a Stampin' Blend

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

Next, you will be working on a piece of Crumb Cake cardstock that measures 4" x 5 1/4". In Soft Suede ink, stamp the seeds and maple helicopters haphazardly around the edges. Try not to overlap the images and be sure to turn the block with the stamp on it frequently so the images aren't all facing the same way.

Add this piece to the Crumb Cake card base.

On a scrap of Crumb Cake cardstock, stamp the poppy seed pods in black. Fussy cut this image, leaving a small margin around the edges.

Mount a 2 1/4" x 3 1/4" piece of Crumb Cake cardstock onto a 2 3/8" x 3 3/8" piece of black cardstock.

Use Stampin' Dimensionals to adhere the fussy cut seed pods onto the right side of this piece.

Depending on how you have the seed pods positioned onto the matted piece, add a sentiment in black ink in the remaining space.

Finish it off with three black gems beneath the sentiment.

Adhere this piece, centered, to the card front.


May 25, 2021


 About a month ago, I created a card using some of the black and white Designer Series Paper from Stampin' Up! It contained tons of tiny little flowers with a few leaves interspersed. Not wanting to color allllll those teeny flowers, I opted to incorporate color into my card in a different way. In the form of the focal point and sentiment. I do love how that particular card turned out.

I came across some of the leftover of that DSP and fell in love all over again. I just adore all those little flowers. But this time I decided to color them. ! I thought it would take literally forever. But, it really didn't. And below is how the card turned out.

I started with a piece of the DSP that measured 4" x 5 1/4" thinking I would use it as a cardmaker would on the traditional 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" card base. 

Choosing three simple colors of the Stampin' Blends, I got started. The colors I used were Light Poppy Parade, Dark Daffodil Delight and Light Call Me Clover. I decided to leave the centers of all the flowers white to add a little bit of pop amongst all those flowers in red and yellow and their green leaves.

In the following photo, you can see just how concentrated the design is on this piece of Designer Series Paper. I colored, colored, colored. It was actually sort of fun and relaxing. 

As I moved along with my coloring, I realized that a piece as large as I'd originally started with would be quite overwhelming. Quite. So, as you can see from the photo, I trimmed the colored piece to 4" square.

I love square cards, so that's what I decided to do. Picking up the black that outlined my entire design, I thought it appropriate to give it a small mat of black. I then mounted this onto a 4 1/2" card base of Poppy Parade. So, the entire base measured 4 1/2" x 9", and of course it was folded in half.

Wanting the flowers to be the star of their own show -- a flower bed if you will -- I opted to simply put a tiny black sentiment in the far lower right corner. The only bling on the entire card comes in the form of a black rhinestone dotting the "i". 

Have you been coloring lately? Either stamped images, DSP that is already colored, or black and white DSP? Do you find it completely relaxing? Do you always find the coloring worthwhile?


May 22, 2021


First of all, I want to invite you all to read or re-read my blog post from a week ago. You can find it HERE. If you've already read the post and know what it's all about, I think it is extra important to scroll past the post itself and read the wonderful thoughtful comments several readers have left on the topic. I think, like I did, that you will glean lots of good/new information from the minds of other bloggers. This will be especially important to those of you who are either bloggers, thinking about becoming one, or who just care about the world of blogging. It will definitely be worth your while.

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The new stamp set and matching dies, Butterfly Brilliance, found on page 106 for the bundle, is truly exquisite beauty. You should really take a look at it before you dismiss it. It really is a work of art.

For my card, I used the largest of the butterfly stamps. I decided to leave it without color and to make the card itself fairly simple in its presentation.

One form of a Z-fold card, it is crazy easy to make. I will add a tutorial for the score lines and everything you need to know at the end of this post.

Obviously I wanted the butterfly to be the star of the card. To have that happen, everything else about it is fairly straightforward and functional.

Here is your tutorial:

Seaside Spray cardstock ( retired <sob> but any other color can be used in its place)
White cardstock

Butterfly Brilliance Bundle (page 106)

Die Cutting/Embossing Machine
Greenery Embossing Folder (Page 154)
Stitched Nested Labels Dies (oh man, I didn't realize this was retired too. Hope you have yours!)
Simply Scored (page 151)

Take a 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" piece of Seaside Spray cardstock (or your choice of color) and, with the Simply Scored, score it at 4 1/4" and at 2 1/8". When creasing the score lines, fold it in half, then at the other score line, fold it in the opposite direction.

Cut a 4" x 5 1/4" piece of white cardstock. Also cut a 1 7/8" x 5 1/4" piece of white cardstock. Run the smaller piece through the embossing machine inside the Greenery Embossing Folder, centering it in the folder.

Attach the smaller piece to the smaller outside flap of the card. Adhere the larger one to the inside of the card.

Stamp the largest of the butterflies (or your choice) onto white cardstock in black ink. Cut the butterfly out using the appropriate die.

