Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas!

We hope your December has been as stress-free as possible and that you're enjoying a lovely season full of family, friends and treats galore! 

Meanwhile, we're debuting the official 2015 ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ header and badge. As always, we'd love to hear your wonderful ideas for upcoming prompts, or maybe you'd just like to guest design with us sometime? Let us know by emailing jinglebellesrock @ hotmail (dot) com!

We'll be back next week, at 12:01am on Thursday, January 1st, to kick off the 2015 holiday card-making season! Hope to see ♥YOU♥ then!

Stephanie and Lauren

digital credits for 2015 header: 
software: photoshop elements 9, adobe; elements from "an icy christmas" full kit by amber shaw and studio flergs, sweet shoppe designs; background paper: "damask tonals xmas paper pack" by katie pertiet, designer digitals; jingle bells from "retro holiday artplay palette" by anna aspnes, oscraps; shell font (free) from, with glitter layer style from the sadly now retired "over the rainbow" glitter set by studio flergs. any questions? email lauren at llaurenb @ hotmail (dot) com and i'll do my best to answer!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Jingle Belles Rock

Sometimes, when people first hear that we ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ make one holiday card per week, every week, starting New Year's Day and ending around Thanksgiving, they think it's a pretty crazy idea. And who knows? They may be right, but we've got two excellent reasons for staying crazy:

Reason #1: We get to spend eleven months marveling over the amazingly beautiful and creative ideas our fellow Belles think up... and link up!


Reason #2: We get to spend December doing... well... whatever the heck we want; instead of stressfully mass-producing holiday cards!!!

The bottom line is: we know this works for us! If you know it works for you, too, or even if you just think it might... we cordially invite you to meet us back here at 12:01am, January 1st, 2015 when we'll kick off our fifth year (!) of holiday card-making festivities! For now, we'll leave you with our favorite pics of the year, the official card piles which represent the 2014 ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ season:

Meanwhile, we thank everyone who came along to hang out with us this year, and wish you all the very happiest and healthiest of holiday seasons!

PS: We'd love to see ♥YOUR♥ card pile, so why not link up a photo?! Or, if you're still working on cards, consider this "Anything Goes" and link your gorgeous holiday creations, and leave some love to your favorite card artists!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Christmas Delicious

What a delicious Christmas Feast you created for us at Jingle Belles.  Here are a few that we thought were particularly scrumptious.


created a card wtih a merry little Christmas Pudding ... isn't he adorable.


shows how you can use little stamps to make a big statements ... her rows of perfectly colored presents & gingerbread men are a delight.

combined glitter, burlap, rick rack & sequins for an adorable holiday design ... and that gingerbread man looks good enough to eat.

A huge thanks to everyone who helped make another year of Jingle Belles a roaring success ... we hope you've enjoyed taking back December ... one holiday card at a time.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Visions of Sugar Plums ...

We're still celebrating the Christmas Feast this week ... making cards featuring our favorite holiday eats and drinks.

Here's what we're dining on this week:

Stephanie says, "This week I'm dining on Gingerbread Men ... and remembering how much fun I had making and decorating them with my Grandma (the strip of gingham is in honor of our festive Christmas Apron).  I created my own polka dot background using a Hero Arts Ink Dauber (more details on my blog) ... bring on the Christmas baking."

Lauren says, "I'm dining on hot cocoa-- my favorite-- with some peppermint candy on the side! The current sketch at Stuck On U Sketches was exactly the jump start my design needed. It's quite a fun coincidence that putting the "Happy Holidays" sentiment just below the Santa journaling card, and clustering those on the sketch's strong horizontal line, kind of makes it look like Santa is emerging from a particularly festive and well decorated chimney!" :)

Friday, November 21, 2014

Christmas Feast

This week's prompt is all about the Christmas Feast ... we're asking you to create a holiday card which features food or drink of some sort... candy canes, gingerbread men, sugar plums, christmas cookies and hot chocolate, or the Grinch carving the roast beast ... whatever yummy foods and drinks mean Christmas to you.

