Handicrafts by Kate Perry and other ramblings

Monday, May 25, 2015

Trying out some more new stash for Rudolph day.

I have failed miserably so far with reaching my monthly target for Christmas cards, but at least as the 25th of each month comes around, I do manage to make one or two for the Rudolph Day Challenge..

For today´s card I am using two new items. Firstly a stamp which I ordered from Crafty Individuals, just too late to use it for last Christmas. It is a sweet little row of birds on a holly branch, so having stamped it, I used copic markers to turn them into robins. I actually stamped it twice, so this week I can use the other one on a different card. For a bit of sparkle, I added Icicle stickles to the holly.

Th other new item I used is a die set. I rather like this tri-fold style of card, but I usually make a right mess of cutting it, and all the little panels to decorate it. So when I saw a set of dies for this purpose I just had to buy it. I was happy when it arrived but I have to admit, I have a few issues with it.
The die is from a series called Presscut by Crafts-too, and it says on it "...will fit most popular die cutting machines", The site I bought if from added "...but it is just too big to cut with a cuttlebug". It is a very unstable die, because it is so thin, and all the cutting lines are thin, and it was held onto a backing card with sticky tape that was so strong I really thought I would bend the die trying to remove it. Also, although it does just fit the width of my big shot machine, (and it is only just!), it is actually about half a centemetre longer than a sheet of A4 card, so in length it doesn´t even fit in my big eBosser machine, so I had to cut it part way down, then turn it around to cut the other half. Fortunately I do buy the pads of coloured card that Lidl sells from time to time, and they are European size not A4, so the die did just fit on a sheet of that. I do think they should warn you about this on the website, which was a British company, as most crafters in UK use A4.
Rant over! The good thing was that, as well as the frame, there were twelve smaller dies for cutting panels, either with a straight edge or a tiny scalloped edge. These are both the same size for each panel, so you can´t layer one over the other, it is either or.
So, back to my card.
I was able to use these small dies, I chose the scalloped ones, and several snippets of three  designs from a pad of robin and holly paper that was by Papermania. I bought  it in UK a couple of years ago, and only have very tiny pieces of it left now.The dies made it quick and easy to assemble the card. Then I added the stamped image to the centre section, big  die cut letters from Memory Box to make the word JOY on the front panel, and a very old stamped sentiment from Hero Arts on the back panel.

So tomorrow morning I shall be linking this up at Scrappy-Mo´s blog for the Rudolph Day Challenge, and at Pixie´s Snippet Playground.

I am now working on a second of these cards using a snowy theme. I´ll add an image if I get it finished in time.

When hubby and I toured Thailand a few years ago, the ´in phrase´on T-shirts, signs etc was "Same, same...but Different". Well I managed to make my second card this evening, so here it is - Same, same...but Different!

The main image is one of my all time favourites from Penny Black. I usually stamp it in black, masking off the deer, and add them in brown. But this time I coloured it all with distress marker pens, (chipped sapphire, bundled sage, and vintage photo),   ´huffed´on it,  and stamped. You need quite wet pens, and you have to work quickly, to get a good image this way, but when it works, I like the effect.
The snowflake chains on the front are an Indigo Blu stamp, with iridescent embossing powder. The snowflakes are a Memory Box die, and all the panels are cut from odd snippets from my Christmas box. 

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Cards for the Men

Those of you who know me well, will know that I am very outnumbered in my family, so I am always needing cards for men. I find these quite hard to do especially when I have left it to the last minute to make them, so this week I decided to make a few in advance. 
I raided my digi stamp folder and chose three images- Kingfisher in the rushes, In the harbour, and A Scottish castle, all purchases from Stitchy Bear. (Their site has changed considerable since I bought these, and they no longer seem to have these images, so I have not included a link).

I printed the Kingfisher out twice and coloured them both the same with copic markers. I cut them with a Spellbinders deckle edge rectangle die. For the mats I chose two different blue snippets - both saved from brochures of a well-known high street bank! - and cut them with deckle edge scissors. The background is a photograph, sized to fit the front of the card, and faded out so that it compliments the image without over powering it. I finished these with a Signature Die sentiment cut to match the image mat.

I printed out, In the Harbour, and then I altered it so that it was the right size and in the right position to  fall across the centre of a card, and printed it again.

