Friday 29 December 2017

Tag Friday at a Vintage Journey

Hello Friends

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!

There are five Fridays in December so that means it is Tag Friday over at A Vintage Journey.  I had a set of ice skates left over from another project so I used them, together with one of Alison Bomber's wonderful sentiment stamps, to create a simple wintry tag.

I made the tag to attach to a Christmas gift so I don't have any step outs but I can tell you briefly how I made it.  First up I used some of Anna Marie Design Christmas papers for the base of the tag, adding some white embossing around all of the edges.
The skates were cut from white matboard, grunged up a little with some Distress Ink and laced up with some brown embroidery cotton.  I applied two layers of silver embossing powder to the skate blades and heat embossed each layer.

I love Alison Bomber's fabulous sentiment stamps and I used one from her winter sentiment collection Paper Artsy EAB05.
To finish off I dyed some seam binding with Ground Espresso Distress Stain and I added some Tim Holtz Idea-olgy jingle bells to the skates.

So there we have it, a quick and easy wintry gift tag.  Please do have a look at what my talented team mates have made over at A Vintage Journey, you won't be disappointed!

We will soon be into the New Year so I would like to take the opportunity to wish you all the very best for 2018, I hope it is a good year for you!

Hugs, Anne xx

Wednesday 20 December 2017

Leather Journals ...

Hello Friends!

  All this month Eileen Hull's team are sharing projects from the new e-Book (Gifts to Die For - details on my sidebar if you wish to purchase one).  As I have already shared my project HERE, I am sharing some Christmas gifts I made for my lovely friends Jenny and Tracy.

Being in a bit of a tizzy with all the Christmas prep etc., I forgot to take photos of the journals (I know, I blame my age - lol), so Jenny took some photos for me - thank you Jenny!
I made the red leather one for Jenny and the turquoise one for Tracy.  I am not going to share lots of details on how to make the journals as I have done that in several previous posts, using Eileen's wonderful Passport Book die (Sizzix 660331).
I personalised each journal with a name tag and made a page marker for each, using Tracy Easson's fabulous stamp set 'We are Three'.  The page markers were then laminated to give them strength and I added a die cut 'today' to the top.  I also used our very own Tracy's sentiment stamp from her new stamp set by AALL & Create.

Each journal has two signatures and a 2018 diary.  I purchased very reasonable diaries from the shop that sells everything for £1, took the covers off and slipped them into a handmade holder so that they would match the other elements in the journal.
Finally, I added a pen holder and pen to each journal, along with a name tag (I am practicing stamping onto leather - still have a lot to learn!).  The journal on the left is shown from the back and the one on the right is from the front.  The beautiful leather I used on both journals is from a UK company - Artisan Leather.

Useful Tip: I have found, when cutting leather, it is easy to cut right through the scored areas of the die (the spine) and it can be difficult to patch them up again.  I use the Sizzix Premium Crease Pad and it scores the lines perfectly, without cutting them through.

You may have seen a photo on social media but here we all are having a wonderful time, meeting up for lunch (6 hours long!) and a chat about all things crafty!

Thanks so much for your visit.  I wish you a very Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!

Hugs, Anne xxx

Monday 18 December 2017

Ice Skating Anyone ?

Hello Friends

Over the last few weeks I have been busy making Christmas cards and gifts for family and friends and I thought I would take a little time out to create a little Christmas wall hanging for my craft room.

As a child I pestered my parent incessantly for a pair of ice skates, but I didn't actually get my first pair until I was 12 and although they were second hand and a little battered looking, they were the best (and most memorable) Christmas present I ever received.  My Brother and I would spend hours skating on the frozen rivers and lakes near our home..... such happy memories!

I was so thrilled when I heard that Tim Holtz has re-released this skate die, it is one of my all time favourites!

