Friday, 27 November 2015

Peace, Love and JOY

It's Rudolph Day over at ScrappyMo's, the last one of the year and the challenge runs until the end of the month (Monday). Two lovely prizes to be won as well!

Plus, another favourite challenge, Merry Monday, is currently running with the theme of  'Blue, white and ... oh NO ... texture'! I literally just spotted that when I nipped over just now to add the challenge link :(

Sigh, I don't think this card will qualify after all - so annoying as I almost dry embossed the letters in the word JOY. That'll teach me to read the brief properly. I know there's texture when you rub your hand over the raised surface created by the large die sitting on the white background - but am not sure that's good enough :( Oh what the heck, I'll link in anyhow - the thought was there!

For my card I used a lovely die that was offered as a Playground prize a couple of months ago. I really do love the die but am realising that there's only so many ways you can use it - perhaps that's why it was on sale (and still is BTW) over at Sizzix.
I used:

- 5.75" x 5.75" square white card blank

- a smaller snippet of dark blue slightly shimmery paper for the largest frame, glued onto the card front using Collall All Purpose glue

- a snippet of pale blue patterned paper from the LOTV 'Winter Wishes' paper pad, with the back covered with some 'Stick-It adhesive sheet. This was then die cut using the Sizzix card front die I wrote about above, called 'Peace, Love, Joy' 

- after removing the backing from the die cut I popped it onto a piece of white card and trimmed around each edge leaving a border then glued it on top of the dark blue paper already stuck onto the card front

- backed another snippet of the dark blue paper with 'Stick-It' adhesive sheet and die cut the letters 'J-O-Y' (the letter dies come in with the die set) then popped them onto the word JOY
- I've used this die before, and again felt that something was missing so I die cut a poinsettia using a Poppy Stamps 'Small Blooming Poinsettia' die set (given to me by a lovely friend, mwah!) and a snippet of the pale blue paper plus a tiny snippet of white card for the centre and the leaf. Covered all the little pieces with clear Wink of Stella and, when dry, layered the flower onto the card inside the letter 'O' using Glossy Accents as the nozzle is so fine

One more Christmas card to make and the target of 132 over 11 months will have been reached - yay! 


Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Less is More Week 251 - 'Numbers!'

The current challenge over at Less is More is 'Numbers'. Bit of pondering here as we don't have any special Birthdays or Wedding Anniversaries on the radar where I'd usually use numbers.

Then I had a little thought, you know how someone can catch you out with a last minute and unexpected Christmas card when it's just too late to reciprocate in time? So I made a New Year card:

I used:

- 5.5" x 4.25" white card blank, tent style

- the stitching on the front of the card was die cut using the biggest die in the Lil' Inkers 'Stitched Rectangles' set and then carefully trimmed to size

- stamped the festive cocktail onto a snippet of white card using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink. The stamp is from SU's 'Making Spirits Bright' set (recently bought as a pre-loved set) and I used little pieces of a post-it note to mask off the Christmas sentiment before inking it up. Removed the post-it pieces and then stamped the cocktail glass with its contents

- coloured the image using Whispers markers and a gold gel pen for the ribbon bow

- added 'Happy New Year' using another stamp from the same SU set

- die cut the image using a Lil' Inkers 'Stitched Rectangle' die and added the year 2016 to the top left hand corner using gold peel off stickers

- die cut a snippet of matt gold card using the next rectangle up in size and glued the image panel to it (using Collall All Purpose glue)

- glued the gold framed panel to the front of the card and called it a day

Had really wanted this SU stamp set for quite some time and was delighted to find it as pre-loved item over on a Facebook 'de-stashing' site. And even more delighted when I found out that it was being sold by one of our playmates, small world eh? You know who you are :)

After several protracted phone calls to the docs surgery yesterday (with the tenacity of a terrier!) finally found out that this 'ere big toe/trotter is showing up on the x-rays as not broken but with 'changes consistent with osteoarthritis' (which I already have elsewhere so no real surprise about that). Wahoo - a relief there's no pockets of infection or a fracture showing up though! So, for now, it's a case of  continuing with the painkillers and anti-inflammatories whilst things hopefully settle down again after what still seems to have been gRout. Appointments are still lined up for repeat blood tests, progress trips to the doc and also rheumatology at hospital (apparently it could be months for that appointment to come round!).

In fairness, the past couple of days have seen a very gradual improvement such as being able to get round the house without a walking stick most of the time and generally less pain than before - so I have to live in hope! Unless there's a massive change backover I won't keep doing 'trotter updates', much prefer to think of the glass as half full! :)


Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Cuttlebug Mania Challenge - Embossing

The current challenge over at Cuttlebug Mania is 'Embossing', a nice open theme this fortnight so the World is your oyster really!

