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29 December 2008

During my current 'tidying up' project (and I'm using the term loosely because I just seem to moving things around according to M - but its all part of the process!) I found this photo (on the pc - tidying that up too!) of a book I made from lots of bits of cardboard, all different sizes, bound together with the bind-it-all. Its a book that I keep on my studio desk to try out bits and pieces in rather than on random bits of paper/ card or in my sketchbook (different surface). This page was created using a scroll cuttlebug die I'd just bought (so of course had to use straight away! lol) and Banana Frog alphabet stamps - these ones are great because they are quite large (about an inch-and-a-bit tall)... I like the page because of the metal effect to the scroll (didn't photograph too well) but at the same time am not too keen because it looks a bit 'halloween' - due to the colours - I might go back to it and try and alter it in some way.......

28 December 2008

Perfect Pearls

Love Perfect Pearls!!!!!!!!!

I was working with these at Card Inspirations before Christmas and I created a couple of sample sheets in preparation to show how different the same pearls look on different coloured backgrounds, and I thought I post them here... I've masked off the background (Heidi Swapp Butterfly masks) and then spritzed onto the page using distress ink mixed with Perfect Pearls, and then finally stamped snowflakes using VersaMark ink and brushed on Perfect Pearls powders. The effect is so lovely on black...

Christmas cards...

I need to pace myself! lol No posts for 2 weeks and now 2 in a day! Phew!

Here are some of christmas cards I made (though I will confess that due to teaching, commissions and a sick cat I didn't have time to make all our christmas cards and so we did send a few bought cards (shock, horror and the shame of it!! and me a card making tutor! rofl) Normally I make all my christmas cards from scratch but this year due to the reasons stated I bought some embellishments to work with... which was good because it was a learning process - adapting things to your own style etc etc etc....

Using Stampendous sticker sheets...


Using Basic Grey card making pack - It's useful to buy if you're in a hurry but I'm not sure I would buy one again - it takes away a lot of the creativity - I bought it as a base start from and I added peel-offs and gems to the paper supplied and I still have lots left over (this isn't all the cards by the way) - even though I did customise nearly all the cards and only followed the directions for one in particular as it was such a definite design with provided embellishments.... (still gotta love Basic Grey though!)......


K&Co papers - lovely vintage feel to their range...

Round up...

I'm sorting out my home studio and so its time to tidy up! and I keep coming across projects that I've completed but don't seem to have posted about - such a lot going on and a lot of it I can't share because its going to be published, used for classes etc etc etc ..... So here are some pictures (apologies if I have shown them before - I did do a quick check back through the blog - which has made me realise I must start tagging things....)
(btw:I'm not supposed to have a 'home' studio because I have studio space that I rent and therefore all my creative bits and bobs should be there but over the past month or so a lot has made its way back home (in my defense the studio can be quite cold)

Firstly here are some of the spreads from a mini-book I made of a day trip M & I took to go and see Seth Lakeman perform at the open air theatre in London's Regents Park - fantastic day and a great concert. Its 6x4in (approx) & I love that the pages show around the front cover - not all the same size.. books like that make me want to look inside! lol (btw - the flowers on the last 2 spreads shown now have buttons or pearls in the centres)
Next is a card I've made for my new nephew. I'm loving using acetate for cards and minibooks but they can be challenge to photograph! Aaaanyway his name is Ethan and he's bundle of cuddly loveliness! - though I may be biased of course! lol

14 December 2008

Slightly lacking in Christmas spirit...

