Friday 31 December 2010

I love to reminisce, good times and happy moments are worth talking and laughing over from a distance of an hour or many years, for sure. I'm a scrap-booker, so I have created a sort of provenance for my collection of memories, that's buying into retropsective isn't it? My birth sign is Cancer, which means I will remember for centuries little tiny details that others don't and worse, it means I can hold a grudge for a lifetime too. Although in my forty something years I must say that I've learned very well that holding a grudge is a pointless exercise. Considering my birth sign and my incredibly wobbly hormones, it is then a surprise to me and lots of others that I can't bear the retrospectives that take place now, just as the calendar brings us a new year to fill.
I have no idea why, I don't think they're mawkish or sentimental, I don't think they should be discouraged, I mean - where's the harm in hearing the top 10 singles (that ages me!) of the last year just before we blare into the next? I dunno. I get really fed up with it. I understand you can't really make good TV or Radio based on music or celebrities that haven't yet been written, invented, blahdy blah, I just prefer to look forward; how many times do I want to have the last year raked over in how many guises? Is it my age? Could it be the security of place and people that I'm lucky enough to be surrounded by? Perhaps that security means that I don't feel a need to remember old times, for better or worse? Certainly could. Although I have no problem telling my child that crisps were less than 10p a bag when I was her age and going to the cinema didn't cost 3 people twenty quid and need weird glasses (but I grant you, the weird glasses do cause the most fantastic effects!)

So perhaps I'm selectively retropsective. Hmm. As I've cruised around blogs this week, I've come across a really lovely bunch of retrospectives - favourite 10 cards of the year and so on. I've enjoyed them enormously. Of course I haven't even contemplated a similar post for this blog - it would take me till next Christmas week to choose, apart from anything else.
Of course, if you were to back me into a corner and deny me gin and tonic for a couple of days, I'd admit that the best part of my crafting life in 2010 was the maybe I do need to become a fan of the retrospective. Then I can have an exhibition. It would be an empty space, bright yellow perhaps. And I would invite you to wander around and imagine all the wonderful things I was going to make, just as soon as I finished typing about them. See I'm all about the future.
Happy New Year; may it be all that you want it to be. May you have the strength to make it what you want it to be.

Wednesday 29 December 2010

What's On Your Workdesk this 5th day of Christmas?

Mine is a work surface in a different room today.We've been royally entertained this Christmas by family and friends who have stepped in to make what was a fraught week a whole lot easier. This is my therapy of choice for Tuesday, and as I type, we're contemplating an early breakfast and a rush about to do a couple of jobs at work before friends arrive for lunch. I should point out I think, that despite the history of work desk disasters involving clearing up, my kitchen is made spick and span after each 'session''s part of the OCD thing in the left side of my brain..I can't do anything in the house if the kitchen isn't clean and tidy. And as it's the smallest kitchen in Christendom, that's no great effort I can tell you!
I made a massive pavlova and Miss D made some more mince pies. A bit predictable, but hey - our friends like a nice chewy meringue!

Show us what you're up to this day of five gold rings then - either on your craft desk or elsewhere - it's fascinating to see what you do on 'days off', and of course for some in the UK, this is a back to work day....bah humbug! Photo, upload to your blog and link in here...I'm still fighting to get around last Wednesday's desks, so forgive me, you may get a double whammy visit this week!
Since this is the last work desk Wednesday of 2010, please accept best wishes for a truly happy New Year, I hope 2011 brings you peace and security and allows you time for crafting!

Monday 27 December 2010

On the third day of Christmas..

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Oh sweet Groundhog Day, we're about to go to Mr Dunnit's family home and start again! But it's OK interweb, I'm ready, I can take it!
I thought you might like a brief insight into the glamour of a real blogger's Boxing day, as a sort of reality check against the previous days warm and rich family gathering. To make sure I deserved another day off today, I swept, hoovered, washed and then waxed the wood floor in our bedroom. You can't tell from the threshold, let alone from here, otherwise you'd be looking at a photo! This morning, it took me a while to work out why my knees feel bruised when I did my routine of crawling under the tree to turn on the lights! It's all glamour. How come I feel like this - that I need to offset the lovely with the erm, less lovely? Is it a gene? Have I, deep in my psyche got an inherited work ethic? Is it like pudding, you only get the nice stuff after you've eaten your greens and cleared your plate? Or is it a back log of outstanding jobs that makes me do these things on holiday days. Or maybe it's guilt. Mr Dunnit laughs and says it may be guilt, but it's just an overdue job really. Do it or don't do it. Philosophy I cannot possibly subscribe to - whatever the day....I'd do nothing!
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday 24 December 2010

Christmas Eve shopping hints

Lunch Lady Jan suggested (in the comments after yesterday's post) that my taste might run to Kitsch. I hope so. I couldn't reproduce it here because it's too long, but do go to Wikipedia and read the definition, it's hilarious - especially the bit about gaudy and unsubstantial works of art - so true and so totally within my skill range! Which is why you see the lovely gaudy cakes above - I could not resist them when I was shopping for some goodies for our get together with the Lunch Lady Jan family today. It was sparkly and fun......although the bobbly bits on the cakes are not terribly nice. Actually, they taste really shouldn't mix your E numbers, it just never works. But the silver lining here? These characters faces are actually rings for us all to wear with pride over the season. Can't beat that for value and taste!
Lots of you were surprised by my inclusion of Christmas Loo roll in my preparations. See, I might not have all the presents or enough food to feed 30 people over the next five days (but there are only 3 of us, so we'll probably be fine). But last time I staggered down the aisle for cleaning equipment and kitchen paper and loo roll, there it was - the Andrex Winter edition printed loo roll pack. So I bought it. A double whammy of luxury, for this house does not usually enjoy such branding in the bottoms department!
OK my third shopping tip - don't do anymore, unless you need petrol in the car to get to somewhere special won't regret doing that today; then you can just jump in the car and go, stress free! This is a tip brought to you by a woman that once drove 40 miles on petrol vapours and prayers one bright Christmas Morning after a dark Christmas Eve. Say no more. She reminds me every year you know, in her generosity.

