Taking part in the challenges and classes over on UK Scrappers this weekend. Unfortunately the gallery server is overloaded so I am just uploading my project photos here for now. More info later. Excuse not so good photos, I took them all at an angle to overcome flare from the flash, it being so dark early here nowadays.

Some more stamping stuff

Phew! Chance to get my breath back! The stamping challenges over at 2 Peas were such fun, I completed LOTS over the week.

For this I used papers by Basic Grey Sultry, stamps by Penny Black (flowers) and Hero Arts (sentiment), ribbon by Stampin' Up. I applied markers direct to the stamp (I've never been confident with this and it took a couple of goes before I was okay with it) and shaded the edges with vintage photo distress ink. The sentiment was stamped and heat embossed with an antique linen embossing powder. To finish, I simply embellished with stick on crystals, Stickles and felt photo corners die cut with Sizzix.

This was for an acetate challenge and I included a felt flower coaster (from Matalan if I remember correctly) as the main element. The background was embossed with the Cuttlebug swiss dots folder and edges machine stitched. I stamped the flowers (Hero Arts) direct onto the acetate and attached the acetate to the backing by way of threading the buttons through all layers. The sentiment was layered onto a punched scalloped circle and a couple of heart topped pins and punch out butterflies finish it off.

I have finally discovered (or should that be succumbed) to a couple of the Sugar Nellie stamps. I chose this one (and another called Catch a Falling Star) for their simple lines, figuring they would be easy to colour for myself and my kids! The ones on these cards have been paper pieced. The square card uses Scenic Route Laurel papers, Sizzix die cut felt flowers and features a pocket inside. The long card uses K&Co papers and ribbon from Stampin' Up. Sentiments are all Hero Arts. The hearts were utee'd and applied with a foam dot for extra dimension.

*cough* *splutter* too much at this house. Josh was ill last week, Mia went downhill rapidly on Sunday after going to a party. Her fever was at 40.5 degC yesterday, but what was most worrying was that she had slept constantly, not had any liquids and I couldn't get any medicine down her - neither Calpol/Nurofen for the fever nor the Epilim for her epilepsy. After speaking to pharmacist, NHS Direct and GP we were directed to Children's A&E where we had to don masks (suspected swine flu) and put in an isolation area. A nightmarish 3 hours ensued with us almost at the point of having her have suppositories for paracetamol and IV for anti epileptic medication. Such a trial. Thankfully her fever is not so bad today, took another three hours this morning to persuade her to have the Epilim and Nurofen and I dare say it will be another battle again tonight. To top it all I have got some signs of a bug now too.

Oh ... but I did spend a lovely hour or so doing a beading project with Chiara. She made a necklace for herself and I made a necklace and earrings for my mum. Will photo later. I also finished all the ironing, thought I better get it done before I was too ill to be bothered.

Gammon, mashed potatoes, carrots, peas and parsley sauce for tea. Off to get it ready now. Yum!


That's the name of the 2 Peas in a Bucket week long event full of stamping challenges, started 17th October and finishing 25th October. Get over to the stamping forum to check out all the different challenges (which can be combined generally). There are lots of raks and a major huge prize from American Crafts. I only found out about it last night and it was late so have just done the one card so far.

This is a scrapling card (2.5x4.25" ish). I used a digital stamp by Hero Arts (dictionary page - which I can see will be very useful)) I printed this onto glossy cardstock (a 4x6 photo paper) and then blended peeled paint distress ink onto it. After drying I stamped the Stampendous leaf image and embossed in copper then blended some frayed burlap distress ink over. I cut the sheet down and used three small blocks as a background for the sentiment (Hero Arts). I don't know the make of the little frame stamp as it was bought second hand). Ribbon is Fancy Pants and gems by Papermania.

I've been rather lucky on 2 Peas in the past, having won a set of American Crafts Goodies, a Basic Grey cardmaking kit and a set of stamps, kudos to them and the generous challenge hosts for not discriminating against international peeps!

