Tuesday, 10 November 2015 did you see Karolyn's cards?

 I know, I know, you saw already...well maybe you didn't, but we had Karolyn Loncon of Paper Therapy blog guest designing with us recently. I 'met' Karolyn online back in 2010 when she captured my attention with her crisp, clean style. Everything she makes looks so fresh to me, it's a style I admire and would love to capture myself. Karolyn is one of my favourite blogland folks, I'm a great lurker on her blog, she has terrific style, the sort of lady whose arm I'd be twisting to help me decorate my home, if she lived a bit closer... I adore this navy and coral floral card - and if you click on the card image you can go to Karolyn's blog post and read about how she created this beauty.

These were some of the wms products used on Karolyn's cards:

This Christmas card made me swoon, LOVE how Karolyn floats the snowflakes in behind the vellum there... click the image to see Karolyn's blog posts for these cards. Aren't these beautiful!

Sunday, 1 November 2015

... Simple shawl for Fall/Autumn

Been knocking up this little shawl in the car, while I'm waiting for folks to come out of school, dentist, badminton... etc.  I can't always get good phone coverage to catch up with emails etc and frankly I can't even be bothered to try stamping in the car....

Pleased with this, it's crocheted in a Stylecraft yarn - Life DK in the Denim shade, they have it here at Love Knitting - must confess that I have yet to purchase from Love Knitting so I have no clue what the store is like to shop with, but they seem to have it at a good price at the mo.

I used three 100g balls of yarn and began by making a chain of 60 stitched plus 4 extra. the stitch is Shell Mesh stitch and that requires a chain in multiples of 12, plus 4 extra stitches. I crocheted the entire of the 3 balls of yarn, joining with a knot as necessary and my shawl ended up 72 inches long by 16 inches wide. I seem to crochet with a fairly loose tension, and I liked how drapey that makes the shawl feel. The yarn is quite soft, but has a 25% wool content so some folks (my little dude) might find that a little itchy, but I find it quite cozy. I liked the denim shade because I live in jeans, it's not too dressy-uppy. There's not much place in my lifestyle for cashmere I'm afraid... It's also well within my price range, the shawl working out at around £6.00 to make.

To make the shawl, I just crocheted back and forth doing the shell mesh stitch - there is a slight pattern to that stitch, you make a shell on alternate rows in alternate places and in between there is a chain row. It's really simple once you start, but if you like the look of this, do check out this video - this lady seems to be doing the exact stitch that I used.

Hope that tickles!

Thursday, 22 October 2015

...It'll get easier...they said...

I'm not even going to write you a big excuse as to why the blog has been empty for two weeks, I'm just going to say one word and I know you will understand. Children. Not complaining at all, they remain the most perfect, sweet smelling, delightfully grinny little fluffy angels that the Big Man above ever created (present company excepted) but they sure know how to induce a heart attack keep me on my toes... which is grand... that's what I'm here for... breathe... "Hello is that Mrs Brennan? Can you come to school? Your son has passed out/your daughter is ill/there's something living in his schoolbag..." breathe. Also it takes a day and a half to track down a decent looking cowboy hat in Northern Ireland.... gap in the market?

Meantime, back at the ranch, this sorry excuse for a card had been hanging around the desk waiting to be put out of it's misery. It was only after I had finished (because, by Jove, I was determined to finish at least one blasted project this week) that I realised how dreadful this card actually was... poor Moose got hung by his horns without a hint of grounding, and as DH says "Warm winter wishes? You wish me a season of dead moose?..."

Yep this card is my lesson for you on how NOT to put a card together....

1) Choose a sentiment that actually matches or relates to your focal point...
2) Decide what you want the focal point to be before you assemble the card... Tip - 3 focal points on one card don't work.... unless you are a genius stylist such as Melissa Phillips and can combine different elements with aplomb....
3) While it's tempting to use card fronts/bits and bobs you already made up for another project, just because you are pushed for time... Don't. Unless it already matches. Turns out rusty orange Moose (Mooses? Moosiae?) and blue snowflakes don't really conjure up that Christmas/winter vibe....
4) In fact, if you are feeling mojoless, or really tight for time - so tight that you don't even have time to turn the handle, just once, on the die machine - Give up. Walk away. Leave it alone or risk the curse of the poor winter moose.

 If you happen to have some rusty moose hanging about (see what I did there) and are desperate to recreate this horror for your own edification, you could use these items that I also used... I can assure you that these items are all terribly well behaved of their own accord and only get into trouble, such as above, when I am 'just not feeling it'.... Chat soon. C.

Friday, 2 October 2015

...It's not what's under the tree...

Happy Friday Afternoon!! SOOO glad to see Friday this week, how about you? What are you up to - plans? or just a quiet weekend - well I have a date with about 536 other Coffee loving blog hoppers, the Fall Coffee Loving Hop is still on, but only just - you've only a few hours left. Here's the link.

I'm going to 'try' to get around at least some of them over the weekend, I've seen glimpses and it looks like an amazing hop!

I desperately wanted to case this card by Joan Bardee, Joan has away with a CAS card and this card spoke to me of peace yesterday when I needed peace. Isn't this fabby - must pop back over, see what ink she used...get some....

Well I decided that I wanted to make my own plaid and so I dug out the Pic Nic Pattern set, it has two neat plaid maker stamps, I used the narrower one and stamped some plaidy type patterns, loved the pumpkin spice and green plaid and so I went with that. I did stamp the stag image from Rustic Christmas (just released) but I baulked at the orange stag and went with the tree image instead. I used my plaid as a narrow outer border. I cut out the middle section and I'll keep that for another project.

One of the things I like about this Rustic Christmas set is the laid back feel - the images are intentionally 'grainy' here and there, and so I thought I'd just play that up by splattering my background panel with some white paint. Instant snow storm. I stamped the tree in Old Olive SU ink onto a tree shaped cut out that I made with my Silhouette Cameo (- free matching cut files available here) and then I sponged a little. The tree was grounded in a drift of white flock snow. Loved that.

Hope it tickles, thanks for stopping by!