Thursday, February 21, 2013

Diagnosis Design #6 Laura Bassen

First an intro...

In medicine, we document using SOAP notes. It is an abbreviation to help keep consistent format when logging information. 

S=Subjective. What does the patient report. Subjective Data. This also includes the Chief Complaint (CC) which tells what the patients main problem is and History of Present Illness (HPI) a history of what happened to bring them in.

O=Objective. What exam findings do you gather. Objective Data.

A=Assessment. What is your Diagnosis, what differentials could there be (alternative diagnoses)

P=Plan/Education. What is the plan for the patient. What do you want them to learn?

This is the format I will use also.

Now lets begin. This is Laura Bassen...she is the 6th one from the left ;)

Tell us about you, your family, favorite dinner recipe, etc. I married a hockey player. We lived in Germany for several years while he played over there. I made pasta at least two times a week for his "sacred" pre-game meal. Five kids later, I'm still making pasta at least once a week, and I think I just might have perfected my recipe. Let's put it this one has a hissy fit when I say we're having spaghetti for supper(like they usually do every other night of the week). Here's the recipe for the Laurafadora Special:) <----click to print recipe! 

CC: There is only ONE Laura! (a family of 7 to care for and still have time to wow us with her talents in blog land. She needs a clone!)

HPI: Laura is a stay at home mother of 5 with a graphic design degree, See? brains too! Now you see why her cards are so spectacular... She went to school for this stuff!!!

How did you start blogging and Why do you blog? I started my blog back in 2008. I just had to go back and look(momnesia). I just realized that I never got a single comment until several months into it. Not that I deserved one because my stuff was sad. My photography was horrid and I didn't know a single sole out there, but it just reminded me how tough starting out can be on one's confidence. I started entering challenges with amuse, Kristina Werner used to have color challenges, and Dawn McVey used to have challenges. That was all back in the day people! You youngins would know this stuff:) There were several interruptions between having babies as well. But my point has taken me a long time, lots of learning about good design, taking good photos and making friends and connections where you can support one another. This took a long time for me.

Do you have any other hobbies? I love trying out new recipes and watching cooking shows, but I rarely get any control of the remote. I also love to play the piano and guitar, but not at the same time.

first published card? March 2012, Paper Crafts Magazine

have you ever been a covergirl? Once for Paper Crafts Magazine and once for Cards Magazine.


Complete the sentence. In high school I was known as_______. That artsy fartsy cheerleader that plays the trombone in the marching band. What?

Has your design changed over the years? Yes. I've become simpler. At least I think I have. I say that, and then the next time I make a card it will probably be loaded.

When was your design aesthetic clear to you? Is it clear? I feel like I bounce around all the time depending whom I'm influenced by. 

How would you describe your design? Clean, simple, color...

Where do you get inspiration from? My Google Reader overfloweth with inspiration. I love Pinterest and all kinds of advertising, logos, graphic art.

Do you have a craft budget? No. I actually spend less than I used to since joining a few design teams. I have been working more and more with what they send me and less time shopping.

how may hours do you spend crafting? Some days I never even think about it. Some days I spend hours. I like to strike while the iron's hot. Sometimes I need a kick, like a deadline to get me in motion.

The best way you can see a persons style is through a body of work. Let me show you what Laura can do. These are some of my most favorites...

Her ability to make her own embellishments and still create a clean impactful design...

Her ability to take a photo and transform it into a spectacular CAS card...

Her incredible ability to stamp flawlessly...

Her ability to use die cuts creatively...

Always being able to take it one step further, masking then stamping on patterned paper...

Whether it be for a party or a baby, she still maintains her aesthetic and keeps it graphic and CAS. She has the ability to showcase a product like no other...

and then there was this card...let me share a story, gather round!

When I first started making cards, I was telling my husband that there were so many wonderful designers out there and they were so good that I didn't feel like I could measure up. He, being the good husband that he is, reassured me and told me that I have talent and DO make great cards.

"Oh yeah?" I said, and showed him the above mentioned card.

His reply?

"Uh... you are gonna have to work harder!"


Do you notice:
  • there is a rainbow in every card 
  • her image is the focal point
  • her cards could translate easily into "doable" sketches?
  • her signature style of big blooms....

  • and her signature plaid...

To see her creative space, her last craft purchase and how she takes photos- watch the video to get a tour!

