Friday, 31 August 2018

Christmas Wreath

The new issue of Creative stamping landed on my doormat a few days ago and I really love the stamp set that came with it - I had to get crafting with them right away!

I decided the wreath was perfect to use on a circular card, so I used an old Marianne Creatables die to cut a square white card, making sure it overlapped the folded edge and also making sure the scalloped edge was positioned in such a way that the card would stand with the fold at the top. Then I cut and embossed the same die with green card and attached that over the card front.

The twiggy wreath from the stamp set is stamped onto white card and die cut to fill the centre of the circular card, and an Altenew sentiment stamped in the middle.

Then I stamped a selection of foliage, cones, spices and orange slices, coloured them with pencils and fussy cut them. Oh, my poor aching hands! I wish we could buy die sets to go with some of these covermount sets! I arranged them on the background and used Pinflair glue to attach and give them dimension.

I am sharing this with

Jingle Belles - Shaped cards
Addicted to Stamps and More - Make your Mark
The Holly and Ivy - Anything Christmas goes
Watercooler Wednesday - Anything Goes

Thursday, 30 August 2018

Dragonfly and honesty

This card is a real mixture of old and new - the honesty stamp came from a very old red rubber sheet that came from Graphicus before they closed, and the dragonfly stamp came from the covermount of  the current issue of Papercraft Essentials.

I stamped the honesty many times, in mustard, dark and light purple and orange, and added mats of dark and light purple and a ribbon in the same colours. The dragonfly is finished with a Wink of Stella body and Stickles wings to give an overall sparkle.

I am sharing this with Shopping Our Stash - Quit Buggin' Me!

Your deal!

The word prompt at Inkspirational is SNAP.

That immediately made me think of the card game, and this sweet little hand-of-cards stamp (Is that a Royal Flush?) from Viva Las Vegas stamps. But it's such a tiny stamp I needed more to go with it.

Since the game is Snap and not (unfortunately for the card holder) anything more lucrative, I needed a card to shout "Snap!"  for, so I took the ace of hearts from a pack of cards - one I keep for crafting purposes, I'm not going to end up stuck for an ace next time I play Patience - and added a green background for a card table. And then, well, I can't see a games table without fancying a game of Scrabble, so out came my spare bag of Scrabble tiles to join in the fun!

Clarice's Cottage

I love the Woodware set of Clarice Cliff style stamps designed by Francoise Read - especially as I adore Clarice Cliff's own work. When I use the stamps, I tend to always stamp and emboss them in black and colour them in bold primary colours, but a birthday card from my daughter this year reminded me that Cliff worked with lots of other colour schemes, so here I have picked up some ideas from the card, using gold for the stamping and embossing, a blue/purple/orange/green colour scheme and a broad black border.

It's great to look at your stamps in a different way sometimes, isn't it?

I am sharing this with Use Your Stuff - Use lots of colour

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Beethoven's Violin Concerto

My all-time favourite piece of music is Beethoven's Violin Concerto, it even inspired me to have violin lessons in my teens (although I scarcely progressed beyond "The Grand Old Duke of York").

So you will understand why I absolutely HAD to have this rubberstamp when I saw it on one of the TV shopping channels many years ago.

I can't remember the brand - I've just been doing a Google search but have failed to find it, so presumably it's long ago gone out of production. A great pity as I'd love to know if there was an equivalent one featuring Mozart!

I stamped it twice, once in grey then again in black, and die cut elements from the black image to emphasize Beethoven himself and the violin. The sentiment is stamped using the same stamp set and the background paper printed out from an old CD, The best of La Pashe 2012.

I am sharing this with
Allsorts Challenge - Music 
Retro Rubber - RRCB94 Anything Goes

Tuesday, 28 August 2018

Bugs at Cardz 4 Guyz

This week at Cardz 4 Guyz we'd like to see BUGS on your work - that's bugs in the American sense of the word, including all kinds of insect and creepy-crawlies.

For my "bug" I chose a bee

This cute little chap is a very old unmounted stamp  that came in a grab bag when I very first started stamping more than 20 years ago. Goodness, I've used him a lot! I can't remember what the bag cost but it was worth every penny as many of my favourite stamps came in it. Today I've stamped and coloured him, using a touch of glitter on his wings and Glossy Accents for his specs, then fussy cut him and added him to a background stencilled with a Tim Holtz honeycomb stencil and stamped with a sentiment from the Clearly Besotted "Cute as a Bug" set.

