Wednesday 28 February 2018

LOTV to the rescue!

My Christmas card target for 2018 had already begun to slip so a while ago I rustled up four cards, all the same, using pre-printed LOTV images to catch up:
I used:

- very old white linen A6 card stock, trimmed down to 4" x 5.5" (partly to be able to balance the trimmed images but mostly as one corner had become very slightly dog-eared)

- a slightly smaller layer of dark green card as the outer 'frame'

- Magnolia 'Sweet Christmas Dreams' patterned paper from the Lingonberry Collection, trimmed to slightly smaller than the dark green layer and then both were glued to the card front

- the LOTV 'toppers' came from one of their Art Pads called 'Penguin Pals', trimmed down to suit then mounted on a slightly bigger piece of white linen card stock

- final thing was to glue the whole image panel onto the card front

These were so easy to make, just a question of rummaging a bit through some boxes and boxes of older craft goodies and then a lot of trimming and gluing. It's a good way to produce cards when you don't feel in the mood to spend ages colouring or die cutting.

My guess is that the images are no longer available from LOTV - unless they're in digital format. The Magnolia backing paper is almost certainly now defunct (it dates back to when I used to order goodies and 12" square sheets of patterned paper from Craft Creations in the early days of my card making). And the white linen card blanks also date back to that era.

The foray into older goodies did prick my conscience and make me realise that very soon I need to have a real purge in here! It's likely to be a huge task so it'll be the 'eating an elephant' approach I suspect - 'just a bit at a time'. 😅

Sunday 25 February 2018

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge # 319 - results

Well, this post almost didn't make it - purely as we're pretty busy here at the minute and I didn't even find time to sort out a Guest Designer for this fortnight - despite having a healthy list of names.

However, I do have my own snippets card(s) which I'd forgotten about. I made a batch of six of them, all identical, ready to enter into ScrappyMo's Rudolph Days Challenge. Then I realised it starts today and closes on the last day of the month - February is a short month remember, so get your skates on.

I wanted to use a little die set that's been languishing here. I was reminded that I had it when Greta posted THIS lovely Christmas card on her blog in December of last year.

I just love her design and was sorely tempted to do a straight CASE of it - but, although the little angel is made in a similar way with glittery pink wings etc. - I did stop myself from doing a straight 'pinch' of the whole thing!

Do hop over to see Greta's original card - and this is my version below:
I used:

- 4.25" x 5.5" white card blank

- layer of baby blue pearlescent card as a 'frame' for the embossed layer

- white pearlescent card, embossed using a Quickutz 'Holiday Words' folder and then trimmed to size

- both layers were then glued onto the card blanks(s)

- then die cut the arched frame using more baby blue pearlescent card and a die from the MFT 'Rounded Banners' set

- the angel was pretty easy to work with, I used a mix of Stick-It backed white pearlescent card for the body outline and head of the angel. Also used snippets from a couple of packs of XCut Adhesive glitter sheet for the wings, inner part of the body and the halo (pink came from the 'Pastel' pack and the white and silver from the 'Metallics' pack) 

- the die set is called 'Paper Angel', made by Memory Box

- then just assembled the angel onto the blue arch shaped background piece before adhering it onto the card front using thin sticky pads

The hardest part was getting the halo to stick down, despite it being cut from adhesive backed glitter paper. I think it's such a small and very narrow die cut that it's easy to pick the sticky off when removing the backing - so I just used a fine nibbed glue pen to bolster up the stickiness!

This fortnight we had an entry which is absolutely amazing - wonderful use of snippets, practical and very pretty. Totally deserving of a Gold Star from the Playground:
Made by the very talented Sonia - and the detail is absolutely delightful! Just look at that little apron with the utensils tucked in the pockets for example - and of course it's super use of snippets :) Please feel free to take a Gold Star badge from the RH side bar Sonia - and well done!

Time now for the other fortnightly picks and, as always, so difficult to choose. I started off with a long list and had to whittle it down to fit the time available here. With the forecast of very cold weather and possible snow I had to dash out to get some fresh food etc. just in case we get hit. Doesn't happen often but when it does we can be snowed in for a short while.

