Sunday, 7 February 2016

Finishing off some WIPs

Hello everyone, I hope that you are enjoying some good weather today. We have had some really cold, windy days lately, and to be honest, I have just wanted to stay wrapped up in the warm. It has been a good excuse to get on with some of my unfinished crochet projects while I am still recuperating, and I thought that I would show you how I have been getting on.

My first project is a lacy shawl, crocheted in a bamboo cotton yarn. It is a great go with anything colour, and quite versatile for adding to my favourite black and plum outfits, as well as more neutral tones. I started this shawl ages ago, and it was the perfect pattern to crochet after my operation; simple without too much thought, as there are only two rows of pattern. I am pleased to have it finished now, as it was threatening to sit unfinished indefinitely in favour of more colourful interesting projects.
My second project was started last year, and before I began this project, I could not crochet much more than a granny square! I decided to tackle this project as a way of improving my crochet skills, and I certainly managed to do that. The project was designed by Jane Crowfoot, and the link to the project can be found here. She is a fabulous designer, and has created several other vibrant designs that you can access by following various links from her blog. Her Lily Pond design caught my eye, and I undertook the design, along with my dear friend Elaine, who is a more experienced crocheter than myself. It was great to have a crocheting buddy, even though we live hundreds of miles apart, we were able to talk about our experiences with the project as we went along. I was much slower in completing the project, and have only just finished mine, in fact. I had a few hinderances along the way....
I chose to change the colour of the edging from pink to green, as I love the green and mint combination. Here it is in its full glory:
I have already started my next project, another blanket, so I will keep you updated with my progress. Thanks for stopping by, xx

Monday, 1 February 2016

Some of my favourite stamps

Hello everyone, I am taking a look back at some of my favourite Chocolate Baroque stamp sets during this blog post. It was a tough call, but poppies featured heavily in my choices, so here are a couple of cards, that I came up with.

For my first card, I have chosen to combine stamps from the Poppy Meadow and Flora and Fauna stamp sets. I have stamped these images, and after masking them off, created a sponged background using Distress Inks, and a Crafters Workshop stencil. I wanted a crumpled finish to the background, and the soft grey ink really helped to achieve this effect. I have added a sentiment from the Loving Sentiments stamp set, and a grey mat behind the background.

My second card uses a stamp from the Poppy Edges stamp set, which I have stamped several times onto watercolour paper using Dylusions in red, orange and yellow tones to spritz the paper. I cut the images out, and stuck them onto another sprayed background, adding a smaller image from the Poppy Meadow stamp set. I used some black card to mat and layer the background, and then added a sentiment from the Mackintosh Sentiments stamp set.

Thanks for stopping by, xx

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Normal service will be resumed!

Hello everyone, I hope that you are keeping well. My house currently looks like a florist's shop as I am recovering from an operation, and need to take several weeks to rest up at home. The family are looking after me really well, but it is a shock to their normal routine as Mum is not doing all of her usual jobs.

This beautiful bouquet was waiting for me when I came around from the operation, and is in my favourite colours, my family know me so well! It has been joined by several more now. I hardly ever get flowers, so I am making the most of the beautiful display.
I have two little friends to keep me company, and they are not often far from my side. Poppy and Bella seem content to sit near me most of the time:
I will be back crafting soon, but for now, am making the most of being spoiled. Thanks for stopping by, Judith xx

Monday, 18 January 2016

Butterfly Duo

Hello everyone, I have a card to share using the Steampunk Butterfly stamp set featured on the recent Craft Channel TV shows. Followers of my blog will know how much I love to mix and match stamps, and I also love to revisit older stamp sets to use materials that I did not have the first time around.

I created a background using gelatos, and then stamped the cog fragment using Tattered Rose Distress Ink. I used some pretty background papers from the Crafty Individuals range to create a bit of paper weaving, and also stamped and embossed two of the large butterflies onto the same papers, using silver embossing powder. Once I had attached the paper weaving to my background, I covered it with acrylic wax to seal the weaving, and to protect the paper.

