Monday 30 November 2015

Man Card Monday

Good Morning Ladies,

Here we are at the start of another week, I can't believe that in a couple of weeks we will be in December!
Today's fantastic man card has been created by Michele, I think this image would be very popular with a lot of teen boys too!  I love the sentiment too, I think I could do with a reboot!
Thanks so much for sharing this man card with us Michele, I hope that Phil likes it and has a fab birthday today! xxx

I hope that all of you have a fabulous week ahead, have you all got your advent calendars ready?
We have handmade ones that we refill each year, it's a major task filling all 6 calendars, remembering who likes which chocolates etc.

Love and Hugs

Sunday 29 November 2015

Another Of my beautiful birthday cards

Good Sunday Morning,

I hope that your weekend is going well, we made a start on the dreaded Christmas shopping, making the most of a couple of the 'Black Friday' deals!
Although this year the girls don't seem to have any ideas for their 'Santa List'!

Today's gorgeous card was designed and created for me by our lovely Karen, I love everything about this card Karen, I can see you have used Creative Expressions Maidenhair Fern, Delicate Daisy Open Petals and Pierced Tag Dies to create this gorgeous design, I love the 60's 'feel' of the embossing folder that you have used too.  The heart warming sentiment your wrote inside was just so thoughtful too.
Thank you so much for taking the time to make such a beautiful card Karen xxxx

Congratulations Patricia on becoming the newest member of the Platinum Owners Club, I hope that this machine brings you many years of die cutting happiness! I have to say after watching both john and Julia using it on TV it looks like it cuts really well!

Today I hope to be finishing off a special post for the blog, which may hopefully be a new feature, depending on how popular it is of course.

I look forward to seeing all of you that pop in today, I am open to suggestions for new features ladies, I can't help but think that maybe you are all a little 'bored' of the current format, although I do understand that this is a busy time of year for everyone.
I will pop in later to see what you have all been up to today.
Love and Hugs

Saturday 28 November 2015

Mixed Craft Saturday

Janet's  Pretty Decorated Box

Jess's Soap Tortes 

Myra's fabulous Crafts

Good Saturday Morning,
I hope you all have a lovely weekend planned and that you have some pennies left after shopping for all of the 'Black Friday' bargains yesterday!  I think that most places are having 'Black weekends' though!  I find it odd they we even 'follow' the tradition here as it is traditionally the first Friday after Thanksgiving and that is the time that most Americans start shopping for Christmas and therefore the first day that some companies go into the 'Black'! 

On to today's Mixed crafts......
First up is Janet's beautifully decorated box, I love the gorgeous paper that you have used and the 
paper doily with the pearl string and stunning glazed flower really do compliment the paper perfectly, you have finished the box so perfectly with that gorgeous ribbon and bow trim.
Thank you so much Janet for sending me your crafts to share with everyone in the cafe, you are very much in our thoughts and prayers at the moment my lovely, I know this is a very sad time of year for you, sending loving hugs xxxx

Next up we have the beautiful Flower Soap Tortes, that have been expertly made by our very own Jess, I love how you have made them in Pink, red, white, burgundy and purple, there is a colour there for just about everyone.  I bet they look beautiful tied in a bit of cellophane with a matching colour bow, you are very skilled Jess, please could you let us know how you make them?
Thank you for sending the photo of them in for me to share with everyone xxxx

Last but not least we have a fabulous selection of hand made goodies from Myra, the planter made from pegs that Myra pegged onto a tuna tin (I think) and then painted that lovely matt blue is just incredible to see in 'real life', something simple but hugely effective, then there is the Sticky Note Holder that has been made using dies and decorated with a beautiful butterfly, again so clever and so useful.  I didn't ask about the little bobbin with a safety pin in it, but to me it looks like one of those fabulous photo holders for your desk! There were so many examples on show at the retreat that Myra had made, all totally genius in design, thank you Myra for your inspiration. xxxx

I am off to hide out in my craft room for a while, it needs a good tidy (again) and I also have a load of stuff to move back in from the dining room where Pat and Sue and I crafted this week, Pat and I were very productive yesterday, Pat did lots of stamping and colouring in and I got a card made,
that's almost unheard of when we get together!
Love and hugs

Friday 27 November 2015

Festive Friday

Anne's Gorgeous Snowman card Silver

Anne's gorgeous snowman card red

The Cutest Christmas Elf

Good Friday Morning Ladies,

Well ladies we have a line up to bring a smile to anyone's face today, two stunning cards from
Anne and the adorable Harry (Norah's Grandson) dressed as the Cutest Christmas Elf!

Anne's Easel cards have been designed using Creative Expressions (CE) Snowflake Border & Santa's Sleigh dies and the Holly Swirl A4 Embossing Folder also from Creative Expressions and
Spellbinders Floral Oval die to frame the aperture.
I love the Snow-Couple you have used in both of these cards Anne, I am also quite surprised in what a difference adding the little touch of red into the second card makes, it makes it look quite different, I love both of them, that Snowflake Border will feature on many Christmas cards this year I believe, it's just so stunning, cut in any colour.
Thank you so much Anne for sending the 'pins' to me, I managed to 'save the image' to a folder and upload it that way to the blog, so any more that you want to share you can send this way, I will try and upload the Minions ones again using the same method.
Thanks once again Anne xxxxx

Now onto that 'gorgeous wee elf' oh isn't he just so adorable, that beautiful smile that could melt any heart, he is the picture of happiness and looks so healthy, Kirsten, Harry is so gorgeous, how wonderful it must be to wake up to that smiling little face every day, thank you so very much for allowing all of us to enjoy Harry's little smile, that outfit is just too cute! 
Norah, thank you so much for sending me the photograph, it will bring a smile to every face that peeks through that window today. xxxxx

Paul is going in to work today to cover a shift for someone, I have Pat coming over to play, which I am very much looking forward too, Sue came yesterday and the time just flew, she barely got her craft stuff out and it was time for her to pack up, it was so lovely to catch up though.