Happy Christmas.

Thursday 23 December 2010

Christmas Eve Eve Checklist

Present shopping finished ? Er, no
Presents wrapped? ergo, no
Food and drink purchased? No
Got crackers? No
Tree decked and lit? Yes
Cards written and distributed? mmmmostly
House clean and shiney? Ha! no
Oven cleaned as traditionally done for some reason? No
Christmas loo roll in bathroom? Yes
Christmas tea towels, cutlery and crockery in kitchen? Yes
Hall bedecked with bunting? Yes
Camera charged and ready? Yes
Mince Pies made? More needed!
Travel arrangements sorted? weather dependant
Finished work? not quite
Surrounded by people you love? yes
Able to stay warm and safe? yes
Gotta problem then? Absolutely not.

Wednesday 22 December 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 81

Gawd, sorry about the lack of Mr Linky - it was entirely a human error..indeed, that human might even have been me....told you I had a memory problem! That's what I get for trying to schedule and be organised!!
The Christmas edition! Good grief already! Do not be afraid or alarmed, do not fall in a faint or choke on your snack, worse, do not spray coffee over the keyboard. My desk is (relatively) tidy!
I don't know if you can tell from the awkward angle, but the basket of stamps waiting to be cleaned is full of....just cleaned acrylic blocks and some other bits waiting to be put away! I know! I'm in as much shock as you are. I didn't enjoy it, there is no therapy for me in the cleaning and putting away, but hey, Wipso, Twiglet, at least when you get here we can just have coffee and chat! I've made a couple more of the tags we made in a workshop last week; but that's all I've done, and it was driven entirely by need. Need for tags, not need for creativity! I'm scheduling this post because I'm doing a Helen, and setting off for work at OhMyGoshO'Clock. Loads to do and not enough hours this week for sure. But by this afternoon, I'll have crept out of work and down to Tidworth for a cuppa with Shopkeeper Gal. One last hit of potential buying before the holiday and a session of diary planning for some more workshops...the fun part of the day, for sure. Christmas Party tonight too - I wonder if that will finally help me to get' in the mood'. Probably. Well that and a pint of Bailey's should do the trick! Happy day bods, stay warm stay focused and it'll all be done....and probably perfect!

Monday 20 December 2010

My days of torch bearing are over and I'm very proud that I had a chance to play with Amber's designs...she and Pam forced me to consider Digi and square up to some of it's challenges. I have a bit, and I will a bit more, actually. What I need now is a really super and completely fool proof printer!

However, for once this post isn't about me, I wanna introduce y'all to the gal to whom I've passed the Amber Ink torch. If you're a WOYWWer, you will at least have visited Jane at one point or another, and if you aren't, well prepare yourselves for a treat. Jane is a super Digi user and (probably - hopefully) because she's 20 years younger than me, she really knows how to do digi. Jane also has an uncanny eye for colour and cheerfulness and is a precision merchant. In short, her cards are everything mine aren't! You can find Jane at Milliesmarvels Please visit her, you won't have wasted a click.

Sunday 19 December 2010

Serendipity, I think....

Serendipity is a propensity for making fortunate discoveries while looking for something unrelated.
This is what Wikipedia has as a meaning for serendipity. And it's as good a description as any, especially as Wiki goes on to say that the people who do these things have found this to be one of the ten hardest words in the English language to 'translate'. How interesting. Well, I thought so.
So today, amongst other jobs, I decided to sort out an area of work space that you've all seen but never noticed. At the right edge of my desk, sits my basket of stamps - you know the ones that are perpetually waiting to be cleaned...well tucked between that and the side of my stamp shelves is my Scor-Pal. This means there's room for various bits of paper that aren't scraps for general use but that I need or want to keep.
One of them has been my faithful spray paper for oh, I dunno, about 3 months probably. As you can see, it was temporarily the desk protector for snowflake spraying, but it has other layers added since, including a magnificent glitter spray that you can't see.
All fascinating Julia, but how do you get from that recycled envelope to Serendipity? Ah well you see...turns out it's not a recycled envelope, despite appearances. I picked it out of it's home this morning - and because the intention was to tidy and not actually use stuff, I happened to turn it over and's unopened and full. And that would be where I put my Tax Return - on my desk for attention.
The serendipity is of course, that I've found it in time. Now, after I've finished here, I'm going to launch a full scale and exhaustive search for my memory, which is apparently, entirely absent.

Thursday 16 December 2010

With a little help....

This gorgeous Christmas card was made using one of Amber Ink's digi stamps, from the Fish Wishes range. I sincerely hope that Amber and Incredimombo don't mind, but this card was made by Shopkeeper Gal, not me. See, there was a commission. Harry is getting a fish tank for Christmas and his Dad wanted a card to put some money in.....because what's a fish tank without fish and the chance to buy the stripey and colourful ones of your choice are definitely part of the gift, huh? Well, Shopkeeper Gal was desperate, a chrissy, gifty, fishy card? help! So I printed the swordfish and bubbles and just look at the result! I was lucky enough to be in the shop today when Harry's Dad collected it - he was so, so pleased. How great. How rewarding for all concerned huh. Amber - you really rock this designing thing!
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday 15 December 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 80

Wow. A whole lot of everything this morning; in fact as you can see, I couldn't even find a forgiving camera angle to help me out!

Last night's glass of orange juice now looks very seedy and I think despite the industry, there's a general look of 'all over the place'-ness. Amazing really, because when I sat down to make up the baskets and generally finish a couple things off, the mat and the desk were clear! Ah well, proof if you need it that you don't wanna sit next to me at a crop!

You can see a set of dies that I borrowed from
Shopkeeper Gal , a jar of glitter
flakes from the cosmic shimmer range - am currently in love with the embossing powders from that range so thought I'd have a play with these too -after all, I've had 'em awhile! Traces
of foil from a workshop and a further card making session, and note the sophisticated way I protect everything when I want to spray shimmer mists - just cover it all in paper! Recycled paper and draught sheets from work though, so not as wasteful as it sounds!

