Monday, December 31, 2012

I'm late, I'm late...

for a very important date!!! So said the White Rabbit. Are you in your party gear or still in your PJ's like me??? Welcome to the last day and Simon Says Stamp & Show challenge for 2012. We are already getting into the party mood with The Mad Hatter's Tea Party. Of course, like me, you may well think of Alice in Wonderland but we want you to think much further than that with this challenge theme and just have some really great, crafty fun... It's an Anything Goes, go mad week, so jump in and celebrate inky style!
l am feeling a bit like the White Rabbit lately. It seems as if I'm always rushing around with one eye on the clock, wondering if I'll make it! Life as normal I suppose with a boisterous baby on the loose...
Despite the fact that we live in a world surrounded by ever developing technology, sometimes you just can't beat the good old paper and pen. Maybe you are like me and still find yourself jotting things down on bits of paper, which is very handy until that elusive scrap goes AWOL.
So I decided to create a simple but fun book for all those important squiggles and notes. Hence the save the date design and all the clocks. I love Tim's Destination Paper Stash and knew it would be just perfect for the job. I covered two pieces of hardboard with different papers to create my covers and used lots of Distress ink around the edges.
I thought the clock and letters page would make a great dimensional cover. I cut four clocks out, stuck them to Grungeboard and edged them with ink for a chunky look. I cut the letters down a bit and then created lots of dimension using string, layering and foam pads. A Mr. Tim word band added a little extra interest...
l used my great Crop-a-Dile Big Bite to punch holes and set eyelets. The inside is dead simple, but that is exactly what you need if you are going to just jot down reminders, so I just stamped the month in the corner. Maybe you want to go to town with a really fancy inside!

So there you go. An ode, book style, to the faithful paper and pen (and my dizzy brain). For more inky inspiration, do take a look at the amazing ideas my teamies created on Simon Says Stamp & Show Design Team Blog, run off to your crafty zone and be in with a chance of winning this generous $50 voucher! Furthermore, let me wish you all a very happy, healthy and heartfelt New Year. Let's make it a great one! With love,

Monday, December 24, 2012

Winter Wishes...

And so Christmas Eve is upon us... and also a time when one cannot help but look back over the last year and wonder where the time has gone too. I think we all will have been through many highs and lows and both the straight and crooked paths.
As I quickly changed my clothes, again, after a little faux pas from a feisty baby Ruby, I struggled to make it to the church service on time. I became very flustered and just wanted to stay home. But when I arrived the carols where in full flow, the candles twinkling and the words Peace on Earth were being sung. I saw the delight in Ruby's eyes, took a deep breath and just embraced the moment.
Whatever the day, month or year, whatever life brings, I want to learn to be more and more grateful for all I do have. Life itself can sometimes get in the way of living! My life has been changed forever by the arrival of my baby girl and I am thankful that she is teaching me to live moment by moment. Just as she is doing here during her very first encounter with Christmas lights...
I have also had a fabulous year being on the best Design Team ever! Huge thanks to Simon Says Stamp for giving me such a wonderful opportunity and thank you to everyone who has supported and encouraged my art and blog. I look forward to another year of inky antics and creativity with you all!
Have a truly blessed, wonderful and fantastic festive time. Enjoy the holidays in your own special way, wherever you are.
With love,

Monday, December 17, 2012


Oh my gosh! How many days until the big day??? As always it seems I am not in the least bit ready and with my oh so energetic baby Ruby reaching her 6 month milestone, spare time has become extinct!
But I am determined to get into the festive spirit and the Gift-spiration challenge theme over at Simon Says Stamp and Show gave me just the push I needed. I always say you can't go wrong with paper decorations and if like me you are short on time, then these hearts are just the ticket!
I often get asked to make something "Christmassy and crafty" for family or friends and this year my task was to create a child friendly tree decoration. They gotta look pretty... but no tears if little fingers go AWOL.
I love blue and white together and decided to make use of my Distress Ink Pads as there are so many wonderful shades of blue to choose from. I also needed quite a strong card so I went for Ranger's Specialty Stamping Paper, also knowing it would give a good inky result.
I randomly stamped one side of the card with the Mr. Tim snowflake and the other side with the Mixed Media dots. As the paper gets cut into strips don't be too fussy with the stamping. Each heart needs two long strips and two shorter strips (the strip length depends on what kind of shape heart you like). I just went by my eye and what looked right to me. You could also use three strips for each side if you fancy...
After cutting the strips I distressed and inked the edges. As you can see, the hearts are made out of two halves which I then stuck together, sandwiching a ribbon in between. I was going to leave them like that then I thought they needed a word to add a little more festive identity! I picked out two words from the background stamp from the Season's Silhouettes set and my hearty creations were done.
You could really go to town with this idea, creating a whole set, making them as fancy or funky as you like. They would make great gifts - and not just at Christmas either. How about embossed metal or even a fabric version... Ah, if I had but the time. If you are making a special inky something for someone, why not join in the challenge at Simon Says Stamp an Show and you could win this fabulous $50 goody voucher. If you're looking for inspiration, then head over to The Design Team Blog and feast your eyes on the wonderful ideas from all the team. Okidokie, that's my inky news for today. Keep calm and keep Christmassing!
See you soon, Sarah.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A little bit of guesting!

