Wednesday, February 29

WOYWW #143

Had to play along today, what with it being that special, once every 4 years, day and it falling on a Wednesday.  So expect a bumper crop of desks over at Julia's Stamping Ground.

Whilst I've been ill, I've tried to keep on top of commitments that I've made and this it the progress so far for one of them.
It's a hanging bird table made from recycled chopping board and children's bricks (sat on top of this year's family calendar which is still to make it onto the wall!)  It needs to go out into the garden to be photographed now and hopefully I might even be able to get some pictures of visitors on it.

The rest of my craft corner it's much the same as usual.
You can't see the pile of pizza boxes on the floor waiting for supplies to be put away and housing other projects with their deadline looming.

As for me, I'm almost back to normal, well as normal as I get!  Just having difficulty walking at my usual pace and distance and permanently tired.

** Kate **

Saturday, February 25

Distress Markers!!!!

Yeah! my first set of Distress Markers has arrived.  I say first set as I am buying them a dozen at a time.  It will probably work out more expensive in the long run but it spreads the cost and allowed me to have a play before I committed to any more.
Straight off I didn't like them, but as I have found with other brands of pen, you have to play around with them and see how they work.  Taking several shades of brown and trying to blend them together didn't work, as you can see from Tilda's slightly strange hair!  You can work different shades from one pen though, by scribbling on a palette and then picking up with a waterbrush.  I think I need to experiment with different papers too, the colour didn't really blend out on the card I was using.  It will be interesting to try the new stamping paper Tim has brought out this year.
Things were going well picking up the colour with a waterbrush and then I decided to add some darker shading straight from the pens and that was when the revelation happened.  I used the fine point rather than the brush tip and it was like sketching with colours, I loved the effect; although it needs a bit of perfecting.  I'm sold on these, by the end of the year (but more likely by the summer) I will have collected the whole set!

If anyone is wondering I have used Victorian Velvet and Tattered Rose for the pinks, I think the Tattered Rose came out lighter than the ink pad as I used to find it too dark for skin tones when I painted with it before.  Walnut Stain, Brushed Corduroy, Antique Linen, Broken China, Faded Jeans and Peeled Paint.
I made Tilda up into a bright flowery card using some of last year's Prima papers and some Papermania V&A paper, as well as Marianne die cut flowers and Whiff Of Joy pearls.

Just Magnolia #145 - Doily
Magnolialicious Highlites - Spring blog hop
Allsorts #143 - It's your choice

** Kate **

Thursday, February 23

February Budget Challenge

Feeling better each day, finally!  I have managed a little crafting, between coughing and sleeping, in the form of February's budget challenge.  I ordered another box of sale items totally £9.79 and set out to make 3 scrap book pages.  I forgot the shot of the box of goodies this time but they included:
Pink Paislee - Bayberry Cottage Trellis, Nantucket Lobster Bisque, Nantucket Crab Cakes and Hocus Pocus Spiders Lair papers.
Bazzill Basics in white and Dotted Swiss pepper
Webster's Pages - Trendsetter Accessorize paper.
Bo Bunny - Crush Darling, Crush Combo stickers and Enchanted stickers.
Tattered Angels Glimmer Glam in Heffalump.
Pink Crystals.
Fibres free with purchase.

Here are the layouts.

I really liked the Glimmer Glam.  It worked on both the dark and the light papers and had a nice drippy texture.

Not sure where I am going to take this for March, perhaps no sales stock or even a smaller spend?

** Kate ** 

Monday, February 20

By The Cute And Girly

There's still another 10 days to enter the By The Cute And Girly challenge for February 'Love is in the air.'

I missed the half-way post this month as I was poorly, but here is the project I had been working on.
I had been planning to add a little bit more to the bottom, but I don't think it's going to happen now.  The base and the bird are Melody Ross chipboard with gesso on, then inked over the top.  The gesso gives a lighter colour to the ink. The bird has then been coated in glossy accents with a bit of litter sprinkled on.
All of the embellishments are from a sheet of K&Co Amy Butler accessories.

I'm slowly catching up with everything.  Did the school run this morning but didn't think my legs were going to make it back again, so I will have to sort out some help with that for the time being.  Off for a rest now before I try and tackle something else.

** Kate **

Friday, February 17

Flu update

Now have other unrelated illnesses as well as recovering from the flu.  Although perhaps being low with the flu has allowed other problems to creep in when my system was down.  I think I will deserve a big shop for new CHA goodies after all this!!!!

** Kate **

Monday, February 13

Got Flu!!

Been laid low by a flu bug.  Can only manage short bursts of time at the computer.  Hope to be back up together again later in the week.

