Friday, September 21, 2018

It's Your 60th... Make a Scene!

The card I have today was a commission... well, one of the ladies I meet up with at the park when I walk the dog asked if I could make a card for her friend Vicki's 60th birthday, so "commission" sounds a bit posh :-)  There were quite a few "elements" of Vicki's life my friend wanted to be incorporated, a scene seemed the most appropriate form... picture heavy LOOOOONG post, sorry;-)
The birthday girl is "not a twig" :-) has bought a campervan to use in her retirement with her hubby, their name is "Read" their kids names are Belinda and Mark - she loves a cocktail (or three, lol) and is a FANATICAL supporter of  "our" Footy team The West Coast Eagles...  whose colours are Blue and Gold. The card was for her friends to sign so it had to have plenty of room for signatures - PHEW, that's a lot of details to squash into one li'l ol' card, lol. It's an easel card, I just love easel cards :-)
There are several images used here; the caravan is the same one I used for my son's birthday card in 2016, which is when this card was made, it's from (the sadly now defunct) The Stamp Fairy and called "Lenny Camping".
I erased Lenny from the front of the van and drew in a drawbar and jockey wheel, as well as adding the spending-kids-inheritance logo on the side of the van and giving the door the appropriate number, one of the reasons I love digis, so easy to mask off and add personalisation :-) I fussy cut the caravan and popped it up on foam dots.
Another little "feature" is the West Coast Eagles flag flying proudly on the back of the caravan.  I downloaded a pic from the WCE Homepage, shrank it down to as small as I could still having it recognisable, wrapped it around a toothpick and glued it in behind the van - of course, it looks so much better IRL
"Vicki", seen here in her cocktail glass is, in fact, Martini Bianca from Dr Digi's House of Stamps... I DID slim her down a little - and fussy cut her & popped her up on foam dots too.  I've added her hubby to the window of the van, he is also from Dr Digi's (Weekend Walter), I've used him for one of my Hubby's cards - bonus here is... he actually looks like Vicki's husband!
I coloured the images with Copics, adding Glossy Accents to the glass and the window of the van.  The grassy hills were cut with Lawn Fawn Stitched Hillsides using some green spotty paper from my stash, I added some shadows to accentuate the layers.  
The "hill" with the pine trees is Poppy Dies Freemont Pine Landscape, the Grassy Border, signpost with "Work" and "Life" on and Picket Fence are all My Favorite Things dies,  the clouds (popped up on foam dots) are Memory Box and the flowers are punches - with gems as centres on the larger and Stickles as centres on the smaller  
I love the arched border... it's MFT as well, "Fanfare Scalloped Border".  I added it in yellow on the blue card (which has a lovely texture called Pebble, and a pearl finish that shifts blue to black that I can't do justice to in photos) that I added the computer generated sentiment panel to... and in blue - though plain blue as the Pebble paper looks nice, but cuts like a dog! - on the jotting panel
As the jotting panel was going to get a lot of signatures it had to be BIG, so I added an "extra" fold and tada... there we have an A4 panel for all to sign - hopefully the pics show what I (obviously!) am having difficulty describing :-)
I added some gems to the Fanfare border on the sentiment panel but left them plain inside so the card stayed pretty flat.
And that, finally, is that!!  I actually REALLY enjoyed creating this card, and the recipient LOVED it, so that was very satisfying too :-)  
I'd like to share it in the following challenges:
Well, that's it for today... this card was one I found on an a camera card.. I'm still trying to resurrect my laptop from the Great OneDrive Fiasco.  I am "getting there", I've found 47 cards from my Drafts- I know I had 52 or 53, so I haven't lost TOO many.  Can't say the same for all my photos sadly, but I am still looking, loading, sorting and labelling so it's not over yet
Until next time, Happy Crafting, Donna

