Sunday, 13 December 2015

Lavinias's Let it Snow

I made this card using Lavinia stamps, inspired by some of the beautiful design team work on their challenge this month. You can have a look at it here.

The challenge title is 'Let it snow' and, inspired by the DT, I had a go at creating a northern lights background. Seeing the Northern Lights in real life is one of the items on my bucket list, but for now I'll have to make do with making them up!

Thank you to Zoe for your advice on Northern Lights inking, Visit Zoe's blog here.

As the Lavinia challenge calls for just one entry per month, I now have to choose my favourite and I keep changing my mind!

Friday, 11 December 2015

The Christmas post

My lovely new little Claire's stamps arrived this week and so it only seemed right that I should take the opportunity to enter in to their monthly competition!

Ingredients for this card;
Little Claire's dinky post box stamp
Card-io Christmas sentiment stamp
Stickles frosted lace
Kan ban snowflake sparkles paper
Pro markers and copics
White pearly satin ribbon

I would like to enter this card in to...
Little Claire's Christmas in white
Crafty ribbons cultural Christmas - what could signify British culture at Christmas more than a red post box?!
Stamping sensations anything stamped with ribbon
My time to craft- Christmas animals - the robins are my animals

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Paper folding gift bag

This week I've had a go at following Neil's tutorial from the craft barn blog here. It is surprisingly quick and easy to do and now that I've done this one I reckon there'll be plenty more to follow!
This one was made with a paper from my stash. I added extra white brilliance ink to the to followed by some liquid pearls to make icicles. I made holes in the top with a little woodware star punch and tied silver ribbon on for handles.

I'd like to enter this in to this week's Craft barn challenge.

Monday, 30 November 2015

The Christmas rush

I've used these little fellas lots of times for birthday cards but I think this is the first Christmas card I've made with them. I stamped and coloured the penny black hedgehogs first and coloured with promarkers. Next I drew in the tree and inked the sky. I die cut the snowflake and used the negative as a mask and inked the snowflakes in to the sky. I die cut the lettering and finished it all off with some liquid pearls and glossy accents.

I would like to enter the following challenges with this card;
My time to craft - let it snow
Penny black Saturday - dies out punches
Penny black at allsorts - anything Christmas

Winter flurry

This is a bit of a last minute entry for this weeks Freshly made sketches challenge.
The sketch is this one
I've gone for a fairly straight forward take on it. I smooshed a bit of tumbled glass distress ink on my craft mat, sprayed it with water and pressed the card in to it. I then stamped card-io winter flurry snowflakes in to the ink. I cut the banner and stamped hero arts Christmas greetings in versa colour Neptune. The snowflake is a crafters companion die. I stuck both on with 3D foam pads and finished with a sequin and some gems.

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Bubbles, rain or the spotlight?

I have made no less than five of these cards trying to get one that I was absolutely 100% happy with. This is number five and I'm still not content but have given up as I'm running out of time to enter the Clarity stamps challenge. This week it is 'clean and simple' using their own stamps. I picked out the little duck silhouette.  I masked and inked the circles using a variety of blue versa colour inks, spritzed with smooch spritz and added the duck and clarity 'thank you' sentiment. I haven't quite decided whether he's in a bubble, the rain or the spot light, but I guess that's up to the recipient to decide.

Friday, 27 November 2015

Owl always love Christmas!

I made this wintery card using the new tree set from card-io. The trees are stamped in versa colour châteaux grey. I added a little more of the ink to create shadows at the bottom on the trees. I used a memory box die to cut the curved piece at the front and covered it in ultra fine glitter. Finally I added the owl (also from card-io) in black to make him really stand out and spattered a little frosted lace stickles down the side of the trees. I have debated adding a message several times but can't quite decide!

