Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Stamp Magic

I played a while longer with the Mini Memories set on Saturday night. I could have gone on until the early hours but I knew it would take me an age to clear away and I needed to make a reasonable start if I was going to make it to the show on Sunday.

This was the last Beautiful Dream card and my favourite so far.

I stamped and masked to give the impression of floating bubbles and wanted to make the swirly border look like hanging vines. It's hard to tell because of my poor photography but there is a subtle background made from the flourish stamp in the set. The background was made with Distress Inks after I was inspired by Lynn Robinson-Hunter's tags at the Graphicus open day. She has achieved some really rich shading on her cards which I'd love to copy. I think there are a couple more of the inks I need in my arsenal before I can even get close.

Anyway, it was a longish journey to Stamp Magic but I was really pleased I'd gone. Highlights had to be Once Upon a Stamp and Crafty Individuals. There were a couple of CI stamps on my wishlist but I talked myself out of them in the end. Not a bad thing after my recent spending. Curiously, I noticed that some motifs from the Crafty Secrets sets I'd just bought also appeared on some of the Crafty Individuals stamps. I asked if there was a connection between the two companies but apparently not.

Overall my purchases were modest. I picked up a handful of Versacolor cubes in colours I felt were missing from my range but will have to experiment with those. I stocked up on EZ Mount and bought a pack of mixed tags. As usual, the biggest shortage is not materials or inspiration but TIME!

Saturday, 21 June 2008

Beautiful Dream

Well, tomorrow is Stamp Magic at Doncaster. It's one of the treats I promised myself to get me through this long school term. But I'm still wavering. I've spent far too much on stamps this month already and I'm bound to get found out soon. But if I miss it when do I get to ogle some more serious rubber? Maybe I could go and content myself with demos and soaking up all the inspiration.

I love my mini adventures (thinking of creating a new blog around them). The more obscure the destination and the more forms of transport needed the better. Doncaster is not the most inspiring of places but I do like the Dome and I really enjoyed the last Stamp Magic.

This week I've had another delivery from the US. Crafty Secrets Clear Art Stamps are really something special. I got two sets as I had a voucher from those generous Ebay people. Tonight I've had my first play with the Mini Memories set. They are just right for ATCs and make me want to chop up all my cardstock into little pieces! These two are literally my first impressions.

The card on the left was made by brayering Butterscotch and Wild Plum dye inks over Versamark. The one on the right was stamped partly in Versamark over a sponged background and then embossed in white, sprayed with Deep Plum Glimmer Mist, then overstamped with Wild Plum. I think I'm going to get a lot of mileage out of these stamps.

Friday, 20 June 2008

Special Birthdays

My teenage boys like to take the mickey out of my hobbies from time to time so coming up with cards for them which hit the spot is quite a challenge. So I was chuffed to find some great stamps by Jill Penney and Daniel Torrente. I had the stamps sent direct from Stampotique in Arizona. They are lovely people and I got great personalised customer service. The stamps do all the work themselves really. This one was for my son Peter's 16th birthday.

The background papers, ribbon and swirly motif were a free download; the grungy 16 was printed from my computer and mounted on a kebab stick! The jigsaw pieces were stamped with a damask stamp and coated with Ranger's Crackle Accents and the page finished with a shrinkie.
This one was for my 'adopted' daughter, Anne, who's a bit of an artist. The stamp is Stampotique again. The background papers are K&Co Scarlet's Letter, a pad I was desperate to own but have barely used. Sound familiar?

Thursday, 19 June 2008

Pop Ups

I'm into pop up cards at the moment. They appeal to me on several levels. The ingenius design is wonderful in itself. The way the card is made from one piece and stands in a perfect position even after I've given it a good mangling. And then the diamond space to work on. Images normally occupying a square somehow offer a fresh perspective on the diamond. And the size allows you to use smaller elements as you might in an ATC but still making a proper card in its own right. I think I might have a session cutting all my favourite card into the perfect size diamonds for pop ups.

This is one I made for my friend Jennifer's birthday. I finished it with Iridescent Gold Glimmer Mist. I gasped briefly as the ink in the image started to bleed but then decided I really liked it that way and might experiment with this effect on purpose next time.

Thursday, 5 June 2008


I haven't really gone down the ATC route before but I have a new stamp to play with and this felt like the right way to try it out. The first attempt went well so I kept going and finally came up with quite a little gallery.

I started with the new stamp but added lots more as I gained momentum. Not sure why things went my way today but of everything I made only one card went in the bin. There were a couple that weren't brilliant and several that I'll do slightly differently next time but one I was really pleased with.