Monday, 14 October 2013

Christmas Screen Card

Good morning again, thought I'd blog this card, which we did at our workshop a couple of weeks ago. I was inspired by a card I glimpsed on Sheena Douglass' oriental show.  It was just sitting on the front of the counter, but they didn't show it properly, which I thought was a bit of shame because I loved it! Anyhow, I had a go at recreating it with a Christmas twist..

It's easier to do than you might think, the first thing to do is make the base card, I cut an A4 sheet to 20cms by 27cms.  But it can be any height but you must be able to divide the width by 3.

  • Score  the longer side at 9cm and 18cms. Don't be tempted to fold it at this point because it is much easier to decorate if you leave it flat.  
  • Cut a piece of card 1cm by 7 cms. Place this at the centre bottom of one of the panels and draw round it, then cut out the shape, this gives you the little legs, repeat this on all three panels, and then do the same at the top (this is optional).
  • Measure the size of your panels and cut your gold layer 1cm smaller, and the black layer 1.5cm smaller.
  • Then I put the black layers through an embossing folder and use gold gilding wax to highlight the raised areas. I was a bit heavy handed with the wax, hence the streaky bits, I think a gentle touch is needed!
  • I decorated mine with die-cut pointsettias and swirls, but you could use anything really.
  • The sentiment is from a Hobby Arts set of sentiment stamps and I used red tinsle embossing powder so everything matched. I also coloured the little gems on the swirls with a red ProMarker.
  • Finally I put a panel of cream card on the back centre so that you have somewhere to write. However Veronica who was at the workshop put a larger sentiment onto the centre panel, and it look really nice, Veronica has a blog too have a little look if you have time.
  • Next fold your card in a zig-zag, 
  • This was a really fun card to make, and as you can see, once I'd started, I couldn't stop!!!

I took these to Ickworth Craft Fair last weekend and sold them all in two hours!

Once again thanks for taking the time to have a look round, if you like what you see, please pass the blog address onto your crafty friends.

Off now to dust my mantlepiece......just noticed the state of it in the photo!

Please feel free to leave a comment, it is an open forum unless your comment is anonymous in which case it comes to me for checking before it is published.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Secondhand Snowflake card from DivaRed October workshop.

It's been a while since I blogged, but here I am, like the proverbial bad penny!
Janet ( and I did our October workshop yesterday, a week early because I have a stall at Ickworth Wood Fair next weekend - Janet's cards will be there too, but not Janet!

We were very excited, and a little nervous about this workshop, because Eileen Godwin ( was attending, and as you know if you have looked at her blog, she is really very good! I hope all the ladies who attended  (we were quite depleted because of illness, family crisis and accidents) enjoyed the day as much as we did.

So this is one of the cards I demo'd, you will see why it is called Secondhand Snowflake when you see how it is done.

I made it on a 7x7 card and matted and layered in quarter inch increments.
To make the snowflake layer you need Centura Pearl card (any colour because you will be using the uncoated side).
Various blue and a pink Distress or Adirondac ink pads, I used Stonewashed, Broken China and Raspberry.
Spellbinders snowflake embossibility stencil
Water spritzer,
Cut and Dry foam.
An embossing machine, I used my Wizard as it is easy to clean.

So this is what you do.

  • Cut two pieces of Centura Pearl slightly larger than your embossibility stencil and using the cut and dry foam, ink one of them well with a combination of the inks on the uncoated generous you need a lot of ink on this piece of card.
  • Time to emboss. The sandwich I used was as follows, but you should do what your die cutter tells you:  Base plate, Tan embossing mat, Inked cardstock (ink side up), Snowflake stencil.
  • Take the second piece of Centura, and spray the uncoated side liberally with water, allow the worst of the excess to drip off, then place it over the snowflake stencil and put the top plate on top of it.
  • Put it through your die cutting machine.When you pull the two pieces apart the top one will be a gentle wash of colour and the bottom one will be a much darker effect.
  • Trim the paler impression to the required size (I think I did 14 x 10 cm) and gently ink the edges with Stonewashed Adirondac. Keep the darker impression for later, if you use gilding wax over this it looks really good.
  • Stamp your snowman, I used the scribble snowman from Funstamps (he is very old, but he is still my favourite!) Colour him in in toning colours, I used Liquid Pearls to colour mine, if you paint a very thin layer on first to provide a key, then just dab the pearly colour  on with your paintbrush you get a raised effect.
  • Stamp a sentiment and mat and layer it.

  • Then it is just a matter of assembling your card as you wish, and adding a few gems, or in my case pearls.

This is a close up of the pearlised snowman, and you can also see that the strip across the card is made from a spare bit of the embossed snowflake.

I am sure I don't need to say this, but I wouldn't recommend that you do this technique with an electric embosser!

Many thanks for taking the time to look at this blog, I will be back with the second card I demo'd and some photos of the workshop a bit later. Please feel free to leave a comment, it is an open forum, and will stay so unless it is abused.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

July Workshop Cards

Thought I'd have a bit of a blog as the sun has vanished again this morning, spent yesterday sitting in the garden with my knitting - all I needed was the guillotine!

