Category Archives: Graduation

Pop Up Box Card UT Graduation

Pop Up Box Card UT GraduationI think these pop up box cards are almost like a present in themselves so if you are looking for an idea for a special graduation card, I think a pop up box graduation card would be a good choice! It’s hard for me to believe that it is the end of the school year for most students and time for graduations.  I thought the New Year just got going! Some of the materials I used on this card are retired Stampin’ Up! products, but some are current, and the designer paper is actually from the UT bookstore, maybe several years ago, in a scrapbooking package. I’ve made quite a few UT graduation cards and announcements the last several years with a pack or two from the bookstore! So if you are looking for school colors or designs, that is the place to look.

After making the pop up box, if you plan on putting it inside a regular size envelope, just be careful as you place whatever images and things you attach to the inside braces. Make sure they don’t stick out too far to the side or too far out the top.  Sometimes if you fold it one way, they do stick out but if you fold it the other way, they are all tucked inside.  So be sure to check that.  Then just stamp whatever congratulatory, fun, or personalized greetings and images that you want to put on the card. I didn’t get a very good photo of the inside with all the things I put inside, but you can get the idea.  Every card should be different anyway when you personalize it.

Here is what the card looks like folded flat with a belly band around it to decorate it and to keep it folded.

Pop Up Box Card UT Graduation Folded

Have fun designing your own pop up box card, whether for graduation or for some other fun occasion!  The sky is the limit!

For any stamping supplies, visit my Stampin’ Up! Online Store HERE.

Check out the new Weekly Deals TODAY!  Click HERE!

Graduation Announcement Pocket Card

Pocket Card Graduation Announcement

If you need some graduation announcements, this pocket card makes a nice one. I made a similar announcement for my son a few years ago that you can see in THIS POST. This uses a half sheet of card stock “the long way”, so 4 1/2″ x 11. Then it is folded in half and the  little flap in front folded down. I made an insert with all the commencement information, printed on my computer. I used some retired product on this card, some new, and some using My Digital Studio as I didn’t have the exact stamp I needed.You can probably purchase a scrapbooking pack of paper and embellishments in the college bookstore if you want the official college colors. These pocket cards work great for other kinds of invitations, gift card holder, just cards in general.

The colleges and schools often offer a gigantic box of announcements and some families just aren’t going to send out 50 or whatever the quantity is.  So sometimes it makes sense to just make a few of your own and personalize the occasion!

Last night I remembered a little too late that the University of Texas at Austin was having a live webcast of their all-school graduation ceremony. I was interested in hearing the speaker and seeing the fireworks at the end! We have attended three of these ceremonies and they were all very nice, but require parking where you can get out easily afterwards, arriving early to get a seat, sitting outside in some amount of heat, eating early so you don’t starve, and mostly sitting, sitting, sitting, and waiting. So I was glad we didn’t have to attend this ceremony this year, but I did catch the end of the webcast. Lots of happy faces in that crowd finalizing their college days and degrees! And I was just in time to see the fireworks over the  UT Tower!

UT Fireworks 2014

Gift Wrap Idea: Gold Kraft Gift Box with Gold Frizzle

Gold Gift Box with Gold Frizzle

Do you need a fancy gift wrap idea?  Use the Stampin’ Up! Kraft Gift Box and gold, gold, gold! Gold is IN these days so you might as well use it! I love these little Kraft Gift Boxes. They are 3 1/2″ wide on each side so perfect for a small gift or treat. I decorated this one first with a layer of Gold Foil on each side, cut just 1/8″ smaller on each side than the box. Then I layered a piece of Gold Fancy Foil Designer Vellum on each side (choose whichever pattern you like the best). I put a different pattern on the top.

Then to really jazz it up a bit, I put a little “frizzle” on the top! I didn’t know where I came up with that term or description, but it turns out “frizzle” does mean curl or kink or ringlets so I guess I was correct! Do you know where I got it?  From the Gold Baker’s Twine! The Gold Baker’s Twine is really just White Baker’s Twine with the metallic gold thread twisted around in it. Some people have even complained that when using the Gold Baker’s Twine, it came untwisted and frayed at the ends. But you can embrace that idea and untwist the gold thread from the white twine! Cut the Baker’s Twine into pieces several inches long each to make it easier.  Then gather your pile of gold threads and tie onto a bow or knot. Very easy! I could have also added a piece of Gold Sequin Trim for some extra bling!

