Wednesday 29 May 2024

In the Shadows

Hi everyone, I was away over the weekend, so what with that and a few other things going on I’ve had pretty much no crafting time this past week. That being the case I wanted to make something quick (very unlike me!!) so I thought I would try some one-layer card shadow stamping, as I have recently seen demonstrated by Jo Rice. 

Looking through my stash I thought the Lavinia group of Christmas trees would work well with this technique, as well as looking good on kraft card for Christmas. I made a couple of cards with different sentiments - these were about as quick as it gets for me.

Card 1
Card 2

I stamped the trees using Versafine Clair in Portobello on my stamping platform, then slightly moved the card and stamped again several times using Memento Brilliance ink in Moonlight White. I grounded the trees using a brown Zig pen and white Posca pen, then added some delicate white Posca spatters and dots for falling snow. I stamped the sentiments in the corners then added some teeny sparkly snowball and red heart gems to finish.

I also decorated the envelopes using the same technique with a different Lavinia Christmas tree.

Stamps: Lavinia Christmas Tree Group, Fir Tree 1; sentiments - Visible Image Christmas Robin, Grunge Snowflake (card 1); Uniko Christmas Wishes (card 2);
Media: Versafine Clair (Portobello); Memento Brilliance pigment ink (Moonlight White); Kuretake Zig Clean Colour watercolour pen; Posca pen (white);
Other: gems from my stash.

Challenges I would like to enter:

Card 1
12 Months of Christmas #110 - Anything Christmas Goes
Allsorts #782 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)
FarmQuest Country Christmas #8 - Anything Country Christmas Goes
Rudolph Days (May) - Anything Christmas Goes - TOP 3
Simon Says (Wednesday) - Anything Goes
Sparkles #176 - Clean and Simple - TOP 3
Word Art Wednesday #649/650 - Anything Goes (3rd entry)

Card 2
C.R.A.F.T. #721 - Christmas
Crafts Galore Encore #123 - Anything Goes (3rd entry)
Festive Fridays (May) - Christmas (2nd entry)
Krafty Chicks #717 - All Occasions
Merry Little Christmas #56 - Anything Christmas Goes
Pammie’s Inky Pinkies #2421 - Anything Goes - HONOURABLE MENTION
Peace On Earth #64 - Anything Christmas Goes
Sheepski #86 - Anything Goes
Sweet Stampin’ - Clean and Simple

That’s all for now - take care, and thanks for visiting.

Saturday 25 May 2024

Embrace the Flowers

Hi everyone, this month’s ATC swap in the Tracy Evans FB group has a theme of “Embrace the Flowers”.  Given the huge number and variety of floral design stamps Tracy has produced both for AALL & Create, and most recently for her own brand, the possibilities for this theme are endless - but I just HAD to include the new wheelbarrow stamp! I ended up making a series of 6 ATC’s - 4 for the swap and 2 extra for me to trade separately. They involved a lot of steps and stages and were very fiddly and time consuming, but I love playing with these stamps and am very pleased with how they turned out - here they are.

I cut six pieces of white stamping card each fractionally smaller than standard ATC size, and created my backgrounds by blending Lavinia Elements inks using my Mini Hill Masks and a home made cloud stencil.  I then stamped the wheelbarrows, and masked each one in turn while I repeatedly stamped a foliage portion of a larger stamp in Verdant Versafine Clair followed by a 2nd generation fern in Shady Lane VFC… this part of the process really did take forever! I then stamped 18 little flowers, coloured with Zig pens and added white Posca highlights and Wink of Stella for sparkle, and fussy cut them all out. I stamped a little tulip onto each ATC using various shades of VFC, and a portion of the “Branched Heart” stamp to represent an overhanging tree branch. I added white Posca highlights to the tulips and wheelbarrows, then matted each panel onto a standard ATC size piece of black card stock before finally attaching a row of 3 flowers onto each wheelbarrow.

Here are some closeups.

