Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Less is More #321 - Recipe - Use A Frame

It's a great theme over at Less is more this week - 'Use A Frame'.

Had a thought right away about a card design and this was the result:
I used:

- 4.25" x 5.5" white card blank, tent style

- then I die cut two matching sets of frames using Impression Obsession's 'Rectangle 6 in 1 Frames' and white card stock

- rootled through my collection of Penny Black Stickeroos until I found one that fitted nicely inside the frame I had in mind

- glued the two matching frames together, back to back, for dimension

- stuck the chosen Stickeroo (from the 'Language of Flowers' sheet) onto a snippet of white card and trimmed it to just a teensy bit smaller than the outer edge of the frame

- glued the frame on top of the Stickeroo flower image

- then, before adding the image to the card, I used the Misti to line up the image and a sentiment as I wanted them

- stamped the sentiment using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a stamp from the Hero Arts 'Love Life' sentiments set. This is the replacement set for the one I was whining over the other week when a favourite sentiment went kaput - took a lot of tracking down but worth all the searching!

- finally, glued the framed image onto the card front and called it done

I do love the set of frames you get from this die, and it's really worth the effort of cutting a second for added dimension too.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Week 271 and 272 - results

It's halfway (once again) through the fortnightly challenge in the Snippets Playground and time for our Guest Designer, some 'picks' of the fortnight and the prize draw.

First of all, our Guest Designer is one of the sweetest ladies in Blogland - let's hear it for Brenda of 'Friends Craftin' with Friends'! Yay - cue Parsnip blowing a toy sized trumpet! But, he put his little heart and white fur into it, so do not mock. And this is the fabulous snippets card Brenda made to share with you:
Front of card, looking out of the window into the rain
Inside of the card front, looking into the window from outside
And the sweet little girl, sheltering from the storm
I totally adore this card - what a clever thought to decorate the inside of the window like that (imagine lining it up for starters?!) and of course opposite on the inside is the little girl in the rain. A card that would bring delight to anyone feeling a bit under the weather!

This is how Brenda made the card, but I'm sure you'll hop over to her blog HERE to comment:

Everything is a snippet but the card base. I layered my snippets onto my card base and then cut out my window (hope it looks like the inside of a room!), curtains and flower pots. Using some ink, I inked a small section on the inside of my card for the sky (hard to see in the photo). Let it dry and then stamped my scene. Colored everything with my Zig Clean Color Pens. Since my window shows through to the inside of the card, I took another snippet and embossed it with a brick pattern after cutting out my window again. I stamped my sentiments on the outside and inside and that is it. 

And here's a lovely photo of Brenda - LOVE the background stars as well - so fitting for a real star of a lady:
Can't you just imagine sharing a good giggle with Brenda over coffee and cookies (or tea and cake as we would say here in England). I can for sure.

It's especially heartening to have Brenda easing back into the swing of making her beautiful cards, after the passing of her much loved husband Dwayne in October 2015. I needed to check back though Brenda's blog for the actual date and ended up sitting here in tears. You can almost touch the love that shines through every post about Dwayne - very powerful indeed. Brenda has an amazing family, and I know many of you/us are very supportive friends as well, and this has been a huge comfort to her.

Back to card making, Brenda has been crafting since she was very young (like lots of us I expect - we learned to play with paper and glue as kids didn't we) and she took up scrap booking in the 90's. Then Brenda began blogging back in 2011 and went from strength to strength. Her style is quite varied but also distinctively hers at the same time - with an air of freshness coming through. She's always brave enough to try something new and thinking back, Brenda was one of the first crafters I spotted using Zig Brush Water colours!

And here's a real cutie to round off this little pen portrait - say 'Hello' to Savannah, Brenda's beautiful German/Blue Shepherd lady dog (bitch sounds so not right!):
She's more grown up now but I just love this cute and cuddly photo of her! A much loved pooch - with the most impressive ears in the US of A - but she already grew into them I suspect.

I'd love a dog but until my back settles down (if it ever does) just have to drool over ones we meet when out and about. Ha, of course, perhaps we could go for a Great Dane and get yours truly a saddle? Gee up there!

Thank you Brenda for making such a stunning snippets card and for being our Guest Designer this fortnight! Mwah! xx

Remember girls, you can always let me know if you would like to be a Guest Designer - I have a list and would be delighted to add your name.

So, let's move onto my picks from this past fortnight:

Carol L hopped in to share this beautiful New Baby card with us. I just love the clever use of the white and pale pink snippets! I think so many of us know just how useful snippets can be for die cutting - and also a great idea to use up white ones combined with one other colour too. Very pretty card.

