Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year's Eve!!


Hope you are going to celebrate in style..

Hubby and I will be hanging out at home as usual, making cocktails, dancing in our pants and gaming!

CAS-ual Fridays are celebrating 2014 with their last challenge of 2013 and I thought I'd join in and make it my last challenge entry of 2013.

My card is very simple, in the true style of CAS and I have a recipient in mind.
Because it was so simple and easy to make I can also play at 10 Minute Craft Dash they have teamed up with CAS-ual Fridays for the last post of the year.

My card took 6 min. 34 sec to make - I am sad that I have only just discovered this challenge and this is the last one ever!! I had so much fun timing myself..

I used a Stampin' Up Celebrate stamp and recollections stickers for the 2014, the sequins and bling are from my stash and really make the card I think.

As this is my last post of 2013 I wanted to say thanks to everyone that has visited my blog and become a follower..as many of you know 2013 has been a big year for me. I am also pleased as punch that I have managed 181 posts this year!! Aiming for the magic 200 next year - eek!

Have a great NYE..see you in 2014.


Monday, December 30, 2013

Craft mash-up..

Hello there!

Hope you had a lovely Christmas. Hubby and I had a great one, it was very relaxing and despite being without our families and close friends it was lovely.

Hubby excelled himself gift wise this year and bought me a dressmakers adjustable dressform...she is gorgeous, I have wanted one for ever!! Such a thoughtful and lovely gift. This is why I married him :)

JT (aka Craft Buddy) and her husband Olly came and spent the weekend with us, we had a lot of fun and it was great to see them both.

The title of today's post is my take on what happens when JT, Dana and I colour a load of digital stamps (over Thanksgiving) and then I turn them into cards for Dana!

The main photo is my fave card of the batch.. I think the papers are a perfect match for the colours used in the stamp..I'm also quite pleased with the way I arranged the papers - vain I know, but sometimes I just can't help myself :)

There are 6 cards in total...here is a collage of them.

All the cards use either Pink Petticoat papers or American Crafts papers. The boats and huts are by Pink Petticoat and the Pixie is by Stamping Bella (scanned in by me). I also used Candi's and mini Pink Petticoat sentiments.

I sent them to Dana before Christmas and she has since told me she loves them, which makes me a happy crafter..


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A year early...


I thought I would post a 'non card' project...I am always referencing these other things I do..but always forget to take photos!!

Anyway, a couple of years ago when our nephew Otis was 10 months old, I made him an advent calendar to use for Dec 2012 (and many years after that hopefully).

He used it for the first time last year and loved it.

Otis and his advent calendar
So as we now have a niece (Florence) who is Otis' baby sister I thought she should get the same treatment...however this time I learnt some lessons.

1 - do not make the calendar in a rush
2 - do not buy a kit to cheat that ends up being the same amount of work
3 - plan it out better and simplify it

The main photo is the finished calendar. I am very pleased, it has come out beautifully.

How did I do it?
- 2 pieces of plain duck cloth (calico) for the base
- 24 coloured squares (+ 8 extra for the name)
- Felt letters and shapes as required
- Iron-on numbers.

I cut the coloured squares first - 32 in total incl the ones for Florence's name - they measure 7x7 (inches) and I used pinking shears to cut them out. The coloured squares are actually napkins that I bought on sale (8 for $4). I bought napkins instead of actual fat quarters as each napkin is the same size as a fat quarter, so I got a lot of variety in colour and a lot of fabric for a lot less money.

I pinned all the squares to the duck cloth (tedious) - before cutting it, as I wasn't sure how much I would need - being as I decided not to stick to conventional ways of doing things... Cut away the excess and then I stitched all the letters and the stars to the squares, before sewing all the squares to the duck cloth
I used two pieces of the the cloth, as I felt it wasn't substantial enough, but you don't need to do this.

Then I used a decorative stitch to create a border - love this Daisy Chain stitch on my new machine.

The numbers were cut using the Silhouette Portrait and I went off piste here and used iron-on glitter material that is meant to be used in a Cricut...one digital die-cutter is much the same as another...

