Monday, 27 February 2012

My name is Diane…and I….am a hoarder!!


Now that’s out of the way….I’d better go the whole hog and show the extent of my problem…..these are the boxes of scraps I keep on my work surface…



S1052459and this is my corner of upcycled stash (not listing how many boxes and bags there are)!!!

…oh and there is a folder (um couple)  of scrapbooking scraps as well…… oh and file box of scraps ready to make Atc’s……….um ….that’s it!

It’s thanks to Less is More that I have finally let my shameful secret out of the bag, their challenge is “Don’t scrap it”…… to my ears

I thought I would have a break from doodling this week (but if you want to see a brilliant doodled card check out Gina A’s card here…guaranteed to raise a smile).


S1052461I found a lovely little silhouette daisy here. I decided I should be making a couple of Easter cards. After having a route through my scraps for some spring coloured pieces I draft printed my flower, then pieced some scraps over the image before printing the image a second time. Once I trimmed the the image to shape, I recycled some of my left over Christmas cards for the base and stuck the flower image over the Christmas one.

TheS1052464 message tags were created on scraps the same way.

The second card was made by printing directly on a large scrap, placing it under the front flap of the card and cutting directly through both layers, the two panels were held together by another scrap stuck behind(I also repeated the image on the inside holding piece).S1052467



I would also like to join in with Allsorts “Anything goes challenge” this week, I haven’t visited them for ages…..might as well share my shame with the wider world…..and….

Final confession….…sometimes I can be ruthless and throw small scraps away….trouble is next day I normally dig through the rubbish and retrieve them……..tell me I’m not alone.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Don’t bug me!! (sorry bad pun)

YEP! can’t believe it…. but I have a bug again….only just got rid of my last bug and now I have another…….how greedy is that???!

….with that in mind I had to make this the focus of my card for Less is More’s challenge of Punches and Die cuts………  and I have to say my heart sank when I read that, apart from a standard hole punch I thought I would not be able to meet this challenge using only the things found at home….but actually when I started to hunt around there were more di-cut things than I expected…..

Of course doilies are di-cut …bit fancy for what I wanted….I have quite a few novelty post-its ….love daft post-it notes  and I save fancy tags and labels which have to qualify as di-cuts……But!!!  the ultimate di-cuts have to be ……………...POGS!!!!

        S1052443   S1052444

REMEMBER THEM??? my daughter Gina had a POG “Milk cap maker” and just after Christmas I had a bit of a clear out in the cupboard under the stairs (was obviously having a funny turn that day) and guess what I found…..a spare pack of blank pogs (didn’t find the pog maker but I think it’s still lurking in there somewhere), the double sided glue had dried up but I knew they would come in handy for something…..


I had to resort to another hand drawn design but I wanted to keep it simple……I did think CAS would be difficult using punches they do tend to lend themselves to layers and more fancy designs….and I didn’t want to get carried away with any extra elements.

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I stuck a piece of thin card to a pog with wet glue and left that to dry while I drew the flower element and message directly onto the card blank (I lightly traced round a pog to give me a guideline). once the pog was dry I trimmed the excess card from the pog and drew on my little ladybug.  She was coloured with standard waterbased brush markers (felt pens)……ladybirds are all girls…aren’t they ?

As with my bird and cat drawings I know this is not anatomically correct but under the guise of cartoon style….I guess I can get away with it?

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Time to try blogsy

 Ok if you are reading this it means I have successfully downloaded and posted with blogsy on my i-pad

But I will most prob delete this post as it is most probably the most dull post in the history of blogging!!!

Friday, 17 February 2012

Stripes and something very important…..


Time has flown away again this week, so that has left very little time for Less is Mores’ challenge of Stripes, and there were so many things I wanted to try but I finally had to resort to an old favourite of doodling (where I originally started this blog). It really is the simplest way to create a card and funnily enough it always seems to get quite a response (hopefully positive) but I think people are always surprised if you have created something hand drawn. Of course the card is unashamedly “homemade” and I would never be ambitious enough to draw something properly but I do think everyone can doodle!! Consequently a little quirky doodled card has often elicited very favourable comments sometimes more than when I have slaved over my cuttlebug, stamps and backing papers!!!????? (not sure what that says about my card making!!)


