Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Flowery notelets

No posts for days and then, like the No. 9 Bus, 3 come along all together, LOL. 
My Mother in Law asked for notelets for Christmas and after seeing the fabulous set made by Melly, I decided to have a go myself, albeit with something a bit simpler.  I have some lovely Hero Arts watercolour flower stamps and I coloured them with my Whispers Pens then stamped onto white card, adding the 'Just a Note . . . ' in black (free stamp from Crafty Individuals).  Each image was then mounted onto purple card and then onto a deckle edged white card blank.  I then made a folder to hold all 12 notelets.  I hope she likes them.

A World without Flowers

My Aunt has her birthday on 1st January so I made this card for her.  The background was made some time ago using Starburst Stains (Mountain Lavender Gold and Carpathian Bluebells).  I stamped the flowers (Hot Off The Press Botanicals) and the sentiment (Paper Makeup Stamps) in Jet Black Archival Ink. This was then mounted onto white and navy card.  Quite a simple card.

Christmas Serena

I have this lovely stamp by The Stampsmith called Serena (I got it from Crafts and Me).  I thought she would make a lovely Christmas card.  I took a cream card blank and stamped holly (Habico Clear Stamps) in Memories Sand.  Onto a strip of Parchment coloured paper I stamped the music (Crafty Individuals 194) in Encore Gold, ripped the paper and edged it with Frayed Burlap Distress Ink.  The image was matted and layered with gold and brown card and I also added Glamour Dust to the flowers (to give it that festive look).  The flower was punched and a Prima Flower Centre added plus a bit of organza ribbon to finish it off.

Monday, 13 December 2010

First and Last

We're having very special challenge at Crafty Cardmakers for the next 4 weeks and its something a little bit different and a lot of fun!  We've also managed to pursuade the sponsors or their representative to join in the fun :)

We'd like to see your LATEST OR GREATEST creation so anything you like or a particular favourite AND here's the important bit, we'd also like to see your FIRST or the OLDEST one you have a photo of!  I can see you cringing and thinking oooooh nooooo mine's really baaaad!  Don't worry, we ALL started somewhere and I hope you can see from the samples that everybody was new once and with a bit of practice you can get better and you'll also see how much you've already got better by digging out your first efforts!
The Rules:

You can enter up to 3 times but each must contain a picture of one of your first designs and must be different techniques or items e.g. first card, first stamped card, first scrapbook page, first tag etc.  They must also be separate posts.

You can enter your latest creations or your favourites previously published alongside your old design.  You can enter in as many other challenges as you wish but many challenges do not accept older creations so just be mindful of that.

Please link back to this blog and mention Crafty Cardmakers in your post.

The challenge runs for 4 weeks from 13th Dec and closes at 9am GMT on Monday 10th January

We are very proud to be sponsored by a number of very kind stores for this challenge with lots of winners for this one and the prizes on offer are...

£10 voucher from Joanna Sheen

£10 voucher from The Stampman

$10 voucher for Stitchy Bear Stamps

Pack of 5 promarkers from Letraset

£10 voucher for Crafts & Me

£10 worth of stamps of your choice from Stamping all day

Right then, now to show you my first and last!

This was one of the first cards I made back in November 2007.  I got the idea from a card  made with Cricut machine and just cut this out by hand as I don't own one.  As you can see even back then I was keen on White Cards.

And this is my latest card. It is a Christmas card for a friend who really inpires me.  The main stamp is by Stampsmith and I've kept to beige and browns.
I resisted making cards for ages but eventually was persuaded to start by my late and much missed Mum who made her own cards and suggested it might be a cheaper to make my own rather than buy Christmas cards! Oh Mum, what did you start, LOL. I quickly joined a group run by the fabulous Vix who encouraged me to explore rubber stamping. Now I feel I haven't made a proper card unless there is a bit of ink on it somewhere. I LOVE rubber stamps. As for style I seem to make both the cute type and arty (and everything else in between, but have to admit to being pretty useless with digital images apart from print. I have started to enter a few more challenges this year and had some success. I was particularly proud of having cards chosen by Play Date Cafe and Gingersnap recently. This is the only DT I am currently on but hopefully when I am more organised in the New Year I shall look into joining a couple more.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Crafty Cardmakers White & Splash

Over at Crafty Cardmakers this week the theme is White & and Splash - one of my favourites.  And this week we are sponsored by the very generous Joanna Sheen who is offering a £10 voucher to her excellent online store.
My card is inspired by a blog called Simplicity (and the fact that I haven't started my Christmas cards yet!!!), so I went with a Clean and Simple style.  I started with a the Three Kings stamp set from Elusive Images and stamped the shadow kings onto white card using Brilliance Pearlescent Purple.  This was then matted and layered onto two shades of purple card (I tried just using the lighter shade but the image lacked definition so added the second, darker shade and voila!!) and placed it to one side of my nice white card blank.  Then I positioned both the wording and star stamps onto an acrylic block and stamped them directly onto my card blank in the Brilliance ink and finished the card off with a little bit of bling in the centre of the star.  I think I may make some more like this but using other colours - maybe even pink!!!

