Tuesday 31 May 2011

I managed it!

Phew, yesterday I managed to finish my WOYWW PiF little 'thingy' - to say more could give it away :) I even managed to add WOYWW to the 'thingy'. My desk is currently a total tip but I did manage in the process to try out the little glue gun I got some time ago - it's absolutely great and I can't understand why it's taken so long to get round to using it. Note to self - try things out sooner!

No piccies today - am in headless chicken mode sorting out and getting ready for the school reunion this weekend. Yay - only three more sleeps :)) !!


Sunday 29 May 2011

Mini Picasso, toddler electronics engineer - and a card :)

It's been a busy 24 hours here. Cutting a long story short we've had Len's son, wife and their two little daughters here for 24 hours en route to Cornwall....... from Southern Germany. We crammed a lot into a short space of time - shopping in Mothercare for the girlies, mooching round Sainsburys and buying UK food that Kai likes (me too!!), playing with crafty things and making some 'quick and slap it on' cards, a trip to the little kiddies play ground just through the nearby park - and of course eating and sleeping! It does make you realise that a little bit of time can be every bit as good as a long time...the best things often come in little packages.  Mia (aged three and a half) loved the crafting and she's gone off with an even bigger bag of goodies, including sticky tape runners, toppers, stickers, cards etc.suitable for her age, just in case it rains on their hols. No scissors needed either!

Meanwhile, baby sister Livi - Olivia really - (aged one and a half) took great delight in toddling round and fiddling with every knob, dial and button she could reach. That girl is gonna be an electronics engineer I reckon! I counted the remote controls before they set off for Cornwall this morning :))

Of course I'm biased but she is just so gorgeous - auburn curly hair and the smile would melt an iceberg! Big sister Mia is a little gem too, my special little playmate with stunning looks and so bright - if she isn't an artist then I reckon she'll be a model...but then I would say that wouldn't I?!?! :))

They'll be doing the same stopover on the way home in about 10 days time, maybe for longer next time. It was a delight having them here and Grandad didn't mind one jot when a little finger (Livi's) was pointed at the computer tower unit, then one 'boink' and a quick little 'Livi finger press'........ followed by that awful sound of a PC crashing. He's still laughing about it - totally unfazed. It would have been my head on the block different if it had been me I bet :))

So, we've been chilling out a bit since waving them goodbye - Grandad slept later on and GranDi did some crafting:

The bits and pieces were on my desk on Wednesday's WOYWW ready to made this card up so I've just played at putting it together. The gingham background paper is from the Papermania Capsule Collection 'Heather' paper pack, the heart-shaped doilies are made by Wilton and came from Joanna Sheen. I'd originally coloured one doily with a 'purple' Pro Marker but did another one using 'lilac' which is a lighter shade and matches better. The image is a LOTV Cute Square from the 'Love and Romance' set, die cut into a circle and mounted onto a very slightly bigger scalloped circle of Core'dinations card (both done using Nesties and my Cuttlebug). The lace and delicious lilac silk ribbon are from The Ribbon Girl, the bow is even but I got the camera angle a bit wrong - and the flowers came from Wild Orchid Crafts. A few pearly stones and then it was done.

My very favourite colour is pink....love. love, love it!! Hot on its heels comes purple and all shades of lilac. I remember having the most gorgeous lilac party dress when we lived in Singapore - my Mum tended to dress  me in blue or lilac as, in those days - I think they fade as we age, or we can't see them so well!! - I had really vivid blue eyes. So, I'd like to enter this card for the current My Mum's Craft Shop Challenge which is 'Favourite colours' - I chose shades of purple and lilac.

The house is soooo quiet - we have an e-bot thingy here and Mia has recorded a little message so, if we miss the silence, we can wave our hands in front of it and hear her chattering away and singing away:)) Bless!!

Having said all that - I'm now off to bed to catch up on lots of sleep ready for my old school reunion on Friday! Fun times ahead - and my WOYWW PiF still isn't finished - I might have to miss out :((


Friday 27 May 2011

A new blog............

.........and it would be so nice if any of you lovely ladies could hop over and say 'Hi!'.

Bernie lives in the USA and has wanted a blog for a while - she now has one called 'Bernie's Craft Closet'. For a long time she's been visiting and commenting on my blog and having her own one is a new little adventure. Bernie has just posted a lovely card  on her blog and  it's worth a peek - here. I know it's always great to have visitors and comments.

