Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Simply Words

The new challenge at AAA Cards is Words Take Centre Stage and I had a NBUS Dovecraft sentiment stamp that was  simply perfect for the occasion.


I stamped and embossed it with gold, dusting with an anti static bag first to make sure I didn't end up with any stray specks,  then mounted it onto an A6 landscape-cut card and finished the corners with tiny shiny adhesive gold tear-drop gems.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

The Snowman

Every year I say I must get a new snowman stamp to replace my tired old 20 year old unmounted one, and every year I decide I can't bear to part with him, so here he is once again...


He looks so wistful, doesn't he? Maybe that's because he's worried about my threats to replace him. I had to take this card using flash as it was so gloomy, and the colours I've used on him don't look right at all - in real life the red, green and brown are MUCH better matches for the lovely Tonic Studios papers I have used!

I am sharing this with
Winter Wonderland - Snowmen 
Jingle Belles - Stars and/or Stripes
Holly and Ivy - Anything Goes

Monday, 26 June 2017

I dreamed it!

A very odd thing happened on Saturday morning. I dreamed that I made a card, and I remembered it all so clearly when I woke up that I made a rough sketch of it. So imagine my surprise when I logged on to my computer to see that my "dream card" almost perfectly matched the sketch for this week's challenge at Less is More.  And even more surprising, the card was a white on white one - and the new challenge at ATCAS is White on White.


I've used the embossing folder that was a magazine gift a couple of years ago and is now so popular that it is being sold under the name "THE Embossing Folder". I cut away the central band and then used the top and bottom to completely cover my card, leaving a gap between them. The sentiment is cut with a tattered lace die.

I'm very tempted to add a whole plethora of gems, flowers and butterflies to this, but I think anything at all added would stop it from looking clean and simple. It's reminded me, though, how much I love this embossing folder and that I really must use it more often.

I am sharing this with
Addicted to CAS - White on White
Less is More - Sketch  

Glasgow Roses

It's coming up to Darnell's birthday, and I've been trying to think what card to make her. I know she loves humming birds, and I'd lifted out a hummingbird stamp, but I couldn't help feeling that she has a garden full of them so my own effort wouldn't hold a candle to the Real Thing. And anyway, rather than doing something that's exotic and foreign to me but an everyday event to her, I really ought to use a British theme.

But what? Then I spotted this beautiful card over on Liz's blog,  and it reminded me that it was far too long since I played with any of my Glasgow Rose stamps. And what could be more British than the Glasgow Rose?


All the stamps are from a set that came with Creative Stamping magazine about a year ago, coloured with Promarkers. The 3 panels are layered in black and the separate roses raised a little with 3D glue.

I know that lots of us are friends with Darnell, and hope you will join me in hoping that her day really DOES bloom with happiness. And Darnell, if you are reading this, I'm sorry to spoil the surprise but your card is wining its way towards you right now - I hope there are no postal delays and it arrives in time!

I am sharing this with
Allsorts Challenge - Flower Power
Glitter'n'Sparkle - Anything Goes 

Sunday, 25 June 2017

#KitchenClearout - using leftover pasta

I really didn't think I would manage to join in Kitchen Clearout at Madhouse Family Reviews this month, as we've been away so much that we've been keeping the fridge pretty empty and just buying things on an as-needed basis.

However the recent hot, sticky weather has dulled our appetites a bit and over the last few days the fridge has filled up with odds and ends, so I threw some together to make this dish. Mark asked what it is called, and I said "Pasta". So here we have the highly imaginatively named
 
PASTA

To serve two people I used:

A bowl of leftover cooked pasta
half a red onion
4 rashers of streaky bacon
3 small tomatoes, each cut into 6 wedges
a couple of tablespoons of finely grated Parmesan
a small knob of butter
black pepper and dried oregano

Chop the onion and bacon finely and place in a cold pan. Heat the pan slowly until the fat runs out of the bacon, then increase the heat and fry until the bacon is crispy and the onions soft. Stir in the pasta, pepper, a good pinch of oregano and a knob of butter, reduce the heat and toss everything together for 3 or 4 minutes until the pasta is thoroughly heated. Mix in the tomatoes and Parmesan and continue to cook for another couple of minutes until  the tomatoes have warmed through and started to very slightly soften but not break up.


