Monday, 16 July 2018

Monday and the start of another summer week

Morning readers,

Hope you all enjoyed a great weekend - get up to much?

It was the wedding anniversary of surrogate daughter #2 and her husband last week and they invited us round for a few drinkies to celebrate the occasion - one or two drinkies turned in to three or four, lucky we walked! S'funny but it took twice as long to get home as it did to get there .... less to do with drink and more to do with the fact their sweet little cat decided to follow us, we got close to the main road and realised she wasn't giving up so took her home again.

Got some crafting to share with you this morning, when it's as hot as it has been you may find it hard to believe but ... I make Christmas cards? REALLY?!?!?! And yet ..... I think this one has a more masculine feel to it - or am I deluding myself?

My card
And a closer view of the red dragon embossing powder
The front, back and inside of my card along with the front and back of my envelope

Materials used:
  • Cream A2/C6, 250gsm, card and matching sized envelope
  • Two pieces of card (one cream and one navy) cut to fit
  • One piece of cream card cut to 1cm smaller than the navy card panel
  • Snippet of cream card
  • MFT wonky rectangle window die cut centrally from the navy card
  • Hero Arts star image stamped on to cream snippet using Versamark embossing ink and then red dragon tinsel (a lovely red/gold/twinkly embossing powder by stamps 'n stuff) which I heat set, once cool, I fussy cut the star and used a red alcohol marker to go around the edge
  • Elsewhere on my card and envelope the star image was stamped using Brilliance rocket red gold pearlescent ink
  • Precious Remembrance Shop (Sketchy Christmas)  sentiment stamped using Memento Paris dusk ink
  • Once I had assembled the card front I used double sided foam tape to adhere the card panel to my card base and smaller squares of foam tape to adhere the star in the "wonky window"
I'll be entering the above make for the following challenges:-
  1. CASonFriday - challenge No. 137 - CHRISTMAS IN JULY
  2. Chrimbo Crackers - challenge No. 162 - ANYTHING CHRISTMAS GOES
  3. StarStampz - July 5th challenge - CHRISTMAS IN JULY
  4. Sasayaki Glitter - July challenge - CHRISTMAS IN JULY
  5. Happy Little Stampers - July Christmas challenge - ANYTHING GOES + optional (unused) twist of SANTA

I'm delighted to say that this card brings me ever closer to my 2018 personal quota so it looks like I'm going to make it this year - who knows? I may EVEN be able to make some to sell this year!! WOO HOO, this beats the year when I was still making them on Christmas Eve!!! I've been trying to  make one or two each week and it looks like it's been working, I don't think I've ever been this close to completion at this time of year. I'm sure it's thanks to all the great Christmas challenges that are about too though, encouraging me - thanks peeps

Saturday, 14 July 2018

Saturday post

Morning readers,

Hope your weekend has started off well and that you have nice things to look forward to today and tomorrow. I also hope you are enjoying (rather than enduring) the hot weather - have to say that .... like my garden .... I'm suffering in the heat but, it won't last long so ... we should make the most of it. In fact, it was the coolest night (last night) in around three weeks - I actually slept part of the night UNDER the covers!!

Anyhoo, in the cool of the morning or as it starts to cool off (slightly) of an evening, I've been hitting the ToC (that's Table of Craftiness) and here's another of the Artist Trading Coins that I am currently obsessed with, such a GREAT way to use up snippets of card and, let's be honest, be all have LOADS of those, don't we?

My Artist Trading Coin
Materials used:
  • Snippets of card in both white and black
  • Circle dies to cut a 2½" black circle and a 2¼" circle from white card
  • Images and sentiments stamped using Memento dandelion, canteloupe, London fog, tangelo and tuxedo black inks - Stamps by: Number/text by unknown manufacturer, words and coffee rings by Creative Expressions (CEC897) and Paper Artsy splatter from HTPX01
  • I edged my white circle using the Zig water colour marker in neon orange and then doodled a border using a white Posca paint pen
I'll be entering the above make for the following challenges:-
  1. QKR Stampede - challenge No. 304 - ANYTHING GOES
  2. CardzTV - challenge No. 56 - ANYTHING GOES
  3. Crafting With Friends - challenge No. 71 - ANYTHING GOES
  4. Simply Papercraft - challenge No. 59 - ANYTHING GOES
  5. Crafting With An Attitude - challenge No. 41 - ANYTHING GOES
And a card which kind of makes a change from ATCoins lately!

