My blog is called "Creative Smiles" because my designs are the result of incorporating mistakes. With fumble fingers that drop whatever they are holding - repeatedly, it takes a lot of giggles, smiles and creative patience during my crafting process. xx

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Beautiful Pansies - Sparkle N Sprinkle February Reveal

Hello, marvelous blogging buddies! I hope 2017 has been good to you.
Thank you for joining me today!

Welcome to the ALL NEW Sparkle N Sprinkle
 February Reveal Blog Hop!


We have another HUGE reveal for you this month, plus something new!
The new sets are 20% off until February 3, 2017, so after the blog hop, hop on over to the NEW STORE and have fun shopping - be sure to check out the OTHER amazing new products as well! With names like TONIC and STAMPENDOUS and HOUSE MOUSE, you're sure to fill that cart up quickly!

SNS also has a brand new blog, which can be found here!

On February 3, ONE GRAND PRIZE WINNER will be selected from the comments left on all the Designers' blogs listed below. Please leave a comment with each designer to be eligible for the Grand Prize. It's always a mystery which designer has the winning comment! The Grand Prize Winner will be announced on the SNS Facebook page and the SNS New Blog.

 There are SEVEN new fantastically-eclectic rubber stamp sets being released this month, 

a Digi Only Bundle set full of extras, including the papers! 

Also, when you purchase the digi versions of any of the SNS rubber sets, you are getting lots of extras that aren't available otherwise.  These extras include a cut file set to work with the rubber or digi image, may include additional images or sentiments not available with the rubber version, and occasionally digi papers! (NOTE: Cut files work with electronic cutting machines).

You're definitely going to want both the rubber versions as well as the digi versions of all our new releases.

It's Demo Donna on the SNS YouTube Channel!

Subscribe today to REVEL IN all the latest Demo Donna tips and techniques! But even more - PREPARE TO BE ENTERTAINED!  Each week a new technique is shared, and each month, a new video kit is revealed!

The supporting cast of stamp sets:

  *815 Leafy Flower Spring Wreath  
            Leafy Flower Spring Wreath digi version DIGI815B
  *826 Pansies (set one) 
           Pansies mini digi set DIGI826833FS
           Pansies fabulous digi bundle version including papers DIGI826-833FS
  *832 Girlfriend Support Set 1 
           Girlfriend Support Set 1 digi version DIGI832
  *833 Pansies in Teacup (set two)
           Pansies mini digi set DIGI826833FS
           Pansies fabulous digi bundle version including papers DIGI826-833FS
  *835 Sitting Pretty Kitty  
           Sitting Pretty Kitty digi version DIGI835LS)
  *836 Luck of the Irish Enchantress - St. Patrick's Day
           Luck of the Irish Enchantress digi version DIGI836LS
 * 837 Rory's Lucky Clover - St. Patrick's Day 
           Rory's Lucky Clover digi version DIGI837LS)
  * Eleven Watercolor Papers - Purple Pink (to coordinate with the pansies) DIGI4003FS 

My Terrifically Talented Teamies in blog hop order:

Donna (you're here)

(*Tip: if you have difficulty with a particular link, try clicking on the Designer's blog title to send you to their Home page.)

I am featuring the incredible new Pansies Digital Bundle, including decoupage sheets, black and white images, colored images, 4 lovely sentiments, cut file set, PNG and JPG images, and 11 beautifully coordinated digi papers! It's a great value, especially if purchased at 20% off!

During a recent "girly" luncheon, artist Tracey-Lynn Miller provided these beautiful pansies which are featured on a gift bag, make-and-take cards, name place cards, and napkin rings! The guests loved these, and took them home to enjoy.

First -- easy, beautiful NAME PLACE CARDS:

Arrange four of the PRECOLORED teacup images on an inexpensive white piece of card stock. I used the JPG color versions because these do not have transparent backgrounds. They have a lovely, soft, water color effect around the teacup. Type the names prior to printing, or die cut teacups and then hand print/write the guests' names:



(boo boo time!)

Arrange several of the PNG colored pansies on inexpensive card stock, leaving enough room for an electronic cutter or for your own dear hand fussy cutting (shown at left).

Use coordinating colored cardstock, or print your own from this set - or even make your own coordinating designer paper (shown further below in this post). Cut it into strips, and "double wrap" the circles to give them a little more strength to hold the napkin in place (see photo below).