If you are looking for more gift-wrap ideas and haven’t signed up for my Mailing List yet, do it today and get your FREE GIFT, “A Dozen Creative Gift Wrap Ideas”. You’ll see the sign up box in the upper right corner of my blog!

Gold Gift Box Top with Gold Frizzle

Another Birthday Purse Card

Pink Purse Card

I think these purse-shaped cards make great birthday cards for young girls! They could also be more than a birthday card.  Instead of just putting a greeting on the inside, make a pocket of some sort and turn it into a gift-card holder.  It is graduation time and I read that cash is the most welcome gift!  Make a pocket inside the card and insert cash or a gift card or check.  My grandmother used to always say you can’t give someone a purse without putting a penny in it!  Must be bad luck or something! Even though I made these purse cards for birthdays, think of all the other fun occasions you could make them for and the ways you could change them out!  Make it super-fancy with some Glimmer Paper or a sparkly closure or flower on the front! Make party invitations out of this idea!  It’s one of those projects that once you make one, you want to make more!

You can barely see the fuzzy thing underneath the closure.  That’s a piece of velcro which will hold the card closed.

Shop for Stampin’ Up! supplies at my Online Store!  Be sure to check the Clearance Rack, too!

Pink Purse Card Inside

Word Play Graduation Card

Word Play Graduation Card

If you are looking for an easy graduation card to make in just a few minutes, here’s one! You can design it using the school colors if you like or any colors you know the recipient will like. I started with a card base of Midnight Muse and stamped the greeting from Word Play in Midnight Muse ink on the Whisper White card layer. You could use any appropriate greeting you had on a design like this. I adhered two strips of 3/8″ Stitched Satin Ribbon to the Whisper White, adhering the ends under the Whisper White and tied the knots with separate pieces of ribbon. Since the colors of my high school were blue and gold, I chose these two colors of ribbon for my sample…Island Indigo and Summer Starfruit!

I love the stamp set Word Play with so many great sayings in it….but it is retiring in a couple weeks, so don’t miss out!

Check the selection of retiring stamps and accessories here in my Online Store and place your order today!

Make a Gift Bag for Mother’s Day!

Mother's Day Twitterpated Paper Gift Bag

Do you need a pretty gift bag for your Mother's Day gift…or really any occasion? You can use this design and just change out the paper for whatever person or occasion you want a gift bag for. If it's for a man, maybe leave off the paper flower but add a stamped image or greeting instead. You'll think of something!

I just found one of those small brown handled bags that you get now and then at the store.  If you save them, you'll always have a stash to go to when you need a nice gift bag.  Just choose 3 patterns from a pack of Stampin' Up! designer paper and cut one larger piece for the bottom section, one smaller piece for the top and  a piece to go across and cover up that line where the two papers meet and make a cute border. You could leave it as is or you could cut or punch a scalloped edge or whatever to jazz it up.

For my bag, I used three patterns out of the Twitterpated Designer Series Paper. For a pretty accent I added three buttons from the  Designer Buttons Subtles CollectionEach is tied with a small piece of White Baker's Twine. For something at the bottom corner of the bag, I chose to make a flower with the Flower Folds Die and the Big Shot using a pattern from the Twitterpated DSP.

Some of these items are on the Stampin' Up! Retired List so better do your shopping soon!  Anything on the list can sell out at any time so you don't want to be disappointed. Just click that link to go to my store with the retiring products and shop to your heart's content!

My Top 10 Favorite Blog Posts of 2012

At the end of the year I suppose we all get caught up in the "lists" of what happened during the year…."The Top 10 This…", "The Top 5 That", "The Most This….", "The Favorite That…". So I looked back through my blog posts of 2012 to see if I could make a list of my own! You can click on the links to go back to see the posts and projects!

