Saturday, 28 December 2013

Oh We Do Like to Be Beside The Seaside ...

Oh we do like to be beside the sea!
Yes we do like to stroll along the prom prom prom
Where the brass band plays - tiddly-om-pom-pom!
So just let me be beside the seaside
And I'll be beside meself with glee ...

The words of this lovely old music hall song were the inspiration for this fun page about my little cousins enjoying a day by the sea with their Granny ...

I used this brilliant December Sketch by Liz Chichester for My Creative Sketches -

Most of the goodies came from my Funky Farm kit and I added a few bits from my stash ...

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Happy WOYWW Christmas!

Hi everyone,

Whatever you are doing this week, I hope you are enjoying a few days of fun and relaxation :o)xxx

It's What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday #238, although it will probably be a quiet week over at Julia's Stamping Ground, because most people's workdesks, like mine, won't be seeing much action - but here is my creative space this week, just for the record!

My son has come home for Christmas (wooHOO), therefore my workroom is currently serving its other function as a spare room - but luckily I thought ahead and packed up some portable projects. Here you can see a pack of beautiful hand-drawn designs by Catherine Scanlon, which came in a Frog Dog kit, along with the gorgeous set of shimmering watercolour paints - can't wait to have a go with these!

We've had a lovely Christmas so far - Tom took this pic of John and Yours Truly, looking very fetching in my new Christmas Onesie!

It was a beautiful crisp, cold day full of sunshine and clear blue sky, so after a huge breakfast we all went for a lovely walk to work up an appetite for Christmas dinner! Here I am about to start cooking up a feast ...

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Starry Starry Night

The theme over at Tag Tuesday this week is Starry Starry Night and I was intending to create a beautiful peaceful winter nightscape, but somehow my tag went off in a different direction (as they often do) - here's how it turned out ...

This was really easy to do - the gorgeously romantic image is from an ArtChix ephemera sheet which came in a FrogDog kit. I just adhered it to a piece of card for stability, sanded the edges, trimmed with scraps of ribbon and lace, added a spray of paper roses and finished with some sticky gems.

Only trouble is that I now have Don McLean running through my head ....

Happy Christmas one and all! :o)xxx

Oh Xmas Tree!

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
You are the tree most loved!
How often you give us delight
Inbrightly shining Christmas light!
O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
You are the tree most loved!

Hi Everyone!

Case File #103 over at CSI this week is full of traditional Christmas colours and imagery. 
Here it is (click on the image to enlarge it so that you can read the clues) ...

Each week, CSI Mastermind Debbi Tehrani finds us a new Scene to investigate. From this image, she takes five colours for the Scheme and inspiration for design elements and journaling prompts.
CSI = Color, Stories, Inspiration

In order to solve the case, you just have to follow all these clues to create a scrapbook page ...

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Happy KHC-hristmas

Hi everyone!

Last Saturday we had a lovely day at KHC - cuttin, stickin, eatin, drinkin, chattin ... you get the idea! What a perfect day - thanks girls!  :o)

L-R: Kate, Rosie, Gill, Amanda, Karen
There were ten of us for our Christmas Special and everyone brought along something different to do - so many gorgeous projects ...

First of all, we all (even Kate who doesn't "do" papercrafting) had a go at a mini matchbook album - see previous post for a link to the tutorial by the lovely Jules at Paperhaus.
Here's one of the little kits I made up, using some scrap cardstock and some of the freebie papers from the last two issues of Scrapbook Magazine (there was plenty for ten of us) ...

The card and paper was all pre-scored at home, so all we needed on the day was scissors, stapler, sticky stuff , sparkles, stamps and ink ...

You are my JOY

Every year I make my DH a special Christmas card - this year I thought I would make him a Christmas scrapbook page instead. It was really quick to do, because I knew exactly what I wanted to say and the design is very simple. Here it is (click on the image to enlarge it if you like) ...

