Tuesday, 30 November 2010

A Christmas Page - Part 2

Here is the second Christmas scrapbook page which makes the double layout.  As you can see I used the same colours to tie the pages together, making the ric-rac style background paper as previously and using Christmas Tree chipboard shapes.

Most of the embellishments, including the frames are from a Carol Wilson Kit I bought about 3 years.  There was so much in the kit that I still have loads left over and will use some more this year.

This page followed on with the theme of Christmas Traditions and the top photograph shows my daughter and me baking on Christmas Eve.  I baked mince pies and sausage rolls with my Mum and have carried that tradition on.  We put on Christmas music, have a festive drink and sing along to the music as we bake.  The heavenly smell wafts through the house and inevitably my husband appears at regular intervals to 'sample' each batch as it comes out of the oven.  That's definitely a man tradition as my Dad did the same. 

Tucked inside the pocket at the bottom is a list of all the family traditions we have at Christmas together with my Mum's recipe for a tasty treat she called 'Cheese Fiddles'  which she only made at Christmas.  I don't know why, but my Dad loved them and now I make them as well, mainly because they use up any leftover pastry.  Naturally there was no recipe written down for this and luckily I've remembered it over the years but decided to commit it to paper just in case.

If you haven't documented your family's Christmas traditions then you should.  Everytime I look at these pages, memories of my childhood Christmases come flooding back together with those of my own family. 

 I am feeling quite festive already and looking forward to my daughter coming home from university to decorate the tree and the house and then to Christmas Eve and that wonderful family tradition of festive baking. 

 If I can take a good enough photo of the tree this year I'll post it in a few weeks.  Although I say it myself, it's a beautiful tree adorned on every branch and is in fact a store of memories in itself.  I'll tell you more later.

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Monday, 29 November 2010

Winter Wonderland or (to coin another song) Somewhere Out There ...

This morning looked promising with a bright blue sky and some sunshine but it didn't last and by lunchtime the snow was back.  This is the view from my craft table at 3.10 this afternoon.  Not exactly picturesque but gives you an idea of how bad it is. 

Still can't get the car out. In fact when I ventured across the road this morning, my feet sank into the snow and kept on sinking until I was almost up to my knees trying to get back onto the pavement. 

More snowmen, that's what we need, along with gritters and snow ploughs and a break in the weather please.

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Sunday, 28 November 2010

Let It Snow! But Not For Much Longer

We've had it all today.  Hail, snow, thunder and lightening.  It's currently blowing a blizzard outside and the snow is now so deep around the cars that mine will have to dug out tomorow, if the snow lets up. 

I wonder if Louise and Ross made it into Kitty Krafts today as they live in the same town as me.  Hopefully tomorrow there will be a break in the weather. I know it looks pretty and the kids love it but trying to drive or walk around is not so much fun especially when you have to traverse country roads to get to work!

What's it like where you are?  I know Jacki at Cards by Jacki has had snow where she is.

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Saturday, 27 November 2010

It's in the Bag

I found a small plain white paper carrier bag amongst my stash the other day and decided to decorate it for a Christmas gift.  You can buy these from craft shops or online in white or brown and with a little creative thinking and some left-over bits and pieces, you can produce the ideal gift bag in the recipient's favourite colours or to co-ordinate with the gift.

I decorated this one for a gift for my daughter who likes shades of purple.  First I cut a strip of patterned paper from Bo-Bunny's Back to Backs paper Peacock Lane Flowers, then edged the top using a Fiskars lace punch.  I used a wooden template to cut the Christmas Tree from a co-ordinating piece of paper and finished off with some foam snowflakes and purple gems.  The bag originally had string handles so I replaced these with lilac ribbon and made a gift tag to complement the bag.  The finished bag has a new lease of life and a modern twist on traditional designs. 
Since completing this one I found another gift bag which I'm working on and will post this in a few days too.  The current bag had a shop logo on it but by carefully placing an embellishment over this it can be re-used,  so you don't even have to buy new gift bags.  What more could you ask for; creative fun and  money-saving ideas at the same time.

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Wednesday, 24 November 2010

A Christmas Page

I haven't posted any scrapbook pages lately so as it will soon be Christmas (you can't ignore it anymore) here is a page I did a couple of years ago. 

I wanted to record very simply the Christmas traditions that my daughter has come to enjoy year after year since she was a toddler.  The kind of family traditions that I enjoyed as a child and that hopefully, one day, she will enjoy with her family. I wanted her to be the focus so decided  to use one picture cut to look like a Christmas bauble with very little journaling, other than to note those special activities that can only be enjoyed once a year.

I cut the Christmas Trees on the left from patterned paper and layered a couple of them with foam pads and cut the triangular shapes on the left and pieced together to make another tree.  The background paper was made by cutting different widths of green card stock using the Carl Cutter Wavy line. 

After completing this page I decided to do another one to make a double page layout and used the same colour theme.  I'll post a picture of the other page next week.

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Sunday, 21 November 2010

Something for Everyone, a Gift Tag Tonight! (It's an old song but I couldn't resist)

Hi Folks.  Sorry I haven't posted for a few days but I've had a very hectic week, working two late nights and then feeling unwell. However I'm much better now and at long last can post some of the Christmas Tags I mentioned a while ago. 

I took each one and temporarily stuck it to a wrapped present so you can see how they look, so ignore the small piece of  Blue Tak on each label.  Here we go. 

For a sophisticated look I used a Nestabilities Scalloped Die, cutting three sizes of circle, two from silver mirror board to match the wrapping paper and one from Imaginisce Black Tie Optional, Kitsch'n Floral.