Viv skipped into the Playground with this totally brilliant Valentine/romantic card - I love it! A perfect sentiment and all those little punched hearts, spilling out of the pretty umbrella are such a clever idea! Great use of snippets and also a real test of patience I imagine :)

What a stunning bag our Val made! All using little scraps/snippets of fabric. It's so colourful and the black background sets it off perfectly! I love it Val. Who can spot the chicken?

And, it's a timely reminder that snippets aren't just confined to card and paper. Material, ribbon, lace, wool, pieces of metal, wood - all of these, and more besides, are fine for the challenge. It just needs to be one or more leftover snippet(s) and away you go :) Of course, the more imaginatively you use your snippets the more chance there is of being a weekly pick. But, just come and play even with a little snippet or two as part of what you make - I often do that with my own cards. The Playground is for everyone and meant to be fun with no added pressure 😀

And here's my third pick:
Carole (Card and Cake) brought this really clever Valentine's Day card to share with us. It's CAS, very elegant and uses such a clever idea. One that I keep forgetting about - the paper in the aperture is a snippet from an old dictionery - with the definition of Valentine of course. How clever.

I have an old dictionary, bought at our local charity shop ages ago for that very purpose, and as yet untouched! And of course, if you feel that either it's a shame to cannibalise a book - or perhaps you want more than one copy of the same entry - remember you can always scan then print it, if you have a scanner of course.

We had one new Playmate this fortnight:

Welcome to the Playground Marlene - it's always fun to see a new face playing along with us. I hope you came back again soon and also that our Playmates will hop over the say 'Hello' and perhaps add themselves as followers. We're a happy little bunch as I'm sure you'll soon find out.

We had a total of 69 entries including our new little Playmate. Numbers are still climbing  up.

Prize draw time now and our winner of the Lil'Inkers 'Love You More Than Words' die and a pack of 10 sheets of XCut Self Adhesive glitter paper is:
Congratulations Pat. Coming so soon after your 'shammy' win, I'd buy a Lottery ticket if I were you :) They say things come in threes!

I still need your address, with full name at the top so I can copy and paste please. I know that some of you do wonder why I always ask for your address when you're a winner and you may think 'But she already knows my address anyhow').

Answer - it's confirmation that I've got the right person, that you still want the prize and also that your address is the same. I will keep on asking, even if it's a bit of a nuisance - plus it makes life easier for me as I don't need to hunt in a few places for your address (a small price to pay for a prize I hope?). I don't want to make more work for any of us but have had a few near misses with unexpected address changes, as well as a couple of changes of mind about the prize even.

Please put Playground Winner or similar in the subject line of your email in case it drops into my junk mail - much of it won't, but you never know. Email address is on RH sidebar as always.

Remember folks, there's still almost another week to run on Challenge #320 HERE. The prize is a Sugar Pea 'HOME' die and a set of co-ordinating 'Home' sentiments.

A little bit of news, Spike has been out a few times after his Winter hibernation. But, I reckon he'll soon be back under his little quilt - tucked up nice and warm for a bit longer!

Love from the little white peril Parsnip (he's busily polishing the runners on his sled, in the hope of snow arriving this coming week!) - and of course me,

Wednesday 21 February 2018

A 'zentangle' style card

A lovely blogging buddy just very recently gifted me a pre-loved 'Zentangle style' stamp, which she thought would be good for paper piecing - and it has a butterfly on it!!

In the end, I also added pearls as well - but just couldn't run to patterned paper and peach (the other two options) without losing sight of the bright, modern and funky card I had in mind. Adding the pearls was stretching it a bit, but I do think they work OK-ish:

I used:

- white DL card

- a slightly smaller layer of white card cut to size, which I edged right round for about half an inch or a bit less, using a purple Pro marker (didn't have any bright enough purple card here - and this is one trick I do keep forgetting to use!)

- at the same time I also swiped the purple Pro marker over a couple of snippets of white card - in case my trimming went wrong! 

