Saturday, 21 April 2018

Cupboard love

This is my final card for the Little Claire Hochanda show (today at 2pm) and it is a side stepper card. I put off making side stepper cards as I thought they were really complicated to do, but once you have seen one it all makes sense as they are very easy to make and a bit different as I haven't seen anything like them in the shops.

To begin making the card you need to cut the side stepper card from a sheet of A4 300gsm card. The template below gives you the measurements and then all you need to do is trim the right hand side down to size once you know how big your sentiment will be. I found the instructions for making a side stepper card on YouTube and then I simply adapted the measurements to fit this stamp.
The stamped image is coloured using water colour pencils and as I have mentioned in previous posts I find these good to use on smaller detailed colouring in projects.
The backing papers are Nit Wit papers from 8" x 8" paper pads "pastel dreams" and "country meadow".
The first part of the sentiment comes with the stamp but I didn't think this was enough to fill the space on the card so I wrote "and the secret ingredient is love" in my graphics program and printed it out onto good quality mat print paper, then I stamped the sentiment above it.
I hope you have a go at a stepper card (they really are fun to make).

Friday, 20 April 2018

It`s TIME for mixed media

This altered art card is another one that I have made for the Little Claire show on Hochanda tomorrow. As the stamp is all about clocks I wanted to make the background look like an old plastered wall where the lats had been exposed.

This card is built up in layers and first of all I ripped down some corrugated cardboard to expose the inside and then I ripped it to the size I wanted (run around the edge of the cardboard with a water brush to get the cardboard wet and then gently tear).
I stuck the corrugated card to a piece of backing card with PVA glue and allowed it to completely dry.
Next came the colouring in and I did this by applying a layer of gesso all over the corrugated card and on to the backing card, once dry I added a muddy coloured emulsion paint but still leaving the gesso exposed in areas. I further shaded using various distress inks and I stamped a script lettering around the edges using one of the distress inks. I added Ranger crackle glaze to areas of the wall and when it was dry I shaded it with distress ink. The little mouse footprints were stamped where I could find a space although if I were to make this card again I don't think I would add these. Finally I shaded around the edge of the piece of card with black distress ink.
The stamped image was stamped onto copy paper and coloured in using water colour. I tore around the edge of the image using a water brush to mark the line of the tear as with the corrugated card and then I shaded the edges with distress ink.
The little cogs were cut using the embellishment part of the Crafters Companion "timepiece easel" dies.
I went back to work yesterday and was stuck in a baking hot kitchen on the warmest day of the year so far, I thought I was going to melt as we are not allowed fans or open doors to cause a breeze.
 I ordered some new wellies which arrived yesterday whilst I was at work and they are purple and fabulous. I had to get some new wellies because on Monday I went next door to get some horse manure and my neighbour took me across the field to the miden saying how boggy it was and to be careful where I put my foot. Sure enough as soon as we got there I lost my wellie in a massive puddle and then put my foot down knee deep into very very soggy horse muck (yuck). Ian my neighbour rescued my wellie after he had stopped laughing and after we loaded up the wheel barrow I walked back across the field with my soggy foot in my soggy wellie making farting noises. I decided to throw my old wellies out as they would never smell the same again.

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Out of my comfort zone

I`m sharing something a bit different with you today, some construction. I have made all of these gift boxes using the Crafters Companion "big score" score board, big score DVDs and new A3 card which is launching today on Hochanda at 6pm as a one day special.

Accordian file

Cut down wine box

Self closing pouch

Twist tea light box

Chocolate box
what was used:
I was a bit nervous about making these boxes at first as I`ve never attempted any thing so complex but using the big score board and DVDs it was easy. The card is amazing and just the thing for construction projects as it folds beautifully, doesn`t crack and is just the right weight, not to mention the gorgeous shabby chic designs. Unfortunately I can`t give you any templates or tips on how to make these boxes but all the details are on the DVDs "the big score video project DVD" and "the big score advanced projects DVD". Of course you could just buy the beautiful card and make projects of your own or projects found on YouTube and Pinterest. I would just add that I like to use Collall tacky glue to glue the boxes together as this is super strong and doesn't take long to dry, nobody wants a gift box to fall apart once you`ve put all that work into making it.

