Sunday, 30 June 2013

Sunday Mojo #???

Hello All,

Regular visitors of my blog will remember that Wendy stated on her last Mojo challenge that it was her turn to RESENT me with the goodies.  This week it was her turn again and I am beginning to think she may resent me!  This week I  was given this load of "goodies"...

As you can see it is all pink, now I don't have anything against pink per se however when its a selection of Handmade paper in shades of insipid pink I do feel a little inclined to place the whole lot in the recycling! Joking apart I am not a fan of handmade paper and it comes second on my list of craft don'ts, the first being peel offs, there you go just alienated half my audience!!  I'm sure when fashion changes I will fall in love with these items, fickle aren't I!

This selection is what I came up with...

I got the idea of cutting all the papers into squares and making various patchwork items hence the main card was born.  I wanted to use the "lovely" rose petal paper so decided to try something I haven't made since school namely a woven paper heart basket.  Hopefully everyone will have made these at school, its constructed out of 2 sheets of contrasting card stock which are woven together so that when you open them you have a basket.  I think we made these as Christmas decorations and I may make others for Christmas as I am planning a Nordic, gingham and handmade Christmas scheme this year (yep it's one thing I plan stupidly ahead)

There is also a mini card, folded card and tag, I thought I should make a few items as Wendy told me she was planning on Quantity this week, can't wait to see what she makes!  The die I used was a simple Heart die I have no idea where from, which I used to cut hearts form some gingham fabric I had at the back of a comment.  This is the only item I added to the stash apart from some Papermania roses.

I have added a few pictures to show everything off!  I hope you like I must admit I actually enjoyed the couple of hours I spent crafting this lot!  Enjoy...

1 final thought, It's my turn to crash the goodies for next week Think I'm Felling rather grungy!!! 

Also in 2 weeks time Ita form Ireland will be joining us for the challenge I will be sending out the stash to her later in the week!!

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Something Different Saturday

Good Morning,

Following on from my stolen post earlier in the week this weeks something different is on the theme of inspiration (or direct copying) from other bloggers.  I have made my version of Becca (Amazing Paper Grace)'s filigree box.  I bought the Enchanted labels 28 die especially in order to make this box.

I wasn't intending to post this however with my GC issues I haven't had the time to finish the other box's I was going to post.

I have changed the design slightly by adding in the offcuts from a piece of brown card into the filigree sections on the lid.  I have used the harlequin embossing folder from spellbinders on the front of the cards and the box.  The panel on the front is decorated with Liquid pearls and is my first go with this amazing product so they are not all uniform (you should see my cake icing it's terrible!) you can tell this in the next picture of the box alone.

I made some simple cards to go into the box with the same Core'dinations cardstock & embossing folder.  The image on the front is one I printed out ages ago from the interweb.  These were simply decorated with some sanding on the embossing and a piece of vintage coloured lace.

Although it looks complicated its quite simple, the tutorial from Becca is here

I have made this in a different size however can't claim the idea as mine!  I will use some time, if I can find any as the summer season is starting here and so my evening job is getting busier, to get my collection of box's finished and photographed!


Friday, 28 June 2013

A Simple Thank you...

Hello Blog Friends,

Firstly an update on My Grand Calibur, thank you all so much for the help and advice on this I took the bull by the horns and contacted spellbinders and have a new handle on it's way as we speak!  This is being sent out form the U.K. so may take a while but the wonderful Maggie has come up with an interim solution of using a socket set as a temporary solution and it works!!

Todays card is for all of you as the sentiment really says how I feel about all of you as without the advice and support I received, especially with my Help call yesterday, i'd be lost!

This is a simple card to make using the filigree card tutorial, which can be found here.  A few people have commented that they find this die difficult to cut I always use a magnetic shim, the same size of the die. underneath it and run it through a few times.

The sentiment is another from Waltzing mouse stamped on the centre panel form resplendent rectangle and decorated with the flourishes from Gold elements one.

Please enjoy as this card is for you with my heartfelt thanks!

John x

Thursday, 27 June 2013


Good Morning,

Todays creative exploit is, quite frankly, stolen!  I have made, through my blog, a lovely friend in France called Margaret.  Margaret emails most days with comments on my offerings and lovely chatty bits about her life and crafting.  On Monday she had a marvelous idea for a die cut / card based on a die Sue Wilson had demonstrated on C&C on Sunday.  Unfortunatly I didn't see the show as wasn't feeling well but to describe her idea Margart sent me the following photo. 

