Monday 30 November 2009

Finally, a card

Yes, finally I am home, so i can start posting photos again! I will leave you with this diorama card that I taught at Dawn's Residential last week. I used Eskimo kisses papers - Basic Grey - and Nestabilities for the apertures and snowflakes.
All products available from Dawn Bibby's Design Studio.

Saturday 28 November 2009

Still up north

I have been so busy this week that all my extracurricular activities -
ie visiting friends- had to be pushed aside. I kind of imagined that
would be the case, so I didn't make any plans and though if I had time
left I would arrange the visits while here.
Anyway, I had my workshops today. All the ladies finished more or less
their projects and seem happy with them. It was a bit chaotic as not
eveyone was doing the same thing at the same time, but as a teacher I
do prefer it this way as it allows everyone to go at their pace and
not feel rushed or bored.
Tomorrow demo, love demonstrating and I will be using some of the
latest products from craftwork cards. By the way, have you seen their
new website? It's lush! (as I am posting from my phone I don't know
how to do proper links so just go to

Wednesday 25 November 2009

Demo at Dawn Bibby's design studio

I am still up north, not just lounging but actually doing design work
that I need to get ready.

I love the north, but it's been almost two weeks since I last saw
omar so I look forward going back south.

I will be this Sunday demonstrating at Dawn Bibby's shop making cards
using Craftwork Cards products and using my beloved Cuttlebug.

Tuesday 24 November 2009

Sometimes I feel exhausted yet I feel good about it. Weird? Well not
really. I get tired easily so I often feel exhausted but the worst
feeling is that I know i should not feel that way. But today I am
exhausted becuase we had a weekend pack with activities at Dawns
residential. From the moment I woke up on Friday till Sunday night
every minute had to be filled with something, no time for relax, no
time for laying around in bed (which I love). So, yes I am still tired
even though it is already Tuesday.
Yesterday dawn and I went into the shop to do some prep work for
today's show. To be honest I was so tired that the some of the samples
were not very good!
I shall be watching dawn on qvc from her lounge, surreal isn't it?

Wednesday 18 November 2009

Christmas acetate

Will I make my Christmas cards out of acetate this year? Well, not a hundred percent sure, probably I will do some like this one which I love using Craftwork Cards stuff/ I used so many different items that I wont list them, too tired for that.

If I mentioned that I am tired is not for sympathy. It is that tomorrow I have a workshop at the Glitter pot. Last week I was sent by post a parcel containing the items for me to design and make the cards. As the postal strike was in full swing, the parcel has not arrived yet. Thank goodness for plan B. But plan B has been a bit challenging, maybe a bit of a stress made me uncreative.

Also yesterday I had my hair cut and... it didn't go that well.
Haircuts. I have had a few, most of them pretty standard ones. It is not that I have been over the moon with many of them, more like I have been satisfied with the results. To be honest, I can only recall two haircust made me feel really good. The first time, eight years ago when I went back to professional hairdressers after a few years of home hair cutting, and the second time was last year in LA, in a proper Hollywood saloon.
Why hair makes us so miserable? I mean when its good its great, we feel on top of the world, but when it's bad it's really bad.
Yesterday I had my hair cut short, I just wanted a jaw sort of length. The problem this time is that I had it cut so short that there is nothing I can do, the back is super short -she actually shaved the neck- and the very front and some top layers are very short too.
I liked the salon -a lot actually- and it is a good hair cut but it is so short!

Well, you live and learn. One haircut at the time.

Tuesday 17 November 2009

More Sequins

Yes, I know this is not Strictly Come Dancing, but sequins are not just for dancing costumes you know!
To be honest I hadn't used many sequins in my cards until recently, but I find myself using more and more of them lately. The stamps are from Penny Black.
By the way, Craftwork Cards is offering Blog Candy in their blog. Their products are one of my top favourites as you may know by now. Click here for more info.

Monday 16 November 2009

Some times the simplest cards have got the most wow factor. I like to think that this is one of those cards. If you are thinking how that card is going to fit an envelope, well let me tell you, you use one of 8 x 8" -from Craftwork Cards.
I know this card is not for everyone, this one is over three edges not just the one!

Sunday 15 November 2009

Square Essentials + punches

As I have already posted the other stamps and their possible combinations with punches. So now it is the turn of the Square Essentials. If you click on the photo you will see a larger picture which will show details.
The ink I used is Versafine, Deep Lagoon.

Saturday 14 November 2009

Simple Joy

Simple cardmaking is what I find easier to do, but simple doesn't mean necesarly easy, although there may be people who think that. The key of cardmaking for me as a crafter is design rather than technique because I always think that is easier to learn technique than to learn design, as to learn a technique is to learn a process, whether design it is either based on an instinct or on pure theory. Anyway, either way, crafting is a hobby, so whatever you prefer is fine by me as long as you enjoy it!
This simple card I made for a demo. I had some paper left overs on my Christmas papers folder and decided to use it to highlight the beauty of this set of alphabet dies. I first covered with other bits of paper I had the mount board -yes, thick Sizzix dies will cut mount board even if it is covered with thick patterned paper- and then I put it through the Big Shot. Because of the thickness of the mount board it was a bit harder to roll it through but I was not difficult.
I used one of the Martha Stewart edge punches to add some interest to the card as well as some silver pearls to highlight the pattern of the paper. By the way, the papers are from Basic Grey, although not a hundred per cent sure from which collection as they were bits of paper, I think it is Figgy Pudding.

