Sunday 23 March 2014

Snippet Sunday Card ... and in my garden today

Hello Everyone

Good morning to you all. I hope you are having a very happy weekend.

As you can see I've given my blog a bit of a makeover. The header, created using Serif Craft Artist, is a collage of some of my favourite things, including a photo of The Boss, and it's in shades of purple ... it's the colour associated with my zodiac sign so seemed a good choice. I see now I've forgotten to create shadows around the butterflies and title so more practice needed there! Do you like it? Do tell me what you think ... even if you hate it!

Today's share is yet another card I made earlier ... this time for a friend, Cass, whose favourite colours are pink and blue. This one gave me the opportunity to play with some recently acquired goodies and still use up a snippet or two ... this time it's the blue pearlescent card used for matting and layering.
The topper was created on white card using the Seed Head stencil, from Clarity Stamp, and Pinflair products that I brought back from the craft show in Glasgow a couple of weeks ago ... you can see a photo on this post here.

To make it I followed Pinflair's Antony's instructions for combining two shades of Buff-it paste, in this case Dark Green and Dark Blue, and sponged the mix through the stencil and then buffed it up - the resulting pattern has a lovely sheen. There's a series of demonstrations on how to use the paste on YouTube - click here for the first.

After applying the Buff-it the next step was to sponge on the Gentle Blends - colours used were Denim and Hot Magenta. Note: the pots of colour look quite a lot richer/darker than the actual soft shades once they are sponged on to card/paper! And they blend beautifully when using the sponge applicators.

That done, I trimmed the card down and matted it on to the pale blue pearlescent card and tied blue organza ribbon round it ready to attach it to the front of the card.

The front of the base card has been sponged with the same two shades of Gentle Blends too.

To finish the front I attached the topper, added a gem swirl cut from Merryweather Swirl Adhesive Gems from K & Company and some purple card candi ... from Craftworks Vintage Berries mix. This mix includes deep shades of blue, red, green, grey and the purple and has to be one of the most useful in my collection of card candi ... I'll be sad when it's done.

The trimmings from the topper were matted on to some strips of blue pearlescent card and used to finish off the inside and back of the card.

As it is Sunday, it's the start of a new week over at Pixie's Snippets Playground where, as usual, Di has posted a fabulous showcase of the snippeteers beautiful projects ... their ingenuity in finding ways of using up snippets and leftover scraps of paper and card never ceases to amaze and delight.

It's a bright and sunny day here with just a bit of a breeze keeping the temperature down and stopping me from doing too much in the garden. However, I recently nipped out with the camera and took this photo.
Not much to see you might think, just a lovely blue sky through bare branches! Not so!! This is one of the two flowering cherry trees (Prunus) that form an arch over our front gate. Ever since we moved in I've been looking forward to seeing them in bloom. So when I spotted the tiny flower buds appearing I just had to take a photo - just for the record.

The EM is very much better today and my shoulder is responding well to the anti-inflammatory medication so all-in-all we're doing just fine. Hope you are too :)

Take care and happy crafting,

Friday 21 March 2014

Butterflies on a Leafy Swirl ... and in my garden today

Hello Everyone

Happy Friday to you ... hope you are enjoying your day and looking forward to the weekend. Still nursing a sore shoulder so it's another card made some time ago that I have to share with you today.
And it's predictable perhaps but it's another card made with pretty paper :) This time I've covered the front of a square Kraft base with a sheet from Prima's Romantique 6x6 pack.

I then stamped, in VersaFine Olympia Green, the larger Leafy Swirl from a Clarity Stamp set and the Birthday Wishes from Stampin' Up's So Happy for You set.

Next it was embellished with three butterflies made by stamping Docrafts Urban Stamp Butterflies, again using the VersaFine ink pad, onto another sheet of paper from the Prima pack, cutting them out, inking the edges with Rangers Stormy Sky distress ink and applying Baby Blue Stickles to the bodies.

The faux bow was made with peach satin ribbon in two widths and blue eyelash trim topped of with a Prima flower ... dipped in glue and iridescent glitter. Blue pearls provided the finishing touch.

Much as I like Kraft card, I always think it's not the best colour to write on so I've covered the inside right with another trimmed down sheet of paper ... the trimming was used to decorated the left side. And the back is decorated with the last of the butterflies.

I will be submitting this card to the following challenges:

Craftyhazelnut's Patterned Paper March challenge - if it wasn't for Hazel I wouldn't be making such an effort to use up the pretty patterned paper from my stash. If, like me, you have lots of pretty paper tucked away in your stash then this is the very challenge to persuade you to use some of it up.

