Monday, 15 December 2014

play time

Good Afternoon  I am just sat sitting as I have been doing some bits and bobs of admin on the old lap top so whilst I was here I thought I would just blog this card I made.

It all started with Barbara's blog and her canvas - you can view it here.  Needless to say mine is pale in comparison but I thought I would give it a go anyway.  I practised on a bit of card stock to get the idea first.

Barbara used some Golden open acrylics - I haven't any of those but I have a few from Deco art so I used those instead.  Also don't have any canvas boards so I improvised and used Acrylic textured paper 30 gsm if you look really close you can see the canvass type texture.

Firstly I dragged in the paints (gold, red and blue) from the sides

Here's how it turned out

 I added the stencil (dirty from my practising) at a jaunty angle making sure that the exposed bits of my artwork were covered with bits of low tack tape

Added the grunge paste and left to dry.  Whilst it was drying I started two more (pics further down this blog post)

Love how the canvas pattern can still be seen 

whilst the paste was drying I also cleaned the stencil then replaced on my work and added more of the same colours through to colour the grunge paste.  I did the leaves in gold first then added blue from the bottom side to add some shade and also blue and gold make a greeny colour!  I did the flower head in gold, then added the red followed by a bit of blue at the bottom again for shade.

Out with the new word chains - oh yes indeedy I got them  and job done

I was quite chuffed with my little self

Here are two more done in the same way.  Methinks I might need some more of the pen acrylics - I likey lots.

Anyway that's it I think I will turn off the lappy and go and make a brew - happy crafting xx

Monday, 1 December 2014



Good Morning and welcome to December - it's nearly here - are you ready? Me ? no I haven't started the Christmas shopping but I am feeling smug in that I have made and written all my cards (over 70) some of the local ones have already been posted in our local scouts posts (they raise money for their funds every year by running a local postal service ---its only 25p per card so thats much cheaper but the last posting date is 5th December to give them time to sort it all out and deliver it.)  The sad thing is I wrote them all and sealed the envelopes then remembered I hadn't taken a piccy of any - how stupid is that.  I have the cards for my girls and their partners that are not sealed so at least I can take a pic of those and I suppose I had better make a card for Grumpy - though why I don't know as he doesn't like Christmas!

Anyhoo enough waffle from me.  We had some lovely entries for travel last month, the most popular stamps seemed to be the boy and birds, balloons and of course last month's ndc stamp the car with the tree in the back.  I wonder who will win and get and early Christmas pressie to spend at Clarity?

The final challenge for this year is Trees so here is my inspirational piece - well I hope its inspirational.

I started with some brusho's I used sandstone and rose red and on a piece of card and sprayed liberally with water.  I laid a piece of acrylic paint card on top with a linen finish and then lifted it off this is a cool way of doing it as you get two pieces so you can save one for matting and layering if you need it.

If you look at the picture below you can see how it just picks up the linen in places - its a really cool finish that I learnt from Pauline Wheeler

I used the remountable butterflies clear stamp set  for this card and I used versamark and black embossing powder so that the image would really pop.I added the top of the tree along the bottom together with some other tree stamps to create a "forest" I stamped the butterflies randomly in the "sky"

On the the other piece of plain card I stamped the some more butterifles and embossed in the same way then I cat them out

 This way I was able to stick them onto my previously stamped images and give them some depth

So there you have it  and here it is .  I hope it inspires you to have a go at this month's challenge 

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

surprise surprise!

Hello Hello Hello,  
Ecky thump its been yonks since I manage to blog that wasn't for the Claritystamp Challenge but just for me!

Its been a busy old year one way and another but there is light at the end of the tunnel!  I think I have nearly finished my numerous Christmas cards  just need to finish a few off and do some inserts.

So before I do that I finished this at the weekend and I thought I would share it with you.

I had been having a session with me brusho's - I have got some of the wax but don't really know what I am doing with it as this is the only session I did with it, anyway I got Jo's bubble stencil and I put some brusho crystal through the holes.  sprayed with water and dried.  I then put the stencil back on and sponges some of the wax through it .  I then added some black brusho around the edges , sprayed with water and left to dry overnight.

