Thursday 12 November 2015

My Nuvo reference book

Evening all..... just a very simple and quick post for you all today .. 

I have been asked many times about my little reference book I made for my Nuvo collection. So here it is. 

I always like to try to sort my pens / embellishments etc into sets, and especially as with the Nuvo, they coordinate so beautifully. So, I decided to make my usual alcohol marker chart, but to incorporate a few other bits and bobs. 

As you can see, the little book is made from board and then I bound it all with my Bind it All. I have these books for my copics, my promarkers and also my kuretake markers, so I obviously needed one for my Nuvo now didn't I?!

As you can see looking down the pages of the book, I don't really like to go off the colour names, numbers and such like... I like to colour myself a swatch of colour onto the cardstock I generally use in my cardmaking. 

Now, here insert a LIGHTBULB - because you may or maynot know that all cardstock is different. If you colour on one and colour on another, the colours may not be the same. I have my favourite cardstock I would always turn to, and you may have another, but use this reference book as just that. A reference. Please PLEASE try your colours on a scrap of paper you are colouring on first. 

You can clearly see next to the pen colours, I have tried to match up the Nuvo drops too. These have the numbers of the bottle and also the colour reference on too. Just for easiness with write ups. 

Here are a few blank pages at the back of the book. Now, these are mainly for when you have a great colour combo you don't want to forget... like for skin, or hair, or anything else that you would have a problem with in the future. 

The little book measures around 6 inches by 3 inches, and the boards were covered with paper on both sides. 

I hope you like today's little make, and I hope it inspires you to come up with something similar. xxx

Tuesday 3 November 2015

Me turtle...

Hello all.... a bit of a long post from me tonight..... have you got your tea?

Yes.. it's a funny ol' title for a blog post, but yes, I often feel like a turtle. And I would be happy if I was half as cute as this little guy... 

So why do I feel like a turtle?

Well, not for many reasons really, other than anxiety and panic attacks, and low vitamin B12 are usually to blame! Something I've come to realise over the past however-many-years that worrying about things you can't change does you no good at all. 

For a long time, like many out there, I feel I'm not good enough, I can't do it, have little self confidence and how sometimes you feel like you could just walk away from it all. 

There was a quote on Pinterest once, that sort of summed it up .... "Noone knows how many times I've lost hope. How many times I've been let down. Nobody knows how many times I've felt like I'm about to snap. But I don't. For the sake of others. Nobody knows the thoughts that go through my head when I'm sad, how horrible they truly are. Nobody. Knows. Me"

It's a horrible feeling... you can't make people understand, can't make anyone understand what is happening inside of you, especially when you can't explain it to yourself sometimes.. I often feel like my anxiety has anxiety!!!

However.. this last couple of weeks has given me an awakening of some sorts. I've actually managed to take my tablets regularly - upped the dose when I felt necesssary - and am feeling in control of things that went beyond my control. I've been talking to the hubby about how I feel and he's put me right on a few things. He's shown me the way, and although I'm not saying it's easy - it's definately helped to start opening up about things. 

I know there are many people out there who see me doing my job, and think I'm full of confidence, like other crafters out there, but we are not all confident. We are not all in control of what we think we should be thinking... it's difficult when you're in the anxiety phase to just 'get over it' or 'just get on with it' or 'just talk about it'. It's hard to even 'stop thinking like that' because 'it's stupid'.. because to us it is rational. 

So.. that's why I'm a turtle. I've grown up. I used to be an ostrich... I stuck my head in the sand and pretended things weren't happening... but now, I can retract into my shell and watch and learn and come out when it's safe. I'm happy being a turtle. 

Anyways... onto my little make for today... and yes. My little turtle fella... Isn't he cute. He's a woodware stamp and I thought it was just perfect to go with this little border from Be Creative. The 3d borders have always been a favourite but you can't often get them these days - there are a few from Be Creative at the moment, but others are in the pipeline I have been told.... !

He was coloured in with their alcohol markers and as I didn't have a blender pen to add the mottling on his skin, I just opted for a very pale grey to dot and dab, which sort of did the same thing. 

Of course he had to have little sparkly eyes and rosy cheeks, all finished off with a little dab of a white gel pen to add highlights - I don't know where I would be without my white gel pen!

As you can see, I made this a central stepper card. The papers were from the Nature pack of the Be Creative papers and so were the buttons. The border I added some extra adhesive to the base of the strip and took my anti static bag to 'un-sticky' the top section so it didn't catch when the card was closed.

