Thursday, 27 April 2017

Seize The Birthday - Anything Goes


Time for a new challenge at Seize The Birthday, and it's an easy one for you - No Topping, so anything goes as long as it's a birthday creation.


Pop on over to the Seize The Birthday blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the rest of the design team, and from our surprise party guest, Anita Bowden.

I've used butterfly dies from Tim Holtz, Happy Birthday from Visible Image, and mum from Woodware, and gems for the bodies.  The diecuts were dipped and smooshed in Distress Inks.  And there's a bit of splatter on there too.

I'm adding my card to Simon Says Wednesday challenge - Anything Goes.


Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Things With Wings Blog Hop - Take Four


It's our final reminder for you the Things With Wings blog hop and linky party at STAMPloprations, so if you haven't played along yet, get your skates on!


I've used the Dragonfly Layering Dies, which coordinate with the Winged Things stamp set.  I stamped one dragonfly and used two diecuts.  The background is smooshed Distress Ink with a bit of grunge stamping, courtesy of Scribbly Splattery Grunge and Mixed Media Elements.

Pop on over to the STAMPlorations blog for our final burst of inspiration, then play along for your chance to win some fab goodies.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

STAMPlorations Inspiration #130


It's Inspiration Tuesday at STAMPlorations, and today we're showcasing Shery's stamps.  This week there's 10% off all Shery's stamps except Bloom Happy, which is 20% off (no coupon needed).  And if you use my code, STAMPGIRLSHIRLEY, you'll get an additional 20% off all stamps, stencils and dies in the store.

I've been playing with the stamps from A Girl And Her Shoes, used the Tiny Attacher to staple them together, and adhered them to my layer of patterned paper (yay! another piece used).

Pop on over to the STAMPlorations blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the design team, and don't forget to leave a comment for your chance to win a $10 gift certificate to the store.

Saturday, 22 April 2017

Winnie & Walter Leading Lady - Take Four

Hello, peeps!  I'm having such a good time being Leading Lady at Winnie & Walter, and I really appreciate the comments you've been leaving me, both on my blog and the Winnie & Walter blog.  

So, here I am for Take Four.  I'm fascinated by the Mini Scenery: Bed of Roses stamp, and I wanted to try different ways of colouring it.  I suppose the most obvious way is to colour the actual flowers neatly inside the lines but I rarely colour neatly (on purpose - I much prefer to slosh colour around).  Here are the results of my little play session.


For my first card I raided my stash and found this piece of mixed media paper that had been coloured with various Distress Inks.  I just stamped in Versafine Onyx Black onto the panel, not really worrying about how the image lined up with the colours.  And to be honest, I don't think it matters, do you?  I trimmed the panel, ran a black marker pen around the edges and mounted it onto white card.


Another raid of my stash produced a panel that had been smooshed with Distress Inks.  Again, I just stamped over it in Versafine Onyx Black, trimmed the panel and ran a black marker pen around the edges before mounting it onto white card.


I think we'll call this next technique 'speed painting'!  I stamped the image onto white card, diluted some Worn Lipstick Distress Ink onto an acrylic block, loaded up my paintbrush and sloshed the colour on very quickly, without trying to fill all the white space.  I reloaded the brush and went over some of the areas again to get a deeper colour.  The background and border is Crushed Olive, although it looks quite yellow here.  I use a No. 4 round brush for all my Distress sloshing.


So, what happens when you splat Distress Stain onto the roses?  This!  I wanted the splats to extend beyond the image frame, so some of the flowers got double splats.


At that point, I thought I'd finished playing, but then I decided to ink the image with Distress Stains, stamp onto mixed media paper and pull the colour in with a wet paintbrush.  Distress Stains are juicier and more intense than Distress Ink, so there's more colour to work with than if you inked the image with a Distress inkpad.  I used a clean paintbrush and water, then if I needed extra colour I just lifted it from the residue on the stamp.


For my final card, I inked the stamp with Distress Stains exactly as I had on the previous card, stamped it onto mixed media paper, then spritzed water in stages until I got the effect I wanted: artsy (hopefully!).


Well, I hope you've enjoyed my little experiments, and seen how to get more mileage out of one stamp.  Maybe I've inspired you to try different ways of adding colour to your stamped images.