Place the cut out elements as desired. NOTE: I wasn't thinking correctly, and placed the 3 pansy heads in perfect spacing on the ring, however, I forgot to turn them "sideways" so that they would be facing each guest vertically, instead of horizontally (sideways). So keep that in mind when creating your napkin rings, or any other similar projects.

I also used some punched leaves for visual interest. As much as I wanted to add glitter, I thought the colors were pretty enough without it, and maybe glitter on the dining room table was not such a good idea (giggle).

This photo shows both the inside of the rings, as well as other angles:

Creating beautiful, easy cards, using traditional methods with digital images:

Recipe is for 12 cards:
  • 1 white card stock for printing out all the digital sentiments, spaced apart for the die cut.
  • 3 white card stock for printing interior sentiment
  • 2 white card stocks for the precolored digital pansies in teacup image, spaced apart for the round die cut.
  • 3 green card stock for layers, run through the embossing folder, and distressed with ink.
  • 3 pink card stock for layers.
  • 6 artichoke green papers for the folded card base.

This is an example of using digital products in a traditional method:

The pretty sentiment is die cut from two directions,
so half the cards are a little different from the first half.
(Don't ask me where that line came in on the photo below - it's not in my Photos anywhere else except on the blog LOL)

I used 1/4" Tear-ific Tape to adhere the panels.

There are now 8 great sizes of Tear-ific Double Sided Tape to accommodate a number of Crafting Mediums and papers.

Making the GIFT BAG

Making your own designer papers is easy if you have the right tools and images.

In this case, the green splattered digi paper was selected. Place it on any word processing document.

Then I randomly placed the leafy pansy heads on top of the green paper, tilting them so they are at various angles. I did the same with the various leaves, and plain pansy heads. There are two sizes of the plain pansy heads on the paper.

Print out 3 sheets of the paper and assemble the bag. Before adhering the front and back panels, I added the white cardstock which was punched with a border punch.

Next, lace and pom poms were added with a larger leaf vine and another leafy pansy head.

I will make a lot more of these papers! It was fun!

Here are some better instructions, and other samples:

Quick Sample Ideas for creating fully digital projects:

The REALLY GREAT THING about Digital Papers:

  1. You can print them out AS THEY ARE NEEDED, so that there is no stock piling of papers in a craft room.
  2. Using your word processor, (or a more sophisticated app), you may customize them using any properly-created PNG images.
  3. They can be sized to your specific requirement.
  4. For EASY FINDING, save them by name on your hard drive OR on "secret" Pinterest Boards so only you can see them (we discourage digital piracy). A simple scroll through the board locates the grouping you want.
  5. Or use your PHOTOS app on any computer, or mobile device.
  6. Create a book of samples and file according to your needs.
  7. Create traditional projects with lots of paper layers, or a completely digital project with lots of digital layers for lower postage rates.

Sparkle N Sprinkle Products:

Other Products:

  • MS Vintage Floral Punch
  • Memory Box Pinpoint Scallop Circles
  • SB Classic Circles
  • Sizzix Sizzlet leafy branch
  • SW Pierced Flags
  • Deco Art Glamour Dust Paint (Ice Crystal)
  • CB Swiss Dot EF

On a Personal Note:

Our Tulip Tree, azaleas and camellias are blooming!
(tulip trees are actually a part of the Magnolia family)
They bloom before leaves are present. 
Ours is only about 20 feet (6.1 meters) tall.
The blooms are a bit larger than my open hand.

Challenges I'd like to play in:
  1. Come and Get it Challenges (Jan 27) 3 or More Layers 2/5 (my card has 5 layers plus the base card, the napkin rings have 5 layers of cuts
  2. Classic Design Team Open Challenge Blog #11 Anything for a DT goes 3/1
  3. Crafting from the Heart #145 Anything Goes 2/5
  4. World Wide Open Design Team Challenge #18 Anything for a DT goes 2/15
Thanks for visiting today!
Stamping Hugs,

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Movie - Cardz 4 Galz

Hello, sweet blogging friends!
I hope you are enjoying yourselves despite the icky weather I hear about.
Seems so strange to think I am writing to people in the extreme (to me) cold, and in the same note to other friends way-down south who are in the midst of their summer heat!
Here in rural Florida, we are enjoying a fantastically mild winter.

