Saturday 31 March 2012

Light Tomorrow With Today

Hello blog friends!  These new dies called Crosses Two are part of the collection on offer this time.  I know it is a very specialised type of die but aren't they lovely (and not just because they have a lattice design to them either!).  I have to say that the type of card that most people tell me they have to make most often besides birthday cards are either wedding or sympathy.  The Crosses Two work beautifully for both of those needs.  I have put them together with the Bitty Blossoms and a couple of my own flowers creations too.  I like the eclectic mix of flowers as I feel it gives a card a bit more interest.   I added a bit of tulle and pearl string from my craft stash too.  I cut two of the crosses, one in a slightly darker shade of grey to act as a shadow.  I added some Diamond Stickles to the left side as a highlight to it.  I know the colours are a bit sedate, but I liked the way the cream and slightly darker shade in the background paper look against the graytones. I finished the card with lots of dots today.  Silver dots on the smaller focal piece and silver  dots on the background edge.  A tiny pearl spray was added to the top to balance the flowers.  A bit different than my usual label shapes, but I hope you like it!  All for now, Sue x

Friday 30 March 2012

Sewing Collage

Hi guys!  How is this one for different?  From frilly to a grungey-ish distressed sewing card.  One of the die sets that is on the shows are Sewing Elements by Nina Brackett.  Sewing stuff is very popular at the moment and these have been so much fun to play with too.  I got to pull out my stash of fun buttons for this one!  My background paper was kraft card that was printed with a ruler background so I just had to use it!  I did a bit of stamping behind it with some new sewing stamps that are on the show too.  The ornate scissors are part of that set and I stamped and cut them out and mounted them up a bit.  I stamped my sentiment and cut it out with the new Swatch label set.  I used the thread die to cut it out and wrapped it with some twine.  I added a piece of hessian across the background and a selection of matching buttons to create a sort of sewing collage piece.   I finished it off with a big bow from one of my favourite new ribbons, our striped grosgrain.  Not to have a naked bow, I topped it with a large black button and a piece of natural twine.  I did distress all the edges of my card with my scissors, hopefully giving it a more vintage look (at least that was the plan!)  Not my usual style, but I hope you like it!  The shows start today at noon so I hope you will tune in to see the rest of the samples!  All for now, Sue x 

Thursday 29 March 2012

Flowers For A Friend

Good morning all!  Clearly if you like really frilly detailed dies and floral elements, you are going to just love the dies on offer starting Friday at noon on Create and Craft.  I was really in my element with these dies as they are so my taste!  The base of this card was done using a Heartfelt Creations die which is manufactured for them by Spellbinders.  It is a lovely, lacy, intricate die that has so many possibilities!  I have used it here to lace my vintage ribbon through as an accent.  The floral spray up the side is composed of the new Spiral Flower Three and the Bitty Blossom dies.  They look really lovely together too I think.  The spiral flower is a rather large flower compared to the others, but I like the way they work together to give a really pretty spray.  I stamped my sentiment on the pale pink background card and added a spray of pearl swirls.  I used a white pin to do a bit of faux stitching around the top of the card.  I paper pierced the bottom layers of matting to frame the entire card.  Just to let you know, the mix of dies this time is quite varied and not all of them are as frilly as these.  I hope you can tune in and take a look at them, but I will show another peek tomorrow at some that are completely different!  All for now, Sue x

Wednesday 28 March 2012

First Sneak Peek

Good morning everyone!  Here is a sneak peek at one of my fav cards from the upcoming shows.  The dies from these shows are quite varied so you are in for a roller coaster ride for the next few weeks in terms of different samples that I will be posting on the blog.  I had hoped to demo this one, but we will not have the micro beads on the shows this time and that is what I have used on the flowers.  This is a relatively clean and simple card but I think that is what appeals to me about it.  It looks very crisp with the white embossed background.  I used the So Trendy Embossibility folder to achieve the chevron looking embossing.  Aptly named because we saw so much at CHA that had a chevron design to it.  I love the way it looks as it gives a really nice deep emboss.  I used a strip of green polka dot paper from KaiserCraft for my background accent piece, with a small black mat to set it off a bit.  I made two flowers using the new Spiral Three flower die template, but I beaded them over the raspberry coloured card with the micro beads.   You can see a better pic below in the close up of these.  I added an accent from one of the Heartfelt Creations dies that comes with their rose die.  The leaves I used are from the Bitty Blossoms dies that are also on the show.  I added some black rhinestone swirls, the sentiment and pierced around the edge to finish it off. 

Tuesday 27 March 2012

Beaded Lattice

Good morning my friends!  I am headed back home today and I'm back on C & C on the 30th for the POTW shows.  I thought I would wrap up the parade of lattice cards this week with one of my favourite ones.  For this one, I started with the Regal embossibility folder for my background.  I layered it up on a couple of pieces of card (milk colour) that I scored around the edge instead of piercing just for a change.  I used the same embossing folder, but the other design on it this time, for the piece of gold card behind my lattice motif.  This is the same lovely gold from a few days ago, but again, it just doesn't photograph very flattering.  I cut two Damask motifs and added them to the two opposite corners.   I used the adhesive sheets on a piece of milk coloured card and then cut out the lattice motif, peeled the backing paper off and poured the clear micro beads over it.  I cut a Moroccan accent out of the gold card to layer up between.  I then stamped my sentiment
and covered it with my adhesive sheet, cut the lattice accent piece, then peeled off the backing sheet and covered this piece with clear micro beads as well.  I cut three Moroccan borders and made two flowers from them by rolling and gathering them using redline tape to stick them.  I added some gold leafs cut using the damask accents.  I tied a large bow using the new gold silky crush ribbon and added a gold button from my craft stash.   A couple of decorative pearl pins finished off the bow as well as the card.  Hopefully the past three days posts have given you some completely different ideas for my lattice motifs and accent dies.  Hope you have enjoyed them.  I still have several cards that I haven't posted yet from previous shows, but I think it is time tomorrow for a sneak peek for the shows that I will be doing starting Friday at noon.  If you want to have a peek, be sure to check back tomorrow morning!  All for now, Sue x