Friday, September 07, 2018

Couples.... and a Couple of Computer Issues

I am (finally) back today with a card.  I've been absent for the last three weeks (though I'm sure no-one noticed, lol) because of MAJOR computer issues, which I will describe, as a way of venting some of my frustration, later.  Here's today's card, which I found hidden during these computer woes; it was for my Mum and Dad's Anniversary in 2016, which turned out to be their last Anniversary
I used an image from Crafty Sentiments (Benson Bear) called Couples, available here.... unfortunately it is a victim of my computer problems, so I no longer own it, it's coloured with Prismacolor pencils, which I didn't do much in 2016, so a fairly early example :-)  
The background paper is from Kaisercraft, the tan strip is a scrap die cut with Spellbinders A2 Scalloped Borders 2 die.  The little pink hearts were from a batch of goodies my Mum bought for me on one of their holidays in Malaysia... it was "our little thing" and I miss it.  Thankfully I still have a LOT of stuff she sourced for me over the years, so it's not gone forever just yet
I stamped on the edges of the jotting panel inside the card, I liked the effect.... then promptly have never done it again :-)  I'll have to give it another go.
So that's it for my card today, I'd like to enter in the following challenges: 
Sketch Saturday Have this great Sketch, which my card fits to a "T"... well a sideways "T", lol
Aud Sentiments Has a Bingo Challenge, I have used the "Die Cut/Flowers/2 Patterned Papers" line
The Paper Shelter Has Make it Bloom (flowers on paper, and stamp on the inside)
Crafty Hazelnut's Patterned Paper Challenge Has Use Patterned Paper

Pixies Snippets Playground Has "Snippets" (the tan strip)
Simon Says Challenge Has "Stamp on it" (if the digistamps on the front don't count, I've stamped inside)
Crafty Cardmakers  Has All Creatures Great and Small - bears are creatures, and so are butterflies :-)
Hiding in- my Craft Room Has a Pastels theme
Creatalicious Challenges Has Anything Goes, Option: Pastels
If you'd like to leave me there, I'll be back when I can with another card, until then Happy Crafting, if you'd like to hear a sorry tale read on...
The *&**ing computer saga
I decided to save ALL my Crafting stuff, images, papers, photos of finished projects, mmm, ALL my crafting stuff to Microsoft OneDrive as I have had (reasonable) success with iCloud for my business backups (to my Time Machine Backups, work's well covered!) and have just had (those backups I had) for my craft stuff, on discs, USBs etc
Well!  Microsoft OneDrive then proceeded to DELETE ALL my crafting files - well not all, but over 200GB -  yes, GIGAbytes.  Including my family photos back to 2004, (not many between 2004 and 2009 to be honest, but LOADS from since the twins were born) Holidays to New Zealand, birthdays, loads.  
It has done this by deleting the contents of folders... so the folders are still there, looking at first glance like a legitimate backup of a drive, but they're EMPTY.  So, a purchased set of twenty digital papers would look like it looked on my Hard Drive... until you go to use one of the files in the folder, and it's not there.  Rinse, repeat for HUNDREDS of folders.  Including 250+Mb scrapbooking kits
I spent EVERY spare minute, and some that weren't spare, lol, rebuilding the Drive - got to three quarters done, checked progress.... and it was all deleted AGAIN.  The folders were there, but empty.  No, the info is NOT in the Recycle Bin, it's just GONE.  And no, Microsoft doesn't care when you contact them about it. 
I have had to rebuild my drive AGAIN - on the Hard Drive this time, from the individual camera cards I have used over the years, luckily a lot of the pics I have "liked" I kept on those discs when overwriting for more recent projects.  Of course some I haven't, and from our iPhones.  Also, my old laptop had some files on, and my last laptop is having the hard drive removed and mounted so I can see what's on THAT tomorrow.  Of course all of this info includes the stuff I have edited out (you know all those random pics you take on your phones!) once, and now it's all got to be trawled through again, time, time, time.  
One good thing (you've got to look for the silver lining!) is that I have sorted and tagged EVERY file I have put back on my computer so far.... so they are easier to find, and I found this ONE card in a folder on my old lappy that I had missed copying over.
Of course when I went to see where I got the sentiment for this card, I realized I no longer HAVE the sentiment, so I don't know where it was from, I also don't have the image (I remembered where IT was from) and it makes me realize there are probably hundreds of image and sentiment files gone for good - many purchased, many generous "freebies" and some prizes for challenges.  
Some purchased scrapbooking kits and image files are unfortunately gone forever, but I must give a shout out to Nitwits who (for only $10) reactivated ALL the links for products I have bought there over the years, well over $100, and to My Memories Suite where I could access my purchases for nothing.  I still have to check some of the companies I know I've made a lot of purchases from and a couple of USB sticks where I save zipped image files, hoping to find some more there.
I would say that the moral to the story is "Backup" - but that is where this whole drama started!!  Well, not really.  I should have just had a Time Machine hooked up to my craft lappy as I have to my work one - I have a spare drive that WAS on my last laptop but played up (turns out that was the laptop not the drive, so I could have used it - and obviously SHOULD have!!)  I am trying to be brave, it IS a "first world problem" for sure.  But I am really p1$$3D off with Microsoft.... and what I hate most of all that it is taking up all my "crafting" time
I have re-found 40 of the 57 cards I hadn't posted on my blog yet, so I do have some offerings in the works... once I get time to sort out the best pics - digital photography does make you a bit "snap-happy", lol
Be safe, BACKUP and Happy Crafting, Donna

