Paper Pros Challenge - GREEN Twist Panel birthday card

Our monthly no-pressure for-fun Paper Pros challenge has a theme of GREEN. This could only mean one thing . . . frogs!



I decided on a 4.5" square side-fold card and the Twist Panel die set. I went stash diving to find a couple of frog stamps and the greetings. I colored the frogs with colored pencils and fussy cut them out. The frames and banners come included with the Twist Panel set. The "Celebrate" word is from Word Set 2.


As the card opens the panels start to lift and twist.


Because I chose a side-fold card, the panels end up as a vertical stack in the open position. 


The rubber stamps are all old ones from my stash. The large frog is Bullfrog, by All Night Media (1982). The small frog is Froggie, by Hook's Lines & Inkers, (1993) and the Wart's New is Art Impressions (1996). The Happy Birthday is a clear stamp from Pebbles. To highlight the scalloped frame I used a gel pen to add stitch lines connecting the dots.


Here is the assembly video for the Twist Panel die set:

Make sure you check out the blogs of the other Paper Pros who are participating this month to see more GREEN inspiration.

Karen Burniston Designer Challenge 07 - Coffee & Cake

Welcome to our March 2018 Designer Challenge with a theme of Coffee & Cake. I challenged the team and our guest designer to use either the Coffee Cup Pop-up or the Cake Pop-up for a card.

For my card and video I couldn't decide which die to use, so I decided to combine them. The bottom two layers of the cake are used as a pedestal for the coffee cup - a completely reasonable celebration of such a magnificent beverage! Watch how I did it here:

In the closed position this card measures 5" x 6" and will mail easily in an A7 envelope. For the front decoration I mimicked the look of the pop-up, trimming pieces of the cake and scalloped trims and then topping with one of the Coffee Charms, styled in the same colors as the pop-up version. The spotted patterned paper is an old piece of Bella Blvd. paper called Thankful. The other papers were just scraps from my stash. 


Once open, the pop-up pedestal expands, revealing the coffee cup, which holds a gift card. The ribbons are stamped in bright colors, embossed with clear powder, and then trimmed into individual strips. 


The scalloped trim pieces that come included with the Cake Pop-up would normally act like frosting, but for this card I wanted to decorate the two tiers as platforms, so I turned the trim scalloped-side-up to act as a decorative molding instead. The Coffee Charms adorn the upper platform while the beans that come included with the Coffee Cup Pop-up decorate the lower platform.

ThanksALatteCloseUp ThanksALatteBoth

Karen Burniston die sets are sold at many of your favorite local and online retailers worldwide. We are always looking for new retailer partners, so please ask for these products at your local store. 

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As usual, the team really hit it out of the park with their cards this month. We also invited a guest designer to participate this month. In all cases you can click on the designer's name to open their blog post in a separate window. Those blog posts will give you more photos, information and supply lists for their particular cards. 

1040_CoffeeCupPopUp Coffee Cup Pop-up Cards

Karen Hasheck is joining the challenge this month as a guest designer. Her Coffee Cup pop-up card features a great color scheme with pops of royal blue. Click over to Karen's blog to see more of her work and find links to her YouTube videos. Karen also runs a children's charity challenge blog called Send a Smile 4 Kids to collect and distribute cards for hospitalized children. How amazing is that?!! We are thrilled that she was able to join us this month.

KH_a kb coffee

Karen Aicken chose such an exquisite color scheme for this card. I love her choice to use the Birthday Charms hat on the front of the cup. So lovely!


Fran Sabad also chose an amazing color scheme for this refreshing card. I love all the floral accents and the pretty elements.


Kelly Booth found a twenty-year-old logo stamp in her stash that was the absolute PERFECT choice for the Coffee Cup. Plus, the stamp is still available! Love the crisp colors to this happy card.


Shelly Hickox has such a way with textures. This masculine version of the Coffee Cup pop-up for her son's birthday is perfection. By the way - if you're looking to impress a man in your life with a handmade card - try a pop-up card!

Shelly hickox coffee cup birthday pop up

 1028_CakePopUp Cake Pop-up Cards

Frances Byrne created this delightful cake card using stamped birds and bright fun colors. I predict that a lucky 8-year-old is going to be very impressed with this card!


Summer Hills-Painter was very clever with this idea to swap out the top tier of the cake for palm trees for a tropical-themed birthday card. Mermazing indeed!

SHP_March challenge

Helen Cryer has such a talent for combining patterned papers. This beauty includes bunting on top of the cake and a floral surround. Gorgeous! 