As we had a few leaves of salad, the remains of some home made quick-pickled red onions and half a bowl of red cabbage coleslaw in the fridge, we served it with those.


Result - a quick, tasty and colourful meal that feels as if it cost absolutely nothing at all - and freed up a whole shelf in the fridge.

June Rudolph Day

Do you realise that six months today it will be Christmas Day? Well, at least if you're playing along with Scrappymo's Rudolph Day Challenge you will have some cards ready and waiting by the time the big day rolls around.

I've delved into the snippets box and used lots and lots of them on this card - in fact the red card I've used for matting and layering is the only thing that wasn't a snippet.


The image and sentiment are stamped using a set that was free with a magazine several years ago - and aaargh, I can see that the sentiment banner isn't dead straight, it really shows on the corrugated card. I'll have to go and sort that out as soon as I've posted this!

I am sharing this with
Scrappymo's - June Rudolph Day
Pixie's Snippets Playground - weeks 287-288
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Bear or anything goes

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Winter village

I hardly ever use this die set - can you see why?


Take a look at the church on the right - in real life, buildings don't follow the slope of a hill, they are built with all their lines perpendicular. If you were to enter this church, you'd have to walk downhill to get to your pew, and anyone who dropped a pen at the front would find that it rolled all the way to the back. Even the bell in the tower would hang at an angle and be impossible to ring!

However it is a useful die for creating winter scenes, so I do use it from time to time, but always try to position it so that the wonky buildings don't take centre stage.

For this card I stamped the trees in green ink and embossed them with a powder called Tapestry - Jungle which has several shades of dark green in it, and after heating while the powder was still hot I scattered a very tiny bit of white embossing powder over to give them a snow-kissed finish.

I am sharing this with Christmas Cards All Year Round - House or Cottage

On Safari

A few months ago, the cover gift on Papercraft Essentials magazine was a really sweet set of safari themed stamps, including hunters (thankfully armed only with binoculars) in male and female versions as well as lots of animals and sentiments, and a matching embossing folder of tiger stripes and pawprints. I spent yesterday and this morning playing with the stamps. I stamped all the images and coloured them with Promarkers, then fussy cut them - wouldn't it have been great if they'd given us an opportunity to buy matching dies? - and used them to create an assortment of cards.

Before reading on, I'd like you to join me in turning a blind eye to the fact that you would never find all of these animals on the same continent, except in captivity! (And don't get me started on penguins and polar bears!)

#1 - outside

#1 - inside

#1 - closed

#2

#3

#4

For #1, I used a pre-cut aperture card and stamped leaves from the set around the edge. The strip of pawprints across the front and the tiger striped inner panel were made using the embossing folder, with the strip cut from Coredinations and sanded and the stripes done with orange card and lightly inked with brown.

#2 has the balloons stamped once onto the card and again onto a snippet of yellow then paper pieced. The leaves in the first two cards are made with a Woodware punch.

I added a Debbi Moore African tree stamp and a punched sun to #3.

#4 has the addition of the boy hunter from the stamp set and two clouds cut with a Dies r Us die.

I would like to enter the following challenges :

C.R.A.F.T. - Animals
Addicted to Stamps and More - Make your mark
CAS  on Friday - Animals ( card #4 only)
Watercooler Wednesday - Masculine anything goes (card #4 only)
2 Crafty Critter Crazies - Anything Goes

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers #87 Arty

For this fortnight's challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers, Edna wants us to get Arty.

Image may contain: 2 people, text
 

In other words, she (and we Sistahs) would like to see a piece of mixed media work - and we'd love it if you could make it snarky too!

