Sunday 29 June 2008

Flickr, House hunt update

I have popped a few more club member cards on Flickr (click on the link in the right hand colomn). It's taken ages to update the photo's, hate it when the computer runs slowly, so not going to pop anymore photo's on for this evening as I need to go and make ATC's.

Quick house hunt update, we went to the Estate Agents, there are already 10 people waiting to view "Dream House", and they aren't doing viewings yet!! Argh! What now, do we wait, and take the chance that we might, but might not, get it. Do we take one of the other houses that will "do", but definately don't come close!!! Bearing in mind I'm now working solid for 7 days so won't get chance to go and view anything this week, and we have to move out on the 18th July.'s never simple is it. Not feeling that stressed though, considering. It'll be right.

Don't forget to join in with the Fab Friday Challenge, scroll down to see what's the theme for this week.

Friday 27 June 2008

Houses and the world

Well, today's house hunting was rather exciting, we have found the perfect house. It is absolutely gorgeous. It is in Harbledown which is a beautiful village on the way to Canterbury (we are moving away from London!). It has a wonderful garden, a green house, sheds, and is just perfect for long walks with the dogs. I'm really excited, I just hope we get it. Dawn is always saying to think positive, so we are going to get it!! There are already other people interested, so it's fingers crossed. Knowing we are moving somewhere like that will help with the move, as it's going to be really sad leaving our little home, but we felt we needed a fresh start with the past year being such a struggle after loosing Jacob. It could be cardmaking on the lawn Ladies!! How divine. Cream tea's anyone?

Now my other waffle, on the stats thing that you can do for your blogging, it tells you the various contries people have visited your blog from. It's brilliant, there are people from America, Austria, Greece - all over the world. If you are one of these people I would love you to pop on and say hello, and let me know how you came across my blog. I think it's facinating. I'd love to know if you craft in Austria.

Anyway, enough babble, I'm all excited about the house. I really want to start packing, but need to crack on with the decoupage.....

Fab Friday time.........

It's challenge time again, of course with it being a twisted week I had to stick with this theme, so I've used only the top sections of my twisted pyramid sheet for my ATC (using the larger sections would have been to big, this way I can get an ATC and a card for my trouble!). I had a decision to make as to the actual challenge title though, twisted, decoupage or "fitting something big onto something little" (the last one needs a little work with the title I recon). As decoupage is sooooo popular I thought I would go with that, so:
Decoupage Delights
However, to make it a little trickier I would be really impressed if you did have to chop your decoupage to actually fit it onto the ATC, and therefore altering it a little (it could be really funny if you had headless flower fairies!! haha, that's my kinda decoupage). Anyhow, I'm looking forward to seeing your wonderful creations as ever, and please do not feel you have to stick to shop bought decoupage sheets, you can use wrapping paper, patterned paper, even a cool magazine picture photocopied a few times - go for it.


Thursday 26 June 2008

Twisted Pyramid

Mmmm, I think I feel like a twisted pyramid!! We had a massive house hunt yesterday (tricky, there are so few properties on the market for rent!), but we managed to find a house we both liked, filled in the forms and put some money down. Everything was tickity boo, until this afternoon when the Estate Agent rings to say the owner has agreed to rent it privately instead! What a cheek. And how annoying. This means we now have to spend the weekend house hunting instead of going having a surprise meal with my grandparents to celebrate their Diamond Wedding Anniversary. We're so disappointed. Anyone want to rent their house? Or alternatively has anyone got lots of spare land that I can pop on a couple of log cabins, grow my own veg, have a little forested area, a pond, chickens, bee''s the latest dream. Wouldn't it be great. I could have craft workshops in one of the log cabins, feed you with my home made honey and sell you some spuds!!