The next day I rinsed it under the tap and was left with what just screamed sky at me.

I left it on my table for a few days and just kept looking at it,  I decided to add some trees, still not quite right - the moon needed something so out came the heron.  I then decided to add some more trees but more in the foreground but as I had already done the ones in first generation ink I decided to use black embossing powder to make them stand out.  I matted it onto some black card but it needed a lift so using the same colours of brusho's, I did another piece to mat and layer onto 

I quite like it but would be very interested to see what you think or am I just going mad?

Saturday, 1 November 2014


OMG I cannot believe we have got to the beginning of November and  I haven't even started making my Christmas cards yet.(starting to panic now)  These months are just flying by.

So what have I been up to since my last blog - oh I must get better at blogging, the trouble is a lot of stuff I do I cannot share and then I am in an atc, gift tag and inches club and I could share these but I always forget to take piccies lol - anyway back to what I have been up to ?  October has just gone in a whirlwind it started with a trip to Gibraltar to visit my youngest which sadly meant missing Port Sunny show anyway grumpy decided that we should go away (he cannot fly so no Gib for him) for my birthday so I arrived back on Monday and set off for a week in Wales on the Friday, in between I had orders to make and workshops to plan.  we booked Friday to Friday which meant I could then go to the Clarity Northwest class in Preston the day after we arrived back and then the following day - it just had to be done - jumped in the car along with my Sister in Law and off we went to Doncaster Dome to the craft show there.  We had a lovely time and of course Sam and Jo were both there as were their brand new stencils - both of them had grins like Cheshire cats, needless to say I got them both then I had workshop on the Wednesday at Craftrange followed by a demo day on Thursday  this last week over in Fleetwood for the Crafty Company.

Enough waffle I am really here to talk about my piece for the November challenge over on the Claritystamp challenge blog.

We had some more fabulous entries again last month so wonder what on earth people will think of for the theme of TRAVEL

I also bought these three little ships at Doncaster so felt I just had to use the bubble stencil and the ships.  I used the gelli plate with ink with a ghost from one print overlaid with a print from another I used a bit of copy paper to make the horizon and a bit of ink, and used the word chains to make the word - so useful those word chains just a case of masking and inking .

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Seasons- the falling leaves of Autumn

Morning All

It's the first of October and so I have only 2 more sleeps before I go to visit my daughter in Gibraltar, I am going with my other daughter so it will be lovely for us all to be together, Grumpy isn't coming (he's not allowed to fly so we will be having a week in Welsh Wales when I come back)

We had some super entries again last month and some stunning cards with clever ideas so well  done to everyone who took part,  it is always hard to pick my favourites 

So the theme for October is Seasons and here is my inspirational piece - I actually remembered to take some pictures as I was doing it - so that makes a change!


I had the idea for this card when I was at the Inkymitts hub at the end of July.  

I was originally thinking for the last challenge of Nature and I saw some stamps on the wall so as I had my stencils with me I borrowed the stamps and this is what I came up with.  At the time I quite liked it but when I got home I realised that the over-stamping wasn't really up to scratch as I had missed bits.  I tested in the corner one with some pencils on the top but I wasn't happy with that so I it to one side.

However on the up side I had taken delivery of some Brusho crystals a few days before and I had this background in my stash from my first days play and I did think it would make a cool background for the leaves.


I messed about a bit with the leaves set, I tried various inkpads and coloured over with my speccy pencils but it wasn't quite right.  I put it all to one side for another day and decided to get out the gelli and try the brusho's on it .  using autumnal colours and spraying water and sliding about on some of them I had these three prints in front of me.

Now in their own right they don't amount to very much and were a bit messy - but then sometimes messy is good.

 Then I had a brainwave I started stamping with archival ink on top. - result lovely leaves so I stamped out loads in various parts of the prints and cut them out.
I shaded the back with brown and a stencil brush so that I could wrinkle them up and bit and not show white.

Can you see how they are all coloured differently like they would be in real life - I was soo chuffed.

So there you have it falling leaves of Autum - eeee this has been a long post for me - I hope you are still with me ! It has been my friend Cindie Cooper's birthday so she got this card.

Looking forward to seeing the entries for this month - bet we get some cracking Christmas ones!

