Saturday, 29 August 2009

Roses. Again.

Aaaarrrggghhh!!! (gnash, gnash, gnash.. teeth, that is!) I am getting towards the end of my long list of cards I had to make, and I wanted to get to this challenge before it ended, but I missed it.. AGAIN! I ask you! (sigh) Oh well.

Anyways... this is for LAST week's Allsorts Challenge, No. 15, which is a fab sketch by Jules, with a twist, as you're s'posed to include some tearing somewhere on the design.

This is my take on it.. Roses. Again.

Gorgeous DP by K&Co. (Bailey). Sentiment is computer-generated in the Cezanne font. (The rosebud stems aren't really that long... I sacrificed some stems from other roses to extend them.)

Friday, 28 August 2009

I'm late, I'm late, for a very important date!

Well.. a fairly important date, anyway! It's for a sketch that's past its sell by date, though, unfortunately, so I've missed my chance at the prize, but the sketch called to me, so I had to do it! It's for Carol's Sketch Fun #11 (HERE)...>>>

I upended the oval, but apart from that, it's true to the sketch...

Not sure where the DP is from.. I think it may be from a HOTP wedding book, but the sheet had become detached. Pretty blue roses, though, eh?

Liberal use of Cuttlebug embossing folders on the white CS (Divine Swirls and Swiss Dots), a long Sizzix border swirl, cut from dark blue Bazzill, with Martha Stewart punched butterflies, waxed cotton cord, dew drops and pretty rosebuds for a touch of contrast colour.

The ovals were cut by hand.

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Calling all eco-queens...

Stamped images that have to be coloured in rarely make it onto my cards because I am so rubbish with a paintbrush/marker pen! But having lost both breasts to cancer (and having a sense of humour about it), I have wanted to do something with this image for YONKS! But didn't have the stamp. I mentioned this in a comment on someone's blog a while ago, and before I could blink, an envelope plopped through my letterbox containing some lovely stamped images!! How lovely!! :o)

Would love to give credit to this person, but my thanks have to remain private at the request of the person concerned who prefers to be anonymous. She knows I am grateful. :o)

I hope you like the card.. I think it's perfect for anyone undergoing a mastectomy, or even breast augmentation (minus the breast cancer ribbon, of course!) Feel free to copy it (for personal use) if you know someone who is facing that kind of trial and could do with sending a smile. (Click on the pic below for a larger image if you struggle ~ like me! ~ to read the writing.)

BG Euphoria paper again, and the image is, I believe, Penny Black.

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Totally cased!! ;o)

Yesterday, one of my colleagues announced that her boyfriend had proposed on Saturday. Initially, she kept it to herself, but I spotted the stunning multi-carat diamond ring and coupled with the unusually bouncy, friendly mood, put two-and-two together, so the cat was out of the bag! So.. needed a quick card last night.

One of my favourite artists (and I use that term deliberately, as her work is stunning and way beyond my reach) is Paula (Bettyboo). Just recently, she posted a series of cards with pure white space around the focal point, which I love, so I used the inspiration from one of those (the one with the butterfly, HERE)...

Paula kindly gave me permission to post my take on her card....
The DP is Basic Grey Euphoria, glued to card and raised on pads. The names are computer-generated, and also raised.

I would thoroughly recommend visiting Paula's blog if you get the chance. You won't regret it!

Hugs,


Sunday, 23 August 2009

It's a hat trick! :o)

Hey hey! You can tell I'm really getting back into this challenge business... this card achieves three purposes...

Firstly, it achieves my long-held objective of joining in with Carol's Sketch Fun (HERE). This is a wonderful sketch (Sketch #12), and just perfect for the use I will put this card to (and sorry it's taken me so long to get with the programme, Carol! xx)...
Secondly, I wanted it also to meet the Colour Challenge for the Basic Grey Challenge #2 (HERE).. Errr... Brown (check), yellow (there is a patch of yellow behind the circle.. honest! You can just see it peeking out).. and - well - pink. (Does the circle not look like deep salmon pink to you? In a darkened room? If you squint a bit? lol ;o)

