Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Spotlight's On.....

Susan Raihala

I first became acquainted with Susan on Splitcoast Stampers quite some time ago. Her screen name is LateBlossom and she has a wonderful gallery of cards. I was immediately drawn to her blog, Simplicity and have been an avid follower ever since. Every morning I can count on an email notifying me of a new post, and if I read no other blog, I always see what Susan has to offer for the day. Here are 5 reasons why I like (love) Susan's blog:
  1. Her style of cardmaking is clean and simple. She often makes one-layer cards using white cardstock. Although they are never fussy, they are extremely interesting and creative. Often times, stickles or rhinestones are her only embellishments  She can create without having to own all the latest stamps, die cuts, punches, ribbon, and fancy embellishments. That's good, because I don't need any more temptations! In fact, Susan, doesn't even own a Cuttlebug and rounds her corners (perfectly) with scalloped scissors. Think of all the money she saves not having to buy embossing folders or Spellbinders! What self-control! 
  2. She uses her cards to illustrate great techniques and tutorials, and the explanations are very clear and concise with detailed photo instructions. Her blog is filled with an enormous amount of excellent content that all stampers can learn from, no matter what level of experience they have. By looking at the right sidebar you can see that she has a wealth of valuable information to share. And she never seems to run out of ideas. 
  3. I love the appearance of her blog. It also is clean and simple and was a major factor in contributing to my decision to start blogging this year. I saw so many blogs with bells and whistles, ads and cutesy things, and I just didn't want to go there. The more I saw of Susan's blog, I was convinced that I could stay true to myself and just write about what I loved to do-- in the only style I knew. I would continue to add interesting and relevant content and hopefully someday my blog would measure up too and people would find it. I saw that simple was good and other people loved it just as I did. 
  4. Susan is sensitive to her readers' requests for particular areas of help and interest. Recently I did not understand something she had done on one of her cards and asked a question about it. Before long I received an email from her referring me back to one of her previous tutorials which cleared up my question. Not everyone takes the time to do that, believe me!
  5. Susan has a witty sense of humor! She was blessed with a creative style of writing (probably being an English major has something to do with it) and she makes every entry iinteresting to read. Some are down-right hilarious! One that comes to mind that I must direct you to is her commentary on pears that you can find HERE. I commented that I would never look at a pear in the same way again!  And if you know me, you know that I did love pears! But the one that is my all-time favorite is her memory of childbirth and the epidural man which you must read HERE. By the way, these gems are accompanied by lovely cards also! So if for no other reason, you should become a follower because Susan will bring a smile to your face. One of her followers referred to her as the Erma Bombeck of the Stamping World! We needed one! 
Susan has a huge following and no less than 20-30 comments are left each day. They are fun to read if you have the time, and it is clear to see that everyone greatly admires this lady. I bet she is a fun friend too!

My thought is that at the end of the day, a lot of us are just looking for a friendly place where we can come for a fresh and fun idea. We don't want to wade through a bunch of music, tutorials we have to buy the supplies for, challenges we can only enter if we use certain stamps, flashing blinkies, or COMPLICATED cards with big bows that do not go through the mail. We all have busy lives and are lucky if we get any time for cardmaking at all. So, in my eyes, Susan, you are what it is all about! Thanks for the inspiration!


  1. Wow, what a great tribute to Susan. You said what all of us followers think, but just never put it all together. You are right on every count, and I add my adulation to yours. Susan is amazing in so many ways. She wears a lot of hats, and does justice to every one. I'm so glad for the day I e-mailed her years ago, asking about one of her cards in the SCS gallery. She wrote back immediately and at length, and I've been a fan of hers ever since. Thanks for putting such a lovely voice to our thoughts.

  2. Just found your blog by way of Simplicity. I, too, get her emails each morning and look forward to them. I have to admit that I do like to go nuts sometimes with layers and ribbon and embellishments but I usually reserve that for the wall art I make or for cards I will hand deliver. I find the CAS style wonderful for producing several cards quickly and it's a great way to spur me on to make more cards. Your tribute to Susan was spot-on. I've been poking around your blog this morning and find it well maintained, inspiring and a delight to read! Your tutorial for the ribbon technique was excellent - very easy to follow and make sense of. I look forward to many more wonderful posts.

  3. 100% agreement - Susan rocks - I love the way she starts my day with a laugh! I have learned MORE from her the past 6 months(since I found her wonderful blog) than from any other stamper out there and if you think that CAS cards are simple -- nope, there really is a placement art to them!

  4. Ok - I just spent an HOUR perusing your blog --fun information, and I love the variety. I am looking forward to your future posts!! TY

  5. Donna, What a wonderful post you've written about Susan. I completely agree! I've been following her for over a year now, and have learned so much from her. And I'm not even new to the hobby!

    By the way, you have wonderful blog too.

  6. I love the way you wrote about Susan's style..true on every count..I was a messed up crafter..I did not know where my style of cards day I'd do layers and hate it, then I'd add more layers and not like it still..but then I found Susan's blog and I knew, it wasn't bad to hate layers..Been in love ever since..and it helped me find my style too...Now I'm a firm believer in CAS cards and I'm absolutely un-apologetic about it..

  7. So many wonderful comments and you've all said it so much better than me! Thank you for making my day.


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