Sunday, 17 February 2019

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #346

Well, that's been a bit of a week! It was vile, however, by Wednesday evening I could at least move around unaided (slowly!) for short distances. Friday was even better - able to finally have a proper shower (yes, it hurts THAT much to even feel water spray from the shower onto a 'goaty' foot, not to mention being unable to stand for long in any case). Am still resting though as not yet out of the woods and even the thought of wearing a shoe is out of the question until everything subsides - thank goodness for 'hotel style' soft towelling mules, something I learned last time. This too will pass as they say.

OK, so that's my update - and the result of the past week is that, even though I did try sitting at the desk for a short time on Friday, just couldn't make a new snippets card showing the prize I had lined up. So had to put that one on ice for now.

However, all is not lost as a snippets card posted on here very recently came to the rescue:
The die I wanted to feature is made by MFT and is called 'Christmas Tree Window' - just perfect for batch baking too :)

The actual post goes back to 6th February and can be found HERE for more details. There are so many ways in which this great die can be used - just do a search using Google for loads of ideas.

I suspect that some of you, like me, will have run off to buy this die straight away. I (naturally, snigger) bought three extra ones for the Playground Toy Box, intending to start stocking up on goodies for the Grand Draw this coming Christmas. But you know what? It would be good to have this die NOW to make your cards for Christmas 2019 ........... and also it saves my bacon this fortnight.

So, three of these lovely dies are on offer (huge apologies to those of you who did buy your own when you saw the original post - but I do hope you'll still play along just for fun, or even play and then give the prize to a friend if you win!).
Sorry, I can't even lift the Toy Box out to take a photo of the die packet as usual, but the above MFT image combined with the sample card will give you a good idea.

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 2nd March. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day. 

It's a maximum of ONE entry and 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're wanting 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 playing only for fun - otherwise I ignore you on my little list.

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 ☺

In the midst of all this we had Valentine's Day of course. I even had a card from Dudley:
Knowing Len he will have ordered it online, and both images could absolutely be Dudley - but he says 100% they aren't actually him Small one is so like Dudley when he was very young and the main one looks just as he is right now - when he needs a brush just after a good old romp and play session ☺.

Hoping that we'll soon be back to normal in the Playground. I'm still managing to get to you all and comment, even if it's a bit slower than usual.

Lots of love from 'Nurse' Parsnip, Dudley 'the Entertainer' - and of course me, 

Sunday, 10 February 2019

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #344 - results

We've gone from snow to endless rain here - little Dudley just nips out into the garden whenever necessary and scoots back indoors for a quick rub down with a towel! He's not a wimp of a dog but I don't think he's keen on regular soakings either, and I don't blame him.

The past couple of weeks have been such a wonderful time with Darnell's brilliant blog hop that she set up to celebrate seven years of yours truly running the Snippets Playground. I've been amazed and totally delighted by the wonderful things you've been saying, by your lovely snippets cards and also by quite a few arriving here through the post as well! I truly can't thank you all enough for your immense kindness and the (blush) wonderful things you've said. And another huge thank you to Darnell of course!

Let's get straight on with the fortnight's picks - and first of all we have a *Gold Star*:

Emma T is going to be a source of much inspiration for you girls I think! She hasn't been playing with us for too long but has totally embraced the idea of using up loads of little snippets, even before she came to play with us! Isn't this shaker jar of explooding butterflies wonderful? So many of you commented on Emma's card and I know it was a huge hit with you. So much so that we now have that same butterflies die in the Toy Box, patiently waiting its turn. I'll be using it differently but you have to wait and see just how!

Do please take your *Gold Star* award from the RH side bar Emma - and well done!

Here's the rest of my picks - all so deserving and of course always so hard to choose a final few to show you:
I love it when Playmates use their prizes and then link up a snippets card - and Sandra H just did exactly that, using the 'Noel Word Antlers' die she recently won in the Playground. Love the soft shades of the patterned paper and am pretty sure it's LOTV.

I just adore this card, made by Margaret. Wonderful use of snippets and it really is like a splash of Summer - I love gingham and the bright and fresh flowers are gorgeous!

