Thursday 30 May 2019

Do you believe in Dragons? .......

Happy Thursday .......

What's everyone up to today?  It's a little bit quiet here, and the weather's not very nice unfortunately.  There's probably a few damp TT fans on the island today. 
Last nights qualifying session was cancelled and it was hoped it could be run this afternoon.  Not happening though ...... not when the mountain looks like this

photo taken from the IOM TT Website
The good news is, it's supposed to clear later this afternoon so this evenings session should run as planned ...... fingers crossed! 

It's all about Dragons today, with some of my samples done for the Sweet Poppy Stencils show on Hochanda last week.

It was the launch of the new Dragon clear stamp set and he was sooooo popular.  I think he sold out twice!!  He is very handsome though .....

Maybe you were a Game of Thrones fan and are missing it already (we're going to watch it all again from the beginning!!!) Or maybe you're just a dragon/fantasy fan ..... either way he is pretty amazing.
He's easy to use too ....... I'm calling it a 'he' but it could be a 'she' I suppose, the choice is yours.

Even though it's quite a BIG stamp, it does stamp beautifully.  Just make sure you put enough ink on there, stamp him, applying even pressure and let it sit on your paper for a few seconds before you carefully lift up the stamp.  If you have stamping platform it's easier still ..... just look at all that detail 

I've simply stamped in black Versafine Clair and then coloured using ZIG Markers and a water brush

A few gold highlights here and there, a simple sentiment, and a few gold ink splatters ...... all done. Perfect for the man in your life!

It's great to fussy cut too ........

Coloured with the ZIGs again, with a few silver highlights here and there .....

I used the Faux Dragon Leather Back Plate Stencil to add a detailed panel on the background .....

Distress Oxide ink, then I added some Crystal Glaze to a few of the scales to add some texture.

And I used the words from the Dragon stamp set across the bottom ......

If you want to add more colour to him that works too .....

I heat embossed this one using a clear powder, and I wasn't too fussy about the colouring ...... Zig markers and lots of water, and a gold gel pen 
I did add some Crystal Glaze to the eye, love how it brings out the colour 

Speaking of the eye, that's another stamp from the set .....

I stamped this onto a piece of coloured card from my stash ...... black card coloured using Distress Oxide Sprays.

I then used a waterbrush to remove some of the colour around the eye.
The centre of the eye has been stamped again onto white card, coloured, fussy cut and then layered on top, before finishing with a coat of Crystal Glaze .... love it!!

Thanks for popping by ...... enjoy the rest of your day.
I probably shouldn't say it but, it's actually stopped raining.  The riders might just get some practice laps done after all this evening ..... let's hope so!

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

Products used:
Stamps: Dragon Clear Stamp set (Sweet Poppy); One for the Boys (Woodware)  
Inks: Versafine Claire - Nocturne: Delicata - Golden Glitz, Silvery Shimmer; Distress Oxide Ink - Hickory Smoke, Weathered Wood
Other: Faux Dragon Leather Back Plate stencil (Sweet Poppy); ZIG Clean Color Brush Markers; Crystal Glaze (Nuvo); Clear Embossing Powder, Silver Detail Embossing Powder (WOW!); Silver and Gold Gel pens

Wednesday 29 May 2019

Good morning! ........

Happy Wednesday to you ......

Are you well?  Enjoying your week? .... I do hope so.

We had a busy Bank Holiday weekend ..... we were out on the Friday night, then we had the little man overnight on Saturday.  Chris moved in to his flat on the Sunday ...... and I spent yesterday cleaning up after he left!!!

This year's IOM TT is also underway. The island is getting the usual buzz as the visitors start to arrive.  I love it!!
The first Qualifying session was cancelled on Saturday due to the weather but, things finally got started on Sunday afternoon ........

picture from the IOM TT Website
And in the evening we checked out Bushy's TT Village for the Charity Band Day ...... a great line up of local bands all doing their bit to support local charities ........ Lauren's Robbie was on stage (see the arrow ...... he's one of the Funk Brothers with Mae Challis

Hopefully there's more racing this week ..... fingers crossed the weather is kind.  We may even get out to watch some.

