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Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Grow a weirdly beautiful garden.

I made this card in May, casing one in Craft Stamper  in the Summer Skies article in June 2015, and I sent off a photo of it to the magazine but I never heard a thing, so I guess it is safe to post it now.
The background was made by heat embossing clouds in white on watercolour paper before painting the paper in blues and lemon blending together to make green grass. My clouds stencil is pretty primative, I need a different one I think.

Then the background was stencilled with distress inks using Bundled Sage. The same JOFY flowers were stamped on white card and the heads coloured before cutting them out to add to the background. I used the butterfly and words from the same JOFY 11 set, I only have two sets and luckily had the stencil that goes with this set. Some of the stencilled flower heads were coloured with Distress ink in purple. I due cut the shape the words are on to make a blue cloud, using a Spellbinders die and more Brusho splatted card.
The colours you get with just a few grains of Brusho powder is astonishingly vibrant!

I decided to post this now because PaperArtsy have the perfect challenge - pigment powders, and there are lots of tutorials and fabulous examples using Brusho's, and other pigment powders, which I hope to have a go at too.

I have entered the following challenges:
PaperArtsy - #17 Pigment Powders (Sun)
We Love 2 Create - #19 mixed media (Sun)
Left of Centre - no designer paper (Fri)
Simon says stamp - Stamptember, die crazy (Wed)
Sweet Stampin - embossing (Wed 30th?)

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Animal magic of the Quirky variety.

Yes it's reminder time already, you have until Saturday 26th to play along with Lyn's animal magic challenge, and any animals are allowed (birds too).
I think this image and sentiment from one of our sponsors, Bugaboo, is so funny I just had to show you. I've seen Christmas biscuits and stacks of "tins" (well rapidly shrinking plastic tubs these days) of chocolates already in the Coop shop!
This set is called Halloween Christmas Owl Trio, and is a bargain, use it with or without the sentiment.
This is a one layer card.

These cuties have fluttered into the following challenges:
Addicted to stamps - make your mark (Wed)
Crafty Gals - anything goes (Wed)
I love Promarkers - Autumn (Wed)
My time to craft - owls (Sat)
Creative Card Crew - Fall (Tues 29th)
Creative fingers - #93 anything goes

It had to be followed by a Christmas card really, and I used Snowflake Silhouette Reindeer for this card, the image is shadowed with lilac Promarker and covered with glitter film available from Little Clair. I die cut a fancy frame  out of glitter paper using a Spellbinders card creator set, and the words with an Xcut set. I added a gem star and some Crafty Ribbons ribbon.

Hop on over to Quirky Crafts challenge blog to see some more gorgeous examples, and to play along and maybe win a prize from one of our three wonderful sponsors.

This card has flown into the following challenges:
Papertake Weekly - Animal Magic (Tues)
Allsorts - Sparkle (Sat)
Catch the Bug - Sketch Sunday
Christmas Card Challenges - photo inspiration (Sun)
Glitter and Sparkle - #155 Die cuts or punches (Sun)
The Craft Barn - snowflakes (Sun)
Cards Galore - anything goes (Sept)
Digi Chooseday - Monochromatic (6th Oct)

Thursday, 17 September 2015

The house that Cazzy built - fit for Tim Holtz?

I commented on a fantastic project by the lovely Alison (whoops, forgot to link to it - I have now), and she came back to visit me and commented on one of my little houses saying if I could make one in the style of Tim Holtz I could enter it into the monthly challenge at A Vintage Journey, so I thought and I thought, and I thought some more and this is what I came up with - eventually! It has taken about a week to make this, and I could probably still finish a couple of bits off like the drawer inside and out!

First of all I cut a house out in kraft card using the Zing and the 3d Houses file from The Cutting Cafe. I decided to make the house opening so lined it with distressed looking "wallpaper" which is from a pad by Me and My Big Ideas (MAMBI), and all through the assembly I have used my Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher where I could to strengthen the structure in addition to using adhesives. Sadly the plastic spring on the Tiny Attacher keeps coming off - this is a bit annoying as I haven't had it all that long or used it a great deal. I think it was in a closing down sale too, so I can't complain to the seller.

