Tuesday, 11 December 2007

DCM-Buttons and Bows & Stripes

At last I have had time to catch up on the DCM dares. It's been a hectic few days with the opening of the new shop and we still have a few jobs to do to get ready for the Open Evening on Friday but I now have a couple of days off to catch up with jobs at home and some card orders I have in........not Christmas...thankfully. This card is for the Stripes dare and I have stamped the tulip in Olive Green Stazon onto some cream card and then masked it off using Masking Magic so that I could stamp the text background. I have then coloured the tulip using coloured pencils and odourless mineral spirits. The edges have been chalked then the piece was mounted onto some gold card. The tab at the side is Quickutz from the Revoloution tag die and this has been dabbed with Stazon in Saddle Brown and Timber Brown. The letter 'T' is from a set of letters which you insert into a metal holder but I don't like the bulk of the holders so use the discs on their own.
For the striped background I have taken a piece of Making Memories paper and grunged it with Timber Brown Stazon. This was then stamped with a text stamp but very lightly so that not all of the image was stamped.
Text on background and the tulip stamp are Rubbadubbadoo and I think the text behind the tulip is a Caroline's stamp.
Just a simple card for Buttons and Bows.
Stamp is unknown and colouring is done with The Works pearlised paints.
There is one card left to do for my orders. I have put it off as it is an anniversary card and as you know I don't like doing slushy stuff. It has to be done though so I am going to get that done tonight and then I am going to play for a bit.
I am finding that I am needing to get to bed earlier now that I have to travel further to work so no late night/early morning blogging or playing......except for when I don't have to be up.
Our new workroom is just about sorted at the shop and I can't wait to do my first class in there. We have a fabulous new table which will seat eight people comfortably.........10 if we are all good!!! Some new comfy chairs but we only have four so I am expecting lots of camping outside the door at the crack of dawn by the class members in order to bag one of these......I am not averse to bribes if anyone wants me to put my handbag on one. Choccy biscuits will usually do the!!!
Right.......I am away to see what the 'Little Extra is for this week.
Bye for now
EDITED..........Oh blimey........I have just noticed that I have gone over 30,000 on my counter. I will need to celebrate that methinks with some Blog Candy but I won't have time to do it this week. I will post something for that when I am off over Christmas though I will do it before if I find I have some spare time to sort out the goodies.

Thursday, 6 December 2007

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!!!

Oh I am sooooooo excited.......we put our Christmas tree up today.
Yes I know that I am fifty and not five but this is the first year for I don't know how long that our tree has been up well before the week of Christmas and it just feels so nice to be in the swing of things. I even have some gifts waiting to be wrapped up which is very organised for!!! I am usually that mad woman rushing round town two days before Christmas but as I have decided that I hate going into town I have done some shopping on the net and DD has picked up some things for me while she has been out.....easy peasy!!!
Also unusual for me is that I don't really know what I want for myself this year. There is usually some must have gadget or something I want which can only be asked for at Christmas or for a birthday gift. DD bought me a big present down in Devon which was the Sizzix Fruit Smoothie alphabet that I have been wanting for ages. I had told hubby I wanted a Bind It All but somebody else may be getting me one of those so I haven't a clue what to tell him to get me now........anyone got any ideas?

It's been a lovely day today DD and I at home on our own for most of it, cold and miserable outside but warm and snuggly inside. I have got some jobs done that badly needed doing and made a list of jobs for tomorrow so all is fab in my world at the moment which is a wonderful feeling.

I promised you a couple more projects that make great gifts and these little photo frames are so easy to make.
The frame is cut from mountboard using the Sizzix Rectangle Frame die. I then made a backing...again from mountboard and cut very slightly smaller than the frame. I also cut a strip of mountboard to act as the stand.
The frames are stamped, inked or decorated however you like and then the back is attached with foam pads across the bottom and up two sides leaving the top open to slip your photo in. You can if you want add acetate to protect your picture This frame has been coloured with a soft blue fluid chalk ink and then sponged with silver ink. The words have been stamped and embossed in silver and then the frame has been embellished with Stickles.
The angel is from a Rubbadubbadoo set called Angel Art. She has been stamped onto white card, brushed over with blue chalk and then glittered with Stickles
Another style of frame. This time I used black mountboard and just stamped the feather background by Rubbadubbadoo in silver Brilliance. Once dry I embellished with turquoise glitter and added some bling with clear crystals.

Finding these projects again has set me off wanting to do some more so I think I will plan to do some while I am off work over Christmas.

Well I am off to have another bit of a sort out. Right now I am going through my cardstock and trying to organise it a bit mean task if you could see how much I have but I am trying to make room for stocking some A3 card for bigger projects I have in mind.
Bye for now

Tuesday, 4 December 2007

I Hate To Say This.............

.........but I HATE PAPER!!!
Well maybe that is a bit strong but after a day spent sorting and filling stands full of paper it is not my favourite thing at the!!!
I used some very bad unladylike language when a piece of paper sliced into an existing cut on my finger......oh gawd it did make my eyes water I can tell you.
Still the paper room is coming along now and there is only all the card stock to put out in there and it needs sweeping and mopping before Friday but I am not there again now until early Friday morning and we will be opening at 10am.
The shop is looking fabulous now that we have a lot of the stock out and Deb is taking a male friend with her tomorrow to help with all the heavier lifting and DIY jobs.
I am so shattered that I just can't face any cardmaking tonight so I am sorting through my files on my computer and moving all my archived cards to CD's......I have filled four so far.
Anyway I came across these projects which I thought might be a bit of a change from cards. They are some things I did when I was designing projects for Rubbadubbadoo and these are using some Celtic sets. This little Tag Book has been made using mountboard and a Sizzix die.
All the colouring is Fluid Chalk Ink and stamping is Stazon Jet Black.
The jigsaw pieces have been triple embossed and attached with PVA glue.
Lengths of fibres threaded with beads adds the finishing touch.
This Draughts board and game pieces was a labour of love and took me days to complete.
The board has been made so that it folded into a box which I made to go with it. The stamped squares were cut, stamped and attached individually.
The game pieces are stamped circles of funky foam which have been heated and stamped. They have then been coloured with Rub On Waxes in red and green and then edged in gold. Once cured they were glued onto circles of mountboard to add a little weight to them.
My daughter and I actually had a game with this.
Unfortunately I don't know where this is now as I sent it to somebody at the office.....(he knows who he is..wink, wink) and I have never seen it since. I reckon he thought it was rubbish and binned!!!

