Sunday, 30 October 2011

Mini-Album Stand


I have finally finished the stand (or the base) that will hold another mini-album. I think I'll call this one... "Autumn Breeze", or maybe "Autumn Swirls".  It's taken me a while to create... not only because the rheumatoid arthritis really is slowing me down lately, but I kept changing my mind about how I was going to finish the top of the stand! Remember all the stuff I bought to go on top... and then I changed my mind and made a little configuration box instead...?
Rejected! *lol* In fact, I have used NOTHING which I bought with the idea to use it on this stand... and made something completely different instead.
I used my new Tim Holtz Sizzix die "Autumn Gatherings" (657454), and spent a huge amount of time sanding and inking up each leaf after die-cutting it out of Co'Ordinations cardstock (I used distress inks: Fired Brick, Spiced Marmalade, Dusty Concord,  and a lot of Vintage Photo).  I also used some paper roses I bought at Pickwell, and blackberry vine picks (that I can't remember the manufacturers name to! Sorry!), as well as a crochet doily I shimmer-misted (with copper, ruby and purple) and part of a small lacy wrap I chopped up and 'dyed' with "Espresso" colour wash (also by Tim Holtz, Adirondack). Here's some photographs to show the full 360 degrees, as well as the inner compartment (not shown well in the photograph), the drawer, and the top. I was so keen to get these photographs online, that the ModPodge hasn't dried properly yet, and it shows a bit milky-white where this has happened.
 I forgot to mention the little owl too... he had such a cute expression on his polystyrene face that I had to use him *lol* It's a shame the photographs don't really show the swathe of leaves at the front - they're all swirled like a rollercoaster track - I wanted it to look as if the wind had caught the leaves and they were swirling about in the air. Although it doesn't resemble it at all (I think), I got my initial inspiration from Patti Carrow. She was sent a beautiful (gorgeous, magnificent, amazing... get the picture? *lol*) mini album and stand made by 'Fred'. Patti's album and stand are definitely Vintage and a little Shabby-Chic, whereas I wanted mine to be all about Autumn. Isn't it strange how you can get inspired by something, and yet that inspiration leads you into a completely different direction?  You can see Patti's album by her friend Fred HERE. I can't imagine anyone seeing this amazing creation, and not being inspired by it in some way. I can't wait to start the album to go on my stand now.

I'm just hoping that, after uploading all these photographs, that my internet stays on long enough to get it all posted. I have been trying to get online and post comments over the past three days... but have been thwarted by internet chaos! Thank goodness blogger saves posts in 'draft' when the page disappears! I'd be pulling my hair out if I had to do all this again :)

I recall promising a kitten update too...
This evening I sneaked into the dining room looking for Duchess, Essex, and Rosie... and I couldn't find them anywhere! I had been feeding Bella, and she'd fallen asleep in my arms (well, in my hands really - she's such a tiny wee thing), and I wanted to see if the others were hungry too. I searched the room... in the basket - no. Litter tray? No. Behind the door, under the sideboard, stuck behind the bookshelf? No, no and no. Under the table? No. Oh... wait a minute...  There they were - in a small basket that I keep their toys in! All three of them were snuggled up - Duchess all snuggly and warm (and squashed) at the bottom...
It didn't take Bella long to decide she wanted in on the snuggle-fun too...
Daft little munchkins, aren't they?! *lol*

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

WOYWW 125 ... and a catch-up!

Another Wednesday, another desk... sounds like a Country & Western song to me :)
Still not joining in on the fun that is found at the Stamping Ground, with "What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday?". Well, pop on over to Julia's and add your name to the ever-growing list of nosey-parkers around the world who, each Wednesday, tire of wondering where their mojo has drifted off to and have a sneak around other people's ideas and creative spaces instead *lol*
Last night was 'Craft Club' at the wondrous and magical place that is Pickwells. Did I mention cold? Well, it was darn cold there last night too... so I kept warm by hobbling around the shop, discovering magical and amazing things to buy. This included: more charms, the "Snow Flurry" PATP set (oh... it's sooooo beautiful! - and the last one in stock, so I had to buy it!), as well as some 6x6 Christmas papers, a DoCrafts 'top note' die set, some wooden leaves, Tea Dye Distress Ink (and re-inker), and some Prima flowers. All on my desk - somewhere around the bottom right of the photograph I think.
So, onto what else is taking up craft space on my desk today...
Covering my desk is a whole load of things that I had considered placing on top of the book-stack base of my new project (far right)... Dolls house furniture, bird houses, straw hat, boxes, wooden blocks... I even had a wreath. And what's been chosen...? Well, none of that actually. I made a little configuration-like box that will be home to a little owl, a basket and a few bits of 'stuff'... and something else I'm working on too that involves a coat hanger.  I don't consider anything I've bought a waste... it will all be used in one way or another... eventually :) AND... it was all bought 'on the cheap', so no big loss.