We went into school last night to 6th Form Open evening and guess what, they have changed the whole A level system once again, there is no 'AS' level now, most of the courses are two years long with a huge exam at the end of the two years, I am not too sure if this will work, Sophie and Lucy's year are to be Guinea pigs!  The bit I don't quite grasp is that the head teacher spent half an hour telling us about the A level results and how they were in the top 25% of schools, so why change things?

Have a fantastic friday ladies, I hope you all 'bag some bargains'!!
Love and hugs
Sandra xxxxx

Thursday 26 November 2015

A little Thursday Sparkle x

 Good Morning Ladies,

Today you have I am sharing one of my cards with you, Inspired by John Lockwood, he was fantastic on Hochanda yesterday, he shared so much useful information, he made me really want to buy some Colour Cloud Inks !

Onto today's card, I started with an 8 X 8 inch card blank from Anna Marie Designs, I matted it with some Creative Expressions (CE) Iris Foundation Cardstock, and then a piece of white card embossed with (CE) Eternity Embossing Folder and then matted that over the Iris.
I then took another piece of White card and cut 3 (CE) Quilted Blocks Striplet Die cuts, I then used Iris card to cut a mat to layer the striplet die cut on to, this had a small border of the Iris card showing all the way around, I then die cut 3 of the striplet outline die cuts out of some double sided adhesive sheet, put it into the centre of the Iris striplet die cut and covered it with Cosmic Shimmer Iced Snow, I then added plenty of Cosmic Shimmer Dries Clear Glue to the White Striplet die cut and placed it onto the Iris mat, I repeated this for other two panels, and then glues these to my card base. (you must use plenty of glue to adhere the white striplet to the Iris panel as it has to adhere to the Iced Snow)
I took the Ornate Oval Just for You Die and cut the outer frame, the decorative Inner and the sentiment out of white card, then another of the larger ovals out of the Iris card, this has a piece of Double sided adhesive to it and some Iced Snow, I mounted the sentiment and the decorative inner onto the Iced snow covered oval, I put some double sided foam on the underside of the outer white frame, added a little Cosmic Shimmer glue for extra adhesion and placed it onto the Iris oval.  I added some pearls all around the frame (although Paul managed to shift one out of place whilst photographing), I then added a few adhesive pearls to the Quilted Box die cuts, a satin ribbon bow, with a pearl dazzler in the centre and a tulle bow behind.
I finished the top and bottom of the card with a strip of pearl flowers.
I hope you like the card, I love the sparkle!
Have a lovely day,
Love and Hugs

Wednesday 25 November 2015

Jean's pretty aqua and white

Good Morning Ladies,

I was looking through the files last night and I found this gorgeous card that has been designed by our Jean, it is just beautiful.
I am hoping that Jean will be calling in later to tell us all about how to create this gorgeous card, the lattice work looks almost Moroccan, the touch of that pretty lace beside the beautiful flowers just looks so elegant.
Hurry up Jean, I want to hear all about how to make it!!!
Thank you so much for sending it to me Jean and sorry for not showing sooner xxxx

Well I am hoping to see one of my two Graces today, Sue should be coming over to play today, Pat has got other plans today, rushing around for her friend that is really poorly, I hope you get everything sorted quickly so that you can off to meet your ladies for lunch!
Pat and I are going to meet up on Friday to craft, I can't go two weeks without seeing my girls!
Anyway I must dash (if only) hahaha and get ready for Sue arriving, must hoover the red carpet and put the flags out!

Have a lovely day ladies,
Love and Hugs,
Sandra xxxx

Tuesday 24 November 2015

Sheila's beautiful card for Nikki

Good Morning Ladies,

I am so excited to share with you today the card that Sheila made for her beautiful Nikki, we are also very privileged that Sheila has also been kind enough to share the heartfelt verse that she wrote inside the card.

Sheila your card is so very pretty, the Ballerina is so delicate and detailed, it is I believe a Cheery Lynn die, the Ballet shoes are also Cheery Lynn dies.  Your tiny pink bow is so perfect.
I love the background you have created, I am not sure if it is Sue's Rose Embossing folder, letter pressed and Iced snow added, I love the frame that you have created to place the Ballerina upon, like an elaborate mirror in as dance studio, the little touches like those tiny butterflies and the little floral die cuts top and bottom of the focal element really make your card stand out, it is beautiful Sheila,
the verse you have written is just so beautiful, I bought a tear to my eye, so heartfelt and so true.
thank you so much for sharing it with us xxx

Not much happening in our house today, trying to regain normality after the weekend, its amazing how your sleeping pattern returns so quickly, we have some research to do into Sixth form choices for the girls, their school has a great sixth form which is very good, it will be good in that the girls will be familiar with both the staff and school but the hard thing is working out if that's the best option over all, the hard thing is that neither of them knows what the want to do!   The decision will ultimately be up to them but we have to lay out all of the possibilities before them!

Have a fabulous day everyone,
Love and hugs

Monday 23 November 2015

Man Card Monday

Good Monday Morning Ladies,
Boy this has been a long weekend, with Paul either at work or sleeping, so I have felt like I had to keep 'shushing' everyone, trouble is our bedroom is the first room next to the lounge and kitchen, everyone has to walk past it to go anywhere, the trouble is Paul hasn't done night shifts for a couple of years and the girls have just gotten used to being noisy, be it singing, play fighting or their main love playing their music quite loud, (I enjoy their music choice so I don't mind) it was Adele yesterday!  The girls are also extremely stressed with exams and revising, Diane I am sure you haven't forgotten what it's like, I am trying to keep them positive, trouble is I remember only to well walking into that Exam Hall and feeling like I had remembered nothing! I think it's made worse when they sit and think too much, yesterday's gem was "we have to go through this every year for the next three years" which is very true!
Although I don't ever remember my mum and dad helping me with revision, (Sophie was in hysterics on Friday night, she asked me to help her with her Spanish Speaking test, I had to ask the questions, well I was trying my best, but my goodness its a hard language to get the gist of 'v's sound like 'b's, or is it the other way  and two l's together make a 'y' sound, well you can imagine my pronunciation error's) but it did make it fun!

