Thursday, 29 November 2012

First box finished

Gave myself a good talking to this morning and got cracking on the first of two boxes I'm decorating for my nieces.  They have been sitting on my desk for two weeks and I had failed to make any progress as whatever I did didn't work out right.

Getting desperate as Christmas is getting ever so close and I've only made one card so far - that was this afternoon as well and I was struggling getting a good image on the wooden boxes. A huge thanks to Paula of Ephemera's Attic who very generously gave me some advice about preparing the surfaces and hey presto, I have one stamped box.

Painted with emulsion from Wilkinson's (matchpot) and stamped in Archival - thanks Paula - and finished with a coat of matt medium.

Here is the top view with a bit of randomly added bling.  Now all I have to do is add the chocolate coins and get my thinking cap on for the second one - I'm thinking peacock colours and feathers.

PS. Nieces are 25 and 19 but it's become a family tradition that they get the chocs in a different decorated container every year

Wednesday, 28 November 2012


Don't know how many more WOYWW days there are until Christmas but it's getting mighty close - and still no cards made.  The stamps are out now though so I suppose that's a start. Wonder how many of Julia's little(?) band of bloggers are showing Christmas desks this week.

Here's the desk -

with the box of Christmas stamps at the back hiding behind all the pots of paint and wooden boxes.  Not made a lot of progress on these as I'm having a bit of a disaster.  I tried to make two textured boxes painting them gold and then pushing texture paste through a stencil but they don't look quite right so plan 2 comes into action with the two at the front.  Only just painted these, one a very pale pink and the other coffee (like 2 giant-sized marshmallows).  Will sponge darker pink and lilac on the right-hand one and blue/green o nthe left-hand one and then add some stamped images and a bit of glitter.  At least that's the plan up to now - all may change tomorrow.

Not had a very good week as my back is playing up and I can't bend over the table for too long and to put the top hat on it the vacuum gave up the ghost yesterday.  Tried to fix it by using my craft knife to cut away all the nylon thread it had wrapped around the brushes - beading supplies (that will teach me for vacuuming the craft room).  Unsuccessful trip to Currys as the one we wanted wasn't in stock (tried to sell me one for £70 more - don't think so!) so while I was there I browsed the i-pads but am totally confused about dongles - what the heck are those?

I do, however, know what this is - its a dogle, or rather my little doggie modelling her new fleece.
She loves to sneak in my bedroom when my back is turned and look out of the window at the birds.  She isn't keen on the coat (well, she isn't keen on any coat come to that)but it will keep her snug in this horrible weather.

See you next week.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday - 181?

Well I have an angel on mine, courtesy of the lovely, and very talented Jozart who organised an angel swap.  Have done my first one but I still haven't started on the second one but I'll buckle down and get started tomorrow (promise). 
I'll show you a close-up of the one I got from Jo after I have shared my desk as part of Julia's massive weekly desk hop - my Wednesday's would not be the same without it (would get a bit more of a lie-in for one thing).

Not very different from last week's desk, just shuffled round a bit to make it look as though I've done something productive.  I have done a little though, the Christmas house I started last week has a few bits added, including some texture paste snow with glitter, a couple of trees, a Santa I found in the Grandchildren's 'playbox' (how Scrooge-like is that robbing the kids toys?) and a polar bear.  As long as they all stay in their own areas we should be OK, otherwise it's Santa sandwiches for the bear.

Have started on the two boxes (for the chocolate coin presents) by giving then a coat of paint but the surface is very rough so I've nicked some of Andy's sandpaper to smooth them out a bit - this project is organic, which is another way of saying I've not got the faintest idea where I'm going with it - yet. Also there, beads, more bits for the house and a battery tea-light in a paper bag from Wilkos (£1).

Centre-front is Jo's angel and here's a closer view.  She looks very serene, just how an angel should look - love her, thanks Jo.

Wednesday, 14 November 2012


How come it is always Wednesday?  Are there more Wednesdays in the week these days?  Glad it is though as it is the big snoop day over at the Stamping Ground where Julia hosts our weekly fix of crafty goodness.

Thought I wouldn't be able to share anything this week as I have been making angels for the swap Our Jo (Jozarty) is running and we cannot share until after the swap.  Made one (she is hiding behind the box of paints) and the other one is awaiting inspiration - hoping my guardian angel will give me a little hint, or two.

Bit boring this week as most of my WIPs are in the very early stages with the winter house and the two wooden Christmas boxes sitting there in their undercoats, and the big box of acrylics/lumieres ready and waiting to be chosen - and if they aren't up to it I have another box of paints waiting in the wings.

Wings are a bit of a theme this week as the only finished item on my desk is the owl cushion I started last week.  He may only be small but he is quite cute with his button brown eyes and so quick to make - only a day from start to finish and that included printing of the pattern and playing with it to re-size.  He is a Christmas present for my Mother-in-law who asked for one after she saw mine - wish I had done him a bit bigger now but maybe he is a Little Owl, rather than a Tawny.