Monday 26 March 2012

Patterned Lattice

 Hi everyone!  Another lattice sample for today!  I wanted to see how it looked with decorative papers this time.  I stamped my sentiment then I cut the lattice motif out of some blue patterned paper (I believe these papers are actually Stampin' Up papers from my craft stash) and matted it on a faux nestie of cream card that I made by tracing around the die itself and hand cutting it out.  Use a bit of 400 grit sandpaper to take off any rough spots. using a coordinating decorative paper, I cut some of the Moroccan accents pieces and four corners.  I used the corners to hold hands with the accent piece.  I mounted this atop my lattice motif and mounted the sentiment on the very top.  I used a bit of black soot ink to highlight the sentiment before taking it out of the die too.  Using a piece of cream crocheted ribbon, I wrapped it across the middle of the card over some decorative striped card.  I cut one Moroccan border and cut it into pieces to tuck under my crochet ribbon on both sides.  I made a couple of ribbon roses out of the white silky crush ribbon using my redline tape technique.  I used a piece of white seam binding which I dyed to match my paper with tumbled glass distress ink and a tiny piece of white grosgrain ribbon to make a messy bow base for my flowers.  I put four large half pearls in the corners and filled in the edge between them with pearl PVA glue dots.  I rather like the contrast between the large corners and the small dots myself.  What do you think of the patterned paper look?  All for now, Sue x

Sunday 25 March 2012

Kraft Lattice

Morning all!  I was trying to create a completely different look with my Lattice dies with this one.  I have used mostly black card and  kraft card, coupled with a few other natural elements.  I stamped my sentiment on kraft card and cut it with the lattice motif die and inked through the die with black soot distress ink to bring out both the lattice pattern and highlight the sentiment.  I cut another one from black card and cut it in half to mount to the outside edge as a shadow accent.  I used a patterned kraft card as a background and did a messy sewn edge on it, overlapping the lines a few times.  I cut a piece of hessian and removed some of the strands to loosen the weave and mounted it behind my focal element.  I had several grungeboard swirls in my craft stash.  I painted them with black Eco-Green brand paint and mounted them on the bottom of my card.  I added three flowers, one was made from cotton hemp ribbon which I fringed before rolling.  One was made from the new silky crush ribbon which I rolled and the last one was one of our zipper flowers.  I used some of the suede leaves with them.  The entire piece was matted on to black card which I added some black PVA glue dots around the edge as a frame and accent.  Hopefully this may appeal to those of you which like a little edgier style.  I liked the fact that the dies could work well in this style as well as others.

It's Sunday so you know what that means!  Sunday Comment Game Winners!  Today's winning names that were drawn were:

Christine Hussey!!!
Jane Stillman!!!
Ladies, you must email me at to confirm your address and claim your prize!  Thanks to everyone for leaving such amazing comments, I really appreciate them!  All for now, Sue x
 All for now, Sue x

Saturday 24 March 2012

A Variation On The Fancy Nesty Tutorial

Hi guys! Today's card is a variation on the fancy nesty tutorial that I did last month.  Using the large Splendid Circle die, I taped it in place at the centre edge of a piece of card that was cut to 8" x 11" with a score for folding in the middle.  I scored the card at the centre of the die above and below the die to the edge of the card.  After placing it on my base plate, I covered the die with the cutting plate only up to the score lines.  In other words, half of the die was left uncovered as I ran it through the machine.  This allowed half of the die to be cut all the way through the card, while the other half was left uncut.  I used my tan mat to cover and emboss the entire die.  Using a ruler and a craft knife (and a craft mat underneath), I cut the section of the front of the card where I scored the line, leaving the rounded half circle that was originally cut by the die.  I used several of the Damask accents to cut shapes out of the card behind the embossed section of the circle die.  These cut out the piece, but I put them back into place and taped the edges from behind so they would leave a pretty embossed design in the front of my card.  I added a background piece of card to hide the tape when finished.  I also cut a damask border so it would peek out from behind my backing piece as an accent.  I used the same border to emboss the design on the inside of the card also.  I cut one of the Moroccan accents to layer up on the circle.  I stamped my sentiment and cut it out with the smallest splendid circle and layered it on top of the circle focal element.  This one is definitely a card you could use for anyone.  Change the dies, colours and sentiment and it could be for any occasion you chose.  All for now, Sue x

Friday 23 March 2012

Another Concertina Card

Hi everyone!  I wanted to do another accordion (sorry, concertina) type card when I made this one.  I had previously done this type of card using the lace doily die set last year.  I thought that the new Moroccan dies would look great that way also, but I wanted to keep the card a bit more simple this time.  I am always restricted to what I can use to make samples with depending what is on any given show.  This card I think really needed some scrolly stamp on the bottom part of it, but alas, I did not have any to use.  It looks a bit empty to me so I wasn't completely happy with the finished card  but not quite orphan status either!  In hindsight, I think I should have moved my sentiment to the bottom and just made a fancy medallion on the top, oh well!  What I really liked was this paper which did not photograph well at all.  The bottom card is the prettiest shade of metallic gold that I have ever seen.  It is some discontinued Scrapbook Sally card that I had and I love it.  I am not big on metallics at all.  They just seem to over power whatever I use them on, but this has the most luxurious understated gold shimmer I have ever seen.  Such a shame you cannot get the true sense of the colour from my pic. It almost looks like Kraft card in the picture.   The striped background paper has a similar gold stripe in it as well.  Please use your imagination here!
As for the topper, I cut two of the large Moroccan motifs and folded them by scoring down all the sections.  You cut to the centre and then fold it back and forth all the way around.  Do two like this and glue them together to get your base for the topper.  I used several pieces of foam on top of it before adding my next piece which was a smaller Moroccan die cut out of the gold card.  Next I stamped my sentiment and cut it out with one of the tiny Moroccan dies and added it to the top.  I wrapped some sheer ribbon around a piece of cream card and put it through the ribbon buckle (I wished I had used the micro beads on it as I think that would have looked very pretty here)  I used my ribbon piece as a divider between my sections.  I added some black swirls to the top and bottom of my focal element.  Paper pierced the edge to complete the card.  I hope you can use the topper idea and make a card that really siongs to you!

