Sunday, 15 September 2019

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #361

It looks as if Autumn is on the way here, although we do still have some hot days, mostly it's quite a comfortable temperature.

Huge thanks to everyone who so kindly sent Birthday cards, as well as good wishes via Facebook this past week. I've been very touched by all your kindness and only wish I didn't manage to miss a few of your Birthdays throughout the year. I have a perennial 'Birthday Book' - which is great ......... so long as I remember to actually check it!
  
And here's my snippets card for this fortnight, using stamps and dies I've had for months:
I used:

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

- snippet of white card, just a bit smaller than the card front, onto which I stamped the words of different fruits in different colours, using the Avery Elle 'Mimosas' set of stamps and glued it to the card front

- then added a rectangular snippet of pink card to the stamped panel

- used snippets of white card, Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and stamps from the same set of stamps to stamp the pretty flowers and the cocktail glasses - all of which I coloured using Pro markers

- snippet of white card, onto which I stamped the main sentiment using a pink SU ink pad and trimmed it down 

- then die cut the cocktail glasses (I'd stamped and coloured two sets) as well as the pretty flowers and foliage. As I often do with more detailed dies, I cut a template first to make sure I positioned it properly - it take just a few minutes but can save a lot of heartache!

- then glued all the elements to the front of the card and called it done!

And of course the pinks match so well in real life but the camera often shows card and inks as being totally different shades, sigh. My card is a CASE of one I found on line needless to say. A lovely blog which you can find HERE, and a shop as well (in the USA).

So, the prize this fortnight is:
An Avery Elle 'Mimosas' set of stamps with matching dies - and of course both items make up one prize.

I'm quite conscious that currently I have a lot of stamp sets with matching dies in the Toy box as prizes. Don't let that put you off if you aren't into die cutting as the stamps can be used without die cutting - or you could even fussy cut them. It's just that sometimes I find good deals on matching sets of stamps and dies! 

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 28th September. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day. 

It's a maximum of ONE entry, please say in a comment if you wish to play and be a possible winner of the prize. Please also link back to the Playground in your blog post to be eligible for the draw.

Remember, if you link into the Playground and don't say clearly that you want to be in the draw in a comment on here, then you will be bypassed if your name comes out of Mr Linky. I'm sure you all know I ask for a positive 'yes' on the blog post itself - just in case you're only playing for fun - otherwise I don't add you to my little list.

This week was busy with some good fun - I finally ordered a new car (prompted very much by Len buying me a personalised number plate for my Birthday). I'm really very sad to see my beloved convertible go, but it's time - as they say. Two seats plus a pooch in a dog booster seat just doesn't compute in a two seater sports car - unless Len sits up on the roof or hangs onto the boot/trunk of course :) Also, it's not the best car to get in and out of with wide doors and idiots people who park too close.

Before today I've had to resort to opening the roof and scrambling in that way in an underground car park in Brighton. The friend who was with me (business trip) was almost wetting herself as I scrabbled and cussed. My parting shot was to leave a note on the mean person's windscreen saying 'Next time you're stupid enough to park like this - leave me a can opener!' I was fuming - more so as I showed the whole car park my knickers! No doubt I'll shed a tear when the new one finally arrives in around November time.

No photos of Dudley today I'm afraid. We applied his Advantix tick prevention stuff yesterday to the back of his neck as usual and from just a few hours later he was very subdued. He's spent yesterday curled up under my desk, with his head on my foot a lot of the time as I was writing this, fast asleep after being really, really sick mid-morning. I almost joined in with him as I was cleaning it up!

He's always had a sensitive tummy, mostly as he gobbles his food down without properly chewing it. But this was different so we kept a close watch and just let him rest in a dark and quiet place whilst making sure he drank his water. After all the soul searching and avoiding ingested flea and tick treatments, it seems that whatever you use can still cause a reaction, sigh.

However, almost 24 hours to the minute after the medication, and as if a switch had been flicked, his cold damp nose returned, the lethargy disappeared, his eyes now have the usual sparkle - and basically he's into a bouncing bundle of mischief once again! Also very keen to give 'leg hugs these days'. And am I EVER glad to see that, my boy is back!

