Friday, 25 February 2011

A New Idea... I think!?! ;D

Hello again!! :)

Wow, this CAS craze has really fired my imagination- and a huge thank you to the Less Is More ladies for that!! :) - and I can hardly believe I‘m actually about to enter a weekly challenge for the third week in a row but here is my entry for the Spring theme!! :D :D This time I have something slightly different to show you... I’m sure that somewhere out there somebody (or several dozen somebodies!) have already done this, but I hadn’t seen it done before and so I’m calling it a new idea for now!!lol 

A while ago I saw the ‘Out Of The Box’ nestie technique- which I was fascinated by and looked all over for an explanation of only to finally find one the day after I figured it out for myself!!- and this is  basically just the inverse of that, so it’s probably nothing that exciting... except to me, as it was really what I wanted to do for my One Layer entry last week but couldn’t for the life of me think of a way!! ;D Then I had a lightbulb moment- while I was resting and supposed to be calm, always the way!!- a couple of days ago while my mind was wandering through some of the ideas inspired by my travels through blogland- not thinking about this at all but one thing led to another, as they say, and I suddenly realised what I had in mind was  actually incredibly easy after all!! :) Anyway, I’ll stop wittering on about my rare moment of inspiration and show you my card!! ;)

So, was that a total anti-climax after all my build up!?! ;D It’s actually really simple to do but I love the way it looks :) I started by drawing round my nestie shape on the card front and then transferring an old sketch of a tulip I drew years ago onto the card, too, overlapping at the top and bottom (I've been wanting to use some of my own artwork in my cards for a while and this came to mind as nothing says spring to me more than tulips- I have some this colour in a vase in front of me as I type!! :) ). I drew over the tulip in Fineliner and then- this is the lightbulb bit!!- cut around the tulip to just past the line of the nestie with a craft knife. Then I slotted the die through the cuts (behind the tulip) and ran it through my bug... simple as that!! ;) After that I rubbed out all my pencil lines, coloured it with my Prismas and Zest-It and added a piece of paper (a beautiful design form the from the Forever Friends Pink Parfait pad) behind the aperture (as it doesn’t have to be just one layer this week I thought I might as well!!) and it was finished!! Or so I thought ‘cause then, when I was about to take the pics, I decided to add some Stickles around the aperture... not entirely sure if this was a good idea but sometimes it’s very hard to resist the call of glitter!! :)

 It’s not perfect and there are definitely areas I will attempt to improve upon another time, like th eneatness of the cut lines- the details are key with CAS after all as there’s nowhere to hide!! ;S – but overall, I’m just happy that my idea worked!!lol

I’ve been inspired by so many different blogs this last couple of weeks and this is a combination of ideas but I should especially say thanks to my lovely friend Elaine, who inadvertently set the train of thought that ended up in this card in motion this week (thank you honey!! :) ), and to Sarita, who’s amazing original sketches have got me feeling so inspired and excited to be more creative with my own designs again!! :)

Thanks to anyone who pops by and especially those who leave a comment- it’s wonderful to share what we’re all doing and I appreciate any comments!! :)

I hope you’ve all had a good week and wish you a lovely weekend!! :) I’m off to link up and then to have a look at a few of the other entries... that’s if I don’t get distracted by anymore of the sneak peeks of the next LOTV release- I have to have that adorable little elephant!!! :D

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Another Masculine Sepia...

Hello!! :)

I do hope I’m not getting into a colour-rut with male cards as this is another sepia one... I just really like sepia and also think it works very well for male cards!! Hope the recipient will agree!! This is the card I have mentioned, which is one of two I was asked to make by a friend for her brother-in-law’s birthday. The only tricky thing was that he’s had a recent bereavement and so she really didn’t want anything too bright and brash and also wanted to avoid all the standard ‘happy’ type greetings- she told my mum (who the order came via!) pretty much exactly the words she wanted for each card so I just had to try and find an assortment of stamps that would fit the bill and fit those around either a car or pint glass!! :) And this is the first of them which will be from her daughters to their Uncle:

