Friday, 30 April 2021

Rudolph Days Challenge - April 2021

Wow, squeaking into Scrappy Mo's monthly Rudolph Days Challenge at the last minute here! It's one challenge I make a point of never missing - no matter what.

I've still been battling a painful and lately 'scrunchy shoulder' - sounds a bit like a bean bag (remember those from school?). So I decided to go through my box of saved 'shop bought' Christmas cards, kept to upcycle, and cull some of the older ones whilst also looking for the makings of a Rudolph Days card. I ended up being quite ruthless - styles have changed and many looked very dated since I began saving ones with possibilities (found one with a message in dated Xmas 2011!). Now I just have what I think could be 'useable pieces' with the backs cut away - ready for future transformation. Eventually I combined elements from two cards - and came up with this:

The light was weird here so the red sparkle on the sentiment and the poinsettias  - along with the lovely shimmering gold touches on the wreath - doesn't show up as well as in real life. But it's all there, I promise - and I love how two very different upcycled cards offered such a good match of toppers as well.

I used:

- 6.75" white square card blank, side opening

- sheet of kraft card trimmed to 6.5" square and glued onto the card front

- sheet of Christmas red card trimmed to 6.25" square and glued onto the kraft layer

- the wreath was so tricky to carefully remove from the original card front as it was popped up on sticky pads - once it was off I carefully scraped every bit of the sticky pads away so I could glue it totally flat onto the card front

- wreath in place so all that was left was the sentiment - which is exactly as I removed it from a different shop bought card

- the already red-glittered sentiment was stuck on with a long sticky pad and, rather than risk crumpling it, I very carefully snipped the background of the card away from the added sentiment before trimming the left 'attached' piece of the background to the same size as the sticky pads - those babies were not going to part company!

- then just glued the sentiment piece, on the back of the 'card covered and not going anywhere' sticky pad, onto the middle of the wreath

To be honest, the planning and measuring for this card took way longer than the actual assembly stage. I had quite a few options in mind believe me! I used kraft card as the outer layer rather than gold (which I did hold up as an option) just because it seemed to detract from the wreath itself and also would have left the sentiment on kraft perhaps looking a bit out of place and not tied in. Am very much into 'tied in' these days! Sort of 'crafting bondage' really - I wonder if anyone will notice what I just wrote there? Also debated about adding some ornate corners to the red layer - but in the end decided it was more striking as it was. Len spotted it and said 'Wow, I would buy that one in a shop!'. Which is good enough for me.



Thursday, 29 April 2021

Hope & Chances Charity Kits

I had a blitz on some outstanding Hope and Chances Charity Kits recently, whilst trying to rest this flipping shoulder. And here are the results:

November 2020

In aid of Action for Stammering Children 

A lovely card to make - possibly my favourite one out of this session, but probably more suited to Thanksgiving 2021 now! I did a boo-boo and only went and added the front panels to the kraft card blank so that it opened as a V shape, with the apex at the bottom, duh. Quick bit of trimming of the whole front of the card and then popped it onto a side opening white card blank. Everything in this kit was supplied - just some gentle TH inking of the elements to do.

February 2021 

In aid of the Bumblebee Conservation Trust

And the inside:

Everything was supplied, I coloured the 'ruler' pieces with TH Distress inks then just added Josy Rose Hot Fix Nail Heads to the centre of the flowers.

March 2021

In aid of the British Lung Foundation

I bought two of these kits as they're so pretty - and all the cutting has been done already. All it needed was to gently Tim Holtz ink up the flowers and add little diamante centres to them - everything else was provided.

In fact, shame on me, I have two different NBUS die sets to make swing cards which I bought a while ago after making a similar card using a previous Hope & Chances kit. Writes that on 'must do' list.

And last, but not least:

April 2021

In aid of Tiggywinkles - British wildlife rescue hospital

I know someone who has a Springtime Birthday and thought this would be a nice change from a straightforward 'Birthday' card. Once again, everything came with the kit, I just added the diamante centres to the already coloured flowers. It looks better in real life, the layers are clearer - honestly!

I buy at least one of Christine's kits each month, but don't always make them up in the right order. Christine will be publishing her latest Charity Kit this coming Sunday morning over on her blog HERE. It's a great way to support a variety of charities in the UK - as well as having a fun kit to play with!



