Saturday, August 11, 2018

Save the Independents By Judi Kauffman

This morning's email brought an impassioned plea from Seth Apter, a year after he posted something similar and this time prompted by the announcement that a store in San Diego where he was scheduled to teach is shutting its doors.

Seth's words are an urgent call to action for all who love independent brick and mortar stores like The Queen's Ink: SHOP, he says, and then shop some more. Otherwise, the places where we take classes from people like him, the places where we get personal attention and answers to our questions and find unique items will disappear! We simply have to support our favorite local stores for them to thrive and survive.

He makes the case that independent retailers are an endangered species, not to be taken for granted. I'd like to second the notion. If you haven't been to The Queen's Ink lately, what are you waiting for?

Here's the link to his blog post - read it, share it, take it to heart!

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

New Class! Merry Mermaids - Tuesday, August 28th at The Queen's Ink

Join Nancy at the The Queen’s Ink on Tuesday, August 28th for a new Copic marker class featuring a variety of fun mermaid themed stamps from Impression Obsession. We'll make three cards in this class, with emphasis on creating simple mixed media backgrounds to compliment your Copic coloring. Details are below. All necessary techniques are taught in class. Seats are limited, so sign up today! CLASS FEE: $25

Tuesday, August 28, 2018, 1:00 PM – 3:30 PM

Register online or call the Queen’s Ink at (301) 497-9449

BRING TO CLASS: The list below reflects the Copic markers that I will use in class. You can follow along using the same colors OR substitute colors based upon your personal Copic collection. Please bring all your markers to class and make sure your Copics are marked with Washi tape or some other means of identification. Markers are available for purchase at The Queen’s Ink.

Students will receive a 10% discount on Copic markers. I will be available prior to class to help with selection.

PLEASE NOTE: You must bring your own markers to participate in class. If you need markers, please contact The Queen’s Ink in advance of class. If you wait until class time, you may not be able to purchase the markers you need.

  • V20: Wisteria
  • Y02: Canary Yellow
  • Y38: Honey
  • R22: Light Prawn *
  • R24: Prawn *
  • YG06: Yellowish Green
  • BG10: Cool Shadow
  • BG13: Mint Green
  • B000: Pale Porcelain Blue
  • B02: Robin's Egg Blue
  • B05: Process Blue
  • B18: Lapis Lazuli
  • E000: Pale Fruit Pink
  • E00: Cotton Pearl
  • E21: Soft Sun
  • E93: Tea Rose
  • 0: Colorless Blender
* NOTE: R32 (Peach) and R35 (Coral) can be substituted for the R22/R24 combination. 

OTHER SUPPLIES:  Please bring:
  • 3 ink blending tools and clean foam refills (such as Ranger Mini Ink Blending Tools / Foam Refills)
  • Distress Oxide ink pads in Mermaid Lagoon and Cracked Pistachio
  • Liquid glue that dries clear (such as Ranger Multi Medium Matte)
  • Scissors suitable for fussy cutting
  • Foam adhesive squares
  • Tape runner adhesive or double-sided tape.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

It's Time for July's Art du Jour!

Join Kate, Kim, and Nancy next Tuesday, July 17th, for our monthly Art du Jour workshop! This is your opportunity to add to your greeting card stash and be prepared for any pop-up occasion. Drop in on your lunch hour, or on your way home from work, or come for the whole day (10:30 - 4:30)! At only $3.00 per project, it will be easy to build an entire card "library." Work at your own pace, choose the styles that fit your taste and needs, and chill out with tools required! Check out this month's versatile offerings (below), then plan your day at The Queen's Ink! Here is a peek at the cards on deck for Tuesday. Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

You Got This. By Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

Patti gave me the summer off from providing tutorials for the blog, but that hasn’t kept me from visiting the store and doing some shopping! And I missed doing a weekly project, so I thought I’d pop in now for some show and tell, even if I’m allegedly on vacation.
I always look at the RubberMoon display as soon as I walk through the door. How could I possibly resist the stamp with the little fellow riding a 7-legged dog? (Is it a cat in a striped shirt? Is it a spotted pup that resembles a mutt from our neighborhood? Who knows, what does it matter.) I LOVE THAT STAMP. Into the basket it went, along with the one that reads ‘Support your Friends. Obviously they need it.’ 