- glued the 'purple edged' card onto the card front

- then took a piece of white card not yet trimmed to size and, using the Misti, stamped the lovely floral image and a sentiment in Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink in the centre. Thanks to Kath I now know that the pre-loved stamp set is made by Woodware and is called 'Tulip Doodle'

- whilst the Misti was set up I also stamped the floral 'Zentangle' image onto paper in almost neon shades of pink and green (goodness knows how old they are!) - as well as the butterfly onto little pieces of purple card I'd coloured with Pro markers. Over time I've learned that if you do have enough paper/card then it's really best to stamp extra in case of mistakes when trimming the images for paper piecing

- then trimmed the white card panel with the stamped image and sentiment down to size, before going any further

- next carefully trimmed around the leaves, flowers and butterfly that had been stamped onto coloured paper/card (I use very small Fiskars embroidery scissors, kept purely for paper cutting). Then ran a black Whispers pen around the edges just to keep the outlines as crisp as possible (if you do this, don't use a Pro marker or similar, as it will bleed - I learned this the hard way a very long time ago!)

- using a Zig glue pen (the bullet shaped one where you can apply wide or very narrow lines of glue), I then, step by step, added glue to the card front images and popped the leaves, flower heads and butterfly in place

- final touch, little pearls on the stems where the stamp design had already drawn circles as well as on the centre of the butterfly's body- just to add dimension

I realised afterwards that I could have just pretended to do some paper piecing and used Pro markers to do the colouring - so here's the proof:

Such a pretty stamp - I love it!

Sunday 18 February 2018

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #320

A lovely blogger (Sandra) who we all know and love, has moved house recently. And what better reason to make a card!

So, today's snippets card was for Sandra and we all send you our love and best wishes for a happy time in your lovely home!

Anyhow, this is my snippets card for this fortnight: 
I used:

- A6 (about 6" x 4") white card blank, tent style

- then I sort of built from the top downwards by die cutting the HOME word using a snippet of aqua coloured card, backed with Stick-It adhesive sheet and a Sugar Pea 'Home Sweet Home' die

- set that die cut to one side and then die cut just the house (plus a bit either side) part of the die again, using a snippet of Christmas red card, also backed with Stick-It adhesive sheet and set it aside

- then I took a bigger piece of white card (snippet again) and did some rough calculations with a wavy stitched edged die and the HOME die cut - plus a stamp for the sentiment

- once that was all worked out we were ready to roll

- first of all I stamped the sentiment itself using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and the Misti along with a sentiment from the Sugar Pea co-ordinating 'Sweet Sentiments 'Home' stamp set

- then die cut the white panel using my Creative Dies 'Wonky Stitches Nested Rectangles' set, took the full HOME die cut (aqua) and adhered it to where I wanted it to sit (bit of a ruler, pencil and eraser job here folks!)

- then snipped off pieces from either side of the red die cut HOME house and stuck the red house on top of the aqua one, pressing it down really firmly

- added the little leftover aqua heart, windows and also a little red heart die cut to the front panel and now the main panel was done, sigh of relief

- added a narrow Christmas red layer behind the white panel - another snippet

- die cut the next size up in the Creative Dies 'Wonky Stitches Nested Rectangles' from some more of the aqua card snippet and layered it onto a narrow frame of Christmas red

- glued it all in place  and then onto the card front and job done!

So, here's this week's Snippets Playground prize:

I enlarged the photo so you can see the variety of sentiments. It's a Sugar Pea 'Home Sweet Home' die and also the Sugar Pea co-ordinating 'Sweet Sentiments 'Home' stamp set. Loads of variations to choose from in the stamps and the die is such fun! You certainly could inlay this one quite easily - but I'm still recovering from my last inlaying marathon of that scribbled glittery heart!

Remember, as a general rule, I won't be splitting prizes in future - so these make up one single prize. I've already said, if you enter the draw really only wanting one item, and you win, then feel free to give the other one to a friend. Although, I would hope you agree that both items are a lovely 'pair'.

