Saturday, 29 December 2012

Home For Christmas

This is my solution to Case File #52 over at CSI - it's my last week as a Special Investigator for December and I have enjoyed every minute of it. It's been incredible to see my efforts featured alongside all the talented CSI Detectives.
So here's the Case File (click on the image to enlarge) . . .

. . . and here's how it works - 

Debbi (CSI Mastermind) finds these beautiful images and uses them to inspire each Case File. the idea is to solve the case by using

  • all the colours in the scheme
  • at least two pieces of Evidence
  • at least one piece of Testimony

You can also download the CSI Coordinates - a new set of fabulous printable elements and pp for each Case, designed by the amazing Michele Singh.

One of the best things about Christmas for me is spending time with the people I care about. I don't get to see my boys too often these days, so it's wonderful when they manage to make it home for Christmas, if only for a day or two. 

These photos of my eldest son Richard were taken at Christmas 2009 and I think it showed great foresight on Richard's part to dress to coordinate perfectly with the Scheme in Case File#52! Also thanks to Sally and Ian for arranging for their home to provide a tastefully neutral background! :o)

  • The Scheme: All the colours have been used
  • The Evidence: Wood - the little star; metal-rimmed tag; kraft paper - the bigger star and the tag bag; newsprint paper - behind the photo and newsprint stamped paper alphas; tags; circles - on the pp; number stickers - dymo printed; eyelets; twine.
  • The Testimony: handwritten on the various tags, all about how much we enjoyed our  day at Ian and Sally's.

Here are some close-ups of the Evidence

The hidden tag pulls out to reveal this picture of Rich having a post-prandial snooze!

Newsprint pattern stamped onto tag and alphas, circles, number stickers made with the Dymo Printer

Eyelets, Kraft star sticker

Metal-rimmed tag, Kraft paper bag, twine

Gorgeous wooden star from my last Quirky Kit

Grungeboard number, newsprint patterned stamped onto background.

Well that's it - thanks for looking and I hope you're having a  wonderful week wherever you are :o) xxx

Thursday, 27 December 2012


Ok so this is probably going to be my longest blog post EVER, but I thought you might like to see some pictures of my FABulous Scrapbook Magazine Scrapbooker of the Year 2012 Runner-Up prize - I feel very very lucky indeed :o)

As well as all the extra stash, I also get to see one of my pages printed in a magazine which has been a source of inspiration to me since I first discovered scrapping, so I am really bowled over by it all.
Thank you so much to all at Scrapbook Magazine and to the sponsors for their generosity - The Crafters WorkshopHeidi SwappAmerican CraftsBazill Basics PaperBasic GreyTando CreativeFancy Pants and Maya Road.

Lindsey Hopkins, editor of the magazine, contacted me a few weeks ago to tell me the news, but I had to keep it under my hat until the magazine came out. A couple of days later, Postie Nick delivered a giant pizza box - can you imagine how exciting it was to open the box and find all these gorgeous goodies?!
Well, you can't see it all properly like that, so I took a few close-ups!
Brilliant chipboard pieces from Tando Creative - can't wait to start playing with these -  thank you Tando! 
Look at this gorgeous collection from American Crafts - Amy Tangerine Sketchbook papers,  Day Book and  funky fabric stickers, as well as some squishy foam Thickers - wow! Thanks American Crafts :o)
These fab masks are from The Crafters Workshop - they're designer by an innovative  mixed media artist called Julie Fei-Fan Balzer and I think they are going to be an inspiration to get going on my art journal at last - thanks Crafters Workshop!
Beautiful romantic vintage style card kit from Basic Grey - these will be perfect for Valentine's Day which will be upon us in no time, so I will be spending a happy few hours cutting and sticking with this kit - thanks Basic Grey :o)
Gorgeous trinkets from Maya Road - can't wait to have a go with the  little  perspex houses - thanks Maya Road!
Beautiful journalling cards from Bazill Basics Paper, plus some fab twinklies and a really useful  Marathon Runner - thanks Bazzill! :o)
The luscious No Limits collection of patterned papers from Heidi Swapp, along with  a  really handy set of clear stamps - thank you thank you Heidi :o)
The fab and funky Summer Soul brag book kit from Fancy Pants Designs, along with matching trims and  buttons - woohoo! Thanks Fancy Pants :o)

