Friday 23 December 2016

Merry Christmas!!

Hi Honey I'm home! Back from my lovely holiday - in fact after 2 or 3 days at home it's as if it never happened. Never mind, at least there's Christmas to look forward to. Speaking of which, it's my turn to show my second Country View Crafts Christmas piece, so here it is.

I started by making my background for the Crazy Dogs with some of my favourite Basic Grey papers and snowy acetate.
Then I stamped and die cut the dogs and presents from the Tim Holtz Mini Crazy Cats and Dogs, and Mini Bird Crazy and Things stamps and dies. I love these sets, but I do wish there was some way of identifying the dies for the cats and dogs. It would be really nice if Sizzix had colour coded them for us, or even a number etched into the die.

So, Distress Markers and Ice Stickles at the ready, time to start colouring!
Who could resist these guys?

There we are, all finished and with a frosty background kindly provided by the Great British weather. I wonder if it will be a white Christmas... When I was younger I loved snow at Christmas, now I just think of people driving and hope it stays away. Older, wiser, but not so much fun :-)

So here we are with the last Country View challenge of the year. A huge thank you to everyone who has entered and a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all.
Have a wonderful time and thanks very much for looking xx

Tuesday 13 December 2016

Stand Out!

Good morning and happy Tuesday. I've left the Christmas preparations behind and set off in search of sunshine, so this is a scheduled post. Helen and Mark recently had a Black Friday weekend sale over at Visible Image, and this is one of the sets that fell into my basket :-)

I started by giving my monolith and stand a couple of layers of white gesso so that the alcohol inks would have a slicker surface to move on, then I just blew them through a straw.

Then I made a total mess of the stamping. I've just re-inked my Versamark and I don't seem to have much luck with re-inked ink pads - I think in future I'll just buy a new one. Anyhow instead of binning it and sulking which is what I wanted to do, I gave it a couple of coats of white acrylic. I quite liked how this knocked back the brick wall embossing that I'd used from the Teenage Kicks plate.

So I huffed and puffed and re-blew the alcohol ink, and just stamped the brick wall a little around the edges then rubbed off some of the bronze embossing powder before heating it.
The legs from Teenage Kicks have been embossed in black, and the quote is actually purple and black but it doesn't show up so well here. Then it was a bit of bottle top stamping and all done.

I really enjoyed the start and the end - the bit in the middle not so much lol but I'm happy how it's turned out, there's actually quite a bit of texture in there which is always good.
Don't forget to check out the website which will lead you to the shop and lots of inspiration.
There's also our facebook group and we love it when you share your Visible Image creations with us here. Then there's  our facebook page and of course Pinterest with lots more to look at.
Have a wonderful week, and thanks very much for looking x

Thursday 1 December 2016

I'm Late I'm Late, I'm Late

In January, I made a half hearted resolution to be more organised at Christmas time. Maybe next year....  So I need some cards, and fast. This calls for stamps and dies and lots of Distress. Luckily it also ties in with our Christmas challenge at Country View Crafts this month.

I thought I would make a mini assembly line, so I stamped the background cards and all the elements, and cut them out with the corresponding dies. They are all Tim Holtz sets and have matching stamps and dies.

These have  been stamped on watercolour paper and coloured with Distress Inks and a water brush.
Same again for this one plus lots of  Distress Stickles. These are fab 'cos you can dry them with a heat gun so there's no hanging around for it to dry. There's also some snowy acetate on top. 
This one's been made on an alcohol ink  background. I guess I'm not much good at batch card making!
So if you're like me, and Christmas has crept up suddenly, don't forget to join in with our challenge and share your Christmas makes.

I'll not be around for the next couple of weeks, we're jetting off for some sunshine (though the weather forecast isn't looking too good) so I will catch up with you all when I get back. Have a fun week, and thanks very much for looking x

Wednesday 30 November 2016

And Now For Something Completely Different...

