Thursday, 31 October 2013

Christmas CAS gone wrong

Call me stubborn, tenacious or uncompromising. It's Halloween and I shall make a Christmas card.

Of late I've been obsessed with getting my head around CAS. It looks easy, but it's not. It's supposed to lend itself to mass-production, as long as the producer doesn't get bored after three. It should be clutter free and pleasing to the eye, unless you're an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink kinda gal. And it's driving me crazy!!!

Hello. I am the anti-CAS and here's my latest attempt:

Here's how I lost my way: lots of layers, plaid patterned paper from Papermania's Classic Christmas Collection, stitching, pink bling, eyelets, dry embossing with Swiss Dots folder, heat embossed greeting, die-cut reindeer and baker's twine. 

The deer is from Clearly Besotted's Merry Little Christmas set, stamped with Memento Rich Cocoa and coloured with SN (inside of ear) and Promarkers (everything else). Since I was attempting CAS (ahem!) the colouring is simple, no fancy shading. The deer is darker IRL, but he looks kinda krafty (!) in the photo.

Those balls you see... they are my lost marbles. Why else would I stamp the same greeting on the inside of the card?

I made only one card, it look me longer than usual to finish and my craft table is a mess. Another prime-time production...not! Still, this little deer will be strutting it's stuff at these parties:

Papertake Weekly "Sketchie Free For All" - sketch #64
Flourishes Timeless Tuesday #244 - "Plaid / Houndstooth" - plaid
Colour Throwdown #266 - colours
ABC Christmas Challenge "V for Vixen" - reindeer
Make It Monday #164 "Anything Goes"
I Love Promarkers #192 "Anything Goes" - Caramel, Cocoa, Burnt Umber, Henna, Lipstick Red and Berry
Die Cutting Divas #139 "Anything Goes"- die cut reindeer
Shopping Our Stash #125 "Stitching" - in pink

It was quite cold this morning. I had to scrape ice off the windshield of the car! He-man hubby scoffed and zooomed off to work on his motorbike. I dare say he arrived at his destination with frozen bits. I had the heater in the car cranked up to high. I'm ready for November, are you?

Thank you so much for stopping by. Stay safe, stay warm and spook yourself silly today!


Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Tuesday Throwdown #171: Witch Way To The Candy

Boo! Are you ready for Halloween? Admittedly, I'm too old for Trick or Treat but  I have plenty of experience following the candy. And that, my friends, bring me to the burning question this week over at the Tuesday Throwdown coven: Witch Way To The Candy?

This week's witchy challenge is sponsored by the Stamp Fairy - hah! Talk about juxtapositions.  Why don't you play along with us. Create a project with a witch / wizard or candy or both and link up your project at The Tuesday Throwdown Challenge Blog.

Stamp Fairy has some of the cutest digi images out there and it really is worth visiting their online store. Here's what I made using one of Stamp Fairy's images. This little guy is called Tommy Wizard.

I've paired Tommy Wizard with papers from Fancy Pants' 31st October 6x6 pad. The greeting is by WMS, stamped in Memento Elderberry onto lime green CS, To finish some Halloween twine by Doodlebug.

Here's a close up of young Thomas. I coloured him SN and Promarkers.

A peek a inside ...

Why don't you join me in these challenges:
Make It Monday #164 "Anything Goes"
Digi Galore "Halloween"
Craft Your Passion #186 "Halloween"
Love to Create #28 "Halloween"
Parade Your Craft #7 "Halloween / Autumn"
Bearly Mine #110 "Orange, Purple and Black" - and some green...oops!
365 Cards "I Stamp For Halloween"
Whoopsi Daisy Challenge "Halloween"

Thanks for stopping by today. Don't forget to link up your Halloween projects at the Tuesday Throwdown Challenge blog. I look forward to seeing your projects.


Monday, 28 October 2013

Happy Holidays

Last Monday of the month, folks! Seriously, where have the days, nay, months gone? And soon it will be Christmas.

Last year I got myself in such a flap and Christmas lunch almost didn't happen in the Martins household. A few days before Christmas it struck me that I hadn't ordered the turkey. No great disaster for me personally because staring down the rear end of a giant bird is one tradition I'd happily give up. But, the rest of the family wouldn't be so forgiving. Christmas was saved by a few pleading phone calls, a sympathetic organic farmer and a fat cheque... ouch!