AND, Mr. Postie has just arrived this minute as I'm typing this post, with a parcel from Bernie - how generous and kind. A gorgeous pashmina, in my very favourite colour, some super stamps to play with that are so me, I'm keeping them outta the photo as I'll be playing with them and then you'll get to see them :). AND, such a pretty card with a stand-up butterfly on - so delicate and pretty:

No time to craft here right now - normal service will resume as soon as possible :)) In the meantime it seems to be my turn to have lost my followers from the sidebar. I've checked the settings and they are fine but haven't got time to play around or report it to Blogger. I know it seems to be a bit of a problem right now for some other folk - it might be my browser running in compatibility mode but no time to play around. Any ideas anyone? HELP!!

Thank you so much and good luck Bernie - happy blogging honey!


Wednesday 25 May 2011


Just the beginnings of a card I have in mind on my desk today left from the other day:

I tend to gather all the bits together before colouring an image - although this one is a LOTV Cute Square. But, I had to abandon any thoughts of crafting and run off to plant these up to hang on the wall beside our front door:

The little garden tea light holder/lantern came from Ikea and it's really sweet in the late evenings. We've had the wall pots for donkeys years - bought from a pottery in Yorkshire. My next outside job is to give the wrought iron garden furniture a good old clean and a fresh coat of dark green Hammerite. Of course I like the hammered effect one which is a long and messy 'do it by hand' task rather than using a spray. I usually end up with as much on me as anywhere else! This is one of the tubs I planted up about a week ago - settled in nicely and growing at a rate of knots already:

I don't go for slightly quirky garden ornaments but this Meerkat is soooo cute. Morrisons had them in last year and they sold out in double quick time. I spotted they had them again last week and just had to give one a home :) He's now called Sergei and his little lantern is solar powered so it glows at night. The buttercups in the lawn are deliberate - my beloved hates cutting them down and the bees just love them.

So, my craft room is a bit neglected at the moment. But, if you want to have a good nosy at what everyone else is up to - go to Julia's here! 

And, it isn't long until WOYWW PiF next week. I'm still not sure if I'll be able to join in - a lot going on here over the next couple of weeks but I might just find some time as it sounds a lot of fun and I'm already working on something. I'm over the fretting if it's good enough, Julia's words are right, if it's made to please then it's always good enough. My problem is I might end up sending the remainder of the crafty bits and a little note saying, 'here y'are - finish it off now'!!

Have a happy WOYWW - I'll try to hop round later, with a bit of luck and a following wind.

Thursday edit: I'm finding that I can't leave comments on a few blogs - can't work out a common thread so I gave up yesterday as you don't find out until you've gone right through the process and are trying to publish your comment.Time to try again today!


Monday 23 May 2011

A little more wrapping paper!

I found more pretty wrapping paper (made by Images & Editions), this time at one of the garden centres I was trolling round last week... so this is another card, not unlike the one wot I made earlier:

Same format really, white linen 6" x 6" card, a square of purple matt card topped with a square of wrapping paper. Then a couple of layered/3D butterfly stickers from Accessorize. I think I like this one even more than the previous (blue) one - the butterflies look so realistic I keep tickling their wings :))

A busy day here trying to protect a newly fledged baby blackbird from a murderous feline. Not sure who's more worn out, us or the parent birds. Obviously we couldn't go too close to the baby for fear of scaring the parents away but it's been fraught. Success so far and right now all is quiet on the Western Front. It's 1:30 am. so I should jolly well hope so too! ZZZZZzzzzzzzz.


Saturday 21 May 2011

Hedgypogs update

Just a quick update to say that Spike, often with A.N. Other, calls by each night at round about midnight to 2am onwards......err, and leaving their little 'calling cards' of course. Last night I was putting something in the recycling bin - scraps of paper from my craft room needless to say :) at 10pm and there was a gorgeous little face peeking at me over the top of the bowl of hedgehog food. An early date!

