Saturday 30 June 2012

Quick post - Craft Barn

Had a lovely day today at the Craft Barn in Lingfield, Surrey at their annual Extravanganza, where they invite - this year 28! - demonstrators to delight us.

I got soaked on the walk to the station here in Sutton but after that it was ok and the sun (as usual for this day in the calendar) came out!  I met some ladies at East Croydon who I often see, up from the Isle of Wight and we chatted on the train.

Once I got to Lingfield, I headed to the shop..... oh dear! Well most of it was on my list!!! Knowing from previous years just how busy the shop gets once the demonstrations get going, I shopped first... sometimes a mistake because you "want" loads of other stuff later.... here it is!

 there is also some grungepaper and grungeboard which I was running low on, and wondertape...

Had lunch with Anna and Kirsten who I had arranged to meet (we are twitter friends already - although I'd met Anna at Ally Pally and are both lovely) and sat outside in the sunshine... which was lovely after the earlier rain. Anna brought some gorgeously wonderful chocolate brownies.. yum yum yum!

The demos were all fabulous.  Early on , I found Lin Brown and settled in.... she surprised me with this beautiful gift for my birthday earlier this week. How cool is this?!!!Those poppies on the front are a fab Memory Box die (now on my wish list!)
This is the inside... note the H for Helen and the number - for my age which I announced to the world on twitter and my blog, for some reason, lol!!

Anyhow Lin, it is fantastic, thank you SO much.

It was lovely to meet Kay and Alison again, too. Also nice to finally meet Neil Walker (of Neelz Expressions) and Jo F-y.  Leandra was also there in fine form with paint and wonderful techniques.

Right. off to whack a pizza in the oven and then it's Andy Murray at Wimbledon in the tennis... laters!!

Will be playing with some of my new stuff tomorrow!!

Friday 29 June 2012

Simon Says Show "Depth of Distress"

This week Simon Says Stamp and Show are challenging us to show "depth of distress".  When I think of distress, I immediately think of Lord Tim of Holtz - but which products to choose?!  

I decided to make a canvas and grabbed the tattered leaves and florals and birdcage dies.

 The birdcage and bird are cut in black foam and painted with Paperartsy Fresco paints - 'old gold' for the cage, and Mocha Mousse and London Night for the bird.
The flowers are cut from papers from the Vintage Shabby and Lost & Found stacks and the leaves from a very old loose sheet of Tim's paper in green (well the reverse is green!) and some core'dinations distress paper

I sanded the leaves and added some vintage photo ink to continue the distressy theme.
 the canvas is painted with distress stains, tumbled glass and bundled sage, and vintage photo on the corners and edges.  Blotted the ink slightly and sanded it.

Made up some flowers and added them to the corners.  Finally used a word band which is also sanded.
Hope you like this!

Simon Says Stamp are providing a $50 voucher for their amazing store to one lucky winner. Good luck!

Wednesday 27 June 2012

TIO- 119 - Don't Fear

Hello, and welcome to another DragonsDream Tag it On Recipe challenge - thanks for your lovely entries last time! This round, sees Silvie setting the recipe "don't fear" and your ingredients on your tag are - a scary image; a crowd of purple, and textures.   Well, Silvie you really really had me struggling with this one! I almost didn't get a tag done - not because there aren't things I find scary, but I don't have the stamps to represent them....or could find any images I could print or cut out.... but.....never call me a quitter!

The purple was no problem, one of my favourite colours, the texture was ok... my spider image is a teeny tiny totally non-scary stamp by Wendy Vecchi, but it's the only one I could find!! The bird is a kind of scary image to me (part of a Crafty Individuals stamp) so hope Silvie lets me off!

I used some viva Croco paste, magic mesh (found whilst rummaging for some inspiration - never used this before, but it's good stuff) and part of an embossing folder of a spider's web (which caused another hole heap of problems as I only wanted to use part of the folder... ended up cutting it out and discarding the rest.)
 The text is a Tim stamp and I stamped some background text onto a couple of flowers for more texture.
Good luck with this challenge, I am sure you will have much better tags than mine to show, I look forward to seeing what you do. You have a fortnight again. Ready, steady, GO!

