Wednesday, 12 May 2021

I don't do cute!

 At least not very often, but I reckon I've nailed it here. 

All the stamps I've used are from a Pink & Main stamp and  die set.  I gave the ladybird border a green mat, to make a layer of "grass" for the little ladybird baby to sit on once I had coloured and die cut it. 

I've got the sister set to this, a bee themed one - I'm tempted to make another card just like this using the bee set. 

I am sharing this with 

Addicted to CAS - Bugs

Tuesday, 11 May 2021

An oldie but goodie

 I can't remember when I bought this stamps-and-paper set but it's many, many years ago. According to the storage card the stamps live in, it was a special offer in Crafts Beautiful. I think the papers I've used here are the very last few sheets from the pack. 

I used the papers to create lots of layers, fussy cutting along the scallops and bubbles of the striped paper. Then I stamped the butterfly and sentiment and coloured the butterfly with colours to match some of the shades in the papers. 

I am sharing this with 

Sweet Stampin - Things with wings 

Just us Girls - layers 

Monday, 10 May 2021

Peaceful on the water


I've used a set of layering stamps to build up the scene for this one layer card, keeping to shades of blue. The water is done by sponging in pale blue ink then going over it with horizontal strokes of several shades of blue pencil.  I finished with a very subtle "frame" of bare branches, stamped in the palest blue I could find. 

I am sharing this  with 

Allsorts Challenge - create a Landscape/Scene  

Cardz 4 Guyz - Monochromatic  

Crafty Calendar - Masculine 

The Male Room - Water/Beach  

Saturday, 8 May 2021

Eating al Fresco

All over the world, countries seem to be at different stages of this terrible pandemic and handling it in different ways. Here in England (rather than Britain - all the British nations are doing different thigs) we are slowly easing out of lockdown, and now restaurants, pubs and caf├ęs can open, but only to serve outdoors. 

On sunny days, pavements and gardens close to them are full of happy people, delighted to be able to share a coffee or a glass of wine with friends again, and this old stamp - I think it was from Crafters Companion? - is a perfect one for current times. Actually today it's pouring with rain, but I'm sure a few hardy souls will still be venturing out to meet up. 

I coloured the image with Promarkers and die cut it into a circle to fit the centre of the large scalloped circle die cut, then finished it with a computer generated sentiment. 

For all of you who have sent supportive messages and get well wishes for my Mum, the latest news is that the rehydration, regular meals, physio and antibiotics have done her a world of good and she is to be allowed home next week, on condition she accepts visits from carers several times a day. In the past, she has sacked any carers that have been put in place for her, but she has been sternly told that this time the alternative to accepting them is residential care - which she really doesn't want, mostly because she would miss her cat so much. So it's looking hopeful. I will be heading up to help her settle back in, so the recent torrent of posts from me (crafting is such great stress relief) is about to dry up for a while. 

I am sharing this with 

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers - O is for Outdoors  

Watercooler Wednesday - all things feminine  

Little Red Wagon - hers! 

Friday, 7 May 2021

Here comes the sun

 Hasn't the last year or so altered our perception of time? Often the days and weeks have seemed to drag on for ever while they were happening, yet in other ways a whole year feels as if it never happened. I bought this stencil at the Farnborough show in February last year and still think of it as a brand new purchase. 

This sentiment-as-focal-point card is really more about the background - it tells the whole story behind the sentiment. I used the stencil and several shades each of red and orange ink to create the sun, then layered it on the card with the stamped sentiment (sorry, can't remember the brand) positioned so it is in the brightest part of the sunshine. 

I am sharing this with 

Fab'N'Funky - Sunshine Colours 

River of Creativity (a brand NEW challenge from my lovely friend Zoe) - Sunshine  

We Love Chocolate Baroque - Bright Sunny Colours  

Colour Hues - red and orange 

Stained Glass Daffodils

 I hate it when I see the question "What's your favourite flower?" because I love them all, and my favourite tends to be the one I've most recently seen or smelled. So I tried rethinking the question - "Which flower would you miss most if it ceased to exist?". Now that's an easy one for me - having lived in the tropics for 7 years, it's the daffodil. When surrounded by opulent exotic orchids, anthuriums and hibiscus flowers, I soon started to pine for  the freshness and spring promise of a simple bunch of daffs!

The image I have used is a very old unmounted stamp that came in a grab bag. I think it might have been an All Night Media stamp originally. I stamped it in black onto heat embossable acetate and embossed it with clear powder. Normally I would use glass paints on acetate, but as the embossing isn't really deep enough to hold the paints in place, I decided to try colouring it with Promarkers. The colours came out lovely and clear, although as the ink dries fairly slowly and tends to pool slightly, it leaves a slight brush-stroke effect. But then, where would art be without brush strokes? 

