Happy Anniversary, Mike and Paulette!


This last week, Paulette and her hubby Mike celebrated their anniversary. Most anniversaries are special, but theirs is just a little bit extra special.

Mike and Paulette met during Paulette’s first year of college. Mike, a young Marine, was out with two fellow Marines, all trying to meet girls (of course)! The three men serendipitously arrived at the dorm where Paulette was visiting with friends, and destiny took over. Paulette spent most of that evening talking with… not Mike. But by the end of the evening, Mike persevered, asking for (and receiving) Paulette’s phone number. It would only take him several weeks to muster the courage to actually call her!

But then destiny really did take over. After dating for six weeks, Mike (who would soon be deployed overseas) asked Paulette to marry him. To which she replied, “I’ll have to think about it!” And indeed, Paulette, 19 years old at the time, would marry Mike 6 weeks later.



In Paulette’s office, a photo from the early days.


They would only be married for 6 weeks when Mike would be deployed overseas. Just before he left, Mike brought Paulette a vase and told her that she would be receiving something special. That next Saturday, and every Saturday that followed, Paulette received a single rose for her vase, a token of love from her husband nearly half a world away. Mike was first deployed in Japan, and would also be sent with the first wave of troops to arrive in Vietnam. They wrote back and forth daily, sent recorded tapes to each other, and no doubt missed each other dearly.

Mike returned to the US, and the first Christmas tree they shared as a married couple was decorated with the bows that had come from each of the roses. Paulette had saved them.

It was a chance encounter that easily could not have happened, but it did. Now each year on their anniversary, Mike sends Paulette a red rose for every year they’ve been married with one pink rose to begin the next year. What a guy!!




Happy Anniversary, you two! It’s clear you share a love that is very, very special!


Michelle Gustafson

Paper Wishes Blog

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Pop-Up Box Card with Gold Shadow-Stamped Acetate!

Happy Wednesday! Here’s a gorgeous card that you might not have seen! Gail designed it for our Stamping 101 page—if you haven’t visited before, you should take a look. Stamping 101 features stamping basics, plus more advanced techniques, helpful hints, information on ink pads and of course, more projects!

Designed by Gail Booth

Designed by Gail Booth


Designer Tip: Stamping on acetate with Metallic StazOn® can be slippery, so use light pressure. I used a color printer to journal “Mom” on the back panel, but black would work fine, or you could write “Mom” with a burgundy colored marker.



1. Card base: Cut six 2½”x2½” and one 2½”x5½” Roses & Lace green lace papers. Use Gold StazOn® to stamp the lace border centered at the bottom of three square pieces and the one long piece, then mat all of the pieces on the large pink rose paper with 1/8” borders. Follow the die-cut pop-up box instructions to assemble the box with Ultra Tape, but don’t install the inner supports yet. Close the box and lay flat on your work surface. Glue the stamped matted pieces onto the bottom panels with the long piece on the back panel (the one without an upper scored flap), then the remaining pieces onto the upper flaps (these will flop downward when the box is opened).

2. Card front: Open the box with the flaps down and the long panel at the back. Cut four 2 5/8”x2 5/8” pink lace papers. Journal “Mom” in burgundy on the center right side of one piece. Stamp the lace border in gold centered at the bottom of three pieces and at the top of the “Mom” piece, placing the scalloped edge on the edge of the paper. Cut 1/16” around the scalloped edge of the stamped lace, then mat all of the pieces on burgundy lace paper with 1/16” borders. Punch holes along the straight edge of the stamped lace, 1/8” from each side, and two holes centered at each scalloped valley, as shown. Lace with 1/8” ivory grosgrain, tying a bow at the center of two pieces. Glue the stamped matted pieces onto the three folded down panels and the “Mom” piece on the back panel, with the lace on the outer edge of each panel, and the bows on the center panels, as shown.

3. Supports: Stamp the lace border in gold centered at the top of two 2¾”x1½” green lace papers. Cut 1/16” around the scalloped edge of the stamped lace, then glue the strips even with the bottom of the two inner supports. Ultra Tape the two supports in place, as shown on the pop-up box instructions, close to the top open edge of the box (the lace edges extend above the opening.

