Saturday, 12 October 2019

Sending flowers with sympathy

Hello crafting friends.

Sympathy cards are not easy to make but it really helps if you have the right tools at hand. When all my stamp sets went, so did my ability to reach for the perfect images and sentiments when I needed them. I'm slowly rebuilding my collection now though, and I believe the set I used for today's card is a worthy addition to my stamp library. Come and see:

It's MFT's Floral Focus, a versatile set which I think could be used for many different occasions. It features a large floral image which I stamped here using Memento Tuxedo Black ink, and coloured with a mix of Spectrum Noir and Stampin' Up alcohol markers.

I wanted to give the flowers just a touch of colour so I shaded only parts of them with a delicate pink, then used a colour lifter to fade out the colour.

Here's the sentiment. Floral Focus comes with six words in this beautiful font, so you can mix and match them. Once the panel was finished, I prepared a card base, attaching a piece of striped designer paper (retired SU) to the front. The floral panel was then trimmed and attached to the paper with dimensionals.

The beautiful sketch from Inspire, Create was the perfect inspiration for this card and is another new (to me) challenge that I shall enjoy joining in with :) I shall also be linking up with the fabulous Addicted to Stamps and More, where this week is a Make Your Mark colouring challenge.

My youngest son has texted me to tell me that he needs a kettle. It seems that there's no need for me to worry that he's being caught up in a life of hard booze and wild parties - it appears he's more inclined to invite his friends round for tea and Magic The Gathering card games!

Thanks for visiting me today. I'm off on a long, muddy walk now with two keen hounds! What are you up to this weekend? Do let me know in the comments below :)


Friday, 11 October 2019

A great big happy, sparkly Christmas!

Hello crafting pals!

It's me again. I know, twice in one day! But it's raining, the dogs are asleep and I've done all my chores... and also, I'm here to set things straight. When I linked up at Less is More with an earlier card, a little voice in my head said "That is not a CAS card!" and although I answered boldly "Yes it is! I only make CAS cards!" part of me thought "That green and white stripy space isn't really white space though is it?" You can see the card here and decide what you think. The upshot of my internal debate was another quick card. Come and see:

Out came my Avery Elle Big Birthday set again and I inked up the least bold 'happy' this time, using Poppy Parade ink again. The word Christmas comes from Stampin' Up's Merry Christmas to All and I think it works well with the big 'happy'.

That gorgeous fir branch in the background is from Uniko's brilliant Winter Foliage stamp set. I inked it up in Pear Pizzazz ink, stamped off once on scrap paper and then again on the card panel to make a paler imprint.

The little sparkly bauble is just a circle cut out of gold glimmer paper with a 1" circle punch, and a tiny bit of the punched edge added to make the bauble hanger. I've 'hung' it from the 'C' of Christmas with a line of piercing and mounted the card panel on Pear Pizzazz card stock. There - that's another Christmas card for my stash!

I shall link this card up with both Less is More, as a sparkle and Matte card, and Just Add Ink again where they're asking for cards featuring elements beginning with 'H' - mine is 'happy'

Thanks for joining me for a double helping today! Do let me know what you think if you have a minute - I always love reading your comments :)


A great big happy birthday

Hello crafting pals!

Today I've come up with a bright and breezy birthday card that could be made in any colourway, and that is so simple to make it could be made five minutes before you leave for the birthday party! Of course that is not how I suggest you make your birthday cards but I remember the days when one or other of my children would announce that they were off to a birthday party and could they have a present and card please!

I've used my Avery Elle Big Birthday stamp set - it's first outing and most definitely not its last! - and some Stampin' Up inks in Pear Pizzazz and Poppy Parade.

To make the background, I put a few drops of Pear Pizzazz ink onto a plate, added a few drops of water and drew freehand lines across a piece of card stock with a paint brush. This is such an easy thing to do - you don't even need a steady hand.

When the card stock was dry, I trimmed it to fit a card base, gently rolled it back into shape and stamped it with the sentiment. You get a choice of font boldness with this set - I used the boldest 'Happy' and the finest 'birthday'. The card was finished with three sizes of sparkling gems.

I shall be linking up with Less is More (squeaking under the wire - I meant to link yesterday's card and forgot!) with my Sparkle and Matte card and also Just Add Ink where they're looking for cards featuring elements beginning with the letter H - mine is Happy.

My charming but naughty assistant Eva is making a habit of photo bombing when I'm trying to photograph my creations!

Although, looking at her expression, she's more: "Look, you're not doing it right! Why don't you run along and make a cup of tea or whatever it is you humans like to do, and I'll get on with this!"

