Monday 26 April 2010

On a pedestal

This is one of my little used Stampin' Up stamp sets that I bought. It's called On a Pedestal, and I really think that it needs to come out of the box a little more often.

I made this card absolutely ages ago, and for one reason or another, have never gotten around to uploading it onto my computer.

The background of the card was made by using the lovely cute little cherries that come with the set, and I stamped them in Real Red and Pixie Pink.


Here is a closer look of the yummy cake. To create the little glittery top, I have used a two way glue stick and SU's Dazzling Diamonds. It gives a lovely effect, but me and glitter?? Well, not a good combination I have found out. lol.


You can build up the cakes as tall as you need or just make them into buns. There are so many different things you can do with this cake stamp set.

Until next time ...

Sunday 25 April 2010

Miley Cyrus - When I Look At You

What a FAB song, I just love it!!!

Fresh cut notes.

What a classy title. I can't think of anything to call it, so this will have to do. lol.

This card below, is in fact, a Fresh Cut Note card that we completed on our workshop on Thursday evening.


I personally love these little cards, they are great for quick and easy Thank you cards, or just to put in as a notelet when you are posting a gift or other things.

The stamp set that I used is also called Fresh Cut Notes, and this is in the main Stampin' Up catalogue. It was made to fit perfectly behind the aperture in the card, which is already cut to shape. All you need to do is pop out the petals and fit it all together.

I finished my sample card off with Real Red ink, ribbon and card to match. The flowers were punched out. The larger flower is the 5 petal flower punch from Stampin' Up. These SU punches really are the nicest ones I own. I also added a brad to the centre of the flowers.

Quick and simple. Perfect!

I am having a fairly quiet day today, so will be back soon to share a few more things.

Take care, and happy crafting!

Saturday 24 April 2010

Old London Town...

Hi again, and thanks for visiting.

I have a very lovely job in crafting, and love everything about it, but sometimes - just sometimes - something comes along that makes me wonder why I ever wanted to do it! Now this card is one of them.


This is a card that has given me a massive headache for the past week. And still it goes on.

As part of my 'job' I take in commissions for cards and things. In fact this week, as I've said before, is quite manic. I have got three different card commissions to finish, a Stampin' Up evening (Thurs) which I had to prep for, a Stampin' Up party yesterday evening, demonstrating at the Liverpool Hobbycrafts show all day today, some project tutorials to do with promarkers, TV show to make samples and demo's for, Kim's projects to chop and sort out for next Saturday, then it's back to project planning for my Docrafts demo's when the kit arrives, hopefully next week. I am then full steam ahead with demo's right through until the beginning of June. Somewhere amidst all the mayhem I have other smaller things to do too.

In between all of this, we have family coming over from Australia in the middle of May. Actually, it will be nice to see them as we haven't for a few years. Now the volcanic ash cloud has lifted and flights have resumed, I think there is a little less panic now on their end knowing they will actually be arriving! lol.

Get back on track Jo!!

The card.

This was one of three cards that were ordered for completion by the 20th. This one was for a gent who is celebrating his 60th birthday, who has built most of London, is a millionaire, and worked (obviously) in construction. But he didn't build with bricks and mortar. He did modules. Now, what on earth are construction modules? Even Mr. Google didn't know! So, as far as I could understand, they were metal things, hence the mirror board. The theme of London is as near as I could get to the brief. Now I've been asked to change the wording along the bottom, so that needs slight adjustment. I just love these Easel cards, they are so effective yet so simple.

The second card I was asked to make is still work in progress. The brief was to make a wedding card for a couple marrying in Cuba. I worked the card using tropical colours and a beach scene. Due to the ash cloud, they were unable to fly out so are now marrying in the UK. The card now needs changing to something more conventional. I will upload the before and after cards later.

Card number three was for a 40th birthday. Completed with lovely decoupage images from Kanban, it was fine and just needed some wording added, but have now been told is unsuitable so needs a total rethink.

You know, I think this just about sums up my week really. If I ever get these three cards finished, I will post them for you to see.

Until then, happy crafting!