My card
The front, back and inside of my card along with the front and back of my envelope

Materials used:
  • Cream A2/C6, 250gsm, card and matching sized engelope
  • Two pieces of cream card cut to fit
  • One piece of red card cut to mat
  • Snippet of red card for heart image
  • Sizzix dies (set #'s 660222 and 660220) used to die cut
  • Hero Arts sentiment (from CL342 - everyday sayings) stamped using Memento tuxedo black ink
  • Hero Arts heart image (on the reverse and the envelope) from the set AC026 "brush strokes" stamped using Adirondack red pepper ink
I'll be entering the above for the following challenges:-
  1. Happy Little Stampers - July DIES challenge - ANYTHING (with dies) GOES
  2. Simply Create Too - challenge No. 140 - NO PATTERNED PAPER
  3. D.L. Art - challenge No. 232 - ANNIVERSARY
  4. My Time To Craft - challenge No. 375 - WEDDING/ ANNIVERSARY/ ENGAGEMENT - I went with anniversary since my own is approaching!

Friday, 13 July 2018

Friday and the weekend is about to start!

Morning readers, 

Hope you've all enjoyed the warm weather ... it's been a smidge too warm for me though Tuesday was actually rather lovely - cooler than the preceding days and pleasant enough for me to be able to sit out without sweltering, albeit not for too long ... just long enough to top up my vitamin D!

Mostly, I've been crafting behind drawn curtains in an attempt to keep rooms cool! Equally it, mostly, FAILED!, but here's one make I managed before melting!

Materials used:
  • ATC blank
  • Snippets of card in dark chocolate and white
  • Coffee images stamped using black (sentiment and coffee mug), brown (coffee beans) and grey (steam) inks
  • Pencils used to colour images and background
  • Coffee stain stamped using brown ink
  • Dots and mini grid stamped using grey ink
STAMPS: Stamplorations "Holiday Artsy", Creative Expressions CEC897 "loopy textures and elements"
and Kaisercraft "mini grid"
INKS: Memento tuxedo black, Rich cocoa and London fog
Posca paint pen in white and (not shown) Faber Castell polychromos pencils

I'll be entering the above make for the following challenges:-
  1. Happy Little Stampers - July ATC challenge - COFFEE
  2. CityCrafter - challenge No. 420 - IN THE PINK ... hope the pink background works
  3. Through The Craft Room Door - July 10th challenge - ANYTHING GOES
  4. Lemon Shortbread - challenge No. 71 - ANYTHING GOES
  5. Create and Makes - challenge No. 22 - ANYTHING GOES
I was lucky enough to have been picked as a winner of a fab prize ($15 to spend at Sparkle 'n Sprinkle) over at Through The Craft Room Door earlier this week, thanks peeps. Want to see my entry? Here it is ....


Nipped out earlier in the week, to follow the gromit trail .. sadly, the bus was SO HOT that I felt really sick by the time we got off ... cue sitting by waste bin heaving (and that's QUITE enough information there peeps) - however, I DID manage a couple

Caractacus Paws!
Caractacus - side view
The Emperor (penguin, aka Feathers McGraw)
I hope to catch some more before they are auctioned off for charity in October .. but not till it cools down a smidge! Our evening out? Well, we met up with our friends at a bar where it was heaving full of footie fans, our restaurant however, was totally empty ... closed and locked up having decided to go out of business between us booking our table (about a fortnight ago) and us turning up!!! Hmmm - thank  heavens for cell phones!!! To avoid trudging from one full restaurant to another we went online and booked an Indian which turned out to be a terrific plan B) - we'd go again!