4. TECHNIQUE: Shadow Stamping on Acetate: Stamp “Thinking of You” and “Wishing You a Beautiful Day” in gold on the heat resistant acetate, then stamp the same images over the first ones again with Scarlet SurfaceZ ink, offsetting the image up and to the right a bit for a shadow effect. Let dry, then cut out the sentiments and Zot™ onto the front and back panels, as shown. Use the same technique to stamp several small flowers, butterflies, hearts and scrolls. Cut out around the edge of each stamped image.

5. Zot™ ¼” wide strips from the acetate that comes with the pop-up box onto the backs of the pieces and Zot™ the other end of the strips onto the backs of the supports, arranging the pieces as shown. Zot™ on a scroll on the back panel and two tiny butterflies on the front and back panels.

pop up box cards     roses and lace papers  lacy things stamps


This card is just stunning, and our Pop-Up Box Die-Cut Cards will deliver flawless results! I hope you’re feeling inspired and ready to do a little creating of your own! Thanks for stopping by. 🙂


Michelle Gustafson

Paper Wishes Blog

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Using Amazing Sticky Stencils with Gelatos!

Earlier this summer, I asked our in-house designers what were some of their favorite new craft products, and LeNae immediately declared, “Sticky Stencils!” So naturally I had to try them out for myself! I was so impressed that I just had to show you too, along with a technique that utilizes the wonderful “sticky” properties of these stencils!

Sticky stencils, as you might expect, are sticky on one side. Simply peel them off their backing sheet, and press onto your project (I like to press the center down first, and work outward). Once it’s in place, you’re ready to go, and because the entire stencil is sticky, you use a more watery medium for your stenciling without having to worry about it bleeding underneath. No taping down required! The “Beautiful” stencil is from the Beautiful Words Sticky Stencil Set (which I LOVE).



For my stenciling, I just scribbled a bit of green Gelatos® onto my “craft sheet” (below). Then swirl in your Water Brush (or wet paintbrush) to make a paint!






Just fill in your stencil and fear not!—your sticky stencil will keep your Gelatos paint from bleeding. Peel your stencil up to see the magic! Sticky stencils peel up perfectly, without harming your project. Then just wash them (I let mine air dry) and place them back onto the backing sheet—they’re still sticky!

You can see in my top picture, the wording it is still a little wet on the edges, but it dries quickly for that great watercolor look! Another neat thing about this technique is that once you’ve done your stenciling, you’ll probably have a little Gelatos® paint left over, and you can use it with your brush to carefully “connect” your lines where the stencil breaks up the image, allowing for a more continuous look! So fun, and especially great for word stencils like these!


Click here to view the product page

I’ve been having a blast playing with these sticky stencils—they make it easier than ever before to stencil a “beautiful” image! I truly consider them a miracle product and can’t wait to try them with other colorants. Paper Wishes® has lots of sticky stencils—click here to see them all. We even have sticky stencil sheets, so you can design your very own custom sticky stencils using your cutting dies, a craft knife or your Silhouette machine! Now I better quit “playing” and get back to work! Thanks for stopping by!


Michelle Gustafson

Paper Wishes Blog

PS — For even more Sticky Stencil fun & project ideas, watch the webisode here!

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Paulette’s Birthday Surprise!



 Happy Birthday, Paulette!!!




Monday was Paulette’s birthday and Sandy, our VP of Operations who you can see standing behind Paulette, organized a surprise celebration! Hot Off The Press employees hid in the lunchroom, ready to shout out a big, “SURPRISE!!!!” to a completely unsuspecting, wonderfully shocked Paulette.


Yep, the web team is ready to party!

Yep, the web team is ready to party!




Of course—a handmade card, signed by all!



Chocolate for all!