Lots of love from us all - Parsnip, Dudley and of course me,


Wednesday, 11 September 2019

'Sail away with me'

I've been playing with alcohol inks and Tim Holtz 'Sparkle' card again. Came up with two very similar cards suitable for chaps and this is one of them:
I used:

- 5.5" x 4.25" white card blank, side opening

- piece of AI background made using Tim Holtz 'Sparkle' alcohol ink card stock and a mix of Stonewashed, Sailboat Blue and Aqua alcohol inks plus some blending solution to create a sort of ombre effect

- used Stick-It backed 200gsm white card to die cut a 'sea scene' using a die from China (one I couldn't resist so I pushed my conscience to one side) then popped it onto a rectangle of the background card. I was careful to add the background so that the darker part was at the top, with the lighter part at the bottom - making it look almost as if it's tropical shallows, just as you'd see in Thailand for example. Then ran the panel through the Cuttlebug using just the cutting plates to press it firmly down

- then stamped the sentiment using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a stamp from the Paper Smooches 'Sentiment Sampler' - plus the Misti of course

- backed the whole panel with white fun foam and glued it in place onto the card front, finished!

For the second card I only changed the sentiment to the words 'For You' from a Technique Tuesday set of stamps called 'Stems'. It's a set I love, sent to me a good while ago by Darnell. Mwah!!

I admit to being especially pleased with the background shading, which naturally looks better in real life. :)



Sunday, 8 September 2019

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #359 - results


What a change in the temperature down here in Hampshire over the past few days. Last night the duvet even went back on the bed and this morning (Saturday) Len had a silly o'clock/early start for archery and popped the heating on for a couple of hours! One extreme to another it seems.

Let's get straight on with Playground business, starting with this fortnight's picks:
Meg brought two gorgeous Christmas tags to share with us - that llittle bird is just so, so cute! And great use of snippets as well of course..


And just another reminder that Christmas will be here in about 10 weeks (or so I read yesterday) - here's another Christmas card. This time made by Helen, and utterly adorable as well! Another  great way to use up lots of little snippets.

Ha, this is the third Christmas snippets make I've chosen as a pick this time - not deliberate in any way I promise. What caught my eye so much with Lynne's adorable card is of course the really cute image and beautiful colouring. But, I always look for different uses of snippets and think the scalloped border of paper at the top of the card works brilliantly! Love it!

And, for once I'm adding a fourth pick, as a change from Christmas:
I really think this is such a clever way to use up snippets strips, shared with us by Heather. Heather created the strips from scraps, which made for a lovely patchwork effect. Great stuff and one to try for sure!

We had 55 entries this time and no new Playmates. It's still good going, especially as (here at least) it was the end of the long Summer school holidays and many people will have been busier than usual.

Time now for the prize draw which is for a Sugar Pea 'Letter Board Messages' set of dies and a Lawn Fawn 'Scripty Hello' die, and the winner is:
 Viv
Well done Viv, doing a happy dance for you here! It's been some time since you had a win and these are great dies to play with. Please send me your address, with your full name at the top as well so I can copy and paste or just write straight from the email onto the envelope - for speed and ease. It's also confirmation that you still would like the prize of course and I'll post your prize once I hear from you. Please put Playground Winner or similar in the subject line of your email in case it drops into my junk mail. Email address is on RH sidebar as always.

Remember folks, there's still almost another week to run on Challenge #360 - you can find it HERE. The prize is an MFT 'Gift Bags' set of dies and an MFT 'Brushstroke Expressions' set of sentiment stamps.

Dudley was at the groomers on Friday afternoon and looked like a snowy white puffball when I collected him. They still aren't 'accredited' to do scissor work, although I think they're perfectly able. So he only had a spa session (as you do!), plus a deluxe pack of extras to trim his nails, apply mouth gel to his teeth to ward off plaque and a special conditioning and whitening shampoo. They did also trim round his paws as he was beginning to look like he was wearing furry boots. However, within literally a couple of hours and after playing 'zoomies' with a good rummage round the garden, his face was looking distinctly grubby around the mouth area!
This is my naughty smile when I know I've been into mischief
And then, I put both paws up on your knees Mama, look right into your eyes waiting for a treat -  and you just crumble
I'm beavering away trying to upload more Dudley's photos to his own dedicated page  - you can see it on the top sidebar. It's a long job and one I need to keep on top of once it's all done!