As you can see I did resort to the safety net of creating a stencil….basically another couple of egg shapes….similar to my birds….but this time ears and a tail…and ….tah dah….a cat!

I did have a quick play with some other ideas but ran out of time and it just wasn’t working so it was back to the doodling!!

But the other very important card which was very quick to make and is most propably going to take longer to explain ….


This is a hello to a very special young man in America (this iron on motif has been lurking in my sewing things for an eternity so felt it would be better used on a card!).

If you follow “Ginger’s House” blog you will already know about Sebastian. Ginger creates wonderful free word art, is a very talented scrapbooker and a very talented writer….I love visiting her blog. She is also obviously a very special teacher as she decided to share her thoughts about one of her pupils and decided to appeal for people to send cards to this special young man. She explains it better on her blog so if you’re interested check out the Cards for Sebastian post.

It rang bells with me as I was fortunate to work with a very similar young man when he was about that age, and quite frankly in three years I think he taught me more than I taught him. My young friend had cerebral palsy, was quadriplegic, had many other related problems plus had also had a very rough start to his home life, but he was an amazing young man, smart, funny, entertaining and most of all compassionate to others…not bad for a 5 year old!

The main thing I learnt from my young friend was his condition was only one part of him, it had shaped who he was and to him it wasn’t a problem….in fact the only disabilities he had were the ones imposed on him by society. Living in his world for a while I realised how complicated society made his life, he was able to do most things if given the support and not presented with hurdles to constantly overcome.

……oh dear I could talk about this for ages…..and I mustn’t, as I sound like I am preaching but I wanted to explain why I wanted to join in Ginger’s Card drive for Sebastian. It’s a lovely opportunity to show that people do care, it doesn’t matter who or where you are, and it’s not about pity, it’s about recognising genuine worth.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Paper chains and doilies…..pinteresting!

Well I am spending far too much time trawling  Pinterest but it does throw up so many inspiring ideas.  One was a page from a french book with a diagram for cutting a chain of birds….it’s such an old technique  (remember cutting paperchains of dolls) but while we forge ahead with new exciting craft ideas we forget the simplicity of older techniques.

Less is More has Aqua as its colour theme (big HAAAAAPPPPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! Party smile  to them and congratulations on a very successful year, you deserve a big pat on the back for not only providing an inspiring blog but bringing so many crafters together).

The theme was perfect for revisiting the cutting idea…I cut a strip from an old envelope (Liz Earle’s promotional stuff has just the right colour for the challenge…. I do like Liz Earle products). After folding the strip into four panels (concertina style) sketched a little bird on the back, he is sitting on a branch which will create the joining element…..then cut it out.

S1052425Voila”… little row of birds ……ok so they still look a little prehistoric…..ala the bird stencil I created a couple of weeks ago……….. but they are hopefully recognisable (will really have to practice sketching birds, I didn’t take art at school because I couldn’t draw…..seems it was a wise decision…but then I promised myself many years ago that I was not setting out to be an artist…but that shouldn’t stop me having fun creating and crafting!!!!).


Not sure if I did the right thing but I decided to tone down some of the “white space” with more colour  (real reason was I was disguising a reject card that I had scored incorrectly).  A quick flick with and old toothbrush and some watered down emulsion paint and a bit more aqua was added.


The other Pinterest find was creating an envelope from a doily….I changed the idea a bit as I felt it needed a liner. I have lot of large doilies left as Katie bought a big packet at Christmas to make some angel place cards (works xmas dinner)with the smaller ones (they had doily bodies and wings and a proper photograph of each persons head ….they looked so funny….especially the blokes!!!!!!!!!!!).

As I make a lot of my own card blanks I am always keen to make my own envelopes as well.   I simply used a matching piece of paper cut the same width as the card but folded round with a slight overlap.