I have a few more things to show you tomorrow which may give you some ideas for Christmas gifts.
I'm off for a Radox bath now to soothe my aching legs and feet.
Bye for now

Monday, 3 December 2007

Random Ramblings!!!

Just a quick blog tonight I'm afraid as I am up rather later than I should be given that tomorrow is the first day in the new shop and as it involves a half hour car journey I need to be at the boss's house for 9am. I didn't have to leave until 9.30am before and was at the shop in 15 minutes.

Didn't get any cardmaking done at all today as we had visitors this afternoon and they never left until 11.30pm.
I have found this card in my archives which I only did the other week and I thought I had posted it but can't find it on here.
Anyway the stamps are Elusive Images and I absolutely adore the Three Kings stamp.
I bought it as a single UM years ago at the NEC but they now have a set out with other stamps on it too and I have used the set as this card was for a workshop.
I drew a template for the shaped card front using an EI's worksheet as inspiration The blue paper has been dabbed with a Versamark pad and a fine fine sprinkling of silver EP has been added then heated. This gives a very subtle effect which doesn't show up too well on the scan.
The purple paper has been stamped with other stamps from the set.
The Three Kings have been stamped in Stazon and embellished with silver glitter and turquoise jewels.

Right I had best go and get some shut eye as we will be busy tomorrow unpacking all the boxes we just packed the other day. I expect I shall be shattered when I get home.
Night night

Saturday, 1 December 2007

Daring Cardmakers-Birds

The 'dare' this week over at DCM is to make a card featuring birds. Now I am not very partial to birds I'm afraid after a traumatic incident when I was younger so I don't really have any bird stamps to speak of. Luckily I had a pack of the gorgeous Periphery papers from Basic Grey which has a couple of sheets with birds on. So this card is just a very simple one using papers and elements from the pack with a stamped sentiment. The stamp is from Creative Expressions.

The traumatic incident involving the bird was when I was about sixteen. I laugh about it now but at sixteen I was somewhat nervy and babysitting for the first time for a couple who lived in a house on the very edge of our village surrounded by fields and woods.
So I was sat watching TV.....can't remember what I was watching but knowing me it would have been a drama of some kind......all of a sudden I heard this flapping sound which just about frightened the life out of me and I just froze in my seat... like you do....and listened to see if I heard it again and the next minute something landed on my head and got caught in my hair. You can imagine how hysterical I!!!
So there was me running madly round the lounge trying to get this thing out of my hair which I eventually did and it turned out to be a flipping canary. It had escaped from it's cage in the corner of the lounge which I hadn't noticed when I went in.
I never sat for that particular couple again and I am still very nervous of anything that flies although I adore robins. Especially if they are like little tennis balls on legs.

Bug thing seems to have gone now thank goodness but the leg problem is back. At one point tonight it was so bad I had to resort to using my walking stick which I haven't used for years so I really must go and get it checked out. I'll see if it settles down a bit over the weekend as I did spend six hours today packing stuff at the shop which could have made it seem worse.

Anyway I am off to do a bit more of something..either tidying or cardmaking. Not ready for sleep yet.
Bye for now then

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Oh Me Aching Head!!!

Think I might have picked up a bug from somewhere. I woke up with a really bad headache this morning and have felt quite sick all day along with really bad shivers and flueylike achiness all over.
Couldn't get into my cardmaking at all so I gave up and just pottered about tidying baskets out and sorting card blanks.
So just after 11pm and I am going to give in gracefully and go to bed.
The card I am sharing is just one I made using up bits and bobs.......some offcuts of velvet paper and some spotty paper I seem to have had hanging around forever. I did well out of the bits and bobs as I made eight of these in various layouts..just right for my stand at the local shop.
Busy day tomorrow as we will be packing up the last of the shop ready to move it all on Sunday although I don't think I am needed over the weekend as Deb has lots of relatives with vehicles going to help.
Right I am off.......I can barely keep my eyes open which is unusual for me.
Night night

Tuesday, 27 November 2007

DCM-Stockings and Gold

Oh yay!!! I have actually done a DCM dare on the day it was posted and I am chuffed to bits.
Today was Stockings......and not the saucy!!! So despite having put a lot of my Christmas stuff away I do still have some stamps out and the little template I drew for the stocking a couple of weeks ago was still lying on my desk so..........the stocking has been cut from two pieces of Stazon/Isopropyl background card I made and this has then been stamped and embossed using a Penny Black stamp and gold embossing powder.
The Swirl and Merry Christmas stamp are from Hot Off The Press clear stamp sets and in hindsight I shouldn't really have embossed the greeting as the detail is quite fine but hey learn by your mistakes.
The gems were free in a magazine package that DD bought for me and the stocking has been attached to the card with a little plastic thing from my new tag gun so that it swings.

This is my card for the Gold dare. The scan isn't fabulous because the embellishment I made is quite dimensional.
Background is once again Stazon/Isopropyl......cos I love!!!
The embellishment is shrink plastic with gold embossing powder and while it was still hot I sprinkled it with a turquoise and gold bead and glitter mixture. I think they are called Accentz and they are from Provocraft.
I have to stress that I did the wire myself..........only because usually if I do anything with wire it looks like something the dog chewed up and I am a bit pleased with how this turned!!!

Had a very busy day at the shop today. We were packing stock away and taking down the shelves and slat boarding. By 4pm my leg was absolutely killing me again so I reckon something must be a bit out of kilter in there somewhere.....may have to pay a visit to somebody to see if they can put it right.
I was so tired that I dozed off while watching a programme about the Titanic. I hope they repeat it as I think I have seen every film and documentary ever made on this subject.
No more playing for me tonight as I have to make some cards for the local shop. My stocks get very low while I am designing all the time for Christmas workshops and demos so now I have to play catch up with those and I try to make at least ten a day sometimes more if I can.
Bye for now then

Strange Day!!!

