Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Happy Easter with hanging treats for the tree!

It's time for me and my family to hunker down for our annual Easter get-together but before I show you today's project, let's have a look at the latest Weekly Deals from Stampin' Up! This new set of offers will be available until end of Tuesday 22nd April 2014:

Crisp Cantataloupe 3/8" stitched satin ribbon £8.25 NOW £6.19
Silver Glimmer Paper £4.50 NOW £3.28
This and That Epic Day designer series paper £9.95 NOW £7.46
Afternoon Picnic designer series paper £9.95 NOW £7.46
Polka Stampin' Around builder wheel £3.95 NOW £2.96
Fancy Flower punch £15.50 NOW £11.63
Floral District photobook template (digital download) £12.50 NOW £7.50

Pop over to my online shop to order any of these and if you're in the mood for a crafty bargain, why not have a look at the Clearance Rack while you're there?

What's the Easter Bunny been up to?

The idea behind today's project was to create something you could hang on an Easter tree. Come and see:



The basket is made by putting together a simple box, attaching ribbon to it, then covering with card stock that has been embossed with the Square Lattice embossing folder. You'll notice that the cute little bunny from Life in the Forest has made another appearance - what a little star he is!

HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE THIS PROJECT
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.

We always put up an Easter tree - just a few twigs in a jug.


I often decorate it with a theme - birds or butterflies and ribbons one year, flowers in ice cream colours another. This year, it's decorated with all our little bits and pieces we've collected over the years.


The children squee'ed over all their old friends!


Oh dear, little Miss Pink Rabbit is looking a tiny bit grumpy... I think she had ambitions to be the Christmas tree fairy!


It always seems like a miracle to me that you bring some dead-looking twigs indoors and they burst into leaf and, as my daughter observed, who can feel sad when there are rabbits and chocolate eggs in the world?!

Have a very happy Easter and I'll see you next week.


Tuesday, 15 April 2014

A pampering gift from the Secret Garden spa!

What could possibly be better than getting the crafting goodies you want? Getting them at a discount of course! Today is the last day to get the items below at the special Weekly Deals prices:

Secret Garden framelits £20.95 NOW £15.71
Dress Up framelits £20.95 NOW £15.71
Festive Flurry framelits £20.95 NOW £15.71
Needlepoint Embossing Folder £7.50 NOW £5.63
Flower Garden Embossing Folder £7.50 NOW £5.63
Framed Tulips Embossing Folder £7.50 NOW £5.63
Blossom Party Originals die £15.95 NOW £11.96
Recipes by Design (digital download) £6.95 NOW £4.17

I made a gift for a friend using the Secret Garden framelits. Come and see:


The box is made using smooth and core'dinations card stock, with a window cut out of the lid with a large framelit from the Circles collection. I laid the white face cloth inside for a spa look and arranged the beautiful skincare products on top.


The larger flowers and leaves were stamped using colours in the product packaging and I cut them out with the coordinating Secret Garden framelits. The Magnetic Platform is so useful for this as it holds the framelit firmly in place as you run it through your Big Shot. I added some tiny white flowers, cut out using one of the flower punches in the Itty Bitty punch pack, and some pearls.

If you'd like to see how I make basic boxes with perfectly-fitting lids, check out my video tutorial.



HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE TODAY'S PROJECT
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.

When I was a little girl I was obsessed with beauty products and longed for a boudoir decked out with cut crystal perfume bottles and jars of luxurious creams and lotions. I was always trying to make some scented lotion with flower petals, water and talcum powder although the resulting messes dampened my enthusiasm a little. My daughter once applied a homemade face mask while getting ready for a special party. It made her feel really pampered, she told me, until she caught a glimpse of herself sitting in the bath with cold, dried porridge on her face!

See you tomorrow - with the latest Weekly Deals!


Monday, 14 April 2014

Flower pot in bloom seed gift

Have you seen that the Blossom Party Originals die is on special offer as part of the Weekly Deals? It reminded me of a little gift I made for my Stampers 6 club ladies a while ago now. Come and see:


I made a plant pot sleeve using a retired card stock but Crumb Cake or even Cajun Craze would work just as well...


