Friday, October 30, 2015

Gone Batty

Some say I did that years ago....

It's Svenja's turn to set the challenge for The Daring Cardmakers this week:
I’d like to see some strictly
non-cute Hallowe’en themed cards.
Make it creepy-crawly-spooky-scary!
Click HERE to take a look a the design team’s creations..... Beware!


I don't really "do" the whole Hallowe'en thing, especially the "imported" version. I'll say no more on that theme though!
I had fun playing with inks to make the background for this card - I inked up some card in yellows, oranges and reds to start with so it could dry before die-cutting the spooky-coloured moon.
For the main background I began by inking the whole piece with DI Tumbled Glass, then smooshed some Broken China around the edges and inwards, but leaving a pale area near the centre.  Next I built up the depth of the outer area with "Dusty Concord" and finally added some Colorbox Black ink just around the edges.
The grass at the lower edge is stencilled - I moved the stencil around to fill in areas of the card, and used a couple of colours - Elderberry (Memento Luxe) and Black (Colorbox) to get a variety of depth.
Finally I brushed some Silver Decoart Glitter Paint over some of the grass.
The curly tree is one of two chipboard ones that I've had for years - its good to actually make use of some of this stuff!  I inked it black, then added a coat of the decoart silver glitter paint which really gives a lovely effect over black.  
The bats were cut with the Cameo using my own template

All that inking took a while, but it's good to experiment occasionally and I learned quite a bit about building up colour making this one.
Thanks for looking, please leave a comment if you've a minute :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

October Sketch Cards

Having just realised that I've not blogged any of the cards I made using the October Sketch File LO, I thought I'd better do a quick catch-up post before the month is over!
Putting them all together also shows I've had a rather blue, silver, white thing going on lately!

I'm not going to go into detail about what I've used on these, but if you like something and want to know more ie which dies, then please just ask and I'll get back to you

This card has the front folded in half with a partial die-cut on the fold, I hope you can see more clearly what I mean in the second photo

 Reindeer is stencilled in gold glitter paste
The white card blank was embossed before the other things were added, but the embossing doesn't show up well in the photo :(

Then just for a change I made a birthday card and changed the circle for a rectangle, which is dangling on silver thread in the aperture
Here are a couple of views of the sketch I was using - there's another week left to join in with this one, so why not have a go and add your link to the blog?
the sketch file
the sketch file

Thank you for visiting

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Storage Folder for Dies

I got a bit fed up with my various Christmas dies being in different places meaning that finding the one I wanted was a pain.  I thought it was about time I got them organised, and as while looking for something else I'd unearthed the magnetic sheets and zipped wallets I had left after making the last one I thought this was a good time to make a dedicated Christmas version of the folder.  I don't think I ever got round to sharing photos of the other two I've made, so I'm going to blog this while I remember!
The covers are made from that thick board you sometimes get in packaging - it's about 3mm thick, so good and sturdy. The spine section is made from empty cereal packet - it needed to be a bit thinner to curve around, covering the binding wires

The flat covers measure about 20.5 x 24.5, I used some 12x12 papers to cover the flat pieces and the spine section.  I used the scoring board and bone folder to make the flat margins on either side of the spine, then curved the rest around a pot to "teach" the spine the shape I wanted it to have
I keep the covers plain because they go on the shelf like library books and I don't want any bits falling off or taking up extra space
Inside I used 12x A5 zipped wallets.
With my Bind-It-All machine I punched holes in the flat cover pieces, and matching holes in the wallets, then used Bind-It-All wires to fix it all together.  I then curved the spine section and glued into place, using strong bulldog clips to hold it all together while the glue dried
The A4 magnetic sheets were cut in half to fit inside the wallets, then I sorted the dies out to fit. Tor the facing page I created a guide for what's on each magnetic page -so I know the manufacturer and name of the dies, and I can tell if anything is missing!
I try to remember to save a picture of each new die set I buy, then I can copy the pictures, resize if necessary and add to the the label page - this also means that I can easily make new versions if I need to move things arund, or add another picture/die to a page where there is space, such as on the one below.
I then resize the whole sheet to a size/shape that fits, print out, trim and add to the folder
These sheets are only magnetic on one side, so having the printed sheet tucked in behind there works pretty well,

I do like to have the pictures there for reference, but I got a bit lazy and some of the pages are a bit "half done" ;_  I can do back and do them properly if I feel the urge.....

