Sunday 31 March 2024

Your Challenge Cards


Good Sunday Morning Ladies, 

Happy Easter Sunday, did you all remember to put your clocks forward??

We were blessed with lovely weather yesterday, we had a lovely walk along the beach, we saw the Steam train, those things are so much more exciting when you have children,  you feel daft getting excited about those things as an adult. We had a lovely day,  the weather couldn't have been better there were actually people in the sea, a lot with trousers rolled up rock pooling too.  I absolutely love being by the sea. 

We are going to have a quiet day today,  we have a nice leg of lamb for roast dinner for when the girls get home. I hope you all have a lovely day x

Your Challenge cards

Maria's Description:

I made another fractured card this week and then run out of time to make any more.

I cut a piece of card out of a block 12x12 by Sara D,   Vintage Butterflies.   Was just about to put the glue on and desided that the other side was prettier 🤭 I used ribbons from my tops to do the fractured bit .  A little die cut butterfly and some crystal drills finished the card off. 

Hope it's ok 🙂

 A gorgeous Fractured card Maria, that paper is so pretty, especially the butterfly paper, I also really love your shiny  ribbon you have use to make the fractured elements, what a great tip!  Thank you so much for taking part in this weeks challenge XXX 


Sonia's Description:

Card 1:  I used a new stamp recently purchased by DarkRoom Door, stamped and heat embossed. I made the rectangle frame using a couple of Sue Wilson’s outer striplet dies. The flower is from The Stamp Market as is the sentiment

Card 2:    I’ve used part of a Dutch Doobadoo stencil, with Spun Sugar and Tumbled Glass distress oxides. The flowers are Spellbinders and sentiments from The Stamp Market

Two stunning cards my lovely,  I love that lined detail on both cards.  Both the stamp and stencil have similar effects.  
Card 1's beauty is it's simplicity,  using that striplet outline die with the stamp market flower added on was a brilliant idea, it looks like the flower is part of the frame.
Card 2 is just so pretty, I love everything about it, the colours,  the flowers with their perfectly coloured centres and the split sentiments. Its a gorgeous card.  Thank you so much for supporting the challenge my lovely XXX


Lilian's Description:

Here is my card for this weeks challenge.

I used chocolate baroque stamp, painted in villainous potion and bundled sage, with a bit of extra green on the leaves.

I think the stencil is one of indigo blues from a magazine.

Hope you have an enjoyable weekend.

Such a lovely card Lilian, I love purple and green together, it works so well, the crocus stamp is so pretty, beautifully coloured as always.   Thank you so much for taking part in the Challenge XXX 


Karen's Description:  

Here’s a fractured card for sketch Not my favourite The stag is too low down - I wanted to keep the antlers So I filled the white space with a Tracy Evans stamp
The stag is Daisy B,  I coloured stag with watercolour paints and added a bit of gold glitter to the antlers.

Karen I absolutely love that stag, your colouring is perfect,  I can definitely see the sparkle from the glitter too.  With the background stamping his position is fine,  we can be our own harshest critics at times.  All it needs is a 'Merry Christmas ' and you have a lovely Christmas card.  Thank you so much my lovely for supporting the challenge.XXX


I know I say it every week but I really do appreciate every minute that you put into supporting the blog and the challenge Ladies 🥰

I hope that you all get to eat a little bit of chocolate today 😋 

Sending my love and hugs to all of you 

Sandra                                                                    xxxxxx 

Saturday 30 March 2024

Mixed Up Saturday


Good Saturday Morning Ladies, 

Today won't be our usual Saturday blog as I spent 80% of yesterday asleep,  I have had a few really rough nights this past couple weeks, yesterday I woke with a headache that developed into what Can only be described as a Migraine, I sat down at the dining table and just felt nauseous,  the bright light from windows felt like stabbing pains in my head, so I ended up in the recliner on the lounge,  all curtains closed, Paul got me my pillow and soft fluffy throw, I just sat and tried to stop my head from hurting,  took paracetamol and I must have nodded off, when I woke I couldn't believe it when told me it 3.50pm !! I must have slept for almost 6 hours, as a result I hadn't prepared today's blog post!  I am sorry about that.  