I stood totally still but after a few moments he decided that he didn't like being watched while he ate (who does!!) and tootled off round the back of the garden shed. Then, I spotted what I like to think was his 'date', just by the rhubarb patch, hopefully keeping any slugs at bay. Of course, she could have been just powdering her nose nose before joining Spike at the dining table for a proper dinner :))

There was no time to go fetch my camera and I didn't want to scare them away but babies tend to be less shy, so perhaps if there are any youngsters later on I might hit lucky. Baby hedgehogs have absolutely no table manners and will happily paddle round in the feeding bowl oblivious of what's going on around them so I've been lucky in the past :)


Friday 20 May 2011

Just a sheet of wrapping paper

Even the dreaded weekly supermarket shop isn't a craft free zone for me :)) I spotted some delicious Hallmark wrapping paper and pounced!

This card took just a few minutes to rustle up and there's still a 'lorra' wrapping paper left to play with. Just a plain white 6" x 6" square card with silver mirri card and then a piece of the wrapping paper layered....OK, so I chose whereabouts on the sheet to pick from :) Then a couple of Anita's Dimensions butterfly stickers (just the one on the tall flower might well have been enough - I'll try that for the next one I think).  Easy peasy. Just as well really - it's busy here right now and time to craft is at a premium - sob, sob!!


Wednesday 18 May 2011


I laughed out loud first thing at Nicky's posting telling folk to basically 'hop it', with the lid of her gorgeous crafting desk firmly closed down to hide what she's working on for WOYWW PiF in a couple of weeks time! Like Nicky, inspiration was slow in gettting here but I've started something. And, a good job I checked the rules this morning and spotted that it should have WOYWW somewhere on it - phew. Luckily I think I can work that in - of course, if it's a total failure then I won't be joining in but will do my best! Might be sensible if you join in to make sure your name isn't directly after mine!

So, that means that my desk is out of bounds this week too :(

However, I have something else to show - Pro Marker storage! :

I know, like a spoilt brat in a sweetshop , I couldn't make my mind up which colours to have when I recently bought the Pro Markers on a very good deal from Cowling and Wilcox. Err, so I got the lot (and ate the receipt of course)! But, then storage was an issue as I'd heard mixed reports about storing them upright or horizontally and I got fed up of rootling through a large Really Useful Box and then, bingo! I spotted a prototype on a blog (details further down this posting). The storage is really well made, it can be wall mounted, and even has space for you to stick the Letreset colour chart on (print to A5 size). I find this mostly handy when replacing the markers as the coloured spots I put on the ends of the markers are more reliable in terms of actual colour, as you might expect. This storage is such a brilliant idea and I love it! As my desk is in sunshine - when we have any - I was concerned about the markers suffering from any drying out problems (err, plus I don't have a ton of room given the other junk crafting stuff on there) the stand now sits happily on the top of a bookcase in my craft room. But, the pens are so well seated that it lifts down easily onto the little storage unit beside me and stands in front of the printer whenever I'm in colouring mode like so:

As my desk is curved it's just the perfect place to swivel to and pick out which markers I need. Brilliant I say!

This is the link to Sharon's blog here with the story of how the storage rack came about, full dimensions, better and more detailed photos, cost and her email address. This isn't advertising, just me sharing what is a really inspired piece of storage that has made my life MUCH easier when playing with PMs. I had to wait a couple of weeks as it was a first run of them but delivery was spot on and really well packaged.

So, if you haven't nipped out already and scuttled over to Sharon's to have a look see, then do make sure you hop over to Julia's here to find out what everyone else is up to today!

By the way, since the Blogger problems of last week, have you been able to spell check your postings OK? I'm not able to, so apologies in advance - or am I doing something stoopid here?!

No crafting planned for me today - catching up on chores here, in between nipping in and out to see what you're all up to. I'm doing some sewing alterations for my OH and could certainly do with Wipso nipping down to give a hand. Happy WOYWW everyone!


Monday 16 May 2011

Honey for sale!

Sometimes a particular card turns out to be extra fun to make and this was one:

The beehive was made using an image downloaded from the internet, resized and then cut out and used as a template twice onto beige coloured card. Bit of careful cutting out there! I then outlined the front and drew the horizontal lines in using a brown Whispers pen. The card is tent style with the front attached to the back at the very top of the hive.

The stamps are among my favourites, they're Penny Black, the large one is called 'Bee Costume' and the small bee is also a Penny Black one called 'honey'. They both sit on my small shelves above my desk and never fail to make me smile.

