Monday, 23 April 2018

It's A Beautiful Day...

Hello friends...

Hope you had a wonderful weekend and fingers crossed the sun has finally shone where you are! Here in London, it's been lovely and hot and spring, maybe even summer has finally made an appearance as the trees are in full blossom and the leaves are adorning the trees, at last!!

So, with this in mind and spring in the air, this week over on the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge blog, our challenge theme is called Flower Power and we can't wait to see your floral projects and hope you'll join us for this fun challenge.

For my project, I thought it would be fun to create a couple of cards ~ we all need cards at some point and I thought this was the ideal time to make two very special ones for family members.
I was actually inspired by an embroidered tablecloth that my Grandma created as a young girl. The cloth was covered with blue flowers, periwinkles and forget-me-nots and I always adored it and would look at it for ages, touching the flowers and just in awe of such a wonderful fact she knew how much I loved it and gifted it to me when I was only 7 years old ~ even then I was always crafting and remember those wonderful times she would sit with me and patiently take the time to teach me to make clothes, knit and embroider ~ so many happy memories. But back to this project and with this wonderful piece of embroidery in mind, I thought it would be fun to recreate these pieces in paper but with a twist and give them some dimension by using Tim Holtz's Funky Floral 3 die to create the flowers.

So, let's get started because it's time for the new challenge!
The backgrounds for both cards are created exactly the same, so I tend to make a few of these and then just cut them to size. I applied Frayed Burlap, Iced Spruce, Antique Linen and Vintage Photo Distress Oxide Inks to my Tim Holtz Glass Media Mat and then spritzed the inks with a light misting of water before swiping Mixed Media Heavyweight card panels through the inks, picking up the colour. Heat dry and if you need to add more colour, just keep dipping until you're happy. Once the card is thoroughly dry, I inked around the edges with Walnut Stain Distress Ink.

Beginning with card no.1...
...I cut the panel of inked card to measure 11.5 x 15cm and using the Ornate Trims stamp set by Tim Holtz, I stamped a border in Potting Soil Archival Ink, around the outside using two of the stamps from this set ~ using one stamp to stamp the first border at the top and bottom and a second, different stamp on the left and right hand sides.
I matted the background onto gold metallic kraft card, followed by a layer of blue card and a layer of kraft card. I then mounted these layers onto a panel of the burlap from the Textured Surfaces set, matted onto black soot kraft card and layered onto a kraft card blank.

Next I started to create those dimensional flowers...
...and for these I used a light weight card that I have in my stash. I added colour to the card by using Faded Jeans, Broken China and a hint of Blueprint Sketch Oxide Inks, applied to the mat in exactly the same way as before.

Once the card was dry, I then used the Funky Florals die to die cut the various sized petals that I would need for each flower ~ I tend to use about three or four layers, which include the central stamen pieces, to make one individual flower. Once I had enough pieces, I then just layered those petals, shaping each one as I go and building up the dimension.

As a finishing touch, I added Nuvo Crystal Drops to the centres of each flower.
I the used various shades of green kraft cardstock to die cut the leaves and foliage.

Moving onto my next layer, I took another piece of the inked background card and used the Stacked Postage die set to die cut a second panel. I inked the edges of this die cut before arranging my floral display onto the panel, adding some ephemera pieces that are placed directly onto the background and adhered using Matte Collage Medium.

I then mounted the finished panel onto a piece of gold metallic kraft stash cardstock, cut with the Stitched Rectangle die and inked with Gunmetal Mixative Ink and Mushroom Alcohol Ink, before I wrapped some twine around the bottom section of the layers.

I went on to attach the floral panel centrally onto the front of the covered card blank using foam pads for more dimension and attached a vintage button to the left hand side of the twine wrap.
To complete this card, I added a Nailhead Finding and a Beautiful Day Metallic Quotations Sticker in the bottom left hand corner.
The second card basically uses the same ideas as I used on the's just a slightly different colour way and the flowers have pearl centres.

The background uses a further panel of the inked Mixed Media card and I just used different border stamps around the outside and added Hex Fasteners to each corner.

The flowers are coloured with Mermaid Lagoon, Salty Ocean and that small hint of Blueprint Sketch Oxide Inks and instead of using the crystal drops for the centres, I used Bauble Findings inked with Mushroom Alcohol Ink.
For the message panel, I used the Stitched Ovals die and stamped my message using wording from the Glorious Bouquet Stamp Set...
...before matting it over the top of a die cut section of card that I had stamped using the Botanical stamp from the Botanical and Batik stamp set.

I completed this card with a Hinge Clip and a Typed Token.
I hope you've enjoyed the creative process and all the techniques that have gone into making these projects but I also hope you've loved the inspiration behind these two cards...they mean a lot to me and hold a special place in my heart.

