Thursday, 10 December 2015

CC&S #153 Christmassy Sketch: Joy To The World

For my last post for CAS Colours and Sketches this year I have chosen my most favourite sketch of the year from challenge #124 in May. flipped it vertically and made it Christmassy! I have also taken the opportunity of combining my DT card with a few festive challenges along the way!

It combines two of my favourite card-making techniques (thus making it eligible for the HLS challenge)! Firstly the cling film technique used with my Cosmic Shimmer mists. Love, love, love this technique and while you're getting messy it's good to experiment with colours and make a few new pieces. The colour combos don't always dry how you'd imagined but that's half the fun of experimenting! Here I have simply die-cut three squares from a blue/silver piece, stamping the Wise Men image with black Versafine and raising this one with foam pads. The second technique involves my love of paper engineering/folding and here I have made a 3D star of Bethlehem from a 9cm square of holographic paper that itself has stars gleaming in it when it catches the light. A very clear tutorial for folding the star can be found on YouTube HERE. The sentiment is computer generated and the card is simply finished with a few silver star sequins.

Supplies Used:
Spray Mists: Aqua Lagoon & Silver (Cosmic Shimmer)
Stamp: Wise Men (DoCrafts)
Sentiment Font: Maiandra GD
Snippets: Silver holographic paper, Silver sequin stars

The challenges I would like to enter are:
Addicted to CAS: Challenge #78 Code Word 'Joy'

AAA Cards: Game #54 'Silent Night, Holy Night'

CAS on Sunday: Challenge #73 'Stars'

For your blog

Happy Little Stampers: December CAS challenge 'Favourite Technique'

A very contemporary card but for me, this is a lovely reminder amongst the hustle and bustle of what Christmas is really all about. Thank you all for your visits to my blog over the last year and for your support for our CAS Colours and Sketches challenge. A few changes and some new faces joining the team in the New Year so please join us all then!

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Stef x

Thursday, 3 December 2015

CC&S #153: 2015 Colours Revisited and Make It Christmassy!

For this week’s Christmas colour challenge at CAS Coloursand Sketches I have chosen a colour palette that I devised for one of our October challenges (#144). I wasn’t very happy with the card I made that week so wanted to see if I could come up with something better.

I really wanted to have another go at the bokeh technique and so for this card I sponged corresponding inks in the two blues onto a piece of watercolour paper. After letting this dry I sponged white ink from a chalk inkpad through a homemade circle template in vary levels of intensity. This was then mounted onto a piece of gold cardstock. Looking at internet images of bokeh, I’m not sure that my circles are really soft or out of focus enough but I like them anyway so I guess that’s all that matters.  

The snowflakes were a right faff to die-cut. I always seem to have trouble cutting very intricate dies though I have tried all sorts of tricks to make it easier without any real success! Eventually I cut enough (some in white, some in gold, one in felt) that were OK and layered them onto a piece of shimmery netting from a recycled wedding favour all held in place with a beautiful snowflake brad! Finally, after several hours with the snowflakes, the greeting was die-cut and added to one side.

Supplies Used:
Inkpads: Nautical Blue, Summer Sky (Memento), Cloud White (VersaMagic)
Dies: Snowflakes (Die'sire), Peace Word (Clearly Besotted)
Snippets: Gold, white, navy & watercolour paper/cardstock, White felt, Recycled netting, Snowflake brad

I would also like to enter my card into the following festive challenges:

So sorry that my post for CC&S is late this week and that I've not managed to visit and comment on last week's entries - it's been a really busy week (and next week's not looking great either)!

Stef x

Thursday, 26 November 2015

CC&S #152 Sketch: Gilded Christmas

I'm very pleased with the way my card has turned out this week for CAS Colours and Sketches. Louise has given us a delightful little sketch to work with and I have also combined my DT card with two other challenges involving the use of metal/gilding.

