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Monday, 30 January 2012

Jumping for Joy! 30th January 2012

Today's card is one of my favourite stamping 'treats' - the House Mouse! I love these stamps and am building up quite a collection. I got these from Joanna Sheen's site a few weeks ago and wanted to use them to make a couple of cards for friends birthdays coming up..they are so cute!!! The stamp is from the 'Mice & Crafty' set.

This card was made on 6x6 card stock, which I covered with paper printed from the House Mouse inserts and backing papers cd-rom. I chose this one because it gives the feeling of material/sewing. 
   Using a die from the Spellbinders Edgeabilities Classic Postage Stamp set I cut the front of the card just over half-way up. I pierced around the outside of the card and across the front using my Tim Holz ruler, and created faux stitches with a white jelly roll pen - but across the front I actually stitched using pink embroidery thread.
The images were stamped and coloured with Promarkers and I cut away the jumping mouse. When Jo Channon was demonstrating these cards on Create and Craft, I briefly caught her showing a card where the mouse was jumping up and down. I only briefly saw it, thought it was a good idea and stored it in my head to decide how I was going to create a similar effect!

I attached the pin cushion to the front of the card with sticky pads so give it some depth, stamped the greeting and cut it with shaped scissors (I thought this would also add the the theme of sewing - my mum had some scissors that cut like this in her sewing box!)
I added a narrow ribbon across the front and  let it run off each side - just because I liked it that way - and added the sentiment, again with sticky pads. I also added Spun Sugar distress ink to the edges of the card, but it doesn't show in the photo at all.

The jumping mouse was created by sticking a narrow strip of thick acetate to the back.
The inside of the card is covered in exactly the same paper as the outside, so I die cut an inner to match the front and stuck it down leaving a channel to feed the acetate into- so that the mouse can be moved up and down at will!

I also photographed the inside of the card to show you the greeting. I typed this and cut it with the Spellbinders Lacey Ovals die...I really like this die, but it's one of the hardest to remove the paper/card from without tearing! Finally I added one more little mouse in a thimble and three little buttons from stash in the top corner.

Love these little guys!
Carole X

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Vintage Aloysius - Sunday 29th January 2012


Today I am sharing the first of the 'projects' I made this week, when I decided to use my day off work, as also a day off from commissions and have a 'play' with some new stamps...

I just got this stamp from Indigo Blu and I think he is so cute! He is based on the teddy with the same name from Brideshead Revisited and he really has that 'antique' and much loved old teddy look about him. In fact he reminds me of my old teddy, who has been with me since my first Christmas and has the very boring name of Ted!! I digress...

I stamped him with black archival ink and coloured him lightly with tea dye distress ink, using a brush and tiny drop of water. I wanted it to retain the 'shabby' look and because the shadow areas are so heavy and the stamp is such good quality, it's easy to achieve with this image. Next I die cut it using the largest of the Spellbinders Labels Four Small dies and distressed the edge using a mixture of distress inks" antique linen and tea dye. Because I needed a slightly larger die of the same shape to frame it, I cut a faux die from the Spellbinder using some light brown card from stash and I distressed the edge in with the same mix of colours.

To follow through with the antique feel, I covered the base of the card with some scrap booking paper I had in my stash. It was another one of those 12x12 sheets that I really loved, but had never found the right use for. The colour is gorgeous but more than that, it also has a lovely feel to it - a slightly raised effect,almost giving it the feel of linen. Only another crafter will know what I mean by the feel of paper!

I gave it a lace border, again for the vintage look and then I used Vintage Ribbon in a lovely choclatey( if that's a real word!) brown across the top. I added a bow, tied with the ribbon and a wooden heart button from stash to finish it off.

No greeting, I wanted to leave the 'occasion' open to choice...used in different ways this stamp has so many possibilities...male or female, adult or child and I think I will try a baby card could add a blue or pink bow to make the bear in to a boy or girl!

Carole x

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Birthday Roses

Well the good news is I finally sorted out the 'add a button' issue..persistence pays off!