Sunday, 25 April 2021

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #400 - results

Hola! Touch of Spanish there as I'm re-reading Chris Stewart's brilliant' Driving Over Lemons' book series about life in Spain, living on a ramshackle farm. It's very funny, literally laugh out loud at times, and he writes so well. He was the original drummer with Genesis - but 'retired gracefully' after a year and Phil Collins took over - the rest is history of course.

First of all, the picks:


Love this gorgeous tag, made by Jackie T - and correctly predicted as a pick by SaRn as well! So much gorgeous colour and 'prettiness' - I love it. Super use of snippets of course - with the gorgeous dragonfly as a finishing touch.. 

Gnomes are so popular right now and I do so love this card, made by Carol L. Detailed dies are such fun to play with and a great way to use up snippets and Carol linked the colours so well with the background strips as well. Super card.

And it wouldn't be right to not include this fabulous card, made by our 'Founder' Jules! Absolutely lovely card and a wonderful selection of snippets used as well. Once again, it's wonderful how the background colours are echoed in the main image. Just beautiful.

And we have one new Playmate as well:

Christa

Welcome to the Playground Christa - please come back and play with us again.

That's my picks from our celebration Challenge #400 in the Playground. I struggled to limit my picks to three but, despite starting this post during the week, am now up against time as today is Saturday! We had 59 entries and one new Playmate. Really lovely to see so many entries - and also so many people (unsurprisingly) throwing their hats into the ring for the bumper prize as well.

So lets move right onto the draw which is for a set of MFT 'Tall Tag Duo' dies, Clearly Besotted's 'All booked up' and 'Wise Owl' sets of stamps, plus a Lawn Fawn 'Really Rainbow' 6" x 6" petite paper pack. And the winner is:

Linby (Lynn)


Congratulations Lynn and I have to admit that I literally burst out laughing when your number popped out! The first entry picked was a recent winner who didn't wish to be in the draw - and then out you popped! Lynn is my 'reading material guru' so how fun is that - and was absolutely the luck of the draw. Smiling still abut a total bookworm winning all the goodies to make some bookmarks  ☺

Please send me your address, even if you know that I know it already, with your full name at the top as well so it can be can be copied and pasted for speed and ease. It's also confirmation that you still would like the prize of course.  Please put Playground Winner or similar in the subject line of your email in case it drops into my junk mail. Email address is on RH sidebar as always.

Remember folks, there's still almost one more week to run on the current Challenge #401 HERE. The prize is being donated by our Guest Designer for the challenge - none other than Mrs A! It's a super stamp set made by Woodware, designed by Jane Gill, and called 'Bold Blooms - Isabella'..Do please see if you can share your inspiration and ideas for using up snippets, with them being the focus of the card if possible.

Len is fine so far after his COVID jab on Tuesday - a couple more days and he'll be past the time when the side effects hit him last time. Fingers firmly crossed! I have mine this coming Tuesday but haven't had a reminder - whereas Len had three of the perishers! If there's any problem I swear I'll throw myself on the floor and throw a tantrum - complete with toddler style drumming of heels and screaming blue murder☺
 
Dudley is still making himself a little nest at night, surrounded by his favourite toys. And his spinning/whirling round for treats is coming along really well - perhaps we ought to change his name to The Dervish. He's loving the current sunny days and would happily spend most of his time out in the back garden, bless him. 
 
Almost forgot - it's Rudolph Days once again from today until the end of the month over at ScrappyMo's blog! 
 
Love from Parsnip, myself and the usual happy 'high-five' and woof from Dudley.




Sunday, 18 April 2021

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #401

Hello again! Glad you could drop into the Snippets Playground. Once again, we've had a week of mixed weather and more snow flurries interspersed with some lovely sunshine.

Time for another snippets challenge and also another lovely Guest Designer. This time it's one of our Playground Mischief Makers - my lovely friend, Mrs. A! Also famed for running The Butterfly Challenge of course. I'm a bad girl for not making the time to join in for ages, the themes are very varied and so well thought out.


Mrs A will tell you all about how she made this lovely card (with a picture tutorial too) when you hop over to her blog. All I'm going to say is that it takes a certain kind of mindset to painstakingly tear up small snippets of paper and then even more painstakingly layer them back together to create a pink 'decoupatch' style background to show off the gorgeous flower bouquet! I have the original card here and it's really beautiful.

