Thursday, May 31, 2007

Some Hania Photos

Got a few photos ready to share.
We were staying on the outskirts of the village of Stavros - where apparently part of "Zorba the Greeek" was filmed! Not that there's much there - a little beach, a few villas and a couple of tavernas - we didn't even se anywhere you could buy a postcard! A real "away from it all" sort of place - perfect.
We went into the main town of Hania a few times - it's a lovely place, with harbours and old and new bits of town. The first photo was taken from above the town, the second from the harbour.

You can walk right along the harbour wall, there's a taverna at the end, should you need refreshment, and just past that are the usual bits of tatty old junk which somehow takes on a picturesque quality that you only get in places like Greece - in most places it would just be a tatty eyesore!
Among the piles of old wood, rusting metal chains and sun-bleached rope was this fab old rowing boat.
I absolutely adore wandering around the narrow streets of old Greek villages and towns. I love the doors, the arches, the balconies, the alleyways and the wonderful colours. I love that any available container will be used to house oleander, bougainvillea and all sorts of other fabulously coloured plants. I might have gone a little photo-crazy here, so I've made the next photos nice and small but you can click on them for the bigger versions if you want to.

We sat on the harbour and watched the sun go down. Hubby usually ends up lying on the ground, with camera set up on the mini tripod at this point, trying to get the perfectly timed shot. I'm getting used to the odd stares he gets . I can't be bothered with all that nonsense so I took my evening shot while there was still enough light left to hold the camera still myself. I rather like the warm glow on the buildings and the reflections on the sea.And finally - at least for now - this is another evening shot, taken back at our little villa, looking out over the pool and the sea.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007


Or "Good Morning"

Got back late last night from a week's holiday on the Greek island of Crete. Don't worry - I'll bore you senseless with photos soon enough, but just wanted to pop in here straightaway and say a huge "Thank You" to all who left messages on the last posting - I've had a lovely time reading them all and they are all added onto the message list now.

I've also had a lovely email from Jeanne to say that she's got her book HOORAY! - Apparently it was deliveredf to the wrong house - looks like it doesn't matter where you live posties can still manage to get it wrong sometimes! Hey we've had mail delivered where the only thing in the address that matches ours is the number on the door - wrong name, street, town but the right door number!

Back later with a proper catch up

Monday, May 21, 2007

Jeanne's book

Well, It's been a while since I sent Jeanne's Blog Candy prize off to her, and I'm sure I sent it Air Mail, so hopefully it'll have arrived by now. As it was going off to the US where pretty much all our crtafting stash comes from, and where it's much cheaper than here, there didn't seem much point in making it a stash-prize, so instead I decided to make a Maze Book.
I love making these little books and that pack of Vintage Brass papers I bought from Self Addressed were perfect for this project.
The idea is that there is lots of space in the book for adding little photos, plus there are hidden tags for messages, more pictures etc. Some pages are flat, some have opening pockets so you can put you pictures inside. I hope it did arrive safely, and that Jeanne likes it - if you read this Jeanne, please let me know it got there!
Here are the pages, I've made the pics small but you should be able to click on them to see a bigger version

See you soon

Friday, May 18, 2007

Starting from Scratch

This week it was Tracie's (Bondgirl) turn to set the dare for The Daring Cardmakers

For this weeks dare, I dare you to "start from scratch" I want to you design a card with NO purchased/pre-assembled embellishments - that means no blooms unless you cut them yourself, no buttons, brads etc etc. I guess how easy this is depends on your usual style

**insert evil laugh here**

The team as usual have come up with a great mix of cards and styles and we cant wait to see yours. As well as the usual team designers we have a special Guest Designer joining us this week, Bety has joined us for a couple of dares, so Thanks to Bety and we all look forward to working with her.

hhmmmm, no brads or eyelets eh?
I needed a new baby card so decided that I could double up for this one.

The letters are made from two layers of cereal packet cardboard - Shreddies I think ;-), topped with a layer of patterned paper. I love the colours on this one - I'd tell you what it is, if the words weren't on the reverse and now part of the faux chipboard lettering!

I used a circle punch to make the prams, and the faux brads were made using a regular office type hole punch, cereal packet and paper combo, topped with Glossy Accents. The handles were hand cut which is why they're a bit wobbly ooops...

I used zigzag scissors on the edges of the Bazzill card and paper edging.

Quite simple really, though the brads were a bit fiddly - but if you need a perfect match and none of the "real" ones you've got work, then it's not a bad idea to have a go at making them this way. Also, it means no spiky bits on the inside to cover up!