I started with a canvas base 5" x 7", giving the base a coat of Ground Espresso Distress Paint.  I used a candle to mark a few areas of the canvas before applying Crackle Paint.  Once dry I rubbed away parts of the paint, where the candle marks were.  I watered down some Salty Ocean Distress Paint and covered the whole canvas.  
I added lots of die cuts to the top, including the latest Tim Holtz Festive Greens and some older Holiday Greens die cuts together with Tim's Mini Poinsettia and Idea-ology flower centres.  I added some seed beads to the ends of some of the greenery.
I gave the skates a coat of white paint to the boot part and covered this with Clear Rock Candy Distress Paint.  I used embroidery cotton to lace up the skates and added jingle bells to the laces. The blades were covered with silver embossing powder.

I really enjoyed making this, I hope you enjoyed seeing it!

I rarely seek out challenges to join in but I found three this time, to round the year off, that I would love to join in with!  I would like to join in with Suzz's challenge - Most Memorable Gift, over at Frilly & Funkie Challenge Blog.

I would also like to enter the 'Tis the Season' challenge over at That's Crafty Challenge Blog.

And also, over at Emerald Creek they are having a Happy Holidays - Anything Goes Challenge and I would love to join in there too!  I was inspired by many hours of ice skating with my brother!

As always, thanks for looking, hope to see you again soon.

Hugs, Anne xx

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Driving Home for Christmas....

Hello Friends

I do love to make handmade gifts for family and friends at Christmas, I just had to make one of these after seeing the gorgeous creations by Kath Stewart and Richele Christensen. I wanted to make one, but not the same and so I used Tim Holtz's Home for the Holidays and Winter Wonderland die sets to make my 'Driving Home for Christmas' shadow box.  I have been listening to Chris Rea .....

I did not do a step by step as I got a bit carried away but both Kath and Richele (links above) have put very comprehensive tutorials together and I more or less, followed those tutorials.

I used the largest box from the Vignette tray set (12" x 6"), adding some Idea-ology Design Tape to the edges.  The sky was painted with Salty Ocean Distress Paint and the snow drifts at the bottom were made from white card and then coated with Clear Rock Candy Distress Glitter using Matte Medium to adhere it to the card.

I absolutely adore this car die from the Home for Christmas die set and the 'snowfall' in the background was created using the background die from the Winter Wonderland set.  The Merry Christmas and all the trees and the 'snow drifts' at the bottom of the frame come from the Home for Christmas die set.
I added a set of lights to the inside back of the tray (as Kath and Richele did), drilled a hole through to the back for the battery pack to sit on the outside back.  The letters on the top are Tim's Idea-ology Typography letters in white - I painted the front of each letter in Festive Berries Distress Paint and set them into Distress Grit Paste with some added glitter.
Here is a view with the lights on.

My Son and his lovely Wife have just moved to a new house in Brighton and it is a bit like a building site at the moment, whilst they renovate, so I hope this will brighten up a room over the Christmas period!
My Dad had a car similar to this retro one, I have such fond memories of it and the cottage that he and my Mum built themselves, in Canada, for their retirement!

I have just got the new Gift Card Package die after seeing all the inspiration Tim's team have been sharing so I will be back with some of those in a few days, I hope!

I would like to enter this into That's Crafty! Tis the Season Challenge where they are asking to see festive creations.

Over at Simon Says Monday Challenge, the challenge is Christmas/Winter Holiday, so I am adding my Vignette to that challenge too....

I am also entering into Country View Challenge - Christmas, with the option of Reds, Greens and Rust.  I don't have any rust but there is lots of red and green so I hope that's OK!

As always, thanks for your visit (and comment), I really do appreciate it!

Hugs, Anne xx

Monday 11 December 2017

Gifts to Die For !

Hello Friends

For those of you who may not have heard the news, Eileen Hull has brought out a new e-Book called Gifts to Die For.  The e-Book, published by Bella Crafts Publishing contains over 65 wonderful projects, many by Eileen herself, projects from her Inspiration Team and also projects by friends of Eileen.  Each project, made with Eileen's dies, links back to an original blog post, with information on how each project came together.  There are projects to suit all tastes.

The e-Book will normally retail at $16.97, but until 31 December you can purchase it for $9.97 (£7.72), a fantastic reduction!  There is a link in the top left hand side of my sidebar, if you would like to purchase one.
I am thrilled that I have a project in the book, it is one of my favourite projects using Eileen's now infamous Journal die! 

