Friday, 24 July 2015

Scrapbooking - My Creative Space

Ooops, guess who got distracted by a crochet blanket, yep, that would be me, I've been adopting the little and often method of crochet (which doesn't hurt my hands) and have made lots of progress with it so I'll share a photo of that soon.

I'm blogging my way through a huge pile of scrapbook layouts that I've accumulated and today I thought I'd share this one featuring an Instagram photo of my creative space/office here at Crafty Alchemy HQ.

I used pink paint, splodges of black spray ink and a scattering of sequins to make the background look a bit messy, just like my desk does most if the time, this photo was taken on a tidy day, before the chaos began.

I used left over scraps of patterned paper from my scraps box and a few star, flower and frame embellishments which can be found in my Crafty Alchemy Elements & Embellishments kits (these are currently on sale in my Etsy shop, as I'm clearing room for some new kits coming very soon, there aren't many of the kits left now and once these ones are gone, they're gone)

I made felt heart mini bunting by die cutting some small hearts and gluing 2 of each colour together with Bakers Twine in between them, then attached them to the page with glue.

Finally I added a couple of stickers "this is my happy place" and "let's do something amazing today".

My desk was actually designed by me and handmade by myself and my dad a couple of years ago, I still need to make a couple of little curtains to hide the mess, I mean, the assortment of crafty products on the shelves.

I'm still trying to reignite my passion for blogging here and am toying with the idea of having a bit of a makeover, which then got me thinking about the Crafty Alchemy logo too, I'm wondering if I need a bit of a makeover there too, what do you think? I'd love to hear your opinion or any hints and tips yo may have to share.

Thanks for stopping by and keep on crafting.

Claire xx

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Quite a lot of yarn...

Hello there, how are you?

In my last post I mentioned I'd ordered quite a lot of yarn (40 x 100g balls of Stylecraft Special DK to be exact) for 2 crochet blankets, well it's arrived. Yay!

It got here very quickly, I only ordered it from Wool Warehouse on Sunday and it arrived here Tuesday, super impressed, I'll definitely be ordering from them again, I've got my eye on one or two of the Attic24 packs they have in there - they have an Attic24 area of the shop selling Lucy's colour combination packs and they are very lovely, I can't decide between Cosy and Cottage so I may have to get both.

I love choosing colour palettes for my blankets, this first one was a bit of an impulse one, I was looking through Pinterest for something totally unrelated and got sidetracked somehow - funny how that happens on Pinterest isn't it? - and ended up choosing these for a blanket.

From bottom left we have Grape, Clematis, Pale Rose, then next row right to left is Camel and Parchment, then finally Parma Violet and Cream. The blanket will be a granny stripe with a large cream scalloped border. I realised once the yarn arrived that I made a very similar blanket to this 5 or 6 years ago for my Nan, the only differences are that one had Mocha yarn instead of Parma Violet, it didnt't have a border and it was a ripple blanket rather than a granny stripe (I'd only learn't how to ripple back then as I was still quite new to crochet, I think it was the second blanket I'd made)

Now the colours for this next blanket have been swimming around in my head for a while now but I needed to order a shade card just to make sure they all went together (Wool Warehouse and their awesome fast delivery once again, I ordered my shade card Friday and it arrived Saturday).

This one is going to be a big ripple blanket with a border, on the bottom row l-r we have Pomegranate, Sherbet and Storm Blue, the next row l-r is Candyfloss, Pale Rose and Cloud Blue, next row up we have Silver and Stone then finally Cream. 

I plan to do a row of DC in Cream between every coloured Ripple Stripe (they'll be in Trebles) then a Cream border too. I haven't decided on the final running order yet though.

I really like to name my blankets so this one is going to be the Daydream. H is already trying to pinch it so I've said she can have the pink granny square one when I've finished it. I'm not sure what to call the other blanket, I'm thinking of Bliss? What do you think?

Those of you that crochet, how do you choose your colours and running order?