Iron-on  numbers were the best thing about this calendar, super easy to make and use, will be using more iron-on stuff!

I decided against adding a hanging tab...why? Because I am lazy..

Florence won't get to use it until Dec 2014, but no doubt she will enjoy her's as much as her big Brother enjoys his.

Next project for Florence will be bunting as Otis already has some..

All the Christmas prep has been done, Hubby is working from home and we are playing non-Christmas music, the fur children are asleep on the bed and all the presents are wrapped.

Happy Christmas everyone..see you later in the week.


Monday, December 23, 2013



Following my work Christmas party and the balloon hat madness...I laid low on Saturday :) I did manage to go out and eat and pick up the photos for my Smashbook and was surprised at how sunny and warm it was!

The weather in NYC is very odd...I can't keep up.

I was planning on staying away from challenges until the new year, but then I saw RetroSketches #95

The sketch felt like the lovely sunny Saturday and seemed like a great excuse to use a Tim Holz stencil that I have. It looks like a sunburst..similar to the one in the sketch.

I decided to turn the sketch around, it worked better for my birthday card, I liked having the white space to the left of the image.

I got all brave and stenciled in 3 colours DIRECTLY onto the card - EEK!! No mistakes though, this is progress. I also used a Tim Holz stencil for the sentiment topper. I seem to have a Tim Holz thing with this card..as well as the 2 stencils, I used 2 distress inks - Mustard Seed and Spiced Marmalade. I managed to break it up a bit by using a Studio G Turquoise ink. The sentiment stamp is by Hero Arts.

Pretty pleased with the outcome, it is such a cheery card, makes me smile when I catch a glimpse of it on my desk.

Today is my last day at work until the 27th..yay!


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Birthday wishes..

Hey there!

After a nightmare day at work yesterday I decided I would make a couple of things to cheer myself up! One of the things I made is a birthday card following the Retro Sketches #94 challenge this week -

I needed to make a birthday card for a friend, who has an early January birthday.

I settled on green as my main colour and then used patterned papers to fit the sketch - a mix from American Crafts and Pink Petticoat. I love these huge flowers by Dovecraft, they are so easy to use, but it has to be the right card for them, as they are so big. Button is also by Dovecraft and the twine and blingy bits are from my stash.

I had a really hard time finding a 'Happy Birthday' that worked in the space for me..I finally settled on the one you see, which is from a free set. I went with it because it has a bit of a combination of elegance and funkiness. A bit like my card I think :)

Oh and finally spot the obvious mistake......the grid paper is not on the card straight?! How did that happen!


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

WOYWW #237...Happy Valentine's Day..

Ha ha sorry to confuse you! But that's what it feels like here...

Before I tell you about it, let's do the important stuff. Today it is time for WOYWW...don't know what I am talking about? Get on over to Stamping Ground and meet our wonderful host Julia and the rest of the gang for the weekly global desk nose..

I am deep into Valentine's Day cards for OWH...as you can see from my desk - partially made cards, hearts, heart punches mini and small, Be My Valentine stamp, mini trimmer, glasses, tweezers, ATG, pencil, stack of completed cards and papers in Valentine hues!

Here is a proper photo of the cards you can see on my desk...

OWH - Be My Valentine
I used an idea that I saw on Pinterest, I loved the idea of a plain card, with a simple sentiment and a busy focal point. Kasia Curry is the card maker and she makes such beautiful things, I love her work. I wanted to credit her, so she knows I am not wilfully stealing!

Card by Kasia Curry via Pinterest
Finally before this post becomes epic..I just want to say thank you to all of you for being such wonderful blog buddies during this strange and exciting 2013!! Have a wonderful Christmas wherever you are.


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Special card for special people..


Today is work Potluck Party day..I made fruity cupcakes, they look and smell good...here's hoping they taste the same!