Lauren says, "For me, at Christmas time... or the rest of the year... when you say, "treats" i think, "SWEETS"; this is true in both art and life! :) So when I realize I have a beautifully realistic (but made of lightweight plastic) candy cane AND some lovingly hoarded Hambly Christmas paper, I'm all set to make a food-related holiday card! Especially if Cardabilities Sketch #111 is particularly awesome... which it is!"

Stephanie says, "This card is an example of what happens when my husband and I design a card together.  I asked him for ideas for this prompt, and he kept singing "O' Christmas Corn" ... and thus this design was born.  Since we live in Iowa, I have a variety of corn stamps ... so I colored my corn stalk with Spectrum Noir markers (GB3, GB4, DG1 & DG2) and then decorated it for the holidays with sequin ornaments and bling for the lights  Every corn field needs a few Christmas critters, a star & some presents ... and of course our typed Christmas lyrics."

Whether you favor candy or corn... or anything delicious that falls in between... have fun making your "Christmas Feast" card and link it up here by 6pm (EST) on Wednesday, December 3rd. Keyword for galleris and flickr is JB:14:24.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Outdoors and Outstanding!

There were soooooooooooooo many amazing cards this time, we are nearly overwhelmed (but in a good way!) by your talent and creativity. If you haven't checked out all the lovely entries, please give yourself the treat of scrolling down to the "Great Outdoors" gallery and reveling in the blizzard (again... in a GOOD way, lol!) of inspiration your fellow belles have brewed up. Meanwhile, here are a few cards that made us feel especially delighted:

...not only constructed a jaw-droppingly lovely and detailed holiday landscape, she is donating this and many of her other Christmas greetings to a very cool non-profit group called the "I Feel the Love Project" which sends cards to hospitalized children. Now that *REALLY* puts the "Great" in "Great Outdoors"! ♥ (You can read their FAQ here!)

...already impressed the heck out of us by creating this incredibly tiny and totally beautiful snow scene; but then we found out the whole thing is constructed in a discarded cheese container??! Holy wow! (WHY didn't WE think of that, eh??!)

...made this amazing dimensional shadowbox card that would be a feat of engineering even if it wasn't also incredibly beautiful... which... it IS!  (She claims it was easy to make; but we think she's just being modest!)

Many thanks to every single one of you who shared your gorgeous work with us! We'll be back at midnight to kick off the last prompt of the year (can you BELIEVE it?!) with some cards we hope will be a feast for your eyes! ♥

Friday, November 14, 2014

Still Outdoors

We've been ♥LOVING♥ all the amazing ways you guys have found to incorporate The Great Outdoors into your holiday greetings! We were so inspired, we came up with a second round of cards ourselves! :)

Shanna says, "Over the last couple of winters, I have spent a significant amount of time in the great outdoors learning to RIDE! There have been bumps and bruises (thank goodness for helmets), sore muscles (remind me to tell you about the time I couldn't lift my leg high enough to put my sock on!), massage therapy, physiotherapy (for an injury sustained from trying to catch myself from falling yet again!), and LOTS and LOTS of soaks in a tub containing epsom salts. Can you say mid-life crisis?!?! I can't explain wanting to learn to snowboard at 30-something any other way! In the end though, I can't explain how very gratifying it was to finally get it! Anyhow...a few weeks ago I got my hands on a new winter sports themed stamp/die set from Simon Says Stamp and was itching to play. This was the perfect opportunity to try out my new snowboard dies! The snow is falling here in Canada, it won't be long until we can get geared up and hit the slopes!"

Stephanie says, "I love when a stamp is so well-designed that the card almost makes itself. Artistic Outpost Snowy Woods is stamped in navy with a bit of color and sparkle from gold & clear Wink of Stella pens."

Lauren says, "I was inspired by the current photo and sketch from Fusion Card Challenge, "Embossed Ombre". I combined part of a freebie Christmas card, a page from an old Ideals magazine, and a strategically trimmed piece of patterned paper... all in shades of blue with snowy trees; then added a tree diecut from layers of lacy doily as a finishing touch."

