Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Craft Room Tour - February 2016 - VIDEO

Hello Everyone! How has your week been? If you remember at the start of the year, I began making a few changes in my craft space. You can read about my adventures in the following posts:

Thank You and Goodbye 2015

Craft Room Update

Craft Room Update - The Return of the Desk

Craft Room Update - More Storage

Craft Room Update - The Big Move

Well I did say in my last post that I was considering doing a video tour and here it is. Now, I'm no Steven Spielberg, or George Lucas or any of those big directors, so my apologies for the slight imperfections (anyone remember the camera work on NYPD Blue? There are similarities!), but I really enjoyed doing the video, so I may brave a card making one in the future!

For now, enjoy my dulcet tones, and I hope you like what I've done to the room :)

Your comments are always appreciated, and if you have any constructive (but pleasant - this is just a hobby for me) ones, those of you who do amazing videos all the time, I would welcome them.

Thank you so much for reading and watching. I hope you have a great rest of the week :)

Sending Sunshine - WPlus9 - Seven Hills Crafts February Challenge

Hello Again! It's been glorious sunshine here for a couple of days and it's set to continue. It always boosts my mood when it's sunny, and as I saw that Seven Hills Crafts February Challenge was coming to an end, I thought I'd give it a go. It's all about fancy folds, so I'm not entirely sure this quite fits, but it has more than one fold (there's two!) and for me it's quite fancy..... yeah, pushing it I know, because there are some stunning cards on there.

I used my new Sunshine Layers Die from WPlus9. I've seen it used on various blogs, but it was an article in Simply Cards and Papercraft 145 by Kim Dellow that really made me think it was time to buy it.

i started by die cutting lots of little bits - clouds, raindrops, rainbow, sun, the word sunshine - using various Lawn Fawn papers - scraps from my Let's Polka 6x6 paper pad  and also my new Lawn Fawn paper that I bought last week. It is very nice - some lovely colours (I bought the rainbow pack to try it out) - and nice and thick, and of course, 8.5 x 11 inches so it will make two proper A2 cards. It isn't cheap, but then it's good quality. I think I will invest in some of the other paper packs in future.

I then cut a piece of white card to 4.25 x 11 inches and scored it at 2.75 inches from each end so it would fold and open from the middle.

I took my Mama Elephant Cloud Border die and used it to cut the corner of each front piece, to make it look like clouds.

The inside was cut with the main scalloped die and I die cut the sun and the word out from a piece of light blue paper (so it looked like the sky!). I then die cut several more suns and sunshines and glued them together before placing back into the panel, now attached to the inside of the card. Gives it some added depth.

I die cut another rainbow from white card and glued the different strips of colour onto it, then glued a cloud to each side. I glued the right hand side of the rainbow to the card panel, but have left the other side attached with blue tack at present until I can find a way to temporarily stick it but allow it to be opened too. The tiny drops were then attached with some Ranger Multi Medium Matte.

The sentiment is from another stamp set and thought it fitted well.

[Supplies: WPlus9 Sunshine Layers; Mama Elephant Landscape Trio Creative Cuts; My Favorite Things Sunflower Sweetheart; Lawn Fawn Let's Polka 6x6 Paper Pad; Lawn Fawn Rainbow Cardstock; Papermania Capsule 6x6 Paper Pack; Memento Tuxedo Black; Ranger Multi Medium Matte; Double Sided Tape]

Thank you so much for reading and for all your lovely comments - enjoy the rest of your week and hope it's good!

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Craft Stash Design Team - Hexagon Panel

Back so soon, I hear you ask, well as I sent my Design Team cards off on Tuesday, I thought it was time to share them with you! 

I was sent three Apple Blossom dies to play with from Craft Stash and I can tell you now, I've had a lot of fun! 

I started with the Hexagon Panel which is a large die, but as soon as I saw it I thought of bees, so this is the first card I came up with - and it's a BIG shaker.

I started off by cutting a piece of water colour card slightly larger than the die and giving it a wash of three different yellows using my Spectrum Aqua markers, so it had an ombre effect. Once dry, I ran the die through my die cutting machine and because it was thick card, the hexagons cut but stayed in place, so I could then set about carefully fixing the outer edges with tape on the back so they didn't fall out on the front of the card. Once that was done, I trimmed the edges and then popped out all the hexagons in the middle with a pokey tool. I was impressed I didn't have to run it through my die cutter again - a definite plus for the die!