I have to admit, I was distracted making Christmas cards and such. This year, I'vet set up a complex series of reminders and alarms and I'm mass producing my cards (without much success, though). For some strange reason I get bored after three. Here's my latest festive trio:

I'm still experimenting with CAS. It's the only way to mass produce. This card measures 4-1/4" square. The stamps are from Clearly Besotted's Signature Christmas set, cut with the coordinating die collection.

Supporting casts in this not-so-mass production include paper from First Edition Isabelle, Crystal Stickles, Liquid Pearls, TH Spun Sugar, VersaColor Silver, Memento Desert Sand and Bamboo Leaves.... and foam tape, of course! 

On the inside I stamped a greeting and the bow from The Signature Christmas set.

You'll find my cards at these linky parties:
Mojo Monday #317 - square sketch
Make It Monday #164 "Anything Goes"
Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge "Anything Goes"
Addicted to Stamps #68 - colours
Amusing Challenge #2 "Anything Goes"
Christmas Card Challenges #48 "Bows"
Craftin' Desert Divas #18 "Anything Goes"
Perfectly Rustics #9 "Patterned Paper"
Christmas Stampin' All Year Long #39 "Patterns" - First Edition's Isabelle paper pad
Keep It Simple #25 "Inspired By ..." alternative colours for Christmas 

I've held back lighting the fireplace until it really got cold. This evening is really is that cold and I finally dragged some logs in from the shed and got the fire going. And NO, I will not be warming his slippers! LOL. However, I will be swinging by your blogs as soon as I chuck something (at this stage not sure what) in oven and call it dinner. Thanks for stopping by today.


Sunday, 27 October 2013

Christmas Gift Cards For A Friend - 1

Just  a quick post today, my friends. I'm making a few mini cards for a friend. She's a potter and at Christmas she gives away some pretty pieces as gifts for friends and family. I offered to make half a dozen (or so) gift cards to accompany her beautiful work .

I made 3 little cards ... and I got bored. Later this week I'll make a few more... different designs. Clearly, I am not a mass producer of anything.

The poinsettia and greeting are from Clearly Besotted's "Pretty Poinsettia" set, cut with the coordinating die collection. I used Nellie Snellen's Dotted Circle die to cut the doily out of vellum. I embossed the background using the Swiss Dots folder.

I mounted the matted panel onto the card base with some foam tape. Embellies: twine & bling.

Here are all three cards. No more poinsettias for a while. :-)

I'm taking my card to the following playpens:
Less Is More #143 "Twine / String"
CAS Colours and Sketches #48 - sketch
Top Tip Tuesday #112 "Black & White + splash of colour"
Scrapping 4 Fun #5 "Christmas / Holiday"
Perfect Sentiments #97 "Poinsettia Christmas" 

That's all from me today. We off for a ride on the motorbike. It's a sunny day and, after a week of heavy downpour, it's a blessing to be able to see the sun again. I won't pretend it's warm but it's I ain't complaining. Thank you for stopping by and I'll see y'all later this evening in blogland.

Have a blessed Sunday!


Friday, 25 October 2013

Polka Doodles #43: Christmas Anything But A Card

Welcome to another week of fun and games with the Polka Doodle lot! Today sees the start of a brand new challenge. We want you to put on your Christmas hats and make something festive but not a card. For my DT project, I made a Christmas treat box and using Polka Doodles new Home For Christmas CD.

Over 500 printable elements for only £17.99 + free postage worldwide!

The Home For Christmas CD collection is crammed with delicious digis, borders, banners, embellishments, even 3-D project. It has everything you need for this festive season - minus the turkey, of course!

About a week before Christmas I leave large home made festive cookies on my colleagues' workstations and to house these delights I painstakingly make little boxes from scratch. Not this year! Look what I found in the CD! A cookie box template...actually there are 3 and I chose this vintage looking one. All you have to do is print, glue and dress. It even comes with a sheet of embellishment. Yay! Extras from my stash: bling and ribbon - that's all. Here's to a hassle free Christmas!

I printed out out the template on some plain white CS, cut it out and, with some glue, constructed this 4" pizza-box. You can very easily resize this box. 

I tied some sheer red ribbon around the box ....

... and dressed up the top of the box with elements which I printed out from the CD.  Some Stickles and bling from my stash and my box is all dressed up and ready to go. 

I lined the inside with some pale brown CS which embossed using the Swiss Dots folder and adhered a few festive knick-knacks from the CD. It's now ready to receive a large cello packed cookie. I just have to make 18 more!

