Friendship Card with NEW stamps

I re-arranged my craft room today and I’m delighted with the new layout.  I had two chests of drawers against the wall before and now they are back to back forming a sort of island unit in the middle of the room with my table butted up next to them.  I moved a couple of shelving units to behind where I sit now and my inkpads are all out on shelves where I can see them rather than in a drawer.  I had a huge sort out of my nesties and cuttlebug folders and found a new home for them instead of the basket they were all stuffed in and the whole thing inspired me to sit and have a play with the newest Chocolate Baroque stamps that we just launched on Thursday.  One set is called Wedding Belle – launched to coincide with a Will and Kate’s special day, and the other is called Words of Comfort and Joy which features a selection of sentiments that really speak from the heart.

On Thursday I was sorting out the special offer that we are putting together for our Guild members whose membership is now due for renewal and one item that we are putting in the renewal pack is a lucky dip paper pack made up from an assortment of yummy designs from Daisy D, Prima, Cosmo Cricket and Basic Grey.  I knew that I had some of this paper in my stash, so I dug it out and used it on this card.  The nesties are Labels Eighteen cut from pale yellow card and edged with Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink.  I stamped the floral vines from Wedding Belle around the edge of them, using the smaller one for the smallest layer.  I finished it with a little prima rose from my stash.

So here are the images of the new stamps.

We have a multi-buy offer on the two sets which you can find on the Chocolate Baroque website by clicking here.

I’m off to enjoy the glorious weather with my Mum today over in the Lake District.  Have a great day everyone!

I made some stuff!

Yay!  I got time to craft last night and apart from stamping a sentiment upside down on a really nice tag, I am quite pleased with my output.  Inspired by Lesley’s class last week, I made these scrunchy flowers with a nestabilities die, ecoline watercolours and three different embossing powders.

Then I looked around for something to put one on and found a tag I started a while ago with Wendy Vecchi stamps – coloured with Ranger’s Clover pigment ink.  I stamped an Elusive Images sentiment on from one of the bird sets.

There’s a bit of shadow on all my images today – I forgot to change the settings on the camera when I took these photos this morning.

Then I felt quite inspired to dig out the Wendy Vecchi stamps and they’re in the same place as my Tim Holtz stamps so some of those came out to play as well.

The result was another couple of tags.

And yes, another scrunchy flower – I’m just addicted to making these.  This one is made with a sheet of paper from Decadent Brocade, crumpled and sanded, then inked with Rusty Hinge distress ink.  The finished result is almost like worn leather.

This tag is my favourite.

It’s a little fuzzy (note to self, don’t leave Aperture priority set on the camera), so it might not be obvious that the patterned bit under the words at the bottom is a gorgeous printed paisley ribbon that I found in Target or Walmart last time I was in the states.  The sentiment is Crafty Individuals and the butterfly sticker is by K&Co – I’ve had them kicking around for a while and just spotted them in a box.

It was so nice to just have some pottering, non pressured play time.  I left things in pieces before I went to bed and actually got up early and stuck things down and finished these off this morning.  I also made another card, but I’ll save that for tomorrow.  I also still have my Regal album to share once I’ve finished editing the photos for that.

While I was finishing off this morning, the garden filled up with rabbits.  With no cats to scare them off, they’re getting pretty cheeky and this morning we watched a big bully chasing all the tiny baby bunnies around and around the trees.  We both got a bit choked up at the one little black baby – I’m still trying to get a photo of him, but he’s managed to elude the camera so far.  One of my nicknames for Sesame was Rabbit because of his mottled, brindle colouring.

As you can see, even early this morning, the sunshine was glorious.  We all got rather overheated upstairs at work today – our unit has a metal roof with skylights in and the upstairs does get very hot in sunny weather.  Adrian and I had a meeting in town today so on the way back we got ice lollies for everyone – I was very virtuous and had a frozen raspberry smoothie.  Just as well as we finished our day with fish and chips on the way back from the hospital!

