Thursday, 26 May 2022

A little bit of Flower Power! ......

Happy Thursday .......

The weekend is fast approaching, and the sun has finally decided to show itself.  
However, that wasn't the case this morning when I had to go into town ....... lets just say it was a little wet and windy at 9am so I didn't hang around long!  I suppose a little bit of rain will do the flowers good though! 

Speaking of flowers, this month's theme for the Simply Sweet Poppy Stencils Facebook Challenge is ........... Flower Power.  If you'd like to play along then there's still time.  
Just follow the simple rules and you never know, you could be the next winner of a £40 voucher  to spend on Sweet Poppy goodies ..... wouldn't that be nice!

Sweet Poppy have loads of gorgeous flower stencils, the hardest part of this challenge is choosing which one to use.

This one was on my desk ....... Wall of Poppies, and guess what ...... it's currently in the sale, what a great bargain!

I decided to go with a rainbow of colour ..... well, poppies don't always have to be red do they!
I simply inked through the stencil using Distress Inks, blending the colours as I worked over the design

I added my sentiment on a strip across the bottom.  I used a tiny Happy Birthday stamp and simply repeated it across the strip of card and then attached it using foam pads, to add a bit of dimension.

I added a few ink splatters using one of the Distress colours ......

and finished everything off with a few co-ordinating enamel dots

The challenge is open until May 29th. 
Simply choose your stencil ...... it must be a floral design and remember, it has to be a SWEET POPPY stencil.  Create something fabulous and add it to the Simply Sweet Poppy Stencils Facebook Page

Happy stenciling!

Thanks for popping by ..... enjoy the rest of your day.

It's starting to get busy on the island, and everywhere is making preparations for the TT which starts this weekend ...... I am so excited!!!!
I went by the The Big Stage @ 1886 this morning,  which is coming along nicely.  They've got two weeks of entertainement going on in Douglas starting on Saturday with an opening party and the Champions Leauge final on the big screen.   Then on Sunday, we've got tickets to see Jessie J who's the first of a whole list of big names coming over for the event ........ TT is going to be amazing this year!!!

Cheerio until next time .......

Stencils:  Wall of Poppies (Sweet Poppy Stencils)
Inks: Distress Inks - Wilted Violet, Salty Ocean, Twisted Citron, Mustard Seed, Spiced Marmalade, Picked Raspberry
Stamps: small Happy Birthday stamp 
Other: Coloured enamel dots

Tuesday, 24 May 2022

Messing about on the river ........

Happy Tuesday .........

It seems like such a long time since I've blogged .......... that's probably because it is!!!! 
I did have good intentions over the last couple of weeks but, nothing seemed to come out. 

We've been away on holiday ..... again! 
Not in the van this time.   Instead we've had a lovely week on a boat, on the beautiful Norfolk Broads ....... it was fantastic!!!!

The weather was glorious, apart from one day when it rained a little in the morning, but as you can see the rest of the week was mainly blue skies and sunshine.

This was our home for the week ...... Explorer 1 from Broom Boats ....... she was lovely!!!   A nice big boat, with loads of room inside, three good sized cabins and a nice sun deck 

Here she is moored up on one of my favourite spots ....... Ranworth Broad.  

It was a bit of a new adventure this time.  We've only ever been on the Northern Broads before but this time we picked the boat up in Brundall, down in the South.  The Southern Broads are very different to the North, very quiet, but I suppose that could have been because of the time of year.  It was still fun to explore though.  
We sailed from Brundall down to Reedham, and then up to Great Yarmouth over the weekend, and we crossed Breydon Water for the first time onto the Northern Broads ...... that was a bit scary!  
It's all tidal, so to cross it you have to time things just right.  We had to work out our journey time to get to Great Yarmouth.  There's no real mooring points so you need to be able to go straight through.  We had to check the tide times and work out when it was low and slack water,  there are bridges to go under and we had quite a tall boat!  
We did it though ..... twice in fact!  Once up to the Northern Broads, which was a little choppy, and we were the only ones on there!!!  That was the morning when the weather wasn't great, which didn't help 

We survived ....... and the trip back to the South at the end of the week was a lot better.   Again we were virtually the only ones on there, but at least the sun was shining this time and it wasn't bumpy at all!