When I make cards for commissions, I ask for some ideas about what the recipient likes; some are more specific than others and I have to say sometimes I'm tempted to say 'if you want that kind of card, you need Moonpig or similar (ouch!) not me', but  I usually grin and bear it and do my best (I've only refused a couple and maybe I should refuse more?).

However, sometimes I get requests that allow me to really create a card that is a proper handcrafted design and a joy to make...yesterday's Vintage design was a good example, in fact most of the cards I upload here are.... and so is today's Birthday Roses...

I wasn't sure about the colours when I started out with this card, but green was one of the recipients likes and along with the roses was my starting point...and as the card progressed, I really liked it.

The base green was from 'Matchmakers' Brights 12x12 textured card. The colours in this pad are gorgeous and have been really useful. I bought it some time ago in my local 'craft heaven' Out of the Blue (Chipping Sodbury) and I use it very often, so couldn't understand why it seems to be everlasting...and then I twigged! I don't use it in my Cricut because it has a white core. Card with a white core will dull the blade more quickly and quite often will tear as it cuts. 

Anyone reading this and just starting out in card making please don't think that 12x12 is just for scrap booking! It is very cost effective for us card makers, you get much more out of it than A4!

Back to the card...The dark green card was from the same pad and the rose patterned paper was from my scrapbook stash.It's gorgeous and had been patiently waiting for a card just like this one. I added pearl dots all around the dark green card using Olympia Gold Cosmic Shimmer and then die cut the heart squares using the Spellbinders die of the same name, using the darker green card and a pale yellow from the same pad.

I confess that the design using this die isn't original, I first saw it demonstrated on a card made by Sue Wilson(Particraft) and loved it. The great thing with Spellbinders is playing around with intertwining the dies and using them to compliment each other. 

The roses were my favourite aspect of this card...I made them from a cream felt using the Spellbinders Spiral Blossom One die. This die is a joy to use with paper, material and especially felt. The end result is a rose that both looks and feels gorgeous. I added some leaves from a pre-cut pack by Creative Expressions. To balance the card I finished off with a flourish in the top left corner, using Cosmic Shimmer Pearl PVA.

What do you think?
Carole X

Friday, 27 January 2012

Vintage Birthday - January 27th 2012


I have  a confession...on Wednesday I rebelled and did my own thing! I  work part time and am generally guaranteed one full card-making/crafting day a week (2 with careful time management, which I'm not good at). On Wednesday, I sat at my desk in my craft room with a pile of commissions and no inspiration. On the edge of my desk were some stamps I had recently acquired and not yet got to use...guess which pile won!

What a great day I had and over the next few days I will share with you the fruits of my day..but today, as promised I am going to share with you the card I made with the Vintage Label that is on a post from last week. Tomorrow I will post a birthday card I made at the same time. Both were commissions and I hope the recipients were pleased with them! They were my style of cards, the kind of styles I love making.

Today I also just bought tickets for the scrapbook and stamping show at Alexandra Palace in April...I've been to the NEC shows many times, but never this one so am really looking forward it - and besides - it's a good excuse for a weekend in London!

Glam Vintage 50's

For this card I matted and layered an 8x8 card blank with plum coloured card from my 12x12 scrapbook stash, Matchmakers Brights. I decided that I wanted stitching in a complementing colour, so faux stitching wouldn't work...but no matter, I actually enjoy sewing by hand around the edge and it's so much quicker when you have already pre-scored the tiny holes using Tim Holz's amazing ruler!

The cream polka dot paper was printed from MyCraft Studio Fab Glam 50's and I distressed the edge using Antique Linen ink.

 I then cut the tag using Spellbinders Labels One small and then made a larger faux nestie using some glittery paper from an 8x8 double sided pad called 'Desert Blooms'. All the papers are gorgeous and I bought it in Hobbycraft with some of my Christmas tokens! 
Please take a look at my previous post for full details of the how I made the tag.
The '40' was cut with my Cricut (Storybook) - I don't know where I would be without this little machine for cutting numbers and letters alone! The greetings label was cut using the gorgeous Spellbinders 'Fancy Tags 3' and again distressed with Antique Linen. The sunglasses were also from MyCraft Studio. The ribbon is vintage and the button is from my button jar and I actually think it is from some 50's garment of my Mum's!