I also bought several embossing folders and some inks and – well, you know how important it is to support the store all year round, but especially right now when Patti’s recovering from surgery. I can’t think of a better ‘Get Well’ present than for her to rest easy, knowing we’re all doing our share.

I rushed home to make some quick and easy ATCs. Artist Trading Cards are the perfect size for this particular stamp duo! And while I was at it, I whipped up a slightly more complicated ATC with a pocket stapled to the front and a tag inside. (I added some stamped words but could have spelled them out one letter at a time using an alphabet set.)

But, like on those late-night TV commercials on cable, THERE’S MORE… I ended up with two pieces that didn’t fit the required size of an ATC and those became the focal point of a pair of cards.
No instructions today, just a bunch of photos and a supply list. I think the cards are easy and self-explanatory. 

I hope your summer is going well. Stay cool, everyone. I’ll check in again soon.



  • Stamps – RubberMoon
  • Black ink
  • Assorted markers and pens
  • Cardstock in white, Kraft brown, blue or other colors of choice
  • Glitter dots, hearts, and flowers (peel-offs)
  • Staples, twine
  • Optional: Word or alphabet stamps

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Channeling Picasso and Matisse by Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

I keep a box on the table next to the die cutting machine into which I toss the little pieces that fall out of die cuts that have been backed with double-sided adhesive, along with small die cuts I make from larger scraps (shapes like circles or folder tabs or clipboard hardware that are under an inch in size).

I started this habit as a way of keeping the table clean and to avoid bending over a short trash can that sits on the floor near the table. Little scraps have a mind of their own and will fly all over the place! Every now and then I empty out the box, but not before I spend some time playing with the pieces before tossing them.
For a long time, I only created whimsical animals and characters like the little fellow above, but this time I decided to channel two of my favorite artists: Picasso and Matisse!

Above are some Picasso-inspired figures. Below are more that channel Matisse.

One thing led to another, and during the same creative marathon I used some newsprint scraps for a pair of cards. They incorporate circles that had been wiped against canvas coasters to remove some black paint to help speed the drying time as well as a bit of quick stenciling. I embossed the left side of one to reinforce the star motif and brushed on some gold paint to add sparkle and highlight the embossing.


Start with an Internet image search to give you a sense of what Picasso’s and Matisse’s work looks like, especially the collages and Matisse’s late-in-life paper cutouts. Use them for inspiration.

1. Save a bunch of adhesive-backed scraps from die cutting words and leaves and other such shapes. Hint: Scraps from large, flourish-filled words and leafy branches provide fabulous leftovers!

2. Cut some circles in your favorite dark colors, cut some white cardstock rectangles. Alternatively, work directly into an art journal or onto ATCs or folded note cards.

3. Arrange and rearrange the little scraps, cutting them here and there as needed. (It’s not cheating!) 

4. Expose the adhesive on the back of the shapes and adhere when things look good to your eye! Turn the circles into ornaments or add them to card fronts. Add the decorated rectangles to card fronts or mat and frame your favorites.

5. Add Lure Eye stickers for eyeballs and use almonds, elongated ovals and other shapes that resemble eyes and eyelids.

6. Keep going: Use other kinds of scraps like newsprint. Stencil or stamp on the pieces, use them for cards.

7. Optional: At any stage in the process use an embossing folder to add pattern and texture.


  • Die cut scraps backed with double-sided adhesive prior to die cutting
  •   (origami paper, Shimmer Sheetz, velvet paper sheets, cardstock)
  • Painted newsprint scraps
  • Solid color cardstock in assorted colors
  • Stencils (shown: Seth Apter for StencilGirl Products)
  • Paint
  • Circle dies or templates
  • 5mm and 7mm Lure Eye stickers (Stanislaus Imports,