Don't forget, you can find more inspiration from my talented teamies over on the challenge blog and every week, one lucky random participant has the chance to win a $50 gift voucher from Simon Says StampYou have until Monday 8am Ohio time. 1pm UK time, 2 pm CET to join in and good luck....

Thank you so much for stopping by today and I'll see you very soon!

Love Emma xxx

Monday, 16 April 2018


Hello friends!

Hope you've all had a fabulous weekend and happy Monday everyone! Of course, the start of a brand new week means that it's the start of a brand new challenge at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog and this week, our theme is called...Let's Doodle!

Doodling isn't something I do very often...I draw, I create but I don't really doodle ~ maybe with the exception of when I'm on the phone in one of those never ending queues waiting for my call to be answered, I might then be tempted to pick up a pen and doodle over the odd magazine photo or scrap of paper. But today was the day and with this fun theme in mind, I thought now was the time to get those pens out and start doodling and I created a layout using an absolutely adorable photo from Tim Holtz's Found Relatives and adding plenty of doodles. I also wanted to create a panel that told a story of this adorable young boy and his dreams for the future and so I incorporate some doodled words ~ imagine, dream and explore into this piece.
So, let's get started because it's time for the new challenge!

To begin with I used the Tim Holtz Guillotine from Tonic to cut a piece of watercolour card, approx 18 x 24 in size and used low tack masking tape to create a rectangular panel on my card, that is slightly off centre.

I then applied a wash of watered down Antique Linen Distress Paint, heat dried it and then blended a small amount of Pumice Stone, again slightly watered down and applied this over the top. Once the paint is dry, I then removed my low tack tape to reveal the panel.

I added torn pieces of tissue tape over the top of the painted block, applying a layer of Matte Collage Medium to secure them into place and allowing the tape to go outside the box in some areas. I then applied colour using Pumice Stone, Black Soot and Weathered Wood Distress Crayons onto the taped areas, blending out the colour with a semi dry baby wipe.
Once happy, I added some gesso using an old credit card to scrape it over the tape and keeping the gesso quite thick in some areas to create texture. I randomly stamped some text using the Script stamp from the Entomology set and then applied Grit Paste through the Mini Stitched Layering stencil, allowed it to dry before dry brushing gold paint over the top ~ the brush catches some areas but leaves others white, which I love. I also added some flicks of navy blue and gold paint over the background.

Now for the doodling and for this, I used a black Dylusions Paint pen and just doodled a border around the painted block, adding wording ~ imagine and explore and just letting the pen do the work.

Now moving onto the photo and after sanding the edges of the image, I added some more doodling using the white pen from the set. I also added some Snippets Ephemera pieces to the image, a mirrored star to his hat and lightly coloured his adorable little cheeks and his shirt collar using Distress Marker Pens.
I layered the image over the top of some torn pieces of corrugated card, that I painted with a wash of gesso and inked with Walnut Stain Distress Ink before adding a highlight of gold paint to accentuate the corrugation.

I then attached the image with foam pads to create dimension.

To create the rusty look on the gears, I painted each gear with Finnabair's Steampunk Copper Alchemy paint and then dabbed small amounts of Rust paste over the top. I then used the Black Soot Distress Crayon to add some darker tones to the metal before attaching the gears with Collage Medium and placing them around the photo.

I also added a Numeric adornment, again giving it a rusty appearance and a Story Stick.
To complete the background, I added a Remnant Rub, a pointy finger and some Adornments Stars which I doodled around. I also added some tiny doodled circles before mounting the panel onto chipboard that I painted black.
As my finishing touch, I added a Quote Chip, aged with some Vintage Collage Medium and attached this to the photo and adhered some Nailhead Findings to the top left and bottom right hand corners...
I hope this project has inspired you on how you can incorporate some doodling into your project and hope you've enjoyed the creative process, it was such a fun piece to create and I can't help but smile every time I look at that little boy's face ~ he is just the cutest!

Don't forget, you can find more inspiration from my talented teamies over on the challenge blog and every week, one lucky random participant has the chance to win a $50 gift voucher from Simon Says StampYou have until Monday 8am Ohio time. 1pm UK time, 2 pm CET to join in and good luck....

Thank you so much for stopping by today and I'll see you very soon!

Love Emma xxx

Monday, 9 April 2018


Hello friends...

Hope you've all had a wonderful weekend and welcome to the brand new Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge ~ Mythology/Inspired By A Story. This week, we are challenging you to be inspired by a fable, myth or story and we hope you'll join us and play along this fun theme but please don't forget to mention on your post which myth, story or fable you are inspired by.

For my project, I was inspired by Greek mythology, a subject that I studied long and hard at school and which was always one of my favourite lessons. I remember doing an in-depth project on Ancient Greece, carefully drawing images of the Acropolis and ancient Gods and Godesses and to this day, I still love visiting the British Museum, where I’m fascinated by everything they exhibit. So when I saw this theme, I just knew what I wanted to create, a dimensional canvas panel telling the story of Athena's owl.
So, let's get started because it's time for the new challenge!

