Friday 31 August 2012

Friday Die Day

Hello friends,
Today I'm not featuring a die template, instead it is an M-Bossabilities™ folder - Garden Delight -
it is still Spellbinders™ so I'm hoping you will enjoy this slight deviation.
If you haven't come across their unique embossing folders before you are in for a treat!
They are clever in that each folder has two designs - one on each side, created and matched to bring you more versatility and value.  Garden Delight brings a bouquet of flowers and vines and butterflies in flight.

 First I'm going to show you a letterpress technique, you may have seen this already - it's fab!
I've used Distress Ink and rubbed it over the raised side of my embossing folder.
Using a piece of plain cream cardstock, I've placed it inside the embossing folder.
The sandwich for Spellbinders M-Bossabilities folders in the Spellbinders Grand Calibur® machine is
A-Base Plate, M-Bossabilities folder and Grand Raspberry Plate.
When you remove it you get this wonderful colour imprinted into the embossing.
 Here's another idea, stamp onto your embossing folder.  I've used my favourite script stamp.
 It is at this point you realise the text will be back to front!  Oh well, it's more the image I'm after!
The end result is a lot more delicate but still effective.
 To clean your embossing folder, use a baby wipe or damp cloth, it cleans off perfectly - looks like new!
Another idea is to use vellum, it embosses beautifully, bringing out the white.
 Here comes the tag! 
I've chosen to cut, ink the edges and layer up some of my sample pieces.
 Talking of vellum, this is one of the flowers I created a while back from Rose Creations and vellum, spritzed heavily with Glimmer Mists. Added foliage - it looks effective cut from patterned paper.
 The finished tag.
 A close up....
Finally - how about this idea  - Trina McClune, a Spellblogger in New Zealand has discovered
a way to use embossing folders in the kitchen!

Thank you for all your great comments yesterday, all going to plan I should be at Ally Pally on the
Sunday of that weekend and demoing on the Creative Expressions stand.
How about this weekend - what are your plans?  Hopefully crafting....
I've got my special first Academy class tomorrow (I may have already mentioned that....)
and then on Sunday I'm going on a photography course, hoping to learn lots of new tricks, ideas etc. 
I've warned Bella and Boys that I'm going to be snapping away! 
Take care.

Thursday 30 August 2012

Busy Busy and a Sneak Peek!

Hello friends,
It really throws me having a Bank Holiday Monday in the week - I spend the whole time convinced it's a different day - yesterday it felt like a Tuesday not Wednesday!
So today is Thursday isn't it?? ... (already!) - the weeks just fly by.
As I mentioned, I've been preparing for my first Spellbinders Academy class  on Saturday in the crafty studio and I have a sneak peek to share with you....

The class is a Summer Card and Gift Box and I think I've managed to capture Summer despite creating it when the rain was pouring down outside!
I'm very much looking forward to my first class and meeting some of my lovely follower friends.
I will be posting full pictures including kit details very soon.
More classes are being prepared, the Christmas Tags has proved a big hit - lots more Christmas ideas coming up.
It has suddenly got very busy - I've been asked to demo at Alexandra Palace next month and two days of TV next month too - I will keep you posted of dates and details.
Are any of you attending Ally Pally?
Right, I'm typing this before heading off to London work this morning - Blogger decided it didn't like my search engine (apparently!) so thankfully Elliott has sorted that issue for me -
(he's going to ask to be paid soon, I just know it!)
Happy Thursday dear friends.
I'm back tomorrow with FDD!

Wednesday 29 August 2012


Hello friends,
Look it's a cat and not a dog! (Sorry Bella!)
Today I'm sharing with you a scrapbook layout that has appeared over on the Spellbinders Idea Gallery.
I put together this page using Grand Labels Four as the main focal shape and then kept layering.
Some serious distressing of the 12 x 12 patterned paper!  All the details and dies used are here.
It's not very often you see my cats nowadays - Bella does steal the limelight a little! 
This is Imogen - she is now 12 but I'm afraid to say she's not very friendly - part feral.
I adore her because she is beautiful and I would dearly like to cuddle her but that's not to be!
This page is most definitely my cup of tea - flowers, foliage, lace, butterflies - yes that ticks a lot of boxes! 
I had planned to show you a sneak peek of the card and gift box planned for my first class on Saturday but Blogger just isn't uploading photos correctly!!  Hopefully tomorrow it will be friendly and kind! 
Have a good mid-week day!
Take care,

Tuesday 28 August 2012

A Friday-Die Day Follow-Up and a Winner!