Thanks to Tracie, for such a fun Dare. Don't forget to check out the DCM blog for all the other cards from the design team, then our personal blogs for all the info. We're very happy to have the fab Bety on the team as Guest Designer for the next couple of weeks - those of you who already know her work will know how stunning her cards are, so we're going to enjoy seeing what she makes for us.
Looking forward to seeing all the cards this dare inspires....

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Really Really Bad Blogger

That's me at the moment.

Things are quite busy really, plus I've not been feeling great - lack of sleep doesn't help - I like to get my full quota, and giving up and getting up at 4.30am (which happened the other day) is not something I'm best chuffed about!

I keep looking at my blog and thinking I should write something but failing dismally.
It's not that I'm not making stuff - I am, but it's all stuff I can't show yet. Haven't really had time to do any "just for me" crafting for a while.
So I thought I could show you a photo of the newly painted dining room - but it's not finished and still full of dustsheets, ladders and various bits of kit, so I shelved that idea too. Bits of the garden are looking good, but it's so manky and grey out there any photos would look really dull, so no go there either.

Craftingwise, it's quite exciting really. Actually it's very very exciting!
Bea has asked me to be Guest Designer for the June Ribbon Oasis kit (there's a sneak peek on the website, if you want to check it out - and why wouldn't you?) , so I spent quite a few days up near the ceiling then a few more running to the door every morning to see if the postie had brought the kit yet, then a few more taking the gorgeous things out, stroking them lovingly then putting them away again. Now all I have to do is actually MAKE some things with them.

You know, I buy loads of stuff and happily look at it all, then put it away to be used at some later date - but this is different, this time I can't just hoard it, I've got to USE it - and I have a DEADLINE for using it - how scary is that then?. You'll just have to come back in June to see if I managed though!

Anyway, I've found some new photos to show you - some that Hubby took when we had all that lovely sunshine last month , and that it wasn't just a figment of our imagination! You should be able to click on them to see the bigger versions.

We found a pot of bubble-blowing stuff in the garage and spent a fun hour trying to get some photos of the pretty bubbles!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Tagged by Pearl

Pearl (Maisymary) tagged me! I have to tell you all 5- 10 ways I come up with things to put on my blog.

I started my blog - and would you believe I missed my poor little blog's first birthday amid all my excitement at hitting the 15000 visitor mark (and is it there YET Jeanne? I'm fit to burst here not being able to show my photos!) because it seemed like everyone else had one but me and I don't like to be lefet out, y'know!
It started out being what it said on the tin - everyday waffle and trivia, a sort of rambling diary type of thing. Then the Daring Cardmakers happened and I guess it's much more of a crafter's diary now, but with a bit of the waffle and trivia still getting in there.
So what do I think about when that blank message box opens up?

1. If I've made something, then it's easy - I take a photo, stick it on the blog and waffle about it

2. If we've been somewhere it's easy - I stick photos on the blog and waffle about them

3. If we've done something to the house/garden, or something is looking particularly gorgeous, or particularly grim, then
I take a photo, stick it on the blog and waffle about it

4. If something has made me happy/sad/cross etc, well, I just waffle about it - but no pictures.

5. If I have anything exciting in the offing, like a SECRET - which I have atm then I just sneak it on like in this tag message and leave it at that

6. If I've been tagged, well I answer the questions and pass on the baton - like now - Rosie, Jeanne, Lisa, Esther - consider yourselves tagged (evil sniggers.....)

Friday, May 11, 2007

Munch Munch Gobble Gobble (updated)

What a week for The Daring Cardmakers - did you SEE just how many people joined in Jane's "Wings" dare this past week? It was absolutely amazing, and we were thrilled to bits with the response. Chuffed too, that our challenge inspired the people over at Inkstains to use the same theme - I guess it's safe to say that things with wings inspires a LOT of crafters!

It's also been wonderful to have Tracy as our Guest Designer for the last couple of weeks - she's done such a brilliant job - her cards are always inspirational and having her on the team has been a real treat for us,
Thank You, Tracy

This time it's my turn to set the dare, and I asked the team to make a card with a theme of FOOD

So let's mull this one over.......
You could make an invitation to a barbecue, dinner party, picnic, kids party etc
It could feature a recipe, ingredients, utensils, cookery quotations, poems or rhymes....
It could have food depicted on it eg cupcake, CHOCOLATE, bowl of fruit , CHOCOLATE, sausages, CHOCOLATE,.....birthday cake....

Hey, it could even have real food stuck on it.....Ok, maybe not....

as long as it's clearly got a foodie theme it's allowed.
So there you go then - something to really get your teeth into!