As well as the new e-Book, two other of Eileen's publications are also reduced in price to $9.97 until the end of December 2017 - Journal Treasury and Die Cutting Magic so if you are stuck for Christmas or birthday gifts for crafty friends, these may be of interest!  Again, there are links in the top left hand sidebar.

Thanks so much for looking, I hope to see you again soon with some Christmas projects!

Hugs, Anne xx

Friday 1 December 2017

Mini Album Makers December Challenge

Hello Friends

It is time for a new challenge at Mini Album Makers, where as always, the theme is any form of handmade mini albums, scrapbooks, journals and book arts as long as they are completed works.

I needed to say thank you to some lovely people who have been a huge support over the last couple of months, so I used Eileen Hull's fabulous Passport Die (Sizzix 660331) to create some personal journals for each of them, and I based them on things I knew they liked.
I thought I would just explain, briefly, the finish on the journals and then show you one in more detail.  I used a dream catcher theme on three of the journals, using Seth Apter's fabulous Drip Drop die, which reminds me of a dream catcher!

1)  Top left was simply painted with blue paint from my stash and some lovely design paper was added to the cover and the signatures inside.

2) Top right was painted in various warm colours, using a brayer to layer up the colours.  The dream catcher was given a coat of crackle paste and then coloured with gold tone gilding wax.

3)  Bottom left was painted with black acrylic paint and I added a picture I found on the internet, depicting a collie dog.  The lady in questions loves collies.

4)  Bottom right was painted with purple acrylic paint, the covers were embossed with an embossing folder and then silver gilding wax was rubbed gently all over.  The dream catcher element was painted in crackle paint before being coated generously with gilding was.  The 'X' in the centre is filled with beautiful purple beads.

5)  I always like to include charms on my handmade journals and each is attached with one of Tim Holtz Idea-ology clips.  The dream catcher charms were purchased in kit form from that very well know auction site.

Now, just a few steps for those who like to see the process.
I die cut the covers and the spine and ran them through an embossing folder (Tim Holtz flourish), painted them with some purple acrylic paint and then highlighted the embossing with some gilding wax (Pebeo).
I die cut some extra covers in thin card, to line the inside of the covers.  I trimmed these slightly to give a neat finish inside.
Eileen's die also cuts the signature covers, I cut three of these and decorated them with die cuts.  I also added an envelope pocket (in the same matching card) to the inside back of the journal.  The advantage of this is that it covers up the knot for the elastic closure on the journals.  The signature inserts were also cut using the die and I trimmed these down to fit inside the signature covers.

As it happens, our wonderful Sponsor this month is none other than Eileen Hull herself and she is offering one lucky winner, one of her journal dies.  This is one of Eileen's Bigz XL dies (Sizzix 658982 - Mini Album)
Website -
Facebook -
Eileen Hull Facebook Fan Club -
Shop -

So, to be in with a chance of winning this wonderful die, I hope you will join us at Mini Album Makers this month, you can find all the details and rules HERE.

As always, thanks for your visit, I hope to see you again soon!

Hugs, Anne xxx

Wednesday 22 November 2017

Book Club Part 2 - Eileen Hull

Hello Friends

I am a bit late posting this, but hopefully better late than never.  In my last post HERE I shared a project using one of Eileen Hull's latest Book Club release (Card Box, Planner Storage) and today I have another of the dies in the new release - Stamp and Photo Storage Box (Sizzix 662359).  It is a ScoreBoard L die, so it will easily cut through thicker card, such as Mat/Mount Board.

As many of you know already I just love Eileen's Journal die and when I saw the Photo Box, I immediately thought that it might just fit inside the Journal and so I went off to experiment!  Of course you may want to use it in the more traditional way, and use it to store stamps and/or photos!

