Sunday, 26 March 2017

Workshop weekend .......

Happy Sunday folks .....

And a very Happy Mother's Day to all you lovely mums out there

We got the weekend off to a great start yesterday with a lovely workshop with all my crafty buddies.
We were creating pretty designs using die cuts.
From beautiful floral cards with hidden messages (a very popular technique at the moment)

A really pretty CAS design where the die cut is the focal point on the card .......

And then, using die cuts to give a faux embossed look

The hidden messages are a really lovely way to use word dies ..... simply stamp your design onto a piece of white card .....  colour it using your favourite inks, pens or pencils and then die cut your word from the coloured image
I used Zig Clean Color pens to colour my stamped images ...... the pretty Dahlia from the Wplus9 Beautiful Bouquet range ......

 and the Ranunculus

Love these stamps ..... they're a great size and so easy to colour

I then die cut the word from the coloured image, and twice again from plain white card, this is so I can layer them and add a touch of dimension

Inlay one of the white die cuts back into the coloured image, and add in all the bits that you would normally throw away from the coloured die cut ....... bits like the centres of the letters and the gaps in between ...... does that make sense.  You want to create a complete bottom layer so that when you add the final coloured die cut word the picture looks complete (no white gaps), giving you this hidden or camouflaged look as it's sometimes called

I added a few splatters of ink here and there and the odd sequin ......

You can even add in stamped greetings too .......

The next design is really simple, however you do need larger dies for this depending on the size of your finished card.

So CAS ...... die cut the word from the centre of a piece of white card, and again from a couple more pieces.  Inlay and layer the plain white ones and then stamp a design on the top layer before adding that.  Choose a stamp that's quite detailed, or a small image so that you can cover most of the letters

I used an old SU stamp for the Hello, that unfortunately has now been retired and .... I used the new Distress Oxide inks to stamp with ...... love them!!!

Love these dots too ..... a great background stamp from Tim Holtz, stamped using Worn Lipstick Distress Oxide

Add in a bit of stamping to complete your greeting and the jobs done .......

And then to finish the afternoon we created a faux embossed look ..... using word dies again and numbers

Simply die cut the word from the same colour cardstock as your base card and attach across the card. Go over the edge with some to give a more random look.

Die cut the word again, this time from coloured card and layer over the top of one of the white ones to give a bit more dimension to it

Another option would be to colour one of the white ones using your inks or pens, the choice is yours. I've added a layer of Glossy Accents to mine to add a touch of shine, and I've stamped in the rest of the sentiment

Numbers are another great option for this technique ....... individual letters would look good too

I've die cut the 30 from the black card, and added a piece of pink behind

Stamped and embossed the sentiment underneath ...... and then used random numbers across the top of the card

You could do this design for any age ..... it doesn't only have to be for special birthdays, it could even be used for an anniversary.

Why not use your dies to cut fancy edges on your cards ......

These were cut using label dies from Spellbinders ........ place your piece of card through the die so that only one edge will cut and then run this through your machine over the cutting edge ONLY, don't run the whole thing through as you'll mark your card with the other side of the die and you don't want that.

Oh well, my little crafty break is over ..... back to normal next week will all next month's blog challenges to prepare for and lots of DT projects to do.  Good job I've got my new camera sorted .... or have I!?  It's not been easy trying to find a replacement for my broken one, buts that's another story.

Thanks for popping by .... enjoy the rest of your day.
I'd better get a move on, the family is coming round later ...... we're having the first family Sunday lunch in the new house and Lauren's helping me cook it!

Cheerio until next time

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

I'm back in the land of Blog .......

Happy Wednesday to you .....

I can't  believe we're halfway through March already, and I haven't blogged since the last day of Feb ........ how bad is that!!! So ........ I think it's about time I did, don't you!

Where do I start ....... well, the new craft room is almost sorted but I haven't spent that much time in there yet.  It's lovely up there, especially with this nice weather that we've been having the past few days.  I just need to remember where I've put everything now, and what to do with it all!!  And ..... I need to find the box that my mojo is still hiding in!! Getting back into the creative frame of mind is proving a little harder than I thought ..... but we'll get there!  I will take some pictures for you too ...... just as soon as I sort out a new camera!  
Yes not only did my phone have a little accident during the house move ..... the camera copped it too!!  Not having much luck recently am I!      
It's funny I was only saying a few weeks ago I think it might be time for a new camera ..... I just hadn't planned on it being so soon.

