Friday, 20 October 2017

Elegant Butterfly

Today I'm dropping in to the Butterfly Challenge again with a second entry for the Vertical and/or Damson challenge, since my first one was vertical but not damson!

The vertical column is cut with a die that I won from Liz at Crafty Sunflower and the card, too, is inspired by one she made, but hers was in her signature elegant style and I felt the big, bold colour of the damson cardstock called for a big bold butterfly and sentiment too  - they are both cut with Spellbinders dies.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Cookie Cutter Christmas

As you may have gathered, since I've not been bombarding you with posts for a few days, Mr Mojo has been MIA.

Now one thing I find helpful when I encounter a mojo-blank is to browse through a magazine. I have an ipad sub to Quick Cards Made Easy and the latest issue had a really sweet set of cards using the Stampin Up Cookie Cutter Christmas stamps and punch, both of which I have. So I decided to CASE the samples shown in the magazine, using my own papers and dies, otherwise very much copying the samples, something I find rather comforting when I'm lacking imagination.

Most of the papers are from an old "My Mind's Eye" pad that was a magazine freebie a few years ago, with a few additions from my stash.

I am sharing these with
CRAFT challenge- Christmas
A Bit More Time To Craft - Anything Goes
Glitter 'n' Sparkle - Anything Goes
Christmas at Sweet Stampin - Anything Goes
The Holly and The Ivy - Anything Goes    

Monday, 16 October 2017

Pink Christmas

It's time for the annual Pink Christmas challenge at Jingle Belles,  where Lauren and Stephanie donate to Breast Cancer research for every card in the gallery. And it gives me a chance to air my Funky Hands "Funky Little Christmas" download which often seems a bit TOO pink for Christmas cards. I've used one of the background papers from it for this card.

With paper as in your face as that, there's little more you can do - some die cuts, some twine and a button and the job's a good'un.

Naturally I am sharing this with Jingle Belles - Pink Christmas
and also with
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Stripes/anything goes
Allsorts Challenge - Think Pink  

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Seeing stars

This weekend I decided to have a try at a technique I've not used before - using an embossing folder for partial embossing. To do this, you use strong card to cover the outside of the folder in the areas that you DO want to emboss so that the pressure is greater there and (hopefully)  the extra depth of that area keeps the rollers of the embossing machine apart while the rest of your card is going through.

I have a folder with alternating bands of stars and a textured background, and I measured the width of one of the star bands, with borders each side, and cut a piece of card to size.  I taped it over the folder and embossed.

As you can see, a little of the textured pattern did emboss too - I have seen this technique referred to as "diffusion" embossing and I think that must be because the edges come out a bit diffused.
Anyway, I got my starry border! I masked the edges and inked it with yellow DI  then stamped the blue sentiment star - a Debbi Moore stamp which works a whole lot better now I have a stamping platform. I'd intended to stop there but the top and bottom looked a bit disconnected so I added a line of glue between the two raised stripes of the border and sprinkled it with blue glitter.
I am sharing this with
Less is More - one layer/stars
Sweet Stampin - Sparkle and Shine 
AAA Cards - Inspired by a film (the 1968 Julie Andrews film STAR!)  

Down in the Jungle

For this card I've used a set of stamps that was a magazine freebie a few months ago, I think the animals are incredibly cute!

I stamped the giraffe, tiger and monkey (yes, I know tigers and giraffes don't live on the same continent as each other - they also don't have cute smiles so I reckon two wrongs make a right) onto a scrap of stamping card - I save all my white snippets in a folder untidy heap on my table - and coloured them with Promarkers. The sentiment is from the same set, stamped and die cut.
The aperture card is one that's been hanging around in my stash for years - I stamped tropical leaves all over the inside back of it to show through the window as a jungle background. Then I delved into my snippets box and came up with a handful of assorted green scraps and used my Monstera leaf punch to make enough leaves to frame the aperture. Finally I arranged the animals so that the monkey and giraffe were peeping through the frame of leaves.
I am sharing this with
Pixie's Snippets Playground - weeks 303/304
Little Red Wagon - Leftovers
Just Us Girls - Window/Peekaboo card 

Saturday, 14 October 2017

#95 Z is for Zombie at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers

Tis the season for ghoulish goings on so our new challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers has gone all zombiefied!

Yes, the theme is Z is for Zombie.