I have been a very good girl and kept all this in its box since it arrived several weeks ago - but now it's time to play!!! It's going to be so much fun seeing what I can do with all this ... is it wrong that my mouth is actually watering when I look at it?! :o)


Guess WHAT!!??!!! To my huge surprise and great chuffedness I've been selected as a Runner Up in the Scrapbook Magazine Scrapbooker of the Year Competition 2012 - wooHOOOOO!!!!
Can you imagine how excited I was when Lindsey Hopkins, the Editor, emailed me a few weeks ago to let me know ... I got even more excited when my fabulous prize arrived a couple of days later (a HUGE box of scrapping goodies) ... and then can you imagine how difficult it was to keep the whole thing under my hat until the official on-sale date which is TODAY!?
In order to enter the competition, you had to send in three layouts, along with instructions and list of materials. These are the pages I sent in (with a lot of encouragement from my friends!)
This is the one which is in Scrapbook Magazine issue 69 - it shows a tiny me wearing a jumper which Granny probably knitted (I've coloured it pink with a Cut 'n' Dry Nib and some Distress Ink in Picked Raspberry). I love this photo - in the background there is a fab vintage tv, one of those classic Hoovers and my little wooden horse).
You can see I've used one of those vintage PG Tips cards I got in the charity shop a while back, one of the flowers I crocheted to decorate the favour bags for the ladies at our wedding last summer.
This part was a bit of an experiment, but it worked out quite well so I will use this idea again - I added a rub-on to a clear disc which was part of the packing for some CD-Rs. After adhering it over the title, I covered the sticky dots with one of my favourite Cuttlebugged bottletops (I posted a tutorial a couple of weeks ago)

This one shows John and me during one of our walks in the beautiful Norfolk countryside - we often take a picture like this with with the camera held at arm's length and I like the way they turn out.
I had lots of fun with the background on this one and again used several "rescued" items and home-made embellishments. Here are some close-ups
Another Cuttlebugged bottletop, spiral rose made from Grunge Paper, another crocheted flower, butterflies cut from pp...
Rub-on applied to white-painted wooden garden label ...
More butterflies, this time created with a Stampin' Up! stamp
And last but not least, my old mate Archie Boy, peeping out from a hidey hole as he was wont to do. The corrugated cardboard folder at the bottom opens to reveal more pictures...
.. of some of Archie's favourite spots!
I love this pointing finger stamp. The rose was made from old book pages, as were the leaves, which were created by cutting around a stamped image. The little key was made by die cutting Shrink Plastic, then applying embossing powder and using a heat gun to emboss and shrink simultaneously - big fun!
Butterfly die and tab punch were both from Stampin' Up! Corrugated cardboard packaging distressed by tearing and inking with Distress Inks in Black Soot and Walnut Stain.
Part of the grunged-up background - I started with kraft cardstock and went mad with gesso, collage tissue, stamping, inking and so on to create an interesting background.
I see you Archie boy! x
Can you imagine how difficult it was to write instructions for this one without going on and on ... I know, it's hard to imagine me going on and on .... :o)
I will do another post with pictures of the amazing goodies in my prize parcel ... I was very good and put them back in the box to bring out after Christmas but I'm itching to play now!
Well if you're still reading this extra-long post, thanks for your perseverance and thanks again to friends (especially Trina and Sally) for all the nagging and cajoling and to my long-suffering husband John for all your support and enthusiasm :o)

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Tag Swap Show 'n' Tell

Wow! I was thrilled to bits when I got home one cold wet Friday afternoon to find a little parcel of gorgeous tags waiting for me. The tag swap was organised by the lovely Carolyn Saxby, creator of Tag Tuesday - we each created five tags and sent them off, then Carolyn divvied them up and sent us each five tags by five different designers. It must have been lots of fun to go through all those tags but also lots of hard work.
I really enjoy being on the Tag Team and perusing fellow Taggers' tiny works of art each week, so to receive  five actual tags in the post was brilliant :o) Here they are

 This one was from Carolyn Saxby - the background is a gorgeous mixture of colours, patterns and textures, the little gingerbread man is so sweet and ...