Here is a picture of the finished project.  I created a travel watercolour box.
I started off by creating the cover for my journal and the box, using lots of paint, applied with a brayer and stamping here and there.
I used a Stampendous set of stamps to stamp out the paint brushes for the front of the Journal.  I stamped them and then elongated them by hand, drawing longer handles and coloured them in with watercolours.  The 'make art' was stamped using Tim Holtz's Worn Text stamp set.
I covered the Stamp and Photo Storage Box with some of the painted paper and plotted out where to punch holes, so that I could fit paint brushes onto the front.  I threaded through 3mm elastic cord and slid some old brushes in, temporarily.

  The Stamp & Photo Box itself measures 6.1/8" x 4.1/8" x 1/2".
I  constructed the Journal and then glued the box to the inside back and added some new paint brushes into the threaded elastic.  The box of watercolour paints fit very neatly into the Stamp & Photo Storage box.
I added one signature made up of watercolour paper and I used Seth Apter stamps to decorate the cover of the signature.

Here is a view of the inside with the paints slipped into the back.  You can't see it here, but there was room for a small water spritzer too, so anyone who loves watercolour painting will be all set!

I hope you like my slightly unusual way of using Eileen's new Stamp and Photo Storage Box!  All month Eileen is showing other Team Members creations using the new dies, I hope you might have time to visit HERE to see all the wonderful projects that can be made with Eileen's fabulous new Book Club release! 

As always, thanks so much for your visit.

Hugs, Anne xx

Tuesday 14 November 2017

Book Club New Release - Eileen Hull

Hello Friends

A while back I shared some sneak peeks of Eileen Hull's latest release in her Book Club range.  The new release has some amazing dies ranging from Bookmarks right up to ScoreBoard XL dies, including the Card Box, Planner Storage & Organiser.  The dies in the new range are intended to be used in several ways, which a great thing for us crafters - we all love to get value for our money!!

I am sharing the Sizzix ScoreBoard XL die (662361) - Card Box, Planner Storage & Organiser and also the Passport die, also a Sizzix Bigz XL die (  )
I know I shouldn't have favourites but this is one them from the new release, it is a lovely compact size and holds the Passport Journal beautifully.  Of course you can us the box to store your handmade cards, photographs, die cuts, whatever you like - I can imagine a whole row of these......
The die cuts in one piece as you can see above.  I brayered the whole piece using a blend of white paint coloured with Eileen Hull's ColourBox Blend ink to give a soft pink colour.  Once dry I brayered DecoArt Titan Buff over the top of the pink.

I painted some plain white cardstock in the same colour combo as the holder.  I used this to cut the Passport pieces.
To add some detail I stencilled onto both sides of the holder as shown above.

To decorate the Passport journal, inside and out, I used some beautiful papers and journal cards gifted to me by a wonderful crafty friend - they are so beautiful!
I added three signatures to the journal, each with two pages and I added some small envelopes to the front and back covers.
Here is a view of the journal inside the holder, but of course the holder has many other uses, the sky is the limit with this die!

All this month my very talented team-mates are sharing their samples too and you can see these on Eileen's blog HERE.

Thanks so much for your visit, I hope to see you again soon!

Hugs, Anne xx

Monday 6 November 2017

A Vintage Journey - Destination Inspiration

Hello Everyone

Just a quick post to say that I am first up this month over at A Vintage Journey with a Destination Inspiration post.  Here's a sneak peek....
If you have the time, I hope you will pop over and have a look - and if you can, please join in our Mini Marvels challenge this month!

Thanks for looking, hope to see you again soon!

Hugs, Anne xx

Friday 3 November 2017

Mini Marvels at A Vintage Journey

It is hard to believe that we are in November already!  Our latest challenge at A Vintage Journey is Mini Marvels and I am hosting the challenge this month.

This month's challenge is to create something in miniature - it could be a little book, a tiny scene, a small canvas, a wall hanging or even a box.  It MUST be 4" or less in size and be created in our vintage, shabby, mixed media, art journalling, industrial, timeworn or steampunk style.
I challenged myself to create a mini snow globe scene in 3D but using some one dimensional dies by Tim Holtz, a glass Christmas decoration and a plastic cup.  The finished piece is just 4" tall.

I have not taken many process shots because it was just so quick and easy to make.  Above, you can see what I started with - A Christmas decoration, a plastic cup and I also used the Tim Holtz Snowglobe #2 die  and his Tree Line Thinlits die.