The cards she makes are generally colorful, clean, consciously simple and ALWAYS have a touch of girl in them. Even when she makes a masculine card, there is a hint of underlying femininity.  

In asking the community what makes Laura stand out amongst the rest and what they like about her work...

KIM HUGHES (Owner of Paper Smooches Stamp Company which Laura is on the DT of) : Laura has a clean and graphic style that many of us are drawn to.  I love her use of color and design.  I think she stands out because she doesn't have a cookie-cutter look...her projects are refreshing and truly unique. Laura is amazing in every way!

MAILE BELLES (Papertrey Ink DT and stamp designer, Studio Calico DT, Paper Crafts Magazine Stamping Royalty 2010): Laura Bassen never ceases to amaze with her genius creations and genuinely fun personality. Her clean and simple style is one I am constantly in awe of. With her unique interpretations of simple products, I'm often left wondering "how did she come up with that?!". For example, check out these cards What?! A folded over heart?! Seriously, in love. Laura is one who truly knows how to make a big statement, all the while staying true to her simple style and I admire her so much for it.

AMBER GERSTEL-KEMP (Clear and Simple Stamps Style Watch Editor which Laura is on the DT of) Paper design is becoming increasingly more graphic with a trend toward more contemporary designs. Laura knows how to combine these like none other. She is an immensely talented stamper and creates precise designs that you kind of just "stare" at and think "how'd she do that!?"  Laura is definitely a stand-out designer in the paper crafting community!

Think you want to join this genre? Watch this video to see Laura's top 5 craft supplies:

The absorber(stamp cleaner):

Versafine Onyx Black ink:

Teflon bone folder:

what music do you like to listen to? I don't really listen to music, although I do love it, but I don't like it on all the time. There's enough noise in this house to fill the void. I listen to what my kids like in the car. I will admit, I kinda dig One Direction, Taylor Swift and the Biebster. But if I had my choice it would be along the lines of Michael Buble, Louis Armstrong, Nora Jones and ofcourse The Piano Guys.

If I had to pick a song that represented Laura to ME, it would be this one: 


Thank you Laura for taking the time to answer the questions and giving me full access to your blog Doublestick Heaven. (go check it out for a BONUS VIDEO)!!!

What is the meaning of your blog title and who designed it? I wish I had a good story for this. I love double-sided tape. I have a drawer full of different kinds. It's my doublestick heaven. The end.


  1. I love Laura and her style, and this DD has just made me love her more! Thanks, Wida, this was awesome!

  2. I KNEW IT!!!!! Thanks for interviewing her :D

  3. I so admire Laura and her clean graphic style! Plus, she taught me the art of plaid. A great Diagnosis, Wida! Perfect song choice, too.

  4. I'm in love with the videos - i'm sitting here giggling to myself...."lemme see if I can get up" - hahaha, and the hubby smirking in the background. I always love it when an immensely talented cardmaker turns out to be a great (and hilarious) person too.

  5. Wow Laura's cards are AMAZING! Such talent, so nice to hear how she began and how far she has come. So inspiring!

  6. Laura's work is amazing! Great video! I love her workspace with all those windows. Thanks for sharing this, Wida!

  7. I *loved* reading about Laura today - thank you so much for bringing her to Diagnosis Design Wida!!! A bevvy of beautiful cards, an interview and article choc-full of personality, some great anecdotes... it's no wonder why this is my favourite feature on your blog!!!

  8. Laura is one of my favorites. I love her simple graphic style that she brings to her cards. I've admired her. I didn't know she had five children. OMG, I admire her even more now. She has the time to design and execute all these fantastic cards with five children to care for? WOW!

  9. I am new to Laura's amazing talent, but WOW. How great to get to know her better, too! I am off to buy some Neenah Solar White cardstock!

  10. Incredible diagnosis! Now it is confirmed...I HAVE to meet Laura!

    The videos were so cute, and I loved getting to know more about her. Thanks Wida!

  11. great interview! I watched all 3 videos, yes, I'm a stalker :)


    hand up "HOLD ON!"

    this made my morning

  12. Wida, this is such an awesome interview! I love getting to know Laura more and hey, her favorite song is the same as mine (we have that song in our wedding). Fun post!

