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Thursday, 22 March 2018

A new Blog Challenge for CAS Christmas cards

Happy Thursday folks ......

It's almost the weekend ..... yeah!

March saw the launch of a new Blog Challenge, especially for Christmas Cards.  And, as the brains behind it are two of my lovely blog buddies ...... the talented Loll Thompson and Bonnie Klass, what else could it be for but ......... CAS Christmas Cards,  one of my favourite styles.

The challenge started on the 3rd of the month and runs through to the 24th ...... so I'm a little late joining the party but ..... I made it!

As you can see the theme is Holly ....... surprisingly I don't have a lot of Holly stamps in my collection, not ones I wanted to use anyway!!  In the end I decided on this little guy ..... he's got holly

He's a little Penny Black hedgie from one of their T for Transparent sets and he's been stamped in the centre of a square card and coloured using ZIG markers

A little sentiment underneath (from Happy Little Stampers) stamped in gold ink.

A few dots of white Enamel Accents here and there to give the effect of falling snow .... very CAS

and I've used the holly sprig on the inside too, as a little decorative accent for the sentiment

A bit of masking tape over hedgie before inking up the stamp ...... easy!

Well that's another Christmas card for the box ..... I think that gives me four now!  I think I'll need a few more than that come December.

Thanks for popping by ... enjoy the rest of your day.
In our quest to watch all of the Marvel Super Hero movies ..... from the first one, and in the right order, we watched The Hulk last night ..... glad that one's out of the way that's all I'm saying!! 
It's Iron Man 2 next I believe .... at least there's Robert Downey Jr to look at on that one!

Cheerio until next time ....

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

CAS Watercolour Challenge .....

Happy Wednesday ......

I can't believe we're in the middle of the week already ...... there's too much to do!!!!
It doesn't help when my laptop is running sooooo slowwww ..... I think it's hibernating!
It took all day Monday before I could actually log in and do anything. I'm not exaggerating there ...... literally all day.
I tried to log on first thing .... nothing.  So I switched it off and re-booted.  Still nothing ....... just the little circle of dots to say it was thinking about doing something.   So ...... after a few choice words I just left it.  Patience is what hubby says I need.   PATIENCE!!!!!  A new flippin' laptop is what I say I need!!
Anyway ...... I went out for the day and forgot about the troublesome laptop.  I had a lovely catch up and lunch with a friend, followed by a bit of retail therapy.  We took advantage of the nice weather and ventured up to the north .... to Ramsey!  My favourite shop is up there so I had a lovely time!
Hubby has since said that I can have a new laptop ..... yeah!  Now I just need to decide which one!
Some research needed over the weekend I think.

I'm playing along with the CAS Watercolour challenge today .... there's a couple of days left before the deadline.  The theme this month is ......

There's not much going on in our garden yet ..... a couple of daffodils here and there, but that's pretty much it at the moment.  Hopefully as Spring goes on things will begin to bloom .... we'll have to wait and see what comes up.

I've been playing with one of my favourite Penny Black stamps .... dancing daisies, along with my Distress Inks ......

I've used my MISTI to stamp the image, repeat stamping to slowly build up the colours, and spritzing with water to blend the inks and get this watercoloured effect .....

I used one colour of ink at a time and spritzed in between stamping. 
The stems were first, starting with Twisted Citron, followed by Peeled paint ......  

The sentiment was stamped with Gathered Twigs Distress Oxide ...... I love these inks for stamping with!

Mustard Seed and Wild Honey are the colours I used for the flowers, with a little bit of Rusty Hinge for the centres

I added in a few splatters of ink to the background, and finished off by brushing around the edges with Antique Linen Distress Oxide ..... possibly not quite as CAS as it should!

The inside fits the bill ........

Same technique but I masked the stamp and used just one of those daisies this time ......

Thanks for popping by .... enjoy the rest of your day.
We've had the SKY TV engineer here today .... we eventually got around to telling them we'd moved and that we needed our TV sorting.  Not that we've missed SKY that much ... we've been watching Amazon and Netflix.  We've just reached the end of a few series that we've been watching ..... Vampire Diaries, and the spinoff The Originals which was good.   We've just finished something called Colony, and the next series of that isn't out yet so, we needed something new.  
Guess what ..... hubby's chosen the Marvel Superhero films ....... oh joy! We're watching them all apparently .....from the beginning ...... in order.  There's loads of them!  And there's some that we've seen already ..... but we have to watch them in order.  This could take a while.