Please bear with me..I'm still pretty new to blogging and usually very good with computers but blogger seems to have got the better of me when in the attempt to add some buttons from other blogs I follow, I upgraded to new blogger and still can't add the buttons or make my post look as I want...hey-ho...if you're a blogger and have some tips, feel free to pass them on!
  That's all for today...hope you like it!
Carole X

I had a lovely comment about this card except that 40 shouldn't be about Vintage...fear not, I totally agree! The card was about the birthday girl really being into everything Vintage, including 50's fashion...but point taken and I should have made this clear! X

Saturday, 21 January 2012

January 21st 2012

January 21st

Good afternoon bloggers, hope this chilly January day is finding you all well! For those of you who have visited before, as you will see, I have been having a bit of a play around with my blog! I'm still very new to this and it will take a while before I get it as I want it, but for a start I thought some winter blue for seasonal touch.Hope you like it! 

 I am also going to start a new post each time so that you don't have to plough through a whole month to see my latest post. I just wish it would load from the newest down instead of the other way...less of the tech talk and back to crafting...

 I have had a mixed week of started last weekend making two cards for orders that were really 'up my street' and that I had so much enjoyment making, followed by one that was not my kind of card but was still fun and two more that...I really tried to enjoy making! But that's what happens when you take commissions and whatever I'm asked to make I see as a new challenge and make the best card possible. What I am insisting on for the new year is that I only use the tools I craft cds (of which there are many), my little baby cricut, my Grand Calibur, dies, stamps and inks...there should be plenty there. It's why I try and encourage anyone ordering a card from me to look at this blog and get a feel for what kind of cards I make.

Some good news...I was recently successful in one of the 'card candy draws' on Sue Wilson's blog! I have chosen a stamp and have gone for something 'Steampunk' as I really have to give this a try (and add my own style to it!) watch out from when I get the stamps some time next month!

It was really good to see Christine Emberson back on Create and Craft this week too...if you love crafting and especially Spellbinders, you should check out her blog, Hope and Chances for some super projects. Christine is the only UK member of the official Spellbinders Design Team  and if you see her work, you can see why she was chosen. If you haven't looked at Sue Wilson's Particraft blog, I really recommend it too. Click to them both from my blog follows.

I will post the full card for the Vintage Tag that I posted last time, but it was for a commission so I am going to wait a few more days until after the recipient has had her birthday 'just in case'. All I can say is that I hope the recipient likes it as much as I enjoyed making definitely a card that was a joy to craft!

Also, at the moment I am having a lot of trouble getting photos photos are showing in iPhoto but when I try and upload them they aren't where they should be! It's never happened before and I have no idea why it's happening now, but it's very very annoying! Apple what are you doing to me?!!!

Skating on Ice: 
Today's card is a bit of fun! I really enjoyed making it for a winter birthday.
Although it doesn't show in the photo (dam having to use flash!), I slightly distressed the edge of the white card with Spun Sugar distress ink. I stamped the image, from The Gruffies 'Dancing Queen' stamp set (by Ellen Jareckie, the same artist who gives us the wonderful House Mouse designs) and coloured it with Flex-markers and Promarkers. I then die-cut it using Grand Scalloped Rectangles, shading the edges with Spun Sugar. I used the same die on plain pink card and positioned them both at an angle. I tied a stripey bow in the corner, finishing off with a sentiment from my stash. Simple and a bit of fun!

Thank you to those of you who leave comments...and to my friends who do so on facebook as well...much appreciated!
Carole xx

Friday, 6 January 2012

January 2012

Hello Bloggers! I hope it's not too late to wish you a Happy New Year! Despite all my plans to make lots of cards in the 2 week post Christmas break I have had from work, I only finally got around to making some on Tuesday! That also happens to coincide with the day that my husband Tom went back to work. Even then, it wasn't a chance to play with new Spellbinder dies and some stamps because I had some orders to fulfill. Oh well, it was still card making and I did manage to incorporate some of my new items!

On Wednesday, I managed to make some stock cards - I have been asked for more wedding, plus acceptance and regret so those are what I have been mostly making, so I will share an example with you...