Time for a quick catch-up? Then read on...
CallieCat and babies are all doing VERY well... so cute and adorable! I'll post some piccies in the next few days.
The 'Big Bash' went really well - who knew a house full of teenagers could be so well-behaved? Okay, so they were a little loud. Oh, alright... I admit it - they were a LOT loud *lol*... but so much fun!  In our house we have a bit of a tradition known as "The Gorm Shot"... basically, you pull the most awful face you can when a photograph is taken... great for unusual wedding photographs, and brilliant if you can get the vicar to join in at a Christening *lol* So... 17 teenagers sat down for a photograph... and I got 'gormed'!
Several people chose not to have a photograph taken... spoilsports! *lol*

Sadly, the following day I recieved a phonecall from my eldest daughter... Little Sox, her black and white kitten (from CallieCats last litter) had been hit by a car and killed. She is devastated, and I've been around to her home to help her sort through a few things. Sox was her baby... she went everywhere with Naomi - either in her handbag, or with a little harness on. They did everything together, and now poor little Sox is no more.  I'm sure Naomi will get over it... and have another cat (in time)... but for now she and her fiance Dan just want to remember their 'Baby Kitty'.

My Internet Service Provider (ISP) has had a few problems... my e-mails are just not getting through to me. My mail box remains empty... and then every few days I get a huge influx of all the mail that's been queueing up! Some of it is just gobble-de-gook... but my ISP has promised to sort it out very soon. So, if you've mailed me in the last couple of weeks... SORRY! I am trying to get round to answering e-mails... when I get them, and if I can understand them *lol*

Well, with parties, craft club, shopping trips and visits to a distraught daughter, my time online has been somewhat lacking. I promise I'll try to catch-up with everyone... though I can't guarantee that I'll be able to comment on all the posts I've missed. Please, please accept my apologies for this.

In the meantime... if you're still reading... Have a productive, happy, and fun-filled Wednesday... and the rest of the week too!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Coming Soon... (but not just yet)...

Well, I sorted out a bit of my stash drawers yesterday (I must have been unwell... delirious even - tidying up??!! Atrocious behaviour! *lol*)
At some point in early November, I'll be giving away some stuff - not a lot, just some handmade flowers really. I'll also sort out giving away the LRMA Christmas mini album too...
So, you've been forewarned.
It'll be the same 'rules' as before... no becoming a follower if you don't want , no leaving comments on loads of posts... just leave a comment on one post to say "Yes, I'd like that" when it's been written, and then I'll get my beautiful daughter to pick a number from a hat. So you know what's coming...
 Handmade flowers, some acetate (or rather, heavier plastic) butterflies, and a few flowers in a packet.
And the cover of the LRMA Christmas-theme.

So... tell your friends and bloggers that November I'll be giving these away... and hopefully we'll have a little blog-post party and someone (or sometwo) will be happy :)
I'll keep you posted...
just remember NOT to leave any comments for the giveaway on this post... I'll sort out posts and whatnot later on *lol*
To be honest, this post is more for my benefit... if it's down here in black and white (or green and black and a few other colours, in my case) I'll not forget about it - and if I do happen to forget, someone can give me a swift kick up the jacksey and ask "What about that stuff you promised to give away?".
Just don't wear hob-nail boots... thankee kindly *lol*

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Fiddle Fart Joy

The heading of this post does make sense... honest! I am so happy to have recieved my gift from Helen today.  The woman has to be a mind reader... I had these little Christmas postcards that I wanted to use... but I can't find them anywhere. Then, lo and behold... Helen's packet arrives, and there's a set of the postcards inside! Amazing! And talking of amazing... you all have had a peek at Helen's blog recently...? She's been Fiddle-Farting (see... post header making sense now? *lol*) away at Halloween and once again (as always) doling out the brilliant ideas and fun projects. Go See!!!
Here's my gift from her, which I shall be sharing with my friend LouLou - but not the felt flowers (sorry Lou!) because they may be headed straight for my new project :)

