Thursday, 20 December 2012

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Hello and welcome to my last post for 2012 as I've tidied away the craft goodies and am taking a little break. I'm looking forward to getting back into full throttle in January.

I began my blog in September this year. My venture into blogging was a kind of unknown as I didn't know what to expect - I could not have been more happily surprised with how it has turned out. I wish to extend my warmest appreciation for the wonderful welcome that has greeted me and to each and every one who has taken the time to visit. I am amazed at how much I have learned over the past 4 months from you all - your blogs, creations, posts, challenges, design teams and tutorials are an incredible university and a never-ending source of entertainment and inspiration! Heartfelt thanks especially go to those who have posted such lovely compliments and those who became followers - doing so makes you so much more real and your encouragement is what spurs me on.
Instruction does much, but encouragement everything." Johann W. von Goethe.

I'm also THRILLED to advise that my card 'Oh Jingle Bells' will be shown tomorrow (21st) on the wonderful Melissa Frances Blog. I genuinely love Melissa Frances creations and products so to be published on her blog is the cherry on top of this Christmas. Thank-you so much to all at Melissa Frances.

My very first post in September was 'Starting with Santa'. I thought it would be a nice balance to end 2012 using the same stamp. So without further ado - here he is!

Ingredients for my card today;
Papers: Maja Design (It's Christmas Time)
Stamps: Inkadinkado (A Visit from Santa 98223) and Stampendous (Christmas Wishes SSC1068)
Ink: Versafine (Crimson) and papers edged with Encore Metallic in Gold. Edges also distressed with Distress Inks (Brushed Corduroy and Vintage Photo)
Embossing Powder: Sparkle and Sprinkle (Japanese Lacquer) and Ranger (Queen's Gold)
Punches: Edger and snowflake by Martha Stewart
Free vintage images printed onto TAP (Transfer Artist Paper by Lesley Riley) and then ironed onto muslin
Bunting embellishment: Melissa Frances (Countdown to Christmas)
Ribbon: May Arts Silk
Dabs of Stickles Glitter
Everything else from stash

Wishing you a joyous and peaceful Christmas,
Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
The Ribbon Reel - Nordic Noel
Holly Jolly Christmas - Vintage Christmas
LEJ Designs - Santa's Coming To Town
Loves Rubberstamps - Merry Christmas
Celebrate the Occasion - Christmas Anything Goes
Deep Ocean Challenge - Santa is coming to town
The Pretty Little Ribbon - Its Christmas
Simon Says Challenge - Merry Christmas
Charisma Cardz - Sanata Claus is coming to town
Craft Us Crazy - Merry Christmas

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Doves of Peace

Greetings all - today 12.12.12 is the last posting day to the North Pole so be sure to get your letters to Santa in the post!

I am really pressed for time today (who isn't!) so will be brief and just give card ingredients as follows;

Stamps - Penny Black 'World Peace' (3040K), Flourishes Stamps - Antique Map, Stamped Sentiment by Crafty Individuals
Inks - Versamark (for clear emboss resist), Distress Metallic Stain in Brushed Pewter, DI in Chipped Sapphire
Embossing powders - Judikins Silver Twinkle, Stampendous Twilight
Lots of UTEE for Dove image and sentiment
Bird cage die cut glittered with Silver Twinkle
Backing paper for bird cage a free image courtesy of the wonderful Astrid of Astrid's Artistic Efforts
Doves punched with Fiskars / Jenny Bowlin sqeeze punch and glittered with Distress Dry Glitter in Clear Rock Candy
CS - Stardream and Curious Metallic
Other - glass glitter (Stampendous), bells, pearls (Kaisercraft), clock hand charm (silvered and glittered), Corner punches by Fiskars, Stars

Thanks for taking the time to visit today as I know everyone is super busy at the mo! Hugs to those lovely people who leave comments or better still become followers. It means a lot!

Have a great day.
Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Fashionable Stamping Challenge - To Die For
Penny Black Saturday - Glitter and Sparkle
Penny Black Allsorts - It's Your Choice
Bunny Zoe's Crafts - Celebration
Sweet Stamping Challenge - Dies and / or Punches
Crafting Ireland - 12 Days of Christmas
LEJ Designs - Sentimental
No Matter Which Challenges - Christmas
Glitter n Sparkle - Use some metal
ABC Christmas Challenge - Y is for your favourite punch/die
Creative Card Crew- Use A Star
The Sisterhood of Crafters - Christmas with a background twist
Inspiration Emporium - Inspiration Journal - Joyful Creations

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Let's Ice Skate

Happy Sunday everyone! I am delighted to see so many visits, comments and new followers. I appreciate them all and thank everyone for hopping on board!

