Wednesday 30 November 2011

Whats on Your Workspace Wednesday - 130

My table is a bit of a mess today as I'm in the middle of a few things - why finish one thing when you can have three things going at the same time?  Bet I'm not the only one with a messy desk this week as you can see at Julia's blog-hopping paradise over at Stamping Ground.

So what can we see today?  Can't tell you what it's for (yet - tease, tease) but I raided Sorrel's sandpit for the sand you can see in the yellow bowl, had to wash it to get rid of the muck though - yuk.  Little tin of bits - shells, charms etc and some wooden cubes gessoed ready for stamping/covering, not made my mind up what I'm doing yet.

Have only made one Christmas card this year so need to get my skates on.  The one you can see is my last year's card to Mr B.  It's a pop-up type thingy and I liked the idea so am going to do more this year for family, so it's out as inspiration.

Happy Wednesday everyone.

Tuesday 29 November 2011

Thrilled to find out this morning that I'm one of the winners in the Crafty Individuals November Challenge for my winter canvas -  have already had a good browse round the shop and picked my prize stamp.

Well I didn't have to browse too much because I had already seen the latest stamps and had to go for the one with perfume bottles on.  One of the bottles is 4711 Eau de Cologne - anyone remember that?  I can, it was probably the first 'perfume' I ever bought as a teenager (either that or ' Nuits de Paris' -  think that was what it was called, used to buy it in Woolies and it was in a dark blue glass bottle), and I thought I was so sophisticated.

Friday 25 November 2011

Just for Fun - shape

This weeks challenge on Just For Fun is 'your favourite shape'.  Well Neet you set me a difficult one this week - never thought about if I have a favourite shape before.  First thoughts were not about cards or crafts but rectangles -bars of chocolate, rounds - chocolate buttons and ovals - cream eggs (sense a theme here?).

Back to crafts and I was going to do a tag then found these jigsaw shapes that I have had stored away for ages.  I loved playing with them when I bought them so I guess they count as a favourite shape.  Had a play and this is what resulted.

The word stamp should read 'What do you do when the pieces don't seem to fit?' which is appropriate.

At least I got the photo straight this time which should please (?) the person who commented on my last JFF challenge piece, not that it bothered me........... much.  Didn't realise it was a geometry competition.

Wednesday 23 November 2011

Just for fun - better late than never, but better.....

On the last minute with my entry for this week's challenge over at Just For Fun, which is your favourite technique.  Another challenge for me as I have so many 'favourites but I had to go for 'resist' (will avoid making the obvious jokes) plus a little gold embossing as this was the first thing ever I did on a card - how brave was that - when I started stamping all those years ago.

 Finished it about 10 minutes ago with a mizhi (?) knot.

What's on Your Workspace -Wednesday 129

Yes it's that day of the week we all look forward to - Wednesday.  What about Friday, or the weekend I hear you ask? (well I don't really as that software hasn't yet been invented but give them time).  No Wednesday, God's gift to nosey people who like to snoop around other crafters' workspaces, and all courtesy of the lovely Julie at The Stamping Ground.

This is my desk at 4:30 Tuesday afternoon - nothing on it this morning as I had to tidy everything away ( breaks my heart to do it) so we can eat at the table as I can't eat pasta on my knee as I make too much mess - like a two year old, I'm a disgrace.  Had a good afternoon Tuesday and got loads done.  The two boxes I got for my Neices' stockings are almost finished (closer look later) as is my button tin (again, see further down the page) and at the back you can see two boxes of Christmas stamps.  Not that I'm making many cards this year, stopped doing that a while ago and now only a select few get handmade cards - collectors items ha ha.

The box on the right contains all my treasures - want a closer snoop?  Of course you do.

Keys, watch parts, charms, locks something old, something (well lots really ) new.

Anyway, enough of that here are the boxes and the button tin, both before and after painting with acrylics and buffing with metallic wax - I love that stuff.

Those paints made a big difference to the tin didn't they.

Enjoy your trip around via Julia's blog.

