Another quick one…

Both my boys have had birthdays in the past couple of weeks.  15 and 13, can’t believe it!  Here’s the cards I made for them. 

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This one had it’s problems – stamped the cake too far forward and it’s actually sitting on what should be the edge of the table!  Also, I stupidly laid a piece of paper over the top – before the glossy accent on the balloons had time to dry.  However, the end result doesn’t look too bad considering.

Clarity stamp balloon and meadowdance stamps with some other birthday ones I had in my stash.

 

 

 

ImageWas happier with this one.  Suited well as he’s off skiing with the school for 10 days.

Claritystamp letterbox kit, skier from Sports set and the miniature spruce tree.  Also used the cloud mask to created the lovely fluffy clouds and the mountain side of the hill mask too.  The Claritystamp masks are great – save a lot of cutting out time.

 

Putting myself out there!

Well, this post isn’t what it started out to be!  Having written it, and published it, I seemed to have managed to overwrite it with something else so I’ve had to start again.  Suffice to say that the previous version was witty and insightful and I can’t remember a word I said!

The original point of the post was to say that I had decided to have a go at a challenge on the Fussy and Fancy blog.  Pink and Black is the theme and this is the card I’d like to submit.  It started out life as a birthday card in yellow and green and I just thought it would look brilliant in the pink and black.  It doesn’t come close to the entries already on the site but it’s a start and I’m hoping it might inspire me to try to think outside the box a little and maybe coming up with something a bit more creative.

I used the Claritystamp Meadow Dance stamp, along with the miniature butterfly from the Best of the Classroom set and the small dragonfly too.  I brayered the Tim Holz Worn Lipstick ink over the Theuva card to begin with and used a pigment black ink to get a really solid black colour.  The centre piece was a separate A6 card mounted on top.

BCMDPNK

Lesson for today, write it up in Word then copy it in so you’ve always got something to refer back too 🙂

Weekend Inspiration

I’ve been crafting since I was a little girl but my other great passion I only discovered when I turned 40.  Cycling!  I started out trying to commute to work on a great big pink ladies Claude Butler bike and now I regularly do 50 mile rides with the Edinburgh women’s cycle group, Hervelo, on my lovely Specialized Dolce road bike.  I love planning routes and leading rides – taking some of the other women in the group around Midlothian and East Lothian to places they’ve maybe never been before.

Two weekends ago we had set out to go looking for snowdrops at a place I know in East Lothian.  We took a higher than normal route there and it was bitterly cold with a strong headwind and snow flurries.  We decided to cut the ride short and head to our favourite cafe in Gifford for egg and bacon rolls. 

So, last weekend I was on a snowdrop mission.  We headed out again, taking a lower more direct route to our destination but it was a beautiful day and we managed to keep warm.  Unfortunately the snowdrops weren’t quite out yet but we saw a few just starting to peek through.  An excuse for another visit in a couple of weeks’ time.

Anyway, I was really struck by the changing colours in the roads we cycled around.  The farmers are starting to plow the fields and they’ve gone from a yucky grey colour to an amazing range of reds and browns. 

So, this weekend’s card was inspired by our route.  It also meant I could use one of my favourite stamps, the cyclist from Claritystamp Sport set.  I’m looking forward to changing this card with the seasons, some buds and early leaves on the next one.  I hope you like it.Image

To shrink or not to shrink

I love Shrink Plastic.  I’ve still got the little Christmas decorations that the children made to put inside homemade crackers about 10 years ago – and they go on the tree every year.  I was fascinated with the idea of using stamps and Shrink Plastic when I saw Barbara Gray of Claritystamp demo it on a Create and Craft – Stamping with Clarity – Imageshow a few months ago.  Seemingly Barbara had a history with Shrink Plastic on the show and previously had, as my daughter would say, an epic fail when demoing it before.  The clip is on YouTube and it does make me laugh.

