Handicrafts by Kate Perry and other ramblings

Friday, November 25, 2016

Flying in for the Final Rudolph Day of 2016

For the last Rudolph day challenge of the year, I have used a little Christmas owl digi stamp from Aurora's wings. He has been in my library since last year, so I thought it was time I used him.
I knew I needed one more set of cards in a hurry so I printed him eight times and coloured him with copic markers, and fussy-cut round him. 
I also wanted to try out a new frame die by Amy Designs. So I found eight oddments of Christmas Backing paper, and eight toning pieces of card to cut the frames from. I distressed the edges of the BPs with a distress ink that matched the frame, and layered each set up on a white 15cm base card.
I liked the frame except for the top left corner which has a rather solid looking poinsettia on it, so I covered these with a double layer snowflake cut with two Marianne dies, and added a gem stone to the centre.
To finish, I added liquid pearl as the fur around the owl's hat, and some glitter glue to the snowy scene at the base of the frame.
I coloured all the owls in the same way, but used a variety of backing papers and frames, according to what I could find in my snippets box.
So, that is another eight cards for my pile, and now I will take them over the Rudolph Day Challenge at Scraps of life by Scrappy Mo.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

When is an Angel not an Angel?

When it is a Star-Angel Sprite !!
I have been having fun  this week making the last few Christmas cards that I need for my local friends, and for these I turned to my library of digistamps and chose two.
The first is LOTV Christmas Angels - Praying. I printed her out six times. Then I chose Aurora's Wings, Star-Angel Sprite, and printed her five times (the sixth one wouldn't fit on an A4 sheet with enough space for a die-cut frame if I wanted one).
I then had a couple of evenings with my copic markers, adding colour to the images. This is so therapeutic!

Then it was time to make them into cards, and for speed I went with one design for my angels.

(I will say at this point, that we are actually having some much needed rain this week and the house is very dark, so all these photos were taken with artificial light and the colours are not good!).
I made six 12cm square cards, raided my Christmas snippets boxes for some backing papers, and on even smaller scraps of each one I stamped the sentiment heart (a SeeD's stamp) and cut it out.

Next I cut one layer of the Tonic Studio Star bauble die set from mirri-card; The one above is gold but it doesn't look it. I made a template for the angel and cut her out and layered everything up, finishing with a scattering of star stickers.
I made this card in three colourways.

Time for the second image. I must admit I do not usually go for this style of image, but I have rather fallen for my Star-Angel Sprite.
I again chose three colour schemes and this time I decided to fussy-cut the sprite. I made four 12cm square cards and one that was a little bit narrower because my snippet of backing paper wasn't quite big enough for the 12 cm card. I managed to find more pieces of backing paper in my snippets box to match or tone with each image.
Again, it doesn't show on the picture, but she is very sparkly because I coloured over the main star, her wings and her head-dress with the new Leonie Pujol Glitter Brush Pens. (The jury is still out on these pens. They are a lovely set of colours and are very sparkly, but the ink is a little too free-flowing for me so you have to be careful not to make blots, the brush is very soft, so precise colouring is difficult, and once dry, much of the glitter rubs off - though there is still plenty left on the image. I need to use them more to see if I can improve my technique).
The star crescent frame is also coloured with a light copic pen and then the pale blue glitter pen and it sparkles beautifully IRL. I have lost the packaging for the die and I can't remember the make, but feel free to say if you know please.
The sentiment is a really old Stampendous stamp. On some of the cards I used a different stamp by Penny Black. So here is the set I made of these.

As I used so many snippets for my backgrounds, and some of my huge collection of white snippets for the star crescent frames, I am going to link these with Pixie's Snippets Playground.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Holiday Robins

I have just returned from a week's holiday in Clonikilty, S.Ireland, and while there, I took quite a collection of bird photos. But the one I really liked was this perky little robin who sat on a dead thistle head right by the rail where I was leaning to look out over the sea at Inchydoney Bay.

So I decided to use it to make some Christmas cards. (I am way, way behind this year and need to do some big batches fairly fast!).

I chose a Winter background paper from a digital scrapbook kit, and in Adobe PS I cropped the robin and added him to the background. I resized it to fit a 15cm square card and printed it, cut it out and made a base card in plain white.

Going through my frame dies I settled on the second layer of Spellbinders fantastic ovals, and used a plain oval die to remove the centre. Then I glued it over the robin and masked any lines where the photo met the paper with stickles silver ice. I should have blended the photo into the paper before I printed it, but with time being of the essence, I didn't start again! I also added some glitter glue to the plants in the photo to give it a more Wintery feel.