I then made a card blank and using a craft knife, cut an aperture in the front. I made a shaker pocket with my Fuse tool using the central piece I'd cut out as a guide and filled it with a variety of sequins and shaker mixes and most of the hexagons and then sealed the top. I'm getting to know my Fuse better and you do have to leave it to heat up a lot - I let mine do 15 minutes before I use it. 

I trimmed my shaker pocket and attached it to the back of the front panel with tape, and then I attached the whole panel to my card blank. I love that I can see the inside of the card through the shaker.

The little girl is a digi stamp from JustMEdigitalstamps - @mom2sofia on IG - and I printed her on Neenah, coloured her with Copics and fussy cut her out. The sentiment I wrote with a VersaMark pen onto some scrap card and heat embossed with WOW! Bright White embossing powder, cutting it out with the CB Long Flag Die (I am rubbish at cutting flags!).

I love how this turned out and as the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge is featuring shaker cards and We R Memory Keepers products, I thought I'd enter this there.

And that's not all! I had quite a few hexagons left over, so I made this simple card by embossing the die, and adhering all the spare bits of hexagon onto the front with foam pads. 

The sentiment is layered using the CB Thanks die. It's all adhered to a grey card base. Seemed a shame to waste those little bits! It's what Darnell calls a 'Two-fer' :)

[Supplies: Apple Blossom Dies Hexagon Panel; JustMEdigitalstamps Honeybee Girl; Clearly Besotted Thanks Word Die; Clearly Besotted Long Flag Die; Spectrum Noir Aqua Markers Floral and Primary; WH Smith Watercolour Card; Neenah Classic Crest 110lb; Copic Markers; White, yellow and grey card 250gsm; We R Memory Keepers Fuse Tool; A4 clear plastic wallets; Little Things from Lucy's Cards Lemon Sherbet; Pretty Pink Posh Sparkling Clear 6mm sequins; Double sided tape; Foam pads; Ranger Multi Medium Matte; VersaMark Pen; WOW! Bright White Embossing Powder]

Thank you so much for reading and for all your lovely comments. I'm looking forward to getting my next lot of dies through to have some more to play with. Have a great weekend - I'm going to get back into the 30 Day Color Challenge - can't believe it's half way gone already!

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Online Card Classes Copic Markers for Card Makers - Day 9

Hello again! So it's time for another Copic class and this week it's been all about backgrounds. There were a lot of videos to get through, so as I was a bit short on time, I skipped a couple because I wanted to focus on the two techniques that Sandy Allnock showed us - the night background and creating clouds.

I got quite carried away and made two cards. First up, creating clouds. 

I remembered I had a little bird already coloured on some Neenah, so I simply made a quick mask and added the branch underneath, then got to work on creating the clouds above him using my B00 and B000 markers. Sandy uses a B0000 marker, and I think it would look a little better and lighter, but at the moment I'm on a Lenten buying ban on inks, stamps and colouring media, so until the end of March, I'll make do!

I simply sketched the outline of some clouds in B00 and then added additional colour by flicking my B000 upwards. I also used my colourless blender when the colour got a bit too strong. I think I need a bit more practice on this technique, but the results could look really good. I stamped the sentiment in VersaFine Onyx Black and added an outline of my silver Copic glitter pen. 

I then added a strip of patterned paper to the side of the card base, before adhering the panel on top with foam tape. I'll be trying this again, seeing as I have the perfect bird set for it.

My next card was made with a Copic background. 

It's not dissimilar to the technique I shared last week of the background mat - see Day 8 - but this time I had to get out my NBUS (Never Before Used Schtuff) of Altenew's To The Moon. I bought this as part of my birthday blitz back in November - you see why I'm on a ban? I need to use this stuff before getting more!

In order to get the moon to line up, as it's a layered stamp, I tried using my WRMK Letterpress as a stamp positioner, a la Julia Altermann and am really pleased with the results. I started with the bottom layer in Memento London Fog, and as I find this ink doesn't cover very well, I managed to stamp three times to get good coverage, and it was in exactly the same place each time. I then used Altenew's Ocean Waves and for the final layer I used some VersaMark and heat embossed it on. Looks great!

I then got to work on creating a night background with B24, B28 and B29. I blended, and I blended and I blended some more, I got out the colourless blender and added that into the mix until I was happy with the result - I like the glow around the moon. 

I then added in some colourless blender dots, white gel pen and sparkle dots for stars. I attached it to a white background, then to a navy card base. The sentiment was heat embossed onto some scrap navy card, attached with foam tape and then some enamel dots added just because. I love this card!

