Saturday 21 December 2013

LIM Pick a Challenge!

At Less is More the challenge for the next two weeks is to simply pick a favourite challenge from any of the 150 previous challenges as a theme for your card.
Here I used week 107 Up in the Air.
It's simply a seagull cut using my Silhouette and mounted over a dark cardstock. The sentiment is from Paper Smooches.
Week 147 here... a Christmas card incorporating a bird. This cardinal is made from the SU punch using a second 'wing' section to create the crest. The wreath stamps are from Cardio.
It could also be for Week 146 to use Designer paper in a CAS way.
I prefer how I have shaded the cardinal on this one, The dies used were from Memory Box. The sentiment is from Penny Black.
Here is Week 140 White on White Christmas!
A Penny Black die-cut teamed with a Stampin' Up sentiment. 
We hope that everyone will have fun choosing their favourite challenges for this one... enough to fill in any spare moment over the Christmas period.
DO have a happy one!

Sunday 15 December 2013

Ruby Anniversary

Photo: We were treated to a wonderful surprise party for our Ruby Anniversary! Thanks so much to our terrific kids Libby and David for organising it. It was a marvellous way to celebrate with dear family and friends. Thanks everyone!
Today is our Ruby Wedding Anniversary and we were thrilled  by a surprise party organised by our two wonderful kids. It was shared by friends and family, some of whom had travelled some distance to be there. What a joy it was to be surrounded by these wonderful people...we are indeed blessed!
Our daughter is just peeking over my shoulder, she really kept this one quiet!
Thank you everyone!

Saturday 14 December 2013

Happy Anniversary

Tomorrow is my 40th Wedding Anniversary! What a milestone..and I have a new stone too.. a very pretty ruby ring to mark the occasion!
This was what made me think of the first card for the Less is More Challenge this week... the subject is the Twelve Days of Christmas and it also has to be a One Layer Card.
The stamps are from Inky Doodles, I think they're so cute. Actually I will be giving this one to some friends whose anniversary is a couple of days after ours and with whom we usually have a celebratory meal each year.
This one uses the Penny Black's Transparent set of the Twelve Days of Christmas. The images are such fun!
My Christmas tree has been used for most of the 40 years of our marriage... this is in fact its 37th year. It was bought in 1976, in Alexandria, Virginia, when we were living there and has been used every Christmas since then. I think that rates value for money!
Here it is!

There are a few new ornaments on it this year, a little ceramic bell from Finland, a cuckoo clock and a wooden Christmas tree from Germany and a little warrior from Estonia. I write the year and the place where they were bought on each one and have a great time each Christmas taking them out and remembering many lovely holidays! 
Santa's chair is waiting for him beside the cocktail cabinet... he may just want a wee dram when he comes... I guess my husband could always drink it for him if he doesn't want to be tiddly in charge of reindeer!
Have a good week!

Craft Stamper Blog Challenge

There 's a new challenge over at the Craft Stamper Magazine Blog.
This time it's to use the OMBRE technique. I believe that this means a gradual change of colour throughout the card. I chose to work with shades of grey.
The stamps are from Penny Black.
I merely masked a section of the card and then clear embossed the flowers before adding areas of colour using both sponge daubers and ink duster brushes.
When I was happy with the shading, I shadow stamped the image again using a deep grey. To add just a little interest I stamped some splatters from the SU Gorgeous Grunge set in white and shades of grey.
I removed any ink from the white flowers with a tissue to allow the colour to pop.
The sentiment completed the card.
Why not give this challenge a try!

Sunday 8 December 2013


Here is a set of cards made really quickly using my Silhouette and some free cutting files from Birds Cards.
Simple stamped and silver embossed sentiments from Stampin' Up and a touch of bling added to snowflakes cut from silver textured paper.
 Easy Peasy!
Addicted to CAS Snowflakes

We're off to sing carols soon, so I'd better get my skates on!

Saturday 7 December 2013

A touch of metallic!

Sometimes it's the simplest of cards which I find the most pleasing! This one took only moments to make and yet I find this kind of design really satisfying... a couple of die-cuts and a sentiment on a raised panel!
The colour challenge at "Less is More " is for something metallic plus one other colour. The metallic elements here are a scrap of gold mirri card and some gold embossing.
It's also for
CASual Friday - Out on a limb

The gold embossed sentiment doesn't show up well on this card, but I really like the mix of gold and the kraft elements  here. I love my new jingle bell die from Memory box,  it means I can have the look of them without the bulk of real jingle bell charms.
It would have been better if the sentiment was stamped on the same piece of card as the wreath in this one, but I didn't think about using a sentiment in that position until I had added the embellishments, so by I then couldn't fit the wood mounted stamp accurately in the centre... you know the rest!

I was called to Bath to look after my grandson who has developed chicken pox for a second time. He had a very mild version some weeks ago and the doctor warned that he might get it a second time. He's really covered this time. Poor little chap.
Tomorrow we will be singing carols at a local Victorian farm in Upper Hamble country park. It was the venue for the Wartime Farm, a TV series which was broadcast last year. The group of singers, who are all friends will be coming back to me for lunch, so today I shall be doing a lot of preparation for that!
I hope everyone has a great weekend.