Thursday, August 16, 2018

'Twas the Night Before Christmas

Last month I had a win over at the Little Miss Muffet Challenge Blog and the delightful Kathie asked if I would like to be part of their "Customer Appreciation Day" today... of course I said "Yes please!"


I got to use an image that is brand spanking new, and even though it's called Spooky Park Scene" I thought I could use it for an (always-needed) Christmas card; I just knew it would be perfect for a moonlit scene to go with a line from the Christmas poem 'Twas the Night Before Christmas", I decided to make a pull-tab card so the "Miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer" would magically "appear"
I extended the lines of the snowy hills a little and added one to the front.  
I used one of the uber-talented Jennifer McGuire tutorials to learn how to make a Hidden Slider card (here's a link, the card structure starts at about the 4-minute mark - I just used a ruler and scalpel as I don't have the slot dies) and cut hidden bits and the "covering" snow hill out of scraps by hand to make sure it was big enough to conceal the sleigh and reindeer until you pull the tab.
Getting an image with a sleigh and 8 reindeer was, well impossible! I ended up grabbing a free coloured image from the web that had three reindeer and by copying and pasting added the extra reindeer using Photoshop.  Here they are peeking from behind their hill :-)
I used different inks, pigment, dye and alcohol to colour the night sky then flicked watery white acrylic paint on for snow. I coloured the moon with Copics then put a coat of Viva Pearl (Creme) on it and a thin coat of Viva Pearl Ice White.  The stars are Swarovski crystals.  I coloured the rest of the image with Copics, added Jo Sonja Texture Paste to the snow and then heat embossed it with white glitter EP (homemade using Clear EP and fine white glitter)  Of course it ALL looks so much more glittery in real life!
I cut the little Christmas trees from a border die that I've had for SO long, and that I can't remember (and didn't write on the storage box for) the name of... any ideas please let me know :-) that got the coloured with Copic, texture paste snow and glitter treatment.
The snowflake (I don't have the maker of that noted either, sorry) and the holly (Cottage Cutz Winterland Holly) were embossed the glitter and the red Candi centre is from my stash
I stamped the sentiment (from Kaisercraft) on the pull out tab using my fabulous fool-proof Press to Impress stamping platform... and STILL managed to get it crooked!! (I DID stamp it after the card was assembled, so not the platform's fault, lol)
That's about it for my pull-tab card.  This wasn't the first one I've done, but the first one I've blogged... the other will make an appearance from my Drafts Folder one day :-)  In the meantime I'd like to enter this card in the following challenges;

Do pop over to the Little Miss Muffet Challenge Blog and check out the new images on show in their Customer Appreciation Day, I enjoyed being part of it, I'm sure you will too.  Until next time, Happy Crafting, Donna

