Saturday, 22 April 2017


Good afternoon blogging buddies and I hope that this post finds you well. If's nearly the end of the Easter holidays here at Casa Mia, but I'm going to enjoy the weekend!

Over at All Dressed Up this afternoon, it's time to see how the second half of the Dressy DT have inspired everyone using the New Release Images for April. As usual, Wendy has outdone herself with some stunning digis, and here they are:

The new images are Butterfly Bunny (top left), Happy 40/50/60th (top right) - and yes you really do get all 3 images for the price of one!, Pretty in Plaits (bottom left) and Spring Walks (bottom right). The links will take you directly to the image in Wendy's Etsy shop.

I've been lucky enough to play with Spring Walks, and here is my card for your inspiration:

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base - is Centura Pearl Ivory cardstock which I have cut, scored and folded to make a 15cm square card base
  • Design Papers - are from the Crafter's Companion Club Inspire October 2016 Download of the Month Times Gone By. This set of shabby chic style papers is a "card companion" meaning all you have to do is press print and affix the result to your card (ideal if you're card making in a hurry) but all 3 papers come individually in the download too, together with some sentiments and ephemera.
  • Image - is Spring Walks and this girlie and her canine friends out for a walk (perhaps in the Bois de Boulogne 😉!) come from the pen of Wendy Burns, the artist behind All Dressed Up Digital Stamps. I have brought this trio to life using my Spectrum Noir Markers Pens in the listed colours, before fussy cutting them out and adding them to my card.
    • Skin - FS2, FS3, FS4, TN4, FS8 (Blush)
    • Hair - TN3, EB3, EB8, AP4, Silver Gel Pen
    • Top - AP1, AP2, AP4
    • Trousers - EB1, EB2, Blender Pen
    • Sandals - EB2, EB6
    • Small Dog - EB2, EB3, EB6, EB8
    • Large Dog - EB1, EB2, EB6, AP4
    • Flowers - AP2, AP4, CG2
    • Grass - CG2, CG3
    • Outline - BT1
  • Flower - is made from the same Times Gone By paper as the top layer of my card companion. I have used my Die'sire Classiques Delicate Flower die and then bent all of the petals over to give a 3D effect. I have also popped a small silver gem from my stash in the centre of the flower.

Please do head over to the All Dressed Up Blog where you can see all the New Release Images showcased by the Dressy Girls. And when you've treated yourself to this image, don't forget that the Blog Challenge is running until 14th May where it is always Anything Goes with an All Dressed up Image and the Facebook Dressy Girls have their own challenge and the theme until the end of April is Feature a Creature - this image would be perfect!

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:
  • Favourite Colour and Why at As You Like It Challenge - I always seem to have a large area of neutral colour on my cards at the mo, and brown/tan/beige/cream seems to be fitting the bill nicely because these neutral shades tone in well with many other colours, pink in the case of this card
  • Challenge #49 - Easter/Spring at Animal Friends Challenge
  • Challenge #1 - Anything Goes at Crafty Animals
  • Challenge #7 - Spring is in the Air at Daisy Chain Challenges
  • April Challenge - Shabby Chic or Vintage at Eclectic Ellapu
  • Challenge #91 - Your Favourite Colour Combo at Sparkles Monthly Challenge - pink and brown are a classic shabby chic combo and one of my "go to" combo's when inspiration is lacking! I was helped by the card companion here in just the right shades to go with the Vintage AP colours of the girl's top
  • April Showers and/or Spring at Crafty Calendar Challenge
  • Use Something Digital at Di's Digi Designs Challenge - the image and my papers are digital compositions
I hope you enjoy the weekend!

Hugs, Helen x

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Wedding Day Shoes

Hi Crafty friends and hope this post finds you well. I hope that you managed to enjoy some fine weather over the Bank Holiday weekend and a belated Happy Easter to you and yours.

I've been a very bad blogger again, and have been neglecting posting. In truth, Mr Mojo has cleared off and the run-in to the Easter holidays was the usual end of term mayhem at school. Plus, youngest Bambino went on a Geography Field Trip the first day of the hols (10 days in China visiting both Shanghai and Beijing!) so getting her packed and sorted took up some time. Then Papa Mia has taken time off both sides of our Bank Holiday weekend, which has really cramped my style.