It's time for the 39th Cardz 4 Galz challenge!

Badges are awarded for the Spotlight Winner and Top Picks.

Challenge #39 theme is selected by teamie Amy - In The Movies! 
You may have 3 separate submissions, and have as many cards as you like on each submission.  

so get crafting and show us your interpretation of your delightful, musical, laughable, tear-jerking, screaming-scary, movie favorites!
Challenge ends on February 1.

I'm using an older VIRGIN stamp purchased from Michaels a good 5 years ago.
It reminds me of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in their many noteworthy dance routines.

For those of you who follow via e-mail, I've learned that you do not get to see the video's.
They just show up as big black squares.
So here is the link so you can view the dancing as well.

Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers

For more photos from this movie of what once was considered quite risque, click here:

Finished Frame:

A sentiment that suits me so well in all areas of my little life - each stumble brings on new opportunities!

Finished card:

We Galz want to see all your fantastic cinema re-creations!

Link it up here: Cardz 4 Galz

Image: Inkadinkadoo - Dancing Couple
Amy's Magic Soft Violet Glitter
Dies: SW Ornate Pierced Squares, Double Pierced Squares Set A, SB Decagon Nestabilities, 
Sparkle N Sprinkle: Double Sided 3/4" and 1/2" Tear-ific Tape (under black frame for glitter)

On a Personal Note:

We live on one of the very few "hills" in Florida which is approximately 194 feet above sea level.
Because we're on a hill, and remain "high-and-dry", we don't see alligators here. But plenty live in nearby ponds, lakes and rivers.
This beauty was seen quite a distance away - about an hour by car on highways - but I thought you might enjoy seeing some of our amazing wildlife from a different point of view, and a different angle:

For my e-mail followers, here is the link to view the video.
How magnificence, yes?

Challenges I'd like to play in please:

Crafty Creations Challenges #333 Anything Goes 2/1
Inspiration Destination #120 Anything Goes 2/1
Scrapy Land Challenges #58 Favorite Colors 2/1 (I am a cliche - I love pink with just about any other colors. One of my favorite childhood dresses was pink with black and white dots. I wore it out. My flowers are usually pink and white. I'm always drawn to the loveliness of pink!)
The Crafty Addicts #32 Monochromatic Theme 2/1

Thanks for stopping by - wishing you a great week!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Hug A Heart Card Drive - Invitation and Information

Hello, everyone! Thanks for stopping by!
You are cordially invited to participate in the first 
2017 Hug a Heart Card Drive!

February is American Heart Month, a time dedicated to raising awareness about congenital and acquired heart disease. Many patients do not realize they have heart disease, even those who are born with defects called congenital heart disease. The Heart Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital cares for many patients with various forms of heart disease. American Heart Month is a great time to raise awareness, to promote healthy habits AND ESPECIALLY, to lift the spirits of these patients who are hospitalized and need major heart surgery or are having a particularly tough time.For information about “Congenital heart disease (CHD) please see Christina's Blog.

We are asking for your help PLEASE.


Christina Hor is offering some wonderful prizes! 

Each card you make will bring heartwarming encouragement to those who are affected by heart disease – 
both patients and families.

What you can do--

Cards you donate will not only brighten a heart patient’s day during 
Heart Month, but will positively impact that child’s life by letting them know that someone cares deeply about what is happening to them.
Card guidelines are listed below.  Thank you so much for your generosity and gift of encouraging and supportive cards!  

Prizes are being offered for making the cards! 

To thank you for your participation and generous gift of cards, Christina Hor has several prize packages. To be considered for the prize drawings, please see details below.

·    Prize Package #1 (all participants) – everyone who sends cards will receive a freebie of Christina's Heart Panda digi and the pretty Sentiment:

Prize Package #2 (U.S. participants only) – to two random winners, a box of brand new craft goodies, each valued at $25.

Prize Package #3 (International participants only) - to two random winners, a $25 gift certificate to shop at Simon Says Stamp.

Platinum package (U.S. and International): to ONE participant with the 30+ donated cards, a $50 gift certificate to Simon Says Stamps.