Creative Knockouts #29-Things With Wings - that'll be the butterflies :) 

What a week it's been so far. The first day of spring, according to Google that is, and the weather took a turn for the worse here. Gales and blustery showers wreaked havoc and left the front garden litter strewn, again! The Boss hates wind and simply refuses to go out in it so she's out of sorts. And just to make matters worse the EM hasn't been at all well ... a really bad cold verging on man flu. But all that aside I still found something in the garden for Annie's Friday Smile.
Not absolutely sure about this shrub but I think it's one of the many Berberis - common name Barberry - possibly, because it's evergreen, Berberis stenophylla. This is a shot of the one in the front garden but there's another tucked away at the back in what is going to be the wooded area ... well, that's the long term plan :)

Now I'm off to check out what's making everyone smile today ... to the background of all the Sport's Relief Does Glee Club ... it doesn't get much better than that :)

Have a happy weekend everyone,

Wednesday 19 March 2014

Shades of Green Card ... and in my garden today

Hello Everyone

Happy Wednesday to you all. It's another bright but blustery day here ... The Boss isn't too happy with that - she hates windy weather. Because of my bad shoulder I'm still trying to stay off the keyboard for long stretches and that, sadly, means not participating in What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday. Much as I would love to I won't be able to type too many comments :(

Fortunately, I have a wee catalogue of cards already made up and not posted so will be sharing one at a time until back to normal. Today I have this Christmas card to share.
Another of my attempts to use up pretty patterned paper. This particular paper, Basic Grey Origins Seaweed Wrap, was leftover from another project. A double-sided paper, one side being flowery and not at all suitable for a Christmas card, the other being non-specific and perfect, I thought, for a very green card.

For the topper I've recycled a card received over Christmas 2013 ... I loved the photo of the mistletoe with the glittered word, Noel, stamped over it, so just trimmed the front down to a suitable size and matted it on to a snippet of white card.

It's not too visible in the photos but there's a bellyband made from smooth green card - more leftovers. The upper and lower edge were punched, using a Martha Stewart arch punch, and dark green organza ribbon (from stash) wrapped around before adhering it to the front of the card.

The embellishments consist of a bow decorated with a green gem brad ... it's from an old Docrafts set, perhaps 2 years old ... and a green card candi (Craftworks Vintage Berries mix) in the four corners.


Inside and back decorated with strips of the patterned paper matted on to the green cardstock.

I'm submitting the card to the following challenges:

Hazel's two Christmas Challenges - CHNC challenge 168: Going green ... a little or a lot - I've gone for a lot! ... and CHNC challenge extra for March where, as always, anything goes as long as it it Christmas.

Then there's Hazel's Craftyhazelnut's Patterned Paper March challenge - anything goes as long as the card front is covered with patterned paper.

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Week 116 - it's my second trip to the playground this week :)

Fan-Tastic Tuesday Challenge # 27 ... anything goes as long as it's square

Craft Your Passion  Challenge 205 ~ Go Green - this card is definitely green :)

That's the crafting bit done but I know many of you are interested in gardening and, more specifically, what is happening in our new garden. Now that spring has arrived every day is proving to be full of exciting discoveries ... all those dull borders and bare branches are bursting into bloom. So I thought I'd share the excitement with you by posting at least one photo in every post. Here's today's shot.
Ribes sanguineum ... common name Flowering Current. It has a rather pungent, and not altogether pleasant, smell but the pretty flower is compensation enough for that.

Right, I'm off to rest this beastly shoulder for an hour or so but will be back tomorrow, I hope.

Enjoy your day.

Happy crafting and happy gardening too :)

Tuesday 18 March 2014

Sweet Pea Card and Daffodils

Hello Everyone

Hope you are all having a lovely day. It's a showery one here but still has the feel of spring about it.

I have a quickly made card to share with you ... using some pretty Kaisercraft paper and chipboard shapes that came free with a copy of Quick Cards Made Easy magazine.
As you can see the images are roses and yet the collection is called Sweet Pea ... I wonder why? The layout is a favourite ... and perhaps I use it too often but the finished look is always very nice. The base is covered with one floral patterned sheet and the belly band is made with a strip of another coordinating paper from the same pack. A rake about in stash produced the trims - pearl bead trim, cotton lace and seam binding. I never throw leftovers away ... it's surprising just how far a scrap of trim will go!

For the inside and back I just layered up some leftover strips of the paper.

Materials used:

  • Base - square white card
  • Paper - Kaisercraft Sweet Pea Paper Collection from Quick Cards Made Easy with matching chipboard die-cuts
  • Ink - Memento Black Tuxedo
  • Stamp - greeting from Stampin' Up So Happy For You stamp set
  • Trims - scraps of cream cotton lace, pearl bead trim; green seam binding

I'm submitting this card to the following challenges:

Hazel's Craftyhazelnut's Patterned Paper March challenge - anything goes as long as the card is covered with patterned paper.