While I am on the subject of paper piercing, I have been getting quite a few emails asking me about it.  I use the Tim Holtz design ruler which has holes in it.  I line it up with the edge of the card that I am going to pierce and I anchor the ruler to my the outside of my card using push pins stuck into my foam mat.  You have to have a foam mat under your card so the needle on your piercing tool has somewhere to go as it pokes through your card.  I always start two holes in from the edge and end two holes in from the edge.  I find that this gives the most even edge around my card.  It doesn't always line up perfectly, especially if your cutter is a bit wonky like mine.  Sometimes I will have to make small adjustments as I go along so it will come up even at the end.  I always hold the ruler as I go even though it is anchored too as there is always a tiny bit of play in it. 

The other question that I have been asked a lot is about the stamps.  I am connected to Creative Expressions and all the producst that I use (unless I state it is from my craft stash) are from Creative Expressions, including every stamp set I use.  The one exception is the decorative papers.  If you are interested in where to purchase any of the other products, you can go on their website and look up the product and they will list the retailers that have purchased those products from them.   There are several competing distributors that carry the same products for retailers, such as Spellbinders and Ranger products.    If you like what I do, please support me and ask your local retailers to order the products I use from Creative Expressions.   Please feel free to email me if you have any other questions.  All for now, Sue x

Thursday 22 March 2012

Sunshine And Laughter

Hi everyone!  I thought that I had already posted this card, but I can't seem to find it on the blog anywhere.  I really like the simplicity of this design, but yet it still has some fun stuff that I love too (ribbon, beads, flowers, swirls, etc.)  I started by embossing the background with an embossibility folder.  Then I added a strip of gingham paper in a sort of tattered rose shade.  I stamped my sentiment on the gingham, taking care to get it straight.  You really have to be careful when stamping on anything lined as it will easily give away any crookedness!  I cut a lattice border out of milk coloured card which I used to separate the two pieces of my background.  I wrapped some cream seam binding across the two near the bottom and added a big messy bow that I sprayed with water and scrunched for a shabby chic look.  Using a couple of shades that matched my background, I made some beaded rolled flowers.  I covered each piece of the card with a piece of the self adhesive sheets, then I cut a large circle and spiral cut it all the way to the centre.  I peeled off the backing paper and added a small punched circle to the centre then dipped it in my micro beads.  The reason I added the small punched centre is bow.  I cut four damask accent leaves and inked then with antique linen while in the die.  I added these as accents to my floral element.  I added a large pearl swirl across my embossed background.  Finally, I finished my card by added Cosmic Shimmer pearl PVA glue dots around the edge.  I have included a close up of the beaded flowers for you to see below.  Hope you like it!  All for now, Sue x

Wednesday 21 March 2012

Gold And Black Joy

Good morning ladies and gentlemen! Too formal?  I'm looking for a new greeting or two as it keeps it a bit more interesting long term.  What do you think?  I have gone back to the decorative background paper that I fell in love with from Hobby Lobby in the States.  If your colour isn't great on your monitor, this set of papers is all in black and gold, mostly non metallic, but there are a few of them that have some metallic gold in them too.  I love the fact that the pattern is small, perfect for card making.  I see many papers that I like but the pattern is always so large that it becomes difficult to use on a card.  I would love these paper manufacturers to start doing smaller patterns, maybe it's just me though. 
 I split the background in to three panels with two small side panels and one large panel in the centre.  I cut two different dies of the ribbon buckle set, one marge and one smaller.  I fed the ribbon through one side of the larger one first, then through the entire smaller buckle, then through the other side of the larger buckle.  The ribbon ends were secured around the back of the centre panel only.  I cut two damask borders to go along the sides of the two smaller side panels.  I stamped my sentiment and cut it out with the large Splendid circle die.  I inked it slightly with antique linen, which is actually lighter than the colour of card that I used, but it becomes a shadow on it more than a distinct colour which I like.  I cut a slightly larger circle in black as a mat  (you could use the splendid circle to make a faux mat if you don't have the right size of  circle to use).  I mounted them both on 3D foam above my ribbon and buckles.  No paper piercing today, but rather decided to use the new gold Cosmic Shimmer PVA glue to make dots around the edge to complete my card.  Hope you like it, it's an easy one, but a useful general layout for any occasion.  All for now, Sue x