Sharing moments like these makes it feel like a true “Paper Wishes family.” Everyone enjoyed the large assortment of treats (thank you, Sandy)!  Happy Birthday, Paulette! Here’s to a fantastic year filled with new adventures and amazing memories!


Michelle Gustafson

Paper Wishes Blog



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Stunning Photo Mats from Designer Susan Cobb

Hello everyone!!! I’m glad you’re here. If the Paper Wishes Blog ever gets a little bit quiet, you can be sure we are working on our next catalog filled with all kinds of amazing new craft products, card ideas and scrapbook layouts! It’s coming in less than a month (the beginning of September), but I’ll be bringing you an early look at some of my new crafting favorites that are inside!

We are well overdue for some great papercrafting inspiration, so I thought I’d bring you the best of the best, and falling squarely in this realm are Susan Cobb’s incredible matted photos! These layouts are from past Personal Shopper Scrapbooking Classes monthly kits.

If you haven’t heard of our monthly scrapbooking kits, they are incredible! Each month we send you 24 gorgeous sheets of 12″x12″ scrapbooking papers (before anyone else sees them!), tons of embellishments AND new crafting supplies (stamps, embossing folders, etc.). So here’s a layout that Susan did using some papers designed exclusively for our monthly scrapbookers:




Here’s the first page, close up:




At first glance, you might almost think Susan inked her photo mat edges black, but no! She has matted her photos on black cardstock with 1/16″ borders to provide some great contrast against the soft-colored papers. She then double-matted her photos on coordinating papers, and finished them off with a final 1/16″ black cardstock mat. I just love how clean and defined everything looks!




By consistently matting her black-matted photos on yellow, and then onto her different coordinating papers, it ties all of her photos together for a unified look that I love! She used Pink Jewel Dazzles™ to add the perfect amount of sparkle, and the pink hearts paper matting her upper photos? It’s been embossed with the hearts, and then lightly sanded—what a great way to add in texture! (And yes, the embossing folder was included in the kit!)

Here’s another one of Susan’s layouts, also from our monthly Personal Shopper Scrapbooking Classes kits. You might recognize the Artful Watercolor papers that she used. Monthly scrapbooking members get our newest papers before they are even released—another benefit to joining. In fact, most of us who work here at Paper Wishes are scrapbooking club members mainly for the papers! Yes, they are that good.




So here’s her first page:




Here Susan used the same black matting technique throughout to unify her look. On her photos, she used strips cut from Artful Watercolor striped paper to accent the bottom and side edges of her photos. This technique can also be used to fill the more “empty” spaces of a photo—try this next time instead of cropping!

She has also created her own artfully splattered paper to mat two of her images. You can try this out too! Just place a piece of watercolor paper and lightly brush one side with water. Then, use a toothbrush to pick up your colorant of choice (Susan used watercolor pencils) and run your thumb over the bristles to spatter your paper! You can do this with more than one color, and the colors will run together a bit more on the wet side of your paper. This technique goes great with the Artful Watercolor papers!




Adding the eyelash fibers and paper blossoms to her photos adds even more interest, and the watercolor spattering is continued on the Gold Color Me™ tag embellishment. And all these embellishments (plus lots more!) come with every Personal Shopper Scrapbooking Classes kit. I love pages like this, and I have to thank Susan for creating them. I hope you all feel a bit more inspired, and take a little time out to create. Don’t be afraid to take these techniques to your cardmaking as well! Have a wonderful day, and thanks for stopping by.


Michelle Gustafson

Paper Wishes Blog


PS – To check out other Personal Shopper Scrapbooking Classes projects and to learn more, click here!

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Welcome to Paper Wishes’ Papercraft and Scrapbooking Vlog! Our card making and scrapbooking vlog is the place to visit for inspired project ideas, the latest craft techniques, and the inside scoop on all things Paper Wishes! Visit our card making and scrapbooking vlog to see the latest card designs and scrapbook layouts from the Paper Wishes Design Team, discover new paper craft tools and products, and to learn about upcoming events! Make sure to visit our card making and scrapbooking vlog often so you don’t miss a moment of crafting fun!