Sunday, October 19, 2014

Snowflake Christmas Ornament

Every year I seem to have a mad dash in the lead up to Christmas as I try to make a lot of Christmas cards to send to family and friends. So shortly after last Christmas when I was talking to my friend Linda we thought it would be a great idea to make two Christmas cards each month throughout the year to save the flurry of cardmaking before Christmas. Well Linda is all up to date (and maybe even a little ahead) in her cardmaking, but let's just say I'm not!

So I decided to pull out some supplies again this morning to make another Christmas card.

Snowflake Ornament

Dies (Simon Says Stamp) - Eliza Snowflake & Kate Snowflake
Stamp (Lawn Fawn) - Trim the Tree


Over at the Simon Says Stamp group on Flickr Barb has a fun challenge going on which is watercolouring. So I thought I'd make a watercolour background for a snowflake Christmas ornament. I used three watercolour paints (two blue & one white) to make the background. I think there are layers and layers of paint on the panel at this stage as I'd be just about happy with it when I'd add something and mess it up! Anyway when I had an okay background I decided to call a halt and just added a few more splashes of paint.

Next it was time to make the ornament. When Simon Says Stamp released a whole range of pretty snowflake dies last year I fell completely in love with them. For this card I die cut two different snowflakes and applied star dust stickles to them.

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After the snowflakes had dried, I layered them together using foam pads and added some string to suspend the ornament from the panel. The sentiment was embossed in silver and to finish off the card I added a sprinkling of gems.

I'm so happy to have my quota of Christmas cards made for this month, now I just have to catch up on the rest of the cards I was supposed to make throughout the year!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Sparkling Season's Greetings

I haven't posted in a while but now that I've finished making things to donate to Christmas fairs and am back from our holiday in Disneyland Paris, I'm all ready to get into making more cards for Christmas.

Hero Arts has a great Holiday Challenge going on at the moment with a number of different fun categories. I decided to combine two of the categories - - Mad About Metallics and White Out.


Ornament stamp & die set (Hero Arts) & pine branch die (Impression Obsession)


My good friend Linda sent me a gorgeous new set from Hero Arts called Stamp & Cut Ornament - thanks again, Linda. The set has a few pretty ornaments, a lovely mix of sentiments and a die to cut out the ornaments - love this as it will definitely help speed up my Christmas card making!

To start with I made a card base and using foam pads added a panel which I had embossed using the Snowflake Trim embossing folder from Darice. Linda had also sent me pretty pine branch die cuts from Impression Obsession so I took one of these, embossed it with star dust embossing powder and to add even more sparkle applied a layer of star dust stickles.


I embossed the ornaments in silver, die cut them and then added gems, dots of stickles and thread to suspend them from the branch. The sentiment was also embossed in silver and to finish I added a sprinkling of gems to the background and on the branch.

Hope you are enjoying the weekend. We're having stormy weather with lots of rain and I think it's due to continue on that way for the weekend - it's a really good reason to stay inside and get inky!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Creative Process Blog Hop

Deborah Nolan a very talented, funny and sweet crafter kindly invited me to participate in the Creative Process Blog Hop, a perpetual hop that highlights card makers and provides a look at how they do what they do and why they do it. If you haven’t already visited Deborah’s blog you can find it here. Not only will you get to see lots of wonderful projects, but I guarantee you’ll enjoy giggles along the way with Deborah’s great sense of humour and way with words. Deborah also organises the fun Card Chain Challenge - if you'd like to join in on the current challenge you can find it here.

Everyone who takes part in the hop is given the same set questions. Here are my answers to those questions:

What am I working on now?

The shorter answer would probably be what am I not working on now?! At the moment I’m mainly working on making items, to donate to an animal rescue centre and a special school for children, which will be sold at craft fairs in late November.

I’ll be making lots of cards with dogs, hoping they will sell well and am using Lawn Fawn’s cute Critters at the Dog Park set (love Lawn Fawn’s generous angel policy). I just wish when I ordered the set from Simon Says Stamp that I also ordered the matching die set! Anyway I’ve made a little start on all the stamping and cutting:)


I’m also making fabric brooches and lavender sachets. I’ve wanted to make lavender sachets for a while and bought some lavender for our garden this year specifically for that purpose. My sister gave me bunches and bunches of lavender from her garden and now that it’s dried out, I’m ready to get cracking on making some sachets. This is just a test piece using upholstery fabric, distress inks and Memory Box stencils my friend Linda sent me – thanks again, Linda.