So, there's no shame, bare all for us and share your doubt the fascination for me is seeing what everyone's making, and where you do the making. Join us do - photo your desk, upload to your blog and link here. We'll visit. Slowly probably, but hey, it's what the days between Wednesdays are for!

Tuesday 14 December 2010

OK, another baby step..

Well, Mr Dunnit has turned into the one who's the most keen to get Christmas underway chez Dunnit. Today at lunchtime he rang me (office to office, so no major romantic effort!) and suggested we go fetch a tree. So we did. And as an aside, and a bit of humbug - golly, 'fresh' trees seem much more expensive this year!
Now you must understand that the lounge room is in absolutely no state of readiness to receive a tree. I make this comment purely so that anyone out there who thinks that I've suddenly got it all together can breathe easy - I haven't. But today's idea to purchase is for a variety of reasons I think; his foremost reason is that we need a few days to allow the tree to acclimatise - from freezing cold shed to our conservatory and then into the warm and badly lit lounge. Hopefully then it won't instantly dehydrate from shock and become a naked folksy type tree! The second reason: I think he thinks that I'm thinking (are you with me?) the longer I put it off, the less likely we are to 'do ' much toward christmas. He's wrong, but hey, it's getting me some attention! And third - we are experiencing some horrible work pressures and it's really easy to forget that there are other, more important things, and I'm convinced that this subtle preparation for Christmas is his therapy. I have considered an intervention, where I force him to take up paper crafting as a therapy type hobby- we all know it would work - but I can't. I don't share my stash well, and I don't really want him to know how much I've got! And anyway, who would make the rocking horses if he got into paper and glue? the weekend I'll probably have finished the wrapping that is all over the floor where the tree will be going, and hey, might even have tidied and hoovered sufficiently to 'put up' the tree. Or not. Perhaps Mr D will do it himself whilst I languish in a coffee shop on another Christmas shopping expedition. Stand by for news of Christmas miracles!

Sunday 12 December 2010

Are we nearly there yet?

Oh boy, there's still a lot to be done in this house before Christmas takes hold. You know there's the point where it's easier to keep going because you know it'll work out? Well, I'm not there yet, although I think we're at the point of no least we'll have gifts for our family and friends - and if I concentrate really hard, I may even get some cards posted. See, I know lots of people now don't bother with cards, or send e cards, but I can't break the habit...despite the rush and the pressure and the writing in them part of it, I love to make cards and I love to receive them. So I judge that others do too.
Yesterday Mr Dunnit and I shopped. We went to Basingstoke, got there about 3pm, parked without difficulty, and then joined the dwindling crowds. Because I have left it later than I like to, I did have some ideas, so we actually did pretty well, and I think I can handle the rest in fits and starts! Although I did discover that just wandering around looking at stuff, without a clue what to buy for someone (anyone!) is very very bad. All I seem to see is stuff that I'd like very much. And that was without dragging him around Paperchase too. I'm getting strong in my old age! And slow apparently, I really need a week off. Anyone else - I could write you a note!

Saturday 11 December 2010

So, the glass mat..

Helpfully, my particular mat is labelled so I don't forget what it is. It's by EK Success and I didn't buy it - it was a demonstration product that I was allowed to keep when I foolishly lost the job. It's one of my 'must have' tools too, I would cheerfully shell out for another if this one met a nasty end. Although I can't imagine it will. It's a great surface to work on, totally flat and totally cleanable - not very often you understand, but when the need arises, I stick it in the sink and scrub it.
It doesn't blunt the blade - it's the paper and card that blunt blades - after all, you don't actually use the blade on the glass, huh. The self heal mats are great, but this is for me, a step up. No healing to be done for sure, and occasionally my teenier projects slide when I'm cutting...because I've not allowed room to hold them. But the glass doesn't absorb the energy that I put into cutting like the self healing mat does - the blade will never stick in the mat and the cutting is therefore a bit easier I think.
As for breaking it..well I dunno, I think you'd have to go some; it's tempered obviously, and I use it as my heat gun base too - although sometimes that causes condensation on the mat surface which is a minor annoyance. It sits on my desk, and once a month it gets passed to my tote for transport to a crop and back. That's not to say that I haven't dropped it, but it's hasn't been from desk height, and I can't say if it's landed flat or on a corner - these things happen so fast!!
I like the grid - I occasionally remember to use it for lining straight stuff up too! So there you have it, my glass mat and thoughts thereon. The best use this glass mat has is that it forms the border/barrier of use-able space on my desk. I can see that once the mat is covered in stuff, the whole desk top needs to be sorted, So it's a closet barometer too!
I'm not a snob about it - I use it and love it, I don't mind if you've got a self healing mat and love it, there's no tool-up-man-ship here, this 'review' is just doing what I do best - talking about myself!

Friday 10 December 2010

Just look at this..

No, it's not WOYWW two days late (although that is conceivable, this week!). This, dear interweb, is a 3 dimensional ATC made for me by Donna. What an incredible artist. See, she wanted to thank her followers and invited us to request a themed being a complete commitment phobe, I said I'd love an ATC, but had no idea what theme, perhaps she could interpret one from what she knew of me on the blog. WOW. How much work! Thanks Donna - I love it - right down to the ribbon tied on the door handle - it's a stable door see, and sometimes I need it to be open but not swinging around...if you know what I mean! And look, you can see my ATG monster, my red sellotape holder at the back..amazing detail, and the 'to do' list - for once there's something on it that I've actually done! How kind and time consuming a gift is this, so ttoally appreciated.
I was going to blog about my glass cutting mat - it's absence from my WOYWW desk raised a few questions so I thought I'd 'review' it. I'll do that tomorrow instead...meanwhile, please absorb the flavour and impact of my micro desk!

Wednesday 8 December 2010

A real life, real time Blog Hop

THE WOYWW POST IS THE NEXT ONE DOWN..not quite two posts on one day, but this post was late going up because of a scheduling error. Of a human kind, naturally!