Tuesday 20 March 2012

I Like Your Style

Good morning my friends!  I'm switching styles today to show you one of the new vintage dressform cards that I have done.  These will be featured on Create and Craft on March 24th in a show that Julia Watts is doing for Creative Expressions.  I made this card the last time I was at my Mom's but couldn't show it then as we hadn't released the stamps or the clear micro beads!  So much that I had to keep to myself then, but alas, no more!  Unfortunately we are out of stock on the micro beads but hope to have some more in stock in time for Ally Pally! Keeping our fingers crossed for them!  I used a lovely new embossing folder for this card.  It is called vintage dressform and it is made by Couture Creations, which is a line that we are now carrying.  I embossed it then went over the top lightly with some Tattered Rose distress ink to give it a hint of colour.  I distressed the edges of the card with my scissors and used a bit of Antique Linen around the edges. I stamped my sentiment in the upper corner.   I pierced the mat layer below it and background sorted!  I stamped my dressform using a black archival ink pad, placed a piece of our self adhesive sheet over it and cut the image out.  You can see through these sheets so it isn't too difficult to do.  I peeled back the liner and dipped it into my clear micro beads.  I mounted it up on some 3D foam pieces in the corner of my background.  You can see the micro beads nicely in the close up below.  I made a shabby chic bow using the vintage ribbon in raw silk colour and scrunched it up using a bit of a water spritz.  I added a button and two crystal stick pins and attached it to my card with glue dots.  I added a spray of swirly pearlies across the card for an accent and voila, I was done.  The entire card was done in a flash.  Great if you need one in a hurry! Don't forget to tune in to see what Julia does with these stamps on the 24th!  All for now, Sue x

Monday 19 March 2012

In Love With All White

Hi there everyone!  Now it's all white day!  I just adore doing cards all in white, they are so much fun and this one was no exception!  I started with an embossibility folder to give texture to the background.  Next I cut four Moroccan borders and glued them into place so they formed a square, cutting each one down in size a bit and overlapping them in the corners.  I added some Cosmic Shimmer pearl PVA glue dots all the way around the frame that was made with the borders.  I stamped my tiny sentiment with a clear perfect medium pad and embossed with silver embossing powder.  I cut it out with one of the Moroccan accent pieces.  I cut two of the Moroccan corners and added them to the top and bottom using the "holding hand" part of the die to link them together.  I mounted this entire piece of 3D foam for the centre focal element.  I tied a double bow using the new white silky crush ribbon and fanned the loops out.  I added a little embellishment from my craft stash and two white decorative pins as accents.  I matted the entire piece using some white glitter card for an extra bit of bling  and then pierced around the edges to frame the entire piece.  I really simple card that works well for a wedding, anniversary, christening or just to say "love you."  All for now, Sue x

Sunday 18 March 2012

Double Ship Cards and Sunday Winners

Hi guys!  I forgot that I still have the last two remaining ship cards to show.  I decided to put them both up together as they are fairly simple cards (not too exciting on their own) but together they make a nice blog post I think.  The first one here is a really quick card that I put together for Sam Poole's show last month.  She and I had gone out on a trip to a local stamp shop and found this doll store next door to the stamp shop and decided to pop in while we were there.  Let me tell you, what a wealth of fun little things for cards we found there!  The background paper for this card, dollhouse wallpaper!  Complete with the little border at the top.  The ships wheel on the bottom card is from the dollhouse shop, as were a few of the embellishments from some of the other ship cards that I posted previously.  Both of these cards are pretty straight forward and easy to reproduce by looking at the pictures if you would like.  With Fathers Day rapidly approaching on the horizon or just a male birthday, these cards could easily be adapted to suit either occasion.  Sam has both of these stamp sets available in her online shop if you are interested too.  

As it is Sunday, I have randomly drawn the weekly winners from the comment game.  They are:
iRene M!!!

Please email me at to confirm your postal address and claim your prize.  As I am still in the States for a while longer, I need to postpone the blog candy drawing until I return.  Any comment game prizes will be sent out when I return also.  All for now, Sue x

Saturday 17 March 2012

More Micro Beads

Good morning all!  I managed to get a quick pic of this card before they swept it away from me to be sent off to the email recipient (If you have ever wondered what the carpeting looks like in the halls of Create and Craft, look no further than behind the card! LOL)   It was an impromptu demo that was based on another card.   We had sold out of the ribbon so I had to change the card around a bit to make use of what I had left.  This was the last demo I was allowed to do using the clear micro beads ( that I completely love!) too.   I picked a piece of background paper from my stash, this happens to be Graphic 45.  I adhered the sticky adhesive sheet to it and then cut it to the size that I wanted.  I peeled the other side of the backing paper to expose the sticky sheet and covered it in the clear micro beads.  Now I know my photographic skills are legendary (legendary because they are sooooo bad), so you will have to really look closely at the background to see the micro beads.  When you see them in real life, they are really nice and give a lovely textural feel to your cards and projects.  I also stamped my sentiment on a piece of matching card, peeled the backing off the sticky sheet and applied it over my sentiment.  I used the small size of the Splendid Circle die to align over the sentiment and cut it.  |You can see through the backing paper just enough to get your sentiment where you need it.  Once cut, peel the backing paper off and cover with the micro beads.  The beads are clear enough that you can read the sentiment without issue. I think the picture looks like there is glitter on it , but it is just the shine from the beads.   I backed my sentiment with a Persian accent piece and then centred it in the largest Splendid circle die cut into a frame out of  black card.  I cut two more circles, using the next two smaller sizes to create three circle frames on my card.  I added a messy bow using the black American seam binding and topped it with one of the lacy layered flower dies.  I added two lattice corners at the top.  I ran out of time, but I think a couple of lattice corners for the bottom would have finished it off nicely (imagine them there, okay!)  I pierced the edge as I do and called it a day!  All for now, Sue x