I decided to use one of my brand new (NBUS) bargain dies from Sizzix, the brick wall strip which is an Alterations long Sizzlet style die. I cut out the "mortar" first and knocked out all of the bricks, then cut it again in a few colours for the bricks. Then the fun bit, I added some of the mortar to carefully selected house corners and began to add the bricks (sticking each one with Cosmic Shimmer glue) - this was a lot more difficult that I imagined.  The die didn't cut properly, or at all using the Crossover, and I had to get the Big Shot out, it still didn't cut right through but I think it was because I didn't have the die facing upwards, will try again on the Crossover to see if that solves it there as I was just thinking I could maybe sell my Big Shot when this happened.
Anyhoo - every single brick seems to be different, so finding the right bricks to fit the holes took several hours that evening.......and the next day..... and next evening......! I really think I could have built a real brick wall in the time it took, and then I decided that the chimney would just have to match so many more hours later..... it was like a nightmare jigsaw, or some sort of mad skills test!

I should add that I live in a red brick house, I love bricks. Our bricks were hand made by a small brick company near Brighton, I remember going down there to get a few more when we built the conservatory, but by the time we built my craft room the small company was no longer, or had been taken over, and now it is really hard to match the bricks we have on the main house.

The panels on the outside are draughtsman type house plans by Karen Foster (I thought of Tim and his plans of things), and I tore or curled corners to expose the bricks, after inking the edges of the plans with Aged Mahogany Distress Ink. Also when we bought this house many years ago it wasn't even built, so we saw another one and the plans!
We don't have any top hatted men however, or even top hats here!

The house base is covered in a panel of an old book page cut out with another brand new die (NBUS) - the Confetti Alterations strip die by Sizzix, which is inked with various shades of green Distress ink, then the puddle holes are painted with Sky blue Distress paint, brown Crackle Distress paint in other holes, then Rock Candy Distress paint on top of the dry Sky. The Rock Candy is a new jar (NBUS?) I won in some blog candy from Katy - thanks again Katy, just as well as the little I had was totally dried up!
On the front apex is a NBUS pocket watch charm from That Craft Place, tied up with some Tim Holtz paper string.

I have made a modification to the box base, I hope Regina doesn't mind, I wanted a little drawer in the middle and it isn't brilliant but it works, and is full of treasure! The drawer knob is a children's wooden bead which was green but has been toned down with Peeled Paint distress paint.

The back of the base has a scene cut with a Sizzix on the edge Alterations die called Townscape. At the front of the house the Sizzix Umbrella man is making his way home, I bought a stamp set with him in too and was disappointed to find that on this first time of using both the die and stamp that they are not the same size at all! Never mind I stamped on the die cut anyway, and filled the gap below his knees!
 See the birds stamped from the same set on the house?

I added Black Soot Distress ink to the chimney bricks, seemed appropriate somehow!

Oh dear Umbrella Man looks a bit bendy!

Peeping out from most of the windows are top hatted men, stamped on a background of the paper used inside of course - so that when you look in the windows you will see what is inside (trick)! The stamp set is another Tim Holtz Stamper's Anonymous set, which I don't think I have used before (NBUS).

Doors and windows are cut from wood grain gold card, inked a little and two brads added for doorknobs.

Round the side I added some On The Edge Sizzix Alterations spooky twigs, and some of the confetti as flowers, some inked with Distress ink. This is the sunny side of the roof, grunge paper embossed with a Texture fade and inked as per the Compendium of Curiousities Vol I. The sunny side had to be the chimney side, anyway it is raining the other side - see the umbrella and puddles?

I've added Tim Holtz Tissue Tape to the rest of the edges of the base.

Now the roof, which as I said opens. I realised after the Christmas box, well after I stuck the chimney on and it was too late, that I should have stuck another roof piece on top of the opening piece so that the sides actually match (so I didn't show the photo of the opening side deliberately). This time I have not only added the relevant piece I have added another layer of Grunge Paper, which I embossed with Sizzix Tim Holtz Texture Fade embossing folders, on one side a sunset and the other arrows, the arrows is a brand new folder and I haven't used either before. I used a technique from the Compendium vol I where you emboss Grunge Paper, ink it with Distress ink with the Ink Blender then swipe it with a Distress Ink pad in a contrasting colour. The reason for the extra roof piece - Grunge paper is a little soft and bendy and I wanted it to be strong and last a long time! I searched everywhere for the Grunge Paper, just so I could do the Inking Grunge Paper technique, and finally when I didn't know where else to look I spotted a dusty folder I had missed!

To the roof on the arrows side I added a Tim Holtz spinner (NBUS), and a Tim Holtz File marker (NBUS) which I recently received in Katy's blog candy that I won. It really is a 9 but upside down is a 6 ("cos" I live at number 6), and I can open the roof with it. I added a star button to the game marker - just felt the urge to add something!