Friday, August 10, 2018

Flying Pigs

The card I have today is one of my older ones from my drafts folder, it was made for my hubby (I know, I only showed you last year's a few weeks ago... this is from the year before!)  He has a wicked sense of humour, so it's another tongue in cheek job. When anyone asked how old he was he (EVERY birthday!) answers 29, so I thought I'd have a little joke about it
I think I may have mentioned before that my hubby loves pigs... or at least he did until the inevitable avalanche that comes when you announce that you like something makes you yell "ENOUGH already", he still gets them from me though, hehe.
This image is called Cincinnati, from the sadly now defunct Paper Pretties.  I thought that when reading the first part of the (computer generated) sentiment and seeing the flying pig he would immediately think that I had put the obvious "yeah, and pigs fly" on the inside as the retort... but clearly we have been together a LONG time because he basically guessed that I had put an equally unlikely flying-pig assertion on the inside, as sadly Stefan doesn't look good for 29 - though not at all bad for 62, as he was on this day
I coloured the image with Prismacolor pencils and added Stickles to the clouds.  The image panel and mat were cut and embossed with Spellbinders Nestabilities Labels 12.
The papers are Kaisercraft Fine and Sunny, with the stripy paper on the banners also from Kaisercraft... but as they came out of my snippets folder I can't remember which pad.
A long time ago I melted (a LOT of) pony beads in the oven to make the little "cabochons", or flatbacks or pearly thingys :-)  like I said I have a LOT - but still I could only find three exactly the same translucent red, so the one on the inside is a bit of an odd man out... the inside's not finished exactly the same as the front (didn't have enough of me snippets for a start, lol) so I think it's okay.  Of course all the layers are popped up on varying thicknesses of foam dots to give it dimension.
Well, that's it!  I'm going to enter this card in the following challenges
Sasayaki Glitter Male Project
As You Like It Fur or Feathers and Why: I like "fur", love most animals... my pig here is HAIRY rather than furry, but I hope that doesn't get held against him... he's still cute:-)  I don't like birds as pets much - probably exacerbated by inheriting my Mum's budgie that drives me crazy with his squawking!  Nice to look at in the garden, but fur beats feathers in an "As You Like It" kinda way
I will be back on 16th (I'd like to say I'll be back with a card from my Drafts before that, but I know me, lol) with a GD card.  Until then Happy Crafting, Donna 

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Christmas in July... and Some!!

This is a long post, but it IS three cards, so, forgivable?  Hope so :-)
I live in Western Australia... where Christmas is HOT, being in the middle of our summer and all :-)  We regularly get over 37C (100F), but at least it's not in February which is the hottest month with numerous days over 40C.  (I have worked, outside with my husband back in our pool installing days on 44C or 118F - in the shade, which we were not... it was over 50C in the sun and, no it wasn't pleasant.
All that was just to explain why I LOOOOOVE Christmas in July; I love Christmas full stop, and getting to celebrate with "traditional" fare is nice for us, as I suppose Christmas at the beach (or around your backyard pool in our case) would be for you cold-climaters :-) 
Hence... today I have a few Christmas cards to share:-)) They're all pretty CAS, that's partly because I like them that way... and partly because I invariably run out of time to get all I need made
On the first one I used a Memory Box die (called Grand Merry Christmas) to cut white glittery (very glittery, just ask my craft room floor, though it didn't shed as much as the last lot I got!) card.  I think it looks really effective over the red card.  The ribbon is from my stash, it's really lovely in real life with a gold thread through it. 
As You Like It wants to know our Favourite: Ribbon or Buttons and Why: I like both, but use more ribbon because it's easy, stays flat (ish) for posting and can add, as in this case a nice patterned element without overpowering your card.  Aud Sentiments Christmas in July plus a Sentiment, I think Grand Merry Christmas has that covered :-)

