Thursday 28 February 2013

Sneak Peek!

Hello friends briefly visited yesterday, perhaps my little bit of moaning helped!
It will be so nice to see everything dry up just a little bit - Bella is tired of being muddy footed!
Come on is March tomorrow!
Back to craft...I'm going to tempt you today with a little sneak peek of the
Mother's Day class.  Here is just a snippet of the gift box and you can see the 
paper stack in the background.....
With this class everyone receives a Cosmo Cricket - Evangeline paper pad.
Traditional, slightly Victorian, tapestry look - gorgeous!
The class is a gift box containing chocolates and a card for Mother's Day but just by switching stamps this could work for birthday, anniversary, thank you and more.
I do have places left - it takes place on Saturday 9 March - 10am to 1pm 
and the cost is £20.  Just drop me an email if you would like to come along.
I promise not to eat all the chocolates...I have had to buy a second lot though!

Slightly shorter post today...I'm working on Friday Die Day and again...
it's extra special.....!!  Do stop by.
Take care friends.

Wednesday 27 February 2013

Thanks So Much

Hello friends
Oh where is the sunshine??? It is so dull, damp and grey - just a little bit of sun pretty please!
Thinking ahead that we might get some Spring-like weather I am sharing
a fresh looking card with you today.  
You may have caught me demonstrating this on Create and Craft.
It features the very lovely Reverence M-Bossabilities folder along with
Gold Ivy dies, the tiny flowers and leaves from Homespun (as featured yesterday and yes, I will be stocking this set..due to arrive very soon) and a little Classic Scalloped Heart .
I was asked yesterday information regarding the new magnetic placement mat for use with the 
Spellbinders have the information regarding the mat here explaining the sandwich etc.  
I have these on order for my studio and Amazon shop.
Talking of my Amazon shop I perhaps should clarify a couple of things - as a seller listing
products I am not always able to upload my own image, if the product is already available on Amazon 
I have to use the existing image (annoying because I sometimes think my photo is better!)
I would urge you to check sizes and descriptions just to make sure you are 
buying exactly what you need, 
I'm very happy to exchange products but it saves you any inconvenience.  

Also postage costs - I've tried really hard to be as cheap as possible but Mr Royal Mail isn't
very understanding!  With Amazon, it is necessary to create 'postage bands' e.g. up to the value of 
£10 there is a £1.95 postage fee so this may appear pricey if you are only ordering a small item - say one stamp - but not so expensive if say you are ordering, say, 4 bottles of Cosmic Shimmer. 
As mentioned - if you prefer to buy products direct from me please email, you do not 
have to go through Amazon and I can always adjust postage costs a lot easier when dealing direct.

 Okay so that was a little bit business like...I've been meaning to mention those points and 
they appeared at the top of my 'To do list' today!  

Right now Spellbinders are having an 'Explore Beyond Blog Frenzy and Giveaway' -
make sure you click into each day for some brilliant projects.

Tomorrow I can share with you some sneak peeks of the Mother's Day class on 9 March.
Also if you feel like escaping this grey dull weather this Sunday, Jennie from the Artistic Stamper
is going to be in my studio teaching a canvas class featuring Rose Creations and Carnation Creations - 
here is a Carnation Creation I featured as Friday Die Day last year.
Please feel free to email for more info.
Take care friends.

Tuesday 26 February 2013

Questions, Answers and a Winner!

Hello friends
It's the tea/coffee cup symbol...long blog post ahead!
Firstly questions...

I was asked yesterday by Ros what my London job is...just to clarify I work on
Thursdays and Fridays for a law firm near Tower Hill, I've been there 15 years.  I would
love to devote a full week to Hope and Chances but right now those two teenage boys of mine
keep me poor!  Bella is a little expensive at times too...her hair stylist is more pricey than mine!