Hug a Heart Card Drive is open to both U.S. and International participants. All age groups are encouraged to make the cards. 
  • Card drive runs from 1/16/17 to 2/14/17.
  • Card Types: handmade cheerful “heart” theme (non-Valentine’s Day) cards such as Thinking of You, Hello, or Just Because cards for children between ages of 1 to 19.  As long there are hearts on the cards, it counts.
  • Greetings (Sentiments) on your card-front is optional.  But if you do include one, here are some suggestions: sending hugs, sending smiles, thinking of you, wishing you a beautiful day, or hello. NO Valentine’s Day greetings please.
  • Inside of cards: Please do not stamp or write inside the card.  Keep it completely blank so hospital staff may write a personal message to each patient.  If using a dark colored card base, please adhere a white or light colored piece of cardstock to the inside of card to make it easier for patients to read the hand-written message.
  • Card size: A2 size card (finished 4.25”x5.5”). 
  • Back of cards: This is completely optional.  You may include a label “handmade by + your name + Hug a Heart Card Drive 2017” to the back of your card. It can be a hand-written, stamped or small computer printout label.
  • Envelopes: Please include an envelope for each card. Do NOT seal envelopes.
  • PLEASE do NOT use loose glitter, as young children will get this in their eyes.
  • Please use embellishments minimally, if at all, and avoid using anything unsafe for very young children.
  • Please package your cards in a box or padded envelope to ensure they arrive undamaged.
  • Mail your box/package to: Christina Hor, P.O. Box 517, Dublin, Ohio 43017
  • To be eligible for the drawings, please include your full name, email address and mailing address in a note with your cardsso that Christina may acknowledge your cards and enter you for the prizes.
  • Optional – if you would like to help spread the words about Hug a Heart card drive, please use hashtag #hugaheartcarddrive when sharing your project on social media. 
  • Questions and more clarification about the card drive?  Please don’t hesitate to contact Christina directly at
Please share the message with others about the Hug A Heart Card Drive, and brighten a heart patient's day this February during Heart Month. Grab the banner from my blog and display it on your own blog 
or share it on social media
Thank you!

On February 1, we will have a reminder blog hop with prizes!

Stamping hugs,

Thursday, January 05, 2017

By the Sea ATCs with Cardz 4 Galz

Hello, dear blogging friends!
I hope you are enjoying the beginning to the brand new year!
Seems almost like Sci-fy to say, "2017"!

It's time for a new Cardz 4 Galz challenge!

Badges are awarded for the Spotlight Winner and Top Picks.

Challenge #38 theme is selected by teamie Aly - ATCs - Artist Trading Cards! 
You may have 3 separate submissions, and have as many ATCs as you like on each submission.  

so get crafting and show us your delightful, colorful, mini creations!
Be sure to keep your ATC at 2.5" x 3.5", either landscape or portrait.
Challenge ends on January 18.

I've been stamping since 1989 and never made an ATC prior to this challenge!
Gulp! Please take a look at my team members' samples - they are incredible!

We are enjoying another warm winter, with record breaking temperatures, so it only seems fitting to use the beachy stamps in my stash:

Stamped with images from: Club Scrap Sand Dollar 2003, Magenta Leaves 09180-M, Netting "Me and Carrie Lou", Anna Griffin Greetings using Timber Brown Staz-on, and colored with Zig Markers which are so EASY TO USE - and well worth the investment!

The edges have been heat embossed with Magic Speckle EP175, assorted mixture of SNS EPs around edging, Nuvo Copper Gilding Flakes, as seen in this fun demo:

A little Mother of Pearl Nuvo Mousse was placed atop the star on the sand dollar, and 2 colors of glitters to the sea plants.

Apologies that the shiny elements "blur" the photos.

SU Touches of Texture, Inkadinkadoo Scallop Shell 97114-LL, Inkadinkadoo Flourish (around edge), and Anna Griffin Greetings using Stone Gray Staz-on, and Zig Markers. The same EPs were used around the edge. Then I distressed the EP by applying Nuvo Pen Glue randomly, and applying the Nuvo copper Gilding Flakers.

We Galz want to see all your fantastic mini creations!

Link it up here: Cardz 4 Galz

Products: Images listed beneath each ATC
Challenges I'd like to support:

Crafts Galore Encore Challenges - Anything Goes! 2/1

On the Home Front:

My sweet hubby custom designed and built our new TV console:

Here is the before:

Instead of staining the wood, we decided to paint the furniture so that the inside colors blend with the outside colors of the house and pool.