Monday, January 30, 2012

My Grungy Valentine...

Morning My Lovelies,
Welcome to another Monday, a new week and challenge at Simon Says Stamp & Show ... I had to use the servant's entrance because the Royals are in the house with our 'Kings and Queens' week! From King Canute to Elvis, from Cleopatra to our very own Lizzie, we want to see your take on this regal theme.  'Queen of Hearts' seemed to be a keeper with me, but not quite the she of Alice or card fame...
Metal and Alcohol Inks are like bread and butter in my crafty space and it seemed to be my 'go to' this week. I started by grunging up an 8" canvas with Vintage Photo and Wild Honey Distress Stains, Rock Candy Crackle Paint and Distress embossing powder. The crackle will cause the stains to move but that was just fine by me!

I white washed a dictionary page with Picket Fence Stain, glued it to card, gave it a good distressing  and then stitched around the edges. I cut a rough square of chicken wire, snipped away a few wires and brushed it with Alcohol Inks. I then stapled it to white page, knowing the hearts would cover the staples.

I stuck Ranger Metal Foil Tape Sheets onto card and cut eight hearts before embossing them with various Tim folders. I dropped and splodged different Alcohol Inks onto the hearts, let it run a little before quickly drying with my heat gun to achieve a rough effect. I lightly sanded the surfaces to bring out the details, but without removing all the ink.
Then it was just a case of having fun with a trip to my Embellie Deli. Each heart has it's own 'thing' going on... mainly Idea-ology and a few findings of my own. All of which have been through the inky, grunge zone.
Here's a few close-ups. I really like all the different metallic tones and different patterns on each heart... my fave is the spinner and flower!
Here's a Memo Pin filled with a kiss and Glossy Accents...! Actually, I really like the Ball Chain one too... The centre stage is held by the Crown from the aptly named Regal Adornments and the wording is made using my Dymo Label Writer and Copper Tape. You can just make out the words 'light-hearted' on the page.

To finish off, I added some metal corner 'thingies' at the bottom and attached an old plug chain to the top using eyelet screws. Get thee to a hardware store or Dad's shed fast!
 Here you can also see the Grungy canvas and stitching in more detail. Well, this gal is all done and now it's time for you to play...

There are lots of roads you could walk with this theme and if you head over The Design Team Blog to check out all the great makes from my'll see what I mean!
Every week there's the chance to win this great $50 prize as well as the Top Three Crown or Tiara! I hope you all have a great week and find time for a little artistic therapy. Thanks for calling by and saying hello... it's always nice to see and hear from you all.
Until the next time...Sarah.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

A woman is meant to be...

many things...but to discover what this fair maiden is thinking, head over to The Artistic Stamper Creative Team Blog
I'm very proud to be January's Guest Designer!  Hope you will hop over and take a peek...
Enjoy the weekend!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

I'll Be Watching You...

I should be be doing a bit of house-wifey stuff but sometimes a creative diversion is just too good to resist. I really fancied joining in with a couple of challenges, just for my own arty(ish) fun and rustled up a tag for both Linda's Grungy Monday and Sunday Stampers from Hels. 

Linda asked us to get cracking with crackle resist, all explained by Mr. H here and over at Hel's it's all about the windows of the soul, the eyes! For some reason I could feel the blues calling me, so I went for a shabby pallet throwing in the darker tones. I swooshed on Weathered Wood Crackle Paint, dried, and then rough strokes with my Pool Dabber for the background.
I over-stamped my tag with various Wendy Vecchi stamps, gave it a good inking with Weathered Wood, Brushed Corduroy and touches of Black Soot inks before distressing the edges and adding some machine stitching. Then I went for some Wendy leaves and flowers, Grungy stylie, made from old French book pages and given a good crumpling!

The eyeful damsel is from Art it For a Queen and I thought her lovely gaze would look good set in an Idea-ology Book Plate which has been coated in layers of UTEE and Alcohol Inks. I stapled a strip of vintage ruler behind and then added wire thread and a button.
I always like to add a few words and these few taken from a longer sentiment and stamped onto a Mica scrap seemed to fit the mood perfectly. All in all, a bit quirky but I do rather kind of like her!
Sometimes it's good to just sit, create and let things happen - and then just let them be what they are! So that's my crafty philosophy...well, for this week. Back to reality and alas, onto the washing up! Thanks for taking a peek. Sarah.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

What's on your Workdesk Wednesday?

