Love is like a butterfly, as soft and gentle as a sigh . . .

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Before I get to talking about card making ….  I’m sorry about the invite above saying: ‘Follow my blog with Bloglovin’ … I had to insert a bit of computer code into a new post order to ‘claim my blog‘. I’m not really sure why I need to claim my blog, but I noticed some other bloggers have done this so, in order to find out what it’s all about, I registered with Bloglovin. Will see what’s so exciting about it.  You can ignore it … you don’t have to click to follow me on there – unless you want to, of course.

There are cards for every sort of occasion and every type of person, (or personality) and I sat for 20 minutes trying to decide on what sort of card I was going to make for a relatives 89th Birthday.  I’ve made her cards  (Birthday, Christmas etc) for a few years, but I felt that she needed something different this year.  Not so fussy, but still with something going on.  Hmm… something with butterflies I think.

I knew I had a little kit which made up two jars of either butterflies or sweeties so I went in search of them among the box of Hunkydory stuffs.  I’d forgotten how pretty they were and the moment I saw them I knew that I’d make her one of these.

In ‘kit’ form this is what you get:kit

The pink jar is the sweet jar, and the blue, as you saw at the head of this post, is the butterfly jar.  But … there’s nothing to say that you can’t mix them up and swap butterflies for sweets.

Now … I have a bit of a problem in making ‘kit cards’.  I ALWAYS feel like I’ve cheated and let the whole crafting community down.  I don’t know why I feel like that, I just do.  But, I know that there very much is a place for kits and also know my relative will love this card.  It’s very ‘her’.

You begin by popping out the ‘front’ central part of the jar, and then cutting some clear acetate  to match the shape of the ‘hole’ in the front of the jar, you then fix that to the inside of the card front.

fluttering-wishes-2

showing the rear of the card and the acetate fitted and fixed to the front of the jar.

It’s when you get to this point in the making that you need to stop and think about how you’re going to write the card out when it’s made.  Yup… you need to do that now before you fix any of the butterflies into the jar, because once fixed in place, you’ll have a difficult time trying to write on the back of the card.

The reason the card has that 3D effect is because of the roundedness of the front.  And that happens because the front is cut slightly bigger than the back. So once you’ve fixed the butterflies into the inside of the jar you then fix that card (jar) front in place.  If you scroll up to the photo of the unmade kits, you’ll notice that on the one edge of the card front, there’s a little flap.  That little flap allows you to adhere the front to the back … but because the card front is too big it ’rounds out’ and so gives the jar it’s shape.  (The use of craft clamps comes into use for this part).

fluttering-wishes-1

This is the finished card as far as the kit is concerned, however you can then add your own touches to it to make it yours.

I added some deep pink with white dots ribbon ‘ties’ which I made (look like bows but not bows), and a silver metal, dangly charm fixed onto a large white paperclip,   which had a little more of the ribbon looped onto the top of it,  which I attached it to the back of the card so that the charm was dangling down next to the hand-written message.

I totally forgot to take a photo of the extra touches until it was packaged and sealed inside its postal box so you’ll just have to imagine the end result.  [sigh…  I’d be terribly dangerous if I had a brain]

And, as they say, that was it!  VOILA!  It’s an easy to put together card, the majority of the time is taken up with trimming off the little ‘tabs’ from where the die cuts were still attached to the cardstock.  Other than that it’s a simple card to make.  But looks so pretty when made.

As I was putting this card together I kept singing the theme song to a lovely, gentle sitcom, called Butterflies,  which was made and shown on the BBC, here in the UK,  between 1978 to 1983, and if I find it showing now, I’ll actually sit and watch it, just to be reminded of a more gentle time.  The theme tune is the Dolly Parton song Butterflies, but for this programme it was recorded by a singer called Clare Torry, and I think this may have been because Ms Torry had a little softer and more gentle tone to her voice.

It’s only 38 seconds long, so I share it with you here:

If I’ve got an earworm I think I should share it with everyone so that you can have it too.  I was taught that it’s nice to share.  [grins]

Have a beautiful Wednesday, whatever you’re doing.  Thank you for coming and having a coffee with me, I love having your company.

Sending my love,  from here in my corner to you in yours.

Sig coffee copy

 

 

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Hints, tips and part 2 of the ‘Guide to Stamping’.

Hello again! 🙂

Yesterday we went through the Rules (there aren’t any) and Guidelines for getting better images when stamping.  We learned the importance of a mouse mat.  We stamped the same image a few times.  We stamped it in different colours too and saw what a difference that made to the end result stamped image.  We chatted about stamping an image in different colours all at once.  And we did a bit of colouring of images once they’d been stamped,  using a rainbow selection of coloured stamped pads.

Today we’re going to move on to something a bit more fearfulSorry.  I meant to sayFearfully Easy.  An impressive bit of stamp magic which, if you don’t know about these types of stamps yet, you’ll be surprised about.

A blog I follow ( PaperPuff ) summed up these particular stamps beautifully when she herself tried them for the first time a few weeks ago.  She called them the stamps of the Three ‘Oh’s.  smiling to myself here because I knew what she was talking about and she’s right. They really are  Three Oh’s.  You’ll see why …    Shall we begin?  Seatbelts on…  handbags on the floor ….  Let’s go!

24 Let's get more serious

These are Altenew Stamps.  I’ve blogged about them before, but this time I’m talking about them because I think anyone who’s having a problem with their stamping should absolutely have this set (or one of their other sets)  in their ‘armoury’.

There are a couple of brands of stamps which allow me to put together a ‘story’, in stamped images, in different ways.  Even if I use the exact same stamps over and over, I can actually still make one-off cards – each of them totally different from the last. 

These two brands are: 

  • Card-io Stamps  – which I adore, these are available direct from Card-io themselves,  (their name is a clickable link which will open in a new window) ... 
  • and . . .  the fairly recently introduced into this country:  Altenew Stamps.  You can now buy quite a selection of the Altenew Stamps from various places which you can find on the web.  Google ‘Altenew’ and it will give you suppliers.  (I use ‘My Mums Craft Shop’ and have had only great service from them – but shop around.  You may find a supplier close to where you live.).

For this ‘play around’, I’m going to use the Altenew Stamps, Vintage Rose collection, shown in the last photograph.

