Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Two Little Birds

 Hi there

How are you? I hope you enjoyed the Bank Holiday Weekend, but kept well away from those who don't give a toss about their own safety or that of others!
The sunny, but breezy weather combined with all the pollen around at the moment doesn't do a hayfever sufferer any good at all, so I've been
more than happy to stay in the relative calm of the indoors!

I'm really late blogging my 
Daring Cardmakers project for this week, apologies to Nat, who set a lovely challenge for us this time.  I was looking forward to it, but when I started trying to put something together I really struggled to make something I liked.  In the end I made 2 cards, and wasn't happy with either!  Maybe its a 'frame of mind' thing.
Anyway, here's Nat's challenge:
"This week, I'd like you to....

Feature Birds on Your Cards
Stamps, die cuts, stickers, papers... our fine feathered friends are a real staple of many product lines and will definitely help lift someone's day. :)
To get you started, Click HERE for some feathery inspiration from the design team"
I really wanted to use a cute little die set I received from the lovely Holley in her recent prize draw event.  It was so nice to receive this little treat in the post all the way from America - it made me smile not only because its so sweet, but because as a Crafter's Companion set, it had been to America and then come home to England!

The little bird, the cage and the pink flowers at the bottom of the cage are from Holley's gift (Crafter's Companion), the leaves, small flowers and the leafy wreath are from various Spellbinders sets
The flowery paper is a scrap piece from one of the papers in Paula Pasqual's Papercraft Society box
The black and white papers and sentiment are my own makes
I used gilding flakes in copper and gold to decorate the cage
For the bird, I covered a scrap of card with a few different shades of Tonic Studios Embellishment Mousse, cut out the shape then rubbed some Nuvo Glitter Paste over the top.  I cut the same shape in gold card and stuck tape over the reverse before removing from the die to stop the tiny pieces falling out.  Then glued the 2 layers together

Card 2

Smooth white card blank, Funky Fossil 'Lines' stencilled in pink ink
Bird and flowers: Crafter's Companion
Scribble Circles and plain circle: Tonic Studios
Fencing and butterflies: Papercraft Society
Leafy Swirls: Crafts Too
Other: Inks Versamagic, Tonic Studios Embellishment Mousse, small gems, home made decal sentiment

That's all for today, Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages!
Happy Crafting, and stay safe!

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Just Saying....

I hope this Tuesday finds you well.
If you are back or going back to work, please be cautious.  Its horrible to have to treat everyone, even your best friends and family as a potential threat. but we have to, don't we:  If we love them, then the best way to show it is to keep our distance. Covid-19 is still out there and is just waiting for us to drop our guard.  
While this has been going on I've been sending out a few cards in the hope of surprising and cheering up friends and family who've "had their wings clipped"

Here are a couple of the first ones I sent, based on Ruth's birthday card, which I blogged last week

Smooth White card blanks.
Stencilled with pink, aqua and lime green inks.  Dots stencil from The Crafters Workshop
Lime Green card for the Scribble Circles,  dies by Tonic Studios  
The butterflies are cut using the smaller sized dies from the fabulous Hunkydory Butterfly set
The lower wings cut from the rest of the inked card from Ruth's card
The sentiment and the diagonal striped pieces are pc generated
To complete I added a few gems 

That's all for today, Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages!

Happy Crafting, and stay safe!

Friday, May 15, 2020

International Family Day

Hi there
How are you?  Are you as concerned as I am about the relaxing of the lockdown restrictions here in the UK?  It seems we are rushing into it and I wonder how much pressure the Big Businesses who donate to the various political party coffers are bringing?  And then of course, there's the various members of the Media who are more concerned with muck-raking and sensationalism than supporting the measures that will protect us and OUR well-being.
Yesterday nearly 430 people died here, and well over 3000 new cases were reported - that doesn't sound like we're winning yet.  Not to me anyway.
I'm not a particularly 'political' person, I just want my nearest and dearest to be safe, and for everyone to think about the people and their health, ahead of powerful men and women's pockets. 
 You can rest assured, the money-men will not be taking risks with their own families health, oh no, they'll be locked safely away while you are out earning that safety for them.

 rant over 
and meanwhile, back in my crafty world it's anothe
 Daring Cardmakers day!

