Monday, 16 January 2017

Stamping fun with Pampered Pets - Craftwork Cards

Hello and today I'm going to share some of the stamped cards I prepared for the launch of Craftwork Cards' new Pampered Pets Collection, which came with two superb little stamp sets, and I was lucky enough to play with the dogs one. 

The very first card I made, I looked at the little faces of one of the cuties and made myself some 3.5cm squares. The photo tells the story... all I did to finish off was select three Nuvo Aqua Flow pens and a water brush, and I coloured in the backgrounds in a shades of watery pastels.

Continuing on the theme, I wanted to do a brighter version, and I also mixed up my pooches. I coloured the backgrounds using 'neat' Nuvo Aqua flows, therefore getting a stronger colour. Funky! 

Time for a bit of colouring - but just the feature dog. Can you tell I love my Aqua Flows...they are my go-to colouring medium at the moment! 

Getting brighter now. Nuvo Aqua Markers again to make a multicoloured background, but first I made a heart template out of paper and went round it using my little bone stamp. I then added the colour round it with my waterbrush. The doggies in the middle take moments to colour in, they are very simple, and a drop of colour and a touch of shading are all that's needed. 

Inspired by three cockapoos we know, I used two colours of distress ink to make a background, and made this 'reverse' easel by folding the top part of the card out, rather than in. The three little bones on the base hold the easel up easel-y!!! I used florescent ink to make the little jackets look authentic!

As I said, colouring in the dogs doesn't have to be difficult - this one took about 20 seconds, a spot of beige on the face! I've used the new Craftwork Cards Reveal-Its for the backgrounds, coloured with a combination of red and pink distress inks.

And finally... sharing the love with a heart-shaped die, and some heart-shaped reveal-its too - the colouring in is negligible, but the cuteness overload from these little characters is immense! 

TOP TIP! Notice that on the dogs' eyes that I've painted, I have added a tiny dot of white Sakura Gelly Roll pen, it makes their eyes twinkle and come alive. 

I'm so looking forward to seeing what you crafters come up with, with your stamps and paper sets. You can see eveything that's available at Craftwork Cards.

Have a woof-erly time!

Nicky x

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Win and Tonic - January Challenge

Here's a card I made for the January Challenge, using the THEME - Love and Marriage, and also the technique of LAYERING!
It was a personal challenge to myself to go almost white on white - ok, so it's cream on white, but as a colourful crafter, I wanted to do something a bit different this time. 

Here is a description of what I did and what I used:
  • Tonic Craft Perfect card on Cream and White 
  • 15x15cm card blank
  • Twisting Veranda Dies
  • Miniature Moments Congratulations die
  • Rococo Lucky Horseshoe (bow) and Birthday Bundle (bunting)
  • Tonic Miniature Moments Wedding die
  • Nuvo Crystal Drops Buttermilk
  • Nuvo Glitter drops - White Blizzard

1. I first added a spine to my card by scoring 2cm to the right of the centre fold and removing a 2cm strip from the left hand side of the card. When folded, you then have a matching front and back, and it allows you to decorate the spine - in this case with a diecut Congratulations. I did this as I knew my layers were going to be quite deep within the aperture and I was then able to enjoy building them up, and also the card stands very nicely, like a slightly open book.

2. I die cut an aperture on the front of the card using the Twisting Veranda, then diecut the leafy detail too.

3.I cut a frame the same size as the aperture from the cream card and die cut the leafy detail. I glued the cream frame into position over white frame on the card front.

4. I added bunting and a bow in the matching colours and stuck the ‘Congratulations’ onto white spine of the card. I added two roses from the Wedding die, cut in cream, to the bottom of the front of the card.

5. I decorated the inside of the card 

I diecut a white base, a detailed cream panel to match the front of the card, and another whole white layer, and attached them with sticky foam pads to build up height. A cream diecut of the wedding 'wreath'  completed the layering.

6. I completed the card by adding Nuvo drops where I could, enhancing the Twisting Veranda frames, the bunting, and then some random dots to contrast against the white of the base card.

I hope this card inspires you to join us over on this month's Win and Tonic Challenge on the blog. Click here to pop across for more DT inspiration and to join in with a chance of winning a fabulous prize from Tonic Studios!

Happy Crafting!
Nicky x

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Dare to be Different - Visible Image

My first Visible Image blog post of the year using this incredible set of stamps:

Here is the card I made:
Now let me tell you about the fun I had making it!

