Monday, 14 October 2019

Singing Chicken

Would wouldn't love a singing chicken on their birthday?
This is a simple DT card for the Perfectly CAS challenge, where every entry needs to be just one third or less of the card front used.
The chicken is one of my favourite Penny Black images, coloured with Copic markers; I think these chickens are SO cool!
The sentiment is from LOTV.
Do join in the fun!

Winter Scene

If ever I'm in a rush to make a Christmas card, this sort of design is one of my 'go to' methods of making one in double quick time.
I simply tear a Post it note to give an irregular edge to use as a mask in order to brush a little Distress ink over to create snow hills. I used Weathered Wood. Next I use the same mask over the hills in order to make the trees look as though they are just behind the hills. For the trees I used Iced Spruce Distress Ink. For the deer silhouette I used  a Sizzix die with deep green paper... although it gives the appearance of a silhouette it's not as harsh against the background colours as using black. The sentiment, stamped in a couple of shades of Distress Ink to tone with the scene, and stamps are from Memory Box. I used Framelits and SSS stitched dies for the mounts
CAS Christmas - Winter Scene
Christmas Kickstart Challenge - Woodland creatures

Sunday, 13 October 2019

Foiled again!

Here is another attempt at foiling. This time I have foiled a couple of die-cut maple leaves. I stamped the die-cuts cuts with Versamark and clear heat embossed them before adding silver foiling sheets and popping them through the laminator. This time I wanted to add some colour using alcohol inks, which I simply dropped onto the leaves with a little Blending Solution.
I really rather like the effect. I simply mounted them onto a piece of hessian, one directly and one on dimensional pads and added a few swirly die cuts. I thought they looked a bit like the tendrils that one can see in nature, but this die cut was actually from a Memory Box Needle and thread.
The sentiment is from Clearly Besotted.
It's another card for the challenge at CAS Mix Up.

Saturday, 12 October 2019

Maple leaves

It seems amazing that the CAS Watercolour Challenge is celebrating its 3rd Birthday. Where has that time gone?
Happy birthday everyone!
I love the Maple leaf and I have quite a few dies in my stash, today I chose this stitched trio from Poppy Stamps.
I started by using Brushos to add some autumn colours but wasn't too happy with the result, I was about to toss them out but decided to keep going with adding colour, this time with Spectrum Noir Aquatints and a little more water. I quite liked the effect but couldn't help smearing just a touch of Brilliance Gold ink over the top.
The grid stamp is from Stampin' Up and the sentiment from Clearly Besotted.
LAst weekend we were ar the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, London for a performance of Agrippina by Handel. We were celebrating a friend's birthday and had supper in the Balconies Restaurant before the performance, having the final course between acts. It was fabulous!
Here are the three wives of the party having a pre dinner G&T!
This evening, the lady on the right of the picture, myself, together with our respective husbands will be travelling to Wimborne to join in with a Come and Sing Dream of Gerontius. That should be fun too!

Friday, 11 October 2019


Quite a long time ago when I first heard about foiling, I thought that it was definitely the way forward and in my enthusiasm went all out on trying to achieve the perfect result.
I began by driving miles to a craft shop where there was a demo of the Heidi Swapp Minc machine. Enthused I thought that the price was a little high so I got a cheap laminator instead. My first efforts were not the most successful and so I bit the bullet and got the huge Minc machine (the smaller one hadn't get come onto the market). Sadly my results were not hugely improved. I also bought a laser printer so that I could foil from that (supposedly). Well, all in all things did not go as well as expected and the printer was little used, the Minc sat on the windowsill and the cheap laminator was simply used for laminating downloaded  knitting patterns... til now!
Those glas at CAs Mix Up certainly have had me dragging out my stash which was often purchased on a whim or when suddenly fired with enthusiasm. 
So here is foiling revisited.

For this card I used a stamp from Indigo Blu which is a lovely splashy kind of image. I inked it with Versamark and heat set it with clear Embossing Powder, before putting through the laminator with gold foil. I'm not really sure of the make of the foil as it was unwrapped in the drawer with other packs of foil. I used the same process for the sentiment which is from an old wooden stamp from Hobby Art. As it was a splodgy kind of butterfly image I thought that this background EF from Sheena Douglass would complement the image.

Thanks again to the CAS Mix Up team for their fabulous inspiration and for getting me going with another long lost technique! I really hope for more success this time!

