Sunday, 30 October 2016

Tonic watercolour tag card.

Hello there! Today I've dipped into my watercolours and die cuts to create a large tag card, 15cm x 7.5cm. 

This is the first time I've die cut into watercolour card and all I can say is...why have I not done this before?! I'm sure you've been doing this for years but to me it's new and I'm EXCITED! 

So, I started off with a basic watercolour background for my tag, using Kuretake Gansai Tambi Japanese Watercolours. I then die cut the Tonic Beautiful Blooms and again used my watercolours on them. Then I hacked into a Tonic sentiment topper, added a few embellishments and popped it all together.

A closer look at the watercolour background and some of the detail. 

I used cord, watercolour paper and flower buds to make the centre of this flower. Isn't it lovely? I also used multiple layers of watercolours for a little depth on each flower. 

I then cut out a Tonic sentiment topper and layered it with black card to make it pop.

The finished tag card is lovely and perfect for an anniversary card. 

Have a great week - and I'll be back next weekend with another make. Until then, stay crafty! 

Jennifer x


Friday, 28 October 2016

See it, scene it, kraft it, Stamp It! get it, got it, good!

Craftwork Cards have recently released a really cool add-on kit - russet kraft crates and I’ve been having some fun with them.
There is plenty of inspiration on Pinterest for these lovely crates here. I didn't want to do the normal build a crate so came up with a few ideas 
Topper crate
These little crates only take a minute or two to put together. You can use red super sticky tape, strong wet glue or hot glue (which I used). I made up a plain kraft one, another one I stamped with a wooden background stamp and white chalk ink, and various colours of glitter.

I decided to use one of the crates as a topper storage/holder, it holds absolutely loads of toppers and the perfect size to boot! Now, anytime I need a topper, I can reach for that little crate on my desk. Having the toppers accessible means they’re a continuous source of inspiration instead of tucked away in a box somewhere. High fives all around if you’re already doing this- I love the idea!

Christmas Crate
Time for mega sparkle with some Tonic Nuvo gold glitter. Now, glitter can be a bit of a pain but I use cosmic shimmer wet glue and leave it to set overnight. if you try and shake off too soon you end up in a right glittery mess. 

Flicking through my toppers, an idea blossomed using Craftwork Cards Christmas Cheer Collection.

I started making up mini boxes with papers from the Christmas Cheer 8 x 8 pad, sentiments and flowers. I then used Candi and a little ribbon to complete this kooky Christmas crate and mini parcel project. You could even wrap up small gifts and use as alternative Christmas Crackers if you wanted to. 

As well as constructing mini boxes, I also designed a small 4 x 4 Christmas card which completes this set and would make a gorgeous table display or gift for someone. 

Halloween Scene

Once Christmas was finished, I thought to myself…erm, hello, it’s Halloween! So I went about creating a really fun project. I stamped a crate with white chalk ink using the wood stamp which comes in this set. I then lined the inside of the crate with CWC papers – any will do but I used Rustic Romance.

Grabbing a few mason jars from my kitchen, I wrapped them with white gauze and stuck googly eyes on the front – voila! Halloween is here…

Taking some sweets, I filled the little crate up with lots of Halloween goodies. Even the mummy jars were impressed! 

Baby mummy looks on greedily at the blackcurrant lolly!

To finish off my Halloween scene, I laid out spider web string, some eyeball chocolates and and a twiggy pumpkin.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my alternative take on these lovely kraft crates and that it sparks your imagination when creating your own scenes. Why not get the children involved this weekend and have a stab at making something fun. 
Until next time, stay calm and craft on!
Lots of love
Jennifer x 

Sunday, 16 October 2016


Happy Sunday to you! 

I've been at the easel cards again and this time it's all about Craftwork Cards. It's a longer post from me today as I've made 6 different cards this week - from a tiny ATC all the way up to a very large triple easel card. 

1. ATC Easel designed using Christmas Cheer. I don't know if you're meant to make easel card ATC's but it was fun making this little cutie!

Here I've demonstrated just how small this is. 

