Wednesday 30 October 2013

Black Lace and Butterflies

Afternoon Folks

What started off as a not to bad day weather-wise is now just plain horrible ... dark, rainy and downright dreich! Thank goodness for central heating.

I hope you are all well and enjoying your day, it's Wednesday, almost the weekend :)

Having had precious little time in the craft room recently, I have a card I made some time ago to share with you today.
It's another simple design, quick and easy to make and relying heavily on the pretty paper for impact. I think it's a Wild Rose Studio paper but I could be wrong. It's layered on to Red Rose Core'dinations card and then on to a black card base.

A strip of the red card was punched with a scalloped edge and layered over a scrap of black lace for the belly band ... I can almost hear Di tittering at that :)

The flower is a rescued disaster! I had intended to make a black flower but the EK Success daisy punch couldn't cope with the black card, too thick, so I decided to use it as the base and layer up with some of the patterned paper and a stamped and cut out flower head - from Inkadinkado Meadow Flowers stamp set - embossed with WOW! Magenta Twinkle powder.

The greeting - from Stampin' Up - was also stamped out and embossed with the same pink glittery powder.

Plenty of snippets used on this card so I'm off to Pixie's Snippets Playground - Week 96 - where I believe all is peaceful now that Di has returned from 'teacher training'.

Better get back to what I should be doing.

Take care and happy crafting,

WOYWW 230 - and the sad tale of the little red dress

Morning WOYWWers, Followers and All,

It seems weeks since I've been able to join in with the mahoosive snoopathon that is What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday ... actually it's only been two but it feels like aeons! And as I'm suffering withdrawal symptoms, I've jettisoned the house packing, dumped the housework, cleared the diary and here I am, Julia,back for one day only ready to share my less-cluttered-than-usual desk :))
The photo was taken Tuesday afternoon. Had to be during daylight hours now that my Ottlite, with perfect timing, has died only weeks out of warranty, sigh :( I've decided to delay ordering a new one until we've moved - only 17 days to go now.

There's a sad, sad tale to what's on my desk today. You see I've just finished sewing that little red pinafore dress and it's only taken me SIX years.
You see, I began making the dress for my granddaughter, Shari-Ann, when she was 3 years old but I then I became ill, too ill to do much at all - hospital, operations, a slow recovery followed and the little dress was forgotten. A sad tale, indeed! But the packing process, which has taken me into parts of our home I'd forgotten existed, namely the attic, clearing out cupboards, investigating the contents of boxes, bags and suitcases, and in so doing, disturbing and evicting many a spider, some ginormous ones at that, from dark and cosy recesses, brought the dress to light. Time, finally, to finish the sewing.

Shari-Ann, in the meantime, is no longer the tiny tot she was then, she's 10 years old ... where did the years go! So, of course, the dress is too small, for her. But, luckily, there's no shortage of little girls in the family - there's my great-granddaughter and great-niece, both 2 years old. They are, for sure, too small now but I have great hopes that the dress will fit one or other of them fairly soon.

So that's my desk this morning ... I'm writing this in real time, it's 7.10am here in Scotland. It's time for my first cup of tea of the day, followed by breakfast ... after that I'll be back to join in the desk hopping.

In the meantime, I hope all is well with you and if it isn't, I hope it improves soon. For those of you living in or near the Blue Mountains of Australia, where bush fires have caused untold damage, and the south of England where gales have wreaked havoc, you are in my thoughts.

Happy WOYWW everybody and do take care,

Sunday 27 October 2013

Craft Exhibitions at SECC Glasgow on Thursday

Afternoon Everyone,

I hope this finds you well and having a super Sunday.

The weather here is appalling ... much rain and the wind is revving up more and more as the day progresses. I hope those of you who are down in the south of England have battened down the hatches ... I hear you are in for a big one ... gale, that is ... the forecast is for 80mph! Hope you all get through it without too much damage.

