Wednesday 28 January 2015

The sun IS shining ... somewhere!

Good morning friends and thanks for visiting Casa Mia this morning!

I hope those of you who have snow are staying warm and safe. We have rain and wind at the mo, although the sun is trying to peek through as I write. By the time I photograph this project, it might have made an appearance!

I'm at home crafting this morning instead of being on the treadmill with a yoga studio class chaser! Things aren't going well at school for the eldest Bambino, so I want to be local and attached to a phone. Hopefully things will get sorted out one way or the other as school are on the case, but it's pretty soul destroying sending your child into school when they don't want to go and you know they're going to face several loads of grief through the day. Still, what doesn't break us makes us stronger .... at this rate I should be competing in the World Strongest Woman Championships pretty soon :o)

Anyway, back to my project. I was really taken with a sketch challenge that was posted last week, but didn't get a chance to make this over the weekend, so here is my offering:

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card Base - is a pre-made 15cm square in white cardstock (although I found out last time I used one of these that they're not 15cm and they're not square either!)
  • Sentiment - is by Paulette at Create with TLC and I think this was a freebie that Paulette generously offered in November 2013. I die cut my sentiment using the second largest Sizzix Fancy Labels die before cutting off the top edge of the label ... else we wouldn't have seen the papers, tee hee! I then used this tutorial by my blogging buddy Annette to make grey chalk clouds on my sentiment label using Craf-T Chalks.
  • Design Papers - are from several sources and once I knew the sentiment I was using, I wanted the papers to tell a story ... even when it's raining, the sun can still shine and a rainbow is the result!

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Thanks for dropping in today and hope you have a great and crafty week!

Hugs, Helen x

Sunday 25 January 2015

Sugar and Spice

Good afternoon my crafty friends and hope you've had a good week and weekend. Just a swift post from me this afternoon, but firstly I'd like to extend a very warm welcome to Shirley-Anne Barber who is my newest follower - glad to have you aboard and hope you enjoy my creations.

As my regular readers may remember, January has been full of birthdays ... in the Admin Team at the school where I work there have been 8 this month alone!!!!! I've been making hand coloured cards for the special people, but for the others I've been making what I'm calling "Mini Cards" like this one:

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base - is Centura Pearl Snow White Silver which I have cut, scored and folded to make a 9.9cm square card. The beauty of this card size is that you can make 3 cards out of one A4 sheet of card, and these cards will go flat in a regular DL sized envelope should you need to post them!
  • Papers, Image, Sentiment and Buttons - are all from a Card Companion set on the gorgeously girlie Sugar and Spice Papercraft CD Rom Collection. I resized the sheet in my word processing programme, before printing it out, and I then cut out the elements. All the papers are ready matted and layered with the band of ribbon across them, so they just needed fixing to the card base. The image and buttons come in 2 different sizes so I had to choose which ones to use, cut them out and fix them to the papers layer. I used 2 sentiment tags, which I've tied together with a bow, offset them and then raised up the top right hand corner with a sticky pad to give a bit of dimension to the card.
  • Twine - is from my "odds 'n' ends" box, so I can't even tell you where it came from! I just about had enough to thread through the holes I punched in the buttons and sentiment tags so that I was able to tie the bows :o)

There is my quick and easy card, but it looks a whole lot more than just a few sheets of card!!!!!!! Here is a pic of another couple of cards I made using the same CD-Rom - these are from the Frame Card section and I superimposed some sentiments from Paulette at Create with TLC onto sentiment tags from the CD-Rom before cutting them out and mounting them. The only additions to these cards were bling/pearls from my stash:

Some beautiful cards for my office buddies!

I would like to enter my Butterfly Card into the following challenges:

Hope you enjoy the rest of the weekend and have a lovely crafty week!

Hugs, Helen x

Tuesday 13 January 2015

Feeling Blue?

Nope, not me ... but I think this little cutie might be!

Good evening friends and as promised I'm back with another post as I've managed to have a crafty afternoon. I'd also like to welcome my newest follower, Jacee from Simply Paper Craft Design - hope you enjoy my crafty meanderings!  This is another Birthday card, but this time I'm actually ahead of the game as far as office birthdays go, so this can go in my drawer ready for the right recipient!