Anyhow we had a really fun day on Saturday (6th), as always lots of laughs, and at the end of the day some pretty good cards. So this is what we got up to:

This was my first card of the morning, the idea was to ease in gently. These instructions are for a black card, but obviously it can be done in any colour.
Its a fun card to make, and only has one fiddly bit to it.

You will need:
A 6x6 inch square card cut down to 5.75 inches in black.
A 5.50 inch square of the same black card.
A 5.25 inch square of the same black card.
Some Fantasy Film (I used pearl gold)
A black flower peel-off (I used a Francoise Read one).
A flower stamp that goes with the peel-off  (I used Barbara Gray's Allium)
Embossing powder (I used Cosmic Shimmer Bronze Lustre)
Glitter that tones with the embossing powder.
Versamark ink pad, and wet glue (Jones Tones, Anita's Hi Tack, any of the usual suspects will do).

And this is how you do it:

  • Fuse together three pieces of the film that are large enough to stick the peel-off onto. (If you don't know how to use fusible film, U-tube has lots of videos on it, or you are welcome to Facebook me)
  • Stick the peel-off onto the fused film and trim around the edge.
  • Now for the fiddly bit! You need to fill in the flower with the bits from your peel-off sheet, I used a pair of tweezers for this, and I promise that it does get easier as you go on. Once you have done this you should have a solid black flower on the film background.
  • Stick the film in place onto the smaller of the two squares of black card, making sure that you only put the glue on the areas that are covered by the black flowers, otherwise it will show through. Your pink film will now appear bronze!
  • Stamp and emboss the alliums around the film circle, make sure that you keep the heat away from the film as it will overheat and either crinkle up or go dull. Once the embossing has cooled add glitter as appropriate.
  • Squidge versamark ink round the edge of the larger piece of black card, and emboss with the same powder so that you have a perfect match for your layering.
  • Stick all the layers together and admire your work!

This was my second contribution to the day. I originally did this with laminated flowers (last months blog for Sundae club) and I "borrowed" the idea from a lady from Sheena Douglass's design team, unfortunately I don't think they gave her name out on the TV or I would put a link on for her.  This is a larger version of the one I did last month, and with the benefit of hind sight I think it would look better with just one shape of flower.

So you will need:
8 x 8 card, and card for matting and layering.
Decorative corner punch.
Odd bits of papers in various colours and patterns.
Circle die, or something round to give you a circle shape.
Sentiment stamp (I used one of Barbara Gray's)
Flowers stamps (I used Sheena Douglass's fantasy flowers)
Gems, Embossing powder, Black ink pad, Glue.

  • Firstly stamp and cut out lots of flowers in various sizes and onto various coloured and patterned papers (really good for using up your bits!) There is a lot of cutting out so easy shapes would be way to go I think.
  • I used an 8 x 8 card and matted and layered in quarter inch increments.
  • Punch out each corner of the top layer with a decorative punch, and stick all the layers onto the card.
  • Cut a circle from the same cardstock (I used the largest of the Spellbinders standard circle dies) and stamp and emboss the verse onto the middle of the circle.
  • Stick the verse onto your card, then arrange the flowers around the circle. I curled the petals of some of mine to give them a bit more dimension, and used 3d foam on some for height. Decorate the centres of the flowers with gems, and put a few gems in the corners and you are done.

Well those were my two cards, but these next two are my take on the ones Janet demonstrated, you will find her original ideas on her blog  Cards, Cats and Coffee. in a day or two.

This isn't a very good photo, the colours haven't come out very well, but I thought this would be a really nice wedding card.

Janet's original was done with Barbara Gray's hollyhock stamp, but I did mine with Sheena's fantasy flowers again. (One of my favourite stamp sets!) I also added some sparkly embossing to the background.Do go to Janet's blog and have a look, there are some lovely cards on there.

Thank you all for taking the time to have a look at this blog, please feel free to comment if you wish, at the moment I have left the comment security open to anyone, and I will leave it like that unless it is being abused.  
I'm off now to see how many mole hills have appeared whilst I have been writing this!
The sun is set to return tomorrow, so enjoy!

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Made a few cards for charity.

Good afternoon, it's a nice bright day in East Anglia today, all the cats are out in the garden, most of the neighbourhood dogs are basking in the sunshine in their respective gardens, and when I have finished this blog, I shall be joining them, so it's likely to be a quickie!
Below is a selection of cards that I have made using cannibalised commercial greetings cards that various friends have donated to me.  Even if you can't use the image the cardstock is brilliant for using with the Gelli plate, the reverse side of the image is after all just card. I also discovered (by accident) that if you put a Gelli print onto the shiny side of the card, you sometimes get a ghostly apparition of the original image coming through, it is really cool when that happens!
Obviously because of the commercial nature of the images I have used, I can't sell these cards, so my plan is to have a coffee morning later in the year and offer them for a donation. All the money will go to the MS Society, which for obvious reasons is a charity that is very close to my heart.

So this is the whole selection, and below you will find the individual cards with a brief description of how I made them.

So this one was originally just the image of the two birds on the cherry blossom. It is just matted and layered onto black and two shades of pink card, with an abundance of die cut swirls, twiddly roses, leaves and die cut bird cage and yet more swirls. The tiny flowers in the bird cage are made from paper clay - watch this space for more info on paper clay!

