Tuesday, 22 December 2020

2020 Top Three Favourites for Eileen Hull Designs

With Christmas almost upon us Eileen Hull's Educator Team is this week focusing on our top three favourite projects for this last year. How on earth to you pick just three ..... it has been a fabulous year of creating with new dies but also those from last year too. Hop on over to the blog to see what we are sharing!

After much deliberation here are my top three ..... in no particular order:

Christmas Mittens

It seemed strange crafting in July for Christmas but I so thoroughly enjoyed using the Chapter 3 Release Mitten Die to make these vintage felt and lace decorations. All the details including a tutorial are HERE on my blog.

Calico Journal and Vintage Inserts

I never tire of using Eileen's journal and notebook dies and love covering them with calico and other vintage embellishments. But as much fun is the decorating of the inside and I love using tea dyed papers, lace and old photographs to create a real vintage feel. You can find all the details for the inserts HERE on my blog when in August Eileen's teams shared the inside of our journals.

Fabric Gelli Plate Needle Case

I love my Gelli Plate and regularly use my printed papers to decorate journals and notebooks. This was my first experiment using light calico and PaperArtsy Fresco Finish Paints on the plate. I was so pleased with the results I used Eileen's Notebook Die to create a place to keep the large pins I use to sew up my knitted projects. It is in the basket by my chair in the study and so is in constant use.

Again you can find all the details HERE and a tutorial for making the book.

I hope you enjoyed my little round up of favourites and I am so looking forward to creating in 2021 with Eileen's new releases. You are going to LoVE them ! ...... 

Even though it is difficult to be with our families this Christmas, I wish you a very happy Christmas in whatever way you will be celebrating. It will be pretty quiet here for sure!

Jennie x

Thursday, 17 December 2020

Christmas Bells with Sizzix Dies by Eileen Hull

As part of a huge effort to make this year special, even though it is very different, Eileen Hull's Inspiration and Educator Teams have been providing prompts and tutorials with the theme of Comfort and Joy. As you can imagine there has been a huge array of different ideas, memories and traditions. My prompt yesterday was a theme for a journal page: "when does Christmas truly start for you?" and if you are a member of Eileen Hull's Fan Club page on Facebook you can catch it there.

If you are not a member and would like to join click the link HERE to join, but do make sure you answer the questions! .... we really are trying to make sure that we get genuinely interested people joining the group.

Madeline Arendt gave us a wonderful tour of her house and all her beautiful handmade decorations and I was so taken by her use of Eileen's Tea Cup die to make bells that I had to have a go myself! You can get Madeline's tutorial on her blog here: Just a Thought or Two : Making Bells and Candle Holders. 

Madeline has an amazing ability to really think outside the box, so turning the tea cup upside down and cutting off the handle, then using the spoon as the holder and "dong" at the bottom is just ace! So here is my take on her 3D Bell using a paper technique I have not used in a while. Scroll down for a tutorial but first here are a few more photo details:

The 3D Bell is sturdy enough to decorate the top with plenty of flowers, leaves and berries.

I made a string of bells in the same way as Madeline did and they are now hanging above the fireplace in the study.

It is difficult to capture the feeling in a photograph but it really does ooze Christmas warmth dressed in lights and bells!

I made an extra bell for my Christmas Journal.

Thank you for joining me and I hope you find inspiration from
visiting Madeline's blog and my tutorial here.

It's beginning to feel a bit like Christmas!!!

Jennie x



Cut out two cups and cut away the handle at the side, cut one down the middle.

Glue one of the cut pieces down the middle of the bell (I did mark this in pencil first as it is easy to miss the line!)

Punch a hole into the second half for your hanging ribbon before glueing the other side to make the 3D shape.

I used old music paper for my inserts. I have cut six bells for each quarter section, but in hindsight I think five would have been enough and easier to insert. 

Run some glue down the folded edge .....

..... and layer another folded piece on top. 

Continue until you have a little folded section.

Each little folded group of papers can then be glued into the quarter.
Do this by adding glue to the board and lining the paper up with the edges (this is why five pages will be easier to fit!)

If you get a bit of a crinkle you can add a little more glue and stick that page down so it can't be seen!

To decorate the top it is easier to add the leaves first so you have a base to glue the flowers to.

The berries and swirls were "poked in" after the flowers were firmly glued and dried.

Dies Used:
Eileen Hull Teacup and Spoon #Sizzix  664797

Friday, 4 December 2020

End of an Era .....

 As I mentioned in my previous post, today sadly marks the last challenge over at A Vintage Journey.

As this month's challenge is all about ATCs we have all made a final ATC to "say goodbye". It is difficult to sum up seven years of wonderful creativity and global friendships but hopefully I managed to say it all in this little piece.

I have been involved with A Vintage Journey from the very start and so have enjoyed seven amazing years as part of the challenge blog. In that time we have seen new members of the team leave and others join, but each and every one has bought their friendship and support to the team, along with an incredible inspiring array of techniques and styles. We hope we leave a legacy of techniques, inspiration and styles that will still be accessed online for years to come.

For me one of the most enduring elements of this creative team (past and present) has been the support we have all given and received from each other.  Not just creatively ..... but when times are tough due to ill health, family and work pressures and certainly during the last year and the worries and fears of Covid 19. We have all been there for each other, instantly stepping in to help and support. A truly special team.

Thank you to all my lovely followers for your interest in A Vintage Journey and thank you to my Creative Guide Sisters for all your love, friendship, support and inspiration.

Hopefully not goodbye ..... but au revoir ......

Jennie x

A Merry Little Christmas

 Hello and welcome to a Merry Little Christmas!

Today we start a new challenge at A Vintage Journey where we are celebrating Christmas but in a tiny way with ATCs! It is a bittersweet challenge as sadly this will be our final challenge (more in another post). You can get all the details of the challenge HERE and we are really looking forward to seeing everyone join in.

I have created two ATCs using some old and much loved Tim Holtz dies, stamps and inks. I know there are always some lovely new products released each year, but I do love my little Christmas collection, with some of the dies going back years.

I have listed them all at the end of the post just in case you need a push to go hunting for yours!

I have used whiteboard as the base as it really gives a nice firm surface to work on. Using the ATC die means nicely cut edges and those lovely curved corners. Each got a coat of gesso before I sprayed with Antique Linen Distress Ink Spray and then overstamped with one of my favourite old text stamps in Vintage Photo Distress Ink. The addition of the gesso helps to create a worn look.

I used Peeled Paint and Mowed Lawn Distress Ink Sprays for the green tags and Candied Apple and Crackling Campfire for the gorgeous red. I was only going to be cutting small elements so just creating a tag saves getting a lot of leftovers.

Some of these dies are out all the year (scribble circle and bow) as I find them so very useful for cards. I still had four little resin flowers left in my stash so decided to use them as I intend to use these ATCs for two special Christmas Cards and so they should be nice and sturdy.

I just about managed to fit the small candle onto the ATC and those little berries were very fiddly, but I think all worth it for the little pop of red.

Fun to make and fun to give!

I do hope you join us in our Christmas and final challenge. The whole team have got an inspiring array of ATCs for you so do hop on over to the blog to find out more.

As always thank you for joining me, and here's wishing you a Merry Little Christmas!

Jennie x

Dies used:

Thinlits Festive Greens #662425

Thinlits Festive Scribbles #660980

Thinlits Sizzix Tag Collection Die Set #658784

Sizzix Die Candlelight #660029

Sizzix Die ATC & Corners 


Stampers Anonymous Tiny Text CMS394

Stampers Anonymous Faded Type CMS397