I haven't done much at all in the craft room since moving in ...... a few 'We have moved' cards for the family, tried a couple of new stamps out, cut a few dies with my new Big Shot ..... and played around with an old stencil I came across on the next pages in my journal.
Oh yes .... I haven't given up on the whole Creative Journaling 365 project, it's just that moving house got in the way a little bit!  

Here's the last couple of pages I did .... and took pictures of ....... before we moved!

I love using this technique .... it's something that I saw the lovely Hels Sheridan use some time ago called ....... paper blocking.  
It's basically using pieces of paper cut into different sized squares and rectangles and then randomly pieced together to cover your project ......

I used some left over bits of scrapbooking papers that I found in my stash ..... not sure which range they were from but I just love the vintage images and the neutral colours mixed with the statement black.

I covered both pages with the pieces, overlapping each piece as I went along and also mixing up the designs for a little bit more interest.   I then dry brushed over the top of some with a little watered down white gesso and sponged some around the edges

I added in some words ....... again this was cut from another 12x12 scrapbooking sheet and I'm sorry but I'm not sure which range, it might have been one from Kaisercraft but I'm really not sure

To finish off I added in some colour around the edges by sponging on some co-ordinating Distress Ink, and then I added in a few little accent pieces ..... punched from more scraps

Well that's pages 21 and 22 done  ....... will I catch up and get to 365, who knows.  It's going to be fun trying though.  Mojo please come home ...... I NEED you!

So .... what else has been going on.  Well .... Lauren and Robbie have got engaged, congratulations there ....... party to follow (not that we need an excuse!)  
We had our first guests round to the house at the weekend ...... good food, nice wine and great company.  I'm getting used to the induction hob that's in the new kitchen ...... not made my mind up whether I like it or not yet, but I do love my new saute pan that I had to buy to use on it, because the one I had wasn't compatible! (always happy to buy new pans ..... that's another little hobby of mine!)
I had a birthday ...... doesn't seem 5 minutes since the last one!  
I had a lovely weekend with family and friends.  Again, too much good food, far too much nice wine, but the best company. Thanks to all of you who sent birthday wishes and gorgeous cards ........ I love them all.
Oh! and we've booked the family holiday .... no Cotswolds this year, we're going on a boat!

We'll be cruising on this 'little' baby ........ along the Norfolk Broads.  Ahoy there matey!
It's a first for us, but something that hubby has wanted to do for a while. It should be a nice relaxing week.

Thanks for popping by ....... well, I hope you're still popping by, and that you haven't deserted me. A more regular service will resume very shortly .... promise!

Enjoy the rest of your day ...... and I'll see you again soon.

Cheerio until next time ........ 

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Guest Designer on the HLS Watercolour Challenge

Happy Tuesday evening to you …….

I'm back in the world of technology .... whoo hoo!!! 
Just in case you’re wondering where I’ve been …… no I haven’t been on some exotic holiday, not even a little trip across to the UK.  The reason I’ve been AWOL is …….. we’ve been moving house!
We’re still not fully sorted in the new place yet, but we’re getting there.

I'm so glad our internet is finally up and running ...... and just in the nick of time too.
It's the start of the Happy Little Stampers Watercolour Challenge for the month of March and guess what ........ I’m Guest Designer! 
Thank you so much ladies for inviting me along ..... so happy to be joining in the fun.

The theme is Anything Goes with an optional twist …… and for March that twist is ....... SMOOSH!
I do love a good smoosh …… and for my GD piece I’ve used the acetate smooshing technique .....

I applied some regular Distress Inks directly onto a craft sheet and then spritzed them with a little water.  I say ‘regular Distress’ because guess what’s waiting in my new craft room?  Yep!  The brand new Distress Oxide’s!!!  All 12 colours, plus the re-inkers ….. excited or what!  I need to get the craft room sorted before I can play though!

I used a piece of acetate to pick up some of the colour and then smooshed the ink onto a piece of white card.  This is such a fun technique, and a great way to create colourful backgrounds.  No two will ever be exactly the same.

