Tuesday, 30 November 2021

Poinsettias and papers

Hello, crafting friends!
Welcome to another fun challenge at CAS Colours and Sketches! Joanne is hosting this month and since there is a fifth Tuesday in this month, she has come up with the infamous 'Double' where she provides both a sketch AND a colour palette! (That's all the planning done for you lol!) 

I am still deep in Christmas card mode so I thought about this for a while until I realised that the colours would work well for a poinsettia and I could incorporate that into the sketch! 

I have one poinsettia in my stamp collection - a retired one from Uniko. I bring it out every year and have never stopped coming up with new ways to use it! Here I stamped it on a card panel and coloured it with alcohol markers in the raspberry shade of our challenge colours. The panel was trimmed to size with a stitched rectangle die from Heffy Doodle.

Deep in the bottom of my paper drawer, I found a sheet of designer paper featuring patterned strips of the challenge colours and made a layered label out of it. I stamped it with a sentiment from Clearly Besotted which pleased me by fitting perfectly! A strip of the plain midnight colour stretched across the card panel and grounded the label nicely. The card was finished with mustard dots with a random raspberry coloured gem to shake things up a bit!

Okay, are you ready to create? I encourage you to hop over to the CAS Colours and Sketches challenge blog to see all the amazing samples the team has put together to inspire you. You'll find the Linky Tool at the bottom of the post as usual and can use it to share your own card with us. Please remember to keep your creation nice and clean and simple with plenty of that all important clear space!

I'm linking this card up with Addicted to Stamps and More where Anything Goes for Any Occasion. I'm also playing along at Allsorts where the challenge is to Use a Hand Stamped or Digital Image; this theme was one of Kath's choices before she passed away and I have used snippets of designer paper which she would have approved of I know! I'm also joining in with the last Rudolph Day of the year (this is the challenge where we make a Christmas card each month in the year and link up from 25th to the end of the month.)

I have been up to my ears in puppies just lately and what a joy they are!

This pair have learned to play tug together - and that gives my arm a much-needed break I can tell you!

Sending hugs,

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

A frozen wave

Hello, crafting friends!

I have a one layer Christmas card to share with you today :)

I've been on the lookout for a snowman that makes me smile and although I don't usually go for cling stamps, I couldn't resist this unmounted red rubber chap from Purple Onion Designs! 

It's a very simple card design - I stamped him in black ink and shaded him with grey pencil before adding some splashes of bright orange on his nose and scarf using a water-based marker. I didn't want my snowman floating about in space (!) so I added a snowy ground with black and grey pencils.

The card was finished with a sentiment from WPlus9's Silver Bells. This will be an easy one to mail!

I'm joining in at with the Whimsical theme at the ABC Christmas challenge where the letters are W for Whimsical and X for Xerox; the colour palette is from Color My Heart Color Dare 471 where we are asked to use Black Grey and White with 1 extra colour; Cathy is hosting the All Things Masculine challenge at Watercooler Wednesday and as this no-frills card is destined for my nephew, I'm playing along there; I've used a Never Before Used Schtamp so I'm linking up at Darnell's NBUS challenge too.

It's been a very mild autumn here in the middle of England but the temperatures are beginning to drop, especially at night. It'll soon be time to get my woolly scarves out - although I think I might hold off on the bright orange nose! Never a good look unless you're a snowman!

Sending hugs,

Tuesday, 23 November 2021

A shining engagement

Hello, crafting friends!

Welcome to the latest challenge from CAS Colours and Sketches! Joanne is doing a great job of guiding us through the month of November and her latest inspiration is this versatile sketch:

I was delighted to hear recently that a lovely couple I know had got engaged and really enjoyed using this sketch to create a celebratory card for them.

I started by masking off the sides of a thick card base with sticky notes, leaving a strip exposed. Into this, I stamped a design with the flower stamp from Clearly Besotted's Perfect Lilies using versamark ink. This was heat embossed with gold embossing powder.

The background was coloured with a silver metallic pencil and the flowers shaded with a gold metallic pencil and given detail with a darker gold metallic pen.

I finished the card with a sentiment from Gemini die cut from gold foil card stock. There's a lot of shimmer and shine on this card which I've just not been able to capture on camera but I hope you can use your imagination!

And now it's over to you! The team has made some inspiring samples so do hop over to the CAS Colours and Sketches blog and check them out. As usual, you'll find the Linky Tool at the bottom of the post so that you  can share your own creation with us. We can't wait to see what you make!

I used the Silver/Gold colour duo at Color Hues to give a special feel to my engagement card so I'm linking up there.

The back story of today's card is this: I was looking after one of my favourite little dogs one weekend and had sent photos of him to his owners who had jaunted off to London. 'He's had such a busy weekend of walking and playing,' I texted, showing a photo of him sleeping on his back with his paws in the air. I got a text back with a photo of an elegant hand bearing a diamond ring with the caption 'We've had quite a busy weekend too!' I am so pleased because from the very first time I met this couple, when I went to meet their puppy, I had everything crossed for a wedding!!