  13. Wow, what a wonderful interview - loved every bit of it, Wida! It was fun getting to know Laura a bit more. I admire her so much - her cards are amazing! Loved the video too, Laura! My favorite part was watching Emma - so sweet! :)

  14. Okay, so I must have scrolled down too quickly and missed your craft space video - but have now watched it. So fun to see where all the magic happens, Laura! And I'm really happy to know how you photograph your cards. No special light box and only natural light - love that! Although, I'd have a tough time leaning over, cranking my neck to focus in on the card each time, but then again, you're younger than I am! :)

  15. Loved this interview and the videos!! Laura is an awesome stamper and designer....I just love her style. Thanks so much for giving us the chance to get to know her better.

  16. This interview was so personable and absolutely delightful. I have once reached out to Laura via email for advice and she is just as nice as she is shown in the videos. Take care and I'm glad to have discovered your blog.

  17. Brilliant interview, love the videos, Laura is a such a joy and her cards are amazing!

  18. OK, so I love Laura's work and have been following her for a while, but now I just love HER! She is so funny, and down to earth, and I love how she was so personable in the video....I mean, there's kids walking in and out, and the hubby is cracking her up. This is real life! Thanks so much for sharing these and the videos!

  19. This was so much fun! Thanks for sharing! I am SO glad to have found your blog :)

  20. Great interview! I love her cards... Some day when I don't make multiple hair bows for every outfit, I will start making cards...with bows, of course. :) AND that spaghetti!!

    P.S. That is one of my top 5 songs

  21. Thoroughly enjoyed this interview and the videos. Love all of Laura's creations, she is so clever with her designs.

  22. Oh. My. Goodness. Wida - what an awesome interview. You and Laura both ROCK!
    It was so much fun to get to know Laura...and her family! I've admired her clean, colorful style for so long.
    Oh. And the song you chose for fave rendition of Over The Rainbow. It brought tears to my eyes.

  23. This was so fun, Wida! Laura is one of my top designers to aspire to and the interview and the video present her JUST like I imagined her to be. Thank you so much!!

  24. Awesome interview, Wida. Love Laura's style and you did a great job writing the interview. Love the bonus videos as well.

  25. Laura is definitely one of my top 5 favorite designers. So great to see a little more of her personality in this behind the scenes look. Great job Wida!

  26. Oh I was happy clapping all the way through this post! What a feast for the eyes!! It's great to get to know Laura better too :)

  27. Laura is the whole package! LOVED getting to know her better and see her creative space. She's a genious!

  28. I LOVE these posts, Wida!! You always pick the designers I want to know more about, and I love the format. Laura is incredible, and so deserving of your feature!!

  29. I was so darn excited to read your post on Laura today that I saved it until everyone in the house was asleep (including my husband!) Free of interruptions, I thoroughly enjoyed my time here! Watched both videos (off to see the bonus one) and LOVED how Laura's daughter was playing with the stamp cleaner cloth in the background of the 5 supplies video. Did you notice that? She was rubbing it all over her face! And what a great personality Laura has! I totally felt like I had come over for a visit and she was showing me her goodies. Once again, Wida, great job bringing such great content to us. You are setting the bar high, my friend!

    PS, isn't it interesting how I didn't even mention her cards? It's just such a given that they're awesome, and everyone knows it, I guess!

  30. What an amazing interview! Great job Wida! I am a BIG fan of Laura's work and was so excited to read this! Loved watching the videos, so nice of her to go out of the way to make them! The cards you chose to feature are incredible too...well, I guess I would have said the same no matter which cards you chose since I think all her card are incredible!

  31. Had to take time to savor this DD Wida! SO much goodness here:)
    Laura is one of my favorite card makers and it was FABULOUS getting to see into her world.
    (wondering if some of those card magazines would like to have you write for them using this format..just sayin')

  32. It's early Saturday morning, just dropped my daughter at rowing, came back with a coffee and watched this. I was totally absorbed and enjoyed your interview so much! Laura's video's were so natural - I love the interaction with her kids and camera person (hubby?) She sounds like a wonderful person as well as being an amazing designer! Thanks for another brilliant DD!

  33. Wow what a great interview...loved the videos. Laura is so down to earth and funny.

  34. Wida, Wida, Wida. You nailed it. Feminine rainbow CAS. I'm so glad you're so analytical. I love rainbows. Now I know why I love Laura B. so much. Though I love all her work - really, has she ever produced just a so-so card? - her blooms never fail to amaze and delight me.

  35. Love it! So fun and I've been a huge fan of Laura's cardmaking for a long time. She's also a very nice person, even comments back at times - I have no idea whether she actually ever sleeps :))

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