Friday, January 31, 2020

Alcohol Ink Birthday..


Last day of January already! This month has flown by.

I have enjoyed blogging this month, I have stuck to my 'no pressure' attitude of 2019 and it's made me relax and post a bit more!

Today's card is a fun one.

I LOVE alcohol inks and we did a fun class with Cheiron last year.

Lisette bought me a bunch of new colours for my birthday and so I had a play and created the fun background you can see.

I stamped over it using archival ink and added a happy birthday die-cut.

It felt a teeny bit flat against the black card blank, so I added some glitter paper and that made a huge difference.

I have loved the discovery of metallic alcohol ink mixatives, they add such nice touches and shimmers to these alcohol ink pieces.


Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The Paper Players 475: Dino-mite..


Last weekend, I was looking for a challenge to play along with.

I really like a sketch challenge and the current Paper Players sketch made me want to play along.

I thought it would be fun to use the cute 'Dinky Dinos' set by Heffy Doodle.

I decided to colour the Dinos in all different colours for a bit of added interest. I heat embossed the sentiment from the set (it comes in parts, so you can build a variety of sentiments) and die-cut it using a banner die.

The scalloped, stitched, dotted die that I used for the white panel is from a random shop I like in the UK that sells a really random mix of stuff, I always pop in there when I am home in London.

A nice easy make for a Sunday.


Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Retro Rubber Challenge #127... Tic Tac Toe..


Welcome to another fun Retro Rubber challenge.

This time we have a fab Tic Tac Toe board for you!

I love Tic Tac Toe - even if several of us choose the same row, the cards are so different.

I went with the top row - green, twine, pattern paper. To be 100% honest, I was unpacking my suitcase from London and I bought a mini pack of paper that happened to have the gorgeous green and gold paper you see on my card and it inspired my whole card and row choice.

I wanted to maximise the amount of the paper that you can see on the card, as it is SO pretty IRL. I decided to keep it all as CAS as possible.

I added the gold twine to tie in with the paper and I stamped the sentiment, by The Ton (which I have had since 2017) onto coordinating green paper, that I die-cut using a Avery Elle banner die.

The Fashion Lady stamp, I have had since 2015 - I bought a 'grab bag' of stamps and got like 60 stamps!! I donated some, gifted some and kept a few. This is my fave one from the whole bag of stamps and works so well with the sentiment. I coloured the Lady in green tones, to fit the row.

A pretty fun, funky card that will make a great birthday card for one of my stylish friends.

Which row are you going to choose? Can't wait to see your makes, also pop over to Retro Rubber and get inspired by the things the DT have made.

Challenge ends Feb 7th.

Don't forget to tell us the age of your stamp, that is part of the fun of our challenge and please only enter 10 challenges including Retro Rubber.


Monday, January 27, 2020

30 Days of ATStamps...


Happy Monday!

Hope you had a good weekend?

I have been having a lovely time in January with my blog, I have posted quite a lot and a lot of it has been end of 2019 makes, which is nice. I have entered a few challenges, so new stuff has been made, but it's been nice sharing some of the things I made towards the end of last year. I got a bit of Christmas fatigue and really just couldn't muster up the enthusiasm for my blog!

Today I am showing you a really cool project / challenge that I did last November.

Carabelle Studios hosted a 30 days of ATStamps. I saw this post on The Kathryn Wheel blog and was totally hooked and had to join in.

Here are the prompts for the 30 days -

The prompts were great and the rules were reasonably loose - each ATStamp had to be 6x4cm, and had to resemble a postage stamp. Using Carabelle Studio stamps was optional and as I only had x5 of their stamps at the time, I mixed it up a LOT.  Mid-way through the challenge, I managed to acquire x3 more sets on sale. Also you could make more than 1 ATStamp per prompt and I did do this for some of them, as I had so many cool ideas in my head!

Here is a little glimpse of my ATStamp's -

From top left clockwise 1) close-up of the ATStamps, 2) a cent for scale as most people on insta thought they were much bigger! 3) the permanent home in my art journal for the ATStamps, they were too much work and too gorgeous to give away.. 5) my fave monster ATStamp 6) all of my ATStamps - I ended up with 38
Kathryn of The Kathryn Wheel, gave me a good idea for how to get started. I dug out all the scraps and stamped backgrounds, gelli plate backgrounds, smooshed backgrounds. I cut approx 40 6x4cm pieces from these backgrounds and they formed the 'base' for all my ATStamps. Some of them I didn't overly embellish and others I did a lot to.
I didn't have the Carabelle postage stamp base, so I used a Simon Says Stamp one from the 'Ho Ho Postage' set that I also have the dies for, I stamped and cut all of these and affixed the decorated piece to this.

