Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Perfect Match

This page was inspired by Melenia Agapides' sketch for the July challenge over at Scrap365.
It's a beautiful sketch so I thought it would be ideal for a romantic page like this one, which shows John and me outside the church where we got married nearly a year ago now (blimey where did THAT go?!)
Just like us, it's a little bit raggedy around the edges but hopefully turned out all right in the end! Here are some close ups (trying to practice my photography skills!)
Here you can just see the edge of one of the loveheart doilies from our wedding picnic. Plain white letters were tinted with green and pink chalk inks and just dirtied up a bit with distress ink.

The plain white jigsaw pieces got the same treatment before the letters were stamped with Stazon.

The mist is a Smooch Spritzer which has a shine to it you can't see here. I made liberal use of ready made die cuts and you may recognise the little flags as a freebie printable download from Scrap365 - I love those freebies!
It's weird seeing all this pink and green again - this time last year I was up to my ears in it, what with making 100m of bunting, matching favours, table decorations .... you get the picture!
Anyway enough waffle already! Thanks for looking :)

A Toucan of My Affection!

It's become a bit of a running joke that when my husband says "token" in his Norfolk accent it sounds to me like "toucan" - well, to be fair, I probably find this joke funnier than he does, but he takes it in good part.
Anyway, I made him this 3-D sort of card-in-a-box which he's stashed away with his little collection of cards which I've made him since we met just over two years ago. Here it is, next to the "Toucan of My Affection" I gave him at Christmas (because he asked me if we were really going to just do "toucan" presents hehehe)
I was quite chuffed with how it turned out - the box was made from one sheet of scrapbook cardstock which I cut using an old gift box as a template and the toucan was made with scraps of card, feathers and a boggly eye. Thecute little wooden toucan was only 99p from eBay! But he doesn't know that ...


Here is my take on this week's challenge "You're So Sweet" over at Daring Cardmakers
It's for my friend Kate, who is famous for her delicious cakes. There were some little cupcake-shaped papier mache boxes in The Range last week...hmmmm......

Summer of Color Week 3 - Baseball Nut

Here is my effort creation for week 3 of the Summer of Color challenge over at Twinkle, Twinkle - each week Kristin gives us a different icecream flavour for inspiration and this week it was "Baseball Nut". Now, I had never heard of this (probably can't get it in the UK) but it looks and sounds deLISH

A smooth, vanilla flavored ice cream swirled with a black raspberry ribbon and loaded with cashews"
-Baskin Robbins
Mmmmmmmm......anyway I digress - and I am in danger of dribbling on my keyboard! 
I've been wanting to have a go at ATCs for a while now, so I decided I'd try and produce one for each of these six weekly challenges. Not sure how successful they are so far, but I'm having a lovely time! 
I got really messy with gesso, tissue, inks and liquid pearls for this one. I've also started working on a little fold-up book to put them all in at the end.
If you haven't already, pop over and have a look at some of the amazing pieces of art which people have created for this challenge - I'm embarrassed to put mine on there really, but everyone's so supportive and in any case, every journey has to start with that first step ...

Friday, 22 June 2012

Just Married

Here is my take on Shimelle's ANFSCD challenge for June over at UKScrappers

I had a lovely time following Shimelle's tutorial over at my scrap buddy Trina's on Wednesday evening and we both managed to completely finish a layout in one go (which is a first!) - this page just goes to show how far you can make a little patterned paper go and I will probably do several matching pages through our wedding album. This is also a great way to squeeze in several pictures AND some of the memorabilia I squirrelled away at the time...the confetti in the clear bag which is washi-taped onto the RHS of the page was some of what had been sprinkled in our bed that night (and there was a fair amount of it stuck to various unmentionable places too)

Summer of Color - Mint Choc Chip

Here is my take on week two of the Summer of Color challenge over at Twinkle, Twinkle. Each week features a different icecream flavour and the inspiration for this week was Mint Choc Chip. I wasn't too sure about working with these colours but in fact I really enjoyed myself and I must say I'm really getting into the ATC thing now - might have to find a swap site...
Oh dear, they didn't really scan too well (because of the lumpiness I think!) - in real life they're more textural and less blurry than this! Don't have time for too much waffle tonight as I need to get some sleep before I go to work in the morning (work SO gets in the way sometimes!), but I used acrylic paints with a crackle medium and walnut stain distress ink, a swirl of pearlescent glue, some tiny scraps of ribbon and a couple of glittered brads. The flower on the left was a printed chipboard shape which I roughed up a bit and the spiral rose was made from an old book page coloured with distress inks and cosmic shimmer mist.
Really will have to improve on my photography!
Nighty night x

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Rich is 30!