ATC 1/6
ATC 3/6
ATC 5/6

Stamps: Tracy Evans Boutique Designs TE14 The Wonder if Nature, TE13 Delight In Nature, TE6 Branched Heart, TE3 Fern, AALL & Create #906 The Good;
Media: Lavinia Elements Inks (Blue Lagoon, Olive); Versafine Clair (Nocturne, Verdant, Shady Lane, Tulip Red, Cheerful, Baby Pink, Lilac Bloom, Charming Pink, Summertime); Kuretake Zig Clean Colour watercolour pens; Wink of Stella; Posca pen (white);
Tools: Lavinia Mini Hill Masks; home made cloud stencil.

Challenges I would like to enter:

Allsorts #782 - Anything Goes
ATC’s Around The World (May) - Anything Goes (2nd entry) - TOP 3
Beautiful Blossoms #17 - Anything Floral Goes (3rd entry)
Crafts Galore Encore #123 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)
Creative Crafters #76 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)
Four Seasons (May) - Anything Goes Spring (2nd entry)
Love to Craft #80 - Anything Goes (3rd entry)
Mix It Up #71 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)
Outlawz (May) - Anything Goes In a Card Free Zone (2nd entry)
Paper Funday #65 - Anything Goes with option Flower Shoppe
Papercraft #106 - Flower Power (3rd entry)
Try It On Tuesday - Small Things - TOP 5
We Love Stamping (May) - Anything Goes (3rd entry)
Word Art Wednesday #649/650 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)

Speaking of embracing the flowers … I’d also like to share a few pictures I took at Rufford Old Hall, a National Trust Tudor Hall near Liverpool which we visited in the gorgeous sunshine last Sunday.  The flowers were in glorious full bloom and made me feel quite inspired, particularly the honeysuckle, dandelion clock and cow parsley which really reminded me of Lavinia stamps. 

Sadly the weather here has really gone downhill since then, but today is looking a bit brighter again so we can but hope some more spring sunshine isn’t too far away! Take care everyone and thanks for visiting. 

Wednesday 22 May 2024

Vintage Typewriter

Hi everyone, I mentioned in my previous post that I recently managed to get my hands on a few of the new Versafine Clair inkpads. One of the colours I got was Portobello, as I love stamping Lavinia scenes, and I thought it would give me more colour flexibility for trees, plus it is a smoky brown which I thought may work for vintage style makes. Anyhoo, when I saw it I could see straight away it is a good colour for a vintage look so that was the starting point for today’s card. 

This was one of those makes that wouldn’t seem to go right .. I actually had several attempts before I was halfway satisfied and I’m still not entirely happy with it, but I got there in the end and it’s done now!!

I cut a 5” square of white stamping card and stamped the vintage typewriter using Portobello VFC. I then made a grungy inky background by dabbing spritzed Distress Oxides onto the card with acetate, and added my sentiment stamped with Arctic VFC, and added some arty vintage background stamping in 2nd generation. I stamped the butterfly onto separate card, coloured with a Distress watercolour pencil and added some Wink of Stella for sparkle, then fussy cut out. I blended some Scorched Timber DOX round the edges and matted onto brown then aqua linen cardstock and a 6” square card blank. Finally I attached the butterfly using a vintage style pen nib for its body, then added a piece of torn washi tape to finish.

Stamps: Text{ures} by Lou Collins “Typography”; AALL & Create #906 Art Notes;
Media: Tim Holtz Distress Oxide inks (Antique Linen, Speckled Egg, Scorched Timber); Versafine Clair (Portobello, Arctic); Distress watercolour pencil (Speckled Egg); Wink of Stella;
Other: Washi tape from the Range; pen nib from my stash.

