Saturday, 27 November 2010

Mad week! Mammoth post!

I'm very happy that since my return to Blogger from the dull world of Wordpress I am much more inspired to blog and actually REMEMBER to do it now - who would've thought a nice blog background would make such a  difference! When I have some spare time it's on my list of things to master just to make my own from scratch but that will have to wait in fairytale land for now I'm afraid.

Don't forget you still have until tomorrow lunchtime to do the blog hop!! We've had loads of entries but we have loads of candy to give away so make sure you get on it!

Well, what a week!
We had a Create & Craft show on Friday morning - up at 5.30am to make sure I was actually alive by 8am kickoff. Luckily I was with Leonie Pujol who is such an angel, I feel like I've known her for years she's such a sweetheart. We met for tea the night before and we didnt stop yakking for 4 hours! Kris was with us and he had a headache in the end lol.
So I've spent the week prepping demo's and making some extra samples for the show. I tell you, peeps, I really go through the mill for these shows. Kris tells me my TV demo's are way too complicated and that I should show simpler stuff like the other guests do, but the answer to that is - I don't want to, and I don't see why I should compromise what I do for the sake of TV and lack of time. So it takes me DAYS to prep for a show. On average I would say I spend 3 days each time. We always have to have extra demo's up our sleeve just in case but generally I know I should get 3 or 4 done on the show. The other thing for me is that because we have CD's to show you round I have much much less demo time. If we have a stamp set to sell we can show you that in 1 minute - but a CD can have up to 4000 images - so we usually have to allocate about 10 mins to viewing the CD from that hour. Hence why we always run out of time.
I know this is a real bone of centention for a lot of viewers but the answer is there, pure and simple and there's not much we can do about it, it's not because of the presenter, or the producer, it's all to do with sales at the end of the day. I love to show you as much as I can and how to use the products but if you don't buy them then it's all a big waste of time - Create & Craft can't operate on a charity basis and heaven knows how much it costs to air an hour of TV so although we all try and be as educational as we can be, we all have to remember it's a shopping channel and the UK craft industry would be a much tinier place without Create & Craft and the other side. This is an argument that always gets me a bit because I see it from both sides. I used to have a bricks and mortar shop and we would get people coming in wanting us to show them how to use stuff they'd bought from TV. Well, you wouldnt go into B&Q for a new lawnmower then go into Sainsburys Homebase and ask them to show you how to use it would you? I mean, you just wouldn't! And it's the same thing! But sadly, some crafters think they have the god-given right to do so! So the independent craft shops get hacked off - usually it has to be said, you won't know they're annoyed because generally most of us are nice and shopkeepers always want to keep their customers happy. As did I, particularly when I spent an hour demonstrating a cricut machine for that person to come back a few days later telling me they'd bought it online for £10 less. Grrrr. Gerroutta my shop I think whilst smiling ear to ear with a Bet Lynch grimace!! (so please think on if you find yourself doing something similar next time you go in your local shop!). We need the small independent craft shops and here at PD I bend over backwards to support them as much as I can - I always tell people to buy locally if they can, it's in your own interest to do so! So if your local shop doesnt stock PD products then ask them to!  Personally, as far as I'm concerned, we all need each other. I need you to buy my products so I can make more to (hopefully) inspire you to make more things. You need me to bring you new stuff so you can buy it and make nice things. I need Create & Craft because it gives me the platform to reach a vast majority of you at once. Create & Craft need me to bring the product and need you to buy it. And so the big cycle goes on - we ALL need each other. And that's how things grow and develop and get better. If we all look back at the UK craft industry 15 years ago it was a very very different place. Tiny, fragmented, old fashioned and hard to find. And then came along QVC and Dawn Bibby.  I feel sorry for Dawn Bibby sometimes, I think you either love or hate her work. But for me, the fact remains that she was fundamental in developing our industry over the past 15 years and we should all give her credit for that. I, for one, would not be sat here typing this if she hadn't inspired me all that time ago, at the time she was a real inspiration to me.
OMG this has turned into a rant and it wasn't meant to be LOL!
Anyway, I suppose all I'm trying to say is be nice. We don't all like the same things and wouldnt it be boring if we did. I always try to think about things from the other person's point of view when I can. You should especially do it when it comes to craft. A few petty things have happened over the past week which have cheesed me off and I sometimes wish I could shake my fist at people haha - so this was my opportunity! Next post I may well be ranting about piracy and copyright so beware!