It really was a lovely week, very relaxing and the weather was fab.  The locals were friendly enough, 

 and I could definitely get used to evenings like this ........ 

and this ......... cheers!

I think we may just do it all again next year.

 Maybe we should try one of these next time ........ hmmmm  maybe not!!

We're now back on the island, for a few weeks anyway, and we've got the Isle of Man TT Races to look forward to, and of course the Jubilee celebrations.

For the first time since 2019 the island is going to be buzzing with the sound of motorbikes.  It's already starting to get busy.  We're so looking forward to it ..... I just hope the weather is kind to us.
It all gets underway this weekend and then it's Practice Week next week, followed by Race Week with Senior Race Day on Friday June 10th!  I'm so excited!!!!!  It's going to be a busy two weeks!

Thanks for popping by ....... enjoy the rest of your day.

Cheerio until next time ......

Monday, 9 May 2022

A quick catch up before we're off again .........

Good morning!   Happy Monday.

May is flying by ...... it's a busy month for us, and ...... the TT is back!!!!  Can't wait.  There's a lot going on before that though!

Well, we're back home ........ for the next few days at least.  
We're off on our travels again on Friday this week.  Not in the van this time though.  
We're off to the Norfolk Broads, hiring a boat this time and spending a week on the water.  The long range weather forecast is looking good at the moment, fingers crossed it stays that way.

Last time I blogged we were on Lucksall Campsite, in a place called Mordiford in Herefordshire.  A lovely campsite, by the River Wye.  
We stayed 4 nights, it was so peaceful.  Hubby managed to work during the day and then we spent the evenings by the river ......... living the dream!!

It was a lovely spot, we walked by the river, and into the local village ........

As you can see, the weather was lovely, we'll definitely be back here at some point.

Our next stop was Tewkesbury ........ a busy little campsite right in the middle of the town, in the shadow of Tewkesbury Abbey

We had four nights here, so plenty of time to explore.
We went to see the Abbey .....

This was huge! ........ a stunning Copper Beech tree in the grounds

There was also this going on behind the Abbey ......


Every year in July, they re-enact the Battle of Tewkesbury (the War of the Roses) at the Tewkesbry Medieval Festival.  There's knights in armour, cannons, and soldiers.  Townsfolk in medieval dress, sleeping in traditional tents, cooking and eating typical food, and showing how life was back then.

What we saw was a prequel to all that ....... showing the amour and weapons used.  It was all very interesting.  Unfortunately we won't be back this year for the actual battle but, it's now on our to do list.

As always, we had to find a watering hole or two.
This place was a must ........  Stephen's mum and dad spent their honeymoon here, in 1963.  Looks like it hasn't changed much

And this place was a little gem ......

Good food, nice wine ......

Whilst hubby was working in the van, I took the opportunity to have a play in an art journal that I had with me.  Nothing too fancy, I had minimal supplies with me ......... coloured pencils and a few wax crayons, a couple of ink pads and the odd stencil.   Word stickers, a few pieces from my bits box (backgrounds, mop up cards, that sort of thing) and some pages that I pre-stamped before we left.

A bit of ink blending and colouring ......

A little bit of collage ...... love these Kate Crane images

Practicing with my coloured pencils ........

and a little bit of doodling on an old stenciled card.

I also doodled on a messy painted page from a workshop that I never got around to finishing

It's still not finished, but it's getting there.

I think this is going to become my version of a junk journal ........ my van journal.  
It's a ring binder so I can add or take stuff out as I go along.  I've already put a few more different pages in there, some that have been started, and some blank.   Lets see where it takes me!

Thanks for popping by ..... enjoy the rest of your day.
It's time to start packing for the next trip now.

