Monday, 31 May 2010

I Inked....I'm Happy!!!

Oooh I did enjoy that quick little inky session.
Stamps are from Creative Expressions.
Distress Inks-Wild Honey, Rusty Hinge, Dusty Concord, Shabby Shutters, Aged Mahogany and Vintage Photo.

Thanks for dropping by.

Feeling Yucky!!!

Sorry about the lack of posts. I've not been feeling too great.......probably just over tired.......and then putting my back out yesterday didn't help me feel any better. I wouldn't mind if I had been shifting heavy stuff about but all I did was turn around in my chair to pick up a piece of paper from behind me. Ooooh the pain made me swear I can tell you. Hubby........sensitive soul that he is.....has just asked me to help him lift the picnic bench from the patio down to the lawn.....insert rolling eye thingy!!!
Not a lot of mojo at Manic Towers at the moment so I am doing some prep work.......cutting mats and layers etc and trying to tidy my bomb site of a room. One table is nearly tidy so I may get swishing some ink about once that is finished.
I have a pan of sauce cooking on the stove for a homemade lasagne for tonights tea so I had best go and give it a stir.
Thanks for dropping by.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Roll On The Weekend!!!

Ooooh I shan't half be glad to see Saturday night I can tell you.
Just like last week I have something on every day and won't have a minutes peace until Saturday afternoon.
I am off tomorrow but I have to go into Derby with DD to help her choose an outfit for the wedding on Friday. I know she is old enough to go shopping on her own but if I let her she will come back with jeans and Doc Martins and some totally unsuitable t shirt. If I go at least I will be able to steer her towards something a bit more may hear screams.......even up in Scotland!!!
Working Thursday and Friday and then Saturday I am being taken out for the morning......just hope I am not expected to get up too early.
Before I can hope to get anything done upstairs at the weekend I shall need to have a tidy up. Gawd it looks like an army has marched through it. There is stuff everywhere........only because I have been looking for things and in too much of a hurry to put things back.

Deb flies back later today and will be back at work on Thursday. I've not seen any mention of the ash cloud so hopefully she will get back OK.

Right I need to go and have a ferret behind the radiator as I knocked my current book off the back of the sofa when I was sitting watching one of the worst films I have ever seen in my life with hubby and DD earlier..........avoid it at all costs......Blades Of Glory. DD said it was funny but I just found it smutty, silly and totally unfunny.
Anyway........hope the spiders have gone to sleep behind the!!!

Night night and thanks for dropping by.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Heart Still Beating!!!

Sorry that blog posts are a bit lacking in pictures at the moment. I have been busy sorting out projects for the shop and prepping for the big all day workshop we have next Friday plus there is another full workshop Saturday which I want to prep for as we won't have time Friday. Once all the materials are cut and sorted into packs I want to sort out all the ink pads, stamps etc that we will be using and get the table set up. I should have that done by Tuesday even though my energy levels are at rock bottom with this heat. So I am not getting much chance to work on my own stuff for the moment.

Was very shocked yesterday when I saw the cardiologist and he said that the problem I had at Christmas was heart failure. I just couldn't believe it. However he said that I had recovered from it well and as I had had no chest pains or breathing difficulties since then that he would see me again in nine months time and see how things are then.

Got my precious little Ruby coming tomorrow and bringing her mummy and daddy for lunch. Can't wait for a big cuddle.

Right I am going to unearth the fan from the depths of the cupboard to see if it will help me sleep better tonight.

Thanks for dropping by.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Up To My Eyes Today!!!

Eeeeh......I've had a busy day today. Had a class with five ladies this morning then spent the afternoon prepping for a class for six ladies on Saturday and setting the table up ready as I won't be there tomorrow.
No time for making anything new and I feel whacked tonight after my early start this morning and the hospital visit tomorrow is playing on my mind a bit so I am going to have a browse around blogland and then go and snuggle up with a book.

Thanks for your visit.

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Works In Progress!!!

Today I have been having a 'Play Day' and have thoroughly enjoyed myself messing about with inks, paints and various other stuff.
Faux leather bookmarks made from Grungeboard up above. They need finishing off with something but that will have to wait now until Sunday.
Down below we have a Crushed Foil panel made from nine 2x2 squares awaiting inspiration for something to finish that off too.