Pro markers were used to colour in the stamped images, the sentiment is an Elzybells one (just perfick for this card!). The little white flowers came from my stash but something was still lacking. Bit of pondering and some poking round the internet where I found a website with signs for 'Honey for Sale'. Copied one image into Word, resized, printed onto card, cut out and then with the addition of a cut-down and brown coloured (Whispers pen again) cocktail stick I had a little sign for the puddy tat salesman! I can't stop smiling at the thought of him there in his bee costume, ever hopeful of a bumper load of honey to sell :)) He even has little antennae (or are they feelers?) on a headband for goodness sakes.

I'd like to enter this into three challenges:

Daring Cardmakers - The Darling Bugs of May

Penny Black At Allsorts - Shape Up (anything but a square or rectangle)

Totally Gorjuss - Not Square

Thanks for calling by - no real honey here for sale though :(


Saturday 14 May 2011

What to do when Blogger is down - make a card of course!

Oh dear, I bet there was some wringing of hands and gnashing of teeth while Blogger was down :(

To waste while away some time I made this card:

It kinda summed up yesterday! The stamps are from the Docrafts Nostalgia Out of Bed set, which I've had for quite a while and been itching to use, and the backing papers are from their Born To Shop Bubbles pad. Useful as one side is patterned and the other is plain so you can mix and match. I kept the card fairly 'simples' as I think the images said it all for me :)

After colouring the main set of images with Pro Markers I then cut a strip of plain lilac using the reverse of a scrap of leftover paper, stamped the irons and rubber gloves and also coloured in with Pro Markers. Wasn't sure if it would work a) on the paper without bleeding and b) on lilac paper. But, positive results on both counts!

After that, I tackled some ironing! Oh deep joy.

Hope everyone is recovering from the trauma of yesterday and even problems before earlier in the week.

My day was made though when my 'all singing, all dancing' Pro Marker storage thingy arrived. Love it - still setting it up so you might just have to wait until our 'show and tell' on Wednesday (WOYWW) to have a nosey :)) Oooer, am such a naughty tease. Have a great weekend!


Wednesday 11 May 2011


And, it's Wednesday once again! What's on my desk right now is some paperwork and a Laura Ashley file (from Staples). I'm a dead woman if Len ever decides to really peruse this file though :(  !!

It looks innocent enough in the front sections - being a bit OCD of a squirrel, I file away ideas and techniques, mostly from magazines, at the front of the file.

Ahem, it's when you get past those sections towards the back that things take a downward turn:

Yup, that's my left paw in the piccie! I file away most order copies from crafting purchases so I can remember where I got them from - either for when I need more supplies or if someone asks where I got such and such from. Now and then I do weed them out so this certainly isn't the whole of my incriminating evidence by any means :)

This little lot are waiting to be filed in plastic filing pouches and only in date order so perhaps it isn't as OTT as all that!? I'm sure I read that someone is even more organised and jots new bit of stash into a notebook. Just gotta hope that my OH doesn't read this post - maybe I should lock the file away?

Last week a lot of nice people commented on the sweet peas water colour I was doing. The card was asked for by my OH as a thank you to a lovely lady who has done a lot for a club he belongs to. Recently they've done a load of groundwork there and Sue has been amazing, working away chivvying members to roll their sleeves up and pitch in as well as providing teas and coffees for the workers. I think her unofficial title is 'co-ordinator extraordinaire' and this is how the card turned out:

It's an 8" square scalloped card, topped off with some shimmery slightly patterned dark blue backing paper from my stash, lace also from my stash and a pink bow using the Ribbon Girls 32mm pure silk ribbon.. I added filigree corners and a few slightly pearlised pink gems, along with Sue's name. If you look closely at the lace there's a little teapot charm tied on with bakers twine :)).....oh, and of course I used the sweet peas watercolour! Almost forgot that bit! My OH chose the backing paper from my quite limited supply of large papers after disagreeing with my initial suggestion of silvery grey - he was the client after all :)) And of course, then it needed a box:

I think, recently watching Forrest Gump and the boxes of chocolates had registered here, so I lined the base of the box with more dark blue backing paper and attached the pink silk ribbon so it was part of the lid.

Sue was delighted and rang me that same evening to say so - how nice was that?! It was a real pleasure to make something as a little recognition of all her hard work.