From Seaside Spray cardstock (or the cardstock you are using), cut one of the Stitched Nested Labels that measures 2 5/8" x 4 1/4" (point to point).

Adhere the butterfly to this piece. I placed mine with the tops of the wings even with the two side points. 

In black ink, stamp chosen sentiment below the butterfly.

Adding adhesive to only the left side of this piece, add it to the embossed panel. Be sure to line the top and bottom points of the label with the folded edge of the card.


May 18, 2021


Have you ever, by any chance, colored on vellum? The colors almost tremble, especially when you do the coloring on the front of the vellum as opposed to the reverse side. When coloring on the back side, the colors are often somewhat subdued because they are being viewed through the vellum.

My workspace in my Creation Station, as I've mentioned many times in the past, is a jumbled mess. Sometimes it's sort of fun sifting through the piles of detritus that have been put aside for future projects.

Recently I was doing just that and discovered a small stack of these vellum stained glass designs that have been retired from Stampin' Up! for awhile.

Being at loose ends at the time for a change, I decided to sit down and grab my Stampin' Blends to do some stained glass, well, faux stained glass. Ever so much fun!

To create the piece below, I used the following Stampin' Blends: Light Shaded Spruce, Dark Flirty Flamingo, Dark Mango Melody, Dark Call Me Clover, Dark Soft Seafoam, Dark Calypso Coral, Dark Lovely Lipstick, Dark Real Red and Light Magenta Madness. I realize that a handful of these colors are retired. But I don't really care. I will continue to use them until they are pried from my stiff dead hands,. 

In order to make the stained glass portion as luminous as possible, I mounted it onto a square of white cardstock. I was very pleased with the bright look. 

The cardstocks I used were black, white and Magenta Madness. 

Usually I am not completely enamored with the brightess of the Magenta Madness, finding it an in-your-face color. But paired with the colors I used for the stained glass, then repeating it again with the mat and the words, I loved the balance it brought to the composition. 

How about you? What have your experiences been with coloring on vellum? Have you used any other coloring medium besides the Stampin' Blends?

Another difficulty with vellum never fails to arise in any project. That of adhesive. Yuk. Have you found anything that works really well without needing to disguise the adhesive in some way? I am sure other readers would love to hear your words of wisdom on this topic. 

In the past, I've used adhesives of all sorts specifically designed for use with vellum. None of which were satisfactory to me. 

Please share your tricks!


May 15, 2021


First of all, this is, after almost nine years of blogging on Paper Seedlings, my 1,000th post. 

With that milestone, I wanted to make this post something a little different and more special, maybe more thought provoking. Of course, I am going to feature a card and talk about that because that is the purpose of Paper Seedlings. But, I also wanted to discuss (hopefully you will join in to make it a discussion!) something that has been heavy on my mind for quite some time now.

This card is another one that, through the use of Stampin' Up!'s lovely Designer Series Paper, a creator is able to make a stunning card with minimal effort.

I stamped in Memento Tuxedo Black ink one of the flowers from the Four Seasons Floral stamp set. I used Light Misty Moonlight and Light Just Jade Stampin' Blends to color it in. I then fussy cut the flower.

Cutting a label using one of the dies from the Ornate Dies set, I created a nice panel on which to adhere the flower.

Unfortunately, the DSP I'd chosen to use for the card was very very busy, and the flower panel blended in too much. So I mounted the white label onto a piece of Misty Moonlight cardstock and fussy cut a small border all around it. That was just enough to delineate my focal point from the busy flowers surrounding it.

For the sentiment, I cut a cheery "hello" from the Misty Moonlight cardstock, surrounded by white and added it to the bottom of the DSP. This panel was mounted to a Misty Moonlight card base.

There! My card is done. And I am happy with it.

When I started Paper Seedlings back in 2012, blogs were all the rage, with some bloggers having been blogging much longer than that even. My original intent, from which I have never deviated in all these years, was to share my love of papercrafting and Stampin' Up! products with my readers. I also had high hopes of gaining new customers.While that hasn't happened, with the exception of two readers who subscribed to Paper Pumpkin for awhile, I still persevered. 

Looking back to my humble beginnings, on September 5, 2012, that weird little first post had 213 views. Nowadays I need to be happy with 213 views. 

Looking back to a post from September 27, 2012, Autumn Splendor Emboss Resist, that post had a whopping 17.618 views!! Yes, almost 18,000 views.  And it was shared and shared. Several of my posts over the years have achieved views that numbered in the thousands. That happened quite often.

On May 3, 2013, I did achieve more than 18,000 views. 18,221 to be exact! Thrilling! But wait! On August 20, 2013, my White Wedding post was checked out by 31,953 readers! From about this time into 2017, I felt my blog was being seen by lots of people. And I was happy.