I wanted to share this lovely photo of Adam & Becca, they were ready to go out for a Fancy dinner with Adam's twin brother Ross and his partner!  
They had a lovely day spending their 30th Birthday  on a Safari,  I can't wait to see those photos!! 

Thats all for me today my lovelies,   I am struggling to think clearly enough to wtite a sentence! 

Sending my love and hugs to all of you,


Friday 29 March 2024

Our Next Challenge


Good Friday Morning Ladies,

Happy Easter weekend, it's a good job that we haven't really organised anything as the weather is looking awful all weekend.  In fact I was that cold when I got back from the hospital yesterday I got Paul to put heating on, he laid the log burner ready for the evening too, we have had a couple of hail showers but yesterday was mostly heavy rain and very strong wind.  It started out like an absolutely glorious day, bright beautiful sunshine with barely a cloud in the sky on the way to the hospital at 8am, it was still bright on the way home, I was thinking that we would get the washing load dry but we hardly got in the door before the heavens opened and the wind picked up.  I feel so sad that the poory cherry blossom on the tree in the garden will be blown away before the bees get chance to enjoy it.

The urology appointment was better than I anticipated, it was with the same consultant as I saw last year, he was rude, spoke over me and refused to do the cystoscopy that I had gone for, I think that he must have been promoting Hiprex as that was the only thing he was interested in.  Now I don't know whether other people did like I did and complained but he was a completely different person!  Paul was as shocked as I was,  he listened, he was sympathetic, I asked him about the after effects of the Cystoscopy and he explained that it was similar symptoms to a Uti, I explained that we were travelling to Devon at the weekend, he said not to worry and he prescribed me a 7 day course of antibiotics to help resolve the symptoms and make me more comfortable, he added a further 3 month prescription to so that I have them to take as a one of after doing any activity that causes my bladder to flare up 😉.  He then fully explained the procedure and made exceptions to positioning etc because I have no muscle control in my right leg, so he said he would just work around it,  the procedure was stinky and a bit uncomfortable, he took the time to show me the inside of my bladder and explain what he saw, he was pleased with how it looked, especially after the number of infections etc.  His diagnosis was (as I had expected) Interstitial Cystitis or ''Painful Bladder Syndrome', which is basically your bladder being super sensitive to anything that can put pressure on it, which is why things like periods etc can cause the symptoms, as everything is inflamed and leaves you feeling bloated and uncomfortable.  The treatment he has prescribed is a long course of Bladder instillations', I will have to go weekly to have medication put straight into my bladder via catheter, I am hoping that I don't get the symptoms every week that I got after the cystoscopy though.  He explained that it rejuvenates the inside of my bladder,  it coats it to help decrease the sensitivity.  Fingers crossed that I don't have to wait to long to start the treatment.  I do wish that he had done this at this time last year, it would have saved me having so many antibiotics that ended up causing me to have Hepatitis. It's great that there is hopefully an end in sight though.

Our Next Challenge

I had so many ideas floating around in my head for this weeks challenge, I think it was because I hadn't slept very well for the last 3 or 4 nights, so had lots of time to think.                                                         So I finally decided to go for Spring Colours & Flowers, which is hopefully something that will work for everyone.  You can make cards, do Journal pages, Snippets, Thrinchies, home decor or anything that takes your fancy.  
You can incorporate the colours into the Retiform technique that I shared last weekend or even the Fractured card technique.  
I can't wait to see all of your bright and pretty coloured creations. 

I hope that you all enjoy the long weekend, on the up side, if the weather is that bad we can stay in and craft!!!