Monday, 27 August 2018

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Here's a very VERY CAS Christmas card:

But oh what a difference on the inside!

I made a simple pop up insert, stamped the Santa and sleigh (a magazine freebie) on both the outside card and insert, then masked off the image on the insert and used a Uniko stencil to stencil a Glitter Paste snowstorm.
I used a Uniko stamp to add the sentiment then die cut the city skyline - I don't know which city this is. Could it be Chicago? Toronto? Shanghai? Or is it just a generic fictional city? Mark bought me the die and he can't remember what it said on the website!

I am sharing this with 52 Christmas Card Throwdown - pop up/cube cards.

Sunday, 26 August 2018

Funky Rudolph

Unusually this month I wasn't knocking on the door of Scrappymo's waiting for the Rudolph Day party to start, but I think I'm in good time to grab a mince pie and enjoy the rest of the party!

And what could be more appropriate for Rudolph Day than a reindeer?

In this case a Bugaboo reindeer, part of the Christmas Trio Blocks set, teamed with some funky papers. The pink id from a Funkyhands download and the grey-blue from an unbranded pad.

I am sharing this with
Scrappymo's - Rudolph Days
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Reindeer  
Watercooler Wednesday - All about holidays

Chilli Con CarDe

No, this isn't a badly spelled recipe, it's a card made with one of my favourite Rubber Dance stamp sets, featuring various types of chilli and chilli related words. With a chilli-growing husband, these stamps see a LOT of ink! I even use them for Christmas cards.

The background paper is a snippet left over from a sheet I printed from a La Pashe CD for an earlier project, stamped at random with words from the stamp set. The large chilli is stamped, coloured with Promarkers (I used several shades but I think the Glossy Accents made them all merge together), fussy cut and then covered all over with Glossy Accents.

I am sharing this with Shopping Our Stash - Hot! Hot! Hot!

Saturday, 25 August 2018

Just a purr-fect day

Here's a card made with stamps from the really gorgeous cat set that was a cover gift on a recent issue of Making Cards magazine.

I've coloured the cat with Promarkers, and added a mixture of the papers that came with the magazine (orange/black fleck and cats' heads) and one printed out from an old download (cat silhouettes) and finished it off with a 3d vinyl sticker from a My Mind's Eye Halloween set.

I am sharing this with
Little Red Wagon - Hippo Birdie
Sweet Stampin - Birthdays or make it a remake

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers #117 A is for Apple

Edna's gone all William Tell on us for this fortnight's challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers.

I think it's gone to her head! Anyway, the theme is A is for Apple. And these days the first thing that springs to mind when I hear the word "apple" isn't necessarily the fruit. Unlike these gentlemen:

Right, having had a pause  for entertainment (that sketch always makes me laugh out loud)  on with the card.

The background is a newsprint effect craft paper and I've added a newspaper column of my own, with the sentiment at the top circled in red in just the way my Dad used to do with items that merited closer scrutiny. I just fed a load of lorem ipsum text in to make up the bulk of the column, the headline is the only thing that matters.

The only apple stamp I have is a small one from a kiddies' stamp set, but it's the perfect size for creating a mock mobile phone without it looking so much like the well known brand that they could get snotty about trade mark infringement! And I coloured it red to match the circled headline.

Well that's just ONE way of interpreting our theme. Why not head on over to see what the other sistahs have created, and share your work with us too? You could be crowned Queen or Princess of Snark!

Thursday, 23 August 2018

Only a bird in a Krafty cage...

… not a gilded one!

I've made this card for The Library Challenge where the current book is "I know why the Caged Bird Sings". Not a book I've ever read, but being by Maya Angelou I'm guessing it isn't about birds or cages at all.  However I've just picked up the "caged bird" and "singing" elements of the title and worked with those.

The die cut birdcage is part of a wedding favour, I bought a pack from The Range and each one can be cut into 4 birdcages. I've added a sheet of music, also using kraft, in a Darice embossing folder. After embossing I lightly highlighted some of the music with deep red ink. All the other bits and pieces came from my snippets box.