I need to put my hand up and confess that I've never seen a zombie movie or read a zombie book. I think once, about 50 years ago, I may have seen a Scooby Doo cartoon featuring zombies, but I probably "watched" it from behind the sofa. So, not having much experience to draw on, I trawled Etsy until I found this kitty image at Aurora wings.

I printed it out, along with a computer generated sentiment, and coloured it with Promarkers.

The background is made with distress inks, stencilled in grey with a partial wall, and the rest stamped with fishbone and pawprint stamps from my stash.

I have to say, I've never thought of zombies as being particularly cute but I reckon this one is!

That cuteness means I'm going back to Naughty or Nice to enter this as my "nice" entry for this month's Something Spooky challenge.
I'm also sharing this with
Crafty Gals Corner - Spooktacular 
Cardz 4 Galz -  Monochromatic

Thursday, 12 October 2017

A CAS DL card for a change

Isn't it odd how you may have a vague idea of what you want to make for a challenge and then another challenge comes along and as soon as you see it, you know how you want to interpret the first. That's what happened with this card.

I'd already seen that the theme for CAS-ology was Odd  and had decided I simply HAD to use this Dylusions sentiment, but then along came the Butterfly Challenge where the theme is Vertical and/or Damson and immediately my vague idea gelled into a certainty.

We hardly ever make DL shaped cards in a CAS style, do we? And yet they can be very striking. Must make a note to myself to do it more often. The die I've used is the old familiar Cuttlebug Butterfly, and for the middle one I used an old scrap of parchment. It is very thin, so rather than use a shim I folded it double, only really expecting the top layer to cut. Both layers cut beautifully so now I have another rainbow-spotted butterfly to use on another project. Two for the price of one - bargain!

Just a number

I've had this Sizzix embossing folder for a few weeks now but today is the first time I've played with it.

I used Coredinations card and sanded it after embossing, then distressed the edges and layered it on top of more Coredinations. The sentiment is from Rubberdance, stamped in grey and distressed, and the background light grey edged with darker grey and also distressed. I attached the embossed panel with screw-headed brads to add to the masculine look.

I am sharing this with
Sweet Stampin - distressing (I hope it's enough to only have the sentiment stamped!)
Fab n Funky - Word Art
The Male Room - Use Metal
Rubber Dance - colour challenge

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Purple Poinsettia

OK, I know poinsettias aren't purple. But neither are fir cones, so the two wrongs cancel each other out....

I've kept to a simple purple and silver colour scheme for this card, a combo I love for Christmas. The poinsettia die was a magazine freebie and I think the cone and bough dies are from Spellbinders and the ivy trail from Marianne. The sentiment is another magazine freebie, heat embossed in silver.

I am sharing this with
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - atg/purple
Addicted to stamps and more - Holiday
Crafty Creations Challenges - Anything Goes

Another autumn card

I can't help it if it's my favourite season!

All the stamps I've used for this, apart from the sentiment from my stash,  were on a set that came with a magazine - Creative Stamping? - a few years ago, stamped with Memento and Kaleidacolor inks and coloured in with Promarkers. The backing paper is from an old DCWV stack, it's my last scrap of that lovely autumn leaf design.

I am sharing this with
Allsorts challenge - trees and leaves
Glitter'n'Sparkle - Fall/Autumn
Watercooler Wednesday - all about birthdays

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

What a scorcher!

I know lots of you read my husband's gardening blog, so you'll know how much we love chillies, and that we went to a chilli festival at the weekend. Which of course put me in the mood to use these super chilli themed stamps from Rubberdance.

I stamped the chillis fist then masked them and masked off most of the card behind them to leave a strip running "behind" them. I then inked this strip with yellow and used a sponge to dab on orange and red. Instead of the usual dense craft sponges I normally use, I chose a more open textured one and dabbed the ink on very gently to make it look as if the strip had been sprinkled with spices. Before removing the masks I stamped "spicy" randomly over the strip.

Because this is a one layer card I didn't want to use Promarkers to colour in the chillis, as they would show on the inside, and my usual watercolour markers tend to show "brush marks" so I dug out my very old Marvy Le Plume pens (do they still sell those? Most of mine ran out years ago) and was pleased to find the bright red is still in good working order. I coloured them in with those and then went around the upper surfaces of the chillis with a blender pen to remove a tiny bit of colour to look as if the light is shining on them from above.

