Wednesday 24 February 2010

Good Times {Leandra's World}

Yoo hooo...yes I'm here...I know its been a while, and there was me thinking how organised I have been! Maybe I was a tad delusional about that....??? My attempts to blog have been scuppered of late. So now that the laptop is temporarily resurrected after a 3 day near-death experience, the kids are away at school so I can actually access a computer, and I have a break in the rubber pressing schedule, I can take a breather and fill you in on the latest goings on here, cos when i write it all down there has been quite a lot on!

New You Tube Project
Half term holiday I had a great day with Millie, Ella and Mill's friend Marie making this little trinket box. It is such an easy project. The boxes are here, and they make the most beautiful little gift for anyone. The kids had no problems making this at all. And you can see us all playing and sharing nicely together here on this new PaperArtsy technique video. Don't forget to subscribe to the PaperArtsy Youtube channel so you can see more demos like this.

A project like the teeny box is an awesome idea for a kids party. 3 of our kids have birthdays in Summer here in the UK, so 'Art & BBQ Parties' are all the rage. We make some stuff, have a paddle in the in the temporary pool, finish making the stuff, have a BBQ...and just oooze thru the day. It's easy to host because the kids are entertained the whole time! All the other Mums are really impressed because its something different and no one does old-fashioned home based parties any more so you become an art goddess/ cool mum overnight. Because we have 3 birthdays in 4 weeks here I also like that these events turns out to be a really affordable way to have a bunch of kids over. Even Miss 16yr old thinks this is an acceptable activity to have friends over for! Tip: for impeccable behaviour infer you might video bits for youtube! LOL

Play Day with Jo and Lynne
What else have I been up to? Had a great day with Lynne Howe and Jo Firth-Young getting some new Arch samples made for the March ArtsyCarfts weekend in Warrington. 
This is a new idea I had with 2 of the brand new Ten Seconds moulds that will be available any day now. I am sure Cheryl from TSS planned for the moulds to be used this way, but I felt pretty chuffed to work this out myself! LOL I fitted bits from new moulds into the frames made by another. These should all be in stock soon, along with the new colours of metal. mmmmmmmm
Here is Jo meticulously painting her balls to be used as the base of the Leandra Bead, She discovered a new way to drip them so they look like the shape of a Xmas ornament. We liked the Jo FY variation - a lot.
And because we call Jo the queen of the cuttlebug, she duly lived up to her reputation, and worked out how we can do the Split cuttlebug technique Lin and I developed for the arch frame using an embossing folder that I thought wouldn't work because of its orientation...if that doesn't make sense then you'll have to wait to the retreat to find out how that works! LOL Needless to say she is one clever bunny and Lynne and I have booked her to come and show us more bug ideas for a whole day!! (exciting - cos I have a few ideas of my own to try)

ArtsyCrafts in March
If you want to join us for ArtsyCrafts in Warrington mid-March, there are are still some places available. Personally, the arch is my most fave class because it incorporates everything I love the most: fabric stamping, metal working and UTEE. All great techniques, plus we have 2 other classes, 1 of which is totally new allbeit an adaption of a previous concept. Booking information is here, and you should check out the youtube video with samples and other info too.

Stitches Trade Show
This weekend just been we had a lovely time at the Stitches trade show in Birmingham. This is a show just for retailers where all the latest products for the year are released. The hard part is working out what you *need* and what you can't live without, and trying to find something that no one else has spotted! LOL 

Our 2 May ArtsyCrafts retreats have a 'flights of fancy' theme, so Lin and I were eyes peeled for trinkets and products to squeeze into the schedule. Like this - adorable little tweeter box. Just love it, but it's not available yet. Soon.
The drive up we had a lot of snow, at one point we followed a snow plough pushing snow off the road on the M6! The good thing was the roads were pretty quiet, so we still made good time. It seemed the aisles were pretty quiet early on, so I had a lovely chat catching up with Rachel Greig from Darkroom Door while she was starting off her demos for the morning. Lin and I went out for a lovely meal with Rachel at CHA last year, so it was great to see her again.  At the same time we then got nabbed by Claudine Hellmuth and Mario (that's Claudines golden locks front right!) so we all chin wagged for a while, and Rachel showed her the crayon resist technique on the gorgeous rose stamp she has.
We were all stunned to see Mario (Tim's right hand man) in jeans, this never happens, even in a blizzard he is known to stick to shorts. I tweeted this pic to see if anyone could guess who it was. Teresa from Ranger clocked him within minutes. LOL
Flicked over to the other side of the booth to watch Suze demo the meltpot for a while. Lots of peeps watching had been in Ranger classes the day before and were loving all the great things she so effortlessly makes. Here I got a quick shot of Suze's stuff on one of the stands at the show, with Suze! 
Every year I get to see Suze on at least a few occasions at various trade shows, and Mark and I had a great afternoon walking the show with her while she was on a break. It's like escorting a royal comedian/phtographer around the show! We had a lot of laughs and spotted a lot of demos and products and people who we all knew. She goes click, click click with the camera non stop to document every step of the way. She is such a great blogger. Check our Suze's blog for a day by day blow of the show and her exciting time here in England and at QVC this week. She is back in June so maybe you can catch her for a class at the Craft Barn. I'll be demoing there too in June for the bi-annual demo day - great weekend, and Lingfield is a typically English, very pretty village.
Suze and I were very excited to see Michael de Mengs newest book on one of the stands. Love his work.