As you probably know, I really struggle with mixed media. I never seem to be able to work out which direction I'm heading in, or how to steer a course to where I want to end up. I like to have a clear picture in my mind of what the finished item will look like and how I'm going to get there, and I'm still too inexperienced with mixed media techniques to be confident in how they will turn out. However, I got myself inky and messy and came up with this:


First of all I gave myself some direction by deciding how the card would look if I was making a simpler one - I would have put the butterfly, on a couple of layers, in the middle of a large die cut, and added a heart or flower in the corner. With that in mind, I found it easier to focus on where I was heading.

I covered an A5 card with a piece of Bo Bunny paper; the grid lines and some of the green distressing were part of the design on the paper but I added a little more green ink to define the edges. Then I stamped the mesh in green and the diamond basket weave in grey - two stamps from a very old Linda Luckin set. Next I used a brass stencil and texture paste to add a motif to diagonally opposite corners, and when it was dry, inked it with Distress Stain.

I die cut several butterflies using the good old Cuttlebug butterfly die and some French text paper, then inked them and added liquid pearls to the bodies of two of them. I added colour and texture to my die cut shape using the faux letterpress technique, inking a magazine cover gift embossing folder before using it to emboss the shape. Then I layered up mesh, hessian, the label, butterflies, some text printed vellum and corrugated kraft, adding a few more liquid pearl drops to the kraft layer.

The metal heart is placed where it would have been in a simpler version of the card, and finally I couldn't resist adding this stamped Dylusions sentiment because the message it conveys is absolutely the total opposite of my own experience when making this!

I  found that despite my expectations, I thoroughly enjoyed making this and I think I'll be delving into the realms of mixed media more often in future.

I would like to share this with the following challenges:
Crafty Creations - Anything Goes
Alphabet Challenge - H for hearts
Sweet Stampin' - Lots of Layers
Country View Challenges - Hearts
Mix it Up - Anything Goes/Stamping    

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Vintage Haberdashery

When I saw this morning that the new challenge at Cardz 4 Galz is  Sew and Sew,  rather unusually for me I knew exactly what I wanted to make and had to set to work straight away.


I dug out cardstock, a topper and sentiment from an old Hunkydory kit and added a die cut dress form that was sent to me by a friend and lots of haberdashery style embellishments from my stash. A bit of distressing and a bit of inking was all I needed to add.

The butterflies on the topper, along with the buttons and bow, also mean it fits the Bingo part of the theme at The Butterfly Challenge, so I'm dropping in over there too.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Stars at Cardz 4 Guyz

Today out new theme at Cardz 4 Guyz is Stars.

I've had a lot of fun creating my starry card!


I wanted to get the effect of a starry sky, so I smooshed distress ink onto acetate and rubbed my card in it, then when the card was dry, sprinkled with darker blue brushos and spritzed with water. Because I'm impatient, I  them heat dried it before applying the waste from a sheet of peel-off stars to use as a stencil and sponged grey ink through it. However maybe the heat made parts of the peel off stick more firmly than usual, because as I tried to peel it away some broke off and was stuck hard to the background. I went to get my pokey tool to pick it off with, but then thought actually it looked rather good, so I left it in place. 

I stamped the words "Rock star" (from a Studio G mini set) over the background and then made the embellishment by stamping the star circle, which I think was a Craft Stamper freebie, onto gold mirri with black Stazon and finished it with a blue gem. I had planned to put it in the centre of the blue panel, but the gold peel off waste meant that it looked better up in the corner to balance the gold at the bottom. Finally I stamped the musical stars border, I'm afraid this is a set I've had so long I can't remember the make.

I'm sharing this with
Glitter'n'Sparkle - Fathers day/masculine
Loves to Craft - Anything Goes
Mix it Up - Anything goes/Stamping  

Monday, 19 June 2017

Summertime at Ooh La La Creations

It's time for our new challenge at Ooh La La Creations and this time our theme is Summertime.

I've used an image and papers from the Paula Oakley Collection, available here , and made a large 20cm square card with them.