I kept it pretty simple, as per the brief as well as my current tastes and energy-levels, and dug out some old stamps for the glass and words along with my much neglected embossing powders and heat tool- it’s nice to use some older stash alongside the newer bits!! :)

I used:
  •          SeeDs Boys Toys stamp set for the glass
  •          Woodware Clear Magic sets Must Have Retro Words and Franciose Alphabet for the wording
  •          Gold embossing powder and heat tool
  •          Distress Inks: Vintage Photo and Black Soot to colour glasses (it's supposed to be a Guiness-like colour- hope it's close at least!! :S )
  •          Nestie Labels 2 and Antique Linen DI applied through the die
  •          One of my digi paper designs
  •     Tim Holtz Paper Distresser and  Antique Linen DI on edges of paper
  •          Off-cuts of Kraft card previously embossed with C’bug Distressed Stripes Folder and punched with MS Cherish border punch
  •          Gold Mirror Card Candy

 And a couple of close-ups :)

So, pretty simple really but I’m quite pleased with how it came together :) I have to say, it’s much easier to come up with a satisfactory male card design with so many more CAS-influenced ideas in my head!! :)

I’d like to enter this in the following challenges: Paper Sundaes - #57 Masculine Colours :) ; PaperPlay – Add Shine (my shiny card candy) :) 

I made the second card for the order on Tuesday so will show you that soon- though I’m hoping I’ll have some more time to play and create something for this week’s Less Is More so that might have to be posted first if I do!! :) Thanks again to all those lovely people who’ve popped by and left comments or become followers!! :)


Sunday, 20 February 2011

Christmas Bunnies In Blue :)

Hi :)

This is a quick post to share another of the Christmas cards I made last year and never got posted... hope nobody will mind or be too bored but it seems a shame not to share them!! :) This one is the one I made for my dad and Step-mum and uses the gorgeous LOTV Bunnies image- can't believe I almost didn't actually buy this stamp... and it turned out to be one of my favourites- not only is it so incredibly cute but I love colouring it the various different colourways and mediums I've tried!! :)

It's pretty similar to ones I've posted before- though I like that the larger size difference between the card and first paper layer and the brighter ink gives the whole thing a much lighter, cleaner feel than some of my other similar cards, no idea why I decided to do that at the time, thought!!lol - so I won't witter on too long about it but for anyone who's new to my blog, I used:

  • LOTV's Christmas Bunnies - Stocking image stamped in Memento Tuxedo Black and coloured with Promarkers
  • Stardust Stickles and Sakura Clear Stardust on the image
  • Nestie Labels (4?) die
  • My own digi papers and a new version of my ticket sentiments
  • MS Aspen Snowflake border punch
  • Tim Holtz Paper Distresser and Tumbled Glass Distress Ink on all edges
  • White Organza Ribbon and Flat-backed Pearls to finish

And a few close-ups :)

As this one was made before Christmas and because I want this to be a quick post, I'm not going to enter it in any challenges but I'm hoping I'll be back soon with the card I mentioned the other day :) Thank you so much for all the lovely comments on my last card and the well wishes, too- I've had a better day or two which was nice but then followed by another dodgy one yesterday... just seems to be the way of it at the mo' but I really appreciate all your kind words :) One thing I will say is that it makes it easier that it's already staying lighter for so much longer in the evenings- I know some people hate this time of year, when the excitement of Christmas is over and there seems nothing to look forward to 'til summer, but I like the sense of things getting better with more light and lovely flowers popping up- it's late September/early October I hate, when it's already cold and so much darker and then you remember that there's still a month before the clocks change and it all gets even worse- and I can tell it makes me feel different from mid-January!! :) :) Right, I'll stop rambling now!!lol Hope you're all enjoying the feeling of spring around the corner and having a good weekend, too!! :)


Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Pretty In Purple... :)

Hi all!! :)

Well, I’m back again with another one layer card for this week’s Less Is More Challenge which is to make a One Layer Card with a tree or flowers :) One Layer is a very different way of thinking to what I’ve been used to but I’m really enjoying it... and not just because it’s quicker!! ;) I had so many ideas jostling around in my head for this challenge and really wanted to try something new and more inventive but I’ve not had a great week so I’ve ended up with the simplest pair of cards for now...

