Monday, 29 March 2010

Dandelion Wishes

The photograph was taken after my 2nd daughters first full day at school... after the school day had finished, she and her sister played in the park swapping tales of new friends and teachers, teaching each other new games - and Katie tried to tell the time by blowing at a dandelion tuft.
Core'Dinations cardstock was used for the background paper, and I decorated it myself... using a white gel pen and also stitching to create the white dandelions on the background, and embellished these with little tiny glass beads I had in my stash drawers. I decided to use two oval shapes to frame the photograph - and instead of using paper or cardstock, stitching seemed a nice, plainer, alternative. Machine stitching around the edges (took me ages... darn sewing machine! *lol*), and a little inking finished it off. Funny thing is, this ended up nothing like what it was supposed to be - I preferred to keep it less fussy and let the work done on the background papers stand out on it's own and compliment the photograph. No added flowers, ribbons, buttons, brads or Ranger inks. Not like me at all!

Monday, 22 March 2010

Little Tyke...

My son when he was just a little tyke - he's 24 this year! I set myself a task with this layout... to try NOT to use things... On my 'not to use' list was Ranger Inks and any Die-cuts - I felt almost naked without my inks at the table *lol*, but still used distressing techniques on the Core'Dinations paper and lots of stitching in blues, green and red (to bring out the colour of the tricycle seat). For the papers, I used Basic Grey "Poplin" (from the Urban Couture collection) and Core'dinations paper. I also used Papermania Dewdrops (Aqua) and Anita's Fairy Wings Dimensional Stickers (Blue Mountain Butterflies). The stickers are printed in holographic sticky paper - and the holographic shine just didn't match with the layout, so I had to trim all the butterflies and get rid of the bits I didn't like. Because of my decision not to use die-cuts, all the embellishments were handcut... what a task!

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Mixing it up...

I wanted to see if I could successfully mix my usual style of grungy/distressed/psuedo-vintage, with something different... cartoon characters. I had the perfect picture of my middle daughter Katie when she was just a little-ickle girl on an outing in Lymington with her Daddy. She had on Disney trousers with Mickey Mouse on them - but he was dressed in oranges rather than his usual red trousers. So, I used the trousers she wore that day and based everything within the layout on those. I chose some papers that, although they didn't quite go together themselves, seem to blend nicely with what I hoped to achieve. The papers are: Core'dinations (colour stack, orange), Imagination Project Gin-X 'Pyramid Jacket' (from the Desperately Seeking Summer collection), and K&Co 'Daffodil Plaid'. I used a small flower punch and a medium butterfly punch as well as a 'round the edges' border punch for decoration. The Pluto and Mickey characters are made by me - just drawn, coloured and then glazed (glazed with childrens craft glaze). As usual, I had to do some handstitching - round the heart and also to highlight Katie's dirty shoes. I decided to do a 'XOXOX' pattern a little on he edges of the paper too. My Ranger Inks in Peeled Paint and Dried Marigold came in handy for bringing a lot of the mismatched colours in the papers together. All in all, I'm very happy with how it turned out.

Sunday, 14 March 2010


I know you read this, and show off my layouts to people (thank you, with blushes here)... so here's a posting just for you.
You are the most amazing, perfect Mum. Everything I am as a mum, I learned from you. Patience, understanding, devotion...
My children are blessed to have you as a grandmother, just as I am blessed to have you as my Mum.
God Bless you, Mum... and all the love in the world to you.


Time on Mothers Day...

Yes, it's that time of year again when Mums all over the country spare a few moments of the day to hug themselves with happiness and love that they had children who trash the kitchen whilst making us a cup of tea that we can drink in bed at seven o'clock on a Sunday morning :) Actually, my youngest waited up last night until the hands of the clock ticked past midnight, and then she presented me with a bouquet of flowers (how had she hidden them from me??) and a beautiful card with a message inside that made me cry (with joy).
Now to the layout I finally finished... It was wonderful to have a spare few hours to do anything I wanted, and so Saturday night I stayed up finishing this layout of my eldest daughter in her prom dress. She looked so amazingly beautiful in her matching blue dress and shoes and even a handbag and tiara to complete her perfect outfit. We spent months searching for "The Dress" - and in the end, she didn't get to go to the Prom at all. She had changed schools, and had decided to go to her old schools prom, not the one held at the new school. At the very last minute, the headmaster of her old school told her that she couldn't go as she wasn't a pupil there any longer (though he had agreed she COULD go beforehand... Mr Schofield, you are an ****!).
I used the Basic Grey "Cashmere" paper (from the Urban Couture Collection) for the background, and a piece of blue Core'dinations paper from the Colour Stack for the middle of the layout. Ranger Inks in China Blue, Faded Jeans and Walnut Stain were used, as well as a lot of distressing with scissors. Lots of flowers and brads, and some ribbon threaded through the plain paper to embellish the page, and I felt quite happy with how it was coming on. Once again, hand stitching was used to finish everything off - a layout seems unfinished to me now without me getting out a sewing needle or the sewing machine. The lettering is acid-free childrens foam shapes I bought very cheaply - love a bargain! I stamped the letters with the same flourish stamp I used for the plain paper - just to tie together all the elements. The added touch was to tear into the background paper and take chunks out, then sew over these gaps with the same thread I used throughout the rest of the layout - I quite liked the effect.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Quickest LO ever (for me*lol*)

My Mum-In-Law with my grand-daughter (her great-granddaughter, of course!) taken in January this year. I just loved the way they interacted - like Lily was hanging onto every word out of her Great-Nanna's mouth...
The patterned paper is from Me&MyBigIdeas, and the rest of the paper is stamped and inked by me with Ranger distressed inks (Black Soot). All the roses and also the butterfly were from a wedding favours stash I had in a drawer - had to come in useful one day :)
The whole LO from beginning idea to end product took less than 3 hours - which is PDQ for me! Though I will admit that I think the speed in which I completed this LO does show somewhat... but it's not too bad.

Finally got a page done!

I love this photograph of my brother - it was taken at Farley Mount in 1980. I had bought a "Kodak Ektra 12" camera with my birthday money that year, and that little (very almost useless) camera went with me everywhere. Every now and then, a photograph would be developed that I knew would be a "keeper" - this was one of them. Not bad for an amateur 11 year old.
For this layout, I used a basic grey paper called Passe (from the "Archaic" range). What's quite unusual about this layout is that all the elements are sewn on either by hand or done with the machine...
The oak leaves and the bird were made in the same way - using pages from an old book, I cut out the shapes I wanted, then used gesso over them. I also used Ranger Distress Inks all over these elements, and also all over the layout :)