Friday 23 April 2010

Birdy punch? What birdy punch??

Question - When is a bird punch not a bird punch?
Answer   - When it's a tulip!


See. You should have guessed that one.

This card was one we had planned for our Stampin' Up! Craft Evening over at Bullcroft Memorial Hall for last night. Lots of prep and sorting, cutting and measuring go into doing these evenings, and for me and Sheila, and everyone who comes along, they are very special! There is nothing like crafting with a bunch of like-minded folks and getting a prize (or four) for it.

The materials are always ordered a month or so in advance, so once a project is decided there is no going back. This causes a little bit of a dilemma sometimes, because as crafters, we invariably change our minds to what we want to do.

For this reason, we have lots of projects in the pipeline for doing, but if you did want to come along to one of our evenings, then please let us know what you would like to do, or have a go at, and we'll try to schedule it in.Why not come along to them all? You'll love it!

So... back onto the tulips. They were made with this punch -

This is the Two Step Bird punch which is in the Mini catalogue at a very cheap (get it??) price of just £13.50.

I LOVE THESE PUNCHES!!! The reason I love these punches is because they fold flatter than my standard punches. I now have two of this style, and I need all of the others changing over to it NOW. As you can see, they lie flat but still release to a proper style punch when you release the slider on the back of it. Great idea!

The card was then finished off with a strip of paper from the lovely Tea Time papers from the main catalogue, and also the oval all stamp set and punches, again from the main catalogue.

On this close up photo, you can see exactly what bit I've used to create the tulips - yep, the wings.


It was a wonderful class last night, thank you all so very much for coming along, and thank you for your orders. I am sure you're going to enjoy playing with your new things when they arrive!

I'll be back later to show you another project from the three things we made last night.

Oh Plum Trees!


Is anyone still there??

Sorry I haven't been around for a few days, life is just getting in the way again - well, work is really. Not that I'm complaining, but it's all systems go at the moment.

To start today though, I just wanted to share with you that my lovely, wonderful, charming Sis -Lesley- is coming over from Canada later on in the year! It was absolutely fantastic news to me and mine, as it will be nice to meet up with her and hubby Gary, sit chattering 'til all hours and have a general catch up! Wilma - I'm so looking forward to seeing you!!!! (Wilma/Betty are our nick names for each other lol)

Right then - onto my proper post, and I am stunned with how much blossom there is already on my lickle plum tree!!


I haven't even trimmed it back yet, and there are squillions of these blooms! You know what that means..... lots of yummy plums!!

Other than observing the joys of Spring and everything popping into life, I have been busy making a few projects.

This one is a little taster for you -


I can't share the whole thing just yet, well, until next Sunday actually, as it's for the Dabble Day I'm doing over in Bawtry, for the lovely Kim Sutton. This is the front section of 'whatever it is' we're making. lol.

So, I really must get on for now - late nights and early mornings are not ideal you know, for three little furry pumpkins who like to sleep in! Honestly, they are sooooo laid back these woofers are! They hate mornings. I hate mornings. Gawd, they are so much like me! (Well, apart from they're furry and I'm not. Well, not too much anyway!!!! lol)

So, check back soon and there are a few card projects coming up.

See ya later!
Jo xx

Tuesday 20 April 2010

What can you do with punches?

This -


I used a variety of different punches to create this little card for you all. I made it a few weeks ago and we have made it at Sheila's card class, so sorry for the delay in sharing.

The card is made entirely from Stampin Up products. The punches are the oval and a range of different circles. The stamp set is also stampin up (will have to check the name tomorrow). I have done a little stamping technique called 'stamping off' to create the shadows on the branches, which in turn add a little dimension to the card.

I hope you like it.

I am really playing catch up this week, as I have little bits to finish off for some commission cards that need to be done for tomorrow. I also need to get myself sorted for the Liverpool Craft show at Aintree this weekend, where I will be there promoting the Stampin' Up range of products.

I also have a private demo to do next weekend and for this I need to sort out the project, do loads of cutting and packing and before all that - decide what I am actually going to do.. lol.

So. I promise that I'll be about soon to share a few more things with you.