I wanted to make a special Christmas card for the couple that drove us to DTown for Thanksgiving and did the bulk of the cooking. Phillip and Gregory are special people, they were so lovely to Hubby and I and I wanted to say thank you with an individual Christmas card.

The colour palette this week at Pals Paper Arts #183 lends itself to Christmas cards, so it inspired me.

I don't have the identical colours, but I think mine match. I decided to try something a little bit different with the layout and dug out an old RetroSketches sketch..

The stamp is by Kaisercraft and I used it a lot for OWH cards. The little Candi made the card for me and I like the vignette in the green paper.

All the papers are by Pebbles. The ink is by Versamark and is a chalk ink, I love the effect you get with a chalk ink.

The card is safely tucked in my bag and will be posted today.


Monday, December 16, 2013

Whaley missing you..

Sorry for the terrible pun, but looking at the main photo today, you'll understand :)

My card is my entry for Freshly Made Sketches this week...
It is a touch busy..but I like it and I think Lemon (who is going to be the recipient) will like it too.

I showed the background during last week's WOYWW - it was made using a stencil. The whale, the sentiment and the sentiment tag were all made using my Silhouette. The pointy strips of paper are from a Recollections stack I have.

I am missing Lemon right now..it is Party season and being in NYC means its not so party for me this year. Normally I'd be out raving up a storm with Lemon, so its a bit hard right now.

So to counteract my pouting I thought I'd make her a card that would make both of us smile. I think I've achieved that.

Have a happy Monday.


Sunday, December 15, 2013

Just for you...


As it has been a snowy weekend (well mainly Saturday) here in NYC..I have been indoors playing with my stash.

Color Throwdown has been calling my name since Wednesday..the colours are very me!

I decided that I would use a new stencil (by Crafters Workshop) and make something for my Ma..hence the Just for you sentiment!

It's actually not a card it's a big 8x8 thing!!! I didn't want to send Ma another card. She has this little area in her TV / dining room where she keeps pretty things and I thought this might work in a frame or something.

I experimented with the stencil a bit because I didn't have a colour that matched Certainly Celery in my ink pads. So I used a Promarker (Frosted Leaf) and coloured some of the leaves before using Dusty Concord and Broken China Distress inks for the rest of the stencil. The end result has made me very happy!

I think my colour matching is pretty obvious this week, but just incase..
Baja Breeze - backing paper (by Co're-dinations), punched sentiment (by Pink Petticoat) and Broken China ink
Certainly Celery - leaves on stenciled image (Promarker Frosted Leaf)
Whisper White - backing paper (by Co're-dinations) and ribbon
Orchid Opulence - paper strip (by Co're-dinations) and Dusty Concord ink
Smoky Slate - backing paper - that I stenciled on to and the ribbon

I am excited to pop this in the post to Ma..but for now I am going to put my feet up for an hour or two and watch some NFL..Go Seahawks!!


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Moving Along With The Times...Winter Wonderland

Hey there...so it's the last outing for Team B over at MAWTT for 2013..

We are going out with a festive theme of Winter Wonderland.

I decided to combine 2 of my favourite things - Bugaboo stamps and my Silhouette Portrait.

I bought the snowglobe stamp a while back to make a card for a friend's Daughter - she is obsessed with snowglobes.

Using my Silhouette I was able to die cut the image, using the print and cut feature.

I coloured it using Promarkers and added a bit of glitter glue to make it sparkle. I love how it has turned out and I hope Penelope will love it too, as it is now in the post on its way to her.

Hope you are going to join us this week and pop over to MAWTT for more fantastic inspiration from Team B.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

WOYWW #236....I've played WOYWW how many times?!

Hey there...

So last week during WOYWW (get over to Julia at Stamping Ground and join us in the nosy fun) Super Stamp girl referenced it was her 3rd WOYWW in a row...I said I'd done 51 in a row..however I have actually 'played' 46 times...35 are consecutive and it is only because I moved country that they are not joined up.

I think this is astonishing and I am forever grateful to Julia for her genius idea, that has brought me so much joy and many a new blog friend.

Can you figure out what your numbers are?