I predicted we'd have a few innovative ways to use snippet strips recently - and Jeanne came up trumps with this wonderful card, for the thank you blog hop (mwah!). I totally love the interwoven strips with the die cut sentiment! Funny enough I need to make a Birthday card for a neighbour's little boy and want to keep it clean and not too specific - my own attempt at this design will, with luck, appear here before too long!

We had five new Playmates this time, as a result of Darnell's blog hop:
Donna W
Lucille K
Welcome to the Snippets Playground girls and what a wonderful selection of cards - hope you all come back and play really soon.

Including the five new Playmates we had a total of 67 entries - brilliant!

Now it's prize draw time, and our winner of the Sizzix 'Love You Tons' set of stamps and matching dies is:
Do please send me your address Andrea, with 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.

Actually, I'll post the prize off to you as soon as one of us can get to a post box - right now I can't get a shoe on, let alone drive! After three years respite, it's 'Return of the Gout' - playing at a cinema near you. It diddled around for most of last week and then last night and now today (Saturday) decided to go into full blown 'now I'm gonna make you really suffer and scream for England' mode so am typing this laid up in bed using my baby pink laptop. I know it will pass so long as I keep taking the pills and rest it a bit whilst it's at the peak - if this ain't the peak then you might well hear the roars over where you live!

Remember folks, there's still almost another week to run on Challenge #345 - you can find it HERE. The prize is a Woodware 'Smile On My Face' stamp and a Woodware 'Time to Wine Down' set of stamps.

Hope you all have a lovely week ahead, I don't have any great plans (just as well!). Dudley is happy to keep me company and is never far from my side right now, bless him. Little tinker got into the craft room while Len was out at archery this morning - he was merriily trotting to and fro bringing the waste bin contents into our bedroom, a bit at a time, until I realised what was going on. But, other than that he's been as good as gold - and is currently out with Len for a nice long walk.

A photo of Dudley to end with. A good few years ago, Len bought a door stop for the door to his study. A sweet, quite heavy fabric covered creamy white dog sitting up - which he named 'Dudley'. That's mostly how we came to choose Dudley's name at the end of last Summer. The other afternoon Len introduced 'the Dudleys' to one another properly - and also took this photo:
See how they both have the peachy colouring on their ears? Needless to say Dudley The First is normally kept well out of reach of Dudley The Four Legged Chewing Machine!  Psssst, Dudley The First is on the right wearing a red bow tie, grin. And I'm still pondering over Dudley's 'bangs/fringe'. A lot of the time when he's out walking or racing around being a puppy it sweeps back but it just isn't parting enough to frame his sweet little face and keep those eyes uncovered when he's 'stationary'.

Parsnip and Dudley send their love, as usual - and of course me as well,

Wednesday, 6 February 2019

This has to be the coolest die I've seen recently!

I'm a sucker for new stamps and dies - sometimes I think I need help, BIG time! And now and then a stamp/set or a die comes along which just blows me away to the point of almost obsessively neeeeeding it, right NOW, this VERY minute!

It has to be MFT's 'Christmas Tree Window' for me right now. I found out about the die when Lynne posted her card in the Playground and also linked to where she'd seen more cards using the same die. I recently had Lynne's card as a fortnightly pick - if you missed it then go HERE to Lynne's blog and take a look! It's fabulous!

And, I then looked at the link Lynne had added to her post and found a very talented blogger called Dana Kirby. Now, I 'realised' that Dana had only been blogging since August last year (2018) and has just 23 followers. How could this be? Dana is soooo talented and I just knew you would love her work! So, I commented and encouraged Dana to come and play with us in the Playground, she very sweetly replied by email to thank me for the kind words and said she certainly would try to join in with us. Not a hint of anything more. Duh, later on though, the asses ears went up here! Whilst browsing I discovered that Dana began her blog after and in addition to using Instagram for ages - I guess mostly to be able to write more about her makes (I think IG sets a word/character limit?). Uh, huh - asses ears for sure. Dana has over 2,000 IG followers (including Gina K) - meep, I did feel a bit stupid when the penny pound coin dropped.

However - I had Dana's blessing on doing a very close CASE of her cards she made using the die that started all this off! And of course - I would love to CASE Lynne's design at some point as well, I need the 'teeny scallops' square die that Lynne used though - it's so pretty! Lynne - can you please enlighten us as to who makes it? Spellbinders perhaps?