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Dry Embossing

It's Spotlight time over at Crafty Cardmakers this week and the theme is Dry Embossing.  This can be using an embossing machine (Cuttlebug, Wizard, Big Shot etc) or the good old-fashioned way - light box and stencil.  Those lovely people over at Prarie Fairy are offering the winner a choice of 5 of their fabulous digi images (ooooh so many to choose!)
My card for this week uses my ever faithful Cuttlebug Machine.  I started with some plain white card and stamped on flowers (Free Stamp from Crafty Stamper ages ago) in Dried Marigold Distress Ink.  Then I ran 8 of these pieces through my Bug using 8 different folders (Script, Allegro, Perfect Paisley, Houndstooth, D'vine Swirls, Textile, Swiss Dots and Stars) then cut out 1" squares using a punch.  I punched out an extra unembossed square and added the hugs sentiment then arranged my squares on a piece of honey coloured card, matted this onto some textured mustard coloured card and then popped it all onto a white square card blank. 
So, take yourselves over to Crafty Cardmakers and check out the fabby cards the other DTs have made to get some inspiration and then have a go yourself.
I'd like to enter my card in the following challenges:
C.R.A.F.T. Challenges - Dry Embossing
The Creative Cottage - Embossing
One Stop Craft - Embossing
Crazy 4 Challenges - Create a Square Card

Friday, 5 November 2010

Win A Complete set of ProMarkers

Do you like Promarkers?  I've only tried them once at a friends and loved them but, unfortunately, don't own any.  Well, The Going Buggy team have a COMPLETE SET up for grabs!!!  That's all 148 of them!  WOW.  And all you have to do is 3 little things.  1) Leave your name, 2) Link the contest to you blog and 3) Visit Going Buggy every day to see a video links and tips.  As they say, easy peasy!

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Beautiful in Blue

I made this using my beautiful new stamp from Crafts and Me.  She is called Josephine.  I watercoloured her with Whispers and Sakura Pens in shades of blue.  The sentiment is from Amy R Stamps with a few flowers added (Rubberstamp Tapestry Florel Filigree Wreath).  I cut the image using Nestabilities Long Classic Rectangles and added a section cut with Labels Four.  The DP is from the very useful Paper Mania Venetian Skies Creative Tones pad.  To finish it off I added some blue velvet ribbon and a butterfly charm.
I am entering this in the following challenges:
Mojo Monday - Sketch
I Did It Challenge - Add a Charm
The Secret Crafter - Anything that flies

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Love from Audrey

I have just bought this fabulous Stampsmith stamp (Audrey Hepburn) from Crafts and Me and couldn't wait to play with her.  I stamped her on glossy card with Onyx Black Versafine and mounted her on some lovely red card.  The bg is black card which has been run through my Cuttlebug using the Textile folder, red ribbon round it and then again mounted onto red card.  I have had this gorgeous Anitas Lips stamp for ages and knew it was time to get it out to finish off my card.  It's stamped with StazOn Black Cherry and cut and matted using good old Circle Nestabilities.
I have made this card for the fabulous Stampsmith Challenge Blog - they run two challenges a month.  On the 1st of the month you can use any stamps you like and on the 15th of the month you have to use Stampsmith stamps (so gorgeous!!!) and each time have a chance of winning some of their lovely stamps.  This time the challenge is to use black and white and one other colour (and this time at least one Stampsmith stamp)

Edited note:  Thanks to a head's up from Valerie H Wilson (from The Stampsmith) I checked my image only to find that after several hours the Versafine was not dry (and of course after checking needed touching up with a cotton bud).  Hopefully it will dry in a day or two, lol.