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

Sludgy printing - can anybody help?

Have any of you ever had a problem with a particular craft CD printing out very dark? I have three that do this, and the printouts from one of them end up too dark to be usable, with all the darker colours looking just about black and the lighter ones looking dirty, and any darker detail obscured. It ends up like trying to look at the image or paper through a very dirty window.
It can't be my printer because I have *mumbles embarrassingly large number* of other CDs that all print beautifully. I've tried using different settings but I'm really not sure what alterations I can try to get the best results. Do any of you have any suggestions for something to try?

This is an example of the kind of thing I'm talking about - the topper on this card has a sort of grey, sludgy cast when the colours on the screen when I open the file on the CD are perfectly clear and vivid.

An aperture card at Back to Basics

We've reached our 8th challenge at Back to Basics and this time we'd like you to make an aperture card.

Nowadays I usually die cut my apertures, but I still have just a few tri-fold ready made aperture cards left over from my cross-stitching days. These  had an extra panel to fold over the back of the cross stitch panel, hiding the back of the work, but are also ideal when you want to sandwich something between the back and front.

The card came pre-printed with autumn leaves and berries, which are perfect for with the stamps in the current issue of Creative Stamping. I stamped and coloured the squirrel and attached him to the inside of the third flap, and added a die cut archway of trees to the back of the aperture, then sealed everything together with foam pads to add depth to the card.

I am sharing this with
Addicted to Stamps and More - anything goes
Crafty Creations Challenge - Anything Goes
2 Crafty Critter Crazies - Anything with a creature  

Tuesday, 21 August 2018

Another CAS Autumn card

I'm still feeling very autumnal and it's showing in my card making...

I've used a Uniko stencil across the bottom of this card, sponging autumnal shades of ink randomly over it. The sentiment is stamped using a sentiment from the Creative Expressions Snowdrop Elements set - although the stamp set is a winter one I think it is perfect for any season. I used a chocolate brown ink to match the card I used for the die cut leaf.

I am sharing this with
AAA Cards - Use a stencil

Monday, 20 August 2018

One layer for Autumn

We're beginning to have the first signs of autumn here - the hedgerows are laden with berries already and our long, hot summer is cooling off.

For this one-layer card I used stamps from the beautiful autumn-themed stamp sheet that comes with the current issue of Creative Stamping.  First I stamped a sentiment from the sheet, then (using faint pencil guidelines which I later erased because I'm a wimp) I stamped the four background squares by inking up my smallest square acrylic block with distress inks, spritzing it very lightly with water and stamping it down onto the card. I chose a berry silhouette stamp from the set and stamped it at a different angle on each square, then used a white gel pen to brighten the highlights on each berry.

I am sharing this with
Addicted to CAS - Berries
Mix It Up - anything goes & acrylic block stamping
Less is More - sketch

Playing with hexagons

The hexagon die I've used here is part of a bee-themed stamp and die set from Heartfelt Creations but I've been playing around with using them in non-bee-like ways.

For my first card, I cut each hexagon in half across the longest pat then rearranged them short sides together to form a background.

I covered the join with bright ribbon and finished with some Indian style kraft chipboard shapes.

I am sharing this with
The Alphabet Challenge - Kraft Card

My next card is very different - I cut the hexagon from three snippets of card, positioning a butterfly die in the middle of each before cutting.

I added a stamped sentiment and layered it using the very last scraps of card, then finished with the butterflies I'd cut from the hexagons.

I am sharing this with
Pixie's Snippets Playground Challenge #333
Just Us Girls - Light Green, Aqua and Pale Yellow

And finally, the two together

Which I am, of course, sharing at Twofers where this month's challenge is Geometric.

Oh BU&&ER, I've just realised both cards are birthday cards..... shhh…… don't tell anybody.... I'm sure nobody will notice! After all, they are obviously for different people's birthdays.
There, I think I got away with that, don't you?

