Friday, February 26, 2016

Designer inspiration...


Happy Friday..

So Hubby and I are now in Melton Mowbray with his family, before we go to a good friend's wedding tomorrow.

We have had a great holiday, it was awesome to go back to Amsterdam.

I wanted to show you another stamp that I made using the Silhouette, like the Thank You stamp I showed you last week.

When I was making my own stamps I decided that two stamps would be good to start with. I decided that a word stamp and a nature stamp would be useful for me.

So I searched for inspiration and I happened to be in London at the time and saw quite a bit of Orla Kiely's work. I've always loved her signature ferm, partly because she does so much with it and because of the colours she uses.

I decided that a fern stamp would be a great one to make with the Silhouette.

The main photo today is of one of the cards that I made with the stamp.

Because I tried several different colour variants, I decided to create a chart that I could file with the stamp, so that I didn't have to re-invent the wheel every time I use it!

I used a random stamp and the Distress Inks to create the chart, I also added numbers, so I remember the order of the colours. The random piece of cardboard is recycled - I recycle as much card / paper as I can and if it's not going on a card, it doesn't really matter.

Here are the rest of the cards I created -

I am really happy with this stamp and I can see it getting a lot of use. I bundled this batch up and gave them to my MIL as a gift.

Have a great weekend. No posts from me - wedding, travel to London = not enough time to blog.


Thursday, February 25, 2016

To be continued..


So following on from yesterday.

I thought I'd show you some things I made using the die-cut remnants that I keep.

I started with these - stupidly forgot to take a photo before using and the hello is too damaged to be photographed..

I used Distress stains, inks and paints through the 'stencils' and then either stamped, stenciled or heat embossed over the top.

I am super pleased with the butterfly, as that is the Tim Holtz Lace stencil over the top of the Distress paint and I heat embossed it too...technique cray cray.

So the title of the post is the point of how these cards will be finished. Like the main card today, they will have no sentiment..

I like to do this, so when I need a card and I am low on inspiration I have something that I have already made ready to go and it helps me.

Then I just add a sentiment or an embellishment and they are ready to go. Fun to do when I have the time..


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Scrap Cards...


I am away on holiday this week with Hubby. 

So this is a scheduled post. I am using the time to show you some of the things that I made during the Superstorm when I had an epic weekend at my desk.

I love scraps of paper, but last year I organised them so that I was only keeping sensible scraps that could become something.

I also like to keep sensible die-cut pieces..I'll show more of that tomorrow.

My two cards today are all scraps or items that were kicking around on my desk.

The main card uses a scrap of paper that I used to cut Tim Holtz pattern strip dies from and a scalloped heart that was already punched.  The white square was already die-cut and kicking around on my desk.

I dug out my Simon Says Stamp Happy and Smile stamp set and stamped the sentiment using a co-ordinating red ink.

The card blanks for both cards were cut by me from SSS cardkit cardstock (I keep all the cardstock from the kits and cut cardblanks now and then)

This feels like a fun anniversary card, for a fun couple.

The second card was designed around the colour of the card blank, so I used all the same scrap elements as before, but used a purple heart (love that it is corrugated card) I added a patterned square that is an offcut from a Pretty Pink Posh die.

I made this card a birthday card I used the same SSS set for the Happy, but used a fave stamp by Technique Tuesday for the birthday. I deliberately overlapped the words because it felt like real handwriting.

What do you do with your scraps?


Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Retro Rubber #32 Winter..still time to play along...


There is still time for you to play along with the current challenge at Retro Rubber..

The theme is Winter, don't forget to use a stamp a year or older and tell us about it, that's part of the fun.

Challenge ends on February 26th.


Monday, February 22, 2016

Birthdays for boys...


So today is my Brother-in-Law's birthday.

I made him a fun card a few weeks back..

I am a teeny bit obsessed right now with the Simon Says Stamp I See You stamp set..

I used it here along with SSS Baby Party Animals sentiment stamps.

Simple, because guys like simple cards LOL.


Saturday, February 20, 2016

Make your own stamp...


Happy Saturday!

I am now on holibobs!! And this post will be up before I land in the UK..

Several months ago - I'm talking like before Thanksgiving... I saw a blog post on the Silhouette blog about using it to make clear stamps..

What?! What kind of witchcraft is this!!

I promptly bought some of the stamp material and a special stamp cutting mat for the Silhouette and had a play.