See you soon.

Monday, 22 June 2015

Introducing the "I am Project"

Hello there, how are you?

Today I thought I'd share the project I mentioned last week.

I had the idea for this after spending a day in a treehouse with Rachael from Excel Coaching and some other lovely ladies. I've always tried to focus on the positive in every situation, I feel it really helps me cope with life's twists and turns and I'm always grateful for what I have, but, the day in the treehouse showed me that I don't always recognise the good things about myself, so I came up with the idea for the "I Am Project" as a way to record and celebrate all these little things, and seeing as "I Am...." is one of the most powerful statements you can make, you can bet that there will be a lot of positivity and gratefulness in this little album. I bought a small 6x8 Simple Stories album (from Hey Little Magpie) and am mostly using papers from Crafty Templates Quirky Kits and lots of stuff from my own stash. 

Then one day whilst I was scrolling through my Instagram feed I spotted Studio Calico were also doing an "I Am Project" with exactly the same thinking behind it as me, a case of great minds thinking alike, and they had brought out a range of products too, then I really chuckled when my Quirky Kit arrived and it had lots of Studio Calico I Am papers and Simple Stories papers inside it not only that, they were all perfect for the colour scheme I had chosen, so I'm taking it as a sign that I was meant to do this project.

I started by covering the album, I loved the black and white stripes with the flash of pink as they are the main Crafty Alchemy colours and the gold and glitter adds the prefect amount of sparkle, I may add some embellishments to the album as the project progresses and develops.

Whenever I do a project like this I do like some sort of consistency so I tend to stick to a certain colour scheme (there will be lots of pinks and blues in here) and the same cardstock for the pages, I'm using American Crafts Kraft for this one. I'm also an intro page girl, if an album has a set theme like this one, I like to do a bit of an explanation so the reader has some idea what it's all about.

I kept this page pretty simple as I wanted the focus to be on the writing, I've used Simple Stories grid paper, some washi tape and gems and one of my favourite frame stamps, I've had these 2 frame stamps for about 8 years, they were made by a company called Bam Pop! and they are right up there on my most used list.

To make the frame, I stamped it onto pale pink cardstock, cut it out and inked the edges with Pumice Stone Distress Ink, then I attached it to a square of white cardstock with 3d foam pads, then I used Thickers and tiny alphabet stickers for the title.

I'll be back soon with more of the I Am Project. 

For those of you wanting an update on the crochet blanket in my earlier post, I haven't done anymore to it yet, but I've just ordered the yarn for the border and yarn for 2 more blankets and a new wooden crochet hook, I know I said in my last post that crochet hurts my hands a bit, but I do love it and have so many pretty projects lined up. I'll share all the pictures of the yarn when it arrives - once I've sorted it into blankets that is.

See you soon and keep creating.


Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Crochet Granny Square Blanket

Hello there, how are you doing?

I've been working on this crochet blanket for months now, and I'm finding it difficult, but I really want to finish it so I can start my next blanket project which involves more granny squares and using up the huge bag of left over yarn scraps I've accumulated over the years.

It's not the pattern I'm finding difficult as I'm using Attic 24's Granny Square pattern, which is really easy to follow (just like all of her patterns) and using the join as you go method to join my squares. My issue is that normally I'm quite quick at crochet, I've been known to make full size ripple blankets in 3 weeks just doing a few hours every night after work, I really enjoy it, it's quite relaxing but when I started this blanket I discovered I'd damaged my hands (not through extreme crochet activities I might add), at first it was diagnosed as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, now it turns out that I've trapped or damaged nerves in my spine, so I can only crochet for a very short period of time before my hands get too sore and sometimes they're just too sore and swollen to pick up the crochet in the first place, but I'm not going to give up, I just need to re-adjust my attitude and accept that it's going to take a bit longer than I'm used to, which is why I'm posting about it here, because if I tell you guys, then you know, then I have to do it, otherwise you'll know I haven't.