I wanted that central square to fit exactly when placed from corner to corner, and was up to my ears in glue when I realised I couldn't work out the size in my head, so I think Mark was a bit surprised that although I was sitting crafting I had an urgent need for him to find the square root of 200 for me! (For future reference, it's 14.14 and a square with edges that length in cm will perfectly fit diagonally onto a 20cm square card)

If you look carefully the main image has a tiny white line around it between the picture and the turquoise edge, and I wanted to replicate that, but my white gel pen didn't show up very well on some of the papers so I went for contrast and used a black fine liner instead, then distressed the edges of each piece.

Finally I added Candi to the corners, picking up the cool blue and aqua shades.

Sunday, 18 June 2017

The Fridge Raider

I love this sweet stamp of a cat stealing the milk - it's an unmounted stamp that was a gift from a friend when I first started stamping, about 20 years ago, and I don't think it was new at the time, so goodness knows how old it really is!


I've coloured the kitten with Promarkers and cut it out with the Gummiapan stitched Ovals dies. The hearts, too, are cut with a Gummiapan die, and the sentiment is a Dylusions one.

For the background I stamped various "catty" bits all over some kraft, and then tried to bleach the colour out from the cats' eyes, however the bleach didn't really take on the kraft so it's left them with a slightly ghostly effect - fine for a background but I'm glad I didn't use it for a main image!

I'm getting naughty (or at least my bad kitten is) with the ladies at Naughty or Nice where it's an anything goes challenge this month,  and also playing along at Little Red Wagon where the theme is Dogs or Cats?

Sun, Sand or Sea at CD Sundays

It is Wynn's turn to choose the challenge at CD Sundays today, and the theme she has chosen is Sun or Sand or Sea.

I've used an image and papers from the lovely Creative Crafting World CD "Through the Year With Seraphina" and as I know Wynn loves fancy folds, I had a go at making a twisted gatefold card.



I used instructions from the May issue of Quick Cards Made Easy - it's a lot easier than it looks!

I would like to share this with
A Bit More Time to Craft - Anything Goes
Make My Monday - At the Beach

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Quirky Crafts - mid month inspiration

It's time for our mid month update at Quirky Crafts - have you joined in yet? Our theme is Things with Wings and there are prizes to be won!

For this card I have used Winter Bird trio from Bugaboo Stamps and some retro styled paper from a pad called Contemporary Christmas - I can't see a brand name on it.


I coloured the image with Promarkers, and a few touches of stickles, and cut it with Gummiapan Stitched Ovals dies.

I love the finished card, in fact I like it so much I'm tempted to make a "batch bake" to boost the Christmas card box - after all, we're almost half way to Christmas now!

I am sharing this with
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge Extra - June
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Anything Goes
Crafty hazelnut's Patterned Paper Challenge - June  
C.R.A.F.T. Challenge - Christmas
Digi Chooseday - Anything Goes

Friday, 16 June 2017

Resist embossing

I don't know why I don't do resist embossing more often, I do love the result it gives!


The stamp I used is a very, very old unmounted red rubber stamp from a set created by Trish Bayley about 20 years ago. Does anyone remember Trish? Back before the days of the internet, she used to run a postal crafting club. I wonder if she is still around, perhaps now blogging or designing for one of the craft businesses? Anyway, the reason I chose it is because this month's challenge at Stamping Sensations is to use your favourite stamp. Now I've been stamping for many years and have a huge collection of much loved stamps that I turn to again and again, so it is very hard to say which is my favourite, but this is one of the most-used stamps in my collection so it's definitely up there in the top few! I love the almost photographic amount of detail it includes.

I stamped and embossed it with Versamark and clear ep, then sponged over with distress inks.

The background is embossed with a Crafters Companion folder.

I am sharing this with
Stamping Sensations - Your Favourite Stamp
The Flower Challenge - Anything Goes

AAA Cards - Resist Technique

Buzz buzz buzz

I've been having a play with adding drops of concentrated liquid watercolour to various products to give them colour, or change their existing colour.