Some of the Altenew stamps come in big sets,  like the set in the photo above, but within that set is a collection of smaller ‘groups’.  In this set, each group makes one rose for you,  in different shapes and sizes, and there also different sets of leaves, again, different shapes and sizes.

35 Clear stamps whilst using

In this photo I’ve tried to show you how I pick out each group that I’m going to use, and I pop them down in their group (in lines – top row is the large rose, middle row is the medium rose & bottom row is the small stamp) so that I don’t have to keep peeling them off the carrier sheet.

I’ve chosen to stamp a larger rose.  The particular stamped image I’m going to stamp has 3 different stamps just to make one rose.  In some ‘groups’ of the larger set, there may be 4 stamps to make just one image.  Keep reading, it’s not as difficult or as scary as it sounds….  🙂

25 Background palest colour of the rose stamped

One Stamp.  One pale yellow colour stamp pad.  The combination of which gives us . . .   a  frankly underwhelming image.  . . . . .  ‘Oh’ – number one!

You stamp the palest colour firstThe paler colour of the roses tones.  I’ve chosen the Yellow set of cubes from the Altenew Pads here – but if you have a selection of tones in the same colour way eg:  four different shades of red/pink, or blue, or green etc etc, then you don’t have to buy the stamp pads just to use the stamps.

26 Second colour for midtones of rose

Then, using the second rose stamp in the group and the next colour,which is slightly darker than the first pale colour.  . . .    ‘Ohh!’  – number 2.

As I mentioned above –  In some sizes of roses there will be three stamps, in others there will be four.  (Hence the reason that the Altenew mini cubes come in sets of four).

27 how to partially overstamp an image with another one

Mmmm.. what’s happened here then??  (I hear you ask)…   well, I want to show you OH! number three, but I wanted to make sure that it impresses you in such a way that you really do ‘get it’.  I’ve covered up the finished Large and Medium sized roses which I’ve already completed, and this last rose, the small one, is at that ‘second stamp’ stage …

28 Finished little rose

That small rose has now had its 3rd colour from the stamp pads, but you can’t really see what I’m trying to show you about how these stamps will make you look like the Stamping Expert of the Year.  Let’s continue and see where this goes …

29 All roses covered, leaves stamped

This time I’ve covered up all three roses But … I’ve added some leaves on vines.

If you’re going to ‘build’ a picture with these stampsin this case a rose,  – you have to start with what’s in the foreground and then follow it up with whats in the background.  But in order to do this you complete each section at a time, but then cover up that section so that you don’t stamp over it and spoil what you’ve done.  As you can see in the photograph above, as I’m stamping the leaves and vines, some of the leaf/vine stamp is actually stamping onto the ‘covers’,  –  so, imagine the mess they would be making on the roses if I hadn’t covered up the work I’d already done.  (If this sounds complicated, don’t fret.  It’s honestly not … as you’ll see …..)….

Now the leaves in the photograph are fine and groovy, but … they don’t have any shadows, or veins to the leaves…..  so let’s pop some in.

30 Veins stamped on leaves

I’ve stamped in the veins and shadows … but I’ve purposely ‘missed’ the right places on the leaves by just ‘off center’  with the stamp.  This ‘miss’ is a prolem that can happen to all of us at some time, so don’t beat yourself up or trash what you’ve worked hard on  It’s not the end of the world.  Like I showed you yesterday, in part one of this guide, you can ‘paint’ with your stamp pads!  So this can be put right really quite easily.  Stamp the ink pad on your glass mat (or plate, saucer etc) and then dip your paint brush into a little water, but take off as much of the water as possible but leaving the bristles damp enough to ‘mix’ into the inky blob and then ‘smudge’ & paint the already (miss)stamped bit.  Then simply ‘paint’ the veins of the leaves just a little  ….. practise this a little on scap card.  You’ll soon get the hang of it.

31

No gaps between leaves and veins now.  So … are you ready to look at the roses? . . .

32 Fishined set

The third ‘Ohhh!’  . . . You can see how masking off the roses means that the vines and leaves don’t make a mess of the images you’ve already stamped.

 

33

So .. let’s stamp the other corner of the card in the same way …

 

34 Finished double roses card front

I’ve stamped a group of 4 roses in the bottom left corner, so that you can see that even though two of the roses are the same, they look different because the stamped images have all been turned around and stamped differently. and the leaves are all different – even though they’re the same!

36 Stamping a sentiment

Shall we make a sentiment for this card?

37 stamping a sentiment

In this photo I’ve stamped that same word in three differently places.  The top image I stamped on my glass mat.  The middle image I stamped on my desk top.  (That’s not the light giving that effect … that’s a missing part of the image.  And finally … the bottom ‘Amazing’ was stamped using the mouse mat, copy paper and then card sandwich.  You can see that the mouse mat really does make a difference.

38 sentiment words

If you don’t have a sentiment which says what you want to say, simply bring in other stamps, stamp them on scrap card and then use them together.

39 fin

I’ve cut out the stamped sentiments then mounted them on some narrow foam tape and place them on the card.  The foam tape gives a little dimension to the card.

I’ve taken three photographs of this finished card, in different lights, so that you can get a reasonable idea of the brightness of the stamped colours which the stamp pads provide.

40 Fin lay down

Lights full on, so that it’s heaps brighter.

41 Final photo

Some bunnies wanted to say bye-bye!

These stamps really are easy to use, and I highly recommend themfor new stampers and stampers who have been stamping for years.  They really are such a great addition to your stamps.

Phew ... well that’s where we end on our hints and tips Guide to Stamping.  If there is anything I haven’t mentioned that you hoped I would, then please tell me in a comment and I’ll do my very best to help.  I’m not an expert.  I’m a crafter, like you, and these are things that I’ve found work for me, and after a plea asking for some help, I made this ‘Guide’ to help a fabulous lady, Mrs. P, but I’m also hoping that it might help someone else along the way too.

Thank you so much for visiting and having a coffee with me.  I love your company, as you know, and  the fact that you visit really does mean the world to me.  So thank you for coming.

May your Tuesday be filled with love and smiles.  Sending crafty hugs and oodles of  lve  ~  till next time …

Sig coffee copy

 

 

 

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Stamping: how to; where; with; what; . . . & what next?

