Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Anything Goes !!!!

Good morning , good evening and good afternoon to you all. I trust you all had a fabulous Christmas and are recovering nicely. Last week for me was bittersweet with my mad dash to London ( for five hours ) for the funeral of my dear friend Robert and then back home to Greece to work around the clock and be cheery in my shop. I have to say that there was so much love in the church for this beautiful man it was more a celebration of his life and we all felt his presence around us.

Anyway like most of you not really had much time for crafting let alone blogging and my commenting has been willy nilly ( craftingclaire will put me right on the spelling `). So when I popped in this evening to see what was going on I saw a few challenges that I could participate in. Hence the title of my post " Anything Goes " The craft room ( whom I love by the way ) and Top Tip Tuesday both understanding how we are feeling at the moment have decided to be lenient with us and and given us free reign ! So no excuses for not entering !

I thought I would share some cards for Christmas that I made but didn't have time to blog. I know I have missed the boat and should have moved on to Easter or at least Valentines but it is a pity not to share these little beauties with you. In other words didn't  have time to make anything !

Have used Waltzing mouse stamps on both cards DP papers and pearls from my stash and Tim Holtz on the edge dies.

Another one of my creations !! my 20 year old son Alexi who stepped into the breach and took charge of our shop while we went to London he had never worked there before and believe you me it was a very daunting task. We received glowing reports on our return from friends and customers we are so proud of him.

In January I will be celebrating my first year anniversary of crafting and blogging and am close to the 200 follower mark so will be putting together a little blog candy , so do pop by in the new year if you have the chance. I would also like to say a big thank you to all my followers and to all of the wonderful people I have met in the last twelve months you have made my life so much richer and ~I feel truly blessed. Wishing you all a fabulous new year , the best of health and a little love in your lives

Right am of to bed ! four more days of constant work and then with 22 friends we are off for a little trip for new years to an outdoor spa in the mountains.

Oops nearly forget , do pop over to the Craft Room and Top Tip Tuesdays to see what their fabulous design teams have come up with.

From me Tara ( as we scousers say )

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Get Creative December 20th Card Sketch

As you are reading this I am on my way to London for the funeral of Dolly's husband Robert unfortunately due to business commitments we can only stay for the service and will be returning to Greece  the same day so my post may be a little early.

Over at Get Creative it is the last challenge of the year and we are asking you to follow the fabulous sketch below.

Now I think you will agree it's quite an easy one and for those of you who are ahead with your Christmas preparations we would love for you to have a go !

I used Metallic paper to make a rosette using my TH die  which I then edged with some glitter. Waltzing mouse stamp for the sentiment ( I love their stamps ) I created my own DP with the aid of my Silhouette and used my spellbinders dies to cut the background.

Here I used various DP's but don't know whose as the cover has fallen of the pad , now how did that happen !!!, Spellbinders die which matches perfectly with the Waltzing Mouse sentiment, did I mention I love their stamps ?   Websters pages pearl in the corner and a little inking around the edges.

Here I used a TH embossing folder for the background some red felt for the base and once again a Waltzing Mouse stamp for the sentiment I think it's from their Around Christmas Time set ( did I mention I love their stamps !!! )  a little ribbon a little bling and a tiny pearl and that's me .....all done and dusted !

Do pop over to Get Creative to see what my fabulous team mates have come up with to inspire you
and why not take part.   We are being sponsored by Unity stamps so you never know you may be lucky and win a prize ! There are currently three other challenges running at the moment so you have until the 28th of December to upload your gorgeous creations.

Well am of to catch a plane ( this is becoming a catch phrase of mine )  Wishing you all the best of health first and foremost, love and peace and for those who celebrate wonderful holidays with your loved ones.

Before I go thought i would share a few pictures of my Christmas lights with you. Although to  be honest these ones are in use all year long !

My tree which looks tiny in this picture but is in fact four meters tall, we had to cut the top as it was hitting the ceiling !! it has over eight hundred lights and all the decorations I made myself out of felt and there are about to hundred of the things !!

