Wednesday, November 3, 2010

One-Layer Wednesday 27: Christmas Kindness and a Give-Away

This week's OLW was inspired by an email Jennifer and I received from Rhonda Schmidkunz. Here's the first paragraph of Rhonda's email:

"Thank you to both of you for continuing the one layer card challenge. I don't participate in the challenges (mostly cuz I'm too computer illiterate to figure out how to post pictures), but I have been dependent for awhile on the challenge results. You see, I head up a group of gals that make cards for the ND State Penitentiary inmates to send to their families and friends. Recently one of the deputy wardens put the kabosh on layered cards. The problem with that is that it threw myself and the rest of our cardmakers into a tailspin as layered cards are pretty much all we knew how to do. I found Susan's site and we have been so excited with the ideas, examples and knowledge that one layer cards CAN be made. Susan, you have been one of the key ingredients to keeping our group going (even if you didn't realize it)."

After re-reading that, I need a minute to collect myself. *sniff, sniff*

Sorry, but it's a huge warm fuzzy knowing that your little ol' challenge is helping fellow stampers do some good in the world. All of you who have posted cards to the OLW are inspiring Rhonda's group. How totally cool is that? She and her stamping friends are showing kindness and positive encouragement to people who may not have had much of either in their lives.

And you know I'm all about kindness and encouragement.


This week's OLW is to make one-layer holiday cards (Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa) that meet the requirements for the North Dakota State Penitentiary, as outlined below. While it isn't a requirement of the challenge, if you want, you are invited to send your OLW27 cards to Rhonda's group, who will send them on to the prison.

To show some kindness and encouragement in this warm and fuzzy challenge, I'm doing two give-aways!

1. A random entry from the InLinkz posts this week will win a $15 gift certificate to either Mark's Finest Papers, Shady Tree Studio, Stampin'Treasures, or Papertrey. The deadline for this drawing will be Tuesday, November 9, at midnight.

2. A random entry from the cards actually sent to Rhonda will win a $20 gift certificate to any one of the four companies listed above. Send your cards to Rhonda Schmidkunz, 518 14th Street NW, Minot, ND 58703. To be entered in the give-away, you must send your cards so Rhonda receives your cards by November 30, 2010.

The cards you send to Rhonda will go to the North Dakota State Penitentiary in Bismarck, North Dakota. It is a 600+ men's prison for 18 year olds on up, with many in their 30s and 40s. The majority of them have wives, children, parents. A few of them only get a visit once a year from family so cards are a nice way to keep in touch. Even those who get more visits enjoy sharing a holiday card with their family. With 600+ guys, any Christmas cards we can send would be very much appreciated!

OLW27 Rules

1. A one-layer card is defined as a single piece of paper folded in half. No other layers allowed!

2. Make a December Holiday card that meets the North Dakota State Penitentiary rules for cards, as follows:
  • No metal (brads, wire, etc.)
  • No gemstones or pearls
  • Limited glitter
  • Flock, ribbon, embossing, and punched shapes are okay

3. Upload your card somewhere online and link to it using the InLinkz button on the sidebar of Simplicity.

4. The most important rule of all is to HAVE FUN!

[photo removed by author]
stamps: Mark's Finest Papers Bells on Bobtail (Nov. Release)
ink: Versacolor
paper: white (PTI)
accessories: ribbon (Mark's Finest Papers)


  1. Great challenge -- I'll be sending a card to Rhonda. By coincidence, my daughter's Brownie troop is making goodie bags for the kids at our local Ronald McDonald House and I was trying to think about how to close up the bags and I thought about the ribbon treatment you used on your cards but I forgot how to do it. Thanks to you, I know how to do it again!

  2. Its amazing to think that someone out there gets so much from your blog and then in turns helps so many wonderful.
    Great set of cards!

  3. What a great idea! Rhonda and her group are doing such a good thing. Thanks for giving us the opportunity to help them out!

  4. What great story you've shared! And way to go, Rhonda and your friends. You may have inspired me to hop out of hibernation for a bit to help spread the love. Thank you! Thank you!