Sending hugs,

Saturday, 20 November 2021

A colourful birthday celebration

Hello, crafting friends!
Happy Saturday and welcome to the last Addicted to CAS challenge of 2021. It's a very special challenge too because we are celebrating our 9th birthday! Nancy has stepped up to host the party and she has chosen a lovely code word:

I think we could all use a bit of colour in our lives!

The code word encouraged me to make a birthday card for my daughter whose birthday was this month. I used Scorpio by AALL & Create for the main image, stamping it in black, colouring it with Spectrum Noir alcohol markers and fussy cutting it.

The image was mounted onto a card base that I'd sponged bright inks over to create a chalky looking background. The sentiment combines words from the AALL & Create set with an older Winnie and Walter set.

Okay! Now it's your turn! We would love it if you hopped over to the Addicted to CAS challenge site where, as usual, our designers have pulled out all the stops to inspire you AND we have the fabulous Cécile Ribon guesting with us. You'll find the Linky Tool at the bottom of the post and can use it to share your own creation. Don't forget to keep your card nice and clean and simple but above all, have fun!

I'm linking this card up at Just Add Ink where they are asking us to Just Add Legs - lots of legs going on here! I'm also playing along at Seize The Birthday - Julie's theme is Beverages but I'm going with the Anything Goes option; I'm also joining in at the NBUS challenge where I'm sharing the Never Before Used schtamps I used!

My daughter and I had a wonderful time at the Christmas fair yesterday and both managed to do a little bit of Christmas shopping between laughing and chatting and drinking hot spiced apple juice. There was a walk through a wooded area to get to the stalls and they'd put up some kind of a light device that made it look as if it was snowing - so beautiful, especially as the evening drew in. I did take photos but none of them have come out well :/ 

Sending hugs,

Friday, 19 November 2021

Celebrate Christmas with Decorative Doilies

Hello, crafting friends!
I am thrilled to be guesting at Uniko's Nov/Dec challenge today after being a challenge winner back in the summer! The theme for November/December is Celebrate with an optional theme of Red/Green.

I am a genuine fan of Uniko's beautifully designed, excellent quality stamps, and have plenty to choose from in my stash, but it seemed fitting to use the stamp set I chose as my prize :)

The set is Decorative Doilies - The Hands of Time. I just love it - AND it's on sale! The doilies remind me of those bang-on-trend honeycomb decorations (I've already used it on a male birthday card here!) and some could be used as stylised snowflakes too! I used bright red ink to stamp a sentiment on a card panel using a 'celebrate' from Pink Fresh Studios and 'The magic of Christmas' from a retired Uniko set. 

The decorations were stamped around it in green ink and the panel trimmed to size with a stitched rectangle die from Heffy Doodle. The panel was mounted onto a red card base and the centres of the decorations were embellished with clear gems.
So now it's over to you! Beverley and her amazing Uniko Brand Ambassadors have loads of fabulous inspiration for you so do hop over to the Uniko Studio blog to check it out! You'll find the linky tool there so that you can enter your own creation and be in with a chance of winning a fabulous prize!

I'm playing along at Allsorts, Stamping Sensations and We Love Stamping where the themes are all Christmas.

We are having a unusually fine November with some lovely spells of autumn sunshine, although the nights are certainly chilly! The sunsets have been beautiful too and I managed to capture yesterday evening's.

So uplifting!
Sending hugs,

Thursday, 18 November 2021

A happy Christmas ornament

Hello, crafting friends!

Welcome to another Thursday challenge from The Tic Tac Toe Challenge. This week it's my turn to come up with  a board to inspire you and here's what I've come up with:

I'm still happily making Christmas cards and have chosen the top row Plaid/Stencil/Tree to create this festive little number:

I started b creating an ornament, die cutting a circle from a scrap of textured blue card stock and stencilling an ornament top using Funky Fossil's Ornamental stencil. I cut another circle from an off-cut of plaid paper from Stampin' Up and then lopped off half with a curved border die to make an interesting (and unlikely!) snowy hillside.

There are lots of different techniques you can use with stencils; as well as inking directly onto your card base or panel, you can ink through bits of a stencil onto scraps of card and fussy cut - as I've done here using just one of the trees on Funky Fossil's Skinny Trees stencil. Once everything was assembled and glued together, I finished with a sentiment from The Greetery's  Snowflake Soirée and some orange enamel dots.

Okay, now it's your turn! You can choose any row or column or either of the diagonals but first, do hop over to the Tic Tac Toe Challenge site and admire the beautiful samples from my clever teamies! You'll find the Linky Tool there as always and will be able to link up your own creation. Have fun!

I'm linking this card up at Happy Little Stampers Stencil Challenge where Anything Goes; I'm also joining in at The Snippets Playground as all items used on this card were snippets - AND The Christmas Kickstart Challenge where Di has put her Elf hat on and is helping Jo celebrate Christmas snippets; I'm also sharing this card at Darnell's NBUS Challenge as the schtencil is Never Before Used Schtuff!

I'm looking forward to meeting my daughter tomorrow afternoon. We're going for a walk in the grounds of a local manor house and visiting an outdoor Christmas fair - and if that doesn't get me in the mood for preparing for Christmas, nothing will!!