It's Joanne here with your challenge today which focuses on the fact it's International Family Day
When I chose this topic, I had no idea that there would be an extra poignancy for many of us who can't see our families because of the current lockdown restrictions. 
So, let’s celebrate families on our projects this week. It could be a welcome to a new addition to the family (a baby or an adoption, or maybe even a new pet), something to mark your relationship with a special family member, or you might choose an image representing a family. 
Show us what family means to you!
 Click HERE to check out this week's inspiration from the Design Team 
We look forward to seeing what you come up with!

I  decided to get ahead and make my card for one of our nephews who's birthday is next month - hopefully I won't forget where I put it before then! I also thought it was about time I actually used some Wallace and Gromit die sets I bought a while back but haven't made anything with yet.

Smooth white card blank
Blue card square for the background
I used the "Wallace" and "Gromit" die sets from the range 
(Build 'ems Craftstash - more about these later) 
and made up the characters from scraps of card and paper, with a bit of inky shading added

The Union Flag image was found on the internet, I  lightened the colours a little to give a softer appearance, before resizing and printing onto white Bazzill card. I then used a die to cut the circle for W&G to sit on, and added some small pieces of chipboard to give some dimension
For the balloon I used Paint Shop Pro to make the wording to fit the balloon die, then altered the colours to make the background orange and the wording white before checking the sizes and printing. After die-cutting, I used a large ball tool to add some shape, some chipboard on the reverse, and glued in place, adding some black and white twine for the string
To complete I again used PSP to make the suitably Yorkshire sentiment 
"have a grand day"

Now, just a word about these die sets!  
I love these die sets so much - they are really cute and such fun to have in my collection - however, they are a real pain to use.  
There are a lot of tiny pieces and they are incredibly fiddly.  
But the worst part is the poor instructions.  There are no instructions at all in the packet with the dies - you have to go to the Craftstash website to find them and they are not great.  The written instructions are a bit on the vague side.  There is also a picture showing all the pieces, and what they are, but its very small and not particularly easy to read, plus you have to use a certain amount of guess-work to figure out how all the small pieces go together.  It's not at all clear, especially when there are options for, say, arm/hand/paw positions.  I'm an experienced crafter and have hundreds of dies, but it took both me and my hubby to work out some of how Wallace went together!  And there are extra paw pieces for Gromit I've not tried out yet, at least, I'm assuming what they are.  As I said its all a bit vague - so be warned.

That's all for today, Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages!

Happy Crafting, and stay safe!

Monday, May 11, 2020

Ruth's Birthday Card


It's another Lockdown Monday and it's quite sunny, but very windy and as the pollen count is really high it's the kind of day I really don't enjoy one bit.

 After the lovely weather we've enjoyed over the last week and especially on VEday75 - we had a lovely neighbourly afternoon on Friday, along with all our close-by neighbours we spent the afternoon in our front garden, or strolling by the other gardens to chat and see what they had to eat and drink!
This lovely group of neighbours not only all go out every Thursday to applaud the keyworkers and check all are well, but we've also taken to having a Sunday lunchtime Drinks o'Clock too.  It's a quiet road so fine for us all to stand around the paths and road for a chatting  at a suitable distance from each other, but the odd car or other person passing by must wonder what's going on!
Even yesterday when it was decidedly chilly we were all out there albeit with mugs of tea and coffee rather than the wine and cold drinks we've had at other times!

Anyway, back to my catch up of things crafty
Today I'm sharing a birthday card which I made for my lovely friend Ruth, who is also a member of our Handmade happy Birthday club on Facebook.  I've actually made it into April for this week's catch up card!

Smooth White card blank.Stencilled randomly with pink, aqua and lime green inks and Kaleidoscope stencil from The Crafters Workshop

Scribble Circles dies (Tonic Studios) for the three matching, overlapping circles
Butterfly dies are memory Box (I think), for the lower wings I inked up a small piece of card in the same colours as the stencilled ones, with the addition of some gold
The sentiment and the diagonal striped pieces are pc generated
To complete I added a few gems 
I then used the leftover bits and bobs to make a couple of smaller cards, which I'll share next time ;)

  So that's all for today, Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages!

Happy Crafting, and stay safe!

