Saturday, 2 December 2017

December - How did we get here?

Hello lovely crafters,
Suddenly we find ourselves in December. I know I'm not the only one who wonders how we got here and that the world must be spinning faster on it's axis. 
We have our final Christmas Card Throwdown Challenge for 2017 and it runs all month. 



Hopefully you have a nice little pile of Christmas Cards stashed away but if not we are asking you to Pick a Previous CCT challenge from the 2012/13. There is plenty of choice and you can see the lists of themes, sketches, colours and stash/technique archives at the top of our challenge page.



Here is my card inspired by the August 2013 challenge - Holly. Click here to see that challenge. There are some fabulous cards there. 

I used one of my favourite techniques for this. I stamped all over a piece of watercolour paper with holly stamps and embossed in clear powder. Then I wet the paper and used Brushos to all over. 
I should perhaps have tried to keep the green off the berries but instead I used water to fade the green, once the sheet was dry, but finished up using a drop of bleach in the water to help. I'm not really allowed to play with bleach having ruined various pieces of clothing over the years! I really only used a drop here though.
I rather like the blue berries but, for the sake of tradition, I went with red. 





After I'd bleached out the green I added Scarlet Brusho and blotted to give paler colour. 
The final step is to iron off the embossing powder with a hot iron and plenty of copy paper under the iron to absorb the sticky mess. 
I only used a quarter of this sheet so you may well be seeing more of it at a later date. 
I finished it off with some washi tape and bow and also a little heart which is punched out, inked and covered with Glossy Accents. I made 6 of these for another project and only used one. Now I've used 2, lost one, found it again and still have 4 left.  
The holly stamp is Honey Doo and the sentiment Creative Stamping #49. 

I hope you'll find time to join in with our challenge. 
Thanks for visiting and Enjoy Your Day. x

Sunday, 19 November 2017

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Guest designer Christmas tags.

Hello Lovely Crafters,
I'm very pleased to be guest designer for Di at Pixie's Snippets Playground this week. Di encourages us to use those scraps of paper and card we all have stashed away. 
My snippets are mostly plain card so I am always looking for ways to use them. I saw some tags like these and, with Christmas looming, thought they were very pretty and a good use of off-cuts. 
I saw them for sale from an online retailer so it's not an idea I've stolen from another blogger. 
I used 5cm strips of kraft card for these first tags and added embroidery thread and a couple of strands of gold for the ties. 
I think it's the gems which make them special. 


Of course you do need the right sort of die as some just leave a hole without much pattern to it but luckily I had one which worked. 
I found a good size was 5cm x 9cm. I made some a bit shorter but they didn't look as good. (Top line).


Then of course I was left with the cut out snowflakes so I just added them to a square of card with a similar tie and a gem in the middle. 


I also made some white ones but I think I prefer the kraft, or do I? I do like the pink gems...


 This photo now looks grey but they are white I promise. White with a pink gem and pink and silver thread. 

Dark gems and red and gold thread. 

Now I'm left with some 1cm strips. What can I do with those? Hmm. Or should I just throw them away! I think I know the answer...

So now I am stocked up with tags and have made a dent in the snippets mountain. I look forward to seeing what inventive  and creative ways people have found for using their snippets this week. 

Thanks for visiting. Enjoy your Day. x

Saturday, 18 November 2017

One layer wreath

Hello lovely crafters, 
I'm not sure why I've never found this challenge before, maybe I have but I was just at challenge overload. Seriously there are 2 or 3 a week I'd like to enter but I'll have to give up work and I really don't need that many cards. 


Please grab our logo

Stamping Sensations. This month it's a One Layer Christmas Card Challenge. Maybe monthly challenges are the answer... 
Stamping is my first love though now I wander into die cutting and design paper too.



I also love stamping wreaths and this one is built up with mostly Card-io stamps in green and then I added gold embossing. It wasn't quite right so I added the red flowers which are also embossed. 
I'm frustrated as usual by trying to get a good picture.
Other stamps are on a need to know basis - if you need to know just ask. x

Christmas Card Throwdown - November colours

Hello Lovely Crafters.


We are back with a new challenge a Christmas Card Throwdown. The pressure is one now and Christmas does seem to be coming. I've yet to hear carols in the shops (thankfully) but they are certainly piling in their stock. 


Here is our colour challenge. 
I couldn't think beyond the obvious so here is my stamped wreath showing a little bit of sparkle. 



