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
and I'm delighted we finally managed to find a mutually suitable
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.
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.
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!
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
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,