Sunday, 2 April 2017

Stamping Sensations April Challenge

First Sunday of the month, so time for a new challenge at Stamping Sensations, and we have a very easy one for you this month as our theme is

* * * * * ANYTHING GOES * * * * *

The choice of subject is entirely up to you, but of course, as we are a stamping challenge, the main element of your design must be hand stamped (or a hand coloured digital image). Please do check that your project fits our rules (see them here), otherwise it will not be eligible for the prize or top 3 and may not be commented on, in fairness to others who do follow the rules.

Our wonderful April sponsor is PDA, who have given us a fabulous £40 voucher for the winner to spend in their store!

I managed to get my hands on some of the new Distress Oxide ink pads last week, and I've used some of them for the background of my card. Think they are going to be my new favourite inks! I'm only just beginning to explore all their possibilities but I'm loving them already!

I stamped over the background with Lavinia stamps (flower border, pods and butterflies), a text by Inkylicious and a sentiment by Visible Image.

Good luck everyone, I'm looking forward to seeing lots of lovely creations!

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Oliver Owl

Oliver Owl flew into my craft room recently. He's the stunning new stamp from Hobby Art. Isn't he gorgeous?!


I've put him on an A5 card, so you can tell how large and imposing he is (a good 6" from the top of his head to the tip of his tail). The detail in his feathers is amazing. I coloured him, the ivy leaves and the fence with watercolour pencils.The background is sponged with pigment inks. All stamps on my card are by Hobby Art.

Oliver brought with him his equally fabulous friend, who lives on a Nature Reserve, also by Hobby Art. I'll be inking him (or possibly her!) up soon!

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Close To Nature

For our March Challenge at Stamping Sensations we're staying with the natural world, but whereas last month's topic belonged to the animal kingdom, this month we're opening it up to anything nature related, with the theme

* * * * * CLOSE TO NATURE * * * * *

As usual, you may interpret this however you wish, as long as the main element of your design is hand stamped (or a hand coloured digital image) and reflects the theme. Please do check that your project fits our rules, otherwise it will not be eligible for the prize or top 3 and may not be commented on, in fairness to others who do follow the rules.

You certainly would not want to miss out on the chance of winning this month's prize, as it is a stunner!


Quite some time ago I bought the Kingfisher set by Hobby Art, and for some inexplicable reason, as it's the most gorgeous set, I hadn't got round to using it. However, it was perfect for our nature theme, and here's the card I've made with it.

I also used stamps from other Hobby Art sets to build up a scene around the main kingfisher image. I coloured the background with watercolour pencils, and the main elements with Zig Clean Color markers to make them stand out. I matted the picture with some Lawn Fawn paper, the colours of which complemented the kingfisher beautifully. All stamps by Hobby Art.

My lovely teamies have created a wonderfully diverse set of superb samples, which you can see over on the Stamping Sensations Challenge blog. Nature themes are my favourites (you probably guessed!) and I'm anticipating lots of entries for this one, especially with such a fabulous prize on offer! Can't wait to see them all!

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Mid-month Inspiration at Stamping Sensations

The DT's current mid-month theme at Stamping Sensations is "My go-to stamp", and I have to admit that my heart sank a little when I saw it! For me, trying to pick a go-to stamp is like attempting to choose a favourite piece of music - there are so many I like and all so different. How do I narrow it down to one above all? Well, if I have to decide, I guess it must come down to trees or butterflies. And as this month's challenge theme is Animal Magic, I've gone with a butterfly. It's by Hero Arts and I have it in three versions: the original rubber, clear (in a set), and a rubber cling which is part of a Sizzix Framelits set. Oh, and a digi version! Sadly I think they are all now discontinued, but some occasionally pop up on eB*y.

The original one is one of my oldest stamps, but I still use it a lot, often as an embellishment to something else. This time, however, I decided to let it take centre stage, which, since it is so pretty, it certainly deserves to do. And it's wonderful to colour.

I made a background by dusting with Memento inks and overstamping the butterfly in two colours. Then stamped the butterfly again on white card, coloured it with Zig Clean Color pens and cut it out and matted it with Spellbinder dies. Sentiment by Stampingallday. Here's a closer look.

There's still time to enter our Animal Magic challenge, with a fabulous prize from sponsors Tattered Lace. Thanks for looking!