I'm taking my cookie box to the following parties:

Make It Monday #163 "Anything Goes"
Crafty Ribbon Challenge "Anything But A Card"
My Heart Pieces "Anything Christmas"
Crafty Little Fairies "Anything Goes"
Word Art Wednesday #103 "Anything Goes"
Bunny Zoe Crafts October Challenge "Ribbon"

Now it's your turn my friends! What are you waiting for? It's time to get started on those Christmas projects: ornaments, table deco, home deco, boxes, bags, banners, buntings, mini albums ... Anything But A Card! You can enter as many projects as you wish and combine with any number of challenges. There really is no excuse not to play along this week!

And one last thing... if you like with digital images, you will be delighted to know that Polka Doodles has started a brand new challenge focussing on all things digi. It's called Digi Choosday and the challenge goes live every Tuesday at 9am GMT. The first challenge is "Anything Goes"- how easy is that. But wait...there's more! To kick start this challenge, Polka Doodles is offering a massively magnanimous 40% discount on all items from their Digi Store until Saturday 26 October 2013. Just enter the code DCD001 at the checkout. (PLEASE make sure you go through the digi checkout or your order will not be despatched immediately AND you will not receive your discount and this cannot be applied retrospectively!)

Thank you for stopping by today. I'll see you soon with another little something. Have a beautiful Friday. We're having another warm day today... a balmy, almost tropical 17ºC (62ºF)! Woohoo! A welcome relief after 3 days of torrential rain.


Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Just a wee tag...

A quick post from me this evening. I made a tag - a thank you tag with a festive feel. I was just goofing around with my latest consignment from Clearly Besotted Stamps. It took me a year to buy this set called Merry Little Christmas....and about time too! And I can't wait t play with the rest... but that's another story for another post!

The tag measures 4-1/4" x 2-1/2" and I rounded the top using Spellbinders Classic Oval die and matted the die on some pale brown CS. Other embellishments: Crystal Stickles, button, twine and blue bling.

I coloured the snowman with Promarkers, The background snowflakes are also from the Merry Little Christmas set, stamped with Memento Bamboo Leaves. The "thank you" greeting is from a freebie set, also by Clearly Besotted.  Although I have the coordinating die for the snowman, I decided to fussy cut it because I was in a hurry to finish the tag and didn't want faff around aligning die and stamp, which usually takes me quite awhile to get right!  Finally, I popped the little guy up on some foam tape.

Some challenges for this tag:
Colour Throwdown #265 - colours
Cutie Pie Challenge #55 "Cute & Tag-tastic"
Flourishes Timeless Tuesday #243 "Fussy Cutting Fun"
Holly Jolly Christmas Challenge "Christmas Thank You"
Deep Ocean Challenge #63 "Button It Up"
Just Inspirational Challenges "Tags"
Make It Monday #163 "Anything Goes"
Rhedd & Rosie's Challenge #18 "Anything Goes"

That's all from me. Must dash: dinner in the oven, hubby on the sofa and I hear something rumbling downstairs...

Thanks for stopping by and have a cosy evening, my friends!


Monday, 21 October 2013

A Child Is Born

Yep, I made yet another Christmas card! I never have enough Christmas cards and MojoMonday is as good an excuse as any to make another but this time with a masculine twist.  Tell me what you think?

The papers are from "Christmas in the Country" 6x6 pad by Papermania. Manly embellishments: brown bling, lashings of Diamond Stickles, dark chocolate grosgrain ribbon double stitched in gold and Liquid Pearls. I distressed the edges and applied TH's Vintage Photo.

The image and greeting are both from Chocolate Baroque's Peace on Earth set, stamped in Memento Espresso Truffle.  I coloured the lantern with Graph'It markers. For cutting and layering: Spellbinders Circle and Scalloped Circle dies.

On the inside I stamped the snowflakes from the Peace On Earth set with Memento Rich Cocoa. 

Here are some really macho challenges for my manly card:
Mojo Monday #316 - sketch
Make It Monday #163- AG
Here Come The Boys #63 "Christmas in Brown & Cream"
Stamping Sensations Oct "All Creatures Great & Small"
52 CCT Oct Theme / Recipe Challenge #22 "Bling It Up"
Sweet Stampin' Christmas "Cards For Men"
Opus Gluei #168 "Something For The Man In Your Life"
OSAAT #186 "AG"
ABC Challenge #50 "3-2-1" - 3 shapes, 2 papers, 1 ribbon

Thanks for stopping by today. I'm going to see to dinner. I know my priorities: craft first then we eat. Good thing hubby shares my vision ... not that he has much choice! lol

Have a lovely evening, my friends!


p.s. I showed this card to my dearest and he said "Very nice. And who are the parents?" Oh dear! I fear for the salvation of his soul. ;-)

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Christmas Card Club #20: Twelve Days of Christmas

A fortnight has rolled by and it's time for the Christmas Card Clubbettes to get together again.  Our hostess , the lovely Sue P  (after a couple of super-charged hot toddies, no doubt) is challenging us to a little festive sing-along and card. Not any ol' song, just one in particular : The Twelve Days Of Christmas.