Ah, there you are...have you arrived from Julie's blog - lastminutecrafter? If you haven't but wanna be a part of this blog hop and stand a chance to win a prize, start of at Shannan's and hop through, easy enough! Go to the Amber Ink blog and enter by posting your vote or leave comments as you hop, there are prizes for commenting = more fun! There's gonna be a vote too, for the best entry, so I 'd better tell you the criteria....
Make a card or project using some Amber Ink goodness and here's the premise:
A seven course dinner for two.
It breaks down a little more easily - the seven courses are the steps or techniques or embellishments to your card, and the two - those are your colour pallet - 2 colours plus a neutral/hint of a third.

So here's mine...and after I'd got my head around the challenge, it turned out to be not so hard as you think - initially I thought 7 courses - jeepers......but actually, you kinda do more than you think, without thinking. If you know what I mean...!
2 Colours of the same ipaper, plus cream as the neutral - check.
And the seven courses go like this....use Distress inks around the edges of the two ipapers (1, check) add one big fat ribbon (1, check), 3 istamped trees (3, check), emboss trees with Cosmic Shimmer powders (1, check), die cut one word from the neutral (but sparkly) colour (1, check). (7, check!) Much easier than it originally sounded. But don't take my word for it, visit the other blogs and be well, amazed.
Here's the blog hop in entirety:
Our Ambassador of Awesomeness:

Purple Team:

Brown Team:

Pink Team:
Julia Dunnit - that's me - You're here !
Blue Team:

Orange Team:
Angela Hathikhanavala

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 79

Argh, well I'm scheduling this...firstly so our friends across the waters can work out their timings in terms of posting and second because I shall be tackling the mountain of ironing by the time you lot wake up and go to work...I've awarded myself the morning off, I just HAVE to get some things straight!

Alas and alack, this many not apply to the desk tomorrow....the missing focal point is my beloved glass mat. And that's because I took it to the crop on Saturday and haven't quite unpacked yet. Oops. You can of course see the ATG monster as usual, ElElJan says it's a bit like Where's Wally - it's always there somewhere! And talking of ATG..thanks to Mary Anne who sagely pointed out the directional arrows embossed into the inside of the case - I changed the sticky roll without having to photo the thing first - never noticed the diagram arrows!!
And to answer an oft asked question - no, I don't stand on a chair to take these WOYWW pics - I don't put myself out like that very often believe me. But those of you who know me will recall my slender, tall frame which is perfect for hovering over tables at dizzying heights. And those of you that have really met me wil understand that double checking I haven't got my boobs in the edge of the shot involves some contortionist skills. Make of that what you like! Happy Wednesday to you. And if you've time, do track bac a post and visit the Amber Ink blog hop - you'll be wow'ed and WOYWWed!
Show us your desk then, in all it's December glory and/or gore...we want to know how prepared and how panicked you are. You can tell my state of mind. Share yours - upload a pic to your blog, link here and let us visit. No other particular rules - be nice though - reciprocal visits are de riguer!

Monday 6 December 2010

Saturday: crop, followed by proper cooked supper, parental taxi service, a load of washing and the beginnings of an idea for a card that's been in my head. Sunday, clean kitchen properly, throw hoover round downstairs, finish card, start another, two hours Christmas shopping, parental taxi service and work on new cards. Monday, if you could see the pile of clothes waiting to be ironed you truly would feel two things - sorry for me, and shock at my laziness. But off to work anyway, via short parental taxi service job and rush around Sainsbury's.Honest It's not that I think I'm lazy, but please can I have my weekend again.

Anyhoo, here's the couple of the cards that were in the secret DT place (my head!), both using digi stamps from Amber Ink - these are ribbons from the Perfect Package set. Coloured with Twinkling H20s again - now I've cracked the box open again, I can't stop using them. And they always remind me of my good friend the Enthusiastic Educator. Honestly, these little pots of paint are genius in her hands.

So how was Monday for you? - what are you planning in this second week of December - anyone ready to write Christmas cards yet? Second thoughts, don't tell me!

Saturday 4 December 2010

Reward: claimed

Oh look, that missing button jar has been found! You were all right; it was in the last place I looked, and it was found when I was looking for something else.

And how's this for irony? It was resting behind the neat boxes of stuff I put on my WOYWW post - this week's, yeah, the post where I bragged that I knew where everything is in the cupboard. I contend however, that in order to know where everything is, I have to know what's in there to begin with, huh! Ah well, all's well that ends well. And the reward? Ah, all day at the crop, pot luck lunch and the pleasure of meeting
Mary Anne. This has been a good day! Keep warm and safe y'all.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday 2 December 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like - well, you know!

Y'all know about my good friend and supporter ElElJan (Lunch Lady Jan). She who caters at the 2 Scrap Ladies events is also a nimble and imaginative sew-stress. I wanted you to see some of the Christmas stock that she's been selling - of course she has some left and of course if you want to investigate further, you need only email me from the link on the right. Meantime, feast your eyes; how about this spotty furry stocking with a blingy lining - honestly, I could have spotted this as one of ElElJan's creations from 500 yards - it's so her to put bling and mono together. It's lovely; she suggests it's perfect for the sort of present that comes in a jeweller's presentation box...large, nuggety things - you know. Not saucepans.A santa sack - not outrageously huge but perfectly lovely when a stocking is too small but not as pedestrian as the pillowcase that we somehow end up using on Christmas Eve as my grown up child gets into a panic about missing out! This is lined in a lovely contrast as you can see....somehow I can find other uses too - currently it would house the pile of hats and gloves that are strewn about my hall and that would be so much nicer hanging off the stair post thingy, wouldn't it. Hmm....
A table runner - ElElJan calls this the table Jogger because it's not as long as some of her others. (Like the one I bought before she could finish unfolding it, for example. Now currently adorning my coffee table and making it look as if I may have given decorating the lounge some consideration already!)

How about the bunting? It's so lovely I can't bear it being in someone else's ownership. And so lovely of Jan because she gave me 2 lengths of each size to festoon the conservatory with. And as you can see, we eat in the conservatory, so it needs festooning and these will be perfect - I love bunting, it's redolent of all sorts of good times, huh! So that's me cheered up on this cold and finally snowy day. It's been a week alright.
Thanks for putting me right about WOYWW - it was 78....I didn't change the prompt when it came up - how fast does it pop up - it must be about 2 seconds after you start typing and another 2 seconds to change it. And I forgot. No wonder it's been a week!