Anyway on to today's cards, they are of course made by our very talented Anne, I do love the embossing folder you have used, it looks 'quilted' almost, you too are very good at combining your colours and matching them to your focal elements, both of the cards would be perfect for men, particularly if they are interested in sailing or anything Nautical.
Thank you Anne for sharing your fabulous man cards with all of us xxxx
I think I am about ready for a 'top up' of man cards, if any of you have any that they would like to share.

I will leave you with a stand on the 'soapbox' I am not sure how all of you feel about the news yesterday that the Cinema giants have pulled the 'political correctness' card and banned an advert due to be aired on the week before Christmas, the problem they have with it is that the advert recites 'The Lord's Prayer' which could be 'offensive' although the advertising body deemed it fine, its promoting the power of prayer, something that I would imagine everyone would have turned to at one time or another.
As a child we recited 'The Lords Prayer' every morning in assembly and sang hymns, something that I used to love.  Would it really be that offensive?? When you think of some of the things we have had to change to accomodate others!   Soapbox stowed back under the stairs should any of you need it!
Love and hugs

Sunday 22 November 2015

Another Beautiful Birthday Card & ADCD Description!

My Wonderful Birthday Card from Michele xx

A disorder that we all suffer from at times!

Good Sunday Morning Ladies,
Oooh it has got sooooo Chilly!!!! 
I was so cold in that big old bed all on my own, and Milo just would not settle, I think it was a combination of the howling wind and Paul not being in bed, Milo usually snuggles up on the bed next to Paul, which to me is so hilarious because Paul was the 'least keen' to have a cat when it was discussed, but he spends so much time playing with them and Milo is like Paul's 'shadow'!  So I don't think I got 1 hour of complete sleep!

Now onto today's card, This fabulous card, designed by our Michele was very apt as we had just arrived home from holiday when I got to open my cards and the piles of ironing were a very prominent feature in our house, so this card did bring a smile to my face, I could just about squeeze the door shut and forget about the laundry for the day, so thank you Michele for such a fun card, it really bought a smile to my face xxxx

Michele also sent me this hilarious and very true poster, I know that I can spend a whole day in my craft room doing many different things yet have no 'card' to show for it at the end of the day, but I do have a basket full of PHD's (projects half done)! These are the days that we learn new things have a dabble into something new, getting your hands dirty!  I think that there are a few of you ladies amongst us that turn their hands to many new things, we only have to look back at the Mixed craft days to see that!  
Thanks for sending this in Michele xxxx

Our home has been smelling delicious this last week, what with Margaret P's Boiled fruit cake last weekend, which didn't last very long, I think I use that recipe for our Christmas cake, putting glazed fruit and nuts on top 'Genoa' cake style, which is generally preferred to the iced and marzipaned traditional cake in our house!
Friday night I made Margaret's P's Lemon & Coconut Drizzle cake (well in fact I made two) as the one that Margaret made me for my birthday didn't last long enough.  
Tonight the smell of the bananas getting a little too ripe in the fruit bowl had me searching for Banana cake recipes, I found one on Pinterest for Crumble Topped Banana Muffins, you make the muffin mix and then make a cinnamon flavoured crumble topping to sprinkle on before baking, oh they smell yummy, a good way to used up the bananas too as I am not keen on them once they get past being 'green tinged', I don't like them when they start to get brown spots! 
Do any of you have a tried and tested recipe for Viennese Fingers/Melting Moments please????  I haven't been able to find one for months and I am suffering withdrawals. x

Saba, I am hoping that you had a trouble free journey home, I am sure that Peter was so very pleased to have you back beside him, thank you so very much for making the retreat part of your scheduled visit home,
you have no idea how much in meant to me that you found the time to come, It was such an absolute pleasure to meet such a kind hearted, caring and totally hilarious lady xxxx 

Thank you all for your continued support, I hope that you are all still enjoying your visits???

Love and Hugs to all,
ps.. Good luck to all of you in Sue's Launch drawer today! xxx

Saturday 21 November 2015

Mixed Craft Saturday

Janet's 'Proggy' Owl
Brenda Littlelamb's Decorated Mirror

Hazel & Patricia's Wirework Pendants
Good Saturday Morning Ladies,
Welcome to yet another Mixed Craft Saturday and what an amazing range of crafts we have today!
First up today we have Janet's absolutely cute and cuddly 'Proggy' Owl, I watched a programme
about making these on Honchanda , I think the company is called 'Craft yourself silly', it was a lovely lady, so much fun to watch, talking you through making these darling animals and rugs, cushions etc,
they involve quite a bit of work from what I could make out, cutting the felt into strips and then pushing it through the 'canvas', I have to say I didn't realise they were so plump and gorgeous until seeing yours close up Janet, have you named him yet?
Thank you so much for sharing him with all of us, or is it a she?? xxx
Next up we have another of Brenda's amazing 'clay creations' this time she has created a beautiful mirror, which she has them embellished with butterflies and flowers, I can also see that Brenda has also put texture onto the surface of the clay too.  I love the sentiment that Brenda has used,
"Enjoy the little things in life for one day you will look back and realise that they were the big things"
I am sure it is a very true saying and a very apt phrase to put on a mirror. It looks like you have used Spellbinders 'Bitty Blossoms' to decorate your mirror Brenda, I love the purple you have picked to contrast the grey of the mirror.  Thank you so much for sharing yet another of your amazing craft creations with us Brenda xxx
Last but not least we have an assortment of Wirework pendants that have been cleverly created by Patricia and Hazel, each one of them is totally individual, and very colourful too, the ladies can create them in what ever colour you may require and amazingly they donate all of the money they make for selling these pendants to Charity, now I know how much work goes into making one of these and how much your fingers ache after a while, so hats off to you both, you are doing an amazingly generous thing, thank you so much for allowing me to share your Wonderful Wirework pendants xxx
I hope that you have enjoyed the wonderful range of crafts on offer today,
Love and Hugs

