Saturday, 31 December 2011

New Years Eve 2011..

Well, it's New Year's Eve and it's a time of reflection...have you achieved what you set out at the beginning when you made your New Years resolution?  At the beginning of this year I set out with a word(s) to live by for the year..Living the Dream.  This was my vision for the year, to live my life to the full with crafting and one day to make a living at it.  Sadly, no matter how much time and effort I have put into this I feel that I have let myself, my family and freinds who have supported me throughout the year with this vision down. I am/have contemplated whether to continue crafting, while I love to create, I do find myself swamped out with so much crafting stuff and of course it all costs money and no where to store it except the lounge,  it bugs me that I have to clear away my creative efforts each time we eat or have guests.  The money aspect is hitting hard right now as with the New Year of 2012  fast approaching and my daughters wedding heading nearer I have to focus on exactly what I can realistically achieve with the little time and money that I have at my disposal. My daughters wedding plans will be stepping up at a pace now and as we are having the reception in my Mother's barn there is a lot of work to do.  You can follow the progress of this miracle that we will perform on my blog. While I continue to contemplate my plans for 2012 I just wanted to wish you all a Happy New Year! x

December Daily, Day 31..

Well, its the last day of the December Daily and today's entry is of  my niece's 21st Birthday card. All cardstock is from Payper box and all the metal elements are Tim Holtz.  A hint of pink with the rub ons and leather thong adds a girlie feel to it.  As there is a lot of metal on this card I have added extra weight at the back of my card so that it stands proud.  Happy 21st Birthday Hannah!  x

Friday, 30 December 2011

December Daily, Day 30..

Well, it's the penultimate day of the December Daily..while it has been challenging I have enjoyed it, especially finding the good things in life to blog about.  It's quite rewarding as you realise that life's not so bad after all!  I bet you are thinking that my blogs are unpredictable, you would be right! Today's entry is a scarf that I am making for my son, he has made his voice loud and clear that he thinks it unfair that my girls had a handmade, soft and snuggly scarf and he didn't.  So, I am secretly making this for his Birthday in January.  As you can see it's a very simply knitted scarf, chunky and I am using a gorgeous Rowan wool called drift.  Its a beautiful blend of greys, browns with a hint of green in the finest Merino wool.  Merino wool is the finest and softest wool of any sheep, quite expensive to buy but it also has an excellent warmth to the weight of the wool, it traps the heat in without the wearer getting overheated.  So, this should be finished in the next day or two just in time for his Birthday and before the cold snap. x

December Daily, Day 29..

Well, we are almost there for the December Daily.
Here is a card that I have made for my good friend Nick, oh how I miss you guys!  I promise to visit in February.  Looking forward to seeing you all again.
This card was made using a selection of My Minds Eye papers, SU stamps- Lovely as a tree and Congrats with some Old Olive ink and Vintage photo.  Finished off with some SU Expresso striped ribbon and a brad.
Happy Birthday Nick. X

Thursday, 29 December 2011

December Daily, Day 28..

I just had to share with you this image.  It was my Birthday present from my lovely Mum and was intended for my patio but I thought it would work equally well in my hall for Christmas.  It's about waist height and is made from Stainless Steel and is from Nordic House which can be found online.  I have just added some ribbon and berries for a Christmassy feel.  With my bannister, mirror and door all having these berries on them it all looks great when you see these all together.  It feels very cosy when this is lit in the evenings.  I am now thinking that I might leave this in the hall all year round and just interchange the decoration to fit in with the seasons.x

December Daily, Day 27..

This white tree was given to me a while back by the lovely Julie-Anne, I love this tree and with the red baubles and silver bells look great on this.  The felted star at the top was purchased a couple of years ago at Van Hage garden centre.  It was very expensive but I used my vouchers that were given to me by Rebecca and each time I set this tree and star up I think of the people who gave me these beautiful things.x

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

December Daily, Day 26..

Well, I can see where Jake likes to get his dressing up from...his Daddy.  Jake looks like a very cute Santa, bit of a cheeky one! His Daddy has his Christmas hat on too. It was lovely to have my family stay with us over Christmas, the house was chaotic and Jake had literally a mountain of toys, he must of been a good boy! x

December Daily, Day 25..

Christmas Day!  Here is my Grandson, his first Christmas and yes, he spent about an hour and a half in this box of wrapping paper.  It appeared that wrapping paper is tasty!! x

Saturday, 24 December 2011

December Daily, Day 24..