Friday 13 November 2009

More Gap parts

A quick post just to share yet another gap card. This is a very small one as I used the smaller mats from the Scallop squares from Craftwork Cards. I would like to point out I used two In Circles as I was demonstrating when I made this card and I did not have the right one. What I did was to use a purple one that said Happy Birthday and then I punches out the Best wishes white and silver one and punched it out using a 1" circle punch.
Also, the spots on the left bottom part of the photo show that I can not be bothered to actually clean up photos. Well, I do a bit of white balance on iPhoto and resizing but not much else. I do admire those who spent time and effort making sure that the photos they post in their blogs are picture perfect. Me? I can't.

Thursday 12 November 2009

Using leftovers

Because of my work, I often finish off with a lot of leftovers which are small pieces of very pretty paper. Because I am a true craft hoarder I find hard to get rid of them, so I keep them for a while until I have a clear out urge. Then I go through bits and pieces that I have and I give away any that could be used. This time, though, when I found three little pieces of Wisteria papers -from Basic Grey, the top one of them I had already been embossed and scuffed with the Cuttlebug-, I fancied making a card with them so I did this one above. To add the message, I just stamped the Miss you -from the Circle Essentials set-. To find a matching ink was a bit of a challenge, I think it was what it took me the longest time. The one I ended up with is not perfect by any means, but close enough for me.

Wednesday 11 November 2009

Diorama card

I love any papercraft or card that pops out or that you can interact with it. A diorama card fits the bill very well. I did this card for a friend of mine (Happy Belated birthday Sarah!).

For the apertures I used Petite Ovals Nestabilities dies, although I am not sure which wether the large or the small set. The double sided patterned paper is from Pebbles Inc.

I used for the cage and the bird images the clear stamp set called Gilded Cages from Craftwork Cards. I stamp the largest bird cage on acetate, on plain white card and on the blue side of the patterned paper and then I assembled it all together.

On the back of the guilded cage I added one of my messages in circles as the cage is suspended it rotate a bit so you can actually see the message.

The flowers are from the clear stamp set called Build a bloom.
Again, apologies for the bad quality of the photos. Apart from the lack of natural light mentioned in the previous post, I also have a problem with my lens.

Tuesday 10 November 2009

Floral Tree

These November days are not good. By the time that I get round to take photos of last night card it is too dark to take daylight photos, so I end up with bad photos like the one above. Granted the card is not my best one -nor my worst one either- but still the photo does not justice to the card.
I use Dawn Petler's idea of decoupaging with circles some of the flowers of the tree but then I decoupage properly the larger ones.

I may follow my friend Fabrizio's advice and get myself a light tent, but I kind of know that I will buy it and then not use it enough. What I need to try is to experiments with the daylight bulbs that I have.

Monday 9 November 2009

I love this paper - and this die!

Probably the most used paper in the last month was this notebook doodles one from My Minds Eye. For this simple card I used yet again the ornate card die from Sizzix. It is one of their XL dies so the price tag is a bit higher that what I am use to pay, but the possibilities are endless which such a lovely shape which fist nicely into a C6 envelope.

For the butterflies I use Martha Stewart punches (the three in one and the single one) and for the message I used a sentiment from my Essentials Sentiments set, of course!

Sunday 8 November 2009

More Ornate Cards

I said I loved this die didn't I? To make the aperture I used one of the Standard Circle Nestabilities sets, but only once I had cut the ornate card. If you are a Nestie wizard, I woud suggest to cut at the same time the smaller circle -for the Christmas pudding inside of the card- and the larger one -the aperture on the front of the card-
Since it is quite thick patterned paper and the finished size of the card is not very large, I figured that I could make the main card using this lovely glittered Christmas paper from K &Company. The letters are cut using the Serif Essentials a fantastic Bigz die set, perfect to cut thicker, like really think materials such as book board or thick chipboard.

Saturday 7 November 2009

Gap Cards

As soon as I saw this die I knew I could do a gap card with the Noel. As it is an intricate die cut, I cut two, one of the patterned paper and another one out of the plain green card. Once the card was done, I glued the green card Noel in the inside to strengthen the gap. I just added the scroll from this decorative scroll.
However, I think I over did it a bit when I inked the card with distressing inks, it became a bit too dark for my liking.

Friday 6 November 2009

Wording stamps and punches

As I did with the Circle Essentials, here you have a the stamps from the Wording Stamp set combined with a selection of punches.
Because this set contains so many different shaped messages (all related to Birthdays) there are a range of punches that combine with them. The two circle messages are smaller than the ones on the Circle Essentials, which means that if you would like to have a white line around it the best sized punch is the 1 1/16" -orange Eksuccess medium punch- and scalloped circle the best one is the Martha Stewart one.