I'm entering this for the current Oldie But a Goodie challenge. The theme is 'Say it with flowers' and you have to use a stamped image at least 6 months old. I've had the sweet pea stamp for a lot of years so I guess it qualifies as an OAP!!

So, if you managed to read this far folks - remember to hop over to Julia's to see what everyone else is up to on What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday. Thanks again to so many lovely readers and for your kind comments too!!


Tuesday 10 May 2011

I've been a bit spoiled today!

This is what the postman brought me this morning from a super friend (yup, that's you Dee!) who hopefully will be blogging soon. We'd spoken about all things card making and I swear she knows me almost as well as I know myself. To list some of the goodies - a beautiful card and what I think is Dee's very first ATC! Gonna have to give this a go I think.

 The goodies also include some gorgeous die cuts (I NEED to know where those delicious lacy labels are from!), embossed and die cut card (I also NEED to know which die this is, it's absolutely beautiful), Tim Holtz goodies, a lovely selection of charms, ribbon sliders, cord and some yummy 'Parisian Style' backing paper. How kind and thoughtful - thank you so much Dee!

I'm going to have such fun playing with these :)


Monday 9 May 2011

Lily of the Valley - Return of Happiness

Daring Cardmakers current challenge is to feature a May flower, either Hawthorne or Lily of the Valley. I remember my Mum sometimes wearing Lily of the Valley 'scent' so I plumped for that. Her all time favourite perfume though was Chanel No. 5 and to this day that's all I wear (err, clothes too you understand!).

Anyhow, I didn't have a Lily of the Valley stamp so I scouted round the internet and found an image on a 'how to draw' website. I then coloured the image using Pro Markers and set about putting this card together:

It's a 6" x 6" cream square card, topped with paper from an old, and dogeared so I don't feel guilty about chopping it up, music book from a local charity shop. I used Tim Holtz 'Old Paper' distress ink to tone the paper down. The creamy Guipure lace is from my stash, as are the heart charms dangling from beige twine. The tag is from my stash and the gorgeous green pure silk ribbon is from The Ribbon Girl. It's so soft and delicate - you want to just stroke it! The little birdies are from a Woodware Clear Magic stamp set and after colouring them with Pro Markers too I also added layered wings for dimension. The Lily of the Valley image is layered onto a Nesties scalloped square with a Tim Holtz Hinge Clip at the top of the 'frame'.

One of the meanings of the flower Lily of the Valley is 'return of happiness'. That's why I chose the tag saying Joy and Happiness and the two little birds and the hearts. Sometimes, things happen to us in life and we wonder if we'll ever find happiness again - this card spells out hope and it's especially for anyone reading this who might be wondering if happiness will return.

So, enough mushy stuff! I'm entering this card into:

Daring Cardmakers Challenge - May Flowers

I Love Pro Markers - 'Song Title'. My chosen song title is 'Lily of the Valley', written by the fabulous Freddie Mercury of Queen. I've just listened to it again and it's beautiful.

A BIG thank you to everyone who has called by and left comments, 'if friends were flowers, I'd pick you'!!


Sunday 8 May 2011

Girl's birthday card

I adore this LOTV Cute Squares image from the Vintage Girls set. Don't these two look so cute cosied up together!

The backing papers are from a Picnic in the Park paper stack which came with a magazine recently, the sentiment is Elzybells, flowers and brads from my stash (I swear the ton of flowers I have must be breeding as they never seem to go down much) - and the rust coloured card is from a Core'dinations stack - which also never seems to go down! Ages ago I bought what was such a good investment - a load of DewDrop Brilliance ink pads. Whatever sentiment I might want to stamp - there's always one which will tone perfectly - this one is Pearlescent Rust. I think they came from QVC and I've already had my money's worth.

This card is for the following challenges:

Totally Gorjuss - a sketch (first time I've followed a challenge sketch and it was great fun!)

Crafters Companion Monthly Challenge - Girls Birthday

St. Luke's Hospice - Pick a Pattern

This last one's a fairly new challenge blog that I've posted about before. You can also send the original card on to them afterwards for them to sell to raise funds. When they first began it was Freepost, but that has proved to be unsustainable so you do have to pay the postage now. From my days working as a volunteer for our local hospice I did wonder about the Freepost as every single penny is so much needed, and it's a great cause. And you can always add more cards into the little box or envelope to get your moneys worth from our friends......Royal Mail!!