The shock was getting to the last of the sets I needed to file, and realising that I'd  filled all but one of the wallets already, so if I buy more Christmas dies I'll be (almost) back at square one!

These folders work really well, you can store a lot of dies in a fairly small space, and they sit neatly on the shelf where they are easy to grab wand flick through when you want to use the dies.  

So that's what I've been doing rather than getting on and using all these dies to make some Christmas cards.... hey ho, maybe it will help - at least now I know what I've got!

Thanks for looking

Friday, October 23, 2015

Tempting Treats

Gez is our challenge setter over at The Daring Cardmakers this week and says:
"This week we would like to see your
Tempting Treats
As the year starts to come to a close and in the northern hemisphere as we slip towards winter, colder, darker mornings.. (I won't mention the rest !!)

 Let's cheer our spirits with something tempting!

The Design Team have lots of inspiration and lovely treats to share with you and I hope you can join in the fun!  
Happy creating, Gez ♥"
 Having thought for a while about which temptation I could make a card depicting, I finally decided on chocolate.  Well of course.  
I think I must be in a bit of a "shaped cards" mood after the piano card I made for last week's challenge because this week I've gone down the same road and made my card resemble a great big bar of chocolate. 
I had a lot of fun with this one, and not a single calorie in the whole bar!

Custom-sized, top folding card blank
Chocolate brown card
scrap cereal box chipboard
Purple card
White and Silver card scraps
Aluminium Foil
White Ink pad. Brown Ink pad
DieNamics Square Stack
Creative Expressions "Enjoy"
Creative Dies (CraftStash UK): Labels and Borders, Nesting Doorplates
XCut Small (1.5cm) square punch 
Hero Arts "Stylish Borders" and
"Vintage Frames"
I hope you'll head over to The Daring Cardmakers Blog to find more tempting treats....
Thanks for visiting today, it would be great if you'd leave a message

Monday, October 19, 2015

Merry Snowflakes

On a desperate mission to find myself some Cword-card-making inspiration, I seem to have indulged in some quite heavy spending on Christmassy dies.  Sadly the mojo is being very petulant just now and has gone into hiding.

So, it's a case of trying to force the issue by sitting down and making stuff with all  that card-making roll.

What do you reckon to this?  I quite like the idea, but it was more fiddly than I like when it comes to making a lot of cards.

350gsm Dark blue square card blank (PDA Woodward)
Lighter blue Bazzill
Glitter card "Diamond" (Best Creations)
Smooth White card (PDA Woodward)
Red Gems (Anita's)
Stars panel (Memory Box) 
Merry Christmas text (Ultimate Crafts

The MB die cuts the whole panel - the snowflakes and the rectangular frame.  I adhered it over a rectangle of glitter cardstock and then laid scraps of the same glitter card onto the die to cut some extra snowflakes for embellishing

I used "Stick It" on the text die as I thought it would make attaching it to the card easier, but actually it was a right faff.  I think I'll be going back to my spreading a thin layer of glue on plastic then dipping the word in method, it's probably quicker for this one

Might have a go with some different colours and see if I get quicker at making this design.
That's it for this time, thanks for popping by

Friday, October 16, 2015

Just a Note.....

This week's theme for The Daring Cardmakers is
 "Thank you for the Music"  
We'd love it if you'd make a card with a musical theme to share with us.  It could feature sheet music, a musical instrument, music notes, lyrics,  be based on a song or piece of music.....there's a huge range of possibilities you could incorporate on this one.