Friday, November 7, 2014

The Great Outdoors

This fortnight's prompt is the rather brilliant idea of our lovely guest star and fellow belle Shanna Cameron Picard, whose outdoorsy family loves winter sports and other fresh air pursuits. Shanna has wonderful childhood memories of being outside, as well, so when she suggested making holiday cards with an outdoor setting, and we realized we've NEVER used this theme before, we said, "Yes, please!" as quickly as possible, and signed her up to come join us. We've got some pretty good examples to share with you, but first let's meet Shanna:

"Besides the obvious papercrafting stuff, i love to read, garden, hike in summer/fall, ski & snowboard in winter and do yoga regularly. I consider almost anything that involves time spent with my boys outdoors to be time well spent. I am one of those people who wants to try everthing but am always working to find balance in life. My day job involves working with children who are blind or living with vision loss and requires frequent travel throughout Northwestern ON. The travel can make life very busy, but i LOVE what i do. I consider it my life work rather than simply a job."

Did we mention that she also makes incredibly lovely cards? And we can prove it, too... see?

Shanna's Card

Shanna says, "I had been wanting to try my hand at creating a collage-style card and this seemed like the perfect opportunity since I was hoping to incorporate a number of things on just one card. I have many fond memories of time spent in the great outdoors growing up and tried to portray some of them here. When I was a little girl, we sometimes went hunting for a tree the old-fashioned way, by tromping through the bush until we found one that was just right, no need for tree lots in the country - hence the trees and snowflakes. We all learned to skate shortly after learning to walk, whether it was at the local rink or on the tiny pond in the pasture - so I had to add the silhouette of the skaters. The overall vintage feel of the card reminds me of Christmases when I was a small girl when we would drive the country roads to Nana & Papa's house to spend most of Christmas day with family in their big old house - warm & cozy memories!"

Stephanie says, "I love this night-time outdoor snowy scene from Hero Arts Merriest Christmas Wishes.  I added a few spritzes of Summer Sky Fireworks spray for snowy shimmer & colored my cardinal with Spectrum Noir colored pencils.  I finished with a sentiment bubble from Holiday Conversation."

Lauren's Card

Lauren says, "When I first started thinking about this theme, I went looking for an image in my vintage stash that showed a snow-covered cabin in the woods or maybe Santa's workshop at the North Pole, but then I came across this gorgeous October Afternoon Holiday Style paper and it occurred to me that there's just as much Christmas Spirit... (and just as much OUTDOORS, for that matter)... in the city as the country, so I built my card around this bustling urban scene using the current Retro Sketch!" 

So whether your ideal outdoor holiday scene is a snowy forest, sparkling city lights, or Santa relaxing on a sandy beach under a palm tree, add that to your next card and link it up right here before 6pm (EST) on Wednesday, November 19th! Keyword for galleries and flickr is JB:14:23.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Christmas Creature Congrats!

We always love seeing the creative creatures that come visit us at Jingle Belles ... here are a few of our favorites from our Creature Feature.


shared an adorable (and perfectly colored) Christmas Platypus ... isn't he a cutie.


created this adorable holiday reindeer (with twine & a tiny jingle bell around his neck) to adorn her fabulous cutlery pockets ... wouldn't these make your holiday table festive!

Sybrina K

made this adorable trip of penguins using an *owl* paper punch ... how clever is that ... and don't they just make you smile.


used both markers and pencils to bring this row of little creatures to life ... and she added a Santa Hat to each one for the perfect finishing touch.

Make sure you come back tomorrow for our next holiday prompt ... so you can use November wisely to stock your holiday card stash ... and take back December, one holiday card at a time.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Creature Feature

We love all of the fun you're having with Christmas Creatures ... here are a few more that we made.

Stephanie says, "For me, Christmas isn't Christmas without a Yeti or two ... my sister and I always exchange a variety of Yeti fun over the holidays, so this card will likely find its way to her.  Stamps are Lawn Fawn Yeti Set Go (colored with Spectrum Noir Markers) and sketch is Mojo Monday."

Lauren says, "I fell in love with these beautiful felt cardinal stickers, but then I was a bit puzzled as to how I would use such tiny elements on a card... UNTIL... I saw this week's Retro Sketch which gave me the perfect plan!"