Tim was in fine form as usual sharing all his tips and tricks with his latest products. He has new inks (which we will have available to use and buy at ArtsyCrafts in a couple of weeks...they are already here ready packed in the class kits...every new colour!!)  Also his new book is jam packed with step outs of all the techniques he has been teaching for years, and showcasing how they fit in with his various product lines. A great reference. I can't wait for his new sizzix line to ship. I am not much of a die cutting girl, but have seen how tim uses them a lot over the last couple of years, and I guess this means I will need to get a big shot. Can my green bug do it all? I am not very up with the play on all things die.
I loved this antique expandable box he keeps all his 'bits' in. Here's a close up. Bet airport security love that!
And waiting in the wings, ever so excited to meet Tim was the lovely and very talented Linda Elbourne. She is such a Tim fan...well stalker is probably the word really...LOL...and she was so in awe she was pretty much struck dumb in his presence. I think if Wendy Vecchi was there too (her other idol) she probably would have passed out in the booth. Tim made a gorgeous sample for her, and she was holding it like the most precious relic in the world. If you could get her to part with it for a peek then you were doing well!! He signed it and she managed to pull herself together to pose for a piccie!
This is the second photo, still a bit blurry, sorry Linda.... must practise with my iphone, I'm good at close up product shots, not so good with peoples!!
Mark and I had a really nice lunch with the Ranger family before heading home. We usually catch up with these guys for a couple of weeks every year at EU and USA trade shows, so it's always nice to hang out and talk about non work stuff. 
This year it was an iphone convention. Suze and Alain were on blackberry's but the rest of us were comparing iphone apps, flicking photos about, 'bumping' details, acquiring new apps.... have you got this/ that etc.  I was the saddo, my apps are practical things like biz calculator (takes off and adds on VAT, or works out the margin of profit!), weather watch, or flashlight, or the jamie oliver app for peeps in a rush! At least I actually had apps, Dy had none until she got Carl! ROFLOL. Guess she and I don't require these time waster gizmos cos we don't have as many hours to fill on planes as Tim and Mario! Anyway we got shown Talking Carl (the only app Dy now has), and now that I know my account password (Mark takes care of all things techno for me) I also have rat on a scooter too! Small things, but very funny. Hugo now knows how to hold Carl's mouth open and he growls for ages, and if you have a Carl on 2 phones and get them talking to each other they get higher and higher pitched until you think the phone is going to explode! So now we have a new child consequence- 'if you keep doing that you can't talk to Carl today kiddo!' Love that!

If you are not an iphone peep, that last bit probs made no sense at all.

Craft Stamper Mag
In the current Craft Stamper Magazine (March issue) we have some gorgeous samples from our very talented and able Design Team using our newest stamps which are of a time theme.(Clocks Ink and the Dog Stamps) You will see these stamps popping up in the mag a couple more times in imminent issues, so there should be plenty of ideas to fuel your muse. 
Featured in Stamping Contrasts was this image (Clocks plate 1) skillfully used very creatively by Jo Capper-Sandon, Jo Firth-Young, Lin Brown and myself to create a variety of different samples. A big shout-out to them all for playing along with us, and wow have they made some beautiful items! Check out the magazine or their blogs to see snippets of their beautiful pieces.
This is one of the samples I made based on the easel card concept with a see through acetate panel. The background is Rum and Raisin papers washed with gesso. Love those papers, and of the 14 designs, only 3 are Christmas, so the colours and patterns are year-round useful - gotta love that. {BTW these are on sale at only £2.50 per pack for 28 sheets of A5 double sided paper!!}

The full clock collage was stamped on the paper, the clock face masked and purple inks sponged around the edges of the clock. This was laid up to Periwinkle metal and black card positioned on and behind the acetate. (check me-PURPLE!)
Stamped on the front of the acetate is the large grid image from Clocks Plate 2. I then cut out the inner part of the grid to leave a frame. On the back of the frame I painted in Viva Precious Metal Colour (gold) a few elements, then over-painted that with white Kaiser paint. Love this idea and haven't done it for many years. It creates a great window to feature the image behind.

The second sample was only shown front on in the magazine which really doesn't show the depth of the piece. Hopefully you'll get a better idea with these pics.
First off the background is periwinkle metal formed on a diamond mould and attached to a circle of chipboard. Some of the diamonds are scribbled on and distressed with white paint, and a few diamonds are decorated with Rum and Raisin papers.
A second chipboard circle is cut to make a frame which is textured with terra and stamped into, then distressed with paint and glimmers. Behind this a piece of acetate stamped with clocks plate 1 is secured. The acetate has the key and postmark painted from the back with gold viva precious metal colour. Use puff pads to lay up the 2 layers of chipboard, and on top of the acetate, the clock is stamped on pearl metal, puffed out, filled from the back and placed in position.

This was quite a complicated piece, but I really enjoyed making it,and the colours are so NOT me but I did enjoy the end result. Maybe I'm going to be a pastel-purple girl this year! 

Right well that is my marathon catch-up post done. Next big job here is to file a whole heap of photos so that we can have a new PaperArtsy Catalogue online for you to see with beautiful artwork from the Design Team. I'll make sure to blog piccies in much shorter posts of the coming days!

Don't forget you can follow me on twitter @paperartsy . I'm a better twit than blogger! LOL

Love to see your comments so don't be shy !


Friday 5 February 2010

ArtsyCrafts sneaky Peeks - March 2010

March 13 and 14 are the dates for our first northern ArtsyCrafts events. If you live in the North of England, then we have organised this event just for those of you who asked us to! DeVere Daresbury park is a wonderful venue located near Warrington, and centrally in between John Lennon and Manchester airports (only 20 mins to either airport).

The main project at Warrington will be the Gothic Arch.  A beautiful wooden frame covered in metal embossed with many diffferent techniques. Inside the frame is stamped, bead embellished fabric, lightly quilted. Hanging from the base of the frame is a row of "Leandra Beads" made with UTEE (Ultra thick embosing enamel)

To see sneaky peeks of the arch and other class samples and for more information about the event check out this video. We'd love to have you join us!