I saw and saved an ice skate shaped card some time ago (can't remember from where). I printed out the shape and cut templates for the skate and boot. I am forever bookmarking tutorials and was glad to put one of them into practice today - please see Shelly Hickox's tutorial on Faux Tarnished Metal here as it is so effective.

I cut out the skate shape from grungeboard and gave it a coat of Metallic Stain in Pewter. Following Shelly's tutorial I gave the skate a few coats of silver embossing powder heating each as I went along. I then sprinkled some UTEE randomly and heat blasted it. The whole process caused the silver to bubble and tarnish beautifully. Just lovely for a vintage ice-skate.

The boot itself is cut from faux leather paper - bought in the most va va voom of Stationers - Kate's Paperie in NYC. The top of the boot is white Bazzill CS stamped using french text stamp by Andy Skinner (Simply Angelic set). Also edged boot top with silver glass glitter. I tucked in 2 types of venise lace from Linda's Funkie Junkie Boutique. Just for shopping balance the lovely lace ribbon used for bow comes from another beautiful Stationer Daintree (in Dublin). I added 3 little heart brads and bow for faux lacing effect.

The background is a square of red velvet SEI Velvet paper (love this for Christmas). I painted glue across end of the velvet and applied a thick layer of Melissa Frances mica flakes. I spent forever trying to see what worked best to highlight the red leather of the boot and eventually settled on a band of white CS stamped and embossed with Stampendous Christmas Background stamp (CRR144). All the stamping on card is done with Versafine crimson and EP is Sparkle n Sprinkle Japanese Lacquer.

Took the shine from some Darice jingle bells by dabbing with pewter metallic stain and tied them together and stitched to the white lace bow. I recently got a fab stash of freebies with an order from Crafty Individuals so stamped and embossed their lovely free Jingle Bells sentiment and backed with strip of red velvet. I punched snowflakes from CS and vellum, coated them with glue and dipped them in Distress Dry glitter in clear rock candy. Also added same glitter to rim of boot and skate for sparkle aplenty.

Lots to do today - I wish I really could skate! Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Nicola x

Thank-you to the many hosts, sponsors and DTs of the following challenges that I wish to enter card to:
Simon Says Stamp - Snowflakes
Crafty Mess Challenge - Vintage Christmas
Jingle Belles Rock - December to Remember
Craft Us Crazy - Its beginning to look a lot
Crafting Ireland - 12 Days of Christmas
Charisma Cards - Christmas
Stampin for the Weekend - Let it Snow
Glitter n Sparkle - Use Some Metal
Pixie Dust Studio - Sparkle and Snowflakes
Divas By Design - Let It Snow
Alphabet Challenge - V for Vintage
Sweet Stampin Christmas - Anything Goes
Just Us Girls - Embossing
Pile It On - Embellishments

Thursday, 6 December 2012

The Mitten

Hello - You are most welcome to my blog! Thank-you so much to those who have begun to follow and/or posted lovely comments. I appreciate them all very much.

My card today has a lovely warm glow to it that hasn't come across in photo as today in Dublin it is just miserable outside. But never mind, it's cosy indoors!

I hand drew a mitten shape and cut out from SEI Velvet papers. Gave glove a double cuff with Martha Stewart punch along edge. I stitched the glove having marked out with my Seweasy. Then decorated the cuff with ribbons by Melissa Frances and May Arts. Using stamps by Stempelglede (Vintage Christmas) I stamped Angel onto TAP (Transfer Artist Paper by Lesley Riley) using archival ink in sepia. I then ironed the TAP onto white muslin so that the stamped image transferred to the cloth. I also stamped sentiment from same stamp set directly onto cream muslin. (One has to be careful with TAP and text as the ironing process reverses all images). The lovely papers are by Maja Design (It's Christmas Time). I distressed edges of paper and then rubbed paper and mitten edges with gilding wax which I left to dry overnight. Adhered the Angel image with 3D tape and attached the sentiment at top with brads. Punched various snowflakes (Martha Stewart and Woodware) and doubled them up for dimension. The larger ones have rose centres (petal edges gilded) and the smaller snowflakes have pearls as centres. Ribbons and charms from stash to complete.

Stay warm and a big thank-you for stopping by.

Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Crafty Mess - Vintage Christmas
Twisted Tuesday - Wintery White
Christmas at Sweet Stamping - Anything Goes
Crafting Ireland - 12 Days of Christmas
Sugar Creek Hollow - Distressing
Sparkles Christmas Challenge - Button or Bow
Eclectic Ellapu - Santa paws and/or Snowflakes
Crafty Bloggers - Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp - Snowflakes
The Crafty Pad - Stitching Real or Faux
Loves Rubberstamps - Anything Goes
Celebrate the Occasion - Christmas - No Red or Green
Alphabet Challenge - V for Vintage
Crimbo Crackers - Wooden

Saturday, 1 December 2012


Hello again! Thank-you for visiting.

Just doing a quick card and post today. I havn't done any stamping for this card and I feel like a cheat without it!!

You can see that there are some little surprises to be found...

Recipe: Hand drawn Christmas Stocking template. Bazzill CS. SEI Velvet Papers. Faux leather papers edged with Martha Stewart punches. Gifts from Woodware punches. Charms, crystals and ribbons from stash.

Enjoy the remainder of your weekend and very many thanks for following.

Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Eclectic Ellapu - Celebration with Sparkle
Card Crafter's Circle - Bearing Gifts #51
Moving Along With The Times - 3 elements with same letter: (Christmas Stocking, Crystals,Charms)
Tuesday Alchemy - Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp - Anything Goes
Crafting Ireland - 12 Days of Christmas

Friday, 30 November 2012

The Maji

Hello again from a very chilly but sunny Dublin. Thank-you for stopping by and welcome to yet another Christmas Card post.

CS is Bazzill. Papers are by Maja Design (having inked/distressed them with various DIs). I stamped and embossed Wisemen Postcard (Stampington and Company C8432)) with black archival ink and black detail EP. Then blended several DIs and Glimmer Mist (Walnut Gold) to create a warm background for the Maji. I coated with Glossy Accents for definition. Next I matted image onto several layers of CS and papers (having distressed and gilded each rectangle's edge). Also used a Martha Stewart edge punch along the base rectangle. With same punch I edged a strip of paper and matted it on CS. Again aged and gilded the edges. Using a holly stamp from Inkadinkado (98398 Christmas Silhouettes) I stamped holly leaves and inked with DI, shimmer mist and applied gilding wax to their edges. Punched the angel wings and bird shapes using Fiskars Squeeze punches and coated with Distress Stain. 'Aged' a Tim Holtz gamespinner and attached to postcard. Added a Brenda Walton metal brad for 'stamp'. Completed with ribbons, bow tied with my boweasy and date (Maja Road). Added crackle accents to embellishments for final vintage effect.

Thank-you so much for visiting and a special thank-you to those who leave comments as they are very much appreciated.

Enjoy your weekend.
Nicola x

Many thanks to the Hosts and Design Teams at the following challenges that I wish to enter;
Sugar Creek Hollow - Vintage Christmas
Sunday Stamper (Ink on my Fingers) - Vintage
Simon Says Stamp - Anything Goes (with Martha Stewart)
Crafty Ribbons - Use at least 2 ribbons
Use Your Stuff - Patterned Paper
Tuesday Throwdown - Lots of Layers
Fussy and Fancy - I Love Christmas
Addicted to Stamps - Christmastime
Glitter n Sparkle - Ribbon and / or Lace
Hooked on Craft - Christmas
Crafting Ireland - 12 Days of Christmas

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Vintage Santa

A warm hello wherever you are, especially those in parts of flood ridden Britain. Thankfully we in Ireland have not been affected by this weather despite being so proximate.

I'm well and truly now in Christmas card production mode.

Background paper is by Swedish brand Maja Design (It's Christmas Time). I have distressed its edges and dabbed with Archival sepia to age and Adirondack paint dabber for snow effect. I won some chipboard ornaments at a raffle a few weeks ago and they are coming in handy! I inked the ornament with various Distress Inks, Metallic Stains and Cosmic Shimmer Mist (Rich Gold). Then stamped Santa (Stampington and Company, St Nicholas, K5545) with Ranger Archival Sepia and embossed with Sparkle n Sprinkle Chocolate EP. I also stamped Holly leaves around Santa (Stampendous SSC1068) but these ended up being mostly covered up. I gave the ornament 5 coats of UTEE and sprinkled in a small amount of glass glitter during coats. I 'aged' two small glassine bags from The Funkie Junkie Boutique with distress inks. Next stamped two 'tickets' using some stamps from Unity Stamp Company (IB-127) - one of these is stamped on canvas tag by Maya Road. I inked the button rims with Archival Sepia and tied through red bows. Added snowflakes and branches with my ubiquitous woodware and Martha Stewart punches using paper by Maya Road and SEI Velvet. Santa's Hat is also decorated with a little metal disc by Nunn Design that says 'Believe'. I painted a metal angel with Gesso and Archival Sepia. Liberally applied Adirondack paint dabber (Snow Cap) to all elements of card. Added ribbons and completed with metal clock hands on angel. Time is absolutely crucial to Santa on the 25th!