Saturday 30 November 2013

Shaped card!

Here is a little scottie dog cut with my Silhouette. I got the file from somewhere on the Internet and then somehow managed to convert it to a Silhouette file, more by luck than judgement. I don't think it's absolutely perfect but I'm gradually getting used to understanding more about the machine!
The coat was made with die cuts.
Paper Players have the challenge for a shaped card this time! I think this fits the bill!

PS Missed the deadline... what a plonker!


CASology this time has the code word SHOP!

I made this card for a friend who is an expert in this field!
It's a Bugaboo digi stamp, coloured with Spectrum Noir pens. The sentiment was computer generated.

I had a good Christmas shopping session this week at the outlet in Swindon, I did worry whether I would get there, as for some time I was stuck on a piece of dual carriageway between two roundabouts, unable to go forward because of a three car accident and with the opposite lane blocked by a double decker bus which had tried to cross the median and got stuck in the boggy ground, blocking the central reservation and the other lane. Needless to say eventually we sorted ourselves out and with a lot of criss-crossing of the median, managed to escape!

Twinkle, twinkle

I really enjoy messing about with Post It notes, ink pads and sponge daubers. I also particularly love this delicate tree stamp which I bought recently at the NEC. It's from Poppy Stamps.
The inks are Distress Inks in Stormy Sky, Weathered Wood and Iced Spruce, with just a touch of Glamour Dust. The sentiment is computer generated.
This one was made from an off cut of one of my inky sessions, but I rather liked it as it is and so made another card out of it!
Sorry for this dreadful picture, I may try to take another. It employs the same stamp, this time heat embossed with WOW Vintage Jade embossing glitter. It's beautifully twinkly IRL! The sentiment is from LOTV.

Since buying my Silhouette Portrait cutting machine, I have been delighted with the things that can be done with it....making me wonder why I didn't get one sooner. There is a site called Bird's Cards where there are heaps of fabulous free cutting files to be had, which was the origin of this pretty little one here.
This was SO quick and easy to make! The little birds are from a Memory Box die.
This one is a commission card and is made using two favourite things... a squished flower background and heaps of Glamour Dust! The butterfly is from Memory Box. The flowers are merely little punchies.
The challenge at Less is More this week is Sparkle, so these are my twinkly cards!
DO join us !

We had progressive dinner party last night. One of our neighbours organises and co-ordinates it. We began next door for the starter with a choice of pears stuffed with walnuts and Roquefort (amongst other things) or Butternut Squash soup. I provided the main course which was Cassoulet, and we went over the road for dessert ...Pecan Pie or Whisky Cream, cheese and coffee. It was all incredibly pleasant and very delicious, but sadly the diet went out of the window for the night!

Tuesday 26 November 2013

Trendy Christmas Colours

At Keep It Simple, there is this vibrant colour inspiration picture!
I decided to match the colours to scraps of card and cut them into strips which I joined together and  from which I cut these dies. They are from Memory Box, a recent acquisition from the NEC.
I also have the negative set of die-cuts, (which actually show off the colours a little more vividly)  which I have made into a another card.
It's rather an odd choice for a Christmas card but I think it's quite fun!
The sentiment is from Stampin' Up.


It feels like winter today, I had a lot of ice to scrape off the car before getting my grandkids off to school and nursery!
I'm looking after them for a few days whilst my daughter is away on a residential course. I know why you have kids when you're young!
This card uses one of my many tree line dies. I think this was bought at the NEC recently, I think it's a Memory Box die and this is just part of it!
CAS on Sunday has the challenge entitled Winter and I think that this fits the bill!
I simply coloured the trees with Copics.
I'm off to do some Christmas shopping now!

Saturday 23 November 2013

Watch the birdie!

SO many birds seem to creep into Christmas cards, that this week we have decided to have the challenge at "Less is More" to be a Christmas card, but with a bird somewhere!
Here is a cute little robin, tired from a spot of tree trimming!
I know that the embossing folder is from Sizzix,, but I'm not sure of the origin of the stamps.
I'm not certain if this little Hero Arts bird was supposed to be a robin . but I decided to make him into one. The British robin is rather different from the American version... ours being much smaller and chubbier than its American cousin which is more the size of a blackbird.

This one is a cardinal maybe? It's not a bird we see in Britain anyway more's the pity. I used to see them on our deck when we lived in Virginia!
Simple card with a Memory Box Die cut tree.
This last one is a total failure, it was one of those 'it seemed a good idea at the time' situations, but I thought I'd post it anyway as it may give someone an idea of how it could be done successfully!
He's a cute penguin anyway... from Stampin' Up.
I hope everyone has fun with this one.

Sunday 17 November 2013

A couple of cards!

I needed a few Anniversary cards for my  sale box at my choir and decided to use die cuts for them. This ginkgo leaf is from an Impression Obsession die. The sentiment is from Tattered Lace and the embossing folder from Stampin' Up.
Easy Peasy!