I love to craft, but freely admit that I’m a bit of a ‘crop sprayer’.  By that I mean that I don’t just stick to one craft. I make cards, tags, scrapbooks, boxes.  I work with polymer clays, making anything from a tiny miniature mushroom, or fairy baby’s little face, right up to a fairy tower for a princess,  with turrets and fairy door and .. well everything a Princess Fairy Tower would have!  I love to re-cycle or up-cycle by turning unwanted into something brilliant;  and …. I paint.  When the mood takes I will paint anything which stands still long enough.  Not painting as in ‘lets paint these walls a different colour’, but painting on:  canvas, wood, paper, card, coffee tables, dining room tables,  chipboard,  … or anything which doesn’t move when I’ve got a paintbrush in my hand and a need to use it.

But,  I actually started out my crafty adult (w-a-a-a-y  over the age of 21 plus tax)  years ‘potterying’.  Not on a potter’s wheel, but the other kind.  Hand building.  I can’t call it sculpting because (to me) that word kind of presumes that I might be good at it.  Now I wasn’t bad, –  in fact I made things which sold well at Craft Fairs, etc.  But I really don’t deserve the title of Sculptor.  I’m no Master Craftsman in any sense or form!

I learnt this incredible craft by going once a week to a genuine real sculptor (a true ‘Master Craftsman’ – coo, the things that this person could turn out were MAGNIFICENT!)  where I spent 3 hours each week, being taught how to do ‘stuff’.  Once the ‘magic’ of this incredible craft opened up to me I LOVED it.  The Sculptor brought out the best in me and showed me ‘how’ to do what I had in my mind to do, and how to get from a doodled drawing into something solid which I could amaze myself at when it was finished. (Half the time I couldn’t believe I’d made  *that*!)  But I wouldn’t ever have been able to make the things I did had it not been for this incredible Master of the art at Sculpting who shared all the knowledge with me.

And that’s the thing.  We all need someone with a little bit of knowledge about something, who we can ask for some general help from when, we want to begin something but aren’t sure exactly what we even need to know which would give us the confidence to do the ‘thing’ – whatever that thing might be.

A fabulous blogger who follows our little blog here,  by the name of Mrs. P. made a comment on a post I did on the blog, and in it she said….

“Have you ever done a post on the basics ~ please read that as … OK I want to try making a card / stamping, I’ve bought some stamps, an ink pad & even some die cut thingy’s and then realising I have the skill set of a 4 yr old …had a tantrum, put said goodies away only to retrieve them every now and again to stroke them, sigh deeply ~ repeat from tantrum to deep sighing on a regular basis”

When I read the comment I actually felt her pain, for when I first began stamping I did virtually the same thing.  I tried them, the images weren’t the fabulous things I’d hoped for so I put them away.  I tried again, and same result… and over a period of time I muddled my way through things and eventually learnt what worked and what didn’t.  So .. here I am, a total un-expert, trying to hold Mrs. P’s. hand, and give any help I can to encourage both Mrs. P and anyone else who finds stamping a pain in the you know what.  As I said…  I’m not an expert .. but here’s what I’ve learnt and what I think might help out.

* I’ll be using both words and photographs as we go through this bit of ‘help’, and in order to do this I’ve had to take a ton of photographs and do some stamping with you at the same time.  I’m sorry about there being so many photos.  With regard to the stamping ..  I’ve tried to, as much as possible, stamp like a regular new stamper.  So that any images here will show you that the images you’re stamping are fine, and also how to make good any little mishaps you might have.  I hope all this helps.

1 Blank Space

SCARY  BLANK  CARD!

When you face that blank card in front of you, it’s right at that moment that your nerve goes. Your brain whispers thngs like:-. What if I make a complete ba**s up of this and waste time  and a card and what if it all ends up in the bin?  I’m  sure I can’t do this!     Don’t listen to it.   You and I are going to prove to your brain that you’re the boss, and this stamping lark isn’t anything like difficult.

  • But first .. some rules and guidelines. 
  • There are no rules.
  • So lets get onto the guidelines:-

The better the stamp the crisper the image.  I’ve found that red rubber stamps give the most magnificent impression, however I LOVE clear stamps because I can see exactly where I’m placing the stamp.  It’s all down to personal preference.  And you won’t know which you prefer until you’ve been stamping for a short while.  (There are stamps about which look like red rubber stamps but aren’t. We’ll have to talk about that another time)

Ink Pads:  I hate to say this because .. well, I’m a canny shopper and watch the pennies, but … from experience … the cheaper the stamp pad you buy, the less ‘lovely’ the image is likely to be.  Obviously there are exceptions which prove the rule, but I’m just speaking from personal experience here, and because of that I don’t buy stamp pads from Ebay or anywhere other than recognised stores which sell crafty goodies. (Not necessarily craft stuff only stores.  I’ll buy from The Range, which is a fabulous place to shop for craft items (here in the UK) and I also have a selection of more affordable DoCrafts embossing stamp pads which work BRILLIANTLY.  But I don’t buy from market stalls or things like that).

CLEANING UP!  …  You MUST clean your stamps after you’ve used them.  As soon as possible after you’ve used them.  Personally – I use Huggies Baby Wipes.  The reason I use this brand is because they have no Alcohol in them.  (Lots of baby wipes do have alcohol, so check the list of ‘ingredients’ if you’re buying them for your stamps, as alcohol spoils the stamps!  Why its used in BABY wipes is a total mystery to me … if I’m protecting my crafting stamps from alcohol, then surely we shouldn’t be wiping our babies btm’s and hands/faces with wipes containing it?  Yes?  No?  Is that just me thinking like that?)

Anyhoo ... let’s begin….

1.  Begin on a piece of scrap card.  Play with your stamps just like a child would play with them.  Stamp over and over. Just to remove the fear of the action of stamping and making a mangled mess of inky shapes on a bit of card.

2.  Now turn your bit of scrap card over,  once you’ve done the first exercise Then grab your computer mouse mat.  (If you haven’t got one of those, please buy one.  Just a cheapy one – so long as it’s that squishy rubber or sponge type – rubber like neoprene rubber  or sponge like a kind of firm foam sponge with a bit of ‘give’ –  and then keep it just for stamping).   In the meantime, if you haven’t got a mouse mat, use something like a folded FLAT weavenot the bobbly type – tea towel*.  Fold it, make sure there are no creased up bits which will make marks on your ink.  Then once folded neatly … put it on your work area,  where you’ll be stamping,  right in front of you. (*or an old pillowcase would do)

3.  Put a plain sheet of A4 on top of it.  Just copy paper.  Nothing posh or expensive.  Use the cheap stuff.  This is so you won’t mark your mouse mat/tea towel/pillowcase nor your desk.  You DO need that bit of paper.  (You can also check out the colour of a stamp pad on it, and .. it will also keep your cardstock clean too).