Very many thanks for visiting.
Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Our Creative Corner - ABC Challenge
Sugar Creek Hollow - Vintage Christmas
Stamping Sensations - Traditional Christmas
Vintage Stamping Challenge - Red/Green/Blue/Purple

Friday, 23 November 2012

Smitten Penguins in Snowland

A belated Happy Thanksgiving to all Americans wherever you are in the world. Thank you so much to everyone who visits my blog and a very special thank-you to all my new followers.

No creations for the last week I'm afraid as I wasn't well. I hope to be more productive this week. I decided I would try and make a shaker card as a lot of YouTube videos make it look easy! It isn't ... mine sprung a leak alas and some careful plumbing work was required. I reckon I should get used to glitter on the floor for the next couple of weeks!

Onto Stardream cardstock I stamped some Christmas Penguins (Penny Black 3514H - Cheerful Giving) and then embossed with Judikins Black Diamond EP. I also stamped with Versamark and clear embossed some snowflakes around the penguins for a resist (Fiskars Winter Wonderland) but these aren't showing up too well against the pale blues. The background was sponged with a mix of Ranger Distress inks and Snow Cap Adirondack paint dabber. I punched some snowflakes with my Martha Stewart and Woodware punches and gave them gemstone centres from Hero Arts. Card is my literal interpretation of one of the challenges I entering - Home Sweet Home as I agree "home is where the heart is". This smitten little pair's home just happens to be the great outdoors. I've added little key and heart charms for them. Used Twinklets glass glitter (Diamond Dust) for the filling underneath the (now securely stuck!) clear acetate. I painted a diecut banner from Melissa Frances with layers of white Gesso. Whilst wet I blasted it with the heat tool so that the Gesso formed nice snowy blisters. I've addded bow, heart and tree charm (both painted and glittered) and stamped sentiment and embossed with Judikins EP. (Stamp was a freebie (amongst many fab freebies!) that I just received in an order from Crafty Individuals). Shaker mounted on Bazzill CS to complete.

Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by.

Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Penny Black Saturday Challenge - Cute Christmas
Fashionable Stamping Challenge - Home Sweet Home
Aud Sentiments - Bingo (Embossing, Bling, Joy)
Sparkles Christmas - Contemporary Colour Combo
Bearly Mine - Snowflakes
Crazy Amigos - Colours of Winter
Creative Craft Challenges - Bingo (Blue, Stamps, Emboss)
Ladybug Crafts - Snowflakes
Fashionista Challenge - Blue Christmas
Crimbo Crackers - Anything Goes
Fussy and Fancy - Feeling Blue
Stampin For The Weekend - Use some texture

Friday, 16 November 2012

Oh Jingle Bells ....

Greetings from Dublin. Thank-you for stopping by and a warm welcome to my new followers. I've had my card today bobbing around in my head for the last week so am delighted to finally get it made and posted. This one was very tricky to photograph.

I've made an easel card to accomodate a musical scene with Rudolph, Dasher and Blitzen rushing over snowy stars (yes, climate change has a lot to answer for!) to bring wondrous toys to all the girls and boys. They are singing Jingle Bells as they go, with not a snowflake clinging to them as they are moving so quickly!

This might be a better angle;

CS is Bazzill. Papers and tags are from Melissa Frances (Countdown to Christmas and music sheet from 5th Avenue). Stamps are from the magical Stampington and Company (S7338 - Classic Christmas), with the dashing reindeer and Santa Moon inked with Encore metallic inks and embossed with Judikins sparkle EPs. The Jingle Bells ticket at front is from Unity Stamps IB-127 stamped with Versafine. The chipboard musical note has been inked with Distress Stains Metallic Pewter and then stamped with music stamp from Anna Griffin (580K21) using Versafine. (By chance I won some chipboard notes in a raffle at a crop last weekend, so I think it was serendipity to make this card). Same musical stamp also used on centre part of a doily backing the chipboard note. I've edged the top and slanting borders and punched snowflakes with Martha Stewart punches. Tied little bows to those jangling jingle bells (Anitas) and liberally applied liquid pearls and stickles for more sparkle. Dotted some of the snowflake centres with pearls (Artoz). The stars were handcut as I don't have a die cutting machine ... yet ... Santa?!