For the sentiment I used a Joanna Sheen Signature die. It is larger than I usually use for a sentiment, but it worked well on this fairly plain background. I cut it from silver mirri-card to match the frame.

Happy with the result I then printed off more of the images, and made a set of six cards. Unfortunately when I came to make the frames and sentiments I found I was just about out of silver mirri-card, so I had to scrabble through my metallic snippets box to find pieces of dark silver (pewter?), and various holographic designs, for the other cards. As long as the frames and sentiments matched on each one, it was fine.

I then decided to try something else with my photo so this time I used another digital background and a Winter cluster png file also from a scrapbook kit. This cluster had a space for a photo so I slid my robin in and sized it down to fit, and again I printed off a 15cm square copy, and glued it to a plain white base card.

This time I used another quite large sentiment die by Creative Expressions - a Sue Wilson design. Again I had to find snippets of shiny card for these. The one in the photo is very holographic, but others were plainer, but at least I have used up quite a few of my oddments. Now I will have to tour all the todo shops and see if one has some silver mirri-card! I finished it off again with glitter glue on the foliage and the larger snowflakes from the cluster frame.

Again it seemed sensible to make a set of six of these, so I now have a dozen cards to add to my collection.

I had to change two toner cartridges mid-way through the printing and as you can see, the backgrounds are different shades, but I felt they were all quite acceptable. (None of them are as pink as they look in this photo!) The one good thing about my new laser printer is that there is no colour change when I add the stickles like I sometimes had with the inkjet prints.

All those bits of shiny card mean these two can wing their way over to Pixie's Snippets Playground #254.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Another Joyful Rudolph day.

Well last month's cards for this challenge featured the word Joy and so do this month's, but I guess it is a good thing to wish for people. Whatever the state of the world, there is some joy to be found in it if we truly look.
I am posting this early because I am off on holiday for 12 days, and I will be staying in a house with no wi-fi, so there won't be much computer activity from me. I will schedule it to post on the right day and hopefully I will be able to link it up on my phone.

I have a 'To do...' list as long as my arm before I leave, so I needed a card that was fairly quick and easy to do, so again I turned to my Silhouette cameo library for a cutting file to use. I chose this filigree star with the word Joy in the centre.

I cut the top layer from white pearlised heavy paper. I like this paper which has a gold sheen on it in some lights, and it is fibre-free so it cuts well. I found that if I resized it to fit a 12cm card, I could just fit two on each A4 page.

For the next layer I raided my snippets drawer and found four pieces of beige/gold sheen card, and two of yellow-gold heavy parchment, and cut the six squares, and six circles with the word Joy cut out,  for the centres.
Then I made six base cards from 240gsm white card and glued it all together.
I am not brilliant with the clean and simple look and am always tempted to add stars etc to the white spaces, but hubby said leave them as they are, and for once I did.
So six more cards in my stash means I can at least write enough to take to UK with me to save on the postage. When I get back I will need to make some more quickies, for my local friends.
Now I will link this up to Scraps of Life by scrappymo, ready for the Rudolph Day Challenge on the 25th October and hope I can do it properly when that date comes around.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

A Joyful Rudolph Day.

Well the 25th has crept up on us again. Fortunately I made my cards a week or so ago, but I have only just got to the computer to post them.

I am still looking for designs that don't require too much colouring and hand-cutting as my arms continue to be a problem, so I went through my Silhouette Cameo library looking for a file I haven't used before, and came across the cutting file for this word Joy.
I had some heavyweight dark red, pearlised paper that I knew would cut well, so I used that. I tried it on a few cards and decided it looked best on plain cream, so i used that to make the base card.
To 'ground' the word I used the off cuts of the red with a Signature die to cut the starry border. I collected all the little stars that came from this, and dotted them randomly around the image. Then I used another die - Memory box I think but I am not sure - to cut a star of Bethlehem from gold mirri card, and glued it over the star in the original image.
Because  this used half an A4 sheet of the red paper, I cut it a second time from the other half, and made another card the same. Then I went through my stash and found similar pearl, non-fibre paper in silver, pewter, and stone, so I cut two sets from each of these. I paired up the silver with turquoise card, the pewter with mid-blue card and the stone with dark red, and made them up in the same way, so I have a useful set of eight cards, that really show why Christmas is the season of Joy.
So I will pop over to the Rudolph Day Challenge at Scraps of Life by Scrappymo, to link this up. Then I have another card to make before tomorrow!