Well it all went strangely QUIET......... and I grew increasingly concerned, do they HATE the idea, or are their heads too filled with fabby ideas to say anything?

Anyway, I needn't have worried because they have cooked up a veritable FEAST of tasty cards - so please check them out on our blog, and pop over to their personal blogs for more info. making food inspired cards is calorie free - it's looking at the finished ones that makes you hungry - but hey - don't let that stop you!

One thing that's becoming clear to all of us is that whenever you set a dare your own mind goes totally blank, what seemed like a good idea when you set the challenge suddenly seems the worst idea in the world. "What on earth possessed me to decide on this one? I must be completely mad!"

Eventually I went with the CHOCOLATE option and came up with this:

I've had this flower embossed (or should that be "debossed") gold card for ages and it seemed perfect to make the top of a posh chocolate box, added eyelets in the corners of the triangles and printed off an inspiring chocolate quote by that prolific "Anon" person!

I found this delicious image of chocolates, printed it on glossy card, and stuck it on the base card. The triangles of gold were fixed over it along the outer edges so they would open up when the ribbon was untied. Finally I added some flowers to the top of the "box", the quote tag with some gold cord and some ribbon from my stash.

It's a pretty simple card really and in the end it all came together quite quickly for once!

Can't wait to see what everyone comes up with!

Thought I'd add some pics of other foodie cards I've made. The Pizza one I've shown before but I've not blogged the apron card which was made for one of my cousins a couple of years back (I like to think my cards have improved since I made this one!), or the Maltesers one, which I made for Hubby's birthday last year - Maltesers being his fave choccie treat!

oh, just before I go...
I got a "silly things people say" calendar for Christmas and yesterday's little quote fits this dare perfectly so I thought I'd share:
"I shouldn't say I'm a vegetarian because I love sweets"
(La Toya Jackson)

well yes, absolutely, m'dear........

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Altered Notebook

I've "tarted up" this notebook for a fabby forum swap - the theme is Summer and the notebook is A5 size.
I used a mix of Basic Grey and Blonde Moments papers to give it lots of citrus-sy zing.
Other stuff used:
bloooms and assorted little flowers from all over the place.
various ribbons and fibres
little flower shaped brads, various eyelets, orange button (Blonde Moments - I think)
Bazzill cardstock
QK Katie classic letters

This is the back of the book. I cut the words with my Robo, added more mosaic tiles (my fave technique of the moment - did you guess?)

The flowers on the back are diecuts to help keep the book nice and flat - I used the Bosskutz Krazy Daisy and the QK flower dodads dies.

Is this QK die my most-used die? Probably!

I meant to put loads of ribbon bows on the ring binding before I sent it off but I completely forgot. Maybe I should send some bits of ribbon to whoever gets it so they can add their own.
Or maybe I'll just hang on to it - after all, a girl just can't have enough ribbon, eh?

I wonder how long it'll take for Jeanne's little parcel to get over to the USA....I really really want to put my pics on here........

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Precious Metals

I got the fab pack of "Vintage Brass" papers from the Precious Metals collection by We R Memory Keepers alongside my regular kit from Self Addressed last month. The exchange rate is just so good at the moment that really, it's rude not to take advantage, isn't it? They are just gorgeous and I wanted to play with them straightaway - I was in the middle of making Aimee's book at the time so managed to resist the temptation till that was done.

Anyway, as soon as the book was done I delved in and have made this card for my SILs birthday. With a bit of luck I'll get another card I need in a hurry done later today.

I've a notebook to finish altering too, plus 12 decorated squares to do....
I have at least done my card for Fridays DCM dare (woohoo!), though the Little Extra announced a few minutes ago I've falied to get done ahead of launch yet again! Maybe I'll get one of those done later on too.
Oh well, that's all for now

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Blog Candy revealed...

Well, actually just the teeniest, weeniest glimpse of the candy won by Jeanne in my 15,000 visitor celebratory draw.
Ooooh, I wonder what it could be? Now it's ready I just hope she likes it!
Anyway it'll be in the post heading over the pond as soon as the Royal Mail reopens for business on Tuesday. Once it's there safely I'll be able to show some more pictures...........or maybe I could do a few more tiny sneak peaks while it's on it's travels.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Earning Our Wings

I'm always a little worried when it's Jane's turn to Dare - she's set some stinkers since the DCM started last October and you never quite know what tangent she'll go off on. This time she said:
"So here is can do any subject but the card has to
incorporate WINGS of some sort
So you can do - butterflies, angels, fairies, insects.........birds........anything basically as long as it has wings.
Good luck and may you all FLY HIGH, ladies."

