Thursday, 6 December 2012

Faking it

Stamps: Bitty Bird (PTI); Season Sparkle (My Cute Stamps); words (Elzybells)
Ink; Versamark (Tsukineko)
other: Prisma colour pencils; Parker alphabet dies (Memory Box)
A complete change of direction for me today.  When my 7 yr old saw this card, he said "Wow Mum, did you draw that?".  As he never normally applies 'wow' to anything I do I was tempted for a moment to let him believe in mum-as-artist, but had to confess to stamping lest he call my bluff later on!
I really enjoyed myself with this, stamping in Versamark & then going over the lines with pencil.  I'm not uberhappy with the JOY bit, even though I embossed it with my favourite letter dies.  Next time, I'll cut out the letters & sponge them with white - but this is for one-layer-Wednesday, so die cuts are strictly verboten!
Linking to:
One Layer Wednesday: OLW117 ~ Snow

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Curvy Christmas

Font: One Starry Night
Dies: Pennants (Spellbinders); Stars (MFT)
Other: 0.25" hole punch; gold tinsel embossing powder; red glitter paper
It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas...  Have just been to see my youngest in the carol service at the cathedral, & wrapped a few gifts, BUT I refuse to put up any decorations for at least another fortnight.  Am I a Scrooge?  I don't think so.  I want to look forward to Christmas & enjoy it, not be sick of it before it even arrives!  OK, rant over.
This card was inspired largely by the fabby font that someone pinned on Pinterest.  I really like the shape of the letters, so decided to make more of a feature of it by curving it up the side of the card (using Silhouette Studio), then cut the edge to match.  A strip of spotty paper inside the card helps highlight the edge.  The tree is simple strips of green stuck on a die cut triangle.  I am perfectly capable of cutting a triangle, but now I own dies for things, I feel duty bound to use them,  even when it takes twice as long to haul out / clear up all the kit...  A smidge of glue pen & embossing powder along the edge gives a bit of extra glam.  This one definitely lends itself to batch production; maybe next year...
PS Thanks Darnell for the heads up about the FaceBook showCASe on ATCAS - I didn't even know it was there!
Linking to:
Addicted to CAS: ATCAS#2 ~ Bauble
Less Is More: Week 96 ~ Red & Green
CASology: Week#22 ~ Sparkle

Sunday, 2 December 2012

More red & green

Stamps: Bitty Banners (WM)
Ink: Bamboo Leaves, Rhubarb Stalk (Memento)
Paper: Jolly Holidays (SU)
Other: 1.375" circle punch
This is one of the cards I demonstrated for my class last week.  I made a triangle template on the computer, printed it out on to an old cereal packet & used it to fold the petals of the flower on each of 6 circles (cut from my carefully hoarded stash of SU paper).  These were then stuck down to form the flower.   Using the banner stamps, I created a wreath of swags for the flower to sit on. A simple punched gold star in the middle to cover up any folding deficiencies  adds a bit of glitz to finish it off.  It might look even better on a larger card base, with a bit more white space around it.

Linking to:
Less Is More: Week 96 ~ Red & Green

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Quilted star

Less Is More are asking for traditional colours today - red & green.  Hurray.  I have been making a lot of Xmas cards this week, haven't posted them all, so may enter more than once.

Stamps: Text Style (PTI)
Ink; Rhubarb Stalk (Memento)
Die: Quilt Cuts 2 (WPus9)
Firstly, a nice regular quilted star.  Squares & other regular shapes are really my first love.  Although I appreciate quirkiness & off-sets, I also struggle with them.  There is something inherently right about a square design matted on to the centre of a square card.
I die cut the star from 2 pieces of card in my stash.  Drawing around the inner squares, I masked off the area & stamped the text.  Using a Quickie Glue Pen was far & away the easiest & cleanest method to stick down the frame & the inserts.  A few more squares, & we're away.  I also tried a card with the left-overs, reversing the colour scheme, but it didn't look right.
Linking to:
Less Is More: Week 96 ~ Red & Green
Dynamic Duos: #31 ~ Light Green & Red

