Monday 28 February 2011

OLW42 - music ....

... it's Jennifer's turn to host the One Layer Wednesday challenge this week - and I'm running late with my cards, as the deadline for entry is tomorrow!!  What Jennifer would like us to make is a one layer card with a musical theme - now she's not being strict - it can be musical notes, birds, anything so long as it relates to music!    There are some fabulous cards already entered - do have a look. 

Anyhow, I wanted to make a sort of grungy, teen type card - I love the Stampin' Up! guitar player (but can't get it in the UK - yet!) - so I decided to see what I could come up with.  And I'm quite pleased - I've done two versions of "You Rock!" and a small "note" card!!

Both started off as white A6 card blanks.  On the blue version above, I stamped the guitar and sentiment with versamark and then heat embossed with black gloss powder.  I over stamped these images with some musical staves from Waltzingmouse.  I coloured the body of the guitar and the stars on the sentiment with a blue Sakura stardust pen.  Finally, I sprayed Cosmic Shimmer Mist over the whole card.  The result is a very grungy, but sparkly card!

Stamps:  Inkadinkadoo - Rockstar;  Waltzingmouse - Muscial Backgrounds
Inks:  Versamark;   Memento - London Fog
Accessories:  Embossing powder - black gloss;  Cosmic Shimmer Mist - Silver

In the card above, I stamped the guitar and sentiment in Brilliance Graphite Black and then heat embossed with clear gloss.  This time I added colour with twinkling H2Os - selecting a bright red.  Finally, I sprayed with Cosmic Shimmer Mist - but a much lighter application.  Resulting in a cleaner, less grungy card.

Stamps:  Inkadinkadoo - Rockstar; 
Inks:  Brilliance - Graphite Black
Accessories:  Embossing powder - Detail Clear;  Cosmic Shimmer Mist - Ancient Copper;  Twinkling H2Os

The next card is just a small one - a little 3" × 3" card from Papermania.  I made a square mask from a post-it note.  I stamped the WM musical background into the square, but did it at any angle.  I added a single musical note in the centre of the stamped music and a simple sentiment.  Really like this one!  Please note, this is a white card - on a blue backing sheet so that you can see the scalloped border on the car.

Stamps:  Inkadinkadoo - Rockstar;  Waltzingmouse - Musical Backgrounds,  Say it with Style
Inks:  Memento - London Fog;  Versafine - Onyx Black
Accessories:  Card from stash

I didn't get into my craft room yesterday, and I didn't get to craft class this morning.  I found out late yesterday that Kathryn wasn't back to school this morning.  She's back tomorrow!!!  The teachers are having a training day today.  So my plans for a crafty day today have been a bit curtailed!!  Instead, Kathryn and I went to have our Visa photos taken (they're awful), we bought some new school shoes and had a nice lunch out!  Actually, it's been fun!  Kathryn's been having a music session on the Wii and I managed to get the cards above made. 

Before I go, I must say Hello and welcome to two new followers - Deb and Carol - so nice of you to join me! 

Hopefully, I'll get back on track with challenges from tomorrow!!  See you then.

Sunday 27 February 2011

CR84FN17 ...

... this week really has gone by quickly - I realised on Friday that I hadn't made my card for this week's challenge - so I had to be quick!!  To be fair I do have mitigating circumstances - it's half-term and I've been ever so busy with the family.

Our colours this week are just so luscious and, I think, feminine - pale pink, bright pink and the most gorgeous chartreuse!!!   And the quote this week is wonderful.  The inspiration pictures are by Leslie from A Creative Mint - she does take the most fabulous pictures - I love her story boards!

I adore these colours and decided that I'd make a card for my mother-in-law for Mother's Day.  For the layout I used the sketch FTL128 from last week's Clean & Simple challenge - it just seemed perfect.

And so to my card - I kept really close to the layout above, even down to using Spellbinders labels 10 - almost exactly the shape in the sketch!!

I stamped the background with En Francais in pale pink, then misted with Cosmic Shimmer in Golden Mint.  In my collection of backing papers I found two sheets that were perfect for the challenge - both from different companies.  I used Marvy le Plume pens to apply different colours to the agapanthus image and stamped on plain white card.  This was cut out using die #3 from the Labels 10 set; keeping the cut out in the die, I sponged pale pink onto the card.  I attached the green and pink papers to the card, and then decided to add a layer of vellum over the pink - slightly softening the colour.  I stamped En Francais in green onto the vellum before layering it over the pink!  It's very subtle, but looks great in real-life.  The sentiment was going to be something to do with Mother's Day, but it ended up being "1 of a kind"!!!  So I still have a card to make!