Sending my love and hugs to you all,


Thursday 28 March 2024

My last card for Sketch Challenge


Good Morning Ladies, 

I hope today finds you as well as can be, I have been dreading this day for weeks, I have my Cystoscopy this morning at 9am,  frustratingly its the same consultant that I saw last year that decided my diagnosis before speaking to me and didn't do the one thing that I went there for!!  I am a little worried about the after effects of the Cystoscopy,  it tends to cause the burning etc that you get with a UTi, I am going to ask if he will provide a short course of antibiotics for me to take after,  because the antibiotics that are prescribed for UTI contains an anti inflammation property and they also reduce the acidity in your bladder.  I am mostly concerned about the long journey to Devon and back on Saturday.  Fingers crossed all will be ok. 

Today's card was a bit of an experiment,  I was going for a different look, I stamped one of my Tim Holtz Bold Botanical stamps in black and heat embossed it, to colour it I used a Tim Holtz Mica stain spray, I love this yellow colour.  After letting it dry I fussy cut it from its black background and cut it down slightly to form a square, I then added foam pads and placed it on my Kraft card base, I wanted the sentiment to tie in with the stamped image so I die cut it in black and the clear embossed it so it had the same shine as the stamp. 

For an extra bit os sparkle I added some stickles to the outer ring of the flower centre, the colour was a perfect match.  

Now I have to think about the next challenge!!!

I hope that you all have a lovely day,

Love & hugs,

Sandra                                                                    xxxxxx 

Wednesday 27 March 2024

An embossed Sketch Challenge card


Good Wednesday Morning Ladies,

Why does the weather tease us with a bit of lovely sunshine and then take it away and leave us with wind & rain, we are blessed with a beautiful white cherry blossom (i think) outside my craft room window, it smells beautiful but rather than being able to be our there enjoying it or even having my craftroom window open to enjoy the fragrance as the wind is too strong and its raining too, the poor tree is getting battered, the other sad thing is that on Sunday it was a haven for bees, they were loving it, but the weather has stopped their fun too.

Enough of the weather, let's talk about today's card, I got the inspiration for this card from Pinterest,  I saw a few versions of the same card. A lady called Mary, another called Julie,  I have no idea who was the original designer though.  

I used my Altenew Daisy 3D embossing folder to emboss a piece of white card, I cut this down down to about 2 1/2 inch, I then die cut a gold mat to put behind the embossing piece, I tried to pick a gold that was similar to my gilding wax, so that everything worked well together,  I laid the embossed piece onto my card base so that I could position sentiment, getting it centred before sticking anything down.  I stamped and embossed the 'thank you' with Gold Embossing powder, then adhered the embossed piece above it, I added some white thread and a gold long stem heart and a branch die cut to embellish the piece and finished it with a bow. I matted the whole piece onto a white card base.  I really like how the whole piece turned out. 

I hope that you all have a lovely day,

Love and hugs to all of you, 

 Sandra                                                                     xxxxxx

Tuesday 26 March 2024

Retiform/Sketch Challenge card


Good Morning Ladies,

Well the temperature has definitely dropped around here compared to Sunday,  in the sheltered part of the garden I was just in my Tshirt, compared to yesterday when I needed an extra jumper.  The forecast isn't great for the rest of the week including the bank holiday weekend sadly.  We are going down to visit Paul's mum on Saturday, although I imagine it will be super busy in Brixham/Paignton area.   We will hopefully manage a bracing stroll along the harbour as long as it isn't raining.   What do you all have planned?                    Easter doesn't seem to be celebrated as much these days, I remember as a child Easter Sunday was a real celebration, we would see lots of our relatives and Easter Sunday lunch was almost as big a celebration as Christmas lunch,  I do remember having turkey and all the trimmings at Easter, we will usually have a Leg of English Lamb, its one meat that we don't have for regular Sunday lunch, mostly because its so expensive, its nice to have it as a treat though.  

As predicted today was a slow & sore one for me, mostly spent in my craft chair!  Paul laughed as every time I had to get up I let out those involuntary 'getting old' noises,  ooh'ing & aarh'ing without even realising! 

Today's card was an experiment,  I wanted to see if I could make the Retiform Technique fit the Sketch Challenge, It's not perfect but I think it works, I used the offset square to put the sentiment in, I wanted to do shades of green and foliage stamps as a theme. I really like how it turned out in the end.  