The main photo today is of my fave ATStamp - Day 13 'Drink' I LOVE Monsters and I love Coffee too and this Monster stamp by Whippersnapper always reminds me of me in the morning.

This was one of the ATStamps that needed a bit of work.. I chose a green and orange background piece and stamped over it with a Carabelle text stamp. Then I prepped my Monster -

Sadly, I had to lose his bunny slipper! After I had trimmed down the Monster to fit the background panel, I added a sparkly M to his mug, as I suspect like me Mr Morning Monster might like a monogram ;)

Finally one fun fact for you, I didn't discover the challenge until 8 days in!! So I spent an entire Saturday afternoon prepping and making the first 9 ATStamps! Here is a photo of the first 9 -

I loved this little challenge, it was SO out of my comfort zone and I was really pleased that I decided to take the leap and join in. It was also fun breaking out my acrylic paint markers and using dots and lines to embellish these super small 'canvases'.

More projects like this in 2020 please.


Saturday, January 25, 2020

CASE: Floral Llama Car Birthday..


So last weekend as it was a long weekend I decided to CASE a card I have had on my Pinterest board for a while.

I knew that it wouldn't be a quick make, so needed to save it for a time when I had oodles of desk playtime.

This is the card I CASEd - by Rejoicing Crafts.

I loved the colour combos and just the fun and unusual nature of the card.
Yoosun used all Flora & Fauna stamps to create her card, but I didn't have all of those, so I dug out some Neat & Tangled and MFT stamp sets to supplement the F&F that I did have. Also Yoosun stamped all her flowers and leaves first and then added the watercolour aspect and I did it the other way around.

Here are photos of the first two steps -

As you can see the watercoloured panels don't really look that great, then add flowers and leaves and wow! it really comes to life.

I used a F&F car die and die-cut x2 cards out of white watercolour paper and then watercoloured them in red and blue to coordinate with the backgrounds better. I stamped and die-cut the Llama's from F&F's 'Llama Garden' set and affixed them to the cars before I popped them up on foam tape and added them to my card.

The sentiment is also by F&F and from their 'Birthday' set.

I am so, so happy with these cards, they came out so well and it was fun to CASE a card using a mix of things I already have!

I get so hooked on the beautiful cards that design teams make to help sell products, I always want to rush out and buy the products, but this year I am trying to mimic what I see, using what I have.

It's working out really well and this makes it easier for me to not be tempted to open my wallet!


p.s Other stamp sets I used were - Neat & Tangled's Scandinavian Prints (no longer available), MFT's Pretty Posies (available here) and My Cute Stamps 'Spunky Nature'(no longer available)

Friday, January 24, 2020

Seize the Birthday: Monster Star Stencil..


Happy Friday!

As promised today I am playing along with Seize the Birthday again - this time with the topping -

I LOVE using stencils on my cards and I am a big fan of the Tim Holtz layering stencils.

I have nearly all of the mini ones, so handy and they come in sets of 3 which I think is VFM.

For this card I made a fun stenciled background using the star shifter stencil - these stencils are great if you want to use multiple colours in different positions because the stencil actually has a star-filled in, so you can place it over the colour you have already done. Sounds complicated - honestly, it isn't, watch the master Tim Holtz demonstrate in this video.

I knew I wanted to colour my fave Monster in orange and green, so I used those colours to create my background.

The Monster is by My Cute Stamps, sadly no longer on sale and he was gifted to me by a friend. I coloured him using Copic markers AND my new love Sakura glitter gel pens - SO much sparkle.

I added a die-cut speech bubble so that I could add the sentiment and the little numbers, as this is a 1st birthday card.

I love how it turned out.

Have a great weekend, I am off to dinner tonight with some friends I haven't seen in forever.


Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Lawn Fawn Reveal Wheel: Magical Unicorn Birthday..


During my recent trip to London, we visited Hubby's bestie so we could a) catch-up b) see her daughters and c) hand over the pun card project.

We had a fun afternoon with Polly and her Daughters.

One of them Maggie is 3 (soon to be 4) and took a shine to me - I do love kids, despite not ever wanting to have any I like to hang out with kids.

I thought to honor our little bonding moment I would make Maggie a special 4th Birthday card and I am also entering it into the current Seize the Birthday challenge - this a no toppings entry, I am going to play along later in the week with a toppings entry!

Obviously, I immediately reached for my reveal wheel kit. I have so many of the add-ons now, it is super fun to make cards with and EASY for an interactive card.

I decided to pair it with x2 Ellen Hutson sets 'Unicorns 'N Rainbows' and 'Over It' - I chose a wide arched aperture for the wheel and stamped the rainbow from Over it, over the top of the arch and then coloured that using glitter gel pens to get some serious sparkle.