I attached it to white card using spray adhesive - being very careful not to get any on the front of the panel as the adhesive is solvent based and would erase the Promarkers, being alcohol based. Then, since it has a very Art Deco look, I chose a suitable style of sentiment and added that before completing with layering and gems. 

I am sharing this with

Passion for Markers - say it with flowers  

The Flower Challenge - Use your favourite flower  

Thursday, 6 May 2021

Rainbow and Butterfly


It's always good to have something new to play with and the stamp, die and stencil I used for this card are all NBUS. The stamp is from the latest Creative Stamping magazine set, the stencil was a free gift with my last delivery from Craft Stash and the butterfly die is a pre-loved one that was in a crafting round robin that I belong to. 

I masked the stencil onto the card so that one complete repeat of the pattern showed, then marked the masking tape into 7 to give me a rough idea where to put the colours, then inked through the stencil with the 7 colours of the rainbow. My indigo ink pad looked too harsh, so I covered what was to be the the indigo section first with violet and then with blue to get a shade I was happy with. I gave the border definition by ruling two fine lines each side with a black fineliner. Then I stamped the sentiment and finished with that gorgeous die cut butterfly. 

I am sharing this with: 

CAS Mix Up - Stencil + Rainbow ink blending (+ stamping + diecutting) 

AAA Birthday - Happy Birthday 

NBUS - challenge 26 

Tall Taggy Christmas

 My latest all-from-the-snippets-box make is here - tags in the traditional festive colours of red (not orange as it looks here!) , green and gold, each one topped with a stamped and punched character from the SU "Cookie Cutter Christmas" set. The tags are cut and embossed with a very old Sizzix die set. 

You may have noticed a change (and deterioration, but that will improve with practise) in my photos recently. Following a recent computer problem, all my computer's USB slots are full so in order to upload photos from my camera, I have to unplug the keyboard. As I've been having problems with the white balance on my ageing camera, I thought it might be the opportunity I've been looking for to swap to using my phone for photos, since I recently got a new phone with a really good camera. My phone puts the photos straight into Google Photos so it saves having to upload them. But I'm not used to the camera yet and still have a lot to learn. 

Also I'm not using my white background at the moment. That's because I have a bit of back trouble just now, nothing serious but it's uncomfortable to bend and twist, and where I usually take photos to get the best light, I have to bend right down and twist to one side (with my elbow in the kitchen sink but you didn't need to know that) so I have temporarily moved to somewhere I can stand upright while I take my photos. And the white background doesn't fit - although I think maybe the wood background is helping with the light balance. 

Lots of experimenting to do before I'm happy with my photos enough to decide on where, when and how to deal with them in order to see my cards at their best, but I'm working on it. I suppose at the end of the day, I'm a crafter not a photographer! 

I'm sharing this with 

Pixie's Snippets Playground  - Challenge 402, Ruby's Memory  

Sparkles Christmas - Use a Tag  

Christmas Kickstart - Santa and Friends 

Wednesday, 5 May 2021

A walk on the beach

 Another make using the really useful stencils from the current issue of Creative Stamping, this time the seashell border. I blended sand coloured ink over the bottom of the card then stencilled the shells over in black Versafine Clair which I find gives a lovely intense blackness. Then added a stamped sentiment, which is also from a Creative Stamping magazine a couple of years ago. 

I am sharing this with 

A Bit More Time To Craft Extra - Anything Goes  

Less is More - Sea Creatures 

Sending Joy

Another Christmas card from me today -  I'm a l-o-n-g way behind my 2-a-week target so I'm playing catch up. 

I embossed the background, leaving a space to stamp the sentiment, then added the word "Joy" die cut in gold. Ugh, and now the photo is enlarged on my screen, I can see a nasty glue smear on the Y. I'll have to replace that letter before I  can send the card next Christmas! 

I am sharing this  with 

Christmas Crafts All Year Round  - Something beginning with I or J 

Inkspirational - Sketch  


Tuesday, 4 May 2021

Paris encore un fois

 Having only made a Paris themed card last week, now one of the latest challenges has a Paris theme. And since I have so much French and Paris themed stash, I couldn't resist joining in right away. 

I dug out a very old stamp set that I got from a bargain bucket of unpackaged stamps, previously used for demos,  at the Farnborough show 5 or 6 years ago. There are vintage collage style images of several different major cities in the set. I teamed the Paris image with some papers sent as a gift - I think they are from Stampin Up - and the Paris panorama  from the Tim Holtz Cityscapes set, also 5 or 6 years old. 

