Beautiful Card Designs Made Easy

October 31, 2012

Green and White

I don't know if I have shared this card with you before ...  so if I have apoplogies and if I haven't then here it is and it is well worth reading the verse on the front of it.

The verse is from Clarity Stamp and it is really lovely and could be sent to many different people for many different occasions.

Send it to your mum for Mothers Day.  To your husbands/boyfriends for Valentines Day or a Birthday.

Send it to your daughter or son for any reason  ...  the posibilities are endless.

The background for this card is from an Embossing folder from Couture Creations and it called Seedling Nouveau ... and it is very pretty.  The fancy edge to the card is created with Spellbinders Classic Triple Scallop.

The centre piece is cut from the Layered Scallopd Posy with the largest die from the  Persian Motifs layered on top.

The ribbon has been threaded through a border created from the Classic Postage Stamp  and the knot covered with a Vintage button.  I love the metal corner piece at the top of the card.

I would also like to share with you a Blog post from Naomi over at  Creative Bug on the Loose  as she has opened a Digital Shop and has some really cute images there for you to buy.... as well as giving away a free image each week .....oh!  I love a "freebie" .... and I bet you do too.

Hugs xx

October 30, 2012

Some news ....

Have you noticed the new button on the right hand side of the Blog page ???? 

I have made it onto the Design Team for Paper Creators  and I have never done anything like this before .... so guess who is really pleased with herself.
I entered a card for this before I went on holiday and was very pleasantly  surprised  to have the email, to say I was accepted, waiting for me when I got home.

I am so pleased  and this is one of the cards that I have made for Debbies Blog

It is made from Centura Pearl card from Crafters Companion and the papers are a  lovely shade of green from a magazines' free paper stack

The paper Doily if from my stash and the Bling as always is from Want2Scrap
There is a pretty piece of Guipure lace under the image and it has been wrapped with white ribbon and the bow.   I have added Bakers Twine around the spine.

Pop over there to see the other cards that Collette,  the other new DT member and I have come up with,  and there will be lots more to come in the coming months.
This is using the  "Hanging Out To Dry"  image that can be purchased from the Paper Creators shop and there are lots of different characters for you to choose from.
Wish me luck  ....
Hugs xx

More on Spectrum Noir

I have been asked some questions concerning the  Spectrum Noir Pen System,  and so the best place to answer them is here,  as many people are starting to collect them.  They filled a real gap in the market for an affordable colouring system and are well within most peoples price range.

There are 12 sets of  6 pens and they are  Pale Hues,  Blues,  Pinks,  Browns,  Reds,  Purples,  Cool Greys,  Warm Greys,   Greens,  Yellows,  Turquoise, and  Essentials.

They also come in packs of  24 and they are Darks.  Lights,  Brights and  Pastels making 168 in the complete collection.

But in the video Spectrum Noir Introduction  I said that you don't need all the pens and that the best way to get started with them was to buy the six pen sets.
These will give you an excellent colour range to get started with ... and when you feel more confident and  you like working with the pens then you can extend your collection.

The set I would advise you to get is the
Pale Hues.... as this is probably going to be the set you will use the most for all your skin tones.
Then the Essentials and two more of your choice will get the ball rolling.
Some of the questions were concerning the way the pens are numbered so let me explain  ...

When the pens were  first introduced  the numbering system  was different and  it was altered a few months ago.
But if you go to the Crafters Companion  website you can order a complete set of tops for your pens with the new numbering system  ... free of charge.
The pens are divided up into colour groups and the Letters tell you which group they are in.
For example  .....
PL is Purple and the numbers are the strength of the colours with 1 being the palest.  
CR is Coral and they go up to CR11 with that being the deepest, strongest colour in that group.
TN is Tan and they are from 1 to 9 with the colours as described ... palest to strongest.
TB is True Blues and they are from 1 to 9
DG is Dark Greens running from 1 to 4
To aquaint yourself  more with the groups you can download the  Colour Blends Chart from this link to Crafters Companion and  you don't need to be a member to get it.
Scroll down to Spectrum Noir and click  view to find the Colour Chart.... click the link and scroll again to Colour Blends, download it and  print it off  onto the same kind of paper that you will be colouring on and keep it with your pens ... you will find it invaluable when you want to choose colours from the six pen sets. 
This is another chart that you can download and this will give you the groups and colours for every pen in the whole collection.  
It is the A4 pre coloured Colour Chart and again very useful to keep with your pens ...  and you can see all the groups at a glance.
Storing them horizontally is best and remember that once you have purchased this system ... it is yours for life.
They are re-fillable and the nibs are replaceable ...  and if you coat your new pen tops with clear nail varnish the numbers won't wear off.
This storage system shown here is not just for Spectrum Noir as it can be used for all your pens.
One of the questions I was asked was the best way to store Promarkers.... well I stack my system on a slant and place the pens so that the pointed end is to the back.
This gives you more to grab hold of to get the pens out but unfortunatly you won't be able to see the pen colours with the Promarker  pen  design.
Hugs xx

October 29, 2012

Pen Storage System.