I would like to enter this card in to the following challenges;
Casology - owl
My time to craft
The craft barn- snowflakes

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Lavinia stamps Christmas challenge

I've been eagerly watching the Lavinia stamps blog for a while note hoping you enter but as the rules state that the only stamps to be used are Lavinia's I was struggling as I only had two! This week I rectified that situation and armed with a little selection of exciting new Lavinia stamps I checked back on the blog. Doh, hadn't realised it was a Christmas challenge this time. I had ponies, lavender, autumn vine, fairies, stars and a bumble bee with which to create my Christmas entry!
Time to get a little inventive! I masked and inked a triangle shape and with the mask still in place repeatedly stamped the stars then sprayed with smooch spritz. I inked part of the autumn vine and placed it to look like the fairies were decorating with it.

I inked all round the edges with distress ink and stamped more of the vine coming off the page. Finally I used bits of the lavender stamp to add an undergrowth effect at the bottom of the card. A bit of obligatory stickles and some garnet liquid pearls and I was there!

This is a closed up of the Christmas tree to show some of the details

Take a look at the Lavinia stamps blog here.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Ponies in the snow

Today I'm shearing this little snowy card with you. I created the snowy scene by masking the card with torn paper and inking it in Chateux grey versa ink. With the mask still in place I added in the line of trees and the sunset in camellia and canary versa ink. I stamped Lavinia stamps pony duo in the fore ground then set about crafting the wreath. This is actually the sizzix 'autumn gatherings' die but I thought if I cut them all out in white they would have a wintery look. To some leaves I added silver ink, and to others I added more of the grey. I punched a couple of flowers with woodware punches. The whole lot is stuck on with 3d foam mounts. Finally (because I can't make a card without it) I added silver stickles to some of the leaves.

This card has been designed with the following challenges in mind;
My time to craft let it snow
The craft barn snowflakes (not technically snow 'flakes' but you can't get snow without the flakes, right?!
Stamping sensations- festive foliage and flowers
Little Claire's Christmas in white
Simon Wednesday- Christmas

Friday, 20 November 2015

One layer Santa

Well this is my third and final entry to this weeks less is more Santa one layer challenge. I masked the rectangle before inking with versa colour inks. I stamped pale silver snowflakes on the diagonal and spritzed the whole thing with smooch spritz in vanilla. Finally I added Santa to the front and stamped the sentiment in the corner. I'm just glad I photographed it before the cat walked across it with his muddy paws. I guess perhaps he felt on this occasion less wasn't more?!

Dashing all the way

These dear little chaps are a penny black stamp which I bought a long time back in one of those 'love at first sight' moments.
I thought they made quite a fun one layer Santa card for this weeks Less is more challenge.

They are coloured with copics and pro markers and I have added some liquid appliqué to their hats along with frosted lace stickles for a bit of texture. The sentiment and border lines were added with my fine liner at the end.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

Santa's washing line

Today's clean and simple card on the theme of Santa. I quite fancy the idea that this is what Mrs Claus' washing line looks like up there in the north pole!

Free stamps from creative stamping
Garnet liquid pearls
White liquid appliqué
Copic pens

Less is more challenge

Monday, 16 November 2015

Advent calendar

Today I have finally completed the advent calendar panel I bought at the craft show in Exeter back in September. (Thank you to Crafty ribbons whose theme of 'Christmas tree' spurred me on to get done!)
The panel is printed by makower and I bought it from the little Laura's stand. I wanted to make it my own so I've added various extra little details.
I made bows from satin ribbons and stitched them on to some of the parcels.
I used gold twine to make the bauble threads 3DD,
and added a couple of other bits and pieces from my crafty stash such as this turquoise ribbon and little jingle bell.
Finally I hung it with some crafty ribbons red snowflake ribbon.
I may add a little glitter to it all yet but I'm not quite decided!

As well as the Crafty ribbons challenge, I'd also like to enter this project in to the Allsorts 'not a card' challenge. (It's definitely not a card but does a sewing project still count?)

Penny black winter bough

This weekend it was time to bring out one of my all time favourite stamps. It is the penny black winter bough and it has been used countless times for cards, tags, wrapping paper, you name it!

I had a couple of goes at what you can see turned out to be pretty similar cards. I started by inking the background with Tim Holtz bundled sage distress ink, then worked in to it with some Nick Bantock sapmoss green. 