The page was inspired by the December Challenge over at the 1-2-3 Challenge blog
This is a brilliant concept for a challenge - you are given a colour, a word and a technique and all you have to do is include all three on a scrapbook page. Here is the image for the December challenge


I started with one sheet of patterned paper - "Sugar Plum" from the Saint Nick collection by Fancy Pants. 

The reverse is a pretty shade of pale greeny-blue which I've used for the background, but I first "gutted" it where I knew it wasn't going to show, then removed the piece I'd cut out, turned it over to show the spotty side, tore it in half and inked the edges with red and blue. 

The other patterned paper with the words is from the BoBunny "Believe" collection and it was free with Scrapbook magazine a while back. The words are perfect, " You are the Gift that made all my Dreams come true." 

After arranging the paper pieces, I mounted the layout on a sheet of ivory cardstock to frame it and tidy up the back, then tied a bow around the whole thing. I wrote the words "You are my" in metallic pen on the torn strip across the middle and added "Joy" in gold glittered alphas. These words are very meaningful to us, because this song was our first dance at our wedding in 2011. 

The photo was added almost last of all (unheard of for me) - I layered up some scraps of paper, a heart-shaped doily and a little brown envelope, then the photo and finally a laser-cut kiss. The envelope is for a special secret message for my DH John.

As I say, a very simple layout this one, but he was very pleased with it and that's what matters :o) 
Here it is on our dresser with some of this year's Christmas cards ....

As you can see, a plate rack makes a perfect stand for a scrapbook page - ingenious! 

Thanks for visiting my blog today - Happy Christmas!!! :o)xxx


Hi Everyone!

What's On YOUR Workdesk this fine Wednesday morning ONLY ONE WEEK AWAY FROM CHRISTMAS DAY!?!?!?! I haven't even written my cards or wrapped any presents yet .... but I still feel strangely calm .....

Here is my workdesk today (Blimey I really need to ask Father Christmas for a new cutting mat!) ...

... not a lot going on, but I'm gathering a few crafty bits and bobs together for some portable projects I can do over the next couple of weeks whilst I can't get into my workroom, because it will be full of big hairy son who is coming home for Christmas (wooHOO!) so my workdesk will be my lap or a corner of the dining table.

You know how annoying it is when your iPod earphones get all tangled in your bag? Well there are loads of tutorials online for crocheting around the cable to stop this happening and they look really pretty as well, so I'm planning to have a go at that with these gorgeous embroidery silks my friend Kate gave me when she had a clear out ...

And I also want to use up some of my paper scraps to make beads ...

... and experiment with various ways of decorating them. These are heat embossed ...

It would be nice to make a whole lot of them in different shapes and colours, ready to add to art journals and mini albums, and I can even make them on a lap tray in the sitting room, so they'll be a perfectly portable project!

What are your favourite portable projects?

If you would like to see what everyone else is up to, or share your workdesk with the world, pop over to Julia's Stamping Ground and join in the fun :o)xxx

Sunday, 15 December 2013


Hi everyone,

It's Case File #102 this week over at CSI - a challenging colour combination for me, but lots of fun design elemnts and journaling prompts and as it's the second Tuesday in the month, we also have a sketch from Emma Stafrace at Page Drafts.

Here's the Case File (click on the image to enlarge it so you can read the clues)

Each week, CSI Mastermind Debbi Tehrani finds a new Scene for us to investigate. From this image, she take sthe colours for the Scheme, inspiration for design elements and techniques and ideas for journaling prompts. CSI = Color, Stories, Inspiration.