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 3rd 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 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' - just in case you're playing only for fun. Thanks!

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 :)

Be sure to call back next week to see the winners of last fortnight's 'Lil'Inkers 'Love You More Than Words Can Say' did and the pack of XCut Adhesive Glitter Sheets. Plus a Guest Designer and fortnightly picks of course.

By the way - I did give Len both Valentine's Day cards in the end - and yes, he was tickled by the play on his surname!

Love from Parsnip (he's still swooning over all his Valentine's Day cards. Odd really, it's the same familiar bear-like scribble and kisses plus a few smudges of his favourite choklit on each one - aw, bless him)  and of course from me,

Wednesday 14 February 2018

Valentine's card for Len - take 2

When I finished making the latest snippets challenge card (the die cut/inlaid heart that took almost a whole day), I did mention in the blog post that I'd had another idea for a Valentin's Day card for Len.

Trouble is, I can't decide between the two options so he might just get both cards!

This latest one is so personalised that I think it will tickle his sense of fun:
I used:

- 6" x 6" square white card blank

- snippet of black card as the outer 'frame'

- snippet of red card with sparkly white hearts on - the date alongside the manufacturer's details is 2001! Surely not, but also quite possible knowing me!

- one hint when you have patterned paper like this, trim the paper so that the pattern is evenly spaced on all four sides and then trim the frame (black in this case) to suit - and even trim the card stock itself if need be. It makes for a more balanced result

- used a couple of snippets of white card to stamp the sentiment and image - plus the 'Love you Watts and Watts' - using stamps from the SU 'Watts of Occasions', the Misti and Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink

- then die cut the image plus sentiment and the 'Watts and Watts' using dies from the Lil'inkers 'Stitched Rectangles' set of dies

- added some light and darker yellow to the bulb and the heart shaped filament, using Pro markers - and also tickled the filament heart with clear Wink of Stella

- mounted them onto slightly larger snippets of black card

- assembled the black and red and glittery white hearts layers onto the card blank, using Collall All Purpose glue

- added the two image/sentiment rectangles using thin sticky pads - remembering to add double layers of sticky pad to where the small rectangle wouldn't sit directly on the larger one. This makes it much more level

- final touch, added a shiny red Josy Rose heart shaped nail head to the right of the smaller sentiment - I'd deliberately die cut it so that there would be space left

The light here was very odd when I took this photo - the light bulb is pale and darker yellow, yet the pale area looks peachy. And the white card blank seems to have a bit of a peachy yellow cast to it on one side. The side where the natural light is strongest as well - how very peculiar.

And the reason I think Len might be quite tickled with this card? His surname is Watts :) The set has quite a few different light bulb designs and also sentiments built around the 'watts theme'. I can see him having a few more cards over the coming year from yours truly, made using that stamp set - so I should get my money's worth! All too often a stamp set is used as little as once here, and that's not good value or sensible is it!? in fact, it's downright wasteful and I ought to be ashamed!

Sunday 11 February 2018

Pixies Snippets Playground - Weeks 317/318 - results

I'll be honest and tell you that this post took me FOUR goes to write. I kept getting rogue HTML scattered throughout. I'm no quitter - but this almost had me in tears of total frustration. I'm almost sure it came from 3rd party code such as the Flickr photo I loaded directly (never do that again!) or possibly the Random number gizmo - but oh boy, did it cause havoc! And, as I was juggling four versions at once trying to salvage what I could, we did have one rogue publishing happen - but it was minimal in any case - and if you're trying to juggle a barrel load of wet fish then am sure you know where I was. Hopefully it's all sorted out now though.

Onto happier things and this week we have a lovely lady as our Guest Designer - an immensely clever crafter and also such a lovely person. In fact, she's representative of all of you as each one of you is very special and also very talented. The Playground is such a source of great ideas - as well as lots of fun and frolics of course! Ha, but even little Parsnip went and hid when I was struggling trying to sort this post out - bless him. He sidled up with a little smile and said 'Don't cry Miss Di - I still love you to the moon and back'. Little perisher is probably wanting to share in any Valentine's Day choccies I might have this coming week :)

Jane, of Jane's Journal, has been on my list as a future Guest Designer for ages and I'm delighted we finally managed to find a mutually suitable date.