Anyway, what I really came here to do was to show you some of the sample cards I made for the show and tell you about the new stamps!  We have 3 brand new sets of unmounted rubber - Be neighbourly, Garden Neighbours and Sensational Sentiments. I launched these on Friday morning and we sold out in 25 minutes so I presume you all love them as much as I do! I couldn't stop creating gorgeous little scenes all week and I think I only took 3 days to prep because really I was just immersed in a good old playtime!

This card was made using the Garden Neighbours stamp set, but also uses some of the flora & fauna from Be Neighbours too. I just adore these little houses. Sentiment is from the new Sensational Sentiments set.

This week the lovely people at Kuretake sent me some of their Zig Art & Graphic Twin pens and although I knew these existed I'd never used this particular Zig set before - I am in LOVE with them! These are watercolour pens which are double-ended and have a brush tip and a really fine tip for detail - much finer than on Aquamarkers so it's a bit easier to fill in that detail, especially when working with small stamps which the fauna ones on these new sets are. The pigment in them is completely lush and these will be my watercolour pen of choice from now on I think. The only other pens I can compare these to is Tombow which I have also tried but never actually bought because they are pretty expensive but I am sorely tempted by the Zig A&G and I will definitely have to get more!

I also use Aquamarkers and also love them but the brush end on the Zig meant I could just swamp my stamps with the colour - all the little trees etc were done this way. Now, in the past when I've used this technique of colouring direct to the stamp it hasn't worked very well and the quality of the pens is testament to this. I also took white Prima flowers and also coloured them with a wash of the same colours to totally co-ordinate the embellies. The button is one I made myself from granite Fimo and I found a couple of pins in my stash, sorry I can't remember who these are from but they were in a pack with little crochet flowers and are adorable.
I really love this card, it's one of my favourites I've done with watercolours, it's not my favourite medium because in the past I've always struggled to get a result I was truly happy with.

Now here is another sample I made - very simple and quick this one. This was coloured with Promarkers and uses the Garden Neighbours stamps here. The scallop decoration at the top is using the Sensational Sentiments stamps. I like the simplicity of this one, I have a feeling I may be about to go into a "clean, contemporary period"!! These stamps are some of my all-time faves I think - they're so forgiving and you
can make up the scenes in minutes, I really am blown away by how well they turned out.
Now, here is another one I totally love.  On this scene I actually made the sentiment the focal point and then
added all the other elements afterwards...
Again this is coloured with Promarkers (nothing will part me from them, although I do have a small selection of copics but find the brush is too big for me to work with) really make the sentiment "pop" I added an IG3 shadow around the edge to make it look 3D...

Now, if you know me well you will know I am a huge lover of grunge and distress but I just never get chance to do it any more because Polka Doodles is pretty cutesy! So I decided to make a distressy card but I'm really not happy with it - it's amazing how you get rusty on techniques when you don't do them for ages! Good job for me that I'm going on a fantastic Tim Holtz workshop in February and I shall immerse myself in filth for the whole day I can tell you!! Hopefully it might help me create something better than this old tut,but I think I may have just rescued it with the embellies hopefully!!...

I started to paint with some mica but changed my mind hence the weird blue roof, but I wanted to share it so you can see that even us so-called "experts" have bad days lolol!!...I'm not proud, me...
This is another watercoloured version, this time using Aquamarkers, really soft washes on this one...