Love from Parsnip, Dudley - and of course me,






Wednesday, 4 September 2019

More ways to use the alcohol ink backgrounds

Whilst making the alcohol ink background for the Simon Says Stamp card I recently posted about, also made a couple of sheets more or less the same - so had some left over to play with using some Memory Box dies. Came up with two cards shown below - and AI stands for Alcohol Ink:
I used:

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

- piece of AI made using Tim Holtz 'Sparkle' alcohol ink card stock and a mix of Flamingo Pink, Amethyst and Aqua alcohol inks plus some blending solution

- used Stick-It backed 200gsm white card to die cut the Memory Box 'Starflower Frame' die then popped it onto a rectangle of the background card, adding the white panel from the die cut back into the centre as well and ran the panel through the Cuttlebug using just the cutting plates to press it firmly down

- then stamped the sentiment using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a stamp from the Penny Black 'Special Thoughts' sentiment set - plus the Misti of course

- die cut the frame using the biggest Avery Elle's 'Postage Stamp' frame die and more white card, a bit heavier weight than 200gsm this time, possibly 250gsm

- backed the frame with very narrow red line tape and then added the image panel face downwards onto the red line tape. The image panel had been carefully trimmed a teensy bit at a time to be just a tad bigger than the aperture

- backed the whole panel with white fun foam and glued it in place onto the card front, finished!

This is a lovely die, a first outing for it although I bought it with possible Christmas cards (poinsettias) in mind  and certainly before I got into sparkly alcohol ink backgrounds. Will have a play again and show what my original idea was - having said that, it's really great for using as I just did! Another example of existing dies in your possession being useful for trying out Jennifer McGuire's Tim Holtz Sparkly AI card stock ideas.

At the same time, I made this card - didn't catch the light as much, should have taken the photo sideways on :
I used:

- 5.75" x 4" white card blank, side opening again, a non-standard size to suit the panel and sentiment placement

- piece of alcohol ink background made using Tim Holtz 'Sparkle' alcohol ink card stock and a mix of Flamingo Pink, Amethyst and Aqua alcohol inks plus some blending solution ( I know, more of the same - for now!)

- the butterfly frame took a bit of thinking through. When I ordered it a few weeks ago, the image shows what you see on my card front (if you reach into your screen and lift the butterfly's wings up!) - a frame of card with a big flat butterfly sitting just above the centre - attached on either side. However, the die itself doesn't come with a frame, it's more of a panel to just cut a solid butterfly into a background I guess. My way round this was just to measure the 'panel' die and add quarter of an inch to the top and to one side, then use the trimmer to cut a white panel of Stick-It backed card(200gsm)

- and at that point you can go ahead and die cut the Memory Box 'Vivienne Butterfly Silhouette' from said rectangle and end up with exactly what the packet shows - but, it did puzzle me for a while I freely admit, and I bet my explanation wasn't very clear either! Sadly MB didn't even have any examples (even though it's been out for sale since 2017) when I searched, I'm sure there must be some other way of using this lovely die - watch this space kids!

- I'd bought the 'Vivienne Butterfly Silhouette' die as I already had the two 'free flying' matching butterfly dies (bought years ago) and could see that it would expand and possibly update the versatility of them as they've been little used I'm afraid

- so next I trimmed the piece of AI background to a teensy bit smaller than my 'self' made' butterfly frame and popped the frame onto the background then ran the panel through the Cuttlebug using just the cutting plates to press it firmly down

- then die cut a solid butterfly using the Memory Box solid 'Darla Butterfly' die from the last scrap of AI background

- die cut a lacy 'Vivienne Butterfly' die from 200gsm Stick-It backed white card and adhered it to the 'Darla' butterfly - and ran it through the Cuttlebug to make sure it was pressed firmly into place

- backed the whole panel with white fun foam and glued it in place onto the card front - just above the sentiment, which had been carefully placed in readiness when I stamped it (darned OCD - no, make that CDO!!)

- and then added the 'butterfly of two layers' with a little piece of red line tape in the centre so that the wings can be flipped up 

- and only at that late point in the whole proceedings did I spot that there was a wee dark blob of AI which drew the eye and spoiled the whole 'flow' of the card. So, out came the sequins and I added five (card makes like to work in odd numbers apparently) using Glossy Accents

- and that was it - end of story!

Or is it? Probably far from it! I have to admit to buying three dies recently from China - it's against many of my principles but I think I certainly do more than my bit to support UK and other Western craft manufacturers and suppliers so I figured I would just dip my toe in the water. In truth, it still doesn't sit easily with me - but I'm amazed to be honest. Price, quality and speed - phew! ANYHOW, one new die from China has led me to need more AI colours from the UK, costing several times more than the die did - so it's a knock on effect. And that, is what I meant when I said 'far from it'!!