And, being Jane, we have not one but two fabulous cards - look below but do be sure to hop over to Jane's for the details of how she made them. Her blog is an absolute delight - HERE.

And now, here's Jane herself - brandishing what looks like one very refreshing (as well as large) G&T whilst on holiday last year. Crumbs, that's a very happy girlie!
And here's what Jane wrote when I asked for a bit about herself. There's a lot more to be found over on her blog if you'd like more details about the companies she designs for etc.:

"I have been crafting since I could hold a pencil and made scrapbooks with embellishments as a child before the term "scrap booking" was even heard of. My Mum introduced me to card making over 20 years ago and I also saw a stamped image being embossed using gold embossing powder around that time at a craft fair. I was hooked by the magic. I still own my very first stamps.

My paper crafting journey took a huge leap forward about 5 years ago when I discovered mixed media and leaving behind my patterned papers (I do occasionally pull them out) I found huge satisfaction in creating my own inky backgrounds. Not just for cards but for tags/journals etc. I often make my own journals/pages to record special events and holidays and I am known for making "Moments" for my physical Jane's Journals (yes they really do exist). 

I was also lucky enough to attend a workshop last year with none other than Tim Holtz who is my creative idol. I adore his work and I have learnt so much from him over the years. His distress inks and oxides are my go to products nearly every time I make anything. He really is as kind and lovely as he appears on his videos. He is the Professor of all things inky in my books.

2 years ago, after working for 34 years as an NHS specialist musculoskeletal physiotherapist, I decided to take early retirement to explore the possibility of a new challenge; a "career" in papercrafting. I first joined the Design team for Country View Challenges. At the same time a new vintage Tea Rooms called Dotty's opened in Carshalton High Street, walking distance to my home. I met the owner Rebecca to show her some of my cards and she signed me up on the spot to sell my cards there. I have since sold hundreds of my one of a kind handmade cards.

I'm also on two other design teams and am lucky enough to have had several pieces of my work published and also shown on Create and Craft TV.
Since I retired I have never been so busy and combined with all my crafting work I am blessed to have 2 gorgeous grandchildren, Daisy 4 and Jack nearly 1 who we try to see as much as possible despite the hour and half journey up and down the A3 to Southampton.

Thanks so much Di for inviting me to guest design for you, it is the very least I can do. You are such a kind, generous crafter and friend and I would like to thank you for everything you do here. You have made this such a friendly, kind challenge spot and I always love visiting here. I would like to take this chance to apologize to my fellow playmates that I often don't get time to comment on their blogs but I do visit and admire all your lovely work".

I happen to know from an email the other day that Jane has actually made over 600 cards for Dotty's Tea Rooms! Thanks so much for being our Guest Designer Jane - and also for your very kinds words about the Playground and (blush) yours truly - which you insisted I left in :)

Time now for the fortnightly picks and I want to start off with a very special Gold Star:
Some, but not all of you, will already know that our Playmate Andreas's wonderful Dad (Doug) recently passed away. I've featured some of Doug's knitting work here before and this is a pair of very snazzy leg warmers he made for Andrea (KandA) last Summer - using up snippets of yarn. Doug was 96 and an absolute treasure - so I thought it would be appropriate if, as this is his 'last hurrah' in the Snippets Playground, we gave him a Gold Star - with our love and thanks for being privileged to take peeks into his life and hobbies.

Please feel free to take the Gold Star for your blog Andrea (right hand side bar here). Hopefully it will be a reminder of happier times and also our affection for your lovely Dad.

We had some good giggles on her post over this brilliant card, made by Alison C. Alison was 'super-selfcritical' about this card - yet all we commenters loved it! Lots of really great paper piecing as well as the freestyle tree and presents. I just love it as a really great example of using snippets and coming up with a delightful result. And those little spindly legs with the boots totally crack me up! Alison was so critical of this adorable card that I bet she needs to lie down at being a weekly pick!