Anyhow ...... I'm popping by this morning to say you can find me on the Uniko Blog today, with a fun way to use the English Country Garden Butterflies clear stamp set along with the new matching Designer Dies released earlier this month

Why not grab a cuppa and pop by and say hello.

Enjoy the rest of your day.

Cheerio until next time .....

Friday 24 May 2019

Well that was a busy week!! ......

Hello there ........

Happy Friday!  I hope you've had a good week, mine seems to have gone by at 100 miles an hour! I'm definitely looking forward to the Bank Holiday weekend.

It's been full steam ahead since we got back from our little break in the Scottish Highlands. Not only have I had all the usual stuff to catch up with but, our son's moving into a new flat at the weekend so we've been helping get all that sorted too. 
It's been nice having him at home for the last few months, I am going to miss him ..... I won't miss ironing his white shirts though!!

We had a fabulous weekend away though ..... even if the weather wasn't very nice. 
We took the ferry to the UK last Thursday evening and then drove as far as Gretna.
We got an early start on the Friday and the weather was lovely. We drove all the way up to just past Inverness.  We stopped at Loch Lomond, then Loch Long  and had a spot of lunch.  We found the hotel where we spent our wedding night too ...... 31 years ago!!
We stopped off in Fort Augustus for a cheeky ice cream, and a nice walk along the side of the locks.

and then drove up the banks of Loch Ness.  Unfortunately we didn't see Nessy .... maybe next time!

Over the weekend we stayed in a beautiful B&B called Drynie House in a place called Kilmuir, North Kessock.

Overlooking the Moray Firth ........

set in 20 acres of woodland, with sheep and lambs, deer and the odd red squirrel here and there, it was the perfect place to relax.

Alasdair and Deirdre were the perfect hosts .... the breakfasts were amazing, and they knew all the best places to visit in the area ....... and beyond!

As I said the weather wasn't kind to us ...... it rained most of the weekend but it didn't stop us getting out and about.  We drove around the Black Isle, stopping off here and there,  and we made it all the way over to the Isle of Skye.
The scenery we saw was breathtaking.  It's such a long time since we've been to Scotland we'd forgotten how beautiful it is.

Whilst we were on Skye we visited the Talisker Distillery ..... well it would have been rude not to, seeing as hubby is a whisky fan.

We did one of the Whisky Tours,  and even tasted a wee dram, or two.
Now I don't drink whisky, well not very often.  You all know I'm a gin girl but, hubby keeps trying to find a whisky that I like.  Well ...... Surprise! Surprise! I've found one.  The 25 year old Talisker is rather nice!!
We even brought some home with us!

We arrived back home on Monday evening ...... and it's been all go ever since!
The washing machine hasn't stopped .... I'm ironing for England ..... and it's full steam ahead in the craft room too!
Never mind .... we've got a nice long weekend coming up and I'm going to enjoy every minute of it.
Tomorrow (Saturday) sees the start of the 2019 Isle of Man TT Races
Yes, its that time of year again when the world's best road racers gather on the island to take on the
incredible 'Mountain Course' .......  37.73 miles of a course, all on the islands public roads.  Practice Week gets underway tomorrow ..... fingers crossed the weather holds.

Well I think we're all up to date now ....... crafty posts will resume next week. 
By the way ..... did you see Lucy on the TV on Tuesday, with Sweet Poppy Stencils?  The brand new Dragon made his TV debut ....... and sold out ....... twice!!!!  I'll be back next week to share some of my samples with you.

Thanks for popping by ...... enjoy the rest of your day and have a great weekend.

Cherrio until next time ........

Monday 20 May 2019

Bee or not To Bee Blog Hop

Happy Monday!

Did you know it's World Bee Day today.

And to celebrate there's the 2019 BEE or not to BEE Blog Hop!

The purpose of this blog hop is to support bees and to raise public awareness of the importance of bees and apicultural products.
Check out the official World Bee Day website too, it's full of interesting information about these amazing little insects.