Well here's a surprise blog...a retirement card!  I have never made a retirement card but I knew that I wanted to use the clock stamp.  The beautiful papers I used are My Minds Eye Lost and Found range, I have just used the reverse side of the paper so that it all co-ordinates. The SU stamp sets used are sense of time and congrats, vintage photo distress ink and Martha Stewart Ribbon.  The hands and clock clogs are all from a real watch/clock and the hands are just attached with a brad. x

Friday, 23 December 2011

December Daily, Day 23

Yep, you guessed it, it's the final card for one of my daughters.  As before I have used Cottage Cutz Santas stables and the tree die (borrowed from my awesome friend Sarah.x) and a Sizzix snowflake die and Darkroom Door stamp.  LOADS of cutting and assembly, "blinged it up" with stardust stickles and used liquid pearls around the edge.  The amount of times I lost the flame to the candle, I can't tell you, but my patience was growing thin, still my lovely daughter is so worth it. x

Thursday, 22 December 2011

December Daily, Day 22

I know you have been waiting a long time for this one but here it is!  I'm not going to say which daughter this one is for I'm going to keep you all guessing!  The Santas workshop die is from Cottage Cutz as is the tree and the poinsettias are from Marianne designs(once again all borrowed from my truly wonderful friend Sarah.x)  The background shapes are cut using the Sizzix SU topnote die-just love love love this die, so versatile, great one to having in your crafting stash. The post mark is from darkroom door.  What can I say except LOADS of diecutting to this and assembly with just some ribbon and stickles to "bling it up". Just for future reference, don't make these to order, they take far too long and are far too fiddly!  But, my daughter is worth it :-) xx

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

December Daily, Day 21..

This is something different for you..a Silver Wedding Anniversary card.  Once again I am letting the high quality cardstock do the work, a mixture of textures, colours and shades from frosted cardstock to high quality foiled card to the SU designer papers along with some mirri card.  It has a great weight to this card something of luxury.  The 2 and 5 have been cut using the Sizzix serif numbers with white ribbon, pearl hat pins and a diamonte ribbon bead it all adds up to class.  Happy 25th Anniversary Alan and Jackie. x

December Daily, Day 20..

This card was made as a gift card for a lady that will be receiving tea for two at The Ritz, what a lovely gift.  I have let the quality of the SU designer papers do all the talking.  I wanted this to be stylish, glitzy and glamourous.  Ritz was cut from the Sizzix notepad dies and tea was from....umm..senior moment...nope, just can't think which it was, sorry. I have added some balck velvet ribbon, tags, gems and an SU brad to finish it all off. x

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

December Daily, Day 19..

At long last, I have visited the German Christmas market in Westminster with my good friends Sarah and Alison, Julie-Anne was going to be joining us too but the poor lass has hurt her back :-(  Get well soon JA, we did miss you.  Of course when in Rome and all that... you just have to get into that Christmas spirit and have the Gluhwein, it would be rude not too! Sarah did get a bit squiffy, but isn't that what celebrating the season is all about? x

December Daily, Day 18..

I know, It's surprising but here you go, today's entry is a Birthday card and not something for Christmas!  This time is it for my soon to be Son-in-law, his fascination with Star Wars never diminishes.  I have had these papers for a few years now, they are from Creative Imagination and are Star Wars logo and Darth Vader.  As the papers are so beautiful I have let them do all the work for me.  I have just chosen to emulate the theme by matting and layering on black and silver with a few white rub ons and the card is complete.  Simple but very effective. Let the force be with you today! xx

Monday, 19 December 2011

December Daily, Day 17

This Christmas card is for my brilliant friend Sarah (and Richard, of course).  Sarah loves everything Christmas and has a particular fondness for gingerbread items.  When I saw this Cottage Cutz die I knew I had to make it for her.  I can tell you there were like a gazillion pieces to cut and stick for this and it probably took me the whole day to cut it.  I could not make more than one of these a year, it is just so fiddly but it does look much better in the flesh.  The candy canes on the thread come from Michaels in the States, as soon as I saw these I knew these were going to go on this card. I just blinged it all up with some stickles and thought that this was enough on this card, I didn't want to detract from the gingerbread house. xx

December Daily, Day 16

I know, I am behind again :-(  But, fear not, I am going to catch up and stay that way for the duration of this December Daily(she says with fingers crossed).  I could not resist taking this photo of my Grandson Jake after we had been out for the morning,  don't you think he looks a cute Rudolf? Love that hat!! xx

Thursday, 15 December 2011

December Daily, Day 15..