So here is the blanket, I'm using Stylecraft DK, it's my favourite blanket yarn as it washes really well (on a handwash cycle and in a small duvet cover to stop it snagging on the machine) I'm using 6 colours which are Pomegranate, Candyfloss, Raspberry, Clematis, Fondant and Pale Rose (left to right along the top row) I also plan on putting a pale grey scalloped border around the edge. I'm just over halfway through and have about 56 squares to go. It's folded over so I could hang it over ... our new garden fence! I've been waiting (read as nagging Hubs) 2 years for this and I am so happy it's finally built, unlike the furry boy below... 

...who is the entire reason that the hedge had huge Bailey Dog shaped holes in it. He liked to chew big holes in the hedge then dive through it into next doors garden, not good! Especially as I had to dive through the hedge after him, then carry the huge mutt back through the hedge. His Houdini days are over! Yay! I no longer have to patrol the garden when I let him out. I don't think he's speaking to me though.

Claire xx

Monday, 15 June 2015

It's been a while...

Hello there, how are you? Nice to see you again *waves*

I have to say that that's the longest I've ever left my blog untouched for, it was really starting to become a chore which isn't right is it? Everything just seemed to be the same over and over again, even my scrapbook layouts were all looking a bit similar, so I took some time away, had a think about what I really wanted my blog to be about, made some notes, did some reading and came up with a plan which I'm now putting in action *big smiley face* I'll still be sharing my scrapbook projects and I'll be mixing in other crafts like knitting, crochet, DIY (much to Hubs' dismay), sewing and maybe the odd cake related post too. I'm looking forward to getting back my love of blogging and would love for you to join me. So grab a cup of tea and some cake, put your feet up for 5 minutes and make yourself at home.

Yesterday the latest Quirky Kit from Crafty Templates arrived on my doorstep, I love these kits, I've been getting them bi-monthly for at least 3 years and I've never had one I wasn't keen on. I'm keeping hold of most of the last 2 kits for another project I'm working on - which I'll share later on this week - as the colours and themes are perfect for the whole project, but this kit was so lovely that I couldn't put it away for later, I wanted to cut straight into it, I also knew I had a big stack of  new Instagram prints which that I haven't had the chance to play with yet. This particular photo is one of my favourites a simple black and white selfie of me & H.

I wanted to keep my layout simple and let the photo do its thing, so I just used small amounts of patterned paper, I splashed a bit of aqua spray ink across the background and got doodle happy with my favourite style of border. I love the glossy finish on the black puffy stickers. There isn't really much journaling on this layout so I kept it small using little labels and a phrase sticker which I cut into smaller pieces and stuck to the photo with foam pads. I had to add some journaling it would feel weird to not hand write something onto one of my scrapbook pages.

I quite often create layouts with a lot of white space on them and sometimes it can be hard to tell if everything looks properly balanced or not, when this happens I hold the layout up to a mirror and if my eye is drawn to the white space then it usually needs something there just to break it up a bit, someone told me this little trick years ago (I really wish I could remember who it was) and I have to say I've found it  to be really useful.

The layout needed something down the side by the photo, so I die cut some hearts, inked the edges and attached them with 3d foam pads to make them stand out a bit more. Finally I cut a small arrow/banner and attached that onto the photo and page and added a glossy black puffy heart.

Kraft and pink is one of my favourite colour schemes but I'm also liking the added lemon and mint too, and I've barely touched the contents of the kit as I've only used small bits of paper, so I've still got lots left to play with.

Supplies used (all from a Quirky Kit.)
Patterned papers: American Crafts, Amy Tangerine, Rise & Shine, Kirsten. Fancy Pants, Office Suite, Creative Agenda. Websters Pages, Megan Hoeppner, Daily Essentials Grid.
Other supplies: Pumice Stone Distress Ink, Sizzix Big Shot Machine, cArt-us Heart Die, We R Memory Keepers Banner Die, Jen Hadfield Home+Made Puffy Phrase Stickers, Bella BLVD Gulf Little Bits Stickers, Elle's Studio Lets Eat Tags & Lil Snippets Blank Labels, Kesi-Art Aqua Ink Spray, 3d Foam pads.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Month in Numbers - March

Hello there, how are you? A very Happy Easter to you.