Sadly neither of these pictures is very good but I hope you get the idea.!
They are for the Anniversary challenge at Addicted to CAS
This is for the Curtain Call challenges at CAS-ual Fridays and Curtain Call Inspiration Challenge!
More die-cutting once more...what would I do without my Cuttlebug!

Saturday 16 November 2013

Designer Paper

The challenge at Less is More this week is to use some Designer Paper in a Clean and Simple way! When I decided that my style in cardmaking was decidedly CAS, I was left with a variety of stack of Designer Paper which tend to get forgotten. The sort I prefer to use, if at all is probably  the sort of monochrome design that Pink Petticoat among other companies, produces.
Here I have just used a strip in a band across the card with a SU bird stamped and cut out. The sentiment is from Hero Arts.
Here I have used Designer paper for paper piecing, matting and for the sentiment (cut with my Silhouette).
I stamped on some DP here, both for the main image and the leaves.
Stamps are from JOFY.

This is nothing to do with the Less is More challenge, but I thought I would share it with you. I bought this fab delicate trees stamp at the NEC. It's from Poppy Stamps and has a matching die, which I obviously didn't use on this occasion. With a little masking and sponging my wintry scene emerged!
I was quite pleased with it... I've made a few cards with this technique! I used Distress inks in Stormy Sky, Weathered Wood and Iced Spruce and added a little Glamour Dust for a touch of sparkle!
The sentiment is from Stampin' Up.
Have a great weekend!

Saturday 9 November 2013

One Layer Thank you!

I love making this type of card. Getting inky is such fun.
I masked a section of card, stamped the flowers in Versamark and then clear embossed. then the other inly colours were added and finally another image stamped in the deepest colour.
I added a few tiny bubble stamps here and there to add a little interest.
I'm not sure that zentangling is for me really... this is my second attempt, the first card was ruined by a smudged sentiment, although I thought that the patterns were slightly better in that one. At the NEC yesterday, I saw that you could buy books on how to zentangle, I felt that I really wasn't very inventive with my patterns, maybe I could do with a few lessons!
I hope to show you a pic of my haul from the show yesterday when I've unpacked it and been reminded of what I bought!

Wednesday 6 November 2013

WOYW 231

I am just back from a mercy mission to Bath where I have been looking after my little granddaughter Daisy, who was suffering with an ear infection! I sometimes wish that my son who is a GP, lived nearer, but then doctors are not supposed to prescribe to family are they... except in emergency! The doctor I took Daisy to see was lovely however and once the anti-biotics had kicked in she began to feel much better.
So here is how my desk looked before I rushed off... work in progress on Advent boxes for Daisy and Seb. I intend making 24 of them, numbering each one for their mummy to hide one per day from December the first, so that the kids can arrange them however they like... to start building a wall or a tower or whatever... once the choccies have been eaten of course. 
I am off to the craft show at the NEC on Friday, it would be nice to say hi to anyone else who may be going on that day... let me know if you are!
This is part of Julia's WOYWW snoop around the desks of the world... do join in if you fancy a nosy!
I lost 3 and a half pounds this week... don't know what I did to manage that, but I'm delighted!

Saturday 2 November 2013

Firework Colours

The challenge at "Less is More " this week is to use colours inspired by fireworks on a dark background.
Here I merely have a strip of black card to surround the inky panel in which I used a little emboss resist and a few bits of stamping over colours applied with sponge daubers. I love playing around with ink like this.
The layout follows the sketch from Seize the Sketch!
To make the contrast of colour for the right hand section, I cut off a piece of the panel and turned it upside down so that the colour would look a little different.
The sentiment is from Hero Arts.
I love this little cardinal. It's the state bird of Virginia, where I lived for three years in the 70's and I have such fond memories of living there. Cardinals would come and feed on the deck at the rear of the house. They were happy days!
I cut the trees with my Silhouette.

This last one is ,my card for Mandi, who began "Less is More with me, in what seems like an age ago and whose birthday it is today!
Happy Birthday Mandi!
The die cuts are from Impression Obsession (heart) and PTI for the sentiment!
I hope everyone has a great weekend.

Saturday 26 October 2013

Stringing along

At 'Less is More' this week the challenge is to use string or twine.
Here are some flowers made from Stampin' Up twine. It's a perfect thickness and texture for this technique.
The roundels are made by sticking pins into a circle of card and weaving the twine round them! If I find the tutorial I followed to make them I will add it to this post.

This is tied into a really flat knot, it's a great embellishment to add to a card for a chap!
Here's another card using the same knot!

 This one has a Stampin' Up image, clear embossed and then inked over the top using Sponge Daubers.
This week we've been staying with  our son and his wife for a few days, it was lovely to see them, we don't get to see them often enough. Bury St Edmunds is quite a journey from here, but in the New Year they'll be moving to the south coast, as David will be joining a practice in Worthing, so that will be wonderful! Hopefully we'll see much more of them!

Thursday 24 October 2013


CASology has the theme 'Country' for their challenge this week.
All sorts of things spring to my mind with that word, but the images on these Lavinia stamps are something which I always associate with somewhere rural!

I simply overlapped the stamping, heat embossing in both silver and gold.
Simplicity itself.