Here's a photo of the prize from Mrs A for this fortnight:
 
A super stamp set made by Woodware, designed by Jane Gill, and called 'Bold Blooms - Isabella'. I love it and also think the sentiment is so perfect for a host of occasions.

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 1st May. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day.

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

Remember, if you link into the Playground and don't say clearly that you want to be in the draw in a comment on here, then you will be bypassed if your name comes out of Mr Linky. I'm sure you all know I ask for a positive 'yes' on the blog post itself - just in case you're only playing for fun - otherwise I don't add you to my little list.
 
Please also remember that I only allow a total of nine other challenges, which makes 10 in total, when you enter a snippets make into the Playground.
 
Dudley loves his walks - once he has his harness on and accepts that there's no way he's not going for one! We have a routine when he gets back home - he always has a particular doggy treat that's his very favourite. Just this past week or two he's learned a new trick whereby if you hold the treat above him and sweep your arm round in a circular motion - he does a joyful 360 degree spin around on the spot! He's done three consecutive spins for one treat so far ☺ Today the spins, next week Crufts agility! I suspect not - he has too much of a mind of his own.

The other day Len brought a tray with mugs of coffee on up from the kitchen and deposited it on a furniture unit. When we looked, there was Dudley up on his hind legs - casually leaning with one front paw against the side of the unit whilst his other front paw hung limply in front of him - he really did look like a foppish 'dandy' from the Regency era! Of course he was just checking there wasn't a treat on the tray - it looked so funny but I couldn't grab my camera in time to take a photo. Priceless though.

This coming week, Len is going for his second Pfizer COVID vaccination, I follow him a week later. Here's hoping he fares better than he did first time round, my reaction wasn't good but nowhere near as bad as his - and absolutely nothing like Mrs A had.

We watched the funeral of HRH Prince Philip on Saturday, on TV. Very moving and our Queen looked so tiny and alone. Dudley couldn't understand why I spent a lot of the afternoon in tears - bless his little heart. Extra cuddles had to be given :)

What a lot of entries from people joining in the 400th celebrations - even a good few who haven't played for some while - great stuff!

Stay safe and be kind.
 
Lots of love from us all - Parsnip, Dudley and of course me.


Sunday, 11 April 2021

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #399 Ruby's Memory - Results

It's been a very mixed week here with one thing and another. We certainly have had a real variety of weather with it swinging from sunny and very warm, to  snow flurries and very cold - plus most options in between as well.

First of all, the picks:

We had a few coffee/cup themed entries this time due to it being a regular coffee lovers blog hop - all of them were great but this one particularly caught my eye - made by Suzanne. Super use of snippets and I love the mixing of gingham and dots - the little pegs on the 'wood' strip are genius!! 

I picked this lovely card made by Greta for a number of reasons. It's pink, pretty, took my breath away and the flowers were die cut from white snippets. Also Greta has included a link in her blog post to the background technique which is 'print making with die cuts'. Fabulous and certainly one to try - do hop over to find the link!

And here's another great technique, beautifully showcased by Jeanne. It's known  as 'the floating element card technique' and i do urge you to hop over to Jeanne's blog to take a look at the video link she has included in her post. Jeanne herself has said that it's easier to see the floating aspect in real life and I can well believe it having watched the video. A clue is that there's acetate involved - I bet that will get Mrs A wondering for starters! 

That's my picks from Challenge 399 in the Playground, been nursing a stinking cold (where did that come from then?) most of the week and am very tired so I've stuck to the three picks limit. 

I make no apologies for including a couple of new and different technique picks - they are great for using snippets and it's always so good to pick up new ideas. Certainly, both of these last two picks/techniques were totally new to me.

We had 42 entries and no new Playmates.

Now for the prize draw which is for a lovely Stamping Bella stamp set (called 'Tiny Townie: Dawn Loves Her Doggie'), donated by Ruby's Mum, Lynne in NI.

Helen (Helen's Craft Haven)

Congratulations Helen - I do hope your prize reminds you of Honey from your childhood! I always stick rigidly to whoever has said a yes please to the prize and is picked first - I think this time it was serendipity! Helen is often one of our picks and it's lovely to see her winning after a slightly dry spell! Many thanks again to Lynne in NI for donating the prize.

Please send me your address, even if you know that I know it already, with your full name at the top as well so it can be can be copied and pasted for speed and ease. It's also confirmation that you still would like the prize of course.  Please put Playground Winner or similar in the subject line of your email in case it drops into my junk mail. Email address is on RH sidebar as always.

