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
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