It has been a very strange day today. I got to the shop this morning to find all of the workshop area dismantled and all of our equipment packed away. Gosh it looked soooo bare. There wasn't much I could do in the way of packing as we are open until Friday and I couldn't make cards as there was no accessible equipment so for the first time in the five years I have worked at the shop I can honestly say I was bored witless. What a strange feeling that was.
Still........when I got home I did have some orders I needed to get done so that sorted me out. Didn't get an awful lot of time after doing them to play but I have started on my card for the Gold dare at DCM........a bit late but I am still playing catch up on the ones I missed as and when I can. No card to post tonight then but I hope to finish it when I get in tomorrow.

We had news today that we can actually move in to the new shop a day earlier than expected so hopefully everything will be moved into there by Sunday night and Monday we will start to set things out. If things go well we could be open by the middle of the week........but that's only if things go!!!

I'm off for a snuggle now then. I have gone really cold.....ha.......I have just realised why......somebody has turned my heater off and I was so busy I didn't notice.......that accounts for my blue fingers and toes.

Bye for now

Saturday, 24 November 2007

DCM-A Song Without Words!!!

Here's my card for this weeks 'dare' over at Daring Cardmakers You had to do a song title but without showing the words. Mine is a bit obvious but I wanted to use some jewel like colours to go with the background I created.
The background started life as a piece of thick handmade paper in off white. I sprayed it with water and then dabbed various dye inks onto a plastic mat, spritzed that with water and then dabbed and dragged the wet paper through the inks.....tis a good idea to wear gloves for doing that as it is quite messy.
Once dried I cut a piece to the size I needed, dabbed over it with a Versamark ink pad and just sprinkled it with silver embossing powder.
The crowns have been handcut.....using a little template I made from a Cricut die cut......from silver miror card that I had coloured using Stazon ink pads and Isopropyl Alcohol. The row of stars at the bottom are tiny peeloffs stuck to offcuts of the coloured mirror card and cut out.

Well I have been into town this morning. The freezer shopping was a nightmare as the store was very busy and just for fun some stupid person has decided that all the aisles need to be narrowed even further than they already are by the placing of dump bins every few feet. Negotiating these with a trolley was bad enough but my sympathy is definitely with those people who need to use wheelchairs or disability scooters as trolleys abandoned halfway between the dump bins made it impossible for anyone to get by.
The trip was topped off nicely by a young lady arguing with her a very loud and whiny voice.... over a pack of chicken goujons.
I managed a quick dash into Evans and picked up a bargainous pair of knee high boots for twenty quid and a couple of jumpers for a tenner each. Restocked on inkjet printable film, ink cartridges and drawing pens.....and picked up three packs of gorgeous little cards and envelopes from Partners. Grabbed a couple of magazines from the newsagents and that was me had enough and ready for home.
Most of my Christmas shopping will be done online I think as I can't bear the thought of having to go again any time!!!

Well I am off to have a tidy up and then I think I might start and box up my Christmas crafting stuff and put it away..........I have seriously had enough of Christmas cards now and I won't need to design any more for the shop for a good while.........ooooooh I am getting all excited thinking of flowers and pretty ribbons and papers and my new chipboard stuff...................I'm gone!!!



The end of a very long week...........I am so out of practice at leaving the house to go to work every day and I am absolutely shattered. Even more so because I have been struggling to walk properly all week due to having something wrong with either my hip or leg. Not sure what it was but it blooming well hurt. Luckily it seems to have gone now.

I did my last workshop on Thursday at Tutbury and Deb has her last one Saturday so the next time either of us do one it will be in our new workroom at the new shop. Deb started taking down the sample cards today and boxing them up so that she could fill the holes in the wall. It looks very bare already and she hasn't done a quarter of the job yet.

I've done a card for the DCM challenge this week but it isn't dry enough to scan yet. I will have to that later so I am posting a Caught In Crystal card done with the Dot and Stripe stamp set from TandaStamps. I have used a patterned napkin instead of the usual tissue for the background of the stamped image and I have also covered a piece of card to use as a layer.

Well hubby wants me to go and do a freezer shop with him today which is a job I hate so I think I will have to insist on a visit to Craft Central on the way home to console!!! I might try and fit in a flying visit round town as I very rarely get in these days. I'll go and see what bargains they have at Poundland and The Works.

Best get to sleep then as hubby will no doubt be waking me up at the crack of dawn.
Bye for now

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

Festive Frost!!!

I promised the ladies who came to my class yesterday that I would post these cards for them to see. They will find them truly shocking as they well know my dislike of pink and!!!
The papers are from the Festive Frost pack by The English Paper Company.
Well it is now official so I can spread the word that the craft shop I work in......Monks Den Crafts of Tutbury is relocating to Ashby de la Zouch on 3rd December. We will be closing the Tutbury shop on Fri 30th November and will re-open at our new premises on Friday 7th December. There will be a Grand Opening evening and celebration on Friday 14th December from 5pm until 8pm with special offers and raffle prizes.
Customers who have left their details will be notified by post of our new address and telephone number but for ladies........and gentlemen of course who haven't left their details you will be able to find us on Brook Street in Ashby which is just off the main street.
Deb and I are very excited. The shop is gorgeous and we will have a lovely new workshop area upstairs away from the sales area which we hope will be a much more comfortable experience for both class members and shoppers.
I don't know how much card making I will get done over the next couple of weeks as we have lots of sorting and packing to do.
Right..........I had best go and get some sleep. I don't have a class tomorrow but I do have to design some new cards for our last class at Tutbury on Saturday which need to be 'not Christmas' so I need to give my brain a bit of a head start.
Bye for now

Sunday, 18 November 2007

Another Catch Up Card!!!