The second card features a bit of ribbon too, yes it's wonky in the pic, I DID straighten it up before sending the card :-)  I used some of my (ginarmous pile of) white snippets for this one on kraft card... you know all those rather skinny white bits you end up with when you trim sheets of card down to make your bases.  The image is a digi from Bugaboo called Snowflake Reindeer Silhouette, available here, that I printed on my laser printer then foiled using my laminator... I did make quite a few foiled cards actually - got on a bit of a roll :-)  This was the first time I've used this image, though I've had it for a while. I printed it on linen card - I know it just looks bumpy in the pic, but actually looked pretty classy IRL.  
The top half of the card was embossed with a Die'sire folder called Let it Snow, the bottom half was embossed with a folder I got with a papercraft magazine... I've got to say it embosses so well - you have to make sure you don't chop right through your card actually!  Pixies Snippets Playground wants to see Snippets, so here they are :-)  The image panel was cut using Spellbinders Ovals, the kraft mat behind it with Spellbinders Scalloped Ovals
Now the third card, lucky last.... for today!
I made a little scene using some paper from a Kaisercraft pad (can't be bothered getting up to find which one, sorry) and some more of the white glittery card I used on my first card today, cut with Lawn Fawn Stitched Hillside border dies to make the snow drifts.  I have the snow drifts at two different levels then the gold glittery reindeer (Cottage Cutz) on a layer above that; it hardly shows in the pic but did make a nice display IRL... which is just as well as it took forever-and-a-half to cut teeeeny little bits of foam dots to put behind their legs :-)) 
The Noel sentiment is a Sizzix die (Tim Holtz Script Holiday Words), the whole scene is mounted on gold foil card.  Little Red Wagon has Ice, Ice Baby as their theme, this is pretty much as close as we get at Christmas... unless you count the stuff in our poolside drinkies :-)
That's pretty much it for card three.
Catch The Bug has a Bingo Challenge as part of it's Christmas in July week-long challenge (for Day 4) I've covered seven of the square in this - if you count Gold Blue and White as three colours; using Texture, Die Cuts, Sparkle, Patterned Paper, Bugaboo Christmas Image, 3 Colours and Ribbon... of course getting three on one line was still a challenge, but I made it with my first card (Texture, Die Cut, Sparkle or Sparkle, Use 3 Colours, Ribbon
Jingle Belles have this fabulous Blog Header to inspire us, I have the reindeer, more than once in fact :-) and the snow
Now, the other thing I like about Christmas in July is all the lovely challenges that are around at this time; 
Fab'n'Funky Challenges, Hiding in- my Craft Room, and Sasayaki Glitter all have Christmas in July so I'm entering there.  A Snowflakes PromiseMerry Christmas ChallengeCrimbo Crackers and Sweet Stampin' Christmas are Christmas Challenges that all have "Anything Christmas" themes as is  Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge which has the option to "Add Some Red", which I have done
The other thing is that, as a lot of DT's are on Holidays, there's a lot of Anything Goes challenges... and right at the time I'm tucked up in my cozy craft room with time to craft - summer being our busy season with work... win/win I say.  All the following are Anything Goes challenges
Simon Says Challenge, Through the Craftroom Door, Digi Choosday, Crafty  Creations, 4 Crafty Chicks, Crafting With Friends Challenge #72, Creative Fingers, Li'l Patch of Crafty Friends, Polkadoodles, A Perfect Time to Craft,  Create and Inspire, Creatalicious Challenges, Simply Papercrafts, Crafting With Attitude, Corrosive Challenge and Card Mania Challenges 
Phew, that's it for today.  I'll be back soon with some more cards... probably Christmas, possibly foiled, then again it could be with one of the 38 still in my drafts.  Until then, Happy Crafting... or sun-soaking or family-funning - whatever you're up to, Donna

Monday, July 23, 2018

Two Years, a Million Tears

Just thought I'd acknowledge my beautiful Mum, who left us at 9.46am two years ago today
I miss her every day, I can't believe two years have gone already, and I can't believe I'm still struggling as I am... ah well, this too shall pass
This photo was taken by my son Chris (her favourite Grandson, not that she had favourites... but we all knew, lol) on her 80th birthday,.
It was such a great day, she loved every minute - but then, she WAS easily pleased :-). My sister and I took her for a "girly" treat, the only one we ever did all three together, having her nails, hair and makeup done ready for our stretch-limousine ride to a winery for lunch with family... this was post-lunch... not looking too bad - all things considered, hic