Well, today, I have created my first Polish Birthday card.  It is made for a strong, friendly Polish man who just so happens to be my "boy" at work.  He works and plays hard and likes the good things in life but is true to his Polish roots.  So here I have used those ideas here, strong colours, Polish flag, he loves cars and the colour yellow.  The car stamp is from Creative Expressions.  The sentiment is printed out on the computer.  I had help with the translation as Google didn't do to well with the Polish grammar and they do not use the term Happy Birthday. Until tomorrow.x

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

December Daily, Day 14..

Well, here we are again and yet another Christmas card. How are your Christmas plans going?  Not long now!  Here is a simple card.  Just using papers that I have to hand and vellum sentiments, baubles that I have made as before, and the Sizzix top not die plus a few gems and matting and layering.  Simple but effective. Not sure where my creative journey will take me tomorrow...just have to wait and see!!  xx

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

December Daily, Day 13..

This was the result of "having a play" with some papers and dies and embossed bits n pieces.  I really love these! I'm not sure where to start as there are alot of materials used here.  Lets give it a go..
Sizzix top note die, label die, and serif nembers dies.
Technique Tuesday stamps, silver embossing powder, SU label punch, SU 1" punch, covered buttons, gems, ric rack braid, vellum, bells, the background papers, sorry I just cannot remember the names of these and of course the December stamp is Ali Edwards(thank you Sarah for the loan of this- love them!).  I still have more cards to make, at the moment it feels never ending but once I am "in the zone" I love the creative process.  xx

Monday, 12 December 2011

December Daily, Day 12..

Yay!! I am finally up to date with my December Daily.  Here are a trio of Christmas cards all using the same materials just slightly different with a few different embellishments.  The card stock I bought a couple of years ago at Ally Pally it's a high quality silk mirri card, very exquisite.  I have used the Marianne Pine tree branch die and the SU Christmas baubles stamp set.  With the baubles I have embossed these with gold embossing powder, cut them out and edged them with a gold marker pen, punched a hole in the top and threaded them up to hang from the branch.  I have inked the edges of the branch with Vintage photo distress inks to add some more depth.  Stamped my sentiment and added my emblishments and this is how they all look.  xx

December Daily, Day 11..

Here is my cute Grandson in his Tigger outfit.  He's just so damn cute!!  Now, I have taken quite a few of his photo's lately for a special project in different outfits that I am unable to reveal right now but I can say that the finished product is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!
Suze, my youngest daughter has done a brilliant job in editting them all, well done girl! In this photo Tigger is being very subdued.X

Sunday, 11 December 2011

December Daily, Day 10..

Well this is part two of our Christmas special at is the Scary Grotto!  Again this is all made from returned items and this is a partial Little Tikes house covered with wadding and the scary elves are added for the scary grotto effect.  No child would ever want any gifts if they had to visit these elves!! x

December Daily, Day 9..

Well, this is not your typical, beautifully decorated tree but here at work we make our own seasonal stuff by reusing what everyone else throws out.  So low and behold we have an unwanted tree, lights which one of our stores threw out and all the "lovely" items on it were made from other reject toys that come our way, as far as improvising goes you cannot beat my team, they have great talent and can make something out of nothing.  That's what I call pure genius!!  The star at the top is made from discarded wrapping paper and one of my boys is an origami master so this tops the tree off beautifully.  I bet you are all jealous?  admit it?! x

Saturday, 10 December 2011

December Daily, Day 8..

Another day of catch up, but honestly, I really am getting there!!  Here is a Birthday card, very modern but I just love the open and airy feel of this card.  It probably looks more complicated than it is?  I have drawn inspiration from a shop window which had a series of loose circles with butterflies coming out of the circles quite randomly and this has stuck in my head and now its out on this card.  Never under estimate the power of the media and where you draw you inspiration from, its a very valuable tool.  The card stock is from Payper box and I have free style stitched on the machine loose circles in silver thread then cut from the Sizzix die the decorative accent with flower, added gems, pins, silver cord and sentiment and this is the finished result. xx

December Daily, Day 7..

Still trying to catch up with this December Daily but I think I'm getting there along with all the usual Christmas stuff going on!!  Here is an Anniversary card that I made, it really is much better in the flesh than in this photo.  Items I have used are-
SU decorative label punch and congrats stamp(sentiment) and real red ink, Sizzix top note and primitive hearts dies, Tanda background stamp set 1,Ribbon, hat pins and red leather.  Textured paper is from The Paper Company-starburst translucent red all other cardstock is from Payper box.  This card is so lovely in the flesh, if I have time I will be making more!!  Would also be good for a Valentines Day card...just change the sentiment at the top.xx

Friday, 9 December 2011

December Daily, Day 6..

