Tuesday 23 February 2021

What’s On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 612

Oh no. It didn’t last long. But don’t fret, if you were going to, I will be tidying up before I start again, even I can’t bear this crush! 
I was totally inspired last week by Mary Ann using her TH Crazy Bird stamps. Boy, my mind said to me, I have that set and I have a huge amount of patterned scraps, I need to copy that idea. So I did! Whilst chatting online, I stamped, die cut, stamped again, cut out eyes and beaks and assembled. Then the next day, a little phased by the number of birds I suddenly had, I set to making some cards. I’ve used up some ephemera that I would never use on scrapbook pages and some olds card blanks.(bottom of the pile on the left). I’m so over keeping stuff! I’m also a little bit over the ephemera too, but that may just be because I’ve purchased badly. Time will tell. And so will I, obviously! So the coffee cup is in the normal place...I wonder if Blogger will cut it off this week - when I read some of your comments about not being able to see it, I was a bit surprised, after all, it’s not an espresso cup! But yep, cropped unintentionally! The bin is overflowing with inappropriately sized waste papers etc. This means I was pretty much in the zone, but you could tell that already from the mess. And piles. The strange red dollop in front of the Glossy Accents is actually the holder for the Glossy Accents. It stores it perfectly, upside down, ready to deliver. It’s made from a plastic medium that becomes malleable with the addition of hot water. I made a couple, deliberately ugly do they didn’t get pinched when I was doing a workshop or at a crop. These things do happen. But not, it appears, if you have ugly accessories! 
Before I ask you to reveal and share it all, can I thank you gentle Desker, for last week’s heartwarming stories about and tributes to Shaz. It made last week a bit easier for a lot of people.
Share now, as you so willingly do. Put WOYWW in your post title and link here as you always do. And as I always ask. And as always, thank you.

Wednesday 17 February 2021

What’s On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 611

This one’s for Shaz.

Pretty tidy, huh! Got a cob on over the weekend and sorted some stuff out. That is not to say that it’s all sorted....but the pushback of the GKW is at least in neat piles against the back of the desk! The charge cable is snaked across the desk, I spent yesterday afternoon in conversation with the Coven, and made two LOs at the same time. Fairly basic and straightforward but I like them. The one you can see I like in particular, features a ‘found’ photo. It’s me and my Mum, at a big old BBQ to celebrate my 30th birthday. Mama came over from Australia to be with us for the event. Special huh. Forgive the dirty coffee cup and see my bag of badges. In the US, you call them buttons. In scrapbook world, they are called Flair. I’ve no idea why, or what that means in relation to a pin-less badge. These badges, buttons, flair are all made by me. I really really wanted a badge maker, even as a kid. So this year, he said ‘just get one’. So I did. Joy. I’ve stopped over-using them on LOs now, but have a lot to learn about the software that will let me print words in circles! The old tidying didn’t stop at the desk either...check out the scraps tray: patterned paper loosely size organised. Plain card stock sorted into colour groups and separated by dividers which were, a week ago, almost impossible to see in the mess. So far, so pleasing!

Fill us in then, please; show us your work, work surface or tell us your Shaz story. 

Monday 15 February 2021

Notes on Shaz

My friend and WOYWWer Shaz Silverwolf died last weekend, defeated by cancer. It may be a cliche, but she fought a long and brave battle; did you ever hear her complain? No,nor me. Her devoted and loving husband told Jan that she slipped away in her sleep and he was grateful to the hospital staff who kept her pain free and allowed him to be with her. Those of us that loved her will be forever grateful for that.

I met Shaz online, in 2010. I was intimidated, to be honest. Her blog was full of interest, and her projects where amazing. But they weren’t the sort of stuff I was doing. Shaz was using brands and products I hadn’t even heard of and making wonderful cards. If you’ve ever visited her desk for WOYWW, you will know about her passion for the research and development....she would plunge in and try everything and anything and report on her blog about usefulness, value, and best ideas. She never failed to share her craft knowledge. Or her stuff. I can still see Doug lugging in the boxes of dies they brought to WOYWW crops so that we could all use them. And we did. I’ve spent some time going back through her blog over the last few days. It is an incredible resource for any paper crafter, I recommend you browse at leisure. 

If you met Shaz, you will hear her voice as you read her posts. I love the bits where she’s honest about the longevity or value of a product, reminds me that Shaz was a woman who could only tell truth, and was rightfully unapologetic about it, whether it  was a craft product, a hotel room without air con or the cake you’ve just offered her. There was no malice, it was just how it was. It’s a skill isn’t it, to be frank and open about everything, and leave no one smarting. She once told me that she thought it was hilarious that someone had described her as ‘a bit marmite’. Love her or hate her. I can hear her laughing and see her shoulders going up and down ; I really think she thought the funny part was that anyone should even bother to have an opinion about her; it never occurred to her to be self important or big headed. 