I thought I'd best update everyone on the cute fluffiness that is "The Kittens".
I have to feed them twice a day just to help CallieCat out... she's all worn out, poor wee mummy-kitty.
They are doing well, and are about normal for their age. Ready for the mugshots? I couldn't take a photograph of them all together, as they were exploring all afternoon - in separate directions.
First we have Duchess ... she's going to be a matronly, loving, big fluffy grey ball... and my future SIL's Mum will be taking her on:
She's also very shy and it was so difficult to get a photograph of her at all! I had to play down the brightness and up the contrast so you can see her in this photograph.
Next we have the last born... the little surprise that popped out sometime around dawn the day after all the other kittens had been born. I named her "Aurora Blaze" Aurora means 'the dawn', and she has a little ginger blaze on her forehead. Rosey, for short:
Isn't she adorabubble? She's a squealer... but loves her cuddles too.
Next is the only boy of the bunch... now named "Essex"... because he's grey like a cloud, but with a lot of silver linings. Anyone under the age of 40 may not realise the connection... think "Eddie Moon", Eastenders, David Essex... and "Hold Me Close".  How I love that song!
We're hoping he'll be a churchyard cat, and have a happy home with the Rev. He's playful, and loves to crawl and hide under things - like my wooden chest he's under here.
Last, little firstborn "BellaBella"... the runt of the litter. She only miaows when she hears my voice, and then toddles towards me... she's so tiny and adorable, I may just have to keep her...
As you can see (I hope), BellaBella isn't actually a pure black cat... she's a black tabby. She loves to curl up in my hand and fall to sleep. I swear I could take her anywhere and she'd be content just to sleep tucked into my cardigan... and she's only 3 weeks old!

So.. they are my "Moggy Crew"... all doing well and being happy.
And Mummy-cat Callie is doing okay too...
Keeping watch over her little balls of fluff.


It's Wednesday again folks, and you know what that means...
It's time for mid-week mayhem, with "What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday?"
I admit to not having too much time on my hands right now... my gorgeous daughter turned 17 on the 13th of this month, and we're planning a birthday bash for her this weekend (I do hope my little house survives 30 rowdy teenagers!). As well as that, I have been helping CallieCat with her kittens... she feeds them about six times a day, I feed them twice a day. Our Callie is a clever little cat, as she has me doing the last feed at night (about 2am) and the mid-morning feed too (about 10-ish). I am pooped! Actually, 'pooped' isn't the best word to use... do you know what you have to do when feeding kittens? No... and trust me when I say, you really REALLY don't want to know either. Just let me say that, unbeknownst to many non-kitty peoples, kittens have to have their tummies massaged after feeding to help digestion. Then they have to go pee-pee. I'll leave it up to you to guess how you help them do that little job. Okay, enough of why I'm so busy and have the urge to wash my hands several dozen times a day *lol*
Of course, I'm trying to start another crafting project :) I usually take a photograph of my workdesk on a Tuesday evening/Wednesday morning... I tend to leave my craft room 'as-is' overnight, and by the time Wednesday dawns, my desk looks much the same as it did Tuesday afternoon. Well, not this time! This was my desk early Tuesday evening...
You can tell a new project is being thought about by the notebook on the far right, and the empty carousel on the far left. Okay... all is tidy and manageable. THEN, I ask Hubby to take me to Pickwell on Tuesday evening, because I decide I need Timmy Holtz knobs for my new project. Now, now, ladies... clean thinking here...  :)
A quick trip to Pickwell, and my desk suddenly looks like this...
There's the carousel getting a bit full, little owls, charms (keys and birds), a small wreath, some brown organza ribbon, 7Gypsies and also Tim Holtz bottles, two packs of buttons, Marion Smith Vintage Trinkets (bird cages and birds and a large birdcage), Petaloo Blackberry sprays, a Prima Carnation spray, two dozen white roses, a collection of three tiny straw baskets, the dreaded raffia (why, oh why.... do I never learn? *lol*), a small straw hat, a small box, some wooden blocks, two packs of natural feathers, a circular bare chipboard album, as well as the books I'm using in this project, scor-tape, bags of leftovers (Kraft cardstock and cardboard),.... and..... I think that's about it. Okay so the craft mats, notebook and my netbook are all buried under my increasing treasures *lol*... but I am hoping to get this mess sorted into some kind of order very soon. Really. Honest. Probably... Not.
So, there you have it...  from order to chaos in a matter of one small (-ish) shopping trip, and a head full of ideas.
Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone - and remember to pop over to the Blog of snoopiness and happiness (that's Julia's Blog, actually called the "Stamping Ground") and join in if you have the time, with WOYWW?!!!

Monday, 17 October 2011

Purple Christmas Mini Album

I haven't posted anything I've done in a couple of days... but I have been busy. Apart from the FOUR HOURS it took me to go through everyone's posts and make comments (why do you people have such brilliant blogs?!? *lol*), I have finally finished another LRMA. "Another?" you cry... yes... and it's all because I just had to ask of my swap partner "What colour would you like for your LRMA I'm making for you?".
Now, with a blog-name of "Purplehouse", you'd think I would've known already. Karen (for 'Karen' is her real name) sent me a lovely little e-mail back asking for "purple, a bit of pink,... and glitter".
Glitter... my nemesis!
The Moriarty to my Holmes
The Joker to my Batman
The Dr Doom to my Fantastic Four
The Katie to my Peter (or vice versa *lol*) get the picture...
Still, I asked and therefore I must uphold my craftegrity, and do as the lady asks.
I used purple... and a little bit of pink... and glitter. Well, I actually used holographic embossing powder a bit - and even encased this little bit of demonic glitter inside several layers of clear embossing powder. To no avail. I am flittered. There is a hint of sparkle in the craftroom, and everything within the room also has that subtle sheen of sparkle to it. Darn! Well, my craft room is no longer virginal as far as glitter is concerned :) But I survived! There are no glittered pets within the house, I am not sneezing glitter, and there are no cascades of sparklyness as I walk though the house.