Sadly a few of my creations were an epic fail..but I managed to create two beauties.

Yes, the main card today uses a stamp I MADE...

I love it!!

Due to the nature of the stamp material, you get a kind of splotchy effect, so for these cards I decided that I would use different distress inks, spritz the stamp, stamp it onto watercolour paper and then dry it..

They all came out so different.

Fun times..

I wanted to show you a photo of the stamp, but it didn't come out too well.

I don't use my Silhouette as often as I 'should' but I stopped beating myself up about this, because when I do use him, lots of magic happens - yay!

Have a great weekend, I'll be back tomorrow to show you the other stamp.


Friday, February 19, 2016

Happy Birdie to you...


Happy Friday.

I bought the fun Stacked Animals set by Simon Says Stamp..I couldn't resist it.

I love the Birdie and I thought he would work well with a pair of glasses that were already on my desk.

I coloured him using a Spectrum Noir Sparkle pen and a gold Promarker, affix the glasses and stamp a simple sentiment..done in a jiffy!

I love easy cards like this. They almost always seem to end up being CAS.

Have a great weekend,

Hubby and I are leaving for London tonight for our holiday and then my week of work, everything will be scheduled from now until I get back mid-march :)


Thursday, February 18, 2016

30 and 60....


Recently I needed both 30th and 60th birthday cards.

I started with the 30th card, for my fabulous friend Charity, she's pretty spesh.

As I am joining in Kathy Rac's The Daily Marker colouring 30 day this month, I got to practice skin tones on the great stamp by Scruffy Cat.

I got a tutorial from here - amazing..I am already much better at skin tones.

I had originally planned on having a big sparkly 30 on the card, but it felt wrong, so I used a thirty number stamp and a thirty word stamp and created my own border.

Charity calls me 'Claire to be fair' because I say 'to be fair' all the time.. To be fair, she might have a point! So I made her this to house her gift -

Ha ha ha fun times.

This 60th card was for my Uncle..he's pretty awesome.

So I created my own dilemma here..

I was very happy with the stamping of the word sixty and didn't want to cover it, but Vellum felt wrong..too girly.

So I broke out the acetate, the Staz-on ink and a mini rectangle die and created a see through panel.

I wish the Happy had not smudged, but I try not to throw 'oops' elements out if it's passable.

I like it, I might try more ideas like this using acetate.


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

WOYWW #350...Birthdays and Holibobs..


Happy WOYWW.

For those of you that don't know what WOYWW is that magical time of the week where we join Julia over at her blog Stamping Ground and share our desk space.

This is my last WOYWW for the next three weeks, as I will be on Holibobs and working in London for the next two weeks.

It is going to be hectic, but fun and it's nice to get to travel with Hubby, as so much of the traveling I do now is solo :(

I took my photo whilst I was colouring on Tuesday night for the current The Daily Marker colouring challenge. JT's Mom bought me a colour a day calendar and it's been a lot of fun. You can see my Promarker colour chart, a couple of Promarkers and the sheets I am colouring.

I also wanted to share two very different cards with you this week..

One is the finished 'hunk' from last week - you all seemed to like him :) He is winging his way to a friend already.

Second card is for our Nephew Otis, he was 5 yesterday!! I can't believe how quickly the time has flown.

He loves Football, his Dad like me is a lifelong Spurs fan, so I coloured the image to match their current kit. I believe he is having a football party on Saturday..complete with 29 friends - the horror of 29 kids under 5..I do not envy my SIL.

Fun cards that both use digital stamps.

Have a great day everyone, see you for a nosy later.


Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Retro Rubber Challenge #32...Winter...


Time for another awesome challenge from the Retro Rubber  team.

This time with have a Winter theme for you...

I decided to break out my Simon Says Stamp Jan 2015 cardkit, as it was Winter themed, I thought it would be fun to use it.

I loved the papers in the set and chose one of my faves for the front of my shaker card.

As I have a Fuse tool, making shaker pouches is easy peasy. This one I filled with Blue Topaz shaker mix by Lucy Abrams - I love her sequin mixes.

I cut a co-ordinating frame using Simon Says Stamp square stitched dies - a frame helps cover the oops I made when attaching the shaker pouch :)

I die-cut the Lawn Fawn thanks from a scrap that matched the sentiment banner (die by Simon Says Stamp) the sentiment is from the Jan 2015 cardkit too.

I was pleased with how my card turned out and so it went to my in-laws to thank them for their thoughtful Christmas gifts.