I'm happy to report that the weather was kind to my daughter, Juli, and I when we tootled off to Glasgow, to the craft exhibitions ... there was two going on at the same time, Crafts for Christmas and Hobby Crafts ... at the SECC.
Check out that blue sky :) And what about this building? It's the recently built SSE Hydro which just opened on September 30th this year ... in plenty time for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. It's a sporting and entertainment facility ... see a photo of it lit up at night here.
Our first port of call was the Crafts for Christmas exhibition which had a display of items from the various stands in the hall. I liked the Christmas tree and Julia loved the 3d picture of The Waverley Steamer - the last seagoing passenger-carrying paddle steamer in the world ... she's been going since 1946 and hopefully will keep on going for many more years.
We were both agreed that this dragon is spectacular ... it's made entirely of recycled metal components ... so we went off to find stand E21 - Roosters Creations - and were totally wowed by what we saw ... here's just a montage of some of the many photos I took.
I think you can click on the photos to enlarge them ... the hand in the second montage is amazing. And if you want a much better look at Scott's (that's Rooster) creations made from discarded cutlery, teapots, spark plugs, tools, scrap metal, etc., check out this YouTube video

We spent a very enjoyable hour or so checking out the various stands and loved everything we saw ... we could have spent a fortune but we exercised great self-control, saving ourselves for the Hobby Craft hall :)

Almost our first port of call was the ClarityStamp stand where Barbara Gray, seen here chatting to a couple of fans, very kindly showed Juli just what can be done on a Gelli plate. And I learned a new trick or two too :)
This chap is the Decopatch Penguin ... he looks very smart in his floral waistcoat. Juli was fascinated to discover some of the crafty things her mother gets up to in her craft room. Some, like this form of decoupage, she had never seen before. I think we may have a crafting convert now after watching demos on everything from air brushing to Zentangle!
Here she is, almost at the end of the day, having a rest and a cuppa ... it seemed that we had walked miles around all the stands. And what did we buy? Juli found some fat quarters of fabric for the patchwork she is working on and, though she didn't buy it there and then, she also found the sewing machine of her dreams ... one specifically designed for quilting and patchwork. And here's a pic of my haul.
As you can see I was remarkable restrained - a Clarity stamp I'd had my eye on since watching Barbara demonstrate it, two pots Pinflair Buff-it, gorgeous stuff, and the sponges for applying it, an Imagination Crafts stencil with thistles I couldn't resist, some fat quarters - love the red one with the wee Westies on it - a patchwork strip, a quilters quarter inch measure, a reel of very nice Christmas ribbon from Designs on Pine and a Pigma Micron pen ... to try my hand at Zentangle some time.

So that's it. I hope you enjoyed our trip to the SECC. We chatted to a lot of lovely folk, watched some brilliant demonstrations and all-in-all had a lovely day. We came away tired but happy and planning return in March for the next Hobby Craft exhibition.

Take care and happy crafting,

Saturday 26 October 2013

Rudolph Day - October 2013

Morning Folks

And a smashing Saturday to you all. Weatherwise, it's not too bad here - it's been raining so it's damp underfoot, there's a slight breeze but it's warm-ish, for the time of the year, and really quite pleasant.

It's a day late but I have a couple of cards to submit to Sarn's Rudolph Day October Challenge over at Stamping For Pleasure ... hopefully she will forgive my tardiness this month, it's due to circumstances outwith my control :)

Both cards feature papers from a very old Docrafts A5 paper pack, Penelope & Percy - possibly two years old! I'll start by apologising for the quality of the photos. Again! I'm still struggling without a decent lamp.
The first features Percy Penguin ... ... dressed up as a Christmas pudding. Well, I think it's Percy but I suppose it could be his girlfriend, Penelope - hard to tell in that costume :)

To make the card, all that's needed is a white card base, two sheets of the patterned paper from the pack, one featuring Percy, the other a coordinating check. I've cut the image of Percy and matted it on to a piece of smooth black card to create the topper then trimmed the rest to make the base layer.

The greeting (from a Molly Blooms Christmas stamp set) was stamped with VersaMark onto a scrap of black card and then heat embossed with Papermania's Seafoam White fine powder.

The decorations are Anita's bright red gems for the holly berries and light green gems in each corner.

Inside and back are decorated with strips of the check and a holly stamp from the Molly Blooms set, coloured with Memento Dual Markers - Bamboo Leaves & Lady Bug.