Monday 21 November 2011

Less is More

The challenge on Less is More this week is to use silhouette.  Now a silhouette is usually a block black image against white but this clever stamp reverses the image stamping a black background to give a white silhouette and as snow is forecast for later in the week it seems an appropriate image to use.

After entering last weeks one layer challenge I really have the bug so this week's entry is also a single layer.  I used my bone folder and the groove in my paper cutter to make the embossed lines.

I was hoping to show you the boxes I was working on (see WOYWW post) but I made a mess - yet again - so am going to paint over the sides and start again - gesso covers (literally) a multitude of sins.  So that's this afternoon sorted out.

Wednesday 16 November 2011

Whats on Your Workspace Wednesday - 128

Am writing this on Tuesday as I want to try scheduling again and maybe this time it will be third time lucky - have figured out I was on Easter standard time so I have changed that and it should work now.

So, what is on my table this week? A bit of work in progress and a completed item this week plus a few new buys, I know, I know, cant stop spending - well if the country is in a recession I'm firmly in the 'spend your way out of it' camp.

Just painted the two cardboard boxes at the bottom ready for decorating so have the paint box out and the lace.  Not decided quite what I'm doing yet - story of my life - but ever since my two great-nieces were little part of their Christmas has been chocolate coins in different containers every year.  When I started crafting all those years ago handmade containers became part of.the tradition so I rack my brains each year for something different.  So far I have done different shaped boxes, pyramid boxes, crackers, jars and this year is is a treasure chest.
Emma and Sophie are 23 and 19 now but still can't wait to get to the bottom of the Christmas gift bag and the coins.  Will probably take me a couple of days to decide what colours I use - do I stick to their favourites (green/brown for Emma and purple/blue for Sophie) or should I go for metallics?  Am tempted to go wintery like the colours I used on my CI challenge canvas (see Mondays post for a closer look) and use crackle glaze and get out the snowman stamps - what do you think girls?

Also on my desk - some beautiful Melissa Francis papers (and this from someone who vowed last week she wasn't going to buy any more paper for a year ha ha.  Have a closer look here and you will see why I was tempted.

...and at 59p per sheet they were bargains (again).

If, like me, you love being inspired at the work done by crafters around the world, and messy desks, then hop over to Julia's blog at the Stamping Ground for a tour, only get you cuppa ready first and make sure you are sitting comfortably because you could be there a long, long time.

PS - just checked (7:15am) and it worked.  Now I've mastered scheduling what next, splitting the atom, time-travelling?

Monday 14 November 2011

Crafty Individuals Challenge - Winter Wonderland

Missed last month's challenge and as I love the magic of snow (well looking at it through the window) I got my thinking cap on for this month's challenge over at Crafty Individuals which is Winter Wonderland.
Now I know we haven't seen any snow so far this year but when I opened the paper on Saturday there was a  touching article about the ill-fated South Pole expedition of Captain Robert Scott and a series of paintings by team member, and self-taught artist Edward Wilson, one of which was a stunning snowscape with a hint of dawn in the sky.

I'm no artist (32nd out of a class of 33 at school) but this was the inspiration for my canvas so I set to on Saturday afternoon with gesso, Distress stains (which I mixed with the gesso), texture paste, tissue and some CI stamps, and this is what resulted.

The stamps are from plates CI 138 - Let it Snow, and CI209 - Trees.  Doesn't show up very well on the photo but I added texture paste round the bottom of the trees and a little glitter for that fresh snow sparkle.

It isn't only the paintings that inspired me as some 30+ years ago I went to the British Museum for the first timeand in the 'books' room was the diary of Capt. Scott opened at the last page he wrote, so sad and yet so very brave - I cried.

Sunday 13 November 2011

Craft Barn Blog candy

Wow, how is this for a prize?  The Craft Barn have a supersized blog candy on this month to celebrate their 600+ followers - and more to come I think with this very generous set of goodies.  I 'NEED' that house shape.

Pop over and have a look.