  • In January 2012 I went to Stampin' Up! Leadership in San Antonio, TX….AND the Stampin' Up! Regional held the next day! I'd have to say all of the posts about Leadership were favorites, but one of my favorite projects I learned to make at the Regional were these cookie holders, made just from folded Designer Series Paper!
  • One of my digital projects was making a calendar with My Digital Studio, first one for my son, and then one almost the same, for myself! It didn't matter that it was already past January! It was fun pulling all the photos together of various events in the previous year to put on each month. And I save my calendars so not only will this be a reminder of dates but I'll have the photos!
  • The Petite Purse Die became such a vehicle for creativity! I could only think of making purses that would make such cute party favors or gift containers, but other people made all sorts of projects with this die!
  • Seems like everyone needs graduation cards, and my posts with graduation cards are always popular. But this past May we had our own son's college graduation so I made his announcement rather than purchase the college ones.
  • Just a simple "Thank You" card but it turned out so pretty!  I love the Two Tags Die and the Fancy Fan Embossing Folder.
  • I didn't go to the Stampin' Up! Convention but I LOVED this video that Stampin' Up! produced!  I can't tell you how many times I have watched it!  I hope you enjoyed it too and got a sense of what a wonderful company we are part of!
  • When in Los Angeles we happened to see a movie being filmed on the road. Amazing that we were able to later find out what it was while watching The Tonight Show! I made a scrapbook page on My Digital Studio to tell the story!
  • While I do make a lot of cards, I also love making a gift for someone or a piece of home decor. This was a Christmas gift that turned out especially nice and really looked great in this frame!

(I have to say it is hard leaving out the Cookie stamps and the delicious cookies I made with the enclosed recipe!!)

I hope you will think about what YOUR favorite stamping projects were this past year! And with Stampin' Up! coming out with the most wonderful new products with every catalog, who knows what fabulous projects of all types we will be creating in 2013!

Have a safe, fun and happy New Year's Eve!!

Thank You Note Card

Thank You Note Card

It is graduation time and certainly the new graduates are going to need to write some thank you notes for the gifts they receive. Did you know Stampin' Up! sells Note Cards #107311 that are just the right size and even come with envelopes?  All you have to do is fold them on the scored line and decorate how you wish. The card size is 5" x 3 1/2". 

For this thank you card, I used a scrap of the Twitterpated Designer Series Paper #125406 on the inside and cut the border with the Adorning Accents Edgelits Die #125595 and stamped with the Bordering on Romance stamp set.

Here is the inside:

Thank You Note inside

Plenty of room on the inside to write a nice note to the gift-giver! Or if you don't want to do the fancy edge, you could paste the paper on the front flap of the card.  Then stamp a "thank you" on the front….or a monogram with one of the Stampin' Up! alphabet sets!

Graduation Tri-Shutter Card

Graduation Tri-Shutter Card Steven UT

When your son is graduating from college and you make cards, you want to make an extra-special graduation card for him!  After thinking about many different designs, I decided on this tri-shutter card.  I love how it opens up yet is simple to make. This card is a combination of current and retired stamps, wheel, paper, and embellishments…even paper from the school bookstore scrapbook package. Oh, and let's not forget using My Digital Studio to print some images for the card!

Graduation Tri-Shutter Card Steven UT open

For the basic card, cut a piece of card stock 5 1/2" x 12". With your Simply Scored Scoring Tool, score the card stock at 2", 4", 8" and 10"with the card stock horizontal (12") in your scoring tool.

Using your Stampin' Up! Paper Cutter (retiring) or a hobby blade, with your card stock long ways (vertical), measure in 1 1/2" and cut a slit between the 2" and 10" score marks.  Do this also on the other side.

Fold as you see in the photo (a little tricky to get it going but it will work!) and then decorate with designer paper, stamping and embellishments to your heart's content!

Graduation Tri-Shutter Card Steven UT top

Graduation Photography Tips From a Mom

When you have a child graduating as we did this past weekend, it will be a momentous occasion, and if you are the family photographer you will undoubtedly be taking photos to document every second. Perhaps you will want to make a traditional scrapbook for the graduate or even a digital album or swatchbook with My Digital Studio for a quick and easy way to save and share your memories. Check out my graduation photography tips below.


Here are my photography tips for graduation to ensure you HAVE those photos!