Hello friends,
I've been rummaging...under my bed!  I keep boxes under my bed full of projects that I've made.
I need to keep a lot of them because they are sometimes requested for magazines, design teams, TV etc 
but it does get a bit scary when you discover projects you barely remember making! 
This is one of them and it features the dies I showcased last Friday for Friday Die-Day.
I decided I would like to share it with you because it proves how versatile a die set can be.
I've used three of the dies from the set, layered onto stamped canvas and lace.
Unity Stamp Company make a coordinating stamp set for this die set, very pretty but unfortunately in the States so it does bump up the cost I'm afraid.
Nonetheless, if you haven't already tried it  - experiment with stamping on canvas and on to your die cuts.
Now, I need to announce a winner.  I've reinstated Bella as a 'working dog' - 
that's if picking out names out of a spotty cup constitutes working! 
Here she is.....she ran off with the winning ticket to her special red blanket!
I snatched it away to reveal the winner is...........................


Please drop me an email:
and I will make sure your E-Z Dots Permanent is sent out to you straight away.
My Amazon shop is getting a little more stocked up now, stop by now and again to see new products.
Today I'm off to my crafty studio to finalise my class on Saturday - 
I think I may have to post a sneak peek tomorrow!
Have a lovely day dear friends.

Monday 27 August 2012

Fancy Ribbon Threader and more News!

Hello friends
It's Bank Holiday Monday..that normally means rain but I do hope it is dry where you are.
I'm still getting around to sharing photos of the projects I created for TV!
This card features the very lovely Fancy Ribbon Threader, the ornate frame from Jewel Framed Sentiments
and of course, those gorgeous little flowers and leaves from Homespun
I've managed to actually not use them for a couple of days... but I don't think I can go too much longer! 
The blog news today is another button on my blog sidebar...look's rather cute!
(Elliott designed it for me) and it says 'My Amazon Shop'!  
Now if you click on that button it whizzes you across've guessed it... my new Amazon Shop. 
I will be honest with you friends - it took hours and hours to set up but I'm really 
rather chuffed with how it is looking.
Listed at the moment is Scrapbook Adhesives products but soon there will be other items, including kits, felt, wooden plaques, frames etc.  I thought it would be useful to have the opportunity to click on Amazon
and go through their checkout system.
Not a problem if you still want to contact me direct for any products -I'm happy either way.
I'm the cheapest stockist of Scrapbook Adhesive on the way! :))

Thank you for all the great comments yesterday - to answer a few....
Yes, the double chocolate ice cream was mine - big fan of very rich chocolate!
I agree - Bella has been far too quiet recently!
No sweeties in that gift box but great idea..not sure they would last long though.

I do try to grab the occasional days to spend quality time with my boys.  They are growing into men and it will not be long before being out with their mum just isn't 'cool'!
Although recently both my boys mentioned that they never intend to leave home...surely that cannot be true - I cannot keep doing their washing and ironing!! 
Have a great Monday dear friends.

Sunday 26 August 2012

A Sticky Exclusive and Giveaway!

Hello friends
Bit of a long blog post today - hope you don't mind! Pop that kettle on...!
Some pictures of our day in London for Elliott's birthday yesterday.
Setting off on the train...
Convent Garden, look it was sunny! Plenty of people watching the street performers.
 Impressive display of Olympic banner/flags.
 We found the theatre but then...
 the rain ...lots of it - thunder, lightening ..
So we took refuge and found 'Scoop' - seriously delicious ice cream!
Back at the theatre, we attended performance number... 
It was really good.   I highly recommend it.
On our way home...a rather damp but still smiling Elliott!
Despite the weather we had a brilliant day.
I do treasure these occasional days out with my boys.

