Monday, 30 September 2019

Hop to it!

The area where I live used to be well known for hop growing, but over the last 50 years most of the hop gardens had closed, but the small local breweries that they had supplied remained open. Now that craft beers have become fashionable, several of the breweries have increased production and are finding it economically viable to once again grow their own hops, so they are starting to reappear around the local lanes. And of course hop garlands are very popular indoor decorations at this time of year.

Which is a very long winded way of saying I used a hop garland stamp on this card.

I stamped it in brown, using the Misti to position it symmetrically with space for the sentiment, then coloured it with pencils.

I am sharing this with
AAA Cards - One layer & optional twist - Autumn 

Make my Monday - Autumn 

Little Red Wagon - Fall it! 

Winter Wishes

We live in such a multicultural society nowadays that we probably all have friends who don't celebrate Christmas as such, although most major faiths have some kind of celebration at that time of year. So I always like to make sure my festive card supplies include some that don't have a specific Christmas message. And of course  many people nowadays celebrate Christmas without wanting to be involved in the religious aspect of it.

These lovely papers and toppers from The Paper Boutique are perfect for those occasions - and for winter birthdays too.

I've added a large medallion cut with a Spellbinders die and some gems, everything else came from the Paper Boutique range which a very generous friend gave me the other day - what a wonderful gift to receive!

I am sharing this with

Christmas Card Throwdown - Easel or trifold 

Jingle Belles - The Hannukah Song 

Sunday, 29 September 2019

Big bold butterfly

When I resurrected my large autumn leaves stamp last week I enjoyed it so much that I decided to bring out another stamp from the set, this time a giant butterfly. (The third and final one is dragonflies - but then you'd probably already guessed that if a range of stams contained a dragonfly, i would have it!).

I coloured it with Promarkers, using the Butterfly Challenge's colours of mint, magnolia and mandarin for the background and those of the central butterfly on Addicted to Stamps's beautiful photo inspiration for the butterfly. I added twisted mats of the background colours and a stamped sentiment. I considered adding some gems or pearls to the corner but with such a bold, bright image it all seemed a bit Too Much and guided the eye away from the butterfly, so I didn't stick them in place.

I am sharing this with

Addicted to stamps - photo inspiration 

Butterfly Challenge - Letter M   (I have used Magnolia, Mint, Mandarin and Marker Pens)

Watercooler Wednesday - All about occasions 

Anything Goes at CD Sunday Plus

Our latest Anything Goes challenge is just starting at CD Sunday Plus . Don't forget, you can use anything you have downloaded now, as well as anything stored on a craft CD or USB stick.

I've made a fun Christmas card this time, using the Katy Sue Designs CD "The Christmas Spirit".

Some of the cartoons on the CD are such fun they really don't need much added, just a suitable background and sentiment, both from the same CD.

I am sharing this with
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Anything goes/for someone special

Wednesday, 25 September 2019

The Christmas Tower of Kitties

Yes, I know, I know, two Christmas cards in one day. Well let me remind you that it's exactly three months today ....

I was wanting to make a card for the challenge at Christmas Kickstart, where the theme is "It's a gift", but when I lifted out what I think is the only stamp I have of a wrapped gift, it had a nasty gash across it  that completely ruined the image. Then I remembered that on this cats-in-boxes stamp  the boxes are actually GIFT boxes.

Nowadays there are several multi lingual people in my family (sadly I don't count myself as one of them, except when it comes to reading menus!) so this embossing folder, with festive greetings in 9 different languages, is perfect  for me. I think it's a Crafters Companion one - I'm no good at keeping records of my craft stuff.

I embossed heavy white paper (to give a crisper impression than card) then gently swiped a gold Delicata ink pad over the tops of the letters, and finally spritzed the while thing with gold mica powder in water.

The image is from AAA&Create and is coloured with Promarkers and glitter glue, with the cats coloured to match the various ones my Mum has owned  over the years. I added it with 3D adhesive so as not to squash the embossing. The sparkly glitter card mat is a piece of Lidl bargain card.

I am sharing this with

Fab 'n' Funky - Christmas 
Christmas Kickstart - It's a Gift 
Passion for Promarkers - Christmas in September  
Shopping our Stash - Dream the Embossible Dream (don't you just love that title?)

