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Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Inky Fingers

'Inky Fingers' was the only title I could use for this post, as that was well and
 truly what I had at the end of the making of this card. However, I seem to be
overcoming my aversion to having messy fingers and hands, as I loved 
getting 'down and dirty', and can't wait to repeat the fun. Before I began
'playing', every single element was stark white, including the card base.

I created puddles of various D.I.s, dragged my cardstock through them several
times, drying with a heat tool each time. Then from a height, I sprayed with
Picket Fence distress stain. When that was dry I sprayed with a little
Pearlescent Liquid Acylic diluted with water, creating a stunning 
shimmery effect, which unfortunately barely shows in the photos. 

When the base was completely dry, I softly stencilled swirls all over, using
portions of butterfly wings on a 12x12 stencil, then sponged around the

The flowers are made using EK Success punches and D.I.s, and the
seam binding was stained with several D.I.s.

The bird in flight (as with the little birdhouse) was embossed with Chunky
Blue Frantage, and a tiny sprinkling of lavender Opals. The stamped bird
and sentiment are from a set of clear stamps I have had for about 5 or 6 
years, and never used. I found them (along with quite a few other sets, and
many other items) when I moved my craft room from the old stable to the
 house. Shame on me! The good thing is though, it's like having new stash.

At this stage I have not decorated the inside of my card, as per usual, but
if I decide to do so, I will edit this post.

Challenges I would like to enter:-
Artistic Inspirations #128 - 'Anything Goes With A Twist of Flowers'
Craft For The Craic - 'Bingo' (flowers, ribbon, die-cuts)
Creative Card Crew #84 - 'Handmade Flowers'
Frilly and Funky - 'Put A Ribbon On It'
Inspiration Journal - 'Spring Blooms'
Mixed Media World #1 - 'Anything Goes'
That Craft Place - 'Easter/Spring'
The Crafter's Cafe #109 - 'Spring Flowers'
The Shabby Tea Room #248 - 'Beautiful Blooms' (photo inspiration)

Dies - Spellbinders Grand Classical Lace Border; Memory Box Woodland Branch; Sweet Stamps Elegant Leaves; Couture Creations Baby Dove; Marianne LR025, LR0106, LR0107
Stamps - Inkadinkadoo
Punches - EK Success Retro Flowers Medium and Large
Stencil - Crafter's Workshop Butterflies 
Frantage - Stampendous Shabby Blue
Opals - Lavender
Inks and Stains - Versamark; Brilliance Archival Pearlescent Lavender, and Jade; Adirondack Denim; Daler Rowney Pearlescent Liquid Acrylic; Tim Holtz Distress Spray Stain Picket Fence; Tim Holtz Distress Inks Scattered Straw, Antique Linen, Gathered Twigs, Bundled Sage, Dusty Concord, Milled Lavender, Tumbled Glass
Seam Binding and Stamens are from my junk stash

Me thinks I had better go and attend to boring tasks like housework, so thank you for visiting. I have some very exciting news to tell you soon, but at this stage I have to 'zip my lips', so in the meantime, I wish you "Happy Crafting".
I would like to mention too that at Winter Wonderland we have a DT Call. We are looking for 2 new teamies who are enthusiastic about making Christmas cards. For full details, pop over to our challenge blog, and if you are interested in joining us you have until 10th April to apply.

Jennifer. x

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Warren and His Giant Easter Egg

Can you believe we are almost at the end of March, and Easter is looming
large and strong. I thought we had 2 1/2 weeks until the bunny comes
a'visiting, but was in a panic when I realised we only have 10 days.

This card has to wing its way to the UK (from Australia), so I made
it yesterday, albeit in great haste. Thereby hangs a tale of woe......
because I had rushed my colouring, I wasn't completely happy, so
thought I would try to draw viewers' eyes from the image with some
sponging around the image. That will teach me not to rush...the 
sponging was very uneven, and looked terrible. The more I tried
to fix it, it looked worse. I didn't have time to colour another
image, so decided to 'fussy-cut' Warren and his giant egg.
Fussy-cutting is not a technique I enjoy, as you can probably see.

A closer look at poor Warren, who I think looks as if he is in 
shock at what I have done with him.

The inside of my card co-ordinates with the front. The photo just doesn't
do justice to the oh so gorgeous paper, which is super glittery.

Challenges I Would Like To Enter
Animal Friends #23 - 'Easter'
Corrosive #220 - 'Our Animal Friends'
Crafty Sentiments - 'Inspired By A Song' (Here Comes Peter Cottontail)
Creative Card Crew #83 - 'Easter Critters'
Cute Card Thursday #365 - 'Spring Fever'
Deep Ocean #100 - 'Easter'
Dream Valley #102 - 'Easter' TOP 3
Fantastic Tuesday #78 - 'Easter Card'
(PIN)spirational #136 - See photo (I was inspired by the soft pastel colours)
Simply Create Too #81 - 'Easter or Bunnies'

Image - Craftwork Cards Warren
Colouring - Promarkers
Sentiment - Easter set from $2 shop
Paper - First Edition Spring Drop
Dies - Spellbinders Classic and Scalloped Circles; QuickKutz Scalloped Border
Punches - Carl Sakura (mini); Martha Stewart Butterfly Trio
Card Candi - Craftwork Cards
Ribbon is from my junk stash

I must go and pretend that I love housework (Urghhhh), so until next time, thank you for visiting.