I am sharing this with
Less is More - Hot & Spicy Colours
Inkspirational - one layer card

Monochrome pansy

I had to think long and hard about which flower to use on this card, as I want to share with the Flower Challenge, where the theme is Your Favourite Flower. How do I choose a favourite? Many of my favourites are flowers I love for their fragrance rather than their looks, and I can't really share a smell! Well, I did have some scented embossing powder once, but after the jar had been opened a week or two it lost all its scent. It's very hard for me to choose a favourite, but one I do love for its looks rather than its scent is the pansy. In my embroidering days it was always a favourite motif of mine, and I have a very pretty pansy stamp which has been sitting uninked in my collection for years! I love the way the text background makes the flower pop out.

The background is made with a silhouette sprig stamped randomly over it. This too is an old but uninked stamp and I can't think why!

I am sharing this with
Little Red Wagon - Classic black and white 
The Flower Challenge (1st birthday!)  - Your Favourite Flower  There are prizes for this challenge - my 1st choice would be prize 1, the turnabout stamp set

Just add ink - sketch 

Boo! or Autumn Thank You at Cardz 4 Guyz

It's time for our new challenge at Cardz 4 Guyz and this time our theme is Boo! (Halloween) or Autumn Thank You.

Many of you know that I don't really celebrate Halloween, so you will be surprised that I've chosen this rather than the Autumn theme that I love so much, but it was such a fantastic opportunity to use some of my gorgeous Graphic 45 "Master Detective" papers and embellishments that I couldn't pass it up!

I had a wonderful time making this, as you can probably tell! Lots and lots of cutting and arranging, a bit of distressing - and a very sinister card! All I needed to add was the brad, the key and that rather super skeleton button (I wonder if anybody ever uses buttons like that on actual garments?)

Monday, 9 October 2017

Add a die cut at Ooh La La Creations

Our new challenge at Ooh La La Creations is "Use Die Cuts".

For my card I have used the S.W.A.L.K. image and paper from the Paula Oakley Collection CD which is available from the Ooh La La shop, and teamed them with lots of die cuts made using the Dovecraft "Kiss and make up" dies.

I've not had much experience of inlaid die cutting - in fact you might recognise some of the die cuts from a card I made a few weeks ago, as I used the "negatives" of some of the dies to practise on!

Sunday, 8 October 2017

For The Love of Dogs at CD Sundays

It's time for our latest challenge at CD Sundays and our new theme is For The Love of Dogs. Don't forget when you enter, we need to see something from a CD - not a download - on your card.

My card uses a design sheet from the CD The Best of La Pashe 2012. I trimmed the dog portrait down slightly to fit a Spellbinders die cut oval, and used the bone border and sentiment from the sheet on a background of self adhesive hessian. The bone button is from my stash and you probably can't make it out clearly but there is a teeny tiny boxer dog charm attached to it with an eyelet and ribbon.

I am sharing this with
Make my Monday - Animal Antics
2 Crafty Critter Crazies - Anything Goes with a creature

Friday, 6 October 2017

Reindeer cutie

I do love this reindeer stamp - he was a magazine freebie some years ago and I've used him many times.

Here I've stamped him* and diecut with a stitched square die, then edged the diecut in aqua and coloured him in with Promarkers, adding Stickles for the snow and Glossy Accents to give him a Very Shiny Nose (are you singing now?). The sentiment uses an old stamp from my stash.

The background is embossed using another magazine freebie, mounted onto aqua card and then cut out roughly with jagged edge scissors to give a frosty feel to it. Once the image and sentiment were positioned, I added liquid pearls to highlight the snowflakes.

*Actually my granddaughter tells me that Rudolph and the other reindeer pulling Santa's sleigh must be female, as male reindeer shed their antlers during winter and female ones retain them. My answer to that is that any reindeer that can learn how to fly can probably learn how to retain its antlers too.

I am sharing this with
Addicted to stamps and more- Make your mark
Jingle Belles - Embossing around the Christmas tree  
The Holly and Ivy - Anything Christmas Goes

Another Step Panel Card

See, I told you I was going to get addicted to making these fun cards!

This time I have used papers and embellishments from the K & Company "Blue Awning" range, which have probably been in my stash for a dozen years or more. I've used about half of the papers and most of the embellishments, but I'm reluctant to actually finish the papers up because of their strokeability rating. However there were plenty part-sheets in my pad, so I still have some uncut papers to enjoy.

The sweet little wooden dragonfly is one I bought at the Make It show in February.

I am sharing this with Use Your Stuff - Blues. 

