Friday, 31 December 2010

Lions into Elephants

Now that Christmas has passed I can share some of my crafty projects I been working on over the last month or two, as they were mostly presents. This was the project I set myself to make some of the little boys we know - a lion which turns into an elephant. I've heard it's been a hit with the little ones who got one.

The knitting pattern comes from Itty Bitty Toys by Susan B. Anderson. I really enjoyed kniting these and I learnt to knit in the round using double-ended needles which I hadn't tried before.

Here's what the lions turned into...

And here's how they work...

Happy New Year! I'll be back with more present projects soon.

Friday, 24 December 2010

Happy Christmas

My favourite non-crafty blog is by Owlcity because he has a beautiful way of writing and takes great pictures. I wanted to add this link in today as this is what Christmas is all about for us (with a little of what's shown in the photo above too :) Click HERE and have a listen.

Happy Christmas

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Sparkly Snowflakes

This seems such an appropriate title for a project today! Come over to Bubbly Scrumptious to see more about these gift tags :)

Friday, 17 December 2010

Christmas envelopes

It's become part of my Christmas routine to stamp the envelopes of my Christmas cards, as I put so much work into the cards it seems a shame to send them in boring envelopes. I'm particularly pleased with this year's envelopes as they look quite classy. I used a Viva Decor stamp and some Distress Ink and I've learnt over the years that sometimes images look even better when they are falling off an edge.

Holiday Lights

This week on "Picture the Holidays" we've been looking at different lights and how to capture them. This has meant that I've got out my camera manual and I've been learning what some of the buttons do!

1th Dec - Looking at creating light images with a slow shutter speed. I really enjoyed playing with this technique and got a very satisfactory result with my little point-and-shoot (which I saw referred to as a PHD camera while looking at online tutorials - "Press Here Dummy"!)

Here are some hearts...

And here is our tree. We are having an unusual Christmas photo competition at church and I'm thinking I might enter this one...

13th Dec - Looking for the divine

Dec 16th - Playing with the bokeh effect using Chrismtas lights.
Here's our tree again...

17th Dec - Today's prompt was about a candle's glow. This is another photo from my friend's candlelit wedding, as was the "Divine" shot above.

I hope these pictures have given you a warm festive glow. I have been doing lots of other crafting too, but it's all secret until Christmas!

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Starting to feel like Christmas

When does it start to feel like Christmas at your house? For some of my friends it's when they see the Christmas Coca-cola advert for the first time. For some members of my family it's putting up the tree on Christmas Eve. For me it feels like Christmas when I see the first of the Christmas milk bottle tops sitting on our doorstep in the morning.

Saturday, 11 December 2010

Taking better photos

I'm really enjoying the "Picture the Holidays" photography class in taking at Big Picture. It's a great way to be creative around the kids, as they are frequently the subject of my photos anyway and they quite like to help Mummy with her homework. I have a Fuji Finepix point and shoot, and I'm really happy with it. I'm sure I can get it to work even better though if I learn what all the buttons do!

I've just found a new photography blog called my3boybarians which looks great and it has a fab section called "31 days to a Better Photo". Maybe this could be my New Year's resolution?
Here are some more pictures from "Picture the Holidays"...
Dec 6th - It's the small things, finding little details. I noticed this echinacea in our garden made a star shape on the top. This is one of my favourite photos I've taken and I haven't fiddled about with the colours or focus afterwards. I think it shows my composition and technique is improving.
Dec 7th - Self portrait. I did change the colours and focus on Picnik for this one.
Dec 8th - Reflections. I found this the hardest challenge so far, as all I was getting was pictures of me holding my camera!
Dec 9th - Looking for a sign. Finding words as a sign to point your way in the holidays...

We're putting up our tree today, so I'm looking forward to playing with some bokeh photos later.

Feeling Festive

I love this picture of my three in the snow a few weeks ago and I couldn't wait to scrap it. It's my Bubby Scrumptious post for this week so you can see more details here.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Three little robins

This month's challenge on Vanilla Sugar was to make a Christmas banner. I started out arranging the pieces horizontally, but they just wouldn't work like that. I think it looks much better like this. Check out the other banners by clicking here.

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Picture the holidays

I've started a new class at Big Picture this week called "Picture the Holidays" with Tracey Clark. We receive e-mails every day with a new theme. The standard of photography in the gallery is outstanding and I was a little overwhelmed on the first couple of days, but it's pushing me to try new things and take better photos rather than just settle for the first image I've thought of.

Dec 1st - Holding onto gratitude.

Dec 2nd - Frame the season

Dec 3rd - All you need is love, include a heart.

Dec 4th - You hold the key, what gives you peace of mind instead of the busyness of Christmas.