Saturday, May 09, 2020

8 Inky Fingers and 2 Inky Thumbs

Hi there
I'm late with my Daring Cardmakers card this week, we had a rather busy day yesterday and I ran out of time!  I know that in these days of Lockdown that sounds weird!  i guess all things are relative. 
Did you do anything to celebrate VEday75?  We are lucky enough to live in a quiet street, with lovely neighbours who do get together from time to time.  During the Covid19 pandemic we've all been out to applaud the keyworkers on Thursdays and shout greetings to each other to make sure everyone is ok, we've also taken to heading out into the street for a Sunday lunchtime 'wine o'clock' catch up - I guess it must look rather odd to anyone who drives down the road, or walks past, seeing all these people standing far apart, chatting (shouting) to each other.  Yesterday we were all out in our front gardens, having a Lockdown version of a street party.  The funny thing is, I'm not sure we'd have organised ourselves into having a street party in the conventional sense - but because we all find ourselves in this strange semi-isolated life, we made the effort and had a lovely afternoon together, but apart!
Anyhoo, I wasn't organised enough to get my post ready ahead of time, and didn't get round to having any computer time yesterday, so here's my card for Rizwana's fab first challenge,  a day and a bit late, sorry Rizwana
     Create an Inky Background

"I would love to see some inky backgrounds using any medium like paints, inks, sprays, distress inks, distress oxides etc. You can use stencils to add interest. Most of all have fun creating them. Check out all the inspiration from the Design Team HERE and we all look forward to seeing what you come up with!"

I had a lovely time playing around with all the inky, painty stuff I have managed to accumulate.  I'm not very good at using it but it is fun to see what you can come up with, and yes, all fingers and thumbs were suitably inky by the end of the session.  I made a few backgrounds but the one I chose to use, and to add more 'stuff' to was the one on this card.
I covered my piece of card with various Distress Oxide Inks and did a bit of water spraying until I was happy with the base section.
Next I grabbed one of my new Funky Fossil stencils and added this little lot:
lighter and darker blue shades of ink
 aqua and turquoise colours of ink
gold embellishment mousse
 gold and turquoise Glitter gel
Then having first cleaned the stencil, I replaced it in position and used a palette knife to spread a thick layer of PVA glue over some areas.
Obviously I quickly removed and washed the stencil clean of excess glue!
Once dry, the glue adds a glossy shine to those areas.
I cut down and adhered the panel to my card, but thought the white area looked a bit bare so used the stencil to add some faint colour, and also a little PVA glue again - this time when the glue was almost dry I added some gilding flakes to those areas
'HAPPY' is two layers blue card, topped with one of gold
'birthday' is a sticker
The butterfly is from a Hunkydory die set, lower layer cut from a spare piece of the blue inky card, the upper layer form gold card

That's all for today, Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages!

Happy Crafting, and stay safe!

Monday, May 04, 2020

Eclipse Detail Anniversary


It's another sunnyish Lockdown Monday today,  OH is at his desk working from home, and I've been at my desk catching up with some blog-commenting and now a catch-up post on my own blog

I'm suffering from back-ache today, having rather over-done it with the gardening yesterday.   The things we ordered from the local nursery came at the end of last week, and while the growbags can just be stacked out of thje way, I did need to get the plants into bigger pots.  We don't know where they will end up until the garage work is done and we can tackle a new layout for the garden, so they'll be in pots for the duration.  However, finding and cleaning enough decent-sized pots and planting 12 herbaceous plants took quite a while!
 I'd already spent the morning baking Rhubarb and Custard cupcakes, which incidentally are lush - but really, I didn't need to do to all the back-ache inducing activities in one day, did I?

Anyway, back to my catch up of things crafty
Today I've an anniversary card to share once again it's back to March for this one - I've really let my blogging slide!

Soft cream card blank.
2 types of Rose gold card, one pearl and one shiny

I die-cut the small heart die to create the detail piece using the Eclipse method, then matted it onto the shiny card
The heart die and card are all from Tonic Studios
The Love sentiment is also a die-cut (can't remember the make, sorry) and was added using some tiny pieces of chipboard to overlap the main square and lie at an angle.
To finish I added a few copper-brown pearls and a very narrow ribbon and bow

  That's all for today, Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages!

Happy Crafting, and stay safe!

Friday, May 01, 2020

May Elemental Inspiration picture


I hope you've had a good week.
No waffle today, just straight on to this week's
Daring Cardmakers challenge and as its the first Friday of the month we have a new Elemental Inspiration picture,chosen by Dawn
May Elemental Inspiration picture
Its Dawn here with this weeks challenge and I can't believe 
we are at the start of May.  

