Sunday, 17 June 2018

Bee-lated birthday

I'm loving the fashion for bees in crafting so you can imagine I was absolutely thrilled to win a lovely prize from the Hochanda Facebook page - three sets of stamps, three sets of dies and a 12 x 12 pad from Heartfelt Creations "Sweet as Honey" range.

This is their first outing - I'm sure they will be used many, many more times.

I cut the background, topper panel, ticket and sentiment from the pad and stamped the beehouse, bees, honey pot and stirrer, cut them out with the matching dies and then coloured them with pencils. I think at last I'm getting the hang of pencil colouring and these are going to be great images to practise my skills with, as they are really too detailed for any other medium.

I am sharing this with
Allsorts - Use at least two dies
Little Red Wagon - To Bee or Not To Bee 
Watercooler Wednesday - All About Occasions

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Q is for Quote at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers

It's time for our new challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers and this time Edna would like to see a quote on your work.

I've used a quote from Douglas Adams - I don't think it's actually from one of his books, it's something he said in real life.

The background is made with brushos, stamped with a starburst from the Gentleman Crafter's stamp set  and a Paper Artsy stamp, and the three face stamps are very old unmounted stamps I got in a grab bag about 20 years ago - don't you think the statue on the top right looks JUST like the kind of person you would want to poke away with a stick? He looks as if he has just smelled something really nasty.

Now let's see what quote YOU use - and you may be crowned Queen or Princess of Snark.

I am sharing this with
Country View Challenges - The written word

Cheeky Robins

For this card I have used the Memory Box "Happy Christmas" die and, once the die cut was attached to the card front, stamped robins from a Woodware set to look as if they were perching on the sentiment.
Because I wanted to stamp them directly onto the card front, I coloured them in with water based markers but now I'm wishing I'd used Promarkers and then lined the inside of the card.

I am sharing this with
Winter Wonderland - Christmas Birds
Crafty hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Non traditional colours or Anything Goes

Friday, 15 June 2018

Two salads for summer

We've had a few warm days this week - in fact mark is already beginning to worry about how dry the garden is getting - and warm days call for special salads.

My first is an American Classic - Cobb Salad. We first had this on holiday in San Francisco, and have re-created it at home many times since.

Underneath all those goodies  there's a very deep layer of shredded Iceberg lettuce, although Cos or Romaine  would be more authentic. It is topped with rows of sliced avocado, cold  roast chicken, lambs lettuce (because we had no watercress), boiled egg, diced tomato, crumbled blue cheese, finely chopped chives and parsley and crumbled crisply grilled streaky bacon.

The dressing, served on the side and tossed into individual portions at serving time, is made from
60ml red wine vinegar
80ml light olive oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper
all whisked together and then 30g of finely crumbled blue cheese worked into it at the last minute.
The high vinegar content gives the dressing a lovely sharp tang although if you are a fan of the classic 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar dressing it might come as a bit of a shock to the system, so taste it before serving and whisk in more oil if you really feel the need.

Now my second salad, which is a substantial side salad. I served it with a South African curry but it would be equally at home with a barbecue or a Mexican dish.

This was a "fridge raid" salad - I found a stump of cucumber, one large tomato, half a red onion, a rather sad looking lime that was turning brown at the edges and the parsley and chives left over from the Cobb Salad which we'd had the day before.

I chopped the tomato, cucumber, onion and herbs and tossed them with a drained tin of sweetcorn and a small  very finely chopped red chilli, then dressed the whole thing with the lime juice.

I think I'll call this Spicy Sweetcorn Salad and share it at Kitchen Clearout at Madhouse Family Reviews.

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Butterflies in the round

Are you impressed with my marbling? That took skill, that did..... the skill required in rummaging through my 6 x 6 pads to find a Stampin' Up pad that I knew was in there *somewhere* that featured several designs of marble printed paper. What a cheat I am! But I do love that paper and I've had it for long enough now that I can start cutting it up and not just save it for stroking purposes.

I used two circle dies to cut the  mint green frame, which I raised with foam pads, and then cut the sentiment (I think it's a Spellbinders die) and the butterflies from moss green card and the flower from a leftover corner of the mint green. The butterfly and flower dies are both upper layers of Dovecraft layering die sets.

The finishing touch is pearls - lots of them - added with Liquid Pearls.

I am sharing this with
Butterfly Challenge - The letter M. I have used mint green, moss green and marbling.
CASology - Pearl 
Cuttlebugmania - Frame It!
Crafty Calendar - Three of Something (butterflies)  
Cardz 4 Galz - Pretty & pearly

Christmas at C.R.A.F.T. challenge

I'm still guesting over at C.R.A.F.T. Challenge and this week our theme is Christmas and our sponsor is Lacey Sunshine Stamps  - one winner will be able to choose three images from the store.