Craft Stampers blog lists the blogs of regular contributors and when they last updated

Jo Firth-Young
2 weeks ago

.. now if that doesn't kick start a person into updating their blog I don't know what would! lol

but the thing is itsgotten distinctly un-christmassy in our house - oh yes we've put the tree up (gorgeous white tree - yes white - last year it was up side down with very bright decorations this year its white and slightly more muted)(the tree looks slightly ghostly...), we've bought the presents and we've lined up our christmas movies - Fred Claus and its a wonderful life BUT and this is a very big BUT...
our lovely, affectionate cat Fredd caught a virus (no idea how because he doesn't go out!) and was literally fading away in front of us - wouldn't eat, wouldn't get up - nothing. zilch. so off to the vets where he spent almost 3 days at the vets on a drip where they filled him full of all kinds of things but he still wasn't responding very well... he came home and I seriously thought I would get up one morning to find out he had died in the night. BAH HUMBUG. Cancel christmas! Aaaanyway a shot of valium later, and yet more tablets and he's gradually getting better... SLOWLY..
So OK I might re-instate christmas...
Losing 2 cats in one year would have been really hard, really sad.
(though there were light moments in all this - the valium shot made him really want to eat but he wasn't completely in control of himself - practically face down in the food, and he couldn't walk in a straight line - it was like he'd had one sniff too many of the catnip... which was v funny in a 'you've been framed' type way)

So, not much creating has been done - I've made some christmas cards (but only because I had to - had a commission) - will add them to the slide show on left when I get a minute - hopefully more will get done this week... Fredd's health allowing - I know you can't put your life on hold for things like this but its hard to concentrate...

I looked at Tim Holtz's blog the other day which got me all inspired so maybe I'll revisit that and see where it takes me...

I might put up some pictures of the christmas tree - its so pretty - well I think so anyway - but as always I still think it needs more decorations! lol When we take the tree down I might count how many decorations are actually on it..... I'll keep you posted..... (and Lola, the kitten, has been very good and not played with too many decorations... yet)

AAAAAAAnyway - on a positive note (too much doom and gloom so far.. lol) had some more work published in Craft Stamper this month (yeay) - in shops now.

Thats all folks.

30 November 2008

I can't believe that tomorrow is DECEMBER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Where did this year go??

18 November 2008

Eye candy that's getting me in the mood for Christmas

In this months Elle Dec/or Living etc (can't remember which) there was a BEAUTIFUL interior and in this interior were HUGE paper balls.... but no source was listed! HUMPH.

.. .aaaaanyway I was clearing out the cruise trunk (our coffee table) last night where all the interiors magazines get stashed away (some were 5 years old which is really bad!) and I was flicking through before sending them to recycling and ... TA-DA more huge paper balls and more importantly a source.

look at the prettyness!! the loveliness!
these made me very happy! these will be debuting in my lounge this christmas... well maybe not the lounge (the biggest snowflake is 72cm!! - maybe the drop in the hall... we'll worry about that later) but they will definitely be out of the reach of Miss Lola! That kitten LOVES to chew cardboard and paper! Am almost dreading putting the tree up - she's going to be a nightmare.
christmas tree versus 5 month old kitten? you do the maths. lol

And these little birdies will go into the aviary with my Tweets (see previous post)

10 November 2008

Shocking!...

... how long its been since I last posted... have been soooo busy with projects that aren't really blogable (is that even a word?! lol) - lots of bits and pieces over the last week or so, and one major project for College... and over the weekend I managed to strain my torso/ribs so I'm hobbling around like a little old person! M's had to help me off of the sofa a couple of times! lol I feel like I've been kicked by a horse! lol

I'll have too keep this blog updated more in future and keep it filled with pretty pictures because now its linked to the Craft Stamper blog site. Exciting.

I'm in the December issue of Craft Stamper by the way! To find out more you'll have to buy the magazine!!

16 October 2008

Deco Round Robin done & dusted

These are the final pages of my deco book... I finished mine to get me in the mind set of working on someone elses - getting back in the mood...
really pleased with how this came out - using lots of my favourite things - bit of PaperArtsy, bit of Tim Holtz - mask, inks), glimmer mists, a butterfly, lovely agapanthus stamp.

12 October 2008

Etsy restock

Its been a while since I restocked my Etsy shop - other things take priority - but this week instead of just parking myself on the sofa and watching TV in the evenings I've been multi-tasking and sewing at the same time.... every time I do this I'm reminded how much I like sewing! And making these little embellishments can get quite addictive!