I gave the cup a good coat of Black Gesso and then a coat of IndigoBlu Raven Black Metallic Paint. I needed somewhere to hide my battery pack (yes, it lights up!) and so I cut a hole in the tub as shown.
I cut out the elements twice from the Snowglobe die.  To construct the buildings in 3D, I cut narrow strips of card which I used to join the front to the back of each building that I wanted to use.  In this case I chose to use the Church.
In this photo you can see how dinky the elements are!
The top looked a little plain so I dotted Glossy Accents around and sprinkled them with glitter to give a snowy effect.  I attached an Idea-ology piece to the top to cover the hole where the cord once was.
Once the church was glued together I added to a round of card with a hole cut in the centre for the lights to fit through, I glued the little trees in place and added some Tim Holtz Clear Rock Candy Distress Glitter to represent the snow in the base. The whole piece was then glued together
Finally, I added some black lace around the bottom edge of the Christmas bauble and here is the snow globe all lit up.  I took this shot in late afternoon, the reflection on the glass made it difficult to photograph in total darkness, but hopefully you get the picture!

I do hope you will join in our Mini Marvels Challenge at A Vintage Journey this month, we have a wonderful prize on offer from Southern Ridge Trading Company who are offering a $50 varied selection of chipboard & wood veneer laser cuts.

Thanks so much for your visit, I really do appreciate it!  See you again soon!

Hugs, Anne xxx

Wednesday 1 November 2017

Mini Album Makers - November Challenge

It is time for a new challenge at Mini Album Makers and, as always, it is any form of handmade mini album, scrapbook, journal and book arts.

I am still in 'mini album' mode and have created a little Christmas album, which tucks nicely into a small decorated gift box.
The finished album measures 2.1/4" x 2" and is 1.1/4" deep.
I used Eileen Hull's Box, Candy Drawer die to make my gift box.  It is cut from chipboard.
The box was painted with Black Soot Distress Paint, covered with paper from the Tim Holtz stack of paper.  All the raw edges were coloured with Black Soot Distress Oxide.
To create the album, cut a piece of board to 5.3/4" x 2.1/8" and score at
2.1/4" x 3.1/2".  Cover with your chosen paper and cut the corners as shown.  Fold the corners over and glue in place and place to one side to dry.
  To create the spine for your pages cut 4 pieces of lightweight card as follows:

1.  Cut a piece of card 1.3/4" x 2" and score at 3/8" and 1.5/8"
2.  Cut a piece of card 1.5/8" x 2" and score at 3/8" and 1.1/4"
3.  Cut a piece of card 1.1/2" x 2" and score at 3/8" and 1.1/8"
4.  Cut a piece of card 1.1/8" x 2" and score at 3/8" and 5/8"
Fold and layer up the spine pieces and glue together to form a 'fan' shape.  Glue a piece of card to the inside of the album.  I usually just glue the spine area and leave the cover pieces to be glued down later, this way you can trim the edges if necessary.
Next, cut your 'pages', you will need 8 of these, 4" x 1/7/8" and score and crease in the middle.
Glue the 'pages' in as shown and then glue to the base of the album.  Once fitted, glue the inside covers of the album, trimming if necessary.
Decorate your pages as you wish, I filled mine with lots of Christmas sentiments, Christmas trees, snowflakes and I added a little pocket to the front and back cover.  I added the number 25 to the front cover and also added an elastic closure.

To finish off the box I added a Tim Holtz Poinsettia in white card, some red jingle bells and some dyed seam binding.

So there you have it, I hope you like it!

Our wonderful sponsor at Mini Album Makers this month is Lindy's Stamp Gang.

Lindy's are offering a $25 voucher to one lucky winner!

We would love to see you join in this month at Mini Album Makers Challenge,

I would like to add my project to the Frilly and Funky Trick or Treat Challenge.  Not very Halloween-like but my frilly treat is that the mini album hides away in the little a surprise.

Thanks for your visit, hope to see you again soon!

Hugs, Anne  xx
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