What's on your workdesk Wednesday (160)

Happy Wednesday everyone! First off, an apology, as I didn't get to visit many of you last week, I will try harder this time...Don't know what I am talking about?  What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday, where we all show off our crafty spaces, chez Julia.  check them out!
By way of further grovel, please help yourself to a birthday cake (it was my birthday yesterday)
some 'jubilee' coloured fondant fancies.. very sweet but yum!! I may be 53 (gulp!) but love sweet things..shame I also have a real fear of the dentist...
My "desk" proper (oh that I had a desk!) has a part done background for a journal page, my ticket for the Artstamps show at Newbury on 7th July (I love that show!) and an ATC that I received from Cardarian in Slovenia from the anniversary swap. And a Jubilee rubber duck. I saw these on twitter after the Artsycraft weekend as Lin and Leandra were given one, and had to find out where they came from - Morrisons supermarket - and eventually my local store got some in! (thanks, Neet!)
Oh, it looks a bit blurry, sorry! (promise I hadn't been drinking when I took this!)
and my lovely handmade cards from some dear crafty friends. Thank you SO much!
I went to Kew Gardens on Saturday, and there are a gazillion photos here
Not sure what time Julia will link up this morning, or I will join her - depends when I wake up. Why is it, when you wake at the time the radio alarm turns on, as opposed to beforehand (which is what I usually do) you feel like you are LATE?? How does that work....Ok, so this isn't short (sorry, Julia!) hope you'll let me off cos it was my birthday... please?!

Monday 25 June 2012

EWV challenge - "brights"

Once again I am sneaking in almost at the deadline for the Yahoo group Everything Wendy Vecchi, this time round Lori challenged us to go bright. So, bright it is!!

Took advantage of my new Dylusion sprays that arrived last week, and the new summer distress inks that arrived last week (do you spot a trend?).... and played!

I used blue, red and yellow sprays on the tag, spritzing and blending with water and adding more spray to intensify the colour.  Then I stamped the letter background from Wendy's 'artfully said' set in the new salty ocean ink. Stamped three of the larger flowers from 'accents for art' in the picked raspberry ink ( love that pink!) and coloured them with shaded lilac and squeezed lemonade.

This challenge runs till Thursday so you've just got time to pop over to the yahoo group, join up and join in!

Crafty Boots challenge - Sport

Those of you who know me know that I love my sport, so you would think that the latest Crafty Boots challenge - a theme of 'sport' as chosen by Zoe, would be a doddle. Not a bit of it.... but it's Olympic year, and Olympics in London so I took that as my theme.

I made a card with strips of card with the colours of the Olympic rings and drew (badly) some Olympic rings (how hard can it be to draw round a bottle cap and still get the lines wonky?)

I took my 'art sayings' stamps which I still haven't mounted, or cut apart but cut out some of the more inspirational ones, edging them with vintage photo distress ink, to wish Team GB the best of luck next month. Go GB!!

Sunday 24 June 2012

A little journal play

It has been weeks since I played - properly - in my journal.  I've done some mopping up of ink (as in fact these started out) but nothing more.

So as a treat after I finally finished a tag for a DT piece (check back on Wednesday!) which I found a real struggle, I allowed myself some playtime!
 This is the left hand page and uses stamps from the Wendy Vecchi set Accents for Art, I love them.  Way underneath the layers of smooshed about sprays (Dylusions) is the background stamp from that set, and which I just inked to try out the  Peacock Feathers DI.  I'd added some white paint (Fresco) and tried to get some drippage down from the top but it wasn't hugely successful - I think because the paint is translucent (doh!!)

Today I went in with gesso and smudged out the background and then overstamped the other images.  It's all a bit of a mess but I was just playing!!
The right hand page started a few days ago, with mopping up some of my newer Dylusions sprays, red, blue and one of the yellows, and then today, again smudged them around with gesso to blur and blend.  Used Dina Wakley stamps on this page.  Thought the page needed some white, so added some splatterings of white paint (fresco again) by flicking the paintbrush.

Thought it needed some more white so added the solid white flower (Hero Arts) and the white fresco paint.

Neither page is beautiful but I prefer this one!

Wednesday 20 June 2012


Hi, everyone - hope this finds you well and ready for another Wednesday surfing the workdesks of the creative world, thanks to Julia's Stamping Ground. 

I am preparing this post early as my evenings are spent at the moment watching the European Championships football (soccer if you prefer) tournament from Poland and Ukraine. Not a lot of crafting is going on... but some shopping is..... look!!

mmm shopping! the larger one is from and the one on the right Art From the Heart... you can see what's in that one.....
and here they are opened!  I have had time to try the colours out on a tag... lush!!!  And sitting on the tag at the top right is the 'spare' tissue wrap flower from my previous post.