There's also an amazing line up of sponsors for the Blog Hop ..... check these out

As you can see Uniko is one of the Blog Hop sponsors, and Bev has invited the Design Team to join in too.

I've made this cute little card using the Uniko Bee Happy Clear stamp set, paired with the Pinstripe Background Block

I stamped the honeycomb heart, heat embossed it in gold and then coloured the honeycomb using ZIG markers

I stamped the bees with a black ink, and again coloured with the markers adding a touch of sparkle to their wings with a Clear Wink of Stella pen

Part of my sentiment has been stamped onto the card and heat embossed .....

with the otther half stamped onto a snippet of yellow cardstock, and attached underneath

I stamped the pinstripe, using a black ink, onto a strip of yellow cardstock, attached it down one side of my cardblank, and then finished off with a few splatters of gold ink.

As you hop on through you'll find lots of Giveaways along the way .....

Bugaboo Stamps, $12 Gift Certificate to the Store
Clearly Besotted Stamps, £15 Gift Certificate to the Store
Create a Smile, 50€ Gift Certificate to the Store
Gerda Steiner Designs, $15 Gift Certificate to the Store
Honey Bee Stamps, $30 Gift Certificate to the Store
Jane’s Doodles, $50 Gift Certificate to the Store
Kitty Bee Designs, 1 Digital Image of winner’s choice
Lawn Fawn, $25 Gift Certificate to the Store
Mo’s Digital Pencil, $5 Store Credit
Newton’s Nook Designs, $25 Gift Certificate to the Store
Power Poppy, $20 Gift Certificate to the Store
Pretty Pink Posh, $25 Gift Certificate to the Store
STAMPlorations, $20 Gift Certificate to the Store
Uniko, Clear Stamp Set (in stock) of winner’s choice

Milka is also giving away Jane’s Doodles ‘Daisies’ stamp set to one lucky winner.

That's 19 prizes to be given away to 19 winners ..... WOW!!!

The Giveaways are open Worldwide (+18) and for a chance to win, all you have to do is hop along all the blogs of the participating designers and sponsors listed in the Blog Hop list and leave a comment on each blog (22 stops).
After commenting on them all, return back to Milka’s blog and add your name to the InLinkz.
Please make sure to read the Blog Hop details, terms and conditions, Giveaway rules and privacy policy which you can find on Milka’s blog post below the InLinkz.

The Blog Hop closes on May 31st 2019  at 23.59 CEST.  Winners names will be announced on Milka's Blog on June 3rd 

Here's the full Blog Hop list ......

5. Donna Mikasa              
8. Larissa Walgemoed              
13. Tina Pavlovic                             
15. Gerda Steiner Designs (sponsor)
16. Honey Bee Stamps (sponsor)
17. Lawn Fawn (sponsor)
19. Paper Smooches (sponsor)
20. Pretty Pink Posh (sponsor)
21. Uniko (sponsor) 
22. Your Next Stamp (sponsor)

Milka Gubo (InLinkz – return after commenting and add your name to InLinkz)

Happy hopping folks!

Thanks for popping by ..... enjoy the rest of your day and Happy World Bee Day!!
(Fingers crossed this post goes live on time.  Hubby and I have been up in the Scottish Highlands and we're currently on our way home to the Isle of Man.   We've had a fab few days surrounded by the most amazing scenery, eaten delicious food, and had the odd dram or two, but more about all that later.

Cheerio until next time .......

Products used:
Stamps: Bee Happy; Pinstripe Bckground Block (Uniko)
Inks: Versafine ink, Versafine Clair - Nocturne; Delicata - Golden Glitz (for the splatters)
Other: Gold Fine Detail Embossing Powder (WOW!); ZIG Brush Markers, Clear Wink of Stella pen, yellow cardstock

Saturday 18 May 2019

Reach for the stars ......

Happy weekend .......