Onto my desk...I had a tidy up..isn't it lovely :) I do love a tidy desk and it's so rare these days. You can see a couple of cards that are in progress..the background under the Whale is a stencil, I think it's supposed to be Zebra print, but I think it looks like reeds or water. The Seahorse I found in my stash when I was looking for something, I decided to keep him out and have a play. In the background are some stamped and die-cut toppers for my Valentine's cards for OWH...nearly there.

I realise that my desk has been very un-Christmas like lately, so check out this beauty...I made 2 of them... for Lemon and Dr Kevin..I used a KennyK stamp.

KennyK Hunky Christrmas Card
Hubby and I had fun in Atlantic City and after a hectic week last week, it was nice to spend some QT together..I thought you'd like to see the view from our room on Sunday afternoon...yes that is the Atlantic, with a snowy beach!!

Snowy Atlantic City beach..
Have a happy WOYWW..I'll be desk nosying after work.


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Stencil tree fun..

So Atlantic City was BIG FUN...

The fun has continued as when I returned I saw the CAS-ual Friday challenge this week...

CFC122: Show us your Clean And Simple projects that feature a tree or trees.
Perfecto! I have been itching to use my new(ish) tree stencil by Crafters Workshop, but haven't had the right opportunity.

As you can see my main card today features it...

I am getting better at working with stencils (aka more ink on the paper than on me and the desk) I used Walnut Stain Distress ink to stencil with.

The sentiment border was made using Recollections papers from Michaels, pearls from AC Moore and the sentiment is an old one from my stash.

I added little touches of glitter glue for a little shimmer (shimmer mists are next on my 'techniques' to learn list).

I've decided this card will be going to JT's sister.


Sunday, December 8, 2013

Merging the challenges...

Hey there, so before I head to Atlantic City, I thought I'd enter the Color Throwdown and Freshly Made Sketches challenges this week.

I thought the colours would work really well with the sketch.

Given that am I deep into Valentine's right now (for OWH), the colours really felt like 'love' to me - hence my spin on it. I also thought it would be fun to not make something Christmassy, as that seems to be all I am doing right now :)

Ingredients are -
Regal Rose - card by Paper Cellar and punched heart using a Woodware punch
Black - punched heart using a Woodware punch
Riding Hood Red (& White) - spotty card stock, stamped sentiment by Craftwork Cards using Reddy Steady Go ink by Hobbycraft
Pear Pizzaz - border using Co're dinations cardstock

I think this card is fun...do you like how my sentiment matches the dotty paper! I did have another layout ready, but once I chose my stamp I had to make a new card :)

Wish me luck in Atlantic City..see you on Tues.


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Have machine...will quilt..

Image from Kristen @ write it down.

So since I got my new machine, I have been itching to make my first BIG quilt..I have made many baby quilts, but never a bed sized one (gulp...am I mad?!)

I stumbled across a website called Missouri Star Quilt Co. Their website is gorgeous and introduced me to Moda fabrics (yums).

I have decided to be overly ambitious and make 2 quilts...one for me, one for my Mum and Dad...(once again am I mad?!). I am not completely crazy though and have decided to follow this wonderful tutorial at Write It Down...makes it all look nice and easy.

As I am being ambitious, I decided to introduce plain squares into the quilt, this makes it a bit cheaper to make.

I have settled on American Basics by Windham Fabrics -

This colourway will be the quilt for my Mum and Dad and I am going to use plain Navy squares and hopefully a spotty backing...but lets not get carried away with thinking about the backing just yet...

For my quilt I will be using Comma by Moda Fabrics and mixing it up with Silent Film solids by Kona

The main photo is of a finished quilt that I am 'roughly' aiming for and here is a photo of the pattern I have created for the quilts....an x means a patterned square and my quilts will be approx 45 x 70 inches.

I am hoping it will all go smoothly and that shortly after Christmas I will be able to show you at least 1 completed quilt.....stay tuned...


Happy Birthday Daddy..