Its a bank holiday here in France at the moment and I can't think of a better way to enjoy it than crafting along with the Daring Cardmakers.
Remember you need to choose 3 elements from the image below and if you use the colour palette then that counts as one element.
We can't wait to see what you create this week and have fun.

From Dawn's board I chose the Layout, the colours and the bow shape - and kept the whole thing really simple


For the four squares. I used a digital paper design from KaramfilaS via Etsy
I resized the paper then printed onto textured white card, before cutting into smaller squares.
The squares were matted onto smaller squares of card then arranged on a smooth white card blank.
For theline across the lower edge I used some velvet ribbon, and added yellow enamel dots for detail
I printed another design from the same paper set to use for die cutting the bow pieces.
Once assembled it was positioned over the squares
To complete I added a home made decal sticker sentiment.

That's all for today, the lovely paper designs and clean layout meant keeping it simple was definitley the way to go this week.

Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages! 

Happy Crafting!

Monday, April 27, 2020

Tassels and Flowers


We've another sunny Lockdown Monday atm but the forecast mentioned RAIN! How very dare it!  Actually as our grass is already looking a bit brown in places maybe some rain wouldn't be such a bad thing.
Like a lot of people we did a bit of work in the garden over the weekend , and this morning we've ordered up some growbags and a selection of herbaceous plants from the small local nursery who are doing deliveries. 
Thee building work on our new garage hasn't moved forward since they finished the groundwork, and as one thing leads to another, its all a bit of a mess out there atm!

Last week I started  my crafting catch up, and today I've another birthday card to share -  it's back to early March for this one

I used some card stock along with dies from the March Papercraft Society box for this card

White card blank.
Lime green card layer is cut with border dies from the
Papercraft Society box as are the flowers
I added black and white twine and  a couple of hand-made paper tassels to decorate the upper section
Some small white pearls for the flower centres and add detail to the pretty border design
The white on black printed sentiment and diagonal pattern are both pc generated

  That's all for today, Thank You so much for visiting,
please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages!

Happy Crafting, and stay safe!

Friday, April 24, 2020

Let the Music Play



Another sunny day here in Hertfordshire, I hope its the same where you are. Are you ready for my weekly rant?
How have you coped with lockdown this week? 
 I reckon its all about the mind-set you develop - if you are staying at home, and keeping to the rules then you are one of the lucky ones - you are safe, healthy and have total control over keeping it that way. And that's a Positive way to look at it - you are in control of your environment.
Remember how everyone moaned about the work-life balance, the horrendous traffic jams, the long commute, that they didn't get enough time with their families......well, .....

Take care of yourselves and your loved ones; stay home, stay safe, 
and look for the positives!

This week at The Daring Cardmakers our fabulous Queen of the Ink Svenja has set the challenge:
let the music play
(and show some sheet music).

Make a card using some kind of sheet music. This may be the real thing, design paper, stamped, or even handwritten by yourselves. Any other ideas? Go ahead!

🎵  🎵  🎵    Ta-daa!   🎵  🎵  🎵
  You can see what our fab Design Team made by clicking HERE

I used a few shades of yellow and peachy shades (Versamagic) to ink the front of my card, then stencilled a pattern down the left side with a light green embellishing mousse (Tonic)
Next I used the same inks to colour up a piece of card ready to cut the flowers and butterflies, I swished a little of the metallic embellishment mousse over the top to add a soft sheen to parts of the card, then left it to dry
For the sheet music elements I used a couple of different digital paper collections bought via Etsy. The background sheet music paper is from one set and after printing to size I tore it rather than cutting it out. The other two printouts are from a set of collage effect designs with flowers and butterflies. I used my fingers to add a little  around the edges of all three.
Next I die cut the hearts background (CraftStashUK) from black card, and again rubbed a little gold embellishment mousse over parts of it
Now I arranged and glued down the music piece, then the hearts, then the two collage cards
The butterfly was cut using a fabulous Hunkydory set
Rhe flowers and swirls are cut using dies from the March Papercraft Society box, with the flower centres coming from a Joanna Sheen die set
To finish this card I added a few tiny green gems and a Happy Birthday sentiment

Thank you for visiting today, I hope you'll add me to your 'following' list and come back again soon
Please leave a comment, I really love seeing your messages! 

Happy Crafting!