I hope you're having a good one.
It's time for a quick reminder about this month's CAS Stencil Challenge.
Our host for May is the lovely Sue, and the theme is a real fun technique for you to try ....... Stenciling over a Coloured Background

There are lots of ways to try this technique ....... use your stencils over coloured cardstock or pretty patterned papers.  Create your own coloured backgrounds using inks or paints and then stencil over the top ..... it's a great way to use up all those pieces that didn't quite turn out as we had hoped!
Or stencil over one of those mop up pieces of card that we all have a stash of  The list is endless.  Just remember to keep your designs Clean And Simple as well as following the theme.

I've used a piece of black cardstock here that's been sprayed with the new Distress Oxide Sprays, and then stenciled over the top using a white paste.

I simply spritzed the black card using the Oxide sprays and left it to dry.

These sprays are fab .... and they work so well on dark cardstock.

Once the ink was dry I took the Shooting Stars stencil and used a white aste through the design.  Whilst the paste was still wet, I sprinkled the stars with a fine crystal glitter to add some sparkle

I stamped and heat embossed the word 'stars' using a silver embossing powder

and stamped the rest of my sentiment onto a snippet of white card, and attached it using foam pads.

To finish off I added a sparkly die cut star.

There's still plenty of time to enter this month's challenge.  Check out the CAS Stencil Blog for all the details, along with more fabulous inspiration from the rest of the Design Team.  We also have our lovely Guest Designer Michele with us again so be sure to pop by and say hello.

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

Cheerio until next time ......

Products used:
Stamps: Reach for the Stars (Uniko)
Inks: Distress Oxide Sprays - Picked Raspberry, Mermaid Lagoon (I think!); Versafine; Versafine Clair - Nocturne 
Others: Black cardstock; Silver Embossing Powder (WOW!); Shooting Star stencil (Funky Fossil); White stencil paste; crystal glitter 

Tuesday 14 May 2019

Happy Birthday Bev! .......

Welcome to Tuesday ......

It's a special day today.  The lovely Bev from Uniko is celebrating her birthday!!

Happy Birthday to You
Happy Birthday to You
Happy Birthday dear Bev
Happy Birthday to You!!! 

It's not just any old birthday ..... it's a big one!  I don't think she'll mind me telling you ..... it's the big 4 0!!!!
To help her celebrate her special day the Uniko Design Team have gt together and we're having a Surprise Birthday Blog Hop ..... whoo hoo!!

Happy Birthday hun ....... hope it's a good one!

I'm not sure how Bev is feeling about turning 40 (I know I wasn't happy when it was me!!) so I thought I'd keep my design CAS, and make the number a little understated ......

Inlaid into the stamped image ......

Gold shimmer ink to stamp with, coloured using ZIG Markers,  and a few little crystal drops to finish

I know Bev has received this, because I gave it to her at the weekend when I saw her at Port Sunlight.
If you would like to join in and wish Bev a Happy Birthday ..... just design a card and add it to the linky on the Birthday Blog post on the Uniko Blog ...... she'll love it!

Speaking of Port Sunlight we had a great day on Saturday.  The weather was fab, the ferry crossing was perfectly calm (both ways) and the shopping was fun.  I even came back with money in my purse which was a bonus!

It was so nice to see everyone, it's just a shame we don't get more time.

Thanks for popping by .... enjoy the rest of your day.
I'm off to the craft room now.  It's a short week for me this week, so I need to get move on!
Hubby and I are having a few days away ....... we're on the boat again on Thursday and then we're off up to Scotland I think.  Let's hope this nice weather holds.
Speaking of the weather, did I mention that hubby had bought himself a little present?  He's bought himself a telescope.

It's a bit bigger than I imagined ..... my hubby never does anything by half!!!

Anyway, as you can see it's all set up ...... well almost.   Apparently, you have to align it using the stars so that the telescope knows where it is, you can then tell it what you want to look at, and it will move around to view different parts of the sky ...... makes sense, I suppose!  Well ...... since it arrived we haven't had a clear night ..... and the thing's just been sat in the lounge.  That was until Saturday. 