I stamped, coloured and die-cut 3 of the images from the Unicorns set and after assembling the reveal wheel and mounting it onto the card blank, I affixed them to the front. I added some hearts from the sets all over the card and went over a few of them with a glitter gel pen to add some sparkle.

Because I chose the large aperture, you only get to reveal two sentiments and I went with magical and awesome.

Perfect for a 4 year old girl!


Saturday, January 18, 2020

Coffee gets me Kracken..


Even though I am in a crafty no spend zone, that doesn't mean I don't have new shiny things to play with!!

This is WHY I am in a no spend zone LOL.

JT and I did our annual Black Friday $20 challenge, which over the years has crept up to be way more than $20, but whatever we are besties, so it's all cool.

This year among other things, I got these 3 really cool dies / die sets from JT.

I knew that I had to pair that splash / splotch die with an awesome Rabbit Hole Designs set that my friend Jen sent me for my birthday, that I hadn't got round to using yet.

Don't they work well together! I love that Caffeinated Octopus. And it was really easy to make, just die-cut the splotch, stamp the x2 sentiments where I wanted them to be and then, stamp, colour and die-cut the Octopus. I popped him up using foam tape.

I used the Caffeinated Reindeer to make Lisette's Christmas card last year. They are SO fun.

Love it when I get to combine things to make fun cards.


Friday, January 17, 2020

Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers: H is for Headache..


Happy Friday!

I got my very first Princess of Snark in December last year and I was very happy about it.

I really wanted to play along with The Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers - X Rated Christmas, but I ran out of time.

So I am joining in the current challenge -

I obviously have the same Tim Holtz snarky chit chat stickers as everyone else, but that is cool - great minds think alike.

I found a piece of older smooshed paper in my stash - loved the colours and as they are quite muted I think they soften the punch of the sentiment!

I die-cut the panel as a tag - using a Sizzix + Tim Holtz die, I love this die, as it cuts the larger sized tags that are perfect for mixed media projects.

It was a great opportunity to use my slightly neglected 'Damn Girl' stamp set by Unity Stamp Co. I used the main image of the 1920's woman and the 'Damn Girl' sentiment, which I masked off to work with the rest of my sentiment.

I'm so pleased with this and it is going to a friend who has a rude work colleague, this needs to be on her desk to ward off that person!

It's a long weekend here in the US, whoop! Have a great weekend everyone.


Wednesday, January 15, 2020

4 cards, 1 stamp set: Neat & Tangled..Fresh Blooms


I have been going through some of the things I made and photographed last year and I realised that there is a lot of blog gold in there!

So I am going to try and post as much of it as I can, mixed in with some new makes.

Today's cards continue my 4from1 series.

If I pull out a stamp set to have a play, I like to make multiples!

I got the Neat & Tangled 'Fresh Blooms' set, secondhand from Cheiron and I had this idea, that I could create fun floral cards using the flower stamp from the set and watercoloured splotches.

Here is one of the cards in progress..

My fave new tool of 2019 is the Wendy Vecchi Make Art Stay-tion. If you don't have one, get one, they are no more than $20 and worth every penny.

I add a sheet of white paper to mine, so I can stamp off the edge and not ruin the Stay-tion. I love that I can hold a piece of paper or stencil firmly down whilst I work - genius!

Anyway, back to my cards.. I created x4 different backgrounds, die-cut them to size using a stitched rectangle die and added big bold sentiments, stamped on coordinating scraps of paper. The sentiments are by Market Street Stamps - they are sadly no longer in business.

Really easy to make cards and I love using different mediums to make cards a bit more interesting.


Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Retro Rubber Challenge #126.. It's Cold Outside..


Happy New Year!

Welcome to the first Retro Rubber challenge of 2020 and in fact of the decade!!

Hopefully it's not too cold where you are, but if it is maybe it will inspire your card.

I thought it was high time I dug out my Lawn Fawn Winter Bunny stamp set (I've had it since 2016), it has been rather neglected.

I thought that it paired well with the Simon Says Stamp birch window die and their Hand Lettered Winter Wishes stamp set to make a really sweet wintery thank you card.

As you can imagine I didn't have to do a lot, it all came together really easily and I love the end result.

What wintery card will you make? Don't forget to pop over to Retro Rubber and get inspired by the things the DT have made.

Challenge ends Jan 24th.

Don't forget to tell us the age of your stamp, that is part of the fun of our challenge and please only enter 10 challenges including Retro Rubber.


Monday, January 13, 2020

Floral Hi..


Happy Monday!

So last year I really really tried to exercise restraint over Black Friday - but it was SOOO hard.

As I couldn't help myself, I am in a NO BUY zone for January, to extend into Feb (possibly).