Right, end of the mahoosive background story - they should have called me 'Mouth and Big Foot In It' - here's my card:
And in fact I made eight of them in total (whoop, whoop!) - two of each colour mix:
I used:

- A6 white card blank, cut down from a 5" x 7" card blank I confess as I find I rarely use them lately

- half a 5" x 7" card blank which I then die cut using a die from the Creative Dies 'Wonky Stitches - Nesting Rectangles' set. One reason I chopped up card blanks for the die cut layer was to make sure the white shades are exactly the same - we all know about how many shades of white there are out there - and also sometimes it's just as cheap in the end as using fresh sheets of white or other coloured card!

- then used a stamp from the Crafters Companion Gemini range of stamps called This bag is not a toy' - oops, should have looked closer - 'Festive Phrases' and a good old Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink pad. Plus the Misti of course, even more useful as I made eight at one time

- before embarking on making the card(s) I had already spent a really happy couple of hours sorting through my XCut self adhesive glitter sheets, finding snippets and cutting half inch wide strips from little saved pieces, which I then mixed around and stuck onto rectangular snippets (approx 2.5" wide and 3.5" high) of white card (any colour of card would do, just make sure you don't leave any gaps between the strips)

- next I used my current favourite die that I've been banging on about - it's by MFT called 'Christmas Tree Window - MFT-1429' - and then die cut the window in the edge stitched panel

- my method to fix the panels behind the apertures is as follows. I used red line tape around glitter sides of the bottom and both side edges of the rectangular glitter paper covered panels - NB. NOT the card front panel itself - too risky! My glittered panels were actually a bit close to the height of the tree once I'd jiggled the sparkly piece around so that the star is cut from one colour only (not essential but you know me!) - and so I added a small strip of red line tape on either side of the star on the reverse of the die cut white aperture piece of card to hold the top portion together on the card front

- that worked just fine and it was then a matter of holding the die cut panel over the sparkly striped rectangle of card with the red line tape protection removed ONLY from either side of the star and carefully lining it up so that the stripes were horizontal and also the star was only showing one colour - and then pressing it in place

- at that point the panel and glitter striped rectangle could be firmly pressed into place by slowly removing the red line tape backing with pointed tweezers on the sides and along the bottom and carefully pressing the panel into place

- then just added the panel to the card front using red line tape again - peeling off the top and one side only until it was lined up properly.  Sometimes glue will ooze through faux stitched edges, I found this out the hard way some time ago - a Woodware or SU adhesive removing rubber will clean it away but I just didn't want the hassle to be honest. I love using glue but this worked fine as an alternative - so long as you always bear in mind that once you press down that really is IT

- eight cards, finished for next Christmas - wahoo!

There is one thing I really still envy about Lynne's card - she was precise enough to have her star all of one colour and ALSO the tub is one colour. That takes some working out - well done! My advice is to do half inch strips all the way up the piece of card but make the top one just that little bit taller and so your star will sit higher on the glitter strips background and then your tub will also sit higher with some room to play. I do hope some of this makes sense - it will if you're actually making a card I promise!

Another thing you could do would be to get three tree shapes from one wide stripey piece of card by flipping the centre one upside down - but I so wasn't into trying that one! 

I do think this die is a stunner - for instance, Len doesn't like black Christmas cards (Victorian old values still come home to roost after generations). I'm fine with them and just bet that a plain black card with the tree die aperture cut and then backed with gold plain or glitter card and a sentiment in gold would look stunning!

And soooooo, the Playground Toy Box is already off to a start for Christmas 2019's prizes, needless to say! Ha, if you can wait that long of course.

Sunday, 3 February 2019

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #345

Well! What a week that's been for sure. I was totally blown away by the wonderful blog hop that Darnell arranged in such secrecy to celebrate 7 years since I took over the Snippets Playground - and of course it's 8 years since Jules started it all off. Who knew it would still be going from strength to strength all this time later? And I certainly didn't realise the wealth of love and gratitude there is for having the Playground to share your snippets in. I've smiled like a Cheshire cat, laughed out loud at some of the outrageous shenanigans going on ..... and also shed a few tears of pure joy to know that you like it here! A huge thank you - and also, don't forget that we do have some lovely Playmates who at times send prizes for the Playground as well. Am not asking for more, can only just close the toy box lid right now - but it's important that we also remember their kindness.