Firstly however, one of a series of different cards I have made using this really cute stamp that was free with Craft Stamper Magazine that I bought before Christmas. You may know that we keep a few hens as pets and I love these funny little creatures, so if I see something with hens on, I want it!

Cock-a-doodle-doo!I stamped the image with Memento Ink and coloured it with Promarkers. I then cut the image out using a Spellbinders Labels Four  Small die and mounted it on a 6x6 card that I had covered with Polkadot paper from stash. I faux stitched around the edge of the card using my Tim Holz ruler and a white Gelly Roll pen. I cut the flower in felt on my Grand Calibur using the Flowe Creations die. This was one of my Christmas presents and it is really useful. I then added a red button, threaded with Bakers Twine. Across the top I took some red vintage ribbon and ruched it.  A really simple card and I hope you like's good for a whole number of occasions really or just to say 'hello'.

Darn these dark days when you have to use flash to take a photo and you still get apologies for this photo.

White Wedding For this one I used a Creative Expressions mask and used it to emboss in the Grand Calibur. It's hard to see, but I have added Cosmic Shimmer Pearl PVA dots, using the embossed card to form the pattern. I then simply typed  the greeting and cut it out using the  heart circles die, which I cut in 2 sizes and again added cosmic shimmer pearls at intervals. I used to be really scared to use this effect, but practice much more confident!

That's all for now, I'll be back soon, 
Carole x

January 14th

I have two pieces of work to add tonight and what a struggle it's been uploading them! For some reason when I try and upload from iPhoto today, blogger isn't recognising my last imported photos...I had to go the long way round through my files and I still haven't found the one I really wanted to upload...oh well...maybe tomorrow!

Lola Rose 18th This is a  fun 18th Birthday created on an 8x8 card blank. I mounted a pink textured card on the front and cut the '18' with my Cricut in the same pink, with a white shadow. Using Spellbinders Grand Scalloped Rectangles, I cut one in pink glitter and one in white and I shaded the white card with Spun Sugar distress ink.

The image is a Pink Petticoat, Lola Rose digital stamp, coloured with Promarkers and finished with Cosmic Shimmer 'Cosmic Twinkles' on the cake icing. I cut out the image and used sticky fixers to secure it to the die cut shape.

I typed the greeting and cut it out with a Spellbinders Lacey Ovals die, which was also distressed on the edges with Spun Sugar. The card was finished off with ribbon tied through the sentiment and around the number.

Vintage Tag
This tag is part of an as yet unfinished card project, but it took so long to make that I wanted to share it with you.

I cut the shape on Chipboard (it's Spellbinders Labels One Small). It was just a little too thick for my Grand Calibur, so I actually drew the shape from the die and cut it out. I then printed some dressmakers dummy backing paper from the My Craft Studio (MCS) Fabulous Fifties programme and covered the shape with it, distressing the edges quite heavily with Tea Dye distress ink. I punched a metallic eyelet through the top centre and threaded off-white vintage ribbon through, tying it in a bow. On top of this I added a button from stash, tied with a little string bow.

The fifties dress is an image printed from the same MCS programme and although it doesn't show in the photo, the skirt is decoupaged to add a little dimension.

I used brown vintage ribbon along the bottom part of the shape,ruching it to add more dimension. Finally the flower.. I was really pleased with the flower!

Now and then, rummaging in secondhand book shops/charity shops I will buy a cheap, old book with thin paper for the pages. After making sure that I am not destroying a priceless first edition (:D), I use the pages to make vintage flowers.  I cut this one using the Spellbinders Flower Creations die and before constructing the flower, I added Tea Dye distress ink unevenly over the petals. I used five layers for this one (and the added bonus is that with thin paper you can die cut quite a few in one go) and put a glittery metallic brad through the centre to hold them together. I used a bone folder to curl the petals, but with paper this thin they almost curl themselves. I finished it off with thin silk ribbon behind the flower and added some little faux pearls.

It's not often that I get the chance to work on a card like this and I haven't made a tag for a long time.. note for 2012..more tags...maybe I'll get a chance to start those ATC cards yet!
That's it for tonight...hope you like them,
Carole xx