Firstly I prepared my background with my newest box of incredible set of Kuretake watercolours, sent to me by a very dear friend. Oh my goodness, the vibrancy in these, I spent a whole evening just playing and making backgrounds by swooshing card over spritzed colour washes and allowing the paint to flow across the was heavenly! 

So when I selected my background for this, fortunately, it was very dry and this enabled me to stamp first the lips, for position and to get the edgy splatty detail, I stamped with clear Versamark and used Cherry Red embossing powder which I then set with my heat gun. I also inked up the top of the sentiment stamp and used white embossing powder, which really stands out, then positioned the word 'lipstick' off-centre beneath the lips, as I had a plan for the lipstick.

However to get a really clean impression, and to get the teeth white, I stamped again onto white card. 

The mouth : red embossing powder then I coloured over the 'open' part with an embossing pen, applying black powder, to create the depth. 

The lipstick: Clear Versamark and careful application of Cherry red over the lipstick, then black embossing powder over the case.

The actual slick of lipstick stamp that comes with the set is just so cool, so I used it under the word. This close-up shot also shows how I created a bit of interest on the background by splatting a bit of watery white acrylic paint. 

I stamped the OXOs with purple distress ink so that it wouldn't detract from the focal images, and I hope that it frames it all well.

Last thing - Lip gloss! Well, glossy accents in all the right places, but mmm mmm, luscious lips!!

You can find this stamp set on Visible Image's own website by clicking here.
Check out the rest of the Visible Image blog here
The facebook group with the monthly show and tell challenge can be found here
And the facebook page for Visible Image with brilliant weekly giveaways can be found here

Don't forget to check us out on Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram.... Pinterest Twitter Instagram

Happy Creating

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Pampered Pets? Craftwork Cards and I know all about that!

Hooray for the first new Craftwork Cards Launch of 2017 - The Pampered Pets Collection. I have been so excited about this one since we first discussed the concept among our Design Team in July last year, and at last, the product goes out LIVE on Create and Craft today, Thursday 12th January. 

Included in the collection are delightful double sided papers in an 8 x 8 inch pad, as modeled beautifully by the lovely Martha.
I did some wrapping of the papers round a pencil and made straws, which I cut down to 4cm long each (so I got 5 pieces out of each straw I made.) The double sided papers gave me lots of patterns and colours to choose from. 

 Then I lined them up and stuck them down onto a 7x7 inch piece of grey board, with our family favourite picture of Martha Cockapoo in the middle. 

The extra embellishments were created using the fabulous stamps designed in-house by Chloe, which you can get with the collection, there is one set of cats and one of dogs, and I 'cockapooed' the cute fluffy one to make our little lady. 

This is a pop-up card I created with the papers from the Pampered Pets Collection Kit, and a few favourite stamps too.

 The die-cut embellishments with cats and dogs, again, beautifully illustrated by Chloe from Craftwork Cards, are perfect for popping straight out and onto cards, but I cut round this happy duo and had a bit of a play. 
You can see from this picture above that I created a middle section for the inside of the card, by scoring two matching pieces and sticking them together. This guaranteed that my little kennel shape, which I cut out myself, would stand upright when the card was fully open, and I simply decorated round it. 

I used a lovely tree from the Craftwork Cards Mulberry Tree stamping set, and something rather cute for the leaves...can you see?

I made a little 2cm deep pop-up mount for my doggies, to bring them forward from the kennel, as you can see in this next picture:

(I added a spot of velcro to attach the kennel to the back of the card, and if you pull it open that's where a message can be written!)

 So the whole card from the front, with the trees up, looks like this:
But when you close it, and seal it with a little wrap made from one of the borders and sentiment toppers from the kit, you get this:

and it all fits in a C6 envelope!

There are oodles of papers, toppers and sentiment toppers to play with in the kit, and I shall share more over the next few days. 
The shows are on Create and Craft at 9am and 1pm Thursday 12th January, so don't miss them, or find them on their 'catch up' for 7 days. There will be an abundance of cuteness, that's for sure!!

Happy Crafting

Sunday, 18 December 2016

Visible Image - Rock Out!

Hi and here's my last Sunday Share for 2016, and the last Visible Image Design Team Blog Post of the year! A genuine squeal of excitement from me when I saw the new and improved Rock Out set, with the extra guitar, the stars, the devil horn hands.... and an idea fell into place. 