Now, I really love this card. Have you checked out all our East of India ribbons on the website yet - omg they really are to die for! East of India is hard to get hold of because they are very fussy who they supply so I'm pretty honoured that they're allowing us to stock their lush products - and boy, are you all liking them or what! Restocks galore, the ribbon is the biggest selling ribbon I've ever had in the shop and I know that when you get it home you will just be stroking it to death. But PLEASE use it, it really does make your projects extra special...

here I doubled up the sentiment, so the card actually says "sending lots of smiles your way just because you cant have too many hugs or laugh too many times". 3 sentiments actually, not 2. I adore this new sentiment sheet, soo versatile and I think it'll be a firm fave for some time...
This time I coloured the images with Bruynzeel watercolour pencils which I've had for ages, thanks to the lovely Amanda Bateman who did me a swapsie for a CD last year! They are in my "speshies" place and they just gave a lovely soft glow to the images. Beaut. Like I say, I love this one, I used kraft card for the sentiments and put it through my Martha Stewart Iron Gate punch then stamped on top to tie the 2 circles together.

OK, so you know how sometimes you just get really inspired by something?
Well last week on Twitter Peppery Apple asked me how she would colour in an image in black because you couldnt see all the lines when you did it.
So I decided to show you and this was my main demo of Friday's show - I loved it so much when I made it I had to share and I knew you all would love it too - and you have, so here you go...

...awesome, huh? even if I do say so myself...

The lovely people at Letraset loved this image so much they are donating me some goodies to giveaway with a tutorial I'm going to do for this very card. If you saw Friday's show you will know how to do it already but if you didn't there will be no repeat because it was a sellout show so check me out here next week as I'll be posting a step by step video for you and giving you details of how to get your hands on some lovely candy. Right, that's me done for my mammoth post, time for Chicken Tikka Rogan Josh and some X Factor!! Enjoy your weekend! xx

Friday, 19 November 2010

Whoop Whoop!! It's Blog Hop time!!!

I've been looking forward to this, I've never actually been in a hop before so it's all rather exciting!
Firstly, I want to welcome all the new teamies and Guest teamies to the Challenge Blog this week - we're very excited to have them all on board and I can't wait to see the inspiration they all offer up! yeehah! If you applied for the team check out the new members - we have loads of news and inspiration this week!
Over £400 of Blog Candy up for grabs and nabs!!!

Now, if you've never done a blog hop either, here is what you need to do for ours.  Hidden on the Polka Doodles Design Team blogs are letters which make up a special word - you need to visit each blog and collect the letters then leave your answer in the Comments section on the Polka Doodles Challenge Blog under this week's post
Make sure you leave a comment on each blog page you visit because 10 of us have BLOG CANDY to win - but you MUST leave a comment to be in with a chance of winning that bloggers Candy! In theory you could win 12 times! And to win you MUST leave the final word on the main blog too! Easy peasy!(the comments will not be published and will be moderated so there can be no cheating or accidental cheating LOL). You have until 12noon GMT on Sun 28th Nov to complete the Hop.

As well as winning all the fabulous Candy, you can also take advantage of a special offer over at the Polka Doodles shop - enter the code HOPPITYHOP10 and you will get 10% off your order (only applicable during the blog hop).

Now, if you've reached this blog from Fliss's blog then you're in the right place! And the next place you need to go from here is back over to here to leave your final answer - after you've found my letter of course, which you can find further down the page!! (you didn't think I was going to make it easy did you?)...

So this week on the Challenge blog we've chosen the theme Give Thanks. This has double meaning at the moment because it's Thanksgiving in the US next week, but it does us all good to stop and say thanks now and then I think...

...this sentiment design just popped in my head the other night while I was on Twitter so I decided to draw it and I've given it to you this week as a FREE DOWNLOAD - if you're entering the challenge then you need to use the download on your entry. I hope you like it (you can change it if you want to for the challenge)...
Here's the free download....(this is a .PNG file & will take a second to download)
and here is what I made with it...