** Kate **

Wednesday, February 8

Washi Tape and Twine

Go back a year and I don't think I really would have thought about it too much, but today Washi Tape and Twine feature very heavily in my craft life.  To the extent that I have a box for each of them to show and tell today for my WOYWW.
The Washi Tape has reached the limit that the box will allow and as I have already ordered some more in brighter colours there will have to be a bit of a move around there.
The Twine box is a bit like the ribbon box, a knotty mess.  The spools are fine, but when you buy it by length, as soon as you start using it, it becomes a big spaghetti mess.  Also in the box are interesting clothes labels that I have found for recycling or to copy the design and my WRMK sewing tool thingy.

Another new item in my craft room is one of these Amy Tangerine Day Books.
It's the sort of tactile stationery item that I can't resist, but I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do with it.  Any one else made something exciting out of something similar?
Don't forget to share all over at Julia's place today, well not literally all, please remain with in the realms of decency.  Also check out Elizabeth's for the start of an in depth book altering tutorial for anyone to join in with.

** Kate **

Tuesday, February 7

Grungy Monday #35 - ATC

The challenge at Grungy Monday this week is to make a Tim Holtz inspired ATC.  There is so much going on over in Tim's world at the moment, there's more inspiration than I can cope with!
I've gone back to basic techniques for my ATC, using a Texture Fades embossing folder on grey card, rubbing back and then inking with Gathered Twigs, which has given a bit of a rusty metallic look.  The Melody Ross heart has a coating of Barn Door Distress Ink and then Stampers Anonymous birds on it, finished off with a coating of Rock Candy Distress Stickles and a little black ink.
There's an Adage Ticket, Tissue Tape and an Amy Tangerine chipboard letter given a pink Copic coating.  But, does it say 'Love U' or 'Love Chocolate'?

Grungy Monday #35 - ATC
Sunday Stamper #191 - Hearts
Allsorts #140 - Free and easy
Daring CardMakers - Pink and Red

** Kate **  

Monday, February 6

Scrapbook Workshop

Still here, taking a break from early spring cleaning for a little crafting and a book review.

When I mentioned that I had received this book for Christmas.....................
Scrapbook Workshop: Favorite Techniques from Favorite Scrapbook Bloggers
..................a couple of crafting friends asked for a review so here goes.

First off, this is not a book about layouts and putting whole pages together.  Instead the fabulous May Flaum has drawn together over 25 crafty bloggers and each has contributed one or two techniques for use on scrapbook pages, 99% of which can be adapted for other types of craft.  Don't panic there are still photos of full page layouts and projects demonstrating each of the techniques too, but the step-by-step is for the technique not the whole page.

The book is laid out by blogger with an introduction to each artist and a blog address to go and find them on line, followed by their inspirational ideas.  There will be some names familiar to many crafters, Julie Fei-Fan Balzar, Dina Wakley and Wendy Vecchi for example.  Other will be less familiar, so there is the possibility of discovering new inspirational artists as well as techniques.

Given the 'ooh' test, as in on the first flick through how many times do you say 'Ooh, I want to try that!' this book scores highly.  There are loads of clear photos and plenty of ideas.

For my crafting playtime I've had a try at Debee Ruiz's layering technique on a quick valentine's tag and here's what I came up with.
I used mostly odd pieces of Pink Paislee Nantucket paper with a bit of a border from a sheet of Amy Tangerine paper thrown in.
This little project is great for using up scraps, but the book also shows how to use the same technique for a scrapbook page.

Overall, it's a definite thumbs up from me from Scrapbook Workshop, I'd certainly recommend this one.

** Kate ** 

Wednesday, February 1

By The Cute And Girly - February

It looks like it's going to be a cold start to February here after we escaped with a very mild winter, but what ever the weather February is always the month for love!  Over at By The Cute And Girly our new theme for the month has been set by Uta and is 'Love is in the air!'  Our digi sponsor this month is Bugaboo Stamps and I've used the Deacon Swing image.
I've used Copics for colouring and gone for a pink and cool grey theme.
All of the papers and tabs are a combination of various MME paper sets.  The flowers have been made by fringing and quilling off-cuts from the papers I used.  Made very quickly with the help of this marvellous instrument of torture.
I found it in my mum's kitchen drawer, she'd bought them to cut up herbs with, but she won't being seeing them again, mwahaha!
I've just treated myself to this lovely Doodlebug Valentine twine so I couldn't resist using it and just beneath there is a glimpse of some Smirk ribbon too.

As usual, we have lovely sponsors offering prizes for 3 lucky winners chosen at random from this month's 'Love is in the air!' entries.

Full prize details are on the challenge blog where you can also find all of the other design team projects for inspiration and share your entries with us.

** Kate **