The Isle of Man is known for it's dark skies and where we are there's not much in the way of street lights etc., it's all countryside around us so, on a clear night the sky is full of stars.  When I got home around 10ish the house was deserted.  I eventually found him, on the patio, with the telescope, looking at the moon!  Bless him .... my little stargazer!  

Cheerio until next time .....

Products used:
Stamps: Happiest of Days (Stampin Up!)
Inks: Delicata - Golden Glizt
Other: Number dies (Stampin Up!); ZIG Brush Markers, Crystal Drops (Nuvo)

Friday 10 May 2019

A quick reminder for the Craft Stamper challenge .......

Happy Friday .......

It's almost the weekend again.  It's a special one too ... if you're a crafter that is, and in the Port Sunlight area on the Wirral.  It's the Happy Stampers Spring Festival tomorrow and I've got my ticket!!

Yes, I'll be up at the crack of dawn to meet the girls and then we catch the early morning boat sailing across to Liverpool (fingers crossed it's not a bumpy ride!) 
It's a long day, but well worth it ..... and so much fun!
The whole day will be spent chatting, and catching up with friends.  There'll be craft shopping, and coffees.  Lunch out, followed by more shopping. Afternoon tea, no doubt with cake, and possibly a bit more shopping before heading home on the evening boat!  I'm ready to go!

Before all that though,  it's time to remind you about this month's Craft Stamper challenge
As always the theme is Anything Goes ...... as long as there's actual rubber stamping on your project somewhere.
The prize this month, for the Challenge Winner are these amazing stencils from AALL & Create ..... aren't they fab!

Don't forget we have two winners each month, the other is the Design Winner, chosen by the DT, and they get their work published in the magazine.  Find out all the details, along with the challenge guidelines over on the Craft Stamper Blog

Speaking of stencils, I've been having fun with some brand new releases from Sweet Poppy Stencils.  There's new stencil designs and ....... for all you Game of Thrones fans, a brand new Dragon clear stamp set.

I've used one of the stamps to embellish my altered notebook.

This little notebook started out with a plain and simple kraft cover. 
I added some colour to the front and back covers using Distress Oxide inks in various shades of green, and a little bit of Aged Mahogany here and there.
I then used one of the new stencil designs, and the Translucent Stencil Medium to add the texture

Whilst the paste was still wet I sprinkled over some fine crystal glitter and then left it to dry.

I stamped the dragon eye twice, onto white cardstock and used Distress Oxides to add some colour.

I fussy cut around both of them, and cut out the actual eye from one. Using foam pads I layered the two together and gave the green eye a coat of Crystal Glaze

Once the stencil paste was dry I sponged over the top with a black ink.  The stencil paste acts as a resist, so the black ink only settles in between the scales.  I wiped off all the excess leaving the stencil dsign to show through ....... the green showiung through the stencil paste with the black in between

I attached the eye onto the front of the notebook and added a sentiment from the Dragon stamp set underneath

The little banner that it's on is from a set of sentiment stamps by Avery Elle that has a matching die which makes it easy to cut out.

Here's a quick look at the whole finished cover ......

Are you a Game of Thrones fan? We're all GoT mad here. 
Will you be staying up until 2am on Sunday/Monday to watch the latest episode on Sky Atlantic?  We might ..... we'll see.  If not, we shall be getting up early on Monday morning so that we can watch it before hubby goes to work! 
Don't worry, if you're not a fan there's only one more episode left after this weekend!!!

Thanks for popping by ...... enjoy the rest of your day and have a lovely weekend.
And if you're off to Port Sunlight, enjoy the day ..... spend loads!  See you there.

Cheerio until next time .....

Products used:
Stamps: A5 clear stamp set - Dragon (Sweet Poppy); Banner Bits (Avery Elle)
Inks: Distress Oxide inks, Verrsafine Clair - Nocurne: Versafine
Others: Small notebook; Faux Dragon Leather Stencil, Translucent Stencil Medium, Fine Crystal Glitter (Sweet Poppy); Crystal Glaze (Nuvo); Gold embossing powder (WOW!);