I printed the download onto Kraft card (aren't we all just in love with that at the moment!) and then I did faux stitching using a paper piercer and a white Sakura pen around the text to add some definition (I just realised mine is pre-coloured brown but I made yours white so you can colour it how you wish). I then layered randomly cut strips of polka dot and kraft onto an 8 x 8" card to make the background. The sunflowers and leaves are from Sundae of Seasons and the button is one I made myself from Fimo when I was in a bit of a button frenzy a few months ago. I love using string on cards and together with Kraft it gives a nice rustic feel. I then just added a little bit of bling with gems and Liquid Pearls. I recently bought the We R Memory Keepers Sew Easy tool and I wanted to use that but to be honest it only really works well on paper, not card. However I did use my WRMK Rotary blades to cut the scallop edges - again you have to really press hard to make it go through card but I really like it, nice and handy and a lot easier than faffing about with a big rotary trimmer or having to change blades on a hand rotary.
I was going to send this to someone in the US to let her know I was thinking of her as she's going through a hard time at the moment but I didn't realise Thanksgiving was so close - I don't think it will get there in time but I'm going to give it a go!....

....And here is my Candy to giveaway - 2 CD's, 2 stamps, 2 ribbon packs, 2 Dewdrops, Prima Daisies, Bazzill Giant Brads and tape - all worth almost £60!
And the letter you need to complete your Blog Hop word is *P*!

So I have a really really busy schedule at the moment which is a bit of a pain considering that I keep getting these flaming cluster headaches which knock me for six for the whole day because I end up having to take Imigran. So I'm getting further and further behind but I think I must thrive on a good deadline!I'm back on Create and Craft on Fri 26th at 8am (ungodly hour, means I have to get up at 5 - and thats IN the hotel, if I had to drive down I'd be setting off at 2am!eek!) and I'm excited because I have some lush new products which will be launching...sneak peeks...

...tee hee, ok it's a really really sneek sneek peek, but you'll have to tune in at 8am on 26th to see these beauties, I think they will fly out and we don't have massive stocks - even the DT havent had their mitts on these, I've only just got them today myself and I can't wait to have a good play.  So it's been a busy old week on the news front but I think I'm all newsied out now for a while at least! As always there is tons of stuff going on in the background which is all very exciting but that will have to keep for later dates!  So enjoy your blog hop and have a great weekend and a positive week! See me here in a fortnight to find out if you won my candy or not!! ttfn xx

p.s. Don't forget you have to leave me a comment below if you want to win the Candy! x

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Lovely day...

I had loads of "stuff" to do today - stuff which meant actually *leaving* the house, wahey!!

Anyone who knows me well knows I am stuck here most of the time and being a lazy mofo I dont go out much. I actually pretend it's cos I'm such a workaholic but it's not really,it's cos I cant be bothered to do my hair. My hair is the bane of my life. It was great in the 80's and 90's when I sported a curly bob aka Madonna and Cybil Shepherd without trying. People actually used to come up to me and ask where i got it done, fawning over the loveliness of my curls and ringlets. And roots. Serious. It used to make me blush it was so embarassing. But then I met the OH and he hates my curlytop and being blessed with curls is not something I ever relished myself. I didnt eat crusts until I was 18 cos my grandad always said crusts make your hair go curly and I didnt want any more.  All my life I've been trying to straighten these locks and the longer it gets the bloody curlier it gets! Yes, my hair is freakish. But today I GHD'd within an inch of my life (it takes me about 30mins to do my shoulder length locks, can you believe that grrr). I'm not a pamper puss me, as you can probably tell.
Anyway, I had to go to the opticians to pickup my new gegs. They're not much different to the old ones it has to be said but I do like 'ems...narrower sides and anivory colour on the inside, as opposed to my lovely Prada's...
these are 4 years old now (bad bad girl I am) and it was nice to see they were still in the shop and were the most expensivo ones they had (nice as in it made me feel better that I hadnt wasted my money 4 yrs ago!)! The newies are DKNY and were mucho cheaper. I dont go in for labels or designer, I just pick what I like but 4 yrs ago was prob the only time I will ever be able to afford anything Prada ever!! So I'm hanging onto 'em and if I win the lottery I might get the lenses updated. Yes, I could've done that instead of newies but it was almost as much to do that as getting new ones and I fancied a change.

