Sunday, 22 June 2014

Sunny travels

Is it really so long since my last post? Half way through June and back home after our first week long trip in the camper.  Started with the journey down to Sarah's in Bristol for Tom's 10th birthday party, 18 ten year old boys and three 3year olds is not a recipe for a peaceful afternoon in the garden.  They all had fun on the bouncy castle and trampoline though and the camper comes in handy as an extra bedroom for the night.

I think I must have done something wrong with the iPhone camera as all the photos look green....oops!

Next stop, Putts Corner CC site just outside Honiton.  We know this super market town very well as we spent around 10 years holidaying on the Blackdown Hills but it has changed quite a bit since our last visit some 12 years ago, not as many antique shops, the Lace Shop has gone, as has the second hand toy shop, what a shame.  Lots of trips out to the coast made up for the disappointment.

Not a bad spot for a picnic, overlooking Beer.  

Slightly inland at Otterton (delicious lunch at the mill) local schoolchildren have been yarn bombing.

Started on our way home Thursday with a long trek up the M5 and M6 but broke the journey at Tewkesbury where the campsite is across the lane from the Abbey. I went in while Andy stayed in the grounds with Sorrel only to be told by two people that it was fine to take dogs in.  A great treat for her and so welcoming.

Next stop Grassington, Yorkshire for the Tour de France in two weeks.

Wednesday, 30 April 2014


Missed last week's desk tour because I haven't done much crafting for a few days. Visiting family over Easter, then away last weekend and away again in the camper on Sunday for a week.  It's all go when the Bank Holidays fall so close together.

Not much to show this week and I took the photo on Tuesday evening because once Mr B gets home we will be cracking open the bubbly (Prosecco, his favourite) as it was our 20th wedding anniversary on Tuesday and I may have a sore head on Wednesday morning.  Have already started on the olives...mmmmm...

OK, back to the desk and six gessoed beer mats which I'm doing ready for a swap organised by Louise of Zuzu's Petals.  Send five and get five back - haven't signed up yet because I wanted to make sure I could complete before I put my name down but at least I've made a start. Pretty papers at the top right and a personalised notebook I got in a swap on Katie's Corner Yahoo Group a few years ago.  Star item this week is that brilliant colouring book that came Tuesday.  I know everyone loves colouring and this one's for grown ups and I've already started.  Bit disappointed that the quality of the paper means I can't use my promarkers of watercolouring pencils but on the plus side it means I need to buy a few more pencil crayons.

Here's a closer look at one of the pages.
Boy, am I going to have fun with those bugs.

Finally a shot of my garden and a ton of Forget-me-nots.  Bought a packet of seed about the same time as we got married and they keep coming back year after year, how romantic is that?

Hope that's not too long a post Julia, and I do have an excuse...did I mention my anniversary????

Wednesday, 16 April 2014


What a brilliant week. no rain and a bucketful of sunshine with lots of walks for me and Sorrel.  Seems a shame to be inside when the weather is so kind but I did manage to do a bit in my journal so that's on my desk.

Lots of inks - you should see my fingers - my new, and favourite, fern mask and new Sheena Douglas silhouette stamps of the Rosebay Willow herb.  The quote on the page came from the little book at the bottom right, lots of good, and some 'not so good' quotes and sayings and it didn't cost me a penny.  Carmel was giving it away at our last stamp club meeting and I happened to be in the right place at the right time.
That's it for this week, short and sweet as Sorrel is waiting for her walk and there is a lawn to cut when I get home.  Will still make time for a snoop around most of the desks via Julia's Stamping Ground so see you there.
Here's a closer look at the journal page if you're interested.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014


I have a special offer on this week, not one, but two desks to share.  The first is my usual craft place, my dining room table. Taken from a slightly different angle this week and twice as messy - must be a Twofer week.

Inkpads galore, even more stamps, clear embossing powder and a new stamp, the flowers on the right which I haven't used yet - give me time.  Right in the middle and towards the right is a bunch of cards made at our monthly craft club meeting on Saturday and finished off at home.  The technique we did was faux batik when you emboss an image in clear on white card, ink over the top, then iron off the EP to give a negative image.  Then you over stamp with coloured inks and finally with black to add a bit of drama.  At the workshop I realised my black Versafine pad had finally hit the dust, well it must be at least 8 years old, so of I trotted on Saturday to a local craft fair and bought a replacement....and six new Archival inkpads, a couple of stamps, some of that sticky EP (I cant get on with Flitter Glue at all), couple of masks, couple of stencil brushes and....well that's enough isn't it?  If you want a closer look at the cards then I blogged them a couple of days ago so scroll down a bit and there they are.