March is over and April has begun, which means it's time for Month in Numbers .

I'm still doing my little 4x4 album, I'm really liking the size as it's really quick to create a page. I'm also sticking to a format to make it really easy and keep continuity throughout the album, I'm using Kraft cardstock, a die cut background (either a scalloped square or a scrolly thing used on the page below) and the same set of banner and month stamps.

So here are my numbers for this month:

9: The age Hermione turned this month, she really is growing up so fast.

6st, 7lbs, 15ozs: This number may cause alarm, this is the weight of my dog, Bailey, he is huge and his favourite thing to do is sit on you and lick you, he's a Fox Red Labrador Retriever....

15: The number of cakes eaten this month, 2 of which were Hermiones' Birthday cakes, she had one at home and one at her Nana's house. The chocolate hedgehog cake was delish! Not baked by me I might add.

2kg: This was the amount of Lego Hermione received for her birthday, which we are now sorting into colours, interesting bits and doors and windows *HELP ME*

44: The number of Terry Pratchett books in my collection. I was very saddened to hear of the death of Terry Pratchett, he is one of my all time favourite authors and he is responsible for re-igniting my love of reading when I was 18. I own all but 2 of the Discworld books, I did have them all but the dog (pictured above looking all innocent) took 2 of them from the bookshelf and ate them. Men at Arms and Mort, just in case you were wondering which ones he ate.

107: Things to do on my to do list. Since I made this page, this figure has doubled, but that's what happens when you get late night flashes of inspiration, however it's all good.

Well those are my numbers for March, be sure to swing by and say Hi to the founder of Month in Numbers, she's called Julie and her blog is Notes on Paper.

See you soon.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Scrapbooking - CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration 158

Well hello there. 

I've been playing along at CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration again, I can't help myself, I love the challenges and the fact that I can see my huge pile of crafty stash reducing, I get a tingly feeling whenever I throw an empty packet of embellishments away or use up the last few stickers on a sheet or the last scrap of a piece of patterned paper.

I really liked the colours in the palette for this challenge and one of the evidence prompts reminded me that I really enjoy hand stitching onto my scrapbook layouts.

The colours for this challenge were pale blue with a hint of green, light peach, olive or khaki green, cool dark brown and white. And when I saw this journaling prompt, "Document a favourite childhood toy or belonging" I knew there was only one photo I could use....

The photo is me aged 3, we were moving house that day, hence the boxes, I was wearing my dad's flat cap and my pink jungle pyjamas, and I was carrying an umbrella with a tea towel tied around the end to turn it into a bag and most importantly I was carrying Snowy the Bear, or should I say Snowy THE Bear, because he was and still is THE bear, no other bear has ever or will ever come close to this bear and I now consider him a treasured possession, he's been my bear all my life.

For the evidence part of the challenge I used stitching, fabric, stripes and polka dots from the list.

The journaling reads: "Snowy, the little white bear with the blue feet. Snowy was my constant companion when I was a little girl, I'm a lot older now, but he still has a special place in my heart and on my bed."

This case file runs until 26th March (it closes around 10pm uk time) you can get the full details of the challenge here.

Thanks for stopping by.

Claire xx

Sunday, 8 March 2015

The "I'm catching up" type of blogging...

Hello there, happy Sunday to you.