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Scene It

Stamps: Tiny treasures Christmas (Pink Petticoat); Tiny Trees (WM); unknown clip-art
Ink: Teal Zeal, Summer Sky (Memento)
Other: Modern Landscape die (Memory Box); circle punch; Stickles
My card today was very heavily influenced by Kristina Werner's card here.
The challenge on one layer wednesday this week is to create a scene.  (I'm guessing Karen doesn't intend for us to go & have a tantrum in the nearest restaurant).  I used the modern landscape die to create a mask, having first printed out my digital images.  The trees & house were a bit lost to start with, so I outlined the house with thin black marker, to create a visual triangle with the sled & the snowman.  BIG mistake.  Now the house was all my eye could focus on.  I have managed to soften it a little, with repeated applications of white gel pen, but I'm still not entirely happy.  What I do like however, is the 'snow' effect achieved by sponging on hammered card.  This was completely accidental.
The Tiny Treasures set also includes a penguin, so I might have another go with that & an igloo.
Linking to:
One Layer Wednesday: OLW116~ Scene It

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Jingle all the way...

Forgive me bloggers for I have sinned: it has been eleven days since my last post.  Guess you didn't even notice I was gone.
Well I have been a wee bit busy (still decorating...) preparing for & teaching a Christmas card class in the village hall.  It was worth the hard work though, we had a very creative morning.  And it inspired me in all sorts of ways  too.

Dies: Parker Alphabet (Memory Box); Snowflake (Marianne Dies)
Paper: Tesco kids glitter paper
Font: Stars from their eyes
Bell: Paperchase
Now I've finally got some time to sit down & work through some of my ideas.  Hurray.  I embossed the snowflakes using my Cuttlebug & an embossing mat, & dotted some stickles around, but I can't see them in the photo. The sentiment was done on the computer, & the jingle stuck on afterwards.
Linking to:
Addicted to CAS: ATCAS#1 ~ SNOW

Friday, 16 November 2012

Snowflake with a twist

Font:  Stars from our eyes
Die:  Parker alphabet (Memory Box)
It's official.  I'm in love.  OK, I know it happens quite a lot, but this time I REALLY mean it.  The Parker alphabet from Memory Box is just FAB.  Clean, simple, not too big, not too small, cuts with a single pass.... & didn't cost an arm & a leg!
Anyway, moving swiftly on:  CAS-ual Fridays have got the blues today.  Snowflakes abound in the design team's creations and, never being one to let a bandwagon pass me by, I scrambled aboard to join them.  So I decided to create a snowflake using a new font I found whilst cruising Pinterest.  Quite a simple affair, just a single phrase copied & reflected a few times, but I like the effect.  After many iterations (mainly because I enjoyed playing with these dies so much - did I mention that?) the sentiment came together with a sparkle.
Linking to:
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC79 ~ Winter Blues

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Thanks again...

Stamps: Bitty Banners (WM); Basic Borders (Mama Elephant)
Ink: Rhubarb Stalk, Bamboo Leaves, Pear Tart (Memento)
Having made a die cut 'thanks' for yesterday's CASology, I happened upon this week's One Layer Wednesday with the debris still around me.  It was the perfect opportunity to use the negative from the die cut with a bit of gentle sponging.  The brief is to make a Christmas thank you card.  So I thought presents (that's really what Xmas means in my heathen household...).  Not a present stamp to be found.  What's a girl to do?  Dig out the foam & the hole punch:
Stick it on the acrylic block with temporary adhesive & away we go.  Nice & simple, easy to do in bulk.  Assuming Santa stops here, of course!
Linking to:
One Layer Wednesday: OLW114 ~ a Christmas thank you
CASology: Week #19 ~ Thanks