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Boozy shenanigans

Well I`ve seen wasps getting drunk on old apples but I didn`t know that Hedgehogs liked beer. This card is made using one of the Little Claire stamps that will feature in their next Hochanda show (Saturday 2pm). It also uses one of the Crafters Companion easel card dies but only as a blank card to showcase the cute stamp.

I used Crafters Companion "Butterfly easel" dies to create the basic easel card and to cut out the lacy bit for the base of the card.
The background I made myself by using distress inks (twisted citron, salty ocean & stormy sky) and the glycerine method. If you`re not familiar with the glycerine method it is really easy, simply take a piece of Sheena stamping card and using a sponge rub over it with a small amount of glycerine. On your craft mat lay down the three colours and a small drop of glycerine. Begin by picking up a small amount of glycerine onto the foam and dab the foam lightly into a colour, rub the colour randomly onto thee Sheena card. Repeat this process with all the colours and separate pieces of foam, using the foam add colour direct from the stamp pad if you want a stronger look. Blend the colours until you have the desired effect and allow to dry.
The damask pattern to the left of the card was made by using a stencil brush to stipple gesso through a Tim Holtz "damask" stencil.
I do think the colours really lift this card and I would recommend making your own backgrounds when you have the time, sometimes I feel crafty but cant find my mojo so I just mess about and make a few backgrounds. Have a look on YouTube and you will find loads of tutorials.
If you decide to try the glycerine method I would recommend you get your glycerine from Boots as its only 99p for 200ml. The small bottles that are sold in supermarkets (if you can find them) are usually only 38ml and although this will last a long time they are way more expensive.

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

You can almost smell the biscuits baking

This is a card I have made for Little Claire as they are on Hochanda this Saturday (21/04) at 2 PM and this is one of the stamps that they will be featuring. I love this country kitchen scene and I can just imagine sitting in a wooden rocking chair in front of the oven rocking and waiting for the biscuits to bake.

The background paper is printed from the NitWit "Crab Apple Lane country lady" downloadable paper pad", I love NitWit papers when stamping detail images as they are quite fussy and I find that downloading them and printing them off to any size is the best way of using them.
 The lacy die used for the edge of the card is an old Spellbinders nesting set of dies but I`ve had them so long I have no packaging and so I don`t know what they are called.
I made the flowers by sticking some hessian to craft card using wet glue and then when it was completely dry I cut the flower shape using one of the Crafters Companion, floral delight, pretty petals dies.
The stamped image was coloured in using watercolour pencils, this is the first time I have used these pencils and I loved them especially for fine detail shading as in this stamp.
I have managed to do a lot of DT work in the holidays and despite the weather Stu and me have managed to start on the BIG task of sorting out the garden. When I was cutting the lawn on Saturday I was bumping the mower into the hedge and saw what I thought I was an old nest from last year but on further inspection it was a new nest and a lady Blackbird was sat on it keeping very still and trying not to be noticed. I carried on mowing the grass and left her to her brooding but I was a bit concerned because the hedge was looking a bit sparse and I thought if I could see the nest then predators would. Well its amazing what a difference a few days makes and the hedge has become very green and although I haven't looked I imagine Mrs Blackbird and her nest will be well hidden by now. We have a nest box which a couple of Coal Tits used last year to raise a family and they are in it again this year. I don't know for sure if they are the same pair that used it last year but I would like to think they are as I did wonder about them when the weather was very cold this winter.

Monday, 2 April 2018

Dreaming of far away lands

Hello crafty friends, I hope you had a good Easter Sunday and didn`t OD too much on chocolate. Here is a card which I  have made for the Hochanda one day special today which begins at 6 tonight. This card was the first of the samples I made and the die is called "henna easel" so when I saw it I thought of India and bright colours.

