Sunday 31 August 2008

A Day out with Hubby for a Change

Back in May our daughter bought us National Trust Membership for our birthdays and until yesterday we hadn't had time to use them at all. So we said that come Saturday we were definitely going to give them an airing and having done a bit of searching the NT website we decided on Fountains Abbey at Ripon, Yorks, not least because we could combine it with calling on our daughter's little family in Harrogate afterwards.
Well, we certainly couldn't have made a better choice for our first use of the membership. The Abbey is the most fantastic place. It is beautiful, magestic, atmospheric and steeped in history way back to the 12th century. The grounds are stunningly beautiful with a mix of formal water gardens and informal parkland.
I have to say our feet and legs are suffering a bit today (because we are so unfit) but it was well worth every twinge and I for one can't wait to go back hopefully in about a month's time when the leaves have turned.Here are a few photos from the 100+ that I took. I'm not a good photographer but I would think it's nigh impossible not to get something worth showing from such a special place.

The image below is the West Range but in the monks time this would have been partitioned.

This is a view of the Abbey from Anne Boleyn's seat. It's a bit of a steep trek to get there but well worth it.

I couldn't resist these lovely wild flowers which reminded me of Elusive Images Wild meadow stamps.

And finally few doorways and archways I loved. The cistercian architecture is quite severe but beautiful nonetheless.

Saturday 30 August 2008

There's Something at the Bottom of My Garden.....

I thought I was away with the faeries when Glenda Waterworth of Graphicus, Elusive Images and Artylicious fame asked me and two other lucky 'bloggers' to aide and abett in her latest blog candy giveaway. Obviously, I said I would be delighted and set about composing my post, only to find I have a computer gremlin which is not allowing me to show the beautiful Gossamer Wings Themeplate. However, if you're reading this WHEY! YOU'VE FOUND ME! and if you click on Artylicious you will be transported to Glenda's faeryland where you can see the lovely themeplate and some wonderful inspiration too. Just leave a comment here before you go to have a chance of winning the prettiest blog candy ever. The winner will be chosen by a random number generator.

Wednesday 27 August 2008

Another 'Birdday' Card

This is another of the 'Birdday' cards I made for a work colleague using the same products as the previous card plus some stitch effect stamps from a kit I bought from QVC when I first started card making about 2 years ago. I think it was a HOTP kit.
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'Birdday' card

This is a card I made for a work colleague's birthday. I nearly didn't buy these birdy stamps from Elusive Images 'cos I don't normally do whimsical but I'm glad I did because the recipient loved the card. As usual, I've used my favourite products, i.e. Graphicus Glimmer Mists, Elusive Images Stamps and Artylicious backing papers and I added a little fantasy fibres.
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Friday 15 August 2008

Graphicus Guild June ATC Swap

I'm trying really hard to catch up on my posts even though I should be catching up on my ironing...LOL! Anyway, these are the two ATCs I made for June's Graphicus Guild swap. The first one is untitled and I used a Glimmer Mist background stamped with an image from Elusive Images 'A Thing of Beauty' themeplate using chalk ink pads to stamp and the same pads and a blending brush to colour the image in. I then covered the image with a strip of fine mesh. I attached a thin strip of the Glimmer Mist basecard to the right side edge with pearl brads.

The wrap is made from a piece of ivory pearlised card, embossed with a Cuttlebug background design, then brushed over both front and back with a selection of chalk ink pads. Finally the sentiment from the same themeplate as before was stamped onto a scrap of the base card, the edges torn and inked and some fibres tied to the left side 'hinge'.

This second ATC is titled 'Pocket Full of Posies' and again I used a Glimmer Mist base card. I used a piece of anaglypta washed over with Moonshadow Inks (must try this with Glimmer Mists) to fashion a little pocket with expanding pleats at each side.
The chipboard paisley embellishment was made at Glenda Waterworth's (Graphicus) Glimmer Mist workshop earlier this year. As usual with my terrible memory, I can't remember what we used but I think it was Adirondak paint dabbers.
I stamped four flowers from Elusive Images Big Flowers themeplate and coloured them in with chalk inks and blending brush, cut them out and shaped the petals a little. I layered and attached two over a scrap of mesh onto a Glimmer Mist tag and attached one to the ATC base and one to the pocket. Finally finished off the tag with some fibres and put the tag in the pocket.
For some reason when I posted the photo of my stationery and box last night the notecards appear to have been stamped back to front. I took two photos, just very slightly different and one has the notecards the right way round and the other (the one I used) is wrong. I'm completely mystified but just so everyone knows they really were done properly I'm posting the other photo. Gremlins in my camera or computer? Weird!!!!
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Thursday 14 August 2008

Glenda's Stampbord Challenge

Oh boy! Two posts in one evening. I didn't think I would have time to enter Glenda Waterworth's challenge for some lovely new bird stamp sets from her company Elusive Images as I have had a very hectic two weeks - Mum's 80th Birthday, my Son's Wedding and visitors staying over. Then I remembered a card I made a little while ago using her products and Stampbord - what better combination can you think of?
The base card is obviously pale blue and after stamping a border of peacock feathers from the Elusive Images Peacock Glory Themeplate I then attached a piece of backing paper printed from an Artylicious CD (sorry can't remember which one without going through them but they're all fabulous). I traced over quite a lot of the printed design with Sakura clear Stardust pen. I then used masking tape to hold nine 1" Stampbord squares together whilst I used various ink pads (Encore and Versacolor I think) to create a background. Over this I stamped the large peacock feather square from the same themeplate as before using black StazOn and used a scratchtool to pick out the areas I wanted to highlight and lastly I used Gold Ecoline Liquid Watercolour to brush over specific areas. When everything was dry I removed the masking tape and placed the squares onto two layers of Glimmer Misted backing card (one with dark blues and one with pale) leaving a small space between each tile and narrow borders round the outside before adding this to the card.
To complete the card I added two strips of navy twill ribbon down the left hand side, added a double knot of gold ribbon to one strip and (shame on me) peeloffs to the other.
I think this card would be quite appropriate for a man. Hope you like it.

A Birthday Gift for a Special Friend

A little while ago I noticed some lovely little sets of drawers on Glenda Waterworth's post about her gorgeous craftroom/studio, one of which she said she bought from TKMaxx. I duly took myself off to my local branch not expecting to be able to find the same set of ceramic drawers but I did find a couple of other items in their clearance section. One was a lovely black box (with plenty of chips) with a hinged lid inlaid with a frosted glass panel. The other item I hope to be able to show you at some later date.

I decided to repaint the box with vinyl emulsion and I then stippled patches of Brilliance Ink in Coffee Bean and Galaxy Gold (and one other colour I can't remember). Because of the shape of the box I knew I wouldn't be able to use an acrylic block so I got rather messy using my fingers and tweezers to stamp images from the Elusive Images Delightful Damask Themeplate. I also knew I wouldn't be able to get a pristine image so I didn't try and ended up with a lovely distressed look. Finally I lined the inside bottom of the box with some lovely dark red velvet paper.

To complete the gift I used the same stamps to create some 'Just a Note' cards and envelopes and a selection of papers printed from my Artylicious Damask Delights CD to make notelets and envelopes.

I was really chuffed with the result and I think my friend was when I gave them to her last week.
Once again I have used some of my fabulous Graphicus and Elusive Images goodies - I LOVE 'EM!