Friday, 4 October 2019

Optional Twinkle

It was quite difficult for me to get a decent picture of the twinkle on this card. As you can see I didn't quite manage it. I used a bunch of glittery embossing powders on my black, die-cut snowflake... Gold Tinsel, Metallic Brass and a final sprinkling of  Gold Glamour dust. The sentiment die is from Sizzix. I dry embossed a stitched frame border with an MFT die.
The challenge at Happy Little Stampers Christmas challenge as ever is Anything Goes but with the option of Twinkle!
Do come and join in the fun!

Wednesday, 2 October 2019


The challenge at Happy Little Stampers CAS is ADVENTURE

For me adventure does not entail scaling mountains, exploring jungles or trekking over the tundra, but rather visiting places of interest. I have been fortunate to visit quite a few, often from the comfort of a cruise ship. Here is one such case. I have visited Russia, albeit briefly and not actually to the Kremlin, but I enjoyed every moment.
I don't remember where I got these stamps from but they are grey rubber and have been in my stash for a very long time. I knew they would come in handy one day! In fact they give a really good impression. I simply embossed in WOW pale gold EP. I cut an aperture with a SSS Stitched rectangle die. I think that this set must be my most used go to set ever and it still cuts beautifully after quite a few years.
Do join in the fun, crafting is an adventure after all!

Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Bit of a pickle

I love seeing new ideas for card making and one superb source of inspiration is Jennifer McGuire. The other day I watched one of her videos where she used her laminator to make different backgrounds. She put little tiny bits of die cuts, embossing powder and all sorts of things through her laminating machine and some of the effects were awesome. 
I thought I would have a go!
I have been doing some knitting for my granddaughter and wanted to laminate the pattern anyway, so out came the laminator. Only half of one laminating pocket was required for the pattern and so I cut off the other piece to use with some embossing powder. BIG mistake! I think I should have not been so mean and used a new pocket as this half sheet jammed up the machine and was not visible from  either side. I think the machine must need the fold of the pocket to take it through the feed. 
I looked online to see what might be done to rectify the problem and I read that someone had taken their laminator apart in a similar instance (although probably not with embossing powder). I tried it and eventually managed to sort it out, but it was a real pickle!
However all's well that ends well and here I have managed to make a card with a laminated, twinkly embossing powder backdrop for the die cut corner.

In order to make the dragonfly tie in with this backdrop I decided to make a black base and then cut the filigree layer from white card,  to which I had added some double sided adhesive sheet on the front. Once cut, I peeled off this layer and then sprinkled on some Gold Glamour Dust.
I was quite pleased with the end result (after all the drama).
CASology Dragonfly

Saturday, 21 September 2019

LIfe is just a bowl of cherries!

I had this piece of grey card left over from an aperture card I had made for a friend. SO when I saw the challenge at Just Us Girls, I decided to use it as a panel for my card. I stamped some script and some blotches on it in a slightly darker shade of grey and then die cut a few stems to superimpose over it. The green card was coloured by daubing some Cracked Pistachio ink over white card and stamping a few splotches in silver. The white piece was just distressed at the edges with Hickory Smoke ink. I added a few pearls and a simple sentiment.

I coloured this Penny Black image, cut it out and mounted it on my cards base, where I had computer generated the sentiment. I looked at it for quite some time before I noticed that I had missed the word 'a' from the sentiment. So it was taken apart and and a new base printed!!! I think these words come from a song but I don't exactly remember who sang it... I think it may have been Doris Day!

 Just Add Ink Just Add food.

Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Just a note

This stamp and die set from Altenew is a recent acquisition. I saw some of the stamps on cards on various blogs and was immediately drawn to it. I don't think I've done enough colouring recently and it's something I really enjoy. I have bought many alcohol marker sets over the years and now lots are at the stage of drying up and it's  hard to decide what to do about replacement. I have sets of Mirage Pens, Copics, Promarkers, Spectrum Noir, Chamaeleon, some Stampin Up Markers and some old Dovecraft ones. I think I need to go through all of them and throw out the ones which have dried up and that I don't think I need. I do have some refills for some favourite Copic shades, but it's tricky to know what to do. I think my two favourites are Promarkers and Copics.
For this card I used Copics. I used the sketch from CASe this Sketch