Back to craft....
Great excitement in the house today!! 
I have an exclusive to bring to you from Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L™ 
it is................. E-Z Dots® Permanent 
This fantastic adhesive is not hitting the UK until November 
but I have a small amount of stock to sell now!!
You receive 15 metres - it dispenses as small dots which allows the adhesive to be applied in curves and on the back of tiny die cuts and embellishments.
It works on vinyl, acrylics, ribbon, foil, glitter and more.

Recently I put together this project using just this one adhesive.
Please click on my Scrapbook Adhesives tab on the sidebar or click here to view
and also other amazing sticky products available.  
Also, I will be giving away an E-Z Dots Permanent :)))
Just leave me a comment and Bella will pick out a winner on Monday -
she's been lazing around far too much lately, I think she needs a job! 
Hope you are all having a great Bank Holiday.
Take care friends.

Saturday 25 August 2012

Bright Tag and Birthday Wishes

Hello friends
Did I say tag? I'm becoming obsessed!
But this is very different tag to my normal style, although it does have a butterfly....
Making this I must have been having a 1970s mix of colours and patterns phase! 
Truth is, I made this on a dark Winter's night at the beginning of the year and
was craving warmth and colour.
This project has just appeared in the Spellbinders Idea Gallery, it features the very 
useful Labels Twenty-Four amongst other lovely dies.  All the details can be found here.
Today is a special day - my youngest son Elliott is sweet 16!
Today just him and I are going to London.  We are having a lunch in Covent Garden 
and I've also booked tickets for the theatre.  
We are going to see The Mousetrap.
Elliott has never been to the theatre before, we only just realised that he's seen countless films and the odd pantomime but never a proper theatre production.  
I decided he should see a classic - well, it has been running since 1952!  
Shhhh we must not reveal who did it!! 
I will be sure to post photos, talking of photos - this is Elliott on his 15th Birthday with Bella...
I'm not sure who has grown the most!
I've added more brilliant products to my Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L™  shop,
please click the link or use the one on my the right hand sidebar.  
Also some special sticky news tomorrow....

Have a lovely weekend dear friends.

Friday 24 August 2012

Friday Die Day!

Hello friends
It is that time of the week when I take requests and show you a set of dies in more detail.
This week it is going to be....

This set has been designed by Samantha Walker and inspired by the bold patterns of the 1970s 
(I knew I liked it for some reason!)
There are 6 flowers and 3 leaves die templates.
This is how they look cut/embossed and stencilled.
Apologies for the white squares at the bottom of the picture, I got carried away when cutting/embossing and accidentally picked up another die that was on my craft desk and included it! 
 It's tag time! 
I believe I've shown this technique before, but for those new followers....
it's sliding the tag/cardstock through the die template to create a shaped bottom...!
It has created the embossing on the tag but I'm happy with that as I'm applying some patterned paper.
I've inked the edges and applied one of the leaves that looks just like a pea pod to me! 
And then I started to layer up other elements and applied a small piece of ribbon with good advice! 
 It's a rather more geometrical design than my normal tags, no script stamping, lace or butterflies..
but I like it!  Perhaps I'm discovering new crafty paths.
Have a brilliant weekend dear friends - I'm back tomorrow.
Take care.

Thursday 23 August 2012

Alpacas and Asters!

Hello friends,
I defy anyone not to smile at this picture!
Let me introduce you to Skippy and friend...
Kathy, one of my blog followers owns an Alpaca farm - Cherwell Leys Alpacas
I often urge Kathy to send me photos because these animals lift my heart and make me smile.
She mentions that they like having their photos taken!
I have a particular fondness for Skippy (so named because apparently she 'skips' to get her milk). 
Kathy has had to bottle feed this baby and make sure she wears a warm coat when needed.
But I probably shouldn't have favourites because look at these...just beautiful.
So that's me set up for smiling today, how about something crafty....
This card has just appeared in the Spellbinders Idea Gallery - 
great news because it means I can share it with you.  It features various dies but includes the very pretty Aster Flower Topper.
The colours for this card are a little different from my usual palette but it is always good to try something new.
Just to mention the Christmas Tags class on 27th October is now fully booked but I am going to do the same class on Saturday 10th November in case you missed booking the first date. 