Back in the olden days, before Blogdom, this mid-week day would pass without a smidgen of furore. But now, thanks to Julia, Wednesday has received almost divine status, the power to oust fair maidens from slumber and has brought new street-cred to many a shambolic desk...
Today, it's more of the usual, lesser of the clean, plenty of dust and AWOL stamps (clean, but still loitering with intent). I'm working really hard to finish DT projects as I'm going to enjoy the rare phenomenon of a Social  Saturday as my bloggy, crafty mate Kaz is hopefully coming to Ludlow! Hooray!
The DT job turned out to be a right, old inky mess, so I was très jolie to deviate into my Less is More playtime! This week it's a 'Cut it Out' theme. No, not a crash diet, but a call for apertures in posh card talk!

Hearts, an old French map and my vintage typewriter did the job! Just a little inking around the inside, distressed c'est fini!
Just one more for fun to use up the die cuts that were flying about. This time the hearts are mounted on card and again edged with ink.

So simple and also versatile. I think this could card be for a lover or family across the miles! 
Don't forget, there's just one more week left to join in the ATC challenge at My Mojo Monthly. Do join in! There are seven lovely entries so far and all so different. 

Here's my Retro Diva (who is looking slightly more glamorous than I do right now...!)
On that note, I'll say Farewell, a big thank you for calling by and wish you all a very good week, wherever it may take you...Sarah.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Fly Me to the Moon....

...maybe it's still the weekend there! The last week has rocketed by (great pun?) and here we are back at Monday morning again! So without further ado, here's my new DT creation for Simon Says Stamp & Show where we have broken into song! That could be your favourite ditty, ballad, rock anthem or golden choose.
I really love both jazz dance and jazz music, especially when it's sung by an old crooner. I just couldn't resist an all time fave of mine... Frank's 'Fly Me to the Moon'. I dived into my treasure chest of Wendy Vecchi Art Parts to create my lunar journey! I went for a 'new slant' on things - quite literally and artistically methinks. After all, Life isn't always a straight road...
I used various circles from the Sample Pack covering each with a different surface. The large 'planet' is covered with Retro Grunge paper, inked and stamped with Wendy's alphabet. The smaller one is inked, stamped, and covered with Rock Candy Crackle paint then adorned with a Timepiece and Spinner.The fab little van and key Art Parts are from the For the Guys set, all stamped up and embellished with metal goodies from my stash.
The moon is covered with the 'fly' page from an old dictionary, white washed with Picket Fence Distress Stain and stamped with Wendy Stars. The dashing space traveller is hitching a ride on a Pocket Watch with light bulb and Trinket Pin wings. I stamped the 'wings' onto Clearly for Art and added a few more Idea-ology touches. I think he's taking a snap for Google Earth.
I hung a Swivel Clasp from the Timepiece and attached a Flying Boot that also wanted to come along for the ride! See, I always say Art Parts can be fun... let your imagination run around naked for a day!
And that being said, I think these words are very fitting. I love the word tinker - it's such a great way to say 'fiddling about'! The inky look comes from swooshes and splats using Distress Stains and Inks.
I sanded down an old picture frame, swiped it with Vintage Photo Distress Stain and added a good coat of Rock Candy Crackle Paint. I then set about assembling everything which was like building a Scooby-Doo sandwich. I glued a diagonal strip of wood into the frame to act as a hidden support for the large circle and worked from there... with oodles of Glossy Accents and lots of ink pads underneath for supports whilst it all dried! And now - ready for lift-off...

A song title is such a great source of inspiration, so I really hope you'll join in, have some fun and maybe pick up that $50 prize whilst in creative orbit. Take a look at the Simon Says Stamp & Show DT Blog for full details and do CHECK OUT all the great pieces from my Team Mates!

Thanks for calling by, I'd love to hear from you and wish you all an inspired and artful week...! Until soon, Sarah.

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Golden Girls...

Hi there to all Friday Blogettes and Weekenders!
I'm dropping in with a touch of shimmer, shine and sheen which is quite unusual for me because I ain't really a gold type of girl at all. I'll melt it down and cash it at the jewellers if you're throwing it my way but it doesn't often creep into my work...