Anyway, so after impaling my leg on the dumbass tailbar on the back of the car which I always forget is there, I headed off to the office to sort some stuff out, namely samples and a few bits and pieces to send off.
And I rooted this little cache of stash out...

hmm...what is this you might ask?? This is a sneak peek of something you could win...
...starting this Friday over on the Polka Doodles challenge blog we are hosting our first ever Blog Hop

You need to check in on the Polka Doodles challenge blog on Friday to find out what you need to do and what you could win - but basically you can win over £400 worth of goodies! Whooooop whooooop!!
As this is our first Hop we're going to town - no miserable little free digi image here from us - over £400 worth of stash and 13 different chances of winning!! It's going to be FABULOUS dahlings!!

Anyway, on with the day...I got back home after sorting all my errands out to find a pile of post...and at the bottom of the pile was a card envelope...
with the sweetest little wax seal on the back which said *hugs*....

so I was wondering who it was from...I've been getting loads of samples from the Design Team through the post this week as we have some new products about to launch... I opened the envelope (sadly broke the seal which I was mad about)...and inside was this...
a lovely pink and girly card from Josie using one of my Fairy Stamps.
...Just Because...
she wanted to make me a card to tell me how much she loved the stamps and felt inspired.
....Bless! And that made my day SO special, right there, in that little moment when I opened it up and read what she'd put. Thankyou so much Josie, it was such a sweet sweet thought and I love it. 
I love how sometimes you can do the smallest little thing and it can affect someone else's life in a huge way. And you did that today, Josie, you made me feel all warm and fluffy inside, bless your kindness 
for taking the time out of your own day to make me such a lovely card.  I didnt think I knew Josie but it turns out I know her from Twitter which made it even nicer to know who it had come from!!

And now she's inspired me to do the same - I never make enough cards for me any more and now I'm determined to make more of an effort. I actually designed this stamp ages ago just for this very purpose...
and it's one of my all time favourite sentiments. I will use it over the next week. A lot!

Right, I've rambled enough for one day! See you back here Friday for the blog hop! (forgot to say watch out for a special offer connected to the hop too, it just gets better and better!!)


Thursday, 11 November 2010

Oh Em Gee...

Today is EPIC for me. Anyone who knows me well probably thinks I'm not the most patient of people. At least, with people that is anyway. It's slightly unfair because I can have the patience of a saint so long as I believe that person genuinely deserves it. If I think you're yanking my chain or being awkward, forget it, my patience breaks like a brandy snap and I'm outta there, usually leaving a barrage of expletives behind me!
But then there's the other people who genuinely need my help. And I will honestly persevere to the ends of the earth if you genuinely need me.
And then there's days like today. Epic days. I remember one day our very glamourous tutor discussed the word tenacity with us. At the time none of us had heard it before and I know as a petulant moody 16yr old I thought "and where the hell am I ever gonna need to use that!". Well, today my tenaciousness (impressed?) knew no bounds and it paid off. After trying to master something for the best part of a year - well, I havent actually been doing it for a whole year but on and off I've tried numerous times and failed - I finally managed to create a proper animation all by myself. Ok, and with some online help maybe. But seriously, you cannot underestimate what this means to me - 10 hours I've been sat here working on this beaut, I just pray next time I need to do it I remember how the hell it works!!

And all to tell you this...

Starting on 19th November and going through to 28th we are hosting a fabulous Blog Hop. We will publish what you need to nearer the date but there are over £400 worth of goodies up for grabs so we think this has to be one of the best blog hops EVER! Make sure you checkout for more information and make sure you join in - there are loads of separate prizes on offer so everyone has a great chance! xx

Also - make sure you grab the blinkie below for your blog!!

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Design Team call!

We need new teamies over at Polka Doodles challenge so please see HERE for details x

Ooohh I forgot!

Totally forgot to add this to my last post - make sure you checkout the Polkadoodles challenge blog over the next 2/3 weeks - we will be giving you deets of our Blog Hop later this month and we have a massive £400 worth of candy to be won, so PLEASE PLEASE don't miss out!!!

Also, watch out as we will be posting a new Design Team Call in the next few days! eek!! x

A bit of catchup drivel and dribble...

