Twighlight fairies

Time for a new challenge over at Crafty Boots and the theme for the next fortnight, chosen by my lovely friend Dionne, is sparkle. Be sure to pay her a visit and check out the stunning box card she has made.

I am sharing a card that I made as on of my DT samples for The Gecko Galz using one of the fabulous new releases for April.


This fabulous fairy image is from the Charming  Silhouettes stamp set. I had to stop myself from using every image in this collection as they are all stunning.


I manipulated the image in Microsoft Word so the background was transparent and then layered it on to some paper, from the By the Shore paper collection, before printing it off . By the Shore is the perfect partner the silhouette stamp set.. I’ve used some more of the same paper to create a mat.


The sparkly ribbon is shimmer satin from Really Reasonable Ribbon and I’ve topped off the bow with a sweetheart blossom.


The glitter is Icicle Stickles which I dabbed on with my finger. It’s a clear glitter glue so it picks up some of the colour from underneath.


I hope you’ll have time to share your sparkly creations with us all at Crafty Boots Challenges over the next fortnight and do buzz over and take a look at what the rest of the DT have created.

Thanks for buzzing by.


Melt Pot Marvels

I had a very happy day yesterday at my Hels Sheridan Melt Pot workshop at Art From The Heart in Harrogate. Hels is a brilliant teacher who instils confidence and packs her workshop full of techniques, she’s also very generous with her provision of supplies. I got to meet and know 13 other lovely ladies who were taking part and there was also guest appearance by that other crafting goddess, Dyan Reavely.


This picture was taken at the end of the day and I made sure I was well out of the frame, although you can see my uncharachteristically tidy place second on the right. Now let me show you what I made:


This was all about the Melt Pot, I piece of crafting kit I have had in my possession for some time but have never even taken out of the packaging. And do you know what? It really wasn’t that difficult.


We started by applying paint to one medium and one small canvas using a palette knife. First a coat of ivory, which was heat dried, then smears of two other colours – I used blues.


We used the tissue technique for the stamping, but instead of applying a collage of images, the tissue was cut to the size of each canvas and then stamped as one piece. There was a huge choice of stamps and I think mine were a mix of Tim Holtz and Wendy Vecchi.


Then it was time for the Melt Pot and melted beeswax. First, the melted wax , which, by the way, smells divine, was applied to the canvas and then the tissue piece laid over the top. Next, you use a heat gun which melts the undercoat of wax. At the same time you brush on a coat of wax over the top. Finally, we added extra wax to selected areas using a brush and also by letting drips of wax run down the canvas. You can give it all a buff at this stage but we applied a dusting of mica powder before hand. Black paint was applied to the sides of each canvas using a piece of cut and dry foam.


Next, we moved on to UTEE. Hels had a selection of flowers and a little stamped butterfly for us to dip and coat with clear UTEE. Then we added green dye to the clear and dipped some die cut leaves. I added a bit of black paint to mine.




Finally, we added gold, bronze, pewter, black and white embossing powders to the UTEE in the pan, marbled it, and used the mix to pour into moulds and also on to texture treads and cut out shapes from it with a cutter. You can see the little bird I made, but in the end I didn’t use my hear, I shall save that for another occasion. Once the Melt Pot was cleaned up we also used it to heat embossing powders that had been added to into little hat pins.



Then it was just a question of using hot glue to arrange everything.


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I was very happy with my piece but, as usual, I liked everybody else’s more!! Now I know that what I need to do next is to fly solo with my own Melt Pot as soon as possible. Hopefully the Easter break might present an opportunity for me to do that and I may see if I can share some photo’s of a step-by step.


Thanks for buzzing by.


Case card for CCCB

At the time that this post publishes all being well I shall be disembarking from the train at Harrogate and wending my way to my Hels Sheridan Melt Pot workshop. I’m ashamed to say the pot has been in my stash for about nine months, possibly longer, and is still in its packaging. I know, shocking! I’m hoping today will give me the confidence to start using it.