Sunday, 19 August 2018

Festive Robin

I'm a big fan of the blog and store called Hope and Chances where, among Christine Emberson's wonderful inspiration, there is also a chance to buy specially produced monthly charity kits, and this month's was extra special as it included a wonderful limited edition robin stencil by Tina Ashton. I'm afraid the kit is sold out, so it's too late to get your hands on it, but here is the card I made using this month's kit.

That robin stencil is adorable, I'm full of ideas for it and I'm sure you'll be seeing a lot more of it from now on. Today I've used it in a different way, with embossing paste.
Once the embossing was dry, I replaced the stencil over it and sponged the inks through. The paste picks up a lot of colour and gives a really bold, intense look. I used a script embossing folder to create a background and finished the card off with brads and sparkly borders.
I am sharing this with
52 Christmas card Throwdown - script
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - No Stamp or Digi 
Just add ink - choose two  

Let's Go Fishing at CD Sundays

Our new challenge at CD Sundays has just started and this time the theme is Let's Go Fishing.

I've used this fun cartoon from the Ooh La La CD "Boys to Men", along with two backing papers from the CD. The arched trellis thing is a sheet from a pad of pre-punched paper. You can't see it clearly from here but it is lightly printed with a cloud effect.

I am sharing this with
Allsorts Challenge - From Boys to Men
Watercooler Wednesday - Masculine Anything Goes

Saturday, 18 August 2018

Shere Khan

In The Jungle Book, the ruler of the beasts is a tiger called Shere Khan and I think this tiger image always looks powerful enough to rule a jungle full of animals!

The stamp came out of a grab bag many, many years ago - I have no idea of the brand. I stamped it with Memento ink and coloured with Promarkers. I've added a sentiment stamped with a magazine freebie, some tiger-print paper, punched leaves and a scrap of corrugated card that came from the packaging of a bottle of olive oil.

I am sharing this with

Little Red Wagon - Lions and tigers and bears!
The Male Room - Wild & Free
Shopping Our Stash - Leaf it to me
The Library Challenge - The Jungle Book
Retro Rubber - Tic tac toe (I have used the diagonal line die cut or punch - green - leaves)

Friday, 17 August 2018

"Patchwork" butterflies

Back to my old favourite Cuttlebug butterfly day for this morning's card. although I tried to use it in a slightly new-to-me way.

I cut it three times using paper from a 6" Crafty Individuals pad, then doodled "tacking stitches" around the edge to give them a patchwork-appliqué look. On the background card I doodled some wavy lines then dotted blue liquid pearls here and there among them, then stamped a sentiment.

I am sharing this with

CAS on Friday - Butterflies
Cardz 4 Galz - Dies/punches

Thursday, 16 August 2018

Playful penguins

My Lili of the valley trio stamps have been out to play again. I think they are only available as digis now, but mine are actual real rubber ones! I think they are ideal for DL cards.

The sentiment is also a Lili of the Valley stamp. The background is stamped all over with a small snowflake block stamp.

I am sharing this with:
52 Christmas Card Throwdown - Black, white and one other colour  (I've used shades of turquoise)

Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - feminine or anything goes

Jingle Belles - sketch

Sparkles Monthly Challenge - Make your own background

Sweet Stampin - Christmas in August

The Holly & Ivy - Anything Christmas Goes

Sweet Stampin Christmas - Anything Goes

Wednesday, 15 August 2018

From the East

I'm glad we are starting to see some Oriental designs returning to the craft scene, as for me they will never go out of style.

Because it's been out of favour for so long, a lot of my Oriental stash is very, very old, like this beautiful kimono stamp that I bought on a holiday to the USA back in 1995. It was made by a company called Design in Squares - I've just searched online for them but they don't seem to be around any more. I loved Chinatown in San Francisco so when I found a craft shop not far away this seemed like a perfect souvenir.

All the papers I have used on this card are intended to be origami papers. That means they are very thin and light, and black heat embossing seems to really stand out crisply on them. The parasol border stamp is an unmounted one that was a gift from a friend many years ago. The flower and character stickers are from an old QVC set.

