Sunday, 21 March 2010

Thank you Margaret...

...for another fabulous project.

Today has been the monthly crop/workshop at Artbase and Margaret came up trumps yet again (I have a few bits to finish off then I'll take some pics to share with you).

We created a mini book from chipboard and envelopes and got to play with stamping, spritzing, inking and good old Martha Stewart punches. Although we all started with a pack containing the same materials, everyone's books came together in very different ways/styles.

Margaret said the idea came from something she had seen done by Heidi Swapp (sp?) - I think it was a super project and it allowed everyone to play with stuff that they probably wouldn't normally use.

...and yes! I have inky fingers again LOL

This getting mucky is starting to become a habit...........................

Friday, 19 March 2010

Why don't I sell my cards...

...cos I never know what to charge.

Most of the stuff I make normally gets given as gifts cos I really don't know what to charge for things. I've read all the tips and guides on how to price your products and I'm still no wiser.

A few weeks ago a colleague caught me in a weak moment and I agreed to make a card for a wedding she will be attending - she wanted something different because the Father of the bride is in the printing/stationery pressure then (GROAN). This is what I came up with........
Due to my photography skills you can't see the lovely textured card that I used to make the box lid - antiqued gold embossing of butterflies all over an antiqued background.
The style of the card was never going to fit into an envelope so there it sits in a nest of tissue in a box.
I've tried to get pics from all different angles.
The tags cause a problem as I don't have a die to cut them with so it all had to be done by hand - my good old Martha Stewart corner punch came to the rescue for the fancy tags.
Paper flowers and pretty ribbons.
Peel-offs do come in handy if you can't find the right design of stamp.
The whole thing was a mix of Bazzill bling cardstock, pearlised card and hammered gold card.

...and what did she think?

She loved it!!! Then she asked "how much?" to which I had to say I didn't have a clue. She asked if £10 would be okay and that is what we agreed. first paid commission. The hardest part really is deciding how much to charge...........................

Sunday, 7 March 2010

At last...

...I have made a Stationery Box.

I have seen so many examples of these on Create & Craft but had never quite managed to do one (despite having CDs which allow the panels to be printed straight onto card ready for cutting out and assembling).

As mentioned in the previous post, I attended two classes at the show held at Excel and this was the other class - a Stationery box.

Once everyone was seated in the classroom we were handed an A3 size padded envelope - inside seemed to be sheets and sheets of card but Stephanie explained that we would only have time to construct the basic box during the hour-long class. What the envelope contained was the cardstock to do this - cardstock to complete a prototype complete with decorated panels - and the cardstock to complete a finished project. What we actually had was enough material to create 3 stationery boxes big enough to hold A5 size cards/startionery...not bad for £5!!!! Better still, every class attendee also received a CD worth £15 as an extra gift (for the two classes I did the cost to me was £10, I came away with two lovely projects and a CD and a set of limited edition clear stamps with a total worth of around £30...REALLY NOT BAD!!!)

Here is my finished box...
I just added some scalloped brown card and pretty ribbon. I love the colours that Stephanie had chosen to use for this class - so adaptable.
For something just made from cardstock this box is surprisingly strong. It also has plenty of space for a selection of cards and other stationery bits & pieces.
As you can see...I have made a start on making the contents for my box. Yes, it is MY BOX...this one is all mine..............................


...and Creative Crafting.

In February I went with a friend to this craft show at the Excel Centre in East London. It is the first time I've been to Excel and I wasn't sure what to expect.

The show was smaller than I expected but as it was my first visit I had nothing to compare I don't know if this year was any different to previous years.

I can't say I was impressed by some of the prices being charged but it was nice to see lots of stands actually demoing their goods - something that seems to be a bit of a rarity these days.

There were lots of classes available to attend and make & take sessions - if I decide to go next year I may just take advantage of the classes...they seemed to be great value for money. As it was, I only managed to attend two classes. Both classes were by Stephanie Weightman (Ideal World/Create & Craft/My Craft Studio) and I enjoyed them both AND I learnt a new technique for cutting straight lines just using a craft ruler!!!

The class I did in the afternoon was a card using stamps/acetate and watercolour pencils.
The card was created to give the effect of a framed watercolour picture.
Because of the colours and the subject matter, I altered the card slightly when I got home and made it into Mum's birthday card. She loved it.................

Ink, Card, Cotton wool balls...

...and tillrolls.

Here are the pics I promised.

I had a fab time playing with the inks - despite getting mucky LOL
It is surprising what different effects can be created with some coloured inks and a cotton wool ball...
One of the most fun things about this lesson was the trying out of different colour mixes - some worked better than others but none were 'wrong'.
I think a little tweaking of my cards and they will be ready to go in my card box - I always like to have a supply of handmade cards at the ready.
It is amazing how different the finish can be just by lifting the card from the shaving foam in a differnt direction.
Flowers are so 'in' at the moment in papercrafting and over recent months I have tried a number of different methods but I think I like these best (haven't tried the Tim Holt style flowers yet).

Well I really enjoyed playing with all these techniques so guess what...I've signed up for a Tim Holts Inking/distressing class in April. You never know, I might actually get to like this 'getting mucky' LOL........................

I've just had a...

...wonderful play day.

Saturday here was bright and sunny but oh so very I was very glad that I was booked on an all-day class learning to play with alcohol inks (yes I know, another MESSY lesson) which meant I would be indoors LOL.

Andy had plenty of ideas for us to play with and he even took pity on those of us who don't really like getting mucky - he provided gloves. During the course of the day we produced five different items to bring home.

Item one; love 'em or hate 'em there are occasions when peel-offs have their place but oh isn't it annoying that they come in such limited colours...not any more! We attacked some dragon-fly stickers and a crossword peel-off sheet with colours of our own choice. Lucy (not a lover of peel-offs) had to admit she was impressed with the finished effect. We then inked some glossy card and assembled a very pretty card.

Item two; what do you do with boxes of tillrolls that don't fit your new till? You make paper roses of course LOL So armed with what seemed like yards of the stuff we set-to inking the paper which we then folded, twisted, poked through holes, twisted some more and highligted with some metalic ink...and voila!!! a collection of pretty paper flowers sat on the desk.

Item three; okay so ink is can you make it even messier?...add it to shaving foam LOL This is a technique that Andy has shown on his blog a few times but this was the first time I had seen it done for real. We each were given four pieces of glossy card, a can of shaving foam and some decoupage flowers. Then we were told to play. Everyone came up with a selection of really lovely coloured card - every piece so very different. We then chose one piece to assemble a card from. We also got to play with the Martha Stewart punches again - I used a pretty butterfly border that combines punched out images with dimensional images - love it (another one to go on the wish list **rollseyes**).

Item four; perhaps not the most inspiring of finished items but certainly a way of learning how to alter stuff using inks. A piece of card and a length of nylon thread containing plastic beads, flowers and butterfly shapes was inked to within an inch of its life...not sure what I can actually make with this but it is a good demo piece.

Item five; we coloured our very own Easter eggs. Starting with two halves of a clear plastic egg we coloured them inside and out and then decorated with...peel-offs! This was a bit too much for Lucy and she declined the offer of selecting a peel-off to adorn her finished egg LOL.

Now I know what you are all thinking...where are the pics?????? Well I'm sorting those out at the moment so you will just have to watch this space...................