Stamps:  Stampendous - Agapanthus Trio; Stampin' Up! - En Francais
Inks: Distress - Spun Sugar; Memento - Pear Tart
Spellbinders:  Labels 10 (S5-022) die #3
Pens: Marvy le Plume - Light Green, Pink
Papers:  Cosmo Cricket - De Lovely (pink); Papermania - Inspirations Cool Tones (Green)
Accessories:  Card and vellum from stash; Cosmic Shimmer Mist - Golden Mint

Full details of the challenge can be found over at CR84FN.  The rest of the Design Team have also been very busy and have some fabulous cards to share with you - so don't forget to visit, either via the side bar, or follow the links below:

We'd also like to say a big thank you to Stella Schenkel for being our Guest Designer for February and for sharing her inspiration with us.  Don't forget that once a month, the design team chooses a lucky designer to join our team as a Guest Designer for one month!  So make sure you play along, and it could be you!!

That's all from me for today.  It's a busy day - taking Ben to the airport so that he can get home to his Dad; sorting out Kathryn's bits and pieces for school and, hopefully, getting into my craft room to catch up with some challenges.  See you tomorrow.

Saturday 26 February 2011

Less is more 4 ...

... it's hard to believe that this blog is only on its fourth challenge.  Chrissie and Mandi have built up a large and growing following.  Their aim is to "promote the making of classic Clean and Simple cards" which they do with a series of different challenges and some fabulous tutorials.  And what's really nice with the people taking part and leaving comments, is that we get "real" feedback and helpful criticism.  I've been trying to get around all the entries to see what people come up with and to leave comments - but they had nearly 200 entries last week and I didn't get to see them all!!

This week the Less is More challenge is a recipe - "to use three squares" on your card.  Mandi and Chrissie have come up with great inspirational cards - both totally different looks.  And in the spirit of learning and development, I've made two cards - there's really only one difference between them - and I'd like to hear thoughts.

Both are plain white A6 cards.  I've used a punch to make the square and mounted the stripes onto some blue swirly paper that I found in my stash.  On the card above, I mounted this directly to the card and added a greeting underneath the stripe, making sure that the greeting finished at the edge of the stripe.

On version two - I made the stripe in exactly the same way as above, but this time I emphasised the edge of the stripe with matching ink.  Then added the sentiment to finish in line with the stripe.

Stamps:  Hero Arts - Letter "U" (alphabet set, large capital letter and various images/sentiments to match)
Inks:  Memento - Danube Blue
Accessories:  Card & paper from stash; Papermania square punch (can't remember name of design)

We had a great time out at Whiz Kids this morning - the girls were absolutely shattered when we came back.  They've been playing quietly (I've had to check to make sure they hadn't fallen asleep) in Kathryn's bedroom.  Ben is making the most of the nice weather - really, the sun is shining - by going out to see some of his friends. 

While we were out this morning I finished reading The Valley of Horses - book 2 in the Earth's Children series by Jean Auel.  I read this series of books when they  first came out (too many years ago) and the final instalment about Ayla and her journey is coming out in March.  So I've been re-reading the stories.  If you've not read them - the story (very, very briefly) is about Ayla (Cro-Magnon) who is found and rescued by a Neanderthal clan and her journey as she begins to grow and mature, her natural tendencies emerge, putting her in the middle of a brutal and dangerous power struggle.  They're wonderful stories and I highly recomment them!!  This might be another reason why I've not made many cards this week :)

That's all for now.  Back later.

Edit:  I've had 14 comments so far (26/02 @ 7.00pm) and most people seem to prefer the first version.  I've found this very interesting, as when I made the card I immediately felt it needed something, which is why I made version two.  I showed hubby (via Skype) and he went for V2.  I think my preference is for V2, but I would probably make the edging a bit neater ;) 

Friday 25 February 2011

Missing ...

... hi all - sorry but I've not made any cards today!!  Kathryn had her last day at the Dragon Sports activity event today - she loved it!!  Ben, being a typical teenager, didn't even get up until this afternoon - but he's been great to be with.  And he went out to see some of his friends today - why do they always leave arrangements to the last minute?? 

Kathryn's last treat of the half-term holiday is a sleepover.  She and her friend have been having such fun - computer games, dolls, singing, dressing up - all the girlie stuff!!  I turned off their light about ½hour ago - but they're still chatting.  It may be a while before they get to sleep.  In the morning I'm taking them both to a local play centre - lots of running around and screaming - I'll take a good book!!

I won't be posting first thing in the morning - see above.  But I do hope to get to a challenge or two tomorrow evening - so check back then.  Take care.

Thursday 24 February 2011

Hey Dude ...

... finally made it into my craft room today - albeit for a short while.  I've made a card for two challenges - the first is this week's sketch from Waltzingmouse Sketch Challenge, and the second is the colour challenge from ColourQ

I couldn't decide what to do with the sketch this week - and then these wonderful colours were posted, and it was a light bulb moment!!  I just knew what I wanted to do.  And here's the card.