Well on the twisted front, I have been making cards for next week (full week of crafting on QVC - oh yes every day!). I don't think it's a secret that I'm not over keen on doing decoupage - all the cutting out drives me abit mad. How lucky am I that there's plenty of decoupage on then eh!! My scissors were creating sparks with the mad snipping. This time however, I've been able to play with the Twisted Pyramid decoupage, which is a little different (not as fiddly either). Thought I would share a few cards with you.

If you have never tried to do a Twisted Pyramid before (it was my first time as well), it's really easy. As with normal decoupage you are cutting your pieces starting with the largest and working your way down to the smallest. With the pyramid these are squares (I'm sure there are different shapes out there but mine were just squares). Great, makes it easier to cut. All you do it layer them, using 3D foam or silicone glue, allowing them to twist slightly, so the image is placed to correspond directly with the image on the first and larger square:

This is the first two squares, I hope you can see how the squares are not stacked directly on top of each other, but twisted slightly.

Monday 23 June 2008

New Readers

I thought I would just pop a note on to anyone visiting my blog for the first time. The main reason for starting my blog was to share some of the brilliant ATC's I exchange through my club, you will find these on the right hand side following the Flickr link.

If you are interested in joining the ATC club please scroll back to the beginning of the blog where you will find full details, and where to write to.

I love sharing some of my work which I do for QVC, so keep having a nose to see what I've been up to. Also love your feedback, so let me know what you think, or if you have any queries drop me a line.

Finally I have started my weekly ATC Fab Friday challenge, where I will post an ATC theme for you to join in with, again it's great seeing your work so I'd love it if you could join in.

Thank you for visiting, hope to see you here again soon.

Animal Springy Stickers

This kit was great to work with, really cute stickers. I did quite a few cards, but just photographed my favourites, which I hope you will like.

I made this card by simply cutting out the tree trunks, and adding the tree tops. I then added the cute squirrels and bird. One of the squirrels is on the front, the second is on the inside of the card. Almost forgot to check if the card stood up, so had to be careful I didn't add to much foliage to my trees!

Again using card I cut out tree trunks and bushes then added the monkey stickers and a big banana.

For this card I used an aperture which I 3D to give dimension. I cut out the green seaweed and popped this behind the aperture. I added the stickers inside the aperture, and on the front, so there are plenty of layers to the card.

Finally 3 cards, the squirrel card and two nice and easy one's. Abit of matting and layering with some lovely card and the cute stickers makes effective and happy cards.


Our day out in the sun was marvelous. Carley and Lottie joined us and we had a lovely time. Sipping wine, eating snacks and playing on the swings. Great fun. Today has been abit trickier - we are in the process of moving, so I have spent all day so far on the phone trying to book house viewings, as times running out to find somewhere! Not handy, as I haven't been able to do any work yet, but finding a home is a priority I suppose!

Anyway, I'll catch up with my posts on my blog before I head off to decoupage.

The following few cards were done working with wonderful paper kits from Saturday. I love working with paper, and you will see from the cards (and the ATC challenge this week), I enjoy taking elements out of the paper so it changes to look of the paper and you get more out of it.

This is lovely paper from the Kim Hodges range (586311), for both these cards I have taken a photo of the full sheet of paper so you can see where the images has been lifted from. I enjoyed taking out flower heads and adding them to the card using micro dots and 3D foam which gives added dimension.

For this card I took a swirl out of my paper which I ran up the left side of the card and cut out extra flowers which I added using 3D foam, I used eyelets and ribbons to finish off the card.

This K&Co kit was one of my favourites of the 2 hours, beautiful designs and great quality (586812). As this is a double sided paper I used part of the back of the paper, cut it out following the pattern, and stuck it to the matching paper. Again cut out some extra flowers and added them with 3D foam. Abit of glittler glue adds the finishing touches.

Sunday 22 June 2008

Sunny days

I was going to pop on a few more photo's from Saturdays show, and also some tips on using the fabulous Angelina fibres - but the sun is shining and the boys are playing cricket, so me and Kathryn are taking our bottle of wine and pretending the watch them!! It's a fine excuse to grab a nice break, gossip and sun. I will definately post the photo's of the cards tomorrow (there will be no excuses then I promise).