My card involves gilding in three different ways. Firstly, I made the background. This involved getting messy with my mica spray mists, a piece of hammered cardstock and the cling film technique which pools the mica together in glorious folds when it's dry. Then I simply cut a rectangle with a stitched die. For my second gilding technique, I sponged Flitter Glu directly onto a piece of white cardstock and applied gilding flakes to make a solid piece of gilded card. From this I die-cut two circles of different sizes. I die-cut a small white Christmas tree and stuck it to the centre of the larger gilded circle and then layered this onto a white scalloped circle. This was then cut in two down the middle and positioned on the background piece as shown in the sketch, raised on foam pads. The third piece of gilding involves the printed gold sentiment  which was stuck onto the smaller gilded circle and adhered to my card with foam pads.

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges:
CAS-ual Fridays challenge #145: Precious Metals

and Happy Little Stampers November CAS challenge: Gilding

Supplies Used:
Dies: Stitched Rectangle Layers (Memory Box), Plain & Scalloped Circles (Spellbinders), Christmas Tree (free gift on PaperCrafter 88)
Mica Sprays: Meadow Lush & Rich Gold (Cosmic Shimmer)
Gilding Flakes: Yorkshire Dales (IndigoBlu)
Greeting: Gold sentiment (Craftwork Cards)

I hope you're not too busy yet with your Christmas preparations to join us this week and don't forget that we currently have a DT call!

Edit: So sorry my card didn't post on time. I had saved it as a draft instead a published scheduled post!

Thanks for visiting!
Stef x

Thursday, 19 November 2015

CC&S #151 Colours: New Home for Christmas

We took our Guide unit away last weekend so a quick post from me tonight for CAS Colours and Sketches as I still have a ton of things to catch up with! I love the colours Louise has chosen this week and decided to go with a card that could be Christmassy but I've actually made it as a new home card for my daughter Laura and her fiance Max who have moved to Bristol this week.

I stamped the image with Versamark and embossed with a silver tinsel EP (by accident!) which makes it quite sparkly but it looks just fine. I coloured parts of the image with Promarkers, added a few silver stars and some Stickles and matted and layered it into a piece of matching cardstock. The sentiment is computer generated and I added a few more stars for balance.

Supplies Used:
Stamp: Good Morning Robin (Little Claire)
Promarkers: Soft Green & Antique Pink (Letraset)
Sentiment Font: Allegro
Snippets: Aqua green cardstock, Silver stars

We had lots of lovely entries for our birthday challenge. It's great to have so many of you join in this week but it's going to be difficult to choose the winners! If you are new to our challenge I hope you can find time to play again.

In the meantime I hope that Laura's move is going well and that she is enjoying her first day in her new job!

Stef x

Thursday, 12 November 2015

CC&S #150 Sketch: Happy Birthday Us!

We are marking our third anniversary and our 150th challenge at CAS Colours and Sketches this week. I feel honoured to have been part of the DT for almost a year now and delighted to be part of such a fantastic team. This week Louise has designed a very special sketch to celebrate our birthday and we have also have prizes to give away too! So what are you waiting for? Whether you've been with us all the way or have only just discovered our challenge please enter into the fun this week with your clean and simple cards!

When I saw that we needed to design a card with an aperture and a number on it, my mind went immediately to making a shaker card using a circle aperture as the number '0'. The celebrations made me think of designing a 50th birthday or golden wedding anniversary card using '5' as my number. And as Bev is not only our guest designer for this month but her company, Uniko, are sponsoring one of the prizes I thought it would be great to use the large Uniko 'congratulations' sentiment which I have only recently acquired.

And so the card came together quite easily. I have used pearlised card throughout to suit the occasion and kept the design all in one long banner to fit in with the sketch. The shaker element was created using the funky foam technique and the sentiment is stamped with Versamark and embossed with gold EP.

Supplies Used:
Stamp Set: All Occasion Sentiments #1 (Uniko)
Circle Dies: Standard Circles Large & Classic Scalloped Circles Large (Spellbinders)
Snippets: Ivory pearlised cardstock, Gold pearlised paper, a random number '5' sticker, assorted sequins and sparkles

I do hope you'll find some time to join in with our very special birthday challenge this week! I think I'll give my card to very special couple at church who are celebrating their golden wedding anniversary in a couple of weeks time.

