Thursday, 29 August 2013

Crafting with a bee

I had a lovely week off work, I only have to go back tomorrow, just in time for another weekend. On Tuesday I made the drive to Farnborough, Hampshire, for Brenda of Bumblebees and butterflies class where we were making a bird card and painting with distress inks. It was such fun to meet a fellow blogger in person, it was like meeting an old friend. She is such a talented crafter and I learnt so much from her (thanks Brenda x)

There were 7 of us in the class and we watched as Brenda explained the card we would make and demonstrated some of the techniques. We used several techniques including embossing and for the first time I painted my image with distress inks rather than using my usual Promarkers.

First I washed the image with distress inks and then I used a paintbrush to put in some details.

 I was quite pleased with my first attempt and I will certainly play with them again.

I had fun making a birds nest out of twine wire

 and of course a nest needs eggs, which were coloured with distress inks then embossed using clear embossing power. Whilst the embossing was hot we pressed a prose stamp in and then went over with distress ink. I really like this effect.

We also made a piece of embossed card to look like rusty metal using ink and embossing powder. This was die cut with a TH cage die.

All these elements were then put together to make up the finished cards.
Here is my finished card, the image is on a hinge which lifts up to reveal a birthday verse.

I would like to enter it into the following challenges;

Here come the boys Lazy Summer days
Simon Says Stamp anything goes
Pile it on Designer paper
Crafting with dragonflies male card
Papercrafting Journey anything goes
2 sisters square card
Jelly Park things that fly
Card crafters circle for the boys
Craft Room Challenge new something my new is my new painting and playing with distress inks which I will certainly be doing again. I really enjoy learning new techniques and skills to enhance my card making.

After the class I continued down the M3 to Southampton to see my daughter and son-in-law. My Hb caught the train from London after work to join us and we enjoyed a lovely meal together. Yesterday was another special Mum/daughter day as we met in Guildford for lunch and some retail therapy. My girlie is 30 weeks pregnant tomorrow and has such a neat bump...she does not look pregnant at all from the back...and yes everyone keeps saying it looks like a boy bump. We will have to wait and see....perhaps there is a little grandaughter in there ?

Enjoy the weekend, the weather is due to change to a more autumnal feel. As I have been spoilt by a week of glorious blue skies and sunshine I really can't complain. Thanks for visiting and take care,

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Monday, 26 August 2013

Sunshine after the rain and some Kewpie cuties

The rain on Saturday was quite spectacular and it came down in sheets for most of the day. My very parched garden had its first decent drop of rain for well over 6 weeks. I took advantage of not being able to garden and disappeared to my studio for a few hours to have some crafty play.

On Sunday the sun returned at lunch time and as we sat out in the garden the clouds started to clear
and we watched the huge cotton wool clouds floating overhead.

I also noticed all the rain drops hanging on my plants like glistening dew drops.

 There was also that amazing heady damp earth smell that takes me back to summers past. As my other blogging friends have commented there are some signs that autumn is just around the corner but certainly today summer is well and truely still here.
My fussy fushias have been show stoppers this year, this variety is called Blackie.

I also bought a very pretty patio rose. As you know I am not that pink a girlie but I do love this new rose called Gentle Touch

The eagle eyed of you will notice something long hanging down the wall where I was trying to photograph my rose,  yes it's none other than Inspector Billy ;0)

The colour of the rose inspired me to make a new card for my Etsy shop. It is a new baby girl card to replace one I recently sold. It is also good practice for me for when our grandbaby arrives.
I decided to use a wonderful image which was kindly sent to me by Ignacio, owner of Nicecrane designs.