I cannot believe that my son is THIRTY YEARS OLD in a couple of weeks!!! blimey where did the time go?! Anyway, I've made him this card, inspired by this week's challenge "A Hole in One" over at Daring Cardmakers
The idea was to use the negative space left by your punches and die cuts. I used my Cricut and the Crop-a-Dile and dug out a 6" paper pad which has been languishing on a shelf for months. It got me thinking differently and using stuff, which is always good, and I really enjoyed myself, but I'm not altogether happy with the end result and not sure how impressed Richard will be! Maybe I will have another little tweak tomorrow....

Wednesday, 20 June 2012


Hello everyone and happy WOYWW :)
 I'm having such a lovely day so far - just sat in the early morning sunshine with my breakfast coffee, listening to the birds and watching the antics of the magpies. 
What a beautiful world we live in ... maybe I should get up earlier and try to start every day like this....hmmmm

Anyway, back to the business in hand - I'm not sure if this counts, but I can't use the camera today, so I'm going to post this picture I took a while ago of something you wouldn't usually see on my workdesk - my husband John! 
It's not a great picture as I was in such a hurry to capture the moment, and I can't remember what he was doing now - some kind of man-crafting! He has actually waded in to help several times when I've had big batches of stuff to do, and became quite a dab-hand (so to speak!) at chalking the edges of the flowers on our wedding invites...
Since then, my desk has accumulated a lot more semi-permanent clutter - these days, John rarely ventures in here, except to hoover the tiny floor space which is left, empty the bin (with caution, because he knows now that not all rubbish is actually rubbish!) and sometimes to bring me a G&T, which is a subtle way of telling me that I've been "playing in my room" for hours and it's time to start cooking dinner!

Now I'm off to have a snout at everybody else's workdesks over at Julia's Stamping Ground

Happy scrapping! Annie :)

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Summer of Color Week One

I only came across this challenge yesterday, but it looks really fun and inspiring so I'm going to give it a go - only trouble was, I only have a couple of hours this morning to come up with something in order to make the deadline for entries and now I have to post it quickly as we have unplanned visitors turning up any minute! EEEK!
If you want to see what it's all about, click on the blinky over on the right of your screen, or click here
The challenge is to create something (anything) using the suggested colours which are all icecream flavours - this week it was "Rainbow Sherbet" and next week is "Mint Choc Chip"
Here is my somewhat rushed attempt - also my first ever ATC!
I will try harder next week - that's a promise!
Ok I've had another play with these colours - still not quite happy with it but I'm enjoying the journey and that's the important thing!
Anyway, I need to start thinking about mint choc chip now ... :)

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Little Miracles

Despite the lack of sunshine so far this summer, I am happy to report that the garden is bursting into life regardless. It never fails to fill me with wonder when we put a handful of tiny brown things in the ground and a few weeks later - POW!!! new life begins to emerge. How amazing is that?!
Here is our tiny veg plot last spring. My husband used all the bits of broken brick and flint which we'd dug out of it to make a little pathway in the shape of an "A" (aaaw, did you see what he did there?!)
It doesn't look much, but you'd be amazed how many fruit and veg we managed to grow in there. Here it is a few weeks later
This year we hope to do even better, and possibly squeeze some veggies in amongst the flower beds too, in the best cottage garden tradition! I have loads of herbs in pots too, some of which soldiered on all through the winter, to my surprise. It's so good to be able to nip out and pick a few herbs when you need them - makes me feel all Earth Motherly!

Friday, 15 June 2012

Freebie Papers

This page was made using mostly freebie papers from Scrapbook Magazine issue 64. This time they were HOTP Serendipity and I really enjoyed using them. The layout is from a sketch by Melanie Joyce in Scrapbook Magazine - I've followed it almost exactly for a change!

As it happened, Sally conveniently dressed to match these papers when I took this photo on my 51st birthday in March this year - how fortuitous!

Retail Therapy

Yesterday we went shopping for lithium batteries and photo paper in Staples, and next door was The Range - well, it would have been churlish not to...

The 3D frames were only £1 for the one picture version and £2 for the 4 picture version. Doilies were irresistible, I really needed the mini alphabets and the twines, the self-adhesive cotton lace was just too gorgeous and you can also see two little boxes of wooden die cuts - my husband actually spotted these and we couldn't believe there were 48 in each box for only £2.99 and well, John may have been offended if I didn't buy at least two different assortments...

