Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Lights

Over on the Daring Cardmakers it's time for our last challenge before we take our Christmas break.
For the last dare of 2013 we have. for you....
'This Little Light of Mine'
 Lights are always associated with Christmas - candles, stars, fairy lights - and those "tiered" candle holders from Scandinavia which I can't remember the name of - I'm sure someone will let us know.....
So please use any sort of light associated with the Christmas Season on your cards - and you have an extra long time to join in with us this time as we won't be back with another challenge until 10th of January

Here's my Fairy Lights card

In my initial DT box from Crafter's Companion I received a number of their lovely flower quilling dies.  Now they do make lovely flowers - but sometimes you've just got to think a bit "out of the box, haven't you?  Just to stretch your imagination a little bit....
The sunflower quilling die has proved the most adaptable so far - the pine cones on a card I shared a few days ago were made using the small sunflower die and the fairy lights on this one are made using the larger version.  
I trimmed a little from the piece that holds all the petals together to make it narrower, then used the die again with coloured card to make the lights. In fact, being mean I used a couple of small pieces of card on the die as I didn't really need a whole length of them.
I glued the "light-bulbs" onto the green base strip, added a touch of white gel pen then coated them with Glossy Accents.
The white card was embossed with the pretty Christmas Patchwork folder,  the sentiment is from one of the Christmas Sentiments sets and the red label is also from Crafter's Companion

 Materials and Tools
Smooth white card, Bazzill Red, Blue, Yello, Green
Glossy Accents, White Gel pen
Die'sire Sunflower Quilling Die (large), Christmas Patchwork Embossing folder, Sentiment stamp, Label die all by Crafter's Companion

Hopefully I'll manage to update the poor neglected blog again soon - I've been woefully bad over the last few weeks!
 Just in case I don't get here before the BIG day, I'd love to wish you a great 
big, wonderful, 
shiny, glittery and very Happy Christmas

Friday, December 13, 2013

Christmas Film Quotes

Oh gosh, I really struggled with Beckie's challenge for the Daring Cardmakers this week! 
    Beckie here today with my dare for you .....
    'The best way to spread Christmas Cheer,
    is singing loud for all to hear.'
    I love the movie Elf and this has to be one the best sayings from the movie! So this week I am challenging you to use a quote from your favourite Christmas movie on your card.

Well - I think the last time I watched a "Christmas" film it would have been "The Snowman" as we'd sit the whole school (4-7s) down in front of it as a treat just before the Christmas holidays to give us teachers the chance to do some clearing and sorting!  As you'll undoubtedly know, there's not much in the way of dialogue in that one!
I MUST have seen some of the films that came up in my google search, but obviously they didn't make much impact.  So I cheated and just looked around for a quote that I could use whether or not I'd seen the film.  I found one from "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" based on the Dr. Seuss story and I think it sums up what Christmas is all about.
Here's my card
I started by making the text piece on the pc, then printed it twice.  One to use for the card, the other to use as a pattern as I wanted to do a bit of emboss-resist around the text.  This involves cutting around the text, then making a couple of layers of the same patterned "hole" and sticking them together.  It's easy to do using a die-cut shape, but a bit more work when you want a more free-form space like for this.
That done, I placed the other printed piece of card in the embossing folder, then the aperture pattern I'd just made over the top of the folder - I usually use a little bit of Pritt-stick glue to keep it exactly in the right place.  Now it's ready to go through the machine.  If you look closely you can see the "wibbly" outline around the text
The embossing folder I used has different patterns on it as you can see. Usually it's for using with the dots at the top and the snowflakes at the bottom with a space between perfectly made to fit a ribbon.
I cut a layered star in silver and glittered card and added silver ribbon, some extra snowflakes, some glitter and some gems.
Materials and Tools
Navy Blue card Blank, Silver card, White card
Glitter card; Silver and White
Glamour Dust Glitter, Gems
Embossing folder: Christmas Elegance (Crafter's Companion)
Snowflake punches; Martha Stewart, EK Success
Snowflake die; Small snowflakes 4x4 die (Cheery Lynn)
pc generated text
Craft Robo cut layered star 
There was a point when I questioned whether I'd actually come up with anything for this challenge - and I do hate to be beaten by a tricky one! Got there in the end though ;)
Do please visit the DCM BLOG to see all the fun cards made this week.
Back with more of my Darice samples next time so I hope you'll come back soon