I see the hop carries on for another week as well - I'm doing my best to comment and will get round to every single one of you I promise! A HUGE thank you also to Darnell of course who arranged this, mwah, you really are the best! Reaches for fresh box of Kleenex.

Friday was a blizzard here in North Hampshire for most of the day and in the end the whole area (our closest motorway stretch and other local roads) was totally gridlocked - and a lot of it still is apparently. We'd already decided not to budge and had done all our trips out before yesterday thankfully. We saw people trudging home on foot having abandoned their cars in the lane at the top of our road, or even further afield. Len fought a constant battle to keep the penned in part of the patio near the house clear so that Dudley could go to the loo without being up to his chin in snow. We only had about 9" in total and both of us have seen much worse when we lived in other places - but this is the very worst we've had in the whole time we've lived here and frankly much of the UK is just not geared up for such conditions. Both of us have previously been caught in sudden snow storms in our cars here when we were commuting and it can be pretty scary stuff! Today (Saturday) the sun is shining and folk are out clearing their driveways etc.

Here's my snippets card - and in fact this week you get two for the price of one - special offer (BOGOF, Buy One Get One Free):
This card is for all of you girls, with love from me!
And this card is also for you girls. From some of the comments I've been reading as I hopped around' I can see that the surprise visit from one certain little Miss Mischief precipitated a load of sneaky sips and even some moonshine!

Both cards were made in a fairly similar fashion so am covering them both  in my usual 'I used' blurb.

I used:

- a black snippet of thick card, scored and folded into an A6 sized card blank - tent style and a snippet of Strathmore Mixed Media paper (which is actually 300gsm!), which (once the image panels was ready) I scored, folded and trimmed to 4" x 4.25" - side opening

- then I used a couple of snippets of the Strathmore Mixed Media paper (I never throw any offcuts of that out, it's too expensive!) and stamped the image panels

- I used a Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink pad and stamps from the Woodware 'Smile On My Face' single stamp set and also the Woodware multiple stamp set called 'Time to Wine Down' (one image and two sentiments)

- before the ink dried, embossed both image panels using WOW clear embossing powder as I wanted to use my Zig brush markers and knew it would spread over the lines otherwise. Really dithered about using a Versamark pad and black embossing powder instead but, even using my anti-static pad, I felt that both panels had such a lot of detail on them it would be all too easy to end up with a stray grain of black embossing powder. Clear embossing at least wouldn't show up!

- spent a happy time colouring both image panels with my Ziggies - word of warning, the red is really easy to pick up on a finger or the side of your hand and then leave a little smudge - ask me how I know this, thank goodness for a sand eraser!

- trimmed and backed the 'thinking of you' panel with a snippet of green card most likely 'Certainly Celery' and glued it onto the white card front

- then trimmed and glued the 'wine' panel directly onto the black card front

I had been going to change the card sizes and add a stripe of patterned paper to both cards but in the end decided they were already busy enough.

I've had both these stamps for a good while now but to be honest, colouring the 'wine down' one always seemed really daunting but in fact it was great fun! When I use the 'smile on my face' stamp again with Ziggies I'll do the backgrounds first so they can be mottled with a mix of colours.

And of course, this fortnight's prize is the same as the stamps I used:

The Woodware 'Smile On My Face' stamp and also the Woodware 'Time to Wine Down' set of stamps. I will be offering these as a bundle and won't separate them, but do feel free to give one or other away if you don't want them both.
As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 17th February. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day.

It's a maximum of ONE entry and 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're wanting 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 playing only for fun - otherwise I ignore you on my little list.

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 :)

Last minute edit! After the snow clearing, Len took Dudley out for a walk. I managed to take a quick photo when they got back, but he just won't look at the camera so this is the best I could do. In fact, he's really keen on eating as much snow as he can! At least he's showing off his new jacket though:
With love from Parsnip, Dudley - and of course me, stay warm and safe!