Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Makes Me Smile....

... when lovely, talented people appreciate my blog! :o) Dolly (whose real name we now know is Vicky!) is a crafter I greatly admire. Her designs are gorgeous, and so fresh and original. And yet she notices my blog. I'm amazed and humbled. Thank you, Doll.. err... Vicky! ;o)

In fact, Doll/Vick likes my blog so much (and a few others who were also dubbed with the Order of the Blush), that she gave me this lurvly blog award! :o)

Hence the title of this post. There, you see? And you thought this blgo was juts thrown together. Wel, their gou yo. Il'l have yoo know this takes degisn and planing. And presicion. Di'dnt no that, did yuo?

Right.. now, you know how things work.. You have to put up with several facts about me you never wanted to know.. sorry.. ALWAYS wanted to know. In this case, it's five apparently.

1. What is my favourite movie? Hmm. That's a toughie, as I am a bit of a cinema fan, and love lots of movies such as Schindler's List, Die Hard, Steel Magnolias, Stepmom, Sleepless in Seattle & You've Got Mail (although I can't stand Meg Ryan, I love the characters she plays).

2. Favourite song... Funny Valentine, particularly as sung by Burt Reynolds in Sharkey's Machine, and I thought Lucy's rendition on the X-Factor last weekend wasn't half bad. No, I mean it was good... although a little bit shrill in parts... and her voice cracked in the end, so maybe I was right in the first place. But she's a nice kid.

3. Favourite classical music piece... Again, many, but favourite has to be Clair De Lune by Claude Debussy. (This isn't the best recording I've heard, but for the sake of speed..)

4. Favourite sports... baseball (World Series starts tomorrow night.. woohoo! Wish the non-subscription British TV channels would show it.. sigh)... ESPN, here I come.. or Fox.. one or t'other! Also enjoy ice-skating, sailing and tennis.

5. What makes me angry? BL**DY FIREWORKS GOING OFF WHEN THEY SHOULDN'T BE!! Don't you know it's against the law? Don't you know every animal in every house for a mile around you is bl**dy terrified????!!! It's not just a case of never knowing when to keep them in or not, it's the fact that it doesn't matter if they're in.. they're STILL scared stiff! I know most people reading this blog are reasonable, kind and considerate people, but if you're not and you are inclined to allow your kids to let off fireworks willy-nilly at any time of year, then GET OFF MY BLOG!!! You're not welcome! The sodding things should be banned from sale to the public, and all perpetrators hung up by their sensitive parts.

They've been going off tonight. Again. Can ya tell? Grrrrrr!!!

Anyway.. sorry.. didn't mean to turn Vill/Dock's lovely gesture into a rant!! Oops.

I am supposed to choose another five people to pass this award on to, but I find this really, really difficult, so I'm going to chicken out and offer it to ALL the deserving visitors to my blog. (That means everybody who doesn't let off fireworks near any house with an animal in it.)

OK. Keep calm and carry on.

EDIT: Hmm. Now why isn't my soapbox man jumping up and down and shaking his fist? I've seen plenty of similar animated gifs working fine on other people's blogs. Can anyone tell me what I'm doing wrong, or not doing that I should?


Saturday, 24 October 2009

A Quick Share.. Fab Free Fonts..

Hi, all..

Hope you're all having a fun Saturday! :o)

Have something to share with you, but I'm probably way behind the times again ( I usually get all excited about a new find I want to share with the whole world, and then find everyone else has known about it for ages!! lol).. but - in for a penny, in for a pound -

Came across a fab free fonts site, with hundreds of really nice fonts, AND you can have your own handwriting turned into a font.. for FREE!! Don't know about you, but I think that's fantastic!

I have been drooling over the Melissa Frances rub-ons, based on the inimitable Melissa Phillips' handwritten greetings (pretty sure it's her writing), but I haven't found a comprehensive source for them on this side of the pond yet, and can't personally get anywhere near producing anything quite like it with my own handwriting, but there are some fonts on this site that would give a similar effect. (Pause for breath!) Used with Wordart, you could get some great effects.