The second card has Percy & Penelope's chum, Pom Pom Puffin on it. Again, I've used two sheets of paper from the pad, the one with the image of the puffin on his sledge and the other has glittery snowballs that coordinate with the background of the first. As for the first card, the image of Pom Pom was trimmed from the paper and matted on to a piece of black card to form the topper.

What was left of the first sheet of paper was trimmed to a square shape, then paper lace (Siesta Lace Border), snowflake pattern, was attached down the left side, before adhering it to a square black card base.

The greeting is an old stamp (Docrafts) that has been chopped up to form two separate words so that when stamping (with Archival Jet Black ink) I could fit the two words between the two puffin images on the paper.

For the finishing touch I've added glitter to the topper and also to the tops of the letters of the greeting ... this looks much more sparkly in real life ... and added tiny blue Anita's gems, mainly to the centre of each snowflake in the lace border, but also to the top left of topper and bottom right of card front.

The inside is decorated with strips of the second sheet of glittered paper and leftover scraps of the first sheet were trimmed down and added inside and back.

That's my Rudolph Day cards this month ... quick and simple cards that will be suitable for two of the mini people in the family.

The clocks go back tomorrow, so officially we are into winter and the clock on my mobile phone will, at last, be at the correct time until the clocks go forward in spring ... I forgot to change it when I should have and, by the time I realised this, we were well through summer!

I was up with the lark this morning ... an early morning wake-up call from Bonnie left me bright-eyed and bushy-tailed ... so I'm off for an early lunch now.

I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend wherever you are in the world :)

Take care and happy crafting,

Friday 25 October 2013

Friday Smile

Afternoon Everyone,

I hope this finds you well and enjoying Friday - the weekend is nearly upon us :)

The EM's nephew, another Alan, often sends us emails intended to make us smile and the one that included this adorable chap was no exception. I thought he would be perfect subject for Annie's Friday Smile feature over at A Stitch In Time.
With that little hat, doesn't he look perfectly dressed for Halloween? :))

Short and sweet today ... I'm supposed to polishing the furniture!!!

I hope you enjoy the rest of the day and have a wonderful weekend.

Take care and ...

Wednesday 23 October 2013

Blue Peace & Joy Tag

Hello Everyone,

Another very quick post this evening. I hope this finds you all well and that you've had a good day.

I have a tag to share tonight. One that I made as a change from making cards. It also enabled me to use quite a few snippets and leftovers and to try out a couple of dies for the first time.
The base of the tag was made with a leftover piece of dark blue card (my favourite Papermania Textured) cut and trimmed at one end into the shape of a label. It's covered back and front with some of the same delicately patterned paper that was used to make the card posted on Monday - from Scrapbook Max's Winter Frost collection. On the front, the stamping with two fab stamps - Unity's Itty Bitty Peace & Joy and Penny Black's Winter Bough ... I'm not sure I will ever tire of this stamp - was done with VersaMark and clear embossing powder (Stampendous) before it was sponged all over with a combination of three distress inks - Tim Holtz Weathered Wood, Stormy Sky & Iced Spruce. I'm not too sure about this combination ... the jury's still out I think.
The small baubles were cut from a scrap of gunmetal grey pearlescent card with the super Memory Box Precious Ornaments die. This was the first time I'd used these dies and they cut perfectly. A combination of tiny snowflake stamps taken from Papermania's Urban Stamps Noel set and Heat It Up silver embossing powder were used to decorate the baubles.
The snowflake embellishments were made from a combination of snippets of white card and the last of a sheet of treasured silver paper using dies from the Die'sire Snowflakes set and a small snowflake punch  - make and name unknown. The glitter was applied to them by covering them first with VersaMark, then a heated layer of Ranger Sticky embossing powder. After adding a coating of iridescent glitter another quick blast with the heat tool was used to set the glitter ... this prevents a lot of the shedding that so often happens with glitter :)

Pebeo silver gilding wax applied around the edges, pearl, ribbon and lace trims and blue, grey and white adhesive pearls (various sources) provide the final touches.
The back has been left unadorned ... ready for the addition of a handwritten greeting.