I was recently contacted by Chalkola and asked if I would review their chalk markers. This sounded like fun so I said yes. I received two sets of pens to use for free in exchange for an honest review.

I received 2 packs, neon (fabulous bright colours) with a 6mm nib

and Earthy colours which are soft muted colours. These are lovely chunky pens with a 3mm bullet nib. The pens have to be primed before use by pumping the nib. Once the colour starts to flow it's very even and the colours are exactly as shown on the pen lid. They are designed for non porous surfaces like white boards, glass and ceramics etc.

yes indeed! they write beautifully on a laminated surface
and wash straight off with a damp cloth. Although your fingers might get painty this also washed off with a damp cloth, and there is no smell at all.

I decided to put the neon colours through their paces first.
They are not called neon for no reason. Fab bold colours that I used on this tile. I just coloured the ceramic tile with the orange pen, then scribbled the purple onto a craft mat and sponged through a stencil.
Edged with a ruler in green. Of course this just wipes straight off the ruler. I'm drying each layer with the craft gun, and it dries to a lovely chalky finish. The colours do not mix at all. You can put white on top of black and you will just see the top colour.
I put the colour straight onto polymer stamps and stamped away. I worried about the next bit as I thought I would test them with spray varnish. Nothing moved at all! So, if you don't heat set them they wipe clean with a damp cloth, if you do set them they become permanent. 

Next I tested the Earthy colours on glossy card. 
They fit into an airbrush gadget so I was able to spray them through a stencil (which cleaned up with a damp cloth - yay)
These colours are a bit more muted but give a lovely soft watercolour effect. 
Again I'm drying each layer. These colours stamp beautifully too, just paint the stamp directly.
You can dye ribbon too!.

I love these chunky pens! They would be great if you were crafting with children as they are non toxic, don't smell, and clean off with water (I'm talking about the markers here lol) If you want to make them permanent add heat - obviously an adult needs to do this part.

These are the links on Amazon, and the lovely people at Chalkola are offering a 20% discount on all their products if you quote this code 20OFFSTR.
I had great fun trying these, for me the best bits were the fab colours, very comfortable to use and these markers have lots of ink in them, and the easy clean up. I suppose I've not used them how they were meant to be used, but yes they also do exactly what it says on the tin, and so much more.

Have a great day, and thanks very much for looking x

Tuesday 29 November 2016

I'm Happy

Good Morning and Happy Tuesday! I'm well and truly into Christmas card making mode at the moment as we go away on Thursday and when we come back it will be very near to Christmas. This is one that I made with my favourite (for this week, my favourites change daily) Tomorrow Doesn't Exist plate from Visible Image.

This one is for my sons girlfriend and I didn't want it to be too traditional, so I chose my pink and purple DecoArt paints...

and sponged away with a piece of foam.

Then out with my trusty home made stencil

and the white gesso to build a bokeh background. I really do like this as a background as the images really pop from it. 

I decided to chop a bit off to make a rectangular card and used this as a practice to make sure my embossing powder showed up.

I stamped my happy girl first and embossed with black EP. It's not a traditional Christmas stamp, but it's how I feel at this time of year! Then came the words from Go To Christmas Words, and Happy from the Tomorrow Doesn't Exist plate. There's also stars from Universal and edgy from De-stressed backgrounds.
So I didn't forget it was a Christmas card I gave my girl a felt Santa hat and a bit of bling. 

For lots more inspiration please visit our blog where you can access the shop and projects gallery.
There's also our facebook page and group where there's new inspiration every day.

I'm also entering this into the That's Crafty 'grungy' challenge - who says grungy can't be pink :-)

I hope you (and she) likes my card, have a fun week and thanks very much for looking x

Sunday 27 November 2016

Alcohol Inks for PaperArtsy

This fortnight the challenge at PaperArtsy is alcohol inks and pens. As soon as I saw this project by Shari I knew that I wanted to try the technique. I don't have any canned air, so I used a good old fashioned drinking straw!