I stamped a sentiment from the Awesome Diva clear stamp set onto the background, using Teal Zeal Memento Ink. This particular sentiment makes the card really versatile, and useful for any number of occasions. Finally, I used some co-ordinating card to mat and layer the background.

Thanks for stopping by, xx

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Berries and Birds

Hello everyone, it's time for another weekly posting on the Chocolate Baroque Challenge Blog, the first post of 2016. This week sees the monthly free download, designed as always by our lovely boss Lesley Wharton. I have created a card using the download, as part of the Design Team inspiration.

The download paper is a beautiful, vibrant design, entitled 'Chinese Goosberries', and it is very versatile, suitable for lovely Autumn, or even Christmas projects, but can be used for any occasion really. I have chosen to add a lovely stamp from the Woodland Dreams stamp set, I love the berries on this one. I stamped the image onto a piece of pretty pink scrapbook paper, that I have hoarded in my stash for ages. I have decided to use my supplies up this year, rather than hanging on to them. I used Versafine Onyx Black Ink, and clear embossing powder for a really vibrant image. I coloured the image with pencils, and then edged the panel with Barn Door Distress Ink. I stamped a sentiment from the Amazing Birthday stamp set onto another piece of the scrapbook paper, edging it with Distress Ink as before.

I matted all of the panels with black card, before attaching everything to a large card blank.

Pop over to the Challenge Blog to pick up the free download for yourself, and see Anne's fabulous card too. You can also read about how you can enter the challenge and win a £15 voucher to spend at Chocolate Baroque, we would love to see your entries.

Thanks for stopping by, xx

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Oranges and Lemons

Hello everyone, I have a cheery project to share with you today, one that will hopefully banish the Winter blues, and bring thoughts of warmer days. I have made a card using the new Another Brick in the Walled Garden shutter stamp, and created a garden scene.

I drew a square frame onto a piece of kraft card, roughly the size of the walled shutter stamp, and then stamped the orange tree from the Fantasy Woodland stamp set on either side, with the leaves from each tree creeping over the edge of the frame slightly. I lengthened the stem of one of the trees by drawing in the extra stem to the bottom of the background, (this meant that the tree was not floating in mid air), by using a permanent dark brown marker. I created a mask for each tree, and then stamped the small brick texture stamp from the Abstract Fragments stamp set over the background. I then trimmed away inside the frame, cutting around the tree leaves where necessary.

I stamped the walled shutter image onto a spare piece of kraft card, and coloured the images with pencils. I added the foliage to the tree on the main image by colouring the stamp with a Distress Ink Marker, the colour I used was Abandoned Coral. I added some shading around the edge of the frame with Vintage Photo Distress Ink. I adhered the frame to a piece of dark olive card, and trimmed inside the frame, leaving a narrow border of olive green card showing. I then stuck the main image inside the frame. Finally, I added some Glossy Accents to the lemons on the tree.

The orange tree stamp goes really well with this new stamp, and really creates a Mediterranean feel to the card. I hope that it has given you some inspiration. Thanks for stopping by, xx

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Happy Christmas

Hello everyone, I have a post over on the Design Team blog today, giving me another opportunity to work with the fabulous background stamps aired on the recent TV shows on the Craft Channel.

I have chosen to create a Christmas card for my final offering of the year, and hope that you will accept it as a card from me to you. I would like to thank you all for the lovely comments that you have left over the year on my posts, here and on the DT blog.

I have used the Studded Lattice cling mounted stamp to create the background, and added some poinsettias from the Joyful Christmas stamp set. The background card was a piece left over from another project, and I used Distress Paints to create the wrinkle free background. I stamped and embossed the poinsettias using a sparkly red embossing powder, and coloured them with Faber Castell aquarelle pencils.