Here's one for the recyclists (I think I just made that up) amongst us.  I cut a rectangle from a box and tore off part of the top layer of paper then randomly brushed some gold StazOn across the surface .  A few silver snowflakes made using my Quickutz Snowflake die and a piece of string threaded through the hole finished it off.

I used my Quickutz Tag die to cut two different sized tags, one from plain card and one from corrugated.  The flower is layered up using the Quickutz  Daisy die in silver and red mirror board. I used Stickles Xmas Red to edge round the smaller die.

For something a little more traditional I used gold StazOn again and a Script stamp from Crafty Individuals.  The Merry Christmas label is fixed with large foam pads to give dimension.

Last but not least, I used a piece of left-over tartan ribbon to make a rosette by stitching loosely along one edge and then drawing the stitches up to form a circle and securing.  I glued this onto a scalloped Nestabilities circle in red mirror board and then placed a button in the centre using Glossy Accents.

You've probably guessed by now that I like large tags even on smallish gifts but I hope you like some of these ideas.  Tags are easy to make and use up lots of the little bits of card and paper you have left over, not to mention all those short pieces of ribbon.

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Tuesday, 16 November 2010

I Think I See A Pattern!!!!!

I've just realised that I have been using the same format for making cards for the birthday card swap.  It's funny how you think you have made each one different and you're really pleased with all of them when they are finished and then you start to look back at previous cards and it hits you:  the same basic card with different embellishments.

Here is the latest card I made and if you look back at older posts you will see what I mean.

Torn pieces of paper, layered up with inked edges, gems and flowers.  OMG!  It's like a production line.  The problem is we all get into safe mode, a comfort zone of design and elements and it's hard to break from that. 

Over on the Crafts-on-the-Net Forum there is a brilliant monthly card challenge which would be perfect for breaking this cycle but unfortunately at the moment I can't commit the time.  You should check it out as the ladies that run this are great and you'll see some amazing cards, especially this month where the challenge is Shape Cards.  As soon as I have a bit more time I'll take part in a challenge but I'll need to work hard to achieve a similar standard.

Maybe this will be my New Year's Resolution.  Okay, okay I know it's only November but it would be a good one along with, go out for lunch somewhere different once a month, try a different recipe once a week, do more baking, painting, scrapbooking..............  Hold on. I think I see another pattern here!

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Saturday, 13 November 2010

Now For The Modern

Here is my other card design for this year.  A more modern, simplistic style using card, ink, a rubber stamp I've had for years and ribbon.

I always feel as though I'm cheating if I use too many ready made elements, so I stamped the Christmas parcels onto glossy card using gold StazOn to make the toppers.  When the squares were cut I roughly inked the edges with more StazOn and stuck them onto matt white cards using foam pads.  I made the bows using my bow maker and glued these on with Glossy Accents. 

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Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Traditional or Modern?

Usually I paint watercolour cards at Christmas but because I've been busy decorating at home my painting has fallen by the wayside.  Still, a good opportunity to try something new and I've been working on a couple of ideas, both of which have turned out better than I thought. 

For this design I wanted to use some text and so opted for a fairly traditional style, layering the elements to give dimension.  I used a stylised script stamp in gold for the main card and torn element and then over stamped the main card with 'Jingle Bells' and the torn element with Santa's sleigh.  All the stamps I used are from Crafty Individuals.  

I die cut the 'Noel' letters using my Revolution and Quickutz Rockstar Cookie Cutter alphabet.  I edged the letters with gold pen and when dry covered them with Glossy Accents to give them a nice sheen.

My other design has a more modern feel and is a cleaner, more minimalist style and I'll post that one later.

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Sunday, 7 November 2010

My Ever-Growing Collection of Mini Art

Here is another selection of the stunning ATCs which I have received as part of the two monthly swaps I take part in.  There are some very talented crafters out there and being part of a monthly ATC swap means I get to share in their work. 

Once again a huge Thank You to everyone who takes part.

If you are waiting for the Christmas gift tags and stamped ribbons to appear, fear not they are in the pipeline, or in the camera I should say.  They're not the sort of think that scans well so I need to photograph them but I still need to clear the camera of hundreds of pictures from Spain.  I've uploaded them to the computer but don't want to erase them until they are backed-up on disc.  Yes, yes I know, get on with it but life has been so hectic lately I just haven't got around to it.  I will though and I'll post those festive items very soon.

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Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Growing Up at Christmas

This is a mini-album I made a while ago from the free CDs you sometimes get with the papers. Yes that's right, the ones that came in the cardboard covers I used for earlier projects! 
I wanted to make a small but unusual mini-album for Christmas photos of my daughter from toddler to twenty.

I covered each side of the CDs in my chosen papers, taking care to match facing sections and when dried, sanded the edges for a neat finish.  My trusty Crop-A-Dile punched the binding holes with ease and I made the heart from chipboard and added a Christmas charm and ribbons. 

 I embellished the pages with felt, patterned papers, buttons and ribbon.  There is little journaling and some pages only have the year the photo was taken and my daughter's age but as the photos are in chronological order they tell the story.
This would make a nice gift for the grandparents at Christmas and it's a way of using up some of those little scraps you have left over.  I used 4 CDs but you could use as many as your chosen binding method allows.

As you can see, I kept the circular theme of the CDs going with circular embellishments on the pages and of course the buttons reinforced this.  In case you're wondering, the felt went through my Quickutz Revolution die cutter no problem and it adds a lovely tactile dimension to the finished project.

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