I wanted that splattered effect in the ink (as inspired by the The funkie junky tag #5) I don't own a proper spritzer so in desperation I hunted through the cupboards and settled upon, well, um... Dettol. Yep, not only do we have a Christmas card, but now it has that pine fresh smell of anti-anti-bac too!!
Anyway, it did the job nicely, I spritzed it and dabbed off the excess with kitchen paper.

Next I repeat stamped the winter bough in sapmoss green, overlapping it slightly to create a bigger branch. I spritzed the whole thing again, this time with smooch spritz and added garnet liquid pearls. To add another layer to the inking I added some little silver stars and snowflakes with the card-io winter flurry set in versa colour silver. The sentiment stamp was free with creative stamping #27.

This card is destined for the following challenges;
The craft barn My world record would have to be 'most unusual product used on a card!!!'
The funkie junky - check out their boutique here
Stamping sensations festive foliage
Simon says stamp something beginning with N is 'Noel'
Casology - Give. Well Christmas is all about giving isn't it?

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Quilting, and a little break from Christmas cards!

I've made this card for my neighbours birthday this week. She is really in to her garden and in to crafting including sewing. I tied the themes together and came up with this. The papers are from magenta. I added fake stitching with a fineliner and extra details with liquid pearls and glossy accents. I went round the edges of the butterfly with a craft knife so as to be able to lift the wings up. The sentiment is from clarity stamps.

I'd like to enter this in to the My time to craft quilt it challenge.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Little Claire's

It really is high time I posted this card as I made it a while back now. The colours are quite subtle and haven't photographed well unfortunately. I keep thinking at some point I'll find better light and get a decent photo but it hasn't happened and now there's only a short time till the challenge closes that I made it for!

I used a tri fold card as my base. I stamped my favourite little Claire's stamp ( the butterfly tree) on to paper and then traced it on to parchment using a white gelly roll pen. I coloured the back of the parchment using Pergamano pens and affixed it via a tab to the fold in the card.

The right hand panel was made by stamping the cat from the butterfly tree. (When the card is fully closed it looks like one image). I stamped the butterflies from the tree on a scrap of parchment and cut out using a butterfly punch. I stuck them with a tiny bit of glossy accents and added pewter liquid pearls. Finally I stamped the sentiment which came from the same little Claire's stamp set.

This card is for this months little Claire's challenge Favourite stamp

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

One snowy night...

When crafty ribbons announced this weeks challenge as monochrome or mono colour I immediately thought of those snowy scenes at night where the snow is so bright that the night sky no longer looks black but goes that magical navy colour that only happens with snow.

I decided to try and create a paper crafted version of that scene using a memory box die, navy and white bazzill card and a sentiment that came free with this months creative stamping magazine. I used card-io winter flurry snowflakes and stars then finished with different textured white and silver ribbons, dots of white liquid pearls and frosted lace stickles.

Challenges I would like to enter;
Crafty ribbons - monochrome
Simon says stamp - the letter N
The craft barn - fireworks (loosely!)
The funky junkie tag 7 (inspired by the colours and snow)
Allsorts- ribbons and bows

Monday, 9 November 2015

Feeling fiery!

A bit of clean and simple card making for me tonight. I used a mixture of versa colour and distress inks on a waterproof surface, spritzed them with a little water and 'smooshed'. I used the resulting print to cut out two circles and lots of stars with Woodware punches and arranged them to suit a sketch from freshly made sketches. I stamped art impressions happy birthday sentiment and foiled the bottom with distress look gold foil from stix 2.

This card is destined for the following challenges;

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Countdown to christmas

I am a complete Christmas- aholic and usually start getting set for the Christmas season around September. This year however my hubby and I are trying to chill out a bit on it and have promised ourselves not to get too excited too early and cause 'excess-Christmas-itis!'
Of course the exception to this rule is card making and present buying because it just makes good sense to be well prepared with those.
This little Christmas card is stamped with a penny black stamp and coloured with promarkers. I added glossy accents to the baubles to give them a bit of shine.  I embossed some red bazzill card with a sizzix Christmas embossing folder. I lightly sanded the top to bring out the greeting and glittered the corner with stickles. The other embossing folder in the set was the stockings which I used to emboss some scraps of Christmas papers. I then cut out the stockings and 'hung' them on red and white twine.