Sunday, September 18, 2016

A lavender butterfly for Challenge #62

All Summer I have been trying to get a card made for the Butterfly Challenge, but the heat sapped my energy and I never made the deadlines. But this month I am in by the skin of my teeth. The challenge was of course to use a butterfly in our design, but with the option of also using L for letters, and/or L for Lavender.
I need a card for an eightieth birthday this week, so this is what I made.
I bought the files from Craftsuprint, and they included cutting files for the card base, a background sheet, the lattice layer and the lace border. I cut it using my silhouette cameo. I knew it would be a challenge to cut the lattice and the lace as they are quite intricate designs, but I found a small piece of pearlised card in lavender that was just big enough, and when I had played around with the settings a bit,  I managed to cut the lattice. The lace cut quite well with some white pearl-all-through paper.This has no fibres so always cuts well.
Initially I cut the background layer from a snippet of pretty lavender and gold scrapbook paper, but I felt it got lost behind the lattice so I didn't use it. The base cut easily from white card, and this showed through the lattice better than the patterned paper.
There was a small piece at the top of the lace border that 'snagged' in the cutter, so I covered this with a label cut round the outside of a die from Sue Wilson's Greek islands-Kefalonia set. The die itself was used to cut the white panel with a computer generated sentiment - (L for letters).
Using the backing paper I had originally cut for the bottom layer of my design, I stamped the Leane Creatief Doodle Butterfly (won as a prize in an earlier Butterfly challenge), and coloured the frame lines with a dark lavender copic marker. I then glued it to a second piece of the BP so it was patterned on both sides, and fussy cut it. I used silicone glue to attach it to the card with its wings slightly raised. 
From the left over lavender card I punched out some tiny butterflies to decorate the sentiment label, and added some sparkle with glitter glue to the tips of the butterfly wings, and the numbers 80.
So I shall now link this to Mrs A's Butterfly Challenge #62 and also, as I haven't dropped by to play for a while, I am linking to Pixie's Snippets Playground#247.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

August Rudolph day challenge

When I have enjoyed a visit from family or friends, it always leaves me feeling a little disorientated and deflated when they leave, so having taken our son to the airport on Monday morning, after a lovely fortnight's visit from him, I needed something to get me going. When I realised that it was already 23rd of the month I knew exactly what I needed to do - make some Christmas cards for the Rudolph day challenge on 25th. 
I have several new cutting files in my silhouette cameo library, some that I have purchased and others I have 'designed', so I went to those for some ideas. The file I chose was purchased from Craftsuprint and is a design by Lyn Simms.

I am trying to do some stash-busting, including my overflowing snippets boxes, but I did not have a enough matching green snippets to cut the panel, wreath, leaves and holly, so I started a new sheet of card and cut them three times. It was tricky cutting the holly branch from card, but I have found that Stampin' Up card is the best for using with my cameo, and it did work quite well. I needed to do a couple of repairs on the stems, but they really don't show. Then I found three snippets of fairly neutral patterned paper for the background panel, and matched them to plain snippets for the other layers. I made three A6 base cards from a colour that toned in with the rest, and glued all the layers together. 

The poinsettias were cut from snippets of dark red mirri-card and the white overlays from vinyl, and I used a yellow brad to hold them all together. The red sentiments are the last of my mini peel-offs.

So here are my three cards, all the same but slightly different!

The cut detail on the background panel looks rather 'lost' in these photos, so I wanted to make them a little more noticeable. In her card, the designer had added tiny red gems to all the berries, but I thought I would need too many for my three cards, so I used liquid perfect pearls instead, and then I felt I needed to add it to the berries on the holly branch as well, so here my first card revised!
As you can see, taking this one in natural lighting, instead of  the artificial lighting I used for the others last night, has brought out the colours better, and the details! But I quite like the tiny red berries so I think I'll add them to the other cards as well.
But first I will link this up with Rudolph Day challenge on Scraps of Life by Scrappy Mo, and also to Pixie's Snippets Playground.


Monday, August 1, 2016

Three very different cards for three very different people.

Well I kept saying that I had needed a lot of cards for July that I would post about once the relevant birthdays had passed, and now we are in August, so I decided to lump three together in one post, or it might never get done.

1).  So first we have a straightforward birthday card that I made for a very dear friend who celebrated her 89th birthday a couple of weeks ago.