If I’m going to be totally honest, these came about because I was trying to stamp a background to anchor a Cross I’d stamped then matted and layered for a Sympathy card my mum needed but I got the positioning slightly off and so had to start again with another card blank :S But then I thought of this challenge and decided to add in another couple of stamps to use the blank that went wrong and make the design work on its own... and I’m really quite pleased with the result- as you could guess from the fact I made two!! :)

 I used three separate stamps from a set called Floral Words by Marian Emberson (from Personal Impressions) and stamped them so they appeared to all be connected with a VersaMagic Chalk pad in Spring Pansy- such a pretty colour!! :) This is the first time I’ve tried a VersaMagic pad and I think I’ll be going back for a few more!!lol 

I added a sentiment from another Marian Emberson set called It’s All About The Words, some Copic Spica Glitter pen and about three coats of Sakura Clear Glaze pen to the flowers and glaze over the words to add a bit of shine :) I punched the edge with my Cherish MS punch and inked with the purple ink, then just a few of my gorgeous new Pale Purple Flat-backed Pearls- I love these things, so much more subtle than gems when you don’t want in your face bling-iness!! :)

This one is *almost* exactly the same in terms of the stamping- think I need to make myself one of those stamp positioners so I can get things exactly where I want the more than once!!lol Though then I may never have created these cards as I’d have got the original with the Cross topper right first time... hmmm!! :P 

I didn’t use glaze on this one and only the merest hint of Spica as, with the Thinking of You wording making it suitable for a Sympathy card, I didn’t want it to be shining all over the place. Sentiment is from my fav Woodware Clear Magic Jane’s Script set again and I used my MS Traditional Scallop punch and inked again :)

I’d like to enter this in this week’s Less Is More – One Layer Card challenge :) And at this point I really must say a huge ‘Thank You!!!’ to all the lovely people who visited me from the challenge last week and especially to those people who took the time to leave comments, too!! :) I was kind of overwhelmed and truly do appreciate every one!! :) :) I did pop to quite a few peoples’ blogs from the linky myself and was really very excited to discover what seems like a whole new side to craft blogs to me with so many talented people making the simplest but most gorgeous of cards in so many different styles- I think I’ll be finding my attempts to make more and simpler cards much easier with so much inspiration just a few clicks away!! I’m only sorry my health makes it basically impossible for me to leave comments on every card I like... but I will hopefully be able to leave a few sometimes as I really like the community idea of the challenge :)

Right, I’m off now for another rest- one of those days unfortunately where rest has had to be the predominant feature again (and clarity of thought has not been, so I apologise for the rambling nature of what should have been a simple post!! :S )... but hopefully tomorrow will be better and I can be back soon with a card I managed to make at the weekend for an order- another male card, think that’s already more this year than in the six months before!! ;) I hope you’re all well and having a happy week!! :)


Friday, 11 February 2011

Less (energy needed) is more (cards made)... :D

Hello again!! :)

Yup, I’m back so soon!! ;) Didn’t expect to be myself but, as my post title suggests, I had a productive day yesterday making a very simple card... I’ve decided recently that I need to try to make some of my cards a little simpler as, although I really love making the more involved ones, they can take an awful lot of time and energy for me and, especially as I’ve been struggling even more health-wise, I’m finding it hard to keep up with the cards I need to make to give myself and not getting around to replenishing my charity box for others to choose from at all!! :S So, when  I came across a new challenge blog called Less Is More earlier this week, I was very interested- didn’t expect to manage to make anything for this week’s challenge but the colour-scheme was percolating around in my head and the idea suddenly came to me so I just had to give it a go!! :) Not often that spontaneously deciding to make a card that’s not on my list is an option for me, which is why I hardly ever manage to make a card as a direct response to a challenge that only runs for a week, but that’s another reason to embrace CAS!! ;)