Now it's your turn, what wintery creation are you going to share with us? Get inspired over at Retro Rubber  by the rest of my teammates.

Remember to use a stamp over a year and make sure you tell us how old it is. Challenge ends on February 26th.


Monday, February 15, 2016

Aloha Monday..


Hope you had a good weekend and that it wasn't as cold as NYC!! It was -16c at some points!

I love this set by Simon Says Stamp..

It came with the March 2015 cardkit, which I loved, but I don't use this set as often as I would like, so when I saw the Quirky Crafts Challenge for Feb, I thought this was my opportunity to have a play..

The challenge is - use Red OR Pink + Black AND White

I die-cut a panel of card stock using a Lawn Fawn stitched square die and swiped some picked raspberry distress stain across it, leaving little patches of white.

I stamped the flowers from the set onto this panel and stamped one on it's own and fussy cut it, so I could pop it out.

The aloha die-cut is by Avery Elle.

I love simple cards and using distress stains to create bright backgrounds.


Sunday, February 14, 2016

Valentine's Day Card Series - Day Five - Happy Valentine's Day..


Happy Valentine's Day.

So today is the end, I hope if you celebrate you are having a good time with your special person. 

Hubby and I celebrate being together all the time, so today we will be slobbing around eating and listening to music, whilst recovering from whatever mischief we got into last night..

So yesterday I told you that JT and I set a challenge to make each other the most hideous, OTT card possible.

Here's my first attempt -  

Busy? Sure. Hideous? Not quite.

So I started again. The main photo today is the front of the card - nice and simple, seems like it's going to be lovely inside... get a busy paper, with a busy die-cut border, a stamped sentiment or two..and a pop-up monster that is winking at you! LOL. Now this is hideous.

Here's a close-up of the pop-up Monster

I had so much fun making these cards and I learnt how to create pop-ups in a card.

Wish I had given the Monster a googly eye...

Hope you have had a fun five days looking at all my Valentine's efforts.


Saturday, February 13, 2016

Valentine's Day Card Series - Day Four...


Hope you are having a good weekend so far.

Hubby and I are running errands, as we leave for our holiday / wedding / work trip next Friday.

Today I have two more cards for you in my five day Valentine's Day card series.

The main card uses a stamp that I have had forever! I They are by Stampendous and I have hardly used them. The set is all about geeks!

I thought the card should be simple and less red and is for a boy after all.

The next card uses another one of the on sale stamps I got at Michaels.

I had originally planned to stamp in the heart space..but I decided that the Tim Holtz stickers worked better.

Again, keeping it simple by just mounting the piece onto a card blank.

I'm sad that Valentine's Day is here tomorrow, now I have to stop making all these's been fun playing in my stash and stretching things a bit.

Tomorrow I'll be sharing the odious cards I made for JT.

We challenged each other to make the most over the top, hideous cards we could. I failed a bit, so made a second one. That worked card number two is horrid.

Seems a bit wrong right? Using our 'good' skills to make something bad..but sometimes that is fun and harder!


Friday, February 12, 2016

Valentine's Day Card Series - Day Three


Happy Friday.

Another batch of Valentine's Day cards for you today, continuing the five day series.

The headline card today was made using a stamp from the Feb 2015 Simon Says Cardkit and papers from my stash.

I thought the stamp would heat emboss really well onto the bright pink panel.

I like the simplicity of it.

The next card is another silly one and I actually use the sentiment to make birthday cards sometimes.

The stamps are all by Lawn Fawn, I also made some cards using the Monsters and the 'You're weird I like that stamp' but stupidly forgot to photograph them before they left for their new owners..

Hope you have a great weekend, join me tomorrow for more Valentine's cards and on Sunday for the reveal of the cards that I made for JT, that are odious...more about that tomorrow.


Thursday, February 11, 2016

Valentine's Day Card Series - Day Two..


Today I am continuing on with my series of Valentine's Day cards..

Today's are all a bit out there...

Starting with the headliner, that uses a great sentiment stamp by Unity Stamp Co, I bought it because I thought it would come in handy. I combined it with the Lawn Fawn Yeti stamp - that I adore! I decided to go with a non-Valentine themed paper, makes it a bit more masculine.

I love it, it's fun and silly!

The next card is pun-tastic..

I have been after this stamp (Viking by Avery Elle) since it came took ages for it to come back into stock and the dies have only just more playtime with this one to come..I have an idea..