The motif is the Heartfelt Creations stamp - feathered daisy, stamped twice so the large daisy could be cut out and layered over the first one. I added a little colour with Copic markers. The frame is part of the Sue Wilson Greek island Collection dies - Kefalonia,  cut and scanned into my Silhouette cameo machine so I could resize it for the three layers. The daisy lace border, and the sentiment are Joanna Sheen Signature dies, and the background layer was embossed using  the Couture Creations Tied Together folder. Some tiny gems in the corners, a dazzler in the centre of the flower, and some stickles glitter glue in the 'eye' of the feather, finished it off.
Because I used a large sheet of blue card to make the base, there were enough off-cuts to make the frame and other embellishments. So I decided to do the same thing using the lighter blue card of the inner frame. I kept it much the same, but used the daisy lace border differently. So I have a second card to go in my box, ready for an unexpected birthday.

2). My second card is very different. I saw this on Facebook and wanted to give it a try because it relies on a feature of my Silhouette Cameo that I have never used before - print and cut. This is where you open up a picture on the design page, mark the corners of the page with registration marks, and print it. Then you trace the outlines in the software, feed the printed image into the machine, and it uses the registration marks to locate the image and cuts it out on your trace lines. That's the theory anyway! 
The file was a free kit from Extreme cards and Papercrafting, and was intended for hand-cutting, but I e-mailed the lady there,  and she happily sent me the silhouette cutting file for which I sent a donation. All the houses, trees, bridges and boats were fitted on to one page and on my first attempt the cut lines did not match up to my printed page. But I decided this was probably because the original file was on American sized paper, not the UK A4 size, and I managed to adjust it and get a good cut. I then went mad and repeated this twice before I forgot how I did it!
Next I cut the inner layer and with some difficulty I managed to get all the little folds going the right way. Then I had fun arranging and rearranging all the little elements on the various tabs until I was happy with the look of it, and glued each one in place. I cut a diagonal slit in this layer to slot in the largest boat at the front. This view from above, gives a better idea of how it works.
I made a base card to fit this, and because it was a non-standard size, I also needed to make an envelope to hold it. The main element of this card is the 'surprise' inside, so I kept the front very simple. I cut a backing paper layer from a magazine give-away, and again used my silhouette to design a large Happy Birthday, and cut it out in a contrasting colour. To give it a bit of sparkle I traced the letters with stickles glitter glue, and added it to some of the stars on the backing paper.  
I was able to use two of these cards for some of the men in my family, and again I have one spare for my box.

3). My third card was for my second eldest son and again I made it with my Cameo, as I find this easier than doing too much stamping and fussy cutting right now. This was a purchased cutting file from 3DCUTS, and it was intended to make a dimensional shadow box. But as I wanted to post mine, I cut the pieces and layered them up flat onto a base card. There are seven layers so it was still quite a sturdy card, but I knew he would like it, so it was worth the postage!
I started by making the background with an ink duster and several shades of Distress inks. I masked the sun after the first layer, and then added a little darker ink at the end. The sea was a snippet of paper I made years ago, to try out some shimmer mists. I went through my snippets boxes and found black and three shades of green to cut the fence, hills and grass clumps, and a small piece of yellow for the sun reflections. Those and the fence were tricky to cut, but I put a new blade in my machine and I was pleased with the way they cut. I thought the sky was a bit empty, so I used an old clip art from my library to make a cutting file for the sea birds, and added them randomly. I might try making the shadow box one day, but I think I have got a good feeling of depth with it as a flat picture too.
This last card will be finding its way to Pixies Snippets Playground, and I had better get thinking about some August birthday cards now.

Monday, July 25, 2016

July Rudolph Day.

Here we are a whole month on from the last Rudolph Day Challenge, and I have had nothing to show you in all that time. But actually I have been busier than usual making several cards I needed for this month, but I haven't been able to post them until all the birthdays had passed. So be warned, I may inundate you with posts next week.
But for today, I am concentrating on Christmas cards. We are more than half-way through the year, and I certainly haven't made half of the Christmas cards I need, so this month I made a little set. Here is the first one.
As it is too hot to do anything too complicated, I wanted a fairly sinple design, but I fancied a gentle evening of colouring, so I found a digi image in my file by "A Day for Daises", and resized it to fit six onto an A4 sheet of heavy paper. I then printed the six again on ordinary copy paper. 
The copy paper layer was lightly dusted with distress ink, Squeezed lemonade and some Mustard seed around the main star.
On the second set I used copic markers to colour the mother and child image, cut them out and glued them over the dusted backgrounds. Then I cut the whole squares out along the scribbled edges,  so that I had six toppers ready to use.
Next I found a lovely scrapbook paper from one of my digi kits, that was a perfect colour match, and I cut and pasted it to form a 17 x 11 cm rectangle and printed it off six times. 
I made six base cards in cream - normal letter size for out here, which is just a little larger than A6. I also cut six smaller panels of the same card and cut along the lower edge with a Joanna Sheen star border die. I stamped the sentiment which is very, very old Great Impressions stamp, and added a topper alongside it. Then I layered up the card with the blue backing paper, and the topper panel, and finished it off with a little gold-ice stickles on the star in the topper, and the main stars on the sentiment.
And just to prove I did make a set of them, here are all six. I may do a few more of these as they were not too complicated. But first I will link up with the Rudolph Day Challenge on Scraps of Life by Scrappy Mo.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

June Rudolph Day Challenge.