Friday 20 June 2008

Fab Friday Challenge time.....

Well, as I've been getting tomorrows show ready I had to choose something that I had been working on. Bit tricky, as there's the moonglow and quite a few other bits and bobs I could have gone for(shouldn't give everything away should I!). The kit I picked eventually is a gorgeous paper kit by K&Co. The papers are fab, and I love working with them as they are double sided, so you can chop them up to make the most of the print on each side. This weeks challenge is titled:

Pretty Piece of Paper

What I would like you to do it try to get as much as possible from your piece of paper! Either choose something with a fantastic print which you can cut out and decoupage, or paper with brilliant texture. Try to make your ATC just paper crafting, try to avoid stamping, peel-offs etc. I'll let you have a bit of ink (just because I did!! haha), and things such as 3D glaze, chalks etc. If you have some beautiful paper this will be easy (I'm sure we all have fantastic paper). If not see what you can chop out of a magazine, wrapping paper or even wall paper. As usual I really look forward to your contributions.

For mine I used a backing paper which was slightly heavier for my ATC, then a double sided printed paper. I layered the plainer side of the paper directly onto my atc, first tearing it so it just covers half of the ATC. I then cut out some of the flowers from the other side of the paper and layer them on using micro dots and various depths of 3D foam to give variation in dimension. Added a little distress ink, and bob's mi uncle.


Wednesday 18 June 2008

Prepping for QVC

I've been working on a number of kits today ready for Saturday's show. I'll be doing two hours on Saturday (booked a hair cut tomorrow to celebrate!!). Thought I'd share a few bits and bobs with you that I've been working on:

I've been playing with pigment powders by Moonglow, lovely stuff. The first card has been done by using a plain die cut flower covered with versamark ink (stamped directly from the pad). Using a nice soft brush add the pigment powders to the flower, blending the colours. Moonglow require a fixative, so I gave them a blast of hairspray.

I found out (by accident - I went out of the lines when colouring in), that if you apply moonglow mixed with water to your stamped image, quite thickly - then using a water soluble pen (I was using Whispers, but Le Plumes will work as well), along the edge. Using a water brush add a little water to the ink and it blends wonderfully into the Moonglow. The ink changes colour, the pen I used was green, but went a lovely blue. This is a great technique for creating shading. You need to leave it to dry and give it a good spray after to fix.

I dug out my Fimo and made some beads, easily just rolling them and popping a hole through the centre. Add the pigment powder to the clay before baking. I've used a few different colours. Bake as per the instructions on the packet, then varnish to fix the powder. I made a little drying rack from cardboard so they didn't pick up any fluff whilst drying. I then made a necklace using ribbon and extra beads.

Pigment powders are fab to make backgrounds, I used clear drying glue and added powders to it, which I swirled around with my finger (you need to get abit messy). The glue fixes the powder, so you do not need to spray this one. I then overstamped using a lovely stamp from PaperArtsy (not available from QVC, but check out their web site and blog). I love the colours of these powders.

Finally for today, look at the difference of these two, same ATC but different camera angles. Need to learn how to use my camera. Luckily I'm starting a course in September doing all sorts - sculpture, photography, fine art, learning how to set up a web site! How exciting. I'm still going to be working and running my club, but I'll have even more stuff to share, and hopefully know how to use my computer better to get on with designing. I've now set dates for my workshop at Topaz, and also some book signings down South, so I'll pop some dates on my blog shortly. The cards below are definately on the list for my workshop, as I love this background technique. It's a little messy, and unpredictable, so completely up my street.

Don't forget the Fab Friday Challenge, dig out your memorabilia.