Need to get off to bed now as I have to be up at six to leave the house at seven. Hubby has an interview tomorrow at 9am and also has to get me up to Ashby. Obviously I get the raw deal and have to leave two hours earlier than necessary so that he can get back into town. This happens to me quite often and I bloomin' well hate it, hate it, hate it!!!...........With knobs!!!
Night night then.......and thanks for your visit.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Wedding Card!!!

Tonights card is a wedding card for DD who's best friend gets married next Friday. Thought I had better get it done while the mood was on me because as you know.......I don't like making wedding cards or anything else sloppy and!!!
The paper is Basic Grey and I think it might be from the Boxer collection.......anyway it was just the perfect colour and design.
Swirl is Tim Holtz for Sizzix and the hearts are a Sizzlet die.
Just dead simple as the bride is a no nonsense kind of girl.
DD nearly dropped with shock when I showed it to her. I think she expected to be reminding me the night before the wedding to get it done.

Had quite a busy day today getting classes prepped at the shop and entertaining me mate Gert who dropped over for a visit. She thought as the weather was warming up that she should stock me up with cooling spray.......she's good like that is our Gert......oh she is soooooo going to kill me!!! As you can guess Gert is not her real name but I've called her that since about the second time I met her.

Just finished a baking session and am waiting for the cupcakes to cool so that I can decorate them and then I am off to bed.

Night night

Monday, 17 May 2010

Inky Things!!!

Ewwww......this looks a bit washed out on here. It's very vibrant IRL.
I was asked for a class with a bookmark in a card so this is one version I have done. The card is DL, the bookmark is just slightly shorter and sits inside a little pocket made from the piece cut from the front.
Inks used are Adirondacks in Butterscotch, Lettue and favourite combination.
Stamps are Inkadinkado.

Had a good visit with the nurse and the doctor this morning. My cholesterol is now down to 4 which is great, blood sugar still a little high but my medication is being adjusted to help with that. Just need to get through the visit to the cardio on Friday now.

Things are looking OK for Debs flight far anyway. I can't imagine how awful it must be to book your holiday, get packed for it, travel to the airport and then get told you can't go. I think I would just lie on the floor and throw a tantrum.

Off to put me feet up for a bit.
Bye for now.......thanks for visiting.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Where's She Been?!!!

Well not up to London to visit the queen......that's for!!!
No......I have been wrestling with rolls of wallpaper and finally getting round to finishing the job on the second staircase. I have finished papering the ceiling, the new light fitting is installed on the landing and all I have left to do is paper the walls and paint the ceiling and walls so the worst jobs are out of the way now.
When I look at the acres of ceiling I have papered I just can't believe I was mad enough to do!!!
So not much papering of the crafty kind going on here at Manic Towers although I need to knuckle down tomorrow and design a couple of things for a class on Thursday.

Volcanic ash permitting.......Deb is off to Spain on Tuesday so I have three days at the shop next week. Couldn't do Friday as I have my appointment with the cardiologist but I am doing a class on Saturday with Debs regular ladies.

Ah well that's me done for now. I am feeling pretty shattered so after a nice cuppa and a browse on the net I think I might shuffle off, put a film on and snuggle on the sofa.

Tara for now

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Crushed Foil Background-No 2!!!

Tonight I have a slightly lighter version of the Crushed Foil Background. Same technique except I used white gesso instead of black and two shades of blue mica powders.
The embellishments are made using Fantasy Film. The butterflies have been ironed with layers of white tissue in between then cut and embossed using a Cuttlebug Cut 'n' Emboss set and the flowers are punched. 

I need to have an early night tonight as I have a class for six ladies in the morning so a good nights sleep and three Weetabix in the morning and I'll be fit for!!!

Thanks for dropping by.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Watercolour Background-The Cheats Way!!!

A very simple card tonight.
I love watercolours and soft washy backgrounds but am just totally useless with the paints and pencils used to create the here I have done what I call The Cheats Watercolour Background.
This is so easy to do.
Take a piece of heavyish watercolour paper (I use a pad from The Works)cut to the size you want your finished piece to be and then cut a piece of coloured tissue paper smaller than your watercolour paper. I usually cut mine to leave a half inch border all the way round.
Now spritz the watercolour paper quite heavily with water and place the piece of tissue in the centre of the paper and leave it to soak for a minute or so.
Lift the paper off and spritz with more water then scrape the lead of a watercolour pencil with a knife over the paper. If the scrapings just sit there and don't blend into the wet surface just spritz lightly with water.
Dry with a heatgun and then iron the reverse to flatten the paper out.