Monday 19 April 2010


Hello again all.

You know sometimes you just have a whim to make a card? A card for no particular reason? Well, this is one of those cards.


I have had this stamp for a long time now - I love little doggy stamps, so whenever I see one that catches my eye, then I tend to buy it. And this stamp is soooo cute. He looks just like my Scooby when he's running in the woods - his ears fly all over the place too. Cute!

Here's a closer look of the little wuffkins.


To colour him, I've used a couple of different mediums, markers and prismas. I laid down a base layer of prismas, then went over the top of it to enhance the shading with the brush markers. I think it looks quite vibrant. What do you think?

I hope you check back tomorrow for a new card.

Love Jo xx

Fancy a cuppa?

Here you go then..


I just wanted to share this very quick photo taking by the most Luvverly Kirsty Wiseman. We chatted over a coffee in Sainsburys last week after our shows on TV.

What a laugh this lady is. And as you can see - is also quite good at taking the odd photo or two.. lol.

Sunday 18 April 2010

Sunny, sunny sunshine..

Hasn't it been a wonderful weekend again?! I'm getting a bit used to this lovely, sunny weather. It's nice and warm, but not too warm for me - but just in case it was, I've bought myself a sunhat. lol.

And take a guess to where I've been?


Do you recognise it? It's the Leas in Folkestone - again.. lol.Doesn't the weather look nice. There was a gentle breeze coming in from the sea and in points it was rather chilly, but a nice three mile stroll along the Leas all the less. We also looked at property again, and did you know that these little apartments you can see along the back of the grass are VERY expensive?!

Looking at property in Sandgate again, the prices per month for a rental, vary from around £600 to £1895 per month?! Blimey!!


I just had to take a photo of this chappy sat on the grass. Maybe enjoying the sun??

Paul noticed his hair first, but what a masterpiece! I bet that took alot of gel. Could this be my new look? Mmmm.. I'd have to think about that.

We also had time to nip along by the Dymchurch railway line.


Now, I first went on this little railway when we only had Leyton and Carley - many years ago now. I think they were only tiny, probably around 1993. The journey on the train takes you from Hythe to Dungeness. It is soooo peaceful over in Dungeness. In fact, I wouldn't mind one of the little cottages on the flat land there.


Everything was starting to bloom too. These little catkins looked really bright against the dullness of the trees, so I just needed to take a photo.

That's all for now - I'm really tired from all the running around we've done this weekend, but promise that I have some cards to upload for you tomorrow.

Have a lovely evening. See you all soon x

Thursday 15 April 2010

**sigh** I'm all romantic-ed out..

Oh Sigh..

I am soooo happy today for Steve! As you know, yesterday I was down at Create and Craft, and there is a fab floor manager down there (Mr Magic Hands!) called Steve.

Now, it was Steve's 30th birthday last Sunday. And he got engaged. Do you want to see his proposal?

Well, just click on the link below. Watch it right to the very end. You'll love it.

Well done Steve and Nick, may you have many many years of happiness in front of you.

Love to both of you!

Monday 12 April 2010

Our weekend away...

What perfect weather!

The sun was shining.. the weather was hot, and we had a really lovely time.

Here are some pics.. and of course, one of Holly being 'Mrs Cutey-Patootie'.

When we go down to Kent, we always go over the bridge.. and after many times of promising myself to take a photo.. here it is!


I absolutely love the feeling when you finally get over it! Talk about vertigo!! But when we are descending on the other side and have paid to get through the tolls, it's an absolutely wonderful feeling to be going back Darn South! I just love Kent.. I love it, love it, love it!!!

Haha... good old Google Earth!


I didn't take any pictures whilst we were out exploring, but bought this up on GE. This is Plain Road where Paul lived when he was younger. The new houses are built on a boat yard, and boy are they lovely! Must admit.. we were seriously thinking one of these could do us as a new home. Kent here we come!! Paul lived in the houses on the right. Not too far from the beach.. perfick!


This is Sandgate seafront. Just outside Folkestone is this lovely, quaint little area. I really like visiting Sandgate when we go South. It brings back many happy memories of cherished friends, and lovely folks we knew.