What you will need:
Crafters Companion, die`sire, create a card, henna easel dies
Sizzex, large dies, tags and backplates die
mat black card
yellow, Green bright orange and dark orange card/paper
5mm yellow pearl gems
5mm black satin ribbon
black Nuvo Drops
This is a fiddly card to make and I ended up with my fingers covered in glue.
Cut the filigree overlay from the black card using the larger of the frame dies to edge the design, take the edge die off and emboss the design.
Cut a frame from yellow card using the outer and inner frame dies, stick the frame to the overlay.
Use the cut out overlay to trace the shapes you will need to cut out of coloured card, cut out the card and stick to the back of the overlay (this is where I got covered in glue), add the Nuvo Drops and allow to dry.
Cut the easel base card from black card and using the topper overlay as a guide position the overlay dies on to the top part of the easel base card, secure with tape and cut.
Place the fold die onto the top part of the base card, secure with tape and run through the die cutting machine.
Fold the top of the base card and stick to the topper (I used Stick & Spray for this but you must remember to mask the pieces of card that you do not need to glue)
Cut another yellow frame using the inner and outer frame dies, cut the frame down at the fold line, glue onto the base card.
Die cut the additional embellishments and add the coloured card as was done for the topper, stick the embellishments onto the card using Collall 3D glue, allow the glue to dry. 
Using a graphics program make the sentiments and print onto dark orange card (you could use your stamps to make the sentiments).
Measure and cut the topper sentiment and stick into place.
Using the Sizzex die cut the base card sentiment, thread black ribbon through the holes and secure at the back of the tag, shape the tag and stick to the card using Collall 3D glue, allow to completely dry, trim the ribbon.
Stick the pearl gems onto the topper.
Definitely not a card for beginners but it is certainly an eye catcher and well worth the effort. I have made this in another more subtle colour way for the May edition of Die Cutting Essentials magazine and I think it works just as well as this "in your face" card and that is testament to the fabulous design of the die.
So believe it or not I didn't have any Easter eggs yesterday, I don't like Easter egg chocolate and from a confirmed chocaholic that is quite some revelation. I did console myself by making a ginger cake, a new recipe for me but the cake is  now almost gone so I think I can say it was a success.
I was hoping to go to the car boot yesterday and it is on again today but the weather has been so wet that I didn't fancy tramping around a muddy field, I guess that's bank holidays for you.
I will be in my craft room today as I have some samples to make for Little Clair who have a Hochanda show at the end of April if the gremlins stay away. Talking of Hochanda I will be watching tonight to see the easel dies and hopefully some of the fabulous samples made by the design team.

Saturday, 31 March 2018

A bird in a gilded cage

The card I`m sharing with you today is a bit more sophisticated and I was reminded of the rococo style of the French royal palaces. It is a bit more involved to make but again the dies do most of the work so you can do as much or as little on the design as you like.

What you will need:
Crafters Companion, die`sire, create a card, "birdcage easel" dies
Hobbycraft general sentiment stamp set
small heart punch
Tim Holtz distress inks - twisted citron, evergreen bough, salty ocean, peacock feathers
rock salt
black Versafine ink pad
15mm fancy cream organza ribbon
12mm AB dazzler gem
red card scrap from stash
I made the background for the topper using the distress inks - Colour the Sheena stamping card with the distress inks using the glycerine, thoroughly spritz the card with water, drop on some rock salt and leave to completely dry. When dry remove the rock salt.
The birdcage was embellished using the gilding wax and I hap-hardly applied the gilding wax to the frame edges of the craft card.
I cut out the craft card bird in the cage and replaced it with a cream die cut.
The base craft card was made using the smaller of the overlay dies twice.
I have been enjoying a bit of messing about with my crafting lately as I have been making more of the backgrounds for my cards and I have finally opened a pot of gesso that I`ve had for ages, my goodness it is amazing stuff. You will definitely be seeing more samples made using gesso in the future as I experiment and find more ways to use it.
Here in Lincoln and especially here in the sticks where I live I have very limited access to craft shops and thank goodness for Internet shopping. On Wednesday 4th April Hobbycraft are opening a store in Lincoln and my crafty friend from work is taking me, we are both so excited and my list of stuff to buy is getting longer by the day. I got a gift voucher for £5 from Hobbycraft the other day for my birthday which is at the end of April and I thought to myself what good timing as I will be going on Wednesday. The day after the voucher arrived in my in box I got another email from Hobbycraft saying they had sent the voucher by mistake and it was void as I would be getting another one nearer my birthday, some you win and some you lose.