Friday 20 November 2015

Maureen's Peace on Earth

Good Morning Ladies,

The weekend is almost upon us once again, this weeks feel like they are getting shorter, there must only be about five weeks until the 'big day' is upon us!
Our weekends plans have been turned on there head, Paul has been asked to change his shift pattern for the weekend, he now has to work Friday, Saturday and Sunday night, thankfully the girls football match has been cancelled, as it was an away game and Paul will be sleeping off his night shift, the hardest thing is keeping the house quiet enough for him to sleep, you would be surprised how noisy two 15 year olds can be, particularly when then are 'trying' to be quiet!

On to today's card, when you first look you think my what a pretty winter scene, a gorgeous Christmas card, but when you take time and look a little deeper, you can see the pure genius skill that has used to create the amazing effect of the light from the North Star illuminating the trees below!
It's Our Maureen that is has created this masterpiece!  I am only guessing that Maureen has used lighter colour paint or pens to create the effect of the light shining on the trees and snow, making them almost sparkle in the light of the star, Maureen I am in awe of your colouring skills!
Thank you so much for sharing your lovely card with all of us xxxx

Temperatures are set to drop so best get your thermal drawers out girls, time to layer up!
Funny, I never think of wearing thermal knickers myself but I insist on the girls wearing it for
football and a white thermal under their school blouse as they have to wait in the cold for a bus early in the morning, thankfully unlike some teenagers my girls do wear coats!
Do Damart still exist? I seem to remember joking about wearing their underwear years ago but after spending one too many winters sat in that wheelchair I think I may well be making a purchase, the trouble is when you are sat in there you aren't moving around to keep warm, I am sure they look very modern these days, but to be perfectly honest I don't really care, I need warmth, mind you I think Margaret's bags will be well used for that very thing this winter, a couple of minutes in the microwave for a couple of hours warmth! The girls have asked me to make the small one's up so that they can use them for Hand Warmers when they leave the house in the morning or a warm up after football at the weekends, so once again we all thank you Margaret xxxx
That's all from me for today,
Love and hugs

Thursday 19 November 2015

Janet's Autumn collection

 Good Morning Ladies,
Today we have a gorgeous selection of cards that have been designed by Our Janet, what a gorgeous display of cards, such a variety of cards for all age ranges, and those Tags, oh Janet they are so 'Classy', they look very 'High-End', you could put 5 or 10 of those in a pack and they would sell like hot cakes!
I love the Grand Decorative Squares Handbag Janet, perfect for those young ladies, all in all a really beautiful range of cards, thank you so much for sharing them with us. xxx

The weather gave us a bit of a break yesterday for a few hours, but the wind paid us another visit last night,
I am expecting it again tonight as its recycling day, the wind always blows on recycle days! I believe we are in for a big dip in temperature tomorrow and across the weekend, we have been spoilt so far with it being the warmest November for many years, I don't mind it being cold, I think we need the cold weather to clear away all the bugs and things that linger in the muggy warm air!  I can live without the ice though, I have enough trouble keeping upright as it is!

Did you all watch Julia on Hochanda? the new Platinum looks pretty good, I know its early days, but it looks very sturdy, they were selling some old Spellbinder dies though weren't they, they were fairly cheap though.
I was surprised to see that the Post and Packaging on the Platinum was £7.95, I know that its huge, but that's a huge cost when you think of the £2.99 that C & C charge, I believe that Hochanda did start out being slightly cheaper than C&C but slowly its crept up and up.  I think that they have reduced the price of their monthly membership too, I am sure I heard the chap say last night that it was £6.95(I was watching in bed so I could have heard wrong)!  I will say that Christine has the Platinum on her Hope & Chances website for £124.95 and there is no postage at all, I can totally recommend Christine's shop too, super fast delivery, always!
Do any of you watch The Craft Channel ? I have seen a couple of shows, but just not inspirational at all and I think that the break in their schedule helps either, its often when you sit down at lunchtime that you switch on the TV for a bit of Inspiration and it has finished.  I tend to watch Hochanda most but there are too many car cleaning shows or those blooming floating candles! I think they have shaken C&C into mixing their line up up a bit, I have 6 monthly credits of £10 to use, but you can still see the regular Tattered Lace/Tonic appearing every Pick of the day/week show!
Well, I didn't get my Christmas cards started yesterday, so that's the plan for today, I am hoping to see Sue and Pat today or tomorrow as we didn't get together yesterday as Sue was poorly with a migraine and Paul and I had an appointment at school early afternoon, we have asked them to write a letter to support the fact that Paul having to go away for 6 months while they are doing their GCSE's would have a negative effect, putting pressure on them to help me when their sole concentration should be on studying for their exams.
Poor Lucy is really stressed at the moment, struggling to get all of the revision done for their upcoming Mock Exams starting in a week or so.  This will only get worse when they have the actual GCSE's next year.
I am trying all kinds of calming ideas but would be grateful for any advice that any of you may have.
I hope you all have a good day,
Love and hugs

Wednesday 18 November 2015

 Good Morning Ladies,
Exciting day today, Sue and Pat are coming over to craft (well chat and craft)!  I think weather permitting, Paul may disappear to the Allotment!