I also used a Word Key by Tim Holtz, and the rest are in the treasure drawer.

I hope I can post this to not only show you but enter in two challenges in particular, A Vintage Journey Home Sweet Home challenge, where all entries must have something Tim Holtz inspired included (I think I have managed that lol), but also the NBUS (Never Before Used Schtuff) challenge at the lovely Darlene's blog which is ending tomorrow! Then I need to choose two more worthy challenges very carefully, there is a 4 challenge rule at NBUS and this is so special it needs special challenges! As I didn't win the NBUS and it is over I am ignoring the rule now - because I found another special challenge.)
At the time of typing  all of this Blogger is refusing to let me select any photos and shouting "Error 400" at me every time! I hope I can add the photos to the words soon, or it will be too late! Sorted, but all my cookies are now deleted so I have to put passwords in all over again etc.

I've added a few charms and some treasure gold to the drawer knob and drawer, and a metal button to the end of the knob.While I was looking for buttons I found a wire twist tag that reads "love begins at home" and added that to the number 6. It's amazing the difference Treasure Gold can make, I am happy with my drawer now.
See the two dogs (one on the way to the front door and one by the bricks on the side - looking at the bone), and a bone on the garden for them? We have two dogs at home too.

Challenges entered:
NBUS -Anything goes
Ike's Art - one for the men (Tues)
Pan Pastels Love 2 Create - #19 mixed media (Sun)
Simon Says Stamp - die crazy (Wed)
Country View Crafts - numbers (Sept)


A Vintage Journey - Home Sweet Home (Sept)

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Lyn wants us all to have some Quirky Animal Magic

 So animal magic it is, could be magical animals or just animals. My first card features Hedgehog Flower from one of our great sponsors, Bugaboo over at Quirky Crafts for the new challenge this fortnight.

I coloured him with Promarkers and die cut him and a scalloped panel with Spellbinders dies. I used Papermania Tatty Teddy paper (the blue) and DCWV cupcake paper, added some novelty buttons tied through with Tim Holtz paper string, and some polka dot chiffon ribbon which you can buy from Crafty Ribbons (as well as polka dot buttons). Happy Birthday is die cut using an IO die set that I use a lot.

I used the Papermania paper inside too, a slightly different design still pale blue.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:
Papertake Weekly - things with wings (Tues)
Crafty Ribbons - Happy Birthday (Thurs 24)
Moving along with the times - cute creatures (Thurs)
Left of Centre - die cuts (Fri)
Allsorts - Buttons (Sat)
Pile it on - birthday (Sun/Wed)
Little Miss Muffet - anything goes (24th Sept)

Oh the trouble I had with this card - maybe I will tell you another day - if you want to know! It turned out OK in the end I think.
This image is Charmaine Flannery's We're All Mad Here, from another of our sponsors - Sweet Pea Stamps. She is pretty Quirky I think, do you like her beautiful green hair? She has a crazy cat on her lap (Cheshire cat maybe?), see the playing cards flying round? I coloured her with Promarkers and Graph'it Markers (the turquoise background), and added highlights with paperwhite Sharpie marker. The frame is die cut using two Spellbinders dies, Locking Loops and a rectangle to take out the centre before mounting it on another rectangle. All around the frame I used flat backed pearls in purple, then the first paper pack I picked up was perfect for the colour scheme, it is a Papermania pack of metallic spots and stripes, which dictated to me that I needed silver behind it. The purple brads are silver ones coloured with Promarker, I added lace and ribbon, and the Just for You is one of my brand new never before used dies by Tonic, and it cut very nicely with no problems at all.

I've entered the following challenges:
TTCRD - anything goes Sept 8 - 14
Tuesday Throwdown - anything goes
Crafty Gals - bingo ribbon, hand coloured digi, sentiment (either card fits) (Wed)
Glitter and Sparkle - 154 something beginning with G (green hair) (Sun)
Ribbon Girl - any image (Sun)
Crafting from the heart - #76 anything goes (Mon)
Creative Fingers - #92 anything goes (Fri?)
Coffee, chocolate and cards - fancy and feminine (Sept)
Delicious Doodles - Dark (Sept)
Unicorn Challenges - mythical and magical (30 Sept)

Finally we have one more sponsor, Robyn's Fetish who are giving third prize in the Quirky Crafts Challenge this fortnight. So hop on over to see more Animal Magic and to play along with us.