You do have to use a manual die cutting/embossing machine (it doesn't need to be a Cuttlebug but it must be manual, not electronic). And, you can't mix the two, it must be all manual please. Then make your entry, link into the challenge, link to the challenge in your own blog post and and make sure that you also say what products you used for any die cutting/embossing.

Our sponsor this fortnight is Fabrika Fantasy, a lovely on line store with a great selection of digital stamps (and they come coloured as well as black and white!). This fortnight the DT have each used at least one of the digital images - I opted to use the 'Happy Chipmunk' on my card:
I used:

- 5" x 7" white card blank, tent style

- beige backing card from the snippets folder, trimmed to size and glued onto the card front

- a snippet of white card stock, embossed using the Couture Creations 'Bon Jour' embossing folder, trimmed slightly smaller than the backing beige card and glued in place - I love the leafy look of this folder

- the sentiment is by LOTV from their 'General Greetings - Small' set, stamped using Brilliance 'Coffee Bean' ink

- a 'Happy Chipmunk' image (already coloured - yay!!) by our sponsor Fabrika Fantasy, printed and then fussy cut leaving a narrow white  border before being glued in place

- lots of little brown/beige snippets, die cut using dies from the Spellbinders 'Fall Foliage' die set then glued in place on the card front so that it looks as if the chipmunk is inviting you to take your pick :)

Your turn now - and of course if you use even just one snippet then you can come and play in the Snippets Playground.

The 'trotter' update: results aren't in from the hospital yet, my doc wasn't in yesterday but has been left a plea from me via the practice reception to go into the hospitals online system tomorrow to check out the x-ray results.


Sunday, 22 November 2015

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Week 204

Yikes, not much more than a month to go until Christmas now and no doubt Rudolph is already limbering up for his big night leading his mates around the World.

I know that there has been some casting going on for the Playground Nativity play - needless to say it's already getting a bit very silly, and also very funny :) Well, there's a big surprise - not!

My snippets card for today is one of two that I made exactly the same:

I used:

- 6" x 4" white card blank

- snippet of SU's 'Real Red' card stock, embossed using Crafts-Too's embossing folder called 'Poinsettia Frame'

- the image was stamped onto a snippet of white card stock using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a favourite Penny Black stamp called 'Little Angel'

- next the white frame was die cut from another white snippet using a Lil' Inker's die called 'Instant Camera'. The sentiment was stamped onto the bottom part using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a sentiment from the Creative Expressions 'Joy to the World' stamp set

- next I used the same die to cut the image before lightly colouring the image background with pale blue 'Pebbles' chalk

- I don't think it really shows in the image of the card  that you can see above but I also covered the 'photo' with some of that thin plastic 'book covering film' we used to use many years ago - just to give it a bit of a shine such as an instant photo would have. Made me smile here - I used to cover all my cookery books with the stuff, and school books before then - err, once we'd moved on from brown paper and then patterned Fablon of course! Clear was such an innovation :)

I also bet loads of us can remember the magic of watching instant/Polaroid photos appear before our very eyes - also many years ago. Sometimes this blog seems like a walk down Memory Lane, or perhaps a history lesson to the younger ones of you!

One thing I would do differently in future when using this die would be to trim the actual image to just a smidgen less than the outside measurement of the entire instant photo frame so that the image then sits 'back' in the frame (and you avoid the sliver thin gap around the image itself) - much as the real thing did in the 'olden days' :) Hindsight is a wonderful thing but I really didn't feel up to fiddling about any more once I realised the error of my ways.

I'd like to enter this card into the current Penny Black and More - 'Anything Christmas'  challenge.

And also Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge where it's' 'Things with Wings' - plus Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge Extra where it's always 'Anything goes'.

Quick gallop onto the weekly picks now. And there was the usual palaver deciding on the short list of course:

This is gorgeous! Mary Anne made an amazing Christmas card using a really beautiful basket die, and lots of snippets of course.

I really love this card, made by Susan (Rainy). Loads of snippets used of course and how clever to make the tops of the acorns interchangeable by adding little magnets to the backs - a great idea!

And Eve used the same set from Stampin' Up as well, to come up with this brilliant snippets make. It really shows how the same set of stamps can be used so differently - and loads of scope for even more variations of course.