I hope that you all have as good a day as possible,

Sending my love & hugs to all of you,

Sandra                                                                    xxxxxx 

Monday 25 March 2024

Sonia's New Home card


Good Monday Morning Ladies,

Well here we are in the last week of March, this time next week we will be in April and the clocks will have changed, I do love the lighter evenings though, so something to look forward to.   

I hope that you all had a lovely weekend,  we spent virtually the whole weekend in the garden, preparing our vegetable garden, Paul totally cleared the area ready for setting up all of the raised beds, we will layer cardboard in and some organic matter, then Bill next door has offered us some top soil mixed with horse manure that he has down one of his fields, the have miniatures ponies so have plenty of manure!  Hopefully we will have them already for planting out in next few weeks.  

I didn't have the energy to get a card made yesterday but thankfully Sonia had offered to let me share the gorgeous card that she made for James & Mollie when they moved into their new home.  

Sonia's Description: 

I used a Gummiapan rectangle die for the background. I stamped one of the ‘Leaf Spray’ stamps from Lavinia on the side of the rectangle. I die cut a Stampin Up heart and inked in Milled Lavender. The little house is from Mama Elephant and the flowers from a punch. I added the sentiment which is from The Stamp Market.

Sonia your card is Clean & Simple Perfection 🥰  using that Lavinia stamp like that makes it look like a tall pine tree beside the house,  adding the flower gives the look of blossom,  the whole composition is just incredible, thank you so much for allowing me to share it XXX

Ladies I hope you all have a lovely start to your week, mine will be a slow start, payback for a lovely day in the garden 🙄

Sending my love and hugs to all of you,

Sandra                                                                    xxxxxxx

Sunday 24 March 2024

Your Challenge cards


Good Sunday Morning Ladies,

Well what an exciting weekend this had turned out to be !!! 

We were woken at 5am yesterday morning to a call from a very excited Becca .....

Adam got down on one knee and proposed!!  Becca was totally in shock when she called and very teary too!  She absolutely adores the ring that Adam had made for her, its a beautiful pale green Emerald set in platinum.  We couldn’t be happier for them both. 

Let's have a look at your 'Sketch Challenge' cards: 

Your Sketch Challenge cards


Janet's Description:

Here is  my card for this week. Once again I have used STAMPERIA papers and die cuts with additional additions.

The set for this card is named 'Coffee and Chocolate'

I have used this set to make a Retirement card for one of my work colleagues/Friends.

Oh Janet what a lovely card, I am so pleased that you made it to Knit & Natter, it will do you the world of good getting out and seeing your friends. 

Those Stamperia papers are gorgeous,  so many layers of detail, giving you so much to look at. Your lovely design allows the papers to be fully appreciated.  Thank you so much for taking part in this challenge my lovely XXX 


Karen's Description:

Card 1:  I Challenged Karen to make a 'Tracy Evans ' style card, this is what she came up with, using the Aall&Create In the Meadows stamp set, I was expected it to take a few days but no Karen came back with her card within a couple of hours!!  
My card is the first card with Clematis on. 

Card 2:  

The square is too big but I think it works
SW - NOEL cut in brown and scratched gold mirri (I’d marked it with glue and the scratching has disguised it!
Patterned paper from The Range or The Works

Your cards are both lovely Karen,  I'm so glad that you enjoyed the Fractured card Challenge,  luckily it worked perfectly for this weeks challenge.  Thank you so much for taking part in the Challenge Karen XXX 


Lilian's Description:

Hi, here is my card this week, not as good as yours, should have put the square in the middle. Have daughter coming for the weekend, so that should be lovely. Hope you have a good weekend .

I love these papers Lilian,  they remind me of Harry Potter!   You have created a percect Fractured card my lovely.   Thank you so much for taking part in the Challenge XXX


Maria's Description:

I wanted to make a cracked card, ended up with doing two 😊 they were fun to do. Thanks for sharing how to make them.
The third card I followed the challenge/ template. Used some old dies, not sure where they came from, flowers are by Spellbinders 
Hope your day is good. 