Shopping sprees galore

Heck. I need another (expensive) hobby like a hole in the head. But the jewellery making classes have been such fun. A pity it's only for five weeks and next week is the last week, sob.

It's a beginners class, so only pretty simple stuff, but all so effective! Anyhow, as well as the specialist beading shop in town I did a trip to Hobbycraft (the local shop didn't have any crimping pliers) and me and Mum went to town on filling the basket with beadie goodies which are all now awaiting to be strung up. I was tempted to buy a beading book but held back and got a couple from the library (all they had) plus I am sure there must be just STACKS of inspiring ideas out there on the www too.

Off soon to see my Dad to give him his birthday card and pressie. Inspired, as ever, by the incredibly talented Jennifer McGuire, I played with some new Hero Arts stamps (from my blog prize win). I used the design block dots and flowers together with distress inks and a clear embossing resist technique (as featured over on two peas in a bucket fall stamp camp week 2 class).

The distress inks I used were faded jeans, peeled paint and frayed burlap. Because these are the only three colours I have LOL! I then stamped on the chipboard letters using the woodgrain stamp. I didn't quite dry the initial inked layer very well which resulted in the embossing powder taking over at the edges, I quite like the way this adds an even more distressed effect though. Love happy accidents :)

Other great finds this week .... found out the wonderful revamped village chippie does gluten free frying. Yippee! (also vegetarian frying for those that are interested). So anyone travelling along the A6 in Derbyshire look out for the Ambergate chippie!

And a new local scrapbook supply shop in Hulland Ward. A bit on the expensive side, but it is stocking the lush Bo Bunny ranges (amongst others) and it is so nice to see things in the flesh so to speak. I bought some of the Tis The Season and Kitchen Spice ranges plus added another couple of papers to the Flutter Butter pile already in my scrap room. Nice to support local enterprise, eh?!
Busy times!

Been scrapping, cropping, jewellery making, cat rescuing ...

Not all in one day but all in one week.

I will take photos of creations and upload over the weekend.

Been up since 6am this morning (I am not a morning person) as Chiara has gone on a Y6 trip to London - Houses of Parliament, Natural History Museum and then off to watch Wicked at the Theatre - exciting day for her! Not due back until gone 1am so a very long day (for us both).

Mia had her speech and language review yesterday. Did the first task easily then floundered on the second and was giving up by the third :( More ideas to focus on for the next period - working on getting her to compartalise new words into two categories instead of one so that she has two chances of finding it in her head when she needs it. Eg a knife would be 'something that is sharp that you use to eat with'. I know, seems simple. For most it is. Mia's brain doesn't work like everyone else's though. And for in class, her 1:1 assistant will be working with small flash cards of who what where when etc, that are kept on the desk and Mia will have to pull the appropriate cards towards her when she has understood that bit of the lesson. This is so the TA will be able to tell which bits of information she has missed (due to the frequent absences she has, she often misses stuff that is said but we never know what she has missed until the relevant question comes up and then, of course, she doesn't know the answer). Hopefully that will help fill in the gaps at the time of learning and help her with doing the activities based on the information afterwards. Oh and I know now who her 1:1 support will be and I am THRILLED! I am sure Mia will be too. I don't know if it is widely known in the school yet so I am not going to spill the beans. But, to be honest, I would not have been disappointed with any of the staff as they are all so lovely!

Oh, and this was the cat that I found under the dining room table the other day. My cats were not at all happy (in fact Polo was in full attack mode which surprised me as he is so laid back). So ginger was kept in the conservatory overnight, fed lots of little meals and generally kept safe. He was a full tom so the conservatory is rather smelly now ... a task to tackle at the weekend :( I put a poster in the shop and leaflet dropped the nearest block of houses. No joy, so I took him to the vets to check for microchipping and quick once over (he was generally healthy, mucky ears, a broken tooth and a couple of war wounds on his ears, but no fleas, sores or obvious injuries). He was very cowed though, hissed a lot but never once struggled or scratched when handled. I am sure he will be a lovely boy once fed and calmed down. The vets are going to re-home him. I sobbed when I left him, soft thing that I am. I hope he gets a good place to live.