Here we are at 25th of the month again, so it is time to post a card or other Christmas make. I am still keeping my craft as simple as possible as I cannot work for too long at anything, so once again I turned to my Slhouette library of cutting files for my card. I still have several files that have never been used, so I chose a nice candle card kit. 

It also makes sense for me to make more than one card at a time when I can, so I made three base cards in cream, and used one sheet of 12"x12" green card from SU, to cut the main, shape for the front three times.
Next I cut three pieces of dark red mirri-card to go behind the windows, and mounted both of these to the base card.
Then I raided my snippets box and found tiny pieces of card to cut the two layers of the candle in a very light, and a slightly darker shade of cream, some neutral brown for the candle dish, and I used the green cut-out pieces from the card windows to cut the holly leaves. I then used very tiny bits of red vinyl for the berries and glitter gold vinyl for the flames, and assembled all the layers for each card.
There was still a gap below the candle which I had deliberately added to the cutting file so I could stamp  a more 'wordy' verse, but as I spend all my time dropping things at the minute, I decided not to risk it. Instead I looked through my folder of gold peel-offs and found these very large Happy Christmas stickers. This seemed like a good opportunity to use some of them, and I finished off with thin strips of peel-off holly leaves down each side.
And just to prove I did make three of them....!
I am rushing around now as my choir has it's first ever big concert this evening and another one tomorrow afternoon, so I must get prepared, so I will link this up with the Rudolph Day challenge over at Scraps of Life by Scrappy Mo, and tomorrow when Pixie's Snippets Playground reopens, I will link it there too, and after this hectic weekend, I will be there to see what everyone else has made.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Butterflies for someone special.

Well, despite my good intentions, I haven't managed a post again all month, but this week I need a card for my sister who will be eighty-eight at the weekend, so I decided to look at the latest Butterfly Challenge. I was pleased to see that this week's criteria is 'O' for Oval, which is my favourite shape to use for toppers. But when I also saw that it was 'O' for Olive green I wasn't so sure. Olives are on the table everywhere you go out here, and although they are not my favourite food, some of them taste OK, but believe me, they are not a pretty colour!

However I raided my stash and found a snippet of backing paper printed with olive green blossom and tiny pink butterflies, so that is what I used to make this card.

I do have  quite a lot of plain olive green card as it is a fairly neutral colour and goes well with most things, so I made a base card from that and also cut an oval frame with my silhouette Cameo, adapting a file from my library.
The main image is another cutting file purchased from the Silhouette store and cut from pink vinyl. I used the same vinyl to cut the 'Happy Birthday', another file from my library.
Once assembled I added some pink gems to two of the corners, and a selection of tiny butterfly stickers bought years ago when Lakelands plastics still sold craft materials. There must have been hundreds of them in the packet, as I have often used them, and there are still lots left.
So that's it. It is too hot to handle anything for long so my cards have to be fairly quick to make and assemble.
So now I will pop over to Mrs A's blog to link up to The Butterfly Challenge#56, and see who else is fluttering by.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Rudolph Day is here again

My word, the 25th of each month comes round fast, but it was a bit of a shock to open my blog to write this, and see that I haven't posted since Rudolph Day last month! Hopefully I will do better after this one as I have just made some birthday cards to post while I am in UK, but I can't show them on here yet. 

So instead I turned my attention to making a couple of Christmas cards and here they are.

Both are made using a set of Hobby Art stamps that I bought last Christmas, but they have never been inked up before.
I tend not to go for 'Cute', and these are bordering on it, but I rather liked the simplicity of the figures, and they were not too challenging to colour. So as time was in short supply, I thought I'd give them a whirl.
I used masks to stamp the figures in two groups, and them masked them all while I dusted distress ink on the backgrounds. Then I used copic markers to colour the images.
I should have learned by now to chose my frame/mats before I stamp, but I haven't, so once again I spent ages going through my dies to find something that would fit my arrangements. In the end I chose the outer layer of Spellbinders labels 46, Decorative Elements for the top one, hand-cutting around the second size for the image, and Nestabilities Decorative labels 8 and the matching plain one, for the lower card.
I cut the frames from mirri-card and also used some for a border on the blue card. The lines from a carol are from a set of stamps by Our Daily Bread.
I couldn't fit a word stamp on the second card so I added a banner from a set I was given many years ago.
Both backing papers came from my Christmas snippets box so I will take these cards over to Pixies snippets playground
I am flying to UK early tomorrow morning to attend my brother's funeral, which is a sad occasion, but it does mean I will get to spend the weekend with my sister Jean, and also meet up with distant relatives whom I have not seen for many years. So I will  publish this a little early, and do my best to link it up to the Rudolph day Challenge on Scraps of life by Scrappy Mo, when I arrive.

