Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Where does the Time Go?

Just a quick post as I've finished this without a minute to spare (seems to be a pattern emerging recently!)
This is my tag for February, inspired by the amazing Tim Holtz and his 12 Tags of 2013. Every single month he comes up with something new and fabulous to have a go at, and even if I don't have all the supplies (yet!) I always have fun and I always learn something.
For this tag,Tim used some gorgeous Distress products which I have yet to treat myself to, but I just I used my normal Distress Ink Pads in three ways - direct to the background, spritzed with water whilst heat drying; with the Ranger sponge Applicator Tool to distress the edges; using Ranger Cut'n'Dry Nibs to colour the stamped image (Chronology stamp new from Papermania) with diluted DI (the image has to be stamped with Archival Ink so it won't smudge when you add the DI).
I didn't have any embossed Kraft Coredinations either, so I used Fiskars Texture Plates (haven't had them out in a while!) to dry emboss normal Coredinations cardstock and sanded it off to reveal the pattern.
Neither do I have any of that yummy Tissue Tape, but I stamped a pattern on some plain paper tape to create my version of Tim's ribbon idea and I think it worked out ok... I would still like some Tissue Tape though .... :o)
Anyway, nip over and check out the real thing - Tim's just a crafty genius! And you can also check out all the other people like me who have linked their versions of the tag - which what I'm off to do right  now!
Cheerio, TFL
Annie :o) xxx

Hugs and Happy Tears!

Last Saturday was our first Scrap Club meeting at the brilliant King's Head at Bawburgh - six of us had a great day scrapping to our hearts' content and the friendly, helpful staff looked after us really well.

Of course it would have been rude not to sample the deLISH lunch menu(I may have sampled a bit more than some of the others I admit!) and have a nice glass of wine with it, and then we just had to have another glass or two in the bar afterwards whilst waiting for DH to pick us up!
All in all, a lovely day AND I managed to finish TWO scrap pages! Here's the proof
I love these pictures of hugs with two of my best mates, taken during a gathering in our garden an hour before our wedding in the summer of 2011. The idea was to thank everyone for everthing they did for us, but  I just kept dissolving into tears ... emotional incontinence it's called!

This page was inspired by the February Simple Recipe at UKScrappers which is a challenge designed by Leo of Crafty Templates (and Quirky Kits!) - it's a great way to get your mojo flowing and use up some of that hoard of stash.
Each month, Leo posts a pdf which you can download. This gives you a combinations of three colours to use, a list of three other ingredients, a sample kit, page and sketch to follow if you want to.
This week the three colours were Lipstick Pink, Mint Green and Toasted Almond (easy!)
I more or less followed the sketch.
The three added ingredients were -

  • Use up Christmas or winter themed stickers (didn't have any so cheated a bit and used star stickers)
  • Make a layout in the style of a divided page (or you could really use a divided page but I didn't)
  • Use ledger paper (I love ledger paper so of course I had some)

Then I did another page which will follow nicely in my album, but it's not a divided page style layout - showing me trying hard not to smudge my mascara!

I still need to add some journaling to this one and the other one come to that, but I need to get these uploaded to UKS today so that will have to wait.
TFL and to my Scrap Club mates - thanks again for a lovely day!

Annie :o) xxx

Just Us 2

Case File #59 over at CSI was full of inspiration as always - I didn't have much time to play this week but I just couldn't resist having a go anyway! Here's the Case File (click on the image to enlarge)

The wonderful Debbi Tehrani came up with yet another fantastic Scene to inspire us - she pulls out colours and elements from this image to create clues which you must use in order to solve the Case -
The Scheme: you must use all five colours (bright red, pale pink, greyish green, charcoal and pale grey) and Debbi even gives the colours funky names.
The Evidence: you must use at least two of these elements on your page (this will get you rummaging through that stash!)
The Testimony: you must use at least one of these ideas to inspire your journaling (telling your story is a very important part of CSI and it's really helped me get over my issues with the writing bit!)