I just felt that the colours would be perfect for a card for my son Ben - they're not pastel, but bold, bright, confident colours.  So I found my Free Spirit set from Waltzingmouse Stamps and set to work.  I used one of the graffiti images and stamped in a gird in green, then over stamped in blue.  The large circle collage was stamped in pink - and die cut into a star.  Finally I used the inverted scallop die to make the circle, added a greeting and inked the edges.  I layered the star onto some holographic card, and edged the whole card with the same pink ink to bring it all together.  The colour matches are as follows:  Pear Pizzazz - Bamboo Leaves, Brilliant Blue - Danube Blue, Rich Razzleberry - Lilac Posies, and Brocade Blue - some blue card from my stash.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Free Spirit - Boy, Free Spirit - Sentiments
Inks:  Memento - Danube Blue, Lilac Posies, Bamboo Leaves
Spellbinders:  Lg Classic Inverted Scalloped Circles (S4-194) die #2, Stars (S4-092) die # 5
Accessories:  Card from stash

The card hasn't turned out quite how I planned it, but it's okay - not perfect by any means. 

We've had another busy day - and I've done my good turn - been and given blood.  It's been nearly six years since I last went - but better late than never.  Anyway, that's all for now - I'm off to read Kathryn a bed-time story, have a glass of wine and read a book!!  See you tomorrow.

Wednesday 23 February 2011

No cards ...

... again today - but we've had a brilliant time!!  Kathryn was totally shattered when she finished at the activity club this morning - and she was given an award for her Zumba session - she's rather keen on that!  I called into our local supermarket to get some sandwiches (lazy mum) for lunch today.  When we got in Ben, who only just got up (teenagers!!) decided to have a sandwich with us - good thing I bought enough!!

Then, as we had no electricity - so no coffee!!!  We played all sorts of games.  We talked, we read some books and we had a brilliant time - so nice to be together.  Mind it was getting bit fraught by 6.00pm when the power still hadn't come back on.  The electricity company were replaced some wooden poles - initially it was only two, but it ended up as four!  Thus it took a bit longer than expected.  Power was restored at 6.30pm - which was good, as it was quite dark by then.  We had a late tea, more chat and Kathryn was in bed by 8.00pm - so tired.

Ben is now catching up with computer game time!!  And I've managed a quick look at some challenges - have missed the deadlines on several other challenges - I've decided that I'm not going to craft tonight.  I'm going to have a large glass of wine and watch a movie.  Well, it's a holiday ;)

Before I go - I must say hello and welcome to Caroline - who became a follower yesterday!!  So glad to welcome you - hopefully, I'll have some cards to share in the next few days.  Bye for now.

Best laid plans ...

... often just fall apart!!  Didn't make it into my craft room at all yesterday and have missed the deadline for several challenges.  Hey ho!!  It's half-term and I'm busy with various bits at home!  The children are thrilled with the super-fast Internet connection.

Kathryn is having a great time on a new activity scheme being run this week - she was "water walking" yesterday - inside a plastic ball!!  She loved it!  Today the options are BMX Freestyle, Zumba, Tri-Golf and Athletics.  Kath said she's going to try Zumba (which I think will be great) and Tri-golf (what's that?).  As for Ben - he's a teen and I suspect he'll be in bed until lunchtime!!  This is probably good, as our electricity is being turned off from 9am to 4.30pm today while the Electricity company do some maintenance work.  And while Kathryn enjoys her activity session, I'll be having my eyes tested! 

I've got a few more challenges I'd like to try to get to - but I'll have to see how it goes.  I've been having a super time visiting other blogs - it's always amazing to see how one image can look so different!!  Anyway, that's all for now.  Must get sorted for the day.  Hopefully, I'll be back later. 

Tuesday 22 February 2011

It's so fast ....

... our new internet connection is now up and running, and my goodness I can tell the difference.  We've gone from a speed of ½MB to 37MB - I can now watch streaming videos!!!  So much faster to load everyone's blogs - and for me that's brilliant - I can whiz through my browsing and still have time to craft :)  JOY!!

Anyway, that's all for now - off to make fish pie for dinner tonight!!  I'll be back later - hopefully with a card to show you.

Stylish blogger ....

... yesterday, while I was looking at the lovely red and green Christmas cards for OLW41 over at Simplicity, I came across this wonderful snowflake card by Kim.  Now, as far as I'm concerned, snowflakes are just some of the most beautiful creations - so I left Kim a message.  And strange as it may seem - she was checking out my card at about the same time - this is what Kim said "Then I just put up a post including my card for the OLW challenge. As I was linking my card to Susan's blog, your card popped up at exactly the same time."  And Kim has given me the "Stylish Blogger" award - which I am honoured and delighted to accept!!  Kim - thank you so much!!