My favourite! The image is cut from the original greetings card, then mounted onto dark brown card which has hearts stamped and clear embossed onto it. The paper flowers are from a kit from Stephanie Weightman (not sure if thats the right spelling - sorry Steph!) The swirls and leaves are cut from the rest of the original card, so they all match. Card candie in the centre of the flowers.

The original card is the background paper on this one. Just added swirls and flowers and a couple of butterflies. The reason for all the peel-offs and corners etc, is that I could not get the damned thing on straight, so I used border p/o's, but they wouldn't stick down on the corners, hence the rather over the top (even for me) corner p/o's.

All I did here was to cut the image down a bit, add a few gems, and mat and layer. Took about five minutes, but I really like this one.

More matting and layering, I did foil the edges of the image, and add the flowers down the left side though.

Matted on to gold and then onto a dark brown card, peel off round the edges (same reason as before - I so need new glasses). Added the sentiment to hide the one that was already there, and added the butterfly on the left and the one on the sentiment.

This one hasn't photographed very well, the colours are much more distinct in reality. Mounted the image onto brown and then pink. The green background was clear embossed with dandylion clocks and then I put a strip of ribbon onto a strip of brown and stuck it down the right hand side.

The original card was the floral poppy image, again I foiled the edges of the image and offset it with the piece of white card. Matted onto bright pink, which in turn went onto the white base card, added swirls (having a bit of swirly day today) and again used paper clay flowers. It looked OK, but needed something else, so I added the butterfly, on the premise that everything looks better if it has a butterfly on it!

Hope you have enjoyed looking at these cards.  I had fun making them, and I used up quite a lot of bits that have been lying around for ages. So don't chuck your old cards out, even if you can't use the images on them, you can use the cardstock with your Gelli.

Thank you for looking, 'til the next time, have fun!

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Craft Club Cards from Sunday - bit of a new technique!

Good morning everyone, once again it is a grey old day in East Anglia, so another day in the craft room planned. Selling my and Janet's cards at Harleston Farmers Market at the Swan Hotel in Harleston on Saturday, do pop in and say hello if you are in the area.
These two cards are what we did at the Sundae Club last Sunday.  I hope you like the tweaking that I have done on a Barbara Gray technique...... read on.....

I did this card 7x7 inches, but there is no reason why you shouldn't use smaller flowers and make the card any size or shape you wish. The original inspiration was from a card made by one of Sheena Douglass's design team, but it was done with the hibiscus flowers and  film and fibre, but given how many flowers there are, and how many of us there were at the club on Sunday, that would have been an awful lot of film and fibre, so I experimented!  When I watched Barbara Gray a little while ago, she did a technique with a laminate sheet and alcohol inks, and it occurred to me that if you can put a laminate sheet through a machine that heats it up enough to melt the adhesive inside it, you might be able to heat emboss on it, guess what? can! (if you are careful!!)

So this is how you do it:

  • The basic card is just matted and layered with gold and cream cardstock, and the corners decorated with a corner punch (corner peel-offs would be just as good)
  • Because I get panicky if I have to do shapes free-hand, I die cut a circle out of smooth cream card and stamped and embossed the sentiment onto it, then stuck it in the centre of the card, that way I had an outline to follow to form a circle of flowers.
Making the flowers.
  • Open your laminate sheet and drip alcohol inks randomly onto the inside of the sheet, the ink will spread into the adhesive coating.  I used Sail boat blue, butterscotch and a red that looks like you've had a nose bleed, (but persevere, once it's done it looks lovely), try to avoid getting the ink near the edges of the laminate sheet, or it will all squidge out and mark your laminating machine.  Leave these colours to dry for a couple of minutes.
  • Add some drips of gold or other metallic alcohol ink and blend it a little using an ink blender and a dabbing motion.
  • Sprinkle on a few gilding flakes, close the laminate sheet and put it through the laminating machine in the usual way.
  • When your sheet comes out it will be warm and very static - put it onto a cool surface and leave it for a few minutes. The heat and also the static will dissipate.
  • Once the sheet is cold to the touch, stamp your flowers in Versamark.
  • It is important to use an embossing powder that has a low melt point like Wow powders or I used Aurora Black  from Cosmic Shimmer. Tip your powder over the image, and give it a sharp tap, and use a paint brush to clean up any stray bits of powder.
  • I have only done this with my heat gun, which is quite fierce, but it seems that the trick is to heat the powder quickly. Allow your heat gun to heat up before you try to emboss with it, hold it quite close and move away as soon as the powder has melted.  The laminate sheet will buckle slightly, but it really just adds to the look of the flowers.
  • Cut out your flowers (I used Sheena's Fantasy flower stamps in the middle two sizes) and stick them in a circle around the sentiment (Glossy Accents was my glue of choice for this as it is completely clear). I also 3D'd a couple of the small flowers with Pinflair glue gel. 
  • Decorate the flower centres with gems, and you are done.
  • A word of warning.. leave your card flat until the glue has dried!

Continuing the minimalist theme that appeared at our last workshop, we also this little card.  It is just a very simple stamped image really.

