Thursday, 31 March 2011

Absolutely the LAST chance! Sale-a-brate with me by 9pm TONIGHT

I'm writing this on the go, so I'm not even sure if I can get a new pic in! Will have to see what inspiration I have stashed away on my iPad photos. I'm between Peterborough and Port Augusta now, having enjoyed some stunningly lush outback scenery on the drive from Sydney from all the flooding rains earlier in the year.

The reason for the post, a gentle (or not so gentle) PROD to remind you that the current Summer Mini catalogue ends TODAY! So does the Sale-a-Bration promotion, which earns you a choice of four FREE stamp sets for each $100 spend. The Summer Mini has been with us for four whole months, so please be sure to check it out one last time to make sure there isn't anything in it you thought was a permanent item from the main catty (link in the sidebar if your hard copy isn't handy) I know I have to look twice to realise that items such as Well Scripted and the Square Lattice folder that I've been using so often are from the mini. I'll miss them!

I'll be placing one more order tonight (just after 9pm AEST) so if you'd like to tag along with a last-minute item or two, you'd be most welcome! Email or text is probably best, phone coverage is a bit variable: 0403 175 790

Seems I can't get a pic in right now, but I found the one I wanted, which reminds me to YELL from the rooftops that the ORNAMENT PUNCH , missing in action since last November is BACKKKK!!!! All quality issues ave been thoroughly investigated, so it's a good time to make sure you have this versatile punch in your collection.

Been so long you can't remember which one it is? LOL! Google is your friend!

Take care, chat some more later!

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Gift Box Class - Tuesday evening, 19th April

My upcoming class is for an elegant and useful box full of gift cards.  The class will be held on Tuesday evening, 19th April 7.30pm - approx 9.45pm.  This date is during school hols in NSW, so organise your other half to do some kid-wrangling and take a little break!  This box of cards is a useful item to have on hand, but would also make a thoughtful gift for lots of occasions.

The picture above shows the prototype, using some retired colours and papers.  During the class you will learn how to make the box and lid from your choice of  a range of cardstock and Designer Series papers.  Next, you'll make embossed 10 cards to fit inside, using paper and cardstock colours to match your box.  Instead of stamping sentiments and greetings directly onto the card, you'll stamp a broad selection of greetings which can be attached as needed, so you'll always have the 'right' card.

Class cost is $25, and includes all materials, instructions, coffee and cake.   Bookings and pre-payment are essential as spaces are limited and to allow for kit preparation and ordering of supplies. If you have to cancel for any reason I am happy to provide you with your kit so that the box and cards can be made at your leisure.  Please call 9484 9447, or email me , RSVP's appreciated by Sunday 17th April.  Location is North West Sydney, details provided on booking.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Time is running out - Sale-a-brate with the Summer Mini

There are just  a few short days left to order items from the current Summer Mini catalogue - it ends on March 31st.  I'm driving to South Australia to teach a stamping workshop at a fabulous retreat, leaving next Wednesday morning 30th, but I'll be able to access my email on the way, and my mobile is 0403 175 790  - text messages will be best, as coverage is patchy in lots of areas along the way.  Sale-a-bration also ends on the same date, 31st March, so check out the great selection of free sets with each $100 you spend, from any catalogue, mini or main.  

The card above is made from one of the sets in the mini, "Grunge Rock" , 122055, just $35.95 in woodmount even!  It didn't grab me at first, but then I kept seeing great cards being made with it, especially for men and teenagers  - two of the hardest groups of recipients, for many cardmakers at least. The purchase price is about 6 or 7 cards from the shop, so it will pay for itself in no time!!  This one started out as a straight CASE of one of the cards that leapt off the page for me while browsing the gallery for this set over on Splitcoast stampers.  Imagine my surprise and pleasure to see it was made by Rachel Capps , another demonstrator on the Inklings team.  I see Rachel has the quote "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery" on her blog header, while grabbing the link, so I hope she likes my version of her beautiful card.  Since I am on a grungy bent at the moment, I couldn't help but get out the distresser tool and do some ripping and rolling, and add some linen thread that I roughed up.  I added a second guitar, mainly because I couldn't decide which colour to go with....

Another item I've used on this card from the mini is the MUST HAVE!! Square Lattice embossing folder for the Big Shot.  This is, without doubt, one of the folders I have found to be most useful of all the designs I own (and there are lots, trust me!!)  It looks great for male, female, vintage, clean and simple, works fabulously with the inking technique and more.    Just $15.95, 119976, page 17. 

So, don't delay, have a little retail therapy session, and cross a few things off your wishlist!

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Stampin' Crop Day - some vacancies!

This Saturday, 19th March is the date for my monthly Stampin' Crop day.
It's a casual, social day, designed for you to bring along whatever projects you would like to work on - cards, scrapbooking, off the page, non papercraft even!  I provide my extensive collection of stamps, inks and tools, and my creative genius (splerk!*) is at your disposal for advice and ideas.

It starts at 10am, and runs till 5pm, and I provide a light snack style lunch, bottomless tea and coffee, nibbles and heaps of inspiration.  BYO basic tools and materials.  There are limited places available each month, but there are a few vacancies for this Saturday.
The cost for the day is just $15.00, so if the idea of good company and some quality crafting sounds good to you, give me a call on 9484 9447 to book a spot.  Beginners and new faces are always welcome!