This one is for the Circle of Friends dare.
Checked paper was printed from the computer.........I don't know where it came from so it must have been a free download from somewhere.
Image is from the Hug Club....printed twice the top layer has been cut. I glued the bottom edge and foam padded just under the hat to make it look like he is popping out of the card.
The snowflake border stamp used as tabs is from a set of Cuddly Buddly stamps sent to me by Rubbadubbadoo.
Sentiment is a 99p stamp from Craft Central.
Finished off with pen stitching.
I know this isn't my usual style but I just love the Hug Club images and have been collecting them for a few years now. I have nearly two hundred collections....fifty of which are Christmas. They don't get used very often......I just like looking at!!!

Well it is snowing here............yay!!!!! Bring it on.....I love it. Hubby is grumping about it but only because he knows it winds me!!!

Watched Harry Potter last night and I think I would have preferred to stare at a wall........what a load of boring rubbish. I shall be glad when the whole thing is done with and I don't need to watch them any more. Apologies to all the hard core fans but it just bored me rigid.

Desk is in desperate need of a tidy up so I had best go and do it as I need to make space to get the paper trimmer out to cut a few card blanks......not that I don't have hundreds already.........just not the right size as you might guess.

Bye for now


Saturday, 17 November 2007

Catching Up With DCM!!!

I have managed to catch up with three of the 'dares' I missed and I have thoroughly enjoyed doing all of them. It made quite a change to do something I wanted to do and not something I had to.
So here we go.................... Piles of Presents
I hand cut a pile of presents from blue glitter card and then cut the lids again and attached them with foam pads.
I added hand drawn swirls and punched glitter snowflakes, wrapped it with silver ribbon and added a tag with the bow.
Snowmen and Snowflakes
Making this card did me a huge favour as I have used up nearly a whole sheet of silver snowflake peeloffs on it and as I am trying to banish everything but peeloff lines from my craft room I was very pleased with that.
The snowman is a Hug Club image which I have cut and layered with foam pads.

.....And Cut
Hand cut tag and holly leaves.
The tag is stamped with a Hero Arts stamp and the holly leaves are stamped and embossed using a Creative Expressions Christmas tree stamp which is made up of dots.
Paper is Hot Off The Press.

Crikey......I need a lie down after that!!! I still have a few to go but they will be a bit slower coming as I have some jobs to do now and then I am at the shop every day next week on my own and I need to get stuff ready for the three classes I will be doing.

Best get cracking on that as DD has just gone out to buy the new Harry Potter to watch tonight.

Bye for now


Friday, 16 November 2007

Who Nicked Monday,Tuesday and Wednesday?!!!

Not wanting to cast any aspersions whatsoever on all you lovely bloggers and blog readers out there..............but someone must be stealing all these days and keeping them for!!! I turn my back for one minute and whoooosh there goes another day when I didn't get to do all the things I meant to's very scary.

Anyway I have a couple of cards to share today. These are made with some very nice Craft Creations papers that we had in at the shop and the Dot and Stripe stamp set from TandaStamps.

This first card is much better IRL.....the ribbon looks burgundy on the scan but it is actually red. No fancy techniques really I just stamped the baubles onto dark green card and again onto some of the patterned paper which I then cut out and glued over the green card.
For this card I took inspiration from a layout by Joanne Sanderson which was in the Christmas issue of Beautiful Cards. It was just perfect for the three circular stamps from the Dot and Stripe stamp set.
At the moment I am working on a card for the Pile of Presents challenge which was this weeks Little Extra over at DCM so I will hopefully get that finished to post tomorrow after I have attacked the huge pile of laundry that seems to have appeared from somewhere. I hate washing.......well I do in the winter as my tumble dryer is in an outside store and it is flippin' cold out there and my workroom doesn't get warm as I am in and out all day fetching dry stuff in and taking wet stuff out.
Well I am going to make myself a nice cuppa and the I'm going to read for a bit.
Bye for now

Sunday, 11 November 2007

Daring Cardmakers-Getting Corrugated!!!

Yayyyy!!! At last I have had a bit of time to sit and make a card for the latest dare over at Daring Cardmaker's I have really missed these dares while I have been too busy to do them and am hoping to catch up with the ones I have missed over the next few weeks.
This weeks dare was to use corrugated card which I have to admit is not one of my most favourite things to use on a card but I do have a few bits of it lying around which could do with being used up.
So for this card I have used a tree shape (which I cut on the Cricut) as a template to cut a tree from very dark green corrugated card. This and the strip for the side have been dragged over with a white Stazon ink pad to lighten the colour a little.
The red background paper is a paper bag and the tiny 'Joy' sign was purchased from Cally's Christmas Cottage.
I used a white gel pen to add the writing and the stitching.

I have a little crafty tip for you..........I have always hated using those wedgy make up sponges for distressing the edges of cards........they just don't seem to work too well for me.
Anyway the other week I unpacked some MM flowers and brads and the brads were pushed into some quite dense foam which I thought would be a shame to throw out so I have cut it into wedges and it is fantastic for distressing with inks and also for applying chalks. Using this foam with chalks you seem to be able to apply much deeper colour than when you use cotton wool.
I have quite a pile of them now as I have also purchased some Dovecraft brads which came in the same sort of foam.
Hope you find this tip useful.
Well I am off to do a bit more crafting before dinner. Hubby is cooking today and hopefully it will taste as good as it smells.

Bye for now

Friday, 9 November 2007

Blogging In Daylight.......Again!!!

Well this is becoming a bit of a habit. I usually update my blog in the wee small hours when everyone is tucked up in bed and I was going to do that today. Unfortunately I couldn't get near the computer as I had been having a bit of a sort out and the poor thing was buried behind a pile of boxes which I didn't feel like moving at 3am.
Hubby has let me have the cupboard under the stairs as extra storage space so I have been moving things about and putting stuff in there that I don't use that often or that is too big to fit in my room. I now have a relatively clear work space......wonder how long that will!!!

The cards I am sharing today are a couple more I did with the Hero Arts stamps.
The Mona Collage Tag is the Caught In Crystal technique but with a slight twist......I used Christmas napkins instead of plain tissue. The one I used makes a beautiful background as it is gold and beige with small snowflakes in it.