Saturday 12 November 2011

Less is More - leaves

I missed last week's Less is More challenge (where does the time go?) so got in early on this week's which is a single layer card theme of 'Leaves'.

Now I must have more than 20 stamps of leaves, trees and quotes in one form or another so choosing is a bit difficult.  Decided to go with this tree stamp by Lavinia.  Don't have many of their stamps as I think they are a bit pricey for clear stamps but I liked the simplicity of this one and it is almost, but not quite, bare of leaves - or it was before I got the inks out.

Stamped in Adirondack Hazelnut and then 'dotted' the leaves on in a variety of Cranberry, Currant, Butterscotch, Red Pepper and Meadow, it's not exactly on a par with Georges Seurat but I like the effect and it kept me away from cyber shopping for the afternoon.  The faux deckle edge was done with a fine brown marker and the sentiment is from a set by Personal Impressions.

Friday 11 November 2011

Just for fun

This week's theme on the Just For Fun challenge site is 'your favourite colour.

Now this is a difficult one for me, should I go for turquoise, teal, aqua, peacock, kingfisher - do you get the feeling I like the greeny-blue shades?  Doesn't matter really - they are all beautiful.

Friend's birthday on Tuesday so this is for her- she shouldn't be peeking as I've asked her not to look at my blog this week but if you are Kath then close your eyes and press the 'back'button quickly.

Stamp is by Paperbag Studio, which funnily enough Kath bought me for my birthday in May, stamped onto some background paper I coloured a while ago.

The main background is also stamped but as I wasn't impressed I covered it with the most gorgeous flowered vellum, which doesn't show up properly in the photo, and added the even more gorgeous lace (a purchase from the Artsycrafty workshop last month) - this is on strict rationing as I only have about a foot left (not a left foot ha ha).

White flowers from Abakhan were spritzed with Glimmer Mists in Patina, only had a tiny drop left and now it's all gone.  Finishing touches are the pearls I put on the lace and in the centre of the fabric flowers.  Hope I haven't gone over the top on it - what do you think?

Wednesday 9 November 2011

Whats on Your Workspace Wednesday 127

I hope all the other WOYWWers courtesy of Julia at Stamping Ground have more to show you this week than I have as my desk is a bit bare this week.

This, however, was a bargain buy, a give-away in last week's copy of Woman's Weekly magazine - and I didn't have to spend a penny because my Mother-in-law buys the mag and passed it on to me.
A big thanks to Lynne Wilkie who gave us the heads up at our Vicky Stampers meeting on Saturday - think women's weekly will be wondering why the peak in sales last week.

I did get a little something through the post though: -

My subs gift from Craft Stamper together with the open copy of the vintage Woman's Weekly.
I have a direct debit but cancel it each year and re-start it the following day just to get my subscription offer.  Especially worth it this month as the offer is some metal sheet backed with card and a PaperArtsy stamp sheet - love that row of bottles at the bottom of the sheet.

Hope to get a bit more crafting done this week - so tired yesterday, and so cold on Monday - so my desk should have bit more to show you next week.  In the meantime I'm going over to Julia's for a desk hop and a bit of inspiration.

Tuesday 8 November 2011

Spindle - from this.....

Posted a blog a couple of weeks ago showing you the spindle that Neet (Hickydorums) had challenged me  to alter. I finished it last week and took it along to our stamp club meeting at the weekend so now I can show you the finished piece.

First a reminder of the spindle and the bits and pieces I gathered together.

Spindle, wooden cotton reels and blank beer mats.  Had an idea to use the alcohol inked plastic dome at the top left of the photo but it didn't fit in so I abandoned that one (plus a few others along the way).

I painted the spindle and reels with Fresco Finish paints, covered card with some silk fabric I had coloured and stamped (lace stamp) a few weeks ago and then die-cut the dressform.  Transferred some coloured thread from my embroidery stock onto the reels (that took an absolute age to do) and draped the ends of the threads from the hole at the top of the spindle.

