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Thursday, 31 October 2013

The Ups and Downs of a Crafty Life.....

First of all, let me wish everyone who is having fun tonight a very happy Halloween, I hope all your little spooks are suitably cute and that all the children in your life get lots and lots of candy and that their costumes stay intact through all the fun!


Here are a couple of the cards I made for my Heartfelt Creations design team submission.......





I 'tie dyed' the ribbon for this one, so that the colours matched all the colours I used to colour the blooms exactly.......




I will share more of the cards I made for them over the next few days - but the bad news is that they didn't give me a place on their team. I have no idea why, I have had no feedback at all, maybe my style just isn't what they were looking for. Hey ho, you can't win them all!
 But on the bright side, I had a phone call earlier this week with some very exciting (for me) news, but I can't share that with you until next week. So this crafting lark is like being on some bizarre roller coaster, one minute you are up, the next you are down. Anyway, thanks to all of you who went over and voted for me on their blog, I really appreciate it.


See you tomorrow x

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Santa, Little Monsters and Halloween Candy......

 Here's a little Santa card made with an image from the Magical Winter CD from Polkadoodles. I took this first photo at an angle so that you can see the glitter....


Very simple, but it took me ages to colour him! This will be Monty's Christmas card this year...


Here's some Halloween candy for you - I have had a much needed tidy up in my craft space, and since I have been on Craftwork Card's design team for some years now, I have gathered a huge amount of the gorgeous card Candi that they make, more than I could ever use in a lifetime - I have sorted an assortment out, some of every collection ever made and I have a bag to give away to TWO of you......



Again, probably more than you will ever need so you can probably spread a bit of sunshine among your friends as well....

 Just leave your name under this post, and on Friday, I will pick two random winners from all those names, I'll let you know on Saturday who won

Some happy mail for me today, I had a parcel from Blitzy, some of the few distress colours that I don't have - I love the pink and the peacock one. Have you tried Blitzy yet, I love it. It's a sale site, based in Chicago, and when you join you get emails with all the latest sales, their prices are fantastic, and even with postage costs, these ink pads cost me £15 less than the cheapest place I could find them online in the UK. You can get extra discounts too - highly recommended


Here are Max and Milo getting ready for Halloween .........




and trying their outfits on for size - I enlarged this photo when my daughter in law sent it in my mail, and underneath those monster faces you can see two pairs of very blue eyes peeping out. Cute...


Mind you, Halloween may be a bit of a trial for four year old Milo, who is going through the waking at night saying he is scared there are monsters under the bed stage.......with immaculate logic, when his parents tell him that there are no scary monsters or burglars he asks 'well if there are no burglars, why do we have a burglar alarm?' Hmm, answer that one Dad!

No photos of Kiki and Monty yet, but she informs me she is going to be a cat and Monty is Gangman Style! I'm rather glad we didn't have all this dressing up malarkey when my kids were small, I think it would have driven me to distraction - I found it hard enough to get three gym kits in the right bags on the right days

See you tomorrow x 

Monday, 28 October 2013

Happy Birthday Cake...

Here's a peek at one of the cards I have in this month's Papercraft Inspirations Magazine, on sale now - the theme was birthday cakes, and I made this one using up scraps of ribbon 



and you are right, the top corner is a bit bashed in, I send the cards to the magazine to be photographed, then they get sent back to me, obviously this one didn't like all that travelling...


Since I last chatted to you I have had two nasty crafting accidents - who would have thought that making cards could be classed as an extreme sport! Firstly, my dear beloved decided to vacuum the room where I craft - the poor guy was probably fed up with picking his way over all the rubbish, risking getting a stray glitter letter X or a foam pad sticking to his shoes...anyway, I wandered into the newly cleaned room and didn't notice that my chair was partially balanced on a plastic box, so I sat down and BINGO, in slow motion, down I went, straight onto the floor with a spine jarring thud. My poor coccyx is still feeling the pain, and I spent a couple of shaky hours on the sofa feeling sorry for myself and watching Judge Judy (I love that woman, straight to the point.. ). Then I gave myself a brisk talking-to and went back to the desk to finish the sheet music project (yes I found it, for some reason it was with the printer paper, never mind)............the project involved hot glue, so out came the little glue gun, and I promptly glued my fingers together. It's not nice to peel glue off your skin and see the skin coming away with the glue. Ouchie!
So I decided I needed a break from the craft desk before I did something really stupid with a paper cutter or craft knife. 