ON Sunday my eldest Grandson took part in his first ever Remembrance Day parade in Bristol city centre.  He joined the cadets earlier this year and only got his uniform sorted out a couple of weeks ago.
He was so excited to be involved and we were very, very proud of him.  Only 15 and 6ft tall, how did he get to get that big so fast?  Wish we could have been there to see it but a 3-4 hour journey was just a bit too far - maybe next year.

Well done George.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012


Here's my desk on a very damp and dank Tuesday afternoon before I gave up and went to sit in front of the fire and watch a video so it hasn't been touched since.

As you can see, it's a sewing day today.  My M-in-L has asked for an owl cushion for her Christmas present so I got out the fabric box yesterday and sorted out some in her colour scheme.  The pattern I downloaded is not big enough so I have quartered it and extended the pieces to make another one out of newspaper.  A local gift shop is selling these cushions for £18 each - seems a bit steep to me but then I remember when you could get four Black Jacks for a penny (old style) ha ha.

I have shoved my altered book/journal on the the right of the desk so that I can share the page I made last week - wish I had done a double spread now but hey ho, such is life.

The wooden boxes at the back (arrived yesterday) will be painted and decorated as Christmas presents and two will go to my nieces with the traditional chocolate coins.  Not sure what I'm doing with the other two yet but at just over £2 each they were a bargain.

We got our campervan back last week, the leak has been fixed (hope I'm not jinxing it by saying that - typing with my fingers crossed ) and it's dry.  The company kept it for almost two weeks waiting for it to rain so they could check the repair worked.  Went for drive on Monday to Dunham Massey (NT) for a picnic and a walk, kicking leaves in the brilliant sun - you just cannot beat it but I wished I'd remembered my camera.

Sorrel loved it but wasn't as keen on the fireworks over the weekend, hid in a corner for three nights and is tired today.  Here she is after her morning nap yesterday.

'Who woke me up?'

Have a good Wednesday and pop over to Julia's place for a bit/lot of super-cool desk surfing.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Three cards

Can't believe this is my third post in three days, or that I have actually made three more cards - I sometimes struggle making cards, much more fun to get the paints out.

First two use the same feather stamp (Clarity) stamped in Versamark on Clarity card but different approaches to adding colour.

This one uses a combination of Distress Inks and stamps from Crafty Individuals (bird) and Dylusions (words).

I used Pan Pastels over the Versamark on the next one.  Not used these on coated card before but I like the softer colour you get on the background.  Word stamp is a Stampers Anonymous highlighted with white pen.

Different approach to the next one as the background came from my box of bits.  Overstamped with a variety of stamps in yellowish tones of DIs and Brilliance.  I used my new Stampers Anonymous face as the main image.

The words are from one of the last plates from the sadly missed Simple Impressions, run by  Cath of Inky Fingers

Looking forward to tomorrow as it is our monthly craft club and I haven't been for a couple of months.  My bag is all packed and I have my ATC ready for the swap.

Not looking forward to the fireworks this weekend though, Sorrel hates them and spent all last 5th November weekend under the chair for three nights - wouldn't mind if it was just one night but it goes on, and on.  We bought a CD of firework noises and a DAP diffuser (supposed to help).  She totally ignores the CD when it is on but jumps a mile if a real one goes off.  Maybe it will rain all weekend and keep the noise down - or is that just me being a misery-guts.

Whatever y ou are doing, hope you have a good (and a quiet) weekend.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Memories of summer days, but winter's on its way

Made two things yesterday, one a card using a Crafty Individual stamp which has a definite summer feeling to it and the second 'thing' with more of a winter feel to it.

First, the card, which is for a friend's birthday coming up soon.

Think I may have gone a bit 'pearl' happy here as I used one of those pearl maker tubes (mine is from Waco) and it sort of took over.

Background papers are from a Tilda Winterbird collection and the stamper card was coloured with Distress Ink (what else) in Peacock Feathers.  One of the many things I love about DIs is the ability to remove colour with water so I stamped the ladies and then used a water-brush to 'bleach' their body parts and coloured with pencils.  Last task was to search my button box for matching colours which means tipping them all out on the table of course.

Pretty chilly here this week so I nipped to our local pork butcher on Tuesday (do other places have speciality pork only butchers I wonder) for a ham shank and some dried peas and soaked both overnight.

Doesn't look too appetising at first but after cooking the meat for 2 hours and then adding onion, peas, bay leaf , thyme and black pepper you simmer for another couple of hours and end up with this pan of scrumptiousness.

No colourings, no preservatives just honest stick-to-your-ribs food.  It was delicious last night

MrB has taken a container-full to his Mum's and the rest is in the freezer - yum.