And what do you just HAVE to do at the seaside......


Well... go for chips of course! And this little chippy is fantastic. This is just across the road from where Nana Dot and Grandad Sid lived when they were alive. They passed away what seems like years ago, but the chippy lives on.. lol. They make the most yummyish chips and even sell Huss (one of Paul's favourites!). But we were good. We only had chips as we were having salmon and salad when we got back home.

Sitting on the seafront eating fish and chips. Nothing like it on earth!


Not much of a view from here but there were reasons to take this pic.. namely to text it to Carley who was at home to say we were at the seaside.. lol.

However, this is Folkestone from our walk along the Leas. Beautiful walk. Beautiful place.

And finally.. here we are...


On our way home. Feeling sad to be leaving the Garden of England.. but happy knowing we'll be going back - maybe for good someday.. who knows!? In fact, househunting down there at the weekend, we found prices very favourable to ours. Now to find that perfect holiday home and we'll be sorted forever.

This photo was taken just as we were leaving to go under the Dartford Tunnel. What a grandious piece of idea was that! Driving to a depth of around a mile under the River Thames??!! Who on earth thought of that? And is this what the channel tunnel is like? Then me thinks I would rather go by air! Or sea! Or something else.. but not driving under the water!!

And when we got home?
Well, that was just perfect too! The kids were all at home, Leyton's beloved had stopped over on Saturday so it was lovely to say Hi to her too. And lunch was ready for us. And tidying up had been done. And there was a bit of malteser cake made for us. What else could we need?

Well, a great big, giant sloppy cuddle from each of the wufflets, and a look into the most affectionate eyes you could ever imagine. Here you go.. a little look at them -

Here's Holly looking pretty. She has the most beautiful eyes a girly could have.


That's all for now. I promise I'll be back with some cards soon.

Sunday 11 April 2010

I'm back !!

I've had a few days away and it's been lovely. The weather's been great, the quiet has been great and the company of just my hubby has been great!

Although, it's lovely to get back home and see my kids, the pupsters and the little furballs.. all back to normal.. work, work, work from now until the beginning of June... baaahhhh humbug! lol

Thursday 8 April 2010

Bags, boxes and more ...

What fun I had the other day. Paul was sat watching motor racing on TV, I'd done all my housey stuff, so I thought I would sit and make some bits and pieces. I borrowed the Flight of the Butterfly Stampin' Up set from Sheila and set off my epic adventure. lol.


This was the little bag I made which holds a set of four love notes. The colours are not brilliant, and I'll change the photos when I get chance to edit them. However, just in case you're wondering, the colours are Creamy Caramel and Pixie Pink.

Here are the cards all together with the box.


I decided that I really wanted to show what you could do with the border punches, so I made a set of four cards using the border punch in a different way on each card.


On the cards above, the left one I've punched two borders, one in each colour and overlaid them to create an edge to the card. The right one has the punched border run through a ribbler to create a ribbon-like effect.


Plain and simple on these cards. A straight border on the left and a border punch frame on the right. Simples!

In addition to this little collection, I also made two smaller boxes. These ones are ideal for gift cards or for those little bits of jewellery you need a box for.


These two measure around two to three inches in height. Tiny!


This blue one was run through the sizzix to add a little texture to the cardstock. Again, the photo isn't brilliant as it was taken in the evening and I don't like using flash. The colour of this one was Ballet Blue.


Now then, out of all my little boxes that I've made, this one is my favourite!! I love all the quirky little bits on it. I used Barely Banana and Certainly Celery colours as I love that colour combination.

So.. that's it for today. I hope you like my little boxes!

See you again soon. xx

Breaking News - Stampin' Up! colours.

Oh, I just know how you love the card colours from Stampin' Up.. these are the one thing that make Stampin Up so special to me and to everyone I come across. However, things are a-changin'!!!!

It has been splashed all over the internet that the colours in our current catalogue will be changing when the new catty is released in October. This means, that we will have all the same colours of card as they have all over the world.. isn't that great news?