Thursday 5 November 2009

Gold Leaf - Part Two

This one belongs to the same article as the one posted yesterday. The technique for this card is simple. Apply to the card or acetate double sided adhesive, it could be just tape or sheets that you can die cut or just trim. Then, I just stamped the Winter Scroll with black StazOn Ink on the front of the acetate so it floats.

Wednesday 4 November 2009

Gold leaf - Part One

Last year this card was featured in Craft Stamper as part of an article I did on gold leaf, actually the fake stuff, as it would be a bit too expensive to use the real stuff.
For this particular card, I use Stamp and Bond embossing powder, something I did not get on at all until the super stamper Kim Reygate taught it to me, do not over heat it and the fresher is the powder the better -ie old powder no good. Also, it was Kim that told me to use gold Perfect Pearls over the top to cover up any gaps without gold leaf.
The message is a PaperArtsy stamp and the Scroll is from Penny Black called Winter Scroll.

Tuesday 3 November 2009

Birthday Wishes

Because I was born on Christmas day, birthday cards that have a winter feel appeal to me. It may sound a weird combination, but that is what I like.
For this card I used Enchanting Trees stamp set from Craftwork Cards, click here to see the rest of the images for the set. Copics for the colouring in, and Rock Candy Distress Glitter Glue. About that glitter glue, let me show you a close up.

The Rock Candy glitter glue is very, very subtle, nothing like Stardust Stickles. BUT, it is gorgeous specially for someone that is not very glittery like myself.
The message is from the first Simply Sayings that craftwork Cards manufactured which were blck printed on white card, which is ideal to color in. Alternatively you could use the ones foiled in silver or gold.

Monday 2 November 2009

Circle Essentials and the punch sizes

Last week I got the parcel containing my latest stamp sets. One of them being the Circle Essentials.You can find them in shops all around the country including The Glitter Pot and Artbase. They look like this on the web:

Unfortunately, I have been extremely busy with deadlines and family so I haven't had the rpoper time to actually play with them -ie make a card-. But I could not resist stamping all of them to check they all work! So, I decided to show how the circles fit into the different punches and nesties. I know there are more combinations but this is using the punches or dies that I had at home.

They all can be punches with 1" but they wont have a white edge around them. If you would like that effect the best sized punch is 1 1/8", which are manufactured by Eksuccess. the bottom examples are used in combination with different shaped punches: star (Stampin Up, large) Square 1 1/8" (EKsuccess) and Scallop Square (StampinUp).

They are all in this set the same size which is slightly larger than the ones in the Mixed Sentiments and also larger than the two that appear on the Wording set - the birthday set.

If you have make any cards using any of the products I have designed whether it is Craftwork Card stuff -Messages In Circles or Buttons, Floral Damask or Floral Christmas- or the stamps -Mixed Sentiments, Circle Essentials...- please leave a comment with the link. I would love to see what people are creating with them.

By they way, I used Versafine Ink Satin Red (there is a reason, as I used Spanish Moss for the Wording Stamp and Blue Lagoon for the Square Essentials). And

Sunday 1 November 2009

Letterpress effect

I did have a system so I could know which cards I had posted photos of and which ones I had not. However, when I had some trouble with blogger last time I decided to use online albums, Picasa to be exact, which works great. But I did that hastily without thinking about my system.
The result is that now I have got loads of photos online and in my computer and I am not sure which ones I have shared. So, from now on you may see some repeat cards. It is not you it's me!
I wish I had more time and energy to actually explain how to make cards, but the truth is I hate writing instructions so I only do when I need to, ie for an article just because that is part of my job. But I can share that the background were don with the Snowflake Impresabilities.

Do you watch Stricly Come Dancing? It wasn't until last year when I started to watch it from my computer -we don't have a tv!-. It was my friend Julie -as in Julie Hickey- who actually talked me into by passing comments here and there about how much fun it was. Last year I was home for week one so I watched it online. I soon became addicted because I LOVE to dance, not ballroom as I don't know how, but pretty much everything else. I really enjoyed series Six and was quite happy with the outcome.
This year I am watching it again online either live or on the iPlayer on the Sunday and I am enjoying it as much or even a bit more than last year just because in each couple I like either the celebrity, the pro, or actually both. Yesterday there was a bit of an upset as one of the clearly better dancers was voted off. Personally I could not warm myself to the celebrity, but I like very much James Jordan the pro dancer not as best pro dancer but because he is one of the few -with Vincent and maybe Brian- who has some masculinity dancing. The other dancers are great, I consider some of them even better, but I don't see them as males dancing just as dancers, if it makes any sense.
The funny aspect about all this Stricly thing is that once I watched about ten minutes of the Spanish version, Mira quien Baila, and it confirmed what I already suspected: UK TV rules! Spanish, unfortunately, is a thousand miles behind.
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