Lovely to see you here today. I shall be back soon with more crafting nonsense :)


Thursday, 10 October 2019

Beautiful branches, twinkling for Christmas

Hello crafting pals!

I'm just sharing a moment of complete and utter excitement today! Eva is looking slightly concerned as I have let loose some strange squawking noises! Come and see what I've made:

When I made this Christmas card, I enjoyed the sparkly berries (which I was inspired to add for a challenge) but secretly yearned for something subtler. Here, I stamped the branches and berries with the gorgeous Beautiful Branches by Concorde and 9th, and added details with a fineliner. Then, to give the berries a bit of shine, I heat embossed them with clear embossing powder. Nice and glossy but not quite what I wanted, so I laid the card aside until...

... my Wink of Stella pen arrived! A gentle brush of the berries with the brush - and magic happened: shiny red berries with a delicious slick of subtle gold twinkle! Lots of people have told me I needed one of these little pens and they were quite right. What they didn't tell me though is that now that I have a pen that adds a subtle gold shimmer, I also need one that adds a subtle silver shimmer too! Can anyone advise?!!!

My card was finished with Stampin' Up's brilliant Merry Christmas to All stamp set. This is a sentiment set with added bits and pieces and versatile words that can be mixed and matched, and many of them can be used all year round. Love it!

I shall link this card up with Happy Little Stampers Christmas challenge where the optional theme is Twinkle. I am definitely twinkling today - and so is my card!!!

Here's someone else who's having a twinkle today :)

I was trying to capture the sparkle on those berries, kneeling in an odd, leaning back position on the floor with a camera clamped to my eye, and found a damp nose in my neck. This is Eva's "What on earth are you up to?!" expression!

Thanks for popping in today. Does your pet find you amusing? Do let me know in the comments below!


Wednesday, 9 October 2019

With sympathy

Hello crafting friends.

Here's my advice of the day: do not wait to make sympathy cards until you need them. It's hard to make them and you may find yourself making the same card over and over because you feel that every mistake is a mark of disrespect. This one is still not perfect but here it is anyway. Come and see:

I started with some (ancient!) Stampin' Up designer paper in a soft grey. I trimmed it, attached it directly to the front of a card base and added a strip of black card stock to ground it.

The topper is a circle of grey card stock decorated with a spray of flowers and leaves from Concorde and 9th's Enjoy it All. I stamped them in Stampin' Up Smoky Slate and Memento Tuxedo Black, then fussy cut them and popped them up with dimensionals.

The card was finished with a sentiment from MFT's Floral Focus and a sprinkling of clear gems.

A big thank you to Just Us Girls for starting me off with this week's Designer Paper challenge and to Just Add Ink where I used their beautiful sketch flipped upside down. I shall be linking up with both challenges :)
Edited to add: Actually, I won't be linking up with Just Add Ink, because - YET AGAIN! - I appear to not have any clue about Australian time zones! 

Eva and I have just come back from a long walk by the river in the sunshine. She tried staying awake for tea time but she just couldn't quite keep her eyes open...

... and for two pins, I'd join her!

Thanks for visiting me today - always lovely to see you here :) Pleeeease tell me I'm not the only one who wants to hibernate!


Monday, 7 October 2019

Rose leaves in disguise

Hello crafting friends!

Autumn is beautiful isn't it - even in the drizzle! But it doesn't last long, so I need to get going with some autumnal crafting before the bleak mid-winter sets in! I no longer have any leafy stamps sadly... but I DO have a cunning plan! Come and see:

I know - LEAVES!!! These ash leaves (admittedly an extremely obscure variety!) are actually leaves from my Wplus9 Modern Roses stamp set. They leapt out at me today and I suddenly decided to disguise them with autumn colour! They are stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black ink and coloured with a variety of Spectrum Noir and Stampin' Up Blendabilites alcohol markers. 

I added this stunning sentiment from Concorde and 9th's Beautiful Branches, and sprinkled the leaves with gems that I'd coloured with a green alcohol marker.

This card was inspired by the colours on this gorgeous inspiration photo at Paperbabe Stamps Challenge:

I shall also link up with Stamping Sensations where the challenge this month is Trees and/or Leaves and/or Autumn.

My youngest son actually found some time (between parties!) to phone today. He is enjoying his course and working hard, has made lots of friends and is coping financially. "Are you eating properly?" I heard myself bleat anxiously. "Yes, I'm eating fruit," he replied. "Oh, and I can eat salads now because I've found they taste delicious with Pizza Express dressing!" I shall have to remember to tuck a few bottles in his Christmas stocking this year!

Thanks for dropping in today for a bit of autumn cheer. Are you an autumn person? Or does the first hint of chilliness make you feel like hibernating? Let me know in the comments below :)


Saturday, 5 October 2019

Birthday stars and stripes for a man

Hello crafting friends!