Monday, April 25, 2016

April Rudolph Day

Here we are at the 25th of the month again, so time once more to make a Christmas card or two. If you still don't know what this is, pop over to Scraps of Life by Scrappy Mo and find out all about Rudolph Day.

Between some health issues within the family, and my new found interest in trying more complex crochet designs, I do not seem to have had much time for card-making, but I am happy to be getting a head start on my Christmas cards, so I was determined not to miss this challenge.

A long time ago I purchased some nice Christmas corner flourishes (cutting files), from the silhouette store, but I have never got around to using them. So this week I made some templates for card fronts in the Studio software, and played around with the corners, some script cutting files, and a stamp that hasn't seen ink in a long while, until they all fitted on my template, and came up with two designs.

The first fitted best on a rectangular card so I stamped the image in Memento pistachio ink, added colour with my copic markers to the holly around it (all part of the stamp), and cut it out with a plain oval die. I distressed the edges, added a small amount of glitter glue to the trees and holly, and set it aside. 
Next I embossed a piece of plain white card with my snowy embossing folder - sorry there is no make on it and I can't remember where it is from- and added it to a light green base card.
I cut the corner flourish and sentiment from matching green vinyl, and assembled it all.
The base card was made from half a sheet of the European-size card sometimes sold in Lidls, so I used the other half to make a second one the same.

My other design fitted better on a 15cm square card, so I rooted around in my Christmas snippets box and found a piece of holly paper for the background. I made a dark green base card, and cut the corner and script from dark green vinyl.

I then made a white base card, used a snippet of blue and silver backing paper, and cut the corner and script from navy blue vinyl.

So that is four more cards to add to my stash, and I shall now link them up at Scrappy Mo's, and as I haven't visited lately, I will also take them to Pixie's Snippets Playground.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Butterfly Challenge #51

I wanted to make a card for a friend who is having major surgery tomorrow, so I decided to have a go at the Butterfly Challenge for this fortnight, which is to use a butterfly of course, but also to use 'M' is for Margins and/or Mint. I love the colour mint and it just so happens that I have a fairly ancient versacolour ink pad called Mint, and also a Brilliance Pearlescent jade pad which is almost identical but with a sheen, so I was off to a good start. (These ink pads amaze me. They really are years old but they still work perfectly).

I do like making square cards, and when I was in UK earlier this year I bought a 12" x 12" pad of white card, so it is easy to cut a sheet in half and make two 6" square cards (or 15cm as I prefer to call it these days!).

I took a slightly smaller piece of white card from my eternal stash of white snippets and stamped it with my much loved, Impression Obsession Cover-a-card stamp, using the versacolour ink pad.

My margins were made from snippets rescued from a brochure from a well known High Street bank, which have been in my snippets box for ever. (We don't even bank with them any more!). I edged them with a Marianne border punch, and when they were attached to the card, I laced them together with mint embroidery thread. The tails of the thread were used to tie on a tag made from more snippets of the card and a Hot off the press sentiment stamp.

I wanted to add another colour so I used Memento ink pads, Pink blush and Rose bud, and my Altnew layered rose stamps, and the corresponding dies, and made three roses. - I love these stamps. There are three or four stamps for each flower which you use with increasingly pale ink and it gives a lovely result. The Misti stamp positioner is a great help when doing this.

The leaves were also cut with the Altnew die, from pieces of darker card from the same bank brochure, but they were too shiny to stamp on so I used a permanent marker to add a few lines.

I rubbed a small off-cut of white card with the Brilliance ink pad, to completely cover it, and when it was dry I punched out some tiny butterflies using X-cut and Marianne punches, and glued these randomly over the card and tag.

To me the card looked a bit 'unbalanced', and being a Libran, I didn't like this, so I rummaged through some boxes and found a green and blue butterfly on a cheap sheet of stickers from our todo shop. Putting this in the top right hand corner balanced it up for me. Then a few flat-back mint pearls gave the margins a lift and with the addition of a tiny pink and mint bow, my card was complete.