I thoroughly enjoyed making this little card. It's around A5 in size, maybe a little smaller, but a great size for the stamp.

I hope it inspires you a little.... and just one last thing - as some people have asked - NO.. I haven't left Tonic, I am merely satisfying my thirst for colouring. Something I let go when I had my bad anxiety problems a while ago.

I have found it helps to sit, colour, and relax and do something just for ME. I'm sure you understand.

Until next time... xxx

Guess what I've been doing....

Morning crafty peeps.... 

I thought I would spend a little bit of time catching up on my blogging as I haven't really had the time to do any for a while and I've got lots of things to share!

As you know, I do the workshops at the Craft shows for Tonic, and we have been a bit busy running up and down the country doing 'our thing'... so time has been a bit limited! Add into that some decorating, building work, painting, sorting and general house-y stuff and time has just disappeared!!

Anyway... I did find time to have a dabble with my Silhouette Cameo. This damn thing haunts me!! 

I have had it for a few years now, and it has cut all but the smallest amount of cardstock - trying to find what I could do with it was a nightmare. Trying to find the perfect cut - was a nightmare. Setting it up - was a nightmare.. The whole thing was - yes you guessed it - a total nightmare. 

But - BUT - I have found one thing I can do with it after all this time!! I can cut vinyl!

This is what I have managed to achieve on my little bits of vinyl I had left over from doing my glass block lamps. (I didn't use the vinyl - I cheated and used dies to cut out the designs!!)

The one above is on the side of the laundry wall... and was the first thing I managed to sort out to cut properly. I found the text on Pinterest and loved the wording, so changed the fonts, added a few swirls and off we went....

These two little coasters are made from small four inch tiles... and I cut the wordings again from the vinyl and just added it to the tiles. This was scaled down to fit so was very fiddly to try and do.. but I think they worked well in the end.

Now... this one below is my favourite.

I have made two of these... one of them is alot smaller - a grand old size of around three inches across, to fit in a dedicated space in my kitchen.

I love the wording, and this was a download from the Silhouette store. All I needed to do was scale it down to the size I needed and that was that.

I hope you like today's diverse little projects... I know they're a bit different from cardmaking but hey - that's what craft is all about eh?

Until next time. xxxx

Tuesday 27 October 2015

Fluttery Buttery's...

Well.... I say buttery's, and I actually mean these beautiful butterflies on the Tonic strips. This one is the Bluebell Meadow, and it comes complete with the die and also the stencil. 

With this card, I chose to use it as a little border along the side of the card. I embossed the die after cutting it, and also cut it again from a paler lilac card.  

The butterfly on the side in the layers was stamped and coloured using the Nuvo pens. I decided to chop off half of the circle so it sat further across the card. 

I then decided to cut and layer the lighter cardstock and use these as dimensional butterflies on the border. However, I didn't use the stencils on these cards, just embossing through the dies with the embossing mat.

This blue card above uses the same Woodland Meadow die sets, but I chose to cut them in two shades of blue.

I left a little border at the side of the card to add a little bow.

I hope you get a little inspiration from the couple of cards I have shown you today.... I will be back with a few more bits and bobs soon....

Until then xxxxx

Wednesday 21 October 2015

Pretty in Pink...

Good morning everyone.... 

Today is going to be a very busy day as I am on way to Glasgow to do the ICHF show at the SECC. We are doing the Tonic Workshops, and I am looking forward to catching up with some familiar faces too. 

However, I just wanted to come on and show you another card from my samples I made for the the Pick of the Day... 

For this card, I chose to use the Aztec Allium set and use a fineliner pen to draw through the stencil to create myself a faux stamped image. I joined up the lines as there are little gaps within the outlines of the stencil. This gave me a solid outline to do the colouring. 

For the colouring, I used the Tonic Nuvo pens  and shaded around the outsides with the range of greys within the packs... from the 485 through to the 489.  Then blend out with the blender pen to bring it back to the white of the card. 

The aperture of the front part of the card was was made using the Tonic cutter, which is on the shows too through today... and as you can see, it makes perfect apertures in your cards. 

I hope you like the card today. I will try to get back tomorrow with more inspiration... 

Happy Crafting!! 

Monday 19 October 2015

It's a Pick of the Day time.....

Hi all.... 

It's been a few days since I was able to get on and share a few things with you, so tonight I thought I would make it worth your while and show you some of my samples for tomorrow night's Pick of the Day from Tonic, which is being bought to you by Jodie. 