Mr Bone Jangles' skull is such a cool size to start a design, the rest came easily. A background, from red, green and orange spritzed distress inks, called for the same colous of stamping for a bit of subtlety, and then a splash of brightness for contrast. 

The guitars were stamped in a skull and crossbones style with Versamark, and heat embossed with black powder direct to the cardstock. The skull I did onto painted card and cut out. 

A finishing touch was to stamp 'happy birthday' from the 'Go To Words' set round the edge of the card to tie everything together. Don't tell him but this will be one of the cards for my son's 17th Birthday on boxing Day! It sums him up in a nutshell!

I'd like to take this opportunity to say thanks to Helen and Mark for taking the leap of faith with me when I turned up at Port Sunlight in May waving my Union Jack card at them! The rest, as they say, is history, but it has been a pleasure and a privilege to work with them and the rest of the inspirational Design Team this year and I can't wait to see what 2017 has in store for us all! 

Click these links to get to the Visible Image shop, The Visible Image facebook page, the facebook group where you can share your makes and get inspiration, and of course the blog, where Helen and Mark showcase their talented Design Team and tempt you with special offers and gorgeous stamps!

Wishing you all, Visible Image customers, crafters and friends, a very merry Christmas and a happy and healthy 2017

Nicky xx

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Win and Tonic December Challenge

Just wanted to share this not-so little card - it's an 8x8 inch one, so that I could use a lovely 'letters to Santa' backing paper that has tiny Christmas cards on it too. So cute! But the main feature is the gorgeous Snowy Postbox from Tonic Studios and also the very useful (and among my favourite layering sets) Art Nouveau set

The post box has been coloured in with alcohol pens and the snowy bits glittered. I was so thrilled to be able to add a tiny letter going into its mouth..just so Santa knows...!

And after I made this card, I learned of a special and brave little boy whose wish, this Christmas, is to receive as many cards as this is now winging it's way to him...

Traditional Christmas colours are my favourite, so I hope this works well as inspiration for December's Win and Tonic Challenge. Please head over and join in, post your makes, there is a huge list of possibble ways to make your project so everyone is very welcome to join in.

Thanks for looking, and a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from me. 

Crafty hugs
Nicky xx

Nuvo Aqua Flow pens - Tonic Studios

Today I'm sharing my makes from this week's double launch from Tonic Studios - amazing Nuvo Aqua Flow pens and Craft Perfect Foiled Card Blanks.

The pens have the capacity to change the way you look at stamping, but for this launch, I concentrated on colouring and painting with them, and I absolutely loved the effects you can get with even just the one pen. Here are some of my samples and a little explanation of how I put them together...

A simple colour wash of the Indigo Dawn, thinning out the ink as I went across. Splashes of water to lift some of the colour and purple splattering to add deep highlights. The dies are all Tonic Studios, I love my go-to Beautiful Blooms sets, this one is from Sunburst Gazania

One colour again -  Azure Blue, washed and lightened across the card. This time I picked out the detail in the mandala-style foiling with the pen and a waterbrush for lighter colours. The dragonfly is from the Mandala Moments set released in November.

Aqua Splash with evergreen Fern...a colour wash and then a blotted technique to build it all up. The ribbon has been coloured buy the pens!

A pink wash from the Red Apple pen, and then the colourof the flowers and the sentiment taken out with a waterbrush. I then used the fabulous Glitter Gloss pen to make the flowers shine. 

Spiced Ginger and Lemon Zest all over the card blank, then Obsidian Black for detail. This time I applied the Glitter Gloss pen to the black for a gorgeous sheen

Straight-forward colouring with four pastel shades, but in order to accommodate the topper I decided to cut an aperture through the front of the card. Waste not, want not - I quartered it to add detail inside the aperture when the card is open.

Red Apple and Spiced Ginger...and the orange came from mixing them together. The red behind the gold frame is simple achieved by colouring directly onto white diecut cardstock - no more hunting matching colours in the scraps box!

And favourite of all the cards I made for the samples...
Three colours of wash, Soft Rose, Aqua Splash and Azure Blue, and then splashes of Indigo Dawn. I also water painted out the colour from the flowers and repainted with light Indigo Dawn, to keep the intensity of the colour, and to match the Tonic Sent With Love topper that just finished the piece off. 

I genuinely love this set of pens, there are over 50 DT photos to inspire you on the Tonic Pinterest Page, definitely worth a look!! 

Enjoy your pens if you get them, I really do love them and they will feature in lots of my up-coming work, that's for sure, 
Happy Crafting
Nicky x