Starting in 2017, my blog readership seems to have gone into something of a decline with post views running in the 400-600 range, with a few forays into the 1000+ range, on a regular basis. That trend continued until later in 2019 when viewership dropped into the 200-400 range regularly.

Then something happened long about the beginning of the Pandemic. Huh. Until the present time, when I am lucky to see a post exceed 100 views, view numbers have been disappointing.. 

What is this all about? I know my work hasn't declined. In fact, I know I am steadily improving and bringing my readers lots of good creative paper ideas. 

My daughter and her husband tell me that blogs are not where it's at anymore. It seems everyone is enamored with Instagram Stories, podcasts, newsletters (isn't that basically what a blog is??). I know blogs are folding all over blogland. But why?

Another thing that has fallen off, and the food I need to keep my blog somewhat alive, is Link Parties. I know to host and run a Link Party for any length of time is expensive and very time consuming. But, there are those who persist with this service. In fact, I link up to one party that is nearing 600 weeks of her Link Party! 

On occasion, I run across someone's list of Link Parties they "attend", and I am so excited to check them out, thinking I can maybe find new ones to keep me going. However, disappointingly, lots of these bloggers do not keep their list of Link Parties up-to-date, with lots of them showing the last Link Party happening several years ago! 

If you are interested in linking up in this manner, be sure to click on the "I Link Up To . . . " button on the top of my blog. I am faithful about keeping my listing super up-to-date. If it's listed, it is an active Link Party. 

And now, Blogger is removing their Feedburner widget, which allows potential readers to sign up for email updates of their favorite blogs. Nice. 

One more thing: So many bloggers are very successful with their videos on sites such as YouTube. I have very bad arthritis in my hands and they are sort of cripply looking. Ew! I am so self-conscious about it. I know viewers would just focus on the awful hands. I also am not comfortable demonstrating this way. So that is not a possibility for me.

After hearing all this yummering (a word from my childhood, meaning complaining and/or venting), I would really like to hear from you. Whether a blogger yourself and trying to contend with my same problems, a reader who has maybe become bored or has moved on to other interests, someone who is just interested in the dilemmas modern day bloggers face on a day to day basis, I know you all have something to say. And we would all love to hear it. 

I feel I have so much to contribute to anyone who is following a papercrafting journey. As a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, we are encouraged to share what we love. And that's my favorite thing to do. Staying creative is, as I say in my blog intro, my life blood. It's all that keeps me alive. Seriously. But no one is happy to feel they are communicating in a near void.

As I am going through my Link Parties each day, I try to check out sites that are also linking up, leaving comments when I am moved to do so. Likewise, when I receive a comment on my blog, I am religious with giving a response. So, I try to be a genuinely interested blogger. 

There are days when I feel under-viewed (?) and that it just doesn't make any sense to keep up the effort of blogging twice a week. My husband and daughter just keep telling me that it's worth it even if I just do it for myself and because I love it. Is that really enough? 

I'm truly curious to find out if any other bloggers are experiencing qualms such as I described. If so, are you able to just move on and continue as  you've always been? Have you found any solutions to these dilemmas of modern day blogging? Or is this form of communication truly on its way out? And, if you believe it is, what is a good alternative?

I often do feel tempted to give up on Stampin' Up! and my creative pastimes. But then I ask myself, what else would I have that means anything to me? I NEED this creative outlet!


May 11, 2021


It is really rare to get a piece of Stampin' Up! Designer Series Paper that isn't over-the-top lovely, at least, in my opinion.

These wonders are what make it ever so easy to let the DSP be the star of a creation. And there are so many ways to do this.

The easy card below is a case in point. Simply lovely, isn't it?

Cutting a favorite piece of Designer Series Paper into equal sized strips is a wonderful way to highlight the paper and make a stunning card at the same time.

Add just a few extras, and you're ready to send out a greeting.

Follow along for a tutorial on how to make this simple card.

A favorite piece of Designer Series Paper
Seaside Spray cardstock (this so happens to have retired)
Shaded Spruce cardstock

Beautiful Friendship stamp set

Black ink

Die cutting/embossing machine
Stitched Shapes Dies 
Black ribbon (past Paper Pumpkin kit)
Green Sequins
Stampin' Dimensionals
Glue Dots

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

Cut three strips of chosen Designer Series Paper that measure 1" x 5". Arrange the strips evenly across a piece of Seaside Spray cardstock that measures 3 3/4" x 5 1/4". Adhere this piece to the card base.

From Shaded Spruce cardstock, cut a stitched oval that measures 2 1/4" x 3 1/4". 

From Seaside Spray cardstock, cut another stitched oval that measures 1 3/4" x 2 3/4". Stamp a sentiment that fits onto the blue oval in black ink.

Adhere the ovals to each other.

Add the finished ovals to the card front, raised up from the center.