Cheerio until next time ........

Tuesday, 26 April 2022

Blogging from the van ........

Happy Tuesday ........

Hello from Herefordshire.  
We're on our latest adventure with Remi the motorhome.  We got the morning ferry from the Isle of Man across to Heysham on Sunday then we drove down to Hereford, where we had a lovely one night stopover on the Hereford Campsite.

A really nice campsite, very peaceful and it's a part of the UK we've never been to before, so it's all new.

Today we're just a few more miles down the road in a nice little corner spot on the Lucksall Campsite.  

We arrived yesterday and we're here until Friday then we're off again.    
Hubby is actually working from the van this week but we are finding time to explore.  We popped into the village of Fownhope (I think that's right!) this morning.  We went to the local butchers and got some rather nice steaks to go on the BBQ this evening ...... it's hubby's turn to cook!

Anyway, the real reason for today's blog is to share a couple more of my Sweet Poppy show samples with you ....... the stamp sets this time.

Here's the cute little hedgehog .......... I love this set!

It's a great sized image and easy to colour too.  I simply stamped it onto white card, heat embossed with a clear powder, and used Karin markers to colour.  

I then fussy cut around the top edge of the stamped image, cutting down the width of the card slightly too, so that it would fit nicely across the bottom my cardbase. 

I inked another piece of white card using Distress inks, splattered a little bit of water over the top to add a bit more detail to the background and then stamped my sentiment, before attaching it on the front of my cardbase

Before adding the hedgehog over the top, I wrapped a piece of natural twine around the bottom, and then used foam pads to raise this panel from the background ....... cute or what!

These stamp sets are so detailed and are perfect if you love to colour but, on the other hand, if you're not happy colouring in with markers or pens and pencils, then these stamps still look fabulous with just a touch of colour

Why not use one of the fabulous Sweet Poppy Aperture stencils to create some shape and colour in the background

I used the circle here with Distress Inks then simply stamped the hedgehog over the top in a black ink .... easy.
I added a little more detail with a few ink splatters, and stamped one of the sentiments from the set using a gold ink

Here's a similar design using the Squirrel stamp set this time ........  how about this for a masculine card?

The Sweet Poppy Oval aperture stencil, with Distress Inks, onto Kraft card.
I then stamped the squirrel, slightly off the edge of the card and over the inked aperture

A few ink splatters add a bit more detail onto the background, and I hand doodled a frame around the edge.  
I decided to add my sentient in two halves ..... one simply stamped at the top in black ink

and the other on a little kraft tag at the bottom, stamped and heat embossed in gold and attached using a foam pad

I also used the squirrel stamp for the detail around the edge of the bottom layer of my card ......  just the foliage part stamped repeatedly around the edge.

Here's a fun idea for using just the foliage part of the stamp .......... another design for those men in our lives maybe

I stamped the acorns and leaves twice onto black cardstock,  heat embossed in gold, and then coloured them using pearlescent paints

I repeated this twice again, concentrating just on the acorns this time.  I then fussy cut everything.

Onto a square of black cardstock, I used the same pearlescent paints to add some splatters and create the background

I attached the leaves and acorns onto my background forming a circle shape in the centre and layering up the acorns to add some more dimension

I then stamped the sentiment, die cut it with circle dies and attached it in the centre using a wobbler so that it acutally moves

All of the new stamps can be found in the New Products section on the Sweet Poppy website.  

And guess what ..... not only are this months new release on there but ..... you can find details of NEXT MONTH'S  Sweet Poppy release too.  
Brand new stencil designs, more new stamp sets and ....... gorgeous new colours of Mica Powders too.  And you can order them all now!!!

Happy crafting!

Thanks for popping by ..... enjoy the rest of your day.
It's time for a glass of wine I think ....... it's 5 o'clock somewhere!

Cheerio until next time ........

All stamps and stencils are from Sweet Poppy
Inks:  Various colours of Distress Inks; Versafine Clair - Nocturne; Delicata - Golden Glitz