Saturday, 4 May 2019

Circles... well just one!

For the Christmas Challenge at Happy Little Stampers this month, the optional twist is to have circles somewhere or other!

I cut a circle from my front panel and looked through my stash of left over  backgrounds for something to put behind it. I came across this scrap of smooshed background which was just about large enough to put behind the aperture and the die cut trees. I played around with the die cut hillside of trees to see which part would look best in the space!
I decided on Gold for the sentiment to reflect a little of the gold glimmer in the background smooshing.
As always, I manipulated the front panel die by extending the cut a little in order to fit British card dimensions!  It's from a Simon Says Stamp double stitched rectangle set!

I love making Christmas cards year round as it's always great by December to have plenty of cards at hand.  I'm always amazed by how many designs I've forgotten about and  that's always a nice surprise!

Thursday, 2 May 2019

Sentiment Only

The theme for the CAS Challenge at Happy Little Stampers this month is to simply have a sentiment with no other image!

I went for a bold look with a black card base and a gold die cut sentiment from Memory Box. I toyed with the idea of putting a smooshed background behind the circle but then thought that a few tiny stars might just do the job instead!
I think that this might be a design suitable for a chap!
Do join us with your CAS design!

Friday, 19 April 2019

Happy Birthday Handsome


Here is another contribution to the CAS Stencil Challenge.
This time I opted to use translucent embossing paste on dark card stock, with the addition of Gold Glamour Dust.
The stencil is from The Crafter's Workshop.
I thought that the image was a good choice for a chap, which is why I went with this sentiment which was a freebie from a magazine.
The twinkle on this image is really very pretty, but I'm afraid that my photographic expertise isn't sufficient to show it off to its full potential!

Our grandkids have arrived for the weekend so my crafting time is over for the moment!


Queen of Bloggers, Darnell has another Twofer Challenge which this time is Zoo Animals.

I find these challenges really challenging... which is what they should be I guess.
Here I used some super cute images from Neat and Tangled. They give such a fabulously crisp image. I coloured the elephants with alcohol markers and so decided to cut them out because of colour transfer to the back of the card. 
The square card is to welcome a new baby and the rectangular one for an occasion such as Mother's Day or birthday... where the sentiment is computer generated. It looks to me as though either elephant could be speaking to the other!
The cut outs are mounted on dimensional pads after having finished the edges with an embossing tool to give a more softened look.
Here a little die cutting has been used. Welcome and balloon from Paper Smooches, thread from Memory Box and slatted heart from SSS.
We are just waiting for 2 of our grandkids to come back for the Easter Weekend and tomorrow we're hoping that we can join with the third one for the day! I love seeing them all together!

Monday, 15 April 2019


My granddaughter said that I was awesome!
This last week we've had two of our grandkids staying with us for the first week of their Easter break.
At this time of year various National Trust properties hold Easter trails sponsored by Cadbury's Chocolate who provide Easter Eggs as prizes.  
We have done many trails this week! 
Granny is suitably exhausted, but with the amount of chocolate on tap you can see why I was thought to be awesome! It was however great fun! For the last one we did, we were joined by my littlest granddaughter Cleo and the three cousins all had great fun together!
Now to my card. It 's an Art Impressions stamp with a computer generated sentiment. I coloured it very gently so as not to show through on the inside of the card!
It's for the challenge at Addicted to CAS

Addicted to Stamps and More  - Anything Goes

Sunday, 7 April 2019

Me my elf and I

Challenged once again by CAS Christmas Challenge I had to find an Elf!