Now part of accepting the award is to pass it along and follow a few simple procedures:
  1. Thank and link back to the person giving the award - Done
  2. Share 8 things about myself!
  3. Forward the award to 8 crafters recently discovered.
  4. Contact the 8 people involved and tell them about the award.
Now I have to tell you eight things about myself - this is fun!!
  1. I love to watch ice-skating - used to love watching Jayne Torvill & Christopher Dean.
  2. I can't stand up on the ice!!
  3. I love new technology.
  4. But I still don't text!!
  5. I'm officially fed up with Winter - it's been a long, hard one this year.
  6. I love half-term holidays - great time to be with the children.
  7. I'm missing Jonathan- he's in India on business. 
  8. And we get super-fast Internet today - I may have mentioned that before !! :)
Now I have to award this to eight bloggers that I've recently discovered.  This is the truly hard bit - but it does give me the chance to award some of my favourite blogs - old and new!!
  1. Craft Obsession - Pauline - another fan of the rodent!!  Check it out - you'll work it out :)
  2. Sharing the Passion - Ali.
  3. Cards n Greetings - Sharon.
  4. Buffy's Place - Buffy.
  5. Wiggy's World - Donelda.
  6. Starcyl's Daily Doings - Starcyl.
  7. Just for Fun - Ann.
  8. Kiss - Keep It Simple & Sweet - Caroline.
If you've not seen these blogs - I do recommend a visit.  Now I'm off to leave a little surprise on each blog :)

I'll be back later today with some new cards to share - and hopefully it'll be so much quicker at my end :)

Monday 21 February 2011

Less is More - Spring 2 ...

... the theme over at Less is More is to make a clean and simple card with Spring as the theme.   My earlier card was made entirely on the computer, and while I'm reasonably pleased with it, I think I need to play a bit more. 

Anyway, I decided to make a non-PC - well you know what I mean - card!  I told you earlier that I'd been given a Grand Calibur as a Valentine's present from my wonderful hubby.  Well, I've finally got around to playing with it!  This card is 5" × 7" and won't go through my "Bug" sideways!  I wanted to emboss a frame onto the front of a pearly white card.  I ran it through - and the die slipped.  However, I rescued the frame (which is fab) by cutting the front off and cutting the sides to fit another card.

I used a lovely stamp set from Waltzingmouse - Spring Baskets.  The tall basket  is made from the two baskets in the set.  I stamped them onto plain white card, coloured with Promarkers and then cut out the image.  I had  already checked to make sure the basket fit inside the frame!  I, very carefully, stamped the daffodils inside the basket and coloured them with Promarkers.  The bow was stamped twice and coloured with Promarkers; I added some sparkle with my clear Stardust Sakura pen.  To position the sentiment correctly I used my trusty stamp-a-ma-jig!  And that was it - finished.  Except, that it wasn't finished.  I decided to add the cute bumble bee and butterfly.  I think I should have stopped at the bee!  Not sure about the butterfly.  For a little definition I edged the card with green ink and attached the lot to the new base card.  I'm really pleased with this one!

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Spring Baskets
Inks: Memento - Rich Cocoa, Tuxedo Black, Pear Tart
Promarkers:  Leaf Green, Meadow Green, Lemon, Yellow, Soft Lime, Cinnamon, Walnut
Spellbinders: Classic Rectangles Lg (S4-132) die #5
I've really enjoyed visiting everyone who has posted on the Less is More blog - and seeing all the lovely Spring cards.  Sadly, I don't think we're going to see Spring here for a while.  It's cold, grey and miserable here - fortunately it's warm inside.  And we're having fun!  That's all for now. 

Less is more - spring time 1 ....

... the challenge at Less Is More this week is to make a themed card.  Chrissie and Mandi have chosen Spring as the theme - which gives us lots of scope, new flowers, baby animals, Easter!  To name only a few ideas.  What's really nice about this blog is that Chrissie and Mandi provide tutorials for the various techniques and tips they give us - and that's such a good idea.  This week there is a tutorial about using our PC to help with making cards.  Chrissie gave some  (really excellent) directions on how to use text boxes in Word.

It occurred to me that I used to use my computer a lot more to make cards than I do now.  In fact I used it a lot to personalise cards.  A few examples are shown below.