I rose to the challenge, downed a couple of sherries (and a strictly medicinal dose of brandy), put on a Christmas CD and produced this joyful number:

No patterned papers! I'm beginning to like that - makes life easier in a sense. The ol' pear tree stamp is from Chocolate Baroque's "Family Christmas". I coloured it with Promarkers and Graph'It pens. I used 2 snowflake stamps from the same set and stamped on red CS with Versamark to make the background paper. The red gingham papers is some scrap piece I had lying around. I scored 3 vertical lines on the right edge in keeping with the sketch. 

I inked the edges with TH's Vintage Photo and Antique Lace. On the lower half of the card I applied random dots with a Metallic Silver Sharpie. 

Here's a close-up. I applied some Liquid Pearls for texture. As for the birds... well, I haven't the foggiest what colours partridges, turtle doves, french hens and turtle doves are supposed to be. But, if you ever see a purple partridge, let me know!  

The sentiment is from Chocolate Baroque's "Warm Christmas Greeting"

And now for some spirited and mirthful fun:

Tuesday Morning Sketches #220 - sketch
Holly Jolly Christmas Challenge "Inspired By Christmas Carol"
ABC Christmas Challenge "U - Under the Tree"
CCAYR "October - Getting Ready For Christmas"
Addicted To Stamps #67 "Christmas is Coming"
C.R.A.F.T Challenge #229 "Christmas"
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge "Christmas / Happy Holiday"
Crafty Little Fairies "Christmas In October"
Crimbo Crackers #52 "Christmas Birds"
CHNC Extra October - "AG Christmas"
Sugar Creek Hollow #72 "Birds of a Feather"
Christmas Card Challenge #47 "Christmas - Flowers (optional)
Make It Monday #163 "Anything Goes"

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you're having a peaceful and blessed Sunday.


Eclectic Ellapu #52: Halloween

Hellooooooo there! Something spooky is going on over at the Eclectic Ellapu Challenge blog and we want YOU to play along. It's that time of the year and try as you may, ghosts and ghouls are pretty much unavoidable! Resistance is why not just play along. The theme: Halloween.... now there's a surprise!

My not-so-creepy concoction for this week's challenge looks something like this:

The papers are from Memory Box's Nightfall Collection.  This card measures 5"x7-1/2" and inked the edges of the card and papers with TH's Vintage Photo.

The focal image is from Chocolate Baroque's "Spookilicious" set. I mounted the image on foam tape and finished the card with some black & white twine by Doodlebug.

Here's a close up of the image. I coloured it with Graph'It and Promarkers.  I plan on giving this card to a young man of 8, so I didn't want to make it too spooky and scare the pants off the poor thing. But I think the haunted house now looks too cutesy, almost like a  Disney cottage! 

On the inside is a greeting from the same stamp set.

Your turn to make a Halloween project. It can be scary or cute; Gothic or Disney; or how about something drop-dead hilarious! If you're looking for ideas, head on over to the challenge blog see what the rest of the design time has prepared for you.

I'm playing along with these good folks:
Happy Campers Challenge #23 "Halloween"
Scrap It With A Song "Thriller by Michael Jackson"
Sarah Hurley Challenge #85 "Halloween"
Craftin' Boutique Challenges "Halloween"
Addicted To Stamps #67 "Make Your Mark"
Crafting For All Seasons #63 #"Too Cute To Spook"
Gem Of A Challenge #102 "Spooky / Halloween"
2 Sisters Challenge #166 "Halloween Colours"
Totally Gorjuss #206 "String"
Make It Monday #163 "AG"

Off to bed now. Thanks for stopping by and I'll see you tomorrow for another post. Enjoy the rest of your Saturday!


Saturday, 19 October 2013

Celebrate Your Day

Hello my friends. A quickie-post from me today. I made a birthday card in the wee hours of last night for my godmother. It's her birthday today and we're taking her out for a special dinner at a swanky place. I started out with CAS in mind but then...oh well, old bad habits die hard and I got a little carried away.