  • Base card is 5x5 inches, looks best if you use textured card.
  • Cut a 4 inch square of the same cardstock. and three squares of 1.5 centimetres.
  • Stamp the image in black and emboss with clear embossing powder (the panda is a very old Stampendous stamp).
  • Colour in the leaves and bamboo stem.
  • Stamp, emboss and colour the top three leaves three times, and cut them out.
  • Layer your stamped image onto black card, and stick it to the base card.
  • Stick the three small squares in a line onto the card with 3D foam pads and stick the cut out bamboo leaves onto the them.
  • Again, beware of marks and blobs, there is no room for error on a minimalist card!
Thank you for taking the time to have a look at this blog entry, I hope you like what you have seen. Feel free to leave a comment if you wish.  
Do try the flowers if you have a laminating machine, the photo doesn't really do them justice.

Thursday, 6 June 2013

DivaRed Workshop - Saturday 1st June 2013

As always we had lots of fun last Saturday, we did miss Janet though, who was off on a visit to her sister in Switzerland.  Because I was demonstrating all the cards I wanted to do four cards that were completely different, so I did, on occasion wander right out of my comfort zone!

This is quite a simple card, but the use of a liquid glaze and pearly paints gives it way more interest, and makes the colours in the flowers much more vibrant.

I made this card 7 x 7 inches square, but there is no reason it could not be any size you wish.

  • Cut a square of white card to 6 1/4 inches square, and piece of darker colour card 6 1/2 inches square to layer onto.
  • Punch a decoration on the corners and then using a blending tool, ink the edges with a water based ink (ie Distress or Adirondac) I used Stonewash Adirondac. If you start inking at the corners and work down the edge, you will get a darker colour on the punched area which is a nice effect.
  • Stamp your flowers with a non-solvent based ink (ie Memento) allow it to dry and then colour in your flowers with Pro-markers. 
  • Stamp and emboss your sentiment onto a spare piece of white card and mat it onto a piece of your dark card.
  • Stamp and emboss your butterfly onto the card.
  • Choose two or three colours of the pearl paint and sponge in splodges onto a piece of white card, leave this to one side for about 10 minutes and then using a clean dry piece of sponge, gently blend the colours using a dabbing motion (don't swirl or you will end up with a muddy butterfly, and you really don't want that!)
  • Dry the paint with a heat gun. I would recommend that you pop off and have a coffee at this point because the paint needs to be completely dry before you move onto the next stage.
  • Stamp and emboss the butterfly two or three times, depending on the stamp you are using (I used Stamp Addicts cloth butterfly, which is one of my favourites because the layers are really defined and very easy to cut out, which is always a bonus). Cut out your butterfly layers.
  • Mat and layer your main image onto the card base, mat and layer the sentiment and use 3d foam pads to stick it to the card. 
  • Stick your butterfly layers on top of the butterfly image already stamped onto the card.
  • Now that everything is stuck together - the final flourish!  Using a liquid glaze  (I like the one that Ranger makes because it dry quite quickly) go over the foremost flower heads and leaves, leaving the ones in the background unglazed, this gives you a real perception of depth in the image.
  • LEAVE TO DRY ---- DO NOT POKE AT IT TO SEE IF IT'S READY YET!  After all that work you don't want to ruin it with a CSI type trace!

This is my favourite card from Saturday, partly because I have a bit of thing for owls, and partly because it's red!

You can buy this shape card pre-scored and pre-cut, I am planning on a separate page on this blog with instructions for fancy fold cards, but for now, I recommend a look round Craftwork Cards web site, I am sure they do this type of card.

  • Firstly resist the temptation to fold your card, leave it flat, it is much easier to deal with.
  • To mat and layer I used gold and a patterned card from the Taj Mahal card pad. It is a bit of a faff to measure all the various areas, but as you can see, it is worth it in the end. I cut my gold mat 1/2 cm smaller than the actual area, and then cut the patterned card 1/2 cm smaller than the gold. You need to measure the strip across the bottom of the card, both the pillars, and the bit where your owl is going to sit.
  • I strongly recommend that you use wet glue to stick all your layers to the card so you can slide it around as it looks most odd if it isn't straight.
  • The owl stamp I used is from Woodware, I actually got it free with a magazine, but I think it is available to buy. I stamped it three times onto different coloured papers, and stamped the wings and beak in the red. 
  • Cut out and layer up the owl.
  • Die cut a cream oval and stick it to the base card, this is because you need something plain behind your owl to make him stand out.
  • Stamp the branch in brown and leaves in green (these are with the stamp set). The branch is actually straight, but you can manipulate it on the acrylic block so it has a bit of a bend if you wish.
  • Cut out the branch and leaves and stick them onto the base card, then sit the owl onto the branch - to do this I cut off his legs ..sorry!
  • Die cut or punch out some swirls and either punch out or stamp and cut out some flowers and decorate around the two pillars, allowing the swirls to go over the edges, this will give you a sense of dimension when the card is folded. My flowers are from Tonic Studio's perfect partners flower punches.
  • I found that the easiest way to fold the card was to slide my fingers behind the two pillars and then through the slits, so they were behind the pillars but infront of the owl, move them to the bottom of the card and push the fold downwards, the card will then naturally take shape and you can firm up the folds with a bone folder.
  • Cut a piece of white or cream card to fit the back of the card and stick it in place so you have somewhere to write your message, and you are done!

Now this one is not like anything I would normally do, but I really liked it when I had finished it.