... and attached this fabulous sentiment from Fabulous Florets which I thought was very apt.


I added a riot of flowers and foliage using the Blossom Party die and some couple of punches...


... which I attached to a piece of card stock folded over a packet of seeds to make a tag.


A piece of ribbon threaded through the tag makes it easy to slide the tag out of the plant pot sleeve.


Look at my plant pots, like Mary Quite Contrary's pretty maids all in a row!

HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE THIS CARD
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.

Yesterday, we were talking about a trip to a local museum when my husband suddenly remembered a story that had appeared in the news about a museum visitor who tripped over his shoe lace and fell down the stairs. Apparently, as he fell, he knocked a priceless pot off the window sill and it smashed into smithreens. My husband found this very funny but my youngest son took it more seriously. "This is why I always say velcro shoe fastenings are best," he said to me gravely.

See you tomorrow,


Friday, 11 April 2014

Framed Tulips - or any other flowers!

I noticed the Framed Tulips embossing folder featuring in the Weekly Deals Stampin' Up announced for this week. Now that is a folder that is indispensable in my Craft Square Metre! I like to make little sponged scenes and frame them - like this:


I find a 7.5 x 10.5cm panel fits nicely in the embossed frame. Here, I inked up part of the Hardwood background stamp and pressed my panel down onto it, before adding the flowers and sponging colour around them.


Aren't these flowers beautiful? They're from Love and Sympathy, a set that was designed for sympathy cards but which is very versatile. I inked the flowers up with markers to get the multi-coloured image.


I used one of the sentiments from Peaceful Petals to turn my card into a thank you and you can see the embossed frame in this close-up too. The tulips are very stylised so you could use this frame for any occasion - even Christmas!

I'll be linking this card up with the Paper Players where LeAnne's Three Spree challenge is to use three of something on your card.

HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE THIS CARD
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Ink: Baked Brown Sugar, Gumball Green, Soft Sky classic inks, plus markers
Card stock: Very Vanilla, Crumb Cake
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.

One week into the Easter holidays my youngest son has confided that his tech teacher is leaving school.This teacher made a huge impression on my son during his first lesson with him. Apparently one of the classroom lights was flickering and the teacher suggested that everyone held their hands up.When one of the class asked why, the teacher's answer was "because many hands make light work". He is going to be very much missed.

Have a great weekend and I'll see you very soon,


Thursday, 10 April 2014

Of stars and stripes

What do Benedict Cumberbatch and Twiggy have in common with Handel and Charles Dickens? They are all supporters of 275 year old children's charity Coram! Stampin' Up has asked a number of celebrities to make cards which will be auctioned between 6th May and 16th May 2014 to raise money for the charity which helps some of the UK's most vulnerable children in many different ways. Find out more here and check out Mr Cumberbatch's and Twiggy's fabulous artwork as well as cards made by a host of other celebrities.

I didn't want to be left out of all this star-studded creativity and although I can't imagine any of my cards being auctioned for any princely sums, I thought I'd make my own tribute to a charity that touches my heart. Come and see:


If you go along to the Coram website, you'll notice that its colours are bright and positive orange and red so I  used those colours and some of the design elements on the site to make my card. While you're there you can read a bit about why Thomas Coram set up the charity back in 1739 and what it's trying to achieve in the present day.


This was a very quick card, suitable for my Three Minute Thursday slot today. I cut strips of card stock and glued them to a curved square base. That was topped with a fabulous graphic label from Hello Lovely which was stamped twice in Pumpkin Pie and Real Red, then snipped and spliced together for a two-tone effect.

HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE THIS CARD
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Other: Envelope board (for rounding corners), paper snips
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.

