Saturday 6 November 2021

Mixed Up Saturday with Diecutting Essentials Magazine Review


Good Saturday Morning Ladies,

I hope that you are all well and relaxed for the weekend, what are you all up to?? Anything exciting? I know that Our Sonia is having fun at the Seaside with the added bonus of getting to watch her hubby Mark perform with his band over the weekend, I can only imagine how proud you must feel watching all of their fans enjoying the show. I reckon you will be ready for some peace and quiet come Sunday night though!! Our Maria is also having an exciting weekend as she is off to the NEC tomorrow to the Creative Craft show that also has a Cake show as well, mind you from what I remember there are that many craft stalls you don't get time on a one day ticket to do both. I am quite jealous, I have really missed Craft Shows this year, not only the shopping either it's the fun of meeting all the lovely craft friends that you only ever get to see at the shows (other than us Blog friends), at Ally Pally our lunch group seemed to get bigger every year!  Anyway I can't wait to see what you buy Maria, have you got a list?  

The highlight of our Weekend is a Trip to the Tip !!!  I know it's not exciting, although I do love the feeling of getting rid of so much rubbish and clutter!  Other than that it's another relaxing one for us, Paul had a super busy week at work so he needs to wind down a bit.  

Janet & Jim's Friday Cakes

Janet kindly sent me the description of their mouth watering cakes for us all to enjoy...............

"Here is This week's Cakes and their description.



As I said earlier I sent Jim out of the car on his own to choose this week's Cakes so they were a complete surprise to me when I unwrapped them this evening.

Jim's Cake was made as follows:

the base was a soft thin sponge then coated with a layer of Crispy choc Biscuit (this was dark choc).

The first layer on top of this was a dense but soft Dark Choc Mousse.

The top layer was a beautiful creamy Dark choc Mousse and was finished with a dusting of fine choc and a tiny piece of white choc.

(you really had to love Dark Choc for this cake).

I have to say that Jim finger cleaned his plate!!!

My cake this week was:-

A plain Choc sponge base.

The first layer on this base was Dark Choc Cream and on top of this

was a layer of Milk Choc Cream.

The top layer was a thick White Chco Mousse

finished with a coating of Vanilla Glaze with Dark Choc running through it.

The final touch was a small piece of White choc with a little dusting of Cocoa.

This too had a tiny piece of White Choc as the final touch. 

I have to say both these cakes were  Dream Cakes  and I hope you all enjoy them with us.

Oh my goodness Janet, give Jim a big old pat on the back, he chose well, I was rummaging around the pantry for chocolate after reading this!!

Thank you so very much for sharing your cakes with us, it's the new Saturday Highlight !!!XXX

Now onto the Magazine Review, I decided to subscribe to Die Cutting Essentials magazine as I saw a really good 3 magazine deal and I have loved the last few issues.  So my first issue arrived on Wednesday and I couldn't have been more disappointed, the free die has to be the worst one I have seen, it's just an odd design, it's not the fact that it's religious as I actually don't mind Nativity scenes etc on Christmas cards, it's one of those dies that you will use once maybe and shove in a drawer!  You can see for yourself......

Diecutting Essentials Review 

I received my first issue of Die Cutting Essentials (issue 83) I am really disappointed with the die but there are some great techniques featured too, thankfully!!

This first feature shares some cards made with the free die, to me they all look the same as there really isn't very much you can do with the die to make it look different, maybe I am being too harsh, let me know your thoughts, Oh and if any of you would like the die I am happy to send it to you.

Now this is a great technique  ''The Magic Distress ink Die Cutting Technique'' and I really want to try it out, I am hoping to have a play today,  from what I can see it is a cross between using a die cut as an embossing folder combined with 'Faux Bleaching'  I will do a step by step below as it's too hard for you to see the instructions above. 

You will need to choose a die to create a die cut that will become your embossing tool.  

1:  Apply plenty of Distress Oxide ink to your chosen card size

2:  Take your chosen die cut and spritz it generously with water ( I would use something like Pink Frog Super smooth or something that will take the water).

3: Lay the inked card onto your cutting plate and place the WET side of your die cut face down onto your inked card. Run through your die cutting machine a few times.

4: Remove from the die cutting machine and heat the die cut BEFORE removing from the inked card.

5: Gently remove the die cut piece

6: Heat the inked card to reveal the impression. 

So it's quite easy, I might try die cutting a piece of mylar as you would be able to re-use that, I have to say that I really like some of the sample cards that were made using this technique. They even used die cut flowers to create the background to one of the cards.

One thing I really like about this technique is that it is giving us something else to try with things that we already have, so getting more use out of our old stash! 

We have another way using our older dies here too, this time we are using them to create some Fancy tags, a lovely idea and they would really add a WOW to those Special gifts.

This piece shows how to use Partial Die-cutting to create some fancy fold cards,  I really love the butterfly example so I might have a play with this technique too.  If any of you want the instructions in more detail let me know and I will send them to you.

This feature shows you that the die can be used for more than just cards, the only thing that looks good here is the Lantern, the die actually works really well for that, the silhouette of Mary & Joseph praying over the crib is really sweet on this project.

I haven't bothered sharing the features that focus on a particular company, unless it's one that we all use and have the products. I made an exception for these cards though as they are lovely designs are we all have flower dies etc, what I really liked about these cards is the lovely die cut background, they are Memory Box dies, one is called Crystal Corner, the other Crystal Border, I think that they are really effective backgrounds.  Do you like them??

Everyone loves a Shaker card this feature shows how to create them and some different design ideas and some different suggestions for what to put inside.  That Chevron one is amazing! 

Some more ideas for the free die, this time combined with the free papers that you can download.