Take care my lovelies x

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

WaltzingMouse Card Sketch Challenge and The Craft Room Die Cuts and Punches

As many of you will know my blogging and creating has been a little lackadaisical of late due to my frequent visits to London due to the ill health of my friend Dolly's husband . Yesterday he lost his battle and is now sleeping soundly with the angels. So once again I am of to London to say my last goodbye to our dearest and oldest friend ( he was 54 ) A beautiful man who touched our life in so many ways and was brave and dignified and even kept his lovely Irish sense of humour right up until the end,  we will miss you Robert.

Now.... er hum she says clearing her throat on to happier things. I recently bought some fabulous stamps from the very talented Claire at Waltzingmouse, I had been ogling her wares ( sounds a bit dodgy ! ) for quite some time and well I just had to have some  as you do ! I love her style and was so excited when I got my grubby little mitts on them. I had been wanting to take part in one of her challenges for quite some time and now I can ! Its a sketch challenge and I have to say sketches are a little difficult for me but this one was quite easy so I had a go.

Here is my take on the sketch

The Waltzingmouse stamp I used is from the set Around Christmas time and it has so may fabulous stamps I didn't know which one to choose for the best. I stamped it with Melon Mambo ink from SU added a little glitter to the berries and when It was dry added tons of Glossy Accents. Do pop over to Waltzingmouse to see what the DT members have come up with to inspire us, I have to say they are a jaw dropping bunch of extremely talented ladies and I am in awe of their creativity.

Another favourite challenge site of mine is the Craft room and their challenge for the next two weeks is to use die cuts and punches . The lovely Nikki has chosen the theme and a great one it is too ! As you can see a lot of die cuts on the above. I have used the Tim Holtz rosette die for the centre I added two together and then edged them with green stickles. Have used my Spellbinders circles for the base of the stamp and the TH on the edge brackets die for the top. My trusty Silhouette provided me with the bottom corners . The photo does not do it justice I have to say in the flesh it looks quite grand ! Do pop over to The Craft room to see what the lovely DT have created for us I am sure you wont be dissapointed.

Right  of to work now I am working seven days a week for the next three weeks,  one of the joys of owning a jewellery shop ! So as you can image not a lot of time left over for anything , so am apologising in advance for my lack of commenting and what not .

Do hope to be back more cheerful and bright in the new year, love to you all and my very best wishes for a happy and healthy Christmas for all who celebrate.

Take care


Monday, 5 December 2011

Get Creative 5th December Card Challenge

Good day to you all ! Well December is well and truly underway and the feeling of panic is almost palpable.....well it is in my house anyway. I am sooooooooooo far behind in my creative endeavors , my muse is missing AGAIN ! I have told her time and time again to give me notice before she leaves  but oh not that little madam she just up and went  ! She says I have been neglecting HER of  late the cheek ! As a true fighter I will battle on int the face of her desertion its about time I took charge around here so.........

Over at Get Creative we have lots going on this month firstly I would like to welcome Efi Stameteli  as guest designer this month after winning Nadia Cannizzos layout challenge in October. Efi is an amazingly talented and lovely lady, do pop over and visit her blog there is so much to see and be inspired by

There are currently two challenges running and both with the same theme the 1st  December being for layouts and the 5th  December for cards and the theme is to make a card or layout using ribbon or wrapping paper that you will be using on your gifts .

This year I will be wrapping my presents with Websters pages and each person will be receiving a homemade tag using the same paper,  this little tag ( actually its not so little ) can be used as a tree decoration so come and see what I made .


I have used Websters pages to make this double sided tag I have used the SU Swirly stamp for the corners , added some pearls a dried flower and used a Martha Stewart punch for the border to which I have added tiny weeny pearls which are invisible to the naked eye ! ( all that without punctuation ! ) The image is courtesy of the Graphics fairy which I printed onto acetate and which is why the photo is rubbish ! I love working with the stuff but you just cant get a decent photo except if you want to see my ugly mug reflected in it and believe you me you don't !

