Friday 30 April 2021

Your Next Challenge


Good Friday Morning Ladies,

Well thank goodness it's the weekend, I am fed up of laying on the bed all on my own, Paul is working from home today so I will have some company, although I am hoping that I can get up and at least sit at my desk today.  I really wanted to yesterday but I was here on my own and had been instructed to stay put, which was the right thing to do, I know this because Paul made spaghetti Bolognese for dinner and I wasn't going to attempt eating that on white bed linen, so Paul helped me get to the table in the kitchen to eat, I managed ok perched on the edge of one of the tall chairs we have but after a few minutes my knee was throbbing and swelling so it was straight back to laying with it elevated!!  I spent most of the day watching the Craft Store, even that got a bit tiresome after a while.  Not sure what is on the cards for us this weekend, not a lot for me, probably a lot of pointing and managing!  I'm not even sure what the weather is going to be like this weekend.  Have any of you got plans??

Your Next Challenge

Right ladies I want you to get your 'pinny' (apron) on get your hair tied back and your sleeves rolled up !!! .....That's right I want you to get messy, have fun, get all of those ink sprays and spritzers out, your Pixie powders, Brusho's, Acrylic or Watercolour paints, what ever you fancy, just get it out and have some fun making cards or backgrounds or pretty much anything you like!  I really fancy starting an 'Art Journal'  I have no idea where to start or what to do, I just really like the look of them.   If you don't have anything in the way of 'messy' mediums you can use dies or stamps I guess, I would love you to have a go though even if its just a few flicks of a posca pen!  
I may revisit some of the techniques that I have tried in the past like 'caught in crystal' or the Baby wipe technique. 
The cards above are made using a variety of techniques 1)  stamping a messy background  2) Acrylic paint 3)  Acrylic paint, watered down pva, texture paste 4) Brusho's .
I loved making all of them.  I have seen lots of cards from you all that has some kind of messy background, maybe just use Distress Oxides!  I really hope that you enjoy taking part in this challenge, I am so excited to see what you will all make.  

I get so worried when I set these challenges, wondering if you will enjoy taking part, this challenge for instance has me worried that some of you don''t really do anything messy/inky.  But then I think that it is actually called a 'challenge' so I hope that even if it isn't your most favourite form of crafting you will have a go, get some inks and stamps out and have fun.

Right I am going to close now as it's 2.30 am (I thought that I had written this blog post but I hadn't finished it) and I don't want the light from my laptop keeping the walrus next to me awake!! 

Love and hugs to all of you,

Sandra xxx

Thursday 29 April 2021

Karen's Amazing Birthday Card for Oscar


Good Morning Ladies, 

I hope that you are all well, we have had a big change in the weather, it rained pretty much all day yesterday,  to be honest the ground really needs it, we have huge cracks appearing in the ground around the seed/potting house and veg plot, it will save watering all of the strawberries and raspberries too.  

As it happened I wouldn't have been able to get out and enjoy the sun anyway as I cannot get off the bed unaided! My knee is still incredibly painful and swollen, I am hoping that a full day of resting it and having it elevated will help it recover,  if not I will call 111 and ask for advice, I really don't want to go to the hospital if I can avoid  it.  I couldn’t even vare putting loose clothes on yesterday either. I needed full assistance to get to the bathroom too, which is going to be an issue today as Paul is working and leaving a couple of hours early as he is finally getting his hair cut, it will be his first cut since last July !!! Lucy is working too and Sophie is at Lewis's,  so it will be long and frustrating day.  Wish me luck!!

I was unable to get to my craft desk yesterday as you can imagine,  I did suggest it but Paul just gave me "the look"!! 

I have got an absolutely amazing card to share with you today,  Our Karen had used her Karen Burniston die set to create an incredible 5th Birthday card, with the Paw Patrol theme. This card is just 'pawfect' for a 5 year old, its so bright and cheerful which will instantly attract Oscar to want to pick it up and open it and when he he will be over the moon, I would love to see his face as he recognises the characters that you have ingeniously included in that beautiful bright and eye catching pop up display! 🤩😍

Karen's Description:

"I thought you might like to see Oscar’s Birthday card He loves Paw Patrol 

I googled the images and took them into Serif adjust etc and used my Karen Burniston photo collage die set"

Thank you so much Karen for sharing Oscar's amazing card with us, where on earth did those 5 years go???!! XXX

I hope that you all have a lovely day, 

Love and hugs to all of you,

Sandra                                                                                  xxxxxx    