Sunday, 1 September 2019

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #360

Mixed week, some nights almost too hot to sleep and now it's dropped in temperature a bit. To be honest we're very grateful - and no doubt Dudley is as well. That little chap took to sleeping in the downstairs loo/bathroom at times. He'd obviously worked out the coolest spots in the house.

Good news on the gout front. The latest blood test showed the uric acid level to be just in the clear zone. To be on the safe side the dose is being upped one step further. I've had a few slight twinges to be honest, but that's to be expected as the crystals disperse from the joints in my feet and ankles........... and a quick gobble down of a couple of Colchicine pills knocked it on the head. Long may the good news last say I! For a while it felt as if every flipping blog post was gloomy on the health front - and that's not why you come here to play.

Plus, the new washing machine is brilliant - although I still have to refer to the instruction booklet at times. Sometimes appliances really are too clever and offer too much for their own good.
 
And here's my snippets card for this fortnight:
I used:

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

- almost a whole sheet of 'bokeh' style paper for the background, from the fabulous Carta Bella 'Beach Day' paper pack, trimmed to the exact size of the card front

- snippet of lime green (for the edge of the striped snippet) - both found in the back of the pad in an envelope pocket where I always store snippets

- layered the lime green topped by the striped strip using a small tape runner and set it to one side

- pulled out a selection of little snippets from the same paper pad and set to making the little gift bags using a snippet of black card for the handles. I used a super little die set by MFT (seems to now be discontinued, although I bet stockists might well still have them in their clearance) - called 'Gift Bags'

- I needed to make the little bags first so I could plan where to stamp the sentiment - I made the bags up using a teensy bit of very narrow red line tape to adhere the handles to the backs. On a couple of the bags I also added a handle dropping downwards and added a little bit of glue using a Zig glue pen to hold it down against the bag itself

- then I could check for the sentiment placement/spacing and of course used the Misti and Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink along with a Happy Birthday stamp from MFT's 'Brushstroke Expressions' set of sentiment stamps

 - ready to assemble the card now so added the striped band to the background using a tape runner - letting the strip overhang on one side (I left it too long deliberately) so I could trim it right at the edge from the back of the sheet which ensures a nice straight line


- then glued the background sheet, now with striped strip and sentiment already done, onto the card front

- added the little gift bags using glue for a couple at the back and thin sticky pads for the two at the front - finished!

The card is more vibrant in real life, with very rich tones - sigh. It's a good idea to use little snippets from the same paper pad when using this die set as they would probably all complement one another nicely. And, I reckon the same design would be good to make Christmas cards as well - the bags could be cut from patterned paper (the pattern needs to be quite small), plain colours or even metallic or pearlised papers. Or even create your own using Distress inks or alcohol inks. Lots of potential - and of course you can switch the orientation of the bags around as you wish too! My card is similar to one I found on line, needless to say 😉

So, the prize this fortnight is:
An MFT 'Gift Bags' set of dies and an MFT 'Brushstroke Expressions' set of sentiment stamps. Both items make up the one prize BTW, I don't want to split them. Our postage seems to have rocketed for posting abroad and I'd rather not have to face possibly two lots of overseas postage for one single challenge as you never can tell what the Random Number selector will pick.

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 14th September. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day. 


It's a maximum of ONE entry, please say in a comment if you wish to play and be a possible winner of the prize. Please also link back to the Playground in your blog post to be eligible for the draw.

Remember, if you link into the Playground and don't say clearly that you want to be in the draw in a comment on here, then you will be bypassed if your name comes out of Mr Linky. I'm sure you all know I ask for a positive 'yes' on the blog post itself - just in case you're only playing for fun - otherwise I don't add you to my little list.


We've been removing more of the barriers to allow Dudley to roam more freely round the house when we aren't watching him. Fingers crossed that he really is totally toilet trained, has been for quite some time now, and isn't interested in chewing things indoors that he shouldn't. The garden is a different matter entirely - he loves to dig and also find stones and twigs to play with.

I managed to take a quick photo of him in between writing this yesterday (Saturday), lying in one of his favourite places now that the barrier across the top of the stairs has been taken away. He has a good view of the front door from his vantage point, across the first step down - where he also has a good chance of making you fall over him!:
Ha, he also has an appointment at the groomers on Friday (that came round quick) to look forward to, tee, hee! Not sure why I'm laughing, I have an appointment with the dentist on Monday - just the hygienist, but even that gives me the shudders.