Sunday, 6 September 2015

Driving home for Christmas..Quirky style

A bit of Chris Rea to get you in the mood!

I thought I could make a whole batch of Christmas treat or present boxes, when I looked for 12" x 12" Christmas paper I could only find a few sheets, and only one was double sided and I wanted the inside of my box to look pretty too!
I used the tall house from the 3d House set from The Cutting Cafe, this time the house is the opening version so one side of the roof opens.
I added the wreath, decorated with gems,  and one of the sentiments from the set with a bow made of some Crafty Ribbons ribbon (I have had it years so you might not get the exact ribbon but there is lots of gingham ribbon available), and a "Christmas" tree from the set which is decorated with flat backed pearls, tinsel, a sequin star and a wooden Santa. 

 On the back I used a Christmas Sentiment Shape tag attached to ribbon  and the house with tiny staples from my Tim Holtz Tiny attacher, the shape is inked with red ink. The door handles are flat backed pearls by the way.

Do you like my snow? It is Flowersoft Polar White which is the only flowersoft I have ever bought. There is even a little on top of the Chimney. 
All of this was cut out with the KnK Zing, I am really enjoying the machine. The chimney top was cut from a tiny scrap left from cutting the house and I had no trouble doing that. The only things cut by hand are the sentiment on the wreath and the sentiment shape which I tried for ages to get into MTC to cut with the Zing - I hate hand cutting. The sentiment shapes lost some of the words when I imported them bizarrely. I still have a lot to learn on the Zing, print and cut remains a challenge to be tackled properly. I found out today from the KnK Facebook page that there is a brand new machine due out which looks very exciting, I won't be able to justify buying it when I just bought the Zing, isn't it always the way, I spent years deciding and finally taking the plunge and buying (don't have as much to spend on such things now I am not working), then a new improved version arrives! I wonder if it will scan and cut?

This little old house is here to remind you that you have until Saturday 12th Sept to enter the Quirky Crafts challenge with anything home related, any project is allowed and we allow a little backdating too if you made something a few days before the challenge started!

Please hop on over to see some amazing projects by the rest of the team!

I've entered the following challenges:
TTCRD - 1st to 7th Sept anything goes
Anything but a Card - celebration
Inspiration Destination - #49 anything goes (Tues)
Simply Papercrafts - #12 anything goes (Fri)
Winter Wonderland - add a sentiment (Fri)
Allsorts - lots of layers (Sat)
Creative Card Crew - anything goes (Tues 15th Sept)
ABC Christmas - R is for Red, ribbon, roof, round the back! (Wed 16th Sept)
Creative Fingers - #91 anything goes (Fri but which Fri?)
Crafting by Designs - anything goes (Sep)

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Home sweet Quirky home - a house at last!

 Finally a little house from the 3d Houses set from The Cutting Cafe. I am getting on better with the Zing than I ever did with the eCraft - hooray, time to celebrate perhaps! I know
 there is a lot to learn yet. The day it wouldn't cut the whole image out - the blade needed setting and tightening, must have worked loose but it took me ages to realise what the problem was.

I used the small house with fixed roof and not opening, I think the opening ones will be lovely little gift boxes and will make some of them I think.

I added some patterned paper cutting with the files in the set, and added mosaics for the front path with glitter grouting, and tiny Prima blooms and dots of Liquid Pearls to the garden. I thought lace round the box base would look nice this time.
Regina - the box base would be great as a drawer so it could hold a gift or additional gift or be for storage.
 Side view.
Back of my house, see the "gravel" path made with microbeads?
I know the ric rac is a bit wrong here, looks much worse now I see the photo.
I would have cut out some trees but while I was squeezing the Cosmic Shimmer glue bottle my thumb suddenly started to bleed profusely from a cut I hadn't really noticed, it is all over the bottle and the blooms bottle, luckily I noticed before I bled all over the house!

This would be a great little gift to give someone moving into their new home.

To join our challenge and win some great cutting files, or files full of printable digi images, or a mixture hop on over to Quirky Crafts with your home related projects now.

I have entered the following challenges:
Anything but a card - Celebrate (Sun)
Crafting from the heart #75 anything goes (Mon)
Creative Fingers - #90 anything goes
Simply Papercrafts - anything goes (Fri 11th Sept)
That Craft Place - anything mixed media (Sat 12th Sept)