I went out and bought some clear Shrink Plastic and I can honestly say that my early attempts were about as good at the Barbara’s on that show.  I tried the tray and heat gun technique but ended up with bits that stuck together and didn’t uncurl, which is really frustrating when you’be spent ages colouring in your artwork.

I decided that it wasn’t for me and put it aside, until I saw Karen Clare’s wonderful card on the last Stamping with Clarity show on Create and Craft.  Via her blog, Karen was good enough to give me some advice on how to use Shrink Plastic and last night I got myself prepared by stamping up sheets of frosted plastic and clear plastic ready for colouring today.  I finally found a permanent inkpad within my stash that dried and stayed put on the plastic but I had also found that it needed a good bit of time to dry.

This morning, as my husband headed out for a cycle, I got everything together and started colouring in and cutting out.  All of a sudden it was 1 o’clock and the kids were complaining about being hungry.  Deciding to have sausages for lunch meant I had a valid excuse to put on the oven and give the shrinking a go.  I was feeling a bit nervous as I wondered if my morning’s work would, in the words of Barbara, end up looking like a pork scratching.

However, success!  Nothing stuck together and everything turned out looking just as I had hoped.  I’ve decided that I definitely prefer the depth of colour you get using colouring pens over pencils (I used my Pro Markers) and I especially liked the glittery effect that using my Sakura clear star gelly roll pen gave me (thanks for the tip Shrink Plastic).

I’m also enjoying ATCs, or artist trading cards.  Something new to me, again through Claritystamps, the ATCs are so small and cute, only 2.5″ x 3.5″ in size.  I decided to combine the shrinked images with an ATC and miniturised one of my favourite scenes using the Moonfairy stamp, one of the funky cottages and also part of the split tree.  They are so effective.

So, now to decide what to do with the rest of my shrinkies – watch this space.

A gift of a card

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I have a friend who loves deer and I bought the Claritystamp small deerscape with her in mind. I followed the design demo’d by Barbara Gray on Create & Craft. I find that if I follow an example I can then start to experiment and come up with other designs and variations.

I gave her the card today and she’s going to send it to her son and his wife in Vietnam in celebration of the Vietnamese holiday, Tet.

I think that’s the furthest one of my cards has gone!

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A new experience

I follow lots of blogs and I’m supposed to blog for my audio transcription business (as my SEO guy keeps telling me) but I really struggle with that one.  However, I don’t think I’m going to have any difficulty in blogging about my crafting obsessions.  I’ve started the blog because a lot of the blogs I follow need you to have your own blog if you want to participate in their challenges so I thought I’d give blogging a go.

I’m also keen to find an outlet for all these cards I’m making!  They’re piling up around about me and the kitchen table is getting swamped.  I had intended to create a bit of space in the home office for all my crafting but we’re about the bring the business back home so there’s not going to be any space.  Time to clear out some of the kids’ old toys and clear some cupboard space!  I’m sure I could fit a little table in the landing cupboard and work in there.  Only trouble with that is, will I have room for the computer so I can watch YouTube videos to learn new crafting techniques 🙂

I’ve had a really crafty few months in the lead up to Christmas.  Not only did I make enough cards for all the family, I also made enough to do three craft fairs, supply the 50+ cards I needed to send out for the business and also the 100+ that I like to send to extended family and friends.   I know that sending Christmas cards is falling out of fashion, e-cards seem to be all the rage, or a FB post, but I love sending and receiving Christmas cards.  They make up half our decorations.  I also really like all the little notes and catch-ups people put in their cards, it’s nice to know what friends you don’t get to see very often are up to.

I particularly like making personalised cards for people.  There’s been a flood of new babies this year so that’s been great.  We’ve also got the 15th birthdays of the children who were born as part of our anti-natal group.  We’ve all kept in touch, which is amazing, and I’m already planning each of the cards personal to each of them.

So, first post done!  That wasn’t as painful as I thought it would be.  I think I can mange this!

One of the Christmas cards made for our overseas friends and family

One of the Christmas cards made for our overseas friends and family

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