Monday, October 31

Friday, October 28

Clean And Simple Christmas

Gosh, that title seems to be a contradiction for me.  My Christmas is usually as messy and complicated as you can get it!
I've used the sketch from The Sugar Bowl #70 which has a clean and simple theme and kept it Christmas for Winter Wonderland's CAS challenge.  The stamp is Tammy from the Simply Sassy range and I have experimented with Polychromos to colour her, although I realised I don't have a good flesh colour so I will have to sort that out when I find some for sale next.
The paper is American Crafts Daydreams - Blissful Day, left over from the 'Melon Pops' layout I made here.  The background is stamped using Martha Stewart's stamp around the page, which I really must get back out of the box and play with some more.
The embellishments are punched pine branches and snowflakes along with an odd flower I had left from a QVC kit and a dusting of Stickles.  I have just realised that I left the greeting off, how daft is that, I've used stickers from The Girls Paperie, here's the completed card.
Just a couple of other 'Anything Goes' challenges to add for Simon Says Stamp and Scrapbook Sisters card challenge #58.

** Kate ** 

Wednesday, October 26

Thoughts On Scrapbook Albums

I hadn't really thought much about my personal scrapbook album until Shimelle's post about them. The majority of my scrapbook pages have been made as a vehicle to make a gift to someone of photos I took at an event.  Until recently I had about a dozen pages of my own in a postbound album arranged in the order in which they were made.  This made them easy to file and allowed me to see how my scrapbook 'style' had progressed.  I seem to have made a lot of pages in 2007, perhaps influenced by the Fiskateers, and the odd page since then.
Recently my scrapbooking has picked up considerably.  I've got photos and memories I want to record and sorting through my craft supplies has reminded me that I bought quite a few patterned papers with specific photos in mind.  I don't scrap my photos in order, I just do what I fancy. As a result of this, I now have a very disjointed album that skips around through the years showing the children at all different ages.

A sort out was called for and I was quite looking forward to it.  Thumbing through the pages, re-organising and reminiscing.
Until I remembered that post bound albums are a pain!  If you take the pages out to re-arrange them and then they are slippery little devils when you try to get them back in again.  Alternatively, you have to take all the pages out of their sleeves, re-order them and then put them back in.
My plan is to start with 2 albums.  One in chronological order all about my family, our lives and things we do.  I've bought an American Crafts d-ring album for this so I can insert and move pages around as much as I like.  The other is for the odd pages I make about my thoughts and opinions, or random items.  These are going to be kept in the order that I make them, which means the postbound album still gets some use and I can still see how my pages have developed/changed.  It might turn out to ne a sort of 'book of me' eventually, who knows.
One discovery I did make during the sort out was that there are no pages about my 2 older children when they were babies, a gap I will definitely look to sort out soon.

** Kate **

WOYWW #125

Here's what's on my desk (bed) today. 
Lots of album pages to be sorted and re-filed.  I've been typing up a post about my efforts, might get it finished later today.  The to-do list is huge at the moment, so I think I had better crack on.

Pop on over to Julia's to have a look at lots of other desks and avoid that to-do list for a bit longer.

** Kate **

Tuesday, October 25

October Blog Hop

Already we are in to the last full week in October, incredible!  There's still time to join in with the By The Cute And Girly 2nd anniversary blog hop.  It's a short hop with prize draws to enter at every stop along the way.  The main challenge this month is 'Anything Goes!', so just link up your next project, no matter what it is, at the challenge blog and join in (only one entry per person please).  To be eligible for the main challenge prize draw you need to collect letters from the blog hop posts, rearrange them and then e-mail Lora with the word you make.  Lora is also the 1st stop in the blog hop.

My blog was sponsored by Joanna Sheen this month and I made some cute puppy dog projects for my blog hop post here.  I did neglect the kittens a bit and, although I am not a cat fan, I have to admit that the kittens on the Giordano Puppies And Kittens cd-rom that Joanna sent me are very cute.  So to make up for my neglect I have made a little kitten notebook.
I had a bit of a play with the cd-rom and, following the instructions it provided, highlighted one image to print. I also decided to have a go at printing in black ink only and as you can see the picture quality was still great.
Keeping the colours fairly neutral, I used some Pink Paislee Nantucket papers and Sassafras letters along with some oyster grey Divine Twine and Liquid Pearls.

Here are some handy links if you want to play along with us and join in with the blog hop fun.
The start of the blog hop -  Lora's post.
My original blog hop post.
By The Cute And Girly October challenge post.
Joanna Sheen's online store.