[Supplies: Clearly Besotted Some Birdie Loves You; Altenew To The Moon; Neenah Classic Crest 110lb card stock; Blue and White Card stock 250gsm; We R Memory Keepers Letterpress Kit; Memento Tuxedo Black; Full Adhesive Post-It Notes; Copic Markers; Lawn Fawn Let's Polka 6x6 Paper Pad; Memento London Fog; Altenew Cool Summer Night; VersaMark Watermark Ink; VersaFine Onyx Black; Wow! Bright White Embossing Powder; Echo Park Hello Winter Enamel Dots; Silver Copic glitter pen; White Sakura gelly roll pen; Scotch Permanent Foam Mounting Tape; Double Sided Tape]

Thank you so much for reading - it turned out to be rather a long post!

Addendum: Must apologise to Aileen for not reminding you all to go over and see what she has done - her card for Day 8 is gorgeous and her night sky is fabulous!

One final thing though, I just realised that last Saturday my blog turned One - an important age for anyone - and I'm extremely grateful to all of you who continue to read and leave me comments, here and on IG and Facebook. It means a great deal and keeps me going!

Thank you all!!

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Online Card Classes - Copic Markers for Card Makers Day 8

Mid-week Hello! I suddenly realised what day it was, and that I had told Aileen I would post again for our ongoing Online Card Class yesterday.....Hmmm.... So I sat last night and caught up and made a quick and simple card using an image from a Simon Says Stamp set, which is a favourite of mine, and one of the techniques in the videos by Jennifer McGuire.

Day 8 was interesting. It was billed as a card making session using the images we'd already coloured, but had some great extra videos, including one from Debby Hughes  which showed a really interesting technique using the colourless blender pen, which I tried and was a bit of a disaster, but I will try again. I stuck with the technique below for creating a background mat in Copic colours to match your image, because it is unbelievably simple and yet very effective.

I'd previously stamped and coloured this image as part of Kathy Racoosin's 30 Day Coloring Challenge, so it made it even simpler to make. It's stamped onto some Neenah 110lb card stock in Memento Tuxedo Black and then coloured in shades of green (I will start writing them down in future!). I then cut out two squares of Neenah from scraps I had, one 2.5x2.5 inches, the other 3x3 inches. 

I adhered the tree onto the smaller square with some double sided tape, and then started to colour the larger panel. I started with my lightest, just colouring in about 2cm around the edge, then highlighted the corners with my darkest shade, before going in with my medium shade. I repeated with the different colours until the blending and shading was to my liking. 

I then adhered the tree panel on top of the coloured panel, and then the whole thing onto a white A2 card base. I added the sentiment to the front in VersaFine Onyx Black so it would be really sharp.

[Supplies: Simon Says Stamp One With Nature; Clearly Besotted Sweet Little Sentiments; Neenah Classic Crest 110lb Solar White card; White card 250gsm; Memento Tuxedo Black; Copic Markers; Versafine Onyx Black]

Really simple, but I think it looks effective and I've really worked on my blending and shading!

It was super sunny today, if a little cold, so I took my camera and tripod outside and took pictures of the cards outside - better? I love the brightness.

I thought I'd link it up to Pixies Crafty Snippets Challenge, because I used up some scraps of Neenah I had lying around. I'm very new to this challenge, but I read about it alot on other blogs, and think I'll enter more often. It's a great idea to make me use up some scraps lying around! It's also going up onto Kathy's blog for the Coloring Challenge.

Please do also take the time to go and check out my partner in Copic Crime, Aileen - she does some fabulous cards and amazing colouring.

Thank you so much for reading, as always, and your lovely comments. They brighten up my day!

Monday, 8 February 2016

Sugar Pea Designs Sketch #39 Challenge - SPDSS39 + Some Exciting News

Hello everyone! Are you all enjoying the 30 Day Color Challenge? We're onto Day 8 - can you believe it! I've been loving seeing everyone's creations and experiments with different media. Makes me want to try everything at once.

I have a couple of cards I made after seeing the Sugar Pea Designs Sketch 39. I couldn't resist - after all you've got to be in it to win it!

I've used a set I hadn't had a play with for a while, and my current SPD love, the Every Day is Christmas set - the images are extremely versatile.

The first card uses the Teddybear's Picnic set

I started by stamping my little girl onto some Neenah 110lb card stock using Memento Tuxedo Black and colouring her in with Copics. I then took a pink A2 card blank and trimmed my Neenah panel to leave a strip of about 3/4" of the background to show through.