To solve the Case, all you need to do is to make a scrapbook page using the following clues:

  • All 5 colours in the Scheme
  • At least 2 items from the Evidence list
  • At least 1 piece of Testimony

The photos on this page show my eldest son Richard when he was 20 months old and his little brother Tom was about six months. I was going through a seriously life-consuming bout of OCD, so I was continually checking and cleaning, and Richard loved to help Mummy ... here he is outside with his duster and his polish cleaning up the yard - bless! :o)

So, did I follow all the clues?
  • Sketch: a dream to work with as always
  • Scheme: all the colours are there
  • Evidence: leaves, birds, dots.
  • Testimony: this is written on a tag which I trimmed with wooden leaves and tucked behind the photo.
"Rich you were such a sweet little boy, always ready to help and busy doing nothing with your imaginary friends Cast Iron and Beano. This picture was taken when you were 20 months and Tom was six  months old - at this time you used to love pottering around with Mr Sheen and a duster, helping Mummy. Here you are polishing up your truck and you can see the tail-end of Badger the cat walking off in a huff because she didn't like the sound of the spray. Four Lanes 1984 xxx"

Here's a close-up so you can check for clues ...

Thanks for looking at my page - check out the gallery over at CSI for loads of ideas and inspiration and why not have a go at solve Case File 102 yourself? You have over a week - ages! :o)

Happy Christmas! xxx

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Christmas Box

Hello me again!

Whilst I was playing with my Snow Angels from LunaGirl, my DH was writing lots of Christmas cards. Before chucking the empty box in the recycling bin, he asked me (as he often does) if I could use it for anything ...

... well, guess what?!

The box has been covered with some gorgeous patterned papers from the BoBunny "Believe" collection - I got these free with Scrapbook Magazine some time ago had been saving them for special, as you do. Then I just layered up one of the sweet little Snow Angels , added a cluster of flowers, berries and leaves and popped the acetate cover back in place before trimming with a scrap of ribbon.

I'm not altogether happy with it, but it was fun and almost free! Right, now I really must stop cutting and sticking and do something useful ...

Cheerio for now! :o)xxx

A Flurry of Snow Angels!

Hi everyone,

Well, Christmas has really taken me by surprise this year - I haven't written a single card or bought any presents at all yet - but I have made some Christmas bunting to decorate the fireplace, so that's ok!

Here it is ...

It all started with some sweet Snow Angels from Luna Girl - what do you think the collective noun for Snow Angels would be? A "flock"? A "shiver"? In this case, maybe a "Download"!? I decided it would be a flurry :o)

Here's what I started with ...

I downloaded the angels from the LunaGirl Etsy shop and printed off several of each to play with. I dug out a couple of sheets of double-sided 12" x 12" paper - it doesn't have a name on and I can remember where I got it, but it has a lovely vintage style print in soft, faded shades of blue, green and pinky-red which matches the angels perfectly. The chipboard bunting came from Every Crafts A Pound - 5 in each bundle for guess how much?! Yes just £1 :o)

Then I rummaged in me drawers for some matching ribbons ...

The bunting was so easy to make - I just covered each side in the patterned paper, sanded and inked the edges, adding gilt cream to give the edges a nice shine, then adhered the angels, alternating with die cut letters (I decided on "LOVE" rather than "NOEL" so it isn't just for Christmas).

Then it just needed some ribbon to hang it up ...

... and some extra ribbons just for show - may add some beads as well for abit of twinkle ...

Voila! A Flurry of Snow Angels!



Hey everyone!

What a beautiful morning it is - it's cold, but the early fog is lifting to reveal a clear blue sky - and it's my day off, so I can spend a couple of hours on the pooter catching up and then the rest of the day play in my room ... bliss! Although as I haven't written a single Christmas card or bought any presents yet, I should maybe start panicking, but I feel strangely calm about it all for some reason ... hmmm. Has Christmas taken anyone else by surprise this year?

So anyway - What's On Your Workdesk this fine Wednesday?! Here's mine ...

What a mess - and believe me, this is the tidiest part of the room at the moment  (of course it's mainly because John's put his ab cruncher and a huge pile of presents for the grandchildren in there - not because I've totally trashed it obviously).