Little Bear Blue for Rudolph Day

Today is the 25th and that makes it September's Rudolph Day.

I've used a collection of papers from a pad that, rather surprisingly, came from Poundland. The bear is stamped with a very old magazine freebie stamp  and the sentiment came from Stampin Up's Cookie Cutter Christmas set. I'm currently in love with these sweet snowflake brads and the two I've used here are the first I've been able to bring myself to part with!

I am, of course, playing along with Rudolph Days at Scrappymo's  and I would also like to share this with

52 Christmas Card Throwdown - Bears 

Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Anything goes

Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Dragonfly Summer

Well, today it  is most definitely NOT summer, we've had torrential rain for most of the morning, making it a great day to stay indoors and craft. Which is a real treat as I've had all my craft stuff put away for a while to make room for guests. So while there's a deluge outside I'm going to deluge you with cards!

I've just realised I accidentally made a one layer card - they used to terrify me and now I'm getting more and more frequently drawn to them.

The dragonfly and leaf stamps are from a very, very old set of Woodware stamps called "In the jungle" - it was one of the first sets of clear stamps I bought so it must be at least 15 years old.  I stamped using a grey Versafine pad and used mint and grey water based markers to colour everything.

I am sharing this with

CASology - Dragonfly 

Just Us Girls - White, grey, green 

Retro rubber - anything goes 
RRCB 120

Trees or leaves at Cardz 4 Guyz

Our latest challenge at Cardz 4 Guyz is Trees or Leaves - and don't forget to make it a card you would comfortably send to a man or boy!

I've used the die and embossing folder set that came with a recent issue of Papercraft Essentials.

For the lower part of the leaf I took white card and used a coarse sponge to "stipple" layers of yellow, orange, green and light tan ink over it then spritzed it with gold pigment powder mixed with water. You can't really see the sheen on the photo but here's a close up  that might give a better idea of it.

I used an opaque lemon embossing  powder and Versamark  ink on the brown card to stamp and emboss the sentiment - I experimented with several combinations of ink and powder and this gave me the closest I could get to the cream background card.

I am sharing this with

Allsorts Challenge - Trees and Leaves
Alphabet Challenge - masculine 
Uniko challenge - anything goes/autumn 
Crafty Cardmakes - Autumn colours

Saturday, 21 September 2019

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers #144 - G is for Gross

Ewwww! This time our challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers is G is for Gross.

Now I'm sure Edna was thinking in terms of the "Ewwww" meaning of Gross, but the mathematician in me couldn't resist the fact that gross is also an old term for the number 144. So naturally I had to combine both meanings:

On the outside of the card is the poo emoji, 144 times over. The sentiment is on the inside.

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Two dogs

The latest challenge at Twofers is Critters.  Now I don't own a dog, I'm more of a cat person, so the lovely dog stamps that came as a cover mount a few months ago have been sitting around uninked and I thought it was about time I put that right, so my critter is this shaggy dog.

My brother recently lost his beloved dog, which prompted me to start with a doggy sympathy card.

I used Versafine ink  and the Misti to stamp the dog,  sentiment and first set of pawprints, stamping 3 times to get a bold impression. Then I continued the line of pawprints, first with a single impression  and then, as they fade away, using the ink left on the stamp to give a much fainter image. I have to confess that even though I'm not a doggy person,  by the time I'd made those pawprints fade away like that, I seemed to have got something  in my eye....

Anyway, I needed cheering up after that and what could be more cheerful than Christmas?

This time I stamped the doggy with Memento ink and coloured him with Promarkers, then fussy cut him. Any other varifocal wearers, do you ever find that when you are fussy cutting, you end up tilting your head up and down like one of those nodding dogs that people used to have in car windows? The festive background was part of a recent magazine gift that I didn't think I would ever be using, but with a bit of modification it turned out to be just right for this. It came with lots of die cut decoupage,  but I used just one layer to add the baubles and garland, extending the garland out over the layers to the edge of the card. The Santa hat is the very last one from a Hot Off The Press pack i bought many years ago, and I added a die cut sentiment.