 I just love the cute little bell and the luscious ribbon - Thanks Carolyn! x
Next up is this one from Valerie AKA "Mrs A" - I love the cute retro reindeer image and the simple gold against red is really striking. I'm also very envious of Mrs A's embossing skills! Look at the detail ...

Thanks Mrs A - it's boootiful (as we say in Norfolk!)
This one is from another Valerie - I love the vintage style and the pretty mixture of ribbons and beads tied through the top.
Here's a close-up of the sweet little angel. Thanks Valerie! x
This one is from SusieJ - I love the bright, fresh colour scheme and all the pretty details ...
... look at the tiny beads threaded onto wire and wrapped around the tree - love it! Thanks SusieJ! x
Last but by no means least, this one is from Jan Smith - I love the design and all the cool details, like the vintage label and the tiny button for Rudolph's nose is actually stitched on ...
... and look at this tiny little bell :o) Thanks Jan! x
I've put all of these up with my Christmas cards and they look FAB! Thanks again everyone xxx
Now here's a quick look at the tags I sent down to Cornwall for Carolyn to distribute - wonder who got them? I hope they like them :o)

Thank you Graphics Fairy for all the vintage images :o)
Well that's it for now - Happy Christmas everyone and may 2013 bring you everything you wish for xxx


Ho! Ho! Ho! Hope you're all having a Cool Yule wherever you are.
Here are a couple of festive tags I made myself, but what I'm really excited about is the ones which came in the post from the Tag Swap - I can't WAIT to show you those!
Watch this space for my Tag Swap Show 'n' Tell :o)
TFL xxx

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Happy Day - CSI #51

Well, this is my third week as Special Investigator over at CSI and I'm having a lovely time - enjoying every challenge and chuffed to bits to see my efforts featured alongside the work of designers I have so much respect and admiration for WOW! pinching myself still :o)

Here is this week's Case File (click on image to enlarge)
How gorgeous is that?
Debbi (CSI Mastermind) finds these beautiful images and uses them to inspire each Case File. The idea is to solve the case by using

  • all the colours in the scheme
  • at least two pieces of Evidence
  • at least one piece of Testimony

You can also download the CSI Coordinates - a new set of fabulous printable elements and pp for each Case, designed by the amazing Michele Singh. This week, I've used one of Michele's sketches as well

I thought this pretty colour combination together with the glamorous atmosphere of this Case would be perfect to showcase one of my favourite pictures from our wedding.

I love this happy smiley picture of John with his Mum
We knew that it was a huge effort for Viv to make it to our wedding, but we were so glad that she did. This picture has captured a happy sparkly moment just after the ceremony.
The Scheme: used all the colours, plus a touch of green (10% accent colour is allowed!)
The Evidence: circles - buttons and brads; beads - added to the frame; rhinestones; something shiny - the resin rose on the RHS; pen work - doodling around the title and faux stitching;
The Testimony: rhinestones added to journalling spot; I was also inspired by the words "best, sparkle/shine"
Here are some close-ups

Journalling spot with added sparkles!
Doodling around the title, beads added to frame, shiny resin rose, button
More pretties!
It was fun to make a page without using any patterned papers - just a sheet of white and lots of scraps and trinkets. This was a fab sketch to use thanks Michele and a really fun Case File thanks Debbi!

Thanks for looking - check out CSI for loads of new inspiration and ideas - every week! :o)