Friday 16 March 2012

Friendship Doubles Joy

Good morning craft friends!  Almost an all white card.  I just felt it needed a pop of colour to it, not sure why I picked blue, but blue it was!  My picture isn't the best today and I apologise for that and white is notoriously difficult to get a good shot of anyways.   I started with a background that I embossed with the embossibility folder, then I used my Persian border and embossed it into the side of the piece.  You can see this a bit clearer in the close up.  I then cut a Persian border and added it to the edge with a strip of white glitter card to set it off.  I just thought it would make for a different looking background to this card.  I stamped my sentiment on white card, centred it and then cut it out using the Samantha Walker Antique frame.  I removed the outside frame from the die and added some very small pieces of mounting foam to the back and mounted it in the corner.   I inked the sentiment while still in the die using chipped sapphire distress ink, leaving the centre section with a bit of white showing through.  I mounted this piece a bit higher in the centre of my frame.   I pierced all the way around the edge and added a small mat of the white glitter card  for a bit of extra bling. I needed it as no ribbon today! LOL All for now, Sue x

Thursday 15 March 2012

Just Because

Hi guys!  From the biggest bow ever yesterday to the tiniest bow today!  See I can change!  It doesn't always have to have a ginormous bow ( I just like them to!) LOL  I had to come back to the lattice motifs and border accents today.  I started with a piece of October Afternoon background paper in a black and pale yellow pattern.  I cut four borders and edged the paper with them, cutting them all down slightly to fit.  I glued them down so the outside straight edge formed a frame for my card.  I added to offset corners for interest.  I cut one of the Lattice Motifs in yellow and mounted it with a bit of 3D foam pieces.  I stamped my sentiment on to a lighter yellow and cut it out.  I mounted it in the centre of my motif and drew some faux stitching lines with a fine tipped black pen to it and to the edge of the lattice motif.  I added three small black pearls below my sentiment.  I made a tiny bow from black vintage ribbon and added it to the top of my motif.

I pierced all the way around the edge of the card and finished it with some offset mats.  Very simple and easy to recreate.  A change of sentiment and it could be for any occasion.  All for now, Sue x

Wednesday 14 March 2012

Nicest Thoughts

Hi there blog friends!  I am not sure what the focal element on this card is, the Persian medallion or the ginormous bow? LOL  I did get a little bit carried away with the bow, I know, but I just love this ribbon!  I hadn't used the brown and ivory ribbon on any of the samples when I made this card so I picked out some card to match it for my card. I know that the colours don't always show up on the blog as they should be, but it's cream and brown today for this card.   I used an embossibility folder on the nude coloured background and lightly sanded it to give it a distressed look. I cut a splendid circle in brown to match my ribbon, then layered up alternating pieces of the circles and the Persian accents and topped it with the smallest of the Persian accents pieces with a pearl to create a medallion type focal element.  I stamped my sentiment using a coffee archival pad.  Using the tag from the Samantha Walker Antique Frame and Accent set, I cut it out and attached it to my bow with some earthtone Bakers Twine.  I used a bit of Tea Dye distress ink to highlight it while it was still in the die template.  I used a bit more Bakers Twine through a brown button for my bow centre.  I finished the card with some pearl swirls top and bottom for a bit of bling and interest.  If you are a "bow person," this may sing to you, if not, I'll try again tomorrow!  All for now, Sue x

Tuesday 13 March 2012

Purple And Gold, Really!

Morning all!  Straight away I'm going to say, I like these colours together!  I think it may spark a debate among the comments that are left, but they work for me.  Every once in a while you just need to let yourself go, step outside of your comfort zone and have a play with something new.  These were new for me, no playing it safe with teal here!  I chose a predominantly gold background, using various backing papers that I had in my stash ( the eagle eyed among you will no doubt spot the houndstooth in there!)  I picked out two shades of purple, one slightly darker than the other.  I used the Samantha Walker Antique Frames and Accents and cut the frame in both shades of the purple.  I nipped off the very top part of the frame, making it more of a rectangle shape.  I layered up the two of them but turned them in the opposite ways and glued them on top of each other.  Since the pattern does not line up this way, it shows bits of both colours as you can see in the pic below.  I stamped my sentiment and then cut it out using the same frame, but I discarded the frame this time and just used the sentiment.  Mounting it inside the Antique frames using 3D foam.  I tied some Rivera Lilac vintage ribbon going both up and down and across my card meeting and tying a messy bow. n I cut a circle out of some gold felt and made a spiral flower for the centre of my bow.  I added some foliage pieces to either side of it.
 I glued three gold glints in the bottom corner and used my Cosmic Shimmer gold PVA glue to add dots around my focal element and the entire edge of the card.   How do you feel about the colour, still not sure or loving it!  All for now, Sue x

Monday 12 March 2012

Beaded Background Cards

Morning all!  I've got a couple of versions of the same card for you today.  I think it is fun to see the exact same card in different colour choices, don't you?  When I finish a card that I was having some difficulties deciding on things like paper choices or layout, I always wonder if it would have looked better if I had done something different.  The first card shown is actually the second card that I made.  I finished the sample and wasn't completely happy with it so when I decided to do it as a demo for one of the shows but I changed it a bit.  I think it made all the difference in it.  I started with a piece of teal card, covered it with a piece of the self adhesive sheets.  I cut about eight or nine of the smaller Persian motif pieces in black for the demo.  The original card, I cut them in white.  I peeled the backing paper off and laid them randomly all over the teal card without overlapping any of them.  Where they went off the edge of the card, I trimmed them even with the edge (I used the leftover bits for around the edges too so nothing went to waste!)  I pressed them firmly into the adhesive sheet then poured my clear micro beads over it to fill in the remaining areas of the background.  The focal element was created using the motif and corners from the Persian set of dies and one of the splendid circles cut out of the same teal card.  The difference in the two cards is merely the changing of white pieces to black pieces.  I feel like the focal element done in the white just allowed it to pop more against the black and teal background.  What do you think?
I pierced around the edges of both cards and matted them with teal and black.  I really like the way the micro beads just add so much texture and interest to a simple card.
I thought you might get a kick out of this pic of Dean.  I did ask his permission before posting this picture by the way too.  He had sent me off to get ready for my demo and it had taken me so long to find what I needed that he made himself comfortable waiting for me.  I believe the camera was doing still shots of the products while he was leisurely waiting for me.  I quickly grabbed my camera and snapped this shot moments before he jumped down off the counter.  What a character he is!  You got to love him!  All for now, Sue x