My daughter's boyfriend brought his three year old sister round to play yesterday and I was transported down memory lane. All our favourite stories were read aloud; a little house was built under the kitchen table and 'porridge' made in a saucepan and dished out onto our picnic plates; our cat was (much to her horror!) petted by eager but clumsy fingers; bubbles were blown and chased after in the garden; my boys' old wooden garage and road system was put together and played with; there was a special lunch out followed by a trip to the playground. I was thinking about all this as I typed up today's post - this is childhood as experienced by the lucky ones.

See you tomorrow,


Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Hang out the garlands - there's great news!

There's some exciting news from Stampin' Up today! More about that in a minute but first, I'm just taking a quick break from feeding the Ravening Hordes to show you another quick card made with Stampin' Up's fabulous Happy Congratulations stamp set. Come and have a look:


What a great stamp set this is for celebrating any happy occasion, for males or females, young or old! I chose an energetic colour combination of Coastal Cabana, Pumpkin Pie, Daffodil Delight and Rich Razzleberry for this happy birthday card!

Now what about that Stampin' Up news...?

I'm delighted that I'll be able to offer you selected Stampin' Up products at slashed prices each week in April starting TODAY! Do you love framelits? Well how about £20.95 now only £15.71! What about embossing folders? Flower Garden, Framed Tulips and Needlepoint border £7.50 now only £5.63! There's more too - just click here to go to my online shop and follow the Weekly Deals picture.



HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE TODAY'S CARD
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.

I always seem to spend a lot of time cooking during the holidays as the boys seem to have turned into locusts! Luckily I have an eager helper in the form of my youngest son although since puddings seem to be his main focus, I'm not sure how much help he is! 

See you tomorrow,


Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Happy Congratulations garland

I've always loved bunting, and garlands with their association with fetes and festivals and a general feeling of excitement, so Stampin' Up's Happy Congratulations stamp set made me want to get stamping straight away! Come and see:


Happy Congratulations is a two step stamping set: it's so easy to stamp the garland outline and fill in the lanterns with the solid stamp.


Different colour combinations give a different feel but I rather liked this cool turquoise palette with a touch of gold from the sequins.


You must have heard me banging on about how much I adore this sentiment from Happy Day! I have a big smile on my face every time I stamp it (and that's often!)

This card will be my second link up with Less is More where using the colour turquoise is the challenge this week.

HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE THIS CARD
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.


The holidays have kicked off with my eldest son taking the first opportunity possible to disappear off on a sleepover with his best pal and my younger son brushing up on some cookery skills between bouts of xbox gaming (check my facebook page for a delicious, fast, no added sugar dessert that he found on Pinterest.) My daughter has been working far too hard so I made her take a break to watch a film with me. We watched an old film called She - does anyone remember it? There's a great review here if you're interested and I would definitely agree with the author who writes "in spite of the poor reviews for She, and the fact it clearly is a load of old tosh, I found myself enjoying it immensely."


I watched it wide-eyed as a child but was thoroughly amused by it this time. Ursula Andress appears in some interesting headgear and there are some hilarious moments such as when Bernard Cribbins offers warm scotch in the desert! We have been entertaining each other with this ever since. For example:

My daughter: "What's for dinner Mum?"
Me: "I thought I'd rustle up a nice warm scotch!" or

Me:"Would you like a cup of tea darling?"
My daughter: "Not really. You couldn't do a me a nice warm scotch could you?!"

See you tomorrow,


Monday, 7 April 2014

Beautiful birthday butterflies

I've been going birthday-tastic just lately so you'll be seeing a crop of birthday projects over the next few weeks! This card, using Stampin' Up's Serene Silhouettes set, was inspired by the displays of beautiful spring flowers around at the moment - come and see:


I've used Marina Mist for the card base. The more turquoisey blues are stealing the limelight at the moment but Marina Mist is such a pretty blue and looks wonderful with Old Olive. I've added a pop of Crushed Curry in the form of the die cut butterflies too - at least I thought it was Crushed Curry until something weird happened...