I'm a huge fan of card-in-a-box cards - and (CraftDee) Donna shared this real stunner with us. Do hop over to her blog for a closer look if you haven't already been for a 'sticky beak nosy'. Not only is the box card just so perfect - but that little BBQ was made by Donna as well. Great idea - and the BBQ lid even opens up! And Donna is not short of some clever ideas so I suggest you take a look around while you're visiting.

And last, but not least, Sindhu made this amazing calendar. It's just so very pretty, uses loads of snippets of course - and the detail is amazing. You really must pop over to see the close-up photos - absolutely beautiful. I just wish I could produce such a beautifully co-ordinated work of art.

Phew, that was so tough - my initial list of possible picks had 11 names on. And that was purely chosen from all of your entries as a route to having three picks! Your work is always gorgeous girls and it gets harder to choose at the end of each challenge! My list for the current challenge is already huge - but, for my own sanity and also this back (which has been playing up a bit in the cold, damp weather here) I do need to be sensible.

We had four new faces this time around!
Sharon H
Karen Finkle
Gill P
Suzanne H
Welcome to the Playground girls, and such fabulous entries too - it's always fun to see some new faces playing along with us. I hope you come back again soon and also that our Playmates will hop over the say 'Hello' and perhaps add themselves as followers. We're a happy little bunch as I'm sure you'll soon find out.

We had a total of 63 entries including our four new little Playmates. So, we're still climbing back up in numbers - slowly but surely! As I'm putting the finishing touches to this we have 43 entries for the current challenge - with almost a week left to run.

Prize draw time now and our winner of the MFT 'Sushi Date' stamp set, kindly donated by Tara of Seven Hills Crafts, is:
Well done April! I just looked back at your comment and see that you're a fan of sushi as well as pandas, so no doubt you'll be doing a Happy Dance. Would you believe that the first three names to come out of the Random Selector gizmo were people who were just playing for fun, which meant I had to run it again of course - so I reckon it really was serendipity!

This time I can post your prize straight off early this coming week as I know exactly where to find your address, it's obvious that you were really keen to win the prize and I know you haven't moved recently either.

But, I will usually ask for your addresses girls if you win - I just happen to have April's address very handy.

On the subject of sushi - what a surprise I had on Thursday when I nipped into our local Sainsbury's for a few bits and pieces (such as fresh fruit) that I just don't trust to our weekly delivery from them. Just guess what was in the process of being stocked ready for opening day - a very swish 'Sushi Gourmet' bar offering a takeaway service! All black, glass and shiny chrome/steel with a single chef just starting to prepare Shitake mushrooms so it seems that you may be able to watch them actually making the sushi. It seems to be a new enterprise opening up in various supermarkets with sushi made fresh in situ - good for them!

Keep those snippets entries coming, you still have a week left to play HERE for Challenge #319! The prize is the 'Lil Inkers 'Love You More Than Words' die plus a pack of XCut adhesive glitter paper in luscious colours.

Just to whet your appetite a bit, I have some really great (IMHO) prizes coming along. The Playground Toybox is looking so healthy and, as I try to do, we have some quite new and innovative products that I wanted to try out - and then of course bought the same for the Toybox! Other than that, my lips are sealed - and I'm off to search for some duct tape to cover 'blabbermouth Parsnip's' mouth!

Love from the little white peril Parsnip - and of course me,

Friday 9 February 2018

Blogging problems

Ooopsie, I accidentally published the 3rd rewrite of the Snippets Playground post for this coming Sunday! Luckily I spotted it immediately and changed the date pronto. What a palaver I've been going through trying to sort out a load of rogue HTML - which reappeared as fast as I deleted it!

Sorry to publish accidentally - I was in such a tizz I forgot my own golden rule - always put the publication date and time in before setting to and writing a post!

Friday and the weekend beckons! Have fun - I will, now that things seem to be finally sorted out!