Finally managed to get my pics off the iphone (turns out the hub isnt working properly so it hasnt transferred them for like, MONTHS). So in the hope of making this blog slightly more interesting than the old one and actually having a few piccies here we go...
I've been playing around with Instagram and Hipstamatic this week - I downloaded Hipstamatic weeks ago after my friend Clare recommended it, she took an amazing pic of her dog on a beach near Brid and it was sooo atmospheric...turns out she used Hipstamatic so I've been dying to get my mitts on it ever since. Not entirely sure which one I prefer - I like Instagram because you can choose loads of different colours for the mood lighting and I havent yet found that option on Hipsta but then I've only taken a few pics so it could be just me. I'm rapidly becoming a right old techno duffer after years of being ahead of the game. Definite signs of senility setting in.
Anyway this lovely piccie to the right is my gorgeous man Mr Doodles (as the delivery man once called him & it's stuck, so funneee!). You can see how Hipsta has shaded all round the edges of the pic so the focus is really around the main image - not sure how I managed to get him off centre as I would swear it wasnt when I took it but in the end it worked out good cos it's applied the shade down the side of his face and he looks even moodier now. This is one of my fave pics of him now I think (could be cos he's wearing his Fishtail Parka & we all know how those make my eyes twinkle lol!). So to give you an idea of what these 2 apps do, here are a couple of other minging pics of my big fat sausage fingers showing off my fave ever ring...

This is the first - taken using Hipstamatic - you can see how it's
slightly brighter and definitely a clearer pic. Note how it makes
my hand look like it's dead and all vampirish...maybe it will
attract Stefan from Vampire Diaries to come and take a look...
a girl can hope...

This one is using Instagram - more of a greenish hue but you can
take your pick from about 10/12 different hues...

...and this is the other Instagram one - see how different it looks, kinda glowing...this would be great if you have a raging hangover and look
like death warmed up I reckon...

...So I shall continue playing with these 2 apps you can get them from the itunes store or just google them, Insta is free but Hipsta is a huge £1.19.

So, Halloween.  I adore Halloween and I really really hope it gets as big here as it does in the States. Sadly I fear the Bah Humbug culture in the UK will stop this, there's always someone ready to put the kaibosh on everything isnt there. We live bang next to a Primary school, but we seem to get hardly any trick or treaters. Then one year we had LOADS and I was shamed into not having much to give so I swore it wouldnt happen any more. Don't get me wrong I give the teens a stern look and tell 'em to get lost when they turn up but when all those little ones come a-knock-knock-knocking in their little skeletons and monsters and witchy wings I can't resist, they're just so adorable! So last year I made some awesome cones for the sweets and carved a couple of pumpkins. Of course, this set a bloody precadent and later on in the night loads of people came round (adults mainly lol) to see the pumpkins and we left them out a few days so the little kiddiwinkles could see them on the way to school. I could hear 'em from up here oohing and aahing bless their little witchy winklepickers.  So of course I had to do them this year too...hilariously, I actually had to SCHEDULE myself to make sure I did them as we had a C&C show on the Sunday and I was a bit stacked out, but I set aside the afternoon and got started.   3 craft blades later and hands like Ed Scissorhands and this was the results - those little ones were ace to cut but the big buggers were like flipping granite, my carpel tunnel raged up for 24 hrs in protest and I couldnt make tea cos my fingers took on a life of their own!

...was quite proud of myself really. Then some b*st*rds (sorry for the language but it's deserved) went and nicked the 3 "Trick of Treat" ones off the windowsill. I have a feeling it was some stupid teenage girls who I didnt answer to (well, if they will come after X Factor has started what do they expect!). I will get you next year you witches, I'm gonna mix wee and honey and smear them with it - Victory will be miiiiiiine mwaaahaha.