Remember folks, there's still almost one more week to run on the current Challenge 400 celebration challenge which is HERE. The prize is a bit of a bumper one - a set of MFT 'Tall Tag Duo' dies, Clearly Besotted's set of stamps called 'All booked up' and also their 'Wise Owl' set of stamps - just perfect for making bookmarks, or cards if you wish. Plus, a Lawn Fawn 'Really Rainbow' 6" x 6" petite paper pack on order to complete the prize - it's been sent out so should be here soon. Good ole Frau Green! 

Do please see if you can share your inspiration and ideas for using up snippets, with them being the focus of the card if possible. 

Dudley is such a kleptomaniac! Len was working fixing something the other day and when it came to gathering up his tools to put them away, a block of very hard wood that he uses for who knows what was missing. Dudley had sidled up, pinched it and was hiding where he thought he couldn't be seen ....... having a sneaky test of it for 'chewability'. When this publishes he might not be on speaking terms with us - he needs a bath and it's pencilled in for Saturday (ie. yesterday). If we survive the deluge I'll add a bit here to say how it went! 

Edit: It went really well - we think he's certainly getting more used to the whole process and it's better for him than a trip to the grooming salon. The real secret is for me to sit waiting with a huge bath towel on my lap at the ready when he's finished to wrap him up like a burrito to pat the worst of the water away. He's currently lying beside me telling monkey all about his experience! It won't be too long before we'll need to give him another trim - we're keeping that news secret for now!

Finally, I just sent another £20 to USPCA in Northern Ireland,who rescued Ruby, as I didn't need to buy a prize or anything to make my own sample. With Gift Aid they get £25 towards their wonderful work - in memory of wee Ruby of course.

Love from Parsnip, myself and the usual happy 'high-five' and woof from Dudley.



Sunday, 4 April 2021

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #400

Happy Easter everyone! I hope the weather is being kind to you wherever you are and that you have a joyous time. 

We also have a couple of other things to celebrate - it's just over 11 years since I began this blog (literally just a matter of weeks behind Mrs A - and it's amazing how many parallels there are between us).

And thirdly, did you spot that this is Challenge #400? It was weekly for quite a while so the number of the challenge did rise rapidly back then.

By way of celebration, it's a slightly different prize this time. Still using snippets, as well as some die cutting and stamping - but a little bit of a different result instead of a card:


Second photo shows the reverse of a bookmark as well as the frog one with the image the right way up! And yes, the colouring IS much more vivid in real life!

I used:

- snippets of leftover white card which I die cut using both dies from MFT 'Tall Tag Duo' set of dies - to make bookmarks

- then I used the same dies to die cut snippets of paper from the Lawn Fawn 'Really Rainbow' petite paper pack as backings and to add more regidity, putting them to one side as I wanted to pick out the colours for the next steps 

- hunted out a couple of ribbon snippets which picked up the blue and also the mauve on the 'Really Rainbow' backing to the bookmark

- on one white bookmark I stamped a froggy image and a sentiment from Clearly Besotted's set of stamps called 'All booked up' which has frogs, bookworms and also a row of books as options, plus fun sentiments

- on the other bookmark I stamped two owl images plus a sentiment using Clearly Besotted's 'Wise Owl' set of stamps - which is (unsurprisingly) owl based with a selection of sentiments

- for both bookmarks I used my smaller Misti, Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a piece of acetate with a grid printed onto it for alignment - easy to make your own with printer friendly acetate as there are plenty of grids online to print . I was really lucky when a good blogging buddy sent me her printer friendly acetate - I returned the favour by sending her some 'grid printed' sheets to use with her Misti :)

- it's probably obvious how it works but I placed the bookmark I was using onto the Misti so that I had the size of the stamping area to follow and popped the acetate grid on top with a magnetic bar on to hold things in place. Then I laid out the stamps using the grid lines for spacing and also making sure things were straight, picked them up on the lid, removed the acetate and held the bookmark in place with the magnetic bar before stamping as one usually would

- next coloured both bookmarks using Faber-Castell Polychromos pencils, picking out some of the colours from the rainbow paper tags

- glued the coloured front and the rainbow back of each bookmark together using Collall All Purpose glue

- threaded the ribbon snippets through the die cut slots at the top of each tag/bookmark

- tied the ribbon in place with little pieces of iridescent twine, trimmed the ends of the ribbon and called them finished!