I was inspired by Eileen Godwin's white circle card. You can find the original on Eileen's blog Eileens crafty zone. Do go and have a look you will be she is amazing!

  • This card works best if you use textured cardstock, I used one that I got from my local craft shop, but Eileen buys hers from Papermill Direct.  This is a 5 inch square card which I made up from an A4 sheet of card. The most important thing with a minimalist card like this is to avoid inky fingers, drops of coffee (read my Facebook page!!) and other random marks.
  • I die cut my squares using the largest square and the smallest square from the regular size nesties. You need one large and three small.
  • Stamp the Allium (I used the one from Clarity Stamps, but anyone will do) using a permanent ink (Stazon, Archival, or Versafine) in black.
  • Attach it to the card using 3D foam tape.
  • Then using the small 3D foam squares attach the tiny squares in a line and put a small black gem in the centre of each.
  • To make the Allium stand out I used a clear glaze over the top of it. Again do not touch it until it is dry.

This was my final effort. It is meant to represent the view from the front of our house. We have a couple of deer who live in our garden, so when I saw this Memory Box die, I just had to have it.

  • The card is A5 and I have trimmed it to 14.5cm x 20.5cm. Because the front is bowed it needs to be trimmed or it won't fit into a standard envelope. If you are going to box it, you can leave it the standard size. Again I have used textured card for the base card and the aperture, but plain for the background.
  • First cut your layers, gold 14x20cm , textured card 13.5 x 19.75 cm, plain white 13 x 19cm.
  • Die cut the aperture from the middle of your textured card. I used a fancy shape from Go-Create, which I bought from the Stamp Hut.
  • Using the plain white card create a scene. I stamped the trees from a very old stamp I bought from QVC in Vintage Sepia Versafine,  but any tree stamp will do. My stamp has a few lines on it to ground the trees and I just extended them to make fields using a fine tip brown pen. Do this using dots and dashes instead of block lines - its a lot less scary.
  • The sun was already on my stamp, so I masked that off with a piece of sticky note, and used my blending tool to put some blue on the sky area and green on the grass area. Then I coloured in the trees and highlighted the fields with promarkers. Coloured in the sun, then extended the yellow out a bit and blended the colour out with alcohol ink blending solution which I applied to the back of the image and then just left it to bleed into the sky, this will only work if you colour your sky with water based ink. If you use promarkers on the sky and the sun they will merge into a green haze rather than the sunny mist you are aiming for.
  • I thought it looked a bit flat, so I used a quickie glue pen and dotted round the tops of trees and drew along the field lines then added a bit of crystal glitter which lifted the whole thing and made it look like a dewy dawn, which is what I was aiming for.
  • Mat your scene onto the gold card and stick it onto the card base.
  • Die cut your deer in a brown card, separate them and stick them onto the back of the aperture so that they are peering out.
  • Stick a piece of acetate on the back of the aperture- it's easier to cut the acetate larger than necessary and trim around the edges.
  • Put a strip of double sided tape down the two short sides of the aperture. Stick one side to your card, then stick the other side allowing the aperture to bow slightly.
  • Decorate with card candy.
  • Finally, put a few white dots on the fawn's bottom (they have spotty botties!)
So all done, it has taken me nearly as long to write this as it did to make the cards in the first place. Hope you like them. Working on a plan for Sunday's craft club now. 
Thank you for taking the time to have a look at this.  Please feel free to leave a comment if you wish, it is an open forum, I will only change that if I get really nasty or obscene comments.


Monday, 13 May 2013

DivaRed Sundae Club Yesterday.

Yesterday was our regular DivaRed Sunday craft club, which I named the Sundae club (well food is never far from my mind). Unfortunately Janet wasn't able to be with us yesterday as she had a family do go to. However, she was there in spirit because I bought a Gelli Plate at the Claritystamp East workshop on Saturday, having been introduced to it by Janet at our workshop last week. If you would like to have a look at the cards Janet did on Saturday they are on her blog Cards, Cats and Coffee (after you've looked here obviously!!)

The ladies at our Sundae club are all very experienced crafters and so the Gelli was perfect for them, I just showed them how to use it and left them to their own devices, and they came up with some amazing designs.

For anyone who doesn't know about a Gelli it is basically a thick sheet of clear jelly like stuff, and you blob acrylic paint on it,  spread the paint about and then take a print by putting a piece of card on top of the paint, then peeling it away. You can add textures and use masks and all sorts of clever things, but that is the basics.

This was my sample card. I was lucky enough to bag a tube of gold acrylic on Saturday, it is gorgeous and the card is much more shiny in reality. I used black, gold and red paint, and spread it with a brayer.  The butterflies are made from the first print and the background from the second. I did apply more paint before the second print, and I was quite generous with it which gave me the nice texture as you can see in the next photo.

So this shows the texture on the background, as I said I used quite a lot of paint to achieve this, and I would imagine that it might not work so well with paints of a thinner consistency. I also discovered that peeling the card off at different angles and speeds gives you different results (you are starting to see that I had fun aren't you?)
I was surprised that with the amount of texture here it was quite easy to stamp onto. I used a cherry blossom stamp inked with Versa Mark and embossed it with Lava Black Cosmic Shimmer powder, then coloured in the blossoms with a white Souffle pen.