... And the third purpose (and most important, really) is a thank you for a chap at work. George - knowing my love of papercraft - gave me a beautiful present on Thursday.. a gorgeous heavyweight leather-bound album with leather thong wraps, made in India, and the lovely ivory linen-like texture paper inside is made from recycled cotton remnants from their garment industry. Each sheet has a fine glassine page protector in between. It's gorgeous!! Not sure what I did to deserve it, but it's lovely, and it's always great getting presents! :o)
(George is the one with the web design service that I posted about a little bit ago.. Shed 21. See link on my sidebar.)
And no.. before you start adding two and two.. he is a married man!! lol ;o)
Card Recipé
White cs from Madaboutcards.com
Black Bazzill
3 pieces of DP from the BG Ambrosia 6 x 6 pad
Inkadinkado 97632 Sketchy Flourishes stamp + Onyx Black Versafine
Dark Brown Chalk Eyes for edges
Waxed cotton thread
Making Memories mini square gold brads
Sentiment computer-generated

I am a Kreativ Blogger.. apparently! ;o)

This is such a pretty award, don't you think? I am very much into damasks right now (but still waiting to get my hands on some stash to feed that obsession!), so anyway.. I luuuurrvvee this one! Thanks go to Lorraine (Crafty Coo) for bestowing this delight on me this time! Bless you, O Talented One! (Lorraine's Blogland abode is HERE. She's a really lovely lady.. Go say hello! :o)

There are rules, as usual, and here they are...

1. Thank the person who presented this award. (Thank you, Lorraine!)
2. Copy the logo & place it on your blog. (Done.)
3. Link the person who nominated you for this blog. (Done.)
4. Name 7 things about yourself that people may find interesting. (Yikes! I'll try.)
5. Nominate 7 Creative Bloggers. (Now this is the part I find difficult... not finding them.. there are soooo many! But narrowing it down!)
6. Post links to the seven blogs you nominate.
7. Leave comments on all 7 blogs letting them know you have nominated them. (Forgive me, but I'm going to opt out of rules five, six and seven, rebel without a clue that I am, and just invite anyone who has taken the time to visit my blog to snag this if you fancy it.)

7 "Interesting" Facts about me... (cough)

1. I am a Christian. Personally, I think that's the most interesting thing there could ever be about anyone, but I know that others may have a different view! lol ;o)

2. I have a beautiful daughter who will be 29 on Thursday. Watching her develop into the young woman she is and encounter the obstacles in life we all have to overcome has been the most fascinating and frustrating... delightful and tormenting... on-going journey in my life!

3. My father was in the RAF and we moved around a great deal as I was growing up. Born in Germany, lived two years in Holland, lived two years in Aden in the middle East, lived three years in Morayshire in Scotland, and lots of places around England.

4. I spent around 20 years of my career as a sales rep in the software industry, selling software packages worth millions of pounds to the top companies in the UK across all sectors, until I got tired of the hours and the miles.

5. As a child, for a while, we lived in Surrey, and my dad signed me up for ice-skating lessons at Richmond where Arnold Gershweiler and Betty Calloway were senior instructors. We were there every Saturday morning at 8.00am for lessons before it opened for general skating. When I completed my course, I received a certificate of skating proficiency signed by Betty Calloway, who went on to be Torvill & Dean's coach in their heyday.

6. I got a B in my Art 'O' level!

7. I have had breast cancer on both sides (diagnoses in 2001 and 2008), had a double mastectomy and am cancer-free 18 mths after the op. Very happy to talk about it if ever anyone wants to ask me about it.

Flippin' 'eck! That was HAAAARD!! I hope I haven't bored you to tears, and those who've known me a little while will already know some of those things, but it's tough trying to think up new material when you haven't led a particularly interesting life!

But although it's not been a thrilling rollercoaster, I am happy, and I am grateful for it all. (OK.. you can reach for that bucket now! ;o)

Friday, 21 August 2009

... And now for something completely different!

My daughter (bless her cotton socks) sent me pics of the kind of jewellery she wears nowadays, so I could make her a necklace to go with it. Trouble is, it's all metal spirals.... hippy stylee. Eeeek!! Now, I might have had a stab at it if I were the kind of artist who creates using a blowtorch, but I'm not! I can whip up some very pretty swarovski beaded bracelets with the best of them.. but HIPPY??? Yikes!!

"I'll leave it with you, mum. I know you'll come up with something."

Sheesh. Yep. OK. Thanks for your confidence in me, sweets!

So.. the brief is 'hippy' and 'purple'.

This is what I came up with, using waxed beading cord, a button and some beads..

Meant to be worn at choker-length, it works by pushing the tail end through a loop at the back of the heart, and tying it in a loose knot with the beaded end, which is tucked behind the button. The free tail showing is part of the 'hippy' design. (Could also be wound around the wrist twice and worn as a bracelet instead of as a necklace.)

What do you think?

Hugs,

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Calling all Pebo hunnies!!!