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Prototype

Well, it's not often I write two blog posts on one day!
A while back I saw an idea for a box which lad space for some sort of little treat plus a space to hold a gift card.  We often give Gift Cards and vouchers as presents, but sometimes they seem a bit dull and "sterile".  I thought it was a lovely idea to idea to have a space for a little treat of some kind, be it sweets, nice soaps or some other little extra gift.
Now, I was sure I'd saved the link for the instructions somewhere in my Pinterest galleries, but it seems that I didn't - I probably went off on a tangent, following links )as you do) and then forgot where I started, and forgot the most important thing - saving that link.

Well, I'd already bought some treats to use in the box, so unless I wanted to eat them all myself, I had to figure something out.
 So despite having plenty of other things higher up the to-do list, guess what I've been making today.....a prototype box, with a cute little holder at the back for the gift card. 
This box was made specifically to hold these 3 Marks and Spencer choccies, as I'd already bought them.  A better way round would be to make the box and then find sweeties etc to fit! 
I thought I'd share the pictures of my prototype anyway.
The gift card fits in the holder at the back, I've wrapped a ribbon around it and added a little Pull tab so that it's easy to see that there's something else in the box.

What do you think?  Some feedback would be much appreciated :)

Darice Samples

Oooh it's a bit nippy today - a bit foggy too and looks like one of those days when it will hang around all day.
Have you tuned in to any of the Crafter's Companion shows on Create and Craft in the last couple of days?  There's a "4 day Deal" going on that started on Monday, so still today and tomorrow's shows to go.
The team I'm part of worked with some brand new Darice embossing folders and I actually managed to remember to watch yesterday eveniong's show so caught a glimpse of some of my cards.
For these two I used the "Pine Cones in Corner" embossing folder
Materials and Tools
From Crafter's Companion: 
Darice Embossing folder - Pine Branches in Corner, 
Dies - Die'sire Cameo Stamping Frame, Coredinations card (red)
From my stash: Chalks for shading, green card, ribbed kraft card. Green Satin ribbon, Red & Green pearls, Crystal Ice Stickles, Glamour Dust,
pc generated sentiment

I like the contrast between these two cards made using the same folder - the NOEL one is quite clean and bright, whereas this next one is much more grungy - I had some fun with my Distress Inks and a gold Posca pen making the pine cone background.  I love the gorgeous Die'sire Doily, and managed to use both sizes on one card, by using the smaller one to make a corner detail.

What do you think of the little pine-cones?  They were made using the Small Sunflower quilling dies - I know they aren't perfect, but they were a bit of an experiment and didn't turn out too badly ;)
Materials and Tools
From Crafter's Companion:  
Darice Embossing folder -  Pine Branches in Corner, 
Dies - Die'sire Circle Doilies, Die'sire Quilling Small Sunflower (for the pine cones)
From my stash:
MME Papers Lost and Found Christmas, 2x Circle punches, Leafy sprig punch
Various Inks, Red Thread, Narrow satin ribbon, Red organza ribbon
Glamour Dust
Here's a little reminder of the Create abnd Craft shcedule
Thanks for visiting today, I hope you liked what you saw here and will come again soon

Friday, December 06, 2013

December Colours

It's the first Friday of the month and that means a Colour Combo Challenge for The Daring Cardmakers.  This time Zuzana is our hostess and the colours, and accompanying inspiration photo are perfect for winter time.  I suppose "Blue-tit Shades" just about sums it up.
Here's my card
Materials and Tools
Various shades of grey and turquoise Bazzill card and Glitter card.
The Yellow card is a Funky Hand design from the "Sleigh Ride" collection, printed onto white Bazzill card.
Turquoise seam binding, Pearls, Silver cord
Memory Box 3x stockings die
I made the sentiment in Paint Shop Pro and printed it onto the yellow card
 Head over to the DCM BLOG to see some really beautiful cards using these gorgeous colours

As I had the various pieces of card and other stash out - and because  I'd cut far more of those tiny stockings than I needed I thought I could use it to make another batch of Christmas cards. So I pared down the design to make a simpler, quicker to make card that is also "thinner" for posting.