Thank you so much for checking out my blog. Have a lovely day! Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Fashionable Stamping Challenges - Musical
Frilly and Funkie - Chipboard and Metal
Moving Along with The Times - Seeing Stars!
Milk Coffee Challenge - More Than 1 Fold
Crafts 4 Eternity - Marvellous Music

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Little Snow Bird

Greetings from yet another lovely bright crisp day in Dublin. Welcome to another christmas card post!

When I started this card, I had intended to leave it CAS so that the background itself was the main feature - this was so card would suit current Our Creative Corner challenge. However once I began on the little snowbird I'm afraid I loved the image so much that it became the focal point.

CS used are Bazzill and Stardream. I used a Fiskars corner punch to shape the background piece that I then stamped (Stampendous Christmas Background CRR144) with Versafine and embossed with Papermania EP (Tinsel Red). Used a Martha Stewart punch to edge the left side of bird image (some room for tail feathers!). I stamped (Stampendous Snow Bird - CRP169) in Encore Metallic Gold and embossed with Sparkle n Sprinkle EP (Gilded Ivory). Added some mica flakes from Melissa Frances and punched snowflakes from Ferro Gold paper. Added pearls, gems, ribbon from stash. Topped with Nunn Design gold metal snowflake to finish.

Wishing everyone a lovely day!

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Our Creative Corner - Make Your Own Background
Stamping Sensations - Traditional Christmas
Crafty Sentiments - Christmas
The Pink Elephant TPE174 - Punches/Dies

Monday, 12 November 2012

Christmas Angel with Frills and Lace

Hello and a very warm welcome to my new followers. I have been so grateful to receive such lovely comments to my last post below (A Christmas Tree). It was a great deal of work but your encouragement makes it so worthwhile.

I spent last Saturday at a workshop with CropTarts in Dublin making a Beach House structure designed by the wonderful Dutch artist Lisa de Witte. It was lovely to try out new techniques and to meet new fellow crafters from Ireland.

I feel that I really should begin to build a stock of Christmas cards so here is my card for today;

Base Bazzill CS. Another layer of pink Bazzill is then covered with sparkling flourish vellum by Papermania. The beautiful angel stamp is by Crafty Individuals (C1-211) that has been stamped with Ranger black Archival Ink and matted on Bazzill. The gorgeous Wings from (Andy Skinner ASCSA5010) have been stamped on tissue paper with black Archival Ink and embossed with Judikins Black Diamond EP. I have added Ranger Distress Dry Glitter in Clear Rock Candy to the angel image and particularly built it up on angel's wings. I 'pinned' the frou ribbon by Melissa Frances with brads to stretch it out. Then topped with Venise lace and bows. Added velvet ric-rac across top and crystals to complete.

That's it. Wishing all a lovely week to come.

Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges;
Crafty Individuals - Festive Sparkle
The Ribbon Girl - Add Sparkle
The Stamp Man - Emboss It
Unique Crafters - Sugar and Spice
52 Christmas Card Showdown - Colour Challenge
Sparkles Christmas Challenge - Contemporary Colour Combo
Glitter and Sparkle - Things with Wings
Loves Rubberstamps - Anything Goes

Thursday, 8 November 2012

A Christmas Tree

Hello and welcome all. Today I'm delighted to share a very special post with you.

As a recent winner (for here and here) I was invited by the wonderful crew at Our Creative Corner to Guest Design for them today. I was generously given an opportunity to showcase any card or project, big or small. Me being me, I went big! Please pop over to Our Creative Corner for further details of my showcase including a Q and A. Their blog really is well worth a visit at any time as the Design Team there are ‘le crème de la crème’ in paper crafting.

My project has been inspired by a padded Christmas Tree that my Mum made for our family home many years ago. Basically my 'Tree' is made up of 10 fabric triangles and a pot! Each of the triangles has a hand stitched muslin front and back with wadding in between to pad them. On top of each triangle I have made a little scene just as if I were making a card. Each triangle is 7.5" wide so the whole tree is quite big, though very light.

This is the original tree made by my Mum

Here is my tree all ready for Christmas!

The following pictures show each element of the tree in more detail. Please also scroll further down this post where you will find outlined in detail all the ingredients and methods used.

I would especially like to thank everyone at Our Creative Corner for so kindly hosting my showcase today and a big thank-you to my Mum for making the original tree. I now have 2 trees that I will always treasure.