I have waited so long to be able to play with these beautiful products, and I'm sure you are going to love them totally too!

They are the Double Detail die and Stencil sets - as you can see, you get the die to cut the pattern and also the stencil which you can use paste, inks or as a general draw-through stencil. 

As you can see, there are four sets in the collection and each of them are as lovely as the other... although, I must admit, I think this one below has to be my favourite... This one is the Aztec Allium. 

To begin with on this card, I stamped my image along some white stamping cardstock and coloured it in with the Nuvo pens. I had heat embossed with the Tonic embossing powder - and I admit, it's the nicest black fine powder I have found! And I've tried a few!!!

I then used the die from the set to cut two pieces out of black card and reversed one to face the opposite way. These were then placed onto the card, with the edges tucked tight against the previous layer, but with the centre sections a little more dimensional. 

You can see I also cut the wings from some of the butterflies to enable them to 'flutter' on the card. I added nuvo drops to finish the edges. 

The next card I want to show you uses the Decorative Daffodil. This was a very simple card, so if you are new to cardmaking you will find it easy to replicate this card. 

The strip across the top was cut from a small piece of cardstock, then embossed with the mat that comes with your machine. 

Whilst the stencil was in place, I took a little finger dauber and some ink and lightly brushed over the design to accent the embossing detail a bit more. It also added a little bit of colour to the card, so with it being black, white and another colour, you can change it to male or female, older or younger. The design is so generic. 

You can see the embossing detail and colouring here a little bit more. To finish the card, I used a little bit of glitter and glue and a whilte gel pen to go around the outside edges. It was simply matted and layered onto the base. 

So... you know me.... I love my colouring... and I had to find a way to incorporate the dies / stencils with colouring... and here it is!

I took the stencil from the pack and used a very fine black pen to draw in through the lines of the stencil. I then coloured in the lines to give them an edge. 

I used water based pens - Tim Holtz distress inks - to colour the designs in so it gave it a lighter look. 

I added glitter around the outside edge, then placed my whole card together using papers from our Tonic range.

Here's your little close up of the daffodils so you can see them more clearly. 

I hope this post has inspired you to look past the dies, and see what else you can do with this little collection.... 

I will be back soon to share a few more posts with you from these beautiful sets. 

Until then.... Happy Crafting!!!

Thursday 15 October 2015

Hi de Hi....

Hello again!!

Back again with another blog post... and today's post is this cute little thing with her lolly pop, all ready for Christmas. 

Now, don't get me wrong, I love Christmas and everything that it means and stands for, but it's coming a little bit thick and fast for me if I'm honest... 10 Friday's left until Christmas? Really???!!!! Gosh. 

So... on a brighter, more cheerful note, and you can see that I've eventually managed to use the topper that I coloured in a few weeks ago, and thought I would pop it onto a card. 

I love the lattice on the framework, and I also like that you can change the dies to create apertures, which is what I've done here, or just for a full lattice effect all over the card. 

So onto the card itself and I had decided to colour the image before I chose the papers... but because I had all the packs of Tonic papers with me, and I was colouring with the Tonic pens, I knew exactly that they would go together perfectly. I used the Essentials cardstock too which again, combines perfectly with the colours within the papers / image etc.

The little girl herself is a sweetheart isn't she? I thought she was the cutest and immediately decided to put her into my frame. She was coloured with Nuvo pens, then had a little bit of glitter glue added to her skirt to give her a bit of sparkle.

You can clearly see ont this picture the flowers which were cut from the Bellus Daisy Entwining Treelis die and also the little leaves and also white nuvo drops. I love the fact that you can just add a bead of various sizes if necessary and they dry really quickly too.

The papers were from the Tonic range of papers - and they are fantastic too.....

Right... I'm going to sort myself out for Beddy Byes at the minute, and hopefully will sleep better that I have done for a few days.

Until next time...
Happy crafting - lots of love Jo xx

Wednesday 14 October 2015

Feeling Dreamee,,

Good evening you crafty peeps .... 

How've you been? 

Tonight is a quick little share with you all, to show you some samples I had done with the Dreamees Tangled Treats. The Dreamee Girls were on Create and Craft TV on Saturday just gone, and the show was pretty damn good if I say so myself.... I love Carol and Hayley and their style of product. Very much my style - so of course I had to play with the cd and stamps didn't I?

This first card that I want to show you was using both the CD and also the Magic Mistletoe stamp set. Isn't it just the sweetest? I love mistletoe stamps!

