Tag Archives: Challenge

Happy Thoughts

Its been a crazy few weeks.

First I decided to sort out our den a.k.a our garage a.k.a the room where we stuff everything we don’t know what to do with. It had become a hell hole and I could no longer bear to go in there, which was less than convenient because, you know, there was stuff down there. Useful stuff. I was sure it was there, only I couldn’t be sure because I couldn’t find it. You know how it goes.

Anyway. We cleared it out and by the time it was done, well, there was space for me to invade with my craft stuff, which meant more room for crafting in my den a.k.a one of our bedrooms.

Then there was a visit with the grandchildren and a worrying time with a young member of the extended family in hospital – fortunately now home again and recovering nicely.

When I got back there was the usual round of washing and ironing that you always end up with when you’ve been away.

Finally, I stopped moving – and it occurred to me that I hadn’t blogged for simply ages. So I thought I’d catch up by posting these happy journal cards I made while I was away. I actually made these as an entry to the Win & Tonic challenge for June.

I like making journal cards, they’re such a cute size to work with and when they are done you can use them in so many ways – in your planner, on scrapbook pages, as card toppers or pop them in the post as happy mail to a friend.

And I absolutely adore finding inspirational quotes. Happy quotes. Words that make you smile when you read them. The world is too sad. I like happy thoughts and when I find them, I want to share them.

Flowers

I made these three as a set, because the quotes seemed to work really well together and because I love sets of anything!

I cut a journal card and an ATC for each, then smudged the edges and layered them.

Butterflies

I die cut embellishments to complement the words.

I printed the text from my computer and smudged the edges of the cut pieces, sticking them with double sided tape and dimensional spacers to add depth.

Beauty of Dreams

I kept the colours fairly soft and kept the splashes of sizzling pink to a minimum. I really wanted a dreamy look to go with the words.

I loved the way these cards turned out. They make me happy every time I look at them. In fact, I love them so much that I think I shall make a wall decoration with them.

Happy Cards
Journal Cards

What do you guys think?

Big crafty hugs – Sandie xx

 

Sizzling Summer is finally here – if only I was on Tonic Island!

Yes, the sun is shining and the temperatures are soaring, and those of us still in Blighty are sizzling hot and wondering why the weather always leaves us unprepared, come rain, hail or heatwave!

If only I was on Tonic Island, sipping a cool cocktail and listening to the sound of the surf, instead of land locked here in the mid country, enjoying the dubious pleasures of our unpredictable and unreliable climate.

Tonic Island
A postcard from ‘Tonic Island’

But speaking of Tonic Island and all things related to my favourite purveyor of crafty treasures Tonic Studios , leads me on to … *drumroll* … I WON the Win & Tonic Challenge for May!  Cool, huh? Check out my fantastic prize here.

So right now, I want to send a huge thank you to the team who runs the fabulous Win & Tonic, and if you haven’t checked it out yet, you should head on over and maybe play along, its lots of fun to join in.

I love this month’s challenge, which is: Colour – hot colours, Technique –  anything goes, Product – any flower dies or punches, Theme – a card for a girlie or lady (my favourite cards to make!) 

So to get started, I took a basic yellow card, which I think looks pretty summery. The textured card stock I chose to cut my shapes from is shocking pink – and you can’t get much hotter than that!

I wanted to try one of my fabulous prize dies, so I chose Flora. I wanted to use all of the cut pieces, so I made a pocket using the lacy cut-out.

Just so you know, this die was a dream to use, and only required one pass through my Big Shot. There were four in the Essentials Collection that I won: Ada, Constance, Evelyn and Flora. They are all gorgeously lacy and ultra feminine and cut through card stock supremely well.

Next, I stuck the ‘negative’ cut of the die to the top part of my card. I wanted to use all of the pieces I had cut, and I had one little trim left. On my desk I found a small trim left from when I tried out Evelyn, and I’d cut it in sizzling orange cardstock – how ‘hot’ is shocking pink and vibrant orange? I stuck my trim down and placed the small pink trim over the top – voila!

June Entry 2A

I really wanted to cut a flower out, so using some thinner card stock I cut 6 layers of flower shapes in two sizes. I punched a hole in the middle of each and smudged the edges using a red ink pad. Then I spritzed them with water and scrunched them up! Oh, how satisfying that was!