My second desk is the little table in my conservatory which I took over for a bit of sewing.

Making a Kindle case for my niece, called Susan would you believe :).  Out came the Cuttlebug for the flowers and I had to make a trip to our local fabric shop for a bit of batting but that was all I bought yesterday :(

Enough of my spending habits, I'm off to look at what everyone else is buying/making courtesy of Julia's Desk hop, might just bump into you on the journey.

Monday, 7 April 2014

Faux Batik fun weekend

It was our monthly craft club meeting on Saturday and our guest tutor was Cath of Inky Fingers.  Cath knows more about inks and techniques than anyone else I know so it was a pleasure to re-visit faux batik and see her fabulous samples.

Of course I had taken all the wrong stuff, as usual and was pining for my Distress inks that were sitting on my desk at home but I managed a few cards.

This one was with home made spray inks (I had not forgotten my Distress re-inkers and mini spray bottles).  Unfortunately I overdid the white pen around the word stamp so that needs fixing.  Will ink a small panel and stamp again to cover that.  I love the stamp, borrowed from Cath's stash and have ordered one of my own.

Did this one at home yesterday using DIs and my brand new juicy Versafine ink pad.  The one I was trying to stamp with on Saturday was more like a mid grey so it's in the bin now.

Here's the final one, my favourite, finished this afternoon using Adirondack inks and a stencil brush.  The sunburst stencil is a new one, bought at a craft show yesterday.  Should have been away in the camper for the weekend but the weather forecast put paid to that so I was able to go to the Sincerely Yours show in Leigh.  Only went for a look around and the Versafine pad but came home with a few (?) more bits and pieces, now how did that happen?

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

WOYWW 252?

Lots of goodies on my desk today that I picked up at the Happy Stampers show at Port Sunlight on Saturday.

Some stamps, of course, Zendoodles by Lindsay Mason for PI, Crafty Individuals (have already had a play with the sunflower one), Lavinia Stamps, Woodwear, and a new (to me) stamp set by Clearly Besotted.  These are a sheet of feathers that come with a matching set of dies so I had to have both of course.  Was quite restrained with my other purchases, couple of masks including a fab peacock feather one and a yellow Adirondack ink pad.  I should replace all my Adirondacks as I have had them for over 10 years and you cant get re-inkers for them now but I keep eeking them out a little longer. Last of the purchases is the pretty paper pad at the top right, springlike pinks and greens so Easter cards are calling to me.

So that's it for this week. Going on a desk hop now courtesy of Julia our charming hostess but I will leave you with this photo of the magnolia in next door's garden yesterday, stunningly beautiful in the sunshine.

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Lavinia Fleur

Spent up on Saturday on my visit to Port Sunlight for the Happy Stamper's Festival.  Haven't been able to go for a couple of times but was determined to make it this time.  Amongst the many things that popped into my basket were a couple more Lavinia Stamps.  
I can remember seeing this maker on their first visit to Port Sunlight many years ago and have built up a little stash over the years.  The fairies are my favourites and I couldn't resist this one, Fleur, so I sat down this afternoon and made a simple card.  I used two colours of Adirondack ink used for colouring the stamp and the spotty background and stamped the nodding bell flower a few more times and cut out to add to the top.

I drew the stems for the additional bells and added the willow stamp fronds at the bottom then coloured the edges of the two mounts in matching colours. 

Haven't done a challenge for a while but am entering this for the 'Spring colours' challenge on the Lavinia Stamp site.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014


This is my desk on a wet, dull Tuesday afternoon, and  from the other side with the light, what there is of it, behind me showing off my new green wipe-clean table cover from The Range (a bargain at £4 as it was the end of the roll and I got enough to cover the table and the small one in the conservatory).

Not an awful lot to show today but quite a bit of work went into making the bee tag.  It was intended as a swap piece for Vicky Stampers, our monthly craft group but I like it so much that I don't want to part with it and am busy making another one on a different theme (same letter though as it is an alphabet swap).  See lower down for a better photo and more details.