Wednesday 28 April 2021

A Fun Fold by Brenda

Good Wednesday Morning Ladies, 

Here we are mid way through the last week of April,  can you actually believe that.  We are preparing to put the frames up for our french beans, preparing the bed for them, Paul has dug a brand new border along the fence at the bottom of the garden, it's an area that was weed filled because of nettles growing through the fence, it's too awkward to mow as well, so we decided to dig it out to use as an extra growing space,  we have sown lots of tall flowers to mix in with the veg plants too, lupins, foxgloves, sweetpeas, sweet Williams too, we slso have our 72 perennials × 2 arriving soon too, so hopefully our garden will be in full blown come the summer.
Are any of you growing vegetables?  We will think differently when planting our sprouts and Sprouting Broccoli this year as we didn't realise how big the plants got, they are currently taking up 50% of our vegetable plot,  we were both shocked at how successful the Purple Sprouting Broccoli has been,  although it loses all of its purle when we coik it.  I pulled some beetroot that had been in the ground since last summer fully expecting it to be woody and inedible but after cooking it this morning I cut into it and its perfectly good, which is a real bonus! I love beetroot in a salad especially with boiled eggs and I'd love to say a fancy dressing but for me its salad cream with eggs and beetroot!! 
Today's card is one that Brenda shared with me a few weeks ago, it was designed for a 'Fun Fold ' Challenge a few weeks back but Brenda didn't manage to finish in time, I am always delighted to share your cards anytime, I class this blog as 'our blog' your cards are as important as mine! 

Brenda has designed a tri-fold card, them hand stamped the background with the same stamp as the coloured one that was used to embellish the card. The flower stamp is a magazine freebie from Altenew,  this is the first time Brenda has used it, its a lovely detailed flower Brenda, I'm looking forward to seeing what else you create with it.  I love how you have finished the edge of the card with ribbon, a great, inspirational idea. 
Thank you so much Brenda for sharing your lovely card ❤ XXX 

Now I am not sure of whats happening today,  I really hurt my knee yesterday trying to rush and get washing in as the heavens opened, the girls were upstairs and hadn't heard me shout to get washing in for me. Annoyingly it's my 'good' or weight bearing side,  so its left me very immobile, we will see how it goes today and if necessary we will seek medical advice.  Eeeeh Ladies I think my body is giving up on me, so frustrating as there is so much I want to do! 🥲😪

I hope that you all have a good day and that the sunshine returns.  
I want to send extra hugs to our Lynda and Margaret and Maria I hope that your hand is on the mend. 

Sending Love and hugs to all of you,


Tuesday 27 April 2021

Boho Indigo card 2


Good Morning Ladies,  

Thank you for the lovely comments on yesterday's card, I actually really like this collection, one of the reasons is the lovely foliage,  then the vases which after this challenge is finished I will use with so many other stamps and dies I already have.  The other part of the collection is the lovely patterned papers all in Navy and cream, all so lovely, there are embossed papers and gold foiled labels ready for adding your sentiment.   Making more than one card is so easy. 

So for todays card I used a piece of Very Vanilla to create my card base I then added a piece of the decorative paper and matted a piece of the V.Vanilla paper that was pre-embossed  onto gold mirror card to echo the gold foiling in the printed foliage and labels in the collection. I stamped one of the vases in Night Of Navy and then pressed a versamark ink pad over the whole vase and added clear embossing powder and heat set. This gave the vase a porcelain look, I popped it on some foam pads and adhered to my matted, embossed piece, next step was to add some foliage, the back two where adhered flat and the one in the front is on foam pads to make the vase look full., to finish the vase I added a gold twine bow and then I added the sentiment stamped onto one of the labels. 

A quieter day for me today as Paul is working, the girls have the day off though, I don't generally see too much of them if they are off together as they usually do something together, which I love, it's just nice having them in the house, we always eat lunch together and they will come down for coffee every couple of hours, they love their music too so there is always something to hum along to!

I hope that you enjoy your day however you are spending it.

Love and hugs to all of you,


Monday 26 April 2021

My First Challenge card

Boho Indigo 

Good Monday Morning Ladies, 

Wow what a lovely weekend,  the weather was lovely, a little breezy but that meant the washing dried in no time.  Did you all enjoy it?  

I have chosen the Stampin Up! Boho Indigo collection for this weeks challenge,  it has stamps, dies and papers, I will mainly focus on the stamps and dies I think, they are a lovely set of Vases and foliage and sentiments. 