I love it, it is totally silly. Great fun to colour and the hearts come with the set.

Continuing on with the theme of silly - can anyone explain what a Love Bandit is?! LOL.

The paper is from the Feb Simon Says Stamp cardkit. The stamps are by Recollections at Michael's and all their Valentine's stuff was 50-60% at those prices it was rude not to buy a few things. I blame JT as I went there to purchase part of her bday gift.

I love making Valentine's cards, especially the silly much freedom.

More Valentine's cards tomorrow.


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

WOYWW #349..Valentine's Day Series..


Happy WOYWW.

So much fun to play along last week and be back again :)

If you don't know what WOYWW is, go here and learn about all the fun we have with Julia and our desk buddies every Weds.

This post is the start of my five day Valentine's Day card series..

Before that what can you see on my desk? Under my main computer is work related Apple items (ugh, we are a resolutely PC/Android household aka geeks), the big black thing is my bluetooth speaker - a gift from Hubby a couple of Christmasses ago, on my cutting mat is a semi-finished card for a friend - stamp by KennyK, I am practicing skin tones, a sheet of paper that I use as the backdrop for my photos and my glasses (current fave's Tom Ford knock-off).

I love making Valentine's Day cards..I don't get all the fuss - I love you, should be 365 days a year..

Despite this I made so many cards, that I thought I'd just show them all over the next five days..

These two cards both use stamps and stickers from the February Simon Says Stamp cardkit.

Distress ink resist

Giant sticker by Crate Paper - love this!

That's all from me, come visit over the next 5 days to see the rest of the cards :)

I am looking forward to a WOYWW nosy later on today.


Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Retro Rubber #31.. Colour Challenge - Still Time to Play...


There is still time for you to play along with the latest Retro Rubber challenge.

It's a colour challenge this time - red, white and pink..

Remember to use a stamp over a year and make sure you tell us how old it is. Challenge ends on February 12th.

Make sure you go over to Retro Rubber  and get inspired by the DT.


Monday, February 8, 2016

Happy Birthday Man....


Today is JT's birthday.

She is one of my bestie's and I love her to pieces :)

She is an absolutely amazing friend, kind and supportive. She is responsible for a ton of the happy things that have happened to me in the past few years. She's got an outrageous sense of humor and I love the fact that she takes virtually anything in her stride.

She's fierce. I like fierce ladies. All my ladies are fierce.

Anyway, her present is still winging its way across the Atlantic, as I was a bit late sending it.

Hopefully her card will have arrived and this post isn't going to ruin it for her.

I wanted to make her a special card, so I got my hands on this fab Callista loves to Craft stamp by Stamping Bella..It comes with a lovely sentiment..too smushy for her :) It's inside the card.

I coloured the stamp with Promarkers and then die-cut it using scalloped circle dies by Spellbinders. I covered the front of one of my giant square cards that JT gave me with a fun patterned paper, I used the same paper inside too.

I added a bit of wink of stella here and there and used a Mama Elephant sentiment.

I like making special cards for special people.

Sadly as I am in NYC right now I won't get to celebrate with JT this time, but at least we can do it in March.

Happy Birthday Man..


Sunday, February 7, 2016

Lucky Superbowl Cat?..


Yay!! It is Superbowl Sunday.

Despite my beloved Seahawks not making it to the Superbowl I will still be watching as I love American Football and the halftime show and adverts are awesome too. It's also been way more fun this season since JT's Dad taught Hubby the he is mad for it too!

I'm showing a little card I made during the week.

I love the Lawn Fawn lucky charm set..JT and I have a thing (yes another 'thing') for lucky waving cats, so I bought it for her at the same time that I got it.

A simple card using Simon Says Stamp stitched square dies, some Promarkers for colouring and a sentiment from Simon Says Stamp.

I love an easy make :)

Happy Sunday - enjoy the Superbowl.


Saturday, February 6, 2016

Welcome Baby Maggie..


Hope you are having a good weekend so far.

Today Hubby and I are running some errands before heading out for a boozy NYC style brunch :)

Two weeks ago Hubby's bestie and her Hubby welcomed their first baby Maggie into the world. She is gorgeous and we can't wait to meet her.

As this card was for a special couple, I thought a shaker card was in order..

I had the shaker pouch already to go and that determined the shape of the aperture. I used Sizzix oval frame nesting dies to create a frame for the pouch.