The glitter stuck onto everything and all over the card, I'm still finding specks of it around. I think I must have been wearing hand cream and touched the surface of the card. I really should know better. 

We hope you like our challenge and hope to see you there. You have two weeks to join. 
Thanks for visiting. Enjoy your Day. x

Saturday, 11 November 2017

CCT - November Sketch


We still have a week left of our Sketch challenge at Christmas Card Throwdown.


This is my card and here is the sketch:

I spotted these folded trees months ago but have never tried it out until now. This is where I found the information on how to do it. When I came to print the pattern, I found we'd run out of ink - how often does that happen? So I drew a circle and traced the fold points from the computer screen. I'm sure it could be done with a protractor if i could find one. 
You need double sided paper,. I didn't have the right sort of Christmassy paper so I've just used  a red pattern which I hoped would look a bit festive. 
Once I'd made the trees I made frames with snippets which involved a satisfying amount of cutting and sticking but I know would send Miss Di running for the hills. I used the same paper and my JustRite corner dies and thin strips. 
Each tree is made from half a circle so I made another tree with the remaining half. 



The I tried green which I didn't like so much as it is the wrong sort of green:



I'd like to try some mini trees but I have a long list of things I'd like to try so it might not be today. 
There are already some outstanding entries to this challenge so do go and admire them and join in if you can. 

I'm hopping over to Pixie's Snippets Playground where I am running in at the last minute again. You'd think with two weeks I could get in earlier. 
Crafty Hazelnuts Challenge Extra for November - there are some excellent DT cards on show. 
CHN Challenge 359

Thanks for visiting and Enjoy your Day. x

Friday, 10 November 2017

Merry Monday - red and kraft

I really like the idea of the current  Merry Monday challenge which is to use red and kraft.


 It's a very Christmassy combination. I really struggled to get my ideas in order, though, and in the end this is what I made:


There is a bit of clear embossing, some red embossing, a tartan ribbon and there it is!
I'll definitely use this combination again when my head is more organised.

Thanks for visiting and Enjoy your Day. x

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Christmas Card Throwdown - November sketch

Here is my late card for our new challenge at Christmas Card Throwdown. This time it's a sketch. 





You have two weeks to join in with this challenge. Somehow we find ourselves in November so it is definitely time to get on with the Christmas Cards. Hopefully  you'll find this inspiring. 
Thanks for visiting. Enjoy the Day. x

Saturday, 28 October 2017

CCT-October Stash


We are into the second week of our Christmas Card Throwdown Challenge - October stash. We have been asking you to use canvas or wood on your cards. 

I think wood is a popular feature on cards but canvas is maybe not quite so easy. 

I have used an embossing folder which I have had for a good long while and rarely used. It is actually called 'Hessian' but I hope I can be forgiven for that. 

I started with grey paper, embossed and then inked directly with a Dew Drop Brilliance white pigment ink pad. I blended more grey and black dye ink around the edge.
The ribbon on the left is covering an unembossed area where the folder was too narrow and I couldn't get it in my machine in the other direction. 

I heat embossed the holly (Honey Doo Holly) on vellum, added some more Brilliance with a brush and a touch of red pencil on the backs of the berries. 



I will say that the holly was reluctant to lie flat even after scrolling with a ball tool on the back. It had to be quite well stuck down so as not to be damaged in transit. It really behaved like real holly being prickly and curled up in all directions. In fact it was like one of those paper fish you hold in your hand that tell your fortune. Perhaps because I'd painted it with ink. 

I wanted to create a wintry frosty look and I think that's what I've done. I hope you will feel inspired to join in with our challenge. Do have a look at all the great work by the rest of the DT.
I'm Joining in with October Rudolf Days over at Scrappy Mo's. There are always wonderful cards to inspire.
Also Crafty Hazelnuts Christmas Callenge #357 Anything Goes as long as it's Christmas. 
Thanks for visiting and Enjoy Your Day, x

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Playing with ink, water and NBUS.

I've been to a local craft show. I went with a list but, no, of course I didn't stick to it. I did just about stick to the budget I'd given myself though so that's all good. 😊

This first card features a bonus set but look how pretty it is. This is a Woodware set called Dotty Flowers. 

My photographs looked very washed out but I think this is a pretty good idea of the colours if not the sharpness. Taken quickly with my phone as I was wasting too much time fiddling about with photographs. I'm sorry you can't see how pretty it really is. 