4.  Now place your piece of scrap card on top of that, making sure that it’s positioned firmly over the folded tea towel at the bottom of the pile of paper and card. You’ll find that if you stamp your image over the edge of the mouse mat etc, then you’ll get a really rubbish image with bits missing and the chance of the line of the mouse mat pressing into the cardstock and giving it a ‘bend’.

5.  Choose your stamp, if it’s a wooden one then you’re ready to go, if it’s an unmounted stamp then choose a stamp block which is plenty big enough to hold the complete stamp.

6.  Choose your ink pad  then tap your STAMP with the Ink pad.  Don’t leave the ink pad on the desk and jab the stamp up and down on it.  Instead, pick the stamp pad up and hold your stamp in the other hand and tapping the ink pad onto the stamp, move it around so that the ink pad gets tapped all over it, watching as you do it so that you don’t wobble  the edges of the stamp or stamping block onto the inky surface.  If you do this by accident, then either use your thumb to rub away the excess or use a baby wipe to wipe it away so that it doesn’t end up marking your card.  This tapping all over the ink pad is in case there are any ‘cold spots’ on the pad, where perhaps the ink is just a tiny bit less intense.  By moving the stamp pad over your stamp, in a tap, tap, tapping motion, you’ll ensure that you have inked all the raised parts of your stamp equally.  Oh .. and don’t ‘drag’ your pad over your stamp, because you’ll end up with a build up of ink in places and it will transfer to your card, making an uneven colouring.

7.  Carefully place your stamp down on your cardstock and press down, firmly  but not hard.  You aren’t trying to push it through the desk top!  But you do want to ensure that all the raised parts of the stamp are in contact with the card.  DON’T ROCK YOUR STAMP!  If you do then you’ll likely get a ghost effect of parts of the stamp.  If you’ve done that then don’t fret.  It happens to everyone.  Just stamp it again.  At the moment we’re only playing anyway!

4 Stamped

8.   Now .. take another, different bit of card and place it on the desk top, but not on the pad of tea towel and A4 paper.  Tap the same stamp you’ve just used, with the same ink pad, and then using the same firm press,  press that same stamp onto that piece of card.  Check out the difference between the two images.  Which one looks best to you?

Some stamps will work and give you the exact same image every time.  However most of the others won’t.  Most images which a stamper produces are much improved by the use of a mouse mat, or the folded tea towel/pillowcase.  There’s something in that bit of ‘give’ which just makes the impression so much sharper, neater, better.  But … if your stamp works without it then that’s great.

Each stamp may need a different method, so the best thing to do is stamp your stamp on some scrap card or pape before you begin your actual project, so that you can give it a test first.

Now .. choose your favourite image which you’ve stamped and let’s colour it in. . .

5 Colouring

You don’t HAVE to colour in a stamped image by using pens or crayons

How do you like to colour things in?  Is your craft room complete with specialist pens, crayons etc which you paid a price for?  Do you get along with those things?  Do you get great results?  If so, then use those.  Use the method which you love the most.

Not everyone is a colourist (the name for someone who colours their images with specialist colouring pens/pencils).  For those who either don’t like the results they get with pens, or would just like to try something a little different, or if you don’t have special colouring pens … then here’s something you can do which won’t cost the earth.  All your need is a few paint brushes which are suitable for water-colours and your stamp pads.

Choose a colour from your ink pads which you’d like to ‘paint’ your image.  Stamp that stamp pad onto your glass cutting mat.  (If you don’t have one of those … do you have a glass cutting board in your kitchen?  Could you ‘borrow’ it,  just to use one corner of it, just for this teach in?  If not – do you have a little plastic palette, the type used by painters?  Or.. do you have one of those foam plates which you used to see as picnic plates?  One of those would work fine too.  Last suggestion … a spare odd saucer or plate – but wash it thoroughly before any food use.  You’re using dye inks here – so if you have an odd saucer which you don’t use then that would be best.)

6 More colouring

You need a little pot, or a saucer for some water.  You don’t need much water – just about a tablespoonful – so you don’t need a huge, great thumping dish!

As you see in the photo above, I’ve stamped a Danube Blue Memento ink pad onto my glass mat.  I dipped my brush into the little bit of water in the pot, then dragged most of the water off the brush,  and only then did I tap my brush onto the glass mat next to the inky blob.

Use your brush to mix a tiny part of the inky blob and pick up some ink, and take it straight to your image. (don’t hang around as the brush will dry pretty quickly).  Use a brush size which is appropriate to what your ‘painting’.  If you have a tiny flower then obviously don’t use a one inch brush!. lol.

Use as many colours or as few, as you like.  Colour your image in any way you want.  If you’re finding that you can’t paint in a neat way .. then paint in a ‘Contemporary Art’ way.  Blob, stripe, stroke, dabble or anything you like which works for you.  Remember, we’re only playing so anything goes!

7 Fin colours

A more contemporary style of colouring an image.  Who would have thought that a church would have looked so fabulous painted blue, yellow, purple and orange!

Once you’ve done that  colour one of your other images which you’ve stamped  .. only this time in different coloursPens/Crayons/Inks/Paints … anything you choose – just use different colours.

8 Diff. colourway 1

colouring another image using different colours.

9 Diff. colourway 2

Another Contemporary Art church!

Ok ... let’s use some words now ….

10 Stamping Sentiment

Now choose a sentiment stamp which would kind of ‘go’ with your image.  And using the same tap, tap, tap method of the ink pad  on the stamp (not the other way round) ink up and then stamp your sentiment near to your image – near it so that it speaks to it – but not so far apart that it looks like the words and image have had a row and fallen out!

12 Diff col

Of course …  You don’t have to colour your image in at all.  You can leave it exactly as it is, and it can look rather swish and very classic. . .

13 No colour

14 Diff Col plus , , ,

But … how about different colours again, but this time … lets take it a step further . . .

