Thursday 30 December 2010

Another Birthday and lots of cups of tea!

This is my Brother's Birthday card. I just brayered with B&J waterfall and used Stampscape stamps in memento london fog and tuxedo black. Very simple. Next I saw the sketch on an oldie but a goodie and thought I would have a go. I used some flowery papers from Pink Petticoat, some gingham papers from my stash and the pink spotty paper (not sure where from, but another digi download). I wasn't sure what stamp to use on the centre. It was then my eyes alighted on the most recent craft stamper with it's little teacup stamp. I got a bit carried away and this was the result...

As I said, It was gong to be an entry for an oldie but a goodie, but it is a very new stamp. Really messed up there didn't I?! Anyway, I remembered a housemouse stamp I've had for about 4 years that was also a teacup...
So here it is. Four cards before I reached my objective, but I did enjoy myself!

Wednesday 29 December 2010

January Birthdays

There are a few Birthdays hot on the heels of new year in our family, so as soon as Boxing Day is over I start making cards for them. My MIL will be 86 on 4th January, and for her card I decided to do one of those half aperture swinging card things (If you know the proper name please let me know!). She is very fond of Pansy's and butterflies, so this year I've used a Hero arts butterfly, coloured with promarkers. There is a little bit of DP (MME) behind the butterfly and lots of stamping and distressing with wild Honey Distress Ink. The music background is a very old stamp from Stamporium, and the ornate corner is from Elusive Images.
My Dad also asked me to make a card for his dear friend Eric who is 80 on the 4th. They used to teach together and every Easter holiday they would disappear (along with another friend, John) for a couple of days up to the Lake District to plan the annual school camp. If I'd known a bit sooner I would've bought a camper van stamp for this one, as that is what Eric drove for many years. Anyway, the main request for this card was to have mountains on it, so what better excuse to get the brayer out!
The only stamp on this one is the 'spruce scape' from Clarity stamps.  I'll be back tomorrow with my Brother's birthday card (7th January) and a few others I've been playing with.
Steve was back at work today, so Meg and I decided we would go out for a while. We had tea and cake at Derby garden centre (very nice), a quick look in craft central there and then back to IKEA and Decathlon. What possessed me to go anywhere near IKEA? It didn't seem that busy, but it took us 45 minutes to escape from the car park! Although I guess he will never read it, I'd like to thank the bloke that let me into the queue in front of him. Might still have been there otherwise!

Sunday 26 December 2010

Recipe for Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

Well, the food marathon that is boxing day is almost at an end, so here as promised is the recipe for the Chocolate Orange cupcakes that I showed you on Christmas eve. It makes 12 muffin size cakes.

2oz SR flour
2oz Cocoa
1 tsp baking powder
4oz castor sugar
4oz marg
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons orange juice
grated zest of 1/2 orange
For frosting:
 8 oz icing sugar
3 1/2 oz butter at room temperature
zest of 1/2 orange
1-2 tablespoons orange juice
Chocolate orange

Pre heat the oven to 160C/325F/ gas mark3.
Mix all cake ingredients together using an electric hand mixer until light and fluffy. Divide equally between 12 muffin cases. Bake for 20 - 25 mins or until firm on top. Set aside and leave to cool.
Beat softened butter and add icing sugar a little at a time until all combined. Add the zest and juice and beat well. Swirl onto cold cupcakes and finish with a slice of chocolate orange.

Now, chocolate oranges have 20 segments, so do you make double the quantity and leave 4 without chocolate on top, or do you make 12 and eat the 8 spare segments? I made 24 and had 16 spare segments. There's now 3 left!
We have had a lovely day with my Dad and brother coming over for lunch (Traditional Christmas Dinner) and then us all going to Steve's parent's flat and taking tea with us. As my dad and my brother no longer drive we fetch them and take them home too. I'm ready to put my feet up now! Hope you have all had a wonderful Christmas, and let me know if you make some of Terry's my cupcakes!

Friday 24 December 2010

They're not Terry's - they're mine!

Chocolate orange cupcakes that is.
And here's one just for you...
If you would like the recipe let me know and I'll post it on my blog for you. I've also made my 'Christmas cake', which this year is a carrot cake, as I'm the only one in the house that likes fruit cake. Meg persuaded me to buy sone ivy leaf cutters, and I'm so glad she did, cos it meant I could do this...
In between baking I made my niece's Christmas card and another tipsy tree one.
Only two more presents to wrap and two cards to make... nearly there! Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and I'll be back after the weekend!

Wednesday 22 December 2010

It's the holidays!!!