For those of you not in the UK, we are expecting a really nasty storm to hit overnight, the type of storm that we only get once every few years. The TV and papers have been full of it for days, so just in case we get a power cut I thought I should look out a torch, I know we have one somewhere. Couldn't find it anywhere, but I did find a lot of those little LED tealights from Christmas, so if the power does go, we can sit around singing Christmas carols, or have a seance or something...If you ARE in the UK, stay safe my friends..

See you tomorrow x

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Autumn Promarkers to win.....

It's my turn to post over on the Letraset blog today, and I have a set of twelve ProMarkers to give away to one of you....



They are the very latest colours for Autumn/Winter and are limited editions. The colours are lovely, you will get: winter spruce, solstice blue, firewood, sugar plum, red sweater, frosted lake, pressed leaf, hearthstone, trick or treat, sleigh bell, frozen lake and iced pearl plus a blender pen 




All you have to do is go over to the Letraset blog HERE and leave a comment, then come back here to leave your name. Don't forget if you tick the anonymous box to leave a comment (if you don't have a google account) to leave your name - Joan from Doncaster would be better than just Joan. All those who have commented on BOTH blogs will be entered into a random draw to win the markers. If you subscribe by email, click on the grey GOING BUGGY at the top of your email, and it will bring you straight here to leave your comment. I will mail anywhere in the world, so you can all enter. I'll draw a winner next Wednesday, and tell you who won next Thursday. Good luck!

What have I been up to over there? Alcohol inks and ironing - such a cool technique, much more fun than ironing sheets and shirts! Here is one of the alcohol ink cards I made today, I love messing around with them, it's addictive....


What else have I been doing - searching for a sheet music book that I bought in a charity shop last year. I NEED it now, for a Christmas project I am working on, and can I find it? I have searched in every crafty nook and cranny, so there is nothing for it, tomorrow will see me marching into Oxfam and Age Concern to see if I can replace it. What a bummer, just when I have masses to do. I did unearth rather a lot of papers though, including a couple of brand new paper stacks that I forgot I had, and I need to set aside a day just to sort this lot out - that day will be after I have finished my sheet music project of course, and the first thing that will turn up will be the book I have spent hours looking for today. Inevitable.......

See you tomorrow x  

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Autumn

It was a typical Autumn day here in the UK - rain, rain and more rain. My desk seemed a cozy place to be, so I now have some magazine cards safely done and dusted, and when I was clearing up, look what I found - some more of those pesky leaves. I didn't know I'd made so many, and I'm a bit bored with them now, and you probably are too, but after all that cutting and inking and glazing, I am not about to waste them..... 



But look what I found, this coppery fern paper was in a set of ten papers on clearance in Target, way back. I paid 20 cents for the pack, and when I opened it, there was this lovely coppery paper - the type of paper you want to stroke, not use. But after all this time, it seemed perfect for my leaves, and you can't hang on to stuff forever (where would we put all the new stuff?...) You will be glad to hear that I have had a tidy up session, and there are no more leaves, pretty or otherwise, lurking around the crafty cupboard..


It's been quiet here in my little corner of blogland this week, I am missing some of my regular pals who often pop over to comment, I hope everyone is okay. In the meantime, I'll keep burbling on to myself .........

See you tomorrow, with a Letraset giveaway, yes, I am getting inky again, well it beats getting wet!

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Using up the Freebies - with a twist....