Amongst the mess on my desk, you can see some Christmas bunting I've been making - I thought it would make a pretty garland to decorate the fireplace.

Right I'm off to finish my bunting and hang it up, then I'll have a nice cup of coffee and visit some other WOYWWers to see what everyone else is up to - if you would like to join in the fun, check out Julia's blog - Stamping Ground

Thanks for stopping by and if I don't see you again before - Happy Christmas!!! :o)xxx

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Suited & Booted

Hello Everyone,

It's time to reveal Case File #101 over at CSI this week - a cool and stylish set of colours and clues for us to follow - a mixture of elegance and fun which I thought would be perfect for this wonderful photograph of my Grandpa and his brothers when they were little boys.

Here's the Case File for your perusal (click on the image to enlarge it so you can read the clues) ...

CSI Mastermind Debbi Tehrani has found another intriguing Scene for us to investigate. From this inspiration image, she takes the colours for the scheme as well as ideas for design elements, techniques and journaling prompts. CSI = Color, Stories, Inspiration.

In order to solve the Case, you need to follow all these clues to create a scrapbook page -

  • All five colours in the Scheme
  • At least two items from the Evidence
  • At least one item from the Testimony

Here's how I did it (click on the image to enlarge it) ...

I love this photo - although it was a very formal setting, if you look closely, you can see a twinkle of mischief and merriment in their eyes and I wanted my page to reflect this, by starting with a formal background and then messing it up and adding some fun yet meaningful little details.

More inspiration for this page came from the current challenge at Scrap Around The World
This is another brilliant challenge blog, where you are given a mood board and sketch to inspire you ...

... isn't it beautiful? As well as the fab sketch, I love the ornate shabby vintage style of the frames, the old books and the gorgeous jewel, so I have incorporated all of these elements into my page - there is a page from an old book in the background, ornate chalkboard frames and several beautiful jewels.

So, did I follow all the clues for Case File #101?

  • Scheme: all the colours are there
  • Evidence: frames, numbers, silver accents, ribbons, dangle something, circles, something transparent.
  • Testimony: this is hand written in a cursive style. On the front it reads; 

"The handsome Robinson Boys ... Frederick (Tony) ... Charles (Chuck) ... Henry (Harry) ... George." 

It continues on the back of the page:

"My Grandpa on the left with his three elder brothers, all suited and booted for this photograph, taken in around 1918. Their little suits were probably made by their father, who was a gentlemen's tailor and always looked very dapper himself. Although this was a formal picture, I think you can see a twinkle of mischief and merriment in their eyes and a glimpse of the men they were destined to become. 
Their Mother, my Great Grandmother Eva, was Anglo-Indian. She met and married their father, my Great Grandfather Archibald Miller Robinson, when he was stationed in India as a tailor to the British Army. This must have been taken not long after they came over to England. Apparently poor Eva came over with the children ahead of her husband - by all accounts this was not an easy time for her, but that's another story ..."

There are lots of little details on this page which represent parts of this story. Here are some close-ups under the magnifying glass for you to scrutinise ...

The title has two kinds of alphas - the soft, textured Prima ones from my Funky Farm kit, which I've coloured grey to resemble suit fabric - and the black shiny Thickers which I sanded back in places, to resemble their polished boots.
The flowers came from Funky Farm as well - one of them has a gorgeous jewelled centre. The pretty stone is an old earring, which is nestling in a tangle of waste threads from my scrap drawer. The little pair of scissors, the tape measure, the buttons, the seam binding and the stitching all around the page are a reference to my Great Grandfather Robinson's trade.
This theme is continued in the layers behind the photo - torn canvas, voile and interfacing to suggest different fabrics used in tailoring. I've tucked in a couple of train tickets from a FrogDog kit to represent travel.

This paper is one I've had so long I can't remember where it came from - it reminds me of old-fashioned wallpaper, so I thought it would be a good backdrop to build on, but I mounted it on some sturdier pp to give it a bit more body. Following the sketch, I added a sprinkling of textured and jewelled brads, enamel dots, gems and vintage buttons down the side and a small journaling card.