So, here's the cover, showing the couple of charms I added to the bookrings and the ribbon  had to use to hold the book together:
All the tags inside are pretty simple, journaling lines on one side and embossed wording and snowflakes on the other. I also made another of the customised bookmarks, using a butterfly charm and a purple tassle as the enclosed gift for Karen.
The little tags on the first page are the same - Santa on one side (holographic embossed) and patterned pink paper on the other side. These slip under the circle with the snowflake on. The little tag that slips into the stocking pocket opens up.
 I used the envelope idea again and placed three little cards inside - all with reindeer on them. Two simple tags slip under the word "JOY" that is also holographic and clear embossed. Following this is my favourite idea... the reindeer on one page attached by ribbon to the present-stuffed (tags) sleigh on the opposite page.
 The following page is a matt that folds down to reveal three spaces for journaling/photos, and also a tag slipped into the punched top of the matt too. The opposite page folds out revealing a tag pocket and a journaling matt held in by clear photo corners.
 The last page is a little matchbook flip-top pocket that holds spaces for five tags.
Well, I hope Karen enjoys her book and her gift... the swap doesn't finish until November 15th, so I may have a while to wait before getting my return-pressie :) I'm so excited *lol*

Because I kept renaming my swap partner. Her name is KAREN, not Helen *lol*
Let's just say it comes with age...and then not mention it again :)

Sunday, 16 October 2011

My Mum... Genius!

My Mum is a crafty genius. Really. She may not agree, but I think an appropriate song could be
"Anything I can do she can do better" *lol*
She is a lace maker, she can also produce tatting lace... she knits, she crochets, and she sews.
A little while ago, she made me a craft bag... and it's perfect! Not many people outside of my close friends here in "The Real World of Un-Web" know, but I can't really walk without the aid of two walking sticks. It's a pain when you need to carry anything, and shopping alone just isn't possible. Well, almost not possible.
The craft bag Mum made has a long, wide strap that fits right over my head and across my body - no hands needed! Other than that, it's got a leafy pattern in it - so very me :)
It's not the best photograph... sorry - but my camera is almost as useful as a chocolate teapot most days - the flash won't work in synch, the focus is all-to-pot, and it's definitely NOT a bad workman blaming his (her) tools *lol*
Anyway... here's the extra genius part...
if I happen to be having a good enough day not to need walking sticks, or I need to balance the bag over a chair (or over the end of a walking stick), the handles can be shortened...

... just by slipping them through the wooden rings attached to the sides.
Told you she was a genius, didn't I?

Thursday, 13 October 2011

What Is A Loo Roll Mini?

After my last post, I've been asked "What is a Loo Roll Mini?"
Also known as:
LRMA (Loo Roll Mini Album)
TP Mini (Toilet Paper roll Mini album)
CTM (Cardboard Tube Mini album)

... and probably a few other names I don't know. I noticed it on You-Tube (mostly known as TP Mini's there), and loved the idea of recuyling something usually thrown away... but still feel a bit squeamish about the whole "re-using empty toilet paper tubes". Still, I usually have a stack of toilet paper that I use in my craft room... so that's a bit more hygienic :) OR you could just make your own cardboard 'tubes' from a good quality Kraft paper... or even cut up any longer cardboard tube. Each 'page' is made by flattening the tube, and this also makes a pocket to slip a tag or two into.
My first attempt was with faux-cardboard tubing (I made the 'tubes' after measuring the only toilet roll  remaining after Hubby had a cleanup *lol*) can be found here.
Have a quick look around You Tube... type in "TP Mini" into the search bar, and see what you find!
Have Fun!

Wednesday, 12 October 2011


Roll Up! Roll Up!

