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Saturday, 6 October 2012

Birthday Girls - Saturday 6th October

Good Morning my lovely blog friends...another weekend is here, wonderful!

Thank you for all your comments on my Steampunk Robin card, I loved reading them all - Steampunk certainly divides us crafters doesn't it? I like it because it is basically masculine, but can be as edgy or feminine as you make it. I love that you can virtually do what you like with it, so it gets my creative juices flowing!

You've all seen my more feminine Steampunk cards - these tend to be more appealing to anyone who just doesn't like Steampunk and also gives us girls a bit of 'edge' !

My pet hate (and I suspect I'm not alone) is making cards for men - I get commissioned for cards featuring sport, especially football and my heart sinks, but if someone asks for trains or engines the light bulbs in my brain light up, because Steampunk masculine I relish! I came to card making through a love of art, inherited from my dear Dad, sadly no longer with us. He was a Signwriter by profession and a darn good one too! He trained in Canada where he lived from about 12 years old and whilst he really appreciated all art, he was very influenced by the impressionists and graphic artists (he actually worked on cartoons for a local paper in Canada for a while when he was a student). Dad and I spent many hours in the Bristol Museum and Gallery when I was a kid, I loved it! On trips to London, where I had some aunts and cousins at the time, my highlight was visiting the galleries and museums with dad, whilst the rest of the family did the shops!

I was wondering what got you all card making..what were your paths? What types of cards do you really like to make? I have to say, I love to mix it up...I love making cute cards with the stamps of LOTV, but I relish using edgier steampunky and arty stamps by such designers as Sam Poole, Wendy Vecchi and of course, Tim Holz. So, as you see I like to mix it up - that is, when I get the time, because I can't generally do that with commissions.

My inspirations in the art world today are many, I love the rich, colourful symbolism of Klimt, the highly expressive works of Klee and my favourite contemporary artist is probably Tracey Emin, controversial yes, but her quilts, scrapbooks and videos are amazing. Tom had to drag me out of her exhibition on the South bank last year, I had been in there so long! Probably my favourite artist is Frida Kahlo, again her exhibition in the Tate Modern a few years ago captivated me.I love the colours, symbolism and angst she created in her work.

 My favourite art collection is the Peggy Guggenheim in Venice. It is somewhere I have visited many times and I can stay for hours. I think my favourite piece of art is in that gallery: Magritte's Empire of Light. The one in the Guggenheim is one of several versions by just speaks to me on so many levels  The concept of much mystery! I won't even start to interpret it here or you will all be nodding off, lol :)

Finally, my other love is graphic art and illustration (again thanks to Dad). I didn't study art, I didn't think I was good enough, although art history should have been my path, but I did study Film and that medium speaks to me in so many ways.  I have to say that I have always been in awe of Tim Burton. I think his illustrations are amazing and Nightmare before Christmas is one of my favourite movies still, today! Have you seen his website? Amazing! The link is here if you are interested.

But enough of the chitter chatter(when is she ever going to get to the card I hear you saying!) and after all that talk of expressionism and steampunk, today's card is none of those! It was made this week,  as a commission for a long time customer of mine. It's especially nice when creating a card for someone who's likes and dislikes I have got to know over the years. The lady works with Tom and we have never met, but it would be good to one day!

However, this card was actually made for my customer's friend to give to her daughter-in-law and I was given no likes or dislikes. Quite hard when you have no idea about the recipient, isn't it? So I went for elegant feminine without (I hope) being too girly.

The card is 8x8, covered with a gold patterned paper from stash (I just have to take advantage of the season at the moment!).  I stamped three antique dressforms from the Creative Expressions stamp set on to Oatmeal coloured card, using clear embossing ink and then heat embossed them all in black before cutting each out.

I cut a black back panel and three rectangles using the oatmeal card,which I edged with wild honey distress ink. I then typed up the greetings and die cut  the Happy Birthday one using a Labels Four Small. I slipped this under the black layer so that only half showed.

The ribbon used is a wide, deckled edged burnt orange organza and I used the Anemone Flower Topper   for the flower, cut using a yellow vellum. 

Thanks for stopping by and reading my waffle! Happy crafting folks,
Carole X


  1. Hi Carole,
    I was so busy reading I forgot to sign in. I got into card making through my niece. She is slightly disabled and at the time used to make parchment cards, but I have crafted for most of my life on different sorts of things as you do. My one regret is that I can't draw or paint, because I do so admire everyone that can. My fav painting is the one of Lady Jane Grey. I could stand and look at that forever.
    Oops! nearly got carried away and didn't comment on your beautiful card. Love everything about it.
    Have a wonderful crafty day.
    Lots of crafty love. Jenny L.

  2. Hi Carole, that is such a lovely story about your Dad, it was good to read too about how you got your inspiration. I quite simply started card making as a result of ill health, as unfortunately a lot of crafters do. I am not sure my style is inspired by anything in particular, I think, like you it is quite eclectic, I don't dislike any form of art and love doing pretty at one end right up to grungy and messy at the other. As I get more experienced I guess that may change. Oh I do hate when I don't get information to do commissions either, it does make it difficult but your card is beautiful and I am sure the person receiving it will love it! Hope the chickens are doing well. Crafty hugs, Anne x

  3. Hi Carole - what a lovely story. Your dad sounds like everything mine wasn't - but that's another story. I got into card/papercrafting as a progression from others crafts. I've done loads of things but this is the one I really took up when my job got soooooo stressful. I could totally switch off when I had my carrier bag full of stash on the table and I would wander off to my planet - hence the name. I love being creative - it doesn't always turn out right, but who cares.

    Your card is really gorgeous and I love the oatmeal colour - the ribbon is beautiful. I am sure it will be really well received, as I can't imagine it not being liked.

    Hugs to you Sue Pxxx

  4. Good Morning Carol, what a lovely story about your Dad.
    My sister and I have always been crafty. Mum (died very, very young) was our influence she had us knitting, sewing, making things from noting as children. We often laugh at the "telling off" we used to get "Will you girls get all those clippings of STUFF cleaned up" However all her teaching has help us along our journeys both of us still love to make and create.

    Your card today is just stunning, your Daughter-in-Law will love it
    Have a Great Day

    Patricia x

  5. Hi Carol! Lovely card (as always), I also love these stamps, they're wonderful. I started with a knitting kit when I was aout 8, I used to always watch Blue Peter and then try and copy the crafty makes! Now, I still do some embroidery, (also loving hand embroidery on my cards), but I also have a varied style, like cute images and then love to get all my inks out and get messy!x

  6. I got into scrapping when I had my children to preserve all those special memories. I make cards as a sideline to that. And I enjoy reading your posts - they make me feel like I know you and we are having a chat! Glad you liked the Harrogate photos! The little video is such fun - I wish I had caught more. Jenx