Earlier in the year my older son made a steampunk airship for one of his art projects in school. A couple of old watches were left over and since he doesn’t want them, I’m grabbing them to make a necklace and something else (I’m not quite sure what yet!). I just love the look of the old watch gears, the more modern watch innards aren’t a patch on them as you can see from this photo.


How does my work differ from others in my genre?

Oh now this is a difficult one! I definitely don’t think I have a particularly distinctive style but I like trying to come up with different ideas. Although I can’t pinpoint how my work differs from others, I feel that everyone’s work differs from others, as can be seen through the wide range of ideas and completely different interpretations of themes that people come up with for challenges or even under time pressure in scrambles.

Why do I create what I do?


Why do I create? Well it’s like an itch I have to scratch, and the itch is only satisfied when I finally get to make whatever ideas I have swirling around in my head. My hubby is similar, but in his case it’s writing music, so he totally understands why I sometimes drop everything to get whatever it is out of my system. Why do I create what I do? As far back as I can remember (and we’re talking a lot of years;) )I’ve always enjoyed crafts and there was always a supply of crafty bits and pieces at home for us to play with. I’ve tried out many crafts over the years but cardmaking has become a firm favourite for a number a reasons, including the wonderful friends I’ve made through cardmaking, how relaxing the whole process is, the fun of putting together something from scratch, the endless number of techniques (and goodies!) that are out there and as someone who couldn’t draw to save her life (or win at Pictionary!) I love having lovely (and recognisable) images to colour and put on my projects. I have to admit that I still have some UFOs from my quilting days, so it is great to have taken up a hobby in which I have no unfinished objects hanging around the place!

How does my creative process work?

Lol another good one that made me think! Well I suppose when I’m making something I usually have a particular family member or friend in mind. So I think about what they might like colour and style wise. Sometimes I know straight off what I’m going to make and other times I haven’t a clue. Even when I know exactly what I want to do, I’d say 80% of the time the idea evolves as I make my card/project. When I’m in my haven’t a clue phase I usually pull out some stamps, embossing folders, inks and dies and mess with my supplies until I’m happy with what I’ve come up with.

I rarely create at night unless I need to make something in a hurry or else if I’m just cutting out bits and pieces or colouring. I much prefer to work early in the morning or during the day – it’s just a pity that thing called work can get in the way a bit for those timings!

Who am I tagging for the next round of the Creative Blog Hop
?

I’m tagging a wonderful friend I’ve made through cardmaking – Trinh Arrieta. Not only is Trinh one of the sweetest people I know but she never ceases to amaze me with the fabulous and creative projects she makes. I’ve lost track of the amount of times I’ve said “wow” when I’ve visited her blog or received one of her brilliant cards. If you haven’t already seen Trinh’s blog you’ll find it here and next Monday she’ll be posting about her creative process – I know that will be a treat for sure!

Thanks for visiting today and well done for making it through my rather long winded post!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Trick or Treat Shaker

I finally had a little time to stamp earlier today and I thought it would be fun to join in on Lawnscaping's Critters Galore Challenge.


For my critter I decided to use the bat from Lawn Fawn's cute Trick or Treat set and made a Halloween shaker card. Sorry my photo isn't great - I always find it hard to avoid getting reflections on the acetate layer on shaker cards!

I embossed the sentiment on a piece of green card and die cut the label shape. To make the shaker I added some lovely green sequins my friend Trinh (thanks again, Trinh) sent me and an embossed Waltzingmouse Stamps image (Very Vintage labels No. 10) which I cut out and used as my frame. The Lawn Fawn bat was cut out and coloured with ProMarkers and I couldn't resist adding a couple of googly eyes before perching him on top of the shaker. To finish I just added a strip of lace to the side of the card.

Trick or Treat Shaker

Stamps - Trick or Treat (Lawn Fawn) & Very Vintage labels No. 10 (Waltzingmouse Stamps)

The last time I made a shaker I had a problem with the little bits inside the shaker sticking to the sides of the foam pads but I saw a tip somewhere which suggested rubbing talc or flour on the sticky parts before assembling the shaker. It really seems to have worked well but I'd love to hear if any of you have any other suggestions as it took a while to get rid of all the traces of flour!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Trick or Treat

I know it might be a bit early to be making Halloween bits and pieces but when I was out shopping earlier I noticed that some Christmas items are already creeping onto the shelves, so maybe I'm not too early for Halloween after all!