I have another of my cards to show you today, this one has been made using Anna Marie Design card (both from set 3), I put the pretty card at the top and the 'Linen' look card at the bottom,  I divided the two with a pretty Crocheted Lace ribbon that I bought from The Works, I ran a matching colour narrow velvet ribbon through the centre of the ribbon to tie the colours of the card together.
I created the flowers using Cream Felt and Spiral Blossom 1 and 3 dies from Spellbinders, I didn't have a matching colour felt so I used some Mica Powders (Ranger Perfect Pearls Capuccino) to brush over the felt to change the colour so that it matches the colour tone of the card on two of them, the larger one I left cream, I then added a little brown pearl to the centre of each flower, I then cut a Cheery Lynn Flourish die, Spellbinders Foliage die and Poppy stamps Fern die to create some interest underneath the flowers.
I them cut a small frame from Creative Expressions Greek Islands 'Rhodes' Die and added then Brittania Dies 'Happy Birthday' sentiment to the centre of it and two brown pearls to finish the card off.
I hope you like it, its slightly more autumnal colours than yesterday.

Have you all seen Julia on the Hochanda show selling the Platinum machine? I would be interested in seeing it in action.
I must dash today as I have to make Minestrone Soup for our lunch today.
It was lovely to see Janice popping in yesterday, back from a busy season and a much deserved holiday.
I will stop by later to see what you have all been up to.
Love and Hugs
Sandra xxxxxx

Tuesday 17 November 2015

Box of thanks!

Good Morning Ladies,

Today I have one of my own cards to share with you, I actually sat playing in my craft room this afternoon and this is the result.
I wanted to make a card to say 'thank you' and I wanted it to include flowers as I haven't used flowers too much lately, my next thought was a colour theme, so I looked at what flowers I had
and then looked to see what card stock I had to match up with them, so I decided to go with soft pastel colours. (you see my flowers seemed to have disappeared while we were on holiday this year along with a lot of crocheted lace ribbon, I then discovered that my darling daughter, who has never made a 'handmade anything' in her life, decided that it would be nice to make a bunting banner for Josh's brothers engagement party, you can imagine how long it was, all trimmed nicely with lace and flowers from Wild Orchid Crafts)!!!
Anyway, back to the card, I had all the bits in front of me and started playing around, I thought about saying thank you and gifts of thanks and that's how this theme evolved.
I used Spellbinders squares to cut the box, I then cut a matching lid, I wrapped some satin white ribbon around them to look like a gift wrapped box. I created a white card base approx 7 1/4 X 7 1/4 inches and matted it with some of the soft aqua Anne Marie Designs card, then a matt of white card that had been embossed with Crafts-too Daisy Lattice embossing folder.
I added some foam tape on the back of the 'gift box' and adhered it to the card base, I then added foam tape to one side of the lid and some Cosmic shimmer Glue to the other, I placed the glued side onto the top corner of the gift box, the foam pad then kept the lid at the same height as the box, I positioned the lid so that it looked like the lid was lifting off and then arranged the variety of flowers to look like they are spilling out of the box. I then tied a bow with matching ribbon and made a little flower with a (CE) Peony die and popped a pearl in the centre to finish it off. I cut the 'Thank you' with a Cottage Cutz die.
I hope you like the card that I created.
How are you all liking Sue's new dies? I have my favourites, one of them being the ''Buckle Bars'',
I wasn't sure when I saw them just as a picture, then Sue used one of them on a card today and I was hooked, so a must have for me I think.  I would love to hear what your favourites are too.
After reading some of the comments yesterday I have popped a couple of photo's below, one of Myra's snowflakes (using lolly sticks no pegs) but you can get the idea, so sparkly in real life, they would make great Christmas Fridge Magnets or card holders when made with pegs.
Also there is a photo of the Hoods that Lilian hand makes, a white one though not blue!
I hope you all have a lovely day,
Love and Hugs
Myra's Snowflakes (not peg ones though)
Lilian's Hoods (not blue though)

Monday 16 November 2015

'Fin-tastic Fun for Monday

Good Monday Morning Ladies,
Today's 'male' themed card is this hilarious creation from our Michele, I love the sentiment "Hope your day is fin-tastic", its sure to bring a smile to a huge range of ages!
Michele you have an amazing eye for combining different card stock patterns and colours, your cards are all really well balanced and so colourful.   Thank you so much for sharing your fantastic cards with all of us xxx

It's so heart warming to see the how the many countries and religions that have come together sharing the grief of those who have lost love ones, also showing this evil group that we will all stand together against them.  Although I have to say I don't much like the thought of being 'at war' ures with anyone.  It has been heartbreaking to see photographs of those that have lost their lives.

I hope that the weather eases for some of you, I did see some flurries of snow forecast for the higher ground in Scotland! It's the rain that everyone can do with out, I was really shocked to see
the pictures of the floods around Bradford I guess it shows how little rain we need these days before we suffer floods.
Well I hope you all have a good week, I will be back in later this morning.
Everything has been set up for you this morning, I thought you would be way to busy getting to the ferry Janet, you must have had to leave 'French Dobby' behind too, I am excited to see what 'West Riding Dobby' leaves for us for breakfast.
Today you have fresh Banana & Oat Muffins, Crumpets, Waffles and fresh bread for those that fancy something simple!  One of Margaret P's boiled fruit cakes in the cabinet, (the name does not do that cake justice) it is a moist and delicious fruit cake.
Love and hugs
Sandra xxxxx

Sunday 15 November 2015

Sunday....Another of my beautiful birthday cards!