Aaaargh! I can only apologise for this photo! These butterflies are yellow in real life but after a lot of frustrating research I've discovered that Google has introduced an auto-enhance feature that wrecks some photos and you can only turn it off if you switch to Google+.  (Perhaps I should go ahead with that... Have you made the switch? I'd be interested to hear about your experience.)


Here's a close up of the embossed frame detail. Framelits are great for embossing with and this scalloped one from the Squares collection gives the card an extra large postage stamp look!

I shall be linking this card up with The Card Concept where the theme is Butterflies, Mrs A's Butterfly challenge where yellow is required this week (my butterflies ARE yellow I promise Mrs A!), and Seize the Birthday where they're all about birthdays!

HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE THIS CARD
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Ink: Midnight Muse, Old Olive classic inks plus Marina Mist and Old Olive markers
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.


I don't think I'm a complete slouch on the technology front but there's always an element of sighing and eye rolling if I ask my children for help. In retaliation, I behave like a decrepit old lady, asking them to ring me on the telephonic instrument or asking them whether they've downloaded the latest gramophone record onto their ipods.

See you tomorrow,


Saturday, 5 April 2014

A spray of turquoise ink

Turquoise is everywhere at the moment - have you noticed? I've been wearing it with a zing of coral so when I saw the challenge at Less is More was A Touch of Turquoise this week, I thought I'd try it on a card. Come and see:


I could have chosen any of the beautiful new florals from Stampin' Up's spring/summer catalogue to make this design but I was feeling wistful for an old friend so out came Summer Silhouettes.


The leaves and flowers were stamped in a triangular shape using two of the turquoise-ish colours: Coastal Cabana and Island Indigo. The banner is from one of the stamps in the Apothecary Art set. It was too long so I cut it down and hid the join with the fussy cut sentiment. No-one would ever know...!

The sketch I used comes from the ever-inspiring CAS(E) this Sketch.


HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE THIS CARD
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.

The Easter holidays have begun so life has gone into overdrive again! My youngest son took pity on me and offered to go to the supermarket for me today. I rummaged around in the cupboards to see what we needed while he wrote the list. "We'll need sprouts," I said. "How many?" asked my son, writing it down. "Hmm, let's see - about 16," I said. "And we'll need a couple of parsnips." He looked up. "Two?" he asked. I nodded. "Yes, and could you get a pat of butter? Just one." He twinkled at me and launched into song: "And a partridge in a pear tree!"

Enjoy the rest of your weekend. I'll be back on Monday when I'll be turning my attention to birthdays! Hope to see you then,


Friday, 4 April 2014

My Easter bunny box with ears

You may have noticed that I'm ever so slightly obsessed with rabbit ears... well they're so cute! Do you remember my chevron bag treat bag with ears? well I thought my latest little box would be great for place settings for an Easter Sunday meal or as a treat for anyone who melts at the sight of rabbit ears (even my eldest son forgot to be manly when he saw these!) Come and see:


How adorable are these little cuties?! To make them I've used two different patterns from the wonderful tone-on-tone designer paper stacks that come in all the Stampin' Up colours.


The bunny noses are tiny hearts cut out with the Owl punch and I like the way the bakers twine looks like whiskers!

These boxes are so quick and easy to make that it would be a shame not to make some! And I've even provided a step by step video tutorial for you:



HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE MY RABBIT BOX
(Click on each item to find it quickly in my shop) 
Punches: Large oval, Owl punch (for the tiny heart nose!)
Click above to place an order any time, day or night,
but if you have any queries, or prefer to speak to me, I'm always happy to help.
You can contact me by email or phone on 01280 820593.


My children once had a toy called Bun Bun. It wasn't a rabbit though, it was a mouse! It was probably intended as a toy for a cat - you pulled the string and the mouse was supposed to creep along realistically, providing endless pleasure for some savage feline.  I don't know if Bun Bun had been on the cooking sherry or something but when you pulled her string, she just went round and round in circles and our cat showed no interest in her at all! She featured as a heroine in many of the boys' games  and was very much loved and, although she lives up in the attic now, we do impressions of Bun Bun sometimes!

 See you tomorrow,