But one must try new dabblings... This week TV Diva Hels has a Goldrush thing going on with her Sunday Stampers. I also had an eye on the new challenge over at Everything Wendy Vecchi held by Lori where we had to create our own Kraft resist paper.  So... plenty of learning curves all round... I stamped Wendy's Alphabetically Art stamp onto Kraft card stock, clear embossed it and then applied Rusty Hinge and Brushed Corduroy Distress Inks.

 The two roses are stamped and cut from inky card which I made by splodging my craft sheet with Distress Stains, giving it a spritz of water. (I was sneakily trying to give it all a bit of a Grungy look!)

I then added a good misting of Heirloom Gold Perfect Pearls. I luuurve the Dimensional Rose Art Stamp and added extra petals by using up the cut off bits you get during preparation.
I used the inside of an Art Bookplate as a base, covering it with old French paper and white washing it with gesso. I stamped the sentiment in Coffee Archival ink and edged the plate with an all time fave, Inka Gold. Now that's a gold I do adore...! I also added three upholstery studs to the corner for another gold touch.

I stamped the leaves onto the same inky card and yes - I really enjoyed all the fiddily diddily snipwork!

I layered it all up adding random stitching, gold ribbon and a piece of card painted in my Gold Dabber for that extra glow! I hung it from an old chain, and what do you know? Even if it's not my usual tones, me thinketh it's pretty okay. I'm also joining in with:

I'm supposed to finish a new DT piece now, but I'm zonked, am heading for the sofa and will just have to hope for extra gusto tomorrow...! See you soonish, Sarah.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Waz Happenin' in Y'all Deskhood?

Okay, let's just get it over with... "Wednesday? Again? So soon? No! But Yes!" There we go, formal gasps all done and dusted and onto table talk. If you're up for Reality Blogging then head over to Julia's, and let your crafty zone strut it's stuff on the "What's on your workdesk Wednesday?" Catwalk... Here's a shot taken during a mid pounce and ink moment.
That's a rejected card on the left due to an over zealous inky corner! Don't you just love those?
New stash! Used to be more of a Do than Die lady but I'm slowly being converted to less snip stress.
I've made two cards for my weekly dose of Less is More where it's one layer and birdies!
I square punched my own stencil and opted for Distress Inks and an old fave by Paper Artsy. This one worked first time!
Went for another as I cannot resist sunsets and I'm also trying to make at least two with the same theme to build up a better collection for selling. I'm joining in with a handmade card exhibition next week and whilst I was sorting out my cards I came to two conclusions...
a) what a random collection! 
b) must remember to store with matching envelopes.
Spent a whole night scavenging the planet for envelopes...
The exhibition, called House of Cards, is at The Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre, Craven Arms and and starts next Saturday on the 28th. It's really great to see the walls adorned with so many handmade creations - and of course sell a few. I'll share more in a few weeks time...

Just a reminder that I have an ATC challenge and fab prize at My Mojo Monthly this month! Here are my three damsels to get you feeling inspired... Hope to see a few of you join in! Go on, ATCs are so much fun...
And that, said Fred, is that! Thanks for having a look round, even a quick peek and a few words are much appreciated! I made it to 110 desks last week before time, Blogger and hallucinations got the better of me. Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more...!  
À bientôt, Sarah.

Monday, January 16, 2012

I'll do anything...for you dear anything...I'll do anything for you...

...but a Card! Welcome to Monday, a new week and challenge at Simon Says Stamp & Show!  Well, the first line says it all really. Yes, it's an 'Anything but a Card' thing, so oodles of opportunity for creative thinking and fun makes methinks!
Let me be the first to practice what I preach and show you my Valentine Shrine which began life as an electrical socket box! In my town there's this totally chaotic but fabulous DIY, hard ware, 'got it all' kind of shop. The shelves are heaving with loads of wondrous metal stuff and as you can see I bring a lot of it home!