What I've done is ink over the whole piece of watercolour paper in shades of pink, purple and blue, then spritz with water. I then inked a little more which gives the water droplet marks a bit of colour which looks pretty cool in real life. 
I stamped the images with Versafine and then went in with a water brush and painted out the ink. This gives a very pretty effect which I don't use often enough.



This picture is really washed out but you can see the water marks and the Wink of Stella added here and there. Having made it I didn't want to cover any of it up with sentiments. 

I'm linking this to Mrs A's Butterfly Challenge. The current challenge is #87 V for vertical and/or Damson. 

Grab the Badge
I quite understand if you don't think the colour is right, feel free to delete. x

This second card is made using a Hobby Art set called Falling Leaves. Everyone needs a good leaf set and this is everything I wanted it to be and was on my list!


I used the same technique here, inking the panel and spritzing. Then I used the water brush to take away the ink from around the leaves rather than inside them. I love the shades of colour. 
I wish I'd made the sentiment smaller but it's stuck on now!
I'm linking this to CAS Watercolour challenge. Having made the leafy panel I didn't want to cut it down so it's not as CAS as it could be. 


And Happy Birthday - they are celebrating their 1st year. 🎂

I can just get into both of these challenges before they close. 

I'm also hopping over to Pixie's Snippets Playground where the challenge is always to use scraps and snippets. I've used a few here. 

One good thing about a craft show is that having seen all the gorgeous samples you come back inspired. I just need more time to play. 
Thanks for listening to my waffling. Enjoy Your Day. x


Saturday, 21 October 2017

Christmas Card Throwdown - October Stash



The weeks are rushing by and we have a new challenge at Christmas Card Throwdown:

I've had moments of brilliance and moments of sheer stupidity today. The brilliance was making the star.
I die cut the shape (remembering to cut first then emboss - having learnt the hard way).  Then I inked the embossing folder before placing the star inside to give the two tone wood effect. I used Versafine which I think gives a better inky finish. The folder doesn't seem to have a name on it. 



After that moment of brilliance I wasn't sure what to do with it. 
I finally fixed on the idea of cutting out a star from the card and hanging in in the centre. 
Top tip - I started with a top fold card, thinking it would look good hanging from that. In reality it hangs down inside the card as the star hangs straight but the front of the card is angled forward. So a side fold is better, I hope you understand what I mean. 

Having finished it and photographed it I realised firstly that you can't write inside the card as it would show and secondly that the front was a bit flimsy as most of it is cut away. So I set about it again to improve. I decided to face the inside with DP. I chose a double sided paper with a subtle grey flower pattern. 

I cleverly cut the star first meaning to trim the paper to fit as that would be easier than getting the hole exactly in the right place. The stupidity was placing the die on the wrong side so the pattern I chose had to be glued down for the cut star on the DP to fit with the front of the card.
But hey, pink and brown look great together and Christmas feathers are a thing aren't 
they?





Here is the back. I added a panel to write on. These stamps are Inky Doodles. 

I hope that you have a moment of brilliance and create something to join in. The challenge runs for two weeks. 

I'd like to link to:
The Merry Christmas Challenge - #39 Anything Goes
The Merry Christmas Challenge
Crafty Hazelnuts Christmas Challenge #356

Please feel free to copy to your sidebar

Thanks for visiting and Enjoy your Day. x



Saturday, 14 October 2017

CCT - October Theme


We still have a week left of our current challenge at Christmas Card Throwdown. 
The challenge is Winter Sports. 


I'm not sure if sledging is really as sport but it's certainly a winter activity. I've used one tiny stamp from Issue #36 of Creative Stamping. 
I used a piece of brushoed background and chose an area with darker blue for the sky though it does look rather like Northern Lights. I stamped a couple of trees then added a line between to make a hill and ground the trees. 
The I framed it with some pretty paper and bits and pieces found lying around. The ribbon was snipped off my newest top after it was pointed out that they were not hidden away as they should have been.  
I hesitate with this sentiment as I don't really want it to snow but I'm sure plenty of people do. I don't like driving or walking on ice but if I can stay inside an look at it, that's fine. 


See if you have any wintery stamps and join in with our challenge. 

I'm skipping over to Pixie's Snippets Playground as I've used snippets. In fact as I was cutting out the square of brushoed background I found it is on the back of an old calendar. I saved it as is was nice smooth cream coloured card. Mad, I know. Recycling snippets!

