Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Polka dot heart

Hi everyone, 
Just a quick post to show this card for the Less is More challenge - Polka dots. Who doesn't love polka dots?

This came together very quickly after I gave up the idea of including embossed dots and found this embossing board heart. 

And it folds flat for posting! Not that it needs to as I'm giving this to my husband for our 28th wedding anniversary on Saturday. No, I can't believe it either, I'm nowhere near old enough! Must have done my sums wrong.

Monday, 28 March 2016

Mint and margins.

A bit of a departure here for me. I decided to attempt a shabby chic style card. I looked up some pictures on the old internet and the rule seems to be More is Not Quite Enough. 
I started with some papers. I chose them for the greens and decided that pink would be my other colour.
I used a small embossing folder for the margins. I bought this as part of a prize I won at the Butterfly Challenge, it is very pretty. Then I roughed up all the edges with scissors and rolling.  

The flowers are made withe one of my older stamps, a lovely Inkadinkado rose, cut out and coloured with Pro-markers. The leaves are die cuts, cut from green card and inked a little round the edges. The darker green stems are also die cuts and I added a little raffia.
I fiddled about with it for what seems like days before settling and sticking it all down.I helped that my husband was away for part of the weekend so I didn't have to pretend to be doing something else. Not that he minds, the guilt is all mine.

Having stuck down the papers I thought I'd just check that I had the card opening the correct way and discovered I was sticking it all onto a flat piece of card! The square of kraft had been lying on my desk so I grabbed it to see how it would look laid out.  Managed to peel it all off and re-do on a proper card, it all adds to the distressing... What a ditz though.

The butterfly is from a nameless set. Stamped on white and coloured. It is a bit raised which doesn't show much here.  I also stamped it on the background paper to get the antennae to show.

 Finally I added some black Stickles for a bit of sparkle to the butterfly and flowers. 
I really haven't gone the whole hog with shabby chic. It needs more layers, floppy bows and ribbon, gems and pearls but I don't like to cover up the lovely paper.  

I had real trouble getting the colours right in the photo, they always look washed out. The more I look the worse the photos look, you can't see any of the detail of colouring etc. But I've taken so many I'm giving up and getting on with my life now. 

I am linking this to the Butterfly Challenge where it is M for Margins and or Mint. I feel sure that one of these greens is mint! The leaves are definitely minty and the borders, though it's rather difficult to tell here.
And I'm nipping into Pixie's Snippets playground between rain showers. I have used snippets for all the additions but the backing papers were cut from new sheets! Shocking. I am using my stash though.

Now I'm off to find out how to take good photos.

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Playing with dies and snippets

I had an idea for a card and whilst making it several more ideas percolated through. 
I was using a set of Tonic circle dies.
Here is the first one:

This is the card I planned but it turned out to be quite tricky. I only had the Wrong Kind of Glue. You need a fine point and a bit of wriggle room in order to place all the circles. I had made it harder for myself by deciding to interlock them. This meant a little snip, slipping one through another and hiding the join under the first one. 
Also I kept changing the order of the circles. This paper is double sided and one piece has dots and circles on either side so was easy to flip and move but then one had dots and another pattern, I got in a right muddle. 
I'll definitely have another go at this maybe using larger circles. 

Then I wondered what would happen if you cut out all the circles and used them in a pattern. Duh, you have to use alternate ones or there is no gap!
The next day I bought the Right Kind of Glue and stuck this one down. (Tacky glue - Fine point, slow drying, dries clear and rubs off).

I curved the words on the acrylic block. 
And finally...

I decided the shapes were not very defined on the first card. I used two dies next to each other in size but here I've skipped one and used the third size up, if you see what I mean. 
This is what I used.

This is better.

It probably would have been much harder to link them together like this though.
I've used up some snippets, not very many I may say and I have had to keep all the circles which were cut out of the centres so I'm not sure if i have used up much at all! 

I'm probaly the last person to learn this but a bit of Washi tape holds dies in place and never rips the card or paper. I used the samp piece to cut all of these circles. I find low tack masking tape to be variable and it's very upsetting when it rips a masterpiece.