And then, yesterday, I had a pal join me for the day, she's recently returned from Florida and, lucky thing, was able to attend a craft retreat and a number of craft classes - deeply envious - she brought some of her fab makes to show me too, they were beautiful. We just about got through them before it was time to head off to lunch at a restaurant I'd been to previously but she never had ... pheww! It was just as good as last time! Home again via a lovely little coffee shop I found none too long ago - coffee, cake and a little gingerbread man cookie! YUM - fab day and it was as stress free as Wednesday was stressFUL!!

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Welcome to that mid week post ....

Morning readers,

This post is a little photo heavy and I apologise - you might want to grab yourself a coffee and get comfy before you start!

I've recently been getting back in to journalling again and some pals and I have been challenging ourselves using one word prompts, Debbie set this week's word and it's BALANCE

My journal page for the one word prompt of "BALANCE"
A closer view of the glittery, scribbly section!
Materials used:
  • I took one ungesso'd page of my Crawford and Black journal (£1 from The Works) and doodled a border around the outer edge using the black paint pen
  • Using a gelli plate background I created using neon and metallic green paints for my background , I cut it to fit the panel bordered by my doodling
  • Using a snippet of another gelli plate panel (also using neon paints) I die cut a circle for my lady to stand on and my letters to wrap around
  • Stampin' Up image stamped on to a snippet of white card, coloured using Inktense blocks and then fussy cut out
  • I adhered the image and circle on to my card panel and then doodled around the circle and scribbled my words around and above the image using the black posca pen 
  • I spelt out the word "BALANCE" using the alphabet stamps and the black ink before adding additional highlighting to various areas of the page using the white posca pen
  • Using the TCW stencil and a spatula I added some areas of interest by stencilling the glass bead glitter gel through the stencil
  • Once I had attached my image panel to my journal page I doodled some more around the page using the black posca pen
  • Finally I flicked acrylic ink splats in purple and silver .. to make it look more "balanced"!!!!
Neon acrylic paints for background, Dylusions alphabet and S.U. "Beautiful You" stamp
Ranger Archival jet black ink, Posca paint pens in both black and white
Faber Castell glass bead glitter gel and TCW Stencil (not shown)
Derwent Inktense blocks and a Caran d'Ache water brush, to colour the image
Daler Rowney acrylic inks in purple lake and silver pearl
My background panel is bottom right and my die cut circle came from the top right
I'll be entering the above make for the following challenges:-
  1. Always Fun - challenge No. 66 - ANYTHING GOES
  2. Crafting From The Heart - challenge No. 214 - ANYTHING GOES
  3. Mixed Media Place - June challenge - PHOTO INSPIRATION .. I used the bubble inspiration for my make ... centre bottom row

And now ... I missed last months "TWOFER" challenge so I couldn't really miss another month, could I? I have no idea why I have such trouble with the rules, they're quite clear ... the same image MUST be used on both CARDS and the cards MUST be for DIFFERENT occasion ... hmm. I dashed off and made a birthday card and a TAG!! First mistake .. after all, a tag is so NOT a card!!

Cards One and Two - using the same image but differently and for different occasions too
And here they are individually ..

Card Number One - BIRTHDAY
The front, back and inside of card number one along with the front and back of the envelope

Materials used:
  • Cream A2/C6, 250gsm, card and matching sized envelope
  • Two pieces of 300gsm cream card cut to fit
  • One piece of navy card, cut to mat
  • Wine bottle image stamped multiple times and the sentiment, stamped using black ink
  • Pencils used to colour image
  • Dimensional gloss applied to the "glass" of the bottles

STAMPS: Dark Room Door DDRS066, Ranger Letter-It "Birthday" and Stampers Anonymous THMB208
INKS: Memento tuxedo black
(not shown) Faber Castell polychromos pencils and Anita's dimensional gloss PLUS
Posca paint pen (black) for doodling a border round the image panel
And card number 2 ...

Card Number Two - CHRISTMAS
The front, back and inside of card number two along with the front and back of the envelope

Materials used:
  • White 12½cm square, 250gsm, card and matching sized envelope
  • Two pieces of white card cut to fit and smaller snippet for image panel
  • Snippet of Christmas card, which I managed to make fit the matting layer for both the card panel and  image panel - woo hoo!
  • Image stamped on to small snippet and coloured with pencils
  • Sentiment stamped on to card panel using black ink and then "blinged up" using the stickles

Snippet of Christmas paper - left over from a VERY old QVC kit!!!
STAMPS: Precious Remembrance Shop "Sketchy Christmas", Inkadinkado 30-31432
"Making spirits bright" and Stampers Anonymous THMB208 "Wine"
INK: Memento tuxedo black
(not shown) Faber Castell polychromos pencils and stardust stickles
And, finally, my tag ..