Challenges I would like to enter:

Allsorts #781 - Anything Goes - Special 15th Birthday Challenge (3rd entry)
C.R.A.F.T. #720 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)
Creative Crafters #76 - Anything Goes
Double Trouble #167 - 6th Year Anniversary Raffle (Birthday - Pink Ticket)
Love to Craft #80 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)
Mix It Up #71 - Anything Goes
We Love Stamping (May) - Vintage (2nd entry)

There is going to be a special challenge next month over at We Love Stamping to celebrate their 15th birthday, and they asking everyone to display their special badge to spread the word. Congratulations ladies on this fantastic achievement!

That’s all from me for today. After a few days of lovely weather the sun seems to have gone into hiding, so I may be doing some crafting later. Take care, and thanks for visiting.

Monday 20 May 2024

Birdie and Bloom

It was my birthday a couple of weeks ago and I was lucky enough to receive a Lavinia gift voucher from a dear friend, so thought I would put it towards the cost of some of the new Versafine Clair ink pads which are currently causing a frenzy amongst crafters worldwide!! By good fortune Lavinia got them back into stock this past week and I managed to get in quickly enough before they sold out again, so 6 of the new colours (along with a few other bits and bobs) were winging their way to me.

Having been inspired by an online  tutorial for Tracy Evans’ new stamps for my previous post my own ideas started to flow, and I made another card with some of the same stamps but this time also using some of my new VFC’s. Here it is.

I cut a 5 1/2” square of stamping card and created an inky background by dragging three different Distress Oxide inkpads repeatedly across the page then spattering with water. I then stamped a background stamp which I had inked up randomly with 3 of the new VFC colours - Baby Pink, Hawthorn Rose and Very Peri. I stamped the flower onto separate card using the same 3 VFC inkpads and heat embossed clear, then coloured with my Spectrum Noir sparkle pen and fussy cut out. I stamped the bird in the corner of the background and added some white gel pen highlights, added a couple of stamped words to the background, then stamped a sentiment and hearts onto a white die cut stitched frame (which I already had in my stash from a previous crafting session), and attached the coloured panel behind it. I attached the flower with silicone glue using some scrunched holographic silver thread (which absolutely has a mind of its own!) behind the flower head, then matted the completed panel onto a dark pink border and a 6” square card blank, and added some teeny heart gems 🩷 to finish - the colour of the gems does actually match the ink colours, they just look as if they don’t in the photo!!)

Stamps: Tracy Evans Boutique Designs TE13 Delight In Nature (flower), TE4 New Beginnings (bird), TE6 Branched Heart (hearts), TE5 Clematis (sentiment); AALL & Create #909 Garden Notes;
Media: Tim Holtz Distress Oxide inks (Spun Sugar, Kitsch Flamingo, Shaded Lilac); Versafine Clair (Baby Pink, Hawthorn Rose, Very Peri, Nocturne); Spectrum Noir sparkle pen (clear); gel pen (white);
Tools: Hunkydory Moonstone Duo-Stitched Square dies.

Challenges I would like to enter:

Allsorts #781 - Anything Goes - Special 15th Birthday Challenge (2nd entry)
Aud Sentiments #313 - Flowers plus a Sentiment (2nd entry)
Beautiful Blossoms #17 - Anything Floral Goes (2nd entry)
C.R.A.F.T. #720 - Anything Goes
Craft Rocket #114 - Flowers (3rd entry)
Moving Along With the Times #166 - Flowers (3rd entry)
Papercraft #106 - Flower Power (2nd entry)
Triple B (May) - Birds, Butterflies and/or Blooms (3rd entry)
Word Art Wednesday #647/648 - Anything Goes (5th entry)

Take care and thanks for visiting.

Saturday 18 May 2024

Delight In Nature

Hi everyone, today I would like to share the results of my first play time with some stamps that arrived yesterday from Tracy Evans’ new release, along with some of her older stamps. The design of this card CASE’s a Tracy YouTube video from earlier in the week … I was literally just finishing watching it on my iPad when my new stash dropped through the letterbox!! 

