Xmas 2015


I hope you enjoy reading this blog and find inspiration and ideas from what you have seen here but I would ask you to please respect my copyright and not use my pictures for publishing as your own work, or for entry into challenges.

Monday, 30 November 2015

Challenge 153 - Crafty Cardmakers & More - Twas the Night...

Lin is hosting our challenge this time, and her theme is 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. She would love to see your creations that depict one of the lines from the poem.  If you need to be reaquainted with the words, they are set out in full on the challenge website Crafty Cardmakers & More.

 Most crafters will recognise that they have a cycle of favoured techniques... I have always liked stamping and inking and just lately my preference has been for doing that again.

My mum was always the "scene builder" of the two of us, and for some time after she died I just shied away from doing it because it brought back memories of when we stamped together.  But it's almost 4 years now since I lost her, and I've been tentatively "having a go" again.

My base card is my favoured 6 x 6 inch square, onto which I layered a black and white polka dot mat.  I used a square of Sheena Douglass stamping card for my topper and started by masking off the moon with a mask I cut myself and  created hillsides with a clarity mask. (Ink colours were denim blue, chipped sapphire, shaded lilac, Iced Spruce and Soot black and a touch of Brushed Corduroy to tint the roof of each house)

I used Hobby Arts Country scenes stamps to make my village scene - it had the really useful fencelines and small trees!  The Santa and moon stamp was from a set I got free with a magazine, as did the Twas the night before Christmas words that I stamped and embossed with silver fine detail powder.  You can just about read the words - unfortunately it's not come out too clear in the photo...

Lastly, I went over various parts with my wink of stella pen (the moon, the snow) and added a touch of glitter to the trees using a quickie glue pen and some glamour dust.

Now I'm in the mood, I think I will do some more toppers for the remaining Christmas cards I have to make.  Such fun! 

Monday, 16 November 2015

Challenge 152 Winter Birthday - Crafty Cardmakers & More

I am sure we all know some poor soul who has a Winter, or even worse a Christmas Birthday - our Design Team Leader Lin's is 27th December and my late mum's was the 19th! 

So for our challenge this time we want to see your Winter Birthday creations.

Josephine is hosting this one and will get to choose our Winner/Top 5.


I've been venturing back to distress ink backgrounds recently, so I decided to make mine a wintery sunset/sunrise scene, where the sun is pinkish rather than the luscious yellow of summer.

First thing I did was to shade the background of a square piece of stamping card, because my stamp (woodware) is a silhouette.  If you stamp the trees first, there is the chance you can smudge the image during the blending process, and also muddy the effect.

So using a mask, I made the hilly bits at the bottom, then used the same colours to make the top of the sky.  In the middle of the two I blended in two shades of pink - a deeper round area in the middle.  Having done that - I stamped over the top and using a quickie glue pen, added some glitter to my tree branches.

The card base is my favourite 6 x 6 - and I ran the front part of  it through the cut n boss in a creative expressions embossing folder.  Onto this I layered a pink dotty background paper onto which I placed my coloured image.  

It looked a bit flat - so I decided to make it a shaker!  I cut another piece of card the same size as my topper image, and cut the centre out to make a frame using a tonic square die.  After running this through the cut n boss in the same embossing folder previously used,  I backed the frame with acetate (using red liner tape to keep the acetate in place) and then edged the topper image with foam shaker tape.  In the centre of the image I placed a few small scoops of micro beads and after peeling off the shaker tape backing, stuck the frame firmly on top.  

With hindsight, I could have put more beads in there...

To finish my card, I added the sentiment in the top right hand corner.

Saturday, 7 November 2015

So many people leaving... memory books

It's been big changes all round where I work recently, with fair number of people being made redundant.

This month, for a change, we had a number of people leaving because they had other jobs!

My contribution to the farewells was to make a memory book for each of them, to remember their time with us.

 The process for the first one was the same for the covers (greyboard covered with a paper created using serif) but I decided to use my cinch to bind it.  Which was a good idea if I had planned it properly, but I made it incredibly hard for myself because I didn't!

I got a reasonable effect by the skin of my teeth - but it took much effort and I decided not to do that with the last two...
Instead, I used my trusty cropodile and punched two holes and then used book rings!  The effect was pretty much the same and saved me from grinding my teeth right down!

Each of the books had the recipients name on it - you can't really see it in the last one, as the diecut letters were on the panel, white on white.  It looked really effective in real life!  Unfortunately, the photo doesn't totally show it.  Inside was a number of card inserts, onto which I stuck the small cards I had given everyone to write their messages onto, and the photographs we had of people the recipient worked with, and anything relative to their job.

Et voilá !  A lovely keepsake.

What you would need to make one yourself:
  • Two pieces of greyboard cut to size.
  • Two pieces of covering paper, slightly larger, say 1.5 cm or just over half an inch all round.
  • Two pieces of lining paper, slightly smaller than the covered greyboard. 
  • Number of cards cut to size to fit inside the covers (as many as you like)
  • Two Book rings
  1. I covered the greyboard in the cover paper, sticking it down on the inside of the cover with red liner tape.
  2. Then, I stuck the liner paper onto each inside cover.
  3. Using the cropodile, I marked each cover 1 inch in from the long edge each side and cut two holes in  line with the mark (around 1.5 cm in from the short edge).
  4. I then cut corresponding holes in all the insert cards.
  5. I put the covers  (innerside faceing) around the insert cards and put the bookrings through the hole.
  6. And then was the fun bit - I decorated the cover.
  7.  I created a box for each of the books using stiff card - I thought it looked better for presentation purposes - but you could put it in a pretty bag, or cover it with tissue.