Today is my Dad's birthday..I buy him the same thing every year (which he wants) so no surprises there. This means that I usually go to town on his card!

This year's card came about because I saw 'The Best Dad Ever' cutting file in the Silhouette store and fell in love with it.

I spent ages trying to find the right background paper and then remembered about the cool sheets of American Crafts Happy Birthday music paper.

It's all worked out quite nicely I think, especially with the addition of a Candi!

Happy Birthday Daddy, hope you have a good one.


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

WOYWW #235 - Black Friday Stash Frenzy!!


This last week has flown by, can't believe that it is time for WOYWW already and that my time with JT has been and gone (she'll be back at Christmas). For those of you wondering what WOYWW is, go over to Stamping Ground and join Julia and the rest of the gang for the weekly global desk nose.

So JT and I had a fun Black Friday enhancing our stash :) I thought I would share my haul - some of it came from JT, as part of our usual $20 challenge (we have to buy each other craft things within a budget and  certain parameters - e.g spots, hearts, 50% off). I also managed to do ALL of my Christmas shopping - score!! Everyone except Hubby.

The main photo is of what 'fell' into my basket...Hexagon dies (from JT), various sized bling, studio calico paper pads ($1.49), thickers letters, Darice embossing folders...3 kinds (only $2 each set), my coffee mug - not part of the haul :), Tim Holz blueprint stamps, Ranger Ink blender,  star stencil, birdie stencils (from JT), fabric stickers...what will I be doing with these? My glasses, random embellishments and my tweezers.

I also got new Promarkers!! Yay!! JT bought 2 sets in the sale and we each chose 12 colours that we liked the best...they are so yummy. I can't wait to get a new bulb for the craft zimmer, so I can use the new colours.

Here is a photo of something I have made using some of the new goodies..

I used washi tape that JT bought me and a Tim Holz blueprint stamp..I left the section above the stamp blank, as I thought the recipient might want to stamp / add their own sentiment..

Mucho goodies for me to play with...I am hoping to swing some serious time off over Christmas so I can have a proper session. In the mean time, Hubby and I will be heading to Atlantic City this weekend taking advantage of the free stay that we got following my winning birthday weekend.

I'm off for a nose now.


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Anything Goes...using Tim Holz products...


So as I got some new Tim Holz stamps, I thought I would use those along with a stencil and enter the Simon Says Stamp Challenge this week.

The theme is Anything Goes and the DT are showcasing Tim Holz / Ranger products.

I am so pleased with my card, it came out exactly as I wanted it to. Although I am sad to say the photo isn't great as a bulb has blown in the craft room!

I used -
Tim Holz blueprint stamp - camera
Tim Holz honeycomb stencil
Tim Holz distress inks in Broken China and Weathered Wood
DCWV blue adhesive paper strip
Hero Arts Happy Birthday Stamp
Versamark black ink
Sequins - from my stash

I am really enjoying Stenciling now, I am starting to get better at blending the inks. I am looking forward to being able to have a serious play with my stencils over the Christmas break.


Monday, December 2, 2013

Big and Small..

Hey there...

Well its back to work today after a lovely 4 day break for Thanksgiving...big thanks to JT and the Nixon family for being so warm and welcoming to Hubby and I...we ate like Kings.

JT and I did some serious craft shopping and played our usual $20 challenge..so to celebrate my massive haul (which I will show later in the week) I thought I'd use some of the items to enter Color Throwdown #270

I blew a bulb in the craft room so my photo is not great :(

My ingredients are -
Gumball green - the ink I used to stamp. The stamp is by Tim Holz and part of a set that I have wanted for ages, they were part of my haul...the little rectangle to the right of the image says 'Birthday'
Silver - the Happy peel-off
Crumb Cake - is the backing paper and is by Studio Calico and is also new!
The white is obvious :)

I like the addition of the bling at the bottom and the top left-hand corner, I also like the contrast between the Happy Birthday words, I like this technique of splitting phrases. Overall I think it's a little bit odd, but I'm happy with it.

Have a happy Monday.