  5. Working out of town at the moment but will definitely get it done. Love yor samples. I love that method of tying a bow. I've used it for years and it looks so cool and gives a really finished look.

  6. Susan, what bright and pretty cards! Very easy, very clean, and very pretty. Great letter from Rhonda, wasn't it. You just never know whose lives you're going to touch. I'll be sending you some, Rhonda!

  7. I've always done the challenges just for myself - to stretch my creativity, expand my style of card-making, etc. I never really thought about it being of help to others too. Thank you to Rhonda for letting us know!

  8. Oooo, your cards are deliciously gorgeous!

  9. Thanks for sharing the letter and challenging us to share our cards. Do they need envelopes with the cards?

  10. what a great new way to add ribbon!!! very CAS and perfect!!

  11. Another really wonderful challenge. It certainly gets one thinking about the impact of blogging. I hope they get a lot of really wonderful cards. Thanks Susan!

  12. Thanks Susan for the challenge! I´ll send the card to Rhonda!


  13. I too have looked to your blog for one-layer ideas. A friend's son is an inmate in Nevada and they cannot have layers, ribbon, glitter, or any embellishment so that is even more limiting and pretty much leaves stamping, coloring, and sponging. I do send him jokes but would like to send cards to brighten his days. Prison rules vary widely.

  14. Morning Susan, thank you for the wonderful comments. I can't put my finger on why I find holly such an appealing holiday image but I do. It certainly infuses more than my cards - all my holiday decor, dishes and even my small but tasteful tattoo. The code for the accent in my name is ALT+138. I can't wait to see everyone's cards and will be eagerly awaitng next week's challenge. Have a wonderful day.

  15. A wonderful story and a wonderful idea. I will definitely send some cards to Rhonda, thank you for this challenge.

  16. such beautiful simple cards thanks for sharing

  17. Fun challenge. I am definitely going to play along. Did want to mention I love that you explained the ribbon technique. I can NOT tie bows to save my life. I have a ton of ribbon I never use for that reason. I think this is something I could actually do so I am going to give it a try! Thank you so much!

  18. Very classy cards. Thank you for the opportunity to enter although I did put OLW 17 on my link it really is for OLW27 as my title says :o)
    Jackie xx

  19. Hi.. I have just participated. How do I send the card/s to you or Rhonda.. I am from Malaysia and it will take at least 2 weeks to reach you.
    Let me know the address. Hugs..

  20. Annieambriel, the address is listed in the description of the give-away above. Thanks so much for participating!!!!

  21. My cards are going out today. Give it at least 2 weeks. I can get cards to Europe faster than I can get them to the US sometimes.

    I did include envelopes just in case.

  22. The cards are starting to roll in - every day is an exciting adventure to go to my mailbox. Our group (The Folding Angels) would like to thank all of you for your participation in Susan's OLW. It is exciting to see all the unique ideas and experience the generosity of so many of you.
    Thanks from the bottom of our hearts.

  23. Wow - so simple but very effective.

    I'm going to give them a try.

    Thanks for sharing


  24. Your donation of cards has arrived safely. As with most of the cards coming - they look even greater in person than on the blogs. Thank you so very much for sponsoring this awesome challenge. Our group has been overwhelmed by the international response. We have gotten so many neat ideas for one layer cards. The guys at the pen have been so excited to see where the cards are coming from. The generosity of the cardmakers with their donations of cards and their kind words has been astounding. If I had my thesaurus handy, I would have even more adjectives to describe my appreciation and the thanks from our whole group. Rhonda

  25. Oh, Rhonda, I was planning on emailing you this weekend to see how it was going! Thanks so much for the update. I think it's especially cool that you all are telling the guys where all these cards are coming from. I hope it makes their holidays just a tiny bit brighter to have a kindness done to them by strangers.


  26. Today I received 50 beautiful cards from Tai probably from the Los Angeles area. There was a lovely note but no return address or email. I'm hoping she will look at this blog and know that her contribution is greatly appreciated. Rhonda from The Folding Angels cardmaking group.


Thank you so much for taking time to comment!