I am sharing both cards with

Twofer Card Challenge - Critters 

Shopping Our Stash - Dog Days of Summer 

2 Crafty Critter Crazies - September anything goes 

I am sharing the Christmas Card with Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge 

and the Sympathy Card with Little Red Wagon 

Anything goes at CD Sunday Plus

We have another Anything Goes challenge at CD Sunday Plus this week.

Don't forget that you can now use something from a CD or  Download OR a USB stick - or of course you can combine them and add any other technique you like, as long as there is something included from one of the specified sources.

I've used a CD for this - that old workhorse, the Best of La Pashe 2012.

I made an easel card and embellished it with die cut vellum feathers. I printed the design sheet twice, once in colour and once in greyscale so I would have a neutral version of the book paper to use behind the image, in order to stop it all from looking over cluttered. There is just a single layer of decoupage, enough to add interest without adding too much bulk.

Friday, 13 September 2019

More Autumn Leaves

I love Autumn - the colours, the smells, the harvest, it's my favourite season. And it's coming across in my crafting at the moment - here is yet another Autumn leaf card.

The stamp I have used is a very old one - at least 20 years old -  that a friend sent me from America. It doesn't have any markings to say the brand name. It's a huge stamp; as you can see, it almost fills the front of an A6 card.

I have coloured it with Promarkers and added a sentiment on a strip of vellum - I embossed it with a powder called Wild Tiger although I think it looks much more like autumn leaves than tigers!

Finally I tried to capture the look of morning dew on the leaves with  scattering of coloured gems.
 I am sharing this with

Cardz 4 Galz - welcome Autumn/Fall 

Retro Rubber - Fall Colours

Passion for Promarkers - pearls, gems or sequins 

Crafty Cardmakers - Pearls and/or gems 

Thursday, 12 September 2019

Gingerbread Christmas

I do love my Stampin Up! Cookie Cutter Christmas stamps and punch. The characters are perfect for CAS cards. Here I've used the gingerbread man, stamped and punched him twice, and added die cut snowflakes and pine bough.

I am sharing this with

Addicted to Stamps and More - Holiday 

CAS Christmas - Holiday Treats 

Christmas Crafts All Year round - Christmas food or drink 

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Butterfly, bird, blooms, bow and borders

I've gone layer-crazy on this card, made with some pre-cut printed diecuts and tag, plus papers from the dovecraft Couture du Jour pad and some bits and bobs from my stash.

I cut one square to fit the width of the card, with a narrow border, then used a lace edging punch to cut a border along three of the coordinating papers and layered them up to cover the front of an A5 card. I used a deckle edged ruler to draw a border around the square piece then had fun layering embellishments over the card front.

I am sharing this with

The Butterfly Challenge  where I have used the elements Lemon and Layers
Pearly Sparkles - add ribbon and/or a bow
Crafty Calendar - add lots of layers

Tuesday, 10 September 2019

Inspired by the Beatles at Cardz 4 Guyz

It's my turn to choose the challenge at Cardz 4 Guyz this time  and I've picked one that I think you can have a lot of fun with - Inspired by the Beatles. I don't want to see any of you submitting a blank square white card and saying you were inspired by "White album"!

I've been inspired by the song "All You Need is Love"  and used this Clarity Stamp which I've had for about 10 years, coloured with Promarkers,  and a very 60s looking background paper printed out from a Funkyhands CD called "Now That's Funky".

Scalloped snippets

For once, I don't feel sad about having used the very last scraps of several papers for this card. Why? Because they were part of a magazine freebie, and the mag also included a link to download the paper designs from their site, so I can print more any time I want to.

I punched lots and lots of circles from the snippets, then arranged them over a strip of card cut to the width of my base card by slightly less than the depth I wanted to cover (this was to allow me to trip the top and edges, which would have been tricky done directly on the card).  Then I stuck it to the card and used a black glitter peel-off border to edge it. I finished off with a stamped sentiment and a scattering of gems.

I am sharing this with

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge 360 
Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Anything goes/patterned paper 
Make my Monday - use shapes on your card 

Monday, 9 September 2019

Pirate Queen

Pirates don't have to be boys!