I LOVE this idea, colour combination and the styling and decided, post haste, to nick the idea and so came up with this card...

Then yesterday, today as I type this Margaret emails me her finished card with her Idea.  I have, with her permission, showcased this here.  It is, IMHO, better than what I did with it so I really think todays post should be especially for Margaret... Enjoy...


Hi all just a quick one, just now as I was cutting the gold dies for my promised tutorial the handle on my Grand Calibur snapped off in my hand! Does anyone know where / how I can get another handle as I only have enough cards left for a few days!!!!  Its only been 10 minutes and I'm already lost without my GC  Don't want to have to buy a new one, and not sure funds will run to it!!!  John xx

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Especially for Ita

Hello All,

Todays offering was made to help me create a tutorial for Ita from Ireland.  She asked how to make the filigree hinged cards I have been featuring recently.  Whilst there are loads of tutorials in blog land I thought I'd have a go as well.

Firstly here's the card...

And here is the tutorial!

1, Take a piece of card (I use at least 220gsm card) that is at least 1 inch longer than the size of the die you want to use and fold the additional inch over using a score board and bone folder. 

2, Tape the fold onto the top of the die making sure that the edge of the die that cuts does not come under the joins.  See the picture for what I mean it's really hard to describe.  Basically you want to make sure that the hinge isn't cut.  If you look at the picture carefully you will see that I have made sure that the very top edge of the Spellbinders Enchanted labels 28 is above the fold on the card.

3, When cut and removed from the die you should have a piece that looks like this...  The filigree sections are all cut however the fold is still intact.

4, Cut a full version of the die cut and stick it on the front of the hinge section (I'm really hoping you can get this from the pictures as I know the description is a bit weak)  you can use a further die cut inside to disguise the line where the front is adhered.  The reason for putting the flap on the inside is so that the back of the card has a nice finish and is embossed the same as the front.

Finally if you got it right it should stand like this, all you need to do is decorate the front of your card! 

I've used  Spellbinders gold labels four which I used for the letter press technique with the middle embossed and coloured using the same technique.  If you want a tutorial on this technique I'll try to get one on here by the end of the week.  I finished the front with one of my usual messy bows and a hatpin from Wendy.


Tuesday, 25 June 2013

All White...

Morning Friends,

I'm feeling Loads better thanks for all your kind comments and suggestions, I skipped the cake making although would of considered Ang (Mrs Duck)'s suggestion for a recipe on Friday!

Reading through yesterdays comments lots of you raised the suggestion that the second card would have been better made in all white.  That got me thinking that white on white looks really good but I make cards in white very infrequently, therefore todays offering and a bonus!

This card is made using a new die I got form the local craft shop, Its a Nellie Sneddon flower die that cuts the delicate flower in six parts each getting larger.  To create the flower I threaded these onto small brads which allowed me to move the petals until I was happy with the finished result.

There is a sentiment on this but it is very hard to see!  I also tried to copy Sue Wilson's style of pierced edge cards using a piercing ruler I bought at the same time however this isn't very visible either!

Now here's the bonus, whilst I had the white cardstock out I thought I would have another go at yesterdays card using all your suggestions, so here goes, enjoy!

Monday, 24 June 2013

We all Make Mistakes....

Good Morning,
Todays offering is a collection of what I would class as my mistakes just to show we all make them.  I wan´t going to post these cards but I thought what the hell we all make mistakes.
The first offering is not my usual style at all, it feels a little old fashioned to me however as Mrs Duck said on her post, which can be found here, "Some folks almost seem embarrassed by using these sort of bits and bobs to make cards but I think they are lovely still, even though I have got a bit more advanced now.I guess what I'm trying to say is, a lovely card is a lovely card, whether its taken you 10 minutes or 10 hours and whether you have used equipment costing £1 or £100. As long as we all find a bit of joy in what we do, its all good.  I wanted to post this to show that we can all have great ideas that just don't translate or that just because a card doesn't look modern or right now, it can still be a nice card.  The ideas started by me cutting a Marianne rose die with red felt.  I liked the way they looked and felt that a simple card would show them off.  I embossed a piece of Core'dinations with a floral folder and sanded it adding the roses on a tag with a felt heart.  To me this is a little old fashioned however not everyone is 'into' the same styles.

To my mind I haven't made the best of this one .

Next is this offering in blue and purple, this shows, to me at least, that even with the latest dies and styles we can still make ugly cards!!!!

  To my eye this has been too heavily worked, I really should remember that less is more!  I used too many die cuts and stamps and really there is enough stuff here for 2 or more cards!