From black 1/8" ribbon, tie a bow. Add it to the bottom of the ovals with a Glue Dot.

Add three green sequins to the blue portion of the ovals..

Of course, all these materials are to make the card as I created it. You will change up your colors to match whatever Designer Series Paper you choose for your card. Have fun!

Are you a Designer Series Paper hoarder? Well, here is a good way to use up small pieces of it! Very gratifying indeed.


May 8, 2021


Sometimes garbage is just too wonderful to throw away. 

Have you noticed how really attractive kleenex boxes are? I have actually been collecting them for years. 

The other day, as I was refilling my tissue holder and holding the empty box in my hand, I decided to do something with it.

Without any hesitation, I rushed (yeah, right. Have you ever seen me rush?) down to my Creation Station to make this:

The colors in this particular box lent themselves to use with Gray Granite and Sahara Sand. Perfection.

I cut the box to 3 1/2" x 4 3/4" and ran it through my Big Shot inside the Old World Paper 3D embossing folder. Because I wasn't crazy about the shininess of the box, I gently sanded it to dull it somewhat, removing bits of surface design here and there.

I love lotus pods. Don't you? They are ever so appealing. The lotus pod image from the Enjoy the Moment stamp set seemed to be a perfect complement for this weird background. 

After stamping it in black onto a piece of Sahara Sand cardstock, I fussy cut it.

A pretty oval cut with the one of the Stitched Shapes dies was just the right size to host this pod. I tied a bow from Linen Thread, and with a Glue Dot, adhered it to the stem of the lotus pod.

I stamped a small sentiment to the left of the oval piece, then added the lotus pod to the right with a couple Stampin' Dimensionals.

A close up view of the focal point of my card:

Added to a card base combo of Sahara Sand and Gray Granite was the perfect finishing touch for my fun card.

Now, how about you? Do you save kleenex boxes? If so, do you ever use them? What about other pieces of "garbage"? Share with us!


May 4, 2021


The Jar of Flowers stamp set, found on page 16 of the brand new Annual Catalog -- that went live today! -- is so much fun.

Recently I stamped two of the bouquets in Memento Tuxedo Black Ink and colored them in with Stampin' Blends. A few of the flowers, in fact, I stamped and colored twice. After fussy cutting all of the parts, I used Stampin' Dimensionals to pop some of the flowers up over their original counterparts to make a more three dimensional looking bouquet.

The stem stamp was simply stamped onto green cardstock, then fussy cut. After placing the stems onto the bottoms of the bouquets, I added a little bow tied with hemp twine left over from an old Paper Pumpkin kit.

You can see in the photo below that I popped up 
the two larger sunflowers for the 3-D look:

I had found sheets of fairly flat cork at my local Dollar Tree. Snapping up a package of that, I just knew that I would find an awesome use for it.

The cork sheet in action:

To echo the color of the sunflowers in this bouquet, I added the whole thing to a gold colored card base.

The second bouquet I chose to work with was the spring-y looking one shown below. This card is going to be my mom's Mother's Day card.

Once again, I mounted my bouquet onto a piece of the cork, which measures 3" x 4 1/2". It cuts so easily with my Stampin' Up! guillotine paper cutter. I do wish Stampin' Up! would bring that paper trimmer back.

Another common denominator with both of the cards is the Sahara Sand piece embossed with the Old World Paper 3D embossing folder, which is, unfortunately, retired. I don't care; I will keep using it forever because I love its texture so much!

Adding it to a Magenta Madness card base bring 
the pinks in the flowers back into play.

Do you have this Jar of Flowers set? If so, in what creative ways have you used it?


May 1, 2021

#dailycreating DECEMBER 2020

Time to share another month's worth of my creations from #dailycreating. This time they were all done during the month of December. 

#dailycreating is a Facebook group graciously hosted by Visual Artist/Creative Encourager Terry Runyan. The members of this friendly family-like group are encouraged by Terry to do some sort of creative project each day. 

Each Sunday afternoon, Terry posts a list of optional prompts for the upcoming week. Most of the time I follow the prompts. Other times, if a particular prompt doesn't thrill me for some reason, I will go off prompt. And rarely do I ever miss doing my daily creating and posting my results to the group.

Following you will find 12 of my favorite creations from December. As always, I will put the prompt, if followed, above the drawing, as well as any pertinent information I might have on the subject.

Ready? Here we go!

 #thing on thing

secretary bird



#off prompt

rhesus macaque

#international tea day

#thing on thing

emperor baby penguin



macaroni penguin


And there you have it. There are couple other drawings from that month that I sort of like, but they were Christmas related, and since today is May Day and we finally got a fairly balmy day, I am not going back to Christmas stuff.

Please remember that these are my original art pieces and are not to be reproduced in any way without my express permission. If you would like a giclee print of any of my work, hit me up and I will be glad to do that for you! Thank you for your respect.