Lifted from her blog. I don’t think Shaz ever had a naff picture taken!
 I think a lot of people would have had an opinion about Shaz. And had it changed when they met her. I did. She didn’t look like any other ordinary middle aged woman. She dressed in all black and had beautiful long red blue and purple hair. A fan of the heaviest of metal music and a woman who informed herself. Shaz knew who she was and was perfectly happy in her skin; I don’t know if she even noticed the surprise her appearance caused on meeting for the first time. She was certainly too polite to say so, and probably that’s a good thing because I’m pretty confident that I know what she’d have had to say about people judging books by their covers! 

Shaz had Doug her hublet, grown up children, and between them a large, close and loving family. Doug and she drove miles in pursuit of fun and friendship, WOYWW crops were visited no matter how far from Redditch, even in early planning stages when I wasn’t convinced that anyone would come, I remember that Jan assured me that we could count on Shaz and Doug being there. And they always were. Their travels were made of the sort of adventures you get when you take the road less travelled - see a brown sign and think, oooh let’s detour and go see this or that. As long as they were together, they were having a good time.

No memory of Shaz and her blog can avoid the label she quickly earned from fellow Deskers- Chief Enabler. She was terrific at it, not least because as I’ve mentioned, she didn’t just photograph her new stuff, she told us where to get it at best price, how best to utilise it and sometimes, even how to store it. Possibly her greatest achievement in this department would be the purchase by LLJ of the Tim Holtz deckle edge trimmer. I think she was a bit pleased about that! However, there is another side to this enabling coin. Doug. Doug was her enabler. There are countless posts recalling a trip to a shop or craft show where having made some sensible choices, Doug would pile up her basket, particularly with more stamps, it seems. Reasons such as ‘I like it’, ‘I’m pretty sure you’ll want it when we’ve left’ and ‘why not’ seem to be Doug’s stock responses to what I can only imagine would be quite feeble protestation from Shaz. And why not. A partner who understands your ‘thing’ is wonderful, but a partner who contributes and supports you in doing your ‘thing’ is even more wonderful huh. 

My favourite ‘and finally’ from her WOYWW posts. As head of R&D, this could have been true!

My life is the richer for having known Shaz, my blogging improved after reading hers. I stopped fretting about whether I fitted in and just went with my crafting style. I’ve bought some stuff that I probably wouldn’t have: Distress oxides, and ironically, the aforementioned deckle edge trimmer. I’ve rejoiced in her friendship.  I’ve had giggly phone conversations regarding tech stuff that I just couldn’t understand, and wasn’t judged. I’ve had some beautiful cards. I’ve had hugs that made me feel like family. Of all the things I have to say, could say or have said, this one thing is constant - I will miss her.

Wednesday 10 February 2021

What’s On Your Workdesk, Wednesday 610

I was talking to LLJ on Monday about a team challenge I’m in; a layout version of a Chinese Whispers. Wednesday is the day that I have to pass on the LO for the next person to interpret. And that I have been a bit uninspired and feel that Tuesday would make a particularly inspiring deadline. And so it was!
There’s more important news than the mess on my desk though, so for once, I shan’t justify my dreadful working methods.
Gentle Desker, our friend Shaz Silverwolf is in hospital again, seriously ill. Her devoted husband has been allowed to stay with her and via Facebook I’ve asked him to whisper our love in her ear. 
So in our usual but fairly unusual way of supporting each other, please share your work space by linking your WOYWW post here for general viewing!

Wednesday 3 February 2021

What’s on your Workdesk? Wednesday 609

Sorry it’s so late, internet problem here. Seems OK now we’ve had a very early morning conversation with the provider. Hmmm.

I took this yesterday, about 420pm. Hurrah, still some daylight. Note that the glass mat is clear of stuff. This means my desk is almost a third clear! As you can see, it was all shoved left and right whilst I made another scrapbook page. At the far end are two A5 (bound with lightly patterned Kraft) folios to go with the two just in the pic at this near end, under the foam tape. They hold die cuts and ephemera and are super useful, if not as well organised s Kelly’s! You can see that I haven’t tidied the scrap tray yet. I might, today. I count 4 pairs of scissors. Not a record, but a decent attempt! The teetering pile at the end is caused by having two small guillotines..the deckle edge TH and the normal straight edge.they do not stack and that drives me nuts. Am going to have to come up with an ‘off the desk’ solution. At least that way, the pile won’t teeter so immediately. Lots of you have asked about Shaz Silverwolf having missed her from our weekly meet for a while. Please visit her blog for an update by her Mr Wonderful. If you’re reading this Shaz, we love you and we send eating, iron and hug vibes to you.
Meanwhile, entertain us do, show us your work surfaces. We visit. Slowly. It’s a good social life. Stay safe all.