Remember, you have until 6pm (EST) on Wednesday November 5th to link-up your Christmas Creature Creation.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Not a CREATURE was stirring ...

Yes, sometimes we love prompts so much, we revisit them each year ... like this one.  

We wait all year for October not just because of the money we raise/donate to fight breast cancer (thanks again to everyone), but also because October is the month that celebrates creatures, costumes and characters.

This prompt is to create a holiday card that features a *creature*. Your creature might be a mouse, a moose, a bird, a robot, elves, reindeer, snow-people ... or yes, even a Monsta. Just have fun with it ... you know we did.

Stephanie says, "I love mail-themed images, so I could not resist featuring this super-cute digital puppy from Mulberry Wood. I added a stamped sentiment using this week's Mojo Monday Sketch."

Lauren says, "Ok, so, here's a shocking true confession for you: a biiiiiiiiiig part of the reason we do a "Creature Feature" at Halloween each year is so that I can make a Christmas Monsta card (or two!) fair and square. What can I say? I'm a woman of simple pleasures, and these cards make me inordinately happy! I used Sweet Sunday Sketch #241 because it totally rocks, and a pink robot bunny monsta dude cut from my ancient Paperchase giftwrap because I still can't believe how totally AWESOME you guys made this year's PINK XMAS celebration! Thank you!" ♥♥♥

So now it's time to see how *YOU* will feature a creature! Link up here before 6pm (EST) Wednesday, November 5th; Keyword for galleries and Flickr is JB:14:22.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Best Gift Ever!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for helping making this the best ♥PINK CHRISTMAS♥ in Jingle Belles' history, both in terms of the loveliest cards submitted and the most money raised, as well! Counting the "extras" that so many of you placed in your posts, there were a total of 144 cards!!! Calculating those at $4 each, we've amassed a total donation of $576 for the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and we could not be more excited, more grateful or more proud of you guys for making it happen!


Choosing only a few cards to feature is ALWAYS a difficult task, but this fortnight it was nearly impossible, since every single cardmaker seemed to be at peak performance, as befits this special occasion! But choose we must, so here are a few particularly prime pink creations. ok, yes, there might be a few extras, but hey, this was a special occasion!

...combined stamps, embossing powders and papers; then she topped her gorgeous blingy, sparkly tree with that awesome pink ribbon!

Diane from Lydia's Post
...made SEVEN uniquely beautiful cards that each cleverly featured a beautiful vintage element of some sort! This sewing pattern lady is a fave, but be sure to check out this post, also.

...pretty much defines the phrase "Merry and Bright" with her amazingly minimalist, yet still satisfyingly sparkly, creation!

Donna Digby from DAT's My Style
...made SIX fabulous pink creations, all using the same stamp set; now that's what you call flexible! (Be sure to check out her other creations here, here, here, here and here!)

...made two equally gorgeous versions of pink poinsettia perfection that each made us feel a bit swoony! (There's also lovely green one, as well, and it's so cool to see how different they all are!)

Joyce M from Cards-by-the-Sea
...made TEN (ten!) beautiful CAS masterpieces, each one amazing in its own right, so be sure to check our her other posts herehere and here!

Finally, our heartfelt thanks to the supremely lovely Jessi Fogan for sharing our hostessing duties, linking up gorgeous extra cards in the readers' gallery, and just generally being a really fun person to hang out with! ♥ We'll be back at midnight with a new prompt we hope will help you appreciate the creature comforts of the holiday season!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Almost at the finish line...

...of our PINK CHRISTMAS prompt raising money for the Susan G. Komen Foundation. We are overwhelmed (in a really really GOOD way!) by how many of you have already joined us, but if you still want to play, there's some time left before the link closes, tomorrow night at 6pm, Eastern.

 Thank you very much to everyone who's participated!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Daniel Craig wants you to make a ♥PINK♥ Christmas card!

Ok, sorry, that's a total lie, but it got your attention, darlings, didn't it? Which was my point. This is Lauren, as if you didn't guess, lol; don't tell Stephanie I've hijacked the blog for a minute, ok? 