15 With spray still wet

. . .   let’s spritz it with a spritzer which has some Mica suspended in the liquid, so that when it dries after a few minutes …

16 Dry Spray

It dries perhaps a little paler but .. hang on … where’s that Mica? ....

17

Ah haaaa!  There it is.  Twinkling away merrily!

Ok .. we’ve done that stamp.  Let’s try a different one, and this time a different colour of stamp pad.

Lots of people only stamp in black ink.  I’m not sure if that’s because they love the black ink so don’t want to try any other colour,  …  or if maybe they just haven’t thought about another colour … or if perhaps they have no idea about what colour to use so use black for safety.  Different colours can give you different results.  Even stamp pads from the same company.  It’s not that the ink isn’t the same, it’s the colour which is different.  Each colour will do things for you which another colour might not do.

Let’s trygrey….

18 Stamping with different colours

This wee little rascally rabbit is stamped using a  Memento Ink pad in a colour called London Fog.  It gives a much softer image.  Imagine that same image in black.  In the London Fog (grey) it looks more … pencil drawn. More soft.  Gentle.

But .. what would it look like in another colour?

19 Diff. Col. comparison

London Fog on the left. Rich Cocoa in the middle.  Tuxedo Black on the right.

20 Colour Comparison

A closer up photo so you can see it more easily.  (I forgot to say .. if you want to see the photographs bigger than they are here, right-click on any photo and choose ‘View Image’.  Don’t forget to click to come BACK here again though!)

You can see how the exact same image gives a totally different ‘feel’ about it, simply by the choice of ink colour.  If you want to stamp an image but are not sure of which stamp pad to use, then test stamp it first.  Do a comparison like the one above of the rabbits.  If you stamp them near to each other (but give a little space so that they have their own space to ‘be’) you’ll make choosing so much easier for yourself.

I think out of those images I rather like the Rich Cocoa colour in the middle.  Let’s try that colour on another image …

21 Different stamp

Aww!  So sweet and so right in that Rich Cocoa Brown.

Ok … so far we’ve only used an unmounted stamp here.  Let’s try something different.  Let’s go to a wooden mounted stamp, but let’s make it a difficult size.  This next stamp is so big that I have difficult holding it in one hand.

22  Lets try a BIG stamp

A large wooden mounted stamp in red rubber.  Large stamps can be a pain in the rear, so don’t expect to get a perfect image the first time you stamp it. You’ll have to get used to the size and shape, as well as the heaviness of this type of stamp.  So give yourself chance.

Large, detailed stamps such as the falling fairy one above, can be a tricky to decide on what colour to stamp it in sometimes. You can just use one solid colour stamp pad and stamp it out like the church I stamped (above), then you can colour the image afterwards in various ways.  Or .. you can play around with your stamp pad colours and stamp the stamp in an assortment of carefully placed colours so that you have some colours there already  … like this …

23 Stamping in colours all at once

The inks around the right side of the image, are all the colours I used  on that one large stamp, all at the same time.

This multi colour stamping is a great trick.  But … you have to be quick –  unless you’re using embossing ink pads – those dry slowly so will allow you the extra time you require to stamp the inks onto the stamp.

But .. if using Dye Inks… they dry quickly, so you need to be quick applying the inks onto the stamp.  BUT … here’s the trick…  If you feel you might have taken just a few seconds too long:-  Hold your stamp up to your mouth, open your mouth as if you were yawning a big yawn, but take a breath in and HUUUFFFFFF a long huff on your stamp.

Imagine you were trying to blow a candle out with your mouth wide open, or if you had some fingerprint marks on your glasses (spectacles) and you wanted to get them off using a tissue … you’d HUFF on the lens and then wipe it with the tissue).  HUFF!  You might want to huff a couple of times if the stamp is huge.  But again … try it out on scrap card first.  Then you’ll know what to do to make it work for you and your stamp.

Ok … Let’s move forward onto something more kind of grown up, but still a ton of fun.

But …  I’ve kept you here for quite long enough for one day.  How about we do the second part of this ‘helper’ tomorrow, so that your  b.t.m.’s  don’t loose all feeling and you don’t get DVT from sitting there reading this.  🙂

Well it’s Monday again, and yet again, someone has stolen three days from last week.  I’d like to know who’s doing that, and if I catch the little divil, I’ll string him up by his ears!

All that’s left for me to say is …  I hope your Monday is wonderful.  Be it peace filled or full 0f excitement.  Just …  whatever you’re doing today … at some point stop and realise that right at that moment you’re making a memory.  All you have to do is commit it to memory, memorise it,  and then perhaps share that memory with someone later in the day.  Share it with me if you like.  I’d love to hear about it!

Sending oodles of lve your way.  Have a good one my friends  ~

Sig coffee copy

 

 

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Darling it’s better down where it’s wetter, Under The Sea!

Some of you will remember this happy jellyfish which I made when ‘Playing with Polyfilla‘  at the beginning of June.  I decided that I couldn’t just sit with this making my desk look pretty  (held by one of those  GREAT BIG PEGS), so after some thought,  I decided today to make a card with it.

Under the Sea 2

Under the Sea – (photograph taken using just the sunlight from the window)

I made another ‘clam shell’  from a die cut,  (a little like the one on the I’d Swim Oceans for You‘ tag I made a couple of weeks ago), only this time I made the colours inside more muted mother of pearl with softer colours, and edged the ‘shell’ in gold, so that it ‘spoke’ to the card which the Jellyfish was on.

Under the Sea 6 making of the clam shell

The clam shell was made from a die cut (the darker pink) which I backed with some pale pink card which I drew around the die to get the shape, then once cut out I fixed it to the back of the die cut shell.

Under the Sea 7 making of the clam shell

It was my original intention to take photographs after the addition of each colour, but … my brain let me down and I forgot.  This is the only photo I remembered to take – at the half way stage.

Under the Sea 8 making of the clam shell

Six colours of powders, one Gold embossing pad, and a Zig embossing pen, were used to make the clam shell.

 

Under the Sea 3 Clam Shell copy

This  ‘clam shell’  originally started out as a die cut

All the shells I’ve used on this card (see one of the bigger photos to spot them all) are all real shells (not plastic or resin), but some of them I hand decorated to add a little colour and interest to them …

Under the Sea 4 Painted Shells

Real Shells – coloured up.