Until next time
Stef x

Thursday, 5 November 2015

CC&S #149 Colours: Double Birthday Cards

If I'm honest, I haven't really liked one or two of the cards I've made recently, probably because they've been a bit rushed. So this week I've put a bit more thought and care into the design of my DT card for CAS Colours and Sketches and with no small thanks to Louise's absolutely gorgeous colour combinations I'm pretty pleased with the end results. That's just as well as this week I needed to make two cards for the special men in my life, my husband Martin and my son Philip.

I was looking to see if there were any other challenges that I could combine my entry with when I stumbled across last week's Muse challenge and some gorgeous cards particularly from Anita (the muse) and Julie (one of the honourable mentions). And so my cards began to take shape. 

My first challenge was to cut out a circle aperture from my 5" x 7" card blank, tricky as I only have a 'Big Shot' and the card wouldn't fit sideways through the machine but after a couple of goes I worked out the best way to do it. I cut 5cm from the right edge of the card and lined the inside of the card with some dark purple polka dot paper. The leaves were all stamped onto linen cardstock in the other challenge colours (using some newsprint for one of the cards) and cut out leaving a margin. It took a while to assemble them in a group but when I was happy with the design they were stuck down, some raised with foam pads. Finally the sentiment was stamped on the left front. I made both cards similarly but not quite the same!

So unfortunately I found it too late and can't enter my card into the Muse challenge but I'm so glad to have been inspired by it anyway. Huge thanks also to Louise for bringing us such a gorgeous colour combination to work with this week.

Supplies Used:
Die: Standard Circles Large (Spellbinders)
Patterned Paper: Purple Polka Dot (free download from
Stamps: Leaf Decor CCS006 (Royal Langnickel), Happy Birthday (Clearly Besotted)
Ink Pads: Pinecone (Versa Color), Elderberry & Peanut Brittle (Memento), Imperial Purple (Versafine)

This weekend Katie and Tom are throwing a party for Phil down in London so I get to spend the weekend with all my children - can't wait!

See you soon
Stef x

Thursday, 29 October 2015

CC&S #148: A Double Challenge

I'm not sure that my card for CAS Colours and Sketches this week is either clean or simple enough to really do the challenge justice. I was making some cards with my mum the other day and obviously had one of those indecisive days so this is what I ended up with. 

We were making some cards using Craftwork Cards products and I thought I would make a card for the challenge using patterned papers and die-cut flowers. As it does sometimes, the design started out one way and finished up another. The card has an acetate panel on the front with a patterned panel on the inside of the card. However, the finished design could just have easily had the patterned panel on the front of the card but I had a different plan when I originally sat down to make it!

I wanted to make my own flowers to match the graphic but ended up cutting and shaping flowers from the papers and using some die cuts. Also, it did prove a real challenge to find papers that only used three closely-matching colours to the ones I chose for CC&S - talk about giving myself a hard time!

Anyway, I have made it for a special friend's birthday this week and I'm sure she'll love it, especially the colours. I've got a really busy week of birthdays so I must go and make a few more cards. Then I will see about enjoying what's left of half term!

We would love to have you join us in the challenge this week. We had a bumper crop of entries last week, so thank you!

Stef x

Thursday, 22 October 2015

CC&S #147 Sketch: Christmas Tree Triangles

Hi everyone! When I drew this week's sketch for CAS Colours and Sketches, it just screamed Christmas trees to me and therefore it wasn't hard to come up with a design.

I used a lovely 5-piece layered Christmas tree die set which I really haven't used enough especially as the trees are so easy to assemble. I curled, shaped and inked the edges of each layer to give the trees some dimension. The trunks are cut from snippets of brown paper and each tree is finished with a silver star. They are mounted onto a die-cut stitched rectangle which has also been debossed using a swiss dots embossing folder. The sentiment is printed directly onto the card blank.

Supplies Used:
Patterned Papers: Christmas Fancy (Dovecraft)
Dies: Christmas Stacker Tree (Dee's Distinctively), Stitched Rectangle Layer (Memory Box)
Embossing Folder: Swiss Dots (Magazine Freebie!)
'Greetings' Sentiment Font: Scriptina
Snippets: Brown paper, Linen cardstock, Sequin stars, Crystal Stickles

Well, that's another Christmas card made. Thanks so much for visiting. I hope you get a chance to play along with us this week!

Stef x

Thursday, 15 October 2015

CC&S 146 Colours: Autumn has arrived!