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog.
Nicola x

Triangle 1 – Reindeer

Triangle 2 – Pink Cherub with children

Triangle 3 – The Night Before Christmas

Triangle 4 – Bluebirds at Home for Christmas

Triangle 5 – The 3 Wise Men

Triangle 6 – Angel with horn

Triangle 7 – Santa Claus

Triangle 8 – Little Flower Angel

Triangle 9 – Santa's Boot

Triangle 10 – Dove of Peace

The Pot

I wish to enter my Christmas Tree to the following challenges;
Live and Love Crafts - Christmas
Viintage Stamping Challenge - Red/Green/Blue/Purple
The Artistic Stamper - Anything Goes
The Crafty Bloggers Network - Christmas Anything Goes
The Stamp Man - Emboss It
Eclectic Ellapu - Its a Vintage Thing
Frilly & Funkie - Tic, Tac, Toe - Lace, Distress Stains, Glitter
Anything But a Card Challenge #5
Southern Girls Challenge - 46 Days to go - Christmas Projects
Paper Crafting Journey - Anything Goes

Details of ingredients and methods used:

Triangle 1 – Reindeer

Base white corrugated cardstock covered by red SEI Velvet paper. Stamped with Versamark and embossed with Sparkle n Sprinkle EP, Image by Penny Black (2803K Let’s Play). Metal Nunn Design snowflake, Prima wooden timepiece and Tim Holtz game-spinners all embossed with Ranger Distress Vintage Photo EP. Snowflakes punched (Woodware) from Ferro Gold paper. Jingle bells by Darice affixed with string. Crystals, pearls, ‘branches’ and pom-pom ribbon from stash.

Triangle 2 – Pink Cherub with children

Background paper by Melissa Frances (5th Avenue). Edger punch by Martha Stewart. Next layer Bazzill CS. ‘Wallpaper’ background is white SEI velvet paper stamped with Distress Ink. Stamp by Justrite (Autumn Damask CL-03895). I painted metal corner frames with gesso then pearlescent mix to match center resin frame by Melissa Frances. Added Adirondack pink paint dabber and slight gold gilding wax to frames. Beautiful cherub stamp image is by Stempelglede (Vintage Christmas). Stamped with Ranger Archival ink onto speciality stamping paper. All paper and frames ‘aged’ with Ranger distress inks. Gave little satin stars some centre crystals and placed around circular frame. I tea-bag stained and crackle painted some small tags. Attached seam binding ribbons and decorated each tag with Christmas charms. (All hidden, but tags do pull out). Next I stamped the silhouette stamp by Hero Arts (F5468 Musical Walk) onto organza ribbon using Encore Ultimate Metallic Gold, Silver and Bronze inks. Added musical charms and pom-pom ribbon from stash.

Triangle 3 – The Night Before Christmas

Background is of white stitched cotton paper on Indian gold cardstock. Stamps from Stampington & Company (S7338 – Classic Christmas). Using Encore ultimate metallic inks in gold, silver and bronze I stamped reindeer on tissue paper and them glued to punched CS ovals. Also stamped from same set Santa moon using Delicata Golden Glitz and text using Versafine Crimson Red that I clear embossed. Added mulberry trees, punched snowflakes, stars,bows, jingle bells and clock. Then it started to snow with Melissa Frances mica flakes!

Triangle 4 – Blue Birds at Home for Christmas

First of all many thanks to Astrid at the wonderful Astrid’s Artistic Efforts for beautiful free images. Base paper is a blue silk fibre paper with glitter particles. I printed some of Astrid’s images onto cotton based paper, backed them with silver angel hair paper and placed behind resin birdhouse by Prima (Ingvild Bolme) and resin bird by Melissa Frances. Dabbed all with silver stickles. Printed another gorgeous free image by Astrid onto the special Transfer Artist Paper (TAP by Lesley Riley). I then ironed that paper onto muslin to transfer the image to the muslin cloth. (If your printer has a mirror or reflection option choose this when printing, as the image is reversed when ironed). ‘Nested’ the birds with doily, silver mesh, stickled blue CS and some white tulle I had glittered. Punched snowflakes (Woodware, Martha Stewart). Added a blue satin bow. Drenched the snowflakes and roses in Distress Dry Glitter Clear Rock Candy. I didn’t know my Mum had a stash but she ‘donated’ the absolutely fabulous bling crystal chain along base edge – thanks Mum!

