Thursday, 29 January 2015

Pound Shop Project #1 - Cute Sock Cat

Hi everyone,

Do you ever find yourself away from home, pining for your workroom and itching for a bit of crafty action? Well, during my last trip to London, my son Tom and I put our heads together and came up with the perfect solution ... Pound Shop Projects!

Guest Designer Tom with Yours Truly
Even if you're stuck in a dreary hotel room and you have no crafty kit with you at all, there will nearly always be a Pound Shop [Dollar Store] nearby where you can get everything you need to while away a few hours and make something fun.

Meet Flossie, the result of our first collaboration, made entirely with a pair of socks and a few other bits and bobs which all came from a Pound Shop - even the tools we used to put her together. We cannot take credit for the design - we followed this brilliant YT video by Maqaroon - although ours turned out a bit differently of course ...

Flossie our cute sock kitty
We both love browsing Pound Shops and there are several along Walthamstow High Street which is just around the corner from where Tom lives. Here was our haul this time ...

You can see a glimpse of the socks that were to become Flossie, as well as scissors and sewing kit, a cushion to use for stuffing and a pair of cat collars. We also picked up lots of bits for future projects - I was very pleased with a set of watercolour pencils and 4 mini canvases, but that's another story for another day!

We took some photos of the process, so please read on if you would like to see how Flossie emerged from a pair of socks and some other tat from the Pound Shop ...

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

WOYWW #295

Hi everyone,

It's been a funny old day - started grey and dreary, now it's all blue skies and bluster - and somehow several hours have gone by and I have hardly done anything at all. How does that happen?!

Anyway, I've just remembered it's Wednesday and I'm going to be late to the party - join us over at Julia's Stamping Ground to see what everyone's been up to this week and show the world What's On Your Workdesk!

Here's mine today - actually tidy from my Big Sort Out last week ...

I've been working on a little project for St. Valentine's Day which you can see emerging there on the work surface. On the top shelf are my newly organised tag books and art journals in progress, and I've also started to sort all my stamps and stencils into file folders - eventually I will get around to giving them a bit of a makeover, they look a bit too "office" at the moment! At the back of the desk next to the "tape tree" (mug tree in a former life) is a cardboard tube with six toilet roll tubes in it - I'm copying an idea I saw on Zsuzsa's blog last week, so that's another work in progress :o)

Thanks for visiting today - see you at Julia's!

Cheerio for now
Annie xxx

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Another List!

Hi everyone,

There hasn't been much time, space or energy for scrapping in my world just lately, but I just couldn't resist Major Case File #151 over at CSI (Color, Stories, Inspiration) - so many fun elements to play with, a brilliant sketch from Em Stafrace from The Nifty Pixel, and the colour combination was perfect for one of our wedding photos.

Here's the Case File ...

... and here's how I solved the Case ...

But did I follow all the clues ...... ?????

Friday, 23 January 2015

Tim Holtz inspired Tag for January

HI everyone,

I've promised myself that this year I will try to keep up with the Tim Holtz Tags of 2015. Tim is always full of new ideas and inspiration - even though I usually don't have all the materials he's used, it's fun to improvise and I always end up trying something new or digging out something I've had sitting in my workroom for ages.

Here's my January tag - somehow it turned out much darker and grungier than Tim's, maybe I was in a dark and grungy mood ...

There were quite a few items on Tim's list this time which I didn't have (yet!) but I did the best I could to achieve a similar look with the supplies I do have.

For example, Tim used Tissue Wrap Postale to create the crinkled background. I didn't have any, so made some for myself by stamping with Archival Ink onto plain tissue ...

... then went on to almost completely cover it up of course, but I love the effect and it's an idea I will use again for sure. I also don't have any Chit-Chat Stickers, so I typed loads of little words onto old paper on my faithful Gabriele and cut them out - I think they look just as good and I like their slight wonkiness due to my rusty typing skills!

When my tag was finished, I popped it into the little file caddy which I made last week especially to store my TH Tags of 2015 - a perfect fit :o)

Thanks for visiting my blog today - pop over to the Tim Holtz Blog to see how it should be done! see you again soon!

Annie xxx

Wednesday, 21 January 2015


HI everyone,

I've just realised it's Wednesday - and Wedesday isn't just another day, it's the day we gather over at Julia's Stamping Ground and see what everyone's been up to. Why not join us? Put the kettle on, pop over to Julia's, link up and show the world What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday!

Not much doing on mine today, there has been altogether too much Life getting in the way! But I have discovered that when time, space and energy are in short supply, a bit of doodling has a very calming effect on my cluttered head ...