I would love to share the reverse side of this BUT .............I Photo has decided that I do not have access to my own photos and has locked me out !!! obviously it is working in cohorts with my muse and they are trying to undermine my determination to go it alone ! My lack of muse I can fight but the loss of all my photos is a low blow looks like the Mac man is in for a visit !

This month at Get Creative we are being sponsored by  Unity Stamps

Luckily this image was on my desktop so at least I could post that !

Please upload your entries by 28th of December to be in the running for a prize. Do pop on over to Get Creative to see what my fabulous team mates have come up with to inspire you . I am off to have a nervous breakdown preferably in the Mac mans office !

See you all later .......... if something else doesn't thwart me !  ( that's for you Donna )

Muse less Marie X

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Fashionable Stamping Challenge " Im dreaming of a white Christmas " and Crafty Cardmakers " Embossing "

They say that creativity is therapy but after my return from my very sad visit to London I am having great difficulty sitting behind my desk and creating. To be honest I am not at all in the mood but I fear that if I don't do something then I may not for quite some time to come. So today I would like to share a few cards that I made a few weeks ago and are in a similar vain to my previous post where I promised to show you them upon my return.

 ( it seems the first two lines of my post are not visible ( so nice to be back ! ) So what it actually says for those who dont have  X ray eyes is  : They say creativity is therapy but after my return from my very sad visit to London I am finding it extremely difficult sitting behind my desk and creating .

The Fashionable Stamping challenge is one that I have been following for quite some time and consists of some of my favourite and very talented blogging friends,  which is most probably one of the reasons I have not taken part before. As individuals they are amazingly talented artists but when you group them all together well it can be quite daunting for us newcomers ! Their theme is " I'm dreaming of a white Christmas"  but we are advised that we can use any colour we like phew ! I do prefer the bold ones as you will see by my cards.

The second challenge I am entering with the same cards of course is for Crafty Card Makers and their theme is  " Embossing " I do love embossing and it usually features somewhere on most of my creations.

Please excuse the rubbish photo's I was in a hurry to catch my plane and upon my return I find that they have been sold ! so you will just have to use your wonderfully vivid imaginations!

This one I have used the emboss resit technique on the bauble and then given it a good lick of Studio multi medium gloss . The embossing around the sentiment I actually gave it about four layers and up close it was gorgeous and thick and looked a little bit like old metal ( this is the bit where you use your imaginations ! )

The obligitory Marie close up !

This one has the embossing just on the bauble and a little distress embossing in the left hand corner although you would never know by the photo !

This last one is quite a tarty little number with distress embossing in the corner and around the sentiment ! I am not at all sure if I like this one but it did beg to take a little walk along the catwalk , maybe some one out there will like it, after all beauty is in the eye of the beholder !
Please do pop over to Fashionable stampers and Crafty Card Makers to see their fabulous piecies by both design teams and I am sure you will be inspired !
will try my best and pop by and say hello I have missed you all and look forward to seeing what you have all been up to !

Take care


Sunday, 20 November 2011

Get Creative 20th November Card Sketch

I am not here !! I am in London and if all is right with blogger you will  be reading this on the 20th of November. If this works it will be a first !  every time I schedule a post it just publishes it straight away and I have to delete it,  so here goes ...........

As it is  ( hopefully ) the 20th of the Month  our new card sketch for Get Creative has gone live. Our  lovely leader and all round good chap Irini designed this fantastic sketch.

Here is my take on it :

Have played around with it a little , a bit of flipping and rotating,  artistic license if you will !

 As you know I have to have my close ups !

I used my Silhouette for the die cuts then used the emboss resit technique with my SU swirly stamp which I coloured over with SU inks . I embossed the DP with Ranger distress embossing powder, some pearls and ribbon inked the edges and there it is. It looks simple but the little blighter took forever.

I will be sharing with you some Christmas and Thank You cards I made using similar techniques upon my return . 