Another Wednesday has dawned in full,
Duchess Julie calls us one and all
To share our desks - just a little peek
And for us to go and have a sneak
At all those treasures piled so high
On some work desks they reach the sky!
And so take part in this fun, and play

Having a fun-filled sneaky look at all those lovely work spaces?
Bet you were having a great time until you came here and read that awful prose *lol*
Here's my desk as of about 3am Wednesday... it's not that I'm an early-riser - more of a late go-to-bedder :)
I've started a habit of ALWAYS keeping pencils and pads handy - to jot down my ideas. These days, I'm forgetting more than I'll ever remember... and it's kind of nice (in a weird way) to pick up one of these notepads, notice something I'd jotted down and forgotten, and think "Oh, what a lovely idea!", all surprised with myself *lol* Empty toilet-rolls at the ready, just in case I want to make yet another cardboard-tube mini album (making one right now... bottom right). My Christmas Cottage stays on my desk right now... I'm doing a couple of tags whenever I can, so it will get finished. Ooh... CAPS that last bit... IT WILL GET FINISHED! *lol* (determination)
Lots of purple Christmassy-feel papers, a bit of KanBan, a bit of BoBunny, and some Ranger Distress Inks in purples and pinks... and all because the lovely Karen from DoCrafts is my LRMA (Loo Roll Mini Album) swap partner, and purple is what she wants!

So... a slight mess on my workdesk today... and the floor is in desperate need of a vaccuum. You'll be so proud to know that the hoover stayed in the cupboard under the stairs, and I just carried on crafting and getting all inky :)

A quick note here... I move my netbook over to the middle of the desk to type up my posts... including this one. As soon as there was a space, it got filled... with kitty-butt!
Oh, make that "skinny kitty butt!". She's gone all fussy on her food again, and I'm desperately trying to fatten her up. Okay, so she'll always be a lean, mean, leaf-chasing machine... but I would like to stroke her without feeling bony bits! She does seem very happy and content, and is getting playful again (spent two hours chasing leaves in the garden today!) The worry I had about the kittens was unfounded - they are fine! Apparently the last litter were a bit ahead and forward... these kittens are simply 'normal'. Well, 'normal' and super-cute!

What a mess!

I have just spent over two hours catching up on people's posts, and commenting on them ... TWO HOURS!!! There has got to be a qicker way to do this *lol*

Just before my mammoth 'commenting' session, I decided to colour a blue chiffon ribbon purple.
A note to everyone (in the hope that Hubby doesn't read this *lol*) Shimmerz Spritz stains white painted walls. Oopsie.
It also seems to stain hands. Double 'oopsie'.
I just had my nails done too, and purple Shimmerz is all under my thumbnail :(
Triple 'oopsie'.
I wonder if I can sneak downstairs, get the shed keys, open the shed (that door hates me, and refuses to open without breaking at least one finger-nail, and with at least four expletives!), find the light switch (break another nail), root around under the workbench (minimum damage: four more broken finger-nails), and hopefully find the white paint. Drag the found paint out from under the bench (one more broken nail - possibly two... and two expletives), make sure I don't accidentally lock the cat in the shed as I close it up, and trip over the dog who will have curiously followed me closely (another nail gone!). Sneak upstairs - missing the creaky one so not to disturb Hubby, open the tin (oops - last nail broken!), and paint the tiny little patch of faded purple on my wall....? Nah... easier just to hide the Shimmerz, and hope Hubby doesn't notice. And if he does, I'll blag my way out of it... it was obviously a stain that seeped through the paint. Right?

Monday, 10 October 2011

Another Small Alteration (Christmas Cottage Mini Album)

I got a bit fed up of untying and retying the ribbon placed around the mini-album of the Christmas Cottage. So I altered it slightly. I cut it down so that it wound round the mini-album with about two inches to spare (to allow for when the album is filled). Then I sewed some velcro to the ends, stuck a spare poinsettia-like flower (the same as on the cover) to the top ribbon end... and voila! A more simple band of pretty velvet ribbon, that does exactly the same job as the swathes of ribbon that were there before. Only this time it's neater... and I don't have to spend twenty minutes untying ribbon and then tying it back up again!

Sunday, 9 October 2011

A Thank You To Kathy

Good Grief! I'm actually working on the mini-album... I've completed forming all the pockets, and am starting to make the tags needed for the album too! I must be ill *lol*
Actually, as I sit here working, I realised that I owe an awful lot to one woman... a lady (I might add) who I have never even met! She has no idea who I am... I just sit and watch some of her videos online occasionally. Of course I am referring to the wonder that is Queen Of The PITA Babes... Kathy Orta of Paper Phenomenon.
Kathy is one amazing lady, let me tell you! A scream-and-giggle-a-moment kind of gal, who has been an inspiration to me. I never started to make my own boxes and mini-albums before knowing Kathy's work... her way of constructing boxes is how I base a lot of my album-boxes on. As for the mini-albums themselves... although I do have a lot of my own ideas, and I realise that many people can have the same idea without ever knowing of each others work, I have to admit that I do think the "Kathy Influence" of having seen her pages, DOES rub off on my own ideas.
So... here's a HUGE "Thank You!!!" to the paper crafting queen with the dirtiest laugh ever!
Yay! I'm going to complete this album... really!
Quick kitty update...
They are doing quite well. I think they're a little weak, so I'm keeping a close eye on them. I opened up the front of their box yesterday... and they started to get a little curious. Not yet curious enough to step off of the cardboard though *lol*