The image I have used is called Sheldon C. Turtle's Christmas Gift 

I used a Spellbinders  die to cut out the image and coloured it in with Promarkers, adding Stickles to the fur trimmings on Sheldon's outfit and glossy accents to the water and bubbles. The papers are from my stash and the snowflakes are stickers from Lidl.

I am sharing this with
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Winter Fun
Christmas Crafts All Year round - non-traditional colours
The Holly and The Ivy - Anything Goes Christmas

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

With friends like this.....

we all have a friend like this, don't we? If you can't think who it is, it's probably you. Or me!

The image and sentiment are stamps from SoSuzy and I used a gel pen to colour in the lady's jewellery and a deckle edged ruler and fineliner to add a border.

Why do I find one layer cards so much easier to make when I'm not under any pressure to stick to just the one layer?

I am sharing this with
Less Is More - Friendship
Crafty Creations Challenges - Anything Goes
Stamping Sensations - Anything Goes

Out in the forest

.. you don't usually see red, orange and yellow fir trees.

However I rather like them. This stamp is an old PSX one of a single tree (sad story coming up) which I stamped across the card, starting with red in the centre - yes, it does look as if I need a new red ink pad, doesn't it? And being a wood mounted stamp, I couldn't just stamp over and over with the Misti until it was bold enough -  then moving out through orange to yellow.

I drew in borders with my finest fineliner to keep it to a one layer card, then stamped the sentiment using a magazine freebie stamp.

Now the sad story.... this was going to be one of my two cards for the Twofers challenge, as well as for the challenges I made this particular one for. My second card was to include a UTEE panel with the tree stamped into it. But when I stamped my tree into the hot UTEE, it set solid into it and wouldn't budge, and when I tried picking the enamelled part off I found much of the rubber broke off with it. Both the stamp and the UTEE powder are around 20 years old, so it could be that the rubber of the stamp was starting to perish or it could be that something in the powder had changed with age, but whichever it is, I've had to say a sad farewell to a much loved stamp and of course now I can't use it for my second card for twofers, so it's back to the drawing board with that challenge.

However, coming back to this challenge. I would like to share it with
52 Christmas card Throwdown - Yellow, orange and red
CAS Christmas - Masculine

Heat Embossing at Back to Basics

It's time for challenge #5 at Back to Basics and this time we would like you to use the technique of Heat Embossing.

I made an inked and stamped background and only embossed the dragonfly to make it really show up against everything else. Most embossing powders give a raised and/or glossy finish but I chose a holographic powder which I used over black ink. This doesn't give a raised line, what it DOES do is give the most amazing sheen that appears to change colour when you look at it from different angles. The colour change is hard to capture in a photo but this close up gives you some idea of the glinting iridescent effect - very much like a real dragonfly glinting in the sun!

The dragonfly stamp was bought for me by my daughter when she was living in San Francisco, so it must be between 10 and 12 years old, and the various plant stamps are all from a Graphicus sheet that must be around 20 years old.
I am sharing this with
Craft Rocket - Happy Birthday 
Retro Rubber - Anything Goes  
Stamping Sensations - Anything Goes 
Love to Craft - Anything Goes 
Addicted to Stamps and More - Anything Goes   

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

You are wonderful

I've gone ultra-CAS with this card - the background panel is a Uniko stamp of geometric shapes - not sure what I'd call them. Trapeziums? Irregular quadrilaterals? Truncated triangles? My maths teacher days are far, far behind me.... Anyway, I coloured the "shapes"  in the colours of the rainbow, leaving out indigo because I can never make that out as a separate colour in a real rainbow. I reckon they only put it there so they could use the mnemonic "Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain"  and have a word for every letter.

Just as an aside, that is presumably a completely British mnemonic - one that's particularly easy for me to remember as I'm a Lancashire Lass and the Wars of the Roses may have been  more than 500 years ago but they are still fresh in the collective memory of many Northerners. So, my friends from the rest of the world, how do YOU remember the order of the colours in a rainbow? I'd love to see some of your mnemonics for them.

And.…. whoosh.... back to the card. The sentiment is stamped with some stamps I won in the Playground a couple of years back. I didn't use them much at first because as you can imagine, they are quite hard to get a really clean impression with unless you have a stamping platform. But now I have one, I can do the two or three impressions needed to get a really clear, bold finish. I fussy cut the text and popped a bit of 3D adhesive behind it to make it really pop from the background.

