Monday, 31 December 2012

The End of a Wonderful Year ..........

I can't quite believe that this is the final day of 2012 - where has the year gone! 

For me it has been my most exciting "crafting" year to date, having made some guest appearances,  being published in a national magazine, but most importantly as I seem to have learnt so many new techniques from a wonderful world of crafting friends. It has been amazing meeting so many new friends and welcoming new followers to my blog.   Thank you for all your inspiration, encouragement and support.

It is always difficult to choose a favourite piece of the year, but I think it has to be this layout of my husband's Aunt - May Atkinson. She was such a lover of life even in her 70s and 80s when I knew her.
This gorgeous photograph taken in the 1930s needed something different and so I tried plastering paints and gesso with an old credit card!   I really enjoyed it! and I think she would have loved it too.
Add a few hand made flowers, some Prima papers and other bits and pieces I always seem to have in abundance!
I have enjoyed being part of a number of challenges this year, but particularly the "Anything but a Card Challenge".  There are always great DT projects, but also a huge array of entries.  So this is my entry for the last challenge of this year - Favourite Project of the Year. 

I hope everyone enjoys their Hogmanay celebrations and I am so looking forward to seeing you all next year !!!!

It is going to be a GREAT year!! 

Monday, 24 December 2012

Wishing you All a Happy Christmas

To all my wonderful friends and followers, I wish you all a very happy and peaceful Christmas. 

I really appreciate all your kind words and support which has made this year an absolutely amazing one for me, with opportunities beyond my wildest dreams.  Keep warm and safe and enjoy the wonderful holiday ahead of us.

Jennie x

PS   We have been stuck in  a terrible storm for the last 36 hours, we have only just got our heating and computer back and the windows have thankfully now stopped leaking!

Friday, 21 December 2012

Round Robin Tri Fold Card

Another month and another Round Robin Card Challenge at Swirlydoos.  This month I am a week 3 team member, so I've lifted from two other cards. 

The original twists were buttons, a handwritten sentiment (urgh!!) and use a border punch.  I've lifted a tri fold card from my other team members, and from Manda, team member 2, a key and tissue tape.

The front of the card:  I've gone for three different sizes of fold.  (I'll come to the "problem" later!).  My sneak peaks on Swirlydoos resulted in a number of pleas for a tutorial for the flower, so I'll try and get photographs for this one soon, although it is based on others I've seen on the internet.  I used Prima Tea Thyme papers which I love, doilies picked up at Hobbycraft in Aberdeen on Monday and some vintage style ribbon. The hessian just fell out of my materials basket, so I just had to use it!

The first inside fold:

No handwritten sentiment (!), I've used Picket Fence Crackle Paint on the cardboard die cut key, and a bit more of the paper string. 

And the problem:  I've cut all my folds a different size and the card doesn't stand up! It leans forward ..................  Oh well, back to the drawing board.

I can really recommend clicking the link HERE and going to the post for the card challenge as there are some amazing designs.  LOADS of inspiration for both Christmas and birthday cards.

Thanks for looking x

PS Shortest day today - looking forward now to Spring!

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Vintage Christmas Ornaments

I have been very busy making loads of different things, but none of which I can share until after Christmas! 

However, I thought I would share these Vintage Christmas Ornaments I have been making these last few days as little "thank you" gifts for special people who have been kind to me over the last year.  I got the idea from Vicky Alberto (Simply Paper) and as I have just got the Tim Holtz Bird Cage Die, put it to use straight away.  Thank you Vicky for such a great idea.

I love these Pion papers and it is always difficult to decide which side of the paper to use!

They also fit very nicely with the Anything But A Card Challenge this week. We are now on Challenge 8 - Celebrating the Light or Seasonal Holiday.  There are some lovely Christmas ideas from the Design Team and some great submissions - all so very different.

Here in Shetland we are having some horrendous weather at the moment - very strong winds, exceptional high tides and torrential rain.  With our ferries being cancelled again tonight, delays over the last few days and more severe weather to come on Sunday, everyone is panic buying at Tesco's.  Thankfully I've got everything in so far, but we may not have any fresh veg and fruit.  But I am sure we will survive!  The gin is in the cupboard and the wine chilling ............

Wednesday, 5 December 2012


I had alot of fun with this one!   When I saw the colours for this week's CSI Case File I immediately thought of my favourite tipple - the fact that I had one in my hand at the time was totally immaterial!!

So I've cheated a bit and I have not used my own photograph - despite trying hard I could not recreate the lovely blue of the bottle.

So the challenge - a wonderful scheme of colours - just nicely taking me out of my comfort zone.  And I really liked the idea of doing a predominantly white layout as I just love the sound of the ice tinkling in the glass.  And these little Marianne die doilies always remind of having a G&T somewhere posh.  The prompts worked in well too, scheduling, time and to eat (rather mine is to drink, but it is before eating so probably counts ?!!). 