Click the 'jofy' button below the Etsy panel on the right to see shop. I've created little embellishments for use on cards and scrapbook pages.. or whatever you want to use them on (I used a couple to mend a hole in scarf!)

9 October 2008

Craft Stamper November

This is a sneak peek of one of my pieces that is in the Craft Stamper magazine I mentioned a few posts ago.. not allowed to show more detail: you'll have to buy the magazine to see more. :o)
When I was shopping earlier in the week I resisted going into WHSmiths and taking photo's of it on the shelf but that was only because I didn't have a camera on me! lol There's still time before the next issue comes out........

6 October 2008

Box + Kitten

I'll try to not let this blog turn into a Lola appreciation site! (yes, her name is now Lola - not Mabel, Mabel didn't flow!) but how cute is this photo!! lol ... I'm putting this photo up to show what her bed is made out of.... I've learnt from past pets that a cardboard box is just as good as a nice new bed and this just isn't any old box - this is a box that contained Bazzill.
gorgous paper + gorgous kitten - perfectly suited!
Hopefully it will somehow teach her that paper is good, special and not something that should be chewed or sat on!(she's already chewed the corner of one of my 'house of cards' (see previous post) cards. bad cat. bad cat!)

27 September 2008

Introducing Lola*

She's a 12 week old kitten that we chose this morning, and will be collecting from the RSPCA on Monday.
We were worried that Fredd was getting lonely and so we've adopted her keep him company...

I'll keep you posted on how they get on.......


* We were originally going to call her Mabel but that didn't suit so now she's Lola.

26 September 2008

Craft Stamper November 08

I've been working on projects that I couldn't tell anyone about .... well now I can!!!!!! and here it is:



I was asked to submit work to Craft Stamper and here is the first issue featuring my work... November's issue and that's my pop-up card as the main cover image!!!!!!!!!
Its not on the newstands until next Friday - this photo of the cover was taken from the magazine's website http://www.craftstamper.com/ on there you'll find previews of upcoming issues etc.
(I may have to visit the local stockists and move all copies to the front of the racks! lol)(or take a camera and photograph it on the shelf)(or take photos of myself standing at the shelf pointing at the magazine - - - no, that one would be too much wouldn't it.. aaah how I make myself laugh!!)

25 September 2008


Sometimes it takes longer to make one card than it does to make ten!!
I was asked to make a card for a friend's son's birthday - which I'm more than happy to do...... but I find male cards really quite hard... I didn't realise how often I put flowers, gems, ribbons or other 'girlie' items on a card until I came to make a male card!
Must practice and make more mens cards.... which hopefully will be helped by the fact that a man has signed up for one of my courses - I think this will be good for me and the students - a different perspective.

These cards were made from sample/ test pieces I made while preparing for a class using Ranger's Perfect Pearls powders. Love these powders - the way they change colour and react to light - especially when used on black/dark paper.... and they are really versatile - lots of uses....

22 September 2008

aaah well, back from hols - 10 lovely hot days spent in Portugal where the most difficult decision I had to make was whether to lay on my front or back on the sunbed!
So am back, recharged and ready for action which is good because I've got loads to do. :o) oooh its hard being a creative! lol

28 August 2008

Sneak Peaks at my classes at Card Inspirations




I've been working flat out this week - or that's how it feels! Am kn*ckered!! :o) I'm supposed to be going to Bluewater tonight but don't know if I can face it! Thats how tired i am - turning down a shopping trip! Unheard of! lol
I'm off to sit on the sofa and think about essay writing . . . . . .

24 August 2008

Here's some work I CAN show you!...

... because I feel that I've been saying 'I've been busy at the studio but I can't show with you what...' So here are some things I have done in the past few days.....that I CAN show! lol

Details from a card I was comissioned to make:
Using lots of my favourite things - bling, die cutting, and my new Fiskars border punch.

