Handicrafts by Kate Perry and other ramblings

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


Yes, it's Wednesday again, so time to pop over to Julia's blog to see what my crafting friends are up to this week. I have had a couple of weeks off trying to shake a very nasty flu' bug, and I am pleased to say I am just about back to normal now. This week I have had the company of my sister from UK, so we have spent a lot of time just wandering along the sea-front, or sitting out in the sun chatting. But we did manage a bit of crafting time too and we decided to have a go at a technique featured in the latest issue of Craft Stamper magazine, which uses fresh flowers to make pretty backing papers. I have very few flowers in my garden at the minute so at the weekend we went for a walk across the campo to pick wild flowers. We managed to get well and truly bitten by the mosquitoes that hatched out after the recent rain, but we did get some pretty flowers, but it wasn't until yesterday that we managed to use them. So here is my desk as it was yesterday with the flowers, a general mixed bunch and some of the yellow chrysanthemums that grow wild very abundantly during March.

The idea is to make an arrangement of petals on some uncoated paper or card, add a another sheet on top of the flowers, sandwich these layers between the A,B and C plates and pass the whole lot through a cuttlebug. (I presume this would work just as well with other die cut machines too). Some of the leaves and petals are very juicy so you need a piece of kitchen paper handy to mop up any over spill. When you gently take apart the two sheets of paper, both have an imprint of the flowers on them, but one is more detailed than the other. You carefully remove the squashed debris of flowers and leave the papers to dry. It is a case of trial and error as some flowers did not shed any colour while other were quite dark but not necessarily the colour you expected. For instance, bright red poppy petals left a deep blue print on the paper. The yellow daisies gave the best result. An alternative is to spray the arrangement on the first sheet with mica mist, (I used bright green perfect pearls spray and a pale lilac glimmer mist), and then add the second sheet of paper and pass them through the machine. This means the second sheet will get a print of the flower shapes in the colour of the mist.

This made some lovely subtle coloured papers which will be perfect behind a larger image on a card or ATC. Here is a selection from our trial run. I shall continue experimenting with different flowers as they appear, and try making more precise arrangements as well as random patterns.

I shall link this to Julia's blog now while it is still Wednesday, but as my sister flies home this evening I am going to sit outside in the sun with her for her final couple of hours. But I will be back tomorrow to visit you all and see what you had on your desks this week.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Cards for Rudolf Day

Well here we are at the end of March and I have finally managed to have some cards ready for Sandra's Rudolf Day. I missed the first one by a few hours and the next one by several days! For those who haven't come across Rudolf day before, the idea is simply to set aside the 25th of each month to make at least one Christmas card. So I was determined to make one this month and I decided to make use of the Madonna and child cutting file that I was trying out a couple of weeks ago. The original cut was rather larger than I usually use, but I try not to waste anything so I hand cut a deep turquoise backing for it, and covered the front of the card and the strip under the cut shape with some pale blue Christmas paper that is on my computer - I'm not sure where it is from. I used a couple of strips of holographic stars to hide where I didn't make a very good job of gluing the backing paper on ! I liked the look of the cut out pieces that remained on the backing sheet so I also used these to make a second card by gluing them individually on to some deep, royal blue card. I layered this with some holographic silver paper and mounted it onto a white square card. A vertical peel-off greeting finished this one.

Both of these cards are usable but I wasn't all that pleased with them so next I made the cutting file a lot smaller so it would fit on a standard A6 card. I cut it from some holly-embossed white pearl card and again I used the cut out pieces by sticking them to a piece of grey-blue pearl card left over from the invitations I made for my son last month. I then made a new cutting file that fitted behind the left hand side of the cut card, and cut it in deep blue pearl paper. I glued this behind the image and added a matching strip of the paper to the left inside edge. A simple word stamp was all these needed to finish them, and a partial silver peel-off frame and simple greeting completed the pair to it. I did two each of these and I was much happier with them than the original pair. So I now have six cards for my Rudolf day contribution. You can see what other folk have made by following this link to Sandra's blog.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


Hi all. This is a very quick post before I rush out to my usual Wednesday sewing/chat group. I took my photo before I went to bed but it was in the very early hours of Wednesday. I started this at around 9.30, so it's only 8.30 in UK and I see there are already 85 posts!

I was having some fun last night playing around with clay and paint. Last Wednesday we had a man who was brave enough to visit a room full of women to collect any jewelry we wanted mended, and to buy any unwanted gold and silver. He is very clever at what he does, and I am really pleased with some repairs he has done for me. I am hoping today he will bring my ring. He has taken an old ring of my husband's and a small Thailand sapphire pendant of mine, and he is making them into ring for me. Anyway, I digress. Last week one lady who used to be a silver smith, brought in a box of off cuts and bits and pieces for him to buy and in amongst them was a silver plaque of the 'Madonna and child'. My friend asked if she could borrow it and promptly gave it to me saying I could make a mould of it and make replicas. (She said she was only thinking of her decoration next Christmas, because I usually make her one!) So I found my last little bit of mold-n-pour and made the mould (in purple on my mat). I then made it twice with air drying clay and three times with Hearty clay. I am pleased with the results. The detail is excellent except perhaps with the facial features using the hearty clay. So last night they were dry and I filed down the edges and gave them a first coat of paint. I experimented with luminarte, gesso and ordinary acrylic, and now I shall add various metal accents, mica sprays etc, to make them more interesting.

Also last night, while on the theme of 'Madonna and child', I tried out a cutting file that I bought from craftrobo megastore. I was using my silhouette cameo machine and I thought I would try it out with a thicker card, so I used 280g coated card, and after a couple of trial cuts, I got the settings just right and it cut beautifully. Here you can see the cut card which I have peeled off the carrier sheet, leaving a perfect negative image. I think I can make use of this as well, so two for the price of one. I shall try down-sizing it tonight, and see if it cuts just as well when it is smaller.

Well now I do have to go, but I'll be back this evening to visit all your desks and see what exciting things you are getting up to.
If you would like to see how other folk spend their time, pop over to Julia's blog and follow the links.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Five flower cards

Welcome to my blog. Thank you for calling in. A special welcome to my newest followers; It's great to have you along, and I hope you will find something to inspire you here.

I showed the beginning of these cards on last week's post WOYWW, so I thought I'd do a quick post today to show I did finish them.

The idea was to use up some long-hoarded stash so I started with a selection of decoupage flower sheets, and a bundle of pre-cut and folded cards. I never buy either of these now but I used to and I have several boxes of them that really need to be used up! So each card has some decoupage on the main image, but I don't use all the layers because of posting them to UK. I then raided a box of rarely disturbed small paper stacks, and my snippits box and found mounts and embellishments for each card. The newest thing I used was the metal sunflower which I saw in the shop where I go for my parchment craft classes. There were nine on a sheet for 1 euro which I thought was a bargain, and as I had hoped, I found I could easily colour them with my copic markers. I also used some ribbons and gems, a Marianne die-cut butterfly and fancy circle frame, some foiled bee stickers, a clear square dome sticker to make a small tile, a German scrap border, and some leaf sprays and letters cut with my Silhouette cameo. I used one card for my friend's seventieth birthday on Sunday, and the tall yellow one was commissioned by a friend for her daughter's fiftieth, but the rest will go into my box ready for when I need one.

I am entering this collection in :
Kaboodle Doodles Challenge 109: Think Spring - Let's see some Flowers.
Crafty Emma's Store Challenge 75: Flower Frenzy.
Make it Monday Linky Party 79: Any paper craft.
The card on the right is also entered for :
Crafty Purple Frog Challenge; Get inspired with yellow and green.