Why not pop over to Get Creative to see what my team mates have created to delight and inspire you and don't forget this month we are being sponsored by Cherry Nest who are offering two places in their on line class whose focus is on Christmas

I know you can all read Greek ...... but for the one or two of you that cant it basically says that " Every day is Christmas and there will be 32 days full of creative ideas and inspiration with lessons focusing on handmade items full of the Christmas spirit, so definitely worth winning a place with Cherry Nest.

Well am off now to stay with Dolly and her family in London so please forgive me if I am unable to visit you all during the next week but under the circumstances that most of you know,  my time is spent helping take care of her and her family during this difficult time.

Take care


Monday, 14 November 2011

CAS-ual Fridays " Tag your It "

Just a short post today as I am getting ready once again to go back to London to visit my friend Dolly and her family. I am in the midst of making Christmas cards and Thank you cards and my desk is heaving under the weight of all things festive. As it is my first Christmas since the craft bug bit me I feel it is only right and proper to be making my own this year !

Anyway the card that I am sharing with you has nothing to do with Christmas . CAS-_ual Fridays is a challenge site that I have been following for awhile and I must say I think the DT are fabulous they always have great Challenges and their pieces are always so inspirational if not a little daunting, which is why I have not plucked up the courage to enter before now !

Their theme this week is to make a clean and simple tag or project incorporating one.  so here goes .....

I used my new Sizzix/Hero Arts die cutting and stamp set for the flowers, cut an aperture with my Spellbinders circles and the frame is made from foam rubber, also sandwiched between the front and back of the tag is a layer of foam to give depth to the window, what a shame you cant see it  ( I mean the depth it gives not the rubber )

In my desperate attempt to show the depth of the window but failing miserably a close up !

The tag can be removed from the card here is a little piccie of the back

Now aren't you glad I shared that with you !!!  so exciting eh !!!

I feel a little mean as I am only showing one card, my loyal followers will know that I usually share at least three so you all got off lightly this time !!!.

Why not pop over to CAS-ual Froidays to see what the the amazing DT have come up with and there are already so many fabulous entries .

                                                          Get Creative Winners 

On another note the winners have been announced over at Get Creative for the 13 yes 13 challenges that we had running  last month. My particular theme was embossing dry or wet and there were some amazing entries,  it was so hard to choose . I would like to thank every one who participated as we had a record number of entries  but there can only be one winner and that was the lovely Maria from Made by Maz , congratulations Maria. Would love to give a little shout out to  Rena and Maria who although they didn't have any embossing tools whatsoever  came up with some very ingenious projects  well done ladies !

Right off to continue my Christmas cards and visit you all

Take care and have a fabulous week.


Thursday, 10 November 2011

Creative Craft Challenges " Minimalistic " and Four Crafty Chicks " Babies "

So as you have most probably gathered by the title of this post I am taking part in two challenges and the upshot of them both will be  " Minimalistic Babies " sounds like a pop group !!!

Creative Craft Challenges who I recently came across via the blog of the  ever so lovely Cheryl of Cheryls Creative Art their challenge this week is to produce  a clean and simple card .

The second challenge is by the intriguingly named Four Crafty Chicks whose theme  is  " Babies " Now I can do a Cas card with the best of them ( well maybe that's a little exaggeration ) but I have never made a childrens card let alone a babies ! so this is a first , so please be gentle with me now wont you !

For those of you who do not like the cute and sweet please look away now ! You have been warned !
For the braver bloggers here are a couple of cards that I made which I think fit both challenges perfectly,  although I do stand to be corrected by both of the DT members should they had differing opinions.

I should be sharing two more cards with you,  I did make the  " Girl " Version of the  first card and the male version of the second ( the male mouse was a little more macho I think he had a bigger tale  ! ) but for some reason blogger once again has interfeared  and wont let me upload them ! Most probably trying to protect you all from a sugar overdose ! Ah blogger works in mysterious ways !

Ah but your not getting off that lightly I have a back up ! but specifically for the Creative Craft Challenge as I don't quite think it fits into the  " baby theme " for the  Four Crafty Chicks !

