Thursday 25 October 2007

A very international girl....

Even though I'm a British lass raised in New Zealand, and now living in England for the last 6 years, my summer seems to have been a blur of international travel and excitement, some business related, and some family time. It has been so much fun, and this has been the first opportunity to let you know about it!

We spent 3 wonderful weeks in July in the South of France on a family holiday. Well I did squeeze in some teaching at 2 stores (in Perigeaux and Bergerac) but for the most part we hung out by the pool at the very private and rural gite we rented. We also had a few magnificent days in Paris on the way back home. The hotel was literally opposite the Louvre. The children enjoyed the whole trip so much - as did we of course. It was our first family holiday in 3 years, and it felt like a real treat. To top it off the weather was perfect, hot but not too hot, so we came back with healthy tans to the dull, overcast, English summer-that-never-was.

Next up was Germany, and Stempel Mekka - a stamp specific show which I have wanted to go to for years. It was great and I demoed all show long for Scrappendoejezo, a store from Holland exhibiting at the show. I bumped into lots of English people, and met many German online friends also.

I arrived home to visitors from New Zealand staying with us while they did the London tourist trail for a few weeks. It was great - all the kids got on well, and Jenny and Pete got roped into the odd bit of rubber manufacturing as the need arose! They have a beautiful scrapping store in the South of New Zealand (Paper Worx), and the sample (right) was inspired by a project Jenny and her daughter Charlotte taught our girls. It's 2 'licence plate style' boards hanging together decorated with papers, bling and ribbon, with a Post-it note in the centre of the lower panel.

The sample shown is a more altered version of Jenny's idea using Ranger Paint Dabbers, distress inks, UTEE embossing powders, and some of the French stamps we make just for the French market which are distributed and available via ACICAM in France. I used corrugated card as a base to work on. I just love highlighting the rippled texture with paint.

The following week we went to France with our New Zealand friends and our kids for a week for more sightseeing, and Jenny and I taught at ACICAM for a day to some French retailers. It was a great day, and Jenny taught this wonderful Christmas Gift box (left). It's a really versatile project for many occasions, and the lid is made from a single piece of 12 x 12 card - all folded, not cutting or glue required! We released some new Xmas stamps this winter called Noel, and so this particular sample uses some of those. Can you see the small circles in red? That has been a really popular new mini this month. You can see the new Christmas minis (numbers 35-42) on our website here .

As well as other teaching gigs in the UK during September and early October, I also managed to get back over to the Netherlands 2 weeks ago to teach at Scrappendoejezo. Dennis and Dorenda have a gorgeous shop. They carry a huge range of papers and all our stamps, and they teach wonderful workshops in their superb new warehouse area. Many of the classes I taught used the ranger meltpot, and so most of the participants learned how to use either UTEE or beeswax. One of my favourite classes was making this charm bracelet (right). It's kind of like a fondue system! So if you're into dipping stuff into chocolate or cheese then I think you'll be able to do this too! I will be going up to Blackpool to Cucumber Cottage for the first weekend in November to teach at the Altered Perceptions weekend, and this is one of the four classes I shall be doing there too. And yes those are Artgirlz felt balls and flowers that i dunked into UTEE you can see on the bracelet.....its full of lots of quirky bits and bobs!

Friday 1 June 2007

Blue and Orange

Today I just had to make something using blue and orange. I guess its not a 'normal' combo, but it's so vibrant and I love it.

In February at SMAC (the Paris trade show) I met Mona from Creative Imaginations who was doing the most fabulous make n takes with their Bare Essentials line. At the end of the show she gave me a gorgeous goodie bag of bits and bobs, and a cropadile (to lighten her load home). So today I learned how to set eyelets with the cropadile into the tags. I guess that's kind of basic for those of you who know how to use these babies, but I must say, the tag thingy is really fat, and the eyelets (soft aluminium) seemed to set perfectly and evenly...a feat I have not achieved before with the other cazillion setters I own! So big thanks to Mona!

To make the tag I started with Ranger Acrylic dabbers (Sail Boat Blue/ Sunset Orange) and dabbed onto cut and dry foam, then smooched all over the tag back. This gave a scratchy covering. Over that I stamped a PaperArtsy Mini (MN#20) in Red Pepper/Sunshine Yellow, and stapled randomly blue and orange ribbons around the edge top make an arch. German Scrap (Fancy Border) got rubbed with Archival Black ink (Ranger) and glued over the staples. The image is Mini #10. I set blue star eyelets at the foot and gave her a party hat from a background I made with the blue and orange dabbers.