I placed the Neenah on top and drew a faint pencil line where the gap would be, removed it and then stamped the two tea cups from the set in Ranger Wild Orchid down the middle onto the card base.

I added the sentiment in the top corner and then rubbed out the pencil line and adhered the front panels with foam pads. 

My other card is made in much the same way, except this time I stamped my little bagpipe playing Nessie onto some watercolour card and cut him out with a SSS stitched circle before colouring him in with Inktense pencils.

I then decided to add a bit of interest by stamping Nessie in VersaFine Smokey Grey onto my Neenah panel before cutting out the strip.

I then made up the card front as above, this time stamping little musical notes from the recent CB Some Birdie Loves You stamp set - am so glad some of those tiny stamps are getting love! - using my new Altenew Forest Green dye ink. I also added a CB Hello in the same colour.

[Supplies: Sugar Pea Designs Teddybear Picnic and Everyday is Christmas; Clearly Besotted Some Birdie Loves You and Congrats To You; Simon Says Stamp Shapes with Stitches; Neenah Classic Crest Solar White 110lb; WH Smith Watercolour Paper; Memento Tuxedo Black; Versafine Smokey Grey; Altenew Forest Green; Ranger Wild Orchid; Copic Markers; Inktense Pencils; Sellotape Sticky Fixers Foam Pads]

Am hoping I can enter both?? Will give it a try!!

Well, you've made it this far and if you've not fallen asleep, you're maybe wondering what the news is. Well, at the end of last week, I received an email asking me if I'd be interested in joining a design team. It's for Craft Stash, a new craft supply company and they make their own dies called Apple Blossom. Naturally, I declined - I'm kidding, hahahah! - of course I said YES! It's an exciting opportunity and a chance to try something new - don't use a lot of dies at the moment and can't wait to have a play. I also happen to be on the design team with someone I'm a big fan of, Liz McGuire - doesn't get better than that!

I'll be sharing some of my makes with you over the next few weeks - excited to get started!

Thank you so much for reading and I hope you have an amazing week - keep colouring!

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

30 Day Colouring Challenge + The return of Sven, the Avery Elle Viking

Hello my fellow crafty chums! Another week goes by and finally January is over. I don't know about you but I find January a hard month to get through - I always seem to have so much on - but now we're into February and another colouring challenge is upon us and I get to spend loads of time colouring and crafting - all for fun!

Who else is joining in? I spend a ridiculous amount of time on Instagram during the challenge, so please join me there if you can and say hello. I love seeing what everyone else is doing and get loads of inspiration from all your posts.

Today's card is inspired by Kathy's first post - her amazing kaleidoscope card - and being desperate to try out my Polychromos on water colour card a la Julia Altermann. I coloured in Sven again. I can't seem to stay away from him - he's terribly handsome, suave and charming, just like my husband ;)

Polychromos pencils are amazing. They are even more amazing on water colour card. It's like a light bulb moment and I think I'll use this from now on.

You can see the colour better in this close up of hunky Sven.

I still have a lot to work on, but I like how his beard turned out and will be using these pencils a lot, so a worthwhile investment.

So onto the card itself. I took a 14.5 x14.5 cm card blank and covered it with some patterened paper I won in a giveaway from the lovely and talented Liz McGuire. I then took two white pieces of card slightly smaller than the card front, and using my circle dies, cut out a circle from the centre of each one - one bigger than the other. I fussy cut Sven out (there is a die that goes with it, but I like fussy cutting!) and stuck him in the middle, using multi medium matte glue and placed the smaller aperture on top with double sided tape. I then attached the larger aperture on top with foam pads for dimension. 

The heart I found in a pack of scrap booking bits that also came from Liz. I attached it with foam pads - had to be done!

I don't usually go all out for Valentine's Day, but I thought I might as well get into the spirit of things and have loads to choose from for my husband :)

[Supplies: Avery Elle Viking; Faber Castell Polychromos pencils; Ranger Archival Jet Black ink; WH Smith Water colour paper 12 sheets; White card blank; white card 250gsm; Spellbinders Nestabilities Standard Circles Large; Foam Pads; Ranger multi medium matte; Double sided tape; Paper pad and heart from stash]

I hope you're going to get involved in the challenge - it is a lot of fun and colouring is so relaxing. 5 minutes a day in a colouring book is all that is required :)

Don't forget the latest release for Clearly Besotted is due on Friday at 10pm - the pirates are on my list!

Have a crafty week and a very crafty colouring month! Thanks so much for reading :)

Edit: I noticed that this week's Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge is all about hearts, so I thought I'd link him up too :)

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