Thursday, 30 October 2014

Tons of trees with Festival of Trees

I had fun playing with this stamp set at Donna’s house and now, of course it’s on my wish list! But I already have enough stamp sets from the Autumn/Winter catalogue… don’t I? 

What’s great about this set is not just the different styles of tree, and the fact that there’s a punch which fits them perfectly, which means you can create Christmas cards really quickly. What impressed me most about this set is that the stamps co-ordinate perfectly… and I mean perfectly. For example, there’s a tree with white spots on it. And there’s a set of spots which fit exactly in the gaps. Which is made possible by the fact that this is a photopolymer set so you can see where you’re going. 


Monday, 27 October 2014

Bright & Beautiful with 3D star

While celebrating my downline Donna’s birthday weekend I had a play with lots of stamp sets from the Autumn/Winter catalogue, as we’d all taken our Christmas sets along with us. This gorgeous stamp set is called Bright & Beautiful and co-ordinates perfectly with the Stars Framelits dies. 

These stars just cry out to be made 3D, which is very simple. All you have to do is score from each point to the opposite side, then fold in and out to create the shape. They’d look fabulous if you stuck two together to create a gorgeous Christmas tree decoration. Hmm… might have to borrow these and have a go!

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Caturday - kittens playing on the phone

This is what happens when you download an app especially for cats. It features a laser pointer, which moves as they touch it with their paw. These little kittens LOVED it, especially the one in the middle, who got a little too hooked. 

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Naughty Forty card with texture paste recipe

Today it’s the very special birthday of my downline/friend Donna, who held a most enjoyable party at the weekend, where we crafted, laughed and ate from early afternoon right through to evening. Here’s the card I made for her. 

I’ve been on a bit of a vellum thing since completing the Around the World Challenge card (have you entered yet? Do so here) but also, behind the scenes, I’ve been having a play with texture paste. 

However, when I went to two craft stores to purchase this, I balked at the £9 price tag so decided to wait and see if I could get it cheaper. I could. MUCH cheaper, because I found a fantastic recipe on tinternet, which I adapted to the suit the ingredients I had to hand. 

This is my version. You will need:
  • 1 part cheap PVA glue
  • 1 part cheap white paint
  • 2 parts cornflour
Mix it up thoroughly and its ready to use, storing any excess in an air-tight container. You can change the colour with re-inkers, compensating for the extra liquid with more cornflour if necessary. 

Here I’ve stuck with white, which I’ve spread across the Hearts & Stars mask to create a funky textured background. My spreader was simply a piece of DSP backing card - no washing up required, just throw it away afterwards. 

This is one of the techniques we will be using at my All-Day Craft Retreat, which will be held early next year. Let me know if you’d like to be kept updated! 

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Many Merry Stars Simply Created Kit - yes, more Christmas products!

You know how much you LOVE Christmas products? Well we have even more for you now, with the launch of the Autumn/Winter supplement. It’s a small-ish publication, featuring new Project Life products, new stamp sets and some great new kits. 

The one that’s causing the biggest stir is this, the Many Merry Stars Simply Created Kit. Mine hasn’t arrived yet so I’ll show you some official pix and videos to whet your appetite. 

Now I must warn you that this kit is not only causing a stir, but is only available while supplies last so, if you fancy getting your hands on one, I personally wouldn’t delay. You can order yours today from my online store, simply by clicking here

The kit contains everything you need to make and embellish 26 3D stars, of various sizes, from 5.1cm  (2”) right up to a whopping 38.1cm (15”). There are bows, tags, banners, wooden snowflakes, sequins and Baker’s Twine to add some festive bling to your stars. 

The stars can be used as Christmas dĂ©cor – how about creating a huge star banner? Or individual Christmas tree decorations? You can use them to top gifts, use the elements to create cards or decorate scrapbook pages… the list goes on. 

As you’ll see in the second video, you can also cut a flap in the stars so that you can use them as cute gift holders, without having to destroy the star to get the treats out. 

Enough waffling, take a look… the first video shows you how to assemble the stars. The second shows you some ideas for using them, and some really cool tips! 

Monday, 20 October 2014

Endless Wishes retro Christmas

This was the Make & Take for the party I did on Friday evening. It was lovely to catch up with old (as in long-standing, honest!!!) customers and new and the hostess was VERY happy as the total reached a whopping £500, so LOTS of freebies for her! The project is very quick and easy to make, which is ideal both for Make & Takes and for your Christmas cards. And I love the colour combo of Coastal Cabana and Cherry Cobbler for Christmas... it’s a little bit retro, which is right up my street. 

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Caturday - Hitler kitten?

This little beauty has been cruelly nicknamed “Hitler Kitten” by my daughter, due to the unfortunate moustache markings. But he’s a real cutie and lucky to be alive after being abandoned, with this siblings and mother, a few weeks ago. Fortunately one of the shelter volunteers found them and rescued the kittens (sadly, it’s thought that a fifth was killed by a dog), returning later to catch the mother. They’s semi-longhaired and adorable... and looking for homes! Head to Woodland Nook to arrange an appointment to visit...

Friday, 17 October 2014

Visions of Santa dancing on vellum

By rights, I should be in Brussels at the European Stampin’ Up!® Convention, but unfortunately I and my team decided not to go this year, for various reasons. It’s probably a good thing, as this bug I’ve had has totally wiped me out, and Convention is exhausting. But I can’t help feeling a pang as I look at the clock and think “right now, I’d be swapping’... or “Shelli will be taking the stage about now...”

I have a lot to do today so will have to keep myself away from the computer, where I’ll be tempted to stalk other demonstrators for snippets of info!

So, back to business and today’s project. When creating a project for the Around the World Challenge, I actually made two cards. This was the first one but I wasn’t totally happy with it. In fact, I may yet still go back and tweak it. 

I really liked the idea of stamping the Santas on either side of the vellum so that the image was reversed. You can see from this image that I coloured on each side, too, as one Santa is paler than the other. This is the tweak I’m going to make as it’s not too late to go back and add more colour. 

My favourite thing about this card is the Kraft cardstock, which looks fab stamped with white snowflakes. 

I used the Apothecary Accents framelits dies to cut out the shape from the Kraft cardstock, and also to cut the same shape from a piece of Cherry Cobbler, which I used to line the inside of the front of the card to hide any adhesives. While I don’t normally line my cards, I don’t like to see anything like adhesives, brad backs etc inside! And I did create a Whisper White panel on the inside of this one, so that it shows through the vellum and enables you to see the main image better. 

Other sneaky techniques I used are on the embellishments. I coloured our Basic Rhinestones with my Cherry Cobbler Blendabilities so that they’re sparkly and red. And I dipped the end of the twine in some Crystal Effects to stop it unravelling and fraying. 

I do hope you’re warming to this Santa set. I haven’t had much positive feedback about it from my customers and team, but apparently it’s very popular. I went from hating it to loving it so maybe you can too! 

The small print

This is my personal blog and my sole responsibility as an Independent Stampin' Up!® demonstrator. All images are © Stampin' Up!® All content including photographs, projects and text are © Helen Read, unless otherwise stated. Please feel free to copy my ideas for your personal use and inspiration - if you are a SU demonstrator you may use these ideas for your events but please give credit where it is due. Please do not use my ideas for monetary gain, competitions or publication. The images on this blog - including blog buttons - should not be copied and used elsewhere on the internet or on CDs.