The first card is one I made for a friend's parents for their Diamond Wedding anniversary.  I didn't have any suitable stamps - so I played around on my computer with fonts and layout, until we settled on the design shown.  The photo is of her parents - I scanned the original onto my PC and then played with it in Photoshop and made this lovely vignette!!  The little diamonds were found in clip art somewhere on the computer, but they worked, so we added them.  I completed the card by added gems to the diamonds and mounting the picture on silver mirri card and some lovely mulberry paper.  The other card was super quick and easy to make - I found some lovely baby photos from Microsoft clip art, made them all the same size and put them in boxes.  I added some text in a nice contemporary font and then printed onto ink jet acetate.  Attached the acetate with brads and added a ribbon.

I thought I'd have a go at making a card completely on the PC!!  And then I remembered why it's been a while since I last made cards like this!!!  I spent the whole of yesterday afternoon messing about with positioning, fonts - getting Word to do what I wanted it to do.  This card is CASEd entirely from Susan and Viv - both beautiful cards ladies and gave me the idea to play!!

The card is printed onto fairly lightweight card (my printer doesn't much like card).  I loved the post stamp idea that Susan used in her card, so I decided to play with that - I made a table (following her instructions) and settled for a block of four.  Rather than stamp an image, I thought I'd use a digi - so the flower is a simple daisy by Pink Petticoat.  I added text boxes above and below the table and hunted for a suitable quote - fonts used are cambria (12pt) and Civitype FG (36pt).  I spent ages trying to decide which fonts worked best and what colour to use on the word "spring".  The design layout is all Viv's - thanks!!  I coloured the images with Twinkling H2Os - French Lilac, and added colour to the stems with a Sakura Stardust pen in green!

I'm reasonably pleased with how it turned out, the positioning needs a bit of work and I think the fonts could be a bit bigger, but it took such a long time and the amount of scrap paper in my bin was amazing!!  What I've learned from this exercise is that Chrissie is a genius!!  And that I need a printer that handles a heavier weight card.  I like the idea of making cards like this - I think I need to build up some templates which can be adapted to suit different occasions. 

Now, I'm off to look at some more cards on the LIM blog site, and then play in my craft room and come back with a Spring card that I've stamped and coloured!!  Back later.

OLW41 - It's Christmas .....

.... over at Simplicity the challenge that Susan has set us is to make a one layer card with a Christmas theme.  Apart from the one layer rule, the only specific requirement is that we use only red and green on cream or white!!  There are already some really lovely cards posted on this challenge - well worth a look - and there are at least two that are close to my original ideas.  So it's taken a couple of days to come up with something a bit different, and here they are.

The first card has the image stamped directly on to a white card.  I used a lovely soft green - Forest Moss - a distress ink, and pulled the colour into the leaves with my aqua brush.  I coloured the holly berries a sparkly red with my Sakura Stardust pen.  Finally, I added the word "holly" in Barn Door.  Very clean and simple.

Stamps:  Woodware - Christmas Greenery
Inks:  Distress - Forest Moss, Barn Door
Pens:  Sakura - Stardust Red

The second card is my favourite of the two!!  And, I have to admit up front, that it is not strictly a one layer card.  It did start off that way.  But unfortunately when I embossed the nestie frame onto the card base it slipped.  I really like the effect of embossing these frames, so I decided to save it and cut the card down so that I could layer it onto another card.  I used the mistletoe stamp (same set as the holly) - this time stamped in memento - Bamboo Leaves.  I coloured the leaves and berries with Promarkers.  I added the word "mistletoe", coloured the card edge with Barn Door and then adhered it to the base card.  I'm really pleased with this - even though it's not quite a OL card!

Stamps:  Woodware - Christmas Greenery
Inks:  Memento - Bamboo Leaves; Distress - Barn Door
Promarkers:  Pear Green, Lime Green, Lipstick Red, Lime Zest
Spellbinders:  Classic Rectangles Lg (S4-132) die #4

We have had a super fun family day today.  This morning Ben, Kathryn and I played Buzz on the Playstation.  It's a music quiz and great fun!  I actually won the first game!!!  It's amazing - I never win normally - but then Jonathan is normally here to join in - and he's the music buff in this family :)  The second game was brilliant - I was never going to win that game!  We managed to talk to Jonathan this morning (just after lunch his time) - I love Skype!!!  The children were so pleased to be able to see and talk their Dad!!  But it will be easier when we get faster our super-fast internet connection :)

Before I go I must say a big THANK YOU to all those kind enough to leave me some wonderful messages recently.  I do try to respond to comments, but with half-term holiday and Jonathan heading off to India, my normal routine has gone up in flames!!!  And that's all for now.  I have got some more cards to show you later, so do drop by this afternoon.  See you then.

Sunday 20 February 2011

CR84FN16 ...

... our colours for this week's challenge at CR84FN are soft and sophisticated - at least I think they are!!  Pretty, feminine colours - light pink, medium violet and grey.  Our inspiration photos are from A Creative Mint - I just love that vase of peonies!!