This is a close up of the butterfly, it is a stamp from Stamp Addicts and I think it is called the Japanese Cloth Butterfly, I use it a lot because it is easy to layer up. Stamped and embossed with Lava Black again, and as I said I used the first print for the butterflies.I just did two layers

This was the design I made whilst I was showing the ladies how to use the Gelli. I was well out of my comfort zone with green, white and yellow, but just so I didn't feel too alien  I did add a bit of the gold! The swirls on the panel have been embossed with gold powder but it still looked as though it needed something so I added the ribbon and a bow, then matted it onto green card. The flowers were made from the spare Gelli print card and the second layer of the flowers was made from the leftover matting and layering cardstock, the gold flower centres are card candi. The flower stamps were a freebie from  a magazine.

This one I used red, yellow ochre and a brown paint (no gold on this one). Spread the paint with a brayer  very, very gently then dabbed away some of the pain with bubble wrap, and then put a mask down, brayered over it then removed it and took my print. The base card is a mucky blue colour, you can just see the original colour where the mask has removed some of the paint (you can use up all your horrible colour card stock on this). All I did was to trim the print and mat it onto brown and then gold. The flowers are peel offs from Dawn Bibby's collection which I stuck onto bits of spare card, then dotted with Sakura's neon pens, and layered up, but Sheena's flower stamps would do just as well, I was just being lazy as these were already made.

So what do I think of Gelli printing - I was so sceptical when I first saw it being done, but now I am totally hooked.
Messy? - Yes
Easy ?  - Yes
Expensive? A bit, but I think it is worth it
Fun?  Oh yes, yes, yes!

Hope you like the cards, and if you have ever wondered if you would like Gelli printing, I would suggest you give it a go.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

A Happy Little Accident!

Now I am aware that there is not much that is brand new in the way of crafting techniques, but this is a new one on me! It all happened when I wanted to glaze a stamped image to look like a tile, and was too lazy to go and find my Versamark ink pad, so I used spray adhesive instead!  The result looked just as though the image had water sitting on top of it.  So today I spent a happy morning in my craft room playing around with various embossing powders, stamps and inks.  Here are the results.  I have tried to get some really close up pictures, so in some shots you cant see the entire stamped image.

Firstly a piece of black card, covered with Versamark ink, clear UT (ultra thick embossing powder, if you haven't come across this it is larger grains that give a thicker coverage, think granulated sugar rather than icing!) This is obviously this is the traditional way to glaze with embossing powder.

Heated from the top, one coat of Crafty Notions diamond clear  UT. Nice and shiny but nothing out of the ordinary!

This one is the same card stock, but sprayed with Crafters Companion Stick and Spray, same UT applied and heated from the top.  It appears that the more heavy handed you are with the spray adhesive the bigger the "droplets" are, as you will see. I put quite a lot of adhesive on this one.
I also put a bit of gold gilding creams over the top of this

Then I moved onto a stamped image which I coloured in with Pro-Markers, and gave a lighter spray of adhesive before applying the UT, as you can see from the close up the droplets are much smaller.

I was really pleased with the result here, it genuinely does look like water sitting on top of the image.

Flushed with success, I thought I'd have another go and see what happened with a finer embossing powder, so out came the stamp, ink and pro-markers again, and this time I used a Wow sparkling crystal embossing powder, the effect was very pretty but not so pronounced.

My final experiment was to use the spray adhesive on white card and apply clear UT, again I heated from the top and then when it had cooled  I applied a distress ink over the whole thing, then wiped over it with a tissue, so the ink only coloured the exposed card and not the embossed areas, (I mention the cooling down thing because this is the second of my efforts, I forgot that UT takes longer to cool down than normal embossing!).

This is a close up of the last image. I really enjoyed playing around with this technique, and hope you like what you've seen, and perhaps you will have a go at this sometime.
I haven't tried the technique with other spray adhesives, but I can't see any reason why they shouldn't work just as well.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog, and, until next time, Happy Crafting.

Monday, 6 May 2013

DivaRed Workshop on Saturday 4th May 2013

It is shaping up to be a really good bank holiday weekend, we had a fantastic workshop on Saturday, despite me having a sore back which made me walk like a duck! Lots of laughs, quite a lot of biscuits and some lovely cards. Thanks to Rosie who allowed me to post a picture of her inky fingers on Facebook - have a look she is very blue!

So amid all the giggling, this is what we made!

This one was made using a combination of free stamps which came with Creative Stamping magazine. It was a huge sheet of stamps, and I think I might have to do an entire blog of stuff I've made from it. The sand was a moment of inspiration in Sainsbury's. Whilst wandering round despondently (I hate shopping with a passion) I spied a packed of that gritted paper you put in the bottom of your pet budgie's cage "ah ha" I thought, a beach!
The shells are from the free stamps, the birds are a Lavinia stamp, and the background is my favourite stamp in the world, sea bubbles from Ryn.
So this how it was done.