I would like to wish you all a very Happy Christmas, and offer my good wishes for 2016. I hope that Santa brings you lots of crafting goodies, and that you have time to relax and enjoy the festive season, whatever you are doing. Thanks for stopping by, Judith xx

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Beautiful Background stamps

Hello everyone, I hope that you have been able to catch the TV shows featuring the Beautiful Backgrounds cling mounted stamps on the Craft Channel recently. The samples created by my Team Mates, and demos by Lesley were just amazing. I have a couple of projects to show you myself that were featured on the shows, and I hope that they will give you a little bit of inspiration in using these fabulous stamps.

My first project features the Floral Weave cling mounted stamp, and I have created an underwater scene, using stamps from the Seashore and Seadragon stamp sets.

I created a watery background on a piece of watercolour paper, by painting some Ecoline ink onto the background, and dropping sea salt onto the paper while it was still wet. I left the background to dry before removing the salt. This technique creates patterns that are reminiscent of bubbles in water, and it is such a fun technique, as the results are different every time. I stamped and embossed the background image using a lovely teal embossing powder, it works really well as a seaweed image on this card. I stamped and coloured the seahorse on a separate piece of card, using Faber Castell Aquarelle pencils, before cutting it out and adhering it to the background. I stamped the sentiment, and matted the background onto teal card. I added some little pearls to the flower centres to complete the card.

My second project is a canvas, combining a couple of the background stamps, Baroque Orchids, and Studded Lattice. I have added some flowers created using stamps from the Elegant Iris stamp set, and some die cut leaves.

I started my project by painting the canvas with acrylic paint, blending the colours with a baby wipe, using a mix of purple, orange and yellow. I dried the layers each time, and just kept going until I was happy with the overall look. I then stamped the Studded Lattice image randomly over the canvas using white paint. I did not use an acrylic block for this, as I just wanted to stamp part of the image each time, and I wanted a more random finish.

I covered the Baroque Orchid stamp with Gold Soft Form Relief Paste, and left it to dry overnight. Once the paste was dry, and had become a film, I painted it with a thin layer of white paint. I gently removed some of the excess paint, revealing some of the gold underneath, which gives a kind of faded elegance to the piece. I allowed the paint to dry and then gently peeled the stamp away from the film. For durability, I added a piece of thin card behind the film before attaching it to the canvas.

I stamped the flower image from the Elegant Iris stamp set three times onto a piece of spare card, and coloured the images with pens. I found that the flowers were a bit bright, and so I gave them a wash of thinned down white acrylic paint to soften them a bit. I added some die cut leaves, which I edged with Soft Form Relief Paste, and I also edged the canvas with some of the Relief Paste as well. Finally, I added a sentiment from the Artistic Expressions stamp set.

Thanks for stopping by, xx

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Gothic Christmas

Hello everyone, this week on the Chocolate Baroque Challenge Blog, there is a fabulous free digital download, designed by our lovely boss Lesley Wharton. I have created a Christmas card using the download as part of the Design Team inspiration.

I chose to use the Gothic Angels rubber stamp set to create my card, as I felt that this set went with the background so well, and chose to create a Christmas card in red and yellow tones. I coloured a large background stamp with Distress Markers, and stamped it onto card, before adding some clear embossing powder. I trimmed the card, and then edged the card with Fossilized Amber Distress Ink. I stamped the angel image and sentiment onto die cuts using Potting Soil Archival Ink, and again edged the shapes with Distress Ink as before. I coloured the angel image with Distress Markers and a water brush. Finally, I matted all of the layers onto burgundy card, before adding them to a large card blank.

Hop over to the challenge blog to see the inspiration provided by my team mates and to read about how you could win a £15 voucher to spend at Chocolate Baroque. Thanks for stopping by, xx

Saturday, 28 November 2015

A Christmas Flower

Hello everyone, I have another project using one of the large Flowerhead collection stamps from Chocolate Baroque to show you today. I have really enjoyed creating projects with these lovely large stamps, great for creating a focal point on a card. I have chosen to use the Circle Centre Flowerhead for this project.