Sunday 11 March 2012

Footprints On Our Hearts

Hi there my crafty friends!  Here is another one of those buckle type cards.  I really like the look of this tartan background paper with it's brown, green, red and yellow colour combo.  It's a bit wild and made for a wild card, but I still like it as its different.   I started with a piece of it and added the Moroccan border all the way around the edge, just peeking out.  I cut the romantic rectangle and used the next size down to cut it into a frame.   I cut a label 25 in red, then stamped my sentiment on the matching backing paper (actually the backside of the tartan paper) and cut it with the next smaller size of labels 25.  I used that die to create a faux nestie for it in brown.  I wove a strip of the matching paper with some red edged organza ribbon through the frame and the labels 25.  I finished the card with a big bow on the side of the card.  This is one of the new ribbons we have been carrying at Creative Expressions and it ties a really nice bow.
  Now for the comment game winners!  We have three winners for the comment game and an additional three winners from the post of March 8th!
Congratulations to: lestim, Mariannes Craftroom, Hellma and
tinaco, jollyjoyce, and nesscraftyqueen

Please email me at to claim your prize!  I still have a few unclaimed prizes from past blog candy and comment games, please be sure to check the lists (scroll back down the page to past posts) to see if you have won!  All for now, Sue x

Saturday 10 March 2012

With Kindness

 Good morning all!  I'm not sure what the weather is doing in the UK today, but chances are you might need a touch of spring to your day!  I have had this background paper in my stash for ages so I thought I would use it (can't for the life of me remember who makes it though, sorry).  I started with a piece about 5" x 7" for this card, rounded the corners and matted it on to a couple layers of white card, one which I pierced.  I used the two largest sizes of Labels 25 to create a frame.  I cut strips of white card to create a trellis look in the frame.  I did this by tuning the frame over to the back and taping the strips across in one direction.  The next step is to go the other direction with the remaining strips, but to weave them over and under the first set already in place.  This is very easy to do and especially because there aren't too many to begin with.  Trim off any bits that my show from the front of the frame.  I cut another piece for the bottom that included a faux nestie of the largest size that just peeks out from underneath and I used the same die size for the inner cut so that my background paper would show through.  I stamped my sentiment on the background paper and cut it out with one of the smaller sizes of the labels 25 die templates.  Mounting it on foam pieces, I set it in the centre of the trellis.
This was my first play with the clear micro beads.  I used the spiral flower one for my sample test and I loved the way they looked.  Pick the card you want to use, peel off a piece of the adhesive sheets and cover an area large enough for your die.  Cut your shape in your machine.  Peel the backing paper off and pour your micro beads over it.  Push them firmly into your card and tap off any excess.  For the spiral flowers, I recommend cutting off the base piece and using a piece of non beaded coated card.  This will allow the base of the flower to adhere better.  Use a glue dot to hold the cut end of the flower to the side.  I put a pearl in the centre of the flower because the flowers won't roll as tightly with the beads coating them.  The pearl fills the centre and adds a nice embellishment to the flower too.  I used our green suede leaves to accompany the flower.  These are really nice to use and you can pull them apart to make two leaves.  They aren't felt, they are a suede material and allow a very tactile feel to your cards.  I couldn't resist a few pearl swirls in the upper corner to complete the card.  I hope it brings a bit of spring to your day!  All for now, Sue x

Friday 9 March 2012

Persian Motifs and Accents

Hello crafty friends! Thank you so much for your comments left on yesterday's post.  They were so open, honest and emotional, coming from your hearts. The support was overwhelming and truly made what could have been a very hard day for me, one that was truly memorable.  The "Life Lessons" seemed to be especially touching to most of you and I have decided that I will reprint it on my blog every March 8th in honour of my Dad.  Lest we forget those things in life, a yearly boost should help us stay focused on what is truly important in our lives.  Again, thank you so much for allowing me to share a personal side of my life with all of you.
   Today is one of my favourite cards that has been done in a simple, not too over the top manner.  No large ribbons or bows, no flowers, nothing too terribly sparkly.  You are probably even wondering if I actually made this card as the only real tell tale sign of that is the piercing around the edges, huh?  Yes I did and I really like to use the dies to simply emboss in to the card sometimes as it gives a really nice detail for the eye to wander around.  These Persian Motifs do exactly that since they are beautifully detailed and rich looking.  I thought I would have the embossing start off the card a bit so it almost looks like an afterthought.  While the die was still in place, I used some antique linen distress ink to highlight the embossed detail and bring it out a bit more.  I cut two of the Persian accent borders to go across the card, separating the sentiment from the focal element.  I offset the border so that the more ornate part showed on both border dies.  I stamped my sentiment underneath in the corner in black archival ink.  I added a large black rhinestone swirl to the top of the card rising up from the borders to the far corner.  A final bit of piercing around the edge framed and finished it for me.  I know that the colours don't always come across in the correct way so just to let you know this card is black and taupe coloured.  Both of these colours were part of the cardstock pack that was available on C & C at the beginning of the POTD shows.  This card could work in simply any colour choice without issue.  I hope you like it!  All for now, Sue x

Thursday 8 March 2012

Happy Birthday Dad!