  • Stamp, colour in and cut out the beach huts and the shells. 
  • Cut a square of white card, 6x6 inches, and using cut and dry foam or a blending tool, ink lightly with blue, leaving some areas lighter to resemble clouds.
  • Mask off the sky area with a piece of copy paper to give you a straight horizon, and ink in layers of green and various blues to resemble waves, (mine is quite green, I used lettuce Adirondac, but then I was aiming for a North Sea effect!)
  • Rip your budgie cage paper into a shape that looks a bit like sand with sea coming in onto it, and stick it to the base of your picture, then trim off the excess at the base of the card. (At this point it doesn't look very promising, but stick with it!)
  • Stamp the birds in the sky, and stick the beach huts and shells in place, you will need to use  Pinflair glue gel to get them to stick to the gritted paper.
  • Stamp the back ground paper (7.5 inches square) in blue ink with Ryns sea bubbles, and glitter the bubbles.
  • Then mat and layer everything onto an 8x8 card. All done!

This is the slightly brighter one I made at the workshop using more of the free stamps and different birds. The background was stamped with Stream Adirondac ink, and personally I prefer it to the blue.

This next one is a card  I made to send to someone special, but I liked it so much I used it in the workshop and it will be on it's way to its new owner tomorrow.

It uses  a Sheena Douglass sentiment stamp, and Lindsay Mason's meadow flower stamps, available from Personal Impressions. 
You will also need Flitter glue, Yorkshire Dales gilding flakes, gold detail embossing powder, Versamark ink pad, various coloured small ink pads (I used Versacolour), a 7x7 inch card and card for matting and layering.

  • Stamp and emboss your sentiment, trim it to required size and mat onto a piece of contrasting card.
  • Cut a piece of white or cream card to 6 inches square, and make a very light pencil mark to indicate where the sentiment is going to be placed.
  • Stamp a selection of the meadow flowers along the bottom edge of the card, going up to, but not over where the sentiment is going to be. Use various different colours to stamp the flowers and a couple of different greens for the stems.  Don't worry if the green ink gets onto the flower heads, it actually looks more natural.
  • Next select a pretty shaped flower stamp and ink it up with Flitter glue, stamp it along the bottom edge of the card, don't stamp too many flowers with the glue, unusually for me, it is a case of less being more. !
  • As soon as you finish stamping with the glue, put the stamp still attached to the acrylic block into a bowl of water, do not wait until you finish the card to do this, do it straight away!
  • Next stamp a couple of butterflies with the flitter glue, and then stamp two more onto a piece of scrap card. Then put the stamps straight in the water.
  • Sprinkle the gilding flakes over your card, rub in with the flat of your hand and then rub over with the Scoochie sponge, and brush off any surplus bits of flake (these can be used again so put them back into the container.).
  • Cut out the two spare butterflies and 3D them onto the ones you have stamped onto the card.
  • Mat and layer onto a 7x7 card in quarter inch increments .
  • Place your sentiment as desired with 3D foam pads.
  • Remove stamps and acrylic blocks from the water and dry them off.
  • Go and have a cup of coffee!
If you are unfamiliar with using gilding flakes, go to IndigoBlu web site, or search You Tube for Kay Halliwell-Sutton and watch the instructional videos.

Once again I made a brighter version at the workshop. I can only stay subtle for so long!
The sentiment stamp on this one is from Stampin Up Sassy Sentiments, which are a beautiful font and it is embossed with Halloween powder from Wow.
I also added a couple dragonfly brads to this one.

The next two cards were Janet's designs, and you can find the instructions on her blog Cards, cats and coffee. Janet and I work together a lot, and it is well worth a look at her blog.

This Rosie (not the one with the inky fingers, the Clarity Stamp). I did vary this a bit, by using my own embossing folder and cutting it out rather than tearing, I'm not a big fan of tearing, always  love it on other peoples cards, but somehow it never looks right on mine!!

Janet forced me to use a Gelli plate, and I am so glad she did! I really enjoyed this one. I used my own flower stamps (freebies again, well I do have Scottish ancestry!) and put a few gold peel off dragonflies on the background, other than that I did what I was told for once!

Well I'm off now to finish knitting for Teeny Gotham, who should make an appearance into the world in the next couple of weeks. Hope you have enjoyed seeing these cards, next weekend is a real crafting bonanza, Claritystamp East on Saturday, and our regular monthly craft club on Sunday.
Enjoy the rest of the bank holiday. Hope to see you again soon.

Monday, 15 April 2013

DivaRed Craft Club on Sunday

We had a full house at our monthly Sunday craft club meeting yesterday, and amid lots of laughs, coffee, tea and cakes, we managed to make a couple of cards!

This was my effort.  I saw Kay Rutter demo the basic design on Create and Craft, and I adapted it a bit. You can make the base as wide as you wish, just by increasing the width of the card you use, Kays original measurement was 9 x 4 inches, I used a piece of card 10 x 4 inches. If you want full instructions with pictures, you will find them in "Everyone needs a Hougie" book 3, this is my potted version, you don't have to have a Hougie, but I must admit it is much easier if you use one! I have pinched Janet's bullet point idea for the instructions, hope she doesn't mind!!!