Jennifer. x

Friday, 20 March 2015

Warm Winter Wishes

It's Friday, and that means the Icicles Team at Winter Wonderland have a new 
challenge for you. Our theme this week is 'WARM WINTER WISHES'.
We want to see your characters dressed warmly, and ...
please remember, your project must be for Christmas only.

Our lovely sponsor this week is 

Several of the techniques I used to create my card are way out of my
comfort zone, but I really did enjoy the process. 
For some time now I have felt that my card making has wanted to change 
direction somewhat. I have always hated getting messy fingers, but after
making this card that is going to change. If you look below at the list of
 items I used, you will have some idea of the 'mess' on my desk and hands.

My card took many hours to create, but I hope I will become quicker and
more adventurous as I become more familiar with the products
and techniques. Of course I will still regularly revert to 
my more usual style of 'clean and neat'.

I fell in love with this lovely image the first time I saw it, and for
reasons unknown to me it is now sadly discontinued. I used
chunky white Frantage and a tiny sprinkling of blue 
Opals around the image and sentiment.

This side-on view provides a better glimpse of the snowflakes I
created with a stencil and translucent texture paste. Unfortunately
you cannot see the wonderful sparkle on the snowflakes, having 
smothered them in Rock Candy glitter while the paste was still wet.

I coloured the seam binding with several blue distress inks, and
die-cut the greenery from cardstock that I had sponged with
several green distress inks. Before attaching them to the card,
I sponged the tips with Gathered Twigs D.I. Likewise,
the twigs were sponged with several brown D.I.s.

I painted my die-cut lamp post blue, then embossed it 3 times,
using a sprinkling of blue Opals and silver embossing powder. 

Challenges I Would Like To Enter
ABC Christmas - 'F Is For 'Frosty' '
Christmas Cards #15 - 'Photo Inspiration - Blue and Silver Ornaments' (TOP 3)
Crafty Catz #271 - 'No Design Paper'
Crimbo Crackers #76 - 'No Printed Paper'
Deep Ocean # 99 - 'Vintage'
Fan-Tastic Tuesday #77 - 'Anything Goes (with a twist) Make It Square'
Mixed Media World #1 - 'Anything Goes'
Penny's Paper Crafty #219 - 'Favourite Embellishments' (die-cuts,glitter,coloured images)
Sparkle N Sprinkle - Anything Goes with glitter/embossing powder/flocking (Honourable Mention)
Sweet Stampin' Christmas - 'Blue Christmas'
Top Tip Tuesday - 'Buttons or Bows'
Vintage Stamping #30 - 'Olde Worlde' Honourable Mention
Whimsy Stamps #81 - 'Use A Die-cut'

Image - Lili of the Valley All Wrapped Up
Colouring - Promarkers
Sentiment - Lili of the Valley Christmas Greetings-Small
Dies - Spellbinders Classic Ovals; Tim Holtz Holiday Greens; Memory Box Woodland Branch; Couture Creations Lucky Lantern 
Inks - Tim Holtz Distress Inks (Tumbled Glass, Salty Ocean, Antique Linen, Gathered Twigs, Bundled Sage, Iced Spruce); Momento London Fog
Embossing - Opals Franklin, Bluegum; Stampendous Frantage Chunky White; Art Stamps Australia Silver
Stencil - The Crafter's Workshop Mini Flurries
Texture Paste - Dreamweaver Translucent
Glitter (dry) - Tim Holtz Rock Candy
Jewelled Brad - Stampin' Up
Seam Binding is from my junk stash

My Icicle teamies at Winter Wonderland have created some stunning cards, so why not pop over there, have a look, and then enter your own creations in our 'Warm Winter Wishes' challenge.

Until next time, thank you for visiting, and happy crafting.
Jennifer. x

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Robin Red Breast

Hello to all my crafting friends, and a big "Happy St. Patrick's Day" 
to all my Irish friends.

I have a very basic Christmas card for you tonight.
Two weeks ago, I went to the big craft show at Rosehill racecourse in
Sydney. This gorgeous embossing folder was the last one on a stand. It
had to come home with me, as I love Christmas trees. The folder is a 
large one, therefore it is perfect for my square cards.

About 4 years ago I bought a pack of 10 large Christmas cards, partly 
because I like to have some handy 'just in case', partly because I know
some people 'bin' cards as soon as they open them (handmade or not), 
but mainly because I adore robins, and could use part of the cards as
toppers. There were 2 designs in the pack. This is my favourite.

I kept the inside of my card quite simple, so as to feature
the lovely embossed layer.

Completely Christmas #54 - 'Add A Robin'
Crimbo Crackers #76- 'No Printed Paper'

Image - Recycled Christmas card
Dies - Spellbinders Classic and Scalloped Squares; Elizabeth Craft Designs Season's Greetings
Embossing - Nellie Snellen Christmas Trees
Ribbon is from my junk stash

Just a short post tonight, as John is with his last student for the evening, so I must go and feed and rug our horse, then prepare dinner.