You can see the makings or plannings of a DT piece behind the sprays... wonder what she's up to here???!!! you'll have to come back sometime in the future!!

It may be late before I get to you this week as I won't have much time during the working day to sneak round some of you!!

Saturday 16 June 2012

Compendium of Curiosities v2, ch 10

Hi, everyone! Friday saw the new challenge launched by Linda at Studio L3 from volume 2 of Tim's Compendium of Curiosities, sponsored by Funkie Junkie Boutique. with a $25 voucher up for grabs - thank you!  Amazingly we are on challenge 10 (I've missed a few!) and is the fabulous tissue wrap flower... which I'd not done before...

I took a tag that I'd started some time ago and not been sure how to "finish"... Dylusions sprays (a more muted look as it is the tag I used to 'mop up' the wet ink on a first sprayed tag) and Dylusions stamps from Around the Edge.
 I made the tissue wrap flower according to the instructions in the book (and on a 12 Tags of Christmas 2011 tag where Tim first showed us the flower) - the first one (not the one I used here) was a bit bigger (didn't measure it) and scruffier!! I think it definitely requires practice, this technique...

Added some pink ribbons and fibres and a Dylusions sentiment brushed lightly with shaded lilac distress ink (can't wait to get my summer ones - that pink would have been perfect here...)

Sprayed the layers of tissue wrap with the pink Dylusions spray before folding it, it is pinker than it looks here!
I chose pink for the flower because I thought it looked a bit like a waterlily.....

I am also entering this in Hels' Sunday Stampers challenge "Pretty in Pink" too.
It was Hels' birthday on Wednesday and this is the card I sent her. Hope you had a great day, Hels'.

Wednesday 13 June 2012

TIO - Industrial Chic

Welcome back to another challenge from Dragons-Dream Tag it On! My good friend and team-mate Gabrielle has chosen the recipe this week - for "industrial chic" and the ingredients are; vintage brown, clockwork or cogs, and industrial imagery. Don't forget to use at least one real stamp on your tag.

Here is my tag - it's one of the jumbo ones.
I started by using the clock and cog masks (Tim Holtz) and frayed burlap DI.

Stamped the cogs (Artistic Stamper) in coffee archival

Then I stamped some of Tim's images - from the Steampunk and Remnants sets, in black; and the pointing finger and sentiment are also Tim's, on scraps and added to the tag.
 The clock is by Maya Road.
Finally added some washers from my stash and a ribbon.

WOYWW 158?

The year is flying and it's only 2 weeks to my birthday which means it's only 6 months to Boxing Day.... yikes! Anyhow, it's Wednesday again and we are ready to meet up at Julia's the Stamping Ground for another blog-hop-fest round the crafty spaces of the world.   Thanks to everyone who stopped by last week and left comments.

I have received my ATC swap now, from my swap partner in Canada - thanks so much Lorinda; together with some other goodies - that's so kind!

 and the one on the left came from Sandra in Australia which is also beautiful
then I had to do a little bit of shopping! I never have enough sentiments - well these should keep me quiet!
and some stencils!!

Before I let you go, if you get a chance, wish Hels happy birthday for today (hope the card arrived Hels!) Have a great day, Hels!

Monday 11 June 2012

Simon Says - Anything Goes!

I started messing about with this canvas yesterday but once I'd got it sprayed wasn't really sure what to do next, so put it to one side.

This morning I saw that the Simon Says Stamp and Show challenge, is "anything goes" so I attacked it tonight with renewed vigour! And some stencils....

The canvas is sprayed with Dylusions (turquoise and yellow) and I used some distress inks and the chicken wire stencil, and then today added the fish - again with distress inks in various colours.  Used a white pen to highlight the bubbles.  I think it probably needs some words, but I don't think I have anything suitable...

Crafty Boots Challenge

I was thrilled recently to be offered a place on the Crafty Boots Design Team and this is my first piece for the Crafty Boots challenge site.  Team-mate Tracie has set the theme for this - Material. Make anything you like, but use some material in your entry.

I decided to make a tag and found some material in a scraps drawer, and my Tim Holtz sewing die.

I sprayed the tag with Dylusions sprays  and stencil before adding a Tim Holtz sentiment stamp.  I cut the dress form twice, once in the material and once in sticky back canvas and stuck the two together and added some ribbon and a brad from my stash, and tied some ribbons through the tag too.

I do hope you'll come and join in.

Wednesday 6 June 2012

Simon Says - show some texture

This week, the Simon Says DT are asking us to show texture.