I hope, perhaps, todays post it might make all of us feel better about the ones that don't work!!!  Something new tomorrow, thanks for the messages and suggestions am over the worst now and just need to start eating again, might make a cake,


John x

Sunday, 23 June 2013

Sunday Mojo

Hi Guys,

not much to write about this weeks mojo as have been suffering from either a stomach bug or food poisoning and really lacking energy.  Please click here for Wendy's blog for more details.  Ill try to update this post later but at the moment need to go to bed!

This is what I gave Wendy...

And this is what I came up with, hopefully more later, enjoy...

Saturday, 22 June 2013

My Photo's


Todays something Different is in answer to a lot of questions I have received regarding how I take my photo's.  One comment was regarding how this persons pictures (I'm not saying who 'cus I don't agree I think her pictures look great) make all her cards look flat.  Therefore todays blog post is on my homemade Light box and how I take my pictures.

Firstly I do not use any expensive equipment, My camera was a gift from the OH for my birthday however as a canny Yorkshire man I don't agree with wasting money so this was less than £100 and not an SLR or anything fancy.

Secondly the light box cost less than €30!  (don't you love the Chino shops, guess in the U.K. we're talking pound shops and the ilk)  I thought I would start with showing a card pictured flat on my desk...

This is a card I made simply to try the inked embossing folder technique that I showed on This Post earlier in the week.  How I have photographed it does make it look a little flat and uninteresting, although you cant see how messy my craft mat or desk is so bonus there.

The light box is made with an old table we had outside around the pool so it took a real battering.  This is stood on an old desk in the built in wardrobe in my craft room.  I simply draped a white sheet over it to cover the sides, top and back.

Next I attached a large sheet of white paper to the back of the table draping down  so that it touched the front.  This is so that there is no seem in the pictures, this makes a great blank canvas to photograph against.

Finally I use four spotlights, one on top, one each side and one at the front.  This makes a really bright light although I haven't got I quite right yet as I want to remove all shadows!

This is the box lit up...

The next picture shows the card placed in the box, I have added some props to add interest to the picture.  I search charity shops, my craft stash and even my own home to find things that will match the cards I show.  I always try to find items that match in colour or style the item I am photographing, its amazing what you can find.

Once taken the picture is usually flooded with an orange cast light therefor when I load it into my PC (I use Picasa 3) I correct the colour and contrast using the built in options in the program.  Next I  straighten the image as I usually take them wonky finally I crop the image to remove the edge of the box and make the card the focal point.

This, Final image, shows the finished result although it doesn't sound it, it is cheap and simple. 


Supplies List for Card
Spellbinders - Gold Labels 4, Labels 4,
Waltzing Mouse Stamp
Embossing Folder Creative Expressions
Card & Ribbon from stash.

Friday, 21 June 2013

Third time lucky!

Hi All,

This is the third time I have typed this post as my net has been playing me up, nightmare, therefore just a quick one.  Todays card was made for hazel at work to send to her daughter as she is moving house,. She wanted something in a fifties style with ice cream colours.  I think I managed the second but not the first, pastel blue and pink but not really very 1950's!

The card is made of layers of die cuts in pink and baby blue all from DoCrafts spots and stripes collection that I got in a goody bag earlier this year and hadn't even opened.  These are not really my style and colours and the photo really does not do this card justice.  The sentiment and border are both form Waltzing mouse and are stamped with versamark on baby blue cardstock and embossed in detail white.  Each layer is mounted on foam tape giving lots of dimension but this does not show on the pic.  a quick post I know but I hope you enjoy...

Also I received quite a few questions regarding the die I used for the wedding cards last Saturday I tried to reply however I'm not sure these went out properly(net problems again) so here is a link to it!  If anyone of my lovekly crafty friends have questions please feel free to email me using the button on the top of my blog and I can ensure a reply goes out!

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Wot No Sentiment

Hello Crafty Friends,

Today's card is titled Wot No Sentiment as I just couldn't find the right one for this card.  I'm not sure what occasion this could be used for, possibly to hold a gift card or even money ( not that's there anything left in the New Die Fund!).  I like the simple lines and colours of this one so have left it, relatively, plain.

I started by cutting Spellbinders Gold Elements One square die three times along the side of a piece of thick parchment.  I copied this on the other edge and folded the piece to create a gate fold card. 

Next I simply added panels of a bright turquoise Blue behind the embossed / debossed & die cut panels so that shades of the blue would highlight the different areas of the emboss, deboss and die cut pattern.  I love this die as, on parchment, it gives a delicate look with certain areas cut differently.