Over the weekend, our newest challenge went live over at All Dressed Up and, as usual, our theme is Anything Goes with an All Dressed Up Image Wendy has plenty of gorgeous images available in the All Dressed Up Etsy Store. Haven't got any All Dressed Up images? Wendy has very generously provided some freebies here - please make sure you adhere to the terms of use if you're saving these though, to make sure they're available for other crafters to share!

Here's my inspiration for you:

I apologise for the sub-standard photos - I had to use my phone as the camera was in China 😁!!!!!

My card recipe is as follows:

I hope that I have inspired you to come over to All Dressed Up and join in the fun this month but if you're in need of further inspiration please head over to the blog and check out the lovely creations by my talented teamies. We've also reintroduced our GDT spot, so our lucky winner is invited to join us on a future challenge - this month it's Jeanette, so please head over to her blog and take a peek at her beautiful card. 

Don't forget that the Facebook Dressy Girls have their own challenge running until the end of April and their theme this month is Feature a Creature. And you can combine both All Dressed Up Challenges if you would like to!

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:
  • April Challenge - Anything Goes with Optional Twist of Wedding Day at Dragon's Lair Designs Challenges
  • Favourite Card Base Shape and Why at As You Like It Challenge - this is definitely a 15cm square card base as it's easy to cut layers to fit it, suits different shaped die cuts for images, borders etc. and suits my OCD tendancies where everything has to fit on the card base!!!!! It's also easy to buy commercially made envelopes to fit this size for posting so I know my creation will reach it's destination safely!
  • SOS #299 - A Rose By Any Other Name at Shopping Our Stash - my stash items are both the CD Rom from which the paper came from (issued Spring 2016 I think) and the die I used to make the border which was a magazine freebie (last year too I think)
  • {PIN}spirational  Challenge #188 at {PIN}spirational Challenge - I've been inspired by the lace borders around the eggs and have made my own double edged border using a repeated die cut
  • April Challenge - Girls Things or Girls Rule at Colouring in Scrapland
  • It's a Girl Thing at Come and Get It Challenge
  • Challenge #142 - One For the Girls at Crafting When We Can Challenge

I think that's all for me today - the Chinese Laundry beckons, not just because there are a few piles of washing around the house but youngest's suitcase needs emptying of it's contents! Whatever you're up to today, have fun and I hope you manage some crafty time.

Hugs, Helen x

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

I'm going on an Easter Egg hunt!

Good evening crafty friends and hope this post finds you fit and well. Sorry for my slight absence over the last week and a half - I was covering at work for my colleague and then had a surprise 50th Birthday Party planned for Papa Mia who hit the big Five-O last weekend. You might find you get a "post fest" from me, as I try (desperately) to catch up with everything!

It's the second chance to see DT inspiration using Wendy's March Releases over at All Dressed Up, and here are the new images:

Top left is Flowers for Mum, top right is Clunk Clunk, bottom left is Feeling Spoilt and bottom right is Pretty Bonnet and they are all available now over at the All Dressed Up Digital Stamps Etsy store.

I've been given Pretty Bonnet to play with, and here is my inspiration for you:

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base - is Centura Pearl Snow White Silver which I have cut, scored and folded to make a 15cm square card base
  • Paper - is from a retired digital paper collection by Summer at Summertime Designs called It's a Spring Thing. I've used this pretty Floral Paper.
  • Image - is the very sweet Pretty Bonnet by Wendy at All Dressed Up Digital Stamps. I have brought this cutie and her fluttery friend to life using my Spectrum Noir Markers in the listed colours, before die cutting it using my largest Sizzix Framelits Ovals die.
    • Skin - FS2, FS3, FS4, TN4, FS8 (Blush)
    • Hair - TN3, EB3, EB8
    • Basket - BO1, BO2, BO3, BO4
    • Dress - AP1, AP2, AP3, AP4, GB3
    • Hat - AP1, AP2, AP3, AP4, IB3, BGR4
    • Flowers - GB3, IG1, IG2, CG3, LG5
    • Eggs - RB1, GB3, AP2, CG3, IB3
    • Butterfly - AP1, TN3
  • Banner - is a Die'sire Classique die called Traditional Bunting which I have used to cut the Blue Paper from It's a Spring Thing paper collection
  • Ribbon - is from my stash and I've wrapped some around my paper as well as making a bow.