I was sitting in the office this afternoon and an idea for this just came to me. Looking back at the DT entries, it is very like Sarah's - sorry, I was obviously subconsciously influenced - but I had honestly forgotten!

Took a piece of cardboard packaging and tore the surface randomly.  Added some Terra paste in various places, and some colours of Paperartsy Fresco paint (Old Gold, Mocha Mousse and London Night, with some Honey Dew mixed and splodged together!

Added some 'perfect fx' flakes fromUS Artquest - don't think I've ever used this before, to the painted terra paste.

Found some embroidered fabric in my stash and stuck it to a piece of tissue wrap (can't get a good picture in artificial light with the flash, will try again tomorrow in daylight)

Made a hanger from some fibres tied together and stapled to the cardboard with Tim's tiny attacher.

Added some skeleton leaves and some flowers from my stash
Stamped Dina Wakley's 'Lonely Girl' on a piece of thin white card, tore her out and edged it with old paper and antique linen distress.

As always, Simon Says is offering a gift voucher to one random winner, so good luck!

EWV challenge

A quick one from me as I'm running last minute to get this challenge in! Lori asked us to make a piece of art for the Wendy Vecchi yahoo group, from her book 3, page 28.  It is just as well I checked the challenge as I had it in my head that the combination was the other way round, but we are to use 3 circles and 2 hearts.....

Mine is nothing like the book version as I've gone for a tag!

Apart from the circles (Dylusions) all stamps are Wendy's and the inks are as you an probably tell, the newest distress colours.


Well, what a party that was! I have just spent the whole of the 4 days of the Diamond Jubilee weekend feasting (on tv) on the pageantry and excitement of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations - despite the sometimes awful weather, how fabulous it was! The River Pageant, the concert and the moving service of Thanksgiving at St Paul's.

Another fantastic party was had last week at the Stamping Ground - the 3rd anniversary of the blog-fest devised by Julia Dunnit. Thank you to everyone who stopped by - I visited as many as I could - I think I managed over 2/3rds of you, sorry I missed some.

So with all the tv watching I haven't actually created a lot since last week!  I have however received some ATC's -3 from Nicky and one from Jo and they are all fabulous.
My swap partner is sending hers from Canada so that isn't here yet, and my swap is off to the Philippines.

Hope to get round and see what you have been up to, hope you have a good day!

Sunday 3 June 2012

Jubilee London

As a few of you are waiting for the photos of my day in London - in case you haven't found them - they are here on my 'photosbyh' blog, as I keep them separate from my crafty stuff!

Saturday 2 June 2012


So for my next piece I managed to combine two challenges with a Jubilee card perfect for this weekend!

Artful Times challenge us this fortnight (there's a week left!) to use ribbon and lace and
Artistic Stamper to use red white and blue - so it had to be Jubilee themed for that!

Started with a piece of red distress Core'dinations paper, sanded to make it smoother. Stamped 'Big Ben' (Paperartsy) in black archival. Cut some white lace trim and thin blue ribbon (you should see the mess I made in my ribbon box looking for this!!)

Then, the postman arrived with some papers and the Union Jack sticker you can see by Diane on WOYWW as  after I commented on how fab the papers were, she left me a comment offering me one of each of the papers. The Union Jack was just perfect to finish my project, so thank you Di, and the papers will be great too!!

Congratulations to Her Majesty on her Diamond Jubilee - I was in London yesterday as I had an extra day off (took a day's holiday) and I walked for 6 hours at all the preparations and flags and bunting - made me even more proud to be British.  (I should get the photos back later this afternoon, so check my other blog later!)

Ok, three down - wonder what's left!! Thanks for looking.

One for the boys

Well as we start our Jubilee Weekend to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee I am hoping to get some challenges done! Here's the first one - Simon Says Stamp and Show -one for the boys.

I don't have a lot of men's cards to make so I can struggle with this but I went for Tim's Stained  Kraft Resist technique and the 'steampunk' stamp set.
I clear embossed the image on some kraft cardstock and used distress stains, crushed olive, tumbled glass and broken china, then toned it down a little with picket fence.  Stamped the 3 gentlemen in black archival and used the 'rolling' technique to stamp the other background partially over the top of the card.  Stamped and cut out the pointing finger and admit one on kraft paper and fixed to the card, before mounting it all to black card.

Once again the wonderful Simon Says people are offering a random prize of a $50 voucher to their amazing store.