I simply stamped another of my fab new Gorjuss Girls- Up, Up and Away- onto an 8” x 3” card blank and coloured her with Prismas and a bit of dark pink Sakura Stardust before adding a greeting along the side of the image and ‘Hey Presto!!’!!  Wasn’t sure if I should add anything like gems or pearls but, well I couldn’t decide and ended up thinking I’d leave it all completely flat for a change and really embrace the ‘Less Is More’ idea!! Was I right, do you think?! :) 

I tried adding a little grey and black to the inside edges of the images as I like the way the artist who created the Gorjuss Girls, Suzanne Walcott, colours them in quite dark, dusky tones and I’m not sure I’m entirely happy with the result but, again, I’ll keep trying!! ;) And I’ll maybe have a look for some Prisma tutorials, too, so if anyone knows of any I’d be grateful!! :)

The greeting is from Woodware’s Jane’s Script clear set again- I just love this set!! :)- and I bent it slightly to curve around the image :)

I’d like to enter this in these challenges: Less Is More – Black, White and Pink :) ; Totally Papercrafts – Clean and simple :)

Thank you for all the really lovely comments on my last card- each and every one is very much appreciated!! :) I hope you’re all well and looking forward to a lovely weekend making the most of the ‘better’ weather while it lasts... apparently it’s going to be much colder and wet again next week!! :S Ah, well, at least you can tell the days are already staying lighter for longer which is definitely a good thing in my book!! :) 

Ooops- think I'm going to go have a rest when I've linked this up... I just nearly hit the 'Publish' button without even uploading my photos first... which would've been an odd (and extremely dull!!) kind of post indeed!!lol The photos actually look a bit dull for some reason, too, so sorry about that!! :S


Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Gorjuss In Green...

Hey!! :)

I’m back with the card I mentioned in my last post which will be my first ever entry into the Sugar Bowl Challenge :) You wouldn’t know it from a look through my blog but, until last year I’d hardly ever made any ‘character cards’- it was mostly butterflies and flowers ‘til then- and I’m not sure I’d even heard of Sugar Nellie before I started blogging last year but I am sooo happy that’s been put right now!! :) This is actually my first Gorjuss Girl card, too- I’ve coloured a couple of the images before from a stamp of my own and some sent to me by a kind and very lovely crafting friend but, what with the madness of Xmas etc., none have made it onto cards ‘til now!! :S This is one of the new ones I treated myself to with the very last of my pressie money when Funky Kits had them reduced the weekend before last and I love it!! :)

I water-coloured the image with Distress Inks and was really only messing about as, after a pretty disastrous attempt before Xmas, I thought I’d need to get myself some proper water-colour paper to be able to produce anything even halfway decent... but, while far from perfect, it happily turned out usable even on the 160gsm Staples card I use most of the time for my PMs :) I'll still get some proper paper at some stage but I’m happy to play with what I’ve got for now- it’s been so long since I used a brush and water rather than a waterbrush (college art class almost 10 years ago kind of long, I’m ashamed to say!! ;) ) that I’d almost forgotten how but I read a great tutorial on Rachel’s blog as well as the one on Hanna’s, which Rachel links to, and they got me back on the right track!! :) My effort is nowhere near as good as either of their's but I'll keep practicing ...shame no tutorial can help with the M.E.-induced clumsiness that is the reason I’ve avoided open pots of water for so long, but no disasters so far- touch wood!! :S lol

It’s quite a different card from my usual, I think- the colours for a start but also the amount of pattern in the paper. I really like the cards I see others make with patterned papers and want to make them myself which is why I got myself some Pads of paper so at least the colours all co-ordinated but I’m a bit of a scardey-cat when it comes to pattern (in clothes as well as craft!) and especially multi-coloured patterns, so I feel a bit out of my depth here-  I like it (I think?! :S lol) but I just hope I haven’t got it horribly wrong and that others will like it too?! :S