I absolutely loved this video, though as usual I did make a few changes - I don’t have Tracy’s latest background “Art” stamp so I used an older one, I changed the colour scheme as I was inspired by this month’s Stamping Sensations mood board, and I used a little Lavinia bird with the addition of a different sentiment and hearts. However the basic design concept is Tracy’s. 

I cut a piece of stamping card 6” x 4” and stamped my background and heat embossed in white. I then blended three colours of orange and green Distress Oxide over the panel, and gently wiped over with a baby wipe to re-whiten the stamping. This was a tip of Tracy’s using dampened kitchen roll … I think my baby wipe was slightly wetter, but this had the unintended but pleasing effect of slightly more smudging the background colours. 

I die cut a circle from a snippet of white stamping card and stamped it with the same background stamp which I had inked up randomly with my 3 DOX colours, then stamped the wheelbarrow and bird sitting on top. I distressed the edges with my Tim Holtz distressing tool and edged with black marker, then set aside. I stamped the focal flower onto a snippet of card, coloured with two shades of orange DOX, then added some white Posca dots and fussy cut out. I stamped the sentiment onto another snippet, cut out and edged. 

At the last minute I decided to add a couple of small hearts to the sentiment and a dangling heart in the bird’s beak, which I stamped with Summertime Versafine Clair. I assembled the card using another large snippet of black linen card stock for matting,  used some scrunched black cotton thread behind the flower, and added some grey shading to “ground” the flower, wheelbarrow and circle with a Zig pen. Finally I added some white Posca faux spatters … I never get on very well with actual spattering, and since I had an eye episode about 3 months ago I’m not supposed to do anything which involves sudden violent movement (the examples given included trampolining or bouncy castles!) , so I shouldn’t really be shaking my Posca pen in a frantic whiplash movement!! Nonetheless my faux spattering still went a bit haywire as my Pisca pen decided to deposit a couple of blots onto my work, and I had to do a little remedial work on the flower (sssh!!).

For once I actually remembered to take a photo of one of my snippets halfway through proceedings!

Stamps: Tracy Evans Boutique Designs TE13 Delight In Nature (flower), TE14 The Wonder of Nature (wheelbarrow), TE6 Branched Heart (dangling heart), TE10 Quirky Birds (small hearts); AALL & Create #909 Garden Notes, #533 Bring On the Sentiments; Lavinia Bird Collection;
Media: Tim Holtz Distress Oxide inks (Twisted Citron, Mowed Lawn, Spiced Marmalade, Ripe Persimon); Versafine Clair (Nocturne, Summertime); Posca pen (white).

Challenges I would like to enter:

Allsorts #781 - Anything Goes - Special 15th Birthday Challenge - TOP 15
Beautiful Blossoms #17Anything Floral Goes
Make My Monday #225 - Florals (3rd entry)
Papercraft #106Flower Power
Path of Positivity #121Anything Goes Positive (3rd entry) - TOP PICK
Snippets Playground #480Use Snippets
Stamping Sensations (May)Anything Goes with optional Spring Mood Board - TOP 3
(I was inspired by the orange flowers and the orange/green colour scheme)

Triple B (May)Birds, Butterflies and/or Blooms (2nd entry)
Word Art Wednesday #647/648Anything Goes (4th entry)

That’s all for today, but I hope to be back soon with some more makes with these new stamps by Tracy.

Hope you’re having a great weekend whatever you’re doing. Take care, and thanks for visiting.

Wednesday 15 May 2024

I Spy With My Little Eye #15

Hi everyone, the last month has absolutely flown by, it’s the third Wednesday in the month again, so it’s time for a new I Spy With My Little Eye... challenge over at Ellibelle's Corner.  Thanks so much to everyone who joined in last time … please do check over on Ellie’s blog to see if you are one of our top picks. 

Ellie has chosen the challenge theme this month, and it is

I Spy With My Little Eye 

*** Something For Boys or Men ***

I know that many of us struggle to make cards for the men in our lives, so here’s a golden opportunity to get inspired and see what you can come up with. Please do pop over to Ellie's blog to see her fab creation and link up your entries here.

