Tuesday, 24 April 2012

The Not-so-Big 30

Not for me you understand as 30 is a long gone distant memory.

Two of my nieces turn 30 this month and I thought I'd show you two of the cards that I made for them.
The first one is an A5 card covered  in Tatty Teddy Especially for you papers, inked with Ancient Page primrose ink.
I have used a topper & messages from the ultimate card making pack then added pink and lemon organza ribbons to co-ordinate with Tatty's hat. The stars and numbers are Papermania's Happy Birthday cardstock stickers.

The second card uses a stamp from Crafters Companion and features the most gorgeous little kitten. It has been stamped with versafine ink in smokey grey, embossed with clear powder and then coloured with promarkers.
The card base is a 6" square scallop edge card. The embossed flowery paper is by Heidi Grace and the pink glitter paper is from Robin's Nest.I have used a strip of Anitas glitter satin ribbon under the stamped sentiment. The mats are die cut using the smallest scallop from Spellbinders Grand Nestabilities and a plain circle from xcut nesting dies. The white edges have been softened with a Papermania purple pigment ink pad and then highlighted with irridescent glitter.
The number outline stamps are from 'Dimension Stamps' and they are such a useful size.
A few self adhesive gems add an extra bit of sparkle. Not too much though as I wouldn't want to disturb the sleeping kitten :-)

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Boofle Wedding

A friend asked if I could make a cute wedding card for a young couple and I instantly knew which image I wanted to use. I love this image from the DOcrafts Boofle range.
I used an A5 cream hammered card blank as a base and used Boofle papers to make the mats.
The rectangle mat is die cut with the largest Spellbinders romantic rectangle die onto paper from the 12x12 paper pack.
A strip of Anitas cream blush spotted satin ribbon has been added across the card width.
The oval mats are die cut with two of the Spellbinders floral oval dies onto glittered paper from the Boofle 12x12 Designstax, and layered on top of the rectangle and ribbon.
The main image is from a die-cut Boofle pack, layered up with 3D foam. A single self adhesive pearl highlights the flower on the bride's head.
Gold peel offs have been used for the sentiment, and the mulberry paper flowers are from 'The Flower Girl'.

Hope the happy couple like it :-)

Monday, 16 April 2012

Full Weekend of Crafting

Another two demos done and dusted this weekend. My final ones for the March / April Docrafts promotion. I'll have the rest of the week to rest and regroup now, ready for my new Docrafts kit to arrive. Really looking forward to that one :) Watch this space for a sneaky peak at some of the cards you'll be able to make with the new products in May.

Saturday 14th April at Gardenlands on the Bridgnorth Road, Shipley, started with beautiful sunshine, if not a bit on the chilly side. It was the last weekend of the children's school holidays here, so I think everyone had a lie-in and the store was really quiet first thing. It slowly filled throughout the day with an assortment of customers, many with young families in tow.

Julie was on hand in the craft department to make sure that everyone could find the goodies they were looking for while I concentrated on making card samples. Lots of people were interested in my stamped cards and were surprised at all the different looks they could achieve with one stamp. Hopefully they will have had the confidence to have a go themselves when they got home.

A lady came and introduced herself and was brimming with excitement because she had received a prize package from Docrafts for one of their monthly draws. She hadn't been expecting it and was absolutely thrilled and wanted to say Thank You. She had a complete collection of the Papermania Capsule in Burleigh Blue & Parkstone Pink and said she loved it all. What a lucky lady :)

I spent Sunday 15th April at Melbicks, Chester Road, Coleshill. It was only my second trip there and luckily it was nothing like my first experience last year, when the weather was awful and I got horribly lost.

Yesterday was wonderful. A frosty start gave way to bright sunshine, the traffic was kind to me and I was greeted at the store by Matt, the department head, who let me in and made sure I was settled. The store was quiet first thing but soon began to fill up and there were lots of friendly faces that I recognised from last time and some of them stayed with me for the rest of the day. By 4 O'Clock I think I had managed to demonstrate everything from the latest promotion.

One lady who was a regular customer in the store had said that she didn't like Michael Powell and had dismissed his stamps until she saw my card samples, then she wanted some :) I think that the packaging with the  multi coloured images does put off some people  and it can be difficult for them to imagine how the stamp would look in different colourways. I was glad to be able to share some of my watercolouring techniques with her and a few other onlookers.

