I beg to differ

The sentiment on this card says ‘a cup of tea solves everything’. Well (a) it hasn’t. I am still in the crafty doldrums, and (b) I don’t like tea. There it is. I am British and I don’t like tea. I try: every now and again I give it a go, but no. Think of an eight year old asked to drink a broccoli and sardine smoothie and that is the face, right there. Bleagh! Gimme beans, any day.

But, I do love teacups, and these stamps are so, so cute. Lovely old-fashioned wide-rimmed teacups. Gorgeous. I haven’t done them justice today, but I have done something, after ages of nothing. Maybe tea has helped, a little, after all.

The pictures are a bit odd – I took them in that evening light that changes the colours a bit. The red is way more scarlet and less neon in reality and the yellow and blue a bit brighter.

Supplies

Dies and stamps: Clearly Besotted Warm Solutions and Diagonal Stripes stamps

Inks: Altenew Mango Smoothie, Persian Blue, Jet Black;  Lawn Fawn hippo. The red is Vivid! Hot Red but I am not sure if they are still around? I searched but just got a lot of tattoo sites!

 

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Today is…Cat-urday?

I recently told a friend that at some point in the future I hoped to have a dog. Her immediate question was ‘what will you call it?’ This took me by surprise a bit – most people ask ‘what sort?’ I realised that I usually name my pets after meeting them – sometimes within a few hours, more often it has taken me days to come up with something I like and that I think fits their personality or behaviour. The only time I didn’t do this was with Riley (the current cat) who was briefly called Pumpkin.

The reasons for this are/were many:

It is a term of endearment I sometimes use

It was Autumn, not much after Halloween when I first met him

He was sort of orange (ginger) in places

I call the end of the work day ‘pumpkin time’, as in make like a pumpkin and get the heck out of Dodge (to mix Cinderella with the wild west…)

 But after having him for a couple of days I went off the idea. It was too cute a name for a cat clearly full of mischief. I needed something a bit more cool, more edgy. Ideas, suggestions, rejections and eventually Riley was settled on. And it really suits him.

Back to my friend. I also know she had her dog’s name picked out ages before she actually got him. But it really suits him too though. So which is it? Does the personality dictate the name or does the name dictate the personality?

What are the best names for pets you have heard? How did you decide on yours?

With pets on my mind I made a couple of really quick and simple cards using Serif CraftArtist and Born to Shop Pets digikit.

Royal Cat

morning cat

Photos are a bit gloomy because it looks like the end of days outside at the moment.

Correspondence (of) Course

Craftwork Cards again, this time the Correspondence range. Soft, vintage colours, postal images, a definite French feel and right up my street, banging on the door and demanding to be given a good home. Who was I to argue? This is such a simple card to make – one sheet of backing paper, most of a page of hearts and pennants (there are still some left). Ink the edges a bit, and curl and gently crease some of the shapes a little for extra dimension. Add pearls, a smudge of glitter to the butterfly’s wings and a couple of baker’s twine bows. I am almost 100% happy with it, I just wish the bows had been a little bit softer and that I had left the tails a little longer. There’s always something, isn’t there?

CWC correspondence card - flags

No long list of supplies – the only thing I didn’t mention was that the ink used was Tim Holtz Old Paper!

 

2 bees it is!

This title will only make sense if you read yesterday’s post…

So I have my second bee card. Yesterday my poor wee brain couldn’t work out how to accomplish the finish at the bottom of the bee paper. I still struggled a bit today, and I’m sure there must bee (sorry!) an easier way of doing it. I wanted all my bees wandering off in different directions, so I decided the order and orientation for the hexagons, sticking all but the first one either up to or over the edge of the paper (so sometimes only gluing the top half of the shape); then positioning the first hexie in the line (no glue), cutting away the background paper enough to make sure it didn’t show and then sticking the hexagon in place. Clear? No, I expect not, because this is a lousy explanation and as I said, I probably made this three times harder than it should have been. Sometimes the light-bulb moment never happens and hard slog is the only way through.