Once again we have two guest designers joining us this month - Gundi and  Fiona - so please click on their names to visit their blogs and see their fabulous masculine creations. 

Here’s my card for the challenge - I decided to go for a vintage monochrome theme. Usually I tend to make vintage style cards in sepia tones, so I thought I would try something a bit different, not least because I’ve run out of cream stamping card and the brand I use (Lavinia multifarious card - I will only pay out that much for card as it is a non-standard colour) is no longer available.

I die cut a stitched square of white stamping card slightly smaller than a 6” card blank, and stamped the Visible Image vintage car in the centre. I coloured all the trims with watered down silver Posca pen paint, and the highlight areas with my clear Sakura Stardust pen. I then stencilled all around the car using Hickory Smoke Distress Oxide, and stamped a variety of Lavinia cogs in two corners. I blended Black Soot DOX round the edges of the panel and matted it onto a black border and my card blank, then added my sentiments which I stamped onto separate card, cut out and coloured with blended Lost Shadow DOX to remove the stark whiteness. Finally I applied some Glossy Accents to the car windows and headlights to add a bit of dimension.

Here is an angled pic to show the metallic shine on the wheels and bumper.

Stamps: Visible Image You’re a Classic, Lavinia Cog Set 2, Cog Set 3;
Media: Tim Holtz Distress Oxide inks (Black Soot, Hickory Smoke, Lost Shadow); Versafine Clair (Nocturne); Posca pen (silver); Sakura Stardust pen (clear); Glossy Accents;
Tools: Hunkydory Duo-Stitched Squares die; Lavinia stencil - Divine.

Challenges I would like to enter:

Alphabet Challenge - C is for Cars - SPOTLIGHT WINNER
Country View Crafts FB Challenge (May) - Make Me Smile (2nd entry)
C.R.A.F.T. #719 - Birthday
Daisy Chain #85 - Boys/Men - TOP 3
Dragonfly Dreams (May) - Use a Stencil (2nd entry) - TOP 3
Dream Valley #116 - Man or Boy
The Male Room #186 - Planes, Trains and Automobiles - HONOURABLE MENTION
Simon Says (Wednesday) - Use Die Cuts (2nd entry)
Word Art Wednesday #647/648 - Anything Goes (3rd entry)

This month the I Spy challenge will end a day earlier than usual, on Saturday June 15th at 23:59 US Central TimeThat’s because in June we will have a surprise for you, but you won’t need to wait  too long, as the next challenge will also begin earlier than usual on Monday June 17th.

Take care, and thanks for visiting.

Sunday 12 May 2024

Watercolour Poppies

Hi everyone, today I would like to share a fairly simple watercolour effect card I made, based on a design by Jo Rice. I used to love watercolour stamping back in the day using my old Marvey watercolour markers with Penny Black brushstroke stamps, though I only had a very small number of the stamps to play with. Recently I have been trying a similar technique using my Zig pens and some silhouette Lavinia floral stamps … I am very pleased with the results although the pens really seriously stain your stamps!! Here is my latest effort.

I cut a 13cm square of white stamping card and masked a 2cm border all the way round. I then created my background with blended Elements inks and an acetate circle mask. I stamped the poppies and grasses by colouring with Zig pens then lightly spritzing with water, then added a flight of birds stamped with Pinecone Versafine Clair. I removed the masks and stamped the sentiment in blue, then matted the finished panel onto a blue pearlescent linen card border and a 6” square card blank.

Stamps: Lavinia Wild Poppies, Field Grass, Birds, Let Your Spirit Take Flight;
Media: Lavinia Elements inks (Blue Lagoon, Sundance); Versafine Clair (Pinecone, Medieval Blue); Kuretake Zig Clean Colour watercolour pens; Sakura Stardust pen (yellow);
Tools: Lavinia acetate circle mask.