In the end, I made quite a lot of the design with the deep border section, then as some of the printing went a bit awry I made a couple with banners on rather than wasting the resulting prints. 
After a while, as is so often the case with this sort of thing - I got a bit bored using the same colours so looked around for other colours to add in to the mix.  I haven't done photos yet, but imagine the same thing with some lilac and purple and you'll get the idea.
After a while I realised that using my Craft Robo to cut the rectangles - and rounded rectangles at that,  would be easier and more accurate - I wish I'd thought of it sooner, that's all!
That's me for today, back to the Christmas card making, but I'm nearly there now, thank goodness!

Thanks for looking, have a great weekend and please come back soon :)

Thursday, December 05, 2013

More Sequins

Whilst the sequin baubles card that I shared a couple of days back was quite simple to put together and I'll probably make a few more like that, this one was fiddlier to make.  The only wreath die I have is a snowflake one and I wanted holly (so...I'm awkward), anyway, it's a lot bigger than I wanted the wreath to be.
 My holly die is the "straight" one I used for the baubles card, so I used that anyway and tried to create a circlet with a couple of die cuts and a bit of cutting with the craft knife.
Materials and Tools
12x12cm card blank
Purple, Green, White and Gold card
Assorted sequins, Purple ribbon
Red and Gold Stickles, Red pearls,
Craft Robo for sentiment
Memory Box Holly die

I quite like the result I think it turned out ok, but too much of a bother to make more!
I hope you like it too
Thanks for looking

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

On the Line

There's a new LO sketch over on The Sketch File blog today and I used it as the basis for a few more Christmas cards.
By chance, a little bag of pretty sequins fell out of a box when I was looking for something else the other day, and I thought that if I "downsized" the design they would make the sweetest tiny baubles!

Materials and Tools
Red, White, Green and Gold card
Gold thread, Sequins Stickles Glitter Glue
Memory Box holly die
Craft Robo to cut the banner and sentiment
"On the Line" sketch from The Sketch File

 I made a few of this card - though mostly just with the "noel" and no banner because I was in a hurry to get them done.  I think they look better with the little banner tbh, Mind you, to send through the post the banner would have to be a flat version rather than 3D like this one!

That's all for this time, thanks for visiting

Friday, November 29, 2013

It's Not Terry's, It's Mine

....Remember Dawn French's TV ad for Terry's All Gold chocolates?  Or was it just the chocolate orange?  Never mind, I'm pinching it anyway for this week's "Going For Gold" challenge from the Daring Cardmakers

Leo says:
I'd like you to use just metallic gold and white to create your card. Think of all the different gold materials you could use, gold paint, gold ink, gold glitter, gold leaf, anything you can think of, so long as it's gold!'s 

This all makes for quite a glitzy, shiny, bling-filled blog today - check it out HERE

We're thrilled to welcome one of our "old" teamies; Lynne, back as Guest Designer for a few weeks, it's going to be fab to have her around again - she does make exceedingly good cards.... (oh jeepers, there I go again)

Anyway, here's my card

Amazingly, the card turned out pretty much as the idea I had in my head - and that's probably a first!

Especially as it involved a quite a bit of experimentation.

The dotty "stripe"
I used a scrap of card with the Memory Box  Border die to use as a stencil.  I taped it onto my card blank with low-tack tape, - I didn't want straight, neat lines so I made sure to make the taping a bit haphazard.
I applied a strong glue over the top with my finger, then  poured a thick layer of Gold Flower Soft (I really don't get on with this stuff!) over the top making sure to push it down well so that it went into the holes.  After tipping the excess gold stuff off I quickly removed the tape and stencil.
It would have been a much better idea to use some thin plastic to make the stencil, but obviously I didn't think of that until I realised that the card one might be too stuck on to remove.....

For the chevron panel I embossed a separate piece of card, then swiped a versamark pad over the top, and heat-embossed with gold embossing powder.  I cut a few lines out just using scissors and glued this panel to my card.