Hello there!
Wow...two posts in one week - that's a miracle at the moment and another reason to get festive besides Christmas in my book! I am very honoured to be Guest Designer over at Calico Crafts this month...
Here is a sneaky peek of the piece I have created. Do hop over to the Design Team Blog for the big reveal.
Big thanks to Louise (a.k.a. Zuzu) and Helen for the invite.
Happy weekending to all!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Tim, Tag and a bag...

Hello, good morning and greetings to all! I'm here bright and early (well, sort of) with a bit of Tim, a tag and a bag! This week at Simon Says Stamp & Show we are having a touch of Holtzamania by diving into Tim's world of Tag-ology... Over the years there has been oodles of inky inspiration from Mr. T so we thought it would make a great challenge theme.
 As my title says I'm being a bag lady today with my variation on Tagology. Now that's a made-up word indeed, word but it works! I've been on quite a mission lately to start using up my mountain of unused Design papers and when I came across my Retro Stash I suddenly thought that the striped paper in the set was actually quite festive!
 I made one of these quite a while back but thought I'd create a festive one as it is just the perfect packaging for that little something special. I'm always looking for a way to make use of all those tags that so many of we crafters accumulate. My inspiration comes from Tim's seventh tag from 2011. Check out the link for all the info. You just need two tags, three folds and some paper to create the sides.
I used Kraft Glassine Paper on the sides. It's great stuff. It's so versatile and I love how it can be transformed in both colour and texture. I have also used it for the holly leaves which I crinkled and swiped with Distress Ink. Don't forget, whether inking or stamping, you do need to heat set the coated Kraft Glassine paper to ensure the ink becomes embedded in the paper.
 I was wondering how to close my bag and was playing around with ribbons and string but it didn't work so then I suddenly thought of Tim's Hitch Fastener. I screwed it to the underlying tag and then it just pops through the upper flap to keep the bag shut! I used Tim's die to cut my tags but I suppose you could cut your own to create any size you fancy. How big can you go???!!!
This week it's all about using Tim's tags as inspiration so you can make anything you want to. It's a great challenge theme and ideal chance to play around with your inks or get some more cards done before the Christmas rush!!!! Do take a look at the fabulous ideas from my team-mates over at the Simon Says Stamp & Show Design Team Blog. We are looking forward to seeing your creative thoughts and don't forget this generous $50 voucher from Simon Says Stamp!!! You have to be in it to win it!
I must be dashing off now as mummy duty is calling - literally.  Thanks so much for calling by. See you soon,

Monday, December 3, 2012

Little House on the....

There's no ignoring it now... The fairy lights are twinkling, chocolate goodies abound, Bing is crooning and the first snow flurries have descended. Yes! The festive month has arrived and I finally gave into it and went all silvery. At Simon Says Stamp & Show we are "In the House" so to speak with our new House Rules Challenge theme.
As said, I felt a bit of the festive spirit creeping up on me, but I also wanted to try out something new with metal but not go down my normal route with the rusty tones. I love Tim's industrial metal technique and wondered how it would look as cladding for on my little Christmas house!
l got Mr. Hubby to saw off a chunk of wood for me, I sanded it down and then covered it in lots of  pieces of metal foil sheets. I tried to get all the raw edges to meet at right angles for a cleaner look. The wood block isn't perfectly square but let's mark that down as 'the rustic look'.... When it was all covered I used my Ten Seconds tools and scraper edge to create all the details.
It was then a case of rubbing a blob of black paint over the whole house and then wiping it off with kitchen paper, leaving some behind to create that 'dirty' look. Don't use too much paint. it needs to be a bit on the dry side to work well. I spent a while thinking of the right words and also knew I wanted to use my rosette die so Star seemed to be the perfect word... and then it led to me adding a few lines from "We Three Kings of Orient Are..."
 I'm definitely into my Grunge letters at the moment and a bit of gesso and Distress Ink gave me just the effect I needed.

 I then went for my peg stamps which really are a must in your stash as you can use them on SO MANY projects!!!!
 Finally my star which I created with more foil tape and paint. My Big Shot cutting boards are very worn but that actually gives me quite a nice bit of texture on my rosettes where the paint can get in! Before folding my rosettes I ran a piece of normal tape along the back as this holds them together better and prevents splitting. Just a spinner, more black paint on the Philosophy tag and two metally things I had in my stash -  and my house was built. Fa, la, la la, la... and all that.

The house theme is just perfect for December crafting! Are you looking for some great seasonal ideas for your home? Well, take a look at the totally fabulous creations from the Simon Says Stamp & Show Design Team for lots of inspiration! Then ski off to your crafty zone and join in as you could win this generous $50 prize! Just what your stash of stash needs! Right then, I'm away... Got a baby in 6th gear and she's ready to rumble (all the time). Thanks for popping by.