Still, once this was done the rest was easy. A bit of spotty embossing at the bottom of the card – I considered the honeycomb pattern again but thought this time it was too busy for my bees (sorry, sorry)…I cut a second bee out – just the body and wings. Life is too short to spend time fussy cutting bees knees (sorry, sorry, sorry). Glamour Dust his wings, a bit of baker’s twine, a greeting and bulldog clip for what I hope is added rustic charm. Who knew you could buy rustic charm in the supermarket stationery aisle?!

bee 2 card

And because his lovely glittery wings don’t show up too well (it is dark as November here today)….

bee 2 detail

Bee paper and sentiment from Craftwork Cards Potting Shed 2; hexagon dies were free with the Crafter’s Companion magazine; base card is Hunkydory Adorable Scorable; bulldog clip from Sainsbury’s

2 bees, or not 2 bees…..

Well, only one ‘bees’ at the moment. As in a card featuring bees. The second card is buzzing around (sorry) in my head and is mid-construction, but I’m not sure that what I want to do is actually possible. Which means it goes onto the ‘when I have more time’ pile, or to that farm in the country…..

I have seen a few people embossing patterned paper and thought it looked pretty interesting, and this bee print from Craftwork Cards seemed like a perfect match for my Crafter’s Companion honeycomb folder, alongside the FREE hexagonal dies I used a few weeks ago for my ‘Quilty as charged’ post.

It’s interesting, because embossing printed paper seems to change the texture in a way that embossing plain paper, well, doesn’t really! It feels softer, more pliable. If you remember ever coming across those small leaves of face powder that had been transferred in a really thin layer onto a matchbook size sheet of paper (probably in the 1950s), to deal with the dreaded shiny nose, it feels a bit like that!

Other than that, I have added wellies, a watering can and greeting and a bit of baker’s twine. A totally flat and very easy card.

CWC potting shed bees and wellies card

 

Here’s a bit of detail, should you be keen for a close-up!

CWC potting shed bees and wellies detail

 

Beetle mania?

The second thing I intended to do today was use (more!) old Kanban stamps I came across whilst rummaging last week. They are quite simple line drawings, almost caricatures, of iconic cars. My car knowledge is sketchy at best, but I think there is a mini, 2CV, Morris Minor, a Rolls Royce, Vespa, Camper Van and a Beetle, plus some road signs, speed limits and so forth. To me they look like paper piecing waiting to happen.

I chose the (I hope) Beetle (could be a mini!) as I had a mind to use some funky WRMK paper I have also had for ages. It is so bright and 1960s-ish that I thought it would be perfect. If you have never tried paper-piecing, give it a go; it’s a great way of getting colour into your card if, like me, you are not born to wield pens and pencils with any semblance of dignity. Also I find it very relaxing.

So, stamp my car once onto kraft card and cut it out. Do this first in case you make a mess of it. If you leave it to the end having done all your paper piecing and then get it wrong, there will be bad words used. Then stamp onto your patterned paper and cut out the sections you want, just inside the stamp line. This makes for a neater end result.

For the windscreen you have a choice. Stamp it again on white card, just the top bit with the windscreen, but this time with a blue ink, so you get the lines indicating the reflection. Now you can either cut this out in the same way (just inside the line) and stick it on to your patterned car and then stick that in turn onto your kraft card cut-out; or you can go in with the scissors and remove the windscreen section from your main image, then cut out your windscreen a little outside the line, to give you somewhere to put the glue. Stick it in place carefully, then adhere to your kraft card image. Obviously I went for the more complicated option. No idea why, really, except perhaps an urge to make sure that my simplistic hippie multi-coloured psychedelic vehicle looks as realistic as possible…?! And then I stuck googly eyes on it! Go figure. I couldn’t help it. When I looked at the car and the way the pattern had worked out it seemed like she had a bit of a pout. Not wanting to miss an opportunity to anthropomorphise, eyes had to be added. I have named her Clara.

hippie beetle detail

For the number plate again I stamped the bottom section of the car onto white card, then used a tiny word stamp to fit into the number plate before cutting it out and piecing it on. A kraft card background, embossed using Teresa Collins Modern Stripe, plus a tiny tag cut from more paper from the WRMK pad and a Spellbinders Charmed, I’m Sure die. Pink baker’s twine, 3d foam for the car and done.

hippie beetle card