Hi guys,  I have a card for you today and if you have the time, I have also added some personal thoughts at the bottom of the post about my Dad.   He would have been 92 today. I will warn you that it will be a long post though so get yourself comfortable if you are planning on staying with it to the end.
First up, let's talk about the card.  I love black and white and pink, and for some reason it always reminds me of Paris. I probably love it because it reminds me of Paris, which is where my daughter took me last June for my birthday!  I started with a black and white striped background which I added a pink and white decorative paper down the centre.  I cut two Moroccan border dies to add to each side.  I cut a romantic rectangle in black for the background to my focal element.  I cut the largest size of labels 25 and then used the embossibility folder to give it pattern and texture. I left the card in the die and placed it atop the opened folder.  The folder must remain open for this technique or your die will cut into (and ruin) your folder.  Very important not to close it!  I topped it with my tan mat and I had to add a few pieces of card to act as a shim.  Remember that the folder was open so it was not the usual thickness.  I had to account for this so I added the tan mat and shims.  Once embossed, I inked it with Spun Sugar distress ink over the top while still in the die.  This gave me that nice crisp white edge. I layered it on to the rectangle.  Next I stamped my sentiment and cut it out with a smaller size of labels 25.  I very lightly inked this too.  I cut two Damask Motif pieces and used them to clip on to the side of my sentiment piece top and bottom.  I nipped the ends of these pieces off and attached them to the sides of the label die to create an interesting shaped frame around it.  I glued all of these in place and added the piece to the centre of the card to complete my focal element.  With a little bit of matting and layering and piercing around the edge, the card was complete.

Now, about my Dad.
I had the amazing opportunity to be part of a lovely ceremony in honour of my Father last Friday.  I would like to tell you about it.  When I was last home, my Mother had a memorial service for my Father at Bushnell Cemetery in Florida.  It is a military cemetery and my Dad was a Lt. Col. in the US Air Force.  There was an honour guard there and they presented my Mom with a flag in honour of my Dad's service. 
He was stationed here in the UK at Molesworth for part of his duty.  He was a fighter pilot and part of the 303rd bomb group that made up a large part of the Molesworth base back in World War II.  At the entrance to the base, there is a beautiful monument to the 303rd bomb group.  I've included a picture for you to see.  I drive over periodically to put flowers on it.  It is a nice connection for me with my Dad.

Several years ago, I made a presentation on behalf of my Father at Molesworth. He had spent over a dozen years researching the whereabouts of every man (over 3300) that was in the 303rd bomb group and tirelessly recorded the research in a set of seven binders which are now on display in the library at Molesworth.  When my Father passed last year, I phoned my contact at Molesworth (Mr. Peter Park) to let him know.  Peter arranged for the flag that was given to my Mother at his service to be flown over the base at Molesworth for the day on Friday March 2nd.. In a touching ceremony, that flag was taken down, folded and presented back to me at 4pm that day.  The first Friday of each month, the enlisted men are in their dress uniforms and it also happened to be the anniversary of one of my Father's missions over Frankfort some 68 years earlier.  My Dad flew over 30 missions while stationed at Molesworth, which was more missions than any of his peers and nine of those missions over the heart of war torn Berlin.  To say that I am incredibly proud of my Father's bravery is an understatement.  The fact that I am even here is a miracle since so many never returned from those missions to keep us free. 

My Dad has always supported my in whatever endeavour I have undertaken.  I will never forget when I was much younger and he was retiring from his job as a stockbroker and financial planner, he wanted me to take over his clients for him.  Now mind you, I have three brothers, but he thought that I would be well suited for the job.  I said that I wanted to do something more creative and start a rubber stamp business.  There was no argument, he simply said to me that he wanted me to do whatever would make me happy.  He knew that I would have been more successful financially if I had followed in his footsteps, but at what cost.  I have never looked back at that decision.  Thank you Dad for allowing me the security of choosing a career path that has always made me incredibly happy.  I feel truly blessed.

My Dad used to send me these incredible emails that either had beautiful pictorial slides, amusing anecdotes or life lesson stories.  I always looked forward to opening emails that he sent and usually having a kleenex nearby as they were always very sentimental and touching.  I'm a big softy for those kinds of things.  When I started my blog, the third post that I ever made included the except below.  I would like to reprint here.  I think it is very true and I have often gone back and reread it when I needed a boost.  With your permission, here it is cut and pasted from my original blog post of June 2009:
My Dad, who is 89 years old, sent me this. I thought that I would like to share it with others even though it is quite long. I hope you take something from it with you. LESSONS OF LIFE .Written By Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland , Ohio "To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most-requested column I've ever written. My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more: 1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good. 2. When in doubt, just take the next small step. 3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. 4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch. 5. Pay off your credit cards every month. 6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree. 7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone. 8. It's OK to get angry 9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck. 10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile. 11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present. 12. It's OK to let your children see you cry. 13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about. 14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it. 15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks. 16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind. 17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful. 18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger. 19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else. 20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer. 21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special. 22. Over prepare, then go with the flow. 23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple. 24. The most important sex organ is the brain. 25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you. 26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words 'In five years, will this matter?' 27. Always choose life. 28. Forgive everyone everything. 29. What other people think of you is none of your business. 30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time. 31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change. 32. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does. 33. Believe in miracles.3 4. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do. 35. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now. 36. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young. 37. Your children get only one childhood. 38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved. 39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere. 40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's,we'd grab ours back. 41. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need. 42. The best is yet to come.. 43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up. 44. Yield. 45. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift." Remember that I will always share my spoon with you! Friends are the family that we choose for ourselves I think that we all need to take a few moments every day and be grateful and appreciative of what we have.

I love you Dad!