I am sharing this with

Make My Monday - Oriental 
A Bit More Time to Craft - Anything Goes

Garden at Sunrise

Morning! I'm just back from a lovely short break in Dorset, a birthday treat, and I need to start with a crafty confession - while we were there I went into a lovely, well-stocked craft shop….. and came out without buying a single thing! I must be a very bad craft shopper, because I seem to be completely incapable of buying on impulse. I get overwhelmed when there is so much amazing STUFF to choose from! I'm the same at a craft show - I love to go to the workshops and attend the demos, but I tend to come home with a pack of white card, a bargain bag of adhesives and a replacement black ink pad rather than lots of exciting new goodies.

Oh well, that's more money in the kitty for when one of you lovely crafters 'enables' me!

Which all explains why there is nothing new on this card.

This card is all one layer - I masked off the central square and blended inks for the background, then stamped the Crafty Individuals floral stamp over the space - I didn't quite line it up right so I added some grasses along the bottom to hide the gaps. After removing the mask, I outlined it with a black fineliner to make it look like a separate layer, then finished off with a stamped sentiment and some tiny highlights of white gel pen.

I an sharing this with
Shopping our stash - leaf it to me
Crafty Creations Challenge - Anything Goes
Flower Challenge - One Layer Card

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Get Well Soon at Cardz 4 Guyz

It's time for our new challenge at Cardz 4 Guyz  and this time it is my turn to choose - I have chosen "Get Well Soon", mostly because I struggle myself with Get Well cards so am looking to you all for inspiration!

A bunch of flowers on a card always works well for a female get well card but what do you make for a man? Well, I've just treated myself to a set of Hampton Art stamps that are perfect for the job and include some fun sentiments too.

To let the image speak for itself I've kept the card very clean and simple - just some fabric-effect paper to match that "elegant" hospital gown and some simple white Candi that remind me a little of pills.

I am sharing this with
Allsorts challenge - Boys to men
Addicted to CAS - Masculine

Saturday, 11 August 2018

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers challenge #116 - Denim

If you are anything like me you will really need to get your thinking cap on for Edna's latest challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers.

Coo, not just denim for Edna, she's gone for the double denim look!

Yes, she's chosen DENIM as our theme. It really had me scratching my head but eventually I dug out this old jeans pocket stamp that was once upon a time the monthly Clarity Stamp Club stamp, and gradually everything came together.

I stamped and embossed it twice onto denim blue paper then cut out the pockets and used more of the paper for the background. To make it look more like the bottom of a pair of jeans, I added a narrow strip of paper edged with faux stitching using a gel pen to look like the back seam of the jeans.

The sentiment - an often heard cry from women everywhere and very familiar to fans of the old TV series "The Fast Show" was stamped using a set of letter stamps that my younger daughter - now 37 - had when she was a little girl.

Friday, 10 August 2018

Not HER again, surely?

You must all be getting pretty familiar with my SoSuzy Cameo lady stamp by now!

It's such a perfect stamp to use with so many snarky sentiments: this is one of the sentiments that I bought at the same time as the image stamp. I usually use it in a very CAS way but I've gone a bit inky with it today, with a distress oxide background for the sentiment and a little of the ink added to the image. The background is stamped with champagne bottles from a recent magazine stamp set and of course the image and sentiment are at slightly drunken angles - how could they be anything else with a sentiment like this?

It's hard to choose a favourite stamp when you have as many as I do, although I have a definite top 10 (or so) but thankfully the Stamping Sensations challenge this month recognises that dilemma and asks us to use our current favourite stamp, and this lady is definitely mine!

I am also sharing this with Shopping Our Stash where I suspect several of the DT were pretty certain that when I saw the Silhouettes theme, this would be the stamp I reached for!

Thursday, 9 August 2018

Spots of Snippets

When I saw the sketch for this week's 52 Christmas Card Throwdown challenge

I thought immediately that it would be a great way of using snippets.

When you use a pad as often as I do the Tonic Studios Winter Wonderland one, you do end up with a lot of co-ordinating snippets, so I grabbed a handful of circle dies and a bundle of snippets and set to work. I gave the circles an appliqué look by doodling in faux stitching around them and framed the whole thing by ruling lines to fill the corners.

I am sharing this with
52 Christmas Card Throwdown - sketch
and of course, with all those snippets, Pixie's Snippets Playground.
And thanks to Liz's reminder, I'm heading back to The Crafty Calendar with a second entry that couldn't be more different from my first one!