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Support the Designers

One of the main reasons I wanted to set up this website was to make it easier for New Zealand craft shoppers to find the good quality, genuine products our favourite YouTubers like to use in their videos.

I have created pages on my website, listing my favourite and trusted stores both in New Zealand, and internationally where you can be sure you are purchasing the stamps, dies and stencils that are original, thereby supporting the designers and companies creating them. We certainly want them to be able to continue creating these things! These pages will be updated as I discover new places, so be sure to check back regularly.

New Zealand is a small market, and I noticed within some of my crafting communities that counterfeit stamps and dies are freely being imported, without knowledge of why this is not a good thing. I really want to be supportive of my crafting community, both locally and worldwide, as this is such an amazing hobby, full of kind and generous spirited people. What other hobby encourages happy thoughts, kindness and giving such as this?

Over the past few years, crafters worldwide have started a movement #isupportdesignnotcrime and I am a happy participant.

Counterfeit product has become a real problem – the practice of stealing other people’s art and design to make money, using low quality materials, is literally closing business doors. In our industry, our crafting businesses are often just small, and most likely operating from a garage or kitchen table.

Art and design, including photography and other art forms fully deserve to be credited and compensated. We wouldn’t dream of knowingly purchasing stolen goods in our daily lives otherwise, and this is no different.

Our stamp companies pay their artists and designers, choose to use quality photopolymer, rubber and metals in most cases, pay for advertising, marketing, store and staffing overheads, taxes, shipping, and are generous with us crafters by sponsoring gifts, giveaways, collaborations and design teams etc. Counterfeiters literally steal the images from online, and recreate using inferior products, often with spelling mistakes and smaller images with little to no overhead.

By ordering and purchasing genuine product through our local retailers, you are also supporting New Zealand businesses too, so that’s a win-win!

NONE of the genuine stamp companies sell their stamps via AliExpress, Alibaba or Wish. You can report listings if you spot copies – stamp companies are having to expend a lot of time and effort into getting counterfeit links taken down, creating a real legal headache! and this is taking time and money away from creating fun products for us.

If you are at all in doubt whether the stamp company you are purchasing from is legitimate or not, you can check the isupportdesign website – they have listed every known stamp company, with a link so you can view their online store. If the company you are looking for is not in the list, you can flick a quick email to them to ask.

If you have any questions regarding the above please feel free to message me – I’m only too happy to help!

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Sweet Celebration Wishes

I’ve had my eye on this stamp set by Stacey Yacula for some time, and was pleased to finally have time to get it out and do some colouring! This card has been gifted to a crafty friend celebrating her birthday.

Supplies Used:

Sending Sweet Celebration Wishes
  • Tim Holtz Watercolor Cardstock
  • Glitter paper from stash
  • Lawn Fawn Mermaid & Black Licorice cardstock for card base and sentiment strip
  • Nuvo Silver glitter cardstock
  • Ranger Clear embossing powder, Ink on 3 Arctic White embossing powder, and Versamark Ink
  • My Favorite Things Diagonal Design Background stamp (retired)
  • My Favorite Things Stitched Rectangles STAX
  • My Favorite Things Sending Sweet Celebration Wishes Stamp and Die set
  • My Favorite Things Celebrate die
  • Copic markers: R24, RV14, R22, R20, R00, E43, E31, E41, E40, E59, E25, E23, Y38, Y15, Y21, BG49, BG45, BG53, G28, YG67, YG63, YG61, G43, G21, G40
  • Distress Oxide Inks: Tumbled Glass, Peacock Feathers, Mermaid Lagoon, Chipped Sapphire

I started off by ink blending with Tumbled Glass and Peacock Feathers, lighter in the middle and darker on the edges of the watercolour cardstock. I heat embossed the Diagonal Design background stamp (just about any background stamp would be suitable for this technique) with clear embossing powder, let that cool, and then continued inking with Peacock Feathers in the centre, Mermaid Lagoon and Chipped Sapphire, again getting darker towards the edges of the panel. Distress Oxide inks are great for this technique as the ink is opaque and you can add layers of colour very easily.

I buffed the ink with a cloth. The clear embossing resists the additional ink, leaving a cool flow of colour blending within the pattern.

I cut the panel down with a MFT stitched rectangle. I actually used a smaller rectangle from the nested set than I originally intended, and had to back the panel with some glitter paper in my stash! Whoops, but it turned out well in the end!

I had fun colouring these little guys and added fun fluff to their hats and the bunny’s tale using Neon Radiance Amplify.

I die cut the Celebrate three times from white cardstock, and once out of Nuvo Silver glitter cardstock and stacked these together for a little dimension.