... it's very strange how "tangling" on paper seems to de-tangle my mind, something about the repetition and the way it doesn't have to "be" anything. To find out all about Zentangle, a really good starting point is a visit to Tangle Patterns - it's brilliant and addictive but in a good way!

Thanks for visiting my blog today. I'm off to see what everyone is up this week - see you at Julia's :o)

Annie xxx

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Happy Birthday Mum

Hi everyone,

Today would have been my lovely Mum's 78th birthday. Sadly, she died a few days after her birthday back in 2009, but still I think about her and miss her every day. She was such a creative soul and always trying something new - she would have loved all the "artyfarty" stuff I'm doing now and the way we can share our crafty adventures with like-minded people all over the world. I just wish I could share them with her too.

Here's a page I made years ago, showing Mum as a schoolgirl ...

The girl you see here went on to live a full and colourful life. She had four children of her own and went through many difficult times, but I feel there was a part of her that never quite grew up and the girl you see here was still inside her until the day she died.

Here's a page I made featuring Mum as a teenager with her elder sister - I love their pretty dresses and hats, and those tiny waists ...

 Do you ever get that thing where you catch a fleeting glimpse of your Mum or your Gran when catch yourself unawares in a mirror? It's so weird, but kind of comforting, don't you think? It's like they're still kind of with you.

 It's the same with hands - sometimes when my hands are busy doing something in the kitchen, workroom or garden, I will suddenly see my Mum's or my Gran's hands in their place, showing me how to crochet, make bread or one of the many other skills they passed on to me.

Many happy times in my childhood were spent with my Granny. Here she is in her kitchen, where I first learned to make honeycomb toffee and perfect scrambled eggs among many other things ...

I'm sorry if this post seems a little sad - I guess I am a little sad today, but that's ok. I miss my Mum and my Gran, but it is comforting to feel like they are still with me and that I will pass them on to my own children - in my genes, in all the things they taught me and in all the memories I have of them.

Happy Birthday Mum!

Love from Annie xxx


Hi everyone,

The theme over at Tag Tuesday last week was "Diva". Straightaway I thought of Maria Callas - beautiful, talented, dramatic, unique - total Diva. This lovely lady can make grown men cry with her voice (my own DH is not ashamed to admit this).

Here's a YT clip from 1958 showing Ms Callas singing the "Casta Diva" aria from Bellini's opera "Norma" - even if you're not an opera fan, you cannot fail to be moved by it ... she portrays so much passion and emotion before she even opens her mouth to sing and she is every inch the Diva.

My drawing skills are sadly not up to capturing this beautiful lady's likeness, but she was definitely my muse for this tag ...

My Diva was sketched in pencil, then coloured in with Kaiser Fusion Pens - I added a little corsage (probably a gift from an adoring fan) and some sparkling jewels (of course).

Thanks for visiting my blog today - the theme over at Tag Tuesday for this week is "Texture", check it out for all kinds of ideas and inspiration.

See you again soon :o)

Annie xxx

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Cardboard Central

Hi everyone,

This year I'm determined to follow along with the Tim Holtz 12 Tags series - click here to see the January Tag. The 12 Tags series has been going since 2012 now and Tim just keeps on coming up with ideas and inspiration.

Of course we all know that it's sometimes difficult to make time for everything we would like to do and the TH tags was one project which fell by the wayside for me last year. To motivate myself to keep it going this year, I thought it would be fun to make some special storage for them.

I had a vague idea, but hadn't really thought it through, and then yesterday I was having a nosey around Lizzy Hill's blog (which is always stuffed full of ideas) and came across the Lessology challenge to make a project using recycled cardboard. This got my cogs turning and I came up with this fun  little file to store all my TH tags this year ...

First I dug out some saved cardboard pieces (you can also see some squished toilet rolls waiting for another project) ...

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Hi everyone,

I got to play in my room again yesterday for the first time in ages and strangely enough I found it difficult to get started - very frustrating! My head was just so full of stuff that I couldn't decide what to do first. At times like this, I have a tendency to wander off into Blogland or YouTube and lose several hours, but this time I gave myself a bit of a talking to and decided to start with a tag for Tag Tuesday. A tag is a great little project if you don't have too much time and I find them a brilliant way to try stuff out and give me a kick up the mojo when I need it!

This week, the theme over at Tag Tuesday is "Winter Wonderland", which put me in mind of the song of course ...

Starting with a scrap of black card stock, I cut some footstep masks from sticky notes before applying a thick layer of texture paste. After removing the masks, I added a liberal sprinkling of white and shimmery embossing powder, dried it with a heat gun and finished with a some Viva Glitter Paste to give it a gorgeous irridescent shimmer ...