The centre piece is just a piece of 2cm wide lurex ribbon

The snowflake is just a "pile" of different snowflake die-cuts (all-right, I admit it, it's the same as I did last week, but all those snowflakes are just irresistible!), in plain white card and gold glitter card.
There a re a few extra tiny snowflakes, some blobs of glitter glue, a few glitter glue-topped pearls and a Robo-cut "noel"

Materials and Tools
Embossalicious Chevrons 6x6 folder from Crafters Companion
Detail Gold embossing powder (Stampendos)Versamark Ink pad
 Contempo Border die (Memory Box)
Gold Flower Soft, Gold Lurex ribbon
Snowflake dies: Crystal Snowflake, Lindeman Snowflake, Precious Snowflakes (Memory Box)
 Giovanna Snowflake (PoppyStamps), Small snowflakes 4x4 die (Cheery Lynn)
Gold pearls, Gold Ice Stickles
Gold card for sentiment, cut using Craft Robo

It was fun making this - even though it meant dragging out some of my least-loved stash and tools.  I think maybe it was because for this project I wasn't looking for perfect lines and a blemish-free result, so the stray specks of embossing powder and the "faded-out" bits were actually to be encouraged, rather than the more usual; "darn it I'll have to start again"

So that's it for this time. I hope you like it and I hope you'll be joining in with us over at the Daring Cardmakers this week
Thanks for visiting - a message would be just lovely ;)

Friday, November 22, 2013

Time to Get Weaving

Mirjam (Miri) is in the hot seat as our challenge setter on the Daring Cardmakers this week and gave us the task of using some sort of weaving on our cards.  
Great challenge I thought - it'll be fun and not too taxing to do a bit of paper-weaving.  
I can leave that till the last minute, it'll be fine.

Two tries at making a card and a huge pile of discarded paper strips later I gave up on that idea and decided I'd have better luck with something else (hopefully).  Like ribbon, perhaps....and oh, maybe I could get to use all those new snowflake dies that arrived this week and haven't been opened yet....

 It was a good chance to use some of those pretty ribbons I've been hoarding - especially as I didn't need to use too much of any of them so still have some kept safe and sound in the drawer.

Materials and Tools
Dies from Memory Box and PoppyStamps: 1. Crystal Snowflake MB 2. Giovanna Snowflake PS 3. Lindeman Snowflake MB 4. Precious Snowflakes MB

EK Success snowflake punch,
Ribbons, braid and ric-rac, turquoise pearls.
White Glitter card

I cut the "ribbons" from the last dies and piled them all on top of each other, using a small piece of faux chipboard between the layers. 
It all went together in about half the time I'd wasted trying to make something with all those paper strips, so it feels a bit of a cheat really!  I wonder if I come up with a skinnier version that will go through the Royal Mail's measly 0.5cm allowance for regular posting....

That's it for me today, I hope you like it.  Thanks for visiting, please leave a message....

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


 One of the cards I made with the latest batch of gorgeous Crafters Companion embossing folders has been shown on their FaceBook page today, so I thought I'd blog it here too.

I'm really lucky to be a member of the Die'sire Design Team for Crafters Companion - as I get to play with lots of lovely dies, embossing folders and other goodies from Crafters Companion and their other manufacturers and suppliers
I've made this card using the Embossalicious 6x6 folder "Cherrylicious"

Centura Pearl card was embossed with Embossalicious 6x6 folder "Cherrylicious"
I then inked the folder with red ink and embossed some plain white card and vut this panel down to fit over the same patterned area on the larger image.
Both panels were matted onto red card
Sentiment was pc generated
Wide ribbon with silver sparkly bits, Red satin ribbon
Embossalicious 6x6 folder "Cherrylicious" from Crafters Companion
Circle punch for sentiment
Red circle cut with Craft Robo

If you are on FB it would be great if you could pop over to the Crafters Companion page and leave a message ;)

Thanks for visiting

Monday, November 18, 2013

It begins

After much procrastination and shifting paper around my desk I've actually managed to start the Cword card making in earnest.
I'm trying really hard to do a bit more "batch-making" this year to try and cut down the time and hassle.  It's not that I don't enjoy making my Cword cards, it's just that I can find myself getting really bogged down with it.  So my plan is to make a at least 5-10 of the same design - or at least the designs I decide I like!
This is one of the new dies I've bought this year - it's so intricate that you don't really need to do much more than cut it out and stick it on a card.  Mind you, that's not to say it's a quick card to make as getting all those teeny weeny little biots out is a right pain in the derrière. 