Medically there’s not much change in Derrick, but he was very fed up and down tonight.  He is determined though to fight through this and get home – the will, the drive and the fight is there – you can see it in him.  He is grateful for all the well wishes coming his way from you guys, though (like many of his generation) he doesn’t really understand the community spirit that can build up on a blog or  how people he has never met can be interested in his welfare.  But he appreciates the kindness of the comments that people leave and the way people are always asking after him.

We appreciate it too and know that this is likely to be one of the most difficult times in our life, but we can’t put our lives on hold.  We have to make a conscious effort to seize moments, pockets of happiness where we can.

As Max Ehrmann said, “With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.”

So I shall leave you with a couple of pictures showing the view we enjoyed while having our fish and chip supper tonight.

It is a beautiful world, you can’t ever forget that.

Sidetracked …

I have been working hard all weekend getting ready for the class I’m teaching at the trade show next weekend. Two years ago my workshop slots were scattered randomly throughout the three days of the show and each one in a different room. I had to leave the stand, take all my class gear to go and teach a 45 minute class, then get me and all my gear back again through the busy hall.

Last year they gave us some storage space and kept me in the same room for all three classes, which was much better, but again, the time slots were random and all during the show itself.

My classes were booked up solid in both previous years so this year, I have reached the dizzy heights of being able to offer a Saturday masterclass (like wot Tim does, ooh, I’m in with the it crowd now!) and on the day before the show opens (oh dear, I can’t help set up the stand, what a shame …). I have one classroom to myself all day and will be teaching three two-hour masterclasses to Elusive Images stockists. No more lugging gear around and two hours gives us time to tackle something a little more involved – yay!

Now I know that most of the people reading this blog are not in the trade and therefore can’t come along to these workshops. I also realise that it will probably provoke an outcry and a general call for me to visit your local stockist to teach, or indeed stimulate more demands for a DVD. Give me a chance folks, last time I checked, there were still only 24 hours in a day.  Lynn has some crazy idea for running a competition amongst our stockists with the prize being to win me for a day!  Hmm, sounds mad, but I might let her talk me into it.  Now what kind of competition could we run with me as a prize?  Clean answers only please!

Anyway …

The point of mentioning all that stuff about the workshops is that I’m sitting here with an ache all down my right arm after cutting up cardstock and paper for four projects for 60 students – thank goodness for the Dreamkutz or I would still be cutting now I think. I still have project leaflets to write, photos to take, one more project to finish, plus I have new packaging still to do and the list goes on and on.  What I do not need right now is to be sidetracked into creating something I don’t need to, then double sidetracked into blogging about it!

I am surrounded by the aftermath of a huge crafting session and should really be tidying it all up and giving myself a space to put class packs together, but instead, I hear a little cry coming from my Clip it Up (It’s where I tend to put my brand new stash that I haven’t ever played with). “Play with me. No, pick me, pick me”. It’s a common enough sound in my craft room whenever I get close enough to the Clip it Up, but there’s a little group of new nestabilities on there and boy can they shout loud.

So here it is. Hardly any stamping, five minutes to put together, but the colours just called out to me and the blossom nestability set made me do it.

The glimmer misted pink/burgundy paper was something I had in my stash, so I can’t remember the colours, but it was sprayed onto a deep pink paper – I suspect Black Cherry was involved.  The background paper is from the neutral section of the Peacock Summer Party CD and what’s not showing up too well is that it has a greenish cast to it.  My colour printer at home is a bit old and clunky now and I’m never happy with it’s colour calibration – it just doesn’t seem to print true anymore, which most of the time doesn’t bother me because I like a bit of random when it comes to colour.

The flash has bleached out some detail – the ‘Be Happy’ (from Say it with Words) isn’t that white, it’s been coloured with Old Paper and Shabby Shutters distress inks.  The flash has also reflected on the glimmer and the metallic sheen on the ribbon, so this isn’t looking quite as coordinated on screen as it does in real life.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Here’s a close up of the flower.  I rolled the petals round a thin paintbrush to give some dimension and finished off with the Martha Stewart daisy punch in the middle and a little metallic gem I found at Paperchase.  All it needs is a knot or bow on the ribbon, but I don’t have enough of that ribbon here – I’m just hoping we still have some at work!


The crafting chaos can wait til tomorrow …