Woo hoo to the winners!

As drawn at random by my daughters.

Early bird prize goes to Alex

and the second winner is Scrapping4fun.

Can both the winners please reply to my email with their details so I can pass them on to enable the goodies to be sent out to you.

Huge thanks to EVERYONE who came and joined in the fun, spent time looking at my projects and then saying such nice things. I have loved every moment of this!

Waiting ...

For my girls to get back from school so they can do the drawing for the Stampin' Up blog candy ...

Here are the comments all printed out and sorted into the appropriate batches (night owls and everyone else).

School finishes at 3.30 so expect an announcement before 5.00!

And this afternoon I have been playing a little again. Now the deadline has passed, I have taken the liberty of adding in a few extra embellishments (buttons, brads and gems) and a couple of sentiments stamps (non SU as I don't have any, but I can see that is going to have to be put right!). I also did some heat embossing, SU do supply Versamark, clear and white embossing powder and heat gun, all of which are what I used here.

I wanted to work with the products on some non-Christmas themed cards. The star, swirl and flower stamps lend themselves especially to other celebrations.

The star is a really fun stamp and I love that punch matches exactly. Saves on cutting out for sure. And the swirly stamp makes such a great stamped background.

I love this shade of green (green is my favourite colour anyway). Paired with white it makes for such a pretty, yet serene, combination. I made a matchbook style card so that, when opened, it displays the feature bracket to best advantage. I heat embossed the flower onto the green cardstock with clear embossing powder for the background, and again but using white embossing powder to cut out for accents. I love this! And I am so upset to be almost out of that green patterned paper, the one with the tiny snowflakes that can pass for flowers.

It was a fabulous opportunity to create with these products, so a huge thanks to Stampin' Up for their generosity in supplying these to me ... and also for offering up blog candy too. I was sent a new catalogue alongside the products and I have a lengthening shopping list. Must haves so far are the scalloped oval and scallop edge punches, designer brads - flowers, heat and stick powder and the circle of friendship stamps. Oh yes and the oval greetings to match the oval punches. Sigh. Times like this I wish I worked!

Thanks and apologies

Thanks to everyone who visited and left such nice comments about my projects. You've all made me feel warm and fuzzy.

Apologies though for the delay in announcing the blog candy winner.

I wasn't well last night so will be working on it today and will announce the winners later on.

I am going to do some more creating today too ... using things up saves tidying things away doesn't it?

See you later

Woo hoo! Launch time is here!

These were the lovely goodies I received! Lush or what?!

Anyhow, now the deadline has been reached so I have to put down scissors and get blogging. Sad really because I had got plans for so many more things, but I am just not the fastest crafter in the world and I got a bit carried away with one of the projects which cut down on the time available elsewhere.

I have to say I am a Stampin' Up Novice. But, wow! the quality of the products is just fabulous. I couldn't really pick one item out above all the others. Apart from anyone who knows me knows that my one true love is patterned paper. And these didn't disappoint. I loved that the patterns ranged from timeless to more modern and the brown and green really worked well with the red. I can't wait to get more time to play with everything.

I did three cards, two altered items and one scrapbook page.

The altered items - the chalkboard I stamped on the wood frame (no smudging, yeah!) and then simply added a little paper and stamped some images to embellish. I stapled the ribbon to the back of the board using a heavy duty staple gun (very useful!).

The wish lists item is packaging from some drawer liners. The inside has a pocket for containing letters to Santa.

For the scrapbook page, I stamped tone on tone on the red and green cardstocks, unfortunately the photos don't really show that detail too well. I love that the papers and inks co-ordinate so well to enable the tone on tone technique like that.