How inspiring! Hopefully these ideas by the team have your mind buzzing with wonderful pop-up ideas. Join us next month, on Wednesday, April 4, 2018 for our next challenge, with a theme of HIP TO BE SQUARE - we will all be incorporating a square or squares into our projects.

Happy Crafting!

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Save the Crafty YouTubers Video Hop

We are proud to be a sponsor of the Save the Crafty YouTubers Video Hop. 

Sponsor Post YT

A huge thanks to Justine Hovey for organizing this huge event. She explains it so well:

"Our Save the YouTuber hop was put together in order to help out the many crafters that are affected by new YouTube rules that require a number of views and subscribers in order to earn money. Some of the biggest names in the industry, along with some companies, have come together to help those in need and to bring YOU, the audience, some amazing new tutorials from artists you may have never seen before. After you are finished watching each video, you can click the link in the YouTube video description to check out the next person on the list. The more videos you watch and comment on, the better your chances are to win 1 of over 120 prizes!”

For my video I show a fun combination of the Twist Panel die set and the Coffee Charms die set. If you leave a comment on the YouTube video (click to watch and comment on YouTube, not here on the blog) by February 26, 2018, you are entered into a drawing to win the two die sets I used in the video, or a $25 Simon Says Stamp gift certificate, or two Catherine Pooler Designs ink pads. (Note - the ink pad prize is for US residents only.)

Now because the hop is so huge, we were instructed to create shorter videos of around 6 minutes. As you can imagine, it was hard to teach all the parts of this card in that amount of time, so if you end up winning or purchasing these dies you'll probably want to watch the full assembly videos, which can be found here:

This card measures 4.25" x 5.25" when closed, so it will fit nicely in an A2 envelope for mailing and plan on the extra ounce stamp because of the thickness. To make the coffee rings I used a plastic cup and brown ink. The rectangle window and frame were cut using pieces from the Twist Panel set. The coffee cup and hearts came from the Coffee Charms. This is also my card for the Paper Pros February "Love" challenge as I love, love, love my coffee!


As the card is opened the panels start to twist and open. You can see how the coffee cup is attached to the back of one of the panels so it is visible in the closed position, but then disappears as the card is opened.

 To decorate my panels I dangled Coffee charms from frames cut with the pieces that come in the Twist Panel die set. (There are 15 dies included in that set, so you have everything you need for decorating!) I used strips of washi tape around the transparency window pane and added a rectangle at the bottom as a place to sign the card. The patterned paper is an old piece of Little Yellow Bicycle (FLH-107) from my stash.


The Catherine Pooler Designs Inks are so vibrant - they worked perfectly to color the Coffee Charms. The coffee stamp came from Hobby Lobby.


If you are just getting started with hopping I suggest you start on Justine's post here: Save the Crafty YouTuber Video Hop

Karen Burniston die sets are sold at independent and online stores throughout the world. As always, we encourage you to ask for the dies at your local stores. If you are sadly without a local store, you can always shop on our website OR at Simon Says Stamp.


Have fun on the hop!

Feb 2018 Class Cards - Scrapp'n Savvy

This Tuesday I'll be at Scrapp'n Savvy teaching two sessions of this card class. Both sessions are sold out, which is really very kind of all my regular students, who sign up for my classes without having any clue what they'll be making. (Thanks, my friends!)

We'll be making a coffee card, using the new Coffee Cup Pop-up, Coffee Charms and accessorizing with square from the Spinner Square. The greeting square can be flipped if you prefer to change out the greeting and make it more of a hot chocolate/apple cider card. The finished card measures 5" x 5.5" and can be mailed in an A7 envelope.


We'll also be making a birthday card using the Cake Pop-up, accessorized with Happy Birthday and labels from the Katherine Label Pop-up. The finished card measures 4.5" square and can be mailed in an A7 envelope.


You'll be receiving the Spinner Square die in your class kits, and you will do some of the cutting on this card with your die. This card uses the Spinner Square Pop-up, Sea Animals, Palm Tree and Tropical Scene dies. The finished card measures 4.25" x 5.5" and can be mailed in an A2 envelope.


As usual, it's an ambitious class, but we'll do our best to leave with three finished cards. If you're in class, here's what you need to bring:

  • Die Cutting machine with plates and platforms for wafer-thin dies.
  • Removable tape to hold dies in place.
  • Pokey tool to eject dies
  • Liquid glue in a fine tip bottle - VERY IMPORTANT - there are small pieces on these cards and you need to be able to glue them down. (You might bring your Xyron X sticker maker if you have one)
  • Other adhesives - tape runner, double-sided tape, small glue dots, pop-dots
  • Black pen to color in the crab's eyes. 
  • Save the card photos to your tablet or phone OR print them out to refer to in class.
  • Optional - brayer to press down glued items
  • Optional decorating items - inks for edges, Wink of Stella or similar glitter pen

See you Tuesday!