Each week, you can also download the CSI Coordinates - fab free printable elements and pp designed by the brilliant Michele Singh to help you solve the case. There is now a library of these at CSI which you can access any time if you're a member - they really are fanTASTic, check them out!

So here is my solution to the case
It was a very quick page, because I used a sheet of beautiful paper from Aida Domisiewicz which did most of the work for me.

I wanted to capture this most important moment during our perfect wedding day, when John and I were making our vows  - after all the months of preparations and excitement, really this was what it was all for. There were 120 friends and family with us in the church and I was so nervous, but at this moment everyone else seemed to fade away and it was just us 2, promising to love and care for each other come what may forever. Still chokes me up just to think about it ....

...of course after that we had THE most amazing party - but that's another story!

The Scheme: Used all the colours plus white
The Evidence: birds, branch, embossing ad something transparent (clear heat embossed words behind the picture - luckily I had a stamp with the words from Corinthians which our lovely vicar, Simon, read during the service)
The Testimony: I used the Inspiration Word "Love" and handwrote my journaling on strips above the title. Here's a close-up where you can see the embossing a bit better too

TFL - check out CSI for yourself if you haven't already - it's BRILLIANT!
Annie :o) xxx

B is for Bailey

I love these fun pictures of John with his grandson Bailey, who was about three at the time - he has this ear-to-ear grin which we call his "flip-top smile".
This was my page for Case File #58 over at CSI where the incredible Debbi Tehrani comes up with new ways to inspire us every single week.
Here's the Case File (click on the image to enlarge it)
Debbi takes elements from the inspiration image to come up with Clues to get your mojo going. In order to solve the Case, you have to include the following:
  • All the colours in the Scheme
  • At least two pieces of Evidence
  • At least one item of Testimony

As this was the second Case of the month, we also have a fabulous sketch to follow from the amazing Emma Stafrace
And last but most definitely not least, every week you also get a new set of CSI Coordinates, free printable elements and pp designed by the talented Michele Singh to help you solve the Case

I had a lovely time solving this Case - here's what I came up with

The Sketch: Emma's sketches are always a joy to work with and this was no exception
The Scheme: I used all the colours - you're also allowed neutrals plus extra accent colour up to 10% so this time I added some white and a deeper golden yellow because I so wanted to use this gorgeous ribbon from my Quirky Kit! 
The Evidence: I used lots - metal, eyelets, string, jewels, fabric, jagged edge, lacing, something sheer, transport accent (car from the Coordinates in a Cuttlebugged bottletop)
The Testimony: I tucked my journaling behind the sheer fabric of the ribbon - it's all about how much we love Bailey's "flip-top smile"!

Annie :o) xxx

Thursday, 21 February 2013

G is for Garden

We're on the letter G this week over at Tag Tuesday and the first G that popped into my head was....
Garden. One of my most favourite places to spend time and get my hands dirty (along with my kitchen and my workroom of course). Another favourite way to spend time ever since I can remember is reading - I can't imagine my home without books in it and I find other people's bookshelves fascinating ... anyway, this quote from Cicero really speaks to me, which is amazing when you think that he would have said it around 50 years BC.
I really enjoyed experimenting with pages from an old dictionary and Distress Inks. The cute little hamster is from a pack of die cuts I've been using for ages (bought them in a Lakeland shop I think!) and I drew the little seedling on scrap card, coloured it with inks then added die cut leaves. Of course it had to be real garden twine through the top!
Then I carried on and made a couple of catch-up tags ...
E for elephant - this one was a leftover piece of pp and I cut the E from my new Bigz alphabet die set which I bought from Stampin' Up!
F is for flowers - another appropriate page from an old dictionary and several shades of DI, this time I used the Tim Holtz Tattered Florals die and accented the flowers with doodling and beaded centres.
I'm kind of working up towards getting started on my Art Journal and tags are a less scary way to experiment with background techniques...I'm so chicken!
A x

Thursday, 14 February 2013

A Parcel from Poland!