I'm trying to be organised with my card making this year - and I thought these colours would be perfect for a Mother's Day card.  Here in the UK, Mother's Day is not a fixed date at it is in the US.  Mothering Sunday, as it is often called, is celebrated on the fourth Sunday in Lent - so the date moves about a bit!!  And this year it falls on Sunday 3rd April - so I've a good head start this year :))

I started off with a piece of white vellum with a soft grey design on it.  I coloured the back of the vellum with a prisma pencil (raspberry) and used oil to spread the pigment evenly over the back of the vellum.  I then used one of my (new) Martha Stewart Punch Around the Page sets (can't remember the name) to make a lovely border.  Using the Spellbinders large octagon dies I cut out a toning paper mat and the flower image.   I edged the flower cutout with silver pen.  The flowers were stamped with London Fog as I wanted a soft, subtle image.  I added colour with shimmer chalks - two shades of pink and very light greyish green for the leaves and stems.  Finally, I added a greeting which I coloured with the two shades of pink chalk. 

Stamps:  Oriental Peony from a QVC set
Inks:  Versamark; Memento - London Fog
Papers & Vellum:  Lawrence Llewellyn-Bowen - Venaissance
Spellbinders:  Lg Octagons (S4-185) dies # 4 and #5
Accessories:  Craftwork cards - greeting; Martha Stewart punches; Pebbles Inc chalks; Prisma pencil

I was left with a beautiful piece of paper with hole in it!!  I decided to use this on another card.  Using the technique explained above, I coloured another piece of vellum and placed this behind the cutout.  Then I attached both layers to a piece of silver holographic card from my scrap box.  Also in my scrap box was a rose that I'd previously stamped but not used.  I coloured it with Promarkers and then sprayed it with Cosmic Shimmer silver - such a pretty subtle shine!  I stuck this to the centre of the card.  Finally I added a couple of flourishes to the top corners of the card and embossed them with detail silver, and added a greeting at the foot of the card - also embossed.

I really love this card!  I opened the card and discovered that I'd stamped it upside down!!  It opens the wrong way round.  How daft is that?  Oh well, never mind!!  All is not lost - I'll simply cut the front off and mount it on a larger square card!  There are no mistakes in crafting - just happy accidents :))

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Roses in Bloom, Faux Fun Circles, Fancy Phrases
Inks:  Versamark; Memento - Tuxedo Blace
Papers & Vellum:  Lawrence Llewellyn-Bowen - Venaissance
Spellbinders:  Lg Octagons (S4-185) die #5
Accessories:  Promarkers; Prisma pencil; card from stash

Full details of the challenge can be found at CR84FN.  The CR84FN Design Team and our Guest Designer, Stella Schenkel, have come up with some wonderful cards to inspire you - check out their blogs:

This has turned out to be an essay - thanks for staying with me.  I can't wait to see your designs - have fun!!  I'll be back tomorrow with more cards to share!!

Saturday 19 February 2011

Mojo magic ...

... gosh, it's been a busy day.  Kathryn and I picked up Ben from the airport and then went for a really nice family lunch.  I swear Ben has grown since we saw him at Christmas - he towers above me now!!  I think he'll hit 6 feet before he stops growing!!  The kids have been having a great time catching up and playing - so nice to hear gales of laughter from them!!

Anyway - onto my card for this week's challenge over at Mojo Monday - another fantastic sketch!!

I've made a card for my cousin - it's his birthday in a week's time.  I've used my trusty Half Pint Heroes set - and I've tried my hand at making a scene!!

I have a lovely set of papers from K & Company that are bright, cheerful and really suitable for guys.  I decided to use an orange A6 card for the base and selected the circle paper from the set as the main backing sheet.  I then picked a couple of coordinating papers from the pack to make the circles and to make a mat for the scene.  I stamped the car and head directly onto plain white card, covered them with a mask and then stippled the background in - making a road, some hills and the sky.  First time I've tried this, and rather pleased how well it turned out.  I added some trees to the side of the hills and some bushes at the roadside.  I removed the masks and coloured the car and face with Promarkers.  I made a paper ribbon from the matching paper and punched either side with my Martha Stewart punch - opting for a simple design.  Finally I added some brads which I've coloured with my Promarkers.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Half Pint Heroes, Teeny Trees
Spellbinders: Inverted Scalloped Circles Lg and Standard Circles Lg
Inks:  Memento - Tuxedo Black, Rich Cocoa, Cottage Ivy, Pear Tart, Rose Bud; Distress - Pumice Stone, Peeled Paint, Shabby Shutters, Tumbled Glass, Faded Jeans
Papers:  K & Company - Hopscotch
Accessories:  Brads from stash; Martha Stewart Edge Punch

I had hoped to get a couple of other challenges completed today - but I've been busy with the family - and we've had a great time.  So I think I'll have a go at putting something together tomorrow.