Today I have a card to show you and I will be sharing this over at City Crafter Challenge Blog where the lovely ladies are about to celebrate their 4th birthday.


You definitely need to buzz over and take a look at all the lovely samples the Design Team are sharing and there are also loads of opportunities to win some fabulous prizes too. The challenge this week is to case one of the projects. I’ve chosen to case project number 3.


I’ve used a similar layout, included a post card image and also one with a pretty dove. Both images are from The Graphics Fairy and have been layered up with coordinating pink card, music manuscript and some paper from my scrap box. Some of the edges have been distressed and inked.


There’s a combination of my own vintage shabby roses (which look a bit peachy in the photograph but are actually pink) and sweetheart blossoms.


I’ve used plenty of lace, partly by design and partly to cover up a little mishap! The bow is made with some gorgeous sparkly ribbon from Really Reasonable Ribbon.



City Crafter Challenge Blog was one of the very first challenge blogs I came across when I started blogging just under two years ago and I can still remember my first entry. I’ve played along virtually every week since and have been lucky enough to be a Guest Designer, in the Spotlight and, just before Christmas, to have a month long spot. I’ve also been lucky enough to win some great prizes and made some lovely friends along the way. . So big CONGRATULATIONS to CCCB, thanks for the inspiration and the challenges, and here’s to many more years of fun.

Thanks for buzzing by.

From butterfly to bee and a bonus brooch

Today I am sharing a card that is a reworking of one that I did for the Sunday Stampers challenge a few weeks ago.


 I was all set to send this to my friend for a birthday when she threw a spanner in the works. Or rather a home for bees! I found out she has just installed a bee house at her central London home. It seemed only right and proper therefore, that her card reflected this so I used the same idea but different colours and, of course, a bee:


As my friend is also a lover of music, as well as being a talented singer and musician herself, it seemed appropriate to use some music manuscript instead of the book pages I used for the butterfly card. I’ve used kraft paper in between adding in some texture and pattern with stamping.



The bee image is stamped onto some ivory card that has been coloured with Antique Linen distress ink. I’ve applied some more ink through a harlequin stencil and then stamped some script. The blossom branch was stamped in Shabby Shutters and Worn Lipstick and I used Vintage Photo for the touches of honeycomb.


I’ve added some more of my shabby vintage wild roses which have chocolate brown glittery centres.


Once again I’ve used seam binding coloured with Antique Linen and Worn Lipstick, spritzed with water and then crinkle dried.


In addition to the card I also made a little altered domino brooch as a small gift. This is similar to the one I made the other week but I’ve made it a landscape design, used a musical domino and music manuscript for the background.



Everything is sealed with Modpodge glitter.


I am sharing these over at Sunday Stampers for the nature challenge, Really Reasonable Ribbon for Challenge #92 Flowers or buttons and bows and at Craft Hoarders Anonymous for Challenge #5 which is to use a stamp.


Thanks for buzzing by.

Trio of eggs

Today I have a celebratory lunch to look forward to. My colleagues and I always organise an “end of term” meeting so we can plan ahead. However, we believe in mixing business with pleasure and make sure we have a nice lunch whilst we are working. This time of course we shall be celebrating the arrival of our colleague’s grandchild. As it’s the last time we will all see each other before Easter I have made sure I am organised with chocolate goodies and their Easter cards.


I only make a small number of Easter cards and decided to make these all the same. They are a variation the yellow card I shared last week.


I made a base card out of white card, using an egg shaped die to cut it. Then using the same die I cut a whole egg out of blue card, then popped it in an embossing folder.


I’ve used some fabulous brown gingham ribbon and white crochet lace across the centre. Both of these were from one of my Really Reasonable Ribbon Club assortments. I made a little bow from some more of the brown gingham. I love this ribbon and it must have been a very generous piece as I’ve used it lots and still have some left.