This card is destined for the following challenges;
Penny black - anything christmas
Allsorts- Christmas
Penny Black Saturday- embossing
Simon says stamp - glossy

Monday, 2 November 2015

Walking in a Winter wonderland

Yep, I'll be singing that from today until Christmas now!

Today I'm sharing with you my snowman card. The stamps used are all by card-io and the inks are versa colour. I found some scraps of card in my stash that I had previously die cut snowflakes from. I used the holes that had been left behind as a stencil and inked them with a mix of blue inks applied with a dry baby wipe. I stamped more snowflakes over the top and dotted some of them with liquid pearls. I stamped the snowman and lamp on an oval and inked in my usual way. I also stamped up the winter wonderland message on a rectangle. I assembled the whole card adding navy ribbons and more liquid pearls as embellishments.

I'd like to enter this card in to the following challenges;
Crafty ribbons - snowman
Penny black at allsorts - Christmas
Allsorts- Christmas
Create and craft - ribbon or twine

Friday, 30 October 2015

Less is more

Every so often as card makers we are tasked with making a card that really challenges us. I remember once being commissioned to make a 50th birthday card for a nurse who was in to lace making and baking... Incorporating all of those elements! Needless to say the resulting card was most definitely one-of-a-kind!
This weekend I am attending a double adult baptism and as such I need to make two cards. The sudden realisation that I have no idea what normally goes on a baptism card, coupled with needing to make two of the things, was rather daunting. Anyway, I figured, if in doubt, less is more, and teamed my make with this weeks Less is more sketch challenge.

This is the sketch I was trying to match. ( No one needs to know that my first thought when I saw it was 'why is there a tampon on the card?!!!' do they?)


Here is my card

I inked the rough shape on to the card first using versa colour Evergreen and Atlantic. I then masked off the tree line with torn paper and stamped the trees (card-io set) in black.
Next I moved the mask so that it covered the trees and added an additional torn paper mask below so I could ink the lake. This is in versa ink, lagoon.
Keeping the masks in place, I then stamped the trees upside down to give the impression of a reflection.
Finally I handwrote the message using an ultra fine fineliner.

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Reindeer in the snow

This is my submission for the Crafty ribbons reindeer challenge, and also for the Penny black Saturday embossing challenge. (The background paper is embossed with a sizzix flower embossing folder which I think looks like snow flakes!)

Basic grey papers
Penny black stickeroos
Icicle stickles
Pewter liquid pearls
Silver ribbon
White and silver edged ribbon
Snowflake dies
Flower embossing wallet

Hedgehogs and autumn gatherings

As I sit here with my booty slippers, bowl of porridge and the rain pouring down outside, I have to say it is feeling rather more wintery than autumnal. However the beautiful orangey leaves are still clinging to the flowering cherry in the front garden so I thought I'd take this opportunity to share a final autumnal card this month.

Craft work cards 6x6 white square card
Yellow background paper (such as doodlebug flowers)
Penny black 'peek a boo' stamp
Black ink (such as versa colour)
Tim Holtz distress ink in pumice stone
Tim Holtz alterations autumn gatherings die
Craft work cards sugar and spice die cut sentiments
Doodlebug sugar coating bon bon glitter
Glossy accents

From your stash;
Scraps of autumnal coloured papers
Double sided tape and glue

To make this card first back your square cardstock with a patterned paper. Mine is one by doodle bug. Lightly ink around the edge in pumice stone distress ink and set aside.
Stamp up the penny black hedgehogs on a rectangle of card and colour using promarkers. Edge the card with some more pumice stone distress ink and set this aside too.
Use a craft work cards sentiment and ink with the same distress ink.
Using sizzix autumn gatherings die, cut out a selection of leaves from coloured papers. Dab them with yet more pumice stone ink and add fine lines of glue to some of them. Sprinkle with ultra fine glitter. Now gather everything together and start to assemble your card.