So I will link this up with Mrs A's Butterfly Challenge#51, and then, as I haven't been to play for a while, I will also take it over to Pixie's Snippets Playground, and see what my crafting friends have been up to.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Ring out the bells for Rudolph Day

For a couple of nights this week our internet has been playing up - hopefully just weather interference - so I took the opportunity to make a quick pair of cards for Rudolph Day.

As you can see, they are both the same except for the  glitter glue that I used to give them a little 'lift'. They were both clear, ice type of glues, Dovecraft 'Crystal' which has very fine green and blue glitter in it, and Stickles 'Icicle' which has a coarser gold glitter in it. On a snowy image the difference is almost unnoticeable, but on this dark background it really shows up.
I spotted the image in the Silhouette store and bought it as a cutting file. I love to hear the bells ring out on Christmas morning, but they are not often featured on Christmas cards these days. I cut the file twice in my Silhouette cameo, using dark blue card. (The frame is attached to the bells and cuts in one piece). 
The backing paper looked as though it was from a magazine but it was a good quality, slightly glossy paper so I am not sure. I found it in my Christmas paper box so it is probably quite old! There was sufficient to back both cuts. It was graduated shades of blue, so they look slightly different. Then I mounted them onto plain white base cards and used a very old Hot off the Press stamp for the sentiment.
I thought they looked a little flat, so I added the glitter glue. There is actually a touch of it on the stars in the background too, but that doesn't show in the photo. A bit of bling was what they needed and I am happy with the results. So I will link them over at Scraps of Life by Scrappy Mo, for the March Rudolph Day Challenge. You have from 25th to 31st to add your Christmas make, so I hope to see you over there.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Butterfly Challenge#50 Buttons and/or Bronze

Another last minute entry from me, but I wasn't able to do the last Butterfly Challenge so I was determined to get a card made for this one. And here it is.
It is not the best photo as I was having trouble with the reflections.
I cut a white base card to the European dimensions 11.5 x 17 cms. I like it because it gives me just a little more space to work in. It also meant that I could use my newest  Creative expressions die - Lattice window by Sue Wilson.
I looked up Bronze on the internet and Wikipedia said it is 'Metallic brown', and it just so happened I had a sheet of metallic brown textured card in my stash, at least fifteen years old, so it is time it was used. I cut my die from it twice, omitting the centre part, and glued them side by side on the base card. I then cut the centres from white card and added them on top.
The butterfly is a Wild Rose Studio die (Butterfly lace), cut from the same bronze card. For the back layer I cut around the outside of the die from white card and painted it with Imagination crafts Starlights paint - Mediterranean Sky - and added red perfect pearl drops to the circle holes. I cut a small banner from some more of the painted card and cut a sentiment with Signature dies in bronze.
To finish it off I raided my boxes and found a mixture of blue and red buttons and brads and glued them randomly on the lattices.
So now I am off to link this at Mrs A's Butterfly Challenge#50: Butterflies with Buttons and Bronze.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Sing us a Song, You're the Piano man

Our youngest son Ben plays the piano and sings, often his own songs, but also covers of other people, and one of his favourites is Billy Joel's "Sing us a Song, You're the Piano Man", so when I saw a lovely 3D piano inside an exploding box, featured in Pixie's Snippets Playground several week ago, I just knew I had to make it for Ben. The original, was made by Alice for her young niece, and you can see it here. This was my inspiration, but I think I managed to put my own stamp on it. I bought the template from Card Carousel. It arrived in PDF format so the first thing I did was to change it into a svg so I could cut it with my Silhouette cameo, giving a much more accurate cut-out to work with.
I assembled the piano and left it over-night to dry completely. Then I added embellishments and filled the empty top with small flowers, some of which I made, but most were purchased ones from my stash. They needed a lot of glue to stay in place, but once it was all dry, it felt quite robust.

Then I turned my attention to the box. It went together well, and I had already got it in my mind how it would be decorated. I cut and assembled it from sturdy blue card and then added a white panel to each inner side, which had been embossed with a music folder and lightly rubbed with Memento Paris Dusk ink.