For this card, I added a single drop of yellow to a spatulaful of Ranger Opaque Matte Texture Paste in a paint palette and used a cocktail stick to blend the colour. Then I applied it to the card through a honeycomb patterned mask.

The bee is an old Raindrops on Roses stamp, heat embossed, coloured with Promarkers and fussy cut. I finished the wings with Stickles and the  eyes with Glossy Accents. The sentiment is from Clearly Besotted.

I am sharing this with

CAS Mix Up - Stamping, Embossing paste, heat embossing, fussy cutting and glitter
Sparkles Monthly - Embossing - heat or dry
2 Crafty Critter Crazies - Anything Goes

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Springtime Snippets

I seem to have lots of pastel coloured printed papers among my snippets at the moment - odd as I'm not much of a "pretty pastels" type, but I suppose that's why the papers end up hanging around once I've cut into them. However I can always use a selection of them up in Pixie's Snippets Playground!

Anyway, it means I had a good selection to use for this card.


I took a 15cm square card and cut across it about a third of the way down, then punched both cut edges using an Anna Griffin border punch. Then I cut a 15cm wide panel of white card, deep enough to fill in the newly created gap and cover the open areas of punchwork, and covered it with 3cm wide strips from 5 different snippets. I stamped the sentiment on the lower panel of the card, then reassembled the card front by sticking the punched borders down over the snippet-covered panel.

Vintage bicycle

When I use this stamp, or my penny-farthing die,  non-British friends often ask me why I refer to it as a penny-farthing. Well, in the UK we always call this style of bicycle by that name, because in old money such as was used in Victorian times, the penny was a very large coin and the farthing, worth a quarter of a penny, was a very small one. So the bicycle looked like a penny and a farthing, side by side.



For this card, I cut the cream background panel and embossed with an Mbossabilities reversible folder (sorry, can't remember the name)  over just the top half. I lightly inked the embossed area and edges with Aged Mahogany DI which is a lovely deep red.  I used Versafine ink in a matching deep red shade for the stamping, then layered with deep red card (it looks black on the photo, I always seem to make dark colours look black when I photograph them) and some newsprint effect paper. I had prepared some matching die cut cogs to embellish it with, but when I arranged them on the card to gauge the best position, I decided it actually looked better without - somehow the embossing gives it an unusual sort-of-CAS-Vintage look that doesn't respond well to further embellishment.

I am sharing this with:
Always Fun Challenges - male or dad
Sweet Stampin - Monochrome
Crafty Gals Corner - Vintage
Cuttlebugmania  -  Fathers day
Craft Rocket - for the men/boys
Fab n Funky - Vintage 



Wednesday, 14 June 2017

A sympathy card

I got home from holiday to the sad news that the husband of an old friend had passed away, so I needed to make a quick sympathy card in order to get it in the post as soon as possible.


I stamped the fern - an old Artylicious stamp (I can't remember the age but it's many years since they closed down) - in purple and then repeated the stamping without inking, to give a subtle shadow. The sympathy stamp is an Anna Griffin one from about 15 years ago and the butterfly is from a set I won recently at the Butterfly Challenge.

A little layering and my card was ready to post.

I am sharing this with
Butterfly challenge - Bingo and/or Heather colour (I hope to join in a second time with the Bingo theme)
CAS on Sunday - Use repetition image
Retro Rubber - Anything Goes
Addicted to Stamps and More - Anything Goes

I'm back!

Have you missed me? Well, maybe not as I left quite a few scheduled posts for while I was away, but Mark and I have just got back from a wonderful holiday in Portugal. We stayed in the town of Tavira, on the eastern edge of the Algarve, a beautiful, tranquil historic town completely different from the sun-and-sand resorts further along the coast. Our hotel was a converted monastery, the Pousada do Convento da Graca where breakfast was served in the beautiful cloisters


The town was full of beautiful buildings - I think my crafting is going to be influenced by the tiled walls and shabby chic doors with peeling paint and beautifully tended metalwork. You can read more about our trip and see some of Mark's stunning photos over on his blog.