Edit - sorry, I totally forgot to add Mr Linky. He's up and running now! Thanks for the heads up Val - have linked you in!

Lots of love from us all - Parsnip, Dudley and of course me,

 

Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Rudolph Days Challenge - August 2019 - and a trip to Hazel's challenge!

In the midst of all that heat recently, I made a batch of Christmas cards all the same. And Dudley took a starring role:
I used:

- 5.5" x 4.25" white card blank, side opening

- piece of white card, stamped using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a totally adorable stamp plus sentiment (recently sent to me by my lovely friend Greta, thank you so much - it's Dudley for sure!) - the stamp is by Hot Off The Press called 'Dog with Antlers'

- once stamped, the image needed very little colouring - just touches of red and green - and pale peach on the doggie's ears :)

- then die cut the image panel using a Lil' Inkers 'Stitched Rectangle' die

- cut SU red card stock for a panel very slightly larger than the image panel and glued them together so that the image has a red 'frame'

- added white fun foam to the back of the panel and then glued it onto the card front at a jaunty angle

Made 10 cards in total, which has helped towards my (somewhat reduced since i accepted I will need to send some shop bought cards) target for Christmas. And I really loved using this cute stamp - it's certainly a real keeper! Big woofs to Greta and Fritz from Dudley :)

I'm entering into ScrappyMo's August 2019 Rudolph Days challenge. AND, at long last, I'm also taking my card to join in with Crafty Hazelnuts Christmas Challenge. Yippee!!





Sunday, 25 August 2019

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #358 - results


And Summer has returned! Coo, but it's hot once again. Which is great news for the 'workers' as long Bank holiday weekends are really precious when you're working full or even part time, and to have sunshine as well is a huge bonus here in the UK as we're known for many Bank Holiday weekends being total washouts!

Let's get straight on with Playground business starting with this fortnight's picks:
I love this pretty card, made by Viv. Wonderful design and super die cutting using up snippets - and the background is amazing! It's all done with paper towels which Viv keeps after mopping up as she crafts. Hop over to here to read all about it.

Brenda L came to play with us, after being AWOL for a little while. And just look as the terrific mini album she made! Again, I really do recommend that you nip over to Brenda's to see the whole thing - one photo here can't do it justice.

And Nicky hopped in with this really sweet 'Taggy Blanky' she'd made for a friend's new baby to match the wonderful quilt she also made. What a great way to use up little snippets of ribbon. I bought one of these at a local craft fayre when Mia was just a baby and she loved it - all the different textures and colours kept her fascinated for ages.

We also had one new Playmate:
Beverly Sizemore

We had 64 entries, including Beverly our new Playmate this time. 64 is a cracking total - all the more when I only allow folk one entry per challenge. Mind you - the prize was a really attractive one as well :)

Time now for the prize draw which is for a Newton's Nook 'Dainty Daisies' set of stamps with matching dies, plus an Altenew 'Feeling Dotty' stencil, and the winner is:
Well done Maxine, the early bird catches the worm according to the Random number generator! Please send me your address, with your full name at the top as well so I can copy and paste or just write straight from the email onto the envelope - for speed and ease. It's also confirmation that you still would like the prize of course and I'll post your prize once I hear from you. Please put Playground Winner or similar in the subject line of your email in case it drops into my junk mail. Email address is on RH sidebar as always.

Remember folks, there's still almost another week to run on Challenge #359 - you can find it HERE. The prize is a Sugar Pea 'Letter Board Messages' set of dies and a Lawn Fawn 'Scripty Hello' die .

It's been a bit of a busy week, so I'm a little bit behind on commenting on the current challenge. Not a lot behind, but just so you know I will be there ASAP!

No photos of Dudley this time. He's still looking for mischief needless to say - such a little scamp! He managed to stick his face into some hedgie poo yesterday - I spotted something on his face and went to brush it off and ended up with 'the stinkies' on my hand. Shudder. Thankfully we were in the garden at the time so I could make a run indoors for tissues, the cleansing anti-bacterial gel followed by a scrubbing brush (that was just for me - it left Dudley's face totally cleanly) - whilst Len sat and laughed at my shrieks of horror. And I swear that little dog gave a naughty grin!

Love from Parsnip, Dudley - and of course me,