Monday, 1 September 2014



September has come along very quickly this year hasn't it  I can't believe that we are heading at such a hurtling speed towards winter - ooooh it's not good, not good at all, lets hope we have an Indian Summer this year and that September's weather is kindly towards us.  

Again this month we have had some fantastic entries for the feminine theme - maybe not quite as many as usual but then again it has been the holiday season and the children have been off school.  As ever though the entries are all fantastic and picking my five favourites has been a very difficult task. 

I have soooooooo struggled this month to come up with something for the theme and don't ask why because there is certainly lots of gorgeous Claritystamps relating to Nature - I know because I have lots of them - but could I think of anything to do - could I heck as like - I think my mojo has just completely done one this month, so apologies in advance for this month's piece but I promise that next month's will be much more inspirational (I know this because I have already done it...sshh don't tel; anyone)

In the end I decided to do a tag so I started by cutting a piece of the gelli card into a tag shape.
I used a coffee archival ink pad, then took the word chains and choosing letters from various words and a lot of masking I stamped Nature.  The inspire bit was simple as that is a complete stamp - I just had to add the S.   Funny that I decided to say Nature Inspires - when I wasn't being inspired myself  lol.

Using one of the brushes I coloured the tag with Antique Linen then I added the poppy stencil and used aged mahogany with a make up sponge.  It looked a little bare - mmm what can I add to fill in the space?  so then I remembered the little leaves from the split tree set - ideal so I stamped with forest moss.  I added more forest moss around the edges followed by Walnut stain

Friday, 15 August 2014

happy birthday Janet

Evening all - Finally I have something I can share ...well I did share all those brusho things on FB lol

It was my youngest daughter's birthday this week and the eldest daughter and her bubby are currently out there in La Linea visiting so I took the opportunity to send a decent sized card lol.


I had the gelli print from my last successful session and I thought this would be perfect.  When my daughter lived here she had this banksy  sticker on her car so when I saw it for sale as a stamp  from the Bee crafty range of inspired by Banksy I just had to get it  added happy birthday from the word chains although on this picture it looks like the Bi in Birthday are not there -- but they are in real life lol.

Anyhow I have had a message to say she loves it so thats all that matters

Friday, 1 August 2014


AUGUST  really? already?

 Oh my word where is this year going?  I cannot believe its time for a new challenge on the Claritystamp Challenge blog.  

Last month was anything goes and wow did we have some fabulous entries again.  You guys are just amazing it is always so hard to pick just 5 for the top 5 - all I can say is I am glad we don't have to single out just one and its left to the random picker!!  
Is this the month you are going to give it a go? £50 voucher for the winner - what's to lose?

This months theme is feminine.

Now for some time I have been trying to get prints off my gelli plate but have struggled to get what I want - but patience is a virtue and practice practice practice practice and FINALLY I got some prints that were what I wanted YAY

So I just had to use one for this months challenge.


I used the abstract squares stencil  for this print and I used buff titanium, a blue, there is also a hint of some pink  and black acrylics.

I used the gingko stencil from last months new design stencil club and denim and black ink to add background around the print.  I have quite a lot of the miniature stamps and decided to use velvet lady, kasha and a shoe as they fit nicely in the boxes and I coloured these in with spectrum noir pencils.  the other two little stamps I have had for years - some of you may remember that many moons ago Barbara always had a box of little unmounted stamps whenever she attended a show and both of these were the results of rummaging lol however they can be found in the atc section the floral urn is here  I can't find the miniature version of the Lotus but here's a link to the full size one

I coloured some sweet lilac flowers - so easy with the Claritystamp brushes - with denim and raspberry.  I gave the same treatment to some white lace and cut a flourish from a die.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Workshop 2nd August

 Morning all,  I have had a lovely few days as my daughter has been home on a visit from Gibraltar, sadly I got up at 4am this morning to take them back to the airport so now I must get  my head back into gear and get organised.  This is the card we will be attempting on Saturday at Craftrange 10.30-12.30

This card was inspired by a card done my Laura Williams which you can view here

Booking is through the shop  and useful items to bring if you have them

raspberry and denim adirondak or any pink and blue die based ink pads
black archival 
ink brushes and a paint brush.
and a stencil of our choice for the background - don't worry if you haven't a stencil - cos I got loads lol 

If we have time we will also make the tag.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

grumpy's card

Morning all, as some of you know I have been struggling lately and have had to use a certain bucket a lot lately.  I have put a picture of the said bucket at the bottom of this post but if you are easily offended don't look Ethel - it was posted on my timeline by a friend one day when I had thrown everything I tried to make in the bin, personally I think it's funny.