Thank you to everyone who has entered so far, it's great to see you are as excited about our 1st ever blog hop as we have been!!  Also, thanks to everyone for all the lovely comments on my blog hop post.  If you haven't entered yet, please leave a comment on the original post here before 8pm UK time on 31st October 2011 when the challenge finishes.
** Kate **  

Melon Pops and a card

Here's the completed scrapbook page I was waiting to photograph.
I've used Kathy's Waffle Sketch for October as the starting point (which is also the Daring Cardmakers challenge this week) and kept my shapes as four sided with rounded corners for the Scrapbook Sisters challenge #6 - Shapes. (Is there a name for a four sided shape with all the corners rounded?)
I can't say that I haven't been influenced by my joining the Pretty Paper Party (it's not a political movement, although wouldn't that be good?), but I can't imagine myself ever looking at scrapbooking in the same way.
Here are the supplies I've used.

There were some left over punched shapes and borders, so I combined these with some kraft card and Bell Blvd stickers to make a mini card for the Less Is More polka dots challenge #38.

** Kate **

Monday, October 24

Still Here

Feeling much better, but now deep into catch-up on crafts, housework and all manor of other commitments combined with the children being at home for half-term.

Just a quick card to share today to celebrate a special event that I forgot to check if I was allowed to blog about, I'll find out and get back to you on that one.
It uses a combination of prompts from Shimelle's Pretty Paper Party.  Dots and stripes, along with a card sketch from #4 and distressed edges from #5.  I've used the Pink Paislee Nantucket 6x6 paper pad throughout.  I couldn't decide if I really liked this paper (and I suppose that should have meant that I didn't order it!)  Even when it arrived I wasn't convinced, but since playing around with it, it's started to grow on me.
Just finishing off a scrapbook page tonight and I have another project waiting to be photographed, so hopefully back tomorrow.

** Kate **

Thursday, October 20

Patterned Papers

Was literally taken off the radar yesterday when a cold I had been trying to ignore went to my head and left me so dizzy I was unable to stand up.  Feeling a little better today, but I think I have spent too long on the computer catching up and will have to have a lie down again soon.  Apologies, I owe a lot of people visits and comments particularly those on the blog hop, I will get round to visiting before the end of the month.

Tuesday night, whilst I was still able to remain upright, I finished a patterned paper challenge for the current class over at Shimelle's.  Maybe it was all those patterns that did my head in!!
The idea is to really tackle the unused stash, so I grabbed a Nonsense pad from WRMK and just used the patterns from there to make my page.
I can't say I am a total convert to the highly patterned background, but it will remain a possible tool for my future scrapbooking. 

** Kate **    

Tuesday, October 18

Pretty Paper Party!!

Shimelle's Pretty Paper Party has begun and, despite saying I was only going to dip in and work on a couple of ideas each week, I am already hooked!  The ideas are really interesting and the example layouts and cards make me want to have a try.

The party kicked off with ways to use off-cut strips and scraps.  Here's my scrapbook page to kick off a gift album I am making (way over-due as you can see from the date).
I'm using Teressa Collins supplies for the album but found some scraps of Anna Griffin paper from an older project that I'm going to incorporate in with it.

Then there are the cards, I'm thrilled that there are card examples in the daily prompts.

From Hot Off The Press scraps:
From My Minds Eye scraps:
And from the scraps of a very old mini album kit:
Now today's challenge is about patterned paper (not my elaborately designed problem stuff - hopefully we will be tackling that later).  Just every day patterns that you shy away from in case they overwhelm the whole page.  Now how can I resist having a try at that?

** Kate **

10 Minute Tim

Grungy Monday challenge #23 over at Studio L3 is titled 'Tim in 10'.  The idea is to select some Tim Holtz supplies and then give yourself 10 minutes to make a card.
I splattered water over this and then realised I was going to have to stamp on it still wet if I was going to get it done in the time allowed, luckily it worked out fine. 
I've used Ripe Persimmon and Wild Honey Distress Inks and stamped over them with vaious Sir Tim stamps.  To finish off I added a little key from the local bead shop attached with one of Tim's mini brads.

Grungy Monday #23 - Tim in 10
Oldie But A Goodie - Forever Autumn (my Tim stamps, old but definitely still good!)