Photo: Like making sparkling festive cards? Then you'll love this month's free cover gift! Our December issue comes with two fab gifts - a decoupage shaker cards kit PLUS three gorgeous glitters! What more could a Christmas crafter ask for? Find out more on our blog: http://papercraftinspirations.themakingspot.com/blog/free-d-coupage-kit-and-glitters-with-issue-119-of-papercraft-inspirations
This Month's Papercraft Inspiration magazine has a great free gift, six snowglobe frames, acetate, and cute little decoupage penguins. Plus three pots of really nice fine glitter 


I hang my head and say that I very rarely use the free gifts given away by magazines - although I use a embossing tray that Papercraft Inspirations gave away almost every day, and I have been known to buy a magazine just for the free stamps if they are designs that appeal

But I really liked these snowglobes, but wanted to use them to make more 'grown up' cards. So I cut out the frames, covered them with a clear sparkly embossing powder and heat embossed. This first one has some stamped trees - I've had the stamp for ever, it's still on sale in Jo-Ann's in the USA.
I added quite a lot of Frantage shabby white embossing powder over the image and heated again.....



I didn't use the acetate for this next one, just some snowflake embossed vellum (Papermania 2012), and some punched snowflakes....



This last one is so much prettier in real life! The trees are by Clarity stamps, I stamped them with Memento dark blue ink and dotted some liquid pearls. The ribbon is white seam binding that I inked with a ProMarker, and I added some sequins to the glitter inside the globe...the little tag is handwritten, and may be changed, I was smiling as I attached it as I can imagine a number of our friends opening it and saying 'Joy? Who the heck is Joy?' 



So a very nice little gift this month, the magazine is out now in the UK, on the first of November in the USA (larger Jo-Ann stores, Barnes and Noble and Books a Million stock it) - AND I have some cards in the magazine, I may give you a sneeky peek later in the week. Not only that, there are some really lovely cards in there by my bestie Kath Stewart - she is using the Fiskars Fuse. If you want free papers and downloads, go to the Papercraft Inspirations blog, lots of freebies over there 

Monday, 21 October 2013

The Vogue Collection...

The latest paper collection by Craftwork Cards is stunning - it has a definite art deco feel to it, elegant and lovely to work with. Here are some of the samples I made for the debut of the range on Create and Craft last week

I enjoyed painting and distressing this cardboard book box that I found in Hobbycraft...it looks really old and shabby, just what I was aiming for....



Decorated with some of the elements from the range, love that dress form...



 They have bought out some really lovely swing cards, I think the butterfly has to be my favourite - there is a gorgeous peacock on one of the papers, and I cut out his tail to cover the wings...




 They are incredibly difficult to photograph though, this gives you more of an idea.....


Here's a very simple card showing that lovely peacock.....aren't the papers lovely? Apart from a little glitter, this card practically made itself!




The papers are so stylish and neutral that some of them would make great male cards, so I made this shirt and tie card - collar and tie cut from Designer Calendar  Cricut cartridge


Everyone loved the collection, and with the help of Julie Hickeys gorgeous demos, it was a sell-out

I have a busy week ahead with quite a to-do list on my desk, but since the weather is grey and wet, it will be nice to snuggle down for a bit of serious crafting...

See you tomorrow x


Saturday, 19 October 2013

More leaves...and a winner

 Here are the other cards that I made with my grunge paper inked and crackled leaves - I found a weird copper button thingy that I picked up on 
clearance in Michaels, many moons ago, and it made a perfect embellishment with a real button popped on the top




I would really like to have had a couple of ears of wheat to put behind the leaves on this one, but didn't want them badly enough to get in the car and drive out into the countryside looking for stray stalks of wheat, so I cut a sissix flourish and embossed it with copper and bronze embossing powders...



Really simple for this next one, I have no idea where this strange little Spellbinders die came from, I only have the one, not the whole set, it must have been sent me for a design team project. I only had a couple of little leaves left, but I was determined not to waste them. The sentiments were printed onto Safmat (transparent printing film by Letraset), and I used the very last remnant of one of my favourite ribbons for a bow.... 