I hope I've inspired you to head over to All Dressed Up Digital Stamps and treat yourself to this image, but if you're in need of any further inspiration then do head over to the All Dressed Up Challenge Blog where my very talented teamies have made some gorgeous creations with this wonderul images. Don't forget we're also hosting our current challenge Anything Goes with an All Dressed Up Image which ends on 14th April. Our Facebook team-mates are hosting their own challenge 1 - 2 - 3 with an All Dressed Up Image on the All Dressed Up Facebook Page until the end of March, and you can combine your entries with both challenges.

I'll be back a little later to link this cutie up to some challenges.

Hope you have a lovely evening!

Hugs, Helen x

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Carnival Time!

Good morning crafty friends! Can you believe it's the 1st March already? Nor me!!!!!!!!!! I'll be heading off to the gym a little later for my Yoga Class, then we have a Parent's Evening at School with youngest later on.

It being the first of the month, it's new challenge time at Feeling Sketchy. We've got a great sponsor lined up for this time and it's Pattie Gomez from Pattie's Creations

Not only are there plenty of images at Pattie's Creations to suit all tastes, but Pattie also runs a monthly Blog Challenge where you must use an image, and she is even generous enough to sometimes provide a freebie to help you play along!

Here is the sketch we're working with this time as designed by Michelle:

and here's my "take" on it:

I've gone quite topical with this card as yesterday was Shrove Tuesday here in the UK, but in New Orleans it was Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday), so I've used this beautiful carnival themed image from Pattie's Creations to create this card. I envisaged the sweep of the ribbon and feathers on the marsk as being the wavy strip of butterflies on our sketch, which is why I've added 2 further butterflies here. The protruding elements on the flourish dies are in place of the 3 blocks on the sketch.

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base - is black card which I've cut scored and folded to make a 13.2 x 10.5 cm card base ... I know these are very random measurements, but this was the length of the die I've used!
  • Die cuts - are both from my Crafter's Companion 2016 Advent Calendar and I've cut both of them from this lovely Regal Blue Centura Pearl cardstock, available in the Darks Pack. I've added 3 gems from my stash to the ends of the flourishes and also the middle "trefoil".
  • Image - is the wonderful Mardi Gras Mask which comes from the pen of Pattie at Pattie's Creations Etsy Store. I brought this pretty image to life using my Spectrum Noir Alcohol Markers in the listed colours, before fussy cutting the image out and adding it to my card
    • Peacock Feathers - AB1, AB2, TB9, BT7, MB3, CG3, Spectrum Noir Sparkle Clear Overlay to add some iridescence to the feathers 
    • Mask - AB1, AB2, AB3, TB8, TB9
    • Ribbons - CG1, CG3, CG4
    • Outline - BT1

I hope that I've inspired you to come over to Feeling Sketchy and join in with this sketch; don't forget that you can flip or turn our sketch ... we just need to see our sketch in your work, and if it's not clear then just leave us a note to explain! If you're in need of any further inspiration, please head over to the blog and check out the other wonderful creations by my very talented teamies. We'll be back with our new sketch on 15th March 2017.

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Whatever you're doing today, have a great day!

Hugs, Helen x

Friday, 24 February 2017

Time for a Cuppa

Hello crafty friends, and here's my last "chasing my tail" post .... the "post fest" of the last 3 days sees me caught up with all my DT work, and I've started on the next bundle as some of these are printed out already!

Last week saw the start of our new challenge over at Feeling Sketchy but there's still plenty of time for you to play along. Our prize for you this time is a $10 Gift Certificate to any online store of your choice!

Here's the sketch we're playing with this time, as designed by Michelle:

And here's my card using this sketch as the base for my layout for a tea (or coffee lover) as the bottom pouch holds a coffee store gift card:

My card recipe is as follows:

I hope I have inspired you to come over to Feeling Sketchy and join in with this sketch. If you need any further inspiration before you grab for your stash, please head over to the blog and check out the other wonderful creations by my talented teamies. We'll be back with our new sketch challenge on 1st March 2017.