To finish I added a couple of little sweetheart blossoms. I dithered over whether to add a sentiment to the outside but in the end stamped it inside.

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Thanks for buzzing by.

Faux Book

As you know, I live on a permanent countdown to Christmas (259 days, if you’re interested!) however this week I am also counting down the days until my Hels Sheridan workshop. Just 3 more sleeps (eek!) and I’ll be packing up my tweezers, along with the some surprise treats for Mrs S, and catching the train to Harrogate, I can’t wait. In the meantime I have the first of my makes that I will be sharing over at Sunday Stampers where the theme is nature:


This is a little faux vintage book and I saw the technique over at Polly’s Paper Studio where Ginny Nemchak has made a great video to show how it’s done. As soon as I saw it I knew I wanted to give it a try. I haven’t got it quite right this time, but I now know what to do next time! All the same I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out.


The book isn’t designed to fold, but is intended to decorate other projects. Check out Ginny’s Graphic 45 audition piece to see how fabulous it can look. Now I’ve had a go I want to have a go at making a miniature version. I won’t explain how to make the actual book – check out the video for that, but I’ll tell you how I made the front pages.


I’ve used a piece of ivory card and coloured it with Antique Linen distress ink. The edges have been distress and then I’ve added a little Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain. I stamped a background with a dictionary page stamp – using the third impression so it is very feint.


I stamped the bees and butterflies using Walnut Stain and then stamped on the blots and splodges using Vintage Photo.



The words were printed on the computer using an old typewriter font. The finishing touch was to add the ribbon book mark and a little key.


Once I had photographed this I wondered, as I do, what this might be like if the stamped images, which if this were a real book would be illustrations, might be like in colour. So as I hadn’t made this for anything in particular I thought I’d find out so added some colour using watercolour pencils and a water brush.




Mmm – quite like this. One piece of advice, if you do decide to make a colourful version make sure you do the colouring before you assemble the finished piece!

Thanks for buzzing by.




When a child is born

So yesterday I told you I was all set for a meeting at the city farm – well in the event I didn’t end up going. I got an early call from my work colleague to say she couldn’t make it as her daughter had given birth at the weekend. Isn’t that great news?! However, it’s not without a drama and I’ll tell you why. First, her daughter’s baby wasn’t due for another ten weeks (I know!) and second, she lives in London, but was in Manchester at the time. Now I can tell you that the baby was a good weight (just over 3 pounds) and is doing well. They will be taking her back to London in the next couple of days.

Having been taken completely by surprise I had to get a card ready for when I see my colleague on Wednesday:


This uses a lovely image from A Day for Daisies who the Gecko Galz have teamed up with for a cross promotion this month. Be sure to buzz on over and check out some of the beautiful samples made by the rest of the Design Team. There’s also a chance for you to win A Day for Daisies gift pack plus a gift voucher if you enter this month’s customer challenge.

P1070874I printed out the image, coloured it in using Promarkers then mounted it on some coordinating card. I added a strip of lace, from my Really Reasonable Ribbon club assortment, down one side.


The background is more card plus some paper from the Gecko Galz Wild Roses paper pack.


The ribbon is seam binding that I’ve coloured with the same Promarkers used to colour in the roses on the dress in the image. Thanks to my Gecko sister Heather for the idea of creating a real bow to apply over the one on the dress.


The rose is one of the vintage wild roses I’ve been making lately – I just coloured it up with Promarkers, so it matched the ribbon, and then added a pearl centre.


The sentiment is from the Darkroom Door All Occasions set. I am linking this up with the current challenge, #92,  over at Really Reasonable Ribbon which is flowers or buttons and bows.

Congratulations Sue, you’ll be a fabulous, not to mention glamorous, Granny!

Thanks for buzzing by.

Golden egg and bees

Another Monday seems to have whizzed round incredibly quickly. One minute I’m kicking off my heels and relaxing on a Friday evening, next it’s the mad dash to get off to work for a meeting. I’m not entirely sure what happened in between!!