Later than promised, but the winner of the Happy Days paper bows pad from Craftwork Cards is

Jane Willis

Congrats Jane. Email me with your address and it will be in the mail on Monday

See you tomorrow with some Craftwork Cards makes and another giveaway x

Friday, 18 October 2013

Autumn Leaves....

The grunge paper leaves have made their way on to a couple of cards - I love the effect....



The little apple is a wooden one by Cosmo Cricket, that I coloured with ProMarkers, and I threaded some twine through the triple gingham bow....




Those of you in the UK, here's a preview of the new Craftwork Cards collection, and the times of their TV shows today - I've set my timer, I forgot last time and missed it all.....



I totally forgot to sort out the winner of  the Paper Bows pad, I will do that later and let you know who won tomorrow

The reason I am a bit behind with everything is that I had my flu jab on Wednesday, normally I just get it and forget it, but this time, I have had a real reaction, I feel as if I have flu! After googling it, it would seem that even a severe reaction only lasts a couple of days, so hopefully I will be firing on all cylinders by the weekend......

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Rusty Birdcages...

One of the techniques in Creative Chemistry 102 showed how to make a lovely antique/pitted/aged look to metal

Slight problem, I didn't have any of the supplies needed - including the TH birdcage die. I did have some great little white cardstock birdcages from Craftwork Cards, so I started to play around with ordinary embossing powders on these, and they look really great.....



I used aged bronze embossing powder on this one, then randomly sprinkled on some black EP........I think I need to ink them a bit to finish them off. What do you think?



For this next one, I used copper embossing powder, and patches of green as a second addition, I wanted it to look like verdigris.


I finally managed to get that little image onto a card! This will go to one of my grandsons I think, it's so sweet.....


 I dotted glue on with a glue pen, all over the card and image, even on his clothes - I wanted it to look as if it was snowing. Then I sprinkled all over with Martha Stewart coarse carrerra marble glitter - nice big flakes! Pretty effective in real life - difficult to photograph though....




The winner of the CD hasn't been in touch to claim her prize. If I haven't heard from her by tomorrow, I will draw another winner from all those who left comments. See you then.... x

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Christmas Wreath....



Well all of a sudden it has turned from a rather nice Autumn to being very very wet - the squirrels are having the time of their lives digging up earth from the garden pots looking for nice juicy bulbs - why do they do that when the ground is littered with acorns?

So, since Winter is around the corner, here is a little Christmas wreath made with the wreath kit from Craftwork Cards - so easy to put together, you get sheets of die cut poinsettias and holly leaves, a chipboard wreath base, ribbons, and gold candi for the flower centers, and even better, you get enough to make two wreaths in one kit. All I did was sprinkle some shabby white Frantage embossing powder onto the leaves and flowers...it will made a special card for someone....



My samples for the Craftwork Cards show on Create and Craft TV, with the lovely Julie Hickey are in the mail - I will let you know what time she is on. Also in the mail are my final submissions for the Heartfelt Creations design team. Breathe...

I had an amusing moment in my favourite coffee shop today. Two workmen were removing a panel from the wall, like a little hidden cupboard, low down, almost like a small understairs cubby, except there were no stairs...One of the guys was rather chunky (I am being so nice and tactful here), but for some reason, he was the one that had to get into the little cubbyhole, presumably there were electrical or plumbing things in there. So he got on his back on the floor and started to edge his way inside the hole, feet first. He got so far, (abdomens were involved by this time..) then got stuck. His mate was giving him advice 'move your shoulder down Ken, breathe in'....No good, Ken was well and truly stuck. So the mate started to push him in, he got down on the floor and gave poor old Ken a couple of good shoves. Honestly, it was like watching a birth video in reverse....
This went on for some time, by which time they were getting helpful advice from all the coffee drinkers. In the end, to my amazement, Ken came bottom shuffling back out, red faced and sweating,  and the skinny little mate crawled in, did whatever needed to be done in about four minutes, popped back out again, and off they went. I mean, if mate was capable of doing it, why on earth did they put chunky Ken through all that agony - I am rather glad they did, it was hilarious! 

See you tomorrow with some Autumn leaves which have made it onto a card...