I've also been asked what are the tiny flowers and leaves I often use on projects
like this one....
and this one....
 oh and this one....
suffice to say I love using them...and I can confirm they are from the die set Homespun.
It also features a pretty jar, basket and more...
Next....the new 3D M-Bossabilities Folders.
The correct sandwich in your Grand Calibur® is B-Pink Embossing Plate, the 3D M-Bossabilities Folder with your paper/card inside and then D Raspberry Adapter Plate.
The way I remember it is to 'think Pink!'  if you are picking up any plates that are not 'pink-ish'
then you haven't got the correct sandwich.

I will be stocking these folders and the Imperial Gold dies, also if there are particular
current dies you are trying to obtain please let me know.  If I haven't got them in my shop
I can normally get them pretty quickly for you.

Now on to Raspberry Plates....

There are two larger size Raspberry Plates - 8.5 x 12 and 8.25 x 11.75.
The reason for this is dependent upon your Grand Calibur - looking at the white tray at the front 
of your machine - if it has side panels to the tray (as pictured below) 
you will need the 8.25 x 11.75 Raspberry Plate.

If the white tray has no side panels (as pictured below) you can use the larger 8.5 x 12 Raspberry Plate.

Now it is possible to change the tray in your machine, if you purchase a new full set of plates they come
with a new tray.
To remove the existing tray make sure your Grand Calibur is secured down.
Create the embossing sandwich - base plate, tan embossing mat and embossing plate.
Feed this sandwich into the back of the Grand Calibur, turn handle.
As the plates run through the tray will become loose and you will be able to remove it.
To insert the new tray, slide it in aligning it with the side grooves.

Remember feel free to email me questions regarding Spellbinders,
I answer emails a little quicker as my aim is to get to all of them in one day! 

Okay so the exciting bit now...the winner of the Gold Corners One
Bella punched in her clock card!  She picked out a winner and took it to her snuggly blanket.
Not the most glamorous shot of Bella, her little back legs!  Once she completed her task she decided to cast it to one side and look out the window - I fear she is not conscientious in her work!
Upon closer inspection ...I can announce the winner is..........
Kym's Crafty Cards.
Please drop me an email with your address details and I will get your dies sent out straight away.
As mentioned, I have more splendid giveaways coming up so eyes peeled.
Have a wonderful day dear friends.

Monday 25 February 2013

Hope and Chances Creativity HQ

Hello friends
Firstly big thanks for all your comments - I know there has been quite a few die questions
over the weekend and I'm doing a detailed post tomorrow with answers.
Back to today.... a different sort of blog post.
Over the last few months I've been asked if I have extra hours in my day...oh how I wish that were true!
I certainly keep busy so I thought I would give you a little insight into my world, I would like to say a 
typical day but things are always a little changeable with taking on the new studio/shop, TV
and, of course, at the end of the week I do that London job thingy!

What is very typical is that I get up at 6am or earlier - I do not need an alarm,
I have a cat called Darcy that wakes me without fail and if I try to ignore her she will chew something,
we've replaced countless phone chargers and she's even damaged a few projects!
I make tea - it is essential!  And feed the cats ..(there are three!)

Bella does not get up, she is cosy in bed and she normally lifts her head to just watch me fly around the house, she knows the routine - her walk is later.
I then go straight to my computer and begin to check emails, blog posts and Amazon shop.
This is my 'office' a little desk in the corner - looks a bit too tidy doesn't it!?
I've scooped all the paperwork off for the photo!
Oh look...there is just one of my in-trays!
Once I'm ready, I leave the house armed with bags - handbag, post-bag 
(this is a very nice Cath Kidston bag that I place all my outgoing post and parcels into) - 
the lady in the Post Office comments on it frequently.
My 'work bag'  - it contains items that need to go down to the studio as well as my file of lists..
there are many lists!
I head to the studio which is only about a five minute drive away and park.
Breakfast time - this week slices of Malt Loaf - I go through phases! 
I put on a DVD - currently watching the box set of Boardwalk Empire (love it!) and begin work.  
At some point I take a break to walk to the Post Office, make phone calls, answer emails but
I really try to complete the projects I have listed for that day.
Occasionally I eat lunch!
I leave the studio at a time that fits in with collecting my youngest son and head home.