Well.. it is, but we also lose some of the current colours - and there are quite a few of my favourites in this collection.. how can I possibly live without my Almost Amethyst, Pixie Pink and Ruby Red.. ?? Not to mention Close to Cocoa and Lavender Lace! But I must say the new Marina Mist is definately on my order for October!

I know you can't see these sheets very well, but you can check out the new colours HERE and the colours that will be leaving us HERE

Wednesday 7 April 2010

All the fun of the Fair...

And boy was it fun!

Last Saturday, you know the one between Good Friday and Easter Sunday?? Well, we - as in Sheila, Chris and me, decided that we were going to promote Stampin' Up at the Carcroft Easter Fair. We wanted to make people aware that we had monthly classes and to introduce the poor oblivious folks to the joys that rubber beholds!

It didn't all go to plan really.. Sheila was going to do some demo's, and I was going to do some make and takes. Well, the lovely folks were having so much fun that we didn't really get that much done.. lol. I did a few Make and Takes with some adorable kiddies and a few adults who asked about the classes, but the bookmarks we made were much more appealing. After all, what is more important? Winning Easter Eggs at the Easter Bonnet parade, or stamping? Well, I know what floats my boat, but that's not the same for everyone.. well, apart from Sheila and Chris.. lol.

Here is our stall as it stood just before we started..


The blue stand at the back of the two tables held all our samples and the small table on the right was Sheila's demo table. The big table at the front bottom of the picture was for the two make and takes.

We had great fun, Sheila's grandson Ty was a little star and helped to eat a bag full of chocolate ricicle cakes lol. Thanks Ty.. you're a little gem!!

Tuesday 6 April 2010

OMG... just had to share..

I was browsing a few sites this morning through AOL browser - something I haven't done for what seems like months!! when I came across these photos via Ree Drummond's blog.. I love Ree's photography, and it's like a breath of fresh air to check out all her new shots.. But then I found these... now these are something else entirely.. Here's the link to the photographers online album. Sorry the pictures aren't any bigger.

Just so cute. Just needed to share. **Sigh**

Cluck cluck cluck...

I told you I'd be back didn't I?

Today, I thought I'd share two cards I made the other day for Easter. One was for Carley's in-law's and the other for her and her fella.


This one was for the in-law's.

Carley's dad-in-law shows rabbits, so this wasn't a hard choice of Easter card for them really. I used a Messy Rabbit - love these! I coloured the image with promarkers and the papers are all Stampin' Up. In fact, she came home yesterday with a 'Best in Show' rosette. lol.


This picture shows you a little more detail of the colouring on the rabbit. Love his little tummy.. and the blushy cheeks. Can you see the little bumbles? Soooo cute! They just needed to be put onto the card didn't they? So.. here they are...


They were stamped, coloured, then attached onto little strips of acetate to make them buzz around. I also added a few little sparkles on the wings to give them a bit of bling.


Now.. what sort of Easter card can you give to a young couple having their first Easter together? Well... a couple of Love Ducks!! When I saw this stamp, I thought it could be used for a multitude of different occasions.. and of course, they were soooo cute.. so I just had to buy them.

I coloured the image with copics (yes... I relented and got some more!!) and now I'm in a quandry whether I love my promarkers, or my copics.. I sold my very large collection of copics to Sheila a while ago, and then decided I couldn't live without a few so got a little collection going again.. sigh! Decisions, Decisions.. lol.


Here are the cute little featheries in more detail. As you can see, I layered up the head and chest a little so they had more dimension.. and then added some Stampin' Up Crystal Effects to their beaks and webby feet.

The papers are all Stampin' Up and so are the punches that I used for the greeting. I had decided not to have a typical Easter greeting, as youngsters probably wouldn't want that stuck on their fireplace, so opted for a more comical 'Happy Chucky-egg Day!'.. they loved it, so that's all that mattered. lol.

One last thing - I did say yesterday I had more news.. well....