Alison - CB's Craft Zone - also did the challenge and her piece is fabulous, very clever and very different from my take on it.  Up until today Alison hadn't put her challenge on her blog - come on Alison, get your finger out love, you need to share your beautiful box..

Thursday 3 November 2011

Just for Fun - Favourite stamp

This is my second post today as I have been a very busy girl this afternoon.  Actually finished three challenge pieces - usually takes me all day to do one.

This week's challenge over on Just for Fun is your favourite stamp.  Now I have more than a few stamps (hundreds) so choosing a favourite is very hard, do I go for asian, nature, words or my latest Stampers Anonymous plate?  Decisions, decisions, hard I know but get your act together Ann and choose one.

Eventually plumped for this stamp as she reminds me of 'Marlene', in fact it could be her but I'm not sure.  Unmounted stamp from a dutch company that I have used again and again, this time on a tag.  Anyway, enough faffing, you want to see the tag.

I really want to start an art journal, I have the notebook ready and raided Amazon for a book by Lynne Perrella on journals and sketchbooks but am still a bit reluctant to take that first step - afraid I'll make a complete b**** of it and give up so this tag is a bit of an experiment for me.

Used a piece of background paper I made weeks ago (mica sprays), inks, gesso, more inks and the movie star stamp and then got out the black fine-liner and white pens and do you know, I quite like it.  Next step - journalling.

Clean and Simple - Stars

Last time week Less is More (well my first as well if I'm honest) I got the day wrong and made a card for the previous week's challenge but managed to get round it by altering the card.
No such mistakes this week but I have taken a different view to the subject - Stars.

Used a Paperartsy mini stamp titled ' Movie Star', stamped straight on the card blank and coloured with ink from a Big and Juicy pad.  The actual 'stars' stamp was a magazine freebie.

Just had a look at the picture in 'preview' and Blogger puts a white border round my card - there is no border but the white card I used looks greyish here.

Had a great afternoon, made three cards/tags for three different challenges - and left a big mess in the middle of my table - looks like dinner on our knees again.

Wednesday 2 November 2011

What's on Your Workspace - Wednesday 126

As you read this my desk will be clear and this is my first attempt at a scheduled post.  What you see is my workspace yesterday, before I had to clear it all away to set the table for dinner.  That's one of the disadvantages to living in a small house as we can't eat in the conservatory at this time of year so I have to share my crafting space - well it is actually on our dining room table.

So what can you see apart from my trusty Distress Inks?  I spy steampunk.
My new Darkroom door set of stamps arrived on Monday from LB Crafts.  Unfortunately the company is closing down and there is a sale on. These stamps were 25% off so of course I had to have them, and any company that sells stamps in a tin is OK by me.  Already putting them to good use as you can just see an ATC peeping out from under the tin.  It is for a swap and is the first ATC I have made for almost a year - went right off them for a time.

Bottom of the photo is my button tin which I am altering.  Saw a great tutorial on You-Tube by Rachel of Artful Evidence where she used texture paste to alter a bottle embedding Fimo faces in the paste before colouring - fantastic - so I am having a go.  The button tin started out filled with Grasmere Gingerbread (long since transferred into my tum) and the lid is embossed metal so it needs evening out so this technique (if it works) is just what I've been looking for.  Knowing my luck all the buttons I have embedded into the paste will fall out and I will have to try cunning plan number 2 (when I think it up that is).

Here's a closer look at the tin lid.

Haven't used any of my 'treasures', just lots of different sized plastic buttons - I quite like the pastel colours but am intent on altering them and jazzing the whole thing up.

It's my stamp club meeting on Saturday and I will be taking along the spindle Neet gave me to alter, and boy is it altered.  Here's a sneek peek.....

Ha, ha, bit blurry isn't it - well I can't give the game away before Saturday but as you can see it is painted and that is all I'm saying.

All I have to remember to do now is link to my post from the fabulous Julia's worldwide desk hop over at The Stamping Ground - why not join us?

Update - Wednesday am
Obviously did something wrong as the scheduling bit didn't work - must try harder.