I'm stepping back in time a bit today, I know I didn't blog a lot towards the end of last year and as a result I have quite a large stack of scrapbook layouts waiting to be blogged and in some cases photographed ***hangs head in shame***

So I'm making an effort to catch up, both of these layouts were inspired by CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration in 2014, I'm intending to make a huge dent in my stash this year and find these challenges are a great way to get things used up as you get a colour scheme of 5 colours to use and you have to use all of them, you can also add a toot of other colours, you have a list of embellishments/techniques of which you have to use at least 2 and 5 different journaling prompts which you have to use more than 1 of. My first step is to go through all of my patterned papers (the pile is about 6 inches) and pull out all the relevant colours, then read the journal prompts and pick a photo that fits the colours and the journal theme, then finally the embellishments. 
On some weeks there's a sketch too so there's an extra kick of inspiration. 

This one above was one of my favourites, the colours were Magenta, White, Pale Pink, Lime Green and Light Grey, for the evidence I used stripes, polka dots, trees, hang something and a circle punch. The journaling is a list of 3 things about H.
1. Very happy.
2. Very cautious.
3. Very scared of heights.

For this next layout the idea was to document a daily pleasure. The colour scheme was Grayish Green, Light Lemony Yellow, Coral, White and Pale Sage Green. I struggle with yellow, I'm never really sure what to do with it, so for this one I decided less is more and to take advantage of white space and a splatter of coral spray ink.

For the evidence I used a tea cup accent, although it looks like more of a coffee cup, it was my attempt at hand carving a tea cup rubber stamp. I also used a tag, staples and doodling.
The journaling reads: There's nothing I enjoy more than curling up in my chair at night with a cup of tea, a bar of chocolate and a very good book, it's my idea of bliss.

That's all from me today, a rainy Sunday afternoon feels like the perfect excuse to put a film on and craft the rest of the day away. Hope you have a lovely day.

Keep creating.
Claire xx

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Month in Numbers - February

Hello there, another month has flown by and it's time for ...

If you've never heard of Month in Numbers, I'll just briefly explain what it's all about, it was started by the very lovely Julie Kirk over at Notes on Paper who began reviewing her month statistically - not in a complicated mathematical way, don't worry there's no algebra or equations involved, just noting numbers of significance or interest. Then a few people joined in with Julie, counting their way through the months and here we are now.

I've chosen to use a 4x4 scrapbook album for my numbers, here's my February page...

I've used 4x4 Kraft squares for my cardstock and used a scalloped square die to cut my patterned paper. I stamped the banner onto pink paper then stamped the month, the typewriter stamp was coloured in with Pastel Green and Tea Green Promarkers, I then used 3d foam pads to attach it to the page. On the next page I made a small pocket to hold the dinky journaling cards I made (they measure 7cm x 5.5cm) and used a set of number stamps for my numbers and a stamp for the "Noted" on the pocket, finally I added a scalloped edge to the pocket, inked everything with Pumice Stone Distress Ink and added a few red brads.

My Numbers for this month are:

15 - Minutes spent cleaning per day.I really hate housework, but I love a sparkly clean house, so I keep doing 15 minute bursts of cleaning per day to keep on top of it, it's working too, even H is doing 15 minutes in her room a day, I didn't realise her carpet wasn't made from bears and books.

1 - Excellent school report for Hermione. Totally proud Mum Moment.

11.30pm - The time I've been getting to bed most nights. I really should try and grab an early night every now and again.

29 - Cakes eaten this month. However there is a good reason....

35 - The age I turned this month, hence so many cakes, not all big chocolate cakes, some small ones with a cup of tea (Ok, lots of small ones with many cups of tea)

72 - Hours spent re-organising my work space. I finally have it as I want it, for now.

342 - Books to the charity shop, I kept 114, the mystery is how on earth did all 446 books fit on a 3 shelf bookcase and not cause it to collapse.

2 - The number of years we've had Bailey dog, and he still won't behave.

Well those were my numbers for February. Thanks for stopping by and I'm sure Julie would love it if you stopped by at Notes on Paper to check out her numbers and the numbers of the people who also play along.

Keep on creating.


