Tuesday, 30 April 2019

Advent Drawer Tuesday – Festive Owls

Two owls today from the woodland creature set of stickers from Flying Tiger (Christmas 2018)
Hmmmm,  this drawer will have to stay as it is, I am not going to attempt to rehash it just in case things get damaged, but those owls would have stood out a much more on a different coloured background, the red is definitely not doing anything for them! Oh well, all I have added to them is their googly eyes, at least they stand out.

Monday, 29 April 2019

Three Cactus Cards Using The Works 3D Cactus Stickers

These cards each measure 5 3/4ins x 5 3/4ins and are made using hand cut blanks.
I am so chuffed with how these cards have turned out. Cactus’s continue to be very en trend, but when I first saw the 3D stickers in The Works, I only bought one pack, not having a clear idea of how I would/could use them.
Then I remembered the 12ins x 12ins Mexican Madness paper pad I got in Hobbycraft reduced from £10 to £3.50 and that was it!
I kept things very simple, as is my want these days, covering the whole of the each card blank with papers from the pad. The proportion of the designs was just perfect, something I have a “thing” about.
I  mat and layered a scrap of white card onto silver mirror card before adding two of the cactus stickers and clusters of three dots here and there using a black fine liner pen.  Two cards in a matter of minutes and suitable for either sex and a whole variety of occasions.  Needless to say I have since returned to The Works for a couple more packets after seeing their versatility.
They also have packs of 3D pineapples which I originally dismissed as not being “my sort of thing”, but as there is also a pineapple design in the paper pad, it was worth a pound just to experiment.  I find with The Works you should buy something you fancy when you see it.  Stock varies from store to store, and where some crafty products seem to stay on the shelves for ages, others disappear quickly never to be seen again. I use their online shop an awful lot especially when there is a 30% off offer on  to buy things I know the Evesham branch doesn’t have. 

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Hunkydory Review - Steampunk Grab Bag/Cogs & Gears Embossing Folder – Steampunk Plaque

This steampunk plaque is what Marc and I came up with using the Steampunk Grab Bag (Product Code SPGRAB - £5.99) and Cogs  & Gears embossing folder (Product Code EF107 - £4.99) which were part of a bundle of products sent to me by Hunkydory to review.
This project took me completely out of my comfort zone, I adore steampunk, but whenever I have experimented with the idea nothing ever seemed to come together as I had envisioned and to be honest everything looked pants!  But this time I had Marc to help steer me through and persevere.
The grab bag I received contained 33 assorted shapes made with 3mm MDF each approximately sized 1.2cm x 2.3cm. https://www.hunkydorycrafts.co.uk/spgrab-steampunk-grab-bag.html

I need to apologise for the lack of photos taken during the various stages of this plaque’s making, but with Marc and I going backwards, forwards and upside down so many times, with pieces being put on, taken off and then put back on again, we were just too too absorbed to interrupt the creative juices to get the camera out.
It was also very spooky but fortuitous that Marc had bought a few packs of his LaBlanche embossed puffy stickers with him because there was a clock face I had wanted and he’d bought everything he’d got because he wasn’t sure which one I had meant.  The screw heads, flower and small clock face from these packs couldn’t have been more perfect.
We even used part of the packaging for the background, which we mat and layered on gold mirror card that we’d embossed with the Cog and Gears embossing folder.  

I think it’s just about visible amongst all the layers and embellishments! https://www.hunkydorycrafts.co.uk/embossing-folder-cogs-gears.html
The wings were lightly dusted with gold micro glitter and then Ranger Glossy Accents was applied over that, following the folds in the wings.  The original cog in the middle of the MDF wings didn’t look quite right, however, with a LaBlanche flower and clock face added it began to take on the sort of look we were aspiring to.
The four cog corners were coloured in, the cogs in a kaki colour, followed by a layer of Glossy Accents and when dry, edged with a permanent black fine liner pen with a screw head sticker in the middle.  The surround of the cog was coloured in black and then left matt, with rough thin white lines using a white gel pen to help accentuate the colour before adding three more screw heads.   
We left it for a while before I decided to add yet another matted layer in black which I then painted with a thin layer of Crackle Accents and that’s where its been left the time being.  For photographic purposes I put it on a picture frame (first picture) and I quite like the effect, so when I am out charity shop shopping I’ll be looking out for something similar or perhaps a tatty metal frame to mount the plaque on.

As I said this project was well out of my comfort zone ……. and I definitely think I will go back to it …… there’s still something missing, I just don’t know what! There are more unused cogs and roman numerals left in the pack, perhaps I need to play with them some more, and even think about spraying them gold or silver???  We shall see …… so watch this space.

