Thursday 29 March 2012

Back on the Island

Hi everyone,
What a busy week we had last week across in the UK, craft workshops, craft show,  lunches out, shopping, wildlife park and a trip over to Sheffield were just some of things I got up to.  More about all that later.  I will say though we had a really nice time catching up with family and friends, we got to spend quite a bit of time with Lauren and our gorgeous grandson Alex. He's growing up so fast.   
This is the first chance I have had to Blog since we got back.  I don't know where this week has gone.   I feel a bit guilty really, my blog's been neglected for the past 2 weeks. Ah well, here goes.  Seeing as I didn't enter the LIM Blog Challenge last week because we were away, I thought I'd get back into Blog posting with this weeks entry.
It's Week 60 and the recipe is 'Take Three Challenges'.   We have to choose 3 past challenge recipes and bring them all together on this weeks card.  I haven't been doing this Blog challenge for that long so I had to take a look at the list of all the past challenges and this is what I came up with.
As usual I ended up doing two cards - different themes though.
Number 1   Just a Note ...

For this card I chose recipes from -  Week 9    A touch of Red
                                                       Week 24  Circles
                                                       Week 46  Music
I suppose I could also include Week 12  Off Centre  in this design.
I stamped the music with black ink using the Hero Arts Music Background stamp and then used Nestabilities dies to cut out the circles.  I then mat these onto slightly bigger circles of SU Cherry Cobbler cardstock and attached them onto my base card.  I finished it off with a small Penny Black sentiment.  As you probably all know Black and white with a touch of colour is one of my favourite ways of designing cards.  It always looks so clean and polished.

Number 2  A little bit of pink

This one took me a little longer to do, and it's got more on than usual for my LIM challenge.
For this card I used   Week 1   Pink, Black & White
                                Week 16  Butterflies/Butterfly
                                Week 43  Bit of bling
I decided to go for a black base card for this one.  I don't normally use dark card for my base, it's nearly always white or cream, it's easier to write inside then.  However if I do, when I decorate the inside I use a white panel and match it to the design on the front,  that then gives me somewhere to write a message.
I always like to decorate the inside to match
The stamp I used on this card is one I have had forever.  I bought this when I was going through my Oriental phase years ago.  The reason it has surfaced again is SU have brought one out very similar in their latest Spring Mini catalogue (Easter Blossoms set) and I was using it last week at Sally-Jo's Creative Cafe.  Check out Sally's blog for inspriation and great ideas  My stamp is not exactly the same as the SU one, but it's just as pretty.  The blossoms were coloured using the new Tim Holtz Distress Markers in Spun Sugar, and the centres were highlighted with liquid pearls. I left the branch as is becasue I didn't want to bring in another colour, I felt it would spoil the look of the card.  I inked around the white panel using the same shade of distress ink. 
The butterflies were cut with the Martha Stewart Butterfly punch, from colorcore cardstock - not sure what shade though, as it was a scrap from my bit box (hmm .... could have used Week 56  Don't Scrap It).  The bit of bling is small aurora borealis gems down the bodies of the butterflies.  The sentiment is from Penny Black and the ribbons were again bits from my stash.

Although I'm missing everyone in the UK already, it's nice to be home again. Suitcases are emptied, washing is done.  Just need to iron it all now - not happening!!  My craft room is a tip, I've not unpacked all my new goodies yet, or the stuff I took across with me!  I've got loads of ideas of things I want to do craft wise, and loads of new stuff to play with. I'll soon be back in the swing of things and hopefully posting more on here.  I've lots to share with you.

Thanks for popping by.
See you again soon.


Monday 12 March 2012

Away with the Fairies

Hello again,
I couldn't decide what to do for this weeks Blog challenge over at Less is More.  The theme this week is One Layer cards and you had to use Script.  My problem was I'd already used a script stamp on last weeks entry, so I was hoping to come up with something a little different. Not sure if I achieved that completely or not, the script is still used as the background. See what you think.
I like doing one layer cards.  You need to think a little bit before you start, how you want your images to look when the card is finished. It doesn't have to look flat, you can add a lot of depth and make it look like there's multiple layers by using masks.  Decide what you want at the front of your design, stamp this first, make a mask to cover your image then stamp over the mask with what you want in your background.  Remove the mask and the first stamped image is at the front - clever.  There's no limit to how many masks you can use, it depends on how many 'layers' you want.
I ended up making two cards and then I couldn't decided which one to go with, so I've entered both.