Check back tomorrow for this week's CR84FN colour challenge - it's gorgeous!!  See you then!

Circle Circus ....

... well, what else could I use for the challenge over at My Time to Craft - they want to see circles - lots of them!!  And for the colour inspiration, what better than the scrummy colours over at Colour Q this week.

Now, I've explained before that I don't have any Stampin' Up! inks or papers, and I have to try to match these colours as best I can.  And I think I've done a reasonable job this time.

I love these circle stamps from Stampin' Up!  - they are so versatile, and they work particularly well on cards for guys.  And I think this one's suitable for a man.  I got a super pack of A6 kraft cards in my local craft shop this week - so much easier than having to make each card!  I started off by randomly stamping a few of the circles in Versamark and then clear embossing them.  The larger circle images were stamped with Versamark and distress inks, then clear embossed.  I used Faded Jeans - Not Quite Navy, Tumbled Glass - Baja Breeze, Fired Brick - Cherry Cobbler, and Spiced Marmalade - Tangerine Tango.  I used the coordinating Stampin' Up! punches to cut the circle out.  Then it was simply a case of arranging them on the card base.  Finally, I added a greeting using white detail embossing powder.  The card design is loosely based on FTL114.

Scouts last night was great fun - but unfortuantely, we weren't able to see the stars owing to a very thick layer of cloud!!!  Still the kids had fun learning about the Solar System, a bit about space exploration and some of the constellations.  Hopefully, we'll get an opportunity to actually look at the stars soon.

Half-term holidays have started in our area.  Ben arrives today, he'll be staying with us for the holidays.  Really looking forward to seeing him.  Who knows, Ben may even decide to talk about school and what he's been up to recently!!  Kathryn has lots of plans for the week off - lots of activities, hopefully a trip or two to the cinema and a sleepover too!  Consequently, I may not be able to post as often as I'd like.  But I should be back again later today with a few more posts.  Take care, see you soon.

Friday 18 February 2011

Oven fresh ...

... this card is for two challenges.  The first is from Stamptacular Sunday - where they would like us to make a project that features food.  Over at Little Red Wagon the challenge this week is to use some misting on your project.

On one of my recent trips to my local craft shop I picked up some Cosmic Shimmer sprays - I had a voucher from a previous shop so these were basically free!!  For the base card I used a pearly champagne card from my stash and decided to bling it up by using the sprays.  I added three colours - Ancient Copper, Golden Mint and Meadow Lush - drying each before applying the next colour.  Then, using my favourite rodent stamps, I stamped the pie and pear onto plain white card.  I coloured both images with Promarkers and then over sprayed with more Cosmic Shimmer spray this tie in Gold.  I cut out the pie and pear, stuck the pie to the centre of the card and then stamped the frame and greeting.  Finally I added the pear to the corner.  Such a yummy looking card!!  It has such a lovely shimmer.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Peace and Plenty, Oven Fresh Gingerbread Joy
Inks:  Memento - Tuxedo Black; Versafine - Onyx Black
Cosmic Shimmer Sprays:  Ancient Copper, Golden Mint, Meadow Lush, Gold
Promarkers: Forest Green, Pear Green, Lime Green, Chestnut, Cinnamon, Oatmeal, Apricot, Ruby

I've a lot on today - planning for Scouts this evening.  I always seem to save it up to do just before the meeting!!  Tonight we're looking at - SPACE.  We've been given a telescope for the Group - it's not been used before, so I don't know what it'll be like, but we'll have a play.  I'm also going to take my binoculars along - it's a full moon, so we should get some great views of the moon's surface - cloud permitting!!

Hopefully, I'll be able to post again later this evening.  Have a good day.

Thursday 17 February 2011

Such a fun day ...

... I had a lovely time Waltzing around so many lovely button designs!!  Some truly inspiring designs on show.  And thank you to all you wonderful people for leaving me such lovely comments.  The faux stitching was such fun to do - and so quick!  I really enjoyed this challenge and can't wait to see what's in store for the March waltz.  If you haven't joined the fun yet - pop over to Waltzingmouse Makes - you can find details of the Waltz here.  Claire has also announced that she is released a load of new stamps in March - that date is already in my diary!!

Anyway, that's all for now.  It's getting late and I need to head off to bed.  Take care everyone.  See you tomorrow.

Come Waltz with me ...

... and see what has been created for the February Friends of Waltzingmouse Stamps Blog Waltz.  The theme for this waltz is to design with buttons!!

I don't usually use buttons on my cards - so it was a bit difficult to work out what to do for this Waltz.  But, as buttons and sewing go together really well, it was only natural that I'd use one of the Sewing Hugs sets.  But which one?   