Many of you will know our beautiful and very talented Debbie from Pink Poppy Craftbox, HERE, but did you know that she has started a new journey? Debbie has joined Stamping Up! as a demonstrator, and is looking for enough people in the Peterborough area to come to her first workshop.

Well, as a Peterborough lass myself, I'm there... but are there any more out there who are close enough to be able to come? Knowing Debbie, her sense of style and her attention to detail, it would be a lovely evening, with lots of inspiration!

For more info, and to see the examples Debbie has made so far, you can go to her new blog, especially for her Stamping Up! career.... 'A Few Stamps More'. (Clever title, isn't it?)

Hope to see you there!

Friday, 14 August 2009

Basic Grey Challenge #1/37 ~ Sketch by Tara

This is my entry for the new phoenix-like Basic Grey Challenges blog. Welcome back, chaps! :o)

My entry just came together so easily.. just kind of 'flowed' naturally. I attribute that to the wonderful sketch by Tara.. Simply fab! How can you go wrong? I flipped it, only because that orientation appeals more to my 'comfort zone'.

I used three papers from the Basic Grey Euphoria collection, two Cuttlebug folders ~ Fantasy Flower and Swiss Dots, and a Hero Arts stamp, along with floral embellishments, mainly from Prima, plus gems, cord and a lovely embossed metal corner.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

That's better!! :o)

Now it's just the photography that's awful! lol.. But then, the light is going and - well - there's just no pleasing some people!! ;o) But I feel tons better having removed the button and the journalling spot. I managed to prize them off without damaging the card. I had to risk it, as I couldn't ask someone to pay for a card I wasn't happy with. Now I am.
(If you missed the previous post and you're wondering what I'm whittering on about, scroll down to see the 'before' pictures! Ohh, the shame!)

Less is more. Orrrr, well.. maybe not.

Hmmm. A commissioned card, but one of those when what's in your head doesn't translate onto paper! I wasn't happy, but couldn't take anything away. There are parts of it I like, but kept adding in the hopes it might grow on me. It didn't. (sigh) Not a satisfying experience. What do you think? Be honest.

Bazzill cardstock frame, Quickutz alphabet, Cuttlebug Swiss Dots embossing, Prima flowers, Basic Grey button, a Stempelglede flower (from the 'Grunge Collection'), Fontwerks dotty circle stamp, Martha Stewart punched butterflies and homegrown sentiment/journalling spot.

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

A new slant on 'going Dutch'! ;o)

I have a new blog buddy in Holland... Lean... and she has very kindly bestowed on me this cute award! :o) Isn't it sweet?

What I haven't yet shared with Lean is that I lived the first two years of my life in Holland! I was born across the border in an RAF Hospital at Wegberg in Germany, but was only there a few days, though, as my parents were living in Eindhoven. I had a Dutch babysitter, and by the time I was two, I could speak as much Dutch as I could English.. not that that was very much! lol ;o) And I don't remember any, sadly.

Anywho, I am supposed to choose ten friends to pass it on to. I have only just passed on two awards in the past few days, so I am going to sit on this one for a while for delayed gratification! lol.. But if you are visiting my blog and enjoying it, please feel free to snag it for your blog, and thank you for visiting! (And thank you for the award, Lean!)

Hugs,

Ohh, lookie here! Am I blessed, or what? :o)

Yesterday, I was bowled over to see on Lorraine (Crafty Coo)'s blog that I had won the second in her series of blog candy giveaways! Woohoo!! And she doesn't hang around, that girl... They arrived TODAY!! I am hugely impressed.. You get so much in a pack!! And they're beautiful! Funny how they go perfectly with the 6"x6" pad of 'My Mind's Eye' Bllom & Grow paper I bought from Lorraine's Ebay shop last week! Spooky co-incidence.. it was obviously meant to be! (Take a gander at these beauties in Lorraine's shop.. fab value at £2.99!)

BUT... nayy, I tell you.. that's not all! Have a butcher's at this lovely card that arrived in the package! It's a pity the photo doesn't do it justice, as it's a beautifully decoupaged card.. very professionally done. I am - or wasn't - a big fan of decoupage, but I think I may be a convert, as this really is superb.. as well as darned cute! Thanks very much, Lorraine.. I love it! :o)


Don't forget to check out Lorraine's blog candy.. There are still plenty of chances to join in! :o)

Hugs,

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

My sheepdogs (for Lean)...