Affix the ribbon about a third of the way up from the bottom attaching it to the wrong side if your card with plain white labels so it is fairly discrete.
Add the hedgehog picture with double sided tape followed by the leaves and acorns in the corners.

Finally add the happy birthday sentiment and a large button. Add glossy accents to the snail shell and the happy birthday sentiment to set them off.

I'd like to submit this card to the following challenges;
Penny black at all sorts
Sir stamp a lot stamping sensations

Sunday, 25 October 2015

A nostalgic craft barn card

I've made this card as a farewell to the craft barn shop who sadly closed its doors for the final time this week. I have many fond memories of trips to the craft barn with my mum, particulary in its earlier days at the site in Lingfield.

To the best of my memory, the penny black stamp used here is the first I ever bought at the craft barn. Now it is time to say farewell, and all the best!!

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Of mice and mushrooms

I thought I'd take a moment to share with you the anniversary card I have made for my husband. Although it's a little girly, he is a keen forager so the mushroom with the mice on top seemed fitting enough.

It's a relatively simple make, I stamped the image using black versa colour ink and coloured it with pro markers. I matted and mounted the image using coordinating autumnal coloured papers and added the ribbon to finish off, sticking it down with double sided tape.

I'd like to enter the card in to the following challenges;

My time to craft
Penny black and more
Stamping sensations

Sunday, 18 October 2015

A Christmas Candle

Having been spurred on by my last attempt, today I had another go at making a candle by transferring stamped ink images. I'm really pleased with the result this time. Here's what I did.

Firstly I measured and cut a piece of white tissue to the same size as the candle. I then inked up a selection of stamps with black Staze on and stamped this scene. The stamps are all from the card-io collections range.

I then masked the bottom of the design with a piece of torn paper, and inked the top with Atlantic versa ink. I added in the winter sun using canary and camellia versa inks. When I removed the mask it gave the impression of fresh white snow on the ground.

 I then wrapped it tightly around the the candle, and then wrapped the whole thing in greaseproof paper. Being careful not to burn myself (!!!) I used a heat gun to gently heat all areas of the candle until the tissue paper had transferred. Being such a large design, this time I had to re wrap it in the greaseproof several times in order to heat all areas without burning my fingers!

I finished up by adding some crystal stickles for extra sparkle. Hope you like it! 

This is my final entry in to the Craft barn light challenge for this week - phew, just in time!

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Design your own candle

I've been meaning to have a go at this project for a long time having seen tips elsewhere on the internet. This weeks craft barn challenge 'light' was the perfect incentive.

Here's how it's done;

You'll need
A large pillar candle
White tissue paper
Permanent ink (such as Staze on)
Permanent markers (such as sharpies)
Stamps (I used little Claire's butterfly tree set)
Liquid pearls
Heat gun
Grease proof paper/ baking parchment

First stamp your image on to a piece of plain tissue paper. (In the absence of this I had to use the lacy effect one but I don't think it mattered)

Using permanent markers colour your stamped image. Make sure you put down some paper to protect your work surface as the ink bleeds through the tissue.

Carefully cut around your coloured image as closely to the picture as possible. Place the cut images in your chosen locations.
Wrap the candle with the pictures in a piece of greaseproof paper and hold securely. Heat using a heat gun for about 30-40 seconds to allow the tissue to melt in to the wax a little. When it has done this the colour shows through the paper more strongly. Unwrap the candle. If there are any parts of the paper that haven't stuck to the candle, re wrap and gently heat again.

Now all that's left to do is to add details using liquid pearls.

Now you're ready to light your candle and enjoy!

Thank you to the team at The craft barn for inspiring me to finally have a go at this. Who knows, perhaps it will be candles for Christmas all round this year?!