Flowers for the Flower Challenge

A Dragonfly for CASology

AAA Cards Up to One Third

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Sunday Morning

Today we have been invited over to a neighbours for something to eat at lunch time and so without Sunday lunch to prepare I have a little time in my craft room.
This card is based on the challenge at TIMEOUT
I love the bold pop of green in the picture and I used a piece of photographic paper which I had sploshed some shades of green alcohol inks onto, for the die cut leaves in my card.  The stripes were from a SU stamp, which I was considering taking off the block in order to get a clean image using my MISTI, but the second stamping, peculiarly, was really pale until I realised I had used Versamark instead of Versafine  (made a mess of the ink pad  too with the black ink from the previous stamping). SO I decided to sprinkle on some black embossing powder and use that instead.
The Hello is triple stacked from a Stamp Market die.
Just US Girls Stacking die Cuts

This is another card using the freebie Crafter's Companion stamps and die, from Simply Cards and Papercrafts Magazine.
Once more I cut the sentiment from the wreath to use separately. The only thing I added was a Memory Box die cut of hanging mittens, but I put the stamped and heat embossed mittens from the freebie set on the string instead of the die cut ones.
Christmas Kickstart Scandinavian Holiday

Here is a simple card using a leaf which I die cut and coloured sometime ago. I used distress inks and a little mica spray.
I heat embossed the Clearly Besotted sentiment and added both it and the leaf to a piece of hessian.

Saturday, 14 September 2019

Perfectly CAS

Exciting News!
There's a new blog on the block and it's Perfectly CAS!
Just up my street!
This one has been has been created down under in Australia by the inimitable Kylie!
In order to keep things Perfectly CAS, there is the codicil ...Just One Third!
SO if you keep your design to just one third of the card base there is bound to be lots of lovely white space... the essential ingredient for Clean and Simple cards.

The first challenge is to include flowers.
Here I used a die set from Elizabeth Craft Designs, cut from white card with the centres coloured with alcohol markers. The sentiment is from Simon Says Stamp.
DO come and join in the fun!
See you there!

Christmas is coming

I've had this Christmas pudding stamp for a very long and haven't used it in fact for a number of years. I was quite surprised that its condition seems to have deteriorated to the extent that the rubber has hardened and wouldn't stamp cleanly. Even with Versafine ink, which normally will make a good impression from any stamp, it wasn't working, so I had to resort to putting the wooden stamp in the microwave for a short while to loosen the glue so that I could take the stamp off the block to try in my Misti. After several stampings I got a reasonable impression. It's strange but once I get an idea into my head I need to carry it through... another stamp wouldn't do, I wanted to use this one!
Anyway, once stamped I coloured it with Copics and then twinkled the icing part with Glamour Dust and  covered the rest with NUVO Crystal Glaze.
The sentiment is from Creative Dies.
CAS Christmas Holiday Treats 
CAS on Friday Use Die cut words

This card would fit into CAS in Friday's challenge too, but I don't know how to add two cards from the same post to the same challenge.
I got the elements for this card as freebies from a magazine.
The Merry Christmas was in fact part of the wreath die, but I cut it apart before triple embossing in Gold. I managed to find a circle die which was just the same diameter as the wreath so that I could make an aperture and attach the wreath to the edge. I used two of the little bird stamps to make the revolving part, fixed onto a piece of gold thread.
Christmas Kickstart - Scandinavian Christmas
I may make another for this challenge as there are loads of super Scandi stamps in the give away.

Lots of dies

I love this colour combination. It's a mix of inks, card and scrap paper.
I sploshed a little Distress Ink in Pumice stone and Festive berries onto a piece of card before spritzing with water  then die cutting the flowers (by Alexandra Renke) when dry. For the squares, I simply daubed a little Pumice Stone ink randomly onto the card before die cutting.
To compose the card I began by stamping some grunge dots before layering the die cuts over each other and adding a little fine twine bow. The sentiment from Avery Elle was stamped onto a piece of scrap paper/card from the middle of a roll of wrapping paper and embossed in white.
The Flower Challenge - Anything Goes

I remember from my teaching days the wonderful stories by Barbara Firth  and also by David Bedford about a Big Bear and Little Bear and this stamp set from mama Elephant makes me think of those stories. 
They each love the other to the Moon and Back!
I layered the die cuts and because the bear has a grey outline (Memento London Fog), I decided to add a grey base layer to the stacked word die cuts and offset it slightly so it can just be seen.
Both parts were liberally sprinkled with Glamour Dust. I started off with the bears stamped directly onto the card, but it looked rather out of place against the dimension of the sentiment, so I stamped another and added it on dimensional pads over the first image.
Die Cut Words