  • Scoring: Score at 2 inches  lengthwise, and at 2 inches on each of the short edges.
  • On the long edge of the card, make a tiny mark at 3.5 inches from each edge at the top and bottom of the card.
  • On the central score line, measure 1/2 inch inwards from where your horizontal and vertical score lines cross and make a tiny mark. Repeat this on the other edge.
  • Score from the mark on the centre score line to the mark on the bottom edge of the card, and then from the centre score line to the mark on the top of the card. You should now have score lines that look like a letter K. Repeat this on the other edge.
  • Decorate your base however you wish. I used Sea Bubbles from Designs by Ryn, and I stamped them randomly in various pinks and blues and a bit of silver. I then coloured in the bubbles with white gel pen and chalked round the edges.
  • Folding: with the decorated side down, fold along the central long score line, open   the card up again and still with the decorated side down, fold  up at the 2 inch score lines on the short edge.
  • Turn the work over so the decorated side is uppermost, carefully fold the score lines that run from the centre to the edge of the card. 
  • You need to fold the card in half along the long score line whilst gently pushing the edges inwards, and it should all pop into place.
  • For the main image I used the largest of the standard circle Nesties, and matted it onto the largest scalloped circle. I stamped the branch and coloured in the leaves then the flowers were stamped with grey Memento and embossed with clear embossing powder, then painted with Cosmic Shimmer and H2O's, cut out and stuck on. Again the edges were stamped with the sea bubbles and chalked. Then the circles were stuck in place on the base.

We did think that the base would make a fantastic place name for a wedding, lot of scoring and folding though!

Janet did her lovely butterfly pan pastel card, which I love,  for the instructions, click on her name to link to her blog. But this is my interpretation.

There was a certain amount of concern expressed from the ladies that I went all girly and pink, very unlike me, but never fear normal service will be resumed as soon as possible!

Monday, 8 April 2013

Saturday Workshop 6th April 2013

Really enjoyable day on Saturday at the workshop.  Many thanks to the ladies who attended, we hope you enjoyed it as much as Janet and I did. This is what we made:

This was my first design. The stamps are from Hobby Art poppy range (I am a big fan of Hobby Art), I used the bordered poppy as the main feature and then the large poppy from the poppy scene-its at the bottom of the card.
The card is 7 x 5 inches, and I used a pink card stock from Anna Marie Designs, the colour is a bit brighter in reality.
Then you need a mat 6.75 x 4.75 inches in a contrasting cardstock and a layer of the same cardstock as the base card 6.5 x 4.5 inches.
The bordered poppy is stamped with black Versafine and coloured in with pencils, and then I wanted to use fusible film and fibres just on the poppy heads, unsure as to whether the stamp was safe to heat or not, I rang Hobby Art and got to speak to Jenny Mayes, who suggested that I try it, and if the heat did damage the stamp she would send my another one out (well you can't say fairer than that can you?) In the event I wimped out of trying it, because I needed the stamp for the workshop the next day, but I will give it a go this week and post the results! The way round this was to fuse the film and fibre sandwich between two bits of baking parchment and then stamp the image onto it once it had cooled down, unfortunately this means using Stazon, which is not good for acrylic stamps, but if you clean them immediately with a baby wipe it seems to be OK. (Do not use Stazon cleaner on acrylic stamps it is far too aggressive for them.).
I matted the poppy image onto a piece of the pink cardstock cut about 1/2 inch larger than the image, and stamped with tiny butterflies around the edge, but any small  stamp will do, this I  stamped with Versamark and heat embossed  with Cosmic Shimmer Silver Lustre. Then I matted this onto the contrast card which I cut about 1/4 inch larger.
Cut out the poppy heads and stick them in position with a glue gel (I used Pinflair). Now your topper is made.
Take your piece of pink cardstock (6.5 x 4.5 inches) and place your image in the position you want it, but don't stick it down yet.  With the topper still in place you can decide where you want to stamp the large poppies, I stamped these with Versafine and coloured them in with coloured pencils.
Once you have done that you can stick your topper down.
The butterfly is a very old Dawn Bibby stamp, which I stamped and coloured with the same pencils I used for the poppies, cut it out (I have to admit that I chopped off its feelers - life really is too short!!! ) Fold back the butterfly wings and stick down the body, you can then draw in the amputated feelers if you wish.  To get the little butterfly trail I used a black Micron pen and drew dots and dashes in a twirly shape. I then used Diamond Sparkle Stickles to highlight the butterfly wings and the trail.
Still looked like it needed a bit more, so I dotted a few gems round just to make it look a bit more spring-like.
You are very welcome to use this design if you wish, but if you publish it please give me a credit.
If anyone needs help with using film and fibre, please leave me a comment either here, or on Facebook (Moira Walters) , and I will happily do what I can to help.

This was the second of my designs, well I say my designs, it is a slightly altered idea from Eileen Godwin.   I actually posted the instructions for this card in a previous blog which I think was called  Sunday Workshop, and it was published in March,  you will also find the link to Eileen's blog there.

This card was Janet's design, the background is done with pan pastels, and then the cherry blossom is stamped and embossed, and the flowers coloured with white gel pen.  The butterflies are from Spellbinders, and are beautiful if a bit fiddly to remove from the die, even with the help of waxed paper. If you want to see the original, go to Janet's facebook page, Janet Pring, and have a look at her designs, they are stunning.

This was the second of Janet's cards, and the image was done with a Dream Weaver stencil and pan pastels.  Janets original version was much more subtle than this and she had torn the edges of the mats, which looked amazing. When she tears paper it looks all arty, when I do it, it looks like .........well like torn paper! Do go and check out her facebook page.

Well I think thats all for today, off now to make a good strong cuppa!