I was trying to find a card blank and matching envelope the other day and came across some envelopes that were slightly marked along the edges - been in the sun (although I do make a point of keeping paper out of the sun so I don't know what happened to these)(I think were quite cheap cards and envelopes and so that may have something to do with it...) aaaaanyway where was I...yes envelopes - I didn't want to throw them away - bit of a waste so I thought I'd make a simple book out of them - bit like a paper bag book. Its not finished but just wanted to share. Same colour choices as the 45th card, and using my new Paperbag Studio stamps. Embellished with bits and pieces from my desk - like the white butterfly that I was going to use on the card but it wasn't right so I coloured the edges and added it to the book. The book's quite small - about 11x11cm.

17 August 2008

Stamps, classes and the cat... oh my!

Some days the Postie brings junk mail and bills, other days he brings nice things like interesting magazines... and then every so often there's a really good day when he brings packages containing lovely things like this on the left..... stamps by PaperBag Studio in the States. I'd been umming over these for a while and eventually gave in and here they are are in all their rubber glory on my studio desk... now I just have to find time to use them!




I had a really good couple of days teaching at Card Inspirations on Friday and Saturday. Smaller classes than usual but the customers really seemed to enjoy themselves and worked really well/ran with the class topics. Friday's Masterboard worked really well - everyone has the same stamps, the same colour inks, the same starting card stock and yet all the masterboards produced from them will be different. I enjoy seeing that happen.

Marred only slightly (!) by the fact that at home I had a very poorly cat attached to a drip at the vets, and I had no idea for a while if he was going to be OK or not........ he eaten part of a hydrangea leaf (!) and it had poisoned his system.

He came home on Friday evening (36 hours in the vets!), he had less fur, we had less money (vets bills...eek) and I had a few more grey hairs from the worry but he's now back to full purring capability and is being spoilt rotten. lol.

here he is - poor thing... he'd only just grown all his fur back from his last visit to the vets and its been shaved again... he did have a very smart bandage - apparently - but by the time I got home at 6pm on saturday he'd pulled it off... little devil.

So glad he made a full recovery - I don't think I could have lost another cat this year!
btw: photo taken from strange angle - it makes his head look wierdly large compared to his body which in real life it isn't! lol

12 August 2008

Great News & a Light Bulb Moment!

Today I had some brilliant news! of the crafting variety... really good.. will keep you posted

meanwhile... I've finished the little book featured in my last post, and have finished 2 other major projects and this means I have a clear up of both my home work space and at the studio (so I can at least see the cutting mat on the desk..lol).. I was still pondering what type of 'thing' to create each time I've finished a little something.. when I spied this:

under the desk at home. Its a rolladex type address thingy that I bought a while back with the intention of tranferring our address book into it...... that turned out to be way too much like hard work! lol!.... but - on came the light bulb - wouldn't it be great way to store mini creative creations in? YES is the answer - ATC sized (so nice and small) .....
I'm dusting it off and taking it to the studio......

5 August 2008

a diddy little history...


This little book started out as a tester while playing with my Bind-it-all (love that machine!!) but has turned into an ongoing project.. each time I work on a new project I tend to end up with bits and pieces left over and so I'm using them to decorate a page in this little book... its quite small - measuring approximately 2x2 inches! bless! A diddy little history of bigger creations.
When its full I'll start using the bits and pieces on something else - probably more cards for the 'house of cards' (inspired by Eames) that I made a couple of years ago as a college project (below). I like that the cards can be interchanged and rearranged and never seems to go back in the same configuration twice! If a card gets boring it can be taken out and replaced by a different one. I'd like to see how big I can make it - the cards are 8x12cm in size and can be slotted together to be tall or wide.... (and when I get bored of them being on display on the fireplace they all pack up flat and fit in a small box... perfect)(or when Fredd has knocked them AGAIN - over one time too many!)
(or maybe I'll just make another little book...)