If my eldest son hasn't taken Bella out because normally they are doing this.... playing on computer games!
I then take her for a walk - right now her most favourite place is the woods behind my parents' home.
(Actually my Dad tends to take her for most of her walks right now...thank you Dad!)
She adores people but isn't too keen on dogs larger than herself so the woods being quiet is perfect for her.

I return home, vaguely think about dinner - dismiss that thought and begin typing!  
I type up project instructions, emails, blog posts and more.  
When the cries of 'what's for dinner?' becomes too much to bear I give in and stare into the freezer 
hoping that the shopping fairy may have visited - oh dear, something with mince again!
I cook, we eat, I clean up and head straight back to my computer - I continue to type and remind myself to order food shopping does actually happen sometimes!

At 9pm I sit in front of the TV, I go through my V+ box and select something that was 
probably recorded around last June!
I indulge in a class of wine and right now I'm secretly attempting to eat the equivalent of my own
body weight in Cadbury's Buttons Easter eggs!!
I totally switch off then, I relax and snuggle on the sofa with Bella.
By 11pm I'm exhausted and my bed is calling - I tell myself not to check emails but I normally do!
I take my Kindle to bed with me....
open it, read about one paragraph and promptly fall asleep.

It is busy, I feel like a lot of the time I'm chasing my tail but I do enjoy it.
Of course it changes on a Thursday and Friday, I have to pop my serious London working head on!

I hope you enjoyed this little blog deviation today...
Take care friends - I'm back tomorrow.

Sunday 24 February 2013

3D Inky!

Hello friends
Something new has popped up on the Spellbinders™  website - under the Explore Beyond tab
there is a section relating to 'Style' and the card pictured is mine!
Haven't they done a wonderful job displaying it with flowers and limes.
Here is my photo that I took for the card project and you can see a little bit more detail.
The dies used are Les Papillions Two, A2 Bracket Borders One and that super embossing
is from the Delightful Daisies 3D M-Bossabilities Folder.
So simple...just using white cardstock, embossed once (the emboss is so deep!) and then a variety
of distress inks, rubbing it over the surface - more intense in some places than others.
Layering up the A2 Bracket Borders One, tiny bit of ribbon and twine.
A little 'For You' tag...yes it's that tag die I lost but found again - phew!
I promise to stock these new 3D M-Bossabilities - they really are superb.

I hope you are all having a good weekend and keeping warm!
I didn't quite get around to the shop window yesterday as I got engrossed in projects
(and a Friday Die Day...preparing ahead!)
I'm cooking today - roast pork with all the trimmings (we don't do the word 'diet' in this house!)
Take care friends.

Saturday 23 February 2013

Pretty Hearts as Flower Centres and more....

Hello friends
What a fantastic lovely response to my post yesterday - thank you.
I will consult Bella's schedule and sort out a day when she is able to pick out a winner!
I think she's pretty much free - just a few walks, chasing squirrels, rabbits etc....
Keep your eyes peeled each day as I've got quite a few giveaways coming up -
I always feel a nice warm glow when I can give stuff away!

Today's post is a card that I created for Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L -
this went live when I was away in Birmingham and I didn't have a chance to blog 
about it until now.  
All the details can be found here.
What I am so thrilled about is the 3D Foam Hearts and the fact
that you can heat emboss them.  Within the pack they come in various sizes so the 
little ones make ideal flower centres.  I have these for sale in my Amazon shop.
As promised - answering a few questions:-

Shop sign: hoping to work on this again over the weekend and the beginning of next week,
it needs more coats of paint and then the actual lettering.  

Grand Calibur: sometimes they develop a rattling sound - occasionally it is possible that the 
screws inside work their way loose - this is an easy fix -
if you need some advice please email me as I'm happy to provide instructions.

More classes: if you could see my desk you would see all my class drafting notes...they are happening and because Spring is supposed to be around the corner (go away snow!) they all seem to feature a lot of 
very pretty papers, flowers and butterflies!  You are not really surprised are you??!
The new classes are going out by email within the next few days, I have a mailing list but just in case
you do not think you are on the list please let me know - I don't want anyone missing out.