Honest;y if you could see some of the dire cards I've made (and binned) in the past in an attempt to use some of the butterfly and dragonfly punches, dies and other pretty embellishments I've bought or acquired - crikey - I've even got rubber stamps for goodness sake!
Other people make lovely cards featuring these pretty creatures, so why do mine always look like a dog's breakfast?

No way was I going down that route - I'd just embarrass myself. Needed another plan.

By chance I've recently added some paper clay to my toy box so looking through the moulds I already have from playing with fimo and friendly plastic I found a butterfly/angel one (yes - another attempt to make something respectable with a butterfly on it), and various other letter moulds, shells, hearts etc so I spent a happy hour pushing the clay into all the moulds - I'm sure they'll all come in useful one day (yeah right!)

The paper clay is great stuff, quick, easy and clean to use and it air dries in about a day. My problem is my lack of painting skills. I did have the crazy idea that I could make an angel for the card - that soon went out the window when I saw the mess I'd made painting the poor angel's fave! Then the winged heart idea began to form.

I painted the heart with twinkling H2O's but tbh it didn't give much of a twinkle on it. The wings were coloured with a Krylon pen. Next I gilded the edges of the wings and bits of the heart with gold foil - I've not used this for ages, but it's great stuff for using with the paper clay.
I've been hoarding theis gorgeous paper for ages waiting for a good excuse to use it, it's so unusual for a romantic style paper to be these colours, but the pink, green and bits of brown look wonderful with a bit of added gold.
I used 3 different papers on this card, the one with the writing on I glued onto another piece of card and used sticky pads to raise above the main card. I cut the flourish for the top right of the card with my Robo, then used the negative of the cut as a stencil to add an extra bit of gold at the bottom.
The message was printed using various different fonts, with some gold gel pen added to the white bitsthen mounted on dark green card.
It still lacked something so I stuck a length of gold ribbon below the raised bit, and a couple of ribbon tabs fixed at the bottom right with gold heart brads.
The Girls on the Daring Cardmakers Design Team have made some fantastic, high flying cards for this dare, so please don't forget to go to and check out our blog, and all the personal ones too where you'll find more info on how they made them - oh and don't forget we have the wonderfully talented Tracy on the team atm as our very special Guest Designer.
We hope you'll be inspired to have a flutter at this one yourselves too!

(now, are there any more "flying" puns and phrases I can get in here, I wonder?)

The End is Nigh

Well, here I am back with the last few photos of Aimee's book. I decided to make a little pocket on the gack cover so she could use it for other odds and ends that she might like to keep.

The only other thing left to show is the little maxe book I added to one of the inside pages - this was probably not the most sensible thing to do tbh, but they are such fun. I tweaked it to make a few less pages in it, but there are still a couple of hidey holes for secret tags.

Here are some of the pages. The plan is that she can add pictures or bits to them as she wants to - I suppose I should mention that in there somewhere - maybe a message on one of the secret tags would be cute.

Only problem is, now I've finsihed showing this I'm going to have to get busy making more stuff to show on here, aren't I?
Oh well, it's not as though I don't have a list as long as my arm of other projects and crafty tasks that I must get on with.

I've got visitors arriving today, but they're only here for a couple of days so hopefuly I'll get time to play over the weekend. Bank Holiday here in the UK on Monday so a longer weekend than usual - hope the weather stays fine - got garden chores lined up for us.

And of course there's that Blog Candy for Jeanne to get sorted too ;-)

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

More album photos and the winner!

Another posting full of pages from Aimee's Friendship Book. One more post should finish it off but I'll save those pictures for tomorrow!
Oh, and right at the bottom you'll find my Blog Candy Winner.
This little book has plain white pages - well, allright, I did ink them a bit, but not much, Honest!
I used the flower shaped cards from April's SA Kit to make the template for this one - incidentally I see the May kit is on their site......
Couldn't figure out a good way to add photo "corners" so she'll just have to glue her pics on.

Just a dull page for a couple of photos and the info about them...
This is one of my favourite pages.
The tags are blank on the reverse for adding whatever....

And this is another of my faves - I love the mosaic style edge - BIG thanks to Angelnorth for giving me this idea when she did her Spring LO class on Scrapstars the other week (my little LO is on here somewhere)
These little "thingies" lift up to give space for messages or notes

I suppose you're wondering who won my little 15,000 visitor Draw then, eh?
Well, the 15,000 mark was reached yesterday, so the names of all those who left a message for me dated 30th April on the info went into the draw and out of the box came................
So Jeanne, if you contact me at the DCM's email address:
with your postal info, I'll get your Blog Candy off to you asap

Thanks everyone - this was fun