  • Think ahead about taking pictures at graduation, preferably at least a day ahead. Four or five years of college tend to sneak up on you and even with a year's notice you may find yourself unprepared for picture-taking at graduation.
  • Search your battery stash for a package of extra AA batteries, making sure you don't grab AAA batteries.
  • If there is no new package of AA batteries in your battery stash, stop all tasks and go to the store immediately to purchase at least one if not two (and maybe three) packages of batteries. It's really more important than having laundry done or the right pair of shoes packed.
  • Have an extra package of new batteries for your camera easily accessible in your purse before the big event.
  • If no new package of batteries is available in your stash and you don't really stop to think through how important it is to go out and buy new batteries right now, then grab a ziploc bag of loose batteries which perhaps are new ones taken along, but not used, on vacation or something recently. Surely they are brand new and will work.
  • If you suspect that your camera batteries may be close to wearing out during the graduation event, change the batteries in your camera during a boring speech while seated. Do not wait until your camera flashes "Change Your Batteries" during the singing of the school song and moments before the fireworks display to conclude the fabulous graduation ceremony.
  • If you are forced to change batteries in your camera, in the dark, while standing during the grand finale of the whole graduation ceremony, quickly take notice of which ends of the batteries are up and which are down before taking out the old batteries, then quickly insert the new batteries from the ziploc bag trying not to mix up the two groups of batteries.
  • If it turns out these spare batteries were indeed brand new, hooray for you! If not, just the act of changing the batteries will probably make your camera work for a few shots.
  • If after a few shots, these replacement batteries do not work because they weren't actually new batteries after all, quickly remove at least two and rub each end vigorously on your clothes and be assured that you will probably be able to get a few more shots out of this technique.
  • Always keep an extra package of batteries for your camera on hand because you never know when you might have a child graduate from college.  
  • If you are over the age of 30, (and you probably are), during the graduation speeches learn how to find and use the camera function on your cell phone, just in case. Did you know you can take video?? Learn how to slide the thing back for still shots so not everything is video.
  • Hope that someone with a better lens on their camera got a clear shot of your child receiving their diploma on stage because even if every other photo you took is perfect, that one will be blurry and unrecognizable.


Steven graduation

UT Graduation Announcement

UT Graduation Announcement

And here are all the pieces you saw a few days ago all assembled into a graduation announcement for my youngest son!  The striped paper is from a scrapbook pack I bought in the university bookstore a few years ago….you may notice it on a lot of my graduation projects you've seen! I dug out some retired Really Rust card stock to come close to matching the Burnt Orange for UT.  Our current Cajun Craze is a pretty close match also. I've also been used some retired stamps as well as printing out a few things here and there from My Digital Studio, which is great for LOTS of things other than scrapbooking!  I have some projects in mind on My Digital Studio after all the graduation hoopla is over!

UT Graduation Announcement Inside

If you are making graduation cards or gift card holders for someone, just google the name of their school and you probably will be able to find out the school colors.  If not, gold, silver, black, and white are always good, as are stars and "Congratulations"!

Graduation Card Ideas

If you are looking for ideas for making handmade graduation cards about now, here are some I have posted in the past!

                                     Pocket Graduation Card UT Austin

Graduation Gift Box and Tag

                       Graduation Pocket Card

                  Extreme Elements Graduation Card stamped

UT graduation easel card

Graduation Easel Card with Stars


Just have fun!  You can do it!

To order any Stampin' Up! supplies, you can shop here anytime!

Graduation Framelit Card

Graduation Framelit Card

It certainly is graduation time, and here is one card I made with the Labels Collection Framelits Die. I've been pulling out a lot of retired stamps and paper for just the right things I needed for this graduation project.  This "Happy Graduation" stamp is one of the a la carte ones we had called "Happy Grad".  If you don't own the stamp, you can purchase the download in My Digital Studio and print it out!  I just did that with a few other graduation projects going on with another graduation stamp brush set! The background is embossed with the polka dot embossing folder on the Big Shot, and I also used the Big Shot to cut out the letters.  I love the Antique Brads on this card!  The paper is Shimmery White…perhaps if you click on the photo to enlarge it you will be able to notice the shimmer!  Love that paper!

I hope this gives you some ideas if you are making some cards for those special graduates! If you need any stamping supplies or digital downloads, you can shop at my Online Store HERE!