So, for this card I used:
  •         Lovely image from Sugar Nellie, Gorjuss Girls – A Little Birdie Told Me stamped in VersaFine Onyx black  :) 
  •          DIs: Bundled Sage and Milled Lavender - clothes; Antique Linen and Tattered Rose - skin; Antique Linen, Vintage Photo and Black Soot – hair; Pumice Stone and Stormy Sky – bird and background; little bit of Milled Lavender on bird 
  •        Cut and Dry Nibs with DIs to add finishing touches to the colouring 
  •          Papers from the Basic Grey Kioshi pad with scraps from Kioshi and Memory Box’s Gossamer padfor the flowers 
  •          White paper with Henna and Cool Grey 3 Promarkers for matting and frame (I used the grey over the henna to tone it down as the brown just looked too warm for the papers but it actually produced a grainy kind of look that seemed like wood to me... happy accidents!! :) ) 
  •          Brown Fineliner to draw on the woodgrain effect on the frame 
  •          Greeting ('hello!'on bottom right of frame) from Woodware Clear Magic ‘Jane’s Script’ set 
  •          Memento Rich Cocoa ink pad for greeting and to edge papers and flowers 
  •          Baby Pink flat-backed pearls

I really love these lollipop flowers- it’s the first time I’ve tried them and they were so easy to make, too!! :) Plus, they’re almost flat which is one reason I don’t use the gorgeous 3d flowers much as most of my cards have to survive the post and I can’t afford to send everything in boxes!! ;)

This last one's mainly me playing with the focus on my camera again but I think you can kind of see the woodgrain-effect I was talking about getting with the PMs on a couple of these- it's honestly better irl, though!! :)

I’d like to enter this card in the following challenges: The Sugar Bowl – Maria Therese’s fab sketch :) ;  Totally Papercrafts – Friendship (I think the girl and bird look like friends and the card will be given to one of my friends, too) :) ; Sweet Stampin’ – Spring Flowers :) ; Sir Stampalot – All Creatures Great and Small (my bird) :) ; Paperplay – Stamp It Out :) ; Crafty Cardmakers Spotlight – Water :)

Right, I’ll pop off and get those linked up before I’m out of time then!! :) So, I hope you like and thank you so much for reading and for all the lovely comments on my last card!! :) Hope you’re having a good week!! :)

Monday, 7 February 2011

Award time!!!:D

Hey there!! :)

Well, today I have something very lovely to share as i have been given an award not once but twice by two of my lovely blogging/crafty/Ayme friends Elaine and Rachel!! :) Thank you to both of you lovely girlies for this very nice surprise- an award always makes you smile!! :) :) :)

This is a special award, which is aimed at bringing unknown good blogs to light and in accepting the award I have had to agree to the following conditions:

1) You have been tagged, do you want to accept? 'Yes, please!' then create a post on your blog and post the love blog photo.
2) Link back to the person who gave you the award and say if you accept.
3) Choose 3-5 of your favourite blogs to tag, link these in your post too and tell the lucky people they have been tagged. As the aim of this award is to bring unknown good blogs to light, please don't tag somebody with 3000 followers.

So I would like to give this award to the following lovely bloggers:

Rachael - Ladybird Dreams
Vicky - Vixx Handmade Cards
Coops -Coops Cluttered Corner
Rachel - Critchley Creations (was planning to give this to Rachel before she gave it to me- she beat me to it cos I've been being slow again, but I still want to!! ;D )
Trish - My Time To Share

So, do please go and have a look at their fab blogs!! I've found a few lovely new blogs myself by following the links on other peoples' award posts!! :) Also, do pop and have a look at Elaine's and Rachel's lovely blogs if you haven't already!! :) I love that these awards are about finding new blogs to enjoy  :)

I hope you're all well and had a good weekend- preferably snuggled up cosily with your craft stash rather than having to brave the rather extreme winds and rain we've been having!! The wind's worse than ever today here!! :S I hope I'll be back soon with a card I made over the weekend which- if I can blog it on time!!- will be my first entry into a Sugar Bowl Challenge :)



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