The butterfly stamps are for my second tag and rooting through my stash I found two sheets of Duralay film, a heatable, mouldable plastic that I bought a few years ago and have never used.  So guess what I'm doing this afternoon?  A few more bits there including some Ranger pens, Urban Stamps butterflies, too many butterfly stamps?  Impossible!  The cards at the top left are ones I made with the Urban Stamps cute bird stamp on my desk last week - see previous post for a closer look at these.

Huge thanks to Julia of The Stamping Ground for hosting this massive swap every week, you are a star.

So, a closer look at the Bee tag.

 Tag cut to size and inked with Honey and similar shade Distress Inks.  The main bee (Stampotique Jo Capper-Sandon) was stamped on the tag, coloured with DI markers, stamped again on acetate and affixed with Glossy Accents plus a liberal sprinkling of fairy dust...well Gold ultra fine glitter.  The circle stamp is a beautiful caligraphy stamp by Quietfire Design, part of a set that also includes the mini bees I used on the background and 'The hum of the bees' to the right.  I only used the top half of that stamp, masking the bottom bit off before inking.  Bits of old music paper, Glossy Accents dots with more gold glitter and a border of gold pearl dots complete the tag.

Now it's off to my craft stash with a notepad as it's the twice yearly Happy Stampers show at Port Sunlight and obviously I need to make lots of lists of stuff I 'need' so that I can totally ignore it and come back with  more unplanned purchases to show you next week.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Paper piecing and cute birdie

In my addiction to ink and stamps I sometimes forget how pretty and effective paper piecing can be. I was reminded this week when searching for idea for two Mothers' Day cards, one for my Mother in Law and the second for her sister-in-law, a lady of 83 who we are taking out for lunch next Sunday.

The cute birdie stamp was an impulse buy (are there any other types?) the other week and has been sitting on my desk since I bought it, it is a Papermania, Urban Stamp. Can't remember where I got the papers as they came from my scrap box and I had just enough to make the two cards.

This card is 5inch square and I added another beak to the bird and hung the 'Happy Mothers Day card from it before scribbling round the edge of the card.

The second card uses the same stamp and the same hanging card but on a larger A5 base.   The Mum stamp and the mini heart are from another Urban Stamps sheet 'Vintage notes - sentiments'.  The heart stamp stuck to my fingertip when I took it off the backing sheet so 'instant' stamp block, must try that again. 

Paper now back in the scrap box and the inks are out again, going for a play this afternoon 

Wednesday, 19 March 2014


Wednesday, again!  Wish someone would get their finger off the fast-forward button I'm struggling to keep up.  Think I've just about made joining in with Julia's desk hop this week (pop over here to see what it's all about) because if you had come over to my craft space an hour ago you wouldn't have seen anything at all, apart from a paint spattered table protector.

Postman just delivered a batch of QuietFire Design stamps from Oyster Stamps so I've ripped open the envelope and am raring to go.  Need to get a couple of Mother's Day cards made, one for my M in L and another for Mr Bs 84 year old aunt who we adopt as a second Mum for the day as her son lives in Japan and her daughter in Egypt.
That cute bird from last week is still in it's packet but I have been looking at my paper packs to see if anything inspires me.  Also out are two boxes of stamps, the blue one has a combination of Indigo Blu, Paperartsy and Stampers Anonymous plates with my favourite dragonfly one out on the desk.  The pink box has my nature collection and the poppies on my desk jumped out of that one.  Now 'all' I have to do is pick a stamp and away I go.  Have been a busy bee today, boring stuff like housework, including cleanoing the windows in my conservatory but tomorrow is reserved for craft.
Have a great Wednesday, what's left of it.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Double slider card

Just finished the double slider card I was working on at the beginning of the week so I'm sharing the photos.

This shows the card closed and flat on my desk with the top of the two tags that work the 'pop-up' visible at the top edge. (Just noticed that the charms hanging from the turquoise thread are turned the wrong way....oops!)

Just pull on the pink ribbons to slide out the tags and Voila!

The front panels pop up to show the inner, stamped pieces underneath and the stamped panels on the two tags (just visible) and the charms turned the right way this time.

Really enjoyed making this one as I haven't done any paper engineering for a while.  Thanks to Helen of The Craft Project for her YouTube tutorial and clear instructions.  Helen made her original card using Graphic 45 papers and has some wonderful examples on her blog - here.

Tuesday, 11 March 2014


Missing last week, and the week before but as I actually have something on. My desk this week I'm joining in Julia's massive desktop this week.