Wednesday, 14 November 2012


Stamps: Star Prints (PTI)
Ink: Lady Bug (Memento)
Font:CK Ali's Hand Official
This card was inspired by yesterday's post from Kristina Werner.  I cut the letters with my Silhouette, but I confess that I wasn't sure how well it would do in the centre of the 'a' & the 'h' (I know this blade is on its last knockings...).  I made it cut 3 times, just to be sure!  The white thanks is 2-ply, with just a single layer of aqua thanks behind for shadow, stuck together using standard PVA applied with a fine paintbrush.
It doesn't show in the photo, but the star is clear embossed for a bit of shine.  Do you like the 'randomly' placed bling?  Positioning those 3 stars took longer than the rest of the card put together!
Linking to:

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Less is More - Houses

Stamps: Nordic Winter, Gingham & Co. (WM)
Ink: Rhubarb Stalk (Memento)
Font: CAC Pinafore
Great one layer challenge at LIM this week.  Houses.  I do love a house.  Simple shape, based on a square, easy to make central... 
So the Christmas card run continues.  House, heart & bottom sentiment drawn digitally, central heart cut out on the Silhouette.  Printed out another house on scrap & cut it out to use as a mask for the inside of the card:

I'm playing around with a larger version too.  If it comes to anything, I'll post it tomorrow.
Linking to:

Friday, 9 November 2012

Orange elephant

Stamps: GeoGraphics (Paper Smooches)
Ink: Tangelo, Morocco, London Fog (Memento)
Font: Century Gothic, Sunshine Poppy
I saw ORANGE on CASology this week & immediately thought ELEPHANT.  A natural connection (!).  The elephant is from the Silhouette Store, printed on glossy photo paper for contrast against the linen textured card base.  The imperfect stamping makes the chevrons look shiny in the photo, but they're not.  More 'rustic'.
Linking to:

Sunday, 4 November 2012


Fonts: Split Splat Splodge; Prime Minister of Canada
A timely challenge from CAS-ual Fridays for a male card, inspired by this week's CAS(E) This Sketch.  No ink, no stamps.  I arranged my digital splats, printed out 3 copies & got busy with my circle punches.
Linking to:
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC77 ~ Masculine
CAS(E) This Sketch: Challenge #4

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Gingerbread house

Stamps: Gingerbread Man (Elzybells); Nordic Winter (WM)
Ink: Rhubarb Stalk (Memento)
Dies: pinking squares (WPlus9)
Finally!  This card has been haunting me for a few days now, but I have not managed to get 5 minutes time to make it happen.  And then when I do, Blogger conspires to defy me with its "server returns invalid response".  Grrrr.
Moving on...fairly simple front, not much to explain, but open it up &
TA-DAAA.  A gingerbread house for the man to live in.  House is made from a manila swing file, with scraps of red.  The roof is strips cut with scalloped scissors & edged with white gel pen. 
I was an engineer for 14 years before I had my children, so I find this sort of construction extremely satisfying.The concept came from a book I found in the library years ago: Paper Engineering for Pop-up Books and Cards by Mark Hiner which contains many fab ideas & techniques.
Linking to:
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC76 ~ Kraft On
CASology: Week 17 ~ Sugar

Friday, 26 October 2012

Dovecote decoration

Stamps: Teeny Trees (WM)
Ink: White Pigment (Studio G)
I have very few original ideas.  By nature, I am an adaptor rather than an innovator - I make changes to other peoples ideas to make them my own.  But this dovecote is all mine.
I created a cut file in Silhouette Studio for the main body, then cut it out of a manilla folder from Staples (good source of cheap kraft paper!).  Before assembling, I stamped the birds on both sides & added the gingham sills.  The floor & roof are simple strips of red from the scrap box.  The hanging loop was added before sticking the roof on.
This looks great hanging on the Xmas tree.  I made a whole bunch of them last year & sold them for the PTA.  If you would like the cut file, let me know & I'll send it to you - I haven't yet worked out how to embed things in Blogger for downloading.
Linking to:
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC76 ~ Kraft On