Wednesday 7 February 2018

Butterly card ready to fly

I made a pretty quick card -just the colour cornflower - along with a flight of butterflies ready to flutter away:
I used:

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

- snippet of my version of cornflower blue card (it's actually SU's 'Marina Mist' now that I've checked against the swatch - but cornflowers do come in different shades of blue and this is one of the lighter shades - tee, hee)

- I trimmed the snippet of blue card to just a bit bigger than I wanted the panel of butterflies to be. Then pencilled around it on the front of the card so that I'd keep the die cuts about quarter of an inch inside the pencil lines - to allow for sticking the blue panel on place later on

- then used the Misti to stamp the Birthday sentiment onto the card front, using a little SU 'Marina Mist' ink pad and a stamp which came with the All Occasions 'That Folder' set

- next die cut four solid butterfly shapes into the card front - overlapping them slightly - as well as keeping them quarter of an inch inside the penciled 'frame area'. I used the Memory Box 'Isabella' die for this

- die cut four white butterflies using the matching Memory Box 'Pippi' die, which is all open and lacy

- onto now assembly time, I used red line tape to adhere the blue panel to the back part of the card front - and little snippets of red line tape to make sure all the 'pointy and therefore likely to lift up' bits of the die cut front apertures would be held securely in place as well

- then added a slightly smaller panel of white card to the whole of the inside of the card front - to cover up the blue panel inside the card

- added a slick of clear Wink of Stella to the bodies/feelers of the butterflies

- popped the bodies and feeler sections onto the lacy butterflies, then added them over the blue backed die cut apertures on the card front, overlapping as seemed best, using Collall glue and a fine liner bottle ....... then called it done!

One slight 'blip' to my eagle eyed scrutiny is that I can only just tell there's a darker panel across the inside/centre of the card if I hold it up to the light - and it was also a bit touch and go as to whether I'd end up with a slight ridge on the card front around that area as well. These are very minor points, but another time I would use 300gsm card rather than what I think is 250gsm. I know, Little Miss Picky here!

I'd spotted this sort of card with solid cut-outs and then matching lacy butterflies over the coloured apertures not so long ago and thought it such a pretty idea.

I was going to say that you need both the solid and also the matching lacy/open dies for this design - but thinking about it - of course you don't! You would use an open lacy die to cut across the card itself as I did with the solid one which would still give you the line of apertures in any case. Although you would still then need to die cut more complete butterflies to add to the backed apertures if you overlapped them.

Sunday 4 February 2018

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #319

I've gone with the majority of you and from now on the fortnightly challenges will be numbered as challenges rather than two-week numbering. To be honest it was confusing me here when I did the in between weekly post in the fortnightly challenge! Two numbers was harder to handle somehow. So, challenges will still run on a fortnightly basis - and we can still celebrate special milestones I'm sure.

My snippets card for this fortnight was made with Len in mind - although I've since come up with a different idea! That's what happens when you make cards too long in advance, as well as Mr Mojo having made a return visit or three!

I spotted the die I used on this card over at the Seven Hills Craft blog and thought it was perfect for either Valentine's Day, Anniversaries or 'just because'. It looks such a simple card but Dumbo here decided that it would be even better to inlay the words - hey, ho, kept me busy for almost an entire day:
I used:

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

- a snippet of red glitter paper from an XCut 'Darks' pack of Adhesive Glitter sheets - which I adhered onto a snippet of card stock (I used SU 'Smoky Slate' but it doesn't matter as it was just to lift the die cut words so they would be flush with the main grey panel once I'd finished)

- then I die cut the red glitter words using the Lil'Inkers 'Love You More Than Words' die and set them to one side. As Lynne in NI picked up, I always pop little pieces into a plastic lid when I'm working to stop them from escaping. Mine just so happens to be a clear lid from one of those small double layer boxes of Ferrero Rocher choccies (my very favourite - yummy)

-  next I worked out the size I wanted a SU 'Smoky Slate' (aka grey!) panel to be and trimmed it to size - another snippet gone