Welcome to everyone visting from CAS Colours and Sketches where it's my pleasure to host again and this week I've chosen an autumnal colour palette for you.

I have a lot of close male relatives with birthdays at this time of the year (my husband, my son and my two brothers), so it's natural for my thoughts to turn to male cards for a few weeks before getting stuck into the rest of my Christmas cards. So an autumn colour palette and design suits these just perfectly.

The background is masked and inked using the bleeding art tissue technique, learnt from the fabulous Eileen Godwin's blog. She creates some amazing mixed media art and if I didn't live at the opposite end of the country, I would love to go to one of her workshops - one day maybe! I used tissue in the three challenge colours, let them run into each other and then left the card to dry completely. I didn't want to use black for my stamped leaves and sentiment so have gone for a very dark shade of brown as my neutral colour because I think it works better with the colour palette. I hope that's alright with the rest of the CC&S DT!

As I have done everything in one layer I would also like to enter my card into this week's challenge #245 at Less Is More where the one layer card theme is 'Autumn'.

Supplies Used:
Tissue: Spectra Art Tissue (from Amazon)
Stamps: Leaf Decor Stamps (Royal Langnickel), Happy Birthday (Clearly Besotted)

Thanks for dropping by this week. Please come and join in the fun and share your designs with us at CC&S. We'd love to see them!

Oh, and happy birthday Stu!
Stef x

Thursday, 8 October 2015

CC&S #145 Sketch: Two for the price of one!

Hi everyone! I hope that you like my tag sketch for this week's challenge at CAS Colours and Sketches and that you'll be inspired to have a go and share what you make with us.

I needed to make a new baby card for a work colleague and at the time of making it she was still waiting for the happy day to come not knowing what sex her baby was so I made two cards, one for a boy and one for a girl. I'm happy to say that she had her little girl on Sunday so that is why I have featured the pink card first and shown the other one further down.

The tags for both were die-cut with a stitched die and stamped with free dies from old copies of two different magazines. The stamping on the pink card is simply highlighted with a matching coloured pencil. The coiled string graphic is printed onto the card background.

With the blue card I have coiled some gold metallic thread behind the tags to replace the graphic and stamped the image with a coordinating ink pad. Both cards are finished with a matching ribbon bow.

As it's an 'Anything Goes' week and I have principally used one of their dies, I would also like to enter my cards into the Paper Smooches Sparks October Week 1 challenge. I only have a few of their products but love using them and the dies cut really well.

Supplies Used:
Die: Tag Stitched KFBD126 (Paper Smooches)
Stamps: Magazine freebies
Ink Pad: Atlantic Blue (Versacolor)
Snippets: Coloured cardstock, Ribbon oddments, Pink pencil, Gold metallic thread

Congratulations to Jaye and her husband on the safe arrival of their beautiful baby girl, Sophie!

Thank you to our readers for visiting and for joining in with us each week at CAS Colours and Sketches. See you next week with another colour palette and more inspiration from our DT!

Stef x

Thursday, 1 October 2015

CC&S #144 Colours: Night of Navy, Metallic Gold and Soft Sky

Hi everyone! It's my turn for another month of hosting the challenges at CAS Colours and Sketches and as usual we are kicking off with a colour palette.

I had decided that I wanted to do a masked and sponged sky design but TBH it's not come out quite as nice as it was in my head. I guess that's what comes from working hard all day and only having a couple of hours to make a card for this week's challenge.

I used a harsh sponge, a mask and an old credit card with Versamark to create the sun. It looks better in real life as there are a few more gold speckles that don't show up in the photo but using inks over the top of it has definitely dulled it's brightness! The sky was coloured using my fabulous ink dusters from Inkylicious and there are also a couple of hills which, again, don't show up too well. I stamped the trees before removing the masking and then stamped and embossed the greeting. I love getting messy with inking techniques but definitely need some more practice at this one when I'm not too tired.