For todays card I wanted to use the Kraft card and Night of Navy colour combination. So I started with a Kraft card base,  followed by a mat of Navy card with a piece of the the Boho Indigo papers matted on top, I die cut a scalloped circle to draw your eye into the main focus of the card, I used the circle to place two of the vases, 1 stamped in Crumb Cake, 1 in Night of Navy,  both stamped onto Kraft card, I die cut them and added foam pads to the back and placed them onto the card front,  I then die cut a selection of the foliage dies to add to the vases and I added some of the tiny flowers too.  I used some Navy Ribbon to the neck of one vase and topped it with another little flower. I stamped the sentiment and used a punch to cut the label for the sentiment. 

I hope you like my card, I am really looking forward to playing with this collection some more.

I hope that you all have a lovely day, 

Love and hugs to all of you, 

Sandra                                                                                xxxxxx 

Sunday 25 April 2021

Your Challenge Cards


Good Sunday Morning Ladies, 

I hope that you are all having a lovely weekend,  the weather was absolutely glorious yesterday,  we needed to pop to shops and it was so busy, half the people had clearly forgotten that we are still in the grips of a global pandemic!!  It only takes an increase in the strain of the virus from india to cause a major issue again!  Sorry Rant over! 

Let's look at your amazing cards, I can see that you all enjoyed this challenge, your cards are incredible  ......


Sonia's Description:

"Here are my challenge cards. This was a great challenge as I enjoyed getting out my Sue Wilson dies and having a play!

For the first card I used the Festive Frames set - Eve. To tell you the truth I hadn’t even realised it was part of the Festive Collection! I’ve used Kraft card and a printed watercolour effect paper. The sentiment is from the Perspectives Collection - Triple Best Wishes, which I’ve cut down.

For my second card I’ve used the Christmas Tree Greetings die. I stamped the Snowflakes Large Square Frame stamp by Phill Martin onto one of the Noble Collection Double Stitched Square dies.

For my third card I’ve used the New Zealand Collection - Hamilton die. I stamped the Delicate Deco Square Frame by Creative Expressions on one of the Double Stitched Square dies. I added one of the Delicate Daisies Open Petal dies and one of the Pierced Flag dies with the sentiment.

Sonia thank you so much for 3 stunning designs, you make such incredibly beautiful cards, your die selections and combinations are spot on!! Thank you for the inspiration my lovely XXX


Lilian's Description:

"Here is my card for this week, They are Sue Wilson Californian Collection  dies, I used paper from my scrap box, and cracked pistachio oxide ink. It is my go to ink pad at the moment, must stop using it."

Thank you so much Lilian, I absolutely love your card, I had forgotten how pretty the Californian Collection are, these were Sue's first dies, I have the whole collection of them and now wish I had used them too!  XXX


Maria's Description:

"My SW die card is made with the Weaving dies I got from you
at one time. I then used a die from the Circle set and together 
with a die from the Times square I made the frame. Flowers are 
her Poppy dies. Sentiment is other and it is not stuck down for
not sure if using it yet. 

Maria I am so grateful that you managed to get a card done, it is fantastic,  those weaving dies are a labour of love to get looking neat and tidy, you have done an amazing job, I love your card, thank you so much for taking part XXX


Brenda's Description:
"I have had fun playing with my Sue Wilson dies, I didn’t go through all of them, in fact I decided to do a Striplet   and took one from close to the top of the pile and one of her older dies which again I didn’t ponder over. (Not like me at all)  The Striplet I used is called  'Embroiderd.'
For both of my cards I used SU card Very Vanilla and Petal Pink. I not a Pink person but love this combo.

My second card the die is from Sue’s Australian collection, its the
 Australian Background die.
I haven’t added a sentiment to this one as it’s going to my sister, I usually send several sentiments and she chooses what to add on depending on the occasion.
During lockdown she was inundated with requests for cards as no one was allowed to go shopping. I was sending her all of my spare cards to keep up with demand. She told me she had used one of my cards to send to the Queen for her birthday!

Thank you so much Brenda your cards are exquisite! I totally agree with you about the colour combination you have used,  I think that Petal Pink is quite a peachy pink though, peaches and cream are just meant to be together!!  Thank you so much for taking part, I am so pleased that you enjoyed the challenge my lovely XXX 


Janet's Description:

"my first Challenge Card this week was made using SW  SWISS COLLECTION GENEVA dies.The fronds are also SW but I seem to have lost the name tag for this die.The backing paper is from Stamperia Romantic Collection Threads. 

My second Challenge Card was made again using SW dies but ASTORIA ELEMENT this time. Again the backing paper is Stamperia Romantic Collection Threads.