Sending hugs,

Wednesday, 17 November 2021

It's a wrap!

Hello, crafting friends!

Oh the joy of seeing a couple of challenges and snatching some time to join in!

This card looks simple but I had a bit of problem solving to do before it came together. I wanted the stamped 'ribbon' to look as if it was wrapped around the panel, but the stamp I had from Uniko's Background Builders Classics wasn't long enough for a standard card so I trimmed the  card base and panel down a bit. Luckily I had a kraft envelope the right size!

I stamped on the kraft card stock with Stampin' Up's Poppy Parade ink. The kraft darkens it down a bit so Real Red card stock was a good match when I die cut the bows using MFT's Birthday Cocktail die set. The holly sprig is from Budding Beauties Winter by the Greetery.

I had planned a circular tag style sentiment but I couldn't get my elements to work well together. In the end, I found this sentiment from Thye Greetery's Snowflake Soirée which fit the space exactly and that excited me so much I forgot about circles!

I loved the brown-paper-parcels-tied-up-with-string in the snow and the sketch at Inspired By this week; Sparkles Christmas Challenge's theme for November is Presents and I thought it would be fun to create a card that looked like a present!

It was my darling dayughter's birthday yesterday and her floofy sister naturally wished to send birthday greetings. Normally she greets the family with cute little 'hen noises' or raises her nose and 'arooos' gently but since we were celebrating at a distance this year, we sent this:

It is not natural for a retriever to hold a thin rose stem in her mouth I can tell you! I removed all the thorns first and used kitchen paper to create a padded area for Eva to hold on to. She was rewarded with dried sprats!! Isn't she adorable?

Sending hugs,

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Lantern light

Hello, crafting friends!

Welcome to another Tuesday and another fun challenge at CAS Colours and Sketches brought toy you this month by the lovely Joanne! Look at the beautiful colour palette she has come up with this week:

I've been wanting to get my Reverse Confetti Lanterns out to make some pretty Christmas ornaments, and thought this was the perfect opportunity to do it!

I used a colour as close as I could find to the Polished Pink for my ink blended background, stamping the lantern over the top in grey ink and colouring it with a metallic silver pencil. The pine branches were stamped in the green ink at the base of the lantern. To hang my lantern ornaments, I used the chain on Funky Fossil's Ornamental stencil.

The card panel was mounted on a panel of green before attaching to the card base. To finish the card, I added tiny snowflakes and berries with a fine tipped Posca acrylic paint pen. The sentiment is from The Greetery's Boughs and Branches.

Okay, so now it's your turn! I hope you can find the time to hop over to the CAS Colours and Sketches challenge site to admire the gorgeous samples the design team has made to inspire you. You'll find the Linky Tool at the bottom of the post and can use it to link up your own creation :) Don't forget to keep your card nice and clean and simple but above all have fun!

I'm joining in with Happy Little Stampers Christmas Challenge where Anything Goes with optional Make A Scene; I'm also playing along at Jingle Belles, where I'm hoping these lanterns count as ornaments :) and Allsorts, where Wendy has chosen the theme of Christmas.

I'm going to let you into a secret... I made this card in what felt like the middle of the night. Like lots of us, I can't see so well in artificial light and reached for the wrong ink. I only realised what I'd done next morning when I saw my orange background!

Honestly, it's only November and already I'm dreaming of spring with its longer, lighter days. On the plus side though, I have an extra Christmas card!

Sending hugs,

Friday, 12 November 2021

Birthday mail for the birthday male

Hello, crafting friends!

I was lucky enough to win a stamp set of my choice from Uniko back in the summer and have only recently found the time to play with it! This is what I made:

For my prize, I chose a beautiful large set called Decorative Doilies - The Hands of Time (which, as a master enabler, I can tell you is currently in the sale at Uniko!) To me, the designs look like those trendy honeycomb decorations and I thought they'd be perfect for birthday cards, especially for those challenging-to-design-for male cards.

To create this one layer card, I used a stencil I made with various circle punches. I sponged ink into each circle, then stamped the doilies over the top in a darker colour ink. The bold sentiment was combined with a 'happy' from Avery Elle's Big Birthday and a 'birthday' from  Uniko's Wild. I finished with some coordinating enamel dots.

I'm playing along again at Allsorts where Tracy has chosen From Boys To Men as her theme, so it's all about male cards; also Seize the Birthday where Jules' choice of topping is Beverages but I've gone for the Anything Goes (as long as it's a birthday card) option; I'm also playing along at Addicted to Stamps and More where the current theme is Birthdays.

Firework season seems to have finished for the season here thank goodness. It doesn't seem to have been quite as manic as usual - we have had years when fireworks have been fizzing and banging every evening for two or three weeks. The great news is that Eva has not been an inconsolable, quivering wreck this year. She has stayed close to my side but has been able to focus on me which is a massive stride forwards. 

Here's a photo of my girl enjoying an autumn walk with not a thought in her head about nasty noises, only squirrels and meeting her pals!

Sending hugs,