No news on the button jar yet, but tomorrow night looks good for a hunt - I'l be panic preparing for the crop, so most of the cupboards and drawers will be getting a going through again!!

Wednesday 1 December 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 77

I may well have one of the messiest desks on this ol' rummage fest, but believe me, my cupboards are in fairly good order. At least, for me. And I know where everything is, which is more than can be said for anything on my desk. And my button jar which has been missing for more than 2 weeks now. I've looked everywhere and decided that someone must have pinched it. I just don't know where else to look. I've declared an amnesty if it's returned. We'll see.
So the desk gives not much away because I'm working on stuff you can't see. I know, doesn't that sound incredibly secretive and DT-ish of me? It does. I sound very important in my head. But really the reason you can't see what I'm working on is because it's still in my head...this table shows the end of one card making session and nothing else, certainly not the beginning of another!
It's Ludgershall Crop this saturday, our Christmas version - apart from the Challenge, Sketch Challenge and all round chat-a-thon, it's bring Christmassy food to eat day. I love it - if you want details because you're within striking distance, let me know! Also safe to travel to this neck of the woods..not one flake of snow has settled. Not one. 18 miles up the road in Basingstoke it's all white and pretty. Nothing here. Strange but lucky!

Crop and snow aside, please show us your workdesk this Advent Wednesday. We like to see what you're doing that we aren't, and what you've got that we might need. Straight forward - photo your desk, upload to your blog and then link to your blog here. We'll visit. Slowly, because there's a lot to look at and sometimes Blogger will simply not allow comments which is very frustrating, but we're checking you out anyway!

Tuesday 30 November 2010

Good Old Fashioned, Modern Baubles

The cupcake inspirations challenge features the most amazing cupcake, decorated with the old fashioned coloured balls that anyone my age used to see on most iced Christmas edibles before silver became the only easily available choice. (Sob). Anyway, the challenge is to be inspired by the cupcake in some way and make a card. I was and I did. I used Amber Ink's acorn bauble from the 'Tis the Season to be Pretty' set of Digi stamps. Amazing how one small image canbe used to fill a 6" square card on a large repeat! Love that manipulation-able-ness. Yeah - you understood, no matter how bad the word! Anyway, I traced over the outlines with Glossy Accents and blitzed them with Glamour Dust. I painted them baubles with Twinkling H20s to try and replicate that shiny 'ball' colour, the rest you can see...emboss background, blah blah.

You like? A bit in your face? Yeah. That's why I like it! Cut along to Amber Ink and get this set, you need it. And then enter the Cupcake Inspirations Challenge and show me up. You know you can. Amber, Ink are sponsoring this challenge, so you could well win something really worth having!

Sunday 28 November 2010

Welcome Sunday!

Yesterday I got up at the working time and did stuff. Not, you understand because I wanted to, but I was trying to clear the 'stuff' so that I could have today to myself. I know, triumph of hope over experience, but here I am. Ok, I'm here; the kitchen is a wreck from last night's supper and this morning's breakfast, I am still in PJs, my bed is unmade and there isn't even a load of washing on yet. But hey, I've made a couple cards and that makes the day a good one!
I've had an unsolicited gift recently and wanted to show you these stamps from Kay. She's a WOYWWer and her blog is called Toodles and Binks - visit her, the inspiration and realism are a tonic!
There's a full set of them called Playtime 1 (which bodes well for a 2, huh!) and you can go see them at Stamp Galaxy, Kay's shop. I can't do them huge justice like Kay can, but I can use them with love huh! On the first card I used an old dinner money envelope and some dictionary pages and the lace - all of which came from Cath in Cyprus as a haul of lovely vintagey stuff that she felt I needed. I did, of course! Thank you Kay and Cath, you've made my Sunday morning one of fun. Now, I have to get a wiggle on, another chore to complete before the day is out - attend to the sweet in-laws for a roast and birthday cake type lunch. Oh how I love my extended family!

Thursday 25 November 2010

In the eye of the beholder

Today's workshop was unseasonally seasonal'. It comprised four christmas cards made using non-Christmas stash, except for the message/greeting. So one of the cards has a panel, embossed and highlighted with the Antique Linen DI, and the panel edges are distressed - with a proper big girl crafter distressing tool, no less.

So the gals beaver away and we're having a chat and things are being passed around and well, you know. Among our number this evening is Miss Glitter - likes making cards, enjoys the social, has a quick humour and occasionally is brave enough to make her card with complete disregard for my sample design. It's ok. They do it so often now that my ego is over it! Now and then, an item for a particular card goes astray and we identify the item to the card when asking everyone to look for it. And this evening, Miss Glitter, without blinking, referred to the ribbon she needed 'for the tatty looking card'. Well, you should speak as you find, huh!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone - which accounts for the photo quality, sorry!

Wednesday 24 November 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 77

Well fellow WOYWWers, what can I say - this week has totally run away from me. Although, ironically, I visited all of last week's desks....there were about 10 that I simply could not get a comment to take on - I wonder if some of my visits were from work. I thought I had that computer tamed!I must warn you - you aren't going to like this. And I must warn you, if you aren't already resigned to my standard, you should probably take it on board, get it over with, and swallow! I can't change, this leopard has too many spots, this dog knows no new tricks, I have no new leaves..can't do it. BUT - I'm OK with it.If you aren't, look and rejoice that it's not yours. Same desk...something missing...hmmm....I know - that awful basket of stamps waiting to be cleaned! Well, the slutty bit got boring so I cleaned them. So where's the empty basket then Dunnit? Oh. Well. *cough* IT'S HERE! Yep. now all I have to do is put them away!!
So come on then, show your workspace without shame or regret. We don't mind, we revel in your craft related state. OK, I do. Upload to your blog, link it here, and we can pop over to see what you're up to, what you're using and in some cases, where we can buy it! When you visit other desks, add your link number to the comment you leave - then a re-visit is easy - and this is all about easy and fun!