PG Tips

Look what I found in our local charity shop!
They are selling vintage Brooke Bond PG Tips Tea cards at £1 for 20 - it was so difficult to pick out 20 from a shoebox stuffed full! Maybe I will go back and offer a tenner for the whole lot and see what they say...
I think they will make gorgeous embellishments for scrapbooks and all sorts :) I HEART charity shops!

My Boy Archie

Here's a page featuring my gorgeous and sorely missed furry friend Archie.
This is the FIFTH  page I've made from my Quirky Kits and I still have loads left. The layout was inspired by a sketch from Cathy Schellenberg for Scrapbook Magazine.
The Amy Tangerine Alphabet which came with the main kit has been so versatile - it's a pale grey pattern in its raw state, but takes inks really well and this time I've used Walnut Stain Distress Ink to colour the bottom of the letters so they stand out against the background and echo Archie's fur coat.
I've also used some of the gorgeous suede effect leaves and the roses are made out of one of the glassine envelopes which came in the kit, which I first tinted with Tattered Rose Distress Ink.
Here's a YouTube tutorial showing you how easy it is to make spiral roses - I put them all over the place now and especially like them made out of old book pages...it's SO easy honestly!
The only thing I had to add to this page from my stash was some yellow twine, everything else came from the Quirky Kit.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012


I can't believe it's really Wednesday again already! this week I was determined not to leave it until nearly Thursday, so I hope to have more time for snooping around other people's workdesks than I did last week...

If you haven't had a peek yet, pop over to Julia's blog Stamping Ground and have a happy WOYWW 158!
You can see that the window is festooned with ribbons - this is not my latest attempt at interior design, it is the contents of my overflowing ribbon drawer which I finally got around to sorting out. Actually, once I got stuck in, I really enjoyed it, in a weird, OCD kind of way - and my husband couldn't resist wading in to help (he's a bit OCD too, truth be told).
Anyway, the end result is very satisfying; I can see what I have now and I definitely don't need any more for a while...well, maybe the reds and oranges are a bit thin on the ground.....
You can also see a collection of bits and pieces I've been putting together ready for Shimells's ANFSCD challenge over at UKScrappers - I love how it gets you shopping in your own stash, like retail therapy without spending any money!

Thursday, 7 June 2012

My First Quirky Kit wooHOO!!!

I was SO excited when my Quirky Kit parcel arrived last week - so many beautiful papers and lots of other goodies to play with (see pics in an earlier post). I've had so much fun already and there's loads left!
Here are my first FOUR pages,
This first one was inspired by a sketch by Sandie Vincent in the June issue of Scrap365.
I used one of the patterned papers as a background and threw several more on top of it - I love how the papers aren't all from one collection - then added in one of the gorgeous vintage stamps and one of the beautiful little butterfly buttons. The Amy Tangerine alphabet, Elle's Studio cutouts, doilies and vintage style trims were all included - I didn't need to add anything except ink and glue. There were several different sizes of glassine envelopes in the kit and I had lots of fun experimenting with those. For this layout, I stamped a script background onto the glassine paper using Stazon - but I have loads more ideas to try!

This one was also inspired by one of this month's Scrap 365 sketch, by Katherine Sutton. 
You can't really see the organza fabric which I've tucked in behind the papers, but it's a beautiful soft grey. I chalk inked the base of the alphas this time to make them stand out against the background and I also coloured the bee on the cotton trim with Whispers markers. The butterfly and the chevron were cut out of some of the patterned papers. I added a sprinkle of stars and another cute button from the kit and also the bits you tear off the envelope which photos are delivered in , because I thought it looked interesting.
I've entered this one for the Scrap 365 June Challenge. It's inspired by a sketch from Wendy McKee.
This time I've added in a handful of yellow seed beads, a paper clip and some floss. It's the same alphabet but coloured with red ink this time. The glassine envelope was crumpled and coloured with alcohol inks.
And last but not least - this one is for the June Simple Recipes challenge at UKScrappers -thanks to Mel from A Trip Down Memory Lane. This page shows my lovely husband before I met him and I used the glassine envelope to hide my journalling as it's a bit soppy! Apart from the gorgeous photo (!) I only added 2  thickers foam alphas, some floss and a scrap of washi tape. Oh and the kraft background. 
And I haven't even started on the mini kit yet......!

Scrap365 Sketch Challenge for June - TWISTER

Here is the June Sketch Challenge by Wendy McKee over at Scrap365

And here is my take on it - using just some of the fabulous papers and embellishments from my first ever Quirky Kit! All I added were some yellow seed beads, a paper clip and some red floss. I've had lots of fun with the glassine envelopes which were included in the kit - in this case I crumpled one up and coloured it with alcohol inks.

