Wednesday, 10 November 2010

WOYWW 10th November 2010

The desk seems to be tidier the more craft I do because I tidy away after me, whereas when I don't sit and craft, the desk just becomes a dumping ground.

Here are my pics taken in the middle of the night at silly o'clock

A cold cup of coffee sitting in the middle of the desk - just behind is a new 'power' pritt stick i bought, which I thought may come in handy for something.  The stamps are some Dovecraft ones I picked up at Dunhelm recently - they are 'relative' - can you believe there is everything but son and daughter and there is Fiance but not Fiancee - I thinks that's a bit strange - but at £3.99 i thought they were a bargain (not that I've compared the price elsewhere)... the other set are called 'Sent with Love' which are sentiment such as 'I miss you', 'All the best', 'Just because'...


A fraction to the right, and you can see the remote control - and the folder is the latest My Craft Studio 'Papercraft Library' CD and booklet.  The green thing that looks like a stapler, is actually a bag re sealer.  It reseals plastic bags by melting them and making a seam. 


This is a very slight fraction to the right again - and you can see the green box which has nothing in it at the moment - but came in very handy earlier when I was putting some sweets in that I'd put new wrappers on for my friends wedding.   Hanging from a hook on the edge of myIKEA shelf unit, you can see the 'hanger' project that I did the tutorial for the other day.  I might finish it off and give it to my friend who had a baby in July - they came to see me yesterday.

So, that's the desk for this week - really not exciting.  I will be finishing my friends Birthday card off later and wrapping her presents - its her birthday on Friday. 

I will be going into work this afternoon to discuss my phased return which will start next week.  I am going in to meet with the HR officer to discuss my working pattern etc.  I have initiated this myself because since I've been feeling a bit better, I feel that I need to get back to something like normal - and that is being a working mum!  Because my return will be phased over a six week period, it will take me up to near Christmas before I am back full time - and then we'll be off for Christmas.  Then the first week back in the new year is when this fiasco with my health started a year ago (Jan 2010).

A couple of weeks ago the doctor put me on a morphine patch, which is additional to the medication I'm still on.  I'm on my second patch now, and it's not made that much difference so I need to go back and ask him to increase the dosage - which he did say he would do.  The reason he put me on this because I asked him to, knowing it was an option and it was something the pain specialist had recommended too.  Also, because I'd had a few good days, which enabled me to have a better perspective on things, I started to be able to look forward instead of focus on the pain I was in - but, those 'odd few days' weren't enough for me - I wanted ALL good days - because I'm greedy like that!!!  I really wonder what is going to get rid of the pain - but in the meantime, a few good days is better than none.  So the only way I will be going back to work is full of meds and on patches.  I can but try - and at least this time, I feel like I'm going back on my terms as I've initiated it all.

I will visit as many WOYWWers as I can, but I've got quite a few things on at the moment and have to prioritise some of those things - and I've not even started a single Christmas card yet - although everything I need is in a drawer ready.

My next blog post is going to be about a ball I went to on Saturday night and the mask that I had to make - that afternoon - for it.

If you want to find out more about WOYWW -which is basically a concept where you link a blog post and pics of your work area - where ever you craft - and what ever your craft is; then add your link to Mr Linky - which will be on Julias blog - 'Stamping Ground', the founding member of this worldwide bloghop!!!

By for now, hope to visit anyone who leaves a comment - but my visits will be spread out over the coming week.

Take care y'all!!!!

Hugs, Paula x x x

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Forever Friends Baby Hanger Decoration - A tutorial

Thank you for all the comments left on my baby hanger (for want of a better word eh? - sounds a bit sinister LOL).... I made it 'off the top of my head' if you like - with no instructions or sketch to follow - I hadn't researched to see if it had been done elsewhere and had a set of instructions, however, I'm convinced that I must have seen something similar - perhaps a sample on Create and Craft - but never a demo.  Anyway, while I say I didn't follow a tutorial - I don't claim to be the first to ever make one, or invent it - but, I do want to share with you how I did it, as it really does make a nice alternative to a card - or a bought gift.