We-ell.. not my sheepdogs, exactly, but they're family, and I love them all the same, and see them often.. Two of them (Abby & Ben) belong to my sister, and the other (Emma) is my mum's, but she and I have an understanding and have deep, meaningful conversations when I see her every Saturday. Me and Emma, that is.. not mum. Although we do, too. Ohh, you KNOW what I mean!!

Emma (above)... Ben (below).. Not pure sheepdog, as you can tell.. Touch of Heinz 57 here..
Now get ready for the 'ahhhh' quotient... This is Abby at 49 days old...

Another one of Em (below)...

Anyone else got border collies? (Or any other kind of dog!) Show us yer pics! Leave a link here to your blog so people can find you. I'll think up some kind of little prize and draw from the links offered in a week... 6.00pm on 11th August.

Birthday card for my Girl..

This is my card this year for Karen, my beautiful daughter. I will be going to visit her this weekend. Not her birthday until later in the month, but she'll be away in Ireland, visiting my brother and his wife, who is doing her PhD at Dublin Uni.

You really wanted to know all that, didn't you? lol ;o)

Any road up, this is not the usual kind of card I make for Karen.. They're usually OTT blingy and uber pretty, but I think she'll like it anyway. It was inspired by a stash accident.. Was tidying up the largest storage facility in my craft room (a.k.a. "The Floor"), and found this flower, haphazardly positioned with a stalk of green leaves, and these papers laying on each other, and I thought, "Ooh!" I thought.. "That looks nice!" So this is a version of how they were!

I have used...

  • Smooth white CS from Madaboutcards.com (my favourite basic CS), trimmed to 6" x 6"
  • Black Bazzill CS
  • Dotty paper from Funky Hand (Salt & Pepper)
  • Scraps of damask paper from Basic Grey
  • Computer-generated sentiment (Cezanne font)
  • Prima flower
  • Gorgeous rosebud (from a RAK from Lorraine, Crafty Coo! Mwaaaah!!)
  • Green leaves from a garland
  • Waxed cotton beading cord
  • Stempelglede border from the 'Grunge Collection'
  • Dark brown Chalk Eyes & Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink

.. And, finally.. This is the young lady this card was made for... My greatest creative endeavour... (I did have some help, though, and I can't claim credit for the design... lol!!)

Hugs,

Chris xx

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Irresistible Blog Candy No. 2!

I have never NOT wanted to post a blog candy notice so much before! I mean, we all have a selfish streak in us somewhere, right? And I definitely do NOT want to share opportunities to win this candy with anyone!! It's just too, too precious.

(sigh) So that's it. I have decided I am NOT going to tell you to go to Sarita's blog before the 15th August to enter. So there.

My first blog candy posting since...


... before my blogging break. Suffice to say, it's been a while. But I couldn't resist the opportunity to be in the running for these little beauties!

This tempting candy is being offered by Leanne to celebrate her move to Dubai, and you can enter (if you must.. sigh) by going to Leanne's blog HERE.

No rush. You have until 1st September.

Getting Funky.. Not for the first time! :o)

Ohhhh, boy, I enjoyed this!! This is my entry for the first 'Get Funky' challenge, and as an ex-Funky Hand DT member, it felt soooo comfortable and warmly familiar.. like coming home and seeing an old friend. What a delight! I'm still smiling. :o)
Anice, Funky Hand's creator, posed the first challenge.. a sketch. Great fun, too! We were allowed to play with it, as long as it still looked something like the sketch at the end. I prefer portrait cards to landscape (they stand up better! lol ;o), so I stood the oval up on end, and other than adding in my (new) signature floral/butterfly motif, I think the pattern is recognisable.

I used two papers from the Funky Little Christmas download, and a flower motif from the Shabby Saturday download. There's a fair amount of distressing and faux stitching goin' on. Hope you like it!
As for the rest, I don't have any oval nesties, so I improvised using MS Autoshapes to get the ovals, and handcut the scallops with fancy-edged scissors. I discovered I liked the slight offsetting of the ovals which left room for the gems.
I have to thank talented and Funky Hand DT member, Ruth, for her inspiration for the letters, as you'll see in her DT sample for the challenge, here >>>>>
Mine are from a Quickutz alphabet. Can't recall which one off-hand, and the craft room is downstairs. If you'd like to know which one, leave me a comment and I'll get off my big lazy backside and go and look! ;o)
The 'happy birthday' is computer-generated in the Cezanne font. Butterfly is Martha Stewart.
I think that's it. For now. Had my fun for the day. Better get on with some housework now. :o(
Enjoy the challenge!! :o)
Hugs,