The Beginnings of a Graduation Announcement

Graduation Announcement Beginnings

Here are the beginnings of the graduation announcements I am making for my son.  Of course they should be in the mail by now, but that's okay! These are such a combination of elements….from a retired graduation stamp, to paper from the college bookstore, to the frame and name of school made in My Digital Studio, retired Really Rust card stock to the current Naturally Serif Sizzlits Decorative Strip Die (but retiring) #113453 and the Stripes Textured Impressions Embossing Folder #123128. They're all assembled now…just have to adhere the actual announcement to the inside and get them in the mail! Nothing like the last minute!

If you need ideas for graduation cards or announcements, just check the "Graduation" category over in the right sidebar. And then if you need some stamping supplies (or My Digital Studio downloads) just go shop at my Stampin' Up! Online Store HERE.

Inspired By Nature Card

Stampin' Up! Inspired By Nature

The Inspired By Nature #111656 stamp set by Stampin' Up! is one of the many retiring stamp sets come May 31st. It was quite a popular stamp set and you can see why….so versatile for many occasions.  Just change the greeting to convey your message. Two sentiments come with it, but of course you can add one from any other stamp set….or leave it plain. Can you see this stamp set being used for a graduation, birthday, get well, or just a note card?


Stamps:  Inspired By Nature

Ink:  Old Olive, Baja Breeze, Early Espresso

Paper:  Early Espresso Card Stock, Confetti White Card Stock #102028

Accessories:  Stampin' Write Markers:  Daffodil Delight, Old Olive, Early Espresso; Aquapainter #103954, Jumbo Brads 5/16" Neutrals #112534

  1. Begin with a card base of Early Espresso. Use Confetti White Card Stock for the layer….a beautiful paper we don't use often enough. 
  2. Ink up grassy side of stamp (this one comes double-mounted on each side of one wood block) with Old Olive ink and stamp off lightly on scrap paper, then stamp on Confetti White
  3. Ink up the flower side of stamp using markers to color in the flowers, stems, and grass. Stamp over the grass on Confetti White. If any of it comes out too light, use your Aquapainter or Blender Pen to add some extra ink from markers or an ink pad or refill. Don't add directly with markers or it will be too dark. 
  4. Stamp greeting with Early Espresso Ink
  5. Use Aquapainter to add some Baja Breeze ink for the sky in the background, being careful not to get into the already stamped images or the ink will run. Just color lightly and without thinking too hard! 
  6. Add two Jumbo Brads to the top and adhere to card front.  
  7. Stamp and add inside page to write on.

Inspired By Nature Inside

Check the Retiring Stamps List HERE.

And then shop online HERE!

Graduation All-Occasion Card

Graduation All-Occasion Card

We're all going to be needing graduation and other all-occasion cards soon so it's time to get started so you will be ready! I got the idea for this card in the Occasions Mini Catalog. This card is 3 1/2" x 4 1/4" so it's kind of a cute smaller size!  After I cut it at 7" length, I realize that the piece I had cut off would make a good size pouch on the inside to hold a check, cash or gift card….so I made another one, cutting my paper at 4 1/4" x 8 1/2".  I scored at 3 1/2" from one end and 1 1/2" from the other…or you could say 3 1/2" and 7".  The top is embossed with the Stripes Embossing Folder #123128. Since the paper is shorter you have to line it up carefully in the embossing folder up to the fold and straight on the sides.

Other supplies:

Stamps:  Elements of Style, Rue Des Fleurs

Ink:  Cajun Craze, Stazon Black

Accessories:  Labels Collection Framelits Die #125598, 1 3/4" Scallop Circle Punch #119854, Hemp Twine #100982

Here is the inside:

Graduation All-Occasion Card Inside

Very simple and yet so versatile!  Just embellish for whatever person or occasion you need a card for with a little gift inside!

To shop for any stamping supplies, just click HERE.

Thank You Kindly Thank You Card

Thank You Thank You Kindly

Thank you cards are always handy to have around, and especially for an important occasion, such as graduation, when many graduation thank you cards will need to be sent.  Online thank you notes or thank you emails might be better than no thank you at all, but, in my opinion, this is when a handwritten note is definitely in order.  And if you really want to make it special, a Stampin' Up! card that you made is always special!