I've seen a few Grand and Baby Grand piano-shaped cards around the web lately so thought I'd have a go at making my own version.  Great for anyone who loves music and easy to make fit various occasions - I decided to give mine a Christmas theme, and a quick google image search brought up masses of pieces of sheet music that are free to use.  I chose a vintage image with traditional Christmas Carols, saved it, then resized to exactly the size I needed then printed onto some white Bazzill card.

I decided to use glossy black card for the main part of the piano - it looks realistic, but oh boy, keeping that stuff smear free is a hard job!
I drew, then handcut the shape onto the card front and used that to trace, then cut the shape in the glossy card
A piece of thinner card was embossed with an A$ embossing folder called "Seasonal Music" (Crafters Companion) and adhered to the inside back of the card, so that the upper section shows behind the piano
For the keyboard I drew the lines for the white keys, then indented over them using  my Scorpal board.  The black keys were cut from the piece left ocer after cutting the piano shape in the glossy card.  I just trimmed the corners away by hand as none of my corner rounders had the "right" sort of cut.
The poinsettia flower is created with the DieNamics  die set.  I've used some gold, glittery stamens in the centre because I think it would have lacked a bit of Seasonal Sparkle if I'd just added yellow ones.
I added a bit of a curve to the sheet music before fixing in place.  

As usual the DT have created some fantastic, inspirational cards on this theme, so please head over to see them HERE
That's all for this time, but I really need to catch up and post some other stuff to my blog - I've been a bit lax about keeping it up to date lately.

Our roof is now all finished and we should be snug this winter!  The skip has be removed, but not the scaffolding yet - so it still feels a bit like being in a cage when I look out of the windows!

Anyway. all for now, I hope you have a great weekend. Thanks for visiting

Friday, October 09, 2015

What do you do?

Today's card is one I've made for Miri's challenge over on the Daring Cardmakers Blog.
This week it's Miri here again, and I’m feeling a bit curious.

What do you do besides crafting?

I would love to know what you do for a living. Tell us about your current (or former) job and show us something "job-related" on your card (Computers? People? Office supplies? Clothes? Plants? ...).

If you would love to know what we all do for a living … have a look at our cards and see if you can tell.  Pop along and visit our blogs to find more information about our jobs and  see if you guessed right

Well, I'm just a Lazy Lay About now, but I used to be a primary school teacher, so that's what I went with for my card.  It's supposed to be in the shape of a pencil, but I'm not sure i got the shape quite right, and I wish I'd made the scalloped edge just a little bit curved to look more realistic - it's fumy how things like that show up on a photo when the card in your hand looks fine.

I inked the tall rectangular card base with a couple of shades of Distress Ink, then cut the pointed shape at the top.  I also cut a curve in the top so I could add the coloured point of the "pencil" peeking above the "wood"
I used a scalloped die to cut the edge of the striped paper (an old 3 Bugs in a Rug design)
The numbers, letters and paintbrushes were cut with the Silhouette Cameo.  The numbers and letters were cut 3 times each in coloured card (Bazzill) and once in black card. then layered up for some dimension
The paintbrush is a new template made for this card, once I'd put the various "bits" onto a Silhouette page I piled all the bits on top of each other, made a couple of copies, then altered the copied ones to get three different shapes/sizes - you don't need to make a different template for each item 
Pretty simple really!
The roof work goes on here, but I've just had a word with them and they are hoping to finish today.  Thanks mainly to the rain we had earlier in the week, all the muck from the 100 years old roof turned to muddy stuff and is now covering our lovely new windows and the rendered walls which were only painted in June :(  
Yes, we did do it all the wrong way round, but sometimes you just have to do the job that "needs doing most" don't you?  We were hoping the roof would last at least another year or so - until the extra-windy weather we had earlier in the year brought a few too many slates down for comfort and moved it up the list.. 
However, Paul has just said they are going to hose the whole house down to at least get rid of the worst of the mess, so fingers crossed it won't be too bad.  I still think it might be worth seeing if there is some sort of exterior house cleaning service we can call on.

Rightio, I'm off now to do some crafting for next week's projects.  Hope you have a great weekend

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Birds of a Feather

Wednesday is my day to post on the Bubbly Funk Blog.  This is the blog for the Bubbly Funk Stencil Shop, which, if you've not already visited then you are missing a treat!