Monday, 25 October 2010

Chunky Alphabet Swap - I

I had this all planned out.  My I was going to be India.  The only problem was I'd left my India stamps at my friend's house and I'm not seeing her till Wednesday and I needed to get these pages off asap as I'm a bit behind (how unusual I hear your all say, lol).  Soooo, after much thought (and a quick look through the dictionary) I came up with I for Imagine.  I decided this page would look best in monochrome so I stamped Pam Bell's lovely lady (P43) in black Versafine and added a touch of Sakura Stardust to the dandylion clock and stars, then matted and layered it on black, silver, white and then finally the black page.  I printed the word 'magine' (Imagine minus the I - see) onto white vellum, ripped it off and pinned it to the page with a lovely letter I (from Making Memories Metal Alphabets).

Chunky Alphabet Swap - H

Having just come back from a holiday in a decidedly damp Wales I can say with all honesty that it's true - There's No Place Like Home, lol.  The little cottage stamp is from Stamps Away (L1018) and is watercoloured with Whispers Pens.  The frame is cut with good old nesties (square and labels two), the title was printed onto velum and the lovely ruby red slippers are cut from sparkly holographic card using a Cuttlekids die. 
(Looking at this now I wish I'd put the other shoe in the front but as I've posted the pages off it's a bit late for that, boo hoo)

Chunky Alphabet Swap - G

G is for Goblin.  I've had this stamp a little while and I got it from Dragonfly Laser on ebay.  I coloured him in with Whisper Pens.  The DP is from Me & My Big Ideas and the little metal G is coloured with alcohol inks. 

Digital Plus

Over at Crafty Cadmakers the challenge is to do something different with your digi images.  Well, after a morning discovering I can't merge digi images (even though Vix's tutorial is excellent - turns out I haven't got Paint Shop Pro!) I decided to do something different.  I have used digital images and rubber stamping - yay!  All my images for this card  are all from the Graphics Fairy and are printed onto glossy photographic paper.  I started with the fabulous picture of the Eiffel Tower and made it into my background then added a few stamped images (ink - StazOn Jet Black and Saddle Brown; stamps - ClearArt Stamps French Mail).  The correspondence was some old french bills and a postcard tied with ribbon.  I framed the portrait with a music folder cover and gave the portrait height with some foam dots.
Go check out the other fabulous cards by the DT.  Soooo much better with digis than I am.  And we've also go some super prizes for this week.  We've got 5 digi images from Stitchy Bear AND 3 digi images from our very own Ei

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Lucid Dreams

Today I decided to have a play with a stamp I got ages ago and have never used.  It's from OnyxXpressions (Lucid Dreams Ink).  It's quite a large stamp and I had some trouble getting a good impression.  After several tries I realised that the problem was me - I was putting too much pressure on the stamp and squidging it (technical term, lol).  So I inked it up once more with Versafine Onyx Black and tried again, this time just using an even, light pressure and voila! 
Edited addition (15.10)
Looking at this pic it's not as good as it could be.  Honestly, the original stamped image looks better than this.  This looks like a photo you take of the TV, all lines, and the image wasn't like that.  Must improve my photography skills.

Purple Postcards


I have had great fun making postcards for a Purple Postcard swap.  The Paris postcard uses stamps from Paper Artsy (Monmatre), Elusive Images (the arch from the Eiffel Tower) and Creative Expressions (French Script).  The Venice postcard uses stamps from Paper Artsy (main image) and Elusve Images (Pierrot).  I found it hard to start with being restricted to just one colour but once I got into it I really enjoyed making these.
This is the back of one of the postcards (the India postcard - there were 4 in all).

Editors Note:  My sister (who's son has just gone up to Oxford) has pointed out that my lovely Venice postcard is not in fact a stamp of Venice at all but of Hertford Bridge, Oxford!  Oh well, you live and learn, lol.  She said the clue was in the lorry at the back of the bridge which would have been in the canal!

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

All Dressed Up . . .

. . . and nowhere to go!
My friend let me play with some of her fabulous Oxford Impression stamps and I chose to make a card with this one from April in Paris. I'm calling her Maud (I've no idea why it just seems to fit, lol).  She has got herself all dressed up and is waiting for her lover to come and take her out.  It looks like she has been waiting a long time, I hope he turns up as I think she looks resigned to the fact that she has been stood up.
The card base is made from sparkly cream card that I got from The Paper Mill. The DP is from a 6x6 K&Co Pad called Life's Journey.  I added 2 strips of the sparkly card top and bottom of the card then a strip of green card punched with my Martha Stewart Zigzag punch and then topped it off with some lovely cotton lace.  The sentiment is from Crafty Individuals, and the flowers are from Wild Orchid.
I am entering this into the following challenges:
The Stampsmith - Getting All Dressed Up

Monday, 11 October 2010

Fancy Folds

This week at Crafty Cardmakers it's time for a spotlight and the theme is folded cards.  I decided to go for something a little different and made this Star card.  It's base on an accordian card.  The image on the front is (of course) by Penny Black and the star is decorated with paper I made using Azure Sea Aster Starburst Stains and snowflake stamps stamped with Brilliance Mediterranean Blue.  Below is how I made it:


Cut 5 squares of card (I usd 14cm squares).  Fold in half horizontally and vertically and then diagonally from top left to bottom right.