I am sharing this with

Addicted to CAS - Rainbow
AAA Cards - Geometrics

Monday, 11 June 2018

On the Prosecco!

I'm not sure I'll ever tire of this stamp of a boozy girls' night out, that was a covermount on a recent issue of Making Cards magazine. This time I've teamed with a sentiment from the same set and have stamped wide borders on the background card using stamps from the latest issue of Papercraft Essentials, with the bubbles finished with Glossy Accents.

I am sharing this with
Allsorts Challenge - Ladies' Night Out (although how ladylike these three will be by the end of the evening is open to question!)
Watercooler Wednesday - anything goes feminine

Birthday Bicycles

There's quite a story behind this card:

Many years ago, when our daughters were just babies, we became very friendly with Roy, the owner of the local greengrocer's shop and his family. One of Roy's passions was pillarboxes, and he used to travel around the country photographing unusual and historic ones. He also loved cycling, a passion that he passed on to his children and grandchildren.

Sadly Roy is no longer with us but we are still friendly with the rest of his family, and his son and granddaughter are about to celebrate very special birthdays with a joint party, so here is the father-and-daughter card I have made for them. The blue bicycle with the 50 sign signifies the father's 50th birthday while the pink bicycle with the 18 sign, the daughter's 18th birthday. And the pillar box is a reminder that it was through Roy that our families became such good friends.

I die cut all the elements using snippets, so naturally I'm heading over to the Playground to share my card.
I'm also sharing with Fab'n'Funky - Shaker card or birthday with a number. I'm rubbish at shaker cards so I'm bringing you TWO numbers instead!

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Second Time Around at CD Sundays

Our new challenge at CD Sundays is live and this time we would like to see something recycled on your card - as well, of course, as something from a CD.

The recycled element on this card is the background 'paper' which isn't really paper at all, it's beautiful printed plastic that came wrapped around my Mother's Day flowers. Far too pretty to throw away! I used spray adhesive to stick it to the card base, wrapping a little around the spine for a neat finish.

The butterflies are cut using the classic Cuttlebug butterfly die and a paper printed out from the Creative Crafting World CD 'Mix & Match Papercrafting Collection'. I was delighted to find one of the colourways was such a good match to some twine I have in my stash!

I am sharing this with - Make My Monday - Go green/Upcycle

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Add Ribbon and Sparkle at C.R.A.F.T.

After having been the weekly guest designer at C.R.A.F.T challenge I am delighted to now tell you that I am the monthly guest designer for the whole of June!

This week's theme is "Add Ribbon and Sparkle" and it is sponsored by Oddball Art.

The image I have used is called kawaii Christmas Baby Elephant 

The sentiment is stamped with a stamp from a Papercraft Essentials cover kit, the background is paper from an old issue of Making Cards and all the other bits and bobs are from my stash. I was able to get around the eternal problem of sticking things to glitter card by choosing a layout where everything that crosses it can be stuck down in other places!

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Fathers Day at Cardz 4 Guyz

It's time for this fortnight's challenge at Cardz 4 Guyz and this time our theme is Fathers Day.

I've used papers and stamps from the docrafts Heritage Press collection, assembling the shirt from snippets of the papers. For the layers, I used pinking shears to cut one layer and drew in faux stitching on the others. The tie and spectacles are die cut with dies from a recent Papercraft Essentials covermount set.

I am sharing this with
Crafty Hazelnut's Patterned Paper Challenge - June
A Bit More Time To Craft Extra - Anything goes 

Monday, 4 June 2018

Pile 'em high!

Here's a tottering pile of parcels! The stamp is a very old one - I think it may have been a Craft Stamper cover mount way back when - and I've stamped and heat embossed it in red on white and white on kraft. The sentiment is from a Uniko stamp set and I've used a festive red card blank.

I am sharing with
Sweet Stampin' - Presents
CAS on Friday - Embossing

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Shabby Chic Shoes

I've been having another play with my Dovecraft Couture du Jour goodies - die cut decoupage, backing papers and pre-formed pleated heart rosettes.

I must say I am very impressed with the die cut decoupage, the quality is much better than others I've tried which have often ended up having irregular white borders that I've had to attack with tiny scissors. As you can probably make out from the picture, there's lots of glitter on the images and that's carried through right to the bottom layer, so if you want to use any of the layers separately they are still sparkly.

I distressed the edges of the backing papers and added pearls from my stash.

I am sharing this with

Little Red Wagon - Not too shabby
A Bit More Time To Craft - Anything Goes

Jungle Fun

I really love these jungle animal stamps which were a craft magazine covermount about a year ago. I've used them many, many times although almost every time sees me wishing it had been possible to purchase matching dies.