** Kate **

Monday, October 17

Pretty Paper


Shimelle's new Pretty Paper class starts today.  I love patterned papers and, as Shimelle suggests in her opening PDF, I often think that a project isn't going to be good enough to use my best paper.  Here's a selection that I have pulled to share.
At the bottom are my newest additions from American Crafts, Lily Bee and Studio Calico.  I'll use all of these but probably in little pieces to spread them over as many projects as possible.  Then at the top are really old sheets that I haven't used.  Like the pale blue Iron Orchid Designs sheet on the top left.  It's my last page of that design and I loved it so much I can't bear to use it even though I have a project on the go right now that it would be perfect for.  Then there are pages like this from Fancy Pants............
My supplies are full of them.  I can't resist them, they look so nice just as they are, and that's the problem.  What exactly do you do with it?  The pattern takes up a lot of the page, doesn't look easy to cut and doesn't break down into smaller pieces.  Fingers crossed for some inspiration from Shimelle over the next four weeks.

** Kate **

Saturday, October 15

Grungy Monday

Yes, I know it's not Monday, but the Grungy Monday challenges are back from their break with challenge #22 A Holtz-ian Halloween.  Well I couldn't resist that one!
I've used paler Distress Ink colours to roughly ink over a piece of card.  Then I've added Tim Holtz Halloween masks and inked over the top again in the 3 new seasonal colours and inked the edges in black.
All of the stamps are from the fabulous Pink Paislee Phantom set, as are the other little embellishments I added.

Grungy Monday #22 - Holtz-ian Halloween
Fussy And Fancy - Fall/Halloween
Daring Cardmakers sponsored by The Ribbon Reel - Bird

** Kate **

Thursday, October 13

Falling Leaves

It's a love sunny Autumn day today and on the whole I am busy with family matters and a few larger projects that I really want to get off the ground.  In the meantime, I thought I would dip into a few mini projects and challenges to share here.

Today I have made an Autumn tag.
Lots of Distress Ink in Ripe Persimmon and Gathered Twigs.  The leaf stamp was free with Craft Stamper Magazine, but I couldn't say off hand which month it was!
I've inked the tag lightly and splashed it with a little water.  Then, once it was thoroughly dry, I put it through the printer for the wording.  After that I distressed the edges and inked them some more before adding the embellishments.

Ladybug Crafts Ink TLT #41 - Tag it!
Try It Tuesday - Tag with peace and tranquility theme
Artistic Stamper - Autumn colours

** Kate **

Saturday, October 8

By The Cute And Girly - October Blog Hop!

Welcome to our first every By The Cute and Girly blog hop!
It's our 2nd birthday and we are celebrating in style with a special challenge and blog hop. As well as loads of prizes on the challenge blog, each design team member also has a prize to give away on their blog from their featured sponsor, so lots of chances to win some great prizes.
If you have come from Lora's blog then you are on the right track, if not, you need to hop over to her for the start of the hop.

This is what you need to do for a chance to win one of this month's prizes:

1. Enter the challenge at By The Cute and Girly as you normally would. The theme this month is "Anything Goes" and remember our challenge is for any type of crafts from papercrafts to baking, so you really can enter with anything you like. This month we are limiting the entries to 1 per person since it's anything goes.

2. Do the hop and leave a comment on each of the design team's blogs for a chance to win the prize on their blog.

3. Each design team member has a letter of the alphabet on their blog that you need to collect. When you are finished the hop and have collected all the letters, rearrange them to make a word and email it to Lora (you will find her email address and instructions on the challenge blog). Please DO NOT leave a comment with the word you have made, you must email Lora with it.


I'm thrilled to be sponsored for our first ever blog hop by Joanna Sheen and I have a £10 gift certificate for her shop to give away to one lucky winner who leaves a comment on this post.

Here are the links for the products from Joanna Sheen that I've used in my projects today.

I've got 3 projects to share with you. 1st a scrapbook page using the cute Giordano stamp detailed above. (All of the colouring for this month's projects has been done with ProMarkers.) 
Then an altered notebook made with one of the decoupage sheets printed from the CD. 

I've seen the Giordano family images before and they are so lovely it was hard to choose which design to use off the CD,  so I will be sharing some more projects before the end of the month!

My last project is a Christmas card to introduce you to the cute and quirky Gleanies!
I hope you've enjoyed looking at my projects, but now on with the hop.  To enter the Blog Hop and be in with a chance of winning one of the fantastic prizes detailed on the challenge blog you will need to make a note of the letter from me which is T and then carry on to the next stop on the hop which is Geraldine.

Here's a list of the hop order in case you get lost along the way:
Kate - that's me, you're here now!
Lisa Jane
By The Cute And Girly Challenge Blog - This is where you will find the email address to send your blog hop word to once you have linked up your challenge entry.  If you have any questions about the hop please leave a comment on the challenge blog and one of the team will be sure to get back to you.

Still here?  Leave me a comment and hop along to Geraldine's!!

** Kate **