This card uses a retiring stamp For You Flower #118726, one of the a la carte stamps in the Stampin' Up! Idea Book & Catalog. I punched the flower out of So Saffron card stock with the Fancy Flower Punch #118073.  With some Stampin' Write Markers, I colored in the center of the For You Flower stamp and stamped on Whisper White, punched out with the 1 1/4" Circle Punch #119861, mounted it over a 1 3/8" Circle Punch #119860 of Pear Pizzazz card stock using a Stampin' Dimensional, and adhered that to the flower punch piece.  

I was actually copying a sample in the catalog (I think sometimes we forget to simply look in the catalog for ideas!) but instead of doing paper piercing, I punched two strips of Rose Red card stock with the Dotted Scallop Ribbon Border Punch #119275.  For extra emphasis, being a thank you note, I stamped the bottom of the card with a stamp from Thank You Kindly #111700.

When you are looking for thank you card wording, there are so many great stamps to choose from at Stampin' Up!.

If you were doing this card as a graduation thank you card, just choose either school colors for your papers and ink or whatever colors suited your personality.  I'm sure the recipient would appreciate something that you put your personal touch on.

For any stamping supplies that you need, please go to my Online Store HERE. (In fact, go take a peek now as Stampin' Up! has updated the look!) Feel free to contact me with any questions!

Stampin’ Up! Digital Scrapbooking: My Digital Studio Graduation Scrapbook Page


You'll need a scrapbook page for that graduation photo so of course one easy way to make one is to use the Stampin' Up! program, My Digital Studio.  I began with a designer template for this page but changed the background paper color and added several graduation stamps….the cap, the sentiment, and the feet.  Imagine the photo going right above the graduation feet!  With My Digital Studio you can easily make an entire album or just a few pages with minimal thinking and designing….or you can start and work completely from scratch.  You could even use this idea as your design and then make it out of paper and stamps.

To find out more about My Digital Studio, click HERE.

Graduation Gift Box Idea and Tag

Graduation Gift Box and Tag

You're probably going to need a graduation gift box idea and a tag. This is an easy one to make if you have the Big Shot Die-Cutting Machine #113439 and the Bitty Box & Envelope Die #115967.  You can use any card stock or paper, of course, but if you need a college graduation gift, maybe you would have access to the scrapbook packet at the campus bookstore and you can make a box in the school's colors! Just cut out the box with the die, assemble and decorate!  There are other Big Shot dies that make nice gift packaging as well.

For the graduation gift tag, I've found that the stamp set Word Play on page 147 of the Stampin' Up! Idea Book & Catalog (available in wood- or clear-mount) has great expressions to use for graduation.  Use your markers to color the stamp different colors if you like to get a multi-colored image.  I sponged the edges, tore the end, added a folded over torn piece and Antique Brad, plus stamped a small butterfly from the SAB set "Bliss".  If you need a larger gift bag or box, make a nice tag that will become a graduation keepsake.

If you don't already own the Big Shot, go to my store now and look it over! You need one!  Let me know if you have any questions!

Fun & Fast Notes Graduation Card

Fun & Fast Notes Graduation Card

Use the Stampin' Up! Fun & Fast Notes stamp set #113500 to make a fun and fast graduation card!  You don't have to have a graduation stamp in order to make a graduation card.  Stars are great to convey congratulations as well as a greeting of "Congratulations", "Thinking of You", "Just for You", "Best Wishes", "Good Luck" or any of a number of other sentiments.  This "Congratulations" is actually attached to the star stamp, but since I cut out the stars with my marvelous Paper Snips #103579, I just punched out the word with the Word Window Punch #119857 and adhered it to the Modern Label Punch #119849.

The stars were colored with Stampin' Write Markers in Real Red, So Saffron, Tempting Turquoise and Old Olive, which are the coordinating colors of the Play Date Designer Series Paper #117168 I used. (I always write the name of the coordinating colors on the back cardboard of the designer series pack to have it handy!)  This paper always makes me happy because I received a free pack at the Stampin' Up! Convention last summer…and Convention is always a happy memory!!

For a little bling, I added Glimmer Brads #121006 to the stars.  I think this would be a fun card for anyone, but would be cute for a preschool or kindergarten "graduate"!  For more Stampin' Up! ideas for graduation, click on the Graduation Category over in the right side bar.