Tuesday 23 November 2010

Wrap It Your Way

Wrap It Your Way - Amber Ink's Inkcredible 21 Day Challenge - check it out do - you take a food or gift item, and deck it out. And there are some stunners - visit the link and Look! There is an amazing opportunity for you here - if you win , you and Amber, (the genius with the pencil and graphic programme) get to collude on producing your ideas as digi images and stuff - I know a heap of people that could be doing this!

So I've used my utter favourite (so far) ipaper - Snowflake Lace - to make this little cone shaped hanger/ holder. It's from a 4" square, so you can get plenty from a sheet! You'll recognise the Martha Stewart border punch along the top of the 'insert' cone and I used a die to cut the snowflake shapes, attached them with silicone glue for a bit of dimension. Obviously the devil in the detail : the pink candy a pack of 20ish from Sainsbury's. I expect if I looked everywhere, everywhere would have them, and probably in traditional colours, but I do quite like the pink for a change.

I must say that despite my initial ignorance and crappy printer fears, I've really had my head turned by this ipaper - so jolly convenient. And I read that one Torchbearer sends her files to a copy shop for printing - now that's a great idea - no probs at all with colour cartridges there! I could build up a bit of a stash instead of print and use - which makes me feel like I have last minute-itis, and doesn't help my decision process because all the possibilities crowd my head!

Monday 22 November 2010

Look, nearly all glitter!

Aha - that Dunnit woman, she flits from extreme to pole and no doubt. One minute she's moaning about being sick of Christmas and glitter and the next - well just look at this! I couldn't resist it. The weather was dead flat cold and dull, the Christmas shopping was erm, shelved because I had a rather severe attack of humbug and so I played a little. In my amazing capacity as part of Amber Ink's th(ink) Tank I had preview access to some lovely stuff and this card is a result. Sure is a result - all images are digital, including the background paper.! I seem to have managed some of the basics of digi and I'm not a bit smug about it. More 'terrified of the shape of things to come' is a better description! Anyway, I bring you sparkly kissing fish for your sparkly delight -I used Spin Pin-Black Tie for the paper and digi stamps Best Fishes. Check out what others are doing by following the link from my fab pink badge!
The use of all this glitter has naturally affected my family, by virtue of central heating, static and breathing. They look even more gorgeous when seen through glitter tinted eyelashes. Miss Dunnit is amused by my surprise at quite how many colours of glitter that I have. She amused is good - because I was shocked! I don't keep them all together (for reasons of I don't know tinged with madness), and so when I amassed them to give me colour choices, there were loads - pots, tubs, phials and bags, some decanted into wider mouth pots, some mixed from careless spills (to form a kaleidoscope colour, on purpose, of course). They cheered me up, they floated around the room and sparkled everywhere - and still do. And then I tidied them away, back into several places. Unlike me I know - perhaps it was the need not t be totally covered in the stuff before I made something else. Perhaps it was because the glittery colours cheered me up. Perhaps it was because I was ashamed of the number in the collection. I dunno. Share your shame, what's your glitter collection like? And are you like me, one of the people that thinks you 'don't do' glitter? It must be genetic, because I really thought I didn't!

Friday 19 November 2010

Look, no glitter!

I was getting bogged down in season-ality and the sort of colours that go with. This fresh little bunny lad is Dandelion (code K001 to be precise) and was a breath of fresh air to colour and make. He's from the Crafthouse Press - more excitingly for me - he's part of a range of foam mounted rubber stamps! Now that is seasonally excellent news! Cut along to your LSS and have a look - I've got a couple others to show...and will when I need to rest from the December stuff!

Did you notice that this week had a record number of WOYWWers? I expect if you have guilt about getting round every desk then you will have noticed. But let me re-iterate; it's meant to be fun - work and having a bad cold and worry about all sorts of things makes the real life a tad more difficult than hopping round friendly blogs on the interweb. So cut yourselves some slack - everyone is really happy to get visitors,but if you can't visit everyone, it doesn't matter, honest. Dip in and out, take part, comment, don't comment - it doesn't matter. Don't pressure yourselves. But hey - if you aren't posting to your blog or WOYWWing for whatever reasons, be unapologetic and stay in touch anyway huh - you don't need to post a pic every Wednesday to drop by and say hi, for sure. So as we gear up for the big season, do take my advice huh. You might as well. I'm not using it (- as one of my stamps sagely puts it!)

Oh and Julia, how come you have an open box of Cyprus made turkish delight on your desk? Well, interweb, nosey as you are, you'll be pleased by the answer. It's genuine stuff and I must say, we ended up fighting over the nutty, almondy pieces, oh yum. All thanks to Cath in Cyprus, who for happy family reasons, was recently transformed into Cath in Tidworth! Oh it was very nice to meet her - you know what I mean, when you sort of have to hug to prove it's really happening! Brave Cath came over to the shop on Thursday evening and joined the workshop - which was manic but fun. The weather was foul whilst she and her lovely man were here, I hope they travelled well and have got the chill off their bones by now.

Have a nice crafty christmas shoppy weekend y'all. No, really if I have to, I think it only fair that you do too!

Wednesday 17 November 2010

Me and a th(Ink) Tank....

I'm pleased, delighted and frankly terrified to have been invited by Amber and Incredimombo to join their guest monthly DT, the th(Ink) Tank. If you do WOYWW, you know about Amber Ink, gorgeous, lively and timely digital stamps and papers and a collection of clear stamps too. Oh man, the digi learning has been scarey and is definitely at the 'beginner' stage and the crappy printer has made me panic; and the light is terrible and my daylight bulb just went pop! But hey, the first digi images are conquered and the printer is about to be usurped by doing some printing at work and the daylight bulb has a guarantee on it. So it may all come good.
Amber, Incredimombo, be reassured that I've got the timetable on the wall and I'm not shaking every time I look at it now, I can photograph at work in better light and most important - I'm really looking forward to playing with all the stuff!
Now just in case I've fooled you into thinking that this isn't a HUGE deal for me, check out my fellow Amber Ink torchbearers; they are amazing. No pressure at all then!
Shannan - Ambassador of Awesomeness
Torchbearer Angela
Torchbearer Julie
Torchbearer Kerri
Torchbearer Stacie
At the Amber Ink blog you can find baby pictures and Incredimombo's write up biographies, really entertaining. Be prepared to add these girls' blogs to your reader, they are fab.