I think my little owl is quite minimalistic I hope the ladies at Creative Craft Challenges agree !

Why not pop over and see what both design teams have come up with to inspire you and maybe take part .  I have to say I quite liked creating these simple cards and if you don't behave yourselves I might even show you the ones that got away at a later date.

Sorry for this higilty pigilty post ( no idea how to spell that ! ) but I am on a diet and my nerves are all over the place !

Take care


Monday, 7 November 2011

Get Creative Card Challenge

Good morning bloggers and bloggerettes !

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend and for those in the UK hope all of your pets nerves are back to normal after the Guy Fakes celebrations !

I just wanted to say a big big thank you to everyone who joined in our challenges 13 of them in total at Get Creative last month . We had a record amount of entries and the winners will be announced in the next few days boy its going to be tough there where some fabulous entries !!

A new month and the first challenge at Get Creative is a card challenge are illustrious leader Irini has asked us to make a card using two stamped images , but they must be different stamps .

Here are my DT cards

I have used my new set of Hero Arts and Sizzix die cuts stamps and embossing folders on this one. oops looks like i have used three stamps on this !!!!!!

Moving swiftly on and using only TWO stamps this time the centre image is Crafty Individuals which I have embossed with Ranger distress embossing powder and the swirly stamp is SU which I have stamped with Versamark watermark resist ink to give a tone on tone effect.

For this card I have used two Hero arts stamps and coloured the flower with Letraset markers ( my first attempt and probably my last ) I and markers do not mix !!  The sentiment is cut out using my Silhouette machine , which I have to say is feeling a little neglected of late !

This one is a variation on the first card using DP instead of the background stamp its a bit busy and I'm not sure if I like it but it begged me to be shown !!

Added this little butterfly to the inside of the card

Why not pop over to Get Creative  and see the beautiful inspirational pieces by my talented team mates and why not even take part. We are sponsored this month by Cherry Nest who are offering a free place in one of their on line classes  entitled Every day is Christmas Woo Hoo !!!

Nearly forgot to mention that the fabulous Lynn Stevens from Trash to Treasure is Celebrating her three year blog anniversary and is giving away some of her masterpieces to some lucky followers. I really didn't want to post this as I am sure you will rush over there and my chances of winning of one her amazing pieces of art will be drastically reduced. The thing is  not only is Lynn an amazing artist but she is a thoroughly lovely lady so for once I will just have to put my greediness aside !

In the words of the great Mr Bugs Bunny

" That's all folks "


Friday, 4 November 2011

Just for Fun " Favourite Stamp " And I Won Again !!!!

Yes yes I won again !!!!! The lovely Fliss at Stampers Chef had a blog give away for reaching double figures !! Not just any ordinary candy but three sets of stamps that she designed herself and they look fabulous ! So firstly congratulations on reaching the 200 mark and secondly thank you ! thank you ! thank you !

Right moving along the bus after what seems like an eternity I am taking part in one of Just for Fun challenges their theme this week is " use your favourite stamp " well it only seems fitting that I should take part using my favourite stamp on one of my favourite sites challenges. Neet has chosen the theme for us this week. Although I have lots of favourite stamps I have chosen the one I " go too " more often than all of the others and looking back on my cards it has turned up on quite a few of them !  It may not be the most beautiful or unusual but it is the most used so therefore my favourite. Infact if you look at my new blog header the stamp has been used on two of the projects !

I have made three projects using it and here they are

Ok this is the before shot not my favourite stamp a wooden dish that I use for window displays in my shop .

So my favourite stamp is this Stampin Up text  script which I also have as an embossing folder. Here I have made my own tissue tape stamping the script all over with Stazon ink and then adhered it to the plate with Gloss and Seal. I then added Ranger crackle glaze and left it to dry I did also use a base coat of Gesso before I started the background. When it was dry I added distress ink over the crackle and then removed it in various places with my sanding block. I cut out four circles of card and followed the same procedure just using my sanding block on the edges.