I stamped and heat embossed the sentiment from the Sweet Celebration Wishes stamp set onto Lawn Fawn Black Licorice cardstock.

The critters were placed above the Celebrate using foam tape strips cut to fit, and the whole front is mounted onto the card base which completes the card.

If you have any questions regarding the putting together of this project, please feel free to message me – I’m only too happy to help!

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Floral Blooms Thanks Card

I have spent my Christmas break organising and setting up my new craft space and I finally had time to make something I could share.

Supplies used:

  • Neenah #110 and #80 cardstock, Lawn Fawn Black Licorice cardstock, black glitter cardstock and vellum
  • Tonic Studios Floral Blooms Die
  • Tonic Studios Budding Vine Die
  • Tonic Studios Thanks
  • Copic Markers – YG25, YG23, YG03, RV29, RV25, RV13
  • Nuvo Crystal Glaze
  • Studio Katia Pearls
  • Art Glitter Liquid Adhesive
Tonic Studios Budding Vine
Tonic Studios Floral Blooms
Tonic Studios Thanks

The Tonic Studios background dies each come in a set of two – the intricate inner piece and a decorative rectangular die. They can be used on their own, or together or mixed and matched – creating many possibilities. I really like the delicate scalloped look of the rectangle die included in the Budding Vine set, so I matched it with the Floral Blooms intricate die for today’s card.

I taped the two dies together with purple tape, just to keep them secure, and die cut them four times.

Having them taped together ensured that all four die cuts matched when put together.

I cut one scalloped rectangle on its own for the base and adhered the first of the intricate cuts. The edges match up perfectly, and now it’s time to add colour!

I used copic markers to colour in the cut out areas in reddy pinks and lush greens. I used blends of three, dark to light from the centre of the flowers/leaves outwards. It doesn’t matter how messy this gets, as it will all be magically tidied up when we add the remaining die cuts on top. Once I was satisfied with my colouring, I glued the second layer on. This hides all the mess, and you can see immediately anywhere that is missed, and can add further details such as shading etc. Then the third die cut layer is glued on top.


Now the fun part – adding Nuvo Crystal Glaze to all of the openings to give a bit of a stained glass effect at the end. I carefully squeezed the glaze and used a craft pick to ensure I could get the glaze right into the tiny nooks and crannies. Getting some of the glaze up the sides of the die cut openings really helps with the stained glass look too.

The final die cut is glued on top to hide all the glaze messy bits and we have our completed panel. This needs a good couple of hours to dry, so leave it in a area where it can lay nice and flat.

I cut the sentiment using the Tonic Studios Thanks twice from black cardstock, and once from black glitter cardstock and stacked them onto a vellum shadow. This die is nice and long, and I glued the ends of the vellum piece around to the back of the card panel, and cut the black to match the edge.

Studio Katia pearls are added to the flower centres as a finishing touch, and I completed the card by mounting the panel onto a Neenah #110 top folding card base.

Thank you for visiting! If you have any questions regarding the putting together of this card, or any of the materials used, please feel free to message me – I’m only too happy to help!

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The Best of the Basics – COLOUR

Sometimes, all you need is a little splash of colour!

It’s taken weeks! This is quite a large subject, and if you are unsure of where to start, it can be rather overwhelming. There is so much to cover when it comes to adding colour to projects and I have created a COLOUR page in my The Best of the Basics Series. This is an overview of the different inks, markers and tools available to Kiwi crafters. Where I can, I have included links to where you can find these products to purchase, and also find colouring classes and tutorials online for more in-depth information.

There are many different ways to add colour to your projects and I have listed many of the ways I like to use colour in my craft room – there are still many more techniques for me to explore!

Copic Markers
Distress Inks
ColorBurst watercolour powders

There are new products being introduced all the time. Distress Inks have been around for a number of years, and over the past 24 months, Tim has released his Distress Oxide range. I love both ink lines and use them in just about every project I tackle. I have just started collecting the Oxide sprays and intend to try them out in an upcoming session of background creations.

Nuvo Shimmer Powders are new this year too, and complement the Ken Oliver ColorBursts brilliantly. I can’t help myself when it comes to shimmery, glittery things and they were an immediate addition to my craft room. Many cards I made this year featured these powders – I imagine there will be many more!

There is just one more subject I want to include in my Best of the Basics Series – that is Handy Tools. So keep an eye out – I have tried many ‘handy’ tools in my craft room over the years, and I intend to share with you what I have found to be worth the $$.

Merry Christmas to you, and thank you for your visit! Have a safe and happy holiday break.