Lovely Christina Griffiths showing some really pretty designs that can be made with her Card Making Magic range, I have a few of her die sets and I have to say that they are great quality and really reasonably priced. How gorgeous is that gift box!?

Here we have another great idea for using our existing stash in different ways, this time we are using our our die stash to create an embossed background !! These aren't simply embossed, the dies are dusted well with anti-static bag then you ink up your die and run it through machine with chosen paper and when it comes out just add the embossing powder and heat set.  I am just thinking about all of the background dies that I haven't used in a while.  I love that scalloped background on that last card. 
One Tip that you may not be able to see is ....To be very generous with the anti-static powder, both on your die and the paper.  

That's all for this issue, I honestly think the magazine redeemed itself by having so many great techniques, they made up for the rubbish die !! I will certainly will be playing with some of them, a great mojo booster too. 


Karen's Country View Crafts Shopping

Karen had a lovely afternoon out at Country View Crafts with Kat yesterday afternoon, she has shared her shopping with us, I think we have an  'Aall & Create' addict in the making!  I love that stencil Karen, perfect for Man cards, celebration cards too oh and Christmas of course!  Those two shades of Distress Oxide will work great together.  Love the Tim Holtz dies too.  Some great new products, I can't wait to see what you have in mind for them.  
Thank you so much for sharing your shopping my lovely XXX

That's all for today's post my lovelies, I hope that you all have a lovely day,

Love and HUGE hugs to all,



  1. Yummm! Those cakes look and sound delicious It’s a good job they are calorie free!!!
    Great magazine review I can see why you’re a little disappointed with the die Some lovely techniques and I’ll be very interested to see how you get on Maybe something we can do at Watford?
    I had a wonderful time over the last couple of days I knew I was going out for a meal with my friend Kat (after a lovely crafting session at my house)?meeting another crafting friend But when I got there I was surprised to see 3 other wonderful work colleagues I wasn’t allowed to pay for the meal and then Kat presented me with a gift voucher for CVC So my shopping was free! And still have some left Susan who runs CVC is lovely and kept reminding us that her advent starts on 1st Dec and items from a brand each day is half price but you have to be quick
    Even though I was spending a gift voucher I still received 10% off! Fabulous
    Looking after the boys this morning for an hour or so and then going to a firework display at our local school this evening
    Enjoy your trip SONIA Hope it’s not too cold on that Norfolk coast
    Take care everyone xx

  2. Hi everyone
    Love the quote 😊
    Hope you have a lovely relaxing weekend with Paul after your visit to the tip xx
    Maria, enjoy the craft show tomorrow, will look forward to seeing what you buy xx
    Karen, enjoy spending time with the boys and the fireworks tonight. Love the look of your crafty goodies, glad you had a lovely day xx
    Janet, oooh those cakes look lovely, I’m sure they went down a treat 😊 xx
    We had a good day yesterday with the bonus of the sun being out. It was a bit chilly though, but we were inside most of the time. Their acoustic set went down really well. I know Mark was worrying about it (he’s not keen on playing acoustically) but he needn’t have worried, as he played really well. It was a VIP event so there was a limited number of people - but still quite a lot, and lots of people came up to them afterwards and complimented them on the performance. We stayed at the venue and had lunch and then watched a couple of bands into the early evening 😊
    We still haven’t seen the sea yet 😂 but may go for a wonder this morning before heading back to the venue later today before their performance tonight.
    Sandra, a great magazine review. I do like the look of the die, but as you say not really much you can do with it. Like the look of some of the articles, thank you for sharing 😊
    Have a lovely day everyone. Sending hugs to you all xxx

  3. Hi Sandra and all in the Cafe today. I love today’s saying 🤣🤣🤣 I can see why you are disappointed with the die. You are very limit with what you can do with it but I do like the articles. Thank you for sharing them with us. I hope you and Paul manage to relax my lovely xx
    Karen, I love the goodies that you got at CVC and having a voucher makes it even better. And what a lovely surprise for you that your friends arranged.
    Enjoy having the boys and I hope you all enjoy the fireworks later xx
    Janet, your cakes look and sound delicious. I wouldn’t want the dark chocolate one but our eldest granddaughter Phoebe would love it as she has always preferred dark chocolate, even as a tiny tot. Thank you for the photos of your cakes. They add to our enjoyment and make my mouth water even more xx
    Sonia, I hope the weather stays dry for you and you manage to get to see the sea. I imagine you are wrapped up well when you go out though. Enjoy the music too xx
    Have a good weekend everyone. I’m off to Mum and Pops shortly. Sending love and hugs to you all with extras for all in need. Take care xx

  4. Hello Sandra and ladies,

    Love the poster - definitely designed for a crafter. Great magazine review Sandra, if no one is interested in your kind offer of the dies with the magazine I know Anne my sister would love them.

    Karen great shopping what a lovely treat your friends gave you. Hope you had a lovely time with the boys and you all enjoyed the fireworks .

    Janet I really enjoyed the calorie free cakes. But also would have loved to taste them. I’ll just have to dream!!

    Spending tomorrow with the family, but will try to pop in.

    Sleep well everyone, love Brenda xxx

  5. Hi
    Cakes look amazing Janet, well done Jim. I could probably manage one later this afternoon.
    Thanks Sandra for the magazine review. Understand about the die but the magazine itself is nice so.

    I hope you all had a good day. We spent the day with SIL and have not been home long but as soon I finished the mug of tea I best get to bed for the train goes 8.45 am. Many mixed reports about the show but I'm still looking forward for like you say Sandra it's nice to see it live again and we be soon together again for a show at Ally Pally!
    Good night. Warm hugs ,Maria xx