Monday, 12 October 2015

Bunnies in the Autumn Light

I've made a rather hasty card this week after the arrival of my new card-io stamps (the tree set) I fancied having a go at some of the Autumn challenges that have been posted recently so tried to combine the two. I have to admit, orange is pretty far down on my list of colours that I use regularly (so much so that the little fabrico tangerine ink pad I used for this card was still in its cellophane wrapping!)

Anyway, it's good to push out of your comfort zone once in a while and so this encouraged me to do so.

I first inked the autumnal sunset background using versa colour camellia and canary, as well as the tangerine fabrico ink pad. I added in the cardio trees with a few remaining autumn leaves.

Next I used a torn sheet of paper as a mask and inked with an ancient 'evergreen' versa colour pad to make the lighter green band. Having re-positioned the mask lower down I inked a second band of versa colour green in front.

I used cardio bunny stamps in the foreground, again using the torn paper mask to give the impression that the bunny was popping up from behind something.

Finally I bordered the card with a fine line of golden rod stickles glitter.

I'd like to enter this card in to the following challenges;
Sir Stampalot -colours of autumn
Penny Black and More - warm autumn colours
Allsorts - no designer paper
My time to craft - autumnal colours
Less is more - one layer only
The Craft Barn - Light (although I still have another project up my sleeve for this one... maybe!)

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Free hand machine embroidery doorstop

This week I have been making a doorstop for my pal as a house warming present. I got the idea from a Poppy Treffry book called 'free and easy stitch style.'
I would thoroughly recommend the book but in case you're feeling really adventurous, here's a basic outline of what I did.

Products used;
60cm x 20cm base fabric (seaside spot by Clark and clark)
2x 15cm x 15cm square or fabric for top and base
20cm x 7.5cm strip of fabric for the handle
Various scraps of haberdashery fabric for your applique. Mine included Cath Kidston pale blue stars, Cath Kidston floral,  more Clark and Clark, some bits and pieces I received in a starter kit from Poppy Treffry and a whole host of anonymous scraps!
Strong cotton thread in various colours (mine was Cath Kidston)

You will also need a sewing machine with the feed dogs lowered, covered or removed.

Choose a length of fabric to be your main background 20cm x 60cm. Fold it in half and in half again then open out to reveal four sections. Choose a design for each section, select fabrics and cut them out laying them on the base as you go.

Cut down the fold marks of your base fabric separating it in to four sections. Using the freehand machine embroidery technique, applique your design to the base fabric. 

In true Poppy Treffry style, I use my lovely old singer for the free machining. I had my husband remove the feed dogs altogether from it as this is pretty much all I use it for, but you can just lower them or cover them in order to move your fabric about freely.

Once your applique is complete, place the fabric right sides together and stitch down the edges to create a sort of inside out box. Leave about a centimetre at the top and bottom to make it easier to attach the base and  'lid' to your box.
You'll notice from the picture that I have switched to a more modern sewing machine. This isn't necessary but it is quicker!

Make a handle for your doorstop. Cut a strip of fabric 7.5cm x 20cm. Fold a little hem in on the ends, then fold in half lengthways . Press to make a fold mark then open out again.

Fold the outer edges in to meet in the middle, then fold the whole thing in half lengthways again to encase all the raw edges. Stitch around all four edges of your handle.

Attach the handle securely to a square of 15 cm x 15cm fabric that will form the top of the doorstop.

With right sides still facing, stitch the base fabric on to the bottom of the doorstop,  and stitch three sides of the top fabric to the top of the doorstop. (handle facing in) 

Now turn the whole thing the right way around and check that you are happy so far. ( I discovered a small hole on one of the corners of mine which I was able to rectify at this point before it was too late!)

Place a plastic bag with no holes inside your doorstop.(A sandwich bag or pedal bin liner work well) Fill with sand or rice and seal. Stitch closed the final edge of the doorstop. I did this by hand as it is now quite tricky to get under the machine.


Place your finished doorstop in situ or wrap and give to a friend as a charming house warming present!

I hope you have enjoyed this s tutorial, if you have any comments or questions please feel free to post them below - I'd love to hear what you think.