Sunday, 21 August 2011

Blogging Break - and what makes me smile :)

I'll be away for a couple of weeks on holiday -
just thought I'd let you know -
 in case anyone wonders where I am -
- well, you never know!

I thought I'd share this little video with you
it never fails to make me smile
- I can't remember why!

Thanks for visiting xx

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Watch The Birdies!

There is a new swap using the
Tim Holtz 'Caged Bird' Sizzix Alterations die on
As this is one of my favourite dies I couldn't resist joining in!

The base is mountboard (6" x 4") covered with assorted book pages and music sheets.  I then distressed it with paint and distress inks using the brayer
and craft sheet. 
 Around the edge is metallic rub on paste.

The birdcages are cut from Grungeboard and coloured with
acrylic paints and more of the metallic rub on paste.

As the Grungeboard is very flexible, when I stuck it onto
the backgrounds (using E6000 adhesive), I was able to bend it
making it a bit three dimensional.

The words were printed off the computer onto ordinary copy paper
and stuck onto the background with Liquitex matte medium.

The birds were cut from scraps of leather,
I used the reverse (suede) sides
as it is softer and looked more like feathers (not a lot, but a bit!!)
The wings were attached with a small stitch
and the eyes are beads and sequins.

I finished them off with sari ribbons and beads
and think they look quite tweet!

If you want to join in with swap but don't have the Tim Holtz die,
you can use other birdcages - all the details can be found on
Dragon's blog along with some of her own beautiful examples.

Saturday, 13 August 2011

40th Birthday Card .... for someone special!

The someone special is my little sister whose birthday is later this month.
I don't know about you, but I always struggle with 'special' birthday cards
and am always stumped for ideas. 

When I saw the latest challenge on the
I decided to use that as a base for my card.
The challenge is to alter a book page, of any book.

I chose an old page from a novel which I coloured with some
acrylic paints then distressed with a few bits and pieces.
I made a stencil for the numbers 40 and sprayed some ink through it.
As it didn't show up very well, I machine stitched around it with red cotton.
I edged it with some red velvet ribbon and a little strip of lace.

The focal point of the card is 'Prom Queen' from Stampotique.  
I rubber stamped her onto card and coloured with Stickles
and watercoloured with pencils highlights on her face. 
She also has some fibres in her hair for her birthday bunches!
She's attached to the card with 3D foam strips.

The birthday flower rosette I made from scraps of lace and cotton
following the tutorial here.

There are lots of lovely examples on the Stampotique blog
which you can find here.

Thanks for looking at mine.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Funky Fowls from Norway

These fantastic characters flew into my craft room today, they are
"Clara & Fredrikke, The Terrible Twos"

They also arrived with some lovely fabrics

.... and I even have patterns and instructions for making up
some of my own Funky Fowl projects!

If you're wondering why,
 it's because I was lucky enough to win a 500th post giveaway from


These two photographs are from Mrs Moen's blog and they show up all the wonderful stitching - I'll be amazed if I could achieve anything like this.

Thank you again Nina Lise for this wonderful giveaway.
The cushion cover fits the cushions on the sofa bed in my craft room
so it is already in place and so far Clara & Fredrikke are
behaving themselves!

If you haven't already visited Mrs Moen's blog I would recommend it
as you'll find all sorts of beautiful creations, tutorials and patterns
and bucket loads of inspiration too.

Just off now to have a word with a couple of funky fowls!!

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

More Stamp and Shrink Charms

Following on from yesterday's post I've made three more charms
for the 'Stamp and Shrink Charm' swap.
Thank you to those who left me lovely comments, I really do appreciate them!

I used these stamps this time

The oriental looking one is 'The Calligraphy Robe' from
 Stampington and Company.
 I stamped it onto black Shrink Plastic then coloured over it in part
with gold acrylic paint, which on reflection wasn't the best idea as it's covered up most of the detail on the robe!  I don't much care for the face either
as it looks like a negative print.  Maybe I'll make another on white Shrink Plastic.

On the plus side though, I like the hanging beads and Chinese coins
which are quite tactile and make a pleasing sound when jangled.

For the next one I used three stamps from the 'London Underground'
from the Artistic Outpost - I just love these stamps!
I used clear Shrink Plastic this time which I much prefer as once
shrunk you can still see the image from the back.

Finally, I did another from the Character Constructions set,
but this time on black Shrink Plastic and StazOn opaque 'cotton white' ink.

I have a few tips I'd like to share -
and if I don't record them here, I'll only forget about them!!
  • Once shrunk the shrink plastic can be embossed with embossing powder - I did this on the reverse of one of my charms then rubber stamped an image into it, it's great for covering up an untidy back.  I did read this on another blog but can't remember whose it was - sorry!
  • When cutting out the rubber stamped image from the Shrink Plastic leave a slight silhouette around it - ie, don't cut right into the edge of the image.  This gives the image more definition and it looks better.
  • Finally, this one is from Lesley who has discovered that ACETATE also works well to shrink.  I shall be trying that one out!                      Thanks again Les!
EDIT:  I tried out the acetate, but it didn't shrink for me :(
I used a heat gun and quite thick acetate - maybe it depends upon
the type of acetate and the method used for shrinking?
If you have a go I'd be interested in hearing how it went for you.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Stamp and Shrink Charm Swap

Shrink Plastic is something I rarely use but I do have a little supply of it in my craft room - like most crafters I suppose, I have a little bit of most things but don't often use all of it.

When I saw this 'stamp and shrink charm swap' on
Ning Network group recently, and some of the examples made
I was inspired to have a go myself.

Here's the stamps I used from Stampotique and Character Constructions.

So it was just a case of stamping onto the clear Shrink Plastic with black
StazOn Ink, colouring (the two Stampotique ones) with Marvy Le Plumme
pens, punching holes into and then heating and shrinking with the heat gun.

This one is my favourite as I like the dangling arms and sewing machine charm (attached with jump rings).

I just added a few beads and findings to these two.
I like the girly one with the heart and the other one is more masculine.
I added a glass gem to his chest as after shrinking there was a large
dimple there and I don't know where it came from!

Here you can see the size of the charms in relation to the stamps.

I might have to make some more now!

Thanks for looking :)