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 76

What isn't on there - a question a few of your pose on some weeks. Well, I'm with you sistahs, this week, my desk shows everything and because I skived from work early on Tuesday, you get a full frontal stark daylight shot. Grim. Because I'm scheduling this post, I suppose I can reassure you that I'm going to clear it up - I need to, I have loads to do and frankly I am now at the stage of needing to start again; it's that bad. Gosh, that empty beer bottle and equally empty foam banana packet doesn't do much for my clean living reputation huh! I'm still beavering over Christmas cards, but have non Christmas stuff in the pipeline too, so the crafty things are all good - it's just the desk that appears to get the better of me! In view of upcoming events , I'm having some lessons from Miss Dunnit about the manipulation of digital images. She is not as patient as I'd like. And apparently, my ability is questionable. I'll show her. Or I'll fall flat on my face.

Some interest to those of you digi babes - Angela at Toucan Scraps (WOYWWer of immense staying power) has put out a call for Tutorial Writers - check it out - you have nothing to lose!

So I've shown you mine - now you show all of us yours! Photo your desk, workspace, counter top, lap tray - whatever you're doing, put it on your blog and then visit here to leave a link. Then loads of us will come by for a rummage. Simple. It's all about sharing what you're doing and showing us what you've got! Thanks!

Monday 15 November 2010

Me and the Distress Ink thing....

Betty-the-bag-lady commented twice over my use of Distress Ink on the snowflake card in previous posts. I'll not picture it again, for gawd's sake, talk about thrashing the impact out of a picture! I've given Betty the impression that I'm in love with the Distress Inks that in the past, I may possibly have been a bit rude about. Well, I'm not in love with them yet. But if it's possible, I'm less out of love with them. Make sense? Certainly Mr Holtz must have heard me when I talked about him working in seven shades of wee wee - I mean, why else did he produce all the bright colours, huh - Spiced Maramalade? I rest my case. I still maintain that you can't get a decent stamp image off these inks - particularly with clear stamps - even treated, sanded and blahdy blah. No doubt it's better with real rubber, but still it seperates a bit on the surface. But I do like 'em for colouring and blending in an offset direct to paper technique. (That's my way of talking about using a bit of cut'n'dry foam to sponge ink over a surface. You gotta admit, I sure can pull technique names out of my erm, head.) If the more vibrant colours hadn't arrived, I would still be in the un-loving camp. But I can't resist strong and bright colour, to the extent that my collection has gone from six to nine inkpads. Now I realise that TH isn't going to get rich from my collection, nor is he remotely interested in my occasional use experience, and there's a way to go before I increase my alcohol ink collection (currently 2), but hey - I only pretend to be a big girl crafter..and I never pretend to like what I don't. Can't. Unless it's given as a gift and it's a handbag....but that's a whole other story!

Doone dear gal, if you're reading this: I haven't been able to get into you blog this past week - Google keeps telling me that you've been infected with a malware that you aren't aware of - is it just me?

Saturday 13 November 2010

No really. I AM THE WINNER

Thank you for your feedback and comments over the previous post - I sure made my point to computer guy and you commenters made my day - good grief you are a generous lot. As soon as my head is less swelly, I'll get my feet back on the ground and possibly maybe do some crafting. No chance of housework for sure. See, I only do housework if Mr Dunnit isn't home. He works on a Saturday morning, always has, not unusual, huh. He went off at 7.30 this morning and I resolved to sort out the kitchen, do some ironing, chuck the vacuum about downstairs and go to the post office. And promptly went back to sleep. Mr Dunnit woke me at 10.00 when he rang to say he was coming home. Great tactics for avoidance, huh! See, I can't do housework when he's home - he's in my way, I don't want to waste our time together and he distracts me by always having the tv on. It's his company of choice, mine is the radio. Of course, creating a blog post and cruising websites while he's home is by no means a waste of our time together. Why, he just has to stand up and walk 3 paces to see me!
Anyway - I forgot (of course), to include details of this card and had a few questions about it -yes - the Artemio snowflake stamps were stamped on cream card in clear ink and embossed with clear powder. The purple is a Dusty Concord DI and sponge application, the text is the same ink, a stamp that I cannot live without from A Stamp In the Hand. And the teeny postage stamp is from a small set by Inkadinkado. Stamped in Purple Stazon and the whole piece swiped with clear ink and embossed with a sparkly clear powder.

Have a lovely weekend.

Thursday 11 November 2010

I win then!

Yesterday I asked WOYWWers to let me know if they visit this blog in between WOYWW, and if they do, do they tend to comment? Thanks for your feedback. It means I win. The bet you see, was with techie guy at work. Last week he saw me browsing the comments on WOYWW and I was obliged to tell him about my real life as a crafter. I think he might have visited the blog a couple times since, because he started a discussion on Monday that seemed relatively well informed. Well, more informed about my hobby than I am about his nerdy tech obsession - I cannot call it a hobby, after all, he makes money from it! Anyway, he suggested that I ought to 'move up' to a website and have it 'fully interactive'. He said I could get proper sponsorship and my readership would increase 'exponentially'.
Well you know by now, I'm easily led, and easily flattered into anything, he bet me that I'd be asking him to build me a site within the week. So for a day, it played around in my mind. And on Tuesday night while I was typing up the WOYWW post it occurred to me that 'my readership' was big enough - one or one million. Because I like it. I like that anyone takes the time to comment - you don't have to - I'm a blog reader too remember, I know how much effort and clicking it involves. I like to leave a comment, but often I don't and sometimes, I can't.
I don't know how many visitors per comment. I don't mind that (this drove him nuts) and hey -if you can leave a comment and once a week you can link to your place from here - isn't that interactive? As for sponsorship - well - if you wanna send me free stuff and have me talk about it - ask me. I like a mutual benefit. And what do I have to do for all of this? Type the words that otherwise crash around in my head and as often as possible, visit loads of blogs. So why change....I think this blog is classically just that - a blog.
Techie boy didn't get this particularly, he feels a blog is parochial and even a bit luddite. Well, maybe it is. But it's mine. And I like it.