For this card I used a Clearly Besotted stamp set for the pirate girl,  parrot and treasure chest and coloured them with promarkers.  I stamped a sentiment from the same set and embosses it with white detail powder, then cut everything out.

I made a "ship's porthole" using circle die-cut waste as a stencil, then cutting cloud shapes from scrap paper and using them as masks, sponging blue ink around them,  and added a "floor" of lightly smudged grey pencil.

I am sharing this with

Sweet Stampin - Nautical 
The Library Challenge - Reader's Choice  (Treasure Island)
A place to start - Anything goes/Masking 
Tales from the craft room - For the kids 
CASology - LOL 

Sunday, 8 September 2019


I love this set of cat stamps that I won in the Playground a while back (which reminds me, very sorry Miss Di I'm not REALLY skipping class this time, just running a bit late!).

The cats are obviously peeping over something, so this time I've made them peep over a wall which I created with a stencil, using a grey pencil to lightly fill in the "mortar". I coloured the cats with pencils.

I'm sharing this with AAA cards - sketch with the optional twist of animals

Copper oak

The copper beech is a well known tree, but today I have for you a copper oak!

To be honest I'm rather disappointed with this card - as I always seem to be when I choose cream as a base card for a CAS card. Lots of white (or almost any colour) space looks lovely but to my eye lots of cream just looks a bit grubby.

Anyway, it's made so here it is - I used stamps from a magazine set and embossed the oak leaf with Copper Sparkle powder. Here's a close up so you can see the shine and  sparkle. 

I am sharing this with Less is More - Metallics 

Saturday, 7 September 2019

Autumn leaves

It's the time of year when my favourite colours come into play - and that means many of my all-time favourite stamps come out to play!

The focal point of this stamp is a very old Rubber Stampede falling leaf stamp. I  can't recall exactly when I bought it but I'm guessing it's about 25 years old. I coloured it with Promarkers then cut it out with a narrow border. I often fussy cut it along the outlines but as I wanted to create this background I thought it needed the white for definition.

For the background, I masked the edges of the card then stamped all over with a speckle design stamp and a Kaleidacolor  pad, then used a leaf silhouette and the brown end of the pad to lightly stamp a few leaves here and there.

I added a stamped sentiment and two buttons that have an all-over autumn leaf design, finished with twine bows.

I am sharing this with

Allsorts Challenge - Autumn Colours  

Passion for Promarkers - Add buttons  

The Male Room - Autumn 

Creative with stamps - Autumn 

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers challenge #143 - L is for Liquor

Rumour has it that Edna is fond of a tipple or three - and I know I'm not the only one of the Sistahs to thoroughly endorse that idea. So our latest challenge at Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers is L is for Liquor.

Oh just look at all that booze! It makes me think of one of my (many) favourite Dorothy Parker quotes: 

“I like to have a martini,
Two at the very most.
After three I'm under the table,
after four I'm under my host.”

I'm sure it doesn't surprise you at all that as a fan of snark I'm also a fan of Dorothy Parker. I'm sure if she'd been around today she'd have played along with the Sistahs. 

The background is stamped with cup stain and splash stamps, the image is a Hampton Arts stamp  coloured with Promarkers and the sentiment is a Tim Holtz Snarky Sentiments sticker.

Friday, 6 September 2019

Autumnal wreath

Brrrr..... the temperature here has dropped sharply this week and it's starting to feel a lot more like early autumn than late summer, leading me to pick out some autumnal shades when I was colouring this.

I used the Misti to stamp the flower spray image four times evenly around the front panel. I'd made a test piece in scrap paper to help me position  the image, and had planned to have the four sprays closer to the centre, so they touched at the ends, but the longer branches reaching towards the centre made it look cluttered, so i moved the image further out and then after stamping added  a green leaf sprig in between, along with one at each corner. This left me space to stamp the sentiment in the centre. I coloured the flowers with Promarkers and ran an inkpad around the edge before attaching it to the front of the card.

I am sharing this with

Watercooler Wednesday - Feminine anything goes 

The Flower Challenge - Anything goes

Stamping Sensations - Anything goes with flowers