Lots of pink and soft greens today as I work on a double slider card for a birthday on Saturday.  Better get a move on then.  I am following the excellent instructions on Helen's blog,  and am almost done.  Bought a new Sizzix flower die yesterday to make some pretty blooms and once these are finished I only have to make the sliding tags and we are done.  

Was away at the weekend in the campervan.  Only a short trip to get her ready for the season and make sure all is working OK. We were only about 15 miles down the road at Burrs Country Park between Bury and Ramsbottom (yes, that's its real name) so I just had to call in a local craft shop for some white card and that cute bird stamp on my desk just flew into my basket.

Here's a few photos of my weekend if you want a nosey around.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014


Later today and a short post as I'm getting ready to take Sorrel for her morning walk in the park...and they say 'it's a dogs life' as though that's a bad thing.
Anyway, here we go, my desk as of 5 mins ago.  Working in my journal with the lovely parrot stencil and wax colours.  Texture paste through the parrots was coloured with acrylics and Portfolios then added Treasure Gold in Brass.  The tag was a try out and the cars are there as I'm trying to stock up on birthday cards.
Will visit later and get round as many desks as I can.

Here's a close up of the journal page

Wednesday, 12 February 2014


Bit later this morning and as it's a dull morning the photo isn't as good as it could be but here is my desk today.

The card is for my sister's birthday on Friday and is a 'pop up' inspired by a Craft Stamper article of a couple of years ago.  Found out last year that my Sis has kept all my cars in a shoe box - must have at least 30 or so tucked away, made me smile so.
The valentines aren't new, they come out every year as do our anniversary cards, and get put away afterwards. Not mean, just run out if ideas after all these years and it saves Mr B a bit of shopping.
The stamps are nature ones as I must start on my tag for our craft club swap and as the forecast for today is for strong winds and resin later that's what I will be doing this afternoon.  Meanwhile there's a  dog needs walking so it's a short post from mr, which will keep Miss D happy.

Happy Wednesday everyone and keep safe.

Sunday, 9 February 2014


I took part in an 'Alice' swap run by Louise of Zuzu's Petals and as my swap partner has received it I can now share my effort.

It is on a large chipboard tag, painted with blue, green and gold acrylics, decorated with torn book pages and with Alice stamps by Stamp Attack. The watch at the top is an actual watch base filled with a stamped piece of card and crackle glaze.  Not sure where're the teacup stamp came from but I do know it has come in very useful at times.

Wednesday, 5 February 2014


Wednesday again and here I am, my mojo is well and truly back after it's long rest, lets hope it continues.
So today I'm playing with Julia and friends, sharing desks, mucky, tidy, inspirational and amusing - pay your money and take your choice.

Make yourself a cuppa, settle down, leave the ironing and cleaning and start the big desk hop here at Stamping Ground but not before you have had a little peep at my desk this morning.

It was our monthly craft group meet up over at Vicky Stampers, Warrington on Saturday, a group of friends who meet up, share crafting time and good companionship on the first Saturday of each month.  This month our group did a fab mini book project led by the lovely Carol of Stamp Attack. It is only 1.5 inch by 2 inch and the covers are heaped with embossing powder before stamping.  Mini stamped pages finish of this fab project, all bound along the spine with beads and wire.  If you want a closer look there is a bigger photo in my previous post.  Carol also brought me some of her stencils, which I'm itching to use, especially the parrot one which I think (not sure about this) was designed by the lovely Jo of Jozart.  Next month we start a monthly tag swop so the red tag on my desk will be used as a template

Top of the desk is the finished journal page - I showed the blank background last week and blogged a closer look at the completed page a couple of days ago, just scroll down if you want to see it. The only other thing on my desk this week is a two year old Craft Stamper magazine as I want to try some different techniques and take part in a few more challenges, got to keep that mojo on it's toes.

Thanks for taking the time to look and for your kind and generous comments each week. Happy Wednesday.

Oops. Thought I had blogged the mini book but I hadn't so here is a close up of it.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Journal page

If you saw my desk on WOYWW you may have seen a blank new journal page. Playtime today and I finished it.

Never know where I'm going when I get out the paints so always a nice surprise when it turns out OK. Mind you this is the second attempt, the first ended up being wiped off. 

Have just changed the photo on this as I didnt like the one I took with my phone.  Just getting used to using the Blogger app and I think I prefer my old style camera for detailed photos.