Cheerio until next time ......

Friday, 16 March 2018

Let the weekend begin ......

Hello again ...... Happy Friday evening

Are you ready for the weekend ........ maybe yours has started already.

I'm home alone this evening ....... hubby is out with the guys from work.  I was invited to join them but, to be honest .... I couldn't be bothered!
It's PJ's, a glass of wine and an early night for me I think ........ living the dream!

Before I settle in front of the TV to catch up with my soap operas I've just realised that I haven't shared any Sweet Poppy Stencil samples with you from Lucy's show last week!!!  Shame on me!!!
It seems to have been all about stencils recently ...... I actually sorted through all mine this afternoon, something I've been putting off for a long time.  But, it's all done .... now they're just all over the craft room floor, in various categories, waiting for me to decide how to store them.  I'll get back to you on that one!!

Anyhow .... back to Sweet Poppy.  Lucy launched some brand new designs on her last show and they proved to be very popular.  One of my favourites was the Star Blossoms

Such a pretty design .... great for backgrounds and creating scenes, but just as gorgeous as the focal point on your cards

I simply used it with the Black stencil paste onto a coloured background (Distress inks) 

and then sprinkled over the top with glitter.  This was the Sweet Poppy Crystalina Rainbow glitter, I love how the colours really come through when you use it on black

Here's the same stencil, but with the white paste this time ....

A delicate Brusho background .....

And the glitter again .... love it!!

Here's one using a stencil that wasn't on the show ..... but I just couldn't resist having a play.  Maybe if you're lucky enough to be visiting the craft show at the NEC this weekend you may just see it there

How gorgeous is she ......... just look at those long legs!!  I think she goes perfectly with the Star Blossoms don't you!

Just look at the detail ...... I used the brand new Peach coloured paste through the stencil then added pink glitter just to the body

A simple sentiment and the Star Blossoms around the edges ... love it!

Another favourite was the Damask Flower .....

I've used three of the new coloured pastes one this one, and chopped the design into four

Such pretty soft shades ... that blend beautifully.

Here's the stencil again this time with the glitters ......

A simple sentiment, stamped and heat embossed and you have a card suitable for so many occasions.

Speaking of stamps, if you are going to the NEC this weekend .... say Hi to Lucy for me and check out the Sweet Poppy Stencil stand. They're launching a brand new range of sentiment stamps that will go perfectly with all of their stencil designs.  I can't wait to get my hands on those.

Thanks for stopping by this evening ..... enjoy the weekend.
Time to put my feet up I think ... and I may just have to try a little piece of these ....

It's been a long time since I've done any baking ..... but I had to try out the new mixer. 
They look OK and they smell delicious, especially the chocolate brownies .... nom! nom! 
There's gin jam in the victoria sponge too!! Will they last the weekend?!

Cheerio until next time .....

Uniko Challenge #46 ......

Happy Friday folks .....

I hope you've had a good week and that you have something nice planned for the weekend.
Let's get it started and have some fun with the latest Uniko Blog Challenge.

#46 ...... Colours
with an optional twist ..... Easter

I've used two of the gorgeous Spring colours from the Inspiration Photo, the pink and green.  It felt like Spring was on its way earlier in the week ..... not so much today however. Oh well, lets see what the weekend brings!  
I've also used the optional twist on my inspiration piece.
I don't actually send Easter cards but, I couldn't resist trying this ......

How was the cute little Easter egg created, well ........ I've used the new Balloon Bash stencil of course ......

Turn the large balloon upside down, mask off the mouth piece and you have this cute little egg shape.
I simply inked through the stencil with Twisted Citron Distress Oxide ink, onto a piece of white cardstock

Keeping the balloon stencil in place ......

QUICK TIP .... always tape your stencil in place even if it's only on one side, this then gives you a hinge allowing you to lift up the stencil and look underneath or in this case ......