Good Sunday Morning Ladies,

I take great pleasure in sharing with you today another of my beautiful birthday cards, I still can't believe how lucky I was in receiving so many, we have had one on show every Sunday for weeks!
This gorgeous card has been designed and created by Maria, the photograph does not do the card justice, it is so pretty and sparkly, I cannot believe how much work that has gone into creating this card Maria, cutting all of those pieces of paper and mounting them with perfect precision, each gap is exactly the same width and along each of those little edges is glitter, that sparkles everytime the light hits it, I also love the super cute image in the centre that Maria has mounted onto perfectly matching card, I absolutely love the card Maria, the background design is really inspired and I will be having a go at it myself along with Pat's idea on Thursday, it may encourage me to start using the mountain of patterned paper and card stock that I have hoarded!
Thank you so much Maria xxxxxx

I would like to wish Patricia a hugely successful Soup and Sandwich Fundraiser today, you have put an enormous amount of work into all of the things that you have prepared, I have no doubt that you will sell every last item! Good luck xxxx

Janet I would like to wish you a very safe journey home, make sure you have your Passport handy, I think you will be needing a lot more than usual, I am sure that you used to have to cross a Border Control point some time after leaving Calais, I remember they gave the children free little bottles of Orangina! I am not sure if they will have reinstated this border, I personally think that they should reinstate them all, for our safety if nothing else. Any way I am sure Yvette will carry you and your haul of craft goodies home safely, (i hope you have put flat shoes on her, she will struggle in stilettos)! I hope you can check in tonight at the hotel to let us know you are safe.
Love and Hugs xxxx

Sue, I hope that your Jumble sale was a huge success, I bet you were exhausted at the end of the afternoon, I hope you didn't have too much left over to dispose of!  I hope you have given a huge boost to your funds, xxxx

I am sat waiting for Paul to get in from his night shift, oh I bet he will be freezing when he gets into bed after cycling home! I hope he brings me a cup of tea and a crumpet!
Love and hugs

Saturday 14 November 2015

Mixed Craft Saturday

Karen's Spring time Cross Stitch

Karen's Summer Cross Stitch

Karen's Autumn Cross Stitch

Karen's Winter Cross Stitch

Good Saturday Morning Ladies,

Unusually today all of the Crafts on display are from just one creator!!
I thought that the amount of work that had been put into creating these Cross Stitch 'works of art'
Karen is the creator of these absolutely mind blowing creations, the thing that amazes me is the amount of intricate detail that Karen has included in each of the four Seasons.
Karen explained that these were 4 years worth of Christmas gifts for her Sister In Law, who loves her garden, the characters are dressed to 'mimic' her Sister in law and her husband.
The Summer Cross Stitch is awaiting a new frame, as the kitchen has been decorated and you know what us girls are like for needing everything to match!
Thank you so much Karen or sharing these absolutely amazing works of art xxxx

I have to say that my heart goes out to the people of Paris today, last nights acts of terrorism have devastated the lives of so many, so very tragic, Janet get yourself home, right now, I was thinking of you last night my lovely.

I hope you all enjoy your weekend,
Love and hugs

Friday 13 November 2015

Festive Friday

Good Friday Morning Ladies,
Festive Friday is upon us once again, just to note that in 6 Fridays time it will be Christmas Eve !
Gosh that's quite scary, maybe I ought to get a proper start on my Christmas cards.
I was hoping to order a stamp from the lady that was going to do our Stampin Up demo at the retreat, by the way Hazel & Patricia to this very day that lady still hasn't bothered to answer my messages!  I wonder if she realises how much money she could have potentially made?!
I will order it on line I think.
Oh have any of you seen those New Shoe Dies and stamps from Heartfelt Creations, I think they were featured on the Sunrise Crafts website, not cheap, but really pretty!
Don't forge that Sue starts her New Die Launch today too, be good to see the lovely cards that she has created with the dies, you can getter a much better idea once you see them cut out and placed on a card. I am sure there will be something that we all want, Santa, are you listening?????

Now onto today's Gorgeous card, to me this card shouts 'high end', something you would see in the most 'chic' of boutiques! It has been designed and created by our Myra!
Myra has used Creative Expressions (CE) Poinsettia Mini Striplet Die, Filigree Poinsettia Die and Peace on Earth Die to create this fabulous festive card, I think that Myra has used Cosmic Shimmer Iced Snow to create some sparkle in the background of the card. A dazzler and some Comic shimmer PVA glue add the finishing touches to Myra's amazing card.
Myra, I love it, thank you so very much for sharing your card with all of us, we can all do with some inspiration xxxx  (apart from those super organised amongst you that have finished your 'c' cards)!!! xx

Tonight I have the pleasure of attending Sophie and Lucy's School's Charter Day Celebrations, Lucy will be playing in the Orchestra, there is also an awards ceremony, which I am very much looking forward to, I am hoping that Paul will finish in time to take us, if not Becca has offered to step in at the last minute, So I will be a beaming, very proud Mummy tomorrow!
Have a great day everyone,
Love and Hugs

Thursday 12 November 2015

A Thursday Treat from Pat


Good Morning Ladies,
Thank you first of all for all of the wonderfully thought provoking and heartfelt words yesterday, it was hugely comforting to read.
Now on to today's card, this amazing card has been designed by Pat, the background has the 'Bargello' look, although I think that it looks as though it has been created by weaving two different
papers together, I think that Pat has them stamped the stunning image onto the woven background and them cut it into squared and pieced it back together, I may be wrong though, I am sure that Pat will be in to tell us exactly how she created this card. I have to say that I really love the stamp that Pat has used, it's a really striking design. Thank you Pat for sharing with us xxxx

Hazel's Chemo Unit Goodies

The above picture is of the Assortment of goodies that Hazel took into the local Chemo Unit for
their Tea Trolley, the money for these (£188) I believe was raised at the Retreat by Hazel and Patricia selling their gorgeous Wirework Pendants, I am sure the patients will be hugely grateful for the donations for many weeks to come, Hazel also had the fantastic idea of using some of the money to provide small goodie bags for patients that would be in over Christmas, I think that it is a wonderful idea that would be hugely appreciated, well done girls, you deserve to be very proud of your achievements xxx

Sue, Pat and I had a fun day yesterday, we all took out Ultimate Pro boards to Pat's to sit and watch the new DVDs that Pat got when she bought her new Ultimate Pro, I will add that Pat's is a gorgeous purple sparkly ultimate, it was their special birthday edition!  We had a go at boxes and a Stepper card, mixed success first time round but we got fab results in the end! xxx

Now I would like to tell you about an idea I have been thinking about to raise some money for Charity, we often discuss baking and ask one another for recipes, they are sometimes hard to find
either on the blog or in an email so I had the idea of creating ......................