Finally we have finished the term, so, as promised here are a few more of my Christmas cards made at the weekend. There seems to be a bit of a colour theme going on!
 This first one features some funky fairies papers, a Marianne poinsettia die and a Martha Stewart punch. What, no stamps?! Well, I'm trying to keep them simple!
 The next two are more using the tipsy trees (woodware) and papers from my Funky hand Dreams Come True cd.
Finally this one uses a Digi image from Digistamp boutique, coloured with promarkers. The paper was a funky fairy one and the paper used for the border is a rich burgundy colour - not dark brown as it looks on the photo!
I'm off to have a nice cuppa and try to tidy my craft table a bit. Thanks for looking!

Sunday 19 December 2010

Ten cards and two cakes!

This weekend I've gone a bit crazy with making cards (just started number 11) and cakes (2 carrot cakes). We have three days left at school, but no planning required, so all my free time has been spent on cards. Here are a couple using Woodware tipsy trees...
and a couple using the holly swirls, also from Woodware.
 I'm entering this one (above) into the Allsorts Challenge for this week, where the theme is Free and easy- anything goes. If you look closely you will spot Hero Arts Old French writing, and the sentiment is an old one from Stampourium. I used Chipped Sapphire, dusty concord and tumbled glass distress inks, and stickles of course!
Now there are probably several challenges out there that I could enter besides Allsorts, but I'm afraid I just haven't got the time to look! I'll show you a few more of my cards during the week, hopefully! Roll on Wednesday!

Sunday 12 December 2010

On a roll!

Well, I've shopped till I've dropped and then come home and made a couple more cards. The first is for a friend's 40th birthday next Friday, and I decided to use the sketch on Our Creative Corner Challenge blog.
 The tree (Penny Black) was stamped with Versamagic Night Sky and embossed with Kaleidoscope embossing powder. The backgrounds (Hero Arts and Penny Black) were stamped with chipped sapphire distress ink. I added card candy, punched leaves and a flower I made from stardream paper. Besides OCCC I'm entering this into the Penny Black @ Allsorts challenge where the theme is 'Beauty is in the eye of the beholder' and for me that is trees. 
My other card is made from some offcuts of a card from my last post (woodware holly stamp). The design is one that Brenda came up with and I saw two of her samples at the Stampalot Demo day. Unfortunately I am not as skilled as Brenda is at getting things straight! I think it looks more wonky on here than it does IRL!
Now for some wonderful news!
When our new challenge at Sir Stampalot goes live on 1st January, we are also having a blog hop. We thought it would be the perfect start to the New Year and as you would expect there will be lost of prizes on offer so we hope you will all be joining in the fun.
Please grab the logo above and help us spread the word and look forward to seeing you all on 1st January.
 Finally a little celebration as my holly card from last weekend made the top three on Keep it Simple! Thanks guys!

Saturday 11 December 2010

Infrequent visits

Well, It has been nearly a week since I last posted and my visits to blogland have been sporadic to say the least. That's because I've had another week of late nights as our school panto did go ahead (despite the plummeting temperatures) a week later than it was supposed to, Commitments at Meg's school and shopping for parents/inlaws/ us. Anyway, now I've explained my absence, I'll show you what I've been up to when I have eventually got home.
 This first card is a variation on the one in my last post. I used distress inks (bundled sage, Victorian velvet and wild honey and then stamped over with a Woodware clear holly stamp in versafine black. This time I embossed with kaleidoscope embossing powder. I used stickles on the berries and added a sentiment (Paula Pascual) in a nestie circle with a punched border. I'm entering this into the Stampman challenge where the theme is Take 3 colours on a Christmas theme.

Yet another variation on the same theme I used broken china, chipped sapphire and dusty concord distress inks this time. I also used silver creative colour spray (Crafty Notions) which helped to blend the colours and give it some sparkle. I'm entering this into the Lots to do challenge, where the theme is Glitz
 The finishing touch on this one was a Marianne design flourish and a paper flower made using flower creations 3 shapeabilities (and more stickles!). I do like this colour combo!

Next is my 'simple card' for this year. I used a Marianne designs poinsettia die from Sir stampalot and a Crafts too embossing folder loaned to me by Lynne. I did use a bit of distress inks around the edge of the poinsettia, but there is no stamping  - not my usual thing at all, but okay I think! As it is so simple and quick I'm entering it into this week's Allsorts challenge where the theme is last minute Christmas, which sums me up! They are being sponsored this week by the Stampman and have great goodies on offer from Kay Carley .
I'm aiming to well and truly sort Christmas this weekend, so hopefully I can start visiting some more of your lovely blogs by next week. Have a great weekend and thanks for looking!