When my petals were dry, I joined them together with a red brad and placed them slightly off the corner of the card. Almost done, but not quite.

June Entry 2B

I cut a journal card from hot pink and yellow and layered on a sentiment from the latest Tonic Design Collection. I cut a tag using the free die and stuck it to the journal card. Using the free embossing folder I made a Happy Birthday panel and popped it onto the back of my journal tag.

Now I’m done! Best of all, I have a bright glamorous friend who will love to receive my sizzling hot summer birthday card!

What do you think guys?

Big crafty hugs – Sandie xx

 

 

Flipbooks and snail mail – what’s that all about?

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So I got interested in snail mail. I know. It’s been around forever, but then there was email and then there was Skype. There was messaging and of course, What’sApp. Yada yada. So I forgot how to write. Shameful, isn’t it?

Then one day, I happened across Puddleside Musings – have you visited yet? Oh, you really should, its a lovely website filled with all manner of crafty loveliness. And Emma at Puddleside Musings LOVES snail mail. She was writing about flip books and they were just divine little books that you make from cards and envelopes and other stuff and you fill them with goodies. I just couldn’t resist.

Emma has this whole snail mail thing going on with penpals, who swap flip books and pocket books, all stuffed nicely with journal cards and washi tape and other good things.

I’m not sure I can ever really go back to Snail Mail, now that I’ve walked on the dark side. But the great news is, flipbooks are fun to make and just as lovely to give, so making them is a win win. Writing letters is optional. 😉

Flipbooks, also known as pocket books are little books full of pockets just waiting to be filled with crafty gorgeousness, or photos, or anything that can conceivably be stuffed into small pockets and put in the post.

You can watch Emma’s video here, it really inspired me to try making my own first flip book. She makes them appear to be quite easy to make and they really are. I’ve made several now and I am quite hooked!

Here are some photos of one I made for my lovely sister. We are such great friends and she’s been a fan of snailmail forever, with little treats turning up in the mail for me at unexpected times, so it was nice to return the treat with a flipbook full of tags and other crafty loveliness. I also thought it would be a nice project for the Win & Tonic Monthly Challenge, so I used a palette of neutrals all the way through the book – I love how it turned out!

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Flipbooks are often made by creating pocket pages from envelopes, I used cards and envelopes but I wanted more pockets, so I made small envelopes to use on the other pages.

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I also used shapes that I cut from dies and simply turned them into pockets by sealing down on three sides.

I filled my pockets with tags, journal cards and die cut shapes that I thought my sis would like. Then I added some washi tape samplers and a card of ribbons.

I popped a handwritten note into the first pocket inside and tied the whole book up with a pretty ribbon. Then I popped the little package into the mail and waited for the reaction! I have to report that my sister was delighted and will be able to use all the little goodies on her own projects.

Now, who shall I make one for next? 😉

Till next time – big crafty hugs – Sandie xx

 

 

 

Pretty Little Treat Boxes

Blue Box
Box: Ultimate Pro; Die Cut: Tonic Studios

I love a pretty gift box, don’t you?  So much fun. My two examples here are easy peasy, one is super fast and the other takes a little more effort but the effect is stunning.

The challenge over at Win & Tonic this month calls for an Easter Treat Box. Well, Easter is over but there are plenty of excuses reasons to make a cute box, and with spring teasing us with blossom and sunshine amidst sharp winds and cold frosts, why not break out those spring colours and make pretty treats for our nearest and dearest, even if we can’t put away our winter warmers just yet.

So first up, I made a really quick little box using my Crafters Companion Top Score multiboard. This cute little gizmo boasts that I could make a box in minutes and indeed I did. Dead easy to make – just scoring and folding – and my little box would hold some little chocs very prettily.

I decorated my box with a beautiful shape that I cut using my Tonic Studio Treasured Token mini envelop die set. The shape was exactly the right size, and I backed it with sparkly pink card to make the design pop out.

Green Box April
Treat box with cutouts, using Tonic Studios crystal carousel die set

Next I opened up my Crystal Lantern die by Tonic Studios and made a six sided box. I cut out the sides using two of many optional cut out dies accompanying the main die. I finished it with a layered flower on the top and a double tag that I cut in matching spring colours. The card stock I used was Spring Fest by First Edition. The colours are gorgeous.