Thursday 5 May 2011

Just wondering.........

.........will I be making a congratulations card sometime soon using this gorgeous Penny Black stamp?

My OH woke me at 2am this morning. The security light in the back garden had been triggered and there was a noisy little party in progress! Spike the hedgehog had brought his lady friend to dinner and......ahem, it seemed rude to peek out of the bedroom window! Our CCTV had picked up the party as well to prove we weren't just dreaming :) So, there just might be the patter of little feet attached to small prickly bundles of cuteness in about four weeks time. Fingers crossed here!


Wednesday 4 May 2011


Hiya! What a fun filled week and what a wedding - I loved every minute of the televised proceedings!

This is my desk right now, at least how I left it yesterday afternoon:

I'm working on a special request for a card but can't say too much just in case the recipient decides to drop in here. But, the main image is a Stamps Happen design called 'Sweet Peas'. It's such a delicate and detailed stamp that I thought Aqua Markers would be best to use, and I had such a lovely time colouring this yesterday. Watercolouring is my first love, it's more time consuming but so rewarding when you mix colours to just the shade you're after. You can see the little strokes on the spare image where I test the colours out :)And I still like working with a very fine brush on delicate images like this one. Also on my desk are the obligatory mug of black coffee, Aqua Markers, perspex block for mixing colours on, cute little 'tot' glass that I pinched from my OH for holding water, centre back are the backing papers,lace, ribbon, filigree corners and such that I may use for the card - I like to have them kind of sorted out so I can tone the colouring in. A quick swing to the right shows a slightly less organised area :)

Ooops, I was just about to begin tidying when I took this photo, hence the open drawer where the little 'tot' glassses live - along with some big but often used punches, Cuttlebug plates and a 'glitter tray' back right, a load of Woodware trimmer decorative blades, baby wipes and calculator. And those baskets on the desktop fill up as soon as I empty them! 

This is the image I'm colouring:

It's probably finished but I like to take another good look a day or so later just in case there's anything to tweak. Then it's all systems go on making up the card for final approval - I'll post the result here once it's been safely delivered.

Meanwhile, do go over to the lovely Julia's - our hostess for WOYWW - to see what everyone else is up to this week! Have a great day and thanks so much to all the lovely ladies who called by and left such sweet comments last week, I hope I got back to everyone. You're a great bunch....of sweet peas perhaps? That would be no bad thing as they're almost my favourite flower!!


Monday 2 May 2011

GorJuss girls are back in town!

In my basket of new things,which I'm determined won't be put away until I've tried them out lest I forget I've got them in the first place, are six unused GorJuss girls stamps. The number is now down to five 'cos I just made this:

It's really peculiar though, the green on her dress (the stamp is called Flower Girl) really leaps out and the greens in the papers and the die cut green swirl (Tim Holtz) and Nesties scallop have faded and become wishy washy when they're so similar in real life. Try as I might I can't get a decent photo, I had to resort to using the camera flash to get the best result I could :( Am not a happy bunny about it but I did try!

Of course I played with Pro Markers, the background papers are from a free set of lovely papers which came with Quick Cards Made Easy called Vintage Rose Collection by Pink Petticoat. The roses are from Wild Orchid Crafts, the pearl stems, lace and other pearls are all from my stash.

Still on a roll with challenges I'm entering this into Totally GorJuss #78, 1,2,3. I've used 1 image, 2 papers and 3 flowers. 

I'm also entering it into My Mum's Craft Shop 'Flowers'. The very talented Cebelica has just joined their DT, she's a real sweetie who often comments on my little blog and I'm delighted for her - well done honey! Oh, and she is currently offering some great candy over on her blog - runs until the end of May - to celebrate a number of things that have been happening for her lately. It's on my sidebar or you can click on the Cebelica link above.

That's my offering for today - time to sit with a glass of wine in the garden and watch the birdies soon, maybe I should do a few chores first though!


Sunday 1 May 2011

Strawberry Molly Giveaway

The Ribbon Girl are having another giveaway - take a look at this:

Not only a cute Strawberry Molly Bloom stamp but ribbons and embellies, all in the gorgeous strawberry felt bag! This is so mouthwatering - I'm off to the supermarket to pick up a punnet of strawberries and some icecream!