This week I've been playing with simple layering of different mediums (or should that be media?)

For the background I used Gelatos, then rubbed them together with a wet baby wipe (you can use water but the wipes were closer and I'm lazy), to mingle and dilute the colours. 

Once dry, I taped the {Birds of a Feather} stencil over the bit I liked best with some washi tape.and used a small (about 1cm) round foam "brush" to apply the black ink; because it's a such a small tool, the ink gets into all the "holes" in the stencil.
I could have left it alone at that point, but some rather lovely Glitter Paste had just arrived on my desk and I couldn't resist opening a couple of the pots to try it out.
So when everything was dry again, I taped the stencil back into position, added more tape to mask the area around each bird, then applied the deep blue glitter paste to the birds (over the black ink)
You need to clean the glitter paste off the stencil fairly quickly because as I found out it sticks fast if you don't.
Again, I left it all to dry then re-taped the stencil in place and added some silver glitter paste to parts of the cages.  I'm wondering whether gold glitter paste would have been better, but too late now!

To finish I trimmed and matted the piece, added ribbon to the bottom then indulged in another passion; making paper flowers in colours to match those of the background.
You may recall seeing a very similar card I made for a Daring Cardmakers challenge a few weeks back.  On that occasion I used different "cooler" Gelato colours: and I did stick to just using ink for the stencilling!

This is the stencil I used for these cards:
Birds of a Feather (Crafters Workshop)
I used the 6x6 version, but there is a 12x12 version too, which would make a wonderful canvas or home decor project

 That's it for today, I hope you'll leave a comment - and if it's not too cheeky to ask, could you pop over to the Bubbly Funk Blog and add it there too ;)  (copy and paste would be nice and quick!)

Friday, October 02, 2015

Elemental Inspiration for October

Hello from Much Hammering Hall!

We knew when we moved here that the roof would need replacing in the not too distant future, but so many things needed doing and a new roof was probaby the least interesting so we did the indoor renovations and alterations and added new bathrooms, new kitchen, new windows and doors ....and some other things along the way. Then earlier this year we got the whole house painted so it looked nice and shiny and white. 
Although a few roof tiles had slipped over the last few years, the roof wasn't on this year's plan at all - until those storms we has earlier in the year dislodged a few more, and sent them crashing down - scary when you're looking through the kitchen window and one flashes past just outside! 
So, a call to our builder and "new roof" is on the agenda before the winter sets in. This week the roofers started work and are up there hammering away as I type, it's not a peaceful place to be atm.  But at least its sunny, warm  and dry and fingers crossed it stays that way for the next couple of weeks and they can get the job done with no delays.  
It's very noisy, but I tell you something, it's not in the same league as when they were cutting through the render to remove the old windows and fit the new ones - that was in a class of noise all of its own!

(please please please let them not be Saturday morning workers though.....)

Anyhooo.... back to the crafting, and as it's Friday it's Daring Cardmakers day, and as it's the first Friday of the month, it's Elemental Inspiration time, with Miri choosing our picture this time

Here's my card
You need to pick at least three "elements" from the picture to use when you make your card.  I chose: the colours, a sponged/mottled background, strong, variably-sized text, the caravan/camper theme, a heart, and the window-blind from Miti's picture:

Miri added a list to the blog of possible elements to get everyone started:
vehicles, anything travel-related, hearts, the colours of the picture, the saying (or any other saying or quote you like), a marbled background, a (mobile) home, wheels, a window, a door, lettering in general as a large part of your card …
bacground created using various Distress Inks, and other ink pads to make a mottled effect
All other card Bazzill or Coredinations
 Campervan is an old template from Crafty Templates, converted to cut with the Silhouette Cameo
Lettering also cut using the Cameo
Road and markings, Steering Wheel,Window-blind all hand-cut 

That's it for this time. I hope you'll leave a message and then pop over to The Daring Cardmakers Blog to see the amazing;y creative cards the DT have made using Miri's picture for inspiration