Monday, 25 October 2010

An Siopa Bui Christmas class sneak peek ...

So this year my theme for An Siopa Bui's Christmas Extravagana is "things to make and mend" - I've got 2 lovely gift ideas of a sewing kit and a button box, both are pretty enough to keep on the mantlepiece, so you'll never have to hunt for a needle again! There's also a little matching easel card as well and the overall style has to be "eclectic chic!" - it's all lace and old books with polka dot ribbon, buttons and pins and a smattering of Hero Arts stamps ....

To whet your appetite a little peek at the button box - it's not the easiest thing to photograph and looks much much nicer in real life....Sunday 21st November - An Siopa Bui - come and play!

Tuesday, 21 September 2010


It's nearly here - the GBCE at The Athlone Springs Hotel starts Friday. And then on Arthur's Day - I'll be there with the brand new Boys2Men dvd rom from Ella's Design. Lisa has been a star and she and her husband have pulled out all the stops to ensure there will be an exclusive supply of these in Athlone. As the disc has not yet launched, no sneak peeks I'm afraid but you can be the first to see it on Saturday ..... One of the designs features in my Men's class on Sunday morning, with the Houghie board slant, so bring your boards!

Last class of the day is my sizzix class - there's new ways of looking at old dies and chocolate. What more do you want!

Saturday, 18 September 2010

promarker giveaway

It always makes me feel warm n fuzzy to find new cardmakers on this island of Ireland and with great delight I discovered A Passion for Cards today.
Even better still she draws her own images, sells them as digi stamps and also in glorious clear polymer  and the absolute clincher? She has a Promarker giveaway! A girl can never ever have enough Promarkers - unless you own them all (and if you do - you can give them to me.... please)
Have a look and enjoy.....
P.S  I am searching for a recent photo of Pat Van den Hauwe, the ex Wales defender. He lives in South Africa now and the only interviews I can find are radio ones - so no pics there then! Help me please .....

Mami Doodles challenge 10

Determined not to miss the deadline on this one, here's my entry for Mami Doodles challenge 10 Boy's card with red . This one was for a Mario fan - obviously.

Mami Doodles challenge

I did this little card for the Mami Doodles challenge last week but have not had chance to post, however Elisa has already set a new challenge so I'm late but that's not all my fault - the original deadline was the 19th. Anyhow - here it is using Elisa's free flower image.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Free Download again ....

So File Factory was not a good choice for file sharing, so  I have tried again using Scribd - and it looks good. So fingers crossed, you can get it HERE
And in case you din't know what I am talking about - here's the card - again ...


Saturday, 4 September 2010

mami doodles - Madeline bakes a cake

It's been a while since I did a Mami Doodles but I just adore Madeline bakes a cake. Even her name makes me want a cup of PG Tips and just one little almondy delight ...
I made another book card, added lots of glitter and some pretty baby blue ribbon, a few off flowers ,big pearl brad and a tiny little silver spoon.
The author of the verse is unknown to me and I collected it in my poem file many moons ago. "I have a little recipe that isn't hard to make but you must always start it as soon as you awake. Take a big mixing bowl and fill it with a smile, Mix a cup of sunshine and good deeds to last a while; Add a pinch of thoughtfulness and care - but don't bake it in the oven, just spread it everywhere."

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Who was your tv crush and did they age well?

So I'm watching reeling in the years - 1985 and it's scary to remember it all soooo well. In 1985 I loved Michael Praed, thought he was so damn gorgeous. It would have been a toss up between him and the Everton defender Pat Van den Hauwe, so it set me wondering what they looked like now ....
Oh well. I wont even start on my bizarre Robbie Coltrane obsession ....
And I found a recipe for sloe chocolate truffles and sloe chutney but you use the leftover sloes from the gin making - so I guess it's time to plan ahead and get these going for truffles next year! 
I'd love to try something with the rose hips that are just looking so divine in the hedgerows - I know there is rose hip syrup but all the recipes have HUGE amounts of sugar, perhaps I could experiment with half sugar and half splenda ....

Lots of stuff

The weather is gorgeous and everytime I go outside I'm reminded that the season's changing. There are apples and a crop of damsons in the orchard and the hedges are filled with blackberries and sloes. There seems to be a glut of sloes and I plan to scour the net for a new sloe gin recipe - just something with a bit of a twist. I also remember making a yummy plum and blackberry "slump" one year topped with lemon dumplings and mascarpone cheese - so I need to find that one as well. Any suggestions for damsons other than jam would be very welcome too.
I'm still busy putting together cards and projects to show at GBCE, Athlone and I am itching to get to An Siopa Bui to see the new sizzix yummies - expect to see them in my class.
And a card? I've got one to share for the current ABC challenge - C is for charms.I made this originally for the GBCE but I've decided to share it as a freebie.
So for you all - a vintage Christmas card. It's a single sheet printable pdf sheet (it's all about paper saving in my designs this year!)
It's a book shaped card, similar to a bookatrix and sits on top of a five inch easel card. You need to score down the centre of each page and then gently curve each section around a small cylinder (tube of glue, small spray can etc) add glitter to the page edges and attach to the centre of the easel with redline tape.
I used a piece of grosgrain to make bookmark for the centre and added my new gold snowflake charm and a large gold brad. Finish with some flowers.