I made mine using images from the Forever Friends CD - one which I am sooo smitten with.  Just before I start, for anybody out there that does have the CD set themselves - you may or may not think a lot of the software that is used with the images.  I have to say that I don't actually use it as I find it rather restrictive and limited, so I imported all the images on to my PC so that I can use them either in My Craft Studio or Microsoft Publisher.  This way it allows you to mix images and papers from the different collections i.e. a paper from the 'love' collection, with an image from the 'baby' collection.  The software provided doesn't allow you this capability, so I find it very restrictive from a creative perspective.

Anyway, back to the hanger...  I've decided to do my own tutorial to share with you so here it is.  If there is anything that I haven't made clear on this tutorial - please e-mail me or leave a comment with your preferred contact method on so I can get back to you.

What you need:

  • 3-5 Images of your choice (If for a new baby or a gift for someone, one of these will be your sentiment or a poem or similar)
  • Backing papers
  • Mirri card
  • Ribbon
  • foam pads
  • Adhesive
  • Nestabilities - I used: Classic Squares Small, Classic Squares Large and Classic scalloped Squares Large
TOP TIP: by choosing either a checked, dotty or striped paper - you can use the pattern as a guide to avoid having to measure (this is what I did anyway)!
1)  First of all, die-cut your chosen images and sentiment panel with No.7 die (one being the smallest and 7 the largest) from the Classic Squares Small collection

 N.B. Because I used digi images for my hanger, I re sized all them all in Publisher; click insert, find your image, then double click on the box, the measurements come up in the task bar in the top right corner of the screen.  To make sure your image will die cut OK, ensure that either the width or height of the box does not exceed that of the measurements of the die. This should ensure that all your images are approximately the same size, so repeat this on all your images.
2)  With die No.7 (the largest) from the Classic Square Large collection, die cut your mirri card mats (you could use a contrasting plain card or pearlised card instead of mirri).

5) With die No.6 (the largest) from the Classic Scalloped Square Large collection, die cut your design paper/backing paper.  You need double the amount of the number of image panels you've cut (e.g. if you have 5 image panels, cut 10 DPs)


6) Cut 2 lengths of ribbon to go between each panel, e.g. if you have 5 panels, you will need 8 lengths of ribbon (4 lots of 2).  4 panels - you will need 6 lengths of ribbon (3 lots of 2); 3 panels you will need 4 lengths of ribbon (2 lots of 2).

n.b.  you can have the gaps between your panels as long as you like.  However, a reasonable gap for this project is 2 inches.  You could either cut the ribbon up, or have 2 lengths running all the way down the panels - but this would make it harder to control.

For a 2 inch gap, cut each length of ribbon to 6 inches in length.  2 inches on each panel to secure.

Now you should have all your components ready to assemble - as follows:

1)  lay your largest mat (the scalloped square) on the table - pattern facing down (or if double sided - the pattern you want on the outside should be face down).

2)  adhere 2 lengths of ribbon.  you can see here that I've actually used the scallops as a guide to where I've attached my ribbon.  Note that the scallop between the two ribbons is the centre of the entire scallop square.  Using either the scallops or a patterned paper as a guide will mean less measuring.


 3) put adhesive on another scalloped square (I use my ATG gun), then place it on top of the scalloped that you have just attached your ribbons to.  This will hid all the 'workings' and create the panel on which to put your image.

 

4)  Add a second scalloped square to the ribbons ensuring they line up with the same scallops...  To ensure all mine were correct lined up, I put some markings on a piece of scrap card stock as follows:


 5)  when your ribbon is secure, add another2 strips to the bottom before you put your other scalloped square on to hide everything


carry on until you have completed all your panels.
6)  Mat all of your images to the mirri card (or whatever you are using)




job done!!!

This hanging project can be used for all sorts of projects - you could spell words by putting a letter on each panel; use stamped and embossed images, dry emboss the mirri card mats - or use different card stock for the matting.  The possibilities are numerous.  You could even do a Christmas themed one to hand as a decoration in your home using Christmas images, Christmas coloured card stock and Christmassy ribbon - how lovely that would be.

I really hope that you go and create one of these hanging decorations for yourself - and come back here to tell me all about it - I'd love to see what you make - and just doing this tutorial has inspired me to make some more using different themes - you could even use photographs of loved ones, a pet instead of an image and give this as a gift.