Shay has generously donated a $30 gift card for me to give away on my blog.  To be in with a chance of winning, just leave a comment on my blog (comments on the Winnie & Walter blog won't be included in the draw).  To increase your chances of winning, make sure you've also left comments on my previous Leading Lady posts on my blog:  Take One here, Take Two here, and Take Three here.

I'll see you next Saturday for my final post.

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

A Bit Of Culture, A Card And A Spotlight

First, a card:


I've been trying to play along with the current CAS Watercolour challenge, but nothing I've been making lately has been pink and green.  But I have a small stash of not-yet-blogged cards, so I had a peep through those and found this card.  I've used a set from Visible Image called Happy Birthday, which includes the flower and stalk.


Now for the culture.  We had a little jaunt into Liverpool today because I wanted to see the Minton floor at St George's Hall.  Most of the time this floor is covered to protect it, but every once in a while it's uncovered and you can pay a nominal amount to view it in all its glory.  Today was the last day of viewing before it gets covered up for a few more years. 


Reputed to be amongst the world's finest encaustic mosaic tiled floors, the last time it was uncovered was in 2015 for filming the latest Harry Potter movie, Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them.  


Normally there's a wooden floor laid to the level of the side steps to protect the tiles.  The outer walkway is accessible, but a lot of the colour has worn from those tiles.


The mythical Liver Birds are depicted in the design.


Ornate side doors.  Anybody else see a smiley face?

And now for the spotlight.  I'm over on the STAMPlorations blog tonight with a spotlight on the evolution of a card.  Here's a sneak peek.  


STAMPlorations Things With Wings Blog Hop - Take Three


Are you playing along with the Things With Wings blog hop and linky party at STAMPlorations?  You should be, because there's loads of fab prizes to be won.


I've used the new Dragonfly Layering Dies - you get a solid shape die and an outline die, I've just used the solid shape die today.  The background stamps are from the December 2016 STAMP Club set, Scribbly Splattery Grunge.

Pop on over to the STAMPlorations blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the team, and play along to win.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

STAMPlorations Inspiration #129


We've got more inspiration for you at STAMPlorations today.  This week there's 10% off all Deepti's stamps, except Just Because, which is 20% off (no coupon needed).  And if you use my code, STAMPGIRLSHIRLEY, you'll get an additional 20% off all stamps, stencils and dies.

I've used these yummy cupcakes from Party Mates, and the sentiment from Balloons and Banners, with a strip of green and gold Art Deco washi tape.  To complement the gold in the tape, I added some gold gel pen to the cupcake wrappers..

Pop on over to the STAMPlorations blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the team, and don't forget to leave a comment for your chance to win a $10 gift certificate to the store.

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Saturday, 15 April 2017

CUTplorations Reminder


Are you playing along with the STAMPlorations CUTplorations challenge?  Look at that fun image, you can't fail to be inspired!  My first card was coffee cups.  Guess what my second card is?  Yup, coffee cups.


Well, coffee cup, to be precise.  This is the Winter Mug, which I stamped, coloured with Distress Inks, complete with drips, then fussy cut.  The hearts are from Two Of Us.  The Hug In A Mug phrase die was just perfect for this card.

Pop on over to the STAMPlorations blog for details of how to play along with us.

Winnie & Walter Leading Lady - Take Three

Hello again!  Thank you so much for your response to my Leading Lady Take Two post last week.  This week, I've been playing with dry embossing and debossing, and finding out what happens when you do it wrong ;)

I started by die cutting the Typecast: Cary Numbers Cutaways a couple of times.  I didn't separate the numbers, just used the whole thing as a plate.

The next stage was to arrange the numbers randomly under some card, then run it through my machine with a rubber mat in place.  Depending on whether you have the numbers face-up or face-down, you'll get an embossed panel or a debossed panel.

On this first card, the numbers are debossed, i.e. sunken.  When I brayered chalk paints over the panel it left the numbers untouched by the paints.  I stamped some cute little animals from Welcome To The Family With Evelin T Designs and die-cut them with the coordinating Cutaways die set.  The sentiment is from the same stamp set.  I watercoloured the images with colours that complemented the background panel.


