Mmmmmmmm irrisistible!

Rouge de Garance. I love, love, LOVE the papers and die cuts by this company. They have a beautiful website and lots of inspiration from the DT on their blog too.

I am a total patterned paper fanatic, I use lots of my pages and I had drooled over the papers for a long while but, you know, they are quite bold and I was really unsure of how I would be able to work with them. Well I was lucky enough to win a set of products in one of their blog challenges last year and that gave me the push I needed to work with something much more different than I usually did.

And oh my word! I so loved working with the pack that I was sent by RDG that I just had to go out and buy some more. They are a pretty hard to find range, but luckily Angel Crafts stocks it (note - it's all on 25% discount until the end of March which is erm, tonight!)

These are some of the pages I have created with the papers:

Using paper Fleur de Tiare No1 and die cut sheet Feuille Etiquettes de Mai No2. These papers are so wonderfully summery:

I love the Urbaine range especially, I think it is just fab for teen boy pages, like these three layouts

I love mixing it with Hambly products, like on this page. The Rouge De Garance on this page is a 6x12 sheet, Daphnis et Chloe No10

And the Aile ou Fleur range is utterly beautiful too. I love that this works with such a huge range of themes, girls, boys, nature and even, ahem, monkeys! By the way - Firkin' is used around here to mean scratching (see this site for more Derbyshire slang!).

This page uses Aile ou Fleur, coupled with papers from Autumn Leaves (heart frame) and Jenni Bowlin (red ledger):

As you can see, I am starting to work my way through photographing my pile of projects!

Colour Combo challenge #64

The colour swatch for this week is now up on the Color Combos Galore blog. This was a really fun combination to play with and the DT have put together some great pages showcasing them too.

Manufacturer links update

I love looking through manufacturer DT galleries and blogs to check out the inspiring ways in which product is used. So last year I put together the list of links on my sidebar. And now I have got around to updating it. I have deleted broken links, updated with new manufacturers and NEW I have also added in blog links where I have been able to find them.

If I've missed any out and you have the relevent links, please let me know.

Erm ... Happy New Year :)

I know. Bad blogger I am. I have sinfully neglected my blog since way back when (eeek before Christmas!). Truth is I have sort of put myself into hibernation (I always get the post Christmas blues but this year was really bad). My Mum gave me a bit of a stern talking to so I am trying my best to get myself back up and running again and 'out there'. I have very shamefully been neglecting my friends too so I have a heck of a lot of apologising and catching up to do very quickly. I started today by forcing myself out of bed before 9am in order to get to the local crop at Hobby Horse Crafts. I haven't been for a few months and I was quite apprehensive about walking into the hall on my own again. There were a lot of new faces (always good to see) and lots of older ones (well not OLD but you get my meaning!) so it was really lovely to catch up with lots of people again. Unfortunately I think the next couple of crops will also be out for me which is a shame as I really enjoyed myself.

I have done a heck of a lot of scrapbooking in the last few months ... I did the layout a day for January, which was HARD work and I have a pile of about 80 pages piled up at the end of the desk waiting to be put into albums.

I am giving myself the task of getting stuff photographed and added to slide show albums which I will add to my side bar, perhaps featuring some of my faves in blog posts now and again. Also on my to do list for my blog is to update the list of manufacturers websites and add in any blog addresses I can find too, as well as putting back in a list of my fave sites to visit for scrapbooking/cardmaking inspiration (I seem to have lost this somewhere along the way!).

Scrapbooking newswise, things have been a bit up and down. The Collectively Yours UK Inspiration blog closed its doors at Christmas and this month has been the last month for The Design Collective. I thoroughly enjoyed my time working with the teams on both, loving the challenges and comraderie and I shall really miss working alongside them all.

Last week I had my very first 'real life' teaching assignment at the Luxurious Angels retreat in Lockerbie. I was asked by both Angela and Roz to teach; I was given Arctic Frog for one class (which I *gasp* created a double layout with) and Tinkering Ink for another class which was a very *ish* single page. I love *ish* pages, I am not very good with clean lines (or straight lines for that matter) so a bit of free hand cutting, paper tearing and distressing were right up my street! I also had fun creating a selection of mini projects. I totally and utterly enjoyed every single moment of my weekend away and my confidence was immensely boosted by the lovely and positive comments about my classes. The ladies were so friendly, welcoming, generous spirits and great fun to spend time with.

Over the weekend the very generous ladies attending the retreat raised over £850 for the Macmillan charity, with another £200 being raised for Ellie Wiseman's fund by auctioning Roz's services (ooooer!) to a couple of lucky ladies. I was unluckily outbid as I could desperately have done with Roz coming down to clear and tidy my stash room (one of the services she was auctioning herself for). Roz, having seen the state of my room, was more than pleased at the outcome :D

What else? I have joined a new inspiration blog. Color Combos Galore has come into being from a challenge run by Janet on 2 peas for quite a while now. Janet has worked hard at creating an independent blog to present the colour swatches and the work of the DT. It's a really great focus when faced with a mountain of stash and as big a mountain of photos waiting to be scrapped. I love that a given colour swatch focuses my attention to a certain set of papers and photos (which really cuts down on the amount of hmming and aahing time spent before starting a page) yet gives me total freedom on theme, style, content, journaling and product. I love to see how varied the pages the DT create from the same set of colours are each week.

The colour swatches are uploaded on the blog each Monday. Janet has extended an open invitation so if you would like to be a guest designer, just follow the instructions on the blog. And we would love to see how you interpret the colours so please add links to your creations on the comments section.

Just for a bit of eye candy, here is a selection of cards I have created over the last few months for The Design Collective weekly extra ... the last three months have been a card sketch with some yummy examples from the DT.