Sunday, 21 October 2012

To Autumn

There have been a number of autumnal challenges floating around lately, but I've not felt sufficiently inspired to make anything for them.  This morning however, I had the lines 'mists & mellow fruitfulness' in my head.  No idea why, I am not a particular lover of poetry.  More likely to be from when it was used in a Mr Kipling advert! 
Anyway, I digress; I found Keats' poem on line & put the first verse into Tagxedo to come up with the above card.  I always feel like a bit of a cheat when I enter something created purely digitally into a challenge, even though it probably took just as much messing about as stamps & ink, but with an emptier waste basket at the end!
Linking to:
Less is More: Week 90 ~ Autumn

Friday, 19 October 2012

Let it Snow

Die: Marianne Snowflake

I used up the last scraps of my stripey paper, with a computer sentiment & some glitter that I haven't played with in ages.  I'm not sure if you can see, but the snowflake is inset into the card, which sits on sticky pads for height.

Linking to:
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC75 ~ Over the Edge
CAS(E) this Sketch: Challenge #2


Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Winter Wishes

Stamps:  Elzybells
Ink: Bamboo Leaves, Danube Blue, Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Other: Quilt Cuts 2 die (WPlus9), white gel pen, Sakura \metallic red
This is my third attempt on 'good' paper.  Needless to say, my initial effort on a piece of scrap has been sitting winking smugly at me all morning, secure in its perfection...
I used the inner frame from the die cut as the window & stamped through it, then masked off the various areas for sponging.  The best way I found for doing the lines around the panes was to go around the inside of the stencil in pencil, remove the stencil & then go over them in fine marker.  Yes, this bit of genius DID only occur to me on the third try!  The snow is just dots of white gel pen.
Linking to:
CASology: Week 15 ~ Night

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Merry & bright

Die: Quilt Cuts 2 (WPlus9)
Other: glossy photo paper; snowflake punch
Just 'cos I haven't been postin', doesn't mean I haven't been lookin' (& investin'...).  Yes I have taken a break from the tyranny of the paintbrush to use my lovely new dies that came in the post last week from WPlus9.  They are fab; lovely geometric quilt cut designs, just right for an obsessive such as myself!
This card was inspired by the Runway Challenge this week, & also CAS(E) This Sketch:
I didn't have any red stripey paper, so I drew some lines in Silhouette Studio & printed them out on glossy photo paper.  I also did the sentiment, using CAC Pinafore, Book Antiqua & Century Gothic fonts.
I placed the die on the paper to ensure that the stripes would run in the direction I wanted, then arranged them as shown on the kraft strip.  The red & white bands are also on glossy paper.
The kraft was embossed using the scoreboard at 0.5 inch intervals.
Having put it all together, it looked a little bottom heavy (don't we all?), so I added the snowflakes to balance things out.
Linking to:
Runway Inspired Challenge: ric#22 ~ Tommy Hilfiger
CAS(E) this Sketch: Challenge # 1

Saturday, 13 October 2012

A short break

Sorry for the lull in posts, folks.  Paint on walls is temporarily taking precedence over ink on paper.  Normal service will be resumed in due course.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Silver Retro Sketch

Stamps: Star Prints (PTI)
Ink: Versamark (Tsukineko)

I like the layout at Retro Sketches this week, & have continued the silver & red theme from Saturday. 
The sentiment was constructed digitally (Century Gothic & Qumpellka no.12), before stamping & embossing.
Linking to:
Retro Sketches: #32
Less is More: Week 88 ~ Silver

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Merry Christmas from our house to yours

Stamps: Neighbourhood (Market Street Stamps); Nordic Christmas (WM)
Ink: Rhubarb Stalk (Memento); Versamark (Tsukineko)
Other: ProMarker; silver detail embossing powder
Hi folks.  Today's offering is in response to Less is More's request for silver.  I took the opportunity to use another recent purchase (Market Street Stamps had a 20% discount last week, & the stamp got from the USA to the UK in a week!).  Love silver & red together.  The silver side-matting is a happy accident of measuring, but these things happen for a reason!  The lower case part of the sentiment was done on the computer, with a couple of nail gems for a bit of extra sparkle.
Linking to:
Less is More: Week 88 ~ Silver
52 Card Pick Up: Week 40