2. This is a  3 x 3 inch Easel Card designed using Birds & Blooms and took about 10 minute using the leftover paper from my other card creations.

 3. 6 x 6 Easel Card designed using Birds & BloomsOnce again I have opted to make a simply designed card which took no more than 25 minutes from start to finish (although I used a heat gun to dry the Stickles). For this card, the only other item used was Stickles, Star Dust. The topper on the base has been converted into a card, so there is room for your message inside. Not wanting to over-complicating the simplicity of this design, I had to pause for a moment to work out how to attach the two base sentiments. I'd recently made a series of mini cards for added interest as part of a larger card design and so adopted that approach here. They simply fold down flat with the card. Dead simple and so effective! I've taken a photo to show you how simple it is - and can be modified to suit toppers or anything else you want to make a card into. ;) The 1.5 inch mini card blank is small enough for all the sentiments in Birds & Blooms, taking into account the slight variation to shape.

4. 6 x 6 inch Triple Easel Card designed using Birds & Blooms. Another variation on the easel card is this very large triple decker. The card base is constructed in the exactly the same way. The only thing to mention is that with this design, there is a hangover for each layer and you would need to put this in a 8x8 envelope. I prefer to make boxes for these larger cards as they are so dimensional and you wouldn't want to squish them. There are three card blanks - 6 x 6, 5 x 5, and 4 x 4 to complete the construction on this design. I decorate all three bases separately and then glue them down.

This card uses more embellishments and paper but also requires at least one hour of time (that's my speed but I'm not a quick crafter). I was talking to my friend and fellow CWC DT, Nicky Gilburt a few days ago about this exact same thing. We all like a quick and simple card which can be given to family and friends or made in those emergency situations ( I have a teenage son who always does this to me - like, mom, can you  make 8 different Birthday cards asap. True story!). Some people like plain and some want something a little special. This card uses lots of lace, twine, buttons, sequins, Stickles, Glossy Accents, Liquid Pearls - and of course plenty of papers and toppers which has been cut into, cut out and decoupaged, not to mention the sentiments and Candi.

And the completed card looks like this: 

5. 4 x 4 Triple Easel Card designed using Birds & Blooms. I've presented the 6 x 6 card first as this next card requires a little more time and is a slight variation. At 1 hour 10 mins, you will need some patience but it's totally worth it in the end. Although it's only 4 x 4'ish, it's quite simply gorgeous! I've added lots of papers, toppers and sentiments just as I have in card #4 but this is much more dimensional and definitely needs it's own special box (which is next weeks project). The reason I say 4 x 4 'ish is because the base has been elongated slightly so it's perfectly symmetrical when flat (you can see the difference between this base and the one above).

As well as all your standard papers, toppers and embellishments - Stickles, ribbon, pearls, twine, gauze, natural fibers and a stick pin was used.

Another small tweak was to the middle easel - it's been cut down to show the entire 'Love' topper in the background and ensure the little bird sits at just the right height. Additionally, the front easel is not centred to create maximum visibility when upright.

6. 5.5 x 5.5 inch Circle Easel Card designed using Birds & Blooms. For my last design, we've moved away from standard square card blanks and opted for a circle easel card. My card base has been made out of a circle die (any will do) but you can use anything round as long as it's the right size to trace around and cut out with a scalpel ( I use Swann Morton No 4 handle with a No 11 scalpel - as it has a curved blade). My first photo is of the design when it's folded flat. I wanted to show just how flat you can make them (although I have the roses in the front for added dimension. If you omitted the flowers or swapped them with non dimensional ones you could easily pop this in a regular envelope.

I used plain magenta card stock for all my outer layers (although the card base is white), and Birds & Blooms papers, toppers and sentiments; with oodles of Stickles, ribbons, brads, natural elements and distress inks. Then hand laid and glued down each individual pearl on the entire card as they were not self adhesive.  The ribbon was twisted and held in place with a hot glue gun and drew a template for the roses then hand cut each one.

The most exciting aspect of this card for me is that the teacup and bird are not only decoupaged but pop up! Remember my earlier photo where the cards was flat? Well, you can see just how dimensional you can make these easel cards without incurring hefty postage costs.