Sunday 5 December 2010

A fabulous day

Megan and I did make it to Sir Stampalot yesterday, despite the snow. It had snowed quite a lot more the previous night and I was beginning to doubt our chances, but slightly higher temperatures and a bit of rain soon gave me hope. The journey was fine, thanks to Meg's navigating and directions to bring us along more major roads from Janice. The inspiration from the ladies demonstrating was great, and it was wonderful to see my lovely friends Chris and Brenda once more.
Here is a card inspired by both Brenda and Chris.
I covered a piece of card in Fired brick, wild honey and shabby shutters distress inks then over stamped with a Woodware Clear Magic holly stamp. I added a pleated flower in black metallic card and a punched border. I finished it off with a bit of stickles on the berries, which you can see better in this picture.
Simple and quick, but I'm very pleased with the result! I'm entering this in the Keep it Simple Challenge where the theme is 'Deck the Halls...' and the sponsor is Whimsey stamps'
I've also made a couple more...
 Couldn't resist that PB stamp- sooo cute! It reminded me of Robert's dog, Harry that you can see here (look at that snow just ten miles north of us!)
Check this out. The set of stamps that I used for this card cost only £4.99 for 14 stamps! What a bargain! The Paula Pascual range are available here. Thanks, Janice, Andy, Chris and Brenda for a lovely day.  Well, better go and mark a few more books and stop enjoying myself quite so much!

Friday 3 December 2010

Snow day 2 - well, Ice day really

Another day of school not being open, as the snow from yesterday had formed sheet ice. Several staff had fallen over, so it definitely wasn't safe for the children. So, what to do with my time? Finally I got inspiration and time at the same time! I finished Steve's Dad's Birthday card:
I used papers from my funky hand dreams come true cd, an image from the internet recoloured to match the papers and some scrabble letter stamps (Stamporium).
Next I made another Kokopelli card for a friend's birthday. I used stamp and bond and gilding flakes - this time I used the variegated red flakes (Crafty Notions).
Then I made a birthday card for a workmate who loves Tigers. This used a digi drawn by my talented friend Teri and is available from her blog shop Delicious Doodles. The base card was stamped in Wild honey Distress inks with the Hero arts leaf swirl.

My final two cards feature a Hero Stamp called Starry Night. I brayered the ink onto the stamp to get even coverage, using big and juicy waterfall and hydrangea  The base card was cuttlebugged and then punched down the edge. The edge of the inside of the card was then sponged to match the stamped image.
I also braved taking the car out to see if my route out of Nottingham to the A52 is clear of snow. It was, so Yes, I'm going to try to get to Sir Stampalot's Demo day at Peterborough tomorrow! Thanks for looking!

Thursday 2 December 2010

Snow day!

Well, I made it in to work this morning, but it was coming down so heavily by eight o'clock that our school had to close, so I had an unexpected day at home with Meg (her school has been shut every day except Tuesday this week). We did a bit of baking, I made a few cards and we went out in the snow and took some photos.The first card is very simple using a penny black stamp, promarkers, a ready made sentiment and a cuttlebug folder. For the second I used a creative expressions stamp(Tree), my favourite leaf swirl (Hero Arts), creative colour sprays, rainbow drops (Crafty Notions) and a cuttlebug folder. The third was a free stamp from the Craft Stamper Magazine and lots of distress inks.  So now you have seen my cards, I will show you the snow.

It's fascinating, this white stuff, but I'd really like it to go away now, as my trip to Sir Stampalot's ultimate rubber stamping Demo day is seeming more unlikely.

Wednesday 1 December 2010

Around the world with Sir Stampalot

 Good Morning! It's the first of December and that can only mean one thing...time for another Sir Stampalot Challenge! This month we are looking for your creations that reflect travelling around the world. Here is my creation. I have gone for a Central American theme with a Kokopelli figure (KK Originals) stamped in stamp 'n' bond and rubbed over with gilding flakes (Crafty Notions). The background was made by stamping a leaf (Hero Arts) in versamark and brushing over with Blonde Moments pearl pigments in gold, copper and green. Now I've told you what I did, I'd better tell you what the prize is. Feast your eyes on this...
Impressive, eh? Wish I could enter myself!
So, If you want to be in with a chance of winning this fabulous prize, Make us something  that will take us off on a journey around the world (what a lovely thought!) Before you do though, pop over to the Sir Stampalot Challenge blog and get some inspiration from my mega talented teamies. Thanks for stopping by!
P.S. You will have to forgive me if I am absent from Blog land this week. It is Panto week at school. By the time you read this we will have done one Dress rehearsal and one evening performance with 4 more performances to go (one morning, two matinees and another evening). I may be face down asleep in my dinner on Friday, but I will have earned some serious retail therapy at Sir Stampalot's Ultimate Rubber stamping Demo day on Saturday, weather permitting! I need to shop, so come on snow, give us a break!
Update: No performances of our panto today, as although school was open there were lots of children off, including some of the main characters. We had a snowman building competition just before home time!