On this second card, the numbers are embossed, i.e. raised.  Using the same brayering technique, the numbers catch the paint but the area directly surrounding the numbers doesn't get any paint, leaving a halo effect.  The elephant is from Big Hugs With Evelin T Designs, trimmed from his partner.  He's standing on a bit of washi tape, and trumpeting his message from Sketchy Thoughts and coordinating Cutaways dies.


So.  Fast-forward a few days, and I decided to make more cards with this technique.  But I am a bear of very little brain, and I'd completely forgotten that I was supposed to use a rubber mat.  So for card No. 3 I die-cut the In A Word: Baby Cutaway from card, placed it on another card panel, ran it through my machine, and wondered why it didn't look quite right.  The debossing was nowhere near as deep as the numbers had been.  I brayered paint over it, but because the depth isn't there, the word isn't as clearly defined.  I was going to throw it away, but I liked the grungy effect, so here's what I made with it:


I cut the panel with the smaller postage stamp die from Essentials: Lana Cutaways set, cut the In A Word: Congrats Cutaway from deep pink card and added a stamped and fussy-cut flower from The Big, The Bold and Extras.  The little pink stamped hearts are from Sketchy Thoughts.

And here's my final card for today.  Still in the vein of getting it wrong, I can't even tell you how I did this!  But I ended up with an interesting effect:


The textured imprint is from all the scratches on my well-used cutting machine plates!  Here's the full card:


I mounted the offending panel onto white card, added some washi tape at the top, a strip of lace at the bottom, and the sweet little elephant from Welcome To The Family With Evelin T Designs.

Well, that's it from me today.  Don't forget to leave me a comment on my blog for a chance to win a $30 Winnie & Walter gift voucher generously donated by Shay.  And if you haven't left a comment on my first and second posts, do it now for more chances to win!


See you next Saturday!

Friday, 14 April 2017

Craft Stamper Take It Make It Reminder


Are you playing along at Craft Stamper Take It, Make It?  All you need is a polymer/rubber stamp, and you're in!

Meet Very Hazel by artist Danielle Donaldson.  Danielle's just released several whimsical characters in her inimitable style.  Isn't she sweet?

This month's challenge is being sponsored by Visible Image, and one lucky randomly chosen winner will get these three stamp sets:



The winner chosen by the Design Team will get a profile on the blog, their winning entry featured in Craft Stamper magazine, and a guest design gig in a future challenge.

Pop on over to the Craft Stamper blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the Design Team, and join in to win.  Remember - only one project in your post, include stamping, and maximum three entries.  Simples!

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Seize The Birthday - Two Patterned Papers


We've got a new challenge for you at Seize The Birthday, and this time it's Two Patterned Papers.

My background patterned paper is actually a bit of Ordnance Survey map, but don't worry, I haven't defaced a map.  I bought a pad years ago (can't even remember where from) made from old/surplus OS maps.  My other patterned paper is a piece from PaperArtsy where I stamped the car onto he paper then fussy cut it.  Added a strip of washi tape and a sentiment, and it's done.

Pop on over to the Seize The Birthday blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the team.  And if you don't want to use patterned papers, you can still play along with any birthday-themed creation.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

STAMPlorations Things With Wings Blog Hop - Take Two


We've got some more inspiration for you in our month-long Things With Wings blog hop and linky party.


Today I've used my Winged Things set.  I stamped a few of the images randomly over the card (so randomly that I managed to overlap two images, so after that I deliberately overlapped some more so that my mistake didn't look too obvious).

I went for bright colours (Distress Inks).  No matter how neatly I intend to paint, I really can't stop myself from sloshing it on and leaving white space within the lines.  Makes me happy.

Pop on over to the STAMPlorations blog and feast your eyes on some more gorgeous inspiration, and join in the linky party for your chance at winning some fabulous goodies.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

STAMPlorations Inspiration #128


It's Inspiration Tuesday at STAMPlorations, and this week we're showcasing Becca's stamps.  And I'm playing with her newest, soon-to-be-released set, Sweet & Sassy Mom.  Apart from Becca's brand of wacky sentiments, there are also these lovely big bold flowers and leaves.  I did a little masking and made a big and bold cluster.  Sloshed some Distress Inks over the images then added some Stickles to the flower centres.