Anyway, it’s time for a new challenge word over at Every Inchie Monday and this week it is gold.


Gold and bees, in my opinion, make great companions. So that was where I started. Firstly some gold heat embossing onto gold card. Because the gold card is quite brassy in tone the stamped and embossed bee looks quite dark. Also, if you’re not careful when heat embossing metallic card it can start to bubble – I decided to let that happen as it created a variation in texture.


The next one is the same gold card, this time dry embossed, rubbed with gold ink and then topped with a little stamped bee.


Finally, something I’ve done before, but not as an inchie, simply gold heat embossing on black card. I’ve used a little gold ink around the edge.


As we are approaching Easter I thought it would be fun to also have a little golden egg. This one was punched from washi tape adhered to card. The background is some vintage newsprint paper, a little strip of washi tape and a few threads of muslin. You’ll see I managed to get the text upside down!




Today’s meeting is taking place at a City Farm and I’m hoping to pick up a clutch of eggs. So it’s out with the heels and on with the wellies!

Thanks for buzzing by.


Good Egg

A new challenge starts this week over at Anything But A Card and the theme is an open one entitled “Spring Forward.” With Easter being very late this year, even now it seems a long way off even if chocolate eggs have been in the shops since January, it almost seems too soon to share an Easter project but that’s what I have for you today:


As you know, I can never resist making a miniature scene, as a child I always made little Easter gardens, usually using bits and bobs from the garden and I did the same with my own two sons. I love it that this one here is inside a cardboard egg and, more importantly, that it has real chocolate eggs!!


I used a plain papier mache egg, gave it a coat of pink paint and a sprinkling of chunky glitter so it resembled one constructed out of sugar. On the inside, rather conveniently, it already had little printed flowers. It seemed daft not to utilise those so I simply went over it with a light coat of white gesso. I’ve mounted the egg on a small spool that I painted white and edged with gold pen.


To neaten the edge I added some gold Dresden trim and a gold pipe cleaner.


Inside I’ve arranged some green Icelandic moss and a tiny wooden picket fence. There’s also a glass toadstool.

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The chick and the rabbit are both images from the Gecko Galz Beautiful March collage sheet and Hip Hop Easter ephemera set. The chocolate eggs were the perfect size for this project and what a shame that I had to buy a whole big bag just to use the few you see here!!


To top it all off I’ve added some seam binding and a paper flower.


Hope you will have time to share your projects with us at Anything But A Card this month, be sure to buzz over and see what the rest of the Design Team have been up to.

Thanks for buzzing by.

Egg shaped card

I love Easter eggs, there’s something about the snap of that shell that you just can’t beat. These days, Easter eggs don’t seem to be as expensive as they once were but I don’t think they live up those that I remember from my childhood. In those days there were surprises and treats inside the egg instead of them being packaged up on the outside sandwiched inside blown plastic. I remember once having an egg that formed the body of a cardboard swan and others that were intricately piped with iced flowers and leaves. The card I am sharing today is a nod towards those sugary confections:


I am sharing this over at City Crafter Challenge Blog for their Easter challenge and also at Really Reasonable Ribbon where the theme is flowers or button with bows.


I used an egg shaped die to cut out the base card the topped it with a piece of embossed yellow card. Across the centre is some gorgeous shimmer satin ribbon and white crochet lace, both of which were from my Really Reasonable Ribbon Club assortments.


I’ve added a bow at one side and then arranged some spring blooms – sweetheart blossoms and daffodils- and leaves.


All around the outside I’ve added some “sugary” dots of rose pink glitter.


The finishing touch is a little paper bee from Anna Griffin. I original planned to use a little bunny but the little bee was to hand so I popped him on just to see what he looked like. Somehow, he finished the card off perfectly and looked so at home I left him where he was!


Thanks for buzzing by.