I will be back a little later to play along with some challenges.

In the meantime, enjoy the rest of your day.

Hugs, Helen x

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Life is a Cabaret

Good afternoon crafty friends, and I hope that you're not being blown away by Storm Doris if you're in the UK. I've only had to go out into the garden to re-cover the patio furniture twice, and managed to do the bins before it got really windy - just hope they don't blow over and send all our recycling rubbish off down the street 😆!

I'm running a few days late with this post, as Monday saw the start of our new challenge over at Incy Wincy Designs and our theme for you this fortnight is Leather and/or Lace.

We have 2 amazing sponsors lined up for you:

Firstly Elena and Kenny Kiernan, the team behind KennyK Stamps are offering our first lucky winner a prize of 3 digital stamps. Here's a bit about them, and everyone's a winner with their discount code and offer of a free digi stamp every month:

Stamp designer Elena Kiernan and illustrator hubby Kenny Kiernan bring a perfect storm of creative energy to the bold and fun digi stamps and clear stamp sets at this rockin’ shop, where it’s always 30% OFF your first purchase with code MYFIRSTPURCHASE. Their hundreds of fun-to-color designs include everything from kids’ to teenage girls with attitudeskateboard boyssteampunkmensportssuperheroesmusic… and for those who enjoy a little spice in their crafting, KennyK Stamps is the #1 Shop in the World for Sexy Stamps!  Rock Your Crafts with KennyK Stamps! 

Get a FREE DIGI STAMP every month by subscribing to their newsletter. It’s a no-brainer, sign up here to join!

Click to follow KennyK Stamps on Facebook and also join their awesome new Facebook Fan Group, “Club KennyK!

Our second sponsor is the team at WOW Embossing Powder who are offering our second lucky prize winner 6 embossing powders and a travel case to store them in, and these will be shipped directly to our winner from WOW HQ! If you haven't tried WOW Embossing Powders, you'll love them ... and here's a bit more about them:

WOW! Embossing Powder has been established as a brand since May 2006 and
has grown dramatically since then. We are rapidly becoming very well-known and
respected within the craft industry. We pride ourselves on our fast and
friendly customer service, and personal touch each and every one of our
customers receives. We are the largest manufacturers of embossing powder in the
world, therefore are very pleased and proud to offer crafters what we believe
is the best product available at a great price

The DT have been given their choice of KennyK Stamps to showcase this time, so here's a sneak peak or the "Watershed Version" of my card - I will warn you, this is waaaaayyyyyy out of my comfort zone and not my usual style at all, so if you're easily offended I would suggest that you read no further!

This will be my card to Papa Mia who will be celebrating a certain Birthday next month! OK - so if you're reading on, I will take it that you're happy with seeing a picture of a scantily clad woman and I will not be held responsible! 😄

So here she is, in all her glory with a faux leather background, so easy to do and incredibly effective too!

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card Base - is piece of Ivory Centura Pearl which I have cut, scored and folded to make an 11.5 x 15.4 cm card
  • Mat & Layer - is a piece of black cardstock sized to 11 x 14.9 cm
  • Background - is an A6 piece of Kraft card and I followed this Faux Leather Tutorial by Sheena Douglass to make it look like this using glycerine, water, a spray bottle, a Sheena embossing folder called Distress Splatter, Distress Inks in Vintage Photo and Spiced Marmalade and a spray varnish, although I had to use my Spray and Sparkle Glitter Varnish so my faux leather background has a glittery finish to it!
  • Image - is the lovely Cabaret by Kenny at KennyK Stamps. I drew a stool under her and then brought this bewitching one to life using my Spectrum Noir Markers in the listed colours before die cutting her using my second largest Sizzix Framelits Ovals die using an "Out of the Box" technique.
    • Skin - FS2, FS3, FS4, TN4, FS8 (Blush)
    • Eye - TB1, TB3, TB9
    • Hair - BG5, BG7, BG9
    • Clothing and Boots - BG1, BG3, BG5, BG7, BG9, Silver Gel Pen
    • Stool (hand drawn) - TN3, TN4, TN8, using the Kit and Clowder Monthly Class Bonus Technique Metal Effects Mini Class
  • Sentiment - is die cut from Ivory Centura Pearl which has been layered onto an additional die cut from black card to give a shadow. The Happy Birthday die was in my Crafter's Companion Advent Calendar 2016 and I used the "th" portion of this die to cut again from both the ivory and black card to go with the numbers. The "5" and "0" both come from the Diamond Press Whimsical Alphabet collection.