I placed this on the doily and folded the doily sides in. With a glue stick I attached the doily only where it came into contact with the lining paper.


The eagle eyed amongst you will notice that I decided the birds needed wings…now not sure????? I truly am the most undecided person I know….or am I?!?!?!!!!!

I would also like to submit this for DYSU challenge this week as anything goes!! This is another lovely friendly challenge site and massively popular…. and as anything goes I will also include a pic of a little thank you gift I have just made with the scraps left over from my project….I needed to make some packaging for my Handmade hand scrub …..also inspired by Pinterest!!!


….and if you check out Pinterest…..warning ….it is quite addictive…and can seriously reduce your crafting time.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Faux Washi Tape

Warning…I have been playing!!!   ….spent ages fiddling and testing as I wanted to see if I could recreate Washi tape without spending anything extra but before I waffle, I will post the end result used on a card.  It was thanks to “Less is More” to give me a nudge to actually use my end products!  This week is a sketch, not normally one of my fave challenges but it instantly inspired me to use the tape and it was a good opportunity to make my hubbies valentine card


S1052406     S1052408

I deliberately avoided the obvious valentine colours and my cards are often more about the words rather than the image. It was an extremely easy and quick card…..apart from the hours testing ways to make tape!!!! Oh and cutting out the lettering printed on the PC to create the message….fiddly!

Well this is how the tape turned out


In the end I was quite pleased, but it is obviously not as instant as the proper washi/tissue/masking/decorative tape on the market as after creating the colour/ design I had to apply an adhesive to attach it, but the effect was very similar and the design can be tailored to the project.

I had to smile yesterday when my copy of Simply Cards and Papercrafts dropped through my door…there was an article on ……. creating WASHI TAPE!! The very talented Jo Kill has also been playing with the idea, she applied paper straight onto double sided tape, which obviously is better as the tape is instantly adhesive, and the effect is wonderful with tissue but other papers need reducing in thickness or it can just look like strips of paper stuck on. It was a fab article and the cards she produced with her tape are ….as always….stunning!

I wanted all my designs to have the same finish whatever their source, so I applied my designs under Scotch invisible sticky tape,  (actually I used a much cheaper brand for a lot of the test pieces), that way the top surface always had the same translucent effect on the top.

Initially I simply chalked (also used eyeshadow…which gave a lovely iridescent look) on the back (sticky side) of the tape, patterns can be created with strips of wax paper (backing off double sided!) or create a stencil or add punched shapes

S1052381         S1052391

I then moved onto transferring paper images, different papers needed different approaches…. some could…..

a) have the tape stuck straight on and cut out – great for tissue paper

b) burnished on and then ripped off (then trim sides)– great for fibrous paper , book pages, newspapers, old wallpaper

c) stick on tape, turn over,  lightly sand the back, brush back with water…..leave for a while….rub off backing paper – great for transfer of laser printed images, magazine images/text (I had generally poor results with the inkjet printed papers I tried)


My next step was attaching the tape,  I was so pleased, I tried wet glues and dry glue (pritt), it didn’t affect any of the surfaces and several days on they haven’t dropped off despite leaving the test pieces on the windowsill. I applied the wet glue as a very thin layer with a glue spreader (an old plastic store card works just as well) and it was a lot quicker and easier than I anticipated.


Still I had to try Jo’s version in comparison, not sure if you can see but there is a subtle difference, and both can be stamped on if required (I used stazon…mine took longer to dry). Cost wise Jo’s is a lot cheaper as I used Poundland double sided tape but based on using actual Scotch brand tape mine works out as    (but there are much cheaper invisible tapes available). My set of washi tape worked out as approx 30p a metre (bought a set of 5 different widths £14.25 + 1.50 p&p)

….and  the inspiration behind my card….. was a piece of tissue in a boot box which has “head over heels” written all over it…..I had to buy the boots….they were reduced from £80 to £6…..they were two sizes to big …...but I really wanted that tissue!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!