Please remember;  while I'm sure I didn't invent this hanging project by any means - it would be really nice that, if you made one following my tutorial, you credit me if you blog it, and linked this tutorial for others to follow - hope you don't mind me saying that bit.

I hope you enjoyed my tutorial -  my next post will be about my masquerade mask fiasco (not so easy to say!!!).


big hugs


Paula x x x

Friday, 5 November 2010

Now for something completely different...

well, certainly different in the sense that I have never made one before.  I wanted to make something handcrafted rather than buy something (and I've not been out anywhere really) so thought I'd do something different - for me anyway!

So, I agonised for a while and thought about making something with the baby's details on - and came up with this:


Now, it's not the best of pictures because you have to stand far enough away to get the whole thing in the shot, but it's the best I could do.  I hung it from the cupboard door so I had a plain(ish) background to show the piece off.

Basically it was easy to make - I've never made one before, and I admit that I did have to think how to attach the ribbon evenly - but I'll come to that later.  I did think of doing a tutorial and thought of taking pictures at each stage, but needed to get it completed as she was coming the morning after - which would be Wednesday morning.  Anyway, I made a box for it because wasn't sure how best to present it - an envelope is not really appropriate, so the box was the best idea.

Here it is in the box - which really could have done with being a bit deeper actually.


Because the shallowness of the box meant that the lid wouldn't stay on of it's own accord, I made a ribbon wrap to go around it, then finished that off with a flower.  I bought a whole pack of flowers in all sorts of shapes and sizes off QVC - and the appeal of these flowers were that they were plain white/off white mulberry - which means I can colour them up with anything I wanted - in this case, I used my Momentum dew drop inks.


I was happy with this - not too fancy, but not too plain either.  I then made another one of my little handbags, that I'm really enjoying making, and put some things in for the new mum - just a token gesture really; a small Yankee candle - 'fresh linen', a glass candle voltive which I'd decorated with a pretty peel off and coloured in the holes with sakura metallic gel pens plus another vanilla larger than normal tea-light in -  then I put a small bag of radox bath salts in with a nestie label on to finish it off and called it 'Mummy Special Salts' - then put another nestie label in with some 'instructions' on for a relaxing bath time.  Everything matched.  I would have put some chocs in, but my OH didn't receive my text so didn't bring me any on the way home from work.  Anyway - I forgot to take a pic of the set - but took a pic of the 'lid' of the handbag that I put it all in:


Again, used the blank flowers and coloured them up with my inks.  She really liked everything and said that she loved my handcrafted stuff - and was particularly impressed with the hangy thing!!!

I can't even find a piccy of the card I did - but it was a lovely A4 Forever Friends one.  Oh well, I'll hopefully get my brain back to normal one day!!!

Here is a selection of some other cards I've done but haven't blogged:

This is one I did for the lovely Annie (Wipso) for her recent Birthday:


This is a quick 'get well' card I made for someone after they had an operation:


This is a card made for my friends daughter's first wedding anniversary - love how the stickles is actually showing up in this picture:


This is a card I made someone else that was recovering from an op - and needed some 'love' sending.  This time is it an image from Tiddlyinks and coloured with Promarkers.  The papers are from Funky Hand's papercraft factory - 'Dreams come true' CD.  Flowers from stash have been stickled - the leaves are made by me freehand.


This card is one that I made for the lovely Twiglet when it was her Birthday last month... the pics I took came out shockingly - no light, flash wasn't helping... this is the best of a bad bunch.  I think Twiglet took a better pic of it herself when she received it.


The next couple of cards I made ages ago but didn't get round to blogging.  Made with a couple of digi's I bought which are gorgeous and very classy looking - again, the pics are quite rubbish - probably taken at night again:


 and this one:


Right, that's it I think.  Pretty much up to date with some of the cards I've been making.  Hope you enjoyed.

Paula x x x

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

WOYWW - 3rd November 2010

Hello Bloggers and Blog Buddies.