I'm really please with how it turned out, and I will definitely be doing this again. I've used stamps from JOFY set 14, and that's it, a bit of stitching and job done.
Right, back to the Christmas cards again! Have a great week, and thanks very much for looking x

Friday 25 November 2016

The Next Scream You Hear...

A couple of months ago I was lucky enough to win the challenge at Lost Coast Designs and now I can show you what I've made with my fab new stamps.

I promise there is more to it than this, and if you click here, you'll be whisked as if by Black Friday magic to the full piece.

Thanks very much for looking, and have a great weekend (don't spend toooo much) xx

Wednesday 23 November 2016

Only 32 More Sleeps

'till Christmas yaaaaaay! I love Christmas, but hate making Christmas cards. I get all my stamps out and then make something else instead. Well you need nice new coasters at Christmas - have I said Christmas enough now :-)

I love these Visible Image Christmas stamps! On this one I've used Winter Wonderland and Go To Christmas Words There's also lots of Frantage embossing powder, and the tiles have been painted with DecoArt gesso and Media paints, and sealed with Satin Finish Varnish.

And this one is using the Enchanting Snowflakes and Go To Christmas Words sets. I love the font on these, perfect for the inside or outside of a card. Speaking of which, I'd better go and make some!  
Don't forget there's a mega Black Friday sale at the Visible Image Store which starts tomorrow at 10pm. Then it's only 31 more sleeps!
Have a great week and thanks very much for looking xx

Tuesday 22 November 2016

Reach High

Good morning, and Happy Tuesday.  It's my turn today to share my second Country View Crafts star project. It's a double page in my small journal.

I was feeling quite bold so decided to go straight in with embossing, distress inks, and pan pastels.
I started by clear embossing the stars from this Darcy plate from PaperArtsy.

Then I added lots of Distress Inks and Pan Pastels. I've used the silver PP through the stencil.

I've stamped the houses from the same plate, and the flowers from Darcy 06 for placement.

 I've coloured the flowers directly with Fresco's, then 'whited out' the houses and re-stamped, and coloured with Fresco's and coloured pencils. The tiny house in the middle has been stamped onto a book page and cut out.

Then I've gone round the edges with black and white pencils to cover up my dodgy lines lol.

I've finished with the sentiment from the same plate, the obligatory washi tape, and some stars cut from a Seth Apter stencil. 

I really enjoyed making this, and that's now 2 things in my journal without it being a total disaster, (that's one more than usual :-D )
Hope you have a great day, and thanks very much for looking x

Monday 21 November 2016

Joy To The World

Good morning and happy Monday. Last month I was lucky enough to win the draw over at IndigoBlu, and as well as winning some fabulous stamps I also get the chance to be a guest designer at the launch of their new Glisten and Sparkle challenge. 
This is what I made.

I started by making a master board using lots of stamps and sparkly embossing powder. As Christmas is coming and I'm nowhere near ready I knew I wanted to make some Christmas cards.
I've used Rain Droplets I chose this as part of my prize so it would be rude not to use it lol.
I also used Bauble Flourish, Large Snowflake, Joy To The WorldRetro Christmas, and Looks Like Rain Deer. Of course there's also my favourite Script Background glistening away in the background. This is an A3 sheet of card so there's lots of room for stamping. 

I've used mainly Frantage for the embossing as it's lovely and chunky and has lots of  sparkle.

Now for the scary part, time to chop it all up. This is an 8x8 piece that I die cut and put some snowy acetate behind.
I then cut this into frames and put the same snowy acetate behind.
and this is my finished card. I still have enough card left for another of these.
I still had loads left for these too.

So I made some smaller cards. Way hey that five cards done and another one nearly done. If I put these with the er one that I've made already that makes - nowhere near enough, time to flick the Christmas mode switch!
Thank you very much IndigoBlu for having me and have a great week everyone x