The Cotswold Crafter Café Recipe Book

Nothing too fancy, just a simply put together booklet featuring some of our favourite recipes, like
Margaret's Butter Biscuits, Margaret P's Boiled fruit Cake, Patricia's Scottish Tablet, to name but a few, we must all have at least one family favourite recipe.

Let me know your thoughts,
I will call in later,
Love and Hugs
Sandra xxxxxxxxxx

Wednesday 11 November 2015

We shall Remember Them

Good Morning Friends,
Today I am going to say very little,  I think that we will leave today's words to this Extract of
Laurence Binyon's Poem ''For the Fallen''.
It will be a hugely poignant day a Brize Norton, having been the home of so many repatriations.

Today's card (I have kept simple) has been made using a Sheena Douglas Poppy die and matching stamp combination, which I used to make the Poppy and the leaves are from that set too.
I matted and layered a white base card with black and red card, I then used a 'That Special Touch' Poppy Mask to give a little bit of interest in the back ground, keeping the theme.
I hope you like the card.
Love and Hugs

Tuesday 10 November 2015

Pretty Be Bunni card

Good Morning Ladies.

I am not sure where yesterday disappeared too? I got a bit of time in the Craft Room, then our Becca turned up, she wanted me to put big yellow bows on some black shoes and then fix a rounded collar and white buttons to a black top!  They are celebrating Children In Need at work on Friday and they are dressing as Disney Characters, Becca has chosen Minnie Mouse, she bought and Minnie Mouse red polka dot skirt on line and then asked me to fix the rest today, before I knew it it was teatime!!

Today's card is a quick one relatively, I used some Be Bunni papers from the Cd Rom from Crafters Companion, they are so pretty, I embossed some |Centura Pearl Card with the Crafts Too 'Daisy Lattice' A4 Embossing Folder for the top of the card and the Be Bunni papers on the bottom. I wrapped some pretty Green Crocheted ribbon over another piece of white Centura Pearl that and attached that over the join of the two pieces of card to form a border.
Then then cut the two largest dies from the Spellbinders Floral Oval set, matted those with some light green glitter card. on the top layer I added the 'Happy Birthday'die cut, I cut it with the same paper as the bottom of the card and layered it on top of some white card (slighlty Offset)
I had cut a mixture flowers from the same papers at the bottom of the card and adhered them to the side of the Die cuts with a Spellbinders Flourish die.
I hope you like the card,
I will be in later to catch up,

Monday 9 November 2015

Another of Anne's Male Cards

Good Monday Morning Ladies,
Today I am excited to share with you this fabulous Gaming themed Man card, it has been designed
and created by our Anne of course, it looks like it might be a 'La Pashe' style card.
All of the gaming pieces, Cards, Dominoes and Gambling Chips have been expertly decoupaged to give the card a real 3D feel.
This a fabulous Male themed Easel card Anne, thank you so much for sharing it with us xxxx

I hope that both Brenda and Myra had a fabulous birthday yesterday xx
I also have everything crossed that Karen's daughter gets her flight home tomorrow, the sooner she gets home the quicker you can stop worrying, thinking of you Michele xx
Not much planned here today,
Will call in later,
Love and Hugs
Sandra xxxxxx

Sunday 8 November 2015

Birthday Wishes

 Happy Birthday Brenda xxxx
Happy Birthday Myra xxx (sorry about photo)

Another of My Beautiful Birthday Cards

Good Sunday Morning Ladies,
First up today I would like to wish two very special ladies a very Happy Birthday xxxx
Brenda, I hope that you have an amazing day with family, I am sure they will spoil you just as you deserve,
I wish I could give you an 'actual' birthday hug, but arms comes a virtual one..lots of love xxxx

Myra, wishing you a very special day, I am sure that you too will have a wonderful day with your loved ones,
here is your 'virtual' hug, lots of love too xxxx

I have made you both a card, frustratingly though with Paul's long shifts and our town having no Post Office temporarily (co-op closed and new asda being built) I couldn't get them posted in time, they will be with you in the next few days though, you will be like me and have the pleasure of your birthday lasting weeks! 

Today's Beautiful birthday card was made for me by Hazel, I absolutely love it, Hazel has used the Majestic Monarch Butterfly Die from Creative Expressions and their Diagonals 'Love Heart' die too, to create this 
beautiful card, I think that the 'Special Friend' Die is from Crafters Companion, using the slight shadow behind the white die card really does make the die cut stand out, I love the card you made for me Hazel, thank you so much xxxxx

My poor girls were out in the most horrendous weather yesterday playing football, absolutely ridiculous as its so close to their mock GSCE exams, it won't be happening again, I am so cross with their manager, they came in soaked through, even their underwear was soaked through, the lost miserably but explained that they could hardly see the ball in the torrential rain, the howling wind didn't help either! I couldn't go as I can't bare to put a shoe on at the moment, I have got an infected ingrown big toe nail, I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy, it is more painful than my hips!!!! Please tell my why, oh why when we have something so sore, do we keep knocking it???? I have bathed it with TCP, i love the smell of that, its such a clean smell, that and bleach are top of my list! I am hoping it will clear up without having to go to GP! 
That's all from me for now,
Love and hugs
Sandra xxxxxx