The background for the wisemen card has been made using the Cuttlebug Swirl embossing folder. I then used Opalite Nordic Ice over the top of this and embossed with one layer of clear embossing powder which gives a fantastic texture and doesn't make the piece too thick or heavy for the card.
For the main piece I stamped onto black card using Versamark and embossed with clear embossing powder then again used Opalite ink pads in Sterling Frost and Nordic Ice to add the colour.

I am having a lazy day today.....well lazy for me!!! I'm all snuggled up in my workroom with a tidy desk so I am making a few more cards for the local shop after that I will try and come up with a few designs for workshops and samples for the shop. I have an embarrassingly large pile of new stamps that have not yet been touched including all of the new Hot Off The Press clear sets.......well I couldn't just pick one.....they were all!!! What's the betting though that it will take me three hours to decide which stamps to use.

Right best go and start deciding then.
Thanks for dropping by.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

I'm Back!!!

Oooooh I can't tell you how great it is to be finally done with going away for this year.
Totnes was fabulous as usual. Dave, Liz and the staff at Finishing Touches gave us a very warm welcome as always. Lots of familiar faces at both the demo and the workshops and some new ones too and everyone seemed to enjoy it.
I spent an obscene amount of money while I was down there in Finishing Touches and at a gem of shop in Buckfastleigh called Cally's Christmas Cottage. If you like American Primitive and Folk Art style you really need to visit this beautiful shop. Cally is a lovely lady and she didn't bat an eyelid at a mad 50 year old ooooohing and aaaaahing like a five year old in a toy shop.
Much as I love doing the classes and demo's the designing, planning and preparation is very hard work..........not that I am going to be putting my feet up much you understand. I have a list of jobs as long as a squids tentacle which need doing both workwise and housewise. Also the shop I work at is relocating......hopefully at the end of November but possibly the end of December. Deb and I are very excited as the new shop is absolutely gorgeous. I'll give more information when we have a definite date.

I have a few new cards to share with you. Dave asked if I would do my demo with the new collage stamps from Hero could I!!!
So the first card is done using Alcohol Inks on silver card. I applied the inks in single colors using Raisin, Denim and Stonewashed inks and then overstamped using one of the stunning corner stamps from one of my Fancy Pants stamp sets. All of the gems were clear to start off with and I coloured them using peeloff pens.
The image is stamped in White Stazon onto black card and attached behind the aperture. I stamped the smaller image onto the piece I removed and mounted it on a foam pad.

The second card is just stamping and layering on Dovecraft Christmas papers and Bazzill card.

Well I ought to go and get some sleep. I am not quite up to scratch healthwise at the moment. I've had a very sore back and hip for a couple of weeks and I have also been snookered by another ailment........details would be too much information but suffice it to say I think I am single handedly keeping the cranberry juice industry!!!
I have just about managed to get through the last two days at work but thankfully I have Wednesday off and then a long weekend to look forward to after Thursday.
I was going to the NEC on Friday but DD bought my Christmas pressies down in Totnes so we are not going to bother. We're going to have a lazy day at home instead watching DVD's and getting our strength up to finish off some decorating jobs on Saturday.

Bye for now

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Blogging In Daylight!!!

WOW what a gorgeous day it is here in Staffordshire. The morning started off very foggy but now the sun has come out and burnt that all away and left us with a lovely bright but cold day...........just what I like.

Today I am working on some samples for the shop demo at Totnes. I have been asked especially by Dave to use some of the new Hero Arts collage stamps so I am having lots of fun with those.
I really need to get them finished today as the rest of the week I have to fit in packing up for Stockport next Saturday around working at the shop and preparing for classes so it's all go here at the moment.
Hubby will be doing a bit of chuntering for the next week or so as I will be taking over the dining table to lay out my lists and the baskets I stack stuff into ready for packing. He hates eating from a tray on his knee but he is not allowed to move anything from the table in case it gets lost.

I don't really want to show the samples ahead of doing the demo so today I am sharing a couple of cards I made for special orders last week.
The anniversary card may seem very strange but it is exactly what I was asked for.....a ruby wedding card for a couple who are both members of the National Vegetable Society and love gardening.
The black and white card was one theme choice I had from the many interests the recipient has. I had a choice of cooking, gardening, shopping and handbags so I chose to do the handbag theme using my Sizzix die. I usually like to add a splash of colour to black and white cards so the Dunelm bloom was perfect. The scan seems to have bleached some of the colour out of it though as it is a much nicer colour IRL.
The lady who ordered the cards was really pleased with them so I just hope the recipients like them too.

Anyway I had best go and get on with these samples.
Bye for now

Friday, 19 October 2007

DCM Little Extra-Christmas Tree

As usual the girls at Daring Card Makers came up with the right dare when I needed a push to make a certain card.
I have been thinking about this card for ages and never got around to doing anything about it.
The stamping has been done with the Holly Doodles set from Tandastamps
Well I am still doing my prep work for Stockport and Totnes. This time I am making all the templates in advance which is taking quite some doing but I think it will help things to run very smoothly and it means the ladies get to take them home too.
As much as I am looking forward to doing both venues I am also looking forward to getting back and tidying up my room ready for all the new goodies I shall buy when I go the NEC next month.
I haven't been for a couple of years except to the trade show for the shop and I have the hugest list of stuff I want to buy.
I wouldn't have even thought of going but DD is insisting on taking me to look for my Christmas present........she's got awful bossy all of a!!! I think she has an ulterior motive though as she now does beading and jewellery making. It's going to be fun to see who spends the most money.
I had a question posted in a comment on the Santa card with the tags in an envelope.
Yes it was a template I used for the envelope which I think was one I bought from Lakeland Limited last Christmas although I am not 100% sure on that as it may also have been one from a set of Anna Griffin templates I have. If it's any help though the finished envelope is approximately three inches square after folding.
I am sooooo loving these cold frosty mornings and being able to wear jumpers and long sleeved t shirts without feeling like I am going to spontaneously combust. Not liking the cold feet much though. I need some new Pods and until I have time to go buy some I am still wearing my Crocs which are a tad!!!
I'm up playing catch up with myself as although I had a good night's sleep on Wednesday I felt shattered when I got home from work and slept from 6pm to 10pm.
I work better though when everyone else is asleep so I am off to make a few cards ready for workshops with some new stamps I have seeing as how I am wide awake.
Catch you later

Sunday, 14 October 2007

Santa Baby!!!