And finally... just as I thought Blogger had sorted out it's problems, here's the latest list of "No Comments"
Susie, at her "1st Floor Flat" has a link to a really good tutorial on backgrounds for wordpress and typepad. A tutorial I might add, that even I can understand and follow, so it must be good *lol*
Alana in her "Little Blue Shed" is showing her 'week in pictures' - amazing photographs... and sponge cake :)

Christmas Cottage Mini Album

I've almost finished the album to my Christmas Cottage! All it needs is a few tags and brads, and it's all done.  I used the DoveCraft "Noel" papers on the inner of the album, and my last sheet of Basic Grey "Wassail" collection ('Mantle') for the cover. I had some cream lace, a sparkly gold ornament from The Range, and some 4-leaf poinsettia stickers from Craft Creations (backed onto light paper and cut out).... and these became my embellishments for the front.
The book is a perfect fit inside the Cottage box... but I do wrap round a HUGE velvet Christmas Ribbon all tied up in a bow, to make it easier to lift out the album from it's box. To keep the round gold ornament in place, I'm using the poinsettia's I made... and in turn, they're held on with sparkly snowflake brads. It's very secure... surprisingly (things don't often turn out that well so easily for me... I'm a 'faffer' and often 'faff' around to get things perfectly correct *lol*)
It was a so hard not to add anything else to the cover... but it looked almost perfect as it was. I first thought that a photograph or santa picture would look really nice in the frame made with the gold sparkly ornament... then I changed my mind (oooh... so unlike me! NOT!). I still had the Papermania "A Silent Night" Glitter Cardstock Stickers, and chose one for the centre of the frame... after chopping it into a circle (rather than the square it was supposed to be) with a 1.5" circle punch.
It just finished it off perfectly... and matched the ribbon to lift the mini album in and out the box with.

Of course, knowing my habit of NOT finishing things, the chance of the tags and bits and pieces being finished in time for the Yuletide Season is pretty close to ... NIL! *lol*

Friday Craft Club

The Friday morning craft club was a very pleasant morning... I had prepped quite a lot before I went, so I got a lot done on the mini-album for the Christmas Cottage.
The ladies at the Church Hall were all lovely and extremely welcoming... though it was a bit different from our monthly craft-nights at Pickwells. I can only describe the morning as somewhat more sedate than the evenings at Pickwells... less raucous and therefore, more productive :)
But, as I said... it was a very pleasant morning. The organiser has a 'show table' where members can show off their latest completed projects, and also a 'giveaway table' where members can give away the items they don't want or need any longer... the brilliant plus side to this being that you can also pick whatever you'd like from the 'giveaway table' too.
So... I shall definitely be going again... if they'll have me :) At one point, I had a sneezing fit that just had to be let out - and I was a bit loud (especially being inside a lovely echoing hall!). If I'd kept in those sneezes and tried to be ladylike and a bit genteel, I would have had a Tena-moment!

Quick 'No Comment' Update:
28 blog entries commented on... and not a single problem. Could it be that Blogger have finally sorted out the mystery of he disappearing comments...??? Dun Dun Duuuuuuun.....

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Still No Comment!

I figure that if I at least list here the people who have written fantastic posts that I can't comment on, then perhaps they'll know I've visited and enjoyed looking at their work/reading their post, etc.
Todays "No Comment" list includes:

Kirsti has just taught a class about a canvas she created... it's brilliant!
My comment:
"This is something you should do ALL the time... such a great piece of art... and now it's shared and shown, it's even better!
Hope you enjoy playing with your new camera :)"

Actually, that's all in the list today... out of 7 comments left, only this one didn't want to stay put on the page and it wandered off into the ether after disentangling itself from the world wide web :)
I'd also like to thank people that have written me e-mails when they couldn't post a comment on my blog, incuding:
Glen (love Halloween? You'll love visiting Glen *lol*)
Toni (Copic-queen and fantastic card maker!)
and Dawn (such a positive and funny lady!)... who wrote me such a lovely e-mail - Thank You!