New bootage.
Anyone who knows me knows I am a total shoeaholic and always have been since I was a little kid. I remember my mum going ballistic missile (she was a bit fiery when I was a kid) cos I brought a note home from the head teacher who had overheard me bragging that I was going to get a pair of platform 2" heels. She made the mistake of telling my mum this was not appropriate for a child of 8. I think she really underestimated how much verbal diarrhoea she was going to get. Of course my ma had no intench of ever buying them for me and I knew those lovelies would never be mine as we didn't have a lot of spare cash for such frippery back then, but me and mum used to just like "window shopping" through the catalogue and writing a list of the item numbers we were going to buy in our dream lives where she'd won Ernie, whatever that was. I remember Mum being so livid she was acsh going to get them just to spite the teacher, but I was always very aware of things as a kid and I told her I didnt like them any more cos I knew she couldnt afford it. I don't think she will even remember any of this now but I do, quite clearly, and I remember those platform espadrille wedges with their lovely silky red, blue and pink ribbony ties...swoooon...
Anyway these beauts here were only £20 from Evans and they actually fit me which is a miracle. Boots never fit my elephant legs and feet. About 6 years ago I fell in love with a pair of Destroy boots which cost a complete forch and I just HAD to have them. They were way too small but I wedged those tootsies in and almost got the zip all the way up. I woke up at 3.30am on fire, desperate to get them off before I had to chop my feet off with a blunt axe - believe me when I tell you wearing new boots IN bed is not a good idea ladies - although it did stretch them a little bit but I will never forget thinking my feet didnt acsh belong to me any more.  I still love those beautiful boots but my cankles wont even allow me to get them on any more. Sigh.
...I quite like this card. This is one of the samples I made from Sundae of Seasons CD. This CD is my favourite one so far and to be honest I am struggling to know how to better it at this moment in time. I love all the images of baking and cooking and housey stuff, but I struggle sometimes to wonder how to put other ranges I've seen into a card. As crafters I always think WE know what it's all about and the inspiration behind our creations, but let's face it, most of the people we give our cards to really don't "get" it a lot of the time I think! So when I do make a card I always try to think "If someone gave this to me would I "get" it? And so when I design I try to make sure there are always sentiments that match if I can. The only thing I'd change on this card is to make the apron from fabric and the tops of the jars from fabric too - I may have to make it again as now I thought of it it will bug me till I do!
...and here from the same Summer Season on the CD is another card - you can tell I made this the same time can't you, same papers too hand, I'm suuuuch a lazy crafter!! Love the little bear and he appears throughout the CD - very cute but not in a "fluffy" forever friends/popcorn kinda way which is just too sickly sick for my tastes. Watch out for more of him, I think he will appear again sometime!

Ok, something a bit September we launched a small range of plastic template called Template everyone loves the Paper Boutique Series so much I decided to do the mylar templates for people who love my designs but aren't into CD crafting, or who just prefer to have the plastic instead of printing templates all the time.
There are 15 in the range and hopefully they're a little bit different to all the others that are on the market.  Most templates, I find, are so overly simple and I think they are completely overpriced for what they are. There's no reason for this other than needing the imagination and having faith that the customer will know what to do with it. As a real crafter I always want you to have more than one use from a product I design and this is the ethos behind everything I do.
This Poinsettia pop-out can also double up as a flower pop-out as well and it's done in a way that you have the template to just make stunning flowers - so 3 uses in one!
I love this project. This is a notelet/card folder I designed for a card class a few months back and I also used it to demo on C&C as well. This is so versatile we've actually done 3 or 4 different versions of it at class now, you can make it adapt in lots of different ways and despite looking really complicated it's such an easy thing to make.
All the papers here are from the Love and Cherish CD
(I think, eek!).
Apologies for the crappo pics with the pooter in the background!
This opens out and I made 2 little pockets and some small notelet cards and envelopes inside for a little pressie for someone. I like to make cards which are a gift, I'm not mean but in our family we don't go in for loads and loads of pressies and it means I can give something without making the other person feel bad they didnt get me something back.

Ok, this is my last post today, I've bored myself let alone anyone reading this mammoth sesh, but I had to show you my little friend here. A very lovely lady called Louise made this cute little fella for me ages and ages ago, bless her!! I think I'm becoming well known for loving anything owl, wonder if I shall die being known as that mad owl-lady!! hahah! So thankyou Louise, I love him and he sits on my desk next to my screen.

Right thats it from me now - are you still alive, or come to think of it, even awake???

Ahh well. See ya then zzzzz