My Mum remembers the original Kewpies which were around in the 1930s.  I also love these whimsical babies and I first saw one inked up by my blogging buddy Kate. I chose to use the girl sitting down and coloured mine up using Promarkers and Prismacolor pencils and fussy cut out the image.
I used my floral oval die to place her on. My sentiment is LOTV and I attached a cute stork charm. The little line die cut is Memory Box. The DPs are ancient, I bought them from the Craft Barn many, many years ago. The pearls are from The Hobby House. Here is my finished card and she is for sale here

What a cutie Kewpie. If you are interested in other designs, including a fab new brownie range do have a look over at the website. I also had a play with colouring another of the is a sneaky peek but you will have to wait to see the finished card ;0)

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

Papercrafting Journey anything goes
Addicted to stamps Option 2, use a Nicecrane image
Make it Monday Linky Party
Pile it on designer paper
Craft room challenge new something my new is this stamp
Totally Gorjuss add a bow
2 sisters Square cards
Pan Pastels pastel colours
The Cutie Pies anything goes
Pink Gem anything with a B my Bs are bow and baby
A little Bit Crafty summer sun, 3rd and final entry

I have put my new post up today as tomorrow I am off to my stamping class and on Tuesday evening/Wednesday I am catching up with my girlie. It will be great to have some time off work. I hope the weather was kind to you over the weekend too. Thanks for stopping by my post on Saturday and for all the very kind comments you left about my wedding Smash Album. I will be back soon. Have a great week,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Saturday, 24 August 2013

A paper anniversary

My daughter and son-in-law recently celebrated their first wedding anniversary. It is incredible how quickly that year has flown by. I shared many posts with you during the pre wedding build up last year of all  the jewellery I created, the card etc. I had lots of "bit and pieces" of memorabilia from both the build up to and the actual wedding day. I had a whole bag full and was not sure what to do with it until one day another of those light bulb moments occurred in my little brain. I would put them all together in an album. I decided to create a "Smash"album which I could give to them as a present for their  first wedding anniversary as that is traditionally a "paper" anniversary.

For those of you not in the know a Smash album is a sort of scrap book but with the advantage that the pages inside are all  themed. The idea is to "Smash" in everything and add to it as you go along.I bought the Wedding version and ordered some copies of the photos I took at the wedding so that I could create a memory album that could be treasured and perhaps even shown to their children one day.

It took me a long time to work out an order for the album and eventually I decided to start the album with photos of when they first met, their engagement, the buying of the dress, the hen party  etc and I would end it with photos of the actual day, 28 July 2012. I used all the little bits and pieces I had kept; ribbons, receipts, menus etc etc.

I had a trial laying out of everything and then I stuck everything in. I cut lots of themed die cuts and I also added some text in my own handwriting as I thought that would make it very personal.

Here are just a few of the many pages I made;

This page is their engagement showing the cake I made and the silver pendant.  I had kept a piece of the ribbon from the cake so I added that.

 This is the wedding jewellery I made for my girlie, her bridesmaids and me.

The dress fitting and the receipts .
Our fun cheesecake testing day and hair practice in the May, on a very hot sunny day.
Their wedding card; I had kept some of the embellishments which I stuck in around the photos

The day before the wedding when we had the day together, just Mum and Daughter in a beautiful hotel in Midhurst, near to the wedding venue. This was the morning of the wedding.
The moment she arrived....a moment that still makes my eyes prickle ;0)

and joyful celebrations for the newly weds

I had kept the ribbon and the pins from her beautiful bouquet as she gave me her flowers. I carefully fixed them in place in the album.

I also decided that I would make some special wrapping paper and a tag to present it in. My daughter adores strawberries so this was the theme, as was their strawberry anniversary card which I have shown you all previously. I hand stamped the paper.  Brown paper is always the perfect medium for this and gives a really great hand made effect. I use it a lot for wrapping very special parcels and the hand stamped images made it really one of a kind. It is also so much cheaper than gift wrap....a £1 roll wraps many many pressies.

I also made a little strawberry gift tag to match and my made with love 1st anniversary present was complete.

and here it is all wrapped up. My daughter and son-in-law absolutely loved it and I got such a sweet teary text from my girlie on the morning of her wedding went down a treat and is much loved ;0)

I would like to enter my tag (and even my smash book and wrapping paper if they qualify ;0) into the following challenges;

Crafting for all Seasons tags
Whimsy Clean and simple
Papertake weekly flower power
Emma's Cards floral
Rhedd and Rosie use red
Divas by design use some twine
Pile it On No designer paper
Papercrafting Journey anything goes
Make it Monday Linky party
Heck of a challenge summer holidays
A little bit crafty summer sun