Saturday 7 November 2015

Mixed Craft Saturday

Jess's Hand Painted Geronimo

Karen's Handmade Bouquet of Roses Cake

Ciara's Chocolate Eclairs

Good Morning Ladies,
YAY, its the weekend!!
That means its Saturday and that means it's Mixed Crafts Day! You Angels really did me proud, thank you all for sending in your photos xx

First up today we have Jess's Hand Painted picture of Geronimo, it's amazing Jess, I can't believe how much detail you have managed to achieve in his face, particularly the eyes.  Also the feathers look fluffy and soft too.  You are one talented Artist our Jess, thank you so much for sharing xxxxx

Next up we have Karen's absolutely amazing Bouquet of Roses cake, It looks professional Karen!
Karen says that this cake became a popular choice for her family and friends, before the days that Supermarkets sold celebratory cakes, but I have to be honest with you Karen, I have never seen a supermarket cake that comes anywhere near as amazing as yours, it bet it tastes much nicer too!
Thank you so much for sending the photos in for me to share with everyone xxxxx

Last but not least we have Ciara's (Brenda Lello grandaughter) hand made Chocolate Eclairs, goodness me Ciara they look so yummy, I really wish I could pick one off that plate right now! 
This was both Brenda and Ciara's first time making Choux pastry, I think they did a cracking job!
You are a Brilliant Baker Ciara, thank you for allowing me to share your eclairs today xxxxx

Thank you all once again for sending the photo's in for me to share, you are amazingly talented!
Love and hugs

Friday 6 November 2015

Warm Christmas Wishes from Maria xx

Good Friday Morning Ladies,
Who would think that this time last week we were all so excited to be meeting each other?! How do these weeks pass so fast? I think I read that it seven weeks to Christmas!

This weeks Festive Friday treat has been designed by Maria, I think it is a lovely card, perfect for people that don't celebrate 'Christmas' but you still want to send a card for the 'Holiday Season'.
I love the stamp, it's a Marianne design Clear Stamp, Maria you have coloured the image amazingly,
capturing both the movement of the skater and the freezing cold weather, that takes some skill Maria!
Your matting and layering frames the image perfectly and the buttons add just enough embellishment without going over the top!  Thank you Maria for sharing your card with us today xxxx

Could I please ask you all to rummage around for more images for mixed craft Saturday, I know you are probably sick of me asking, if you have no more we can change Saturday to a different theme, I am open to your suggestions!
Lynda and the rest of you ladies going to the NEC this weekend, I hope you all have a fab time, don't go spending too much!  Make sure you wear comfy shoes though and get your seat for lunch early, the last time we went there were no tables and chairs for you to sit at to eat your own lunch, we ended perching on a window sill In the hallway outside.  My other piece of advice or observation is that if you can wait until after about 3pm to go and see demo's on stands, the place really seems to empty out at about that time, I am guessing coach trips or something, but after then you can walk right up and shop with ease.  I will admit, as hectic as it is a tiny part of me still wishes I was going.

I am looking forward to this weekend very much, I feel I haven't seen Paul properly since last Thursday, it's been a really long week, he has 5 days off now, which sounds like heaven!
I think that we will be hearing Fireworks all weekend, it is the big display on the RAF camp tonight, all of the other displays seem to be Saturday, but I am sure we will be hearing them for the next week or two, I just don't understand why the have to be so loud, the best part of fireworks is surely their
prettiness, now the earth shattering bang, I kid you not our windows were rattling tonight with some of the explosions and that's just folk having them in their gardens!
Anyway, soap box is stowed, feel free to take your turn!
Have a great day,
Love and Hugs

Thursday 5 November 2015

Janet's Beautiful Card

Good Morning Ladies,
Just look at this stunningly beautiful creation, I love the beautiful floral element that Janet has created in the centre of this card. Janet has used the Creative Expressions Lattice Arched Adornment, finished with pearls around the edges of the card, it looks amazing.  The Central Focal frame of the card comes from the Creative Expressions Vienna Die from the Austrian collection, Janet has matted this die cut with some Teal coloured card, to top this Janet has made a delightful arrangement of flowers and foliage, I  love the way the foliage swirls from the top to the bottom of the card.
Janet, I really,  really want to know where you got that AMAZING butterfly from? it looks like Lace, it is so pretty!
Thank you so very much for sharing this beautiful card with us xxxx

Well ladies I managed to get most of my bags unpacked yesterday and things put away, boy did I take a lot of stuff, mainly because I wanted everyone to have access to a die cutting machine etc.
It was interesting to see how many people still love the good old Cuttlebug, I was surprised that how many people agreed when I said that I thought they should just make a Larger Version of the Cuttlebug, without making any alterations to it, as it seems that we all thought that it was the most sturdy reliable small machine! I know that Patricia said that she had thought the exact same thing.
Maureen told us that her Cuttlebug had popped apart during a die cutting session but she just popped it back together and it continued to work perfectly! (something that can only happen to our Maureen )!
I still keep replaying part of the weekend back through my mind and chuckling to myself, so much humour in one room! Delicious cakes too, gorgeous Lemon Drizzle cake courtesy of Diane, Yummy Swedish Treats from Maria, those Ginger Biscuits were amazing! We had delicious shortbread handmade by Jess, it just melted in your mouth, Patricia bought some of her Scottish Tablet and Baileys Truffles that went down a treat after dinner, I don't think there were many of them left over, the cake that I couldn't get enough of was Margaret P's boiled fruit cake, it doesn't sound anywhere near as delicious as it actually was, I loved it and could quite easily have it as a Christmas cake, I think we should Publish a Cotswold Crafter Cake and Biscuit book.  Please ladies can we have your recipes??
That's all from me for now, I will call in again later,
Love and Hugs