Supplies Used:
Ink Pads: Nautical Blue & Summer Sky (Memento)
Stamps: Lone Spruce and Sprucescape Trees (Clarity)
Sentiment: Xmas Wishes (Inkylicious)
Snippets: Ink dusters, Gold EP

Looking forward to seeing what you make of my colour and sketch choices this month.
Thanks for playing along with us!
Stef x

Thursday, 24 September 2015

CC&S #143 Sketch: Snowflake Circles

If I ever make this card again, I'll know what to do differently! It was such a faffy card to make and when I first saw Lizy's sketch for this week at CAS Colours and Sketches, I hadn't envisaged making such a complicated card!

I began by sticking a square of snowflake patterned paper to the front of my card blank and printing the sentiment onto it. I chose my snowflake dies and punches but unfortunately had to choose slightly larger circle dies than I would have liked to allow the flakes some movement! The snowflakes are double-sided and I was going to stick the paper layers together before cutting and then realised that if I wanted to attach thread through the middle that I would have to cut them separately and then try and stick them together! Silly me also chose metallic thread which slipped all over the place when trying to sandwich the various layers together!

I need a piece of card on the inside to cover the thread and because the circles were bigger I decided to place it so that it forms a shadow to the outer circle. The whole card did take me much longer than expected but I quite like the finished design so maybe I might make something similar another day!

Supplies Used:
Dies: Snow Flakes (Die'sire), Standard Circles Large (Spellbinders Nestabilities)
Punch: Large snowflake (XCut)
Sentiment Font: Allegro
Snippets: Snowflake patterned paper, Metallic papers and thread, Pale blue cardstock

I would also like to enter my card into this week's challenge #165 at CASology where their cue word is 'Circles'. I hope Lizy's seemingly straight forward sketch doesn't lead you astray too far? Can't wait to see what you come up with. It's my turn to host again next month and I'm just finalising my colour choices and sketch designs.

Looking forward to sharing them with you and seeing your entries this week.
Stef x

Thursday, 17 September 2015

CC&S #142 Colours: BasicGrey Trees

This week I decided to make the card that I wanted to make for CAS Colours and Sketches without worrying too much whether I could combine the colours with another challenge and am quite pleased with the result!

I always struggle with matching the chosen colours as I don't own any SU products but sincerely hope that the BasicGrey papers I've chosen this week are near enough. I used to love their papers and decided it was high time to get them out again. The trees have been die-cut from a set where they are designed to overlap as layers of the same tree but they look just as great as single trees on their own. I bought the set several years ago but, to my shame, have never used it, so again, I thought I would give it an airing! The trunks have been cut from my snippets box and the trees overlaid on a circle die-cut from the same set of papers. The sentiment is computer-generated and printed directly onto the card.

I would like to enter my card into the challenge at 'Seize The Birthday' where they have an 'Anything Goes' challenge as I have made the card for my brother's birthday in a couple of week's time.

I notice that Darnell is having another NBUS challenge over on her blog so, as my card qualifies, I would also like to enter it there.

Supplies Used:
Tree Dies: Christmas Stacker Tree (Dee's Distinctively)
Circle Die: Standard Circles Large (Spellbinders)
Patterned Papers: Two Scoops (BasicGrey)
Sentiment Font: Cold Spaghetti!
Snippets: Chocolate Brown cardstock

Can't wait to see what you create with these lovely colours from Lizy!
Stef x

Thursday, 10 September 2015

CC&S #141: Flowers Sketch

Lizy is our hostess at CAS Colours and Sketches this month and this week her inspirational sketch makes it very easy to create a quick CAS card.

For my background piece, I used one of my Cosmic Shimmer Mist sprayed pieces of cardstock in green with touches of blue and yellow that have merged together to make even more interesting green shades. The gold mica forms a lovely pattern by scrunching clim film over the top while it's still wet. I love getting messy with this technique, it just needs patience whilst it dries.

I interpreted the sector of the circle at the top by using a circular sentiment printed in gold. The poppy flowers have been simply die-cut in white cardstock.

I would like to enter my card into challenge #240 at Less Is More this week where the theme is to use the colours green and gold and very little else!

Supplies Used:
Shimmer Mists: Meadow Lush, Aqua Lagoon, Mango Blaze (Cosmic Shimmer)
Die: Prim Poppy (Memory Box)
Snippets: Circle sentiment

Just beginning to catch up now after my busy summer but still got loads to do!
See you all next week!

Stef x