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Week 116 - anything goes as long as snippets have been included ... I'm hoping the scraps of lace and pearl bead trim qualify me for entry to the playground.

I began this post by saying that despite the showers it still feels like spring and I thought I'd close by leaving you with this photo as evidence ...
... the first daffs the EM picked from the garden. They were still in bud yesterday but opened up overnight - just lovely :)

Enjoy your day and happy crafting,

Monday 17 March 2014

Some recent sewing projects.

Hi Everyone,

I hope this finds you all well and Monday has been a good day for you.

It's not been so good for me. I've been having increasing pain in my right hand and arm for the last few weeks. Up until the weekend it's been just about tolerable but then it got worse so the EM insisted I see the doctor and it seems that it's inflammation on my shoulder that is causing the pain. Advice is to keep taking the pills and rest it for while - if it isn't okay in a month he will refer me to the hospital to see the arm specialist. Needless to say, I shouldn't even be typing so I'll make it as brief as possible!

I made these two little pot holders so that I could try out some easy quilting.
The square with the chicken motif has been in my stash for at least two years ... so nice to find a use for it at last.
The appliqued heart was made by tracing round the largest die in my Homespun Heart die set.

And here's what I made from some of the lovely fabric I bought at the Glasgow craft show.
I know there's one or two chicken keepers out there who would love this :)
The tote bag is fully lined, has a double pocket on the front and is really easy to make.

Okay, I'm off before Matron, aka DH, catches me behaving badly :)

Take care and happy crafting everyone,

Friday 14 March 2014

Friday Smile - Week 60

Morning Everyone

I love Fridays: it's the start of the weekend and the day for Annie's Friday Smile ... this week she has treated us to a photo of some gorgeous red tulips from her garden. Yes, spring has finally arrived to cheer us all up.

When I'm thinking of what to include in this post each week I often find it a bit of a struggle. Not because there's been too little to make me smile, quite the reverse - I have a lot to smile about - but narrowing the photos down to just one or two, well, that is difficult. So, after much ruminating and cogitating, here's my choice for this week.
First choice is this shot of my gorgeous great-granddaughter, Rhian, on her way to nursery school. She looks so grown up now. Love those cute pigtails and aren't those lace trimmed socks just so sweet. I can't help noting that her backpack is almost as big as she is :)
My second, and last, choice for today is this delightful photo posted by my niece, Louise, on Facebook. I just had to share it with you too ... hard not to agree with that sentiment?

That's what is putting a smile on my face this morning. Annie would just love it if you joined in and let us see what's making you happy too.

Have a great day, wherever you are and whatever the weather,

Thursday 13 March 2014

A Touch ... Of Cream

Afternoon Folks

Not such a nice day today ... just a bit overcast here in the south-west of Scotland and a mite chilly ... keeping me out of the garden and in the craft room instead. So I have another card made to fit in with Hazel's Patterned Paper Challenge and Di's Snippets challenge again. Both these lovely ladies are helping me to keep to my goal of using up all the pretty patterned paper and snippets I've amassed in the last few years  - thank you ladies :)
Just for a change I've chosen to make the orientation a tent shape ... I'm not often so adventurous but today's the day :) The front has been covered with paper which is patterned with a delicately small pastel floral on a cream ground - from the Kaisercraft Sweet Pea Paper Collection that came with an issue of Quick Cards Made Easy.

For the topper I stamped this simple but lovely daisy image, oddly called A Touch, from Penny Black, in Versafine Vintage Sepia on to Rich Cream Linen Card (PaperMill Direct). It was then matted on to a scrap of leftover smooth  kraft coloured card (Buff - also from PaperMill Direct).

Before glue gelling the topper to the front I wrapped cream satin edged ribbon, from stash, around the top of it and tied a bow off centre so as not to cover any of the stamped image. The finishing touch is the cream coloured enamel dots - Teresa Collins Summer Stories collection - one large on the knot of the bow and two smaller ones on left and right bottom corners. Just in passing, I've now started to use extra adhesive on sticky backed dots and gems ... experience tells me that the adhesive they come with can't be trusted!

The inside and back are stamped with the daisy too, stamping off the edge so that there are just parts of the daisy showing.

It was a simple and easy card to make ... a good design for when you are in a hurry. I've deliberately left off a greeting or sentiment ... I'll decide on that when I get around to giving it to someone but until then it will go into the drawer and join the others in my collection.