I really like the house from the Sewing Box - Hugs set, so decided to paper piece it.  I used the Celtic Squares papers in several colours.  I cut a couple of backing mounts - one in green Celtic Square and the other plain white onto which I stamped the pretty lace circle - with my Spellbinder dies.  I used faux stitching to make a border around the card; had a rummage in my button box to find co-ordinating buttons and added them to the corners.  I also found a few heart shaped buttons, which I thought looked really sweet falling from the door!  Finally I added a simple greeting in red.  Home sweet home - a place where the heart is!!

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Faux Fun Circles,  Off Beat Backgrounds, Sewing Box - Hugs
Inks: Memento - Tuxedo Black; Distress - Barn Door, Faded Jeans, Brushed Corduroy
Spellbinders:  Sm Pinking Circles (S4-172) die #5, Classic Scalloped Circles Lg (S4-124) die #5
Papers:  Waltzingmouse Celtic Square - Creme de Menthe, Regal Red, French Blue, Saffron, Heather

I had great fun with this challenge.  Do enjoy the Waltz!!  See you soon.

Wednesday 16 February 2011

Scrap paper ...

.... being used for a few challenges.  Among my resolutions to use old/neglected stamps/papers, and to make at least one Christmas card a week, I've also decided to try to be a bit thrifty!!  Yes, I know that sounds sort of daft having just got a Grand Calibur!!! :)  But that was a present from my wonderful hubby - so it doesn't count!!!

This card fulfils two of the resolutions mentioned above - it's a Christmas card and it used some left over paper from a previous project - thus thrifty!!!  Now, the challenges are:
  1. Waltzingmouse Makes - this is a monthly challenge to make Christmas cards - the theme changes each month.  This time Lynn wants us to use the  "Quick Pick method: Look around your craft work space and find a few items lying around that you haven’t put away yet, and use them to create a Christmas card. Suggested items might be cardstock, pieces of patterned paper, buttons or other embellishments lying around from your last project."  You need to be a member of the Forum for this challenge - but if you follow the link above you'll find all the details.  There are prizes so worth a look!
  2. Jingle Bells - JB07 one of the new challenges set up to help get us ahead of the game!!  They don't want to see RED used!!  This is a weekly challenge and for some reason I'm late getting on board!!
  3. Sparkles Christmas Forum - another of the Christmas challenge blogs - this one does monthly challenges.  And the theme for this month is Christmas Trees - who could resist?
So to my card - it's was so quick and easy to make - and I love it!!  When I made the my Easter Eggs card - I had some of the lovely paper left over, so it was easy to select this for the Waltzingmouse challenge.  It also so happens that my WMS are rarely in their storage case - mostly they lie within easy reach!!  Oh yes, this card almost uses the colours for this week's colour challenge at CR84FN - but sadly there's no yellow.  I couldn't see how to include it!!

So I stamped and embossed this lovely tree onto the green paper.  I stamped the pot onto a scrap of the blue paper.  Then it was simply a case of attached them to the base card, colouring the trunk and adding the border and greeting.  Job done!!!  Took about 10 minutes.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Nutcracker Sweet, Frame-It
Inks:  Versafine - Onyx Black; Memento - Rich Cocoa, Versamark
Twinkling H2Os:  Lemongrass, Mediterranean Blue
Accessories:  Card, embossing powders - from stash

That's all for this morning - I've decided to make a start on my Spring-cleaning.  I'm going to tackle the bedrooms and bathroom!!  I think it must be because the sun is shining, the skies are blue - it's a super day, and I feel full of energy!!  See you guys later!!

Tuesday 15 February 2011

It's arrived ....

... Parcelforce have just delivered my Grand Calibur - it's wonderful!!!!  My husband is the most amazing, adorable and lovely man - he'll have to wait for the hugs and kisses :)  But I get to play today!!!  Watch this space!!

Early start ....

... today as Jonathan has left for India.  I was up at 3.00am and  Jonathan didn't go to bed at all!!  He decided that the best course of action would be to stay awake all night and then try to sleep on the plane later today.  I spoke to Jonathan at 5.30am after he completed check in at the airport - next time we'll be together is April!!  Still, we have Skype so we can at least talk to and see each other everyday!!

Getting up early has been brilliant - I've uploaded loads of cards to my Waltzingmouse gallery, I've viewed all the cards on the CR84FN site, checked in at the Less is More site and dipped into the mega amount of entries on Mojo 177!!  I've been inspired to get into my craft room later today.  But now having been up since 3am, it's time for me to wake Kathryn.  I think I'm going to have to give her lots of hugs today - she's very much a Daddy's girl!!  See you all later.

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