 I'm skipping over to Pixie's Snippets Playground and as it's Easter there is sure to be Choklit.
So now I have several generic cards, I understand there are some people who don't like flowers and butterflies.

Friday, 18 March 2016

Little green house

I've been round in circles with this card and it nearly didn't make it to the finish line.
This week's challenge at 52CCT is  a colour challenge - Green and White.


I wanted to use this house so I didn't even think of any other ideas and I've managed not to use any other colours.

I started with the oval, still having ovals in my head from last week. I just went round the outside of the shape with a ball tool to gently emboss the oval then stamped through a mask made with the same shape cutter. I used thin magazine paper, thanks Diane for the tip. 
I've had various issues, including yellow snow! I added Stickles to the roof and top of the door for snow but where it touched the green ink it turned yellow. I managed to scrape it off again so it doesn't look too bad. (But not perfect, which is what I aspire to).
Then I was mounting it up on a square card. I had the background paper and ribbon all in place and had glued the picture when I decided that it was all wrong and pulled it off again. Instead I've gone very simple with just a green matt and small card. It is only about 13cm tall. I may now have to make an envelope to fit but I do have a green background all ready for some other card.
The house stamp is from Polka Doodles and I couldn't make up my mind about a sentiment so didn't add one.

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Butterfly garden

I've seen a few bright simple flowery cards and here is my version.

I'm entering this into the current Butterfly Challenge which is B for Buttons and/or Bronze.
I've used these Inky Doodles flowers (again, I know I do have other stamps but I keep going back to these). They have button centres so are perfect for this challenge. Though I have used these stamps time and time again, I'm not sure if I have ever coloured them with pens. I usually use ink. I bravely drew the stems by hand! I was going to stamp on leaves but there didn't seem to be room.
It looked a bit flat soI added some detail with glittery gel pen.
As a bonus I have added a couple of buttons to the sentiment. I looked through my button box in the vain hope that I might find a bronze button. Nope. But I did have these. I think they are made of wood and I have no idea where they came from. Out came my favourite bronze Sharpie and I coloured them. They were pretty scrappy before and look much smarter now. I sewed them onto the strip and then popped them up on foam pads. I'm pretty sure I'll be hand delivering this one, hope so.
I've made this for a friend who has had a difficult couple of years so I hope this will bring her flowers, butterflies  and happiness this year.

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Birthday balloons.

A perfect weekend, I spent most of it outside. The birds were singing the sun was shining and it felt like spring. What more could you want? Oh yes, stamping. 
When I was too tired to stand up any longer I came in and made this card:

The challenge this week at Less is More is sentiments to the fore. I needed a birthday card for a boy so I thought this challenge might work for that. I don't have any particularly large stamp sentiments so I used a smaller one four times.
I even planned this out using quadrants with faint pencil lines rather than diving straight in and wasting several bits of card as is my usual way. I still haven't got the placement quite right but it's not bad. 
I've used a Paper Smooches sentiment stamped four times then some Stamplorations balloons and stars. I do love these balloons and they are fun to colour. I almost put the stars on the balloons. I think I'll do that on another occasion.  
It was quick and easy after a fair bit of planning and no card was wasted!  Yay.

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Friday, 11 March 2016

Snowy sketch

I really don't know where the time goes. One minute it's Saturday morning and I'm looking up the details of the new challenge, next it's Friday afternoon and I'm running out of time!
It's a sketch this week at 52CCT:


Quite a complicated one. I thought I'd have a go at layers, I've seen some really beautiful layered cards but rarely manage one myself.