Sunday, 1 March 2015

CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration - Case File 156

Hello there, 

CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration Case File 156 went live on Friday night, and you know how much I love their challenges, well today I've got my final layout as a Special Deputy for February to share....

For the scene I used all 5 colours which were: Bright coral - the coral I've used looks a bit orangey here but it is more coral in real life (it's that dress thing all over again), Yellowy Green, Warm Grey, White and Tan.

For my evidence I chose to use leaves - printed on the patterned paper and a couple of rub-ons, other rub-ons including parenthesis which were on the list, stamps - the journal spots and finally triangles on the bunting.

For the journaling I used 2 stamped journal spots and took inspiration from the words grow and spice.
The journaling reads "The best thing about growing your own pumpkins is large bowls of homemade spicy pumpkin soup"

You can find all the details of the challenge here over on CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration and you have until Thursday 12th March to upload you entry.

Thanks for stopping by and keep on creating.

Claire xx

Saturday, 21 February 2015

CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration - Case File 155

Hello there.

I was going to post this earlier this week but I got a bit distracted as it was half term so we've been doing all sorts of things - watching DVDs, shopping, working on a needle felted mouse and exploring Skipton Castle (we possibly did a bit more shopping too).

I was lucky enough to be chosen as a Special Deputy for CSI this month and have really enjoyed playing along. Here is my attempt at CSI's challenge 155...

There was a sketch for this one, which I've rotated, I've also used all 5 colours from the scene: Seafoam Green, Lavender, White, Light Sky Blue and Light Taupe.

For my evidence (embellishments) I used a Bicyle accent - both stamp and wooden, buttons as circles, doodling, stamps - typewriter and bicycle, and rub-ons.

The journaling had to be about a stage in life, I also used Life as an inspiration word and chose to list the journaling so I managed to use 3 of the journaling techniques. The journaling follows on from the title - Me right now at 35 - and reads:
1: Still keeping a journal.
2: Still can't cook.
3: Still has childhood bear.
4: Still plays loud music.
5: Still loves to make things.
6: Still very blonde.
7: Still loves to read.
8: Still the eternal optimist.

This challenge closes on 26th Feb and you can find all of the details of the challenge here on CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

CSI:Color, Stories, Inspiration. Case 154

Hello there, how's it going?

I'm absolutely thrilled to be back with the CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration team as a Special Deputy. I really enjoyed being a Special Investigator in January and I get to do it all again this month, yay!

Here is what I created for case file 154

I used all 5 colours - Cherry Red, Black, White, Kraft and Olive Green.

For my evidence I used polka dots- lots of them, stripes on the Washi tape, Woodgrain patterned paper behind the photo, a book page (Lord of the Rings, Return of the King, I have one copy for ripping pages out of and one for reading). The red cardstock is Swiss Dot embossed so that's the textured paper and finally a metal key.
The journaling reads: She's a dreamer, a doer, a thinker. She sees possibility everywhere.
It was a quote I found on Pinterest using the words: Wisdom, Possibilities, Go. The author of the quote was unknown.

This case is open until the 28th February and you can find all of the details in more detail (oh dear) over here on CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration.

I'm supposed to be having a major clear out and reorganise in my studio and office and I just can't face it, I think I'll have a cup of tea and a slice of cake and mull it over some more. What are your tips for re-organising your craft space? Please? Help me! lol.

Take care and see you soon.

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Month in Numbers - January 2015

Over the last couple of years I've missed having an ongoing craft project, so I decided that this year I',going to join back in with Julie Kirk and her Month in Numbers, I took part in 2012 and really enjoyed it,  each month I made a 12x12 scrapbook layout to record my numbers.

This year I'm still going to create a little album, but on a smaller scale. I've chosen this 4x4 We R Memory Keepers Mint Instagram Album , and I've got a basic format that I'm going to stick to which will be great for those months I'm short on time. I'll also be adding Instagram photos when I next get them printed out, I'll be buying some extra page protectors and adding them in as I go.