The other month, Stampin' Up announced that they were having a stand at the Hobbycrafts show in Aintree, Liverpool and needed six people to help out over the three days. I expressed an interest, as we were asked to do, and guess what? Out of all the people that must have entered I got asked to help out! I can't believe it. There are sooo many SU demo's in the UK I didn't think for a minute that I'd get asked.. but I did!!!! So, I'm off to Liverpool for the show, which is on the 23rd to 25th April. Excited? Me... ?? Of course I am!! lol.

Monday 5 April 2010

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter everyone..

I have had such a brilliant time over the last week or so. More on the new happenings later...

Firstly, I just want to show you a few things that I've been making over the last week or so. I haven't had chance to get them uploaded, so will split them up into a few posts over the next few days so I don't inundate you all at once.. lol.


This card was one of a few I made last week. I enjoy making my swaps for a Stampin Up forum I go on, it's a great way to recieve new samples and get some great new ideas.

For this card, I used the Bella Toile background stamp (I really love this stamp!) and it makes perfect wedding invitations, which was ideal because the swap I did was 'Wedding invitations'.


Now then.. a few weeks ago when I was making my samples for the last TV show, I nipped over to my friend Sheila's with my stash to see what we, along with the fabbie Chris, could come up with.. well, as you can see, apart from the mess we created, we didn't actually get alot done on the day. I wasn't very well, so left early to leave the girls to it... only they deserted my TV stuff too, and got playing with other things. Tut!


Just one last little photo for you today.

This is a photo of my springers Holly and Scooby. They love to cuddle up together, and here they are tucked up under the bed covers. They are so daft sometimes. Truly was probably somewhere chasing her shadow haha.

So... news!

Well, things are changing here in the Austin household.

I'm not going into details here for one reason or another, but let's just say, whether my children live here or elsewhere, I love them all dearly and wouldn't want them to be any other way than what they are. They don't suffer fools gladly so the saying goes, and give their love and respect to those that deserve it. Wonderful chidren.. all three... and I'm very proud of all of you! You derserve the new jobs and opportunities that you have been given, and you need to grab them in both hands and treasure them. Gawd, now I sound like a right sloppy sod! It's just that things change, things move on and I am starting to feel a tad old.. lol.

Me? Well, I've had a busy week planning classes and projects, doing some samples for TV again (for next Wednesday I think it is..!?), preparing for the Easter Fair over in Carcroft (photos tomorrow) and making cards for other occasions.

so, that's enough of my waffling, I'll be back tomorrow with more exciting news, and more projects.

See ya later!

Thursday 1 April 2010

Free postage?? Well indeedy....

 How would you like FREE postage on your SU Mini Catalogue orders?
Well, read on to find out how.. but firstly...

Today is a very very exciting day, as it heralds the release of the brand new Stampin' Up! Mini Catalogue. I absolutely love this little orange book, and I'm sure so will you!

I have made a couple of cards (inspired from the net, not sure where now.. ) so I thought I would share them with you.

This one is my favourite one that I found.. I'm pretty sure it was Jo Dumbleton's blog that I originally saw it on, but I just copied and pasted it into my folder, and forgot to name it.

Anyway.. I used my favouritest colour combination from SU.. Barely Banana, Old Olive and Ruby Red. Don't they look amazing together?

I made a little template to create the shadow in the centre then stamped my images from the new set of Vintage Vogue - simply stunning set with wording, blooms, branches and borders - what more could you want??


You can see the close up on this picture, just look at the detail within the stamp images. Absolutely beautiful. I finished it off with a filigree designer brad from SU.. and I think it just adds that little bit of bling!


Now, I have absolutely no idea where the idea for this one came from - you know, getting up at five in the morning isn't good for the constitution! lol.

I have used Sheila's bits and pieces for this one too - my bird punch is currently flying itself towards my house as we speak. I didn't like it originally, but after working with it I decided I needed it. The strip along the side of the card base is from the wheel which goes with this set.


Just look at the birds wing - I stamped with black ink  onto the red wing. A lovely effect.


So, two projects from one stamp set. And there is so much more you can do with it too.

And as far as friends go.. my friends are great! All of them! lol.

Now, if you'd like to order anything from the new Mini Catalogue, here it is.. just click on the picture and you can get the catalogue to look at.


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