I knew I had one somewhere... just one... however it took a while to find it, so during the process I popped over to Bugaboo Stamps and purchased this digi image of a seated Elf! I think it's quite a cutie.
I made the card with the elf I'd rummaged for in my stash, but thought I might try again... see that card below!
SO I began to work on the Bugaboo image (above)!
However once coloured he had to have something to sit on and a host of ideas came to mind, but none was particularly exciting. Then I decided to see if he could sit on an embossed something or other. I was thinking of a wall and tried that but was more pleased with this section of music manuscript.
SO I cut him out, sat him on it and added the sentiment from Paper Smooches.
One less card to make in the run up to Christmas!
I don't know the origin of this elf but it's a stiff plastic stamp and stamping a fine line is quite difficult. The sentiment is from MFT but sadly the spelling of favourite is wrong for a British recipient, so one of my buddies from across the pond may see this one coming their way

Friday, 5 April 2019

Birthday Butterfly

The theme this month at CAS Stencil is to use Embossing Paste. These challenges are SO good for me as they make me use techniques sometimes forgotten, sometimes new and sometimes ones which need a little refining of my technique (to put it politely).  Actually some need a lot of practice!
The first pot of embossing paste I picked out of my stash ... I couldn't open... it was totally stuck, probably due to the fact that it wasn't cleaned up properly before closing the last time I used it!
Anyway I digress!
For this card I cut a stencil out of vellum from a Memory Box die, through which I applied some Sweet Poppy Pearl White Embossing Paste. It was quite pretty as it was but I thought that a tiny sprinkle of Gold Glamour Dust over it would make it even prettier, which I think it did!
Using vellum as a stencil is great as there is no clean up involved... I just throw it away when I'm done!
I cut a berry spray from vellum which I just popped onto the paste whilst it was still wet. The butterfly, from Cutplorations was cut from white card and the top layer glued and sprinkled with the same gold  Glamour Dust. I had though that it might look a little too fussy but I liked the effect as the gold twinkle is so delicate.
I treated the sentiment in the same way but thought it looked a little tacky, so I added another layer in plain white card over the top. A tiny bit of the gold peeks out which looks really nice IRL. 
Sadly I don't remember where the sentiment die came from!

This coming week we will be having 2 of our grandchildren staying with us as it is the beginning of the Easter holidays! By mid-week all three will be here! What fun!

Thursday, 4 April 2019


Using a stamping platform such as the MISTI makes using watercolour stamps really easy. It means that you can stamp parts of a large stamp such as this one, in small sections and still get it perfectly in place. I used three colours of markers on each berry and a couple of shades on the branch. I was really pleased with the result.
The stamp is from Penny Black and the die cut sentiment from Creative Dies.
I added a little clear Wisp of Stella over each berry although it doesn't show up too clearly on this photo.
This is my DT card for the Christmas Challenge at Happy Little Stampers
Where as ever it's an Anything Goes Challenge with the optional twist of including something linked to nature. 
Making Christmas cards throughout the year saves so much stress as Christmas approaches so do come and join us, it has worked for me!

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

One Layer for Happy Little Stampers

 Sometimes it's a little difficult to give definition to a one layer card, but a simple technique is to dry emboss a frame. Here I used a little pierced rectangle die to surround the Blockhead stamps image. As this is image has no defined edge I think it would look a little odd by itself on a one layer card. I had to emboss from both ends as the die was slighted shorter than the image itself. I coloured the flowers with watercolours as alcohol markers show through to the inside of just one layer.
The sentiment is from Clearly Besotted. I am very fond of combining script and printed fonts for sentiments and this set  does just that. It would be nice to know the name of these fonts so that I could use them on my computer! 
This is my DT card for the CAS challenge at Happy Little Stampers... if you don't often try one layer cards, now might be a good time to have a go!
We would love to see you join us!

Monday, 1 April 2019


Today is my first day back in may craft room after a couple of weeks spent to-ing and fro-ing between here and Bath on granny duties. 
Later today we are going to meet some friends for lunch whom we met on a cruise some time ago (I don't remember exactly how long ago it was). I dressed in the clothes that I will be wearing when we go out and so I didn't want to attempt anything messy in my card making this morning. Hence die-cutting and dry embossing.
I wrote the word 'baby' on my Silhouette, welded the letters and offset them before cutting out in pink for the background and white for the word itself. The heart shaped balloon from Paper Smooches was added to the card on dimensional pads and the string was cut with a thread die from Memory Box.
I decided to add a little twinkle to the pink parts of the card with some Glamour Dust.
I am adding it to the challenges at Addicted to stamps and More - Clean and Simple
AAA Cards - Dry Embossing
Just Us Girls - Photo Inspiration
Dies R Us   Challenge # 118 -Anything Goes - (Paper Smooches & Memory Box Dies )

Each Thursday I look after my youngest grandchild Cleo and I have started taking her to Baby Ballet classes! She loves it! Here she is ready for her class, She doesn't have baggy Nora Batty tights on, they are leggings which she wore over her ballet socks to get to the class...  it was a little chilly that day! Does the expression 'Good toes, Naughty toes' bring back any memories for any of you?