For the next week there's 10% off all of Becca's stamps, except Funny Kind of Love, which is 20% off (no code needed).  And if you use my code STAMPGIRLSHIRLEY you'll get an extra 20% off this and any other stamps, stencils and dies in the store.

Pop on over to the STAMPlorations blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the team, and don't forget to leave a comment for your chance to win a $10 gift certificate to the store.

I'm playing along at Inkspirational, where the theme is Spring.



Saturday, 8 April 2017

Winnie & Walter Leading Lady - Take Two

Hellooo!  Thank you so much for your lovely response to my first Leading Lady post for Winnie & Walter last week.  I hope you'll enjoy this week's instalment too.

The brief was simple: do whatever makes you giddy, said Shay.  Well, if you know me at all, you'll know that Distress Inks make me giddy - I'm surprised I didn't use them last week, to be honest ;).  One of my favourite ways of using Distress Inks is to ink the solid reverse of a stamp, give it a light spritz of water, then stamp and let the colours slurp together.  Magic!

I've used standard cardstock for all these cards.  The smoothness of the card allows the ink to play on the surface for a little longer than, say, watercolour card, so you get a bit of time to work the colours by lifting one side of the stamp slightly away from the card then replacing it, which squeezes the ink between the stamp and the stamped area.  This trick also helps with coverage if your spritzing was a little uneven and your first impression had patches of white card showing through.  Make sense?

For this first card, I used the back of the large heart stamp in the From The Bottom of My Heart set (this set was a free-with-qualifying-purchase set for the January/February release, but will be on general sale in 2017). I inked the reverse of the stamp with Picked Raspberry, Ripe Persimmon and Spiced Marmalade, then spritzed, stamped and slurped.  The sentiment and small hearts are part of the set.


For this second card, I used the reverse of the heart cluster from Sending You With Evelin T Designs set with Tumbled Glass, Evergreen Bough and Broken China (I think!).  The other effect that I like about this technique is that the watery ink can leak outside the image as in this case, giving a ragged edge.


I like using Pine Needles and Forest Moss for Christmas/fir trees, and with this technique no two trees look the same.  Using the reverse of the large tree stamp from the Happy Owlidays With Evelin T Designs set, I stamped the first tree on the right, masked it, reloaded and stamped a second tree slightly behind, then the tree on the left.  Then I decided I wanted a hillside in the background, so I just laid some copy paper at an angle as a mask, and stamped.  Wouldn't you know it, the ink soaked through the mask, which explains those extra little marks.  Or we could just pretend that the snow is melting near that tree ;)


When I was inking the reverse of the tree stamp, I noticed that if I dragged the inkpad (Distress Ink Mini) down the stamp, it left a pattern as the ink pooled, so I thought I'd try stamping without spritzing to see what I got. Funky, eh?  Also, because the stamp isn't saturated with spritzed water, when you stamp over a masked image you don't get the soak-through.  I stamped that gorgeously cute robin, coloured him with Distress Inks (of course!) and fussy cut him.  Adding a bit of shadow with Hickory Smoke helps to ground the images.


So now I'm two Christmas cards nearer to my target.  (What target?  I just keep making Christmas cards until Christmas Eve, and hopefully I've made enough by then!)


I've got a $30 gift certificate to the Winnie & Walter store that Shay has generously provided for me to give away to one lucky commenter, so don't forget to leave a comment on my blog post.  And if you haven't left a comment on my first Leading Lady post yet, pop on over and leave me a comment there to increase your chances of winning.

I'll be back with more Winnie & Walter goodness next Saturday, see you then!

Friday, 7 April 2017

Craft Stamper Take It, Make It

It's time for a new challenge at Craft Stamper and, as always, it's Anything Goes as long as you use polymer/rubber stamps.


I've used my brand new, hot-off-the-press stamp set, Parfumerie, available soon here.

This month's challenge is sponsored by Visible Image, and one lucky random winner will get these three stamp sets.

The winner chosen by the Design Team will have a profile post on the blog, their winning entry published in the magazine, and a future guest design gig.

All you have to do is create a single project (no sets, please, we're British) which includes polymer or rubber stamping.  You can enter a maximum of three times.

Pop on over to the Craft Stamper blog for some more fabulous inspiration from the team, and play along to win.