You could use this box for all sorts of little treats and they look so pretty on a table for special occasion treats. I made some at Christmas for table presents after dinner.

Little gift boxes are just so much fun, to make and to give, because who wouldn’t appreciate a small gift popped inside a pretty box that has obviously been made with love? There are loads of dies out there for making pretty boxes, but the simple ones made with a few folds are just as effective.

Hope you all have some fun making pretty little treats.

Ready, Steady, it’s the Easter Egg Hunt!

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I made these cute bags for my grandies for their Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday. We love having them here for their annual chocolate chase, the faeries are sure to have hidden them lots of little surprises – but what should they collect them in?

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Nana to the rescue! In my craft stash I happen to have a stock of Kraft Lunch Bags – they make great personal gift bags and can be put together in a matter of minutes.

I got to work and using my Tonic Studios Harrop dies I cut out a large scalloped rectangle to decorate the front of each. I cut two large ovals for each from my new Mixed Edge Oval die set, also from Tonic. There are 13 dies in the set, with alternating scalloped and plain edges, so they will get used over and over, but the shape made them perfect for this project.

I finished each mock-choc egg with a ribbon. Some cut bunnies using a gift die from Papercrafter Magazine, and the name, cut using a Sizzix Thinlits alphabet set, finished each bag.

Cute huh? So easy peasy and they take no time at all. So cute I decided to enter them in the Anything Goes Challenge over at Win & Tonic.

Big crafty hugs – Sandie

Why is it so hard to make cards for guys?

Male Card March 24Anyone else have this trouble?

I’m a girly girl. I love hearts and flowers. I buy shoes, more than I need. French perfume? Yes please. Shopping? Till I drop! Another handbag? Bring it on! Ask me to make a card for a guy? Whaaa? I have no clue.

So, I had to make a card for a man, because I resolved not to buy any cards this year! Clearly didn’t think that one through.

But it turns out, I’m pretty pleased with what I made. In fact, I was so pleased, I entered it into the Win & Tonic Challenge. If you’ve never been over, check it out guys. Its a lot of fun and the prizes donated by Tonic Studios are simply fabulous!

Kraft card seemed a good start. Then I chose some paper from a gorjus paper pack that looked masculine to my eye – not a trace of pink in the pack.  My Tonic Harrop Card Blanks dies came out again and I cut a base layer out of some brown stripe. Then I used one of the dies from Tonic’s Delicate Drape to cut a panel to layer on top.

I cut some tags to layer in the centre, and the top repeated the base layer, with the stripe in the other direction. I embossed this with  Just For You.

Male Card Cropped
Tonic Emboss Die from Delicate Drape Set

Finally I used some brads I had for scrapbooking. I thought they looked great incorporated into my card, so I’ll be using more of my scrapping stash from now on.

Inside I’m going to put another panel and pop a gift voucher inside.

Way to go me – I managed a boy’s card! Now, where’s my pink paper stash? 😉

Big crafy hugs – Sandie

Die Cutting Anarchy

Bird CardOK, not so much anarchy, just a bit of thinking outside the box. Literally.

I decided I just didn’t want all of my die cut image on my small greeting card. So I cut it off. I like the half off the page look when I’m scrapbooking, so why not when I’m card making?

So I took my die cut off the top of the page and cut it carefully with my paper trimmer. I smudged the edge with a well worn ink pad, to give it a bit of finish.

Then I did the same with two of my bird die cuts, and placed them off the vertical line to add interest. The other bird I left intact, but edged the top off the page, after carefully making certain it would still fit in the envelope!

I made the extra long banner by cutting the die off the edge of the cutting sandwich. Its a technique I saw someone else doing. I am not so good at it yet, but I’ll improve, I’m sure!

I used some three dimensional fabric paint to trim the filigree fence. It will take hours to dry, but its pretty. Note to self: get some Tonic Nuvo Drops, they make a nice drop shape. 

The dies I used are all by Tonic Studios: Tangled Terrace, Garland Terrace and Beautiful Banner. I entered this card into the challenge over at Win & Tonic. Check it out!

Have fun today

Big crafty hugs – Sandie x