And so it over once again to Pixie's Snippet's Playground - Week 95 - a ton of snippets have been used on the tag :)

Exciting news ... well for me it is! I'm having another day off tomorrow. I know, it's been virtually unheard of over the last couple of months and now two days of in one week. And for why you may be asking? Well, I'm meeting my daughter in Glasgow and we are having a girl's day out. We are going to the Hobby Craft show at the SECC in Glasgow tomorrow.

I have a list of exhibitors and another list of wants desires needs ... I can't wait :)) Hopefully, I'll remember to take photos this time ... last time I was at this show, a couple of years ago now, I forgot to take my camera out of my bag I was so mesmerised by all the goodies available.

And, I'm going to bed now, I have an early start in the morning and I need my beauty sleep :))

Take care and happy crafting,

Tuesday 22 October 2013

Roses and Butterflies

Morning Everyone

Another good-for-crafting day here in bonnie Scotland, it's wet, though surprisingly warm for the time of the year. The smokebush is looking fabulous ... and if it wasn't so wet I'd pop out and take a snap to show you, maybe later :)

I'm sharing a simple and fast card again ... I don't seem to have time for anything else at the moment but at least it's taking care of my crafting craving :)
Truly it would have been a shame to cover up too much of this bonnie paper. I wish I could tell you make and design but I've had it so long the details are lost in the mists of time!

I simply wrapped some of that gorgeous cream lace around it - it looks white in the pic but that's because I'm photographing under natural light now that my Ottlite has died :( Then it was matted on to a layer of Core'dinations Aged Wine card before adhering it to a 6" square white card base - cut from a 12" sheet  of Bazzil Basics cardstock.

The butterflies were cut from scraps of the Core'dinations card and the green patterned paper, from the Docrafts Papermania Happy Days collection, using a combination of dies - X-Cut and cArt-Us for the solid ones and a freebie from Simply Cards & Papercraft magazine for the filigree one. The flourishes, also cut from the Happy Days scraps, are from Spellbinders Shapeabilities Flourish Accents set.

Finally, Stampin' Up oval punches were used for the simple stamped greeting and peach coloured pearls the decoration.

And that was it ... simples! I've left the lovely paper to do most of the work ... it would be a shame to do otherwise.

And for the second day in succession I'm submitting a snippet card to Pixies Snippets Playground - Week 95 ... well somebody has to keep an eye on the ducks while Di is living the vida loca in exotic climes :)

I'm not sure what I'm going to do now, an early lunch I think, and time to consider what task is the most vital ... I can hardly bear to look at my to-do list!!!

I hope you had a marvellous Monday and are having a terrific Tuesday :)

Take care and happy crafting,

Monday 21 October 2013

Wishing You Peace and Joy

Afternoon Everyone

It's a horrible day here ... rain, never-ending rain! I really do hope you are faring better where you are.

The card I have to share today was actually completed late Friday night, too late for Hazel's challenge over at CHNC then, for square cards. But, lucky me, it fits in very nicely with this week's, that's Challenge 47, which is to incorporate 'peace', in shape or form, into a card.
And this, new to me, stamp fits the bill perfectly. It's an Itty Bitty stamp by Unity called Peace and Joy. It's been stamped (VersaMark) and embossed in white (Docraft's Seafoam White) on to a snippet of smooth black card then die-cut using a Spellbinders Nestability Labels Nine die. The outside of the same Nestability was traced on to silver mirror card and the shape cut out to create the faux nestie used to mat the sentiment.

The patterned paper, from the Scrapbook Max Winter Frost Collection (came free with a 2012 issue of Scrapbook Magazine) was trimmed to measure just shy of the square black card base - an inexpensive buy from The Works some time last year ... yes, I'm still using up my stash and can honestly say I haven't bought new patterned paper and card blanks for months!

Even the poinsettia is die cut (Spellbinders Shapabilities Layered Poinsettia) from snippets of red mirror and black card - the dies for the leaves are from a Marianne Creatables set, Chinese Rose. The finishing touch is a silver card candi.