For this card with the cat on, I used 4 masks.  First I cut a circle in the middle of some paper, used the outer piece (mask 1) as a stencil to ink through to give me the circle in the middle of the card.  I also used a smaller circle (mask 2) inside the big one, to give me the moon.  I then covered over the large circle (mask 3), tore a piece of paper big enough to cover top and bottom of my card leaving a strip across the middle and placed this (mask 4) over the top of the circle mask.  I  then stamped the script across the centre of my card, over the masks, and used some Distress Ink along the edges to give a bit of definition.  Once all the masks were removed, I used my fabulous Lavinia stamps to create the scene.  Once it was all finished it looks as though there's 3 layers, when really there's only one.

The second card was a little easier as I only used the one mask, but created the look of  layers by using distress inks to colour, then splashed a little water over the top and removed some of the ink with a paper towel, and then added the leaf and swirl stamp at the top.  I think the fairy on this card is gorgeous, she's one of my favourites.

I do love my fairies, I have them at the bottom of the garden you know!!!  When we moved across to the Isle of Man one of the first things I wanted to see was the 'Fairy Bridge'  According to folklore, this is a place where some of the little people of the island choose to hide away.  It's considered bad luck to pass over the bridge without saying 'Hello' to the fairies that are there.  Some people even write messages to them and pin them on the nearby trees.  It's so funny because when we first came over here we had to remind each other to say it, now we just say 'Hello' to them without even thinking about it when we go across the bridge.  When the kids are over here they do it too!  So, if ever you're in the Isle of Man, remember to say 'Hello Fairies' if you cross Fairy Bridge, you may get a little Fairy Magic!

Fairy Bridge on the A5 at Santon
Well, that's it for today. I don't think I'll get to spend much time in my Craft room this week, apart from cleaning it up.  I need to get things ready for going across to the UK on Friday. At least we're going in the car this time, on the ferry, so luggage isn't an issue.  I can't wait to see the kids and my beautiful Grandson. We've haven't seen him since January.

Have fun, whatever you're up to.
See you all again soon.

OMG! I've got an award!

I hope you've had a good Monday.  My week got off to a great start.
You can imagine my reaction this morning when I found out that one of my fellow bloggers, and very good friend, had given me my first Blog award.
Thank you so much Sally  xx  I'm honoured.

It was after I started following Sally's Blog  and because of her encouragement, that I decided to start my own, and now I love it! (Not sure if everybody else does though!!). 
I don't know about inspiring and motivating others, it's nice to think that's what people do get from my Blog, I certainly find inspiration from Sally's, and all the other Blogs that I follow.
We all suffer from days when whatever we do it just doesn't turn out like we wanted it too.  That's when I get myself a coffee, settle down and check out what everyone's up to on their Blogs. You soon find that ideas come flooding in, and before long you're back on track.  Thank you all, for those great Blogs out there.

I hope you don't mind Sally but I've taken the words from your Blog regarding the award.

'The purpose of the award is that each recipient has a small blog (less than 200 followers). They in turn nominate five other recipients, each of whom has a blog with less than 200 followers.

Leibster is from the German and means "dearest" and the award is passed to people who have inspired and motivated others.'

I'd like to pass the award on to the following 4 talented bloggers, I'm afraid it's only 4 at the moment as all the other blogs I follow don't qualify.  I will come back and do a fifth one though, at some stage.  I won't forget!

Can I ask the ladies that I've nominated for this award, to please do the following....

1. Link back to the person that gave you the award and thank them.
2. Post the award on your Blog.
3. Give the award to 5 fellow Bloggers (with less than 200 followers), whose Blogs you appreciate.
4. Leave a comment on each of the 5 blogs you have nominated to let them know you have given them the  award.
Thank you again for the award Sally. It's much appreciated.