Here's the card I'll be giving my dear Tia Tita:

For the card base I use pearlescent cream CS. I modified the sketch a little by using score line and stitching to emulate the layers in the sketch. I was going for a CAS look- The papers are from Basic Grey's "Indian Summer" 6x6 pad. 
I popped the central panel on some foam tape, applied 4 large pearls at the corners and tied a bow with some salmon sheer ribbon.
The greeting is from Clearly Besotted's It's Your Birthday set, stamped with Memento Elderberry. The butterfly are from the Butterfly Wishes Additions set, heat embossed in white and cut with the coordinating dies. In the middle of each butterfly I adhered a light grey pearl.

Here's another greeting from the It's Your Birthday set, also stamped with Memento Elderberry.

Come play with me here?
Freshly Made Sketches #108 - sketch
Clearly Besotted Challenge #5 "Colour Inspiration / Autumn Theme"
Seize The Birthday "Colours Of Fall"

That's all from me today. Must dash - nowhere exciting, unfortunately. Got to wrestle with some laundry and then put myself through some medieval torture... on the ironing board. Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely weekend. I'll see you tomorrow!


Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Tuesday Throwdown #169: Pumpkin Patch

Well hello there! We meet again, my friends. For today's post, I'm going back to making something with a seasonal flavour. The theme over at Tuesday Throwdown is "Pumpkin Patch". That's just great because to play along you don't have to make a Halloween, Thanksgiving or Autumn card, if you don't want to. As long as your project  has a pumpkin or two, you're good to go.

I made a pumpkinny birthday card with rich autumnal tones using some lovely embellishments so generously provided by our sponsors for this week - Freckled Fawn.  Check out their online store for your embellies and doodats. You'll be spoilt for choice!

Anyways, on to my card:

The patterned papers are from Basic Grey's "Pyrus". I attached a  gorgeous orange rhinestone by Freckled Fawn at the bottom lefthand corner. 

Now this adorable Pixie Cottage image by their illustrator ArTish is called 3 Fall Mice. Aren't they cute?! I coloured them with Graph'It Markers.

On the inside is my computer generated message and a paper clip by Freckled Fawn.

Join me in a little pumpkin playtime:
Without Words October Challenge "Pumpkins!"
The Paper Girls Challenge #41 "Sew It On"
Freshly Brewed October Challenge "Pumpkins"
Loves Rubber Stamp "Pumpkins"
Bearly Mine Challenges #108 "AG"
Make It Monday #162 "AG"
Pile It On #41 "Humour"
Glitter n Sparkle #54 "Add Some Orange"
Pumpkin Spice Challenge #41 "Pumpkins!"

Now it's your turn to show us your pumpkin project. Remember, the theme is all about pumpkins. So make sure there's a pumpkin somewhere on your creation. And then link it up to the Tuesday Throwdown Challenge Blog. Don't forget to visit the rest of DT for ideas and inspiration.

Before you leave I just want to say that this is my 500th - yes - FIVE HUNDREDTH post! I am especially tickled because this is probably my longest lasting hobby. LOL! Over the years I've dabbled in all kinds of everything but I don't think I've produced 50, let alone 500 of anything. Personally, I am in shock! How did this happen?!

Thank YOU, my friends, for all your lovely comments and words of encouragements... even when I am slow to respond! (eeek! my bad!). I have met so many lovely people and made beautiful friendships and have so much to be grateful for. 

I truly appreciate your visit today and let's see where this road takes us!  (To the nearest pub to celebrate... no doubt! LOL)


Monday, 14 October 2013

Christmas In Full Bloom

It's Monday again and time for another MojoMonday show and tell. For this week's challenge I debated over the theme for all of 5 seconds before succumbing to making yet another Christmas card. I just needed an excuse to use this big bold poinsettia stamp:

The star of this show is from a stamp called Poinsettia Stamp n Stitch by Chocolate Baroque. Sadly this stamp has been discontinued. I think it's just lush and gorgeous! 

No patterned papers today. I stamped little stars from WMS A Cottage Christmas with Brilliance Galaxy Gold ink onto vanilla CS. Other embellies: lace, ribbon, button and twine.

Here's a close-up of the poinsettia. I stamped it directly on coloured CS with Memento Tuxedo Black. Then I applied TH's distress inks.  The little black dots are the stitch points. All you have to do is poke 'em and stitch 'em.  I finished it with some yellow bling in the centre. The greeting is from WMS A Cottage Christmas, heat embossed in gold.

On the inside I stamped another little sentiment from WMS A Cottage Christmas, this time in Memento Rich Cocoa.

Join me in these fun challenges...

Thanks for stopping by today and have a a lovely day!


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