Anyway there are a couple of challenges I wanted to play along with - Teri's Fabulous Friday Challenge over at Moxie Fab World and Simon Says Stamp's Stamp It Challenge


The photo above is the one to be used for inspiration for the Moxie Fab World Challenge. It inspired me to make a garland, use yellow, orange and black, and also to use chevrons and triangles. For the Simon Says Stamp Challenge you have to stamp - lol I love nothing better:)

So first up is the little garland. I die cut circles from plain paper and patterned paper. On the orange ones I stamped Hero Arts' Tiny Flags using spiced marmalade distress ink and on the black circle I embossed the Lawn Fawn sentiment from the Trick or Treat set.

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Stamps - Trick or Treat (Lawn Fawn) & Tiny Flags (Hero Arts)

The cute candy corns which are from the same set were stamped, coloured with ProMarkers and covered with glossy accents.

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Next up are a couple of cupcake toppers, again using the same dies and stamps. At Halloween they will be stuck in cupcakes that are spookier than the mini chocolate chip ones I have here:)

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Stamp set - Trick or Treat (Lawn Fawn)

Well since Halloween wouldn't be Halloween without treats, I had to make up a little bag of treats and a tag.

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Stamps - A Little (Hero Arts) & Trick or Treat (Lawn Fawn)


The tag was embossed and pieced and I again added candy corns that had been coloured and glossed. I used baker's twine from a Halloween assortment pack from Doodlebug Design. Only a little over eight weeks to Halloween now but I think these treats might be eaten a little before then;)




Saturday, August 30, 2014

Mark's Monster and Messing with Paints

Earlier today I had fun messing with watercolour paints to make backgrounds. I squirted some watercolour paints from tubes onto my largest acrylic block and added only little splashes of water as I wanted to paint to remain thick and add texture to my panels. Then I squished panels of watercolour card onto the block and ended up with a batch of panels like the ones below.


Lol I haven't a clue what I'm going to do with some of them (the odder looking ones may end up being die cut into butterflies or sentiments!) but I used one of the orange panels to make the background for my card. I stamped Hero Arts Tiny Star Background on the panel in barn door distress ink and embossed the sentiment on a piece of black scrap card. As I don't have any monster stamps I asked my son Mark to draw a few for me. After seeing one of the bigger guys I thought he would be perfect for a sorry card.

Monster image by Mark
Stamps (Hero Arts) - Tiny Star Background & Everyday Sayings

I coloured the monster with ProMarkers and gave him a spotty look with the blender pen. To finish I just added some glossy accents to his horns, eye and tooth.

I'm submitting this card into Simon Says Stamp's Anything Goes Challenge.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Adam's First Challenges

My twelve year old son Adam was very excited when he heard about Simon Says Stamp's Summer Vacation Kid’s Challenge and this morning decided to make a card before his breakfast.



It took him a bit longer than he thought it would to make the card (lol that happens to me all the time too!) but he just wouldn't take a break for breakfast until he was finished. Well first off he rummaged through my stamps to find all the images he liked and then he drew a rough idea of what he wanted to do.


He particularly loved using the Big Shot and was delighted with how quickly he could cut a strip of grass with it.

Die - Grassy Border (Lawn Fawn)

Something else he really enjoyed was doing the colouring on the dog and ice cream. His first practice stamping is on the piece of scrap paper underneath.

Stamp - Critters at the Dog Park (Lawn Fawn)

Stamp - Fantastic Birthday (Hero Arts)

Here he is sticking the last stamped piece to his card and the final touch was when he added sprinkles to the ice cream.


The bonus was eating the extra sprinkles that he had "accidentally" poured out for the top of the ice cream;)


So here's the end result of all his hard work, fueled only be some sprinkles:)

Stamps - Hero Arts (Be Happy, Picnic & Fantastic Birthday) & Lawn Fawn (Critters at the Dog Park)

I just love Adam's card and all the fun he had from start to finish making it. The super happy dog with the best ever treat in his bowl and the sun with the happy face and sunglasses make me smile every time I look at this card:):) Hope you enjoy it too!

As Adam added texture to his card by using sprinkles he's also submitting his card into Lawnscaping's Texture Challenge.

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