Please do head over to  Incy Wincy Designs and check out the other wonderful creations featuring Leather and/or Lace from my very talented teamies. Then come back and show us your creations. We'll be back with our next challenge on Monday 6th March 2017.

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:
Whatever you're doing for the rest of the day, have fun and stay safe!

Hugs, Helen x

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Bunny and me

Good afternoon crafty friends and happy Thinking Day/Founder's Day to any friends who are current or former members of any Girl Guide Association or the Scout Association!

To those of you who don't know what I'm talking about, today would have been the birthdays of Lord Robert Baden-Powell (founder of the Scout and Guide movements) and his wife Olave who became the first World Chief Guide. Today is the day when Rainbows, Brownies, Guides, Senior Section members and all leaders are encouraged to participate in activities to learn more about their fellow Guides and Girl Scouts all over the world. Although I'm no longer in uniform, I have been very lucky to have been chosen to represent Girlguiding UK abroad 3 times and I have to say, there is something very, very special about singing Taps at the end of a campfire with 50 other members from many, many different countries, each young woman singing in her mother tongue but to the same tune. Just writing about it now, is making the hairs on the back of my neck stand up! Once a Guide, always a Guide and it is something still special to me.

February sees us celebrating the first new release of 2017 over at All Dressed Up and this month, Wendy has brought us some wonderful images celebrating Love. Of course, Valentine's Day has been and gone for this year, but these delightful images would be a great addition to your stash:

Top left is Love Heart, top right is Some Bunny Loves Me, bottom left is Be My Valentine and bottom right is Little Birdie all available now over at the All Dressed Up Digital Stamps Etsy store.

I have been lucky enough to play with Some Bunny Loves Me, and here's my card:

I've made a K-card which, once made, looks like a variant of a swing card.

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base - 2 pieces of A5 lightweight card onto which I've printed my papers which came from the January 2017 Download of the Month at Crafter's Companion and this collection is called Be Mine. The front portion of the card has been scored to make an A6 card base, and the middle portion of the card was scored in a concertina fold. I then used the heart embossing shape on my Ultimate Pro to emboss my K/swing portion, cut half of this out and brought it to the front of my card (if you click on the image closeup photo, you can just see the cut marks around the left edge of the white heart!).
  • Image - is the utterly gorgeous Some Bunny Loves Me by Wendy at All Dressed Up Digital Stamps. I brought this cutie and her little rabbit friend to life using my Spectrum Noir Alcohol Marker Pens in the listed shades, before embossing round them using the same heart shaped template on my Ultimate Pro, cutting them out and fixing them to the swinging portion of my card.
    • Skin - FS2, FS3, FS4, TN4, FS8 (Blush)
    • Hair - TN3, EB3, EB8
    • Bunny and Girl's Bunny Ears - GB8, GB9, GB10, PP3, PP5
    • Top - IG1, IG2
    • Skirt, Scarf, Hair and Shoe Bows - BT3, BT5, BT9
    • Shoes and Belt - True Black
    • Pull Along Cart - CR7, CR9, CR11
    • Grounding - IG2
So, a really clean and simplish card from me this time; just letting the pretty papers and adorable image speak for themselves 😊

For more ideas using these beautiful images, please head over to the All Dressed Up Blog to check out the other gorgeous creations from my talented teamies and the first half of the Blog Dressy girls showcased these images here.

Don't forget that we've got our current Blog Challenge Anything Goes with an All Dressed Up Image running until 14th March 2017, and the All Dressed Up Facebook Group have their own challenge of Romance and/or Red - why not combine the two by using one of Wendy's newly released images?

I would like to enter this card into the following challenge:

Hope you have a great evening!

Hugs, Helen x