I am so in love with the Black Friday Studio Calico Celebrate Animal set that I used it again for this card - for the Elephant and Girl.

I randomly decided Lilac was my theme colour for the card and so stamped the Elephant using a Lilac Tsukineko ink. I used the same ink to stamp the Penny Black Dots in Space onto the background paper.

The Baby die is by Lil' Inker and I die-cut it in the same cardstock as the card blank..I like making my own card blanks, I get to co-ordinate things even more!

The whole thing just looks so pretty - I love shaker cards and new babies.


Friday, February 5, 2016

Holibobs and Weddings...


Happy Friday!

So Hubby and I are off to London at the end of next month for the wedding of a good friend.

We are going to take some time off and have a little holibob on the way..Amsterdam here we come..

I wanted to make the happy couple a special card and their invitation served as inspiration.

Their invite is navy and a bronzed colour..I have the navy, so started there..

I used a Sizzix doily die that I got a couple of years ago in a Black Friday sale. I love it, but it's so fiddly that I don't use it very often..

I used the doily as my base and die-cut a stitched circle in kraft card that would fit in the centre.

I decided to use stamps from Simon Says Stamp Congratulations stamp set.

After testing various embossing powders and inks, I settled on the navy inks with the heat embossed ranger metallic powder for the contrast.

I heat embossed the navy sentiment onto vellum and fussy cut it out..hugely disappointed by the white foam squares, so if anyone can give me a tip here I'd be very grateful.

I love the card, it feels really vintage and was exactly what was in my mind.

Have a great weekend. I am looking forward to the Superbowl on Sunday.


Thursday, February 4, 2016

Moving Along With The Times..Things with wings..


Welcome to another superb challenge from the Moving Along With The Times.

This challenge is hosted by Judith and she has chosen a theme of Things With Wings...

JT and I had quite a bit of chatter about this one, trying to decide what to we have a lot of the same stamps..

I decided to dig out a newish set that I bought during my Black Friday blow-out at AC Moore -

I stamped the bird (bottom right) in a Turquoise ink and used clear embossing powder before heating it. It's actually really shiny.

It took me ages to choose a background for the bird..then I saw the panels I had die cut from some previous makes - 

I think it works really well and just like this card I think the bird looks like he is among the trees.

Obviously no need for a sentiment with the beautiful text in the bird.

Show us your fabulous creations featuring wings and go over to MAWTT have a look at the other inspiring makes by the rest of the DT.

Challenge ends on Feb17th.


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

WOYWW #348..Long time no see


Hello WOYWW buddies.

I haven't seen you since June WOYWW #313..lots happened..not all good.

So you deserve an update as well as an explanation of my desk..

Before that, for the WOYWW curious, Wednesday is the time of the week when we join our fab hostess Julia at her blog Stamping Ground and share what is on our desks.

Update first..

I now work from home (whoop whoop) so my desk doubles as my work desk. I love working from home. My new job requires me to travel back to London every 5 weeks, which I am overjoyed about.

Mister broken foot ended up worse, I had an additional break that went undetected until after the MRI. MBF is now finally healed..kind of. I spent 4 months in a rigid knee high boot. Now I am going through physical therapy to help him, but there is a possibility that I will never be able to do high impact activity ever again.

Husband, family, furbabies are all fine and as cray cray as usual :)

My desk - you can see my work macbook, new pen storage (new for you, old for me) I outgrew the one I had made and it has been recycled via a friend - I've labelled everything else. It's pretty tidy for me!

I am so excited to join you all again and to have a nose at your desks and catch-up with you.


Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Retro Rubber #31 Colour Challenge..


Welcome to another fab Retro Rubber challenge.

This time we have a colour challenge for you - 

As it is close to Valentine's Day, I thought I'd use the colours to make a VDay card.

I die-cut a white square using a Simon Says Stamp square stitched die and then I used an ancient (approx 5 years old) Studio G falling heart stamp in red and pink and stamped it several times onto the square.

I really love the sentiment by Simon Says Stamp and is part of the Paper Hug set - it's just over a year old and I thought it would look great heat embossed in white on vellum.

I attached it to the heart panel using mini staples and then mounted the whole thing onto a square card blank.

Your turn to show us your creations, remember to use a stamp over a year and make sure you tell us how old it is. Challenge ends on February 12th.

Make sure you  go over to Retro Rubber  and get inspired by the rest of my fabulous teammates.