Not to be shamelessly self-promotional... well no, actually that's EXACTLY what i want to be, but not for myself... for our JINGLE BELLES "Pink Christmas" prompt! I know you already know we're making ♥PINK♥ holiday cards and that for each one linked up we'll donate $4 to the Susan G. Komen Foundation; I also know you know there's a post with all the details and a cool challenge graphic right below this one. I hope you'll scroll down and check it out, then link up a card (or two, or ten?!) and then tell all your friends! Thanks very much for your support, now back to our regular ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ reminder post!

We're still feeling in the pink, so here are the cards we made this week:

Jessi says, "I went with a sassy boob image... I figured it was fitting given the cause, lol. This card took a little longer to create than usual, as I kept starting cards and then -DOH- forgetting pink."
*shakes head*

(Lauren says, "Jessi, I am soooo happy to hear I'm not the only one who does that!)

Lauren says, "I hardly ever take a 'do over' on cards, but I actually made the card you see here last week, and I really liked it, but for the grand debut of Pink Christmas 2014 I decided it wasn't quiiiiiiiiiiiiiiite pink enough for my liking. So I made the ornament card and posted it first. But of course your card doesn't have to be all pink or even mostly pink... it just has to have some noticeable pink on it, and this one definitely fits the bill; plus I have always adored and hoarded the mustard gold Christmas paper Rhonna Farrer designed for Autumn Leaves years and years ago with the swirly trees on it, so this seemed like a great time to use one of those!"
Stephanie says, "I went *all PINK* this week using three different pink designer papers (none of which are actually *Christmas* papers) and two pink cardstocks.  The layout is this week's Retro Sketch and stamps are from Clearly Besotted."

Friday, October 10, 2014

♥PINK♥ Christmas!!!

We're pretty sure everyone who's ever played along at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ saw this one coming, but that doesn't make it any less exciting! Yes, once again, in honor of October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we are celebrating ♥PINK CHRISTMAS♥! What does that mean? Well, we'd like to see holiday cards with a noticeable bit of pink on them, and for every card you guys link up, Stephanie and Lauren are each donating $2 to the Susan G. Komen Foundation!

There's no limit to how many times you play, so please link early and link often!!! We'd also love for you to pass the news along to all your card-making friends, so we've made a special challenge graphic and a paste-able blurb to make this really easy to blog about! :)

The "Pink Christmas" prompt will run at JINGLE BELLES from 12am on Friday, October 10th to 6pm on Wednesday, October 22nd; as in previous years, Stephanie and Lauren pledge to donate $4 per linked-up card to The Susan G. Komen Foundation.

The only requirement is that all link-ups be NEW holiday cards with some noticeable pink on them... so in other words, not just Rudolph's NOSE, lol!

Participants may use sketches, combine challenges, and include any other colors in addition to pink; you can showcase however many cards you'd like in one post, don't worry, we'll still count every single one of them towards the total!

Thank you very much for your support!

To give you even more than the usual amount of inspiration, we're pleased as punch to welcome our very lovely and mega-talented friend Jessi Fogan!

Here's what we made:

Jessi says, "I'm absolutely THRILLED to be joining the Jingle Belles for their annual Breast Cancer Awareness challenge - this is a cause very close to my heart, as my oldest friend is a recent one year survivor! Living across the country I couldn't be there in the traditional ways to support her through her battle, but dye my hair pink? I can do that. Surprise her with this? I can do that too! Angela's written about her journey much more eloquently than I ever could - her blog is right here. She's FUNNY, and I love her. "

Stephanie says, "It's probably not surprising that I purchase almost any holiday paper collection that includes pink ... this card features the vintage Christmas Carnival Collection from KaiserCraft.  I used a sketch from Winnie & Walter's World Cardmaking Day Challenges ... and I really have no explanation how I ended-up featuring a sock monkey ... sometimes you just have to go where the Muse takes you."