This means I have to play with all the beautiful new shiny things I have..

Today I am showing you a card I made using the amazing Spellbinder 'Floral Hi' dies. I fell head over heels in love with it when I saw it on their site.

It's pretty simple as a set of dies, but whooo it's a lot of work to put together! But so worth it. I made x2 cards at the same time and die-cut all of the pieces first, mainly out of scraps, before I assembled both cards.

I added bling for the flower centers and added some dots of gold stickles around for a bit of interest.

I wish they made this die as a Thanks.


Friday, January 10, 2020

CASology: Repeat Butterflies..


Happy Friday.

So its been a while since I joined in over at CASology, with Christmas and everything getting in my way!

Seems like a great way to start 2020 by playing along.

I used the Stampin' Up 'Perpetual Calendar' set to make my desk calendar and it was still on my desk and I saw the butterfly stamp and thought it would work perfectly here.  I stamped it in a few different colours of Altenew Inks (which I LOVE) and I can't believe I haven't used the butterfly in this way before.

I added a few teeny tiny die-cut butterflies here and there for some added dimension, but you can't really see them that well in my photo.

Over the Christmas break (before I left for London) I organised my dies. I have a fair amount of stand alone dies and tbh I really had no idea of what I did or didn't have. Needless to say I stumbled across some forgotten faves, like the wonderful 'Love You' die by Simon Says Stamp that I used on my card. I die-cut it out of some pink self-adhesive foam.

Such a pretty girly card, so unusual for me to be this girly.

Have a great weekend, I will be on the couch watching NFL playoffs!


Wednesday, January 8, 2020

4 cards, 1 stamp set: Taylored Expressions..


Well, I lied.. there are actually 5 cards!

And I am essentially entering ALL of them into the current Use Your Stuff challenge - which is 'Anything Goes'.

Basically, I have been hoarding the papers that you see, all from a 6x6 DCWV stack that I have had a few years.. naughty, naughty.

I bought the awesome Taylored Expressions 'B is for Birthday' set early on in 2019, but never used it. So I decided to break it out along with the DCWV papers and do another one of my 4 from 1 posts.

I love how the cards came out and I got lucky, because I didn't plan my colour choices when colouring, but fortunately found papers in the stack that coordinated really well.

My 'recipe' was pretty simple, I used Copic sketch markers to colour the stamped images and I added some details using a white gel pen. Then I die-cut them out using either a circle or small rectangle stitched die. Added a teeny bit of glittery washi tape to make the white panels pop a bit and voila! 5 finished cards.


Monday, January 6, 2020

Pun Card Project..


Back to normal now with Christmas and my trip to London done, I go back to work tomorrow..

I had a fun trip, it was great to spend so much QT with my folks and I got to hand over my pun card project to our friend Polly.

Polly is a big fan of my cards, which is lovely. Last year she made a comment about one of the cards I sent to her and it sparked an idea.

What if I made a pun card from every single pun set I have?! 

Well, 5 months (Aug to Dec) and 48 stamp sets later, I ended up with 55 pun cards and to be honest there are probably about 10-15 more sets I could have used, but I just ran out of time.

I used all the techniques for these cards - stencils, heat embossing, dry embossing, smooshing, watercolouring, gelli plate backgrounds, die-cutting, masking and marker colouring.

It was so much fun to do though and here are the majority of the cards!

Fun right?!

I might consider a similar project later this year - like all birds or something?


Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Welcome to 2020..


Happy New Year from London!

Welcome to a brand new decade!

Hope you had a great NYE - I spent mine with my Parents and it was a fun day / night.

Today I am showing you the cards I made on Boxing Day - I had a bumper 10hr session at my desk and it was wonderful to just play and not have Christmas things to make.

I had an offcut of a smooshed piece of paper on my desk and it sparked an idea. I used the 'Flamingo Sunshine' stamp by Flora & Fauna - they have been my fave new to me stamp company of 2019..

I stamped the Flamingo onto the smooshed background and coloured the details in the few glitter gel pens I had - this was a new to me thing and I LOVE how much sparkle you get - cue me the next day in Blick with Cheiron buying more of them (Sakura Gelly Roll Stardust gel pens). I liked it so much, that smooshed x2 additional pieces of watercolour paper and cut x5 more squares from them so I could create x6 cards.

I die-cut the frame from patterned grey papers - the frame is by MFT stamps. I thought they looked a bit flat on the white cards, so I added a black piece of paper to make them pop.

I decided the sentiment's should be black and I used dies by Lawn Fawn, Taylored Expressions and Heffy Doodle. I was planning on them all being thank yous, but I needed a couple of birthday cards so switched it up a bit.

Love how they came out, I hope the recipients will too.