Hope everyone is gearing up for the weekend - I'm off out tomorrow to another craft club - I'll let everyone know how it goes. I'm so nervous! Hopefully, my gorgeous and beautiful neice, Caitlin (who is 8 years old), will prove to be a distraction... I've packed a little box of bits and pieces to help keep her occupied. Come Saturday, I'm pretty sure I'll be absolutely shattered! *lol*

Kitten Update

Just had to let everyone know that the kittens have started to open their eyes as of Wednesday night... they are soooooo adorable! In fact, there aren't enough o's in "sooooooo" to explain just how cute and adorable they are!
I thought the first litter Callie had were the cutest kittens ever... but these ones are so sweet, I could squeeze them ... oh, no I don't mean like Lenore and the hamsters kind of squeeze them *lol*
Little tiny Bella mewls for me... how cute is that?
I got so lonely and bored in my craftroom on Tuesday and Wednesday, that I bought the kittens upstairs with me. Much as I miss them... NEVER AGAIN! *lol* Callie plopped each one out of the small basket, onto the floor... and then waltzed off and left them to crawl around on the carpet!
They did look cute all curled up together in that basket though...
NB please note that "Lenore, The Cute Little Dead Girl" is not appropriate for children... or the easily-sickened, faint-hearted or easily offended.  But she definitely appropriate for anyone with a dark sense of (slightly sick) humour *lol*

Oh, and now...
*doing the happy dance*
I finally got to plug Lenore!

Patience... patience...

I am well known within my circle of friends to have "the patience of a saint" (or so they all tell me). I think it's just because what most people regard as naughty children, I find adorable, fun, and mischevious (unless it's MY ornaments they're breaking, MY dog's ears they're pulling, and MY flowers they're dead-heading *lol*). I just think kids are cute... we can all learn so much and remember such beautiful moments through just sitting and watching children play. Anyway... as I said - patience. Should have been my middle name. Well, until today.
The shelves for my boxed corner in the craftroom have been built... they've also had an undercoat, and yesterday had a coat of gloss. Now, one of Hubby's mottoes is "If you're going to do a job do it well". His idea was to leave the shelves for a few days to dry out completely, sand them down, and then give them a final extra-smooth lasting coat of gloss. Or I could have them now - perfectly nice and very useable. My motto is "It's a craft thing... I want it now!" (actually, anything to do with decorating I want "finished yesterday at the latest" *lol*). So, Hubby  should never have given me the choice really. "Well, if you want them up in your room, you'll have to give me a hand carrying them up the stairs", says Hubby. No problem. "Mind - the paint sometimes takes a while to set as it seeps and gathers into the corners of the shelves" was the fantastic advice Hubby threw nonchanantly in my general direction as I "oomphed" and "ugh-ed" picking up the shelves.
I should have taken the "wait and sand down" option really. The paint is still wet. As I lifted the piece, my thumbs went through the soft paint, my hands slid over and furrowed up the paint on the shelves... and I got a fit of the giggles as my hands, hair, and clothes started to become covered in white patches. The more I laughed, the more the shelving unit slipped from my hands. It's so lucky we're thinking of redecorating the hallway, as it now has smears of paint along it. When the shelves hit the light pendant, I nearly dropped them, giggling so much was I. I really have no idea why I laughed quite so much... but the heavier the sighs from Hubby (and the deeper his frown) the more I couldn't stifle the laughter.  We did get the shelves upstairs and into the little room. Eventually. My bare boxed corner went from this:
To this:
And they'll look great filled with plastic baskets full of 'stuff'... except for the long wait I now have for Hubby to get rid of these:
I darkened the photo so you could all see what happens when I get impatient *slaps wrist*
I've gouged, furrowed, and messed up a really nice piece of work. Oh, the guilt! Actually, the guilt is somewhat lessened as Hubby sighs at me, rolls his eyes, and lets me know that now the waiting, sanding, and re-painting will all have to be done in the craftroom itself. And he'll try not to get gloss on the flooring :o
He's smiling now though... think he's found the funny side of it all too :)
Either that, or he's planning on redecorating the hallway with superbike posters... AGH!!!

No Comment!

Grrr! Blogger! You're really annoying me now!
I've been leaving comments on a few blogs... thank you so much to everyone who 'blogs' amazing posts - many of you are an inspiraton, quite a few are an absolute hoot... and you're all brilliant. I've managed to get round to trying to post  42 comments on various blogs....
So... here's to the blogs that blogger wouldn't allow me to post a comment on this evening:

Ooooh... NEVER admit to possibly having enough stash! *lol* Beautiful papers on your desk this week - love it all!

Yet another amazing creation! I love how you can use flowers and swirls, and yet this is still a very 'boy', masculine, layout.

