Friday, 28 December 2012


My goodness. I can't believe it is nearly three months since I last posted. what a bad blogger I am, and that's not all! My 365 journal went off course too. October got some journalling but life went a bit awry and I didn't feel like writing so never finished it off. November got a background but nothing else, and once that happened it was nearly Christmas and I just never caught up. I think I'm going to give it a miss for 2013 - the feeling of failure when I don't keep up is one extra worry I don't need right now.

I have been keeping up with the alpabetica postcard swap though. U was definitely the most difficult for me although that might have been because it coincided with other things and my creative muse was on a low ebb anyway.

Here are the remaining letters I made for the swaps.

U and V...

 W and X...


Y...Yule and yellow

Z... zigzags and zentangle

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Nothing changes

September whizzed by. Back to the normal routines now school is back and a huge bundle of birthdays to boot including, on 21st, what would have been the birthday of both colleagues who died far too young earlier this year.

We have an unwritten rule in our house that C*******s isn't mentioned until the birthday season is over - and that extends into October in our family. It doesn't stop the shops having Christmas cards on the shelves before the schools go back though.

It turns out that the aqua drops in the background of my September 365 (well 366 this year as Kate has reminded us) journal was very appropriate for the weather. York and other villages around us have been flooded recently.
My October page is all Halloweeny and batty - like me.

I have just kept upto date with my alphabetical themed post card swaps - getting Q and R done in the nick of time.

Q obviously is for queen, complete with gold and diamond embellishment.

And also for quilt so I patchworked patterned paper and sewed on a letter Q for good measure.

I sketched a round robin for R, making him as circular as I could and colouring in with pencils.

And on the reverse a red background stamped with some roses.

 And at the end of last week I had a little blitz and got myself sorted with October's letters already. With apologies for those of a sensitive nature S is for scary, spooky, splatter, scream, skeleton, spider, scalpel, slasher etc. Thankfully not all feature!

I'd  got whatever it was out of my system then and the reverse is seaside in water colours with a frame made out of string.

What could be better for T that a turquoise background featuring two twins, Tweedledum and Tweedledee?

 And on the reverse some travel tickets.

I know I said I wasn't looking forward to X but U has already got me thinking ready for next month.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

True to form

Late again posting my journal. The August page is finished  and for most of the month the sun shone in keeping with the summer holiday theme.

September in our family has lots of birthdays: two on the 4th, two on the 6th, two (if you count my late grandad's) on 11th, one on 18th and mine of 22nd. In our house the C word isn't mentioned yet despite Christmas things being the shops before schools go back. The clock/time theme of my September page is indicative of passing time and years that birthdays bring to mind. I just hope I have time to finish it.

We have reached O&P in the alphabetical themed postcard swap in August. In my book O is for orange in a bold, bright way.

The reverse is much more restrained with distress ink applied to very "sucky" card. I took the photo before my handmade by stamp had dried.  It is much less obvious - like the background images- now it is dry.
On a trip to drop my som off on a residential weekend in July I stopped off at Crafty Notions to have a look at an exhibition of Sarah Lawrence's wonderful textile works. Whilst there I had a browse round the shop and made a few (liar, liar) small purchases. One of these was 5 little bottles of marbling paint - 20p each in the sale. I've never done any marbling before so for £1 I thought it was worth a play. The result is a stack of marbly backgrounds which you can expect to see popping up from time to time. One example is below where the swirly pattern was somehow reminiscent of lava lamps and early Top of the Pops effects and the like.

The reverse of my P card was more conventional with a glossy card background and some purple and Paris and people.
Off now to rack my brains over Q. (Not looking forward to X much either!)
Please do check back to see how I get on.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Blinked and nearly missed it!

Well there's nothing like leaving things to the last minute as motivation to get on with things - and that's what happened this month.

Right at the end of June I had an unfortunate encounter with White Van Man who very thoughtlessly drove straight into the back of my car at a junction. Nothing too serious, I was stationary waiting to turn out of a T junction so no injury but it did shake me up and stess me out. As a result most of July has gone by in a blur of not quite right-mindedness with no creative mojo and a tendency to hysteria.

The car is now mended and I now have to wait to see if I can get the costs back from the culprit, however on the up side it is now school holidays and I have had a few days off work to spend crafting and keeping an eye on my son (to make sure he doesn't get DVT from too much XBox and Olympics viewing on TV).

So I've started to catch up a bit.

Here is Jubilee June in my 365ish journal - complete with expletive (censored) regarding the accident.

And here - on time - is July all finished. That must be a record for me. The picture is a bit dodgy because the book won't stay flat on its own and I cropped my fingers out. It says "I'm just sitting watching flowers in the rain" across the bottom which was pertinent at the start of July, hence the drippy background.

August is ready to go too - all seaside holiday colour schemed in keeping with the season.

For July we were up to letters M and N in our Alphabetica post card swap. Fortunately I was ahead of the game and ready to post at the end of June or they might have been very grumpy pieces of work. I'm looking forward to receiving swaps any time soon. I hope the recipients of my cards enjoy them.

Oooh, and lastly a new issue of Craft Stamper is out this week. It has an especially nice free stamp this month, some great techniques using masking tape and lots of other lovely things.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

June already!