It seems the camper van idea was a hit! Hope and Chances on tour!
I happened to mention it to my Elliott and he created this image in Photoshop...
if only it were real, wouldn't that be fantastic!  
It has got me thinking that in the future it may be possible for me to visit some craft clubs and shops around the country...I will keep you posted or indeed, if you have any ideas please let me know.
I'm back tomorrow with the all important ....Friday Die Day!
Take care friends.

Wednesday 22 August 2012

Watch the Birdie!

Hello friends,
Sharing a card today that is a little different from my style but I so wanted to use the bird!
He/she is available from Studio 490 and can easily be painted/inked.
I've used Matting Basics A for the kraft cardstock, the pink stamped background 
(it's that texture script stamp again..yes I love it!)
I've used the smaller rectangle from Fancy Ribbon Threader so you just get that beautiful scallop edge showing.  The mask is one of the Special Touch Mini Masks with quite a liberal spraying of 
Cosmic Shimmer Vintage Rose.  All in all I would say a very pink card today!
Just in case you may not have noticed, I have another button on my sidebar - 
Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L  - I'm going to be a stockist!! 
I know quite a lot of you were having trouble purchasing their products so I asked if I could stock their products here and in my crafty studio.  I received a very enthusiastic yes so I'm very happy.
Please click on the button to see what is available so far.  Lots more products to come as I take delivery, upload the photos etc.  You too can get to use this amazing adhesive!

Also, a big thank you to all of those who have booked, are in the process of booking classes -
I'm so thrilled and excited that it is all coming together now and cannot wait to meet each of you in person.
Saddened that I live too far away for some of you, I promise to create kits and you never know, perhaps one day I will hire a camper van and do a Hope and Chances crafty class tour!  
Actually I really like the sound of that....!
Take care,

Tuesday 21 August 2012


Hello friends.
Today I'm sharing one of the layouts that is appearing in this month's edition of Scrapbook Magazine.
I was sent Fancy Pants - Childish Things papers and embellishments to use and created three very different layouts.  This one features my mum with me (the day I was born!) and my big sister.
I chose a cluster design using Classic Scalloped Circles and Standard Circles and then kept adding embellishments.  I really enjoy creating these sort of pages but it is difficult to know when to stop adding!
Over the next few days I will share the other layouts with you.
Talking of scrapbooking......I also have details of a scrapbooking class - please see below, 
a Sunday afternoon of scrapping! (In a crafty way of course!)
If you cannot view the document please drop me an email and I will attach details by return. 
Classes for full day workshops are on their way - (must type faster....must type faster!!)
A very happy day yesterday - Mitchell, my eldest son passed his driving test. 
He is spending all his wages each month on his own car, 
the insurance is crippling but it is lovely that he can get out and about.
This is his pride and joy...called Rupert!
We do not know why he chose that name for his car but we all laugh about it!
Back tomorrow friends.
Take care.

Monday 20 August 2012

For Dad...

Hello friends,
Hope you all had an enjoyable weekend and kept cool if you were down in the South East like me.
It is the start of a brand new week - what do you have in store?
Today I'm sharing a card that I created for my Dad's birthday, 
there seems to be a distinct shortage of ideas for male cards so hopefully this one will help. 
I created this using Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L products and all the details are over on their blog
Again, a favour to ask of you - if you have time to zip over there to leave a comment, I'm very grateful.
 Using one of those brilliant Keepsake Envelopes..I'm going to be stocking those soon...
Other news...
I finally have a button on my blog where you can access classes that are available.
This button/link has been a real achievement following hours of frustration for myself and eldest son! 
We thought we would be able to use the 'Spellbinders' tab button that is already there but unfortunately that wasn't to be, in fact that poor button is now redundant as we cannot seem to link it anywhere.
Since my blog revamp it doesn't seem to follow traditional blogger template rules!
But now, wonders of wonders, if you click on the photo on the right hand sidebar you will be able 
to access a page that details classes - yippee!  
It's amazing what things make us happy!
Happy Monday dear friends.

Sunday 19 August 2012

Itching...! And a New Class!

Hello friends,
Thank you so much for all your kind words yesterday, my family and I truly appreciate it.