I created my background by covering a gelli plate with turquoise ink, using a brayer. I used a piece of white card to take a print from the gelli plate, taking care to smooth the back of the card thoroughly. This is a really quick way of colouring a piece of card if you want a single colour. Once the card was dry, I stamped and embossed a harlequin design from the Harlequin Fragments stamp set onto the background, using Versamark and gold embossing powder.

I used Fired Brick Distress Ink and water to flick onto my background with an old toothbrush as I wanted splashes of red over the rest of the background, and a little bit of gold shimmer, using a Wink of Stella gold pen.

I stamped and embossed the flower onto red vellum twice, using Versamark and gold embossing powder, and cut it out. I added a leafy die cut, and matching dark green matting to complete my card.

Well, that's another Christmas card completed thankfully, not long to go now! Thanks for stopping by, xx

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Cheery Sunflowers

Hello everyone, I have another floral project to share with you today, using one of the Flowerhead Collection cling mounted stamps. I have chosen to use the Daisy Ring Centre image to create my card, as I liked the versatility of this design, with the open centre. I wanted to create a cluster of sunflowers, and the open centre of the design works perfectly for adding beads, which I love to do in lots of my flower projects.

I started my card by stamping the first image onto my smooth watercolour background, and masking the image, before adding some leaves from the Sunny Sunflowers stamp set. I masked the leaves, and stamped two more of the large flower images, plus a spare image onto an extra piece of watercolour paper, so that I could decoupage the central image.

I coloured the images with Distress Markers and a water brush, and then added shading with pencils. On this occasion, I used Faber Castell Aquarelle pencils, but I did not wet them once I had coloured the images. I coloured the background by tapping some Salty Ocean Distress Ink onto a craft mat, and picking it up with a crumpled baby wipe. I then patted the ink onto the background, turning the baby wipe this way and that way, to get a varied pattern.

I stamped the butterflies from  the Thistle Butterfly and Briar Rose Butterfly stamp sets, onto the background, and again onto spare watercolour card so that I could decoupage them. I simply coloured them with the Aquarell pencils, and blended the colours with a water brush. The sentiment is from the Mackintosh Sentiments clear stamp set. I matted the background onto a black card blank, and then added Glossy Accents to the centre of the main flower before adding dark brown seed beads.

Sunflowers are my Mother in Law's favourite flower. They are so cheery, and would brighten up anyone's day. This card would make a lovely Get Well card, or a Thinking of You card, as well as a pretty Birthday card. I hope it has given you some inspiration anyway. Thanks for stopping by, xx

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Floral Tag

Hello everyone, it's time for another weekly post on the Chocolate Baroque challenge blog, and this week, I am providing a little bit of the colour inspiration to try to get your crafty mojo working. I have chosen to make a tag which I created by mopping up some of the left over ink from my card that I created in Monday's post. As you will be able to see, the colours are very similar!

I stamped a flowerhead twice onto some Crafty Individuals paper twice, using Memento Sweet Plum Ink, and cut these out. I added some coloured detail with pencils. Using Memento Bamboo Leaves ink, I stamped some leaves from the Sketchy Doodle Landscape stamp set onto green scrapbook paper, and also directly onto the tag itself. I then cut the leaves from the scrapbook paper, leaving the stems behind, and decoupaged the leaves onto the tag.

I edged the tag with Seedles Preserves Distress Ink, and the stamped the sketchy flower onto the background using Wild Honey Distress Ink, and Sweet Plum Memento Ink, for a layered look. I added the flowerhead, which I had stiffened with some card. Finally, I added two circles of tiny seed beads into the centre of the flower using a 'dries clear' glue.

Please pop over to the challenge blog to see the inspiration provided by my Design Team mates, and why not get your stash out and create something for the challenge?

There is something new over on the Design Team Blog today, so head over there as well if you have the time. Thanks for stopping by, xx

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