On the front window panel I inked up the mini #20 in blue/ orange and randomly stamped around the acetate frame. Then softly sponged blue and orange over the top. I set eyelets (metallic blue and orange) around the edge, attached book corners, and hand drew dashed lines to make the frame more 'finished'.

I just found out that Wednesday stamper is doing a ''door" challenge this week, I figured my Ribbon Arch could maybe fit that brief too. Blow me down, Belinda has got a gorgeous Blue and Orange (and pink) door! Go take a look the work there is so inspirational.


Monday 21 May 2007

Pink and Sparkly.....who me??

Today was one of those days where I really know I should be doing a whole lot of mundane stuff, but I was itching to do something more exciting. I'm kind of on top of admin (and ironing BTW...woke at 5.20 this am!!...too weird that never happens), and so when i get to a point where I'm almost organised I feel like i deserve a reward.

Right on cue, in comes an email enquiring how I like to use the new PaperArtsy mini backgrounds. (only available to buy from shops we supply at this point. Katy's Corner has all of the newbies in stock, call her if they aren't online yet.)

Here's the result...more pinky sparkly than my usual, but this is exactly what minis are designed make your own BG's to co-ordinate with whatever (papers) you wish them to. Small or large areas and everything in between.

Still lovin those Ranger acrylic dabbers, this time 'peri' and 'aqua' got to feature. Used frayed burlap distress ink and transferred the PaperArtsy Picture Pack image with glazing medium onto white card. The embellishment is using opals EP's with a (probably discontinued) hero stamp to make a faux wax seal kind of effect.

This week's Wednesday Stamper Challenge is Fleur de Lys, so i get to play with those cool gals too. Satisfying day, did something different to my usual and had a total blast. And i didn't have to pick up kids till 4.30pm. Ahh the artistic lifestyle....

TIP: the 'light' dabbers are thicker consistency than other colours, and take longer to prime. Unscrew the lid and drop a couple of teaspoons of water in. Shake and it will be more fluid, but the colour isnt compromised. Also a good trick when your paint is starting to run out.

Saturday 5 May 2007

New Stamps for May

Hiya, we have a bunch of new stamps released this month. We are adding a new group of 4 plates to the Urban Snapshots range called Wrought Iron. Here they are...
We have also redesigned Urban Snapshots Stage Lights 2 ...We are also introducing a new range of stamps called PaperArtsy Minis. These are credit card size stamps on EZ Mount. They are ideal for kinds of altered art and craft applications especially ATCs, card making, inchies and more. The images are mainly taken from our Ink and the Dog collection. This you can see 15 designs and next month we will release another 17...

Here are a couple of examples...
Click here to go see the rest.

Get going and collect the set.

Monday 2 April 2007

Earth To Orsun...

Hi there. Well its been so busy here over the last couple of months that we're just beginning to get some normality back in our lives.

We've been at trade shows in the US, England and France generating more interest in PaperArtsy stuff. So this month we are releasing some more stamps from the Urban Snapshots range. These 4 are called Fancy Dress.

Here is another nice sample from Isabelle Norris using Plate Pierrot 3

Wednesday 17 January 2007

More artwork

I was just fossicking about in the file manager of my computer and found this. I like it! Nice colour combination. It is from Jackie Hunter and uses stamps from Words plate 4 and Vintage nudes plate 4.

Tuesday 16 January 2007

ATC's from Urban Snapshots

Wow 2 posts in one day!!! Check out these ATC's from Julie Harrington the designer of our Urban Snapshots range. She has used stamps from the Passing Time family of stamps. Along with Daisy D's papers and Basic Grey rub ons.

Cool Canvas

Here's a cool canvas that Dyan Reaveley (Art From the Heart and Blonde Moments famous front woman) sent to us. She has used School Days plate 2 from our Ink & The Dog Collection.

Monday 1 January 2007

Here are our new stamps for January... Happy New Year!!!

We have 2 more new families to add to the Urban Snapshots range. They are Passing Time and Structures.Passing TimeStructures.