Materials used: (photo as per car number one)
  • Kraft tag
  • Sentiment and images stamped using black ink
  • Pencils used to colour
  • Dimensional gloss to simulate glass

I'll be entering the above for the following challenges:
  1. Twofer Card Challenge - challenge No. 7 - THEME - see below - Cards One and Two only
  2. Pammie's Inky Pinkies - challenge No. 1827 - ANYTHING GOES Card One only
  3. Through The Craft Room Door - July 10th challenge - ANYTHING GOES Card One only
  4. Seize the Birthday - July 5th challenge - ANYTHING GOES + optional twist (unused) of SEQUINS Card One only
  5. Lemon Shortbread - challenge No. 71 - ANYTHING GOES Card One only
  6. Addicted to Stamps - challenge No. - 6th BIRTHDAY - BIRTHDAY CARD  Card One only
  7. Lil Patch of Crafty Friends - challenge No. 85 - ANYTHING GOES Card Two only
  8. A Snowflakes Promise - challenge No. 53 - ANYTHING CHRISTMAS GOES Card Two only
  9. The Holly and The Ivy - challenge No. 32 - ANYTHING CHRISTMAS GOES Card Two only
  10. Crafty Sentiments - July 10th challenge - CHRISTMAS IN JULY Card Two only


Monday, 9 July 2018

Welcome to the start of another (scorching) week

Morning readers,

As the UK heatwave seems set to continue through this week too, how do YOU keep cool? I must confess that I am struggling and, for two pins, would empty out the fridge and sleep in there .... if I thought I wouldn't suffocate!

I've been crafting in near darkness too, in an attempt to keep the heat out - just hoping it doesn't show in my work!

I signed up for a free creative retreat for this weekend and watched a couple of their tutorials - I don't presume to call myself an artist so most of the tutorials just kind of went over my head but .. I thought I could work with one of them and my make below is my interpretation of that .. be nice, it's so far out of my comfort zone, I still got to sneak some stamping in though, with splatters and a sentiment!

EDITED TO READ: the retreat was free over the weekend, there were a good number of tutorials from very talented artists, a taster if you will, to introduce us and encourage us to sign up to their chargeable online classes - sorry for any confusion

My Artist Trading Coin
A view showing the stamping and texture
My snippets
Die cut and gesso'd
Materials used:
  • Snippets of card in cream and navy + ripped sheet from book of music
  • Circle dies (2½" and 2¼") used to cut circles from the gesso'd and navy card
  • Using a water soluble pencil, I drew the outline of my face and hair, blending strokes using the waterbrush
  • Inktense blocks and waterbrush used to add colour and drips
  • I stamped the splatters using the grey ink and the sentiment using black ink, sprinkled with clear embossing powder which I then heat set
  • Using the paint pen I accentuated the sentiment and then doodled my border
  • I then gave the project a spritz with Crafters Companion spray and shine to stop the water based pencil from further reacting with any water it might come in contact with!
Memento tuxedo black and London fog inks
INKTENSE blocks and a Caran d'Ache water brush
Stabilo "Aquarelle" water soluble pencil + white Posca paint pen
Precious Remembrance Shop "DIY stamp set"
I'll be entering the above make for the following challenges:-
  1. Pixie's Crafty Workshop - challenge No. 330 - USE SNIPPETS
  2. WeLoveTooCreate - challenge No. 10 - ANYTHING (mixed media) GOES
  3. More Mixed Media - July 5th challenge - ANYTHING (mixed media) GOES + option of PINK - which I used
  4. Creative Artiste - challenge No. 40 - ANYTHING (mixed media) GOES
  5. Happy Little Stampers - July mixed media challenge - NEWSPAPER (though DP is acceptable so I'm assuming music paper counts too - hope so!