I couldn't get the file to upload with 4 shared, so I have opened a File Factory account and you can download the PDF HERE

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

1000 sheets blog candy - EDITED thanks Kate

 I found a super cute cardmaker while blog hopping - Sandi di Falco - she's one prolific cardmaker and talented lady - I'd love to digi colour like that.
Anyhow she is giving away a 1000 sheets of paper blog candy - so go have a look and if you win, please share!!! I want the top sheet at least .... good luck
Actually she isn't - she was linking the candy, I just didn't realise ....

Here's the real link candy and it's more than paper - there's stamps as well. Woo hooo.
Thanks Kate for letting me know.

Monday, 23 August 2010

New Stuff

It's the countdown to the GBCE Athlone - woo hooo. Want info - SEE HERE
I am there Saturday and teaching Sunday. I have 2 classes - for the guys using the Houghie board first thing Sunday and then a Sizzix masterclass at 2pm, but I'll be demoing and mooching around all day Saturday - so say hello if you drop by my table.
I'll have yummy bits n bobs, some made by me printables, new Plush Pals ideas and the WORLD PREVIEW of the next design dvd rom from Ella's Designs - BOYS to MEN. Lots of fab cards for those non flowery types in our lives. And lots of spotty ribbon - I got tired of looking for it, so I'm bringing enough for everyone at knockdown prices!
I also updated my class tabs - with new design classes for anyone wanting to learn how to make your own design files for cardmaking using either Microsoft Publisher or the free Open Office software. Please contact me for more details.
Need a peek?

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Folded frame - see previous post for tutorial

So here's my finished frame - not totally yet, I'll tweek the embellishing a bit more but you could be waiting a week for me to get there! The finished frame is approx 17cm by 16cm and I made a single lid covering from a sheet of cardstock 212mm by 202mm scored at 2cm on all sides.
I cut an aperture from the lid using my X Cut circle cutter template and shape cutter and I will layer some acetate inside but it makes for terrible glare in photos, so I left it out for your viewing pleasure!
thanks for looking and hope you try it too.

folded frame on the Houghie board - as promised....

Here's a quick how to tutorial to for the folded frame made on the Houghie board. I promised to do it afteret my demo at An Siopa Bui, hope it makes  sense - this is one of those things that is easier than it seems - you just have to make one and you'll soon get the idea. Once you get the hang of them it is easy to alter the frame size with different card and different sized "slats" ( the basic idea to remember is 8 equal slats and additional for turnovers).
But first -
Place an A4 sheet on the Houghie board landscape. Score at 1cm and then make 4 more scorelines every 2cm.
So we score at 1 cm, 3cm, 5cm, 7cm and 9cm.
Turn  the sheet 180 degrees and repeat these scorelines on the other side.

Next turn the sheet 90 degrees so that is in the portrait position and score at 2cm, 4cm all the way down  the sheet top to bottom.
Score at 6cm, 8cm and 9cm but this time only score through the centre portion of the card - not through the existing scorelines (see photo)
Turn sheet 180 degrees and repeat on other side.

Next using the guide below cut along the 2 green lines as shown using a craft knife and cut away the solid green areas (I'd recommend printing this picture to fit an A4 sheet, it will make a handy reference guide and a to scale visual for when you are making your frames)

Fold all the scorelines and fold in tabs.

To construct your frame - fold and stick the 2 short sides first using double sided tape along the edges. I then use redline tape on the flaps - carefully tuck in and then stick the 2 longer sides of the frame.

Cut a sheet of cardstock to make a back for your frame and add a hanging loop if required then adhere to frame back.
Decorate frame as you wish!
I'll be back later with pics of my decorated frame .... (I've not finished yet!)

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

summer baby decor and sassafrass make it count

My latest work in progress is this cute window dangly for a new baby, The centre is a removable fridge magnet frame, which I'll put a photo of the baby into and there's another photo and birth details on the reverse. The box has a Papermania acetate lid and big pink bow to secure.
So I have been waiting for the catalyst to  get me scrapping again and I think I might have found it.
I've just bought DD1's school books - we are going uniform shopping tomorrow, my baby is so grown up - and just in time Sassafrass has released a fab range called "Count Me In" - so many school themed papers are very staid and traditional, I love the fresh colours and I love orange and green shades for scrapping and the flag style stickers are just simply divine - I can see me doing a mock first day photo shoot so that I can get these early!

Friday, 30 July 2010

EEK have you seen the new Sassafrass vintage brooch/flowers and all the ton of flower loveliness?

You did. Are you swooning too? You didn't? Well - loookee here - sassafrass new yummy stuff

And just in case you need a peek - here's the gorgeous vintage brooches, these are my fave.
You can use them on cards, pages, handbags, keyrings, necklaces, dangle them from your car mirror, put them around a vanity mirror, on picture frames (can you tell I'm loving these?)  - these are far too good for even me to hide in my stash. Although I might just keep some  in my bedroom - so I can keep an eye on them and unlike the real thing, they wont make me sneeze!