Phew, I bet you're glad that's over! ;)

I've loved making these cards and can't wait to try the same concept out again on a new shape next month.

Have a restful Sunday afternoon.

Yours faithfully
Jennifer xx

Thursday, 13 October 2016

A masculine touch

Hi there!

Brrrrr - it's getting cold here in Cornwall. I'm not looking forward to the dark and dreary winter down here; roll on Spring! ;)

Today's blog showcases a couple masculine cards. Personally, this is always a challenge and takes me longer to design something I'm happy with. Luckily, both worked out. :)

First up is a 15cm Easel Envelope card I designed using Craftwork Cards 'Take it Easy' collection and one of the new stamps from Craftwork Cards Stamp It! set which has now sadly sold out. I fussed about with the decoupage a little and hand cut a tag. I'd seen something similar from my friend, Nicky Gilburt and knew I needed to have a whirl with my own spin on it. The end result was this:

As a coincidence, the very next day I needed another masculine card but didn't want to use the same papers. So, I flicked through my paper stash  and came up with - Time to Flourish from Graphic 45 - which isn't necessarily for men but worked out well. The sentiments and Candi are both Craftwork Cards. 

It came together really quickly and I like the overall composition.

Just a quick post from me today - thanks for taking the time to swing by and I'll be back on the weekend with a shedload of easel cards! 

Jennifer x 

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Everyone needs a good Tonic now and again!

So yeah, I've had family intervention. After using my Tonic Twisting Veranda and Beautiful Blooms dies over the past few days, my husband says all we need is a monorail and some fireworks and the house would look like Disneyland!

I admit it, I've gone a little overboard on my recent makes. They are large, dimensional and pretty darn cool! The dies are now safely tucked away until my next inspirational moment.  

Now, I've die cut in the past but nothing intricate or fussy. It's mainly been for apertures or the odd leaf or sentiment. But I've recently bought some Tonic die sets - first was the Beautiful Blooms and then Twisting Veranda. 

I'm not gonna lie, it was tough getting to grips with this sort of die cutting. I intentionally stayed away from social media as I needed to figure it out myself and wanted to create something totally me. 

It took nearly 5 hours to get to grips with these dies - but you have to remember I had no idea what I was doing and it's questionable whether I do now ;). 

First up was Santoro Mirabelle. OMG this paper is LUSH! So I set about cutting, sweating, cutting wrong and nearly crying, then began sticking it all together. It looked good but something was missing. Aah, flowers! I turned to the Tonic Beautiful Blooms, Apple Blossom. So I cut cut cut and viola! it looked much better - this enormous easel card was looking pretty good!

Now, the sentiment. What to add, what to add? Nothing seemed to work. My only Tonic sentiment die I bought in a sale was Little Princess and it was perfect! I just couldn't figure out where to stick it so in the end, I made a tiny card blank from the second smallest solid die and stuck it on the front. Now I have somewhere to put my sentiment AND somewhere to write a note! Perfect :)

I wasn't ready to put them away so the next day I made a second easel card with yet another slightly bigger mini card but using the smaller Twisting Veranda dies, the Beautiful Blooms Woodland Aster dies and Craftwork Cards papers - Antiqued and Birds & Blooms Collections. The process was so much easier but I still faffed with the build of the card. One again, I was pleased with the outcome: 

By now I was looking slightly crazed and my family had stopped talking to me. So, I busted out the Hunkydory and with a quick mop of the brow began my third installment. This took me a little longer to formulate as I was limited to the papers I could use and wanted to stick with this set. I decided on Hunkydory Festive Elegance, A Merry Little Christmas and Tonic Sweet Melia Beautiful Blooms dies. I also made two mini card blanks this time - l guess I really was crazed! But it turned out pretty nice.  

So we've made three cards using Tonic Twisting Veranda and Beautiful Blooms - papers from Santoro Mirabelle, Craftwork Cards Chinoiserie and Birds & Blooms, and Hunkydory Festive Elegance, A Merry Little Christmas!

Now, to clear up my EPIC mess! 
Have a brilliant week. 

Jennifer xx