Anyway, the site is by Kevin & Amanda HERE, and I found it through the truly wonderful Kadee Morrison's blog, HERE.


Friday, 23 October 2009

Christmas Kraft #3: Elzybells Challenge #30

This is the one I am entering for the challenge, because I think it ticks all the boxes.. Glitter.. check.. Sparkle.. check... Shine.. check!*

All the elements required to qualify for the Elzybells #30 Challenge.

* On all my Elzybells cards, you'll see the glitter more clearly if you click on the pics to enlarge the images.

Other than the brads, gems, glitter and basecard, this is another Elzybells special.

Christmas Kraft #2

The colour in the picture below is more accurate. Not entering this one into the challenge, either.

Apart from the PSX pine branch peeking out from behind the bear, and the silver thread wrap, the rest of this is pure Elzybells, from the snowflake, to the ink, to the white leather cs, the stamps and the kraft wrapping paper.

Christmas Kraft #1

I recently invested in some new stash from Elzybells. I only went there for ink.. ended up spending a small fortune!! lol ;o) Funny how that "it fell into my basket, m'lud" defence applies equally to on-line shopping, huh?

The reason I went to Elzybells for ink was because I follow Sarita's blog (one of my all-time favourite crafting heroines), and there was a discussion on there recently about finding an effective opaque white ink that works on cardstock. Clare responded with a recommendation to try Elzybells, and - OMG - this ink works like a charm. No having to to mess around with heat embossing (although I have found that the hybrid ink version benefits from a little warmth to set it on acetate). The pigment ink version is as opaque as you could ever wish on kraft or dark cardstock. I heartily recommend it.

Very pleased with my purchases, and also loving Elizabeth's (the brains behind Elzybells) blog.

... Aaanndd.. guess what? She runs a fortnightly challenge! This is new to me, but I know I'm way behind the times, as today's new challenge is number 30! Anyway, I've used my new stash to knock out a few Christmas cards this evening. (I don't have any kraft CS yet.. just ordered some today, BUT.. I used the packing Elizabeth uses in her parcels... which is pretty close to kraft paper, if you ask me! lol ;o) And don't I feel good for recycling? Hehe! ;o)

The theme was set by Elzybells DT member, Jeanne Streiff (also makes really lush cards), and is Glitter, Sparkle and Shine... WHAT were you thinking, Jeanne? THE three most difficult things to photograph, lol ;o) But I think I got away with it. Bling is the one thing that is easier to pick up when taking photos at night.

This is my first one, but not entering this one in the challenge...

Other than the main image, which is an old PSX stamp, the glitter, the gems and the main card blank, this is all Elzybells.. the kraft wrapping paper, the white leather effect card and the greeting stamp.

Very simple.. too simple, maybe?

Monday, 19 October 2009

Wedding card reveal.. at last!

Regulars may recall a sneak preview of a wedding card commission from a few weeks ago. Well, the wedding was scheduled to take place this past weekend, so I can now show you the whole thing. :o)
I have used my staple smooth white cardstock from Madaboutcards, Nesties (Labels 1), Quickutz 'Eliza' alphabet, a Cuttlebug butterfly, a hand-drawn and cut heart, Primas, waxed beading cord and miscellaneous rosebuds and pearl spray.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Lavender's blue, dilly dilly..

Anyone remember that nursery rhyme?

'Lavender's blue, dilly dilly, lavender's green.
When I am king, dilly dilly, you shall be queen'..

Isn't that sweet? That's only half of the first verse, of course.. Apparently, there are thirty! You'll be relieved to hear that I only remember the first two lines! lol ;o)

Annnnyway, this is today's creative effort.. a commission for a lady at work who's mum is on the cusp of 50.. a glorious age, in my opinion!

The brief was 'purply blue'. Think I've achieved that.

I revisited that beautiful rose spray image from Victorian Vignettes (refer to previous post to see it in its original state.. blogger is having a strop, so can't upload it again at the moment). I changed its hue to purple/blue using Photoshop Elements. Doesn't it look lovely? Found some DP which complements it perfectly, but it has become detached from a pad, so I can't recall who it's by.. HOTP, I think.