ABC Christmas Challenge has V for Vibrant or U for unlimited. I think this sky is vibrant so I hope you agree. 

Thanks for visiting and Enjoy your Day. 

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Christmas Card Throwdown = October Theme = Winter sports

Welcome to our new challenge at Christmas Card Throwdown. This is the time of year when we pretend Christmas is not coming but we know it will so lets get ahead with our cards and save the last minute panic. 
This time our challenge is:
I made an inky background by stamping the snowflakes and clear embossing then inking over. Then I added the skates and greenery. 


The first time I went ice skating I imagined myself sailing round in beautiful skates like these. ( Noel Steatfield was somewhat to blame - 'White Boots' ). Not only was I given ugly brown skates but they gave me horrendous blisters. I never took to ice skating. 
Maybe you have a better experience. We look forward to seeing your winter sport cards over the next two weeks.
Thanks for visiting. Enjoy Your Day.
x

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

NBUS butterfly and old stash too.

For this card I've used new stuff, old stuff and scraps of stuff so I'm very pleased with my efficiency. 
I wanted to make a special card for someone who shall remain nameless, but is going to be 50 soon. She grew up in close proximity to me but is in denial about how old she is. I chose not to proclaim the number on the card, which was kind of me, but she might as well get used to the idea.

The flowers were made of scraps of something which is probably interfacing. Ok I'll confess....MrC had some new work shirts recently which have logos embroidered on them. One of them had not been trimmed properly on the inside and had large pieces of interfacing still attached. I cut them off but instead of throwing them away like a normal person, I stashed them. There is no hope. 
I cut out the flowers then coloured them with ink and water on a craft mat. The colour wasn't great so I tried again with Brushos and they gave a better colour. I like the way the colour pools to give darker areas. They take a little time to dry.  
The background is ink dusted and stamped in various colours. 
I layered them up and sewed a button in the middle of each. Luckily I had the right colour. 
The butterfly is a new die which I bought early in the summer when I decided I needed a butterfly die, then to my shame, have not used it. It is coloured with Eggplant ink and water but needed a couple of dippings to give the dark colour. 
Then the problem of how to attach the butterfly. Glue was going the show through and I ruined one by trying spray adhesive.  I glued it to the paper I had it on, perhaps I was rather heavy handed. 
In the end I used some tiny pieces of 3mm tape in the corners and the middle and that worked and doesn't show. 
I'm fluttering into the Butterfly garden before the end of Mrs A's current challenge:
S for silhouette and/or the colour indigo
Grab the Badge


A run around the Playground is also allowed as I've used snippets. Save me a swing. Do I need sunglasses or wellies today?

Also Darnell is running a new challenge:


She is generously offering lots of lovely prizes and has lots of inspiration. Thanks for encouraging us to use our stash. 

Thanks for visiting and Enjoy Your Day. 
x

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Christmas Card Throwdown - September colours



We are back with a new challenge for you at Christmas Card Throwdown. This time it's a colour challenge:

These are lovely colours, I hope you agree. I've discovered a new way of stamping wreaths, which is my favourite kind of stamping but could lead to all my cards being similar. I'm not sure if I've done a wreath this year yet. I think this would be a great non-Christmas card too. I'll try that soon. 
I've used mainly Card-io stamps with one Stamplorations leaf stamp. 
I used an oval mask very lightly glued in the middle then stamped over and around it then added black Stickles in the centre of the  flowers. The pink is very faint but it is there. 

 I hope you like it, thanks for visiting.
x

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Bloomtangled birthday



Stamplorations are launching a new colouring book for crafters. There is a blog hop and linky party and a sampler page to download. 
I found time to print the page so I was keen to see what I could do with it. A wet afternoon gave me the perfect excuse for some colouring. 
Which colours to choose? Less is More had the answer:

A delicious combination. 

 I coloured using promarkers. I have a few but they are an underused area of my stash. I tried to add some shading but with my limited colouring skills I'm not sure it has made much difference. The black lines are nice and thick to there is little chance of running over and it was very pleasing to colour. 
I cut a square and then a strip for the edge. To finish I die cut Happy Birthday from an off-cut. 

I had a lime green gem so I added that and then a brush of Wink of Stella over a few places. 
I hope you like it, I love the colours and I have a bit left for another card. 
Thanks for visiting and Enjoy the Day. x