Because this second print was for an ´almost´ one layer card, to save on weight for international posting, I couldn´t use my copic pens to colour it as these leak through the card, so I used coloursoft pencils instead. The waves, anchor and sentiment were all cut using my silhouette cameo machine.

As the second image was to be layered up, I did colour this one with copics, and hand-cut it, and its blue mat, using the inner and outer edges of a Labels 8 die. (I often resort to this because the gap between one die, and the next size up, is just too wide). I set this at an angle on a cream textured card, and stamped the sentiment - from a Crafty Individuals word set - with brown archival ink. The seagull on a post is a Chocolate Baroque stamp that I stamped on a snippet of white card, coloured and then cut out.

The final image I only printed once because I felt I was more limited in what I could do with it. In the end I added some subtle colour with copics, using warm greys for the rocks and bridge, and cool greys for the castle, and then a range of greens for the vegetation and blues for the water. I cut a light grey frame using the largest die from the Spellbinders Radiant rectangles set. I didn´t want to put a sentiment on this image, but I may add one at the last moment, or else print it on the insert instead.
As I used a lot of snippets for the mats in these cards, I will link them up in Pixie´s Snippets Playground.
As my first two and last cards all fit their colour challenge, I am also entering this at The Male Room, where all entries have to be for men or boys.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Ripping it up for The Butterfly Challenge #30

It is an honour and a delight to be Guest Designer for Mrs A´s Butterfly Challenge#30 . My choice of the letter ´J´was a purely random one, simply because our son Jonathan was staying with us at the time. When Mrs A informed me that J was for Jagged edges, it became a real challenge! However I had a new set of stamps to play with, and here is what I made.

The backing paper is printed from a digi scrapbook kit called Damask Papers, from e-scape and scrap. The paper behind the image and sentiment, and the butterfly are from the same digi kit I used for my previous card. They are both darkened around their edges with some Pistachio Memento ink, and I dusted the butterfly with it too,  to tone down the bright white parts. The sentiment was one I had on file on my computer, and I printed it out in green and roughly cut around it with some deckle edge scissors for the first Jagged edges.
For the roses I used my new stamps which are a set by Altenew. Not a company I am familiar with. I had to send to America for them and they were quite a while getting here,  but I am enjoying using them.
The set makes four different roses, two leaf sprays and several individual leaves. Each flower and leaf has three or four layers, and the idea is to use three or four different ink pads getting progressively darker, or to use one pad and first, second and third generation stamping for the layers.  For this card I have used just one ink pad - Memento Rhubarb Stalk, but the leaves used three different pads, Memento Pistachio, Bamboo Shoots, and Cottage Ivy.
It sounds a bit complicated but it isn´t really. The stamps are clear so you can see how you are placing them, and I printed off a pdf file that shows which parts should line up. And it isn´t important to line them up perfectly. As you can see from this close up, my leaves are not quite aligned, but it doesn´t spoil the end result. I think these stamps produce almost the look of a vintage printed image, and I can see me using them quite often as I have always struggled to find a vintage look.
I used paper masks to layer the roses into a bunch, and then tore around the completed image for my Jagged edges. I distressed them as described above, and glued them to my card adding the butterfly in the corner.

When the stamps first arrived I was a bit daunted by them, but I soon realised that there was a line on their acetate carrier sheet, encircling the parts for each rose, which helped a lot. The leaves you have to sort out for yourself! There are around fifty-six separate stamps in this set, and some of them are very tiny! The first thing I did was to experiment with different inks and this was the result.
The two roses on the far right, and the two on the far left, were all done using several ink pads, and the two central ones were done with one pad, stamping it off first to get progressively lighter results. I rather like the orangey-yellow one.
Most people would find this easiest to do, using a stamp positioner. I know there is a Fiskars one available in UK. I actually sent to America for the MISTI, which cost a lot more, and I do mean a lot more, but it has a larger working area, and think it is brilliant, so for me it was money well spent. It is also wonderful for anyone stamping multiple times with one stamp, for making party invites etc. Jenny McGuire has posted an excellent video on using the MISTI along with the Altenew stamps on youtube which you can see HERE, if you are interested to learn more.
But now I shall schedule this to post for you all on Wednesday, and I´ll be back to see how you all have interpreted the Jagged edge challenge - with a butterfly of course.