Lots of you, quite rightly, hopped over to Pat's blog to take a closer look at this fabulous card. The poppies are just so gorgeous, and perfectly set off with the embossed zig zag and  oval shaped die background - and of course the perfectly toned in butterfly too!

This is the very first white on white card made by Liz and it's absolutely fabulous - so elegant and just perfect in every way! Hard to believe that Liz had never made a white on white card before now - what a way to begin! And then, the embossing folder is just stunning don't you think? Sigh, once again I was 'enabled' and just had to go and buy one - plus a spare for the Playground toy box of course.

That's one thing about running the Snippets Challenge and looking closely at so many beautifully made and very clever entries. The Playground really ought to come with a bit of a health warning as it's one of the very best places I know to find people happily sharing what new crafting materials they're using. Don't say I didn't warn you!

Isn't this wall hanging just adorable? Made by Ileana, I think it's so pretty and that snowman is just the cutest little guy - love the jingle bell as a finishing touch!

These darling little Tic Tac holders were made by April - another great way to use up snippets and also fabby little stocking fillers/craft fayre super sellers! And, there's a link to a tutorial over at April's blog if you fancy having a go yourself :)

We had three new playmates this week:
Tina Z nipped in a couple of times, and this was the lovely butterfly card she brought on her first visit - wonderful die cutting and embossing.
What a great Christmas card this is - brought to us by Shirley. I so love the little pops of red against the white, deep blue and silver - and what a fabulous image!

This amazing scene was created by Sandma (Sandra) - it's so beautiful and I love how the twigs frame the top of the image and just flow so naturally down the side as well.

Welcome to you all and do please come back and play with us again. You'll find that the Playground is a fun place to meet other crafters as well as picking up lots of ideas - plus everyone is so kind (don't tell them I said that though!)

A little drum roll now while Mr Random picks the winner(s) of last week's prize of the Inkylicious 'Thank You Calligraphy' stamp and the set of Spellbinders Nestabilities 'Labels Eighteen' dies. And our winner is:
Barb has been playing along regularly with us since mid-July and this is her first win - so it's really lovely to know that her turn arrived, whoop, whoop :) I don't have your address Barb so could you please drop me an email ( and I'll post your prize off ASAP.

This super 'make' by Barb was already lined up on my list of picks from last week:

It's a 'Birthday Box' and such a clever way to keep a note of Birthdays for each month of the year, as well as using up snippets of course. Would make lovely gifts as well as sure fire sellers at Craft Fayres - I know that a lot of you have picked up on how clever this idea is - and so pretty too!

Moving onto the coming week's prize, there's another stamp and die on offer, just like the ones I used on my snippets card (well, there's another surprise I guess!). We've actually had the same stamp as a prize before (won by Sam (aka Hettie) this time last year, but it's so sweet and really good for gift tags that I thought we could have another one as a prize (especially as it fits so nicely into the die aperture. The die is totally new to me, and of course another one fell into the shopping basket for the Playground :)

It's a Penny Black 'Little Angel' stamp as well as a Lil' Inker's 'Instant Camera' die, a die which isn't just for Christmas of course :)

The Snippets Challenge will run for one week and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 28th November. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day.

Maximum of three entries and please say in a comment if you wish to play and be a possible winner of the prize. Do say if you only want one or other part of the prize (the stamp or the die) but both are up for grabs as one prize of course and will only be split if the first name out only wants one or other of the items, in which case I'll do a second draw for the other part of the prize. And please also link back to the Playground in your blog post to be eligible for the draw.

Mr Linky is below - please let me know if you have any problems linking, it's easy for me to sort out so don't struggle on alone :)

Friday saw me at the docs once again, long story cut short - more new meds, and sent off to hospital for an x-ray. Apparently 'something out of the ordinary' does appear to be showing up on the x-rays of said 'poorly trotter' but I won't know just what until Monday as it needs to be properly evaluated. Amazing that it's taken three weeks plus of agony for me to finally be sent for an x-ray - all I want now is to know just what it is, if it isn't gRout/inflammation :)  If it's a fracture then at least I might have a head start for Sarn and Mrs A's 'casting' sessions - tee, hee.

Christmas could be a bit different this year I suspect, depending on what's been found. Thank goodness for Ocado and other online shopping outlets :)

Remember it's Rudolph Day over at ScrappyMo's from Wednesday until the end of the month and of course it's the last one this year. There's a fabby Memory Box die to be won, and if you hop over now and comment on Mo's post dated 20th November you can also be in with a chance to win a different and equally lovely Memory Box die set in the interim!

Have a good week!

Di and of course, Parsnip!