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base - is a pre-made 5 inch square cream card blank
  • Design Papers - are both by Donna at Bearly Mine Designs which has sadly closed its doors. The bottom paper is from a set called "Plain and Simple" and the border paper is from a set called "Mini Dots". I have dry embossed a wavy edge on the border paper using my Ultimate
  • Image - this gorgeous girls is called Sugar 'n' Spice Doll Saffron and she comes from the pen of Barbara at Little Miss Muffet Stamps. I brought Saffron to life using my Spectrum Noir Pens in the listed colours before fussy cutting her:
    • Skin - FS2, FS3
    • Hair - GB8, GB9, GB10, EB3
    • Hat, Scarf, Muffler and Dress - EB1, 1B2, EB3, TB4, TB5, TB6
    • Coat - TB3, TB4, TB5
    • Boots - EB3, EB4
  • Sentiment is by Paulette at Create with TLC and I re-coloured the sentiment to blue in my word processing programme before fussy cutting it.

I'm not totally happy with my colouring this time - I don't find the blue pens the easiest to blend (the colours seem too tonally spread) and then to cap it all, one of the blue pens ran out whilst I was using it and I don't have a refill ink for it (guess what's going on order tomorrow!). Then I couldn't seem to get the texture right in her hair and the more ink I was laying down the worse it was looking .... Anyway, it's done now, and I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Whatever you're up to this week, I hope you have fun and get some crafting in!

Hugs, Helen x

Christmas Joy

Hello folks - hope you're all OK out there and keeping safe, warm and dry in this weather. 

I know that it's only been 2½ weeks since Christmas, but another one of my New Year goals is to try and make a Christmas card every couple of weeks. As with most things here at Casa Mia there is a story behind this. For the last couple of years, my youngest has helped me run a "Teddy Tombola" at our Church Summer Fete. Last year, we held a Christmas Fayre for the first time and the organiser phoned me and said "Right then Helen, what are you going to do?". I tentatively mentioned that I make cards at which point she nearly snapped my hand off down the phone and that was that ... I was running a hand-made card stall. I nervously went with a very small number of cards that were mostly made from CD-Roms as I didn't want to invest heavily in my time if my cards didn't sell. Well, I needn't have worried ... after a slightly shaky start, I had sold all the cards I took within the first hour! 

So, I'm thinking ahead here as I guess I'll be asked to do this again and it would be good to have slightly more stock to sell. Here is my first offering:

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base -  is made using Kraft Cardstock to make a 10.5 cm square card.  My TIP for Top Tip Tuesday is that using this size of card base means that it will fit opened and flat in a regular DL sized envelope. This avoids extra thickness in the envelope and (depending on how heavily you embellish your card) a chance that you will avoid punitive postal costs.
  • Image - is a sadly now retired stamp from the Humphrey's Corner Collection called "At
    . I think I got this stamp as part of a bundle during Crafter's Companion Birthday week a couple of years ago and, shame on me, this is the first time it's been inked up! I stamped Humphrey and his friends directly onto the Kraft cardstock using Black Memento Ink before bringing them to life with my Spectrum Noir Pencils (enjoying their third outing!) in the following shades:
    • Humphrey's Hide - 001, 112, 117
    • Duffle Coat - 024, 027, 033
    • Scarf & Mittens - 058, 047, 084, 107
    • Clothes - 096, 104, 117, 119
    • Reindeer Sledge - 024, 027, 033, 088, 085, 008, 095, 104, 058, 047, 084, 107, 012, 014
    • Snow - 001, White Gel Pen
  • Sentiment - is from another stamp that I got as part of the Humphrey's Corner Collection bundle; this one is called "Christmas Joy" and I also stamped this directly onto the cardstock with Black Memento Ink
  • Faux Stitching - Black Gel Pen

This is the first time I've used the pencil blending solution with my pencils and I'm pretty sure that I have never made a card by stamping/printing and then colouring directly onto the cardstock from which my card is made. A lot of firsts ... :o)

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:
  • Keep it Simple at Top Tip Tuesday - second entry
  • A is for Anything Goes (with the optional extra of Antlers) at ABC Christmas
  • Challenge #130 - Something Old, Something New at Crafty Cardmakers - Old is my Kraft cardstock which I've had since June 2014 and New is a new technique to me of stamping and colouring directly on kraft cardstock.
  • January Challenge - Anything Goes at Spectrum Noir Facebook Page

I may be back to share another card a little later as I'm hoping to have a crafty afternoon. In the meantime, hope you have a great day!

Hugs, Helen x

Saturday 10 January 2015

Warm & Snug

Hello there my crafty friends! 