Before I went on holiday I was asked by Crafters Companion if I would like to do a guest blog post for their Spectrum Noir Blogspot ... and of course I was delighted to do so. 

There are many good tips about the pen system and how to get the best from it and if you like Spectrum Noir pens then it will be useful to visit their blog often.

They have featured the videos I made on colouring both pale and  dark skin tones.

As a  "Thank You" to me,  Sara Davies, the owner of CC,  sent me a complete set of the storage trays.

Crafters Companion have developed these for the Spectrum Noir range.... but they will take any pens that you have.

So together with the numbering system to the pens and this neat way to store them I now have a really tidy desk when I have completed colouring in my images.

And it is  easy to see which pen is missing and replace it into the correct spot.

Take a look at the video and maybe this Marker Pens Storage System could be just what you are looking for too.

Hugs xx

October 28, 2012


Day 13 Vigo, Spain

This is the last stop now and the next one will be in Southampton and then home. 

It has all passed far too quickly but we have had a wonderful time on board this huge cruise ship.

So this is Vigo and this chap is waiting to greet us outside the port entrance.

He was quite tall and many people had photos taken with him ... but he was not a living statue ... no this a  real solid statue.
This was another big statue near the port but I have no idea what it is supposed to represent.

The weather although not raining was not very warm and we only had till 2.30 pm before we needed to be back on board to sail for home.

This was a little park that we found and we sat for a little while watching and listening to the water.

Every so often the pattern in the water cascade changed to a different formation and it was very pretty to watch.

The view along the main street made us want to see what was there and so we walked all along this shopping area... with the obligatory coffee stop on the way.

We sat and people watched for a while and then set off back to the ship. 

And this cloud in the sky looked just like a bird and so was worthy of a camera shot as we walked.

And so we said our farewells to Vigo and this was the shot from alongside the ship.

The sun was setting later in the day as we sailed away from the land.

The water as it was churned up was the most beautiful shade of turquoise and oh so clean.

This has been a Happy Holiday ...  and tomorrow is Day 14 and back to the Southampton UK ... and the long drive back to Blackpool.

So no more snaps from me till the next  holiday.

 Thank you so much for viewing all my pictures  and leaving me your lovely comments.

I am glad that you have enjoyed seeing them as much as I had taking them.

But now it will be back to work on  Card Making Magic  and to lots of new changes that are happening on the website.

The next posts will be back to card making and another video is on the way. 

Hugs xx

Lisbon in the Rain ...

Day 12 Lisbon

This was the view from our balcony as we sailed up the river, passing the Monument to the Discoveries and on into Lisbon.

It was very early in the morning  and the weather forecast was rain and I promise you it did not disappoint.

We have been to Lisbon before so we had a plan of what we wanted to do and we got the ships shuttle bus from the port into town.
I snapped Griff filming from the balcony and this Monument on the hill was in the background.

It is enormous but we didn't have time to visit this.

You can see how grey the sky was even at this hour in the morning.
The first stop was to go to the Castle on the hill and we walked up a very steep hill to get there.

 As we got to the top the skies opened and down came the rain... so no photos.

We decided to take the small trams back down into the town to rejoin the shuttle bus and go to another part of the city.

But not too worry I had our plastic ponchos and the trusty umbrellas

This is the Monument to the Discoveries that we wanted to photograph but it was so wet we took shelter in the cafe.

I had a welcoming hot chocolate ... looking like a drowned rat ...

.... and Griff had some fresh squeezed juice ... looking his usual handsome self with not a hair out of place and no mascara running down his face.

Then it was out into the rain  to try and get a photo.... complete with the ponchos again and the brollies from Barcelona.... but all was not well !!

The thing decided to blow inside out and here I am trying to fix it without much success.... in fits of giggles as I tried.

Griff said we should go back to Barcelona and complain ....

So I am afraid that this is the best I could do on this very wet day ...  and we made our way back to the shuttle bus.

But as we waited for the bus  we spotted this very beautiful building and the fountain was still flowing even in the rain ... so out came the camera again.

Once back on the ship ... all showered and dry ... we found a cozy spot at the top in the  "Olive or Twist" lounge bar.

We settled into some cozy sofas with a lovely cocktail and watched as we sailed out of Lisbon and past the Monument again.

And would you believe that once back on the ship the rain stopped and the sun came out......

Hugs xx 

October 27, 2012

Fun with towels ...

Day 11 at Sea

Our cabin steward was a young man from India called Anthony who had an amazing skill with towels.

Every other night he would make a sculpture and leave it in the cabin for us to find.

This was the first one that he did and it really made me laugh as it was wearing a pair of my sunglasses.

Here is me and my new friend and over the next few nights there were many more for me to find.