Sunday, 5 February 2017

February Challenge at Stamping Sensations, and a strange phenomenon

Since Christmas, my mojo seems to have disappeared. I reckon it's taken itself off to warmer, sunnier climes, given the cold, grey, wet and dreary weather we've been having here lately, and I can't say I blame it. However, I need it back, but how to attract it? One look at the state of my craft room was enough to suggest the answer!

A mega clear out was long overdue. The task was so daunting, I'd kept putting it off but I knew that a good tidy up would go a long way towards making me feel like crafting again. One of the main problems was not being able to find anything I needed without having to shift piles of stuff out of the way first. I store all my unmounted stamps in A5 ringbinders, and when I first set up my craft room, five years ago, they all fitted into a small bookcase. Not any more! As my collection grew, the extra binders had to be crammed into odd spaces here and there on other shelves, which was really annoying.

Then, a few weeks ago, my daughter announced that she had a large, tall bookcase that had become surplus to her requirements, and would I like it? Would I??! Of course, that meant I had to bite the bullet and start the grand clear out! To cut a long story short, what once looked like this



now looks like this!























So much tidier and more efficient, don't you think? Anyway, the clear out is just about finished, (as well as the stamp shelves I have two walls of built-in floor to ceiling shelves and drawers to store everything else) and I now know where everything is again.

But - and here's the strange thing - although I have removed a considerable amount of rubbish and stuff I didn't want to keep, and have gained more storage space with the new bookcase, there doesn't seem to be any more room on the other shelves than there was before! If anyone has an explanation for this odd phenomenon, I'd be very interested to hear it!

Fortunately I managed to clear enough space on my desk in time to make my sample for this month's challenge at Stamping Sensations, where our theme for February is

* * * * * ANIMAL MAGIC * * * * *

As usual, you may interpret this however you wish, as long as the main element of your design is hand stamped (or a hand coloured digital image) and reflects the theme. Please do check that your project fits our rules, otherwise it will not be eligible for the prize or top 3, and may not be commented on, in fairness to others who do follow the rules. And you will not want to miss out on this month's fabulous prize, kindly donated by our lovely sponsors Tattered Lace.


For my card I have used some of the latest new Lavinia Stamps, which are absolutely gorgeous. The range includes badgers, foxes, squirrel and snail, all perfect for our challenge theme, as well as some beautiful fairies.


All stamps on my card are by Lavinia Stamps. I stamped and masked the moon before creating a background with an Inkylicious mountain and valley stencil and pigment inks. The badger, fairy, flowers, foliage and distant trees were then stamped over the top, and a bit of sparkle added with some glitter glue to finish.

I'm entering this card in the Lavinia Stamps Creative Challenge for February, where the theme is "The Full Moon".

There's some stunning Animal Magic by my lovely teamies over on the Challenge Blog, so do go and take a look, and they would be delighted if you had time to visit their individual blogs too. I think this will be a popular theme, and am looking forward to seeing your entries.

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Coffee and Cream

Happy New Year, everyone, I hope 2017 will be good to you all! As New Year's Day is a Sunday, we're straight in with our first challenge of the year at Stamping Sensations, where our January theme is

* * * * * COFFEE AND CREAM * * * * *

As usual, you may interpret the theme however you wish, but please do remember that we are a stamping challenge, so the main element of your design must be either hand stamped or hand coloured digi and should reflect the theme. Sadly, projects which don't fit the theme or our rules will not be eligible for the prize or top 3, and may not be commented on, in fairness to all those who do follow the rules. If you're not sure what they are, you can find them here.

Here's the prize for this month's lucky winner!


And here's my sample.

I was aiming for a vintage feel, which I think works well with this lovely image by Crafty Individuals. The background paper is from the same Dovecraft pack as the paper I used in my November sample. Although the pack is Christmas themed, many of the designs are suitable for other occasions too, and the one I've used here seemed to go perfectly with the theme. A piece of self adhesive lace. some pearls from Be Creative, and a sentiment by Inkylicious, cut out with a Spellbinders die, completed the card. I thought the sentiment was quite appropriate for the New Year.

My lovely teamies have some really beautiful samples to show you over on the Challenge Blog, so do pop over and have a look at them. I'm just off to put the kettle on. Still got a drop of cream left over from Christmas, so I shall have a final seasonal indulgence and put it in my coffee. Back on the diet tomorrow!
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