Sunday, 29 May 2016

Pink and Black - old meets new again!

Obsessed as I am with getting the most out of my older Tonic Studios dies, I dug out my shutter die panels AGAIN! This time I played with 3 from the Pavillion set and moved and rotated them around a piece of black card to get my back panel

The feature on the front is the much newer Twisting Veranda, finished off with a fab little sentiment and just the one flower from the Beautiful Blooms set. Really simple, really clean, I really like this style. 

Just 3 little dies make a fabulous panel -
the possibilities are endless!

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Craftwork Cards - My happy day!

A card to celebrate joining the Craftwork Cards Design Team, created entirely from papers from the fabulous new USB stick, (currently only available from Create and Craft) Botanical Garden, using only papers from the Vintage Rose collection. What beautiful papers they are!
I managed to print up everything I needed onto just 5 sheets of A4, including, for this project I had in mind, one double sided sheet which I've tried to show in this photo. I just printed the design I wanted on one side, and fed the paper back through the printer to get the other side!
I LOVE the flexibility that this USB stick gives you to do this 

So....what  did I do with the double sided paper....?
I placed a roll of tape in the middle and drew round it.
Then I used a knife and metal ruler to score 3 lines across to make a 6 pointed star. I did it freehand but you could measure it, or make a hexagon template to get your even points.
When you carefully fold back your points (and it's at this stage that you can balance out any imperfections), you get THIS....
So pretty and so very easy!!!!
If you wanted (and it might be easier for measuring) you could do an 8-pointed star
.But look what happens when you put another bit of contrasting paper behind
 - and build up the card from there.....

Just one more pic to share - it was only as I finished the card that I realised where my inspiration for this card had come from....
My card matched my mug of tea ha ha!!!!

Thanks very much for looking! Nicky xx

Friday, 27 May 2016

One splatty mess, three cards!

Just a quickie today - experimenting with backgrounds using acrylic paints. I made lots of splats and swirls on an area roughly 10x7 inches on my glass mat, and in turn pressed in 
1. A sheet of plain white card
2. a sheet of clear acetate
3. after a quick spritz with a bit of water, another piece of plain white card.
And here are the results - of course, the AMAZING cassette stamp and accompanying text (so true!) are available to buy from Visible Image !
1. A lovely rich, textured splatter pattern
A translucent  mottled effect on the acetate
a much paler less discernible pattern, but perfect for adding swirls and extras!
And that is how I made three backgrounds for this fun and fab stamp!

Even better, that's 3 family and friends birthdays sorted! I love writing a personal message on the tape. Takes me right back....!
Thanks for stopping by
Nicky xx

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Just hit play

I loved this stamp from the moment I saw it and have at last managed to have a proper play with it! Who did I have in mind when I made this? ....Me! 

Made by Visible Image this stamp has just the coolest cassette - makes me feel retro, not old! And the accompanying sentiment...well I'm in 100% agreement with that! 

To make the cassette look authentic I stamped and embossed it onto white card, and also onto heat resistant acetate. I cut out the viewing panel from the white card. A careful bit of sticking plus a little hole punch through the 'holes' at the bottom of the casssette gave it a fab 3d effect when it went on the card front on  sticky pads

I can only describe this as the credit card technique. These paints are so stunning, little blobs on a glass mat and then drag the paint across your card - it layers up beautifully and dries in seconds too

Another technique I picked up was 'lid stamping' - literally dipping the lid into blobs of paint and pressing it to the card. With some funky circles from the  Visible Image Universal set there was enough background to build on, and all I had to do was attach the cassette and the sentiment. 

Thanks for looking! Nicky

Friday, 20 May 2016

A heart shaped easel - love these!

I always love a wedding card and this style is no exception. That's what's so special about a hand crafted card - yes the shops are full of beautiful wedding cards but you just don't get anything near as unique and special as this! Partly down to the sumptuous Tonic Studios affections hearts which cut so easily through two layers of card to make the base, to create an easel card unlike anything commercially available. 

  1. To achieve this style of card you need to cut a double with the top of the die just overhanginging the fold of a 6x6inch square card blank, by about 1cm, then score the 'front' one horizontally half way up. 2
  2. Cut a second heart of the same size on one piece of card. 
  3. Apply glue or double sided tape to the BOTTOM section only of the card you've just scored and then stick the single heart neatly over it.
  4. As you raise/push the front of the card it makes an easel, which you can then wedge in place with a raised bit of card, in this case I used my word plaque as a stopper once I'd decorated my card.
  5. Decorate! I used three small flowers from the Beautiful Blooms like this Sunburst Gazania, silver outlines on navy cardstock, and some Nuvo navy blue crystal drops

If you're a Tonic fan reading this, you'll be delighted to know that the much sought after Mr&Mrs die is back soon - you can add your details to this waiting list direct with Tonic Studios themselves, and you will be the first to know when they are available again! I'd say they were a MUST-HAVE purchase to add to your wedding collection - with or without the extra frames! 

This card is part of the Tonic Studios Win and Tonic Challenge - Click on this link to see some truly amazing cards by some very talented crafters! 

Thanks for looking! Nicky x

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Simple but so pretty!

For those of us crafters on a budget, or who can't always get everything as it comes out, this is a mixture of old meets new ( I NEEDED these Tonic Beautiful Blooms! I'm still paying for them though ha ha) 

I wanted a diecut background and Tonic Studios have some sumptuous patterned panels,  like this one, coming out (C&C had the exclusive when I didn't have the pennies!) so I looked at what I had and made a plan! 