Janice made this CAS and 'oh so clever' card - once again, a card showing really great use of a couple of colours of snippets. I've used the Memory Box 'Crisp Bow' die to make similar parcels as card toppers - but how cool to use the same deep sea colour as a frame on the card for the parcel, and then emboss it! Great idea Janice :)

Lily Sprite
My final pick of the week is this fabulous card, made by Susan (Eden Land). It's a stunning card to begin with and the Prairie Lily Fairy is so beautifully coloured. It's also a perfect reminder that snippets don't just have to be card or paper. Susan used a wide variety of materials to add texture (eg. different types of paper, burlap and cord). Love it!

That's my three picks and once again I focused very much on some interesting ways to use snippets - which might inspire you.

We had 74 Playmates joining in this past fortnight - with three new little friends joining us:
Heather's daughter Arianna - aged 8!!
Carol G (NZ)
2Craft Everyday
Welcome girls! Hope you came back and play with us again :)

Prize draw time now and our winner of the cat stamp set, made by Paper Xtra and kindly donated by Megan - plus a MFT 'Rectangle Peek-a-boo Window' die from me is:

Well done Dorothy! I had this 'ping' go off in my brain when your name came out and sure enough, when I checked your comment, your grand daughters love cats :) That came as a huge relief to me - sometimes I do wonder about my memory here! Can you please drop me an email with your address in and I'll post your prize off as soon as possible! My email address is on the right hand side bar.

Dorothy lives in the USA so that means a trip to our nearest all-singing-all-dancing village store cum post office. Not that I mind tootling out and about one bit - I would love to live closer - with a dog to take for a walk, are your reading this LEN?!?! Thought not, sigh :( About the revamp - to be fair, and Kate touched on this, the new look store is growing on me - and there are some amazing branded bargains to be had as well, if you have the time to have a good old nosy around!  

Anyway, keep those snippets entries coming girls, you still have a week left to play HERE remember!

See you on the swings! And, if you live in the UK - remember that the clocks flip forward an hour at 2am on Sunday morning. Spring Forward, Fall Backward :) Drat, we lose an hours sleep :(

And finally, it's the March Rudolph Days Challenge over at ScrappyMo's - you have until the end of the month to join in, as usual. It's anything goes so long as it's Christmas, as always, so there's plenty of scope and it's a great way to get ahead with some cards to alleviate the 'end of the year panic'.

Love from the little white peril - and of course from me too

Friday, 24 March 2017

Less is More #320 - Washi tape

The current challenge over at Less is More (#320) is 'Washi Tape'.

The DT and many of the entries have really used some inventive and ingenious ways to use Washi tape. But, I went for a very simple and easy design, relying on the lovely vibrant colours and a NBUS flowing script sentiment to add that 'certain something':
I used:

- 4.25" x 5.5" white card blank, tent style

- piece of white card for a front panel, trimmed slightly smaller than the card front

- the sentiment was stamped using the Misti, Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and a single sentiment stamp from a NBUS Penny Black sentiments stamps set called ''special thoughts'

- then I just tore the ends on three rolls of washi tape so that they were roughly angled upwards from left to right - leaving the intact tape on the roll

- used a couple of the torn off scraps of washi tape to temporarily fix the sentiment panel onto my glass cutting mat - making sure the grid lines on the glass mat were even on either side
- then added three strips of washi tape as shown on the card - using the grid lines was a great help in keeping the gaps as straight and even as possible (to me they look a bit on the wonk in the photo though)

- folded the top ends of the washi tape over the card panel and then added it to the card front using a sandwich of white fun foam

I preferred folding the washi tape over the top of the card, rather than trimming it level - it just looks more 'finished' IMHO, that's why I used a separate panel for the design.

Love the NBUS Penny Black sentiments stamps set - some lovely swirly script fonts in there.

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Cuttlebug Mania Challenge - 'Mother'

It's time for a new challenge over at Cuttlebug Mania and this fortnight's theme is 'Mother'.

Details of our sponsor/the prize to be won can be found over on the Cuttlebug Mania Challenge blog.

You do have to use a manual die cutting/embossing machine for Cuttlebug Mania entries (it doesn't need to be a Cuttlebug but it must be manual, not electronic). And, you can't mix the two, it must be all manual please. Then make your entry, link into the challenge, link to the challenge in your own blog post and and make sure that you also say what products you used for any die cutting/embossing.