Apologies for the quality of the photograph. My Ottlite has suddenly and unexpectedly died :( We thought at first a new bulb was all that was needed but it was much more serious and even the resident handyman has been unable to repair it. I'm now searching for the perfect replacement.

So many snippets went into the making of this card that I have the perfect reason to go check out the ducks over at Pixie's Snippet's Playground - Week 95. And there's a rumour that Parsnip is the worse for wear ... now who could have been leading him astray ... and while Di is off on her jollies in paradise too? :)

Almost forgot to submit to CHNC's Extra Challenge for October - where anything goes as long as it's Christmas!

Right, off to do a bit of shredding ...  6-year old business records. That's well past the legal requirement so no point in keeping them any longer - something less to pack :)

Take care everyone and happy crafting,

Sunday 20 October 2013

Saturday Outing - Model Trains, Lyle Kirk and Autumn Trees

Hello Everyone,

I hope this finds you well and enjoying Sunday.

In my last post I mentioned that the family was going to a Model Train Exhibition and hinted that there would be pics to follow ... well, as good as my word, here they are :)
These are two layouts that are Scottish based - Hunterston is a power station on the Firth of Clyde and the other has Glasgow tenements as its backdrop. 
This was a very long display showing the railway line meandering through beautiful countryside. There's even a river running by. Varnish was used to give the appearance of water. 
This layout has the Odeon cinema - a Roger Moore film was showing -  looking down on the rail track, and if you looked closely you could even see the sweet (candy) stall in the foyer.
It's a miniature world and absolutely delightful. I loved the attention to detail, tiny folk, animals, buses, cars, even Del Boy's little yellow Reliant Robin (Only Fools and Horses) advertising Trotter's Independent Trading was parked up in one display :) Men were at work on the lines, railway police were keeping an eye out for ne'er-do-wells and there was even ruined buildings, castles, churches, etc. to be seen in some of the layouts. One layout had a town centre featuring a floral bed surrounding a statue of the mayor, a parrot!
The EM was in his element ... chatting to the exhibitors and picking their brains for ideas for the display he plans to build once we've moved house. He has his eye on the spare bedroom!!!
My daughter and her two youngest thoroughly enjoyed the show too ... no sign of my SIL though, he was away with the EM, exploring, when these shots were taken.
The venue for the exhibition was Lyle Kirk, Greenock - one of three kirks called Lyle in the area and needless to say we got lost and went to the wrong kirk! However, a postman came to the rescue ... who better to ask for directions :) The inside of the kirk is beautiful - loved the stained glass window,  the organ pipes were massively impressive, and fabulous arches.  As for the ornate metal work that ran the length of the aisles, the central heating pipes run underneath ... both functional and good to look at.
Finally, I just had to show you these shots taken from the car on our way out of Greenock and on our way home. The colours of the trees that line the road are simply stunning ... at last! Autumn seems to have been a long time in coming this year but here it is now in all it's splendour.

So that was my day off yesterday ... great fun and we all had a super time together. We even had our photo taken by a newspaper (The Telegraph) photographer. The EM still has a long way to go before he converts me into a model railway enthusiast but I have to admit I was impressed with it all and would not be averse to going to the bigger exhibition at the SECC in Glasgow early next year :))

I hope you enjoyed these photos as much as we enjoyed our day out. A big thank you to all the exhibitors and the church volunteers who worked so hard to make it a super experience for everyone.

The worst of the packing is done so I think I can play hookey again this evening and see what I can do in the way of crafting using the somewhat limited resources I am now left with.

Take care and happy crafting,

Thursday 17 October 2013

Folksy Floral Spray

Hello Everyone,

How are you all ... well, I hope and enjoying yourself.

I'm still stealing time from what I should really be doing to make a card or two, though working with a much reduced stash and crafty arsenal.

This quick and simple card was made just so that I could try out the embossing folder ... for the first time. It's one of a set of two Sizzix Textured Impressions - the Folksy Circle & Fun set - that has been sadly neglected.

Oh, and the Cuttlebug is still on my desk ... couldn't bear to pack it away just yet!