My lucky streak continues - there was one of those fab pizza boxes (if you're a scrapper you know the ones I'm talking about!) waiting for me when I got home today and guess what?! It was my parcel from the amazing artist Aida Domiewicz of 13 Arts - Ayeeda on the CSI design team - I left a comment on Aida's post as part of the CSI Birthday Blog Hop at the end of January and I was lucky enough to be picked out of the hat ! Here is a picture of the goodies I found inside -

There are two whole collections designed by Aida herself - "Frosted Life" and "Love is All" - lovely quality papers, stickers and journaling spots - and a fab collection of trinkets, trims and flowers from 13 Arts, which is Aida's online shop.
This photo doesn't do them justice - click on the links and check it out for yourself.
Aida's little note says she hopes I will enjoy playing with her papers - as you can well imagine, I can't wait!
Thanks SO much Aida :o)

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

St Valentine's Day Greetings

I found this gorgeous image on Graphic Fairy (thanks Karen!) and couldn't resist!

If you haven't checked out this fab site already, you should do - Karen sources incredible copyright-free images which you can download free and save to your PC to use for whatever you like. There's all sorts of interesting stuff on her site - just have a look (there's a button on the RHS of this page which you can click on)
May all your dreams come true on St Valentine's Day xxx

Re: Throwing Caution to the Wind!

Well! I got in a right strop last weekend trying to solve Case File#57 over at CSI - I think because this particular page meant such a lot to me I just wanted it to be perfect ... Here's the Case File (click on the image to enlarge it)
Each week Debbi Tehrani comes up with a new Case File inspired by an image such as this one. The idea is that in order to solve the case you must

  • use all five colours in the Scheme
  • use at least two pieces of Evidence
  • use at least one item of Testimony

On the second week of each month, you also have to use a sketch by the amazing Emma Stafrace (I first noticed her work in Scrap365 and always lover her pages) and every single week there is a set of CSI Coordinates to help you solve the Case (accents, images, journalling spots and background papers which you can download and print off or use for digi-scrapping if that's your thing) - these are designed by the talented Michele Singh for CSI members.

Ok, so now I'm going to show you a bad photo of my feeble attempt at this Case File and then I'll try to explain ... !

I thought the colours and theme would be a perfect opportunity to finally get around to doing something with all the lovingly hoarded emails John and I sent back and forth to each other during the very early days of our whirlwind romance. I always think it's just like my Granny would have kept love letters tied with ribbon in an old biscuit tin or something, I've kept mine in a Hotmail folder, but that's not very romantic is it?
So I had what I thought was a great idea but I REALLY struggled with it for several hours, tore it up and started again, still didn't like it, uploaded it to the CSI gallery anyway and BLOW ME !!! I've been picked as STAR WITNESS!!! wooHOO!!! :o)
I really can't believe it - I'm almost embarrassed to see this featured amongst so many really GOOD pages - having said that, it's made my day and that won't stop me proudly displaying my Star Witness badge on this blog! What a show-off :o) Also, I think there is a prize involved ... as I said in my previous post, my lucky star really is shining at the moment.
Thanks for looking and if you haven't already, check out CSI - it's brilliant and it's all free!
Annie x

Monday, 11 February 2013

Lucky Lucky Lucky!!!

I can't belEEEVE my luck just lately - I got home from work this evening to find a parcel full of goodies from Scrapbook Magazine which I wasn't even expecting!