This was such a lively sketch, I thought it suited the subject really well. Thanks Wendy!

Wednesday, 6 June 2012


Ok my desk is looking a bit messier this week! But I have made 4 scrapbook pages, 5 tags and two cards over the last two or three days. You can see what's left of the alarm clock, along with several broken watches...
..and on the left you can just about make out the beginnings of a mini album which I am planning to fill with cogs and sprockets and pictures of my boys. In my head it looks really good.....!

Monday, 4 June 2012

12 Tags of 2012 - JUNE

Here is my take on the Tim Holtz tag for June. I had SO much fun with this one! The most exciting bit was learning how to tint a black and white photo with Distress Inks and Ranger cut-n-dry nibs - this technique will be popping up all over my scrapbooks now...
You can't see it too well here (because I am rubbish at photography) but this is one of my favourite pictures of my Grandpa - obviously I didn't use the original though! All the bits and pieces commemorate things which were significant in Grandpa's life - roses, music, tailoring, mechanics and the GPO, where he worked from the age of 15 until 6 months before he died at the age of 65.
As usual, I had to improvise a bit with the supplies I had available, but I was well chuffed with the end result!
Thanks again Tim!

Playing Tag Catch-Up!

Whilst browsing in Blogland last week, I discovered the 12 Tags of 2012 challenge on the Tim Holtz blog and decided to give it a go, because I just love ALL Tim's stuff!
I was too late for the May challenge, but I've managed to do June's AND catch up Feb, March, April and May. I had so much fun with these and learnt such a lot - even though I had to improvise supplies quite a bit. Tim's techniques are really clever but achievable and doing these tags has made me look at some of my stash in a new way, which is always a good thing.
Here are my "catch-up" tags
Top left is Feb - the background was created with a resist technique, stamping with acrylic paint first, then using distress inks over the top. March is top right - the butterflies were die cut from grungeboard which first had double sided sticky sheet applied to it, then tiny scraps of paper were added to create a mosaic effect, the spaces between were "grouted" with embossing powder and then glossy accents were added to the paper chips to make them look like broken china. Bottom left - this one used crinkled tissue and distress inks to make a lovely grungy background, various stamped images were added and the paper roses were dunked in glossy accents to give a porcelain effect. Finally, bottom right - the grungeboard diecut was distressed and embossed with three different colours and the background used a clever technique of stamping an image inside an embossing folder with archival ink, then running it through the Cuttlebug so the embossing kind of comes out on top of the inked image - FAB!!! Thanks Tim :)

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Rumtopf Time!

Well I've been very busy this morning and started my first ever Rumtopf AND a batch of Lemon Liqueur which is destined to be used for summer cocktails at our anniversary party in July. Here are my new babies
Next I plan to add some peaches or nectarines, then some of our own strawberries and perhaps some plums later in the year. They should be perfect by Christmas - if they last that long!
Here is the recipe I found on a site called German Deli

Candy Giveaway at Floral Fantasies

Just been having a wander through Blogland and found Brenda's blog - all kinds of creative ideas and inspiration especially for stamping techniques AND there is also a fab Candy Giveaway going on with lots of Tim Holtz goodies - go on, have a look, you know you want to ....
Click on the image on the right to check it out :o)

Friday, 1 June 2012


I've been having a lovely time with Shrink Plastic! Haven't played with this since I was a kid and the 4 of us used to fight over who got the little Shrinky from the cereal box....aaah those were the days, they should start putting them in Special K for grown ups - you could collect mobile charms - they are definitely missing a marketing opportunity there!
Anyway, here are the little charms I made last night ...
The detail doesn't show up too well here (photography is not my best thing!) but I've put a penny in to give you an idea of scale.

  • They were mostly done by stamping with stazon then cutting around the image before shrinking. 
  • The metallic ones were mostly die cut, then covered with clear pigment ink and embossing powder before being heated, so they were shrunk and embossed at the same time - WELL cool!!! 
  • I didn't have a crown stamp or die which would have come out big enough, so just hand cut one from paper to use as a template - may have to bling that one up a bit!
  • I still want to try some colouring pencils on a stamped outline, see how that comes out. Sharpies didn't work too well for me, except for drawing the crown outline.
  • I definitely found the opaque cream version easier to work with than the clear, but I guess that depends on what effect you're after...
  • One VERY useful tip - if you are going to want a hole in the charm. I'm going to put jump rings though these to go on a scrapbook page or whatever.

Fathers Day

Here's my effort for Father's Day this year - my dad's always very appreciative of my cuttin and stickin...at least he makes all the right noises and sticks it on the fridge (how old am I !?)