This is really easy to do, simply using the  veryfinenib. Sharpies.  Because these particular shells are so teeny tiny I had to use the magnifying glass which is on an arm of my craft desk lamp, as I found it really difficult to see the places where my pen had to go next – I was staring so hard I was going ‘boss eyed’, so the magnifying  glass was very much appreciated!

I won’t bore you to tears telling you all the elements of this card because you can see them yourself without me yammering on.  But … if there’s anything you want to know about, or ask where I got something from, or who’s make of something or other I used … anything.  Any thing at all…  you just ask away.  I’m more than happy to share information.

Under the Sea 5

Under the Sea ~ photograph taken using a photographers little spotlight.

Before signing off,  I just want to say hello to a couple of new followers who have joined our crew here at The Cobweborium Emporium this past week.  I won’t name you, but you are very much welcome here.  Please feel free to wander around and leave comments where-ever you wish to. I know how it can be a bit daunting to make that first post, but even if you just want to say hello, I promise I’ll chat back to you.

Well, that’s me cooked to a turn!   So …What have you been up to this past week? Have you made anything that I’ve missed .. if so please do give me a poke in a comment I’ve noticed that the Reader can sometimes miss things so I try to regularly visit blogs I follow just in case I’ve missed a post.  Been somewhere fabulous?  Bought something naughty which will make us all drool?  Or just stayed happily where you are and enjoyed the sunshine/breeze/winter/summer/park/dog/ … or anything else?  I’m all ears … so do share!  🙂

It’s Wednesday today, and I call that  ‘Tipping Day’  –  because it tips the beginning of the week towards the end.  May the rest of your week be truly lovely.  May you be given something to smile about, something which makes you happy and .. may you make at least one wonderful memory every day for the rest of the week.

Take care out there … and …  have a blessed rest of your day my friends.

Sending love,  from me here to you there,  ~

Sig coffee copy

Two Hand-made Plant Pot Cards for Autumn Gardeners

As any gardener will tell you, gardening doesn’t stop when the summer sun does, and it was this thought that made me realise that there were very few gardening or ‘plant growing’ cards for gardeners in the autumn/winter months to be seen on the high street (or on hand-made card makers blogs that I’ve come across) at these times of year, so I thought I’d make some cards for those of us who garden and pot all year round!

Card one:

Bumble and Hedgehog 1

I decided upon warm terracotta and copper tones for this first card and hand painted the little pots on some Neenah card then cut them out and shaped them (just with my fingers) to give them that dimensional look.

The deep ruby-red flower is made from felt with three glass beads in the centre, and I teamed it with two lovely burnt orange skeleton leaves.

The little Bumble Bee actually started off life as a photo corner –  ones which I’ve had for a gazillion years! (ok, I might be stretching that a little, but I’ve had them so long that I can’t even remember when I bought them nor where from).

The rim of the pot is made from coppery coloured corrugated card with the addition of a little brown and dotty ribbon, which brings a bit of happy whimsy to the pot rim.

I added a little smile to the inside by adding another hand painted pot, to which I added a ‘seed packet’ –  cut from some cardstock which had little seed packets all over the page.  I fixed the seed packet at an angle so that I could ‘sprinkle’ seeds falling out of the packet and into the pot.  The addition of the sentiment  ‘Sow Lovely’ finished the little inside scene off.

Bumble and Hedgehog 2 inside

Card number two:

Blooming Wonderful 1

The second card began life in the same way (as a Craft Card terracotta pot shaped base) but for this card I cut out papers for the rim and the base then coloured them up so that the pot took on a much deeper colour than a normal terracotta pot in order to give it a more autumnal feel.  I added three half daisies along the rim (with Candi to the centres) and added the Happy Birthday sentiment so that they looked as if they were tucked behind it.

The watering can at the bottom of the card is actually a wooden one, which I coloured silver by using a silver marker pen, and added a flower to the centre.  The dragonfly, (like the bumble bee in the first card), began life as a photo corner – and again, I’ve had them for ever so can’t tell you where I bought them from – but they’re so adorable and I’ve used them lots of times.  I hope that I can still get those from somewhere because I’ll buy them in a heartbeat.  They’re perfect for that little accent when you need one).

This time, the inside of the card was a pop up – in the shape of some flowers….

Blooming Wonderful 5 open

These flowers started life as:

Blooming Wonderful 2

…7 x 2″ square pieces of decorative cardstock,   folded and then trimmed to shape, then cut, coloured . . .

Blooming Wonderful 4

. . . and then glued to turn them into ‘cone’ shaped flowers . . .

Blooming Wonderful 3

Then they’re re-folded and glued together in a specific way in order to make them close up and open again as ‘one’ pop up.  Once the flowers were in place I added the little heart shaped sentiment to the inside, on a belly bar, over some printed gardening themed text paper.

Blooming Wonderful 5

And that’s all  there is to it! 

Two cards, both really simple,  but both with friendly little smiles to brighten the birthday of someone who still likes to garden even when the sun isn’t there!

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and check out my blog, it’s really lovely to see you here!

Have a wonderful Friday, and a truly fabulous weekend, doing whatever makes you happiest.

Cobs siggy sml

 

Sunday Arrivals!

 On Platform 1 A Beautiful BOY!   

  On Platform 2A Gorgeous GIRL!  

Two beautiful new souls to cherish and love!

On reading one of the blogs I follow, I found out that one the writers of a blog, who had been MIA (Missing In Action) for a couple of weeks,  had a very good reason for being away from her computer:  She’d had a baby! A beautiful, baby girl!  After congratulations had been said I thought that it would be a lovely thing to make a baby card for the mommy and her new bundle of love and scrumptiousness, so I sat at my desk and gave it a bit of thought.

The first thought I came up with was that if I was going to make a card for a new baby girl, then to be totally fair, I should also make one for a little boy too.  So here I am again, sharing (this time) two cards for the price of one!

I decided on Beatrix Potter –  Beatrix holds a big place in my heart – so made two very different cards, but around the same ‘theme’.

Firstly  Just arrived  –  On platform 1:   A New Baby Boy.