Today I am having to share a couple more cards from the Archives as I haven't had time to do any stamping at all today. I have spent all day making twenty eight sets of three layer templates ready for some classes and I feel like a carthorse has done a clog dance on my hands now......they ache like h*ll.

So todays cards were made last Christmas using stamps by Rubbadubbadoo and the blue card uses a technique called Opalite Infusion.
A selection of co-ordinating images are stamped onto white cardstock using black Stazon ink (images with some solid areas work better than outline stamps). These are then dried off with a heat gun to make sure that there are no damp spots.
You then need an Opalite ink pad in the colour of your choice along with a selection of dye inks in matching colours. I used Opalite Nordic Ice and a Big and Juicy ink pad called Waterfall.
Once your stamped images are dry cover the entire piece with the Opalite ink then starting with the palest of your dye ink colours pick up ink from the pad using a sponge or cotton wool and starting in the centre blend the dye ink into the Opalite. Next use a medium ink colour and move towards the edges of the card. Finish off with the darkest around the edges.
Dry off and then apply another coat of Opalite and dry again.
You can now mat and layer your finished piece as required.
The author of this technique is Kim Bennington-Thompson and I found it while browsing sites on the internet. It has become one of my most favourite techniques because I had only thought of using Opalite inks on dark card and this is such a cool way to use them on light card too.

The idea for the second card came from that time of year when you go up into the loft and start to bring down the decorations and wrapping paper and such from previous years and you find odd bits and bobs you saved but didn't know why. So this is some tags that have been put into an envelope and some stray bits of packing tissue got caught in there too. I have used assorted papers to represent the odd bits of wrapping paper you save wonder some of my cards take so long to make......I sometimes think that I think waaaaayyyyy too!!!

Well now the templates are all made I need to make up the packs to go with them. I find the easiest way to cope with all the bits needed for each project is to pack an envelope with everything in it for each card. During the class the finished card can be put back in the envelope along with any leftover pieces and it keeps everything nice and tidy.

I am now the very proud owner of a Grey's Anatomy t shirt which arrived from the USA yesterday. I have one that says 'seriously' in bright pink....... I love it!!! My next order is going to be for two one saying 'Dark and Twisty' and the other saying 'Bright and Shiny'. I'd love one saying 'The future Mrs McDreamy' but I think hubby might object to that!!!

Coffee break is over so I had best get back to work for a bit. I have a feeling I shall be seeing the sunrise today as earlier I fell asleep on the sofa while watching a film with hubby and DD. It was called Pathfinder and I didn't like it at all. Too much violence and not enough story for me so I shan't be watching that again in a hurry.

Bye for now

Friday, 12 October 2007

Daring Cardmakers-Christmas Word

DCM's Little Extra dare this week was to make a card with a Christmas word.
I managed to make the lime and pink card yesterday by pinching an hour from the work I was supposed to be doing. It is made totally from die cuts with a punched snowflake.
Dies used-:
Sizzix large circle
Sizzix large tree........trimmed down and embossed in the Cuttlebug
Sizzlits Alphabet-Nouveau

The pot was made by trimming down a small piece of silver card and using a stylus tool to emboss the pattern.
Very quick and easy to put together once all the die cutting is done.

The holly card is one I designed last year and one of my most favourites. The patterned paper is all hand stamped and the letters are hand cut using templates made on the computer.
The holly embellishment is a Sizzlit die cut.

Well as far as I am concerned winter is!!! For the last few days I have had goosebumps on my goosebumps and my toes have never been warm so I have had a ferret in the wardrobe and found a couple of jumpers out and my Cooler boot slippers have been hunted down and dusted down ready for use.
My workroom is like an ice box when the temperature starts to drop and is also very draughty......hence the Coolers to keep the draught off my ankles.
I am a very happy bunny when it's cold as it means I can 'snuggle'. I get out all of my favourite books with winter and Christmas themes and gather all of my Christmas recipe books together to start looking for new things to try out for the freezer. I then spend my coffee breaks on the sofa 'snuggled' under my fleece blanket and either reading or planning cooking sessions for later on next month once my visit to Totnes is finished.
I know you will all think I am totally barking but Autumn and Winter to me are just the best seasons of the year......I love them.

Right I am off to faff about for a bit longer.
Bye for now

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Hello Blog Land!!!

Long time no see!!!

I've been having a bit of an odd time for the last week or so. A mixture of work and not feeling so good with a dash of having a good think about what I want to acheive in the coming year.

The card I posted with the pregnant lady went down really well and I have had orders for other cards for other occasions from it which was a lovely surprise.

We are busy at the shop still with Christmas workshops and I did my first Monday class last week. I over-ran by about half an hour but that was due to serving customers at the same time so I didn't do too badly I don't think.......not when you consider that I can run over even when Deb is there to see to the customers........I do have a tendency to talk a!!!

Deb made the mistake of letting me have a look at one of our suppliers catalogues last week and saying that if I wanted anything to write it on the list. As you might guess the pen ran away with me a bit and I came home yesterday with a bag full of goodies. Three Cuttlebug embossing folders, a set of four dies and a large single one, six Adirondack ink pads to complete my collection of the earth tones, two ink rollers, a Brilliance ink pad and I can't remember what else although Deb gave me an early Christmas present of one of the Basic Grey packs with the papers, die cuts and alphabets. I was nearly in tears. It was the Periphery Collection which is just beautiful and I can't wait now to have a play with it..............just a few more weeks and then my time at home will be my own for a while.......yay!!!

The card I have posted today is my first attempt using Stampbord. I have packs and packs of it in my drawer but just haven't had the time to do anything with it but I needed to do something with it for a future class. I have to say that it won't be this card as it took me hours to do but I had fun with it.