Triangle 5 – The 3 Wise Men

Background is a copper stitched handmade paper. I stitched two Inkssentials tags together. Stamped image by Stampington and Company (C8432 – Wisemen Postcard) using Ranger Archival black ink that I then embossed with Stamp n Stuff black detail EP. Achieved ‘desert colours’ with a mix of Distress Inks and Distress Metallic stains, (having masked top right corner). I had never used Utee before, but I am now a convert. Gave image 4 coats of Utee having mixed in some gold gilding wax and Melissa Frances glass glitter to top right corner during Uteeing. The beautiful gloss on the image doesn’t come across in photo. Also gave similar treatment to stamped sentiment by Stampington and Company (G1068 All the Year). Added stars, charms, Tim Holtz game-spinners and light bulb. Rubbed gilding wax around tag edges. Inked seam binding ribbon to match and dabbed with copper stickles. Finished by wrapping millinery netting around top and base to resemble dune shapes.

Triangle 6 – Angel with Horn

Background Bazzill CS topped with crepe paper. Stamped the cherub (Inkadinkado 98398 Silhouettes) with Archival ink onto pink tissue paper that I wrapped around a tag. Stamped corners (Stampendous SSC1068 Christmas Wishes). Painted metal music notes with Distress metallic stain in silver. Stamped music (Anna Griffin 580K21) onto doily. Added punched snowflakes, roses, pearls, crystals, leaves and berries. Fabulous pouf ribbon by Melissa Frances

Triangle 7 - Santa Claus

A heavy cotton fabric that was a soap wrapper and a music print ribbon form background. Used Gesso (by Claudine Hellmuth) for the first time and will use it often! Stamped Santa (by Stampington and Company - K5545 St. Nicholas) in Ranger Archival ink. Distressed the stamped image and backing doily with distress ink and metallic stain mix. Gilded edges with gilding wax. Using a Tim Holtz Journaling ticket I stamped ‘tickets’ (Ticket to Christmas by Unity Stamp Co.) and again coloured with gesso, distress inks and gilding wax. Added a crackle glaze to ticket – it didn’t really crack but became quite leather like which was good. Again, thanks to Astrid at Astrid's Artistic Efforts for her beautiful free images. I printed her postcard image onto cotton paper and inked to ‘age’ it. Added glossy accents to parts of Santa’s face and postcard for definition. Punched snowflakes, distressed their edges and coated them (and some gessoed Anita’s jingle bells) with Distress Dry Glitter in clear rock candy. Tied some bakers twine around a tiny spool from The Funkie Junkie Boutique. Tucked some of Rudolph’s stray fur behind ticket (just checking if anyone still paying attention!). Added charms, bow, brad by K & Co, punched branches and a masculine looking frill!

Triangle 8 – Little Flower Angel

Stamped angel by Stampington and Company (K5546 Angel Delivery) using Distress Ink onto special Transfer Artist Paper (TAP by Lesley Riley). Then I ironed that paper onto muslin to transfer image to the cloth. I discovered too late that I should have used my printer ‘mirror’ print option as the image reverses when transferred. I resolved ‘back-to-front’ text issue by stamping angel again onto glittered vellum (Papermania) that I cut to form a frame around image. Painted a heart doily with pearlescent mix. Glittered a punched dove (fiskars) and roses and berries in Distress Dry Glitter. Added edging of venise lace (from The Funkie Junkie Boutique) and May Arts leaf trim.

Triangle 9 - Santa’s Boot

(Stay with me – we’re nearly there!). Background formed from Indian Gold CS and cream crinkled paper with gold stitching. I cut boot shape from burlap and stitched 2 sides together having placed some goodies inside. Top of boot is some cream SEI Velvet paper edged with a Martha Stewart punch and stitched. Some cream pom-pom ribbon is on top edge. I strung beads together for decoration and added red bow. I stamped some swirls with gold ink onto 2 tags. A big thank-you to Vintage Ephemera blogspot for 2 free images that I printed onto Lesley Riley’s Transfer Artist Paper. I then ironed that paper onto muslin to transfer the images to the cloth. I then wrapped the stamped cloth around the inked tags and aged with distress inks. I wrapped a gift for the little boy but he went and opened it while I was wrapping the other gift for the pretty miss! Painted holly charm with green stickles and red gems. Finished with other charm and bows. Added bunting from Melissa Frances (Countdown to Christmas).

Triangle 10 – Dove of Peace

Using a masking technique stamped Stardream navy metallic CS with Antique Map stamp (by Flourishes - SS112) and embossed with Judikins Silver Twinkle EP. Onto white cardstock I stamped the Dove (by Penny Black 3040K) with versamark and clear embossed it to form resist. Inked the image with Distress ink and pewter Metallic Distress Stain mix. Gave it 5 coats of Ranger Utee. Got some vintage glass glitter (Melissa Frances) to stick and gave it a sixth and final coat of Utee. When cool, punched the corners (fiskars). Matted on white cardstock and silver mesh. Added 2 bells, silver mesh bow and May Arts leaf trim.