The Enchanted Fairy range was immensely popular on the day. Even Jackie who works in the craft department, was persuaded to treat herself to a pack of the beautiful papers and some of the decoupage. They also hadn't realised that there was a pack of fairy decoupage in the March Goody bag as well as a 12x12 Boofle paper pack. The papers are such lovely generic designs and don't feature lots of dog images as you might expect, so are perfect for so many occasions.

The A5 landscape card is made by cutting a section off the card front, covering the front panel with green glitter paper from the Enchanted Fairies paper pack, and covering the inside of the card with co-ordinating plain green paper. An A5 piece of acetate has been stuck to the back of the front panel using double sided tape. The pyramid image and sentiment tab is from a die-cut decoupage sheet.
The flower embellishments have been made using a papermania midi flower punch and some paper offcuts, then highlighted with lots of green self-adhesive gems. Quite a simple card to make but very effective and eye-catching.

The Stepper card is from a kit which contains four cards in two different designs. The decoupage is die-cut and there are four sheets in the pack so loads to spare. I have added some irridescent glitter to highlight the printed card and message and a couple of heart gems to draw the eye to the message.
Quite a complicated looking card which is easy to assemble and can't fail to impress.

A lady who said she only did scrapbooking, sat with me for a very long time looking for ideas that she could use on her layouts. I am delighted to say that by the end of the afternoon, she had bought a Goody bag and was going to have a go at cardmaking too when she got home. Another convert to our flock :)

I'll be back at Melbicks again on 12th May with lots of goodies from the new promotion. I hope everyone will be as excited about them as me :)

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Bank Holiday Fun

Another typical cold and wet bank holiday Monday, but it was nice and cosy in Mountain Ash Crafts surrounded by crafting goodness. It was my second demo there with this range of products but they were still popular. Many crafters missed out last time due to the snow. Don't you just love the British weather?

Yesterday was all about Tatty Teddy and the 'Especially for you' competition being run by Docrafts. You can find details in the March edition of the Creativity Magazine. We had all made a card to inspire customers to revisit their Tatty Teddy stash and hopefully to try a few new items too.
These are the two that I made:
The blue card started off as an A4 sheet of white card folded in half with a strip cut off the front.
I slotted an A5 piece of acetate behind the front panel and attached with double sided tape.
I covered the card front and inside with papers from the Especially for You 12x12 pack, then rounded the corners with an x-cut large corner punch.
The pink strip of Anitas satin ribbon has been stamped with Me to You shooting stars and pink star shaped adhesive stars fill the outlines.
The white topper is decoupaged and the edges are outlined with a silver Kuretake pen.
Small paper flowers have been made using a Papermania punch and paper offcuts, and these have been arranged to give a scattered effect across the card. Centres for the flowers are a mixture of self-adhesive gem stones, glitter glue, and 3D gloss.

For the pink card, I started with an A5 white card and covered the front in pink paper, layered with a mat of lemon paper, cut with an x-cut scallop rectangle die. The edges of all the layers are inked with a blue cats eye chalk ink pad.
The ribbon strip and the rosette is cut with a doily dots border punch. Then a strip of cream dotty ribbon with a bow is stuck across the card. The topper is from the Ultimate paper pack and the butterflies are cut from the waste on a die-cut sheet. Gems are added to highlight the butterflies path.

Hope you like them.

Saturday, 7 April 2012

A Few of my Favourites

I have loved all of the products in the latest Docrafts creativity promotion and have made innumerable samples. Most of them are displayed in my gallery on the Docrafts website but I thought I would just select a few of my favourites to show on my blog. Hope you like them too :)
This cute little character is called Boofle.
Mr. Cool has been stamped onto Boofle paper and textured with one of the background stamps.
The black background has been created using the Buttons embossing folder and some of the buttons have been highlighted with Anitas 3D gloss.
Boofle Birthday Boy  is a decoupage image and he stands out nicely against all the Boofle papers.
The bunting is made using the smallest scallop bunting die with letters stamped onto them. They have been strung onto some wool and hung across the card to give a kinetic effect.
Faux stitching stamps have been used on both of the cards and give an extra finishing touch.
 Both of these cards are made using the Bookprint Papers. I adore these and love to ink them to give a distressed effect.
For the 21st birthday stepper card, I have also used the co-ordinating Birdsong stamps and Typography number stamps. Everything has been stamped and inked in either light brown or black.
The Matryoshka Doll card has been inked and coloured with an ancient page Bordeaux ink pad, shaded using a waterbrush.
The metal embellishment has been made using a triple embossing technique and a stamp from the round the world set.