Saturday 10 March 2012

Tag 2

Happy Weekend!
I hope you're all doing something nice this weekend.  We're having a quiet one I think, busy week next week. We're going across to the UK next weekend and I can't wait. We're going to catch up with family, and I'm off to spend time with my crafting buddies.  It's going to be loads of fun!!
I've had a lovely week this week with birthday wishes, and surprises arriving daily. Thank you everyone. My new camera arrived on Friday (another present from Hubby), so I'm looking forward to having a play with that.  Hopefully I'll be able to get good pictures now.  Bear with me though, it may take some getting used to - I'm no photographer!
I've spent quite a bit of time in my craft room this last couple of days, and boy can you tell.  I've left it in a bit of a mess, but hey! what's new.  Unfortunately I can't show anything just yet as it's all been stuff for birthdays that are coming up, and Mother's Day. Don't want anyone to spot their card before their big day.
The one thing I can show you though, is my March Tag for Tim Holtz's 12 Tags of 2012.
This month's inspiration is Spring.  I love the little butterflies made with the Movers and Shapers Dies.  Unfortunately, like last month, I didn't have all the products that TH used but I managed to find something to do my version.
I've pretty much stuck to the design of his tag this month, except I wanted mine to be a little bit more feminine, so I used the blue and the pink papers from the 'Vintage Shabby' paper stash, and added some vintage seam binding and a few pearls. Hope you like it.

The mosaic technique was really fun to do, a bit fiddly because the pieces were so small, but I think it's very effective. It's a technique that I will do again, on something a little bigger next time!  I didn't have the Antiquities embossing powder or anything that was similar (Note to self:  must look for that at next craft show!) so in the end I went for a Cosmic Shimmer Embossing powder in Steel Blue Aurora.  I think it turned out ok.  The woodgrain background stamp is a Hero Arts one that I've had on my shelf for ages, and I haven't really used it that much. At least doing these tags, I'm going through my stash searching for product to use, and I'm finding stuff that I'd forgotten I had.  You never  know what you'll find when you start looking!
Have a lovely weekend whatever it is you're doing. Thanks for stopping by.
Cheerio for now

Wednesday 7 March 2012

Blog challenge - Neutrals

Hello everyone,
A quick post from me today.
First of all I'd like to say Thank You to eveyone for their cards and birthday wishes.  I had a lovely day on Monday, and my fab hubby spoiled me rotten!!  This 'BIG 50' thing isn't so bad after all.

On to business.  I actually spent a couple of hours in my craft room today.  I had a little time on my hands so I decided to make some cards.  One of them being this weeks entry for the Less is More Blog challenge  It's Week 57 and it's a Colour challenge - Neutrals.  Now for those who know me, black and white is one of my favourite colour combinations for cards so that's what I went with.
Week 57 LIM - Neutrals
I used ......
Script background stamp (not sure where I got this)
Heidi Grace clear stamp set for the flowers
Hero Arts Clear Stamp Set - Congrats (CL488)
Versafine Ink - Onyx Balck and Smokey Grey
Black and White cardstock
Crystal glitter

I kept the design very simple. I stamped the script background using grey ink, stamped the flowers over the top in black, just going over the edge of the card slightly to give a random look.  I felt it needed a little sparkle so I added crystal ultrafine glitter, you can just about see this in the photo.   The image was then mat onto a piece of black card to frame it and then attached to my base card.  No matter what you do, I think black and white always looks striking. I love it!!

Hope you like it.  Off now to continue my birthday week. 

Bye for now


Friday 2 March 2012

Another Blog Challenge!

Happy Friday!
How is everyone today?  I hope you've all had a nice week. It's gone a little too quickly for my liking, but hey, there you go!
I had a lovely day yesterday with a friend.  We did Coffee and Crafts, with cake in there too (Yum). Although we chatted more than crafted, we did do a little creating.   I  managed to finish my latest Blog challenge entry, yes another one.  I'm really enjoying doing them, you could say I'm hooked.
This one is for Colour Challenge #16  pink, brown and cream, over at The Ribbon Girl  It's the first time I've entered one of their challenges. When I spotted it I had to give it a go as I love this colour combination, I think it always looks very feminine.  I wanted  a real girly look, with a bit of a shabby chic feel.  This is what I came up with .......

Pink, cream and brown  Colour Challenge
I think I need to learn how to take a straight photograph!

I used ...
Cream 8x8 Card blank
Scrapbooking papers from My Minds Eye - Lost and Found Collection
Chocolate Brown Pearlescent cardstock
Cream cardstock
Corset Stamp by Clarity
Memento Ink Pad - Rich Cocoa
Worn Lipstick Distress Ink
Vintage Photo Distress Ink
Background stamp is from Madame Chic clear set by Butterfly Kisses
Nestabilities Die - Labels 16
EK Success Border Punch
Flourish Die by Sizzix
Tim Holtz Rosette Die
Paper flowers, pearls, vintage button
Vintage Seam Binding from The Ribbon Girl

I do hope you like it.

Have a lovely weekend, hope you're all doing something nice. I'm going to enjoy my last couple of days as a '40something', because, Monday is the BIG day (oh no!!!)

Bye for now