And Finally – The Pot! (Thank heavens I hear you say!)

Red SEI Velvet Paper. With Versafine I stamped Robin image by Andy Skinner (Simply Angelic ASCSA5010) and Angel image by Stempelglede (Vintage Christmas). Coated both with Ranger Utee, popped whilst still hot into the freezer. After 5 minutes, removed them and made cracks. Stamped Sentiment (Stampabilities IR1038 - Bright with Promise) and embossed with Sparkle n Sprinkle EP (Japanese Lacquer). Threaded through some ribbon. Added stars. Punched holes with Sew Easy and stitched.

That’s it! Thanks once again to Our Creative Corner for initiating and showcasing my project, and to my Mum for having been the inspiration behind it. Thanks so much for stopping by and enjoy the rest of your day. Nicola x

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Greetings all. I'm sorry for my absence over the last week - I've been immersed in completing a special project. Check back next thursday for more re same.

A particular hello to readers in USA affected by The Storm - wishing you strenght through a most challenging time.

Any crafty people in Ireland might be interested in visiting the 'Knitting and Stitching' show in Dublin. I was there today - there sure are some incredible crafting talents on display, as well as 'shopping opportunities'. Show finishes tomorrow.

My card today will hopefully bring cheer, as the song goes, Somewhere over the rainbow, skies are blue...

Ingredients are: Bazzill CS, SEI Velvet Paper, Bo Bunny flower, Punches from Woodware, Martha Stewart and Punch Bunch, Ribbons, Twine and Ladybird from stash.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Nicola x

Thank-you to hosts, sponsors and design teams at the following challenges that I wish to enter;
Craft Your Passion - Photo Inspiration
The Ribbon Reel - Rainbow with ribbon and twine
Fab 'n' Funky - Diecuts/Punches
Flutterby by Wednesdays - Butterfly or Fairy
Paper Crafting Journey - Ribbon or Twine
Chocolate, Coffee & Cards - Stripes
Shopping Our Stash - Flowers in 3D
My Mum's Craft Shop - Bold and Bright

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Swan Story

Hello! Its a bank holiday here in Ireland this weekend so everyone's in good form with the extra free day.

For my post today, in order to enter certain challenges, I've made something invented by the fabulous Hels Sheridan who labelled it The T'Pouch.. The challenge over at Frilly and Funkie is anything but a card to include a hidden compartment. Also the challenge at The Stamp Man is Butterflies, Birds and Bees.

Here's what I've made;

The T'Pouch is folded in such a way that it can contain 2 tags that can slide in and out of T'Pouch independently of each other. My first picture above shows the side of the T'Pouch stamped with Stampington and Company's lovely image (Heavenly P2216) embossed with Judikins EP (Black Diamond). This is 'The Black Swan'. The quote of advice from Aesop (from my printer) is on the top of a 'tag' within the T'Pouch. (Sorry its not a proper tag shape but by the time I realised I didn't want to go cutting proper tag corners in case I went awry and wrecked the whole thing! Bit tight for time today!)

The reverse of the T'Pouch is;

The same lovely image, but this time embossed with Stampendous EP (Winter Wonderland). Obviously this is 'The White Swan'. I've stamped some relevant text on the top of the 2nd tag inside the T'Pouch using stamp from Paper Bags Studios (Beauty PBS-038-C). (The tag, that curled from embossing, is now under a heavy book to flatten as I was rushing to get post published first).

Continuing with 'The White Swan' I've pulled out the tag to reveal it in full;

Clearly she is a happy swan as she is surrounded by butterflies, dragonflies and a glittery rose pink heart. Going back to 'The Black Swan' however the revealed tag tells a different story;

Yes, you've guessed it, this poor creature has a sting in her tail!

Thank-you to Anita who sparked my brain with her Design Team inspiration piece where she had different birds on front and reverse.

Supplies; Stardream and Bazzill CS, Cromatica Paper, Punched shapes with SEI Velvet paper using Punch Bunch, EK Success, Woodware and Fiskars punches. Melissa Frances pearls, Karen Foster metal charm, Lace from The Funkie Junkie Boutique. Bows and ribbon from stash.

Wishing you all a really lovely weekend. Nicola x

I wish to enter T'Pouch to the following challenges;
Frilly and Funkie - Anything BUT a Card but with a twist
The Stamp Man - Butterflies, Birds and Bees
PaperPlay Challenges - Butterflies and Bees
Do You Stack Up - Embossing