Thanks Hazel for reminding me about The Craft-Room Challenge site.  Haven't done a challenge for ages (only started blogging again two weeks ago) and this page fits in with the latest 'Age of Aquarius' so I'm entering it.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

What's on your Workdesk Wednesday 243

Well, I'm keeping up with my aim of blogging and crafting/playing more so here I am for the second week running, joining in again with Miss Dunnit's big blog hop.  If you want to join in, or see more messy and creative desks then click on the link.

This is my desk on a dull, damp Tuesday afternoon after a little retail therapy at Hobbycraft.  Not my favourite place for craft supplies but I ran out of gesso the other day and had to make an emergency purchase.  Of course a few other things sort of fell in my basket on the way round but they don't count because they were 'staples' - DST, a huge bottle of Matt medium, a tube of blue acrylic paint and a packet of bronze coloured chain, all of which are on my desk, somewhere.

Also there, my storage tin for all my markers, and a 'few' of my stamps including some of my Paperartsy Lynne Perella, and Indigo Blu that I want to use on that lovely blank, for now, journal page.  The item in the bubble wrap is an Alice chipboard tag for a swap I'm doing for Louise Crosby's Facebook group, all finished and ready to go but I can't share that until it has arrived.

Finally a question for all you Stampers who love to make your own backgrounds.  What card do you use?  I love to use Distress Inks and spritz or drop water on it but the card I have been using lately doesn't react well to getting wet. Not sure if it's the weight or the quality of the card but the water breaks through the surface and I get ugly 'dimples' and spots so any suggestions gratefully received.

Gosh, that was a long post for a Wednesday, hope Miss Dunnit doesn't give me detention, I have a lot of crafting to do today.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Acrylic resist

Over on the Katy's Corner Yahoo group we have a monthly challenge and this month it is pink, and/or dry embossing.  Now pink isn't one of my favourite colours and I'm never very successful with embossing folders, and to top it all I'm only just getting back into crafting but I wanted a go out came the Picked Raspberry Distress inks.
In the end I made three cards using DIs and acrylic is the third in the batch.


Background was stamped in white acrylic with a poppy stamp I have had in my stash for years.  The acrylic acts as a resist to the Distress inks swiped over.  I love my Distress inks, they are my standby and I always find myself reaching for them because they create such fab backgrounds and you can pick up the colour with a water brush and colour, as if did with the main image.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Test upload

Big thanks to Neet of Hickeydorums for telling me of the Blogger app.  Now means I can upload photos to my blog from my iPad or phone which will be a lot easier than waiting an hour (well that's what it feels like) for my steam powered computer to fire up.
So this is a test post to see if I can do it.
Here's a photo of my little dog after our walk on Tuesday morning.  Fine when we set out and then it rained halfway through the woods.  

 She doesn't like getting wet, not surprised if she looks like this.

And this is a couple of weeks ago, in better weather when she decided to try tree climbing.  She loves chasing squirrels so obviously thought if you can't beat them, join them.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday 242

Well I think it's number 242, bit behind the times with blogging. Bit? More like four months but am slowly getting back into it, and stamping which I've also been 'off'.

Is it winter? Could be.  I like huddling down in front of the TV, or my iPad after me and Sorrel have finished our mornings walk, then lunch, then a bit, only a bit, of cleaning of shopping and it's almost tea time, and it's dark so my body thinks it's time for a nap ha ha, if only.

Before I get carried away in my new found enthusiasm I better share my desk this morning.

Main problem has been lack of enthusiasm and total disorganisation of my craft stuff so that when I went in to do something I couldn't find the right stamp, or ink pad and lost heart. So what to do?  Re-organise.   Bought a cheap laminator from Aldi (just love that shop) some pouches and made some stamp mounts to fit in my Really Useful boxes that house my multitude of stamps so now i can find them more easily.  Feeling like a new (stamping) woman this week and I have made four cards so patting myself on the back, not an easy task, I'm blogging a couple of them on my desk above.

Two cards, one stamp - Darkroom Door - watercolour pencils on the 'vintage' postcard which was swiped over with Distress inks to knock back the colour and various water markers on the other.  I like the vintage one best.

Sorry for being so long-winded Julia. It I have four months to make up on, promise to keep it brief in future.  Meanwhile I'm off to do a bit of blog hopping starting over at Julia's