We are off out to our local gardening centre for tea and strawberries ... well, there's a talk on growing strawberries accompanied by tea ... later this afternoon. Tea and gardening - what more could we ask for :)

Whatever you have planned for this evening, I hope you have a good one.

Happy Crafting,

Wednesday 12 March 2014

WOYWW - Week 249 ... the one with the craft show

Morning WOYWWers, Followers, Friends ... Bloggers Everywhere,

So it's What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday again and what have I got to reveal to the head of workdesks, Julia, and all, nothing, zilch, nada ... not a thing! Why? Because there's not a lot going on craftwise right now ... too many distractions, e.g. the sun, the garden and craft shows, to name a few. So, to compensate, I thought I'd show you the pics from last week's Creative Stitches and Hobby Crafts show at the SECC in Glasgow. The following is heavy on photos but short on words :)

First up a shot of my daughter, Juli, making a beeline for a fabric and haberdashery stall.
Spoiled for choice! So many fabulous trims: needless to say we both found a selection to bring home :)

Next is a series of photos taken of the Craftwell Village ... a wonderful knitted and crocheted project that attracted a lot of attention.
Even the flowers and vegetables were knitted. The neat vegetable gardens are a credit to the residents :)
We were just in time to see a newly wed couple having their photos taken. And the attention to detail was amazing, even down to the stones in the graveyard.
The village had everything, including a train station and an outdoor market.
And on the outskirts the farm where there was even a farmer bringing in the hay.

While we were sitting down for our lunch we were treated to a fashion show.
Unfortunately, I was so enthralled I forgot to take out the camera so missed taking photos of the fabulous Snow Queen and the wonderful Frog Prince and the Princess ... sorry!
There was some wonderful embroideries and quilting on show but because of the many 'No Photographs' signs I have few pics of the inspirational work on display.
However not everything had a photo ban, here's just a few shots taken of fabulous display portraying The Seasons - one of those displays where the more you looked the more there was to see!
Similarly, the Myths and Legends display had us mesmerised!
And at one of the fabric stalls, every little girl's dream, tutus and concoctions made of ribbon - delightful :)

And finally, my haul. Top left - lovely pieces of yummy fabric, a desktop ironing pad and some batting/wadding; top right - the trims, bias binding and ribbons were irresistible (the buttons were thrown in as a freebie); bottom Clarity stencils, some tiny doilies, and lots of Pinflair goodies - several Gentle Blends, the sponge applicators and lots of adhesives, including a bottle of, new to me, Temporary Stick Stencil Glue ... I can see this being invaluable for holding masks and stencils in place, something I struggle to do.

Please let it be noted, not one piece of pretty patterned paper or cardstock, no matter how temptingly gorgeous, made its way into my basket ... still staying true to my goal of using up the stash I already have!

That's me done ... a longer post than Julia would like I guess, but nevertheless I hope you found the pics interesting.

I plan to visit as many of you as I can and, in the meantime, I wish you all a wonderful WOYWW.

Happy Crafting,

Tuesday 11 March 2014

One Layer Card - Just For You

Hello Everyone

I hope you are enjoying the same beautiful sunshine as we are here in Ayrshire. Just the thing to tempt me out into the garden  ... after a visit to the garden centre, of course :)

Now, with the sun proving to be such a distraction, not a lot has been happening in the craft room so the card I'm sharing with you today is one I made earlier.
The UKPC swap for last month challenged us to make a one layer card and after a bit of thought this is what I came up with.

I began by creating a panel with post-it notes on a plain white card base. I then inked it up with blue and pink inks from a neglected Big and Juicy pad, Hydrangea ... it's such a shame but I forget I have several of these fabulous ink pads tucked away. A spritz with water and dabbed with paper towel created the lovely speckled effect.

Once the panel was dry it was simply a case of removing the post-it notes and then stamping Agapanthus, from Kanban Crafts Spring Meadow, in black (Memento Tuxedo Black), and the bird, from Papermania Summer Bloom Collection, and the butterfly, from Inkadinkado Woodland Trails, in grey (Memento London Fog).

With the flourish stamp ... Sheena's A Little Bit Sketchy Best Friend Swirls, stamped in grey ... the effect I wanted to create was of it winding from the front to the inside and then finally on the back of the card ...

... like so.

The absolutely final touch was to stamp the greeting, Just For You, from Ladybug Crafts It's Only Words, in black on to the flourish. The stamp is transparent enabling it to be placed on an acrylic block and bent to follow the line of the flourish.
I haven't forgotten my promise to post some of the pics taken at the craft show last week ... not to mention the pile of goodies I blew my pocket money on ... I will, just as soon as I've finished cropping them and selecting the best.

In the meantime, I wish you all a very good evening.

Happy Crafting,