Lauren says, "It's definitely *NOT* a requirement of the challenge to make a card which is ENTIRELY pink, but you can if you want to... and I seriously doubt anyone is surprised that I wanted to, lol! It might be easier than you think, however; I'd like to point out that apart from the sentiment strip which is trimmed from some Echo Park Christmas paper and the rhinestone snowflake, there are NO holiday products on my card. Most of the smaller bits of patterned paper are scraps, even!"

 So why not take a good look at ALL your pink supplies and make some pink ornaments or pink trees or pink sock monkeys or heck, how about some pink reindeer?! This is *DEFINITELY* a case of "more is merrier" so please tell your all your card-making friends and let's raise as much money as we possibly can for Susan G. Komen! Keyword for galleries and flickr is JB:14:21. Link closes at 6pm (EST) on Wednesday, October 22, 2014. Thank you for joining us! ♥♥♥

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Pretty Paper

We loved seeing all of the creative ways you combined beautiful designers papers.  Here are a few that particularly caught our eye.

Becca Cruger
(isn't that a great blog name)

used three fantastic holiday papers on her background ... and then created her own embellishment using a fourth paper (so clever)

Deborah Frings 

used her designer papers for some rockin' paper piecing ... I seriously want one of those hats ... and the plaid cardinal is awesome.


Used a perfect combination of patterns and colors for this gorgeous designer paper gem ... oh, and did I mention she made twenty-five of these ... go girl!

We hope you'll come back tomorrow for some COLORFUL October fun.

Friday, October 3, 2014

The Patterns & The Designs

We're still celebrating designer paper at Jingle Belles this week ... creating cards using at least *three* different patterns (same or different company or collection, it doesn't matter, as long as it includes three different ones).

Here's what we created with our papers this week:

Stephanie says, "I used another favorite designer paper technique this week ... using squares of six different papers (this time from the same collection We R Memory Keepers North Pole), a few SRM Stickers, and a sketch from The Paper Players.  I use my punch upside down, so I can see where I position my square to capture the exact portion of the design I want to feature.   This is also a great technique for paper scraps."

Lauren says, "I was totally inspired by the current sketch at Stuck on U Sketches, and immediately thought the three overlapping rectangles would be a great use for the tags that used to come with older Basic Grey collections. Once I had the centerpiece of my design assembled, I only had to choose a few additional patterns to be my mats. I went with one large scale and one small scale red pattern (by k and co and october afternoon, respectively) and a plaid by Echo Park to bridge the gap between them, while also pulling in some of the other colors from the tags" 

Remember, you have until Wednesday at 6pm EST to link up your patterned paper beautifies.

Friday, September 26, 2014

We Three Kings

Our Jingle Belles prompt - We Three Kings - is to encourage you to dig into your stash of designer papers (you know you have them!) and use at least three different patterned papers in your card design.

This may happen by cutting into your favorite hoarded pieces ... or  by digging into your scrap pile ... You can combine three different patterns from the same coordinated collection, or branch out and choose unrelated prints that you just happen to love. Be brave, be colorful, and have fun!

Here are the cards we made this week celebrating designer paper:

Lauren says, "I've actually got six different patterns here, though admittedly some are featured more prominently than others. The MME blue background is pretty obvious. The two red prints by 7 Gypsies from which I've die-cut my "appliqued" quatrefoils are very similar, but one has a shiny accent that adds just a little variety. Pattern number four is the very pale white-on-white by K and Co which constitutes my card base; whilst the last two are snowflakes in my focal point stack: reddish polka dots by Glitz down towards the bottom and pale blue swirls by Basic Grey up towards the top!"

Stephanie says, "My inspiration came from the photo at the Weekly Christmas Card Challenge. I started going through my hoarded 12"x12" papers and pulled out pages that featured reds and pinks (none of which are actually Christmas papers or from the same paper collection). I combined them using this week's Sweet Sunday Sketch. The strips of paper melted into the background design, so I matted them with dark brown cardstock, which helps all of the patterns work together. My focal elements is another pocket card, which makes cardmaking so easy."

Link up between now and 6pm (EST) on Wednesday, October 12th. Keyword for galleries and flickr is JB:14:20.