Oh Maria your Fractured cards are both perfect, I love the papers you used especially the bird one, its beautiful.  I love the vintage look of the floral one too. 
You have made the actual sketch card perfectly Maria, using pretty die cut flowers too, that border you have used is so delicate and lacy, creating a beautiful background for those flowers. 
I am so grateful that you took part in the Challenge my lovely,  thank you XXX 


Sonia's Description:

Card 1 :  This is the one I started at yours on Tuesday ☺️ Sorry, I don’t know the brand of papers I’ve had them so long! The die cut flower is Gummiapan and sentiment from The Stamp Market

Card 2:  Using same set of papers, larger flower and sentiment. I literally copied the sketch exactly ☺️

I love how your Fractured card turned out, those papers are lovely, the glitter doesn't really show im photographs but it really lifts the design.  

Your send card is equally as lovely,  its so nice to see you using papers from your stash too, we often forget how lovely some of these older paper pads are, I have had some for 10 years, like yours they haven't dated at all.   The trouble with that is that it works with Paul's hoarder theory, if you keep something long enough it comes back into fashion!!! 🤣😂

Thank you so much for taking part my lovely XXX 


Ooh I hope that today is a quieter one,  after announcing Becca & Adams engagement I was pretty much answering messages all day, not that I'm complaining of course, my typing finger was exhausted though 🤣😂

I hope you all have a peaceful Sunday, 

Love and hugs to all of you,

Sandra                                                                    xxxxxx 

Saturday 23 March 2024

Mixed Up Saturday


Good Saturday Morning Ladies, 

It's been an exciting week in our house, with Matt getting his new job, Becca is having a lovely time in Sri Lanka, they went on s littlest Safara yesterday,  she got really close to an Baby elephant and it's Mumma....

How blessed is she,  she was overcome with emotion bless her.  The top photo of is of the Baby Elephant,  the second is Adam,  his twin Ross and Becca and Ross's Girlfriend Katie are in front, the last photo is Becca with star of the show in the background ❤️ 

Retiform Technique 

Step by Step

I decided to show you how to create cards using the 'Retiform' technique'

Retiform Technique Explained:

It involves creating a network or grid-like pattern on your card using lines or shapes. For this reason it is also called the grid technique. The technique is incredibly adaptable. It can be used with a variety of materials, such as pencils, pens, markers, watercolours and stamps.

Its a great way to use stamp sets that you already have, you could use magazine free stamps too, they don't even need to be themed like mine is.

You start with a piece of card 1/4 inch smaller than your card base.

Next step is to take large post it or low tack tape and mask off a section of card,  you then take your chosen ink and whichever blending tool you prefer and starting off of the card front, blend the ink along the line that you have masked. 

Just like this, you now need to decide where your next section is going to go.

Reposition your post it or tape and ink along the masked line again, you can blend the ink out into the area you have created, just make sure the actual line is visible. 

Continue to reposition your post it /tape to create the pattern you like.

This is my inked pattern.

Now we can add some stamping, before you start though Mask of the area you are going to stamp in so that the stamping remains totally inside each section.

Stamp your desired details in a darker shade of the ink that you created the borders with.

I started mine with this anchor stamp, once I had stamped, I moved the post it notes and moved on to the next area. 

Continue to mask off each area and stamp your chosen design.

Here is my finished piece, I will say that it is a good idea to decide at the start where your chosen sentiment will go and build your pattern around it. 

I then mounted my stamped piece onto a contrasting card base.   

This is a different version to the one above, after I finished I realised I hadn't done enough photographed steps, so I made another one. 

I am going to make my next one in shades of green,  using different foliage stamps for the details.   

You could use any theme you like,  I quite fancy doing Seasons as a theme.  Especially Spring! 

I hope you enjoyed this brief tutorial on the Retiform Technique,  I look forward to seeing any that you make. 


I hope that you all have a great Saturday, 

Love and hugs to all of you,