The background is alcohol inks on white gloss card. Meadow and Lettuce with Gold Mixative. I then stamped the large image from my Elusive Images Holly set in Sage Ancient Page ink over the top. It doesn't stand out a lot as I wanted a very subtle finish.

The gold lines across the bottom are done with PVA glue which has been covered with embossing powder and heated. The gems were pressed on while there was still some wet glue but it didn't hold them so I lifted them off and re-attached them using Glossy Accents.

The Stampbord was inked with chalk ink pads and then stamped with the holly stamp in one corner. The rest of the decoration was hand drawn.

I scraped some of the drawing off and recoloured with a gold pen for the flourishes and an Adirondack pen for the dots.

Holes were made with my Crop-adile and threaded with eyelash fibre.

I am quite pleased with the effect but I'm looking forward to having a more in depth session with the Stampbord.........especially the larger pieces.

I played hookey today from the work I was doing at home to make a card for the DCM challenge. I will post that tomorrow as it is not quite dry yet and I don't fancy glue all over the scanner bed.

Best go and grab a couple of hours sleep as I have an all day class tomorrow at the shop. I have one Friday too so I will have done four days this wonder I am shattered.

Ooh forgot to say a huge thanks to Andrew, Tanya and Alex at TandaStamps for the lovely welcome when I popped down to see them last Wednesday in Bridport. They very kindly showed me how they go about making the clear stamps and it was fascinating.
Night night then

Monday, 1 October 2007

A Not Christmas Card......AT LAST!!!!!

..........and I bet you are as glad as I!!!

I've had a pretty productive weekend and caught up on quite a lot of stuff.......even the paperwork for the dreaded tax return which took forever. Next year will be different I can tell you. I have already set up a system on the computer and a storage folder and will keep on top of it all.

Another job was to catch up on some special orders and the card above is one of them.
The pregnant lady is from the Cricut New Arrivals cartridge and I have done her in the largest size. Even at that I don't think I will be using her an awful lot. She was fiddly to put together and very wasteful on card and paper as I had to cut a full set of the accessories in each colour. Having said that I am very pleased with the card.
The sentiment is done using the Girls Are Weird Sizzlits alphabet.

I also had an order for a wedding card but that is still drying and I may not have time to scan it before I deliver it tomorrow on my way to work.

Well I had best go and get some beauty sleep.........and blimey do I need!!!
Bye for now

Saturday, 29 September 2007

Bad Blogger, Bad Wife!!!

Honestly I am just completely useless at the minute. By the time I get five minutes to blog I am so tired I can't even be bothered to type.
I was thinking that soon I will have time to play and mess about with some new techniques but the work just keeps piling in and then today I remembered that I still have to do my tax return which is a pretty awful job......simply because I am a rubbish filer and everything just gets chucked in a carrier bag to be sorted!!!

For the ladies who have been asking about my Totnes workshops and Demos there has unfortunately been a bit of a mix up with the dates for October and we are rescheduling it for November. There will be a slight change in the order of things with the demo now taking place on Thursday instead of Saturday due to Finishing Touches having one of their own classes taking place on Thursday morning.
If you would like an update on any cancellations for the classes or anything else please give Dave a ring at the shop an he will let you know what is happening.

Bet you all want to know why I am a bad wife too don't you? Well it is hubby's birthday today and I am sat here blogging when I should be making his card. Luckily his pressies are under control.....wrapped but not written on though. Poor fella......and after the lovely things he did for me on our anniversary. I'll have it done before he wakes up!!!

The cards I have posted today are some I have done workshops.
The bauble card is my yummy Elusive images stamps yet again.
This was a trifold card with the front piece cut as a half circle but the embellishment was a little too heavy for the card to stand up properly so I removed the half circle and just attached it to make a DL card which now stands up perfectly well.
Cardstock is Bazzill and the backgrounds are done in what I call 'shabby embossing'.
I stamp the images in Versamark and then instead of covering with embossing powder I just sprinkle it over with my fingers and then heat it. It gives a lovely subtle distressed look which really makes the stamped embellishment stand out.
I have made the bauble by cutting one red and one green circle with my Sizzix die and then using a compass cutter to make a slightly larger circle in gold glitter card. The two coloured circles have been stacked ontop of each other and the cut with a craft knife so that when you take one of each colour they fit together perfectly.
I have stamped and fully embossed in gold and then layered them onto the gold card, added a shaped piece for the top of the bauble and a rather gorgeous bow with gold dewdrop stars.

I had to get my beautiful Santa stamp out again. It would seem right to make cards without using him for at least one.
The paper I have used is some that DD bought for me last year. I forgot to look who it was by before I cut it and stuck it down and would you just know I used the bit with the name on..........silly woman!!!
The tags are cut by hand but you can get a Sizzlits set that does some quite similar shaped ones.
Santa is stamped in Denim Adirondack and embossed in clear powder.

I haven't done a card for the new Dare over at DCM yet but I will try and get one done sometime over the weekend.

Right best go and get hubby's card done.
Bye for now

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

And Yet More Christmas!!!

Here is another card made using an Elusive Images stamp.
The stamp is actually the swirl pattern on the blue paper of the parcel. It has been embossed with Winter Wonderland EP.
All paper is Basic Grey and the poinsettias have been punched using a large Woodware punch.

Sorry this is such a short post but I have to get to bed to make sure I get up for!!!
Bye for now

Sunday, 23 September 2007


Hi there........long time no blog. It seems ages since I last blogged although it's only a week.
I'm still busy but there is light at the end of the tunnel now and hopefully by the end of October I should be back up to scratch with daily blog entries.

Here is a quick card I did for the DCM Little Extra.....a bit late I know.
I have used my new Christmas stamps from an A4 sheet by Elusive Images.
Very simple gold embossing onto gold glitter card which has then been attached to a cracker shaped card and a tag added. It is a copy of the card below which I designed for last weeks Tuesday morning class.
For this one I did white embossing onto pink glitter card. Have to say that although I like the gold one, the pink is my favourite.