I've used them today with a selection of papers from a pad of natural design papers from Zeeman - there are animal prints, stone and wood effects and fabric effects - some punched Monstera leaves and a cardboard slide mount covered with one of the papers.

I am sharing this with
Creative With Stamps - Cute Animals

Just Add Ink - Sketch

2 Crafty Critter Crazies - anything goes with creatures

Saturday, 2 June 2018

Y is for Yummy at Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers

It's time for our latest challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers and this time Edna must be feeling peckish as she's chosen Y is for Yummy.

I've used an image printed from the Joanna Sheen CD  Viva Las Divas, which you probably know I have a love-hate relationship with, lightly decoupaged by cutting out parts of the second image on the sheet.

The sentiments on the CD are editable so I created my own, and have added a background of encaustic wax painting (done with a hot iron and melted wax) to pick up the colour of That Wallpaper.

I do hope you will head over to the Sisterhood and share your yummy creations with us (snark optional but encouraged) - you may become our next Queen or Princess of Snark!

I am sharing this with
Watercooler Wednesday - Anything goes because I reckon it's the kind of thing the girls  gathered around the watercooler would have a good chuckle at.

And also with The Library Challenge - Breakfast at Tiffany's  because with tea, toast and jam they must be eating breakfast!

Friday, 1 June 2018

Santa at Sparkles Christmas

The start of a new month means the start of a new challenge at Sparkles Christmas,  and the theme starting today is Santa.

I've used a rather lovely image of Santa and some wild animals, printed from a CD called "Classic Christmas", as the centrepiece of my card.
I've teamed it with some hand made paper that has been in my stash ever since hand made paper was fashionable! There are tiny metallic specks embedded in it that remind me of the pattern frost makes on a window. A voluptuous organza ribbon adds the finishing touch.
Linking up with
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Silver 
The Holly and Ivy - Anything Christmas  

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Pet sympathy

If sympathy cards are hard to make, pet sympathy cards are ten times harder unless you want to get into the whole rainbow bridge thing which isn't my cup of tea at all.

So, just as with a human one, I decided to go down the simple and elegant route, using this very elegant cat stamp which is still on extended loan from my daughter. It's a Stampa Rosa stamp from 1996 called "Waiting for dinner".

I stamped it off the edge of the card - a pity to lose any of that glorious tail  but it gave the balance I wanted - and stamped a sentiment and pawprint from my stash, then just added a tiny touch of colour for the eyes, nose, ears and shadow.

I am sharing this with
Less is More - One layer, Thinking of you
Addicted to Stamps and More - CAS

Guest Designer at C.R.A.F.T.

I'm delighted to have been invited to be Guest Designer again at C.R.A.F.T. challenge and  the theme this week is Come Play Outside.

The sponsor is Paper Nest Dolls  who provided me with the super image I have used, called Captain Owen - as I have a grandson called Owen it is perfect for me!

Here is my card:

I used Nestabilities to cut a wave-like frame by placing a large scalloped circle die inside a plain circle. The papers are snippets from my stash, the sentiment is stamped with a sentiment from the Clearly Besotted Pirates at Play set and the anchor die cut using the X-cut Ahoy There set.  

I used lots and lots of snippets for this card so that I could take it into the Playground, so here I am joining the current Pixie's Snippets Playground  and hoping it doesn't give Parsnip any funny ideas about running away to sea!

And I am also sharing this with Fab'n'Funky - For a Child

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

It'll all come out in the washi

I have a confession to make. I have loads of washi tape. Loads and loads and loads of it. And then some. Yet how often do you see it in my makes? Once a month, I would guess, if that. At least half my rolls of it are still sealed in cellophane. Nevertheless, I found myself eyeing up more in the stationery shop yesterday.

So I thought I'd better get on and use some before my resolve crumbles and I end up buying more. At least this card used quite a lot (that is, when you include all the incorrectly lined-up pieces I had to throw away!).

I've used two rolls, a black and white squiggly one and a white and black spotty one. I arranged then in a "tick" shape, mitreing the ends in the middle. Even carefully mitred, the join still looked a bit scrappy so I covered it with a tiny black peel-off border which then looked so neat and tailored I decided to do it at the edges of the card too.

After that all there was left to do was stamp my squiggliest sentiment!

I am sharing this with
Alphabet challenge - Ebony 
CAS-ology - Squiggle 
Use Your Stuff - Washi Tape

A folksy Christmas

I always think of anything Christmassy with hearts on it as being rather folk-art-y, so that's the rough direction I've headed in with this card.