It's our anniversary tomorrow and I have been trying to make a card for grumpy.

It all started when I bought a craft mag and one of the free stamps was this sentiment - oh that will do nicely for grumpy a card - I had been struggling with a theme - cos you know he doesn't have any interests except sport lol.  Anyway I made him a gelli print card in February and he really liked it so I thought well I will just use a print and the sentiment, sunshine stencil and Bob's your uncle (or in my case husband).


So I had many attempts and spoilt lots of lovely backgrounds trying to get the sunshine on  and following a conversation with Sam Crowe I had another go last night and finally cracked it.

I made a lovely background , took a heart from the hearts and leaves stencil and used it in the middle of the sunshine stencil.

I now had a nice print but the sunshine was white and where the heart was - a bit blotchy.  ADD INK!

doh why didn't I think of it before - so I added some lettuce followed by some denim, went around the heart to define it with a speccy pencil added Happy Anniversary from the Happy word set.  and mounted it .  That'll do but it looked a bit lost on the card so I took the ginko stencil - cos that's a  bit sun ray- ish too same green and blue - job done

Here is the bucket..................................>

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Someone Special

Morning all  now don't faint but I am here with another card !

I was asked for a birthday card for a chap with a white terrier and not being a big animal lover myself I have no dog stamps!


No idea what to do so I found a nice piccie of a chap walking his terrier in a dark moody setting  so I dragged it into Serif and sort of sized it so that the man would be central in the abstract squares stencil   I chopped up the pic so I have the sun in another square.  I added some text on another it of the picture and then cut this to fit another square.

Using the stencil I inked through with lake mist, butterscotch, slate and a touch of black to match the colours of the original pic. - In real life it looks quite good.  I did a bit of stamping hither and thither, using post it notes to protect around the shapes a few gems and a small wood heart I coloured in with a sn pen

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

anything goes

Oh Wow can you believe it's July already? Have you had your holidays yet or are you still looking forward to them?

 So have you had a look at all the fantastic entries we had for the Claritystamp Challenge 16 last month?  Masculine - we are all agreed men cards are a pain right?  but I will tell you what you lot are up for a challenge and you met it more than admirably - fantastic entries from everyone.

This month's theme is anything goes - easy peasy right? but no I really struggled to come up with an idea this month - I am blaming the weather  but my mojo seems to have gone awol and where I normally have loads of ideas of things I want to do my mind is currently a blank which is not good.  

Anyway I had to make a card for my crafty Sister in Law whose birthday was on Sunday so I have killed two birds with one stone and come up with this! 
I also wanted to used the abstract squares stencil (new addition - these stencils are even more addictive than the stamps - I have loads and still got a long wish list that is ever growing!


I wanted to layer up some of the squares so I made two backgrounds using red pepper, butterscotch and pesto, they are not exactly the same but as my mother used to say - a man on a galloping horse will never notice lol

I stamped the design onto one of the backgrounds using geranium archival.

 I looked at the squares and decided which ones to cut up to layer up from the second background.  I also wanted the stamping to match - could I find my acetate - could I heck as like - I could find some strong stuff but that was too expensive to just chuck in the bin after - so I raided the kitchen drawer and used some greaseproof paper - at least I could see through it!

I stuck down the greaseproof over the top of my image so that it wouldn't move and then with a tiny bit of tape gun on the back of my squares I lay them in place - now I could match up the stamp underneath without spoiling my original!


I then removed all the masking and attached in place with foam pads and stamped Happy Birthday.  I felt it just needed a few flowers - so I got some sweet lilac flowers that were white and inked them up with red pepper and my stencil brushes.