There was a compliment slip in with it saying "For being in our Scrapbook Magazine issue 70 activity pack"
Well, I only recieved my copy a few days ago and we've been so busy I haven't had chance to peruse it yet so I didn't even know I was in there! Woo HOOO!!!
There are some gorgeous papers and stickers from the Authentique "Seasons" collection
A fab HOTP stencil for making Bodacious Blooms which I'm itching to have a go at
And these scrummy Color Me papers in Chocolate - they look like the design has been stamped in melted c chocolate! - these will be lots of fun to play with...
This was the layout which went into the magazine
And here's the one that went in the last issue 69
I got some lovely goodies for that too
Some gorgeous die cuts from the Papermania Vintage Notes collection :o)
Issue 69 of Scrapbook Magazine also featured one of the layouts I submitted for Scrapbooker of the Year
Have a look at my original post to see the AMAZING goodies which I got for Runner Up Scrapbooker of the Year
At the same time I was very excited to be Special Investigator for December over at CSI
And then just a couple of weeks ago as part of the CSI First Birthday Blog Hop I was lucky AGAIN - very very lucky indeed - to win Ayeeda's birthday present prize - two fabulous pp collections designed by Aida Domisiewicz and some beautiful blooms from 13 Arts ... it will be very exciting to get a parcel from Poland!
I'm starting to wonder if I should have a go at the Lottery as my lucky star is obviously shining at the moment!
Moral of the story is - upload your pages, enter those competitions and leave comments for those random giveaways, because you never know - IT MIGHT BE YOUR LUCKY DAY!!!
TFL :o)

Monday, 4 February 2013

Olde Curiosity Shoppe

This weekend I've been "off the page" - making a keepsake box to safely store all my vintage family photos and other memorabilia.  Of course, I could just go out and buy an archive file or something, but where's the fun in that?
I had been hoarding a little stash of Graphic 45 Olde Curiosity Shoppe papers for a special project and it occurred to me that I could use them to create the perfect storage for my own Vintage Curiosities and Unusual Oddities.
It all started with a boxfile ...

... and ended up (eventually) with this ...
A lot of cutting and sticking was involved so I was in my element. All the background patterns, contents and signs were cut from Graphic 45 papers - mostly Olde Curiosity Shoppe, but also a smattering of Steampunk Debutante, a dash of ABC Primer and a smidgeon of La Cirque.
The sides are all covered in matching papers and the edges all sanded and inked.
The window frames were cut from black cardstock, layered up with foam dots and backed with acetate.
The key above the door was made with a TH die, embossed, sanded and inked to look old and rusty.
The little flying pigs on the wall are mounted with foam dots for dimension.
All the raw edges of the cut out pieces were inked to soften and age them.
The door handle is a flat-backed gemstone stuck to a bead with Glossy Accents.
The peacock feathers have been repeatedly snipped into for a feathery effect.
Oddments of paper were cut up to create books and the fan.
The Nutcracker escaped from my Nutcracker Sweet leftover bag!
Some of the cut pieces in this window were coloured with DI using Cut'n'Dry nibs
The box is kept closed with a ribbon tie - the ends are glued in underneath the lining paper inside.
The inside is lined with a montage of pieces cut from several sheets and then coated with Mod Podge.
The expanding file and envelope were constructed from cardstock and decorated with pp.
Family photos and memorabilia can be filed away safely in this section.
All I have to do now is move them to their smart new home!

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Little Piggies!

This is a page all about the day Trina and I went to Cromer - one minute, there we were paddling in the sea and writing our names in the sand, eating a delicious lunch outside in the sunshine - and the next, we were running through torrential rain back to the train station, with our umbrellas turned inside out, wet through to our knickers! It was hilarious and I hadn't laughed so much in ages ... what a brilliant day! Thanks Trina :o)

I made the page for Case#56 over at CSI - here's the Case File
The idea is to use all five colours in the Scheme, at least two items of Evidence and at least one piece of Testimony. Every week you can download the CSI Coordinates - a set of free printables to help you solve the case, especially designed by the very talented Michele Singh.
Here is my solution to the Case
The Scheme: all the colours are there
The Evidence: clouds, umbrellas and teacup all from the CSI Coordinates; doodled dashed lines;plain cardstock.
The Testimony: My journalling is written on a teabag shape tucked into the teacup and attached to a piece of twine with a tag.
I had a go at doodling around the misted splats with black pen which was fun and I quite like the effect. You can see part of a file tab which I made with a Stampin' Up! punch - it's a really useful punch that one.

Washi tape - one of my favourite things at the moment, great for adding a spot of colour just where you need it and easy to take off if you change your mind! The cute umbrellas were from Michele's Coordinates and I love those squishy Thickers :o)

A xxx