Other bits and pieces include Bazzill cardstock, Chalk Eyes inks, bit of faux stitching, Ash branch punch with glamour dust, an old clear button from my mum's button tin (it's not as yellow as it looks in the side view), and a Martha Stewart border punch.

Oh! And I typed up that wonderful poem by Jenny Joseph ~ "Warning" (you know.. 'When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple..') and used that as the text piece (also printed in full on the insert in the inside cover). (The font used for the text piece is from a CD-Rom that came inside a Lisa Bearnson book on scrapbooking.)

EDIT: By the way, I forgot to mention before that this layout was inspired by a card I saw on someone's blog recently. With apologies to the crafter in question, I would love to credit her with the inspiration, but haven't the foggiest which blog it was! If anybody recognises it, please would you let me know, so I can provide a link and let her know?

Other News

Yesterday, I called in to the Sir Stampalot shop where I knew Brenda would be demonstrating, so I could grab thirty seconds of her time and say hello. What a lovely lady she is! And - well - her cards are amazing!! I had some idea they would be from following her blog, but in real life.. my gob had never been so smacked! Just luscious!

Really nice to meet another blogger in the flesh. It was a real pleasure, and if you ever get the chance to come to Peterborough for any of her classes at Sir Stampalot, I urge you to make the trip.. She is a very talented lady, and her blog does not show how truly lovely her designs are. Seriously.

Friday, 16 October 2009

Thank You card

A thank you card for customers of my 'Handcraft Your Own Wedding Stationery' CD-Rom...

I have used a beautiful rose spray image in the background from 'Victorian Vignettes' ~ a wonderful resource for vintage images and ephemera.. Just gorgeous! I used the 'Washed out' option on the 'Picture' tab of the Formatting menu to give that lovely watermark base which is perfect for further decoration, but I can see many uses for this stunning rose image.
The sentiment tag is left unattached at one end to add some dimension and interest.

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Very engaging..

Just a little something I threw together for some friends who just got engaged..

Monday, 12 October 2009


Fairly flying visit today, as feeling under the weather with a cold. Just wanted to post a card I made on Saturday before the sniffles set in.

This started out as an idea for a commission for a 50th birthday for a lady who likes purple and gardening... but the watercolouring distressed the paper so much, it ended up too grungy to be fit for purpose, so it morphed into a general kind of 'I'm sorry' card! Not really elegant enough for a lady's 50th in my view, so will have to regroup on that one.

The extra strands under the button are scraps of leftover cord from previous cards. It works, right? I feel so virtuous for recycling! Or I would, if I had the energy right now. (sdiff.. pass me a tissue)...

The stamped image is, of course, an old one by Magenta, watercoloured with distress inks, mainly, glittered on the pot with Craft Planet glitter glue, and embellished with a Basic Grey button and miscellaneous brads and flowers. Bazzill CS and Basic Grey ‘Cupcake’ DP.


Wanted to thank the five people who responded to my appeal below for help with promoting my charity project for the Papworth Trust. They have generously posted my appeal on their blogs, and I am very grateful! You just never know where that may lead. I have already sold another CD! Yayyy! (Thank you, Debbie and Lesley, for your purchases! :o) Only 8 to go!

OK.. I am retreating back to my cosy duvet now. Goodnight.. God bless..

Friday, 9 October 2009

Wedding Stationery CD-Rom.. Update on Fundraising Sales

You may recall that I am trying to sell ten of my 'Handcraft Your Own Wedding Stationery' CD-Roms by 31st December to raise funds for Papworth Trust. (For more info, please revisit my previous post on the subject, HERE.)

Well, so far, I have sold the grand total of one CD! Didn't I do well? lol ;o) True, there is still plenty of time left before the deadline, but time has a habit of whizzing by kind of quickly. (Reminds me of that old joke.. "I love deadlines.. I love the whooshing sound they make as they rush by..." lol).

Anyway, because of my astounding success to date, I am going to ask for your help... Won't cost you a penny, I promise.. just a couple of minutes of your time...