I repeated the technique a couple of times until I liked the look of the background …….. note, each time I used a different colour of ink I dried off the previous one first,so as not to mix the colours too much.  I didn’t want to end up with a muddy mess!
Once it was all dry I used the HLS Doodled Flowers and stamped the flowers using a Black Versafine ink.

At this point if you wanted more colour on the flowers you could always go in with your Distress Ink and a paintbrush, or even use pens or pencils over the top.   I chose to leave things as they were and let the smooshed background show through.

I drew in the stems by hand with a black fine liner pen and added a few leaves from the Doodled Flowers stamp set …….. they’ve been coloured  using Distress Inks

The sentiment is made up of ……  ‘Happy’ from the Bold Birthday Sentiments stamp set, stamped in a pink Memento ink.  I did use my MISTI for this to get a nice even coverage, and then I added the ‘Birthday’ part from the Butterfly Birthday set, stamped in the black

I couldn’t leave the inside blank now could I ……. 

Acetate smooshed again using the same colours of Distress and finished with another sentiment from HLS Butterfly Birthday set 

Hope you like it. 

Check out the HLS Blog for more fabulous smooshing inspiration from the rest of the Design Team.   You’ll also find links on there to some great videos and demos of more smooshing techniques.

Don’t forget, as with all the HLS Challenges there’s a prize up for grabs.  The challenge winner will receive a $15 discount voucher to spend in the HLS store ……. So get smooshing!!

As the old craft room isn’t fully up and running yet at the new house I won’t be joining in with all my regular DT commitments/challenges throughout March (sigh!)  
I'll still be keeping an eye on things though, visiting all the various challenge entries and leaving comments for you lovely people who take the time to join in,  so I won’t miss anything.  
It just gives me time to settle into my new craft room properly and then normal service will resume at the beginning of April ....... I promise.  You'll hear from me again before then though.

As I said we've been busy moving house ..... always fun!  We haven’t moved far, and we’re settling in nicely. We're finally in a place for just hubby and I ..... both kids have flown the nest (again!) and we're back to just the two of us.  It’s quiet, but it's already beginning to look, and feel like home. 
There's still a few things to sort out though .   The telephone and internet finally got connected today (thank goodness!) so that's one thing off the list.  Sky TV hasn’t done their bit yet (good thing we have plenty of Blu-rays to watch) and my mobile phone is out of action ..... talk about feeling cut off!!!  It had a little accident during the move …….. it came into contact with water (ooops!)  So now it’s with the local gadget guy and is hopefully being fixed ….. if not,  guess what my birthday present will be at the weekend ..... yep .... a new phone! 

The new craft room is coming along though .... slowly!  I’m up on the top floor this time, with a sea view.  How much I'll get done up there remains to be seen.  All I've done so far in between the unpacking is drink my coffee and stare out to sea! 
Once it’s all sorted I will share some pictures with you. 

Thanks for popping by .... enjoy the rest of your day.
Cheerio until next time ......

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Party Time .........

Happy Thursday .......

Well today's the day ......... we're moving!!
All the furniture is finally going to the new place ..... I can't wait until we're all settled in.
By the time you read this I'm hoping that the bulk of it's done .... and I'm busy unpacking boxes.

 I've got a quick reminder for you of this month's STAMPlorations CAS Card Challenge ........

It's Anything Goes ..... anything CAS that is, with the optional colour twist .... HOT PINK!

I've gone all girly today with a collection of pretty party dresses ..... one of the stamps from the STAMPlorations Party Girl

I stamped the first dress in the centre using a pink Memento ink, made a mask and covered the image then stamped the dress again either side, this time with Black Versafine ink

I added in the hangers, from the same stamp set and then coloured the centre dress with Picked Raspberry Distress ink
I added a touch of glitter glue to give it some sparkle ....... well, a party dress always needs a little sparkle I think ....

I then finished off with a couple of sentiments from the STAMPlorations Party Time! ..... one on the outside

and a little something on the inside too .........

Check out more fabulous inspiration for this month's challenge from the rest of the Design Team over on the STAMPlorations CAS Card Challenge Blog

Thanks for popping by .... enjoy the rest of your day.
Hopefully I'm disappearing under a pile of empty boxes by now ..... putting everything back in it's place.  Let's hope nothing's got broken!

Cheerio until next time
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