I cut out the oval an inked the picture before putting it back into it's frame for the central part of the sketch. Due to an error of judgement the foreground is grassy rather than snowy but hey ho. I'd like a bit more definition on the trees but knew I'd ruin it if I carried on.
Then I stamped the holly border. Last week I found a packet of paper I had  bought just after Christmas and had forgotten about! I rarely buy paper as I have some enough and don't use it very often but this was so pretty and best of all cheap. It is DoCrafts and there are some beautiful snowflake patterns in pink and blue. However, this sheet was included so I thought I'd try it here. 
Then I added the Washi tape border. My daughter gave me this at the weekend so I wanted to try it out. I wondered if you can make a Washi tape bow, well of course you can but I need to work on my technique. 
So here it is all layered up. I wasn't sure at first but I like it more and more.  

I've just been doing a little gardening and  buds are busting and bulbs are bursting into flower so I think I'll try a few spring like cards  next for a change. 

Stamps - central - free with magazine last year. 
              Border and sentiment - Personal Impressions.  

Monday, 7 March 2016

Buttons and snowflakes

I'm rather overawed to have been chosen as Guest Designer for the Merry Monday challenge. My card was a winner which surprised and delighted me very much as all the entries are so amazing. 
So this is the new challenge:

Have a quick look on the Google web, there are so many inventive ideas for using buttons on cards. I played around with several ideas but after realising I was making it far too complicated I went for something simple. I suspect we will see plenty of good ideas here at the challenge too. I have lots of white buttons saved from clothes etc and a just few coloured ones. Now I've seen what can be done with them, I plan to use them more often. Who doesn't love buttons?


I found this pretty blue paper which had a very slight pattern on it which gave me the idea of stamping flourishes over it. I stamped off the blue ink once first so they are more subtle. 
The I embossed the snowflakes. I confess I put the first sheet in the folder the wrong way round so had debossed flakes! How cross was I? 
Luckily, I had another sheet the same. I saved the mistake, I'm sure I can use it but it wasn't right here.  
I sewed on the buttons with silver thread and left the ends loose. This means there is no danger of them falling off and adds a little more interest.
Then I mounted on dark blue with silver embossing around the edges.  I'm pleased with it and also pleased to have used some buttons.
I hope you enjoy the challenge, I'm  looking forward to all the inspiring cards.  

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Glittery butterflies

I've finally managed to make a card for the current Butterfly challenge. I'm so glad we have two weeks to work on our entries.
The challenge is G for grape and/or glitter. I wanted to get both on.

I stamped and coloured the flowery panel and then mounted it on a card with part of the front cut away so it is under the cardbase, if you see what I mean. I'm not sure if it is very clear here.

I've used two thin strips of card to lift the front slightly at each side so the card sits over the panel and slightly raised but not as far as foam pads.
One butterfly is partially cut out so it overhangs the panel. The trouble with cutting out butterflies is that there is often small detail which you lose if you cut so this solved that problem.I wish I'd thought to cut out the other one too.
I've coloured the butterflies and then added a little glitter on the wings and in the centres of the flowers. 
When I had finished, I wasn't sure about the colours working so I nearly made it again in pink instead of yellow but restrained myself. It does look lovely and sunny.  I might try again though as I do like the idea. (Which is not original but I can't find the source. If it was you, thank you and sorry for pinching your idea!)
This is all made from snippets so I'm tripping over to Pixie's Snippets Playground,  where the gates are always open and there is fun in the Tree House as well as the Butterfly Challenge.

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Stencilled stars

Last year I regularly played along at 52 Christmas Card Throwdown but this year I have failed every weeks so far. I was determined to manage it this week:

Hmm, stencilling. I don't actually have any stencils. Some are on my wishlist but I haven't got round to getting them yet. I scratched around for things which might work or using a die to cut one. Then I remembered this:

It is part of an old card which I saved in case I needed a  star shape. 
So here is the card:

I stencilled that background and then needed a focal point so I made an origami star. I had meant to do this at Christmas as they look so pretty but maybe I'll manage some for next year. It wasn't too hard (for crafty inclined folk like you all are). Here are the instructions I followed. 
I'm not overly keen on the finished card and it could be one which goes into the 'maybe' pile come December. I like the background but not the overall layout. I wish I'd made the star a different colour to stand out more. I do like the stencilling though.
Anyway, I've made it so I'm posting it!