Dec 5th - The view from here, a landscape

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Paper Stars

This week's post over on Bubbly Scrumptious includes a link I found on Youtube about how to make these paper stars. They are really easy and can be made with any square scraps of double sided patterned paper. To see more click here.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Memory Stars

At church this week we are selling memory stars for our regeneration project. It's quite a popular fund raising activity and I've seen it done in a few places. A star is bought for a small price (ours are £1) and then you can write a loved one's name on the back and hang it on a communal tree. It is usually done with plain cardboard stars, but we have to go one step further! My friend Jo and I decorated 100 stars this week .

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Snow in November

This week has seen the most snow in the UK at this time of year for 17 years. This has been such a gift for scrapbookers leading up to Christmas. I've managed to take the annual Christmas photo of our three actually in the snow. I attempted Christmas hats too, but you'll notice the ginger one decided on a pink flower hairband instead.

I was really pleased with my holly photo and I think that could be a great first photo for a December journal, although the thought of starting one of those, may be a step too far as I'm still making Christmas presents. I am starting a new class tomorrow though called "Picture the Holidays" over on Big Picture Classes, but as this will be a photography class, I'm hoping it will be relatively easy to squeeze it in.

We got creative in the snow and made a snow reindeer...

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Watercolour Christmas cards

I've been making my Christmas cards this week and I've managed to finish 60 of them - phew! I've stamped the design on fabric and painted with watercolours. If you'd like to see more about it, check out my post for Bubbly Scrumptious here.

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Colour! or is it color?

Today I was really excited to see my name on the Prima blog again! This time I won a "leave a comment to win" type post about a new class run by Nic Howard at Big Picture Scrapbooking, who is one of the very talented people on the Prima Design Team. I've won a spot in her class - hurray! I have absolutely no time to fully take part in it at the moment, but I think I'll put the notes to one side and really enjoy it after all the busyness of Christmas is over.

As for the title of this post, that's the name of Nic's class - I think the answer is "colour".

I should also add that the picture here is by the blonde one, it's not a project from the new class!

Saturday, 20 November 2010

On the beach

I've been a bit quiet on the blog this week as I'm working through Christmas preparations, but here's some pictures from my sheer beach album I've made as my Saturday post for Bubbly Scrumptious. If you'd like to see more pages and find out how it's put together, click here.

Sunday, 14 November 2010


After three weeks of painting layers of gesso and paint and stamping and gluing, my "Beloved" album is finished as part of the "Fun with Fabric" class with Donna. I'm really pleased with how it's turned out. The photos don't really portray the different layers and textures of the pages - it's even better in real life :)

Here are the pages...

Page 1 - using a "Loved" iron-on...

Pages 2 & 3
Pages 4 & 5, including an extra clear acetate page I added myself with foam stamped flowers with bling centres (on both sides) and words cut out from book paper and inked.

Pages 6 & 7 - with another extra clear page with a swirl made from book paper flourishes and flowers and some flower stamps from Donna's "Insightful Meadow" set, stamped with Staz-on.

Pages 8 & 9
Page 10

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Excited about Tree Hugging

Over on the Prima blog there is a sketch challenge once a month caled Build A Page (or BAP) and last month I e-mailed in this page as my entry. I was really excited to see my page on their blog yesterday in their "we also liked" section. Woo hoo! You can see the Prima post here .

This is also my Bubbly Scrumptious post for this week, so you can see the page in more detail here .

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Works in progress

I have been thinking about Christmas and I am determined to be ready early this year and not have a stressed out December. How many times have I said this in the past?! I already have most of the shopping done, but I love giving handmade Christmas presents and cards and this is where my time usually runs out.

So this week I've made a start on my cards... (using inspiration from the Donna Downey class)

And I've started knitting to make presents for the smallest people on my present list... (The pattern comes from a lovely book called "Itty Bitty Toys")
And it seems like I've been a bit quiet about the Donna Downey class for a couple of weeks, but that's because we are working on an album project spread over 3 weeks and we've had two weeks of building up layers of paint and letting things dry. We're going to finish the album off this week and bring all the elements together.
You'll notice a big spray bottle of water in the middle of the picture which has been used to spray on the pages and help the paint run ("Drippage" as Donna calls it). The ginger one has been helping me with my "homework" by spraying my pages, but she got a bit overenthusiastic and started spraying towards my trays of scrapbook papers - Nooooo! Maybe not such a good idea after all.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Firework Party

Here's my page for Bubbly Scrumptious this week. I actually managed a topical page today, although it is with a picture from last year that I finally managed to finish. To see more about it click HERE.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Snow Whites

I'm gradually working through my stack of photos waiting to be scrapped and here's one that's been waiting since last Christmas. It was a picture of the girls in their new costumes, watching their new Snow White DVD on Christmas morning. This is one of the pages where I've had a layout fixed in my head for months, but it didn't seem exciting enough. I added in some swirls, made in the same way as my Summer Swirls page, but this time I used Stickles glitter glue to make the dots. I think they add a bit of Christmas sparkle.