It is the bank holiday weekend here in the UK, the last one before Christmas no less (123 days to go). Enjoy it and I hope you get some crafting time as well as time to relax. We finally got a real soaking of rain this morning to water my very parched lawn.  We are planning some quiet time at home but on Tuesday I am off to a card class run by my blogging friend Brenda Brown in Hampshire. I am hoping to learn some more about distress inks, which she is the Queen of. As it is near to my daughter (76 days until our grandbaby is due ;0) I shall be carrying on afterwards to visit her and my son-in-law. My Hb is taking the train down after work and we will enjoy an evening meal with them both before driving home. I also have Wednesday off work for our monthly ladies' lunch/mother and daughter day which I am really looking forward to, a real double day bonus in my eyes. Take care everyone and thanks as always for visiting me here and reading my Journal.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

More glorious sunshine

This late but long summer has been glorious and this week the temperatures are rising again to 26c by Friday. This morning, as it's my day off, I trotted down to the high street to have my hair cut and this was my beloved ponds at 9.30 am.

Doesn't sunshine just make everything look perfect? My heart skips a little beat when I sit for a moment by the ponds as it brings back so many memories of summer days when my children were small. We visited the ponds most days and they spent many happy hours in the amazing play park there. I also thought that in a few years time I will be able to retrace those memories with my grandbaby who is due in no less than 80 days time ;0)

My garden produce continues to provide lots of tasty treats and my tomatoes have been made so beautifully sweet by the long sunny days. I love just pulling a fruit off the plant, a quick wash under the tap and then the joy of a still warm snack.

I also grew a couple of unusual plants this year. The first I would like to share with you are the cucamelons. They are a range of seeds from Sutton's and  I bought these in the spring. I started them off in my little indoors propagator in the sunshine of our back bedroom. They taste of cucumber with a very slight sweet twist and I think will be perfect for Pimms this weekend, it is a bank holiday here in the UK.
Here they are back in May being planted out in my hanging basket
Last month

 and today

I have been able to spend the this afternoon with Billy in my garden studio cracking on with some jewellery making and some card commissions. I have also been deadheading my pots which are still producing amazing blooms. I'm not sure you can really call this helping ?

My card today has a garden theme and features the red and green from my tomatos. I have used my Magnolia yummy Strawberry Kisses Tilda stamp. This card is for sale here in myEtsy shop
 I have added my usual recipe of glossy accents to the strawberries to make them even more delicious looking. I coloured my image with Promarkers and highlighted with Prismacolor pencils. The die cuts are Cheery Lynn small butterflies are a MS punch. The tags I made are by LOTV, part of my Pretty Vintage win. I have tied a dragonfly charm with some twine and added gems in red and green at the sides. The flower I made with prima petals with a Card Candi for the centre. I have just bought some new Craftworks card candi and this is one of the new packets. 

I would like to enter my card  into the following challenges.

Papertake Weekly flower power
Top Tip Tuesday use things with your initials My initials are JT. Now J is incredibly difficult but I thought I would push my luck and suggest Juicy strawberry  jewels (jems) for J and  for T I have used Tags, Tilda stamp, Tibetan charm and Twine
Ribbon Girl Red
Emma's cards Floral
Penny Black and More In the garden
Passion for Promarkers Fave colour combo mine is red/green
A little bit crafty summer sun
Cutie Pies Anything goes
Ohh La La Inspired by a song Whenever I use this stamp I start humming The Beatles "Strawberry Fields"
Crafty Ribbons 3 of something I have made 3 tags
Stamping Sensations Wings and things and a touch of vintage
Marvellous Magnolia anything goes
Loves Rubber stamps round or square cards
Craft Room Challenge Use something new the new is my new dragon fly charm, the card candi and the vintage tags stamps
Make it Monday Linky party #154
Bunny Zoe Bingo I have used the far right vertical line; Tag, gems, charm
Rhedd and Rosie's challenge use red

I hope every one in the UK is making the most of this glorious weather. It's work for me tomorrow but I am really looking forward to the long bank holiday weekend, let's hope the weather can last until then. Enjoy the week and your crafting. Welcome to my newest followers and I hope you enjoy following my creative journey and thank you to everyone who stops by here and leaves such sweet comments. It's the start of the Great British Bake Off on TV tonight...I watch very little TV but this is one of my must sees ;0)

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x