This is what I made:
I used:

- 5" x 7" white card blank

- snippet of peach coloured card, embossed using the Cuttlebug 'Swiss Dots' embossing folder, trimmed to size, corners rounded using an XCut punch and then glued onto the card front

- snippet of white card, die cut using a Spellbinders 'Labels Eight Decorative' die

- then I used a Memory Box 'Perky Poppy' die to cut out a poppy shaped aperture- backed the aperture with double sided adhesive sheet so that the inlaying would be nice and easy

- die cut the poppies from a snippet of green card and inlaid the outline part into the aperture, also using two little white infills I'd also kept from the main die cutting

- die cut the poppy heads from a little snippet of peach coloured card and, before inlaying them I laid them out on a scrap of paper, gently touched the central parts with an orange Zig pen then 'pulled' the colour out towards the edges of the petals using clear Wink of Stella

- then inlaid the petals to complete the poppy 

- tickled the poppy bud and the leaves with clear Wink of Stella

- added the image panel to the card front, using a sandwich layer of white card and white fun foam, die cut using a plain 'Label Eight' die - smaller than the image panel

- the sentiment was stamped onto a snippet of white card using SU's 'Mossy Meadow' and a 'Stamping All Day' sentiment stamp

- then layered the sentiment onto a snippet of peach card and glued it to the card front

- added three iridescent peach sequins as a finishing touch

A little bit about the sentiment stamp. I bought it on line from 'Stamping All Day' when I was searching for a First Holy Communion stamp (which I found in the same shop). They specialise in text stamps and there are some really lovely fonts as well - here's an example of a stamp that's on my 'wish list':
Santa's Treat clear Christmas stamp
The service was super fast and the clear stamps are great quality and stamp perfectly - they even make personalised stamps to order. This little 'toot' is totally unsolicited BTW :)

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Week 273 and 274

And it's a new fortnight in the Snippets Playground - I've been saying that Spring is around the corner and just the other night one of the hedgies tottered to the feeding station for a quick drink and something to eat!  It's been back a few times since as well, in fact we think there might already be more than one of the little critters :)

Thank you so much to everyone who came to play this past fortnight as there were some many fabulous entries!

This is my snippets card for the fortnight, and I confess to using two 'almost card sized' snippets:
 I used:

- 4.25" x 5.5" white card blank, tent style

- snippet of black card stock for the 'frame', glued to the card front using Collall All Purpose glue

- a snippet of 'rainbow' card stock which I used for the background, it also saved me having to use duster brushes and inks

- using the Misti, I first stamped the dandelions and 'Make a Wish' using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink and the Inkylicious 'Make a Wish' stamp set

- then I trimmed the piece of card to size before stamping the Inkylicious 'Gentle Breeze' sentiment, again using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink

- glued the image panel on top of the black panel, using the same glue as before

- added three iridescent sequins using Collall All Purpose glue in a fine liner bottle

- final touch, using a fine brush kept for the purpose I added tiny little tickles of 'Frosted Lace' Stickles to the dandelion seed heads

There's a lovely tale that the dandelion is the flower of the military child (I was one - ha, a military child not a dandelion!!) and one piece of prose about it goes like this:

"The official flower of the military child is the dandelion. Why? The plant puts down roots almost anywhere, and it's almost impossible to destroy. It's an unpretentious plant, yet good looking. It's a survivor in a broad range of climates. Military children bloom everywhere the winds carry them. They are hardy and upright. Their roots are strong, cultivated deeply in the culture of the military, planted swiftly and surely. They're ready to fly in the breezes that take them to new adventures, new lands, and new friends.

I would have left the 'good looking' part out - but a lot of the rest rings so true!

This coming fortnight's prize is made up of stamps, (A) a couple are the same as the ones I used for my card (Inkylicious 'Make a Wish' and 'Gentle Breeze'). Plus, (B) a Lavinia 'Flower Fairy' stamp that I had originally intended to use with the dandelions - we've had this same stamp as a prize twice before in the Playground BTW - always very popular. And (C) we also have a lovely traditional English Summer cricket scene stamp, kindly donated by Lynn (Linby) - made by Crafthouse Press and called 'K007 Cricket'.

I will split the prize three ways if necessary, the two Inkylicious stamps (A) will stay as one part though (I think the verse would be lovely stamped inside a card with the dandelions on the outside). The Lavinia 'Flower Fairy' stamp (B) can stand alone - although it would work so well with the dandelion and the sentiment sets. And the cricket stamp (C) would be the other part. But, as always - all four stamps are one whole bundle if you wish to play for all of them together.

The Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks from now on and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 1st April. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day.

It's still a maximum of ONE entry and please say in a comment if you wish to play and be a possible winner of the prize. The prize is all stamps together as a single prize, unless you really do only want to try for a 'split' as I explained above - in which case I'd do further draws for the other items. Please also link back to the Playground in your blog post to be eligible for the draw.

Remember, if you link into the Playground and don't say clearly that you're wanting to be in the draw then you will be bypassed if your name comes out of Mr Linky. I'm sure you all know I ask for a positive yes just in case you're playing only for fun. Thanks!

Mr Linky is below - please let me know if you have any problems linking, it's easy for me to sort out so don't struggle on alone :)

Be sure to call back next week to see the winner of last fortnight's prize  plus my picks from the past two weeks as well! And to see who our next Guest Designer is!