Until then...some places available on March classes including Jennie's canvas class -
(I've heard some inside info that she's using Rose Creations and Carnation Creations).

I'm doing a Mother's Day Card and Gift box class - chocolate involved with that one!

Also Grand Dies and Nestaboard notebook class - this is being re-run due to demand.
All class details can be found by just clicking on my Spellbinders Academy tab on the sidebar.
But, always email me if you need to know anything - I'm getting faster on that little keypad on my phone too!

Have a brilliant weekend - I'm hoping to change my shop window -
out goes the Valentine theme and in comes Spring - photos to follow!
Take care friends.

Friday 22 February 2013

Friday Die Day and a Chance to Win the Dies!!

Hello friends
Whoosh ....and Friday Die Day is here!  
This week I am featuring Gold Corners One from the Imperial Gold dies AND....
I am able to give away a set of these!
Spellbinders have kindly offered me some of the demo show dies to give away on my blog -
the lucky recipient will not have the packaging but the dies are the main thing..right?!
All you have to do is leave me a comment - if you would like to mention how you 
would use the corner dies that would be great.
Bella will pick out a winner next week.

Okay, I may have cheated just a little this week because I did feature this tag on
Create and Craft but for those of you who missed it I decided to do a step by step tutorial and 
feature it on FDD.
You receive an assortment of corner dies - some with soft curvy corners, some with spiked and others with scalloped - all very detailed and pretty.  
Remember these revolutionary dies cut/emboss/deboss/pierce and stencil.
This is how they look cut/embossed. 
Here is the tag - please note the splodge-like marks are the paper design - I didn't spill my coffee!
I chose to cut/emboss 8 scallop corner die cuts from orange/red cardstock.
Applied some liquid adhesive to the straight corners.
Layered one on top of the other but opened up the scallop edge to create a little pocket.
I couldn't resist trying out Gold Labels Four.
Arranged my corner 'pockets' to create a flower.
A little flower, pearl and lace ribbon added to finish.  You can of course stamp/add a sentiment,
my main focus was using the corners as a flower.
A close up picture. 
This tag got sent out to a viewer along with a few of my cards - I hope they all arrive safely.
Have a wonderful weekend - take care friends.
Just off to tell Bella that she's got some work coming up...!

Thursday 21 February 2013

Back Home!

Hello friends
I'm home, the house is still standing despite the boys being left and 
Bella has been squeezed and hugged lots!
In fact my lovely boys went out shopping, bought dinner and cooked it for me...
I'm expecting some bad news and they are softening the blow..maybe!?
I was only away for three nights but it felt longer.  
I had a truly brilliant time in Birmingham.
And look..first class travel!  If you travel on a Sunday you have the train to yourself
and it only cost £3.50 extra to upgrade!  
It was my first ever visit to Birmingham.
 The weather was crisp, cold and bright. 
The NEC is huge!  Set out very much like an airport.
Thank goodness for comfy shoes!
 I was there to wander and watch others demonstrate including the brilliant Ken Oliver.
I returned the next day to absorb all the creativity from lots of stands...!
I was able to say a quick hello live from Stitches on a Spellbinders Try It Tuesday You Tube video
and spent some time with the lovely Betina from Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L.
(Don't forget to nip over and 'Like' their Facebook page - full of interesting info).
We ate at Jamie's Italian ....
and did a bit of shopping at The Bullring.
Back at the show I made notes of what really caught my eye and returned the next day to 
place some orders for the studio/shop. Very excited about those arriving....especially WOW embossing powders, Fantastic Ribbons and The Hobby House -
I have to say The Hobby House stand was beautiful, it ticked all my boxes -
they had combined beautiful white units with their fresh looking products and with a twist of vintage.
I wanted to airlift it all to my shop window!
While I was away I tapped into my blog and read all the comments,
I know some of you have left some questions and I promise to get to those.
Remember you can always email me too with any Spellbinders queries - happy to help.

Please stop by for Friday Die Day tomorrow as it is EXTRA special...
I'm not going to give the secret away but I promise it's good!
Take care friends.

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