And it was easy to work with the evidence:
  • a clock
  • a mosaic pattern
  • silver metallic accents
  • plain brads
  • lace border punch

I've been trying to use these little stamens for ages but I never seem to be able to get them glued strongly enough, but I finally found that a good dollop of Art Glitter glue really holds them in well and then you can cut off the overhang at the back once it has dried.  I am now getting a bit addicted to making these flowers with the thick white handmade paper.  They also spritz very nicely too, so you will probably see them around for a bit longer yet.

Talking of spritzing I had intended to spritz the page with some green and blue inks, but I am afraid I chickened out.  Another time ..............

Thanks for looking and I hope you are all enjoying your week.  It is a bit wintry here with lying snow, but not enough to stop us from doing things.

Monday, 3 December 2012

By the Sea .........

A lovely challenge this week over at Anything But a Card - my favourite topic "By the Sea".   As I am pushed for time finishing Christmas presents and working on a larger topic, I've opted for an ATC.  I love these colours of distress inks together and the white shells are some I've picked up on our sea voyages.  Everything else is from my bits and pieces box.

Do hop over to ABAC as there are some lovely DT projects all with a lovely sunshine/seaside feel for these drab days of winter!

Right, now back to that drying glue ............

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Prima Style Flower Tutorial


As promised here is my Prima Style Flower made from handmade paper. Mine is the one at the bottom.  I rather liked the shape and feel of these flowers, but didn't particularly like the glitter on them.  So these are the last two left from my packet of ten which have all been spritzed for scrapbooking layouts!

I bought a few sheets of this thick creamy coloured handmade paper at an art shop recently, but there are plenty of outlets on Ebay selling something similar.  It takes sprays well, so I was able to spray a small bit pink for the inner.

I cut petals in three different sizes.
I have used Donna Salazar's Rose Creation
Dies but any five sided flower would work.
The largest is approx 1.5" and the smallest 1".
You could also get away with two sizes of petal
(see another example at the bottom of the post).
Take two of the largest petals and on the wrong
side use a ball tool on a piece of foam to
depress the petals.
Do the same on the third large petal but also
circle the ball tool in the centre of the petal
to make the petals pull inwards.
Now layer these three petals, however you might
want to curl the edges of the top petal with
a pricking tool or knitting needle.
Now to make the bud - this is the same technique
as my small rosebuds.  Circle the ball
tool in the centre of each of the petals to help
shape the bud. Add a little spot of glue
to the inside of the petals and then shape.
This photograph is unfortunately a bit blurry, but I
think you get the idea of how to shape the inner bud.
Another shaky photo!  Place the inner bud in the
centre of the second pink petal and add a little
spot of glue to the inside of the petals
and stick this petal to the inner so that you end up with a
bud like this.
Use the ball tool to again shape the last petal and
glue the bud into the middle.

Then finally glue two the parts together.
As the paper is quite thick it has a lovely feel and
will be reasonably robust on scrapbook pages and cards.
This flower is made in exactly the same way, but I
used a 2" and 1.5" punch.
 And here is another example.  Rather than making the
rosebud, I have used the smallest die from Donna Salazar's
Bitty Flowers.

I hope that these pictures help and inspire you to have a go. I would love to see the flowers you make, so please let me know how you get on.  And my apologies for the blurry ones - zooming in on these little flowers seems to result in a bit of camera shake!

Thursday, 29 November 2012

This is our Home .......

Well again not my usual sort of layout!  I very rarely scrap landscape photographs and never seem to get multiple photographs to sit well together and the top photograph is quite dark which doesn't help.  So I am not sure I am really happy about this layout, BUT I just loved CSI's journal prompt this week which was to write an ad for your home. 

As I am committing myself to doing more journalling on my layouts I thought I would give it a go.  So here is the ad:

Early 19th Century former Manse situated at the
Head of Tingwall Loch
Spectacular uninterrupted views south to Fitful Head
Established gardens with greenhouse and vegetable
garden with polytunnels
South facing sitting room and dining room, kitchen and study on Ground Floor, three bedrooms, bathroom and
Craft Room on Upper Floor

Aren't we lucky! We have lived here now for 18 years, but desired the house since 1979 when we first came to Shetland to live.  So it is really a dream to live here.  This is the view from my craft room window taken yesterday.
I am working on some Prima style flowers made from handmade paper and these are the buds from the centre.  I hope to get a tutorial on the blog shortly for these flowers once I get some good light to take some photographs.
So back to the Challenge .............

Here is the Case File for this week.  I struggled a bit with the colours (they are more in my photographs than on the layout) and I used, stripes, mesh and foliage from the evidence prompts.  As usual there are some amazing DT layouts, so click the link here to have a look.

Thanks for looking and I am now just off to visit some of my favourite blogs which I have not had a chance to visit lately.  We had our first night of the panto last night and it was brilliant, so although I have to do sound, a bit of backstage work and go on in a part in Act 2, life should start settling down a bit ! Mind you the last night is not until the 8th December ...........


Friday, 23 November 2012

Our Sunshine Girl .........


When I saw the colours for this week's CSI Challenge I decided to give it a miss, but ....... we are in this for a challenge ....... and boy was this CHALLENGE!!  