The date is written on a price tag with is popped up with foam dots. Golden Heavy Gel Medium is brilliant for sticking things like the ribbon and I also used it for all the metal and plastic bits on this page - wonderful stuff! The little slide mount just has a piece of the voile in it to balance the design.

Well, that's it - quite enough waffle for now! Thanks for visiting, see you again soon :o)xxx

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Little Angels

Hi everyone,

The theme over at Tag Tuesday this week is "Angels" and I've managed to finish two! Here's the first ...

This one was made with a couple of images from Graphics Fairy, which I cut out and layered up. They were coloured with some of the gorgeous shimmery goodies from the November FrogDog kit - pearlescent watecolour paints, Sakura pens and Distress Glitter on her halo. You can't see it in this picture, but the paints give a beautiful shimmery irridescent effect when they catch the light.

Here's the second one ...

This sweet little ballerina was also from Graphics Fairy, and I gave her a pair of angel wings from a LunaGirl collage sheet. I used the pearlescent paints again to give her tutu and wings a soft glittery effect which looks really pretty in real life.

When I was at primary school, it was always the blond little girls who were chosen to be Angels in the Nativity play - don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with donkeys and shepherds, but I always longed to have a pair of wings and a tinsel halo, so I really enjoyed making some for this little brunette - and I've just realised I forgot to bling up her headband ...

Thanks for popping in, see you again soon :o)xxx

WOYWW 235?!

Hi everyone,

Well it's been absolutely AGES since I last joined in with What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday over at Julia's blog Stamping Ground and I can't believe it's the 235th!

Today is the day we get to show the world our workspaces and what we're making AND have a good snout around other people's workdesks, admire their creations and check out their stuff - it's fascinating and it's addictive!

So, what's on my workdesk today? Body parts!

hehehehe! Not real body parts, obviously, that would be TOO weird .... but whilst I was looking for a box for my sister's birthday present, I came across this one, containing the beginnings of a cloth doll I started about 7 years ago and had completely forgotten about - I really must have another crack at it ...

Underneath the box was my messy desk at 7.30 this morning, where I was just quickly going to finish my tags for Tag Tuesday (only one day late, not 7 years!)

The theme for this week is "Angels" - you can see here some sweet images from Graphics Fairy and LunaGirl which I've been titivating with some gorgeous shimmery goodies which came in my November FrogDog kit - watercolours, Sakura pens and Distress Glitter.

The box was perfect for my sister's tag book ...

... it has pictures of her grandchildren and lots of space for her to add more. Hope she likes it :o)

Ok, that's me done - I'm off to have a nosey at someone else's workdesk now. Thanks for popping in xxx

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Little Boxes

It's always lovely to give and recieve home-made gifts at Christmas - cookies, jam, bath bombs, lavender bags, fudge and all kinds of other goodies make really nice presents - but you need a pretty box to show them off and make them look special.
When I saw last week's challenge over at LunaGirl - "Retro Gals" - I was inspired to use some of these gorgeous vintage images to revamp some of the many little boxes which I've been hoarding in my workroom. So I gathered up a few bits and bobs ...

On the left is a selection of boxes awaiting transformation, then there is an assortment of patterned papers and on the right a couple of lovely LunaGirl collage sheets.

The first box was really quick and easy because it already had a nice striped pattern, so I just needed to cover the label, tart it up a bit and finish with a pretty bow.

The same patterned paper was used to mount the image on the front, decorate the top and create a little tag, so it would all match ...

I stamped the words "I made these for you x" on the front and I think this will be filled with some home made cheese nibbles for my Uncle.

The next box took a tad longer to do, and in fact I may not have finished it yet! With the glamourous lady on the front, I think this box would be lovely filled with luxurious bath bombs for someone who deserves some pampering ...