New Baby Boy 1

Made on a 6″x6″ white, pre-scored & folded card by Papermania I love their cardstock – 300gsm weight – so it will take practically anything you ask it to.  The backing paper is from a range of Beatrix Potter papers & toppers which I actually got free with a magazine over a year ago, and hadn’t used at all (I think, because I loved them so much,  I wanted to keep them!)  When I went through the papers I fell instantly in love with this backing paper and knew it was going to be the basis of the New Baby Boy card.

The Gingham Check card which I used to mat and layer behind the Hunca Munca, cradling her baby, topper, is from a range by Anna Marie Designs.

New Baby Boy 2

I added the fabulous ‘New Baby‘  duckling tag and then chose some ribbon to match the card.  In the photographs the ribbon for some reason looks lighter than it is in real life.  I think it’s possibly the way the flash on the camera caught the satin of the ribbon and washed out the colour a little.  Little blue bow applied to the top left hand corner.  I then added a strip along the bottom of the card of Potter paper ribbon, and then resting just along the top of that I added a blue blossom twig (again by Anna Marie Designs)  to represent a branch, to which I knew I wanted to add a little metal, antiqued bird house (which has a baby bird perched up on the roof – which you sadly can’t quite see  properly in the photo).

The bird house has a hanging loop on top which was too ‘tough’  for me to snip off with my jewellery tools, so I added a tiny bit of ribbon through the loop and tucked the ends under the New Baby topper, gluing them in place with a dab of Anita’s all-purpose.

Of course – me being me, I had to take the decoration into the inside of the card….

New Baby Boy 3

I added a pale blue insert to which I added a matching blue ribbon at the top of the page, and at the bottom I added a tiny topper which had daisies, grass and leaves on it, and it just finished off the card nicely.

~ ~ ~  Just arrived on Platform 2:  ~ ~ ~

A Gorgeous Baby Girl

The new baby girl who began my thought of making a baby card was born on the 9th July 2014 and her name is Alea Francesca.  (You’ll find a link to the momma’s blog at the bottom of the page).

Because I had Alea in mind, I felt as if I ‘knew’ who I was making this card for and ….  well I just went to town on the whole girliness!

New Baby Girl 1

Again made on a 6″x6″ 300gsm card, by Papermania.  To which I added a 6×6″ piece of pink with white polka dots card (by Anna Marie Designs).   I added a small paper doily (Dovecraft) – which I actually stuck to the card with foam tape, as I wanted it to be raised slightly from the card so that I could add flowers which where kind of tucked under the doily.

I’d already chosen the topper that I wanted to use – Mrs. Rabbit and her baby bunnies – but I wanted to give it a little more importance – so chose a frame from a selection by Trimcraft (their Santoro range).  I cut some pink, gingham check card (Anna Marie Designs) to fit the back of the frame exactly, and mounted the topper onto that then fixed it to the frame using Anita’s all-purpose glue.

The addition of the ‘Congratulations’ gave the card it’s sentiment.

New Baby Girl 3

Then it was time to fix some flowers.  All the flowers you see are all paper flowers.  I’ve had them all for  . . .  – ohhh,   yonks!  I use paper flowers all the time so used to buy a pack of them every time I did any crafty shopping, consequently I don’t currently have to ever buy any – and probably won’t for a while!  But paper flowers are pretty much generic so any you have would likely work if you’re hoping to make a card ‘like’ this one for yourself.

New Baby Girl 1a

To the bigger flowers I added a button for a centre and sprinkled a tiny amount of glitter dust so that it would stick to the glue which popped up through the button holes.  To the smaller Blossom flowers which had no ‘centre’, I added a teeny flat-back pearl in a colour which matched or complimented the colour of the flower (flat back pearls by Anita’s – the Gemstone Pearl Wheel).  Other blossoms came with their own stamen centre.

The pink and white popcorn type of flowers (look above the Congratulations topper – just above the blossoms there) are by Anna Marie Designs.

Then came the butterflies.  With all those flowers there just HAD to be butterflies!

I’ve had a big bag of plain coloured butterflies in my stash for about 8 years and never used even one of them.  I don’t know where I got them from or why,  and I actually put them in a box to go to the charity shop, along with a few other crafty things which I wasn’t using.  However, I got them back out again because I wanted paper butterflies for this card.  So I chose colours and sizes and then stamped a butterfly on top of the card shape in order to give them the correct butterfly markings.  I creased and folded them a little to give them ‘flight’, and then used Anita’s 3D Clear Gloss to give them all a glossy coating – as if I’d clear embossed them a couple of times (only without the pitting which you can sometimes get by doing that).  

butterflies1

I couldn’t catch this glossy coating properly in a photograph.  I either got ‘white out’ – where you couldn’t see the butterfly at all, or nothing.  So you’ll just have to imagine a photo of the whole card showing the butterflies with their glossy shine!   But I did manage a ‘montage’ of the butterflies from the gazillion I took while I was trying to capture one whole ‘good’ photo – so this montage kind of shows that the butterflies did have this lovely glossy accent.

Birdhouse Baby

The addition of some really lovely warm, rosy pink ribbon and a little antiqued, metal bird house completed the front of the card.

Inside … I just simply added one tiny thing …New Baby Girl 2

…  a silver star, right at the top of the pink insert.  Is it because the new baby is a star?  Is it a wish star?  It’s a star which will have meaning to the new mummy and daddy – and to the baby as she grows up and looks back over her baby cards.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, are the two arrivals at Platforms 1 and 2, todayNot by train, you understand.  No no.  As is the tradition in all new babies, they came by Storknaturally!  😀

Thank you so much for reading, looking and for visiting,  but before you stop reading:   can I just please just give you a link to the blog I referred to up in my post above – so that you can see the wonderful new life which is the little girl who started off my thinking of Baby Cards.

Please click to visit the blog and if you can …  leave a comment of congratulations for the new mommy.  After all – we all love acknowledgements on something we’ve done which we’ve worked on, and I can think of no finer thing in life than a new baby, which someone has worked extremely hard on producing (and then some!)  and can think of no better thing on which to receive congratulations.

http://artatzazuta.wordpress.com/2014/07/18/celebrating-life-2/

Thank you SO much for taking the time out of your day to come and visit.  I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your kindness, your support and your friendship.  For those of you who follow me – thank you.   For those who don’t but are visiting:  Click to ‘Follow Me’!  What have you got to lose?  You won’t be sent loads of rubbish or spam.  You’ll just get an email to let you know when I’ve made a post on my blog  so that you don’t miss amything.  No spamNothing which asks you your date of birth or even your location!   All you have to do is put your email address into the space provided so that the system knows who to send the email to.