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

(Plenty of) Elements of Style - Happy Birthday Ryn!

First, let me say that assignments are IN.  I was very good and refrained from procrastinating further until today.  Always plenty to do on the ole' to do list, but I do enjoy slipping in a cosy blog chat amongst the more mundane :)

My downline team member and good friend Carolyn, known as Ryn to many shares her birthday with me, along with lots of other things in common!  It wasn't possible to meet up on the day, as our schedules have become busier than ever lately with work, uni and other commitments.  But, we met for lunch yesterday at a T2 tea shop and enjoyed a yummo selection of high tea goodies with steaming pots of Earl Grey  (yet another taste we have in common!)  It was lots of fun, and I wished we got a chance to be decadent like that a little more often!

Anyway, here's the card I made for Ryn, using the Elements of Style set.  Again, this card started out as a rescue project, so I can thank Barbara (yes, the same Barbara who provided the beautiful rescued watercolouring in the post just before this) for her exacting standards.  This time it wasn't a wayward punch chomp, but a slightly wonky greeting.  Four words Barb, Stamp A Ma Jig.  But!  Never mind, it created material that I was keen to put to good use.  It involved a lot of fussy cutting, but I was very pleased with the result.  I chose colours from the crayon watercolouring used, Old Olive and Blushing Bride, and recycled a distressed piece of Confetti Cream cardstock from a previous stamping session. Ryn would be proud of me - she's big on minimising waste.  I stamped the same flower sprig onto the scrunched Confetti panel in Early Espresso ink, and mounted the cut out watercolour paper image over it with Stampin' Dimensionals.  I curled and distressed the edges of the other layers, and used my new punch, Pinking Hearts along the right hand side

(be quick for this punch - it's in the current mini, ending March 31st, and I'm not sure about it being available again until at least September)

The base of the card was stamped with the Bella Toile background in Old Olive ink, and I used an offcut made into a pennant shape to stamp the Birthday Wishes greeting from the Level 3 Hostess set Occasional Quotes.  I used an Antique brad to attach a scrap of Blusing Bride twill ribbon to the pennant, and slipped it behind the Confetti layer.

As a final touch, I got out the Crystal Effects dimensional lacquer, and dabbed glossy accents onto the flowers.  It takes a while to set, but gives a beautiful raised shiny finish to a special card for a special someone.  Happy Birthday Ryn!

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

A very special Get Well - Because I Care

Hot on the heels of Elements of Style comes this Get Well card for a special friend and mentor.  It also uses the easy watercolouring technique of watercolor wonder crayon with blender pen.  First, about the card itself, then a bit about it's recipient...

There is a slightly amusing tale behind this card,  it's what I call a 'rescue project'  One of my lovely customers, Barbara, does beautiful watercolouring, and was busy using her new crayons with the blender pen.  Her gorgeous hydrangea blossom from the Level 1 Hostess set was beautifully coloured, trimmed into a panel for the card she was working on, then laid aside.  However, Barb was in driven production mode this Stampin' Crop day, trying to complete some projects before needing to leave earlier than usual.  A few steps later, she grabs a scrap of Very Vanilla to stamp a greeting on, and duly punches it out with the Scallop Oval.  Oops...  The punch monster had left lovely teeth marks in the coloured flower image on the other side of the 'scrap'...  Into the rubbish tub it was tossed, and Barb got on with making a replacement.  No!! you can't throw that away, I'm sure you can do something with that!!  So, it was handed over to me as a challenge of sorts.  And here is the result!  I stamped a second flower on a piece of Naturals Ivory card, and coloured with the same colours Barb used.  I trimmed around the damaged section, following the outlines of the hydrangea bracts, to create a new, slightly smaller layer to create dimension with.  The change in cardstock colour from Vanilla to Naturals Ivory adds to the shading and depth.  Bet you can't tell where the oval scallop bite is now!  I also rescued one of the leaves and overlaid it on my stamped image, and made one for the other side for balance. 

The card sat like this for a few days, with the matching greeting from the Hostess set, but then the ideal opportunity came up to complete it.  I added a Soft Suede background stamped with Wonderfully Worn background in matching ink, then layers of Crumb Cake and Blushing Bride.  Blushing Bride twill ribbon was wrapped around the base, and I had an idea to try the ribbon ruffle technique.  I wasn't sure how the diagonal weave would go, but thought it was worth a try.  Instead of creating a nice straight piece of gathered ribbon, the ribbon naturally curled and twisted, and I could quickly envision a ribbon flower.  A few stitches of thread later to secure the ends, and my twill hydrangea accent was done!  A few adhesive half back pearls from the Jewels Basic Pearl pack to the main image and the centre of the ribbon flower complete the card.

A special card, for a special person - my upline and mentor Jayne Mercer.  Jayne is currently recuperating from surgeries for gallbladder removal after a nasty attack last week.  Get well soon Jayne, now it's our turn to return some of the kindness and care you offer all your team members.  Pop on over to Jayne's blog if you'd like to leave a message for her, I'm sure it would make her day

Now, what's this - two longish posts in under a week,  how could that be?  A dose of procrastination perhaps?  Hmm, that would be true - an assignment on the Skemp theory of relational vs instrumental mathematical instruction awaits, as well as a critical analyis of some educational psychology papers.  But the ideas have been percolating while I warm up my typing fingers, and I'll finish them before I return to more pleasurable writing tasks, pinky promise!!