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Hunkdory Review – The Little Book Of Wonderful Wintertime - A Christmas Shadow Box

The exciting parcel of lovely bits and pieces from Hunkydory for me to review has finally arrived and rather than doing just one long post I thought I would much rather put together a series of posts over the next coming little while featuring the products as and when inspiration takes me.  If you’re anything like me when you’re working with something new one idea quickly gets hijacked by another and I really want to give what I have been sent my best shot, especially as, although I am familiar with the company I have never actually used any of their products.
So, my first project is this  Christmas shadow box was made using a Poundland, glass fronted  bathroom frame which has a little depth to it, when I saw it I was pretty sure, if done carefully, I could get the back off and then use it for a all manner of 3D festive type projects…..
….. especially when teamed up with pages from the Hunkydory Little Book Of Wonderful Wintertime. https://www.hunkydorycrafts.co.uk/the-little-book-of-a-wonderful-wintertime-lbk216.html  £9.99 (or buy 3 for 2)
This A6 book of 150gsm papers contains 144 pages featuring 24 designs – 6 of each and with nothing else done to them, they would make a perfect card topper, but that’s not really my style, they demand to be embellished, but that’s another post or two.  I am a bit fussy about Christmas designs, especially snowmen and Santa’s, but given one or two of the Santa’s, I would be happy to use almost all the designs in one guise or another. The paper is glossy which takes me a little out of my comfort zone as I am very much a matt girl, but with this particular pad, because of the designs, I am happy for once to overlook the gloss.

The plastic Poundland frame measures approx.  7 3/4 ins x 5.3/4 ins with a working depth of approx. 1/4 in.

After carefully removing the hardboard backing I set about covering it completely with a light wood affect paper (from an assorted box of A4  papers, given as a free gift from the Create and Craft show Marc and I went to last year) to create a border that went with the rusticy/country feel of the designs

I then mat and layered my chosen design on matt red and then silver mirror card and placed it in the middle of the wooden effect paper.
I added three small plastic snowflakes (from The Works last Christmas) over the larger printed ones   …….
…… put three red flat back pearls over the holly berries on his hat, tiny black dome stickers over his eyes and applied Ranger Glossy Accents on his scarf and nose ……
….. plus a tiny blue button, just for the devil in the detail.
The final touches were added using a very sparkly, white, iridescent micro glitter on his hat, trees and on top of the wording.
I was so chuffed with how it looked, but the proof of the pudding was putting it back in the frame.  If I may say so myself, perfect!
Once in the frame I faux stitched round the outer and inner edges with a permanent, black fine liner pen and clusters of dots using a white Posca pen.  Adding two large wooden snowflake in the adjacent corners with one of the plastic snowflakes in the middle and another by the side with more dots.  The frame stands up on it’s own (I removed the ribbon hanger) so would be fine to display on festive shelves etc. Voila!
I am so pleased with how this idea has turned out  that I have decided that this will be my Christmas Card  of 2019, as you know I always give family and close friends something that they can keep/use from one Christmas to another rather than a card that is more often as not thrown away after the event.
I am hoping/praying that I can find some more frames (if you find any I would happily pay for them plus P & P), but if not I do have an alternate frame I could possibly use but without the depth but with which I would probably remove the glass altogether.  I will have a play and hopefully post what I come up with using this frame and another design from the book.
I have been sent a selection of free products to review by Hunkydory and have not received any additional financial payment for writing said review.  The opinions I have given are my own honest findings and are not in anyway influenced by the company involved.  I do not receive any commission for any products that might be purchased as a result of this review.

Monday, 22 April 2019

Random Letter Birthday Card

This card measure 7inx x 5ins and uses a hand cut, grey linen effect card blank.
I apologise as you have most probably seen this type of card quite a few times now, each one slightly different but with the same basic idea of using random letters from a variety of alphabet sticker packs and embellishments.  This particular card was made for my upstairs neighbour whose flat makes me smile as it is so masculine in all it’s black and grey décor …..  which is why I made a card with a grey background.
I need to think of some other sentiments to put on similar cards because one day I am going to run out of some of the more repetitive letters such as P, Y and H.
Most alphabet sets include for extra vowels, but if I could find a source of just plain wooden vowels that I could then colour in to suit, that would be heaven. However, I can now hear Marc nagging me, saying I could cut them out on my Scan And Cut and I could!  I am still a little nervous of the machine, but there’s a project we could definitely work on together when he stays with me next to bolster up my confidence. Now I think he has some thick, grey modelling card that would be perfect, I must ask him to pop a few sheets in his case and then we’d be off and running.

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Three Easter Bunny Cards

These three cards measure 14.5cms x 14.5cms and are made using a hand cut white linen effect card blank.
The cards are all pretty much the same, using a bit of simple mat and layering and faux stitching and dots using a black fine liner pen.
The 3D printed, felt rabbits were 50p for a pack of four from Hobbycraft (I think I may have got them in a sale), I think I have also seen something very similar in Home Bargains for around the same price.
The 3D card sentiments are part of an assorted pack of nine by Express Yourself MIP, I think also from Hobbycraft.  I reckon they took me less than 15 minutes each to make.

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Easter Bunny Card

This card measures 14.5cms x 14.5cms and is made using a hand cut white linen effect card.
This card consists of a simple bit of mat and layering, followed by an Easter scene using two different types of sticker/embellishments.  I don’t usually like to mix stickers made from different materials but I think in this case the puffy foam rabbit works pretty well with the 3D card signpost.
I reckon the whole card took me around 20 minutes to put together which considering it was a very last minute rush job turned out pretty well.