Thank you Janet for two amazing challenge cards, I really love both of the die sets that you have used, they work so well with your lovely papers too. XXX


Karen's Description:

"Here’s a cc using “new to me” Sue W dies It’s almost a copy of an idea on the packaging "

Thank you so much Karen I love your design, I have balloon stamps and dies but never think of using them, that embossed background is amazing too, the soft colour palette gives the card a real sophisticated look.  Thanks again my lovely XXX


Michele's Description:

Three challenge cards all made using something by Sue Wilson. First card is using the Shadow box outer frame & large stitched squares plus Retail Therapy. Second card is made using the Slimline dies I treated myself to a while ago (DL sized card). Plus the creatures from Little Treasures. Third card is using the Let it Snow die on a pearlised card plus some bling.  
I loved this challenge as it made me look through my older dies & it would be great if we did this one again later in the year"

Thank you so much Michele for 3 amazing cards, I have the Let it Snow card and never remember to use it, your other two designs are gorgeous, the first has been a great addition to your craft stash, you have made some stunning cards with it.  Your second 'Slimline' card is adorable, I am so tempted to get some of the slimline dies, you are making me want them more!  Thanks again my lovely XXX

Ladies, I really hoped you enjoyed reaching back to the back of your die collection for this challenge, I have loved seeing the amazing cards that you have all designed, thank you all so very much for taking part in this weeks challenge XXX

I hope that you all enjoy the rest of the weekend,

Love and hugs to all of you,


Saturday 24 April 2021

Mixed Up Saturday featuring Michele's Magazine Review

Good Saturday Morning Ladies,

I hope that this lovely sunshine lasts the whole weekend although I am really restricted to what I can do as I have really hurt my knee, I think its purely from being on it too much while we have been moving things round in the house and doing garden jobs too, so it's going to be a frustrating weekend of just watching the garden jobs being done by Paul. .  I hope that you are all able to enjoy being outside. 

The first 3 pictures today are of one part of one of Sophie's University Modules.  For this one they were given a 'brief' like you would from a 'Client', I have included the 'Brief' below. It involves a prop, which in this case is a boat.  I believe that it is making graphics for a computer game.  Either way her artwork is outstanding and I was excited to share with it with you. 

Michele's Magazine Review 

Hi Ladies 

Papercraft Essentials has a lovely Cardmaking kit free this month-fairies.

Here’s some ideas of what’s inside the magazine.

Lots of inspiration using the free gift.

Great article on Stamping & stencilling.

Aren’t these Digi images so cute??

Lovely cards using Lavinia stamps, I’m sure we’ve all got something similar.

More ideas.

Here’s a new way to look at your dies-hybrid diecutting.

What lovely, pretty cards in this feature.

More ideas, easily recreated using your own stash.

What a fantastic ribbon storage project.

Brilliant article on Bold Backgrounds.

Mixed media birthday card.

Lovely cards featuring Chloe’s new embossing folders,

Great ideas using flora papers, you could easily substitute what you have in your stash.

That’s all for this week so
Happy Crafting.

Love Michele

Sonia's Shopping 

Sonia has shared her latest Craft Shopping with us, Sonia I absolutely love those gorgeous 'Stampers Anonymous' stamps, but lets face it anything that Tim Holtz designs is a hit.  Your background die is great too, it looks quite small though, mine are mostly A5 size. Yours is a lovely design though. 

Sonia's Description:

Thought I’d share my latest crafty buys which I ordered from Buddly Crafts. Inspired by some mixed media projects on Pinterest, I couldn’t resist the Tim Holtz Fragments stamps - maybe I’ll use them in next weeks challenge. The Penny Black Geometric Circle background die is much smaller than I thought it would be, but I love the design, so will make it work 😊

Thank you so much for sharing your shopping with us my lovely XXX 

Michele's Shopping 

Michele has been waiting for these last few dies from Ebay to arrive, I have to say that they were worth the wait Michele,  I love them all, the crosses are so pretty and so handy to have in your stash, that leaf die is fantastic,  is it a slimline die with 4 separate leaves or is it a slimline background?  The last die looks like it will give you a lovely diagonal dotty background,  I look forward to seeing how much texture it gives .  Thank you so much for sharing your shopping with us.  Thank you also for the fantastic Magazine Review,  now I'm not big into Fairies, (or angels), I'm not sure why, don't gey me wrong I love Lavinia stamps style, they create the most incredible artwork but I just have no idea who I would make a fairy card for.  So i wouldn't have gone to purposely but this magazine but as always you share the amazing projects and features from inside the mag. The hybrid die cutting and bold backgrounds both really appeal to me.  Thank you once again I really do appreciate you contributing to my blog my lovely XXX 

That's all for today Ladies, I hope you all have an enjoyable day, I am so looking forward to seeing your Sue Wilson cards tomorrow. 