Karen Burniston Designer Challenge 06 - Castle!

Welcome to our February Designer Challenge with a theme of Castle!

I challenged the team to incorporate the new Castle Pop-up die set into a project of any theme.

For my project, I wanted to show an idea for using the Castle in a bottom-fold card with a semi-transparent cover so the castle is visible in the closed position and then expands into a 3D castle upon opening the card. I chose a sand castle birthday card but you could adapt this idea to any castle theme. Watch the video tutorial here (e-mail subscribers - click the title of the blog post to find the video - can't anyone solve this annoying problem for me? Why don't the videos play in the e-mails? Anyone? Anyone? Please?)

This card measures 4.5" square when closed and will mail easily in an A7 envelope for no additional postage. I used a double pane transparency window filled with sand. I like how the sandy window offers a hint of what's inside.


The top of the card features a foldover magnetic closure:


I used several other dies to decorate this card as a fun birthday party where the Sea Animals are playing in the castle.




Karen Burniston die sets are available at many independent and online craft stores throughout the world. As always, I encourage you to ask for them at your local stores. If you are sadly without that option, you can always shop on our website. Here are supply links for most everything used in the video:

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But wait . . . there's more! Much, much more! Check out these seven amazing Castle creations by the Design Team. For each card, I encourage you to click the name of the Designer, which will open their blog post in a new window. You'll find more photos, supply lists, tips, tricks, etc. on their individual blog posts.

Shelly Hickox shows that castle pop-up cards aren't just for kids! Check out this stunning Queen for a Day castle card, complete with ivy growing on the walls. Shellypiece!

Shelly hickox castle card

Fran Sabad made matching boy/girl gift boxes and tags with the Castle die set plus related royalty accessory dies and I am blown away! Who wouldn't love to get a gift in a box like this? Amazing!


Kelly Booth was very clever by using the heart Cake Trim die to make glasses for the dragon! I love that! As usual, her coloring skills are exquisite and I love her choice to incorporate some pink into this anniversary card. Pink is for everyone!


Karen Aicken created an undersea castle! Brilliant! She used the floating floor die that comes with the House and Fence and then decorated it with a lot of new dies. I love how she converted the mermaid into a merman!


Summer Hills-Painter has three little boys and created this fabulous "you slay me" card using the Castle on the Spinner Square Pop-up. I love the bright regal colors and how the knight spins out from behind the square as it opens.

SHP_feb 2018 challenge 5

Frances Byrne created this absolutely fabulous sand castle card featuring the mermaid on both sides of the card so it looks great from any angle. She mixed in some stamped greetings that fit the theme perfectly. I want to go hang out on this beach!


Helen Cryer made this princess castle and it is perfection! She has such a gift for mixing patterned papers and I love the addition of the path and the Outdoor Scene in the background. Beautiful!


The team did such a great job of showing the versatility of the Castle Pop-up die set. Join us next month on March 7, 2018 for our next Designer Challenge with a theme of Coffee and Cake. We can choose to feature either the Coffee Cup pop-up or the Cake pop-up. Doesn't that sound delicious?!

Happy Crafting!

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Winter 2018 Palm Tree Pop-up Assembly Video

NOTE: If you are reading this blog post in your e-mail because you subscribe to this blog, just know that I have been unable to figure out why the YouTube videos don't play in the e-mails. You have to click the name of the blog post to find the video. If anyone knows how to fix this, please tell me! Please! 

Here's the video tutorial for the Palm Tree Pop-up die set. All dies are available NOW! 

I love this die set for its quick, easy assembly and because you have the option to use it in a top fold card or a side fold card and it looks good either way. Versatility! And coconuts!


My video card measures 6.75" x 5" when closed and will mail easily in an A7 envelope. The front of the card is a simple lead-in to the magic inside, using the Tropical Scene and Sea Animals with the Palm Tree. I used an older Stampin' Up! stamp from my stash for the front greeting.


As the card opens the two palm trees start to lift up. 


Once open, the two palm trees pop-up and the hammock is suspended between them. The greeting is a combination of the Happily Ever After die and Congrats from Word Set 1. I thought this would be a great greeting for a retirement or honeymoon card.


I also posted the assembly video for the Sea Animals die set:

All dies are available now and have shipped out to independent and online craft stores throughout the world. As always, we love it when you ask for these products at your local stores first, but if you are sadly without that option, you can always shop on our website.