How did that happen! June and the Jubilee holiday are upon us, and as my son so helpfully pointed out (whilst we were discussing his astronomy homework and the transit of Venus across the sun this week) it will soon be the longest day and then the nights will start drawing in. What a thought!

Anyway I am keeping up with my 365 journalling just about. Didn't fill my May page completely but said all I wanted and have made a start on June which as you'll see is suitably Jubilee themed. I am feeling rather old though as I can remember the silver jubilee - much better than the golden one oddly but maybe it is just my age?

And in a fit of enthusiasm and still playing with red, white and blue I have already made my alphabetica postcard swaps for the month - letters K and L. Amazing what a long weekend can do for you.

I used distress inks for K - direct to paper and stamped for the key side and wrinkle free distrees technique on the back.

The front of my L card has some inky embossing and a bit of celebratory glitz. The reverse is painted with acrylics and stamped with lots of colours and letters.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Oops, I did it again!

Now sometimes simple is best. I have lots of stamps with a Venice theme - I love the place - and some Rome ones too although I've yet to go there (too hot for me in the summer holidays). Just basic stamping and direct to paper with distress ink here for the front of my I themed post card.

And on the reverse by way of contrast lots of chunky glitter, Croco paint and some Diamond Glaze (to stop it all cracking and falling off) to get a cold and icy effect.                                 

And now to the oops I did it again part... Didn't I say I wasn't going to buy anything new? A set of London themed stamps just fell into my shopping basket, honest Guv. And a good job too - they were just the thing for some background stamping on this red, white and blue extravaganza of all things beginning with J.
Lots of fun with a bit of everything - improvised as I went along just like jazz. The background has sheet music, string, die cut letters and paper towel (oops got a bit stuck in the gesso by accident but never mind). Ink and paint splattered on top in characteristic uncontrolled combinations of colour.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

History repeating itself...

And here I am late once again. No surprise there then - and as ever it is the posting that is late not the journal, which in my abbreviated form I am keeping up with (just).

Here is April complete with scribblings...

And May primed and ready to go.

And I have been keeping busy with other things too.  The alphabet themed post card swaps reached letters H and G for April.

 It is amazing how many uses there are for the little sticks you get to stir coffee with. Am I the only person who takes no milk or sugar in coffee but still needs to take a stick to stir which some how finds its way home with me?

I had a bit of a London 2012 moment with this G themed card. It started out with Games in mind but somehow came all over red, white and blue Union Flag like. And yes I do know some sgements probably are the wrong way up - it was just how the scraps of paper happened to be as I picked them up.

Scratching my head at the moment for J themed ideas. Everything that comes to mind at the moment is either too difficult or needs too many new things!. Check back to find out how I get on. 

Friday, 6 April 2012

Almost back on track

It's amazing what a morning off can do! I have got my overdue March swaps complete and wrapped ready to post. The fact that they were probably still slightly damp and the PO isn't open today so they haven't actually left the buidling doesn't matter does it???

To demonstrate to the very forgiving and patient members of the swap group that I'm not making it up, here are the alphabetica postcards for letters E and F. I don't know why but E was the most troublesome letter so far. Although the most used letter in English I struggled to come up with themes - at least ones that didn't require investment in new stash - and then struggled to make what was in my head.

These are the fronts, coloured mainly with spray inks onto rather absorbent card. Soft colours and mica sheen - not that you can tell from these snaps.

And on the backs... E is embossed with punched border and letters underneath sticky backed metal sheet, with embossing powders and alcohol ink on top.

F is made from different patterned papers shaded with coloured pencils and with a tiny bit of stamping.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

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

Late, just like the white rabbit on my March journal page. Nothing new there then!

It seems only two minutes since I last blogged, wondering  where time was going. It definitely does go faster now than it used to when I was a girl. Was it Victoria Wood who said something about years going Creme Eggs, Christmas? Well it certainly feels that way to me.

I have just about been keeping up with the journalling in my own now and then fashion although behind with other crafty things for swaps which are still WIP.

Here is March, all green and mad March hareish.

And here all ready to start is April in soft spring colours with bird eggs.  Not very in keeping with the wintery weather that has arrived.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

I know... Twice in a week!

Well the other day I just wanted to prove I was keeping up with the 365 journal challenge, but now we are in to March properly I can share a couple of little projects I've been doing for swaps.

The items are now in the hands of the Royal Mail, on their way to their respective recipients so they don't have to be kept under wraps any more.

The first is a textured canvas with inchies mounted on it. I have no idea how it came to be so lilac in colour! It is a favourite of mine but I do try quite hard to try out other schemes. I gave the canvas texture with some Terra paint in a mustardy yellow sort of colour, and put Ranger dabbers in Cranberry and pale pink on top. And then some silver mettalic. Who'd have thought that mixture would turn lilac - it is certainly not the usual recipe but I'm just glad it didn't all go sludgy brown.

The second package to go in the post is a domino book. I made this out of really tiny dominoes coloured with alcohol ink and used lots of little scraps of things to embellish it. I hadn't tried these before but along with match boxes, which I love, they are great for using up snippets and scraps.