I'm using Kraft cardstock all the way through and I'm going to use die cut patterned paper for my mini layouts. Here's my cover page for the album, if an album has a theme or is a full project I always make a cover page, it's just how I roll. I stamped the banners, used rub-ons for the title and big gold Thickers for the year. I also used up the last few stick on gems from 2 packs - Yay! I am so determined to make a big dent in my stash this year, every little helps.

And here are my actual numbers pages, I've stamped the banner and month, used a mix of number stickers for ...erm, well... my numbers and some  more stick on gems and stars (of which I still have more of). I'm also inking all of the edges of the die cut papers with Pumice Stone Distress ink.

So here are my January numbers:

14 - The number of things I crossed off my to do list in one day. This kind of achievement always makes me very happy.
200 - Envelopes bought from the wholesaler, they're padded and in quite big boxes, which I will have to keep moving around until I can re-organise everything in a couple of weeks. They are constantly in the way in my little storeroom.
7- Hours spent in a treehouse, in January. Not as strange as it might sound. I was on a workshop with Rachael from Excel Coaching and some other lovely ladies, and it is held in a treehouse. It was lovely and warm inside, it had been snowing so looked lovely outside. It was a very enjoyable day indeed (I'm looking forward to going back in June).
24 - The number of hours a day I have to wear my wrist splints, thankfully this is only until they operate on my hands, so all should be well in a few months.
0 - The amount of snow in CM that actually stuck here in Blackpool - none, zero, zilch, it just melted as it landed,
£19.95 The cost of the fabric needed to re-cover the conservatory furniture, plus £3.60 for the zips. - not bad at all, you've got to love your local fabric shop, now we just need to make them and get them on there.

If you've never heard of Month in Numbers, pop by Julie Kirk's Blog - Notes on Paper to see what it's all about. Thanks for stopping by to check out my numbers.


Friday, 30 January 2015

CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration - Special investigator

Whoosh! That was the sound of January whizzing by, I cannot believe it's almost the end of the month already, January normally crawls by painfully slowly, but not this year.

I've got my last 2 layouts from my month as a Special Investigator  (guest designer) on the CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration design team.

This one is my absolute favourite and I love the photo of me, my eyes are open and I'm not mid yawn or pulling some other ridiculous face, honestly, it's like I have some sort of allergy to cameras as soon as one gets pointed in my direction my face starts doing all kinds of strange expressions.

I created a shaped layout and used all of the 5 colours for the scene, blue is also one of my favourite colours, so it came together quite easily. For my evidence I used quite a lot of the embellishments listed in the challenge - Stripes, silver metal, 3 of something, rhinestones, glitter, scallops, stick pins hearts and ribbon.
All of the journaling is on a 6x4 Project Life card in the scalloped envelopes, it's all about 2014 and plans etc for 2015 (and is very lengthy, so I'll spare you the details).
Here are the details of the challenge and although it closes for entries tomorrow it's still worth playing along because it's great mojo booster and stash user-upper (yes, this is a new scrapbooking terminology invented by little old moi)

This next one was my final layout for January, 

here are the challenge details, I love the colours, I'll use this colour palette again...

This one is running until the 2nd of February so there's still time to have a go.

Again I used all 5 colours. From the list of evidence I used a border punch, circles, label shapes and I sprinkled on some sequins, (carefully picked off the ones that didn't agree with my OCD tendencies) and glued the remainder down.

For the journaling I chose to list our top 5 Harry Potter Lego sets:
1, Dumbledore's Office.
2, The Burrow,
3, Hagrid's Hut,
4, Hogwarts,
5, The Hogwarts Express
(We also love all of our other Lego too).

I've loved being one of the team on CSI this month, it's been great fun, I've loved every challenge and I'd like to say a BIG THANK YOU to Debbi Tehrani and the very talented team of investigators for inviting me along. I'm going to carry on playing along throughout 2015 as I do love the challenges and it really is a great way to use up stash, the orangey red & brown papers on the layout above have been in my stash for 5 years, feels great to finally use them.