Monday, 15 April 2019

Marc's Shelves

I think one of the first things I do when I arrive at Marc's London flat .... after my first coffee, is get up and have a good mooch on his shelves.
He always says that I've seen it all before, but I know he's had another arrange or two since my last visit so there's always a little something I may have missed or something new has been added.

He's just so brilliant at putting things together,  grouping old and new bits together and putting something tres tres expensive next to a treasure from Poundland
It's something I aspire to and I think I am getting there, if slowly...........
........ but Marc will always be the master.  
I know am terrible for mooching on other peoples shelves but I guess you have to know who is happy for you to do it and those who don't like it, perhaps thinking that you are really checking up to see if they have dusted!!!
I think Marc's kitchen window shelves are my favourite, illuminated with blue fairy lights and encompassing a proper diverse eclectic mix. 

Very expensive designer cactus lights and vases sit next to Poundland ones, a tiny man out walking his dog stands next to a bejewelled elephant.  I thought I had got them in shot, but somewhere amongst all the treasures are the three giraffes we bought in Poundland (shown yesterday), they looked like they "belonged" and had been there forever.  I am sure Marc will mooch similarly at mine when he comes down, and no doubt we will hit the charity shops of Evesham in an effort to find for other "prize" bits and pieces with which to proliferate our shelves even more.

I Love You Shadow Box Frame

As I may have mentioned before I have a special expression for both Iris and Bertie when I tell them I love them, especially when saying goodbye. For Bertie, it’s “I love you a big much bit” which he finds hilarious and puts his thumb and forefinger together to indicate a tiny weeny bit, which is sooooooo cute and usually accompanied by snuggles.
I put the sentiment on a Christmas tree decoration for him last year but decided to make him something for his third birthday (where has the time gone???) for his bedroom, so he’ll always be reminded of our little nonsense and how much I love him.
I found these packs of ruler embellishments on EBay (3 pks of 6 rulers for just 99p plus £1.59 P & P – working out at 86p per pack) well, it was a no brainer, especially because as soon as I saw them I had a nugget of an idea.
Finding a suitable font for the sentiment wasn’t hard, but the font size and placement wasn’t so easy. I started off big and gradually got  smaller to get it to fit centrally in the frame mount with enough room to add the rulers in a roughly symmetrical design.
After several attempts I was finally happy and the rulers glued into position.
It needed something else, but I wanted to keep it clean looking if you know what I mean.  I knew I didn’t want to add colour and then  I remembered the tiny silver nail art hearts I had from Poundland (assorted pack wheel £1) ages ago.
They were perfect, just a few black dots here and there bought it all together.  I am so chuffed with it and it looks even better in real life, it I am allowed to say that.

Thursday, 11 April 2019

Exciting News - Hunkydory Review

It's been a couple of years since I have been asked to do a review. I don't push my blog anymore like I used to, so it's not really that out there to attract the interest of craft companies ...... so imagine my surprise when I recieved an e-mail from Hunkydory asking if I would consider putting together a review for them.

Well, it would be rude to say no wouldn't it?  I have always been aware of Hunkydory but to my knowledge have never used any of their products, so this is going to be really interesting. I have given Hunkdory a list of the things I would like to try out, mainly with a steampunk theme as Marc is due to stay with me over the Easter holiday so hopefully we can work together to produce a double review from two quite different perspectives.  I have included MDF shapes, stamps, an embossing folder and just to hedge my bets a book of Christmas toppers as we crafters are never that far away from the odd festive thought or two.

Below is what I have put on my request, as soon as they and Marc arrive I will let you know.  It's so exciting!

Wednesday, 10 April 2019

Charity Shop ***p NOT - Italian Holy Water Font

Oh my goodness, definitely not Charity ***p, when I saw this beauty lying flat on the shelf in Evesham’s Extracare shop I wasn’t sure what it was, but when I picked it up I thought I would burst ……. as you know I love religious kitsch and this, well!??!!! I didn’t even notice the price but when I did, £1.99 …….. I would have paid an awful lot more. We were meant to be, I love it in all its naïve crudity.
I think it’s terracotta judging by the rough red material showing on the back and then, (but … what do I know) the front is covered with slip and then hand painted??? After a very quick Google search I am pretty sure it’s Italian, it’s a holy water font probably for domestic use.  It’s probably a holiday souvenir  with not much age to it, but it would have cost quite a bit more than £1.99.  I am thrilled and it has aroused my curiosity so I will be researching similar pieces some more.  I may also be going to Italy next year, so I I will definitely be keeping my eye out for another one or two, smaller versions perhaps.
When I got home I went all round the flat trying to find a apt place for my treasure, she’s now in the hall, on her own,  just to the side of the door into the lounge/dinner so she can’t be missed, but where there is room should I stumble upon any more (in Italy or possibly E-bay).  In the meantime I have put a very small tea light in the bottom (originally a floating wedding tea light from Home Bargains) in the bottom of the font bowl, so in the evening she looks, how shall I say, very atmospheric and very romantic!