Push the corners with the diagonal folds towards each other so they look like a frogs mouth, then push flat.  You should end up with a square a quarter of the original size. 

Repeat with all five squares of paper.

Stack all five squares on top of one another, gluing each square to the next one until you have all five stuck in a stack.

They should end up looking like this.

Alternative view of all five folded squares stuck in a stack.

Decorate all exposed surfaces (I used 3 sheets of A4 for this).

Another view of the sides decorated.

Attach a piece of ribbon around the folded squares diagonally.  Use a length of ribbon at least 4 times the measurement of the diagonal of the folded square  plus a little extra (my square measured 10 cm so I used 50 cm ribbon)
Make and decorate two covers exactly the same size as the folded squares and attach on each side of the stack.  Thread both ends of the ribbon through some large holed beads (pony beads) and then tie a knot in the ribbon.  This forms the closure for the book and the star.
To open the star, slide the beads up to the knot (be careful not to slide them right off), open the card out until back and front covers are back to back and slide the beads back down the ribbon.
I am entering this into the following challenges:
Bah! Humbug - Cuties (got to be a PB Hedgehog)
Totally Gorjuss - Not a Square
C.R.A.F.T. - Shaped card

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

More cute little mice

Today I had a play with my other set of Penny Black Stamps - Hugs! I chose these two little mice and coloured them with whispers pens, then matted and layered them with Nestabilities. The DP is from a 6x6 pad I have had for ages (and is nearly all gone) from Vanessa Arbuthnott and the pearls are from Debbi Moore.
This card is being entered in the following challenges:
2 Sisters Challenge - Animal Fun

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Simply floral

I saw a card made by Jo Capper-Sandon in Craft Stamper that I thought would be perfect for my Daughter-in-Law's birthday. I didn't have the stamps she used so I had a rummage (she's right - everyone has flower stamps) and found these. The main flowers are from Laurence Llewelyn Bowen's Retro Rose set, the swag is from Hot Off the Press Botanicals and the leaves are from Clear Choice 20 Leaf Decor stamps. The main flower was stamped first and then masked, then the swag, then the leaves. I coloured the flower with a pink felt pen and then matted and layered my image to define it, before mounting it onto a white card blank.
I am entering this into the following challeges:
Fab 'n' Funky - Black and White with a Twist (Pink)
Stamps R Us - All Nature
Pollycraft Monday Challenge - Anything goes
C.R.A.F.T. - Fancy Florals

Make a Wish

I decided to get my little Penny Black stamps out as they have been in the dark for far too long. This stamp is from the Critter Party set. I coloured the image with Whispers pens and the icing is done with a Sakura Stardust pen. The image and mats were cut with Nestabilities Labels One and the DP is from DCWV Pocket full of Posies (a fav of mine).
This card is going to be entered in the following challenges:
Crafty Catz Weekly Challenge - card for a child with sparkle
A Spoonful of Sugar - sparkle and shine
Incy Wincy Designs - Sparkly and Glitter

Monday, 4 October 2010

LM's secret is revealed!

My friend Lynne leads a secret life and I decided it was time the whole world knew about it. I thought the best way to reveal all was to publish, lol. (Warning - LOADS of pictures!)

I started with a board book (poor old Woolly) and cut off the spine. I cut out two windows, then I covered each page with gesso, then cream acrylic paint then pink acrylic paint. I stamped loads of images (Clear Choice 22 Travel France Stamps, LLB Retro Rose, Darkroom Door Monmatre) in Tumbled Glass Distress Ink. I put my images behind the windows and stuck two pages together to seal the images in. Then I added a few adornments - the fan is actually a MIC corset that has also been altered, lol, the little envelope has been in my stash for ages and has a piece of cream card that has been stamped with Creative Expressions French Script Inside and the pearl necklace I made. The story was printed in blue onto cream card, cut with Nestabilities Labels Ten and edge with Old Paper Distress Ink. The book was bound with my much under-used Bind-It-All.
I am entering this into The Stampman Altered Challenge