The comment thing is a biggy huh - we all love 'em, but sometimes you can't. On this blog, that's not a biggie - please don't be apologetic..I'm just really grateful when I realise I'm not typing this to myself. Although I realise that it's all very much for my own good. I suit a big head, really I do.

Wednesday 10 November 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 75

As I write, it's Tuesday evening. The written part of this post will be scheduled and I'll add the photos when I actually 'post' this - that way if I forget, at least there'll be something! I came home from work early enough to take a photo that would at least feature some daylight. But I got sidetracked by the need to lie on my bed giggling with Miss Dunnit. She thinks that my carefully made bed is an invitation for throwing herself on it and causing me to be lazy. For those of you that may not know, Miss Dunnit is not a cat. She's my daughter.
Ah, well, turns out to be just as dark in here at 5.40am! Oh. My desk is as I left it last night. So as you may or may not be able to tell, I pushed back and played. Basket of unwashed Marathon and assorted other stamps on the right, some polka dot material that I bribed out of elelJan to use in a swap. Her secrets are safe with me. This time. Large, indeed, glaring ATG gun and a lot of stuff. Hmm, I felt quite in control when I left it come this week even from the top it doesn't look tidy? Poor light I suppose! *cough*

So you might have a more interesting and well lit desk top for us all to see. Visiting all is difficult - but I promise you'll get some visits and believe me, this is an enriching experience! Photo your desk, whatever you're doing, upload it to your blog and then leave a link here. Easy peasy. Join us do.

Also, if you read this blog in between WOYWW posts, could you make an indication of some sort in your comment - especially if you're a non-commenting visitor on other days (and why shouldn't you be). Not important, just a non scientific survey for a man who thinks this should be less blog and more website. Trying to prove a point on lack of evidence, see!! Thanks.

Monday 8 November 2010

Tales from behind the till - yes really!

OK, last one for a while, but I had to share this. It's Friday. My last day of looking after the shop, Cappuccino Gal had arrived with cookies and erm, cappuccino and we were doing the job - chatting, selling, oohing and ahhing over people's ideas and purchases and erm, drinking cappuccinos. A tall and rather untidy bloke came in...dressed in filthy jeans, muddy steel toe capped boots and a high-vis jacket that was so grubby it wasn't. Hig- vis that is - it was still a jacket! He threw himself into one of the chairs and chatted to us as if we'd known him all of our lives. Turned out he owned a recovery vehicle - picks up and tows damaged and broken cars - you know. He has the orange flashing light on top of his van thing - again, you know - it's the one that blinds you from the other side of the carriageway when all you wanna do is pass safely without appearing to gawp. Anyway - the orange lens had been broken and he needed to replace it. Different colour lights mean different things and different people on scene and of course, you aren't allowed to flash the wrong colour lights. After all, you don't want to be mistaken for a doctor if you're the tow guy - I'm guessing the two sets of skills aren't overly inter-change-able. First, he wanted orange acetate to glue inside his new, but clear lens. Julia and Cappuccino gal hunt around. Sorry, can't do that. He isn't going. Indeed, he isn't leaving the chair. He tells us of the vendetta that has resulted in this broken light problem, and how he's going to sort it out and save the police the trouble. Ohhhh Emmm Geee! Me and Cappuccino Gal have our fingers in our ears and are singing 'tra la la' so as not to hear. He suggest orange acrylic paint. Now we do have that, but surely, it's opaque? Cappuccino Gal suggests a visit to the garage (lovely, old fashioned place up the road, - with an attendant that wears a brown overall type place). He doesn't seem to hear. Instead he goes on impressing us with his plans to 'even the score'. Eventually, I cave in and tell him that there's nothing in the shop we can suggest will help - we wvewn considered three bottles of orange Alcohol Ink! Cappuccino gal sagely advises the garage again, indeed, suggests a coloured bulb inside the clear lens. Genius huh! Hmm. Totally ignores it. I think when he finally realises that we've lost the will to live and he isn't going to get a coffee, he leaves. He wasn't scarey or offensive, just out of the ordinary for the environment. The scarey bit came twenty minues later when he popped back in and waved an orange indicator bulb at us. Should've thought of that, he advised us. Thanks Cappucino Gal, for being there!

Sunday 7 November 2010

Here I am..

Yeah. Here I am, blogging. I have a million ideas floating around in my head, some of them are good ones too! I have ideas for cards, workshops, swaps, projects, cooking, and present buying for Christmas. I have a raft of ideas for some things at work and having booked the work Christmas party, I have a few ideas for that too. It would seem that blogging about all these ideas is easier than getting them out of my head and doing something about them. I've been talking to Mr Dunnit about my home time-management skills. I don't think there's a problem at work - you just tackle the work and that's it. And I have learned that I need adequate down time, and I very often don't allow the crafty moments to be down time. Because I have to have a deadline to motivate me. I have lists. I have dates and I have allocated things appropriately. I think.
I think one of the things that makes me procrastinate so is that I'm sort of putting off the pleasure of doing it - whatever the 'it' is. Perhaps because it will take two or three goes at it and in 40 odd years, I know myself well enough to know that if it doesn't work first time, I'll be......miffed, let's say! So Mr Dunnit simplifies it in his massive-understatement-type-summing-up-way, a way that makes me realise that I'm never going to be a big girl crafter really - he says - 'why don't you enjoy the process instead of just the accomplishment?'
I can't explain: I do enjoy the process AS LONG as it has a finished, accomplished, thing, item, piece. Now is that petulant or impatient? You decide, I have a problem with choice too!

Part of the tidy up has yielded these three items that don't belong to me - if you were at the Card Marathon last weekend and have missed them - let me know........they were in seperate baskets, so they are unlikely to belong to one person!