I would have preferred to use Pro markers in some ways - cutting the rainbow paper as a backing was originally to cover the inevitable bleed-through you get with Pro markers in fact. However, Len was busy in the garden when I was at the point of wanting to colour the images and lifting down the huge storage rack of PM's was just not feasible until this shoulder is better than right now. Having said that - I do so love colouring with pencils now, and they can at least be erased if you make a mistake!

Here's a few photos of the prize for this fortnight:
 

Ha! You need to stand on your head to take a proper look at the bookworms on the left hand stamp set!

The prize is a set of MFT 'Tall Tag Duo' dies, Clearly Besotted's set of stamps called 'All booked up' and also their 'Wise Owl' set of stamps - just perfect for making bookmarks, or cards if you wish. Plus, I have a Lawn Fawn 'Really Rainbow' 6" x 6" petite paper pack on order to complete the prize. Rainbow papers are so popular that it took me ages to track a pack down - but it's on order and will be here (with luck) before it's time for the prize draw - from Frau Green who is often a great supplier of 'out of stock elsewhere' items in the UK.

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 17th April. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day.

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

Remember, if you link into the Playground and don't say clearly that you want to be in the draw in a comment on here, then you will be bypassed if your name comes out of Mr Linky. I'm sure you all know I ask for a positive 'yes' on the blog post itself - just in case you're only playing for fun - otherwise I don't add you to my little list.
 
Please also remember that I only allow a total of nine other challenges, which makes 10 in total, when you enter a snippets make into the Playground.
 
I do hope you will all join in and make this a special celebration of the Snippets Playground Challenge #400.
 
Dudley is still coming up with new things to entertain us - his prowess at sitting up on his hind legs perfectly balanced during his 'grooming resistance manoeuvres' is amazing and the look of very serious concentration on his face is priceless! Just a shame I don't have any extra hands to hold the camera as I do worry in case he topples sideways from the table, although I'm usually too busy laughing anyhow! 

One of Dudley's favourite places to lie during the day - apart from the table in Len's study where he can watch all the comings and goings from a window, or under my desk where he can sleep with his head on one of my feet - is right at the top of the stairs. It's a good spot for woofing at shadows and also spotting if anyone comes to the front door - as well as being a health and safety hazard to us humans stepping over him! His latest trick is to now leave monkey on guard duty at the top of the stairs if he's occupied elsewhere in the house or garden. It's not just left or dropped there but placed carefully - actually sitting upright facing, straight ahead down the stairs just like a little monkey soldier!

Stay safe and be kind. 
  
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I used this cute little bunny at the end of yesterday's post and at least one of you lovely Playmates remarked on it. I originally got it from our now departed Playmate Bernie who lived in Tacoma, USA. She left us in 2013 and I do so hope that she somehow knows just how loved and missed she still is, so many years later - now up in her huge, absolutely HUGE, craft room in the sky. She was one of our first Playground Pals and did her crafting in a 'closet' for so long and produced such lovely stuff - her first die cutting machine was, wait for it, a pasta rolling machine that she adapted! Those of us who knew her back then will no doubt recall that our lives were all the richer, as well as funnier, for knowing her. Who could forget her trials with the 'snow plow' guy who always came by just after she cleared the snow away from their driveway! RIP sweet friend, we won't forget you ........... and I'm sure you would be pleased to know that 'Bernie the Bunny Wabbit' strikes again :) x
 
Lots of love from us all to all of our Playmates - Parsnip, Dudley and of course me.
 

Saturday, 3 April 2021

Happy Easter!

I make very few Easter cards, just for close family and a couple of school friends. This year I went 'Oddball' for a change from the more traditional Easter chicks etc:

I used:

- 5.5" x 4.25" rose pink card blank, side opening

- piece of patterned paper from a DecoTime paper pad, the papers are slightly 'flittered' and do catch the light very prettily 

- trimmed the patterned paper and glued it to the card front

- stamped the image using the Misti, Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and the Stamping Bella 'Oddball Easter Bunny' stamp

- coloured the bunny with Faber-Castell Polychromos pencils, picking up some of the colours from the backing paper

- stamped the sentiment using a sweet little stamp from 'Stamping All Day', the Misti and Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink

- popped the image onto a backing of olive green, same as in the backing paper and then glued the panel onto the card front

Have a lovely Easter!

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