These cards have been made using the lovely new heartwarmers sentiments toppers.
I have used basic square cards with one side folded to create an easel support and an extra half card stuck on to give a high easel back. The cards are covered in papers from the Boofle collection which co-ordinate perfectly with the toppers and flowers.
The enchanted fairies range includes a pack of glittered papers, stamps, toppers and decoupage which all co-ordinate beautifully.
The apricot card is simply matted and layered. The scalloped mat has also been hole-punched to add extra detail.
The new style foldies card is a real mix of everything. Papers, decoupage and sentiments on the front, papers, scenes and stamped images inside. The stamped fairies are coloured directly onto the stamp with brushstroke pens, then the multi-coloured image is finished off with a water brush. All the edges are highlighted with irridescent glitter to give an extra bit of fairy magic.

Michael Powell is another new addition to the Docrafts range.
The 6x6 foldie card has been matted with colourful textured card and each face shows a the same Michael Powell Chapel stamp coloured in a different medium. Hopefully a style for every taste.
The other card is made using images from the MP designstax pad. Three identical images have been cut and layered to give a 3D effect. The co-ordinating matted layers are also in the same pad. The ribbon slider is a button from the Booffle button bag and makes a lovely faux buckle.

These cards are both made using the same stamp and show the different looks that can be achieved using different colouring mediums.
The bright colourful image is coloured using alcohol markers. A strip of double sided tape covered in cousins beads mimics the pathway in the image.
The 2nd card is much more subtle. The whole image has been coloured using just one brown watercolour pen applied with a waterbrush to give shade and tone. The very edge of the card has been coloured with the same wash too, then faux stitching has been drawn on by hand. Boofle gingham paper and buttons complete the homespun effect.

So many lovely craft products to play with.
Hope you enjoy using them as much as I have :)

March Madness

Where did March go? I am sure that time really does fly.

Three crafting demos in March started off with a trip to Garners garden Centre in Stoke-on-Trent. There was a slight hiccough in the morning when I got half way there to discover that the main Stafford road was completely closed off and following the diversion signs took me on a 20 minute detour almost into Telford. Not in the right direction incidentally. Luckily I still managed to arrive in time to set up. Lots of customers had the same idea though and they were waiting for me.
Sadie had set up a huge work area with seats round so there was plenty of room to display all of my sample cards. I still managed to fill it though :)
The customers were wonderful, all dedicated crafters who were very excited about the new products. Everything was selling out so quickly and Sadie was having to take orders for everyone and promised to get new stocks in within the week. Most of the customers seemed quite happy to go along with this and just enjoyed the demos, adding a few more items to their wish list as they went along.
I loved how supportive everyone was to each other. A couple of ladies really needed a confidence boost to help them to craft as they had been attending a card making class and felt they still didn't know how to make a card on their own. Such a shame. A few of the ladies got together to encourage each other and arranged to take it in turns meeting for crafting sessions at each others houses. How lovely. I really hope it works out well for them.

Sunday 4th March began with a bit of a shock. Snow! As the day progressed we had gale force winds and then hail. Not the best weather to encourage people to visit a lovely little craft shop in the countryside, but thankfully a few people braved the elements. Mountain Ash Crafts is an absolute treasure of a shop. Housed in a cabin type structure at Halfpenny Green Vineyards in Bobbington, it is jam packed to the hilt with everything that a craft addict could possibly desire. The shop is family owned and run, so they are much more flexible in the variety of brands that they stock. They are always bang up to date with products seen on tv shows and generally, if they haven't got what you want, they will order it for you. What more could you ask? A loyalty scheme maybe? They do that too :)

A visit to Percy Throwers Garden & Leisure was on the cards for Saturday 24th March. Waking up to brilliant sunshine and with a promise of temperatures being the hottest so far this year, the day looked promising. So why did I have to battle through thick fog to get to Shrewsbury? I suspect a conspiracy on the weather front.  It felt a little like the Marie Celeste when I first arrived, as the fog initially kept the early morning shoppers away but the sun quickly won through and it was a wonderful day.
Don't be put off by the slightly rough car park and entrance to the shop when you first arrive at Percy Throwers. Once you get inside the building it opens up to reveal multi-levelled areas with all sorts of goodies. The craft department is huge, beautifully spaced out and really well stocked. A real treat to shop there. I was visited by a lovely group of ladies who sat with me at the demonstration and were keen to try some new card shapes. They were inspired to try the Michael Powell stamps too. Initially put off by the multi-coloured images on the packaging, they were delighted by my samples in one colour tone and were looking forward to making their own. Hope you enjoy your new stamps ladies :)