Friday, October 29, 2010


Christmas cards that is.

I discovered while on my marathon non-clothes buying trip that half the Docklands outlet centre has been ripped out (including the food hall and I was desperate for a drink) to be replaced by The Range, so I had a little cheer up in the craft section since I couldnt buy anything else. I loved this stamp when it was on the shelf, its a Papermania one, but I was dissappointed that it wasnt as clear when stamped as it was in the picture. Still a nice santa though and I love the paper from the Noel paper stack by Dovecraft so I decided to use it to make a card for the colour challenge on The Ribbon Girl's blog which is to use the colours red and green.

Jenny Mcguire has started (4 weeks ago) a free course of stamping techniques for christmas cards on the 2 Peas site, with a small comp each week for anyone uploading their own card using the techniques. This is a really really bad photo as it is over exposed and the blue is much darker and softer than this shows. The background is a SU! stamp but enhanced with a few more snow drops which have been embossed with white. No idea what the snowman stamp is, but he too has been coloured using embossing powders.

A free digi image from Jennifer, two SU! stamps for the background and lots of distress inking for this one.

This weeks technique is all about paint so dug out my acylics to make the backgound tiles, then some art institute glue and glitter to pop the snowflakes. The background paper, sentiment and bird are all from some free papers in a really really old copy of Creative Cardmaking mag.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Half term wearing me out!

This week is half term, and it started well when, on Friday we all took Dad out to celebrate his 80th birthday. Kelly, Ollie, Wayne, Laura, Martin and I took him and mum for a meal at the Rose in Bloom, a pub none of us had been in for years. We had scoured the 'net for menu's of local eating houses, and decided this one looked a likely menu for someone with no nashers (LOL) and were lucky enough to strike gold. It was a delish meal although service was a little slow, hampered only by the fact that after a hard week at work all of us were falling asleep at the table.

It wasn't Dad's birthday until Sunday but Laura and Wayne were flying off to Turkey for the week so it was the only day we could all get together. I was left to take his presents over the next day, Kelly, Ollie and Martin and I had bought him a garden bench and cushion between us. I think he is quite pleased with it, but it is packed in a box and he is going to have to put it together himself.

Half term is meant to be a time to rest and recharge your batteries. Unfortunately it also co-insides with the time for buying a winter wardrobe. Years of buying cheap clothes has left me with literally nothing that fits, isn't full of holes, or covered in glue/paint from teaching small ones, so the miserable job of going out to replace everything started on Sunday. I had already half heartedly been to all my usual haunts and had not found much (one top and two pairs of trousers was not getting me through the week) so Kelly recommended I try Sainsbury.  Our nearest branch selling clothes is over 25 miles away but undaunted off I set. 3 hours later, having spent much time looking in Sainsbury, BHS, and a few smaller outlets, I returned with one skirt and top.  Not good.

Yesterday I travelled to Medway, another 60 mile round trip.  I left home at half nine and got back in the door at half six. In that time I had walked several times up and down the high street, the pentagon shopping center and the docks outlet centre. I came home with not much more than three tops and 2 skirts.

I returned home in a rant. What was it with clothes designers? We had gone through the late 60's and then the 80's wearing stirrup pants, and leggings. On both occasions, after the fad had died a death, designers and fashionisters all said they are the worst and most unflattering garments ever and what could possess women to wear them? Well I can answer that one. If there simply isn't anything else to buy what choice is there?  I KNOW leggings and a baggie  unshapely top is not a good look o n a very short, overweight middle aged woman. Heck its not even a good look on a tall skinny youngster, but no-where, and believe me I have looked, I even ventured into M&S, a place I hate, but no-where was selling anything but!!!

Give Primark their due, I had found a few items I actually liked and thought might suit me, trouble was either all the fat people must have got there before me or Primark were only expecting extremly starved skinny people to shop in their store. I have never seen so many size 8's and 10's in a store. Every style had at least 10 size 8's available. If you were really lucky there were some size 14's (sorry tough if you are a 12 as there were none of those in the whole of a very large shop) and if you were luckier still there might be 1 of a style in a 16, 18 or 20 (never all three sizes). 

So today, still with not enough clothes to make up more than three full outfits, I tried again in Canterbury, but this time I was going to concentrate on buying patterns and fabric to make some stuff for myself. Trouble was my poor legs, having been on a constant clothes shopping marathon for three days were having none of it. Not that the fabric shop had much in the way of fabric, it being full of halloween costume making stuff or christmas fabric, so after 2 hours and managing to buy 2 pairs of jeans that were not jeggins I had to give up and come home. 

So please fashion designers could you just take a second to think next time you believe leggings to be a fantastic fashion idea. And clothes manufactures could you please leave a small part of your factory workers making normal clothes for normal people and shop keepers, could you please hide some of the large size clothes out the back for us fatties not so fast on their feet to  buy? 'Cos I am pretty sure I am not going to be the only vertically challenged, overweight, over 50 year old walking round naked this winter!!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Birthday card for a man

I am just loving the LOTV stamps atm. This is the card I have made for my dad who is 80 years young tomorrow .. hope he is not peeking LOL.

Its kind of appropriate as his name is Edward but he has always been 'Ted' so this is 'Ted in his shed' which is where he spends much of his days anyway.

I cut the 'nestie' shapes on my cricut using downloads from Penny Duncan's blog, then used promarkers to colour in the LOTV stamp - I think I am getting the hang of using them a bit now. 

The vines are cut on the cricut and then combined with some fern leaves cut from a woodware punch. I sprayed the whole lot with silver glimmer mist but didnt think that was enough bling, so covered them with gold glamour dust while they were still wet. It says on the dust's instructions that its ideal for doing this, but not much of the glitter stayed on when the leaves were dried. 

American Arts ribbon, number stickers from a very very old Kay and Co alphabet sheet, sentiment Kirsten font, tag cut on cricut.

Happy birthday dad! xx

Monday, October 11, 2010

Saturday, October 02, 2010

A few more cards

I have been so busy making cards that I havent had the time to take photos and upload them. Please excuse the quality of the pics, the light in my new craft room is appauling and will have to be sorted out as soon as I have fixed my Billy Bookcase.

Yes the poor thing isnt really made for books. At least that is the conclusion I have come to, since within only a week of putting all my children's picture books and teaching books on it, the sides bowed and the shelves co
llapsed. Martin has fixed it with some screws and I have lightened its load so it no longer looks quite so elegant but at least it is able to do its job.

Determined to get this brayer lark sussed I have continued to try. I am getting better but far from perfect. These were all done with stamscape stamps. I started buying these stamps the very first time I visited Ally Pally back in the days, but could never get the hang of brayering onto glossy paper. I never even thought of using ordinary cardstock until I saw the demos this year Duh!

And finally a half decent one using the Babara Gray stamp and following her demo at Ally Pally (still cant get the snow flakes to work with the embossing pen like she did though). Home made ala Sir Tim roses covered in glamour dust.

This year the rage is Lili of the Valley stamps and who am I to buck a trend. Bev Rochester has been my inspiration and lots of the ideas on these have been scraplifted from her (thanks Bev, you are my card making hero).

And finally for this blog entry, this is a digi stamp image from Just Inklined. I dug out my cuttlebug embossing folders and made a heap more of those Tim Holtz stamps.
Oh and a mention for Penny Duncan who has a wonderful collection of shaplies svg files (much like nesties) with some brilliant tuts which have helped me get to grips with matting my images.