Storage Idea: Blending Foam Trays for Distress Oxide Inks

And now for something completely different! Ha ha.

Here's a quick video showing an idea for how to store your round blending foams underneath the large Distress Oxide ink pads with the velcro-side-up by making little storage trays to fit under the ink pad.

Feel free to grab the SVG for your electronic cutting machine OR the PDF if you want to hand cut your own. NOTE - make sure your printer settings are set to 100% (actual size) when you print the PDF. The trays should measure 1.5" tall when printed full size.

Download SVG_BlendingFoamTrays_by_KarenBurniston

Download PDF_BlendingFoamTrays_by_KarenBurniston

To download the files, just click on the links, which will open them in a new browser window. Then use the "File" menu at the top of the browser to save the files to your computer.

Share the files with anyone - they're free. 

Oh, and one more thing - it is completely possible that someone else has already posted this type of idea. I didn't do any research - just thought of it while chatting with Fran, made the file, it worked great, so I'm sharing it. End of story. No toe-stepping intended, I promise! 

Happy Crafting!

Winter 2018 Spinner Square Pop-up Assembly Video

ACK! In good news, the new Winter 2018 dies start shipping out TOMORROW! Store orders have already been shipped, so you will see these dies showing up in your favorite local and online stores any day now. In bad news . . . I still have assembly videos to complete!

Today's assembly video is for the Spinner Square Pop-up. This die has no theme and will work for any occasion. There are so many possibilities with this one! Watch the video tutorial:

I decided to style the Spinner Square with some of the new tropical dies for a fun "hello" card. The card is a standard A2 card - 5.5" x 4.25" when closed and will mail for a single stamp in an A2 envelope.


When the card opens the shark will spin down from behind the square to say "hello"! The Spinner Square makes cards that people will want to open/close/open/close! 



Karen Burniston die sets are available at many independent and online retailers throughout the world. We love it when people ask for our products at their local stores. If you are sadly without a local store, you can always shop on our website. The dies have just arrived in time for our promised ship date of February 1st. We do have a lot of orders to fill, so they will be processed in the order received.

And now . . . back to more videos! Thanks for watching!

Winter 2018 Cake Pop-up Die Assembly Video

Happy Tuesday!

I'm plugging along on making assembly videos for the Winter 2018 Die Collection, which starts shipping this week.

This new Cake die sports a classy hexagon shape, and thus the folds at the side of the cake which are necessary for it to fold flat become part of the design. It also includes scalloped trim pieces, a bride and groom and mirror-image candles. Optional accessory dies include a large script Happy Birthday, a set of Cake Trims and a Numbers set.


Learn the assembly of this die by watching this video:

I decided to use this assembly video as an opportunity to make a special birthday card for my Mom who turns 70 this year.


The front of the card is just a simple lead-in to the magic inside. There are two candle dies in the set, so it didn't take long to get a whole line of them to decorate the card's front. The oval and heart came from the Katherine Label Pop-up. This card measures 5.5" wide by 4.25" tall when closed (standard A2).


As the card opens the cake starts to pop-up.


Inside I've used the Happy Birthday die set above the cake, the Numbers set on top of the cake, and the Katherine Label for a place to sign. The patterned paper is Authentique "Infused" from my stash. 


Karen Burniston die sets are available at many independent and online retailers throughout the world. We love it when people ask for our products at their local stores. If you are sadly without a local store, you can always shop on our website. The dies have just arrived in time for our promised ship date of February 1st. We do have a lot of orders to fill, so they will be processed in the order received.

Winter 2018 Die Assembly Videos - Royalty and Coffee Dies

Just one week left until our Winter 2018 die release starts shipping. My goal is to have all of the assembly videos up before the dies ship and I'm plugging away on them. So far I've completed videos for the Royalty dies (Castle and Accessories) and the Coffee dies (Coffee Cup and Charms) See those videos below and also on the product pages linked below each video.



Shop: Castle Pop-up Die Set

Shop: Knight and Dragon Die Set

Shop: Princess and Mermaid Die Set

Shop: Word Set 5 - Royalty Die Set



Shop: Coffee Cup Pop-up Die Set

Shop: Coffee Charms Die Set

All of the new dies, plus a restock order of the Tag Book Pop-up will start shipping February 1, 2018. Stores around the world have already ordered, so definitely ask for these products at your local store if you are lucky enough to have one. Even if they don't carry our products now, please ask if they'll order them in for you. We make it easy for retailers with convenient online ordering and low minimums, or they can order through a distributor. 

And now . . . back to making videos!