Now, what do I have for you today?
A tag!  
I was itching to demo this on TV and never got to it.  In fact, I was going to do this as a step by step tutorial post with the kit I had left over only to realise I had left it behind at the TV studio! 
Instead I will explain - I've used a regular luggage tag stamped with embossing pad (Versamark)
and using the script texture stamp available here.  I then sprinkled on Cosmic Shimmer Embossing Powder - Lapis Pearl and heat set.  I cut/embossed the smaller rectangle from cream cardstock using Card Creator - Fancy Postage Stamps - ink edges.  Using No.3 die from Matting Basics A, I cut/embossed a piece of red striped paper.  Assembled and adhered at a jaunty angle!
 The pretty green frame and gold foil 'Worth' is from Jewel Framed Sentiments and yes...
those tiny polka dot flowers - Homespun.  The keys are great for that extra touch and appropriate 
for an 18th, 21st or new home project.
Talking of tags....
It's a Christmas Tag Class.
Please let me know if you have problems reading the embedded document,
always happy to email across details.

I hope you are enjoying your weekend, it is very warm here, a little too warm!
I know I should not moan because a lot of you have rain!  I wish I could parcel up sunshine.
Take care friends.

Saturday 18 August 2012

Black, White and Pink

It is the weekend dear friends and I hope the sun is shining where you are.
This is one of the cards I featured on Create and Craft TV and actually got to demo!
Using the very popular Polka Dots from the new Card Creator line.  
I've used templates No. 2 and 3 to create a frame from white cardstock.  (With Spellbinders dies you always count from the middle outwards so the smallest template is always No.1).
Popped a piece of patterned paper behind, looped some of the double sided ribbon, added a black embellishment from the Studio 490 range and again....
used the lovely little leaves and flowers from Homespun!
I don't think I'm going to stop loving those cute little florals.
It is a speedy card!  I like the black and white with just the small shot of colour but I also think it will work in various other colours...I may just try that!

I wanted to mention something today - I lost my Great Aunt a few days ago - an incredible lady who lived into her 90's.  Up to a week ago she was still shopping in Morrisons, cooking her own meals and loyally watching every soap (and me!) on TV.   She was a true traditional old fashioned lady who thought that if a presenter kissed me on the cheek he would be sure to ask me to marry him!  
This special lady was born in Camberwell, London in 1916, she raised my dad when he lost his own mum at a very young age.  She worked through the war in a biscuit factory and then the Co-op.  
At the age of 87 she decided to move to Portugal and then returned a few years later! 
She only ever had alcohol once in her life ...
A fascinating life and thankfully a couple of years ago she sat down with my sister and I and we recorded a video film of her detailing her upbringing and life story.  
I'm sad but I'm also celebrating her amazing long and full life. 

Sarah Annie Brodrick (nee Woodward).
Aunty Sally to me.
Take care friends.

Friday 17 August 2012

It's ....Friday Die Day!

Hello friends,
Whoosh!! That's how fast Fridays come around!
Again - so many thanks for the kind comments yesterday.  For those who missed the shows I will be featuring some of the cards on my blog over the next few days and explaining some techniques. I've been true to my love...of butterflies!  I'm featuring Les Papillions.
You receive four die templates with this set.
Two cut very intricately and two are superb for stencilling.
 Here they are cut/embossed and stencilled.
 Is that a tag?? Oh yes it is!
I've decided to use two of the dies to create an embossed impression in the tag.
 Run them through with your embossing sandwich.
 The emboss only is super deep and effective.
I've lightly inked the edges and then I'm going to stamp it with one of the Texture stamps featured this week on Create and Craft.  I like this stamp and use it a lot! 
 I've added two of the butterflies, some ribbon, twine and some of those little flowers and leaves from the Homespun set - they were left over from TV and I didn't like to waste them..!
 A close up of that lovely embossing.
 Have a brilliant weekend friends, apparently we are getting a heatwave, I think I may keep cool and craft!
Details of more classes will be coming soon - I'm struggling with a little button on my blog!
For the moment if you would like to be added to my classes list then please drop me an email so I can make sure you are included when I send out all the details.
I'm planning a scrapbooking class on the afternoon of Sunday 16 September,
I think that will definitely require afternoon tea! 
I'm back tomorrow, take care.

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