Thursday, 5 October 2017

One card, two ways

There seem to have been quite a few "Your favourite stamp" challenges recently so this lovely old horse chestnut leaf stamp, which I've used so often the writing has worn off the wooden block, is never far from reach (although it's in danger of being usurped from top spot by the Katzelkraft grumpy cat stamp!). It's perfect for the season too.

I've used it to make a background, watercoloured by smooshing  the craft mat with distress inks and spritzing with water, then when dry stamped all over with the leaf, die cut into two matching ovals and then used in two very different ways.

For the first one I have kept it very CAS - just added another leaf that has been heat-embossed using a tapestry embossing powder that comes in mixed brown and green shades, then picking up the main colours with a row of Candi dots.

I am sharing this one with
Addicted to CAS - Favourite Stamp
CAS watercolour - Autumn leaves

Now for the second card, which is a lot more complex. I added a background of kraft card, run through a woodgrain embossing folder and lightly inked, and as well as the embossed leaf as above I added a second one stamped and embossed onto a thin metallic sheet (it's much more of a brown-terracotta colour than it appears in the photo) and cut out, plus two leaves stamped into squares of hot "Almost leather".

Almost Leather was a product available 20-25 years ago, A4 sheets that looked rather like fun foam but changed texture when heated to give a leather-like finish. While still hot, it was possible to stamp into it using permanent ink like Stazon, to give a result very much like tooled leather. It was lovely stuff, great for key tags and bookmarks, and I really can't think why they stopped making it. I'm down to my very last few tiny scraps now - none of them even big enough to take a complete leaf image!

I am sharing this one with

Mix it up - ATG & watercolouring
Country View - Mixed media with autumnal hues
Stamping Sensations - Autumn Glory

A Halloween card without Halloween stash!

This card definitely says "Halloween" although it doesn't have any specific Halloween reference on it - and yet it uses no Halloween stash at all.

The pumpkin is simply made with three die cut ovals using the smallest die from my set of oval Nestabilities, arranged to overlap and with a scrap of patterned paper added for a stalk.

The leaves (I think the die is a Marianne one) and the "Hi" sentiment, cut with a Spellbinders set, are both cut in dark grey card as black would have looked a bit too harsh.

I am sharing this with
Cuttlebugmania - Hello Sweet Pumpkin
House of cards - CAS Halloween and/or colours

A witch and her beasts

Sorting out some stash recently I came across some huge and very beautiful sheets of Thai hand made paper, all still untouched. I really can't remember whether I bought them when I went to Bangkok back in 1998 or whether a friend brought them back for me a couple of year later. Probably some of each. Anyway, I had to have a play and used one for the background of this card. I cut it quite roughly and intended to distress the edge too, as the gold finish stopped it from tearing when wet as these papers often do, but when I tried to distress it, it refused to budge.

The image is from a set of miniature vintage reproductions, the sentiment is from Rubber Dance and the buttons from a goody bag. I can't remember the brand of the cat die!

This is my entry for this month's Naughty or Nice challenge - Something Spooky.

Pretty in Pink

As you know, I'm not a big fan of pink and girly, but that's not to say I NEVER choose to use it!

I got a great bargain at the charity shop this week - a massive bag of punched flowers in a range of sizes, a mixture of foam and paper ones. There must be thousands in there - and it cost me £1.50. I've used some of the foam ones on this card, along with a topper printed from the Ooh La La CD "Shoes in Bloom", some glitter card (well sanded in the middle - I sometimes wonder why we love glitter card so much when it is an absolute THINGY to use!) and scraps of ribbon from my stash.

I am sharing this with

Craft Rocket Challenges - Birthday or Pretty Pinks
Fab'nFunky - Pretty in Pink
Glitter and Sparkle - Think Pink
Watercooler Wednesday - Feminine Anything Goes  

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

How does your garden grow?

With silver bells
And cockle shells
And pretty maids all in a row.

The flower border stamp is one I won some months ago on the Fiskarettes Facebook page. It's one of those long border stamps that is designed to attach to a continuous stamp roller. I did buy one of those a few years ago but could never get it to work nicely, so I threw away the roller. I kept the stamps I'd bought with it, but none of my acrylic blocks was big enough to take them, so they've been hanging about unused, and the ones I won have remained completely NBUS.

However yesterday it dawned on me that now I have a Misti I no longer need to worry about the size of my stamps, anything that would fit on a card will fit in the Misti. So these stamps will all be losing their virginity now! Here's the first one to pop its cherry, stamped over a masked-and-sponged band to represent ground and sky. The sentiment is from Dovecraft Curiosity Corner.