Sunday, 17 March 2019

CAS Christmas

There's still time to join in the fun over at the CAS Christmas Challenge where the theme this time is Deer!

Here I limited the colour palette to just two colours... white and navy. I used a circular die from Simon Says Stamp and added a backdrop piece of card coloured with Chipped Sapphire Distress ink applied via Sheena Douglass's Snow Embossing Folder. I inked the inside, flat side of the folder and ran the card through my Big Shot.
The sentiment from Cutplorations and the stag from Sizzix (which I have since misplaced Grrrrrr!) were simply layered and added to the front of the card.

It's such a good idea to prepare Christmas cards at leisure throughout the year, as for many years I've had a mad scramble to get enough cards made at the last minute.
Hopefully it will work well again this year!

Many thanks once more to the team at CAS Christmas for this wonderful invitation to join them!

Spring Flowers

It's always a little tricky when colouring a one layer card, as it looks horrid if the colour transfers to the inside of the card, which is why I have used watercolour here. Some times I use watercolour pencils and a brush and sometimes I use paints... here I used a combination of the two. I wasn't too pleased with the colours I had used from the pencils so I added a little warmth from the colours in my little paintbox.
The stamps are from Penny Black.
There's something a little odd about the bucket... There's a line around the back of the flowers which I think is supposed to be the rear  rim of the bucket, but the perspective is all wrong to my eye, so I ignored adding colour to the inside of the bucket as I thought that it would accentuate this anomaly!
The Paper Players - One Layer
Crazy for CAS - Watercolour
Addicted to stamps and More - Make your mark
Ike's World - Clean and Simple
Papercraft Challenges - Clean and Simple


It's a while since I used a digi image for one of my cards, but this is a favourite of mine from Fred She Said, Spring flowers are so delicate looking and these tiny snowdrops look beautiful. It's simply water coloured with a dash of Glamour Dust added to the petals. The sentiment was computer generated using Andalus and Alex Brush fonts. The front panel was cut with a Creative Dies die.
Mother's Day is celebrated in March in the UK unlike the US where it takes place in May. I have many friends from my choir who are particular about calling the special day "Mothering Sunday". It refers back to the time when servants in large houses were allowed to return home for one special day to visit and take a small gift to their mothers. Normally their work work be seven days per week!
Working in service is far less popular these days, as most of the help we have in our homes comes via other means...central heating, dishwashers, washing machines and dryers etc!
Back in the day, I think I would have been the one scrubbing the floors rather than having them scrubbed for me!
AAA Cards - Spring
Krafty Chicks - Shades of green
ElliBelles Corner - Think Spring... add some Green
Always fun Challenge - Add some Green
Addicted to CAS - Green

Friday, 15 March 2019


It's difficult to see from this picture but the ink of the sentiment and the ribbon are in a deep shade of purple... chosen to tie in with the lilac of the spotty paper. Just about everything in this card has been in my craft room for years. When I first started crafting, I used lots of papers. some of which I printed myself as here. This is from the remains of a sheet from Pink Petticoat.It was curled up at the edges and stained with ink in places but for a couple of die cuts it looks pretty good. The ribbon has been sculling around for years and I think it actually came from a box of chocolates. The dies are from Sizzix and the sentiment from Clearly Besotted. The ink used for the sentiment is Concord Crush from Stampin' Up.
I based it on the sketch from Freshly Made Sketches
The Flower Challenge - Anything Goes