I used just the ONE die from my Liberty Shutter set on this one, and just rotated it 4 times on the front of a 15x15 card. I made a card insert to keep the strength and cut a flower from the Beautiful Blooms set Woodland Aster and some bits of foliage from some of the other sets. Really simple, so pretty and definitely flat enough to post on a first class stamp!

I've made the full shuttter card with this but it's so cool to take one or two elements and make something completely different!

So for this one I used TWO of the dies and just worked my way around using the same principle. A couple of heart punches to finish off and it was a couple of quick cards made very easily!  

Thanks for looking, Nicky xx

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

A fancy fold octagon card

A card in two parts - the collar shaped base is easier to make than it looks - and all you need to do is stick your topper card on it and you're away! 

It's a cute idea, I've done lots of diamond fold cards in the past and the principle is the same - just remember to flatten your creases as you go along!

For the base, cut a piece of card 10cm x 25cm. Score lengthways at 5cm, then across it at 5cm in from each short edge

Then measure and mark, just at the top and bottom edges,  another 5cms in from each vertical score line 

You then need to score diagonally from the measured points to the point at which your other score lines cross, a bit like an arrow pointing towards each end!

Then a bit of gentle folding and teasing into shape. Your diagonal lines are VALLEY folds, all perpendicular lines are MOUNTAIN folds. Be careful not to extend the creases beyond the scored lines you've made!

This is what you end up with - burnish the creases with a bone folder or scoring tool and you have your collar base to decorate and attach to whatever shape you want to make the main section on the card out of.

NB I don't use a folded card, just a single sheet, in this case cut to an octagon size, and decorated with nifty Craftwork Cards papers! This is the More than Words collection.

Thanks for popping by!

Hope to see you soon, Nicky x

A spot of nautical home decor

Not a card! But a little project - a deep 3D box frame which I painted and decorated myself with delicious Craftwork Cards Harbour Boulevard papers.

 It only measures 6x6 inches but it gave me plenty of room to play, ripping papers for the sea, decoupaging the beach huts and of course carefully cutting out the anchor and the very fiddly seagull!
Lots of assorted sticky pads were used to raise the anchor off the background then I covered the frame with a piece of acetate, which in turn I covered with mitred strips of shell paper. Topping it off with a couple more shells and the necessary lighthouse, and the project was almost complete...

It might have stood up ok on its own but I thought I might as well add a tiny stand - just out of card,  adhered with strong tape. 

Thanks for stopping by!
Nicky x.

Sunday, 15 May 2016

My never ending card

Well...I'd always fancied having a go at one of these. It's a card, which, once the four parts of the base are stuck together in a certain way, and the folds are scored, you can literally turn inside out, round and just seems to go on for ever! A bit like decorating it...unless the job is made easy with this stunning set of papers from Craftwork Cards, their Chalkboard collection. Not so easy to find these days but a gorgeous set of papers I got from Create and Craft last year, and have had hours of fun mixing and matching.

As you open up the card it exposes all the different layers and arrangements - from a crafty point of view you just have to remember which way is UP and then just cut and stick to your heart's content!

Flip up, flip down and you get a new view - in this case I wanted to include the bicycle, and the only way was to split it in half...but even that worked better than I'd hoped
The 'back' view...
It's a very clever bit of paper engineering! it stands up perfectly yet flips around with ease - I'm so glad I had a go - I used instructions from the latest Crafters Companion Summer '16 magazine, but there are dozens of templates on the web - look for 'infinity cards' or 'never ending cards'.

I filmed a little video of me having fun with it, it's on my facebook page and unfortunately I can't move it to over here so.....

To see my card in motion click here!

Thanks for dropping by!
Nicky x

A feast of flowers

My challenge to myself was to cut and use a circle aperture out of a top folding card. I don't know why - just part of my never-ending quest for new shapes! 

To achieve this I measured and placed my circle die astride the central fold (although I only scored it at the edges) By careful positioning of my cutting plates I only cut half of the circle.

Another circle cut and a careful fold and the card was ready to decorate

It was an afterthought to make a little W shaped brace, which I attached to the inside front and back of the card. It ended up looking like a handbag but that was just an unintentional added bonus!

To make this card I used - 

  • Tonic Miniature Moments Best Friends 
  • Tonic Beautiful Blooms assorted flowers and leaves
  • Tonic Harrop Layering dies
  • Memory Box Pippi Butterfly outline and base
  • Creative Expressions Finishing Touches Ornamental Corners
  • Creative Expressions Finishing Touches Classic 3D Bow
This card is entered into the new Tonic challenge on Win & Tonic There are some amazing cards on there! Pop over and take a peek!

Thanks for looking!
Nicky x


Sunday, 8 May 2016

A very British card...

Another crafty play using my favourite stamps from Visible Image...although having bought some new ones yesterday, they may be usurped in my affections as I now have a tantalising butterfly to play with. Can't wait! Watch this space....

This effect was achieved by making the St.George's cross out of strips of post-it notes - so simple! I then versamarked and embossed several soundwaves in white along the edge of the strips.Then I made smaller diagonal  strips and did the same for the Welsh bit (I know my flags!) After that it was just a delicate bit of sponging and stencilling using distress inks in all the right places, and I added the guitars  and a thin  red border to finish off.

Thanks for popping by! Nicky xx