Anyway, we're home, the laundry mountain is dwindling and I'm able to start crafting again. I've eased myself back into it with a very clean and simple card using a set of NBUS Anita's stamps that I was given a while ago. I made a one layer card, stamped in Versafine and coloured with markers, with ruled lined to emphasise the cherry border and make it look as if it is another layer, and glossy accents to highlight the cherries.


I am sharing this with

Less is More - one layer, Sweet Things

Creative with stamps - Fruit  

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers - D is for Drunk

It's time for our latest challenge at The Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers, and  it's a theme very dear to the heats of all the Sistahs - D is for Drunk.

Image may contain: 1 person, text

Doesn't Edna make a classy drunk? Unlike the gentleman in my image, printed from the CD "The Wine Buffs" by Katy Sue designs/


The image, sentiment and papers are all from the CD and I've added some wine-red ribbons. I chose the stitched ovals  and wood effect paper for the die cutting because it reminded me of the huge wooden barrels that wine is matured in.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Something Blue for Fathers Day at Cardz 4 Guyz

Here in the UK, Fathers Day is on June 18th  this year, so our new challenge at Cardz 4 Guyz is "Something Blue for Fathers Day".

I'm not a fan of making Fathers Day cards, since my own father passed away 17 years ago,  but I've made a very simple one to share with you.


The central panel is made with a set of Studio G sentiment stamps and a Kaleidacolor pad. I added two pockets - after all, what dad doesn't have to constantly dip into his pockets where his offspring are concerned? - made using some peel offs from a very old set I got from QVC many years ago. A bit of layering and some silver Candi because it is reminiscent of jeans rivets to go with the jeans pockets. Job done!

Monday, 5 June 2017

Pearls at Ooh La La Creations

Our new challenge is just going live at Ooh la la Creations and this time the theme is pearls.

I decided to make a tag instead of a card, for a change.


The image and papers are from the CD Yesterday's Memories, which you can buy here, on a large kraft tag and I have added some replica cigarette cards and embellishments from my stash. The filigree embellishment is one I have had for years, but you can get hold of very similar ones on the Ooh La La website

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Things With Wings at Quirky Crafts

Today is the start of our June challenge at Quirky Crafts, and this time it is my turn to choose the theme,  so I have chosen Quirky Things With Wings.

Our sponsors this time are Limited Runs and Bugaboo, and for my card today I have used Limited Runs image Dragonfly #1 which is a very quirky dragonfly!


I've teamed it with a selection of papers from an old K & Company stack, coloured it to co-ordinate and given it a die cut mat, then added a stamped sentiment and some dragonfly brads from my stash.

Shabby Chic at CD Sundays

Today the theme at CD Sundays is Shabby Chic.

When I think Shabby Chic, I think Debbi Moore, and today I've used the Shabby Chic Paris Bookazine CD, one of my favourites.


I had a lovely time making this! First I covered my card with one of the background papers then sanded all the edges to distress them. Then I stamped the Paris scene from the Tim Holtz Skylines set onto another of the background papers. That, the two poster style toppers and the border are all cut from sheets from the CD and distressed with a V-shaped distressing tool. The pink rose scrap is from yet another of the background papers, roughly torn to shape. I fussy cut the roses from one of the design sheets and added a die cut bicycle and a penny farthing button, then finished off with a handful of pearls.

I got a bit carried away with the printing and printed out far more than I needed, including a few sheets I didn't cut into, so watch out for more Parisian fun coming along on here soon!

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Non-traditional colours at Sparkles Christmas

It's time for our new challenge at Sparkles Christmas and today we would like you to use non-traditional Christmas Colours.

Now Black is definitely not a Christmas colour, but teamed with Silver I think it looks very stylish, and I've used elements from old Kanban and Hunkydory kits to make a gatefold card using these colours.




I had also intended to cover the insides of the two gatefold panels with the black and silver paper, but then I realised it would leave nowhere for the sender to write!