Okay, so 2 out of 42 isn't really that bad... but copying each and every post, waiting to see if it has actually appeared on the comments list, and then trying again if it hasn't really does take a LONG time *lol* Not much done for the mini-album for the Christmas Cottage tonight then :)

Wednesday, 5 October 2011


Tuesday has rolled away into the forgotten mists of time... and Wednesday heralds a new day and a new time...
Ah, yes... getting all lyrical and happy because the hot weather has disappeared, and we're forecast rain later. WooHoo! I like the rain... it IS Autumn, after all.
So, Once again the Stamping Ground (and her High Craftiness, Julia) is hosting the join-in fun that sends crafters worldwide scurrying online to peek and pry at each other's desks! Is there greater nosey-parker fun to be had? Probably not! :)
I will admit that my desk (as it is often of late) is somewhat boring. I've picked up this nasty little habit since moving up to my little room... it's called 'tidiness'. This 'tidiness' problem is NOT conducive to crafting for long periods of time. The room isn't actually finished yet... and I've hoovered already. Twice. Oh, the shame! What kind of crafter am I to lift a vaccuum cleaner, when there's heat guns, hot glue, and pretty paper to play with? On the other hand, the quiet and solitude up here has meant that I'm able to close the door, craft all day, and ignore the telephone and the front door bell (unless I'm expecting a crafting delivery, of course *lol*).
Business cards in their holder (just because!), an empty carousel with scor-tape piled on top, a cold cup of coffee... and my Christmas Cottage :)
As you can see, I'm trying to concentrate on the mini-album to fit inside the cottage, and have decided to work (at the moment) just with the DoCrafts "Noel" paperline. I have been even tidier... the papers are kept on the keyboard tray under the desktop (it's a modified computer desk) when I am working with them - so I put them on top of the desk, to fill a tidy space, just before I photographed it. How terribly sad is that? 
My trusty laptop computer, which is always present on my desk, is always a bit of a surprise to me... because I don't really do digital crafting. Maybe it's just always there in anticipation of seeing a lot of more interesting workdesks than mine each Wednesday :)

So... although I am going out Wednesday, am very busy Thursday, and have been invited to another craft-club on Friday (whew!) I will try to have a good ol' pry into as many desks as I can (and hopefully Blogger will have sorted out all those pesky problems to do with commenting!). In the meantime... this post will (as usual) be scheduled to blog itself sometime in the early hours of Wednesday.

Happy Crafting To ALL!!!
... and have an absolutely DIVINE and WONDERFUL
"What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday?"

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

The Christmas Cottage

I finished the outer shell... the cottage itself.
I may add some flowers or something... I haven't decided yet. I did, however, make a decision on the lights - and they're along the front of the cottage, attached to the roof. I so wish I could take a photograph that does this little project justice... but my camera just isn't up to the job :(
This project is so different from the Christmas House Mini I made... this seems so much less serious (and a lot easier!), a bit twee and almost whimsical and cutesy.
So, without further ado, here it is...
You can just see the lights poking out from the scallops on the roof. he original idea was to make the chimney as a hideaway for the battery... but the battery was too big. I did still want a chimney, and made it just big enough to contain a small 1.25" square box. And inside that little box shoved in the chimney is...
... a tiddly little book. Of course it's the Clement Clark Moore poem "A Visit From Saint Nicholas" (also known as 'Twas The Night Before Christmas').
It's not as nice as the mini-mini I made for the cardboard tube mni... but I really didn't have the patience to do all that again  - especially after I discovered that I had deleted all the files with the tiny pages on from my computer. Grrr!
I've used a lot of the DoveCraft "Noel" papers - and was thinking that my best friend LouLou would love this image of Santa on one of the paper sheets - so I stuck him in a window on the side of the cottage.
Finally, I had to figure a way of keeping the battery inside the roof... so I simply made a little ledge for it to hide in. Easy!
The inside of the box is all prettied up... ready for the mini-album to go inside - and I haven't even begun thinking about that yet!

Monday, 3 October 2011

Christmas Cottage Roof

The roof of the Christmas Cottage is finished (no lights yet... don't know whether to put them in the roof or on a paper tree I'm cobbling together). I can say, with hand on heart, there's not a bit of flippin' raffia in sight!
In the end I decided to use a 2" scallop oval to punch out shapes from some Basic Grey papers I had (Wassail Collection: Mantle and Sleigh Ride). I cut the ovals in half and used these as 'tiles'. The paper is double-sided, and I took advantage of this by alternating each layer to show one side of the paper or the other. The flat top of the roof is simply a recangle cut to size, with a 1/4" 'lip' cut with scalloped edge scissors.
I think the roof will look slightly unusual (in a good way *lol*) as I've tapered it slightly, and curved the outer edges. This can be seen a bit better in the photograph showing the inner of the roof.
With one hand a bit out of action, I'm a bit slower than usual (yeah, yeah, I know - any slower and I'd be going backwards... *lol*). The swelling has gone down a lot and the bruising is fading fast - it's just a bit sore and stiff. Thank goodness it's my left hand - I'd be totally useless if it was my right hand... unless... hmmmm - I'm wondering how long it would take me to learn to craft with my toes, and with my teeth?
Still, the point is that my hand is getting better :)

even if it does look a bit jaundiced  where the bruising is fading *lol*
Let this be a lesson to anyone who'll listen... Don't pick fights with stair gates - they're mean, nasty, and will probably win.