I didn't want to spoil the front with embellishments but couldn't leave it plain therefore with an offcut I made a wrap for the whole card.  I stamped a spare piece if parchment with a border stamp from Waltzing Mouse and embossed it in turquoise. This was folded around the card, meaning I could use this as a gift card, and embellished the front. 

The flower is cut in felt and coloured with tumbled glass distress stain, the ribbon is from the stash with beautiful hat pins kindly made be Wendy next door (on a side note Wendy has made packs of her hatpins up to sell for charity at the local summer fayre, if anyone wants some give her a shout all the hatpins I use are made by her)  The foliage is form spellbinders which I embossed with a text stamp in the same colour before cutting.

I know this post is a little picture heavy but I wanted to try and give an idea of the different parts.  Enjoy...

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Normal Service Resumes

Good Morning All,

Posts have been a little, time at least, erratic over the last couple of days so I thought It was time I resumed normal(ish) service with todays offering!

Todays card is in my classic combination of Red, Black and White and is made using simple plain card although the eagle eyed may spot a bit of glitter, a new departure for me.

I started by cutting the Spellbinders Gold Elements die four times and rotating it on a piece of red card each time (I used a heavy weight card of 275gsm as it needs to be strong to take so much detail)  This did take a little work through my GC but using the magnetic shim technique I showed a few weeks ago helped.  Next I laid this over a piece if black card, in the same weight, and carefully drew around the same swirl on each side ( difficult to describe but hopefully the picture illustrates this).  I then joined up the swirls I had drawn and cut out an aperture using my craft knife (I use a scalpel left over from my college days as they are so sharp and accurate)

I stuck this to a piece of white glitter card then foam mounted the red die cut over this making sure the white area lined up!  Finally I cut the black piece to give a fine line around the red and added a couple more matts of red and black before mounting onto a white card blank.  Hopefully this picture shows the cut aperture and dimension better!

The sentiment is from Whimsy stamps and is stamped with versamark and detail white heat embossed.  I cut this with the matching die and mounted it onto the fancy die that also comes in the set.  I have to admit I have had this set for ages but it's rarely used, don't know why.

No Ribbon, No Bow but still, in my opinion, a detailed card.  Enjoy...

Monday, 17 June 2013

Elegant Moi?

Sorry this is later than planned guys was waiting for another blog to go live, read on....


I have some great news to share today, I have been successful in my application to the House Of Cards design team.  I am really excited to be asked to join this new team and new challenge.  This is based in the U.S of A so the timings will be different from usual but I am, genuinely, so excited about this.  Please Click here to see the other members of the team and click through for their blogs!!

I gained my place, based on this card, which I used for my application, in the Classic and Elegant team (I would never of thought of myself as Elegant but I'll try my hardest, honest!).  Please click on the link to see the challenge blog, there are even prizes for followers, if you've come to my blog from House of Cards, Welcome please feel free to look around!?! lol

To celebrate Today I am showing 2 cards which, Hopefully, match the Classic and Elegant tag as well as my first Blog candy ( coming tomorrow)!!

Firstly this offering...

This card embodies what makes me happy, Crafting, from the comments I get my friends and family believe that Happiness is homemade.  It may not always be the right colour, style or even very good however the very act of making something or receiving something homemade, I feel, is more personal and cheering than anything shop bought.

This card is made with the filigree Card technique using Spellbinders Enchanted Labels 28.  The sentiment is form Waltzing mouse .

Secondly this card is designed to encourage everyone to enter the new challenge with the simple message "Try It"

It would be great to see everyone entering this challenge as they are wonderful (I've seen some of the inspiration for the challenges, July's is fabulous)

Blog candy to follow tomorrow so check back, all I can say is Enjoy...

John x.


Today's full post will go live this afternoon however I wanted to say a big thank you to everyone who follows my blog and writes such wonderful comments!   See you all later

John x 

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Sunday Mojo


This week it was Wendy's turn to crash the stash and, as usual, it was a mixed bag.

The main elements of this was a set of die cuts that neither of us could fathom what they were for, along with a selection of papers and embellishments.  part of the die cut pieces was a set of folded pieces that would make perfect bookmarks, so that's what I did!

I used the other die cut to make a card / holder for the bookmarks making giving them as a gift very simple.

Finally the panel piece I used to make the Screen card with three panels  I love the colours.  See what Wendy came up with HERE, Enjoy...