Its Wednesday again - then again, I could be wrong judging by my track record!!!  I tried to visit everyone who visited me, but in some cases blogger wouldn't either bring the comments box up, or post my comment... i think it also has something to do with my FireFox browser too - as quite often I have to do a restart on my laptop... and sometimes I have to switch off without it closing down properly - total pain in the backside!!!

Anyway - some of you may recall that I mentioned in my last WOYWW post that I was going to a 60th Birthday party on Friday... well, I turned up Friday to the venue recognised no-one after going to both function rooms at the venue - to phone home and be told it was on Saturday... probably why everyone was looking as me and OH funny!  One party was an 18th Birthday party and the other one, that i waltzed into trying to find the birthday girl, was a motor cross presentation evening - they really DID look at us funnily... OH said "didn't you see the motorbike and trophies in the corner?" - erm, NO!

Anyway - we went again on Saturday and had a jolly good time.  My friend had hired a Beetles tribute band which was fab!  I couldn't dance - but my toes were a-tappin'... great time was had by all.

Here is the card I made her:


This card is cased from the cards made by Helen at "It's all Fiddle Fart"... Its produced in Microsoft Publisher and decoupaged.  It turned out to be rather appropriate seeing as she had the tribute band at her party - but having worked with her for a number of years, I went to her 50th party and was also her Bridesmaid when she married in 2005, so I knew this would be the card I'd make for her!

Here is the gift bag I made.  I put two different necklaces in - one for her 'Rock Chick' look, and one that is more demure - and suitable for her days spent at her favourite 'Warner Hotels'!!!

front of bag


The bag was constructed in single sided pearlised black card, and because I didn't want it plain white on the inside, I printed large polka dots on it, which is from a Pink Petticoat collection.  The 'flap' of the bag was embossed with my new embossing folder and ties in with the polka dots on the inside.  The buckles on the side were die cut from the Spellbinders Shapeabilities Buckles, done in silver mirri card.  The ribbon is grosgrain. To hide the fastenings where the flap is fastened to the bag, I've used black pearlised card candy.  I then made a small tag from the card stock and put '60th' using a silver peel off.  The front of the flap was edged using the Martha Stewart wavy edge punch and fastens with a small piece of self adhesive hook and loop tape...

Right - onto the desk.  Its pretty tidy after last weeks bombsite (well I was about to sort it out and did so that afternoon like I promised LOL)


Not too bad - I tidied up after myself after doing a couple more projects last night which I'll post at a later date.  There are a few bits of paper left over from my latest project (will post later), the remote - very important, ball of string - not sure why that is there as I've not used it, another one of those handbag/purses to the right.  At the front of that is a pile of stuff from a bag handed to me by a policeman outside the local co-op... they were on a community safety drive and gave bags of leaflets and some useful gadgets away.  At the back on the right there is a couple of images from My Craft Studio - I printed them off and will use them at a later date.  Nothing else of much interest anywhere else really - just bits and bobs I've not put away - we all have 'em don't we?

Here is a swing to my sofa which is behind the desk and where I spend a lot of time when I'm not crafting.  Sitting at the desk is not always very comfortable for me so I sit here and watch TV or surf the net and blog and email friends - its great - like my own little studio!!!


Notice my pillow still hanging about which I need to put behind me wherever I sit (not on the chair to the desk though as it falls off then I run over it)!!!

Standing at the entrance to the conservatory/craft room - here's a view that puts it a little more into perspective:


It appears quite tidy at the moment - but teenage sons soon put paid to that if they venture in here - which they do from time to time or if there is something on the TV in the lounge they don't want to watch... funny thing is - they both have their own TV but take over the ones down here... When I was a teenager still at home, all I had in my bedroom that needed a plug was my lamp - they've got that much they need extensions - they even have plasma TV with built in Digital TV and DVD player - and their own aerial points to the full aerial and still try to dominate down here !!!

Right, that's my contribution to WOYWW - sorry it was a bit long - its soooo not like me (tee hee)!!!  If you want to see other contributions to WOYWW where fellow bloggers from all over the globe show their spaces (some might even have projects or WIP on) - pop over to Julia at the Stamping Ground, and she'll explain all.  Visit as many people you like who are added to Mr Linky and leave a message where you can!

Thanks for looking, hope you come back soon.

Paula x x x

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