Friday, 20 November 2015

Merry Monday #180 - Use a reindeer

The current challenge over at Merry Monday is 'Use a reindeer' - I guess that two or more would be acceptable as well :)

I'd recently added some Penny Black Stickeroos to an on line order and they were still sitting on my neglected desk here - and amongst them was the sticker I used on this card.

Edit: AND, Brenda dropped me a huge hint that a Stickeroo is acceptable over at the current Penny Black and More challenge (which is 'Anything Christmas') so I'm also joining in the fun over there - thanks B!

Here's the card I made:

I used:

- 5" x 7" white card blank

- a piece of SU's 'Hello Honey' card stock for the little frame around the embossed layer

- a piece of white card stock, embossed using Darice's 'Snowflake Background' embossing folder and trimmed to just slightly smaller than the 'Hello Honey' layer

- stuck the 'Hello Honey' and the white embossed layer together and then added a strip of netting ribbon across the front before adding the panel to the front of the card blank

- stuck the Penny Black Stickeroo onto another piece of SU's 'Hello Honey' card stock, which I then trimmed to have a narrow border before adding it onto the card front using thin sticky pad strips

- the sentiment is a pre-printed one, made by Craftwork Cards - stuck onto a larger oval of SU's 'Hello Honey' which was punched using SU's 'Larg Oval' punch (a perfect fit with a border for the Craftwork Card oval messages)

- final touch is a Josy Rose gold heart shaped nail head just above the two reindeer :)


Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Happy hedgie card

A couple of weeks ago I sent Maura her Presscut 'Step Card Cutting' set of dies, won in the Playground, and enclosed a card as I always aim to do. The package has now arrived so I can post this on the blog :)

I thought it would be an idea to make her a step card using my own die set - I know that when I first tried my own set out I was so very grateful to have the lovely card that Liz had sent me a little while ago as a reference.

My card was made very quickly as I wanted to get the prize off to Maura ASAP:
I used:

- A4 300gsm white card, full length but cut to 5.75" width - just enough to accommodate the die and also go through the Cuttlebug with a smidgen to spare on either side

- a hint - if you buy this die set and only have a small cutting machine like me, you'll need to tape the die in place onto the card stock and then carefully turn it round after cutting one half. And, I almost wrecked my Cuttlebug by trying to push the sandwich through with the top of the long die aligned right up to the edges of the cutting plates. They need about an inch of 'freedom' to go through the rollers before meeting up with the die, then it works fine  - and the same when you cut the other half of course

- after folding the card I flattened it out again and added the scalloped edge rectangle and strips, die cut from a 6" square sheet' of paper from the Wild Rose Studio 'Vintage Rose' paper pack

- the image is a Penny Black Stickeroo from the 'A Bunch of Love' sheet, popped onto a piece of white card and then die cut using a Lil' Inkers 'Stitched Rectangle' die

- the sentiment is by SU from their 'A Word for You' set, stamped using Memento 'London Fog' ink and then punched using SU's 'Modern Label' punch

- too late to photograph now but I also used the slightly odd looking 'spare' die to cut a liner from more patterned paper, then stuck a plain white scalloped rectangle on for the message to Maura :) 

It might be 'cos I'm using a Cuttlebug which is really on the edge and quite a snug fit, but I did feel that some of the cut edges on the card itself needed something like a burnishing tool or even a bone folder held flat and rubbed over them just to take away any little lines that you often get when cutting solid shapes. Apart from that - it's a star here!


Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Less is More - Week 250 - Santa

The current 'one-layer' theme over at Less is More is 'Santa'. And, over at Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge 255 it's 'red and green must be seen'. And, it's always 'anything goes' over at Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge Extra for November.

So, I sneaked into the craft room for 30 minutes (absolute tops) on Sunday and quickly whipped up a teensy little card to cover all three challenges:
I used:

- 3" x 3" square white card blank

- the image is from a single Penny Black wooden stamp called 'par avion'. I masked off two of the three little chooks with a post-it and inked up the one exposed chook using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink before removing the mask from the stamp and stamping the little chap in the centre of the card front. Used SU's 'Stamp-a-ma-jig' for placement

- coloured the image using Whispers markers with a tickle of clear Wink of Stella on both the fur and pom pom on the hat

- stamped the sentiment using Memento Tuxedo Black ink and a stamp from the Personal Impressions 'Many Greetings' set

- finishing touch was to emboss a circle round the image using a circle die from the Tonic Studio's 'Circle Layering' die set and a ball ended embossing tool

Really quick and easy make, the first I'd made for several days :)