Look forward to seeing what you come up with this fortnight - more clever ideas for snippets as well as 'anything you choose' - what could be simpler?

Love from Parsnip and me,

Friday, 17 March 2017

Merry Monday - #239 - colour challenge

The current challenge over at Merry Monday uses the most fabulous colour combination - copper or bronze, gold, and turquoise. And the DT cards are really gorgeous too - those colours work so well together! As I write this, I'm surprised more folk haven't entered as it's such a beautiful combination of colours - and one I'll be using again for sure.

This is the card I made, and it was almost impossible to photograph, sigh. I tried all ways with my camera and it was Len, using his camera, who ended up taking this photo for me:
The rich vibrancy of the 'peacock turquoise' is still more vivid in real life, but I think 'the boy done good' - considering my best efforts came out dark blue!

I used:

- 4.25" x 5.5" white card blank, tent style

- piece of matching white card, into which I die cut the set of three baubles using a Memory Box 'Clairmont Ornaments' die - keeping the little die cut pieces to one side for later

- then I backed the aperture with double sided adhesive paper (medium strength) and set it to one side as well

- die cut the ornaments using a snippet of matt gold card and then popped the outline part of the die cut into the sticky aperture on the card front piece of card

- added in the relevant little pieces of white I'd saved

- die cut the inerr part of the holly leaves from a little snippet of copper matt mirri card and popped those in place

- then die cut the baubles themselves using turquoise glitter paper from the Xcut self-adhesive 'darks' glitter sheets - and popped those in place

- now I could see how much space I had to play with, so I die cut the word 'noel' from another little snippet of copper card, backed with Stick-it double sided adhesive sheet

- the die I used is actually the Poppy Stamps 'Noel Snowflake' stamp - but it's a piece of cake to just snip the (only partly cut to save card!) snowflake off of course

- stuck the sentiment in place onto what was to be the front panel of the card

- then I could position a Lil' Inkers 'Stitched Rectangle' die as I wanted and die cut the panel

- added the panel to the card front, sandwiched with white fun foam to lift it. Gonna have to pull back on this idea else I could be headed for Large letter post costs at Christmas!

- finally added three sequins, one gold and two turquoise to finish off

The sequins came from packets of 'shaker card' fillings I bought at the end of last year - this is where I got them from - (Little Things by Lucy's Cards). Be careful if you go and look, the choice is just so tempting! Lucy is based in the UK but her overseas shipping costs are very reasonable. The packs I dipped into are called 'Caribbean Dream' and Rose Gold' - bet that's got you drooling!

One tip I think a few of you have mentioned in the past is that it's a good idea to run an inlaid (or otherwise) die cut completed (before any fancy embellishments like sequins of course!) image through your die cutting machine just to flatten everything evenly. It take those little bumps out of die cuts that you sometimes find (where the release holes are in the die), adheres everything beautifully and looks much more professional. For the life of me I can't think why I didn't do it before now!

Oh, and I was going to make a set of four identical cards - but when I was making the first one, even though it was 'semi-batch baking', I knew that making four was going to be too much - but I did make two the same!

I'd like to enter this card into the following current challenges:

Merry Monday #239 - 'Colour Challenge - copper or bronze, gold, and turquoise (of course!)

Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge #324 - 'Anything Goes' (I skipped the option of 'vintage')

Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge Extra for March - 'Always Anything Goes'

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Less is More - Challenge #319 - One Layer Card - 'Leaves'

This week's challenge over at Less is More is 'Leaves' - and that reminded me of a set of stamps and matching dies, as yet unused here. As it's a one layer challenge, I couldn't try out the dies this time round, but I do so love the stamps on their own anyhow:
I had to take the photo at an angle to pick up the shine of the embossing!

I used:

- 4" x 5.75" card blank, tent style - made using Strathmore 'Mixed media paper - vellum surface' . What's extra great about this is that it's 300 gsm, so it's perfectly sturdy for a card blank when doing just one layer

- the stamps are from the MFT 'Geometric Greenery' set, which (as I already said) does have a matching set of dies

- using the Misti for placement of all the stamps in one go I lined up the leaves and popped the sentiment above

- stamped the images and sentiment using VersaMark and then heat embossed using Ranger 'Liquid Platinum' embossing powder

- coloured in the leaves using my new Zig water colour brush markers and called it done

Using an embossed outline certainly helped me when colouring the leaves - and I'm sure I got the 'Liquid Platinum' idea from Loll as it always looks so great on her beautiful work.

Edit: As encouraged by Loll, I'm also joining in the current CAS Watercolour Challenge, where the theme this month is 'Spring'. I reckon the pretty greens are a harbinger of Spring :)