Would you consider helping me to promote this? On your blogs and on your Facebook walls and in your groups and forums? Would you post a link to my original post?


With your help, I should be able to turn the £10 stake into £100 for the Trust.

Thank you so much in anticipation of your kindness. Mwaaahh!! :o)


Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Get Funky & Basic Grey Challenges

My old mates on the Funky Hand DT have done themselves proud with their cards for the Hallow E'en themed Get Funky challenge this month, set by Allison. I am not a fan of Hallow E'en, but can still appreciate the DT's talent! lol.. and I wanted to play along, but how? Hmmm. Well, I just went for dark colours, and I found a cat stamp I have, which I thought fitted the bill purrfectly! ;o) Pity you can't see him sparkling, though. I sprinkled Glamour Dust into the embossing powder while it was still hot, and he is lying by my keyboard, merrily twinkling at me as I type, but my camera didn't pick up the glimmer. Poo.

The Funky Hand paper I have used is from the Rock Star collection on the 'Now That's Funky' CD-Rom. I tell you, these CDs are packed full of great choices! Anice is a great designer.

Anyway, I hope this is acceptable, Allison! :o)

For the layout, I used Martine's brilliant sketch from the current Basic Grey Challenge, Week 5.

The qualifying Basic Grey item is a piece of beautiful bright orange DP from the Ambrosia collection (the 6x6 pad).

The flourish was cut using a Sizzix border die, the metal word embellishment is by Making Memories, and I'll have to tell you who made the cat stamp when I come back in the morning. My eyes are clozzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...........

EDIT: Had forgotten to put on the two little tags either side, top & bottom, so had to re-photograph this morning, and forgot to re-do the perspective view at the top of the post!!

Sunday, 4 October 2009

Carol's Sketch Fun #15 and Penny Black Saturday Challenge #69: 'Autumn Breezes'

This is for two challenges. Actually current ones! I was determined to enter something ON TIME, for once! lol

I haven't done anything on the Penny Black challenge for probably a year, and I love this season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, so it was a delight to enter their current challenge, which is:


And of course, the card layout is for Carol's Sketch Fun #15, here on the left. Great sketch! I loved using it.

I've used Penny Black's Xmouse Ornament stamp. Am loving that little mouse, and think I will get lots of use from him.. with ~ or without ~ his snowflake! ;o)

The leaf is from the PSX stamp I used for the border, watercoloured, as is the mouse, along with Distress Inks for the shading around the edges.

Bazzill cardstock, raffia, autumn leaf brads and punchies and a copper word embellishment, "Wish". The leaf is also touched with Decoart glamour dust.

Down By The Sea..

This was inspired by a DCM (Daring Card Makers) Challenge, but - as is often the case with only having limited time outside of work hours - I rarely get chance to complete a challenge on time! lol ~ Oh well. Still waiting to come up on the lottery! ;o)

I love all things nautical, so couldn't let this one slip by, and this is one of my favourite stamps, too, but rarely have the opportunity to use it.

Stamp by Stampland Chicago (great site.. loads of fantastic stamps! Go HERE to see for yourself).. plus Doodlebug rub-on lettering, Sizzix seahorse and part of a Sizzix scrolly border-type thing! And various embellishments and glamour dust.

This was one of those cards I started and hated for most of the time I was making it and almost scrapped it, but kept adding bits, and now I love it! I think the white dotty doodling was a mistake, though. Anyway, my lovelies.. hope you like it, too.

Friday, 2 October 2009

Party Mouse..

For my sister-in-law, who handed in her phd thesis at Dublin Uni last Friday, after working on it for four years. I understand there were some sore heads last Saturday morning! ;o)

How well do you know your stamps? Recognise which one this mouse is from?

EDIT: Well, Kath guessed it is a Penny Black, so that narrows it down a bit. Here are a couple more clues: Take off the doodling, change the angle and consider what might be missing from the picture? Think Christmas!

Yayyy! Well done, Leah! :o) He should indeed be hanging from a snowflake! :o) Happy Xmouse!

Bazzill CS, Doodlebug rub-on lettering, opaque white embossing powder, and star brads by Making Memories.