I'm still in a metal mood... I started by roughly brushing the whole metal box with Red Pepper Alcohol Ink. Boy, is that stuff potent. Thankfully, my daily swim does wonders for inky fingers! I took a piece of my favourite mesh wire, gave it a sponging of Gesso and cut it to fit  halfway inside the box. I made sure it was a tight squeeze so it holds itself in place and then added a strip of gesso swiped Ruler Ribbon.
I painted some Grungepaper on both sides, cut nine Tattered Floral flowers and stamped them with Tim's Stuff To Say in Vermillion Archival Ink which comes out so well. I edged the petals with Barn Door Distress Ink and created three Grunge Roses turning each layer to vary the wording. I glued them onto the wire adding ribbon, a Trinket Pin and just one word taken from a larger stamp.
The roof is created with two metal corner brackets (from that shop!). I painted them white and lined the inside with Tissue Tape. I stamped and cut a Papillon butterfly from painted Grungepaper to perch inside the roof. I coloured an old key and Charm Clip with more Red pepper Ink, adding a single 'L' for love of course - or it could be your secret sweetheart's initial!
I finished off with a wrap of Ball Chain which is fab stuff, again dipped in the red stuff. You can create any colour chain you want with a touch of Alcohol Inks! Even added a little colour to my 'nutty' feet - all glued together with good old Glossy Accents. So there it is. A little house but a lot of love! And definitely NOT a card.

 After the Christmas frenzy, I'm sure you are all raring to go with anything but a card, so this is your chance to show us your creations. Hop over to the Design Team Blog to see more inspiration from my wonderful teamies and all the challenge details. There's a chance to win this fab $50 prize and make a bid for our specially selected Top Three!

Time for me to be awaying... Thanks for calling by, hope you enjoyed your stay! Wishing you all a luuuurvely week, see you soon. Sarah.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sneak Peek...why not???

C'est moi! Just giving you a sneak peek of my second creation for The Artistic Stampers Creative Blog. Hop across to see lots more pics and all the crafty gossip!
 Don't forget Jennie's great Sale ends this Sunday, so grab a bargain while you can! Thanks. Sarah.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday playtime...

Golly, Friday already.The world doth spinneth faster methinks... I'm just dropping by with a little tag therapy. I have a lot of DT work and projects bubbling away and a crafty lock-in has already booked this weekend. So it's good to have dabble and ponder in ink just for fun. I decided to plunder the week's scraps and create a tag for Grungy Monday with a few other challenges in mind...Sunday Stampers by Hels and Fashionable Stamping
I can't seem to stop inking up these three amigos lately... I thought I'd give them one more go before sending them on a short break! My other stamps have ink-envy. I have festively acquired the Kraft resist papers and this is a take on the Tim Tag Two Technique from the Christmas frenzy...
I cut a tag from the Steampunk page, swiped it with Picket Fence  and coloured in sections with Vintage Photo Distress stain. I added some splats and splashes, some stamped details and edged everything Rusty hinge. I stamped the men in Black Stazon onto copper metal which I'd set onto card for strength so I could cut them out. In the background I've used a weathered clock off-cut clock coloured with Distress Stains, scrap wire and layered it all onto the tag.
The letters cut from metal tape are distressed and coloured with various Alcohol inks. I like adding little details and went for copper thread, hammered eyelets, staples and a touch or random red stitching. Lastly a philosophy tag, hanging from a swivel clasp. (I now see I forgot the seam binding finish!!! Oh well...) So that's my lot for tonight. A gal has gotta sleep so I'm signing off and going to dream of the weekend. Thanks for calling by! Sarah.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

What's on your workdesk Wednesday?

Ah, 'tis Wednesday! Welcome to my blog and an unashamed display of organised chaos... It's all down to Julia. The only Hostess I know who holds a party where you get up before 6am and wear your PJ's to flaunt a dishevelled craft room. There's a touch of the purples going here...more of that later. I have the mind of a slightly sane woman this week as I'm getting back on top on the projects and I've cleaned the whole house. Tidy house, tidy mind definitely works for me. Well, for a week then.

The many hours of tweaking have at last brought sunshine. I'm extremely chuffed to say my first design piece for Craft Stamper Magazine made the press! It's the February issue which you can also buy at most WH Smith stores. I was totally amazed when I was asked to start designing some pieces. It's all very exciting, nerve wracking and quite a challenge.
I can't show the piece on my blog but I can share a snippet of my altered book covers (page 78!)
I was soon brought back to reality by having to clean this lot which had started to breed. Oh my...
It's been a wee while since I've joined in with Less is More and I was glad to find time to dabble. It's a Purple thing. A tough colour if you're not normally into it...
So I went for the torn look, a little romance and I actually quite like it! I swear that was my only scrap of purplish design paper...

So that's the low down on life at La De Dah. A little more space in the old Filofax (yes, a pen and paper gal!) means I'm looking forward to a morning of table surfing. Get your best fluffy slippers on, I'll be round soon. Thanks for taking a peek. Happy WOYWWing to all! Sarah.