I have a selection of musical sayings and images in my silhouette library, either saved when I have seen them somewhere on the net, or purchased from the silhouette store, and I used four of these as embellishments on the inside of the box. I cut them from navy vinyl and used transfer tape to place them on the embossed panels. These are the four designs I used. And below is the box when it is open.
For the outside of the box I used panels of printed backing paper and another musical image, the same one on all four sides.
The lid was made with the same paper and image but I used a larger image with a lighter shade of blue vinyl, and added a punched lace trim around the edge. (Marianne punch).
I was only able to make this for Ben because I knew I would be travelling to UK in January and could hand deliver it. I wrapped it in bubble wrap and placed it in a large ice-cream tub in my luggage, and miraculously it arrive undamaged.
It was his birthday on Monday of this week, and he kept it until then to unwrap, and I am happy to say he loved it. So much so that he posted a video on Facebook, of how it opens to reveal the piano, and it has received lots of nice comments, so it was worth all the work.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Sparkling Poinsettia Candles for Rudolph Day

Because I have done very little crafting lately, I seem to have a pile of new stash that hasn't yet seen light of day, so I have chosen a new stamp set for my cards - Sparkling Poinsettia Candles by Heartfelt Creations. And here is my first card.

I stamped the image twice onto white paper and coloured one with copic markers. I chose fairly traditional colours. 

Next I cut  a mount with the largest of the Spellbinders Elegant oval die set. I laid the die over my image and drew around it's centre opening, and cut it out, cutting around a few leaves and petals that extended beyond it. 
I made a mask for the candle and dusted a yellow glow around it.
Then I chose a backing paper from my snippets box - from a magazine giveaway I think, and assembled the card. 

I stamped a sentiment from the same set, with a versafine pad and heat embossed it with gold powder. Sadly it seems I have kept my gold powder for too long, and it is no longer very gold, so I must have a hunt, because I am sure I bought a new one recently.

Finally I added yellow glitter glue to the candle flame and the centres of the flowers, and a little clear frosting to the leaves.

I was pleased with the result and as I had another stamped image, I made a second card using less traditional colours. (I had stamped two images intending to decoupage the flowers, but as postage of dimensional cards is becoming a problem, I decided that one layer was enough). This time my backing paper did not have its own edge so I cut a holly border using a Signature die. The sentiment is a peel-off.

I really want to keep up with my Christmas card making this year as I failed miserably last year and had my usual last minute rush, so last night I made four more toppers, experimenting with different colour combinations. Some worked better than others, but the one I was least sure about (orange candle) ended up as the one I liked best!
I chose a backing card for each one and cut the matching mounts as above. Then I rummaged through my Christmas snippets box and found coordinating backing papers, so now they are ready to assemble and I just have to find/make some embellishments and I will have a set of six to add to my collection.
Happy Rudolph Day everyone.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Blue butterflies for the Butterfly Challenge.

I  feel that I am getting back into the swing of things after my holiday and visitor, and as I sat wondering what I could make last night, I suddenly realised that there are still two days left to enter Mrs A's Butterfly Challenge where the theme is 'S' for Stamping or Sapphire, or both, and of course, a butterfly or two, so here is what I made.
Dark blue (Sapphire?) card from my stash for the base card and trellis which are cut with a Memory Box die.
Pale blue paper strips under trellis are snippets from an old magazine giveaway.
The centre panel is a piece from my huge collection of white snippets.
Butterflies are by Crafty Individuals. Each one is two stamps. The bottom layer - the fill in - was stamped with a Brilliance rainbow pad, and the top layer - the detail - was stamped using an Archival dark blue pad.
The butterflies were masked while I stamped the flowers in the background, using the same ink pad, and a new set of Altnew stamps called Persian motifs.
The sentiment is from another Altnew set.

So I will quickly link this up with Mrs A's Butterfly Challenge#48 and see who else has fluttered by,

Now to make some Christmas cards for Rudolph Day on Thursday!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Fun in the Snow for Rudolph Day

I am writing this a little early as I will be away on 25th January, but I will schedule it and hopefully it will post on time.
For Rudolph day this month I am using a set of cards I made in December as back-ups, and then didn't need, so they are the start of my collection for 2016.

I used a pair of stamps, bought a while ago, but inked for the first time. They are Woodware clear stamps and I think they are rather fun.

I stamped each one several times and then rifled through my Christmas snippets for some strips of paper. 
For each strip I made a coordinating base card, DL size, and coloured one of the images to match the colours in the paper.
When the inks were dry I cut each image out with a straight side and one side cut with my new Joanna Sheen Signature die - Snowflake border.
I mounted them up and added a matching bow to the top corner.
I made half a dozen of these but  must have used one. Don't they look jolly all together? I still have a some of the stamped images ready to make a few more.
I shall be linking these to the Rudolph Day Challenge at Scraps of Life by Scrappy Mo, and also to Pixie's Snippets Playground. I might build a snowman but I hope there are no snowball fights going on in the playground when I visit.