Friday, 5 October 2012

One stamp two ways

Stamps: Teeny Trees (WM); Text Style (PTI)
Ink: Angel Pink, Rhubarb Stalk (Memento)
Taking up the challenge for One Layer Wednesday this week, to use one stamp in 2 completely different ways.  I think this is probably the very first time I have used 'Teeny Trees' as trees.  I drew the curve (which has more than a little resemblance to the Modern Landscape Die I took possession of last week...), & used it as a mask for the 2 hills in the 2 different inks.  With the mask still in place, I stamped the text for a little bit of texture.  The trees were straight forward to do, then I added the digital image from the Graphics Fairy.  I am also entering it into CAS-ual Fridays 'One for the Girls'.
Stamps: Teeny Trees, Fancy Phrases (WM); Polka Dots II (PTI); Elzybells
Ink: Tangelo, Morocco, London Fog (Memento)
The second card uses the tree tops as butterfly wings.  I achieved the spots by stamping off (don't you love that phrase - sounds really angry!) the ink & then kissing (much nicer) it back on with the original.
Linking to:
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC73 ~ For the Girls
One Layer Wednesday: One Stamp 2 Ways

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

CASology ~ Zoo

Stamps: Circus Animals (My Cute Stamps)
Ink: Tuxed Black (Memento)
Other: various paper; By the Numbers die (MFT); Cuttlebug embossing folder
I've been playing about with MS Photo Editor.  Can you tell?
A bit more involved than my usual offering, but I do enjoy a bit of paper piecing now & again.  There was also a monkey involved during the early stages (in the the design, not helping me out), but he got cut before the final take.  I love this set from My Cute Stamps & may well be tempted to use them for this challenge again before the week is out.
Linking to:
CASology: Week 13 ~ Zoo

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Runway Inspired Challenge

Inspired by this week's picture:
This colour combo is new to me, as I am not over fond of yellow, but I like it with the grey & aqua.  The main shapes are all slightly different, as they are on the dress & I have used the off-set grey rectangle to mimic the shadows at the models' feet.  The digital sentiment is my favourite font - migraine sans.  And no stamps or ink in sight!
Linking to:
Runway Inspired Challenge: ric#21


Saturday, 29 September 2012

live simply, love much

Stamps: Polka Dots II, Little Bitty Bird (PTI)
Ink: Lady Bug (Memento); Aegean Blue (VersaMagic)
Other: Modern Lanscape die (Memory Box); tiny heart punch
I've been dithering over this die for a while now, but seeing Donna's FAB winning entry on CASology this week just pushed me over the edge.  This is a blatant case of her card, but I love it so much, I don't care!
The sentiment just jumped out at me & begged to be paired with the simple landscape.

Next day edit: I have just realised that this could also have been inspired by my blog header, qualifying for CAS-ual Fridays this week.  The aqua & white colour scheme, the simple tree-line is the same modern style as my main header font & the sentiment placed similarly to my 'housework' note.  This must have been subliminal!  Am tempted to add in some red to my header now...
Linking to:

Friday, 28 September 2012

Tuesday Trigger card

Stamps: Studio G Alphabet
Ink: Bamboo Leaves (Memento)
Paper: Jolly Holiday (SU)
Other: By the Numbers dies (MFT); various hole punches; MS scoreboard
This week's Tuesday Trigger is:

Now that September is nearly over, I feel justified in making a few more Xmas cards.  I think the inspiration is clear to see - I've just turned a couple of the numbers into baubles.
Linking to:
Tuesday Trigger: Soup to Nuts

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Just a quickie...

Stamps: Bitty Banners (WM); Get Merry (HA)
Ink: Rhubarb Stalk, Bamboo Leaves, Pear Tart (Memento)
Inspired by masking on One Layer Wednesday this week. I stamped the distressed tree from Get Merry, cut it out & stuck it down, then stamped across it with the banners.  Simples!
Linking to:
One Layer Wednesday: OLW107 ~ Masking
Less is More: Week 86 ~ 3 challenges

It's getting wetter...