I've made this one in several colours already, for the backgrounds I've used coloured Bazzill. or as for these, printed various of the plainer "textured" Funky Hand designs onto the white Bazzill
The Die is from memory Box and I've cut it from Centura Pearl (white/silver)
Other Materials
Narrow Ribbon, Tiny silver gems

That's it for now
Thanks for looking

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Funky Little Christmas

It's so easy to move on to the next thing and forget about all the lovely stash we used to enjoy using - I have boxes of the stuff to prove it!
One of the fun things that's happening on the Get Funky Inspiration blog is a series of occasional "showcase" posts where one of the older download collections is chosen and we all make something, absolutely anything we like using that set of designs.  What you get is a fab blog post full of great ideas all using the same set of papers - truly inspirational as our dt is made of crafters with so many styles and crafting favourites,
The current showcase was launched yesterday and this time the spotlight falls on "Funky Little Christmas"  
I was trying out an idea for a layout design so used it to make a couple of cards with the Funky Little Christmas stash
if you like pink and green, this is definitely the download for you!

Papers: Funky Little Christmas by Funky Hand
Circle dies from Spellbinders, Holly die from Crafters Companion
Stickles Glitter glue for berries

I also made this one with the same papers
You can see the whole Funky Little Christmas Showcase HERE and find the download in the shop HERE
Here's a little look at what you get for just £3.49 with this download

That's it for this time, have a great weekend

Friday, November 15, 2013

Not just for Christmas

On the Daring Cardmakers this week we have a challenge to make 2 things, one a Christmas card and the other "something else" - not necessarily Christmas relates, but still using Christmas Stash!
This is because we have Funky Hand sponsoring us this week and as they've very kindly given the dt not one but both of their gorgeous 2013 Christmas collections to play with we thought it would be good to make something with each of them.
I may be a bit biased because being a member of their design team I work with Funky Hand stash on a regular basis - but even after a few years with them, I'm still finding new ways to use the wonderful downloads and CDs.  You know how you can look at a sheet of paper and think hmmm this is nice, but I would love that bit of pattern smaller...or bigger.....or just that little bit of it....?  Well using digital stash means you can make the design do what you want - and you can print it on all sorts of media too.
I'll stop lecturing now and give you a peek at the two collections - one lucky person will get both of these for free at the end of the week!  Thank you Funky Hand.
I love both of these sets and will be using them, plus some of the older Christmas collections for most of my cards this year.
I decided to make my Christmas card for this week using Silent Night 
papers, the plan was for a vintage-grungey sort of card, but the grungey bit didn't really happen, and it's not that vintagey either!  But I am quite pleased with how it turned out  
Materials and Tools
All designer papers Silent Night by Funky Hand
Gold card, Cream satin ribbon, Wired Holly "berries", Gems, Dewdrops, White Flower stamens inked yellow (because I couldn't find my yellow ones ....), Glamour Dust glitter
Gold "label" background cut with Craft Robo from my own template
Dies: Spellbinders D-Lites "Sprigs", MFT Die'Namics Poinsettia 
2 x snowflake punches
Printing Info:
Card Blank - cream design resized to print directly onto the smooth white card
Green background - this was my newest experiment - I resized to print A5 and printed the dark green design onto ribbed Kraft cardstock, I love the way it turned out so rich and textured. On the other end of the card I did the same with he holly design which I'll use another time as I wanted the holly paper on this card to have the normal creamier colour.
Holly, Spotty, Red, Cream, Lighter green designs all printed onto Bazzill twhite to use for other parts of the background and embellishments
Cream snowflakes were covered with glue and dipped into Glamour Dust glitter

 My Sleigh Ride project is a pillow box
Materials and Tools
All designer papers Sleigh Ride by Funky Hand
Narrow ribbon: gold, red, turquoise, Cream leaf, cream rose, Red Wired flowers, large pearl brad
EK Success border punch, 2x SU Flower punches, Spellbinders D-Lites "Sprigs",

 Printing Info:
Spotty design was printed on a sheet of A4 pale cream ribbed cardstock.  I also printed the green chevron design on the reverse so the inside of the box looks pretty too. I used an offcut with the chevrons uppermost on the bad that goes around the box
Red and Aqua designs printed on White Bazzill.

You can see how well the designs print on ribbed card and what a lovely effect it produces on the photo below:

That's it for this time, I hope you'll head over to the DCM BLOG and see what the others have been making - and be inspired to join in and win these fab downloads for yourself!