Friday 13 June 2008

Fab Friday ATC Challenge

Well this time I was inspired from my lovely weekend at Kew Gardens, so the theme is:
Recollection and Receipts
Sounds abit fancy, really what I want you to try this week is using a receipt, ticket, programme etc from somewhere you have been and decorate it, or use it as part of your decoration. Give life to your old bus ticket, or preserve the memory of a great day out on your ATC. We get receipts and leaflets for everything, and some are lovely. The one's we received at Kew Gardens have a lovely picture on the back, which I used for the top of my card. The "Kew" part has been torn from the second ticket and I've taken the date off the card as well. I've hand drawn some trees, and colour tinted using Distress Inks.

Now I was going to make a second card, dug out the stamps to use and everything, with the receipt from the butterfly exhibition at the Natural History Museum. However, I have discovered if you iron them they turn black!! Could only find one receipt, so that was the end of that. Suppose that's why it's a good idea to photocopy them and use the copy not the original. I know, I know, I just didn't!! Duh.

I hope you like the challenge, it's not a tricky one and gives you a chance to look at your bits and bobs more carefully before they are recycled.

The one that went wrong!!

Thursday 12 June 2008

Kew Gardens - and cards

We had a lovely weekend, seems like a while away now! We went to Kew Gardens, it was fantastic weather and the gardens are brilliant - the tree top walk is lovely and feels so peaceful even though it was really busy. Thought I'd pop on a couple of photo's - the one I took of Nicky makes me laugh, he looks rather scary staring through the plants.

I've been working on some new kits that have been delivered, just a couple of sneaky pic's for those as they haven't been on air yet. Still in the process of getting my Newsletters done - I've almost run out of ink again! Haven't even got through half of them yet. Gulp.

Now it's almost Friday again, so anyone wanting to get their challenge from last Friday in then get posting.

I've popped a few cards on Flicr as well, just 3 for the moment - but definately worth having a look at.

Thursday 5 June 2008

Fab Friday (early!!)

Okay, I know it's early, but I'm being organised. We are at QVC tomorrow, there's a TSV (I haven't seen it yet - tut!!). Thankfully it's not to long a day for me. Dawn is on this evening, well tomorrow morning, but I do not have to go in until sensible times of tomorro morning - the theory is that I'm wide awake for the whole day.

For the challenge this week I have choosen:
Chop and Change
I want you to cut up your ATC, then but it back together again. This can be done before or after you have decorated the card, and you can put it back in any order. You can do a mosaic style, chop it in half, diagonal etc. You can use any style to decorate the card, as long as you chop it up!

I have done two, the first one was easy just cutting an ATC in half after pasting a newspaper cutting to it. One half was trimmed down smaller, so then I put them back together again, the smaller half would show some of the card underneath. The second one I have cut out the centre section, and left it out. I used inks to colour tint my card, and a lovely Hero Arts stamp as my focal point.

Have a play and see what you can do with your paper trimmer and a bit of imagination!

Craft Fair

It's been years since I did a craft fair, but my friend Jenny is having a stall at the week long craft fair held in Haslingden (i'll pop on more details when it starts, it's always worth a visit, there's some lovely stuff). It's been really nice just working with whatever I fancy - I've had a bit of a play!

I eventually had my ink delivered, so I have started the hugh job of printing Newsletters, these should start hitting the post next week, so I look forward to seeing all my club members themed trades, and competition enteries soon.

Tuesday 3 June 2008

Artist Trading Cards by club members

Another quick not to let you know I've updated the flickr account with some more wonderful creations from our club members. You'll notice I've received quite a few RAK's - thank you so much to everyone who has taken the time to do a card for me - I have a wonderful collection and each one is completely different. Great isn't it.

Have a look on the Flickr for people who have been joining in the the Fab Friday challenge, and sending their cards in to trade, such as Christine with her music for the heart. I'm waiting for the next batch to come down with Dawn on Friday, so will get some more pics on then
ps link for the flickr page is in the right hand column, just scroll down a little