Love and hugs to all of you,


Friday 23 April 2021

Your Next Challenge


Good Friday Morning Ladies,

I hope that you are all well and ready to have a nice relaxed weekend.  Paul is going into work today and the girls are both working so it's a bit of a quiet house here, I am hoping that there is something good on the Craft channels so that I can have a bit of background noise going, The Craft Store (Hochanda) seem to be having a lot of sewing shows of late, I did succumb to a mixed box of fabric from show called 'Make it Joe', the box they showed on TV was amazing so many lovely, good size pieces of fabric, different weights etc, I thought that they would be fun to try some small sewing projects with, just to get used to using my machine regularly, I was exciting to open mine when it came but alas as is often the way, mine was really disappointing, it wasn't 'so crammed full' as described by Leonie and the choice of random fabric was also really disappointing, I was hoping to be able to make some new masks for Paul and the girls but I don't think that there is one piece that would be suitable, never mind I should remind myself of the one thing that my mum always used to say ''If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is''!!  It's a shame as I really like some of the things that the chap makes when he is on the shows.  Have any of you had your fingers burnt like that???

Your Next Challenge

I thought that we would try something completely different for this weeks 'Challenge', now as I am writing this I am realising that it is only really going to be a 'Challenge' if you make more than one card but we will go with it anyway.
The reasoning behind this challenge is that we often buy a die or stamp set, paper collection, embossing folder, set of paints etc because we have been inspired to by a card that we have seen on Pinterest or we have seen someone using it on craft tv or YouTube, we wait for it to arrive and then we have forgotten what it was that inspired us OR we make that one project that made us buy the item and then put it away, forgetting about it.  I will hold my hands up and say that I have done this on many occasions and have a very full craft room as a result!!  So I want to do something about it..........

So for this weeks challenge I would like you to take ONE stamp set/ Die Set/ Paper Collection and use it or elements of it for the whole week or for the projects you make for the next 5 days.  It can be anything from the items listed above to things like 'Alcohol Pens/Watercolour Paints/ Embossing Paste & Stencils etc. 
I have shared 4 different things made with the same paper collection as one example, the 'Vintage Lace' Collection from Sara Davies.  
I have also just received some lovely 'Sweet Poppy' Background stencils so I could use those for my challenge, showing different ways of using them, exploring the capabilities of that one product so that I feel that I have really gotten my moneys worth out of it.   

I was kind of inspired by reaching to the back of my die storage for my Sue Wilson dies that have been gathering dust for the past couple of years, some of which I have not used at all, which is terribly wasteful.  Magazine collections are another example, we receive them maybe have a play on that day and away it goes, please tell me it's not just me!!!

I really hope that you all enjoy this challenge, I know it's a bit different but I would love for you all to feel like you have really gotten your money's worth out of a product by the end of the week, I think that it will encourage us to pick that item up and use it more too.

I hope that you all have a lovely weekend,

Love and hugs to all of you,


Thursday 22 April 2021

My final Sue Wilson Challenge card

 Good Morning Ladies,

I loved hearing your 'Airing Horse' stories yesterday, it was obviously called the airing 'Horse' many years ago, I found this article when I did some research: 

" Clothes-horse "upright wooden frame for hanging clothes to dry" is from 1806; figurative sense of "person whose sole function seems to be to show off clothes" is 1850.'' Just as a real 'Horses' purpose is"

I find it so fascinating reading about the history of different sayings or reading the reason that something was called a particular name, I did also read that a Lancashire term for an Airer was a 'Clothes Maiden'.

Now onto today's Challenge card, I really wanted to make a DL/Slimline size card as they seem to be the 'in thing' these days!  So I thought that I would use a Sue Wilson Striplet die as it would work well with that card shape.  I chose the 'Lattice Window' striplet as I love it's ornate style. I used the colour combination 'Just Jade' and 'Very Vanilla', I seem to be drawn to these colours these days.  I matted and layered my card base with Very vanilla and Just Jade card, I scored 1/4 inch around the top layer, just for interest, I cut two of the striplet and layered together for stability, placed it in the centre of my card on foam pads.  I then sorted through my box and found some pre-made flowers that worked really well with the colours so I used those and made some smaller ones to add a few extra filler flowers.  I decided that it needed a flourish of some kind, something delicate, I found I had an Apple Blossom set that had a small flourish in, so I used that die cut in cream with a little touch of blue ink on the edges. 
To finish the card I die cut my 'go to' SW sentiment and layered it up on a tag, added some matching ribbon and another flower to finish.
I hope you like my card, I have really enjoyed revisiting my Sue Wilson dies, I can't wait to see what you have all made.

I hope that you all have a lovely day,

Love and hugs to all of you,