It looks as if what passes for summer in the UK has definitely finished.  It is cold & gloomy here (just another excuse for poor photos...), with lashings of rain.  So what better than a cheery pair of wellies?
I made the digital stamp from some clip art, & used digital paper too, printing on to glossy photo paper to get some shine.  I cut out 2 versions, so I could pop up the front boot on sticky pads.  It was very tricky to cut out, as it is so small.
The corners of the white panel were rounded with my corner chomper, as was the card base.

PS Is anyone else having trouble with blogger at the mo?  It's playing very hard to get.  It took me >5 attempts to load these pictures today; kept saying server returned invalid response.
Linking to:
CASology: Week 12 ~ Shoe
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC71 ~ Fall Fun
Less is More: Week 86 ~ 3 challenges (wk 32 seeing double, wk65 sketch, wk73 paper piecing)

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Folded squares

Stamps: Little Bitty Bird (PTI)
Ink: Tangelo, Tuxedo Black (Memento)

Long ago & far away, before Pinterest (yes, there was such a time) I saw this idea as artwork.  I thought "I could do that".  And then did nothing.  I have had a flick around likely sites today, but have failed to come up with the original piece.  If you know where to find it, please let me know.
CASology are using WHITE as the challenge word this week, & that's what triggered my memory.  Prior to today, I have scoffed at the idea of square punches.  I have pooh-poohed them soundly.  Because any fool can cut a square, right?  Wrong.  At least, this fool can cut one, but apparently not 12 identical ones. Even when I cut a strip & then only had to chop it up at the right intervals. Perhaps the picture I should be showing you is of my table, covered in over-large confetti comprised of squares-that-didn't fit & squares-that-can't-be-folded-exactly-in-half. I think a square punch may well be on my Christmas list.
Anyway, the card is a 5" square, & I used a 1/2" border all round to position my folded squares correctly.  I learned the hard way to stamp first, fold & stick later.
I just hope it's white enough.
Linking to:
CASology: Week 11 ~ White
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC70 B&W plus one

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Less is More ~ Oval

Stamps: Tiny Trees (WM)
Ink: Pear Tart, Bamboo Leaves (Memento); Chocolate Brownie (Elzybells)
Paper: Pink Petticoat
Twine: Brown Sugar (Divine Twine)
Hmmnn.  The spotted paper looks a but sludgy in this picture.  IRL it's much nearer to the darker green of the leaves. 
As well as photography, I'm having real trouble with layouts lately, in particular where to put a sentiment.  Which is why I so often don't bother.  I tried all sorts of combinations for the above, before deciding on the computer generated strip.  Any tips?
Linking to:
Less is More: Week 85 (Theme) ~ Oval

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Faux newspaper flower

Stamps: Text Sstyle (PTI)
Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Paper: Ribbin Stripes (Pink Petticoat)
Other: Aqua ProMarker

Listen.  Can you hear that?  Yup.  Nothing.  No kids rummaging through the Lego box.  No cat yowling.  No builders hammering.  It's just me.  For the first time in months.  Hurrah.
So I thought I'd have a go at something a bit different.  I saw this idea for a flower ages ago, & squirrelled it away in my head. 

I used my Silhouette SD to create & cut out the leaf shapes from 3 diamonds, stamped them with the text pattern, then coloured the outside edges with ProMarker.  By folding the outside diamonds in half & sticking them behind the middle diamond, you get a nice 3D effect.  All 8 were then stuck on a circle to create the flower.
Adding a brad & a couple of punch squares coloured with the same pen finished the embellishment.
 A couple of strips of stripey paper for ribbons & 3 tiny squares in the bottom corner to balance things out, et voila.  I just hope it's CAS enough for the challenge.
Linking to:
CAS-ual Fridays: CFC70 ~ B&W plus one

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