For my sample I have used a stamp from a set by Artemio and added a little colour to the foliage with a green watercolour pencil. The flowers have been glitzed with a little yellow Stickles.
I think the sentiment stamp is Penny Black but I'm not 100% sure as it has been unmounted from it's block.

I have no work tomorrow and I'm in a baking mood so I'm off into the kitchen to cook up some treats for my lot. I just find baking so relaxing.

Bye for now

Monday, 10 May 2010

Crushed Foil Background!!!

This is the background I was working on the other day.
It doesn't photograph very well but I hope you can get the idea of it. I've taken a piece of thin chipboard and covered it with kitchen foil which has been screwed up and unfolded. You need to try and keep as many of the creases as you can so don't smooth it out too much.
When I trimmed it I left enough to take round and glue onto the back. I just used a glue stick to attach it. At this stage you can emboss it in a folder if required although it does flatten the background down a bit.
Next I painted it with black gesso and let it dry then lightly swooshed over it with a baby wipe to remove some of the gesso from the higher areas revealing the silver underneath. It needs to dry thoroughly can do this with a heat gun.
For the next stage I added mica powders.......Cosmic Shimmers for this sample........then spritz with water so that the colours blend together and dry with a heat gun.
The powders wash off the foil and onto the black background so you get silver veins showing through the colour.
That's it........job done.
For this sample I used a Cuttlebug star folder and the Rock Star stamp set by Inkadinkado.
My black gesso was from Hobbycraft.......where the Bob Ross painting range is.
I am so excited.........DD and DDIL are thinking of moving closer to us. They rent at the moment and there's a house just round the corner to let. I do so hope they go and have a look at it. I have everything!!!
Had quite a productive day today after having to get up early to go and have my blood tests. I have even.......and this must be a first.........tidied my desk ready to start again when I get home from the shop tomorrow. The floor has been hoovered to within an inch of it's life.........for the second time in a week.......any more of this lark and people will think I'm a bloomin' Stepford Wife never mind a domestic!!!
Anyway........I am off for a bath and then the old feet are going up on the sofa for a good snuggle and a read.
Tara for now.........and thanks for your visit.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Wet Sunday!!!

Well it may not have been raining outside today but it sure was wet inside.
Little Miss Ruby was not a happy bunny today and has shed quite a few tears during her visit. Poor little scrumplet..........she just couldn't settle.

Didn't get a lot done upstairs. The background I was thinking about worked out beautifully but the stamped images I wanted to go with it just didn't want to play on the card I wanted to stamp them on so it's back to the drawing board on those and I'll post the card tomorrow.

I'm retiring to the bathroom now for a soak and a listen to the!!!

Thanks for your visit.

Clearing The Bit Basket!!!

I have been clearing out my basket of paper offcuts and using up some 6x6 pads........a job that's needed doing for a while.
Here are a couple of the cards I made.......they are both 8x8
Both are made using My Minds Eye papers and my new Tim Holtz dies which I have had for a couple of weeks and only just opened.
The flower centres are some jumbo brads which had pretty awful designs on them so I covered them with paper.
Now that job is done I can crack on with a new background I have been thinking about for a few days.
Little Miss Ruby is bringing her mummy and daddy for tea today so I will have to do some more baking this morning and have a dust and hoover round before they come.
Off to do a bit of knitting before I go to sleep.
Thanks for dropping by.

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Colorbox Brocade!!!

For my card today I have used the gorgeous Colorbox Brocade metallic pigment inkpad and Smooch Spritz in Pearl.
For the background I have stamped a swirl image by Inkadinkado using the blue ink and then spritzed it with the Smooch. The main panel is another swirl from the same set stamped and embossed using Versamark and clear EP. The ink has then been applied using cotton wool then I spritzed that too.
The panel is layered onto silver card.
This picture doesn't do either the ink or the spritz justice. They are both gorgeous in real life.

I almost daren't say for fear of jinxing the flippin' thing but the cardigan for Ruby is going well. The back and one of the fronts is done so just one more front and the sleeves to go. I'm hoping to get it finished over the weekend.
The tea cosy is standing up very well to being used and is a vast improvement on the manky old thing we had before. So all in all I'm a happy old knit at the moment.

Tomorrow I am planning on a morning cooking and maybe some baking and an afternoon of crafting so we'll see how that goes. Anything can happen at Manic!!!

