October 2008


been busy with the cards again today.. i’ve been experimenting with apeture cards and embossing onto parchment paper, which works rather well. i may well make some more of these. I got an embossing pen through the post today from Sez, as well as some sparkly embossing powder. The pen means i can draw freehand onto paper, sprinkle embossing powder ontop and then apply the heatgun and it will pick that up, i’m no longer restricted to the stamps, which is way cool.

my favorite card of the four i made

my favorite card of the four i made

Number of cards produced now stands at 26.. the rest of the cards are behind the cut as usual. not sure how much more i’m going to get done over the next few days. I’m running a bit low on double sticky sided tape and i can’t really afford to get any more until next wednesday (when i next get “paid”). may have to try just making toppers and things till then.

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back to christmas card making today, but today, i wanted to have a little play, so i decided to make a batch of cards that were all 100% my own work, no using pre-made toppers, no using recycled christmas cards.. all from scratch.

I pulled out the two bauble stamps i had from Artemio and inked them up, red and silver first, creating a series of stamps on some cream card. I cut them out into rough squares, allowing the ink to dry, while i created some purple and silver ones, and some purple and gold ones too. Then, while the purple ones dried, i stamped a snowflake stamp into some clear embossing ink onto the bauble, covered with embossing powder, shook off the excess, then applied the heat gun till the pattern “took”. i did this for all the baubles i’d created, then created another set of smaller cards with a stamp saying “have yourself a merry little christmas”. To do all these, cut them out and apply the corner punches took around 4 hours – i did 5 large red and silver baubles, 5 small red and silver baubles, 3 purple and silver large baubles, 3 small purple and silver baubles, 2 large gold and purple baubles and 2 small gold and purple baubles (i.e. 10 altogether).

Once that was done it was a case of selecting background paper, cardstock and the process of putting the card together. from start to finish, these 10 cards took around 6 hours to create. Exhausting, but worth it. The results are behind the cut, as always.

Card production total so far: 22.

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i finally knuckled down today and made my first batch of christmas cards this year (not including the parchment card i made the other day). i did 12 today, which is pretty good going, given that i’m out of practice. I started with the easier ones – using toppers i already have, recycled card etc., so it’s simply a case of putting existing elements together. As i start to run out of these i’m going to have to start making my own, using things like stamps, embossing ink etc., which increases the time necessary to create each card, but that’s okay. At this point i’m just trying to build up a good collection of cards ready to take with me to the fair (and, no, i’m NOT putting pressure on myself, mum, so stop worrying).

i spent yesterday working on a new handbag. Made with the same material and style as the tote bag i made a few weeks ago, its not quite finished – I’m doing some stitchery to go on the front of it – but when it is, i’ll post photos. I just can’t move to finishing it all off till the stitchery is done, and that i shall be doing while i watch the box tonight.

Photos of the cards are behind the cut. Note about the photos: I’m using Mum’s camera to take the photos, which has a very powerful flash – so powerful it sometimes obliterates the card (not helped by tendency for christmas card to have shiny bits to them, thus reflecting the flash. argh!). I’ve experimented today and the best way to take them seems to be from an angle. this does make the card look a bit wonky in some cases, and changes the colour in others, but can’t be helped. In addition, most of these cards have layers to them (raised layers i mean) and a few have material that is very tactile (I’ve used felt in some cases), and this doesn’t translate to photographs well either, the luxuriousness of it. but for all that.. enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚ Behind the cut, as usual.

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When i was shopping in Ashton last week, i got talking to the owner of the arts/crafts shop i was in (Rooky Crafts), and he mentioned Parchment Craft. when i put my clueless face on, he promptly showed me the most incredibly beautiful pieces of art I’ve seen in a long long time. Of course, i was itching to have a go for myself, and while i don’t fool myself i can get up to his standard (i haven’t the equipment for one thing), i did want to have a go. And this morning, i did.

my first ever attempt at doing something like this...

my first ever attempt at doing something like this... more photos of the card (including some closeups) can be found here

Its not bad for a first go. the image in the middle came from a stencil, and i definetly need to practise working with the embossing tool. I do need some supplies, really, to go a lot further, but given i’m under something of a deadline, i’m not sure whether i should leave this till after christmas and learn that craft then. To give you some idea of just how stunning this kind of art can be (and how poor mine is in comparison), take a look at the links below.. Its not to everyone’s taste, to be sure, but i think they’re gorgeous.

Christmas card / thankyou card / Rose card / lily card / lace card / lattice card / flowers / birthday card / Geisha card / mother’s day / parchment fan /

if you’d like to know how to do this for yourself, then some links below to tutorials..

card crazy tutorial / Splitcoast tutorial / Parchment craft magazine

I’ve rather a backlog of nature photos. I’m just posting the ones that i think are the best: there are more over on flickr. To avoid cluttering up the page, they’re behind the cut. [Mum, feel free to look at these, there’s nothing xmas-present related here.]

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It seems to be the time of year for cards. not only christmas is a-coming, but i’ve made two more recently, which i thought i would share here. The first i made just this morning, for Michiel’s sister who is moving house this weekend:

congratulations card for Michiels sister & Family, who are moving house

congratulations card for Michiel's sister & Family, who are moving house. The leaf is real, the shiny part created via embossing ink/powder.

the second was for a friend who just turned 21. I’d have posted this before but i forgot to take a photo before i put it in the post, so my friend kindly scanned it for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

birthday card for a friend. The pebblestones were recycled from a card sent to me earlier in the year.

birthday card for a friend. The pebblestones were recycled from a card sent to me earlier in the year.

I’m also struggling once more. I think I’ve caught this at the beginning of the trip down, rather than at the bottom (where i usually catch it), and its definitely not been helped by not getting enough sleep. I’ve started to try to rectify the sleep issue, which is helping some, and i’m just focusing on trying to get stuff done. I’ve done another stitchery for a bag, i’ll post a photo when the bag is complete. I’m running out of embroidery thread though! Focusing on making sure i do something every day helps, but at the same time, i am aware that i’m struggling – and that’s why i’ve gone quiet. I need to stop that though, and work it out, even if i don’t post my feelings here, i do need to write it out. I always feel better when i do.

I’ve always admired Rhonda Jean’s stitchery over at down—to—earth, and long wanted to try it – but never had anything to try it on. However, the tote bag i made changed all that, and since the handles on the existing tote bag aren’t quite long enough for me to be able to wear it over my shoulder with my thick coat (if i put my arms through the handles with a normal coat it fits fine), i’ve an excuse to make another one. (Like i really needed an excuse, but there ya go). Because of the way in which these totebags are made, the stitcheries have to be done first, and attached to the pocket, so that’s what i’ve had to do, and tonight, i made my first stitchery. Not bad for a beginner, i think! So of course i had to share here..

first ever stitchery ive done...

first ever stitchery i've done...

Longer post coming tomorrow, with the promised nature photos…

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