Plush Pals -not just for babies!

Given my penchant for baby makes using my Plush Pals dvd, you'd be forgiven for thinking that was all it could do. Truth is, I like making baby stuff but this disc will go far beyond baby cards. I've done some simple flower cards - all I did was insert a backing paper into my document and then inserted a flower on top. I then flood filled the flower with white to create a flower shaped "hole" in the backing paper. I printed this off , folded and cut into a square card.
Next I used the ready to print flower embellishment sheet, I cut out the flowers and look how different you can make the flower look just by pinching the tips of the petals together. You can then play with flower layers and positioning to create different looks - if you add distress inks, you get a softer more aged look, glitter adds a lot of sparkle - perfect with white card.
Something I'll be playing around with some more, the basic elements would make a lovely 3d frame too.
I also want to say I really appreciate people who take time to leave comments, I know how busy life is but I have had switch to moderation mode as I am fed up of deleting irrelevant and gobble-de-gook comments.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

hougie board demo

Friday 7th August and I'll be in Spiddal, to give a Houghie board demonstration  - it's straight after the coffee morning and kicks off the Spiddal Summer Extravaganza weekend plus I've heard there will be some great 12 by 12 offers to be had and of course the Houghie.
I think it's a great piece of kit - I have mine for a while and  to be honest, as first I wondered had I made an expensive mistake but now it's invaluable. I can follow tutorials in both metric and imperial, which saves so much time - compared to translating it over onto my blue board.
Once you  start to play with the board, fancy box making becomes really easy, I use a pad of A3 paper from the 2 euro shop to practice on (I hate wasting my good card making mistakes) or A4 copy paper - I've started to keep these "try outs" so that I am not always starting from scratch and I find the visual much easier to work with than just written instructions.
I have about 20 boxes and cards to show so far, and a couple more to complete if I find the time, I also have to prep for 2 classes - my house is awash with paper trimmings, which are been scattered far and wide by 2 rambunctious kittens and two equally rambunctious children. I had to take a break to wade through the detritus in the girls bedroom, how can 2 little people make sooooo much mess?

Anyway, see you in Spiddal Friday 7th - there be cake for sure .... and cake boxes ....

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

acetate plush pals card

I was asked to make this for a little baby boy - it uses some of  the backing papers, the embellishment flower sheet  and the  blue teddy decoupage sheet from "Plush Pals". So once I had the sheets cut the card itself did not take too long - I find it great for commission cards as I have no thinking to do (believe me, that can take a LONG time!). Then I added a little matching vest as well, they cost so little to make and make such a personal little addition - there's a candle as well but I haven't finished the wrapping yet.
This is one of the cards that we'll be doing at the August 7th class in Kilcolgan - but using a different colour theme and character. (I know you like a preview Catherine!)

Friday, 16 July 2010

Fimo card accents

I was in An Siopa Bui last week doing a Fimo demonstration for Staedtlar - the weather was a total washout but we had a fun day playing with this extremely versatile polymer clay.
I was primarily using Fimo soft - a great introduction to the medium, as the name implies it is softer and easily modelled than the classic (more suited to jewellery applications - although I have made beads, brooches etc using fimo soft). It comes in a huge array of colours which are then blendable so that you can create any colour imaginable and there are glitter and metallic options. For cardmakers, Fimo makes great accents and can be coloured and mixed with many of your other craft materials - I add ultra fine glitter, paint it with acrylic paint, blend on alcohol inks, colour with chalks, distress inks and pearl-ex. When I have finished a project I squash up all the bits and then make little flowers, I then colour them with gold and silver pearl-ex and add a bit of green promarker onto the leaves. Nothing is wasted.
Anyhow, here's a couple of quick cards using fimo embellishments - I'll post the rest of fimo creations soon.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

digital papercrafting and a bit of distress

Digi is Huge this year, I wonder what it has done to worldwide patterned paper sales - I've bought one measly 6 by 6 paper pack this year so far, partly because I have enough paper to fashion a full scale replica of the Eiffel tower should I ever be so inclined or so talented and mostly because there is a slew of digital papers available - even BG are selling digi files of their back catalogues. Brilliant news for anyone working on albums were you might want more than a couple of sheets of one design - all we need are huge quantities of good decent white cardstock and gallons of ink, which if you use original cartridges is priced more expensively than liquid gold.
But if you are buying patterned paper check out 3 bugs in a Rug - fresh and funky designs for both scrapbooks and cards. What  CHA releases are you watching? I love Spellbinders Lacey Squares and the accucut scrapbook albums (oh wishlist - wishlist)

Anyhow, I am a digi fan but if you leave it at print and cut , it can look a bit flat - but add a bit of distress ink (or any ink for that matter) and some ribbon - I just don't get digi ribbon! And you're nearly there.

Polish off with some glitter (slowly coming around to it in little pinches...), ink a few flowers and overstamp for a bit of detail. And a flat sheet can come to life ....
This is a little preview for my 4 ways for distress class in August - trying to get ahead!