So that's it, Margaret loved it.  I am looking forward to seeing what everyone gets up to this month - Oh my word with the theme of anything goes - anything could happen lol. So come on give it a go  I love seeing what you all produce

Friday, 27 June 2014

Block card

Hello Strangers

I apologise profusely to all of you whose blogs I normally visit but I do not know where the time has gone just lately and life just keeps getting in the way of crafting. 
Like today for instance I get up ...late cos I overslept grrr because I need to do the dreaded food shop then grumpy says can we go for a drive somewhere, stop for a butty and then we can call at the supermarket on the way home?  OK says I (thinking here I am building up brownie points as I will be out all day tomorrow at the lovely Claritystamp Northwest with our lovely Maria Simms and loads of crafty friends).
So off we toddle and eventually get home around 1.30, unpack the shopping make a cuppa and I sit down with my lappy to check bank statements etc etc.  Oh hells bells I don't tally!!!!  so I then spend yonks trawling through my transactions and I finally get sorted.  Grumpy likes a printed statement - he doesn't do computers lol so I prints him one off and sign out, Go to get the print out - bliddy printer didn't take the paper straight away so top of of page missing ..So I signs back into bank to do it again.
In the middle of all this a crafty friend popped in with a very nice card to show me so now the afternoon is nearly over and I still haven't done anything!

So I give up am obviously not going to get any crafting done this afternoon and I promised several people on facebook that I would blog instructions for this here card I made.

I am ever hopeful that next week things will return to normal  lol

Here goes I just cobble a quick jobby together just to give you the general gist.
You can use either A3 or A4

for A3 score across the landscape view at 5cm intervals all the way along, this leaves a small strip at one end for A4 score at 3.5 cm intervals.  at portrait score the same measurement bur you only need to score 3 lines

now I included a little pocket in the back spine of mine - somewhere to write a message and sentiment if you want to do this you need to leave the end section - if not cut off at the bottome score line.  cut out the hashed area in the top have and also along the solid lines.

I trimmed a bit of the pocket so that it doesn't go right to the top when folded over and I left some bits at the sides with which to stick!

Thats it you now just stick the back to the front and the flaps in the middle that overlap to form the shape

Folds flat for posting now all you need are 15 squares to decorate the sides and steps, a longer piece for the spine and a little insert if you want to use the pocket.

Hope this helps - shout if you need help .

Sunday, 1 June 2014


Oh my life I cannot believe that we are in June - seriously- already! where is this year going?  I have even seen some people talking about the C word - I want a  bit of summer first please - I do hope it is going to be a "Flaming June" we have only had two or three nice days here in Darwen so it would be nice to see some more Sun.  

It's a right proper Claritystamp day today, what with a new blog challenge and of course our Barb on the telly, I am looking forward to the shows and then of course its a new month so I will get m NDC stamp shortly and a stencil too - can't wait 

We have had another set of brilliant entries for our Words challenge so lets see how you all get on this month MASCULINE now don't you all just lurve making cards for chaps - a right pain they can be 
This is my inspirational piece - I hope you like it.


I just had to get the men wheelie stencil - there are some great little chaps on there but I love this young lad leaping in the air.  I also thought what a great "hole" is in the stencil so I thought I would make use of it - well it would be rude not to!
So I made some masks and put them to one side, and kept the outer part too.  I found the centre of my card and drew a dot with a pencil. I also marked each side of the card at the halfway point.  I took the stencil apart and using the marks on the side of the card and centering over the dot I inked through the aperture  I dragged some colour across from the side  to give it a bit of variation and the little guy . I then used the outer mask to and stamped through the hole with the fob watches. I covered them up with my masks and then used the cog stencil for the background .  I used the cog stencil on some spare card and then cut circles out of it, added the words and mounted on to some cogs cut from a spellbinder die.

Right that's me done time to go and make a cuppa and settle down to watch Barbara work her magic - I wonder what stamps and stencil we will see today?  I know one thing for sure - there is bound to be something to add to my list of wants lol
Have a Super Sunday.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Working with Stencils

morning all - just thought I would share a few samples with you. My next workshop is on Saturday 7th June at the craft range - there is a link on the side bar if you would like to book a place.  We will be using stencils and dye based inks.