The script stamp has this time been embossed with Hero Arts Gold embossing powder  a silk leaf added and using a S U beveled  windowpane placed an embossed butterfly underneath onto a piece of card that I have also stamped the script onto with distress ink.  Ribbon and a button for a little extra something somethin !

Here I have made a pocket sewing two pieces of DP together and making some leaves from grungeboard using my tattered florals die ,  coloured them with DI inks embossed them and then coated them with glossy accents and put them in the little pocket on the front of the envelope. Used my script stamp again and stamped onto velum with Stazon opaque white ink and then embossed it in a random fashion with DI embossing powder.  This fits inside the envelope  and a message can be written on to the back of the tag. Made a flower again with the aid of my big shot  and blah blah blah same technique as above and attached it to the leaves.

Do pop over to Just for Fun to see the fabulous inspirational pieces by the lovely ladies , Zoe, Neet and Von.

Thank you for popping by and for all of your lovely comments that you leave me I really do appreciate each and everyone !

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend.


Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Extra ! Extra !

No cards today !!! Just a few announcements!

Over at Get Creative where I am a DT member,  during the month of october we were and still are having a card bonanza with each member of the design team posting their own challenge and offering a prize in their category. There are 13 challenges running all with a different themes !!!. Well in order to give everyone a fair chance of taking part as some of the challenges were posted close to the end of the month, the deadline has now been extended until the 5th November . Why not pop over to Get Creative with thirteen challenges running i am sure there is something to suit everyone's taste !!

Did you notice my new banner and blog button !! It was created by the multi talented Cindy Adkins of Whimsical Musings . I have to say I think they are gorgeous even if it is based on my own work lol. Cindy was given free reign to choose and design them both and  think she did a fabulous job and so reasonable too ! She has chosen pieces that I  believe reflect my style and I  couldn't be happier. For those of you that don't know Cindy do pop over and visit as not only is she a fabulous artist, writer, designer but she also showcases many wonderful and talented designers on her blogs.

Last but least a little while ago I was lucky enough to win some blog candy from the fabulously talented Gerri Herbst of Its all Treasure. Well when I say some candy I mean loads and loads of candy !! The photo just doesn't do it justice there are so many wonderful and interesting little treasure here I don't know where to start ! but I know I will enjoy creating with them. Thank you so much Gerri for your kindness and generosity.

 If anyone would like to grab my gorgeous blog button please feel free !

Take care


Saturday, 29 October 2011

Daring Card Makers " Use Felt " Fairy Fun Fridays " Heat Embossing "

Why oh why is it every time I upload some of my cards than the next day there appears a couple of great challenges with the same theme  ! I always feel one step behind ! This usually happens when I feel I have done my best work. Well as you can guess it has happened again..

Two new challenge blogs to me the first is Daring Card Makers whose theme is " Use Felt " well my previous post was filled with the stuff !!! Luckily enough I had some pieces that I didn't post so I would like to share them with you.

Wont bore you all with the details the three panels are velum card and felt which I have embossed you can just make out the sentiment if you squint !!

For those of us with bloggers blindness have added a couple of close ups !

On this one I have made a tag card cut some leaves with the tattered floral die by TH and embossed them. Made a little felt flower and added a pearl.

As my regular followers will know am in a bit of a felt embossing frenzy at the moment !

This is a broach I made using black felt card and a button covered in stickles .

This next card  I want to share is for Fairy Fun Fridays who have asked us to use heat embossing on our cards . Once again my previous post was full of  the marvelous stuff ! It also has some felt on it so maybe it can be entered in both challenges !

I have double embossed here onto design paper so the paper actually shows through the embossing.  I used my brayer to add Versamark embossing ink onto the inside of my embossing folder and then ran it through the big shot, I then sprinkled the image with SU black embossing powder and heat set it. This gives the background a lovely shiny effect........honest.  Die cuts are by Hero Arts added a little glitter glue and there you are !

Why not head over to Daring Card Makers and Fairy Fun Fridays and see the wonderful DT pieces am sure you will be as inspired as I was.

Take care