I'm the sort of person that likes to wake up in the morning and think, happily, that nothing out of the ordinary is going to happen that day but I'm afraid Life has been happening a bit lately. And talking of lately, I missed my nephew's birthday because of it, so today's card was made to set that right. Come and see:

My first Uniko order arrived and I am absolutely delighted! Amongst the gorgeous stamp sets was the Background Builder Classics which I know I'm going to be using a lot. For its first inking I used some nice autumnal colours to stamp a design just off the edge of a good thick card base.

I stamped the belated birthday greeting from Altenew's Birthday Greetings below a nice solid banner to ground it and embellished with some Stampin' Up washi tape and some punched stars. There! A quick, simple, one layer, male card to pop in the post this afternoon.

This month's Uniko challenge is Anything Goes with optional autumnal twist, so I thought I'd link up there, proudly using my new stamps! I'm also joining in with The Male Room, where they want to see CAS cards, and Addicted to Stamps and More, where it's an Anything Goes week.

I had to be in London yesterday and texted my daughter on the off-chance that she might be free for lunch. She was! It was lovely to see her and, as a bonus, she works in a beautiful part of London where we were able to have a picnic lunch in a private garden in a pretty Georgian square. What a peaceful oasis in a busy day!

Thanks for joining me today. I'd like to think you have found this site an oasis in your busy day!


Thursday, 3 October 2019

Manly mediterranean Moments

Hello crafting friends!

I've been mucking about with inks and it was FUN! Come and see:

I was recently given Stampin' Up's beautiful Mediterranean Moments stamp set (thanks Gill - I love it!) and wondered what I could do with it. I am no painter but I thought I'd stamp the largest image in Stazon black ink on Watercolour paper and then just colour it in with inks and water and see what happened.

Well, I really got into the zone! I started off with pale washes and then worked up to adding darker shades of the same colours. When it was dry I added small amounts of detail with a fineliner. You wouldn't want to look too closely but I think it generally looks quite arty!

I think this card would work for a guy who likes to travel, and has fond memories of this kind of Mediterranean scene, so I kept it simple by just stamping a birthday greeting directly onto the image...

... and adding a couple of black staples for a bit of manly interest. These are becoming a bit of a favourite embellishment of mine - a craft room staple you could say!

In case anyone is interested, I used Stampin' Up inks in these six colours: So Saffron, Cajun Craze, Pear Pizzazz, Mossy Meadow, Crumb Cake and Soft Suede.

I'm going to link this card up with the Allsorts Challenge where From Boys to Men is the theme this week - they'd like to see masculine cards.

My daughter and I were amused to find this in the reduced section at our local supermarket at the weekend:

We agreed that nothing says 'party' quite like a collection of salad vegetables that are past their sell-by date!

Thanks for visiting me today. What's your favourite party food? (I'm willing to bet that it's not a bit of dilapidated lettuce, tomato and cucumber!) Do let me know in the comments below :)

Wednesday, 2 October 2019

Tag you're... feeling better!

Hello crafting pals!

It's that time of year when the sniffles start and everyone starts stocking up on tissues. Time for a Get Well card I think! Let's face it, we know it's going to come in handy at some stage! Come and see:

This cheerful card features a striped tag from a Stampin' Up Tags and More Accessory Kit. I stamped a sentiment from a retired hostess set (Express Yourself) onto a banner left over from another kit and attached it to the tag with dimensionals.

A spray of flowers from Concorde and 9th's Enjoy it All were inked up with markers, stamped and fussy cut, and I slipped a couple of die-cut leaves and some gold thread behind it.

The tag was attached to a snippet of textured Daffodil Delight card stock with some staples I'd coloured black for another project. I added a few black enamel dots too.

This card came about because I had a peek at the As You See It challenge this week and saw that LeAnne has come up with a card recipe I couldn't resist playing along with!

I'm also linking up with Pixie's Snippets Playground as I used lots of left over bits and pieces to make this card :) Eva and I will be popping round with a get well bone for Dudley and the pups can go zoom-tastic round the playground!

No sooner have I said goodbye to one of my sons than I get the other one back! My eldest son has come to stay as he is working nearer to home at the moment. It's so lovely to have him here and there's someone else that is delighted too...

Eva adores her family and clearly misses them all. When they come home for visits, she runs to them making little delighted sobbing noises (we call them hen noises) and doing little bunny hops because she wants to jump up but knows she isn't allowed to do that.

Thanks for coming to visit me today. I'm sending hugs to anyone who's feeling a bit under the weather and hope you feel better soon. I'll be back tomorrow with another crafty project - hope to see you then!