I used the beautiful collection of patterned papers which was free with Scrapbook Magazine some time ago - they have a real vintage vibe so they worked very well for this project ...

Layers of Distress Paint, Distress Inks and gesso were built up over the patterned papers to create a shabby vintage look, then I added a cluster of flowers inked with the same colours, with some little gems and pearls dotted around it for extra glamour.

Some silver gilt paste help to blend the edges and give a touch of luxurious sheen.

Finally I gave the lovely lady a bit of bling with a jewelled frame and finished with a chiffon bow.

Unfortunately I've just missed the deadline for the Retro Gals challenge at LunaGirl - but never mind, I had fun anyway and there's always the next challenge ...

Thanks for popping in, see you again soon :o)xxx

My Boys ... Always

Hey Everyone! It's a big week over at CSI - firstly, our 100th Case File was opened for investigation on Friday, then today is the Big Reveal of our third Special Case File for Scrap365.

CSI and Scrap365 are two of my favourite sources of inspiration, so to see a collaboration between the two is brilliant.
Here is Case File S365-3 (click on the image to enlarge it so you can read the clues)

CSI mastermind Debbi Tehrani has taken inspiration from this sweet image and used it to create a delicious confection of a Case File for us to investigate.

All you need to do to solve the case is to follow these clues -

  • Use all five colours in the Scheme (plus neutrals and up to 10% accent colour if you like)
  • Use at least two items/techniques from the Evidence list
  • Use at least one journaling prompt from the Testimony list

As you will know if you're a regular visitor to this blog, I don't really "do" pastel palettes very well - although I love what other people do with them, it just never works out very well for me. So, I thought I would grunge it up a bit, lean towards the grey end of the palette and scrap this picture of my handsome boys, Richard and Tom.
13Arts are sponsoring CSI this month, so it seemed like a good time to use some 13Arts papers I'd been saving for special (as you do) - Frosted Life and All is Love.

(Click on the image to enlarge it if you like)

So, have I followed all the clues?

  • The Scheme: all five colours are there
  • The Evidence: ribbons; vertical strips; texture paste; silver accents; doodling.
  • The Testimony: I've added a ribbon to my journaling spot - index card tucked behind the photo.

"My two handsome boys - this picture was taken over twenty years ago and since then you have grown into two men I can be very proud of. You have busy and successful lives and you don't need me any more, but to me you are still my boys and I will always be here for you. Mum xxx"

I had a great time with texture paste, gesso, heat embossing, stamps, coloured pencils and inks - the 13Arts papers are a lovely heavyweight quality and will take any amount of this kind of abuse!

Here are some close-ups for you to scrutinise ...

 Embossing paste from my FrogDog kit was applied through a chicken wire stencil, then I applied silver embossing powder and blasted it with a heat gun. I built up layers of paper strips, doiley scraps and cut-aparts, distressing and inking all the edges. The title alphas got a bit lost, so I doodled around them with a black pen.

The frame was stamped over and gesso was applied to tone down the pink a bit and the key was made with a Tim Holtz die. NB the red paper clip is NOT meant to be there - it must have fallen on to the page before I photographed it and I didn't even notice!

Here, the texture paste was applied through a brickwork stencil and coloured with Distress Inks. You can also see more of the layers behind the photo - some Magic Mesh, Grunge Board, Washi tape, rescued index cards, and a snippet of chicken wire which I die-cut from silver card.

I just kept playing with the background, building up layers until I was happy/got bored! Here I started with a 13Arts paper which has a chicken wire background, added gesso to tone it down a bit, then the dots and bricks and finally the heat embossed chicken wire. Can you tell that I'm a bit keen on the look of chicken wire?!

Well that's it, I think I've waffled on for quite long enough! Check out the gallery over at CSI and of course Scrap35 magazine, to see what everyone else has done with this Case File - and why not have a go yourself?

Thanks for popping in - see you again soon :o)xxx