Another post from me and so far I'm keeping up with my New Year Goal of making at least one card each week. This week I have exceeded my goal as there are a plethora of birthdays this month, both family and work. I made this card for my Sis-in-Law whose birthday was earlier this week, so I reckon I'm OK in posting it now!

My card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base -  is a pre-made A5 white card blank 
  • Design Paper - is from the Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady Twin CD-Rom which I treated myself to in October, but have only just "cracked" the cellophane! :o) I love these bare trees, and it's just right for a winter birthday! I imported the paper into my word processing programme, resized it to suit the card, and  put a brown border around the paper as a faux mat.
  • Image - This beautiful lady out for a stroll is called Winter Emily (Emily Winter Wonderland) and she comes from the art desk of Heather at Lacy Sunshine. I die cut an oval using the 3rd smallest oval in my Sizzix Framelits Ovals die set before bringing brought Emily to life using my Spectrum Noir Pens in the following colours:
    • Skin - FS2, FS3, BGR3, 
    • Hair - TN2, TN3, TN5, TN7, TN9
    • Cape, Muffler & Umbrella - BGR1, BGR2, BGR3, BGR4, BGR5, White Glitter, Silver Gel Pen
    • Dress - EB1, EB2, EB3
    • Snow & Outline - IG1, White Glitter
  • Sentiment - is by Paulette at Create with TLC and I have recoloured the sentiment in my word processing programme so it fits with my blue and brown themed card. 
  • Gemstones - on the top right hand corner of the card and on Emily's muffler, but I've just realised they're not showing terribly well in the photo .... ooops!

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Hope you have a great weekend!

Hugs, Helen x

Friday 9 January 2015

Birthday Butterfly

Hello friends!

Wow, I seem to have been really busy this week and not just with work. I have also managed to find some time to sit down and craft! Just a well really as there are a plethora of office birthdays in January. This card is for a good friend in the office, so I wanted to do something a little special for her, and it fits in with some challenges too!

My card recipe is:
  • Card base -  pre-made A5 card blank in white onto which I've directly printed my DP
  • Design Paper - is one of the co-ordinating papers from the Kids at Play CD-Rom (part of the Papercrafting Collection Twin CD-Rom by Rachelle Anne Miller
  • Cardstock - is plain black card which I've cut 0.5cm smaller all round than my base card, just to show off this pretty heart paper!
  • Image - is a die cut butterfly, using the largest butterfly in the Die'sire Essentials Beautiful Butterflies set. My TIP for Top Tip Tuesday is try using the negative cut from your dies like I have to make a focal point on the card, and show off your pretty paper underneath. Although I've left my butterfly unadorned, you could use gems etc. to glam up your die cut space if you wish!
  • Sentiment - is from a free set called Oscar the Owl and Pals that came with Cardmaking and Papercraft Magazine a while back. I've stamped this directly onto my cardstock using a Versa Color ink pad in Gold.

Hope you like this clean and simple card as much as I do.

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Hope you're having a great and crafty week!

Hugs, Helen x

Thursday 1 January 2015

Skating Polies

Hello friends and welcome to 2015!!!!! I hope that the New Year is a good one for you and yours.

I'm opening my blogging "account" for 2015 with another Christmas card - not the first one of the year, but sharing the card that I made for our youngest, who just LOVES polar bears. She's now 13, and she still shares her bed with a polar bear that two of my friends gave her when she was just a few weeks old. He's called Poly, hence the title of this post. She took one look at the image on this card and promptly gave me a huge squishy hug!!!!

I've kept this card very simple as I wanted to show off the lovely embossing folder and my card recipe is as follows:
  • Card base -  is plain black cardstock which I have cut, scored and folded to make a 15cm square card. 
  • Embossed frame - is made using an festive embossing folder (which came free with Cardmking & Papercraft a few months ago) and Centura Pearl in Snow White Silver. I cut out the middle which was blank to create the frame.
  • Image - This lovely couple are called Skating Polar Bear and they have been created by Claire at Jellypark - sorry I can't provided a link to the image, but Claire's website is "down" while she finds a work-around for the new European Union VAT laws which appear to be scuppering some of my favourite digital traders ... grrrrrr!!!!! Grump over, back to the card! This fun seeking were brought to life courtesy of my Spectrum Noir Pencils in the following shades:
    • Ice - 061
    • Polar Bears - 065, 104
    • Scarves - Small Bear - 050, 024; Large Bear - 066, 013
    • Trees - 104, 050, 052

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Catch up with you all soon!

Hugs, Helen x