I added in the Scattered Polka Dots stencil  underneath the balloon stencil, and then used some white texture paste to add the spots

Whilst the paste was still wet I sprinkled over the top with some pretty pink glitter and then left it to dry.

I stamped the bow from the co-ordinating Balloon Bash stamp set and then fussy cut around it before adding it to the top of the egg 

A simple sentiment to finish off ...... from Uniko's Simply Said

And a little something on the inside ....

I used a Post It note to mask off the centre of the card, stenciled the Scattered Polka Dots around the edges and then doodled around the inside with a fine liner 

The challenge runs until midnight on Friday 20th April so there's lots of time to play along.
Happy stamping!

Thanks for popping by ...... have a great day and enjoy the weekend.

Cheerio until next time ....

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Stencil fun ........Weekend Workshop

Happy Tuesday ......

What a lovely day we have here .... the sun is shining and the sky is blue.  Spring is definitely on its way!

It was our monthly workshop at the weekend .... the first one in the new house, and we had fun playing with Stencils
You know how it is, we all have lots of pretty stencils in our craft stash but .... do we use them?  And the answer to that is usually .... not as much as we should!
I love stencils but they're not always the first thing I reach for .... that's usually rubber stamps.
I do have my favourite stencils however and they do get used time and time again ..... the brickwall, for me, is a must have

Honeycomb is another one ..... great for adding that little bit more interest to the background

And a pretty flourish that I love to layer ..... oooh!  the harlequin's not bad either

We did the usual with stencils .... ink straight through the design, nothing too difficult.  I'd used the brand new beautiful large Chrysanthemum from the Pure Florals range at Uniko Studio, as one of my samples, I love this

Another popular design was this pretty Daisy from Inkylicious .......

Simply inked with Distress inks and then I added a hidden sentiment inlaid into the front of the card

You know me ..... I like to decorate the insides of my cards.  Use stencils and a little less ink to make the inside look pretty too

Next up we used the stencils more like a stamp ..... applied ink directly onto the stencil, spritzed with water and then placed the stencil onto a piece of cardstock.

This gives a sort of watercoloured look to the design I think ....

Here's that pretty daisy again done this way ..... doesn't it look so different

Depending on how much ink you've applied to the stencil and what sort of cardstock you use, you may even get two or even three prints using this technique, without adding any more ink .... give it a try.

To  finish off we did a little layering using stencils ...... inks again and adding some stamps

This is fast becoming a new favourite stencil of mine ....... one of the floral designs from Tim Holtz ...... you may just see a little more of it on here you never know

A sentiment stamped directly over the top looks fab .....

And of course the stencil looks just as pretty on the inside ....

We also layered using texture paste ......

Another of Tim's floral designs, with white texture paste this time, and then black glitter sprinkled over the top whilst the paste is still wet

You can see in the background I've used a heart stencil along with the last technique ... inking the stencil, spritzing and then printing with the stencil.  This was done onto a piece of watercolour card and it looks like I added more water in some places, so the design isn't as sharp but I quite like this effect, it looks more random, if that makes sense.

A few tips that I find useful when using stencils ......

  • Tape your card and your stencil in place whether you're using inks or pastes.  Always have at least one side taped, that way if you need to lift your stencil to see how the design is coming along, when you put it back down it will be in the correct place
  • If there's any blank card showing, make sure to cover it, either with more tape or just copier paper.  You won't get ink where you don't want it then. 
  • Use a very low tack stencil tape so that it doesn't damage your cardstock 
  • and finally ...... if you're not using all of the design on the stencil use the stencil tape to cover up the bits that you don't want to get ink through .... no matter how careful you think you're going to be, ink gets everywhere!
Speaking of stencils, check out the Uniko Studio Blog tomorrow.  I'm doing my first DT post on there since joining the Stencil Design Team.

Hmmm ....... now what shall we do for next month's workshop?  
I need to get my thinking cap on as our little get together is a week early.  We've only gone and booked a little holiday, so I've had to change the date for the April one.
Hubby and I are off to Italy again ...... we've got 7 nights in Sorrento.  

We've never done any of the Amalfi coast so it'll be an adventure.  I'm so looking forward to it

It's going to be a busy few weeks before we go though!

Thanks for popping by ....... enjoy the rest of your day.

Cheerio until next time
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