I embossed a square of deep pink Core'dinations, Aged Wine, and then rubbed it over with an emery board to reveal the paler pink inner core. The edges were roughed up with scissors, as was the green patterned paper - from Docrafts Happy Days collection - used for the base layer.

The topper was made by stamping Hero Arts Flourish Spray on to a snippet of smooth white card - Neenah Solar - with Archival black ink. I used a selection of pink and green Memento pens to colour the flowers and leaves. I found a cArtUs circle die the perfect size for the centre of the Folksy Circle.

Embellishments are the butterfly, cut using another cArtUs die set, and some pink and green pearls - Melissa Frances.

It has been a wee while since I've been over to Di's playground, that's Pixie's Snippets Playground of course, but I'm off to now submit this card ... and to see how the ducks are doing while she is off sunning herself in exotic parts :)

Not long to the weekend now. We are planning to take some time out on Saturday, taking a run up the coast to Greenock to a model railway exhibition. The EM and SIL are fanatics enthusiasts so we are making it a family outing with my daughter and two youngest grandchildren coming along too ... expect to see some wildly exciting pics of tiny trains and fantastic miniature railway layouts :))

I hope you too have something equally entertaining lined up for the weekend.

Take care and happy crafting,

Wednesday 16 October 2013

Silver Dove - not on my desk this Wednesday

Morning Everyone

Time is of the essence today and, because that is so, I thought it would be unfair to join in with WOYWW ... the chances of me finding much time to desk snoop is virtually nil, and leaving comments even less. However I have a card that was super quick and easy to make to share with you instead ... this won't take long :)
All that was needed for the card was a white A6 (5.75"x4") card base, a piece of silver mirror card measuring slightly less and an absolutely stunning topper recycled from last year's cards that really needed very little in the way of embellishment, trimmed to measure just a fraction less than the silver mat. All I've added is a greeting with VersaMark ink pad and silver embossing powder and some clear rhinestone gems for the snowflakes and top left/bottom right.

Et voila! One very speedy card which is about all I have time for at the moment.  I'm sad pleased to report that most of my crafty stash, tools and whatnots are all boxed up ready for the move. The house looks like a Pickfords depot right now and the Boss is totally confused and put out by it all!

Okay, gotta go ... things to do.

I hope you are all having a wonderful Wednesday.

Take care and happy crafting,

Monday 14 October 2013

Scarecrow at Sunrise

Evening All,

Just taking a few minutes to write up this post so it will be brief. I have another seasonal card to share with you today.
The background is another of the considerable number of prints I made with the Gelli plate quite a while back now ... I'm steadily finding a use for them all. As usual it was made using some bubble wrap and a Special Touch mask - Fretwork, I think - and a combination of yellow, orange, white, and even a touch of black acrylic paints.

The topper has been inked with a combination of Tim Holtz DIs - wild honey, weathered wood, black soot - and Adirondack - sunshine yellow, peach bellini, willow. The Scarecrow and Wild Poppies are from Clarity Stamps - stamped in Memento tuxedo black and coloured with ProMarkers - apricot, ginger, lime green, pastel yellow, buttercup and cool grey 1.  This is the first time ever that I've tried to create a sunrise, actually showing the rays radiating out from the sun, and ripe fields of goodness knows what ready to harvest ... hope you have a good imagination :))

Wild Poppies simply stamped in black for the insert.

I'd like to submit this card to the following challenges that all have a photo for inspiration:

Colour Throwdown # 263  - photo & colour inspiration ... didn't have the exact colours so substituted with what I do have.

Addicted to Stamps and More Challenge #66 - Anything Goes

Papercraft Star Challenge # 165 - photo inspiration that includes a scarecrow :)
Pixies Snippets Playground - Week 94 - although there is only one tiny snippet - the piece of white card that is the basis of the topper - every little snippet used helps :)

I'm off to lie down now ... I finally cleared out my wardrobe this afternoon, discovered a lot of forgotten stuff, much for good reason, and I'm utterly exhausted! And I'll swear there's not a bone in my body that isn't aching :(

I hope you are all well and that Monday has been good to you. Thanks for dropping by.

Take care and happy crafting,