Challenges I would like to enter:

Aud Sentiments #313 - Flowers plus a Sentiment
Craft Rocket #114 - Flowers (2nd entry)
Lavinia Creative Challenge (May) - Favourite Florals (3rd entry)
Make My Monday #225 - Florals (2nd entry) - TOP 3
Moving Along With the Times #166 - Flowers (2nd entry)
Path of Positivity #121 - Anything Goes Positive (2nd entry)
Simon Says (Monday) - Light and Airy (2nd entry)
Word Art Wednesday #647/648 - Anything Goes (2nd entry)

Hope you’re having a great weekend. Take care, and thanks for visiting.

Friday 10 May 2024

Mooch Amongst the Flowers

Hi everyone, yesterday I traded a couple of ATC’s and am now waiting for one that features Mooch the Lavinia cat, so this inspired me to have a play with my own Mooch. I also wanted to create a fancy fold card for this week’s Allsorts Challenge and to incorporate flowers for this month’s Lavinia Creative Challenge - here is the result.

I die cut a triptych card in white, and three white panels on which to create my scene. I created the background by blending Elements inks using acetate circle and hill masks (I held down  my panels on my magnetic stencil board with magnets to allow me to line everything up properly). I then stamped Mooch in Nocturne, Spring Trees in Acorn, bluebells in Paradise / Shady Lane and grass in Shady Lane (1st/2nd generation) Versafine Clair. I stamped cherry blossom from the Spring Trees set using 2 shades of pink Distress Oxide, then added Fairy Bells stamped in Shady Lane and the petals coloured with white Posca pen. 

I added a retired Lavinia sentiment which required some complex masking to fit in the available space .. I had a few problems with this and ended up with a few marks on the card, but having spent so much time on the card I did my best to disguise it with a bit of random doodling! I added a dangling heart for Mooch to look at, and finally I added a few highlights with white Posca, Sakura Stardust and Spectrum Noir sparkle pens, then matted the finished panels onto pink linen card stock and the triptych base card.

Stamps: Lavinia Mooch, Spring Trees, Bluebell, Fairy Bells, Grass, Birds, Fairy Charms, The World is Full of Beauty (retired);
Media: Lavinia Elements inks (Blue Lagoon, Olive, Sundance); Tim Holtz Distress Oxide inks (Kitsch Flamingo, Spun Sugar); Versafine Clair (Nocturne, Acorn, Shady Lane, Paradise, Charming Pink); Posca pen (white); Sakura Stardust pen (yellow); Spectrum Noir sparkle pen (clear);
Tools: Studio Light Essentials triptych dies; Lavinia acetate circle and Mini Hill masks.

Challenges I would like to enter:

Allsorts #779 - More Than One Fold
Crafty Animals #83 - Use an Animal
Day of the Month Card Club #63 - “Vappu” - Finnish Spring Festival
Festive Fridays (May) - Spring Flowers
Four Seasons (May) - Anything Goes Spring
Incy Wincy (May) - Spring and/or an Animal
Inkspirational #315 - Seasonal (Spring)
Lavinia Creative Challenge (May) - Favourite Florals (2nd entry)
Little Red Wagon #755 - Create Your Own Background
Path of Positivity #121 - Anything Goes Positive - TOP PICK
Show Us Your Pussycats #100 - Furrything Goes - WINNER
Simon Says (Monday) - Light and Airy
Simon Says (Wednesday) - Use Die Cuts
Simply Create Too #200 - Add an Animal

I see that Allsorts Challenge are celebrating their 15th birthday on May 18th so they are asking everyone to spread the word. I’m a big fan of AALL & Create so I’m sure the prizes will be awesome!! 😍

I was lucky enough to receive a Lavinia gift voucher for my birthday from a good friend, so seeing as there are some new stamps being released today plus I have my eye on some of the new VFC colours (which are as rare as hens’ teeth here in the UK right now!) I may just go have a look on their website and see what’s what over there.

Take care and thanks for visiting.