- while I was using the trimmer I cut a narrow snippet strip of the XCut red Glitter paper across the middle (and positioned it on the card front so that just a little strip would peep from underneath the top and bottom of the Smoky Slate panel (this is a real cost saver when using precious card or paper for backing purposes. Saves on making a full square or rectangular mat and still gives a pop of contrast (in this case I could have used the centre of a square of the glitter card of course to cut the die and then used the outside 'frame for matting

- die cut the words again from the grey card and removed the die cut very carefully from the die itself as I wanted to use a lot of pieces to fill in between the red glitter words. Most of the teeny grey pieces that are in the centre of total loops stayed in place in the die cut thankfully 

- at this point I really began to doubt my sanity at even thinking of inlaying such a fiddly die but I'd started so was determined to finish

- took the grey panel and added a smaller piece of medium sticky  sheet to the back then set to adding the red glitter die cut words into the apertures - that part was quite good fun 

- then it was time to add all the teeny little grey infill pieces, which took ages! The easiest way is to position the grey die cut bit by bit on top of the red glitter one and gently poke out the tiny infills. You then feel them lock down into place

- then ran the (by now) grey and red glitter panel through the Cuttlebug using embossing plates and an unopened embossing folder (for thickness) just to make sure everything was firmly pressed down

- final step, at last, was to adhere the grey panel on top of the two red glitter strips. I wasn't totally sure about what would happen if glue didn't hold the top and bottom firmly or even worse squeezed out onto the red glitter layer

- I could have taken the time to experiment with some tiny scraps from the waste bin but that possibility of 'glue ooze' was still bugging me so I tried another of my little tricks - which worked like a charm!

- I flipped the grey panel face down on the desk, and left the adhesive sheet backing behind the die cuts in place as that stuff is so unforgiving if you get things wrong when placing layers together - hence my love of wet glue or Stick-It sheets

- then I ran a strip of red line tape across the top and the bottom of the panel, leaving the protective red plastic in place

- next filled in the rest of the back of the panel with Collall All Purpose Glue before flipping it back over and carefully positioning it, centred between those red strips

- then straight away I gently lifted corners at one side of the top and bottom of the grey panel, slipped my very pointed tweezers in and peeled away the red line tape covering so that the sticky could adhere to the red glitter paper. Perfect!

I do often use a similar trick with red line tape so it wasn't a totally idea to be honest, more of a way to avoid any messy glue ooze. Normally that can be removed with a glue eraser or even the sand eraser but I just wasn't sure how it would work on glitter - plus it's stuck there like a limpet now with no chance of peeling back!

To be honest, I made a rod for my own back by inlaying the die cut - even though the results were so worthwhile. I could have just stuck the die cut straight onto the grey panel by cutting the heart shaped words straight from the adhesive glitter paper without even backing them with card as well as eliminating all that fussy poking out of teensy little pieces. The glitter paper holds its shape really well even when die cut finely - unlike the way that peel offs tend to distort. Also, and this may have been a trigger for me doing an inlay - the die cuts in two pieces. If you look closely you'll spot that the words 'you than' come out separately to the rest, But, on hindsight I don't think that's enough of an issue to make me spend such a long time messing around inlaying this particular die cut in future :)

So, here's this week's Snippets Playground prize:
It's a Lil'Inkers 'Love You More Than Words' die and also a pack of 10 sheets of that luscious XCut Self Adhesive glitter paper - both the same as I used for my card of course. The glitter papers are red, lime green, cerise, purple and a beautiful peacock blue - and totally non-shedding as well.

There is a caveat on the prize, which will apply from now on. Both items form the one prize and I won't be splitting future prizes unless I decide that it's really got to be an option, which is extremely unlikely. These babies go together - of course, if you win you can always pass what you might not want onto a friend once the package arrives with you. So you play for the complete prize and I post off just one package to the winner. It also means I only need to keep one list of prize players with no options of course - keeping this as slick as possible girls!

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 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' - just in case you're playing only for fun. Thanks!

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 :)

Be sure to call back next week to see a really lovely Guest Designer, my picks of last fortnight's entries and also the winner of the MFT 'Sushi Date' set of stamps.

Love from Parsnip and of course from me,