Have a truly, blessed Sunday all. 

Sending you love, smiles and joy ~

Cobs siggy sml

A bit of Vintage, hand made – For You!

A Vintage made just For You 1

There was a supplement with my Sunday Newspaper this week which had a nicely written article about the war years, and accompanying it were some fabulous pictures of posters from the same time.  They absolutely fascinated me.  I was sat there, with my magnifying glass out, reading each poster with gusto.  (They were all printed small size – hence the magnifying glass!)

Well they obviously had an effect on me because I sat in my craft room with just one thought…  make a card which had a vintage feel about it.  Something which had that wonderful romantic feel about it, but a card which could be sent even to a friend for a birthday or any other reason.

I started with my stash of card stock,  looking for ditsy prints.  I chose a Tilda, duck egg blue with a little flower pattern down the side, and another Tilda print from the same range, this time with teeny tiny ditsy flowers on it.  They needed ‘ageing’ – so I firstly took my scalpel to them both and roughed up the edges.  Then I chose two colours of dye pads and blended around the edges.

A Vintage made just For You 2

I used Memento Dye Ink Pads in Rich Cocoa and Rhubarb Stalk.

I wrapped the duck egg blue card stock with two short lengths of narrow lace, then attached it to a craft card which I’d already scored ready to make the card.  (The finished card will measure 5½” square).

With the ditsy flower card stock, I curled the edges and corners by gently pulling and curling them between my index finger and thumb.  I then wrapped a wider, short length of lace around the ditsy flower card stock,  and fixed it to the duck egg blue, using Collall glue.  (I love Collall all-purpose glue.  It’s not an instant fix, it gives you just enough wiggle time – but it’s an instant fix within a minute.  So if you use it – get your wiggle done asap!)

The little postcard was cut from another piece of Tilda cardstock, and I just inked around the edges (again using Rhubarb Stalk) and blended, then curled the edges and stamped  ‘for you’ using a sentiment from a gorgeous little selection of stamps from the Lillibet range.  Originally the sentiment read:  ‘Just for you” – but I snipped the ‘Just’ off (I kept it and still use it when I need to) so that I had more options with the stamp.  I then fixed it in place.

Then came the flowers…

I sorted out a little selection of paper flowers which I’ve had for … ohhh, for ever!  but realised that I had no leaves of the right size so I called on an old trick I’ve used for donkeys years.  I got out my tins of silk flowers and looked through them for flowers which I could cut up to make leaves.  I didn’t need tons, just a handful of small and slightly bigger than small ….  I then ‘dyed’ them using my ink pads:

A Vintage made just For You 4

There’s one green leaf in the photo above – which is one of a few that I dyed before I thought of taking a photograph to explain what I was doing …..  So the flower heads you see – the white and purple – are going to become leaves, using the two ink pads you see in the photo.  Memento New Sprout and Bamboo Leaves.

Now – before I show you the next photoif you try this yourself,   you’ve got to  HAVE FAITH.

If you try this yourself . . .   You’ll think at first that you’ve completely messed up and made the worst leaves in the whole world – but give them a few minutes and they become much nicer.

Here’s what happens when you first do them . . .

A Vintage made just For You 5

Don’t they look awful?  They’re too strong.  Too … aw, just ‘too’!  But …  have faith.  Put them to one side and get on with something else.  Don’t keep looking at them.  Just leave them alone and do something else.

While they were doing their ‘thing’, I got on with the card. 

I wanted to add a little glamourbut not too much.  So I decided that I’d add a very gentle twinkle to the card by using a Graph’It Glitter Ink pen, in Silver.  I touched really lightly all around the distressed edges of the cardstock – VERY lightly.  It left behind it the faintest twinkle, but it was enough to make it feel ‘perfect’.

A Vintage made just For You 3

 

I’m not sure if you can see it in the photo above, but if you click on the photo, it will open up much larger and you’ll then be able to see the faint twinkle to the distressed edges. (Don’t forget to click back again so that you come back here).   You’ll also be able to see that I lightly dragged the same pen over the embroidery on the lace you see in the photo.  It just gave it that teeny bit of twinkly glamour which I wanted to add to the card.

Now then  . . . .   Do you remember those awful, horrible looking leaves?    Well this is what happened to them after a few minutes . . .

A Vintage made just For You 6

A Vintage made just For You 7

See what I mean about having faith?   Those leaves are all made from petals of flowers.  The larger ones in the first photo are the very petals you saw before they’d been attacked with the ink pads.  I just inked them.  Snipped them, and then left them alone while I did something else.  Voila.  Instant leaves.

The green twiggy things are Blossom Twigs from Anna Marie Designs.

The two hat pins:  The one is a heart-shaped regular, but fancy, dressmaking pin, but the other,  the beaded hat pin was in a little set I bought from Hobbycraft about 10 months ago, for just £2 for a set of six.  (They were my bargain of the day, in the sale!)

The pink Dragonfly is one of a small selection which I’ve had in my stash for ever and ever and I can’t even remember where I got them from.

The Pink; Rose; Cream; Lilac; Blue; Red pearls which I’ve used as the centre of the flowers, and on all four corners of the card, are from a wheel of pearls made by Anita’s (I bought them from The Range – although you might be able to buy them from other places).  There are literally hundreds of these little pearls, in an amazing array of colours (all colours in one wheel – and more colours than I’ve used here) for £3  (English pounds).  You even get the storage wheel – imagine a grapefruit cut through the centre so that you can see all the segments – well that’s what this wheel is like, and each segment contains a different colour of pearls.  It’s a totally fabulous design idea and I love the pearls.  Oh .. here y’ go … I  found a link:  http://www.therange.co.uk/anitas-assorted-coloured-pearl-gemstone-wheel//the-range/fcp-product/67347

And that, as they say, is ‘it’!  One Vintage, made For You, hand-made card.

A Vintage made just For You 8

I really like this little card.  I wasn’t sure I was going to, about half way through, but I kept on with it and I’m now thrilled that I did because it’s darling.  My mum would have loved this card.  So .. Mum … this one’s for you!

Thank you so much for coming and staying for a while.  Hope you like the card.

Much love ~

Cobs siggy sml