I am sharing this with 

Country View Challenges - We will always have Paris 

Crafty Hazelnut's Patterned Paper Challenge - Anything goes  

Retro rubber - sketch 

Flying high


I've used a very old Lawn Fawn stamp set for this card. First I masked off the bottom two thirds of the card, to make sure all the details were "up in the sky". Then I stamped the bird and covered it with masking paper. Next I cut a cloud template from scrap paper and sponged blue ink over it to make a cloudy sky. I added the sentiment then removed all the masks  and  coloured the bird with pencils. 

I am sharing this with 

Perfectly CAS - Wings 

AAA Cards - up to one third (without the twist, unless a bird with big eyelashes counts as a mystical beast!) 

Alphabet Challenge - B is for Bird  

Addicted to CAS - Sky   

Monday, 3 May 2021

Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May....

 I can see our apple saplings from my study window. They are bursting into flower and look beautiful, but those rough winds that Shakespeare wrote about in Sonnet 18 are forecast to shake them very hard later today. I do hope the blossoms survive and set, so we can have a good crop of fruit later in the year. Everything tastes better when it's home grown! 

Anyway, here's my home grown apple blossom card for you. 

The stamp I have used is from an old Uniko set. It's an old favourite that I've had for a good many years, but sadly I won't be using it any more as it completely disintegrated as I peeled it from the Misti. I've never known that happen with a good quality stamp before, only free and cheap ones. I don't know whether it was just old age, or something I might have done. But I've never used Stazon ink with it, cleaned it with harsh chemicals or left it somewhere too hot, so I'm puzzled. I just hope the same doesn't happen to the Happy Birthday sentiment as it's probably my favourite of all my happy birthday stamps. 

Anyway, I coloured it with alcohol markers, outlining it in a very pale green which I think really makes the image pop, and added pink matting, cutting the border very narrow to help keep everything CAS. 

I am sharing this with 

Allsorts Challenge - Spring Blossoms  

Little Red Wagon - Smell the Roses  

Taylormade Cards 4 U - May Flowers  

Stamping Sensations - Beautiful Blooms  

Pearly Sparkles - CAS 

Christmas flowers

 Hi friends. Mum's still poorly but not as bad as she was - she's been moved between the rehab centre and hospital a couple of times, and because of covid precautions, every time she moves back to the rehab centre from the hospital she has to start quarantine again, so she's feeling very lonely, not even able to meet the other patients. We're waiting to see whether the latest treatment the hospital gave her is working, so fingers and toes are all crossed. 

I've been crafting like a maniac to take my mind off things, so I'll probably be doing a couple of blog posts every day for a few days. I'm just bursting with ideas at the moment so there are lots more cards to come! 

Here's a Christmas card - perfect for the May bank holiday! I wanted to try using an inky background in a very CAS way. I inked the background in shades of red and green (it really is green even though it looks yellow in the photo) then stamped the poinsettia cluster, from a Creative Stamping set from a couple of years ago, positioning it so the main flower was roughly over the darkest red area. Yes, I know the red part isn't the flower - the flowers are what look like the stamens. I die cut the image - and the sentiment, also from the same stamp set, with stitch edged dies and finished the flower centre and berries with liquid pearls. 

I am sharing this with 

Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge - Anything Goes  

Fab'n'Funky - Christmas 

Fezziwig's Festive Frolics - Festive Florals 

Sunday, 2 May 2021

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

 When I was a child, one of my most treasured possessions was a box set of The Chronicles of Narnia books, and when the new Creative Stamping magazine arrived last week,  I spied one of the ship stamps and thought of the book immediately and decided to make a card with it. However once I'd made the ocean, the ship looked far too small so I had to have a complete rethink. 

This Galleon die, from an X-cut set, is meant to create a pirate ship bit simply omitting the skull and crossbones has changed it into the good ship Dawn Treader. To make the ocean, I sponged blue ink over  the card then used the stencil that came with Creative Stamping to roughly apply white texture paste. 

I had planned to position the ship centrally and upright, but that ocean looks so rough I'm sure she would be being tossed about a bit so angled it slightly and moved it to one side, creating a suitable space for the sentiment. The magazine stamp set had a banner stamp, complete with sentiment, but I wanted to use the banner with a different sentiment so I very carefully cut the existing sentiment away, creating too separate stamps, and stamped the outline banner around a sentiment from the Clearly Besotted pirates stamp set. 

As soon as Mark saw the card, he claimed it to send to a friend! 

