Art Strips? Trash to Treasure? Absolutely! Every day I learn and relearn ideas that I can apply to my card making and scrapbooking. Recently a fellow Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator, Christine Versluis, posted her Art Strips. HELLO (picture me head thumping). I save my cool scraps and use them individually why not group them together in a collage.

I have always been an advocate of saving those tiny scraps, unused stamped images, ribbon bits, scraps from die-cutting and paper trimming, embossed papers, doily bits, embossing paste gone wild pieces, etc. Mine are in a clear bin on a shelf. I highly recommend limiting the size of your bin and performing this ritual at least once a month if you are a prolific paper crafter. Scraps can quickly add up and overwhelm. Just remember that they would have been in the trash so it is ok to throw them out at any time because you can always make more.

Here are 5 cards that I created from my Stampin’ Up! Pieces & Parts bin to create Art Strips.

collage card
Collage card
collage card
collage card
collage card strips


Now are you ready to tackle the box of scrap pieces & parts and take the trash to treasure plunge? Here is my method

  • Dump out the container of pieces and parts on the table.
  • Sort by color. I do the subtle, bright, regal, neutral grouping.
  • Find a base piece. Any size will work. You can trim it down or die-cut to a circle, triangle, square, etc.
  • Breathe deeply. I find sing-a-long music helps move my brain out of analytical mode.
  • Grab a color grouping and start attaching bits to your base piece. Do not overthink this step.
    • Tear paper to fit
    • Add stenciling with ink or embossing paste (even tinted)
    • Try embossing piece mid-way through
    • Add a color wash to change the entire look
    • Use Stampin’ Blends and add shading or color
  • Trim your piece to fit your project (in my case, a card). And then the options are limitless
    • Add a frame layer
    • Create a focal cluster
    • Use up retired embellishments
    • Add a sentiment. I had several imperfect sentiments that are perfect on this kind of project.
  • Layer on an embossed card base for some additional tactile interest.



Here is one of my raw panels. I used a half sheet of cardstock (5-1/2″ x 8-1/2″) as my base. But that is not necessary. You can use any size or shape as your base.

Can you find the gnome?


Now for some advanced thinking. If you don’t like the color of something change it. Yes, change it. Use Stampin’ Blends or ink dauber or sponges. Paint? Why not?

Add a random photo. Use color pencils to tint the photo.

This is your work. There are no instructions to duplicate because you can’t repeat the same thing twice. That thought alone should give you freedom. And WOW you have art strips to use on cards or in scrapbooks. This is definitely a Trash to Treasure adventure.

Go get your artsy on! I would love a chance to be your Creative Coach and Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator. The color coordination across the Stampin’ Up! product line is phenomenal. This project will definitely bring that point home. Go create those Art Strips and take the trash to treasure plunge!


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