Using old dies

I have heaps of stash which simply sits in boxes, files or drawers and rarely sees the light of day. One such is the die which I used to cut the lacy panel on this card.
I store my dies on magnetic sheets in slim plastic box type folders which hold about 8 sheets. They are filed in a variety of ways... Butterflies, Hearts, Babies, Tags & Labels, Foliage, Flowers, Large & Border Dies, Stitched and Pierced dies, Creatures, Sentiments, Alphabets.. I could go on, I must have thousands of dies!!!
What I was looking for today was a die which cut a pattern in a front panel without cutting it completely apart. This is what I found and I'm afraid I no idea of its origin and I can't even remember if I've used it before. Anyway I think it looks quite pretty, however as it is quite intricate I found it difficult to find something to complement it! This little bunch of hearts stems from Impression Obsession  ( I scribbled the make on the back of the die with a Sharpie during a moment of enlightenment) seems to fit reasonably.
The sentiment is from Clearly Besotted I believe. I usually write the make of sheets of clear stamps on the carrier sheets if the manufacturers haven't already done so.
Foolishly I assembled the card before adding the sentiment, but as I had used strips of dimensional pads to elevate the front panel a little instead of just dots, I managed to stamp the sentiment is my MISTI.

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

More vellum

I have to say that the CAS Challenges managed by Loll and Bonnie, certainly do just that... challenge! However there is so much inspiration together with links to videos to help with new techniques that it really is a terrific place to have fun!
This is another attempt for their watercolour challenge, which is to use watercolour on vellum.
In the first card I entered, I coloured on the back of the vellum, this time I coloured on the front.
This is from an old wood mounted stamp from Magenta. It had been sitting in a drawer for quite some time and when I first stamped it, part of the image was missing,  I guess it had got a little squashed. So to be able to double or triple stamp in order to ensure I got a good image, I decided to take it off the block to use in my MISTI. After a few seconds in the microwave it came off easily and in the MISTI worked beautifully. I embossed it in gold and coloured using the little box of paints which I bought for the art class on my last cruise.

I think the sentiment is from Clearly Besotted. It was quite a game trying to find stitched dies to cut out the sentiment. Having done the white piece of card, I wanted a really slim surround in the black card. With a little trial and error and a bit of jiggling to reduce the size of the second die cut, I managed to get the effect I wanted.


A funny thing happened on my blog the other day!
When I first set up my blog many moons ago, I added a gadget on my sidebar called Crafty Blogs. It gives you an idea of the amount of traffic visiting your blog. (lots of people visit to have a look  but don't leave comments, so you don't actually know they've been around.
It appears that my blog is usually fairly well visited and the number appearing on the gadget is usually between about 60 and 90. (Number 1 being the most popular of all) Not bad considering the number of blogs there are around!
The other day however the number was 287 or something like that! I find it really hard to understand how that drastic fall in popularity could happen overnight. Since then the number has been gradually climbing until it is now round about back to where it historically had  been.
Has anyone else had something similar happen?
What would be even better is if visitors could drop me a comment to say they have been and what they think of my cards!!
Anyway to get back to this one.
I based it on the sketch from CAS Colours and Sketches
I used the Ghosting technique with a Stamplorations Stencil on the pennant, adding a die cut  and water coloured foliage spray from Sizzix. The sentiment is from Personal impressions. The two pennants were cut with MFT pierced dies.

I guess that quite a lot of the earth is coloured with various greens!
Sunday Stamps

Monday, 11 March 2019


There's something about monochrome cards which I find rather pleasing. This is simplicity itself. I stamped an Impression Background Manuscript stamp in Soft Slate, to pop a section behind this circular aperture. I cut the flower dies in two shades of card and inserted the cut outs of the grey card into the white frames, Just for the heck of it I put just one white insert into the larger flower. Actually I couldn't find the grey bit amongst all the detritus on the floor and on my desk, I could easily have cut another but in fact I quite like the look. The sentiment is from Personal Impressions, stamped with a slightly darker grey than the background stamp (to give a little more definition) and cut with an extended  pennant die, with the tails cut off one end.
Just us Girls - Use a Background Stamp
The Flower Challenge - Anything Goes