The heart die was a magazine freebie from goodness knows how long ago, and I've teamed it with an embossed heart background, a stamped sentiment and some ribbon and lace from my stash. I like the way the lace almost echoes the design on the ribbon!

I am sharing this with
52 Christmas Card Throwdown - Lace
Winter Wonderland - Hearts Come Home For Christmas
and a second visit to Jingle Belles - Tie a holiday ribbon....

A Fold-Back card at Back to Basics

Our new challenge at Back to Basics and Beyond is just beginning and this time we would like to see a fold-back card, ie one where the front panel of the card is folded back on itself to reveal half of the inside.

I've had this pretty pre-cut hummingbird image for ages, it was part of a bundle of goodies I won from one of the card making magazines, and I thought it would look pretty flying off the folded-back part of the card.

I made a background panel for both the front and inside of the card by stamping all over with flowers and leaves from Uniko's Paradise range, stamping each image off onto scrap paper first so that I got a fainter, "second stamping" image to keep it pale and less cluttered looking. I finished with a sentiment from the same stamp series and a tiny copy of the hummingbird from the same pack of die cuts.

I left the inside of the folded-back front empty for writing a personal greeting.

lorem ipsem blah blah blah

Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Hive minded

I'm really loving the fashion for bees and beehives in crafting at the moment. Maybe I'm not *quite* as crazy about bees as I am about dragonflies - but not far off it!
For this card I've used a First Edition bee die and a Tim Holtz stencil.

When I've used the bee die before, I've cut it once in brown or black then again in yellow to inlay into the body - but that leaves me with a yellow bee which isn't very useful but is too good to throw away. So today I cut the bees in white and then used a sponge dauber to colour the different sections before reassembling them.

I am sharing this with

Allsorts challenge - Insects, bugs, bees and butterflies

AAA  challenge - 4th Big Birthday bash

Monday, 28 May 2018

Everything in the garden's lovely

As you know, my husband is a keen gardener/garden blogger, so I find myself making a lot of garden themed cards!

For this card, I've used some Sheena Douglass stamps that I've had for 3 or 4 years. I never did get around to buying the matching dies, so after stamping and colouring them I hand cut them - leaving a narrow border because there was no way I was going to fussy cut all those feathery carrot fronds! The sentiment is stamped with the same set. I found a surprise piece of garden themed background paper in my stash - I have absolutely no idea how long it's been there or where it came from - and added a strip of self adhesive hessian and a wooden watering can with the edges lightly inked.

I would like to share this with:
C.R.A.F.T. Challenge - Male
The Male Room - Gardening
Retro Rubber - sketch (I've switched from portrait to landscape but the sketch is still, I hope, in evidence)

Happy Bird-Day

I recently got hold of a bird themed stamp  and die set which had been a magazine freebie last year that I'd not seen at the time.

I stamped the bird outline and wing onto white card then used the individual stamps to colour in the blue-tit's plumage. Than I used the matching dies to cut it out. The sentiment is stamped with stamps from the same set and the branch is die cut with a die from a Christmas owl set - I think it's a Marianne one.

That beautiful background paper is from the Hackney & Co "English Garden" pad by Craft Consortium. I've had it for ages but didn't use it much and I've suddenly fallen in love with it - expect to see it featuring rather a lot over the next few weeks!

I'm sharing this with Cuttlebugmania - Birds and/or Buttterflies

Sunday, 27 May 2018

Beautiful Blooms at CD Sundays

Our latest challenge at CD Sundays is called Beautiful Blooms so we want to see lots of lovely florals, and of course there must be something from a CD somewhere on your work.

I've used a CD called Flower Soft - Floral Designs for Card Makin.

Each of the flower panels is designed to fit a set of Nestabilities dies so that you can cut it perfectly - although of course they could also be cut by hand. There are coordinating plain panels so I have used one on the inside to write my greeting on. There are lots of extra flowers on each sheet so I have fussy cut a selection of them to use as embellishments, and added a stamped sentiment to the floral panel.

I am sharing this with
Shopping Our Stash - April showers/May flowers

Friday, 25 May 2018

May's Rudolph Day

It's May 25th and that means it's Rudolph Day at Scrappymo's.

I have a very quick and easy card for you today - extra quick and easy actually because I had already stamped and coloured the image for a different project but then decided to use a different one, so it was ready and waiting to go.

Along with my snowman I have used papers from an old craft magazine goody pack, a peel off greeting and some of Lidl's fab snowflake stickers.

As well as Rudolph Day I am sharing this with
Addicted to Stamps and More - Holiday
Fab'n'Funky - Christmas
Watercooler Wednesday - All About Christmas