The snake was very clever and Anthony had even added beady black eyes to him.
 The bat was suspended from a coat hanger and was hovering over the bed waiting to bite ... coz of course it is a vampire bat.
 The monkey was also suspended from the coat hanger and was cleverly done with one of the legs tucked under him.
But the rabbit was the best of all and had the TV's remote control in his front paws.

So thank you Anthony for all the hard work you did to keep us comfortable.

And also for the fun we had seeing these adorable creatures when we returned to our cabin.

Hugs xx


Day 10 Malaga

This holiday is passing fat too quickly and here we are at our last Mediterranean   stop before we have a days sailing to get to Lisbon. 

 At this stop we had to be back on board by 7 pm so we had a good days sightseeing planned. 

This was the Castle a the top of the hill and today it was a beautiful sunny day.

The view over Malaga was lovely in the sunshine and we took lots of photos.

You can just see one of the other ships in the distant port

Malaga is the Birthplace of Picasso and of course we had to visit the house.

It was near a very busy square that was bustling with people and a very good place to have a coffee stop

This beautiful building was worth a photo shot but for the life of me I cannot remember what it was...

... but this young man was one of the living statues that we saw in many towns.

He very rudely told me to add money to his cap if I wanted a photo of him.... and I couldn't very well refuse seeing as how I had the photo.

But  he was the only  one ..  out of several of these living statue people that I took ... that was rude about it.

Hugs xx



Day 9 of our cruise in Alicante

We visited the Castle here in Alicante and again had a magnificent view over the port.

It was a lovely place and very warm but we only had till 4.30 pm to look around.

We had a lot to cram in and the best way was to take a tour from the ship.

This was inside the Castle and we had  a lot of steps to climb to get to the top...

...but we were rewarded with this spectacular view over Alicante once we got there.

This is the Bullring but there are not many bull fights held here anymore.

Back down in the town we walked along this beautiful Mosaic tiled floor that runs along the centre of town. 

It has stalls and artists along it and we stopped and viewed many of them as we walked.

And in the harbor is this Galleon ship that you can visit.

It was lovely and as the day went on it got warmer and warmer.

But the one thing I want to show you are the beautiful dolls that are made each year for a festival that is held in June.

When I say Dolls I don't mean little ones that kids play with .... oh no these are very  big .... and this is Griff stood along side some to give you an idea of the size.

These dolls are made by the local people from Papier Mache and are hand painted.  

They start the work on the 21st and  they are placed around the town for everybody to see.

Over  the following days the festival takes place and the Dolls  are then  judged by the towns people.

On the  last few days the Dolls are all burned.... except for those judged to be the very best and these are stored in this museum for visitors to see.

You are allowed to take photos but you must not touch as they are made from paper and can be easily damaged.

Here are some for you to see and they are all very beautiful.... and many hours of hard work must have gone into the making of these Dolls.

But time conspired against us and all too soon it was time for us to leave.

This is another place I would be happy to return too in the future as there is still so much left to explore.

Hugs xx

October 26, 2012

Palma De Mallorca

 Day 8 in  Majorca

We took a trip from the ship on this day and in the morning we visited the Caves of Drach and it rained here. But fortunately we were underground at the time so it didn't really bother us.... no need for the brollies then !!

It is the biggest underground lake in Europe and went way down ... passing some beautiful scenery as we went.  But unfortunately we were not allowed to take photos and so I can't show you the view.

Once at the lake all the lights were turned off and we sat on benches and waited.... then from one side of  the  lake we could hear classical music and three illuminated boats sailed into view... with the musicians on board.

Because of the acoustics in the caves the sound was wonderful and the atmosphere amazing.

Then came the long walk back,  up lots of steps,  to the  top and by the  time we got there to was into the sunlight.

On the way back to Palma we visited a Pearl factory and watched a lady making the faux pearls from glass. They were very pretty but I didn't buy any as they are not really my style of jewelry.

This was the Cathedral up on the hill and the sky was a beautiful blue.

It was very warm and sunny in the afternoon and we didn't have to be back on board till 7 pm.

We spent the rest of the day wandering around ... after we had had some lunch in a near by cafe.

These were the steps to the top of the hill and it was quite a climb but the inside of the Cathedral was well worth it.

We very much enjoy the sightseeing and Cathedrals, churches, museums and Castles are always top of our lists.

We have a friend who only ever wants to "shop"  wherever she goes and that seems to me to be a waste when there is so much culture to see in strange places.

Imagine going to Barcelona and not visiting the Sagrada Famila ... what a waste.

This is the ceiling inside this lovely place and notice the different colours in it.

The light in here was wonderful and again another sight not to be missed.

The view from the top was overlooking the port where our ship was waiting in the distance

On the way back to the ship we passed many artists sitting in the sunshine, along the centre promenade, creating some lovely paintings for sale.

They where of landscapes, seascapes as well as portraits of  subjects that where willing to sit and be painted.

But we passed by and headed back on board after a very pleasant day in Palma.

And who knows maybe we will go back for a longer holiday here in the future.... but Day 9 is on the way and we are more than half way through our holiday... Sigh!!

Hugs xx