Monday, 19 January 2015

CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration. Challenge 152 The Tale of the Teapot

Well hello there.

I was lucky enough to be chosen as a special investigator for CSI: Colour Stories Inspiration for the whole of January, and I'm really enjoying playing along, if I'm honest it's worked out really well as I've always enjoyed their case files and one of my goals for this year was to try and complete every case file, so for January I can confidently say I will complete each challenge and I'm off to a great start.

When I saw the scene, evidence & testimony for this challenge I did a little happy dance because I had just the photo and story that I needed to create this layout all about a teapot...

For challenge 152 the five colours you needed to use were Lime Green, Teale, White, Lemony Yellow and Tangerine Orange - normally I'd struggle with these colours but, these were all the colours in the teapot - oh how I love a bit of serendipity. I inked all of the papers with Pumice Stone Distress Ink then layered them up a bit.
For the evidence I used polka dots, ribbons, jewels, scallops, triangles (on the patterned papers) and stars.

One of the topics for the testimony (aka journaling) was "document a gift" - serendipity again, so, here is...

 "The tale of the Teapot" 

"Mum spotted this Beatrix Potter teapot at a craft fair we were at, she spent ages looking at it and admiring it and then she walked away! So, I got Hermione to keep her busy whilst I bought it for her, she was quite upset when she saw it had gone and had no idea that I had it hidden in my bag for her Christmas present"

I'm happy to say that Mum was thrilled with her teapot (which she now stores her teabags in - as you do) and she is now looking for a matching milk jug and sugar bowl.

All of the details of this case file are below, why not play along?

You can find a more detailed explanation of  Case 152 over here on CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration.

Thanks for stopping by and see you soon.

Claire xx

Saturday, 3 January 2015

New Year, New Start & Lots of Crafty Goodness

Well hello there, how are you? A very happy new year to you all.

Wow, it's dusty in here, hand on a tic ***grabs hoover, quickly dusts & removes cobwebs from blog*** That's better. Sorry for my absence towards the end of 2014 but the Carpal Tunnel Syndrome was making life pretty awkward & I was banned from typing for a while back there, but I'm a lot better now, my hands are still a bit twingy so I can cope with that.

I have rather a lot of plans of for 2015 and seeing as I totally did what set out to do in 2014 I know I can achieve what I want to in 2015, I'm so looking forward to sharing my journey with you.

This year got off to a cracking start back in December when I received an email from the ever so lovely Debbi Tehrani at CSI: Colour, Stories, Inspiration asking me if I'd be a Special Investigator for January 2015, well, of course I said yes, I love the CSI challenges and had already decided to do as many as I can in 2015 to help reduce the mountain of patterned papers and embellishments that I own.

So the  first challenge went live last night and here is what I created....

I used the sketch provided for this challenge and tweaked it slightly, for the scene I used all 5 colours required. For the Evidence I used a cream frame with a stamped image of a cupcake inside, I used 2 banner die cuts for the date, I doodled stitching around the border and used patterned paper with triangles printed on it.
For my journaling I used the inspiration word "Grumpy" and hand wrote it too. The journaling reads: "Oh dear, why does Grampa look so grumpy in this photo? Was it because we didn't put all 65 candles on his birthday cake? Who knows"

Here are all the details for the case file if you'd like to play along, this challenge is open until 31/1/15 so you've got plenty of time to play along, If you've never tried a CSI challenge I can highly recommend it.

I've got plenty of other things to share with you in the near future and promise I will be blogging more regularly throughout 2015.

Just before I go we're having our Winter Sale over in our Crafty shop and the Crafty Alchemy Etsy shop, with 25% off selected items. In the Etsy shop all, yes, ALL, of our Elements and Embellishment kits are 25% off. Just thought you'd like to know.

So once again Happy 2015 to you all.

Take care & see you soon.
C xx