Here is another card using the same set of stamps.
I'm not sure what you call this card fold but it's a trifold card with one of the sections folded to make a smaller front piece. This will fit into a DL envelope.
I have stamped a background using Winter Wonderland embossing powder. This is a white powder with small flecks of silver.
The trees are stamped onto silver card using plain white, plain silver and Winter Wonderland embossing powder.
The two white trees are attached to the card with DST and the silver one with a foam pad.

Well as I say I am still very busy what with one thing and another. I am now working three days at the shop and it's surprising how that affects the time I have to do other things and I really missed being at home last Monday.
I am really looking forward to the end of October when I will have loads more time to play and blog.

I have been watching series three of Grey's Anatomy on the computer while I have been working. We couldn't wait for the release of the Region 2 set so DD bought a multi region player and we have it on Region 1.
I have never ever been so hooked on a TV programme in all my life. It's so bad that DD has ordered me a tee shirt which says 'Seriously' on it in bright!!!

Anyway I must be off for my 5 minutes peace in the bath before I start work again.
Catch you later

Monday, 17 September 2007

Daring Cardmakers-Word

After yet another busy day [whatever happened to Sunday being a day of rest?] I decided that I would snatch a little time before going to bed to make a card for the new dare over at DCM
This week Rhi has set the dare and here is what she says.

I have posted two cards. One is from last year when I was really into the big letters and was very much in love with the blue paper from Magenta.
I made the letters by printing them in a 350 point Times New Roman font onto card and cut them out to use as templates.
Since then I have acquired a Cricut machine and a Base Camp call me daft if you like but I preferred my original method of making the letters by hand. They just seem to look a little less perfect and I like that look.
The other card was made using some new paper from The English Paper Company which my daughter bought for me yesterday. I have torn the top piece and layered it over the tree print paper. These were then layered onto some silver sparkly paper and sewn.
The word 'angel' has been cut with the Sizzlit Nouveau alphabet and the stars were punched with a Fiskars plier punch out of silver mirror card.
Both cards are very simple but I like simple now and again.
Well the boss should be back from her holiday now but as it is her day off I don't expect I shall see her until tomorrow.
Today is our first day of opening six days a week and I am going to be doing Mondays on my own. I have a great plan to prepare all of the workshop materials for the week on Mondays so that we are not rushing to get stuff ready on the day. Hopefully everything will go to plan.
Best get off to bed now then else I won't be up in the morning. It's going to seem odd getting up to go to work on a Monday.
Bye for now

Thursday, 13 September 2007

DCM Little Extra-Big and Little

I have managed to fit in a quick card for the Little Extra dare over at Daring Cardmakers which I have probably got completely wrong know what I am!!!
I thought about this card last night and made part of it at work this morning then finished it tonight at home.
Yummy BG Fruitcake paper on a trifold card which has had the fronts shaped by drawing around a dinner technical is that?!!!
Embellished with two sizes of snowflake.
This may be my last dare for a couple of weeks as I really must concentrate on getting my stuff ready now for Totnes which is approaching at an alarming speed.
My chauffeur and the hotel are booked so it's just me that needs to get properly sorted. I have too much sidetracking going on at the minute. I am going to promise myself to have everything prepared and packed by next Friday so I want you all to keep your eye on me and give me a swift nudge if I get distracted and start playing instead of working.
Just want to say a quick 'hi' to Margaret. It was lovely to see you today. Also 'hi' to Kathryn...........I've never met you but I know all about!!! Thanks for the lovely comment you left.
Kerry..........hope hubby enjoyed his beans on toast in place of the pork he was supposed to!!! I hope you told him that it was my fault.....again.
I am sooooooo ready for bed now. Going out to work every day is tiring me!!! I think the last time I went to bed before midnight was when I was twelve.
The pain from the abcess is nearly gone now so I am hoping for a decent night tonight.
Catch you later

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Me Poor Neglected Blog!!!

I am so sorry for being such a lacksadaisical blogger at the moment. I just don't seem to have enough hours in the day lately.
I could have blogged yesterday but we had a bit of a special day here to celebrate. It was our 31st wedding anniversary. Hubby surprised me by having the biggest and most beautiful bouquet of flowers delivered to me at work and then when I got home he cooked us a lovely meal. I couldn't eat the steak he had planned for me as I have had an abcess under my tooth again but he cooked me a lovely piece of chicken instead. It was still very painful to eat but I did at least manage some of it. He had booked the day off so that he could do some jobs for me too so it was a really lovely day.

Anyway before I went to work yesterday the postie delivered me some new stamp sets from Tandastamps. One of the sets was the new Flower Set 3 by Kim Harrison and that is what I have used for the card above. There are eight stamps on this sheet.
I have used the lily image which I think is just gorgeous with those lovely tendrils hanging down. I know the colours I have used are not true to life but I really am rubbish at colouring so decided to do something a bit different.
The card is a trifold card with a half circle cut from one of the sections which folds over the front.
The papers used are DCWV.
The flower has been stamped onto a piece of plain turquoise and cut out leaving all the tendrils intact. These were glittered using Stickles Diamond. I then stamped and embossed a second lily onto some white vellum using Versamark and silver EP.
That was cut out removing all the tendrils and attached with a glue dot.
I have added a stamped flower border to the vertical striped paper using another stamp from the set.
This really is a lovely set of stamps and if you haven't visited the Tandastamps website before or if you haven't visited for some time, you really need to go and check out all the new stamp sets available. There are a couple of new designers with their first sets just being launched so go and take a look at what is on offer.

I need to go and check out the new dare over at DCM and see if I can squeeze in a bit of time to do that and then I need to get a couple of cards ready for tomorrow and also have a think about what I am going to do with the new Racing Set from Tandastamps which I shall work with tomorrow if I get chance.
I need to go and have a bit of peace in the bath first though as the dog has been driving me nuts tonight barking at every little noise and needing ten times more attention than he usually does. Hubby is home now so he can Smudge sit while I go and soak for ten minutes.
Bye for now