It's the very last (bonus) day of Darnell's NBUS challenge today so I'm popping in there with this to share it with all the other crafty schtuff that hasn't been getting the love it deserves.

And I am also sharing it at AAA cards where the current sketch challenge inspired this card.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Step Panel Cards

In the August issue of Quick Cards Made Easy, there was an article about making Step Panel Cards. They looked interesting, and I thought they would be a really good way to incorporate several different co-ordinating patterned papers onto one card, so I had a shot at making them.

Here is my first attempt.

The papers I have used are all from the Tonic Studios "Winter Wonderland" pad, with a stags head cut using a die from a docrafts build-a -scene set. I wasn't quite sure how to line up the front panel - it is only attached at the top so that it hangs free over the lower step, allowing the card to fold completely flat for posting as well as providing an undecorated surface to write on - and I've placed it slightly too low down so that when the card stands up, the upper step doesn't lie completely flat, but nevertheless I'm pretty pleased with it for my first attempt at a new fold.

I am sharing this with
Christmas Cards All Year Round - Monochromatic Browns
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - taking the anything goes option
Alphabet Challenge - O is for oval


Right, now I had tried and seen the possible pitfalls, I wanted another go straight away, and I thought I'd make a card for the Butterfly Challenge where the theme is Any shape and/or the colour of quartz. I had a look at some google images and quartz crystals range from pure white through delicate rose quartz to all shades of amethyst - perfect, I thought, for the BoBunny Secret Garden papers lurking in my stash. I've used quite a lot of them and when I lifted them out, several of the sheets were down to the last scraps, so I'm taking this make over to the Snippets Playground too.

See, I lined up that front panel correctly this time! It's one of those things you have to get exactly right first time - a fold like this needs the really strong red-backed tape and that beast gives you no second chances.

All the papers used on this are from the BoBunny set - the floral sentiment panel on the front is fussy cut from one of the papers. The butterfly and sentiment on the back panel are out of a goody bag of embellishments I was sent.

Playmates in the playground will be proud of me - apart from the white card made to construct the folding card, every piece of card and paper I used on this was a snippet - I didn't cut into s single sheet of virgin paper.

Now here's a look at the two cards together. In the second photo you can clearly see the difference between the alignment of the first and second cards.

I loved making these and they would lend themselves to so many different themes. I'm sure you'll be seeing lots more of them on here.

I am sharing the combined effort with

A bit more time to craft extra - anything goes
Crafty Hazelnut's Patterned Paper Challenge - October

Monday, 2 October 2017

Welcome to Snarktoberfest!

Very exciting news! The ladies of the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers have been invited to join in with the Snarky Stampers blog to celebrate their Snarktoberfest. We have all made cards to celebrate, thanks to our lovely sponsors, and now YOU have a chance to win prizes simply by following a blog hop and commenting on the posts.

Head over to The Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers to see our own hop post and to Snarky Stampers to see the full details of the hop and prizes - but hop quickly, you only have 3 days to play.

Here is my own card (NOTE - this is NOT part of the hop, and much as I would love you to comment on it, there's no prize for commenting here!) which will be shared on the Sisterhood's page.

The stamps were kindly provided by the lovely Suha of Swedish House Crafts - I stamped the cake over the background  and coloured it in with Promarkers, then matted and layered it onto a large (20cm) square card. To make the chocolate bar, I cut a rectangle of brown card and added squares of the same card - I stacked the squares two layers deep to make them look thicker because nobody wants thin chocolate unless you're eating after dinner mints.

Then I wrapped the whole caboodle in thin craft foil (it's more flexible than kitchen foil but you could use that, however if you do watch out for sharp edges that could cut fingers) before tearing away some of the wrapping at the top and scrunching it back so the chocolate bar is ready to chomp into.

Next I measured and cut the purple card to wrap around the still-wrapped part of the bar, cutting along the top edge with deckle edged scissors. I stamped and embossed the sentiment using white opaque ink and powder then scored the side edges to make it wrap neatly.

This card is actually incredibly healthy - there's all that chocolate (salad), raspberries, mint leaves and of course cake is made from flour and flour is made from wheat which is a plant and therefore a vegetable.....  that's four of your five a day. If you add a glass of wine (grapes) you've nailed it!

I'm sharing this with
Allsorts Challenge - Sentiment in Focus
A Bit More Time to Craft - Anything Goes
 Love to Craft - Anything Goes