To begin with I created my background on a canvas board, 24 x 18cm ~ I wanted to keep the colours fairly neutral for this piece, creating the look of a stone coloured background, adding woody, earthy tones over the top and finishing the piece with touches of metallic bronze.

I applied some Tissue Tape directly to the background, placing it on the right hand side of the canvas, where I would be concentrating on my focal point. I scraped gesso over the top of the canvas and allowed this to dry before using Pumice Stone, Iced Spruce and Black Soot Distress Crayons over the top, blending them out with a semi dry baby wipe.

Once happy, with the colour and remember, you can always add more depth of colour by just adding more crayon to the areas you want darker, I then concentrated on texture and for this, I applied Grit Paste through the Crossed Layering Stencil.

When the paste is dry, I added some random stamping onto the background using the script stamp from the Entomology set.

To create the dripped effect on the central area of the background, I used the gold and black from the Prima Watercolour Metallic Paints palette and just allowed the paint to move around, creating drips and runs but what you can't see from the photo is the fabulous shimmer that these paints create. Heat dry the paint and then add some splatters using Black Soot Distress Paint.
I dry brushed some Antiqued Bronze Distress Paint around the edges and also applied Black Soot Distress Crayon.

Next, I attached one of the Baseboard Frames, placing it directly over the top of the drippy painted area on the canvas and adhering it with Matte Collage Medium.

I added some of Tim's Wood Slices which were available around Christmas time but if you haven't got these, Simon Says Stamp also sell a similar product HERE.

I attached the wood slices, together with a Mechanical Rustic Washer from Prima and arranged these across the bottom section of my baseboard frame with some more Collage Medium....
...and then using 3D gel, I added the gel around the slices before sprinkling Art Stones over the top. I allowed these to set and dry thoroughly before painting them with Dragon's Eye and Unicorn's Hair Sparks Acrylic Paint.

You can see the wonderful dimension that these wood slices create on this piece in the photo below and the owl is just suspended onto these pieces...
Now to move onto the subject of this piece, the owl and for this I used the Ornate Owl die and cut it twice from a piece of Mixed Media Heavyweight card. I then stuck these two pieces together to create a more substantial die cut.

I painted the image with Walnut Stain, Antiqued Bronze, Ground Espresso and Black Soot Distress Paints, blending the colours together to add light and dark shading. I also added some white paint to the eyes.
Once the image was dry, I added a touch of Alchemy Wax around the edges to accentuate the body.

To create the body and the backing to the die cut, I then placed the owl onto a piece of card from my stash that I'd previously inked with a few of the neutral Distress Oxide Inks and cut around the outline.
I attached my owl over the top of some sisal fibres, placing it in the centre of the frame and allowing the branch to sit on top of the wood slices.

For the foliage, I used the Garden Greens Thinlits die and die cut various pieces from green kraft card and gold metallic kraft card. I inked the edges of the green foliage and applied Hazelnut and Gunmetal Alcohol Ink to the gold pieces to create the look of bronze.

I then attached the foliage by tucking it in behind my owl, arranging it in a spray across the canvas.
At the top of the frame, I used a Vignette Accent which I inked with the Hazelnut and Gunmetal Alcohol Ink that I'd previously used and attached the metal piece to my frame with Collage Medium. I then placed another Finnabair Mechanical Rustic Washer piece which reads 'Create Magic' in the centre of the Accent and added a Star Adornment.
Below the frame, I wanted to add the word 'Wisdom' and used the Alphanumeric dies to cut the letters from silver card, which I then attached to a piece of gold metallic kraft stash, inked with the same alcohol inks as before. I matted the lettering onto black kraft stash card and then placed two hex fasteners into the plaque. I attached the plaque with foam pads directly beneath the frame.
Finally, I added some Clippings Stickers, one to the body of the owl ~ a wonderful creature and a number directly onto the canvas.

As a finishing touch, I used Nailhead Findings down the side of my canvas.
...and that completes this project which I hope you love! It was so much fun piece to create and I really did enjoy this week's theme ~ I just wish you could see the dimension, shimmer and shine on this project, which was really hard to capture in a photograph but I promise, I did try my best!

Don't forget, you can find more inspiration from my talented teamies over on the challenge blog and every week, one lucky random participant has the chance to win a $50 gift voucher from Simon Says StampYou have until Monday 8am Ohio time. 1pm UK time, 2 pm CET to join in and good luck....

Thank you so much for stopping by today and I'll see you very soon!

Love Emma xxx

Heat Gun

Just before I go, I wanted to let you all know that we're having a Design Team Call on our sister Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge . If you are interested in applying please CLICK HERE for more details.
Wednesday Challenge Design Team Call

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