Well,  as soon as I blogged about the cabin, the delivery man arrived and we now have all the flat packed storage to build.  Here are just a few of the boxes that need assembly.  Phase two of the storage arrives sometime next week, let's hope that we can build it all in time (big gulp!)  Do you like the Lego blue carpet that you can see sneaking out from under all those boxes?  x

December Daily, Day 5..

Just wanted to share with you guys what AJ and I have been working on for the last two years...landscaping our back garden to build a large log cabin and sidestore.  The log cabin is for AJ so that he can create Lego masterpieces, maybe one day he will be a Lego Master builder?!  The side store(the attachment to the cabin) houses all the usual garden and DIY paraphernalia, which is my domain.  Love my sidestore!!  The garden has taken a terrible beating while all this has been happening and hopefully in the spring I will be able to replant the new beds that I have created. All we have left to do to the cabin is await AJ's delivery of a massive storage system!!

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

December Daily, Day 4

You might well be wondering.."what the ..."?  Well, this photo has been taken of me and my team at work.  We work in the returns department for the largest independent toy company in the UK.  We thought it would be fun to have a team photo taken together in our elves hats and grabbing a toy of our choice for the Christmas card that we will send out to our stores and suppliers.  This is just the photo and not the final card but as it goes to print, it looks pretty cool!! Did I say..we really enjoy our job?! xx

December Daily, Day 3

Today I wanted to share with you this twig heart that Sam bought for me.  Sam knows I love this kind of rustic stuff and it sat in the bag for a couple of days not knowing quite where or what I was going to do with it but the one thing I did know is that I LOVED IT (in the words of Craig Revell Horwood).  I felt it needed a bit of colour to enhance it so I have woven in these berries and added the ribbon to give it a Christmassy feel.  It now proudly hangs in my hallway for all to see and it is the first Christmas decoration I have put up- I know, I have a long way to go! 

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

December Daily, Day 2 - My AJ..

My significant other deserves the best, trying to produce something each year that is totally unique is tricky.  This card has been made just for him...he loves music, especially 80's or Country, loves retro cool stuff.  So, here I am trying to fit that theme using quite calming retro colours, jukebox and records, music and notes personalised with his initials and the year in which he was born.  The other really special thing here is that I have printed onto vellum some lyrics from his latest favourite Country song which has a special place in both our hearts, and as you know I like my card to fit in with the gift he will receive (I'm not telling...)  The card is a very substantial weight due to the vast amount of matting and layering which this photo doesn't pick up very well.  Here is a list of what I have used- Cardstock-Payper box, Stampendous stamp-rock out, Quickutz dies-juke box and record, Tanda stamp-background set 1, Vintage photo distress ink, archival black ink, vellum, letraset.  The lyrics are from God Gave Me You by Blake Shelton.  Happy Birthday AJ...Love you. xxx

December Daily..

Well, I never thought that I was going to enter into the spirit of this as I'm really behind with all the Christmassy stuff but, I thought, let's give it a go!!  Now, let me just make this perfectly clear, it might not be the usual card or page that I blog as I definately won't be able to keep that up.  That would be foolish, it just would not happen.  I need to keep my life simple and stress free (like all of us?) So, my intention is to give you a glimpse into my private world of ME (something I rarely do), it could be something that I have made or someplace I have been or simply something that inspired me to take the photo.  I am running late with the December daily already so I might be making a couple of blogs per day in order to catch up :-)  This photo is what I am still working on..the guest room for Christmas.  I have almost finished papering-this room has two rich white walls and there will be on the two shortest walls this paper which I have hung horizontally to make the room look wider.  I have made the blind in here too.  Still alot to do in here but watch this space.xx

Monday, 5 December 2011

Seasonal batch cards..

I'm not making any excuses, BUT, when you have to make a vast amount of cards the easiest thing I find is to batch make them.  Apologies to those who think this is a cop out but at least it is handmade and not shop bought.  There is still the love and attention gone into each one and time is of the essence right now.  Here is what I have used-
Cardstock from Payper box, Top note die from Sizzix, Stampin Up stamps sets-winter post and seasons of joy, inkadinkadoo stamp, Marianne die-large poinstettia, Magnolia die-vine, Vintage photo distress ink, gems, gold brad, liquid pearls-lemon yellow, vintage lace and off course stitching in red!  As you can see there are still alot of elements to them and I wanted something that looked traditional/contemporary and I think this fits the bill. Has everyone else finished making theirs yet?? xx