Remember to comment for blog candy, see the post below (or below that!). And also check out Lousette and Jenny for their fab creations too :)

BTW I will be creating more projects because there is so much stuff left over and I have enjoyed playing with them so much. So keep an eye out in the next day or two (I think I have to go to Sainsbury's tomorrow, which is a long job as I go with my mum, so hopefully Friday I will be able to play again).

So far ...

Three cards
Two altered thingies
one messy desk

Blog Candy details

Well I'm back from jewellery making classes. Got a nice big box of goodies waiting to be played with so I need to get cracking for that midnight deadline!

Whilst I have been out, Lousette has blogged about the blog candy, so, hoping she doesn't mind, I am copying out what she has written on here too! I know, very cheeky of me, but Lousette is such a kind person I am sure she will be fine with it.

Blog Candy Blog Candy Blog Candy

There will be two prizes, each one consisting of a punch, a stamp set and an ink pad ... does that sound good or what!

The first prize will be an early bird prize. To qualify you need to visit this blog between midnight tonight and 1am - only one hour ladies, so this one has good odds indeed. Leave a comment, and if you are also a blogger we ask that you mention the challenge on your own blog, link through to here and then paste your blog link in your comment.

Don't worry if you are not a blogger, simply leaving a comment will still put you in the running for winning the prize.

Second prize will run from 1am until 12 midday on Thursday, so if you missed the early bird, or shall I say night owl draw, you still have a chance of winning a prize.

Same rules apply, leave a comment, bloggers leave a link ... and then I will choose the winners later tomorrow evening using a random number generator.

This is just getting better isn't it.

Remember, both Lousette and Jenny will also be giving away two prizes each, that is six in total, so be sure to come along and play.

Good luck everyone, I will talk to you later.

Drumming fingers ...

Nervously waiting ... for my box of goodies.

Luckily I have things to do today to take my mind off things a little.

I've hoovered, washed the pots, tidied around, fed all the animals (only 2 cats, 2 guinea pigs and 2 fish, but still).

I've tidied my craft desk (not the rest of the room mind, just a clear area at my desk to work on) and put out new clean messy mats to work on too.

I've had a scout around my 'odds and ends' cupboard and brought down an array of things that I may want to decorate with the Stampin' Up supplies.

And now I am out to a jewellery making class myself followed by school pick up and then taking the girls to a jewellery making class. So, like I said, plenty of things to keep me occupied during the wait.

Oh yes, more news on the blog candy later, got to go though just now.

pssst .....

Apparently the very kind and generous people at Stampin' Up are also going to be providing blog candy for the blog hop on Wednesday. More details tomorrow :)

I'm so excited ... and I just can't help it!

Deep breaths. Need to stop hyperventilating.

I am one of three lucky crafty bloggers who are going to be part of a blog hop for the new Stampin' Up releases being launched this Thursday (1st October!).

I can't believe it. Did I say I was excited?

Along with the talented Lousette Ashton and Jenny Cocks, I shall be sat at home on Wednesday afternoon eagerly waiting for a box of goodies from Stampin' Up. We get a few hours (eeek) to create some projects of our choosing and then upload them for a reveal at midnight Wednesday.

It's so exciting! Oh, yep, I already said that didn't I?!

I have to admit to being rather nervous too, being in the spotlight like that, and am hoping to do justice to whatever luscious goodies I get sent.

If you're not already familiar with Stampin' Up just follow the link to find out more about their products and how you can get hold of them yourself (click on the find a demonstrator tab).

More deep breaths. Almost felt calm there. For a minute. LOL!

Remember to bookmark this blog and those of Lousette and Jenny and come back Wednesday night for the big reveal.

Oh, I forgot to say, I am pretty new to stamping myself but have been scrapbooking for a few years now (if you don't know who I am, I go by the online name of fruitysuet). I love creating and have started to use stamps in my scrapbooking a lot more recently. I love that you can make your own customised embellishments to fit whatever colour or theme of page, as demonstrated on the two pages below which I did at crop last week.

See you Wednesday!