I have been wanting to do a layout of our "Sophie" for some time and as she brought so much sunshine, love and laughter into our lives what better than using these lovely bright colours.  The testimony challenge was also to write about a pet or animal - so just perfect.  But just oh so not me!! - way out of my comfort zone.
For my evidence I used:
  • a grid design
  • painting (acrylics)
  • a transluscent element (transluscent pocket for my tag)

Whilst I was sewing my patchwork pieces I suddenly realised that this would fit perfectly with the current Anything but a Card Challenge which is A Stitch in Time.  Do click the link and have a look at the super array of Design Team projects and the entries so far.  Julia's cover for a charity shop book find is wonderful and would make a lovely idea for a Christmas or Bithday present.
So what can I say about Sophie ...... 
She blasted into our lives after we lost our old spaniel when the boys were in their early teens.  The vet asked if we would give her a home (she was 9 months old) and she was flown from one of the outer islands, on her own! with no lead and promptly did a bunk the minute the door of the plane was opened.  We looked all day for her and couldn't find her but at 5 pm she walked into the airport lounge as if to say "Enough is Enough - I'll go home now". 
You can imagine the state she was in after a day running in the hills, but we didn't want to stress her by giving her a bath and brushing.  However, we left the kitchen door open that night in case she felt lonely. 
My husband and I woke the next morning to find her, not on, but IN the bed with us!  Life was never the same again and we miss her terribly.
Have a lovely weekend x
PS  My patchwork grid looks rather squint!  I think it is the angle of the photograph (I hope it is!) The stitching is definately squint - I forgot that cardstock does not crumple up like material when sewing - it took alot of rolling!

Friday, 16 November 2012

Home from the Sea ...........


As soon as I saw the colours for this week's CSI Challenge I knew the photograph I wanted to scrap!  The colours just cried out vintage and a sepia photo.

The little girl in the photograph is my mother-in-law, Mollie, and this is a rare family photograph, as her father spent many months at sea away from the family home.  The sea was in their blood as my mother-in-law was a Wren in the Royal Navy and her older brother was a steward on large liners.  Sadly the little boy in the sailor suit died at a young age during a routine operation.
In addition to using the colours of the scheme I have also used:
  • silver metal
  • vintage text
  • textured paper
  • and the word HOME.
I am really enjoying making these paper flowers using Donna Salazar's Spellbinders die Bitty Blossoms.
They are becoming quite addictive!
There are some jaw droppingly wonderful layouts by the CSI Design Team - all amazingly different!  Click the link HERE to have a look.
Thanks for looking and have a lovely weekend!



Monday, 12 November 2012

Scrappy gems in your jewellery box .................

Another month and another Round Robin Card Challenge at Swirlydoos.  This month I am first in the team of three so here is my entry.

The challenge:
  • paper tearing
  • stitching
  • and a non-scrappy item
Having torn my papers I still wanted a "crazy patchwork" style background, so I stitched each piece individually as if it were material.  My non-scrappy item was this black earing I found in the drama group jewellery box when I cleared out all the "singles" a couple of years ago - I just loved the shape and knew I would use it at some point.

The stems are paper string which I have twisted and pulled out at the top - I find this quite effective.  I am looking out for some coloured paper string as this too would be very effective.
I can't claim this as my own technique - I saw it done as an embellishment to some weaving in the Spinners Guild magazine last month. 

Thanks for looking and I hope everyone has a good week.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Summer in November ........

OK so I'm getting a little fed up with grey skies and making Christmas cards!  These are the other two cards I have made with Catherine Scanlon this week through her online course The Magic of Christmas
Both are slider cards, which I have not made before:

This card has a side slider with a quote
which I thought would make a nice wedding card
This card slides open to reveal a middle pocket
which would be nice for a birthday gardening voucher

I can't wait to see what designs Catherine brings us next week!
I hope you are all enjoying the weekend x

Thursday, 8 November 2012

The Magic of Christmas .........

Although I am flat out producing/directing the local panto, I am making sure (for my sanity!) that I craft each afternoon in order to relax and clear my head - and because I just LOVE it and miss it if I don't.

So in order to make sure I had something to drive me, I've been doing an online Christmas Card course with Catherine Scanlon over at My Creative Classroom called The Magic of Christmas.  Ten interactive cards over two weeks. I am not a great card maker so I really needed some ideas for some different types of cards. I love doing Catherine's courses, she is such a great tutor and is very inspirational and supportive.  And of course you always end up getting your sewing machine out! 

So here are the first three cards I have made:

A tent card:

which opens out to hold a photograph
(my gorgeous little grandson!)

A pocket card:

And this is my favourite so far!
with lovely hanging pennants inside!

Thanks for stopping  by and having a look - I can certainly recommend the class and it is only day four!

I hope you are all getting better weather than us:  it is very grey and dull here and of course the light is not good as the days are getting shorter and shorter.  I feel as though I have the lights on all day and photo opportunities are  getting very limited!

Roll on summer!