I am sharing this with 

Use Your Stuff - Inspired by a Book (The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C S Lewis) 

A Bit More Time to Craft Extra - Anything Goes  

Just Us Girls - Float 

Saturday, 1 May 2021

Happy Birthday Holly

 Today my granddaughter Holly is 9 years old (going on 17). She is passionate about history and her favourite period is the Ancient Romans, so I wanted to make her a Roman themed birthday card, yet keep it suitable for a child. The adorable Roman Hippos stamp set from Clearly Besotted fitted the bill perfectly. 

I used a Tim Holtz "Cityscapes" stamp to make a background. The hippos and archway are stamped on separate card, coloured with Promarkers and fussy cut. I backed the archway with purple paper and used stickers to add her age - in Roman numerals of course! Then I planned all the positions and stamped the sentiment before adding everything else using 3D adhesive. 

Mark added a finishing touch by writing her a message in Latin on the inside, which I hear she is at  this very moment trying to translate. 

I am sharing this with 

Addicted to Stamps and More - Any occasion 

Passion for Markers - use a sentiment 

2 Crafty Critter Crazies - anything goes 

Friday, 30 April 2021

Paris revisited

 Foreign travel is still a dream for most of us, but at least we crafters can travel the world without leaving our craft tables! 

I've printed, cut, distressed and layered lots and LOTS of elements from Debbi Moore's "Shabby Chic - Paris" CD for this card. I didn't really start with a layout in mind - just kept shuffling pieces around until I was happy, then took a photo to enable me to remember where to stick them. 

I am sharing this with CD Sunday Plus - anything goes 

Thursday, 29 April 2021

Lots of kitties

 As many of you read in my post the other day, my 95 year old Mum is poorly at the moment and has just been transferred to a rehab centre, where she is likely to be staying for a while so won't be at home on her birthday next month. Here's the card I've made to send to her. 

She's mad about cats, and missing her own cat, so these will be a substitute! The cats are die cut, and I cut 9 squares of white card and embossed them with the Swiss Dots folder before matting them with red card. I arranged them on a square card, rotating the centre one for extra interest, and added the cats to the top and bottom rows. The sentiment is stamped and heat embossed. I chose "best wishes" instead of "Happy Birthday" because last year when I wished her a happy birthday, her reply was "What have I got to be happy about?"  

I am sharing this with Time Out Challenges where the theme is Pets. 

Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Shades of green

 It's lovely to see the trees starting to look green again (although my eyes rather wish the nearby birch trees weren't producing so much pollen) so I've made a card that celebrates all the shades of green we see in nature. 

A total snippet-fest using scraps of several shades of green and a snippet of leaf-patterned paper. The leaves were cut and embossed and the background finished with the last pieces of the scraps of card.  I know the leaves are more "deep dark jungle" than "English country lane" but the colours are very reminiscent of the spring leaves, the conifers and the evergreen shrubs along the roadside. 

I am sharing this with 

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge 401  

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers - M is for Monochromatic  (apologies for the total lack of snark, sistahs, but my 95 year old Mum is in hospital at the moment and my mind just refuses to get into a snarky groove, I'm feeling to stressed to laugh!) 

Sunday, 25 April 2021

Shrink plastic revisited

 A few weeks ago, I used a very large butterfly stamp from the latest Indigo Blu magazine kit, and speculated at the time about how it would look used with shrink plastic. 

Well I've had a play now and am delighted with it. 

I stamped it onto clear shrink plastic and coloured it with pencils before shrinking. Then I used a new-to-me card fold called Mini Miura, following instructions over on Mrs A's Butterfly Challenge blog. I used coordinating patterned papers on the end panels and a green core-dinations card, embossed and sanded, for the centre panel. The back of the last panel has a white space for writing, and the sentiment attached to the belly band is a very old Polkadoodles stamp, coloured with pencils. 

I an sharing this with 

Butterfly challenge  - I've used the fold and all the colours and of course a butterfly. I'd planned to add some metal brads but the ones I was going to use clashed horribly with the papers, being *exactly* the wrong shades of green and maroon, so I can't claim a full house this time. 

Sweet Stampin - no squares allowed 

Thursday, 22 April 2021

Victory Lap

 I've not made an easel card for absolutely AGES and thought it was about time I put that right. 

I used stamps from a recent issue of Creative Stamping magazine and papers printed from the La Pashe CD "Something for Everybody" . I coloured the images and made the chequered flag strip using Promarkers. 

I am sharing this with 

Addicted to Stamps and More - Birthdays 

Cardz 4 Guyz - Wheels 

CD Sunday Plus - Anything goes

Make my Monday - checks or plaids 

Watercooler Wednesday - All about Occasions