I will be back on Friday with the rather elaborate card I made for this week's challenge at Winter Wonderland. I have been trying new techniques, so yesterday I had very 'inky hands'. so until then..."happy crafting" and thank you for visiting.

Jennifer. x

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Pearl-ex Cars


Welcome to my newest follower, Pamellia, whose blog contains 
some incredible inspiration...I recommend a peek.

During the first half of the year, I always have lots of birthday cards to 
make, and much to my dismay, most of them are for men. Many of you
say that you struggle with these cards, and believe me, I am no 
different. Why can't men enjoy pretty pink cards, with cute 
images and lots of flowers, lace and pearls?

Mmmmm, well this is the best I can come up with for a fellow guide 
at the Fort. It was his birthday yesterday.
I have more peel-off stickers than I will ever use in my life-time, a
result of my fascination with them in my early days of card-making.

When recently transferring my crafting studio from an old converted
stable to our spare bedroom, I found lots of stash and equipment I
had not, in some cases, seen or used for years. One of these items
was a Pearl-Express Watercolour Palette, so I used it to paint these
outline peel-off stickers, giving the cars a wonderful metallic finish.

Inside my card continues the mechanical theme.

This is the first time I have used this fabulous die-cut, and I
attached it to the left-hand panel inside the card.

Dies - Spellbinders Classic Ovals and Rectangles; Marianne LR0198 (cars); Memory Box Mini Gears
Colouring - ArtQuest Pearl-Express Watercolour Palette
Scissors - Fiskars Deckle Edge
Peel-off stickers from my junk stash

Sparkles Monthly #65 - 'One For The Boys'

I really must have a shower, my 3rd for the day as the weather continues to be so dreadfully hot and humid, then try to get some sleep. I am on duty at the Fort all day tomorrow, and we will be incredibly busy, as there is a cruise ship coming into Newcastle for the day. On 'cruise ship days' it is not unusual to have 600-1000 people visit the Fort.

Until next time, "happy crafting",
Jennifer. x

Friday, 6 March 2015

Animal Antics

Good evening everyone, and welcome to my newest followers. Thank you
for visiting, and I hope you find something of interest while here.

It's Friday once again, and therefore it is time for another challenge at
Winter Wonderland, and the theme this week is 'ANIMAL ANTICS'.
During January and February your creations could be for any occasion,
but for the remainder of the year, you MUST create 
something for Christmas.

Our generous sponsor this week is 

I love creating Christmas cards, and I had great fun with this one.

This oh, so cute image is by our sponsor, and is coloured
with Promarkers. I have been trying to get my hands on Frantage
for a long time, but here in Australia, it is VERY difficult to find.
However, I remembered a store a few hours drive from here, and found 
that they actually stock thank you Tracey, at Pages 2 Scrap.

Another product I purchased from Tracey was a huge jar of Tim Holtz's
Clear Rock Candy glitter. I used heaps of it on my 'snow', but sadly I
could not capture the amazing effect it creates, in my photographs. I
 created that pine branch (on the right) by using a Cheery Lynn Fringe
die, after seeing a tutorial by the incredibly talented Pamellia.

Inside my card is decorated to co-ordinate with the front.

Image - Wild Rose Studio Bluebell and Presents
Colouring - Promarkers
Paper - Wild Rose Studio Annabelle's Christmas
Dies - Spellbinders Labels Eight, Decorative Labels Eight; Impression Obsession Pine Branch; Cherry Lynn Cutie Fringe 2; Couture Creations Mistletoe
Punches - EK Success Scalloped Corner Rounder; Martha Stewart Branch, PATP Aspen Snowflake (negative)
Embossing - (Brand Unknown) Snowflakes 
Sentiment - Craftwork Cards
Frantage - Stampendous Shabby White
Glitter - Tim Holtz Clear Rock Candy
Mini 'pine cones' are from my garden
Lace and gold cord are from my junk stash

52 (Christmas) Card Throwdown - 'Markers' (HONOURABLE MENTION)
Christmas Cards #13 - 'Winter Hues' (photo inspiration) (WINNER)
Christmas Cards All Year Round - 'Cute Critters' (TOP 3)
Completely Christmas #52 - 'Anything Goes with Twist - add some texture (WINNER)
Crafty Catz #269 - 'Song Title To Match Your Image' (That's What Friends Are For) (TOP 3)
Deep Ocean #98 - 'Our Furry Friends'
Fussy and Fancy #133 - 'Tic Tac Toe (lace/ribbon/sentiment) (ribbon on deer & gifts/gold cord?)
Holly Jolly Christmas - 'Dies and Punches' (TOP 3)
Jingle Belles - 'A Very Vibrant Christmas' (photo inspiration) (I used reindeer)
Sparkle 'n' Sprinkle - 'Anything Goes with loose glitter, EP,, and/or flocking

For a chance to win a lovely prize, pop over to Winter Wonderland to see the wonderful inspiration by my very talented teamies, then enter our 'Animal Antics' challenge.

Until next time, "happy crafting",
Jennifer. x