All for now, Sue x

Wednesday 7 March 2012

Lovely Lattice

Good morning everyone! As this post goes up this morning, I will be on my way to the airport (don't fail me now Blogger!).  I am heading back across the Pond to see my Mom again for awhile as tomorrow would have been my dad's 92nd birthday.  I wanted, no needed, to be there with her for that.  As always, I promise to keep the blog posts coming every morning for you.  Back to lattice today, the border specifically.  I absolutely love this border as there is just so much you can do with it.  For a really quick card, cut four or five of these borders and place them on to your choice of cardstock colour that has an adhesive sheet adhered to it.  You can offset them for all sorts of different patterns to make your card interesting.  The colour of your cardstock will show through the adhesive sheet and whatever is not covered by the borders, just add the clear micro beads over and press them firmly down to stick them well.  A really pretty quick background!  If you weren't able to get the micro beads before they sold out, Sam Poole has some available in her online shop, just to let you know.  I used my lattice border to cut some felt and make flowers too.  You want to use 100% wool felt for the best results.  You can cut other types of felt, but the wool felt will cut like butter.  Other felt types may need to be run through several times to cut completely.  I added redline tape to the very bottom of the border and rolled them like I do with ribbon to create the flowers.  You will need two borders to make a nice big flower, one for bud size.  I made three flowers of varying sizes and colours for the corner.  I added a bow of cream seam binding and a few of the green suede leaves to create a nice floral element.  I stamped a sentiment in black archival and cut it out using one of the Persian accent die templates.  Using a bit of Tattered Rose distress ink to give it an accent, I created a tag for my card which was added using a small piece of Bakers Twine.  The edge of the card was created with the border also, but I only used the very top edge so it was just peeking out to give the card a soft feminine look.  I hope you like the overall look.  All for now, Sue x

Tuesday 6 March 2012

Earthtone Medallion Card

Hello everyone!  Back to earthtones for today's post.  I like this one, especially all the fun Spellbinder layers.  I started with the romantic rectangle (the largest one in the set), cut it and then layed it across the die (like in a plus sign), roughly lined up the four holes (it isn't perfect, but it is very close) and cut it again to make a square shape.  I added some black rhinestones on each corner to hide any imperfections.  Next comes the Lattice Motif (sneaking it's way back into my posts!), cut in rust coloured card.  Layered on top of that is two of the Persian Accent pieces with the points up and down.  Next is another piece from my Lattice set, it was cut in black and layered up in a diamond shape fashion.  Last layer is another of the Persian accents, but this time, I added a very small piece from the set in the centre and just embossed it, adding a rhinestone to the middle.  I layered this one offset to the others ones too.  This created a nice medallion look for an interesting focal element.  I added a few swirls to the top and bottom for interest.  I stamped my sentiment in black to the side and added a big black double bow out of satin.  The two beautiful stick pins were a gift made and sent to me by Lindyloo.  Aren't they gorgeous!!  I added a couple of black glints to the top and bottom to finish the card.  Super simple just a matter of playing with the layers until you find a pleasing look you are happy with.  All for now, Sue x

Monday 5 March 2012

Blog Candy Winners

Hi guys!  Just a quick post to get the new Blog Candy Contest Winners announced.  If you have just logged in for the day, there is a card project that was posted this morning, just scroll down to the post below.  Be sure to check to see if you have won candy first though!

I'll make it quick.  The THIRD place winner is.............................................

The winner of the SECOND place prize is...................
Sandra (Misty)

and now , finally the WINNER of the FIRST place Grand Prize is........

Congratulations to all of you!  You must email me at  to claim your prizes and confirm your addresses please.  The blog candy contest rolls on and the next drawing will take place when we reach 2600 followers!  Thanks for all your support.  All for now, Sue x

Quilt Card and Tutorial

Hi guys,  today I am showcasing my quilt card using the Damask accents.  There is another colour way that I did this card in and I will post it at the end of the tutorial for you.

Start with this die template which is from the new Damask Accents from Spellbinders.
Cut 16 of these pieces, 8 from a neutral colour (I'm using white) and 4 from a light tone and 4 from a dark tone colour.  You can cut these quicker if you do two at a time.  There is no need to emboss these so it will save a bit of time there too.

Next step is to cut squares the same size.  If you use a square die, your finished piece will fit together better than if you cut the squares on a guillotine.  If there are any bits of the points that extend past the edge of the square, nip them off with your scissors.  Glue each Damask piece to the matching square.  You can change the look of your quilt by making the backing square a different colour too.

Next, you need to cut all the coloured squares in half and four of the white squares. You will need to leave four white squares uncut.
Next you will need to cut a piece of square card that is slightly larger than your four squares across.  I use tape for this step to get the positioning right.  The four squares will be the four corner pieces.  If you want to be exact with this you canuse a ruler and mark it, but I find it is easy to place the squares in each corner then use the cut white pieces to get the spacing.  They need to be layed out in this pattern.  The edges should touch each other as it forms the perimeter of the pattern.  You should be able to adjust the corners if need be if you haven't used glue on them.  Once you get the pattern straight you can go back and glue the pieces down
Next go in and place the coloured halves in from the outside edge.  You will alternate colours as you go around.   You can see that the colours will continue to make the original sqaue shapes with the white pieces.

Continue to add your colours, this time placing the colours in the opposite directions to make the pinwheel shape for the centre.  These have only been layed in place for the picture.  Your lines should meet up seamlessly.
Adding the last remaining pieces will complete the pattern for your quilt card.  I added a sentimenrt on mine that was cut from the Persian die templates.
Here you can see the same card done in a second colour way.  This card shows the sentiment cut from the Persian die templates
The card to the left is exactly the same card except without the Damask accent piece attached to the squares.  This card, once assembled using the above instructions, was run through the new Spellbinder Embossibility folder called Patchwork to give the card texture.  It is a nice alternative to the first card but yields similar results.  if you would like to see another tutorial on this card, Davy and Jackie, friends of the blog have done a version too.  Just go to  I hope you have enjoyed seeing how these cards were made.  All for now, Sue x