Thanks for dropping by.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Strawberry Tea!!!

Experienced knitters.........look away!!! This is the project I fell in love with in the Handmade Gifts book and I just had to make it despite not being over fond of knitting. Isn't it just too cute?
Unfortunately our teapot is rather fat and the stitches look a little stretched around the middle but nevertheless I love it.
Being the mad woman that I am I have been out and bought a pattern and some wool to knit Ruby a cardigan. The pattern is very simple and the wool is chunky so how wrong can it go?.............Watch this!!!

No work tomorrow so after a quick browse on the net I am off to snuggle and read. It's quite chilly here so a snuggle is very much in order.

Night night.......and thanks for your visit.

Monday, 3 May 2010

Bank Holday Fun!!!

I have been crafting today but not in my usual way. I have been knitting.........yes you read that!!!
The last time I completed a knitted project was about 25 years ago when I knit a jumper for my son. He never got to wear it as it wouldn't go over his head. The time before that was a cardigan for my daughter which unravelled in the washing machine so you can see why knitting has never been high on my list of fun things to!!!
Anyway yesterday I fell in love with a project in one of the books I purchased and I have finished all the knitting and just need to sew it together now.

Nipped into town with hubby this morning and he treated me to another couple of books from The Works. One has beautiful ideas for projects with empty jars and the other is about making bags and decorating existing ones.
Sometimes I get a bit fed up of making cards and as I have more time on my hands now that my hours have gone down again at the shop I thought I would look at some different things to do with stamping and papercraft for my own pleasure and use rather than just making things to teach.
With that in mind I am off to wander around the web in search of papier mache and wooden things.

Thanks for dropping by.

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Stamping & Shopping!!!

Didn't manage to get started on any stamping until after lunch today as DD dragged me off into town this morning.
So here is the one card I have made.
I have used Distress Inks in Scattered Straw, Dried Marigold, Barn Door and Shabby Shutters to colour the panels and card blank. The images from Penny Black have been stamped in Black Versafine.

While in town I went for a mooch around The Works and found some absolutely fabulous bargainous books in the crafting department.
This one is just hilarious and is more a look at various crafts from the 50's, 60's and 70's with some basic instructions. It covers everything from nail and string pictures to sea shell crafts and pretty much everything in between.
What sold it to me though were the gorgeous retro illustrations and adverts.
Some gorgeous projects in this one although they all involve Melissa's Vintage Label range.

Some nice ideas in this one. I don't do scrapbooking as I find it a bit daunting. Maybe starting on a small scale will spur me on.
This is my favourite book out of the lot. It has some really great projects........especially the strawberry tea cosy.......I soooo have to knit one of those.
Anyway I must dash. Hubby is impatiently waiting for me to go and watch a film with him.
Tara for now.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Happy Things!!!

I've been a bit of a grumpy old woman for a few days so DD took me out yesterday to cheer me up a bit and it certainly did the trick.
We went to our favourite garden centre........Bridgemere.......and were totally bad and had a cream tea with a voucher we got for a BOGOF. Back on the straight and narrow today though. This beautiful Helebore came home with me.........well it was an absolute bargain at £5........Who could resist that?Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous tea towels. They will never dry a single pot as I have other plans for them. They are not your bog standard rectangular tea towels either. They are big square ones so I am thinking apron.....and bunting with the leftovers. They came as a set of three for £10 all but a penny. It's been a tad chilly here today so a bit of home baking was in order. Spiced Apple & Raisin Cake from my diabetic cookbook and Ginger Snaps made with Half Spoon sugar so that I can have one without feeling too guilty.
Hubby shocked the hell out of me today. Usually when I ask him to do a DIY job it takes him two years to think about and probably another two to get round to doing!!! This morning I enquired about the possibility of having a shelf above door height in the bathroom to store all the spare bottles, tubes and sprays that clutter up the window is done and dusted. He went straight out and got the materials and it was done by just after lunch. That's a big gold star on his!!!
Didn't get much done in the way of crafting today what with baking and other housey stuff but tomorrow I get to spend the whole day upstairs playing......yay!!!
Off for a soak in the bath and a read. I have a Cathy Kelly on the go at the moment and usually love her books but I'm finding this one a bit hard to get into. Maybe I am more in the mood for a murder.death, kill book so I might put it by and go raid DD's bookshelf while she is out........she's out on a hen night so I don't think she would notice if I took the!!!
Bye for now and thanks for dropping by.