I printed off the papers from the CD and layered up onto black cardstock. I stamped the image using black versafine and embossed with Tonic clear embossing powder. I prefer to do it this way as it saves getting all those little stray black bits all over. 

The image was then coloured with distress markers and watercoloured to give it a more vintage feel. I inked around the edges with a green distress ink and a dry baby wipe - waste not, want not!

As you can see on the picture above, the last little bit for this card was to add some glaze onto the berries and also some card candi to the corners of the card. 

Now onto my second make.... 

Papers were again printed from the CD and stamps used to create the greeting, this time heat embossing in silver to give it a little bit of sparkle.

I had printed onto vellum for the flowers from the CD and layered them up after colouring over the back with one of my blue Tonic Nuvo pens. It was coloured on the back of the flower to give it a softer look.

The papers were them layered together and a piece of lace added to the bottom of the card. I finished this one with some red Nuvo drops to the centres of the snowflakes.

I LOVE the set of Tangled Bauble stamps and you can see there are many ways that you can use them. I have simply stamped and heat embossed them in white. Two were put onto black and one was put onto white card. The white one was them watercoloured with Distress Markers.

They were cut out and put to one side whilst I created the branch across the centre of the card topper. This was also white heat embossed and coloured and a few black outlines added to make it stand out.

The beautiful papers were printed from the CD again - I can think of sooooooo many uses for that I'm sure!!! Finishing touches was the ribbon and buckle for the card, some fine string to 'hang' the baubles and a little bow made from the same string and stuck to the top.

Now.... this has to be my favourite of the day...

The mdf shape was covered in paper that I'd printed out, then inked around the edges with a green distress ink. The flowers and snowflake were printed onto card from the cd, and coloured in using my Tonic Nuvo pens. I kept the colour theme quite funky if I'm honest, as I didn't really want a traditional christmas colour. The designs are too funky for that. 

The greeting was printed onto vellum, cut out and layered to the top with a border of glitter around the outside edge. 

It was simply all stuck together, layered flowers and attached, and a couple of layered bows for the top of the mdf shape. 

That's all for now... I hope you like my Dreamees cards, I love the cd and stamps and think it may be coming out a little more often!!

Until next time... happy crafting!

Wednesday 7 October 2015

It's your Big Day....

Evening all.... 

Phew - bed at last! It feels like a very long day today, I don't know why.... started off by visiting a special friend this morning, going to get a Gratitude Journal - more on that another day! Coming home to take receipt of a VERY special gift from my buddy Cheryl which had been sent home via the hubby's!  It's funny really how you come across people in life and immediately have that familiarity with... that's me and Cheryl. We've only known each other for a very short while, and our paths crossed via a cup of coffee being had in Barnsley and Create and Craft in Peterborough! Very wierd - both husbands knew each other from work, but we had never spoke! Now it's like we are very much alike - too similar in alot of ways it's scary!!!

Anyway..... What has your day been like?

I thought I would just pop along and show you two more of my Chalkboard cards. I am so glad that you've all been enjoying looking through the gallery on the Tonic Gold site, checking out everyone's cards - and there are some corkers on there too!

But I think the Chalkboard is my current favourite... I love the frames and the way they come with the sentiments that mix and match. This one is the 'It's your Big Day' set of frames and stamps, but as you can see, I've just changed the sentiments in the centre. 

I cut some of the card using the outside edge only, and left some card with the design only, then played with arranged the layout until I was happy with the layers then stuck it all together. 

Being a stamper and a colourererer.... lol.... I thoroughly enjoyed creating this little card below. 

I decided to use some of the Tonic background papers to match in with the colours I had used on the stamped image - a download from the Tiddly Inks website... love it!! 

The wording was taken from the inside part of the die set, cut from different colours then layered up and paper pieced accordingly. The topper I coloured was cut from oval layering dies and placed into the centre of the chalkboard frame. 

It's a perfect fit as you can see, so even if Chalkboard is not your style, there are elements of the sets that you can use to coordinate with your existing crafting arsenal. 

I hope that you like today's selection of cards.... Back to share more inspiration soon! 

until then... 
Happy Crafting!!

Tuesday 6 October 2015

Chalk Dust...

What is it about chalk that makes me think of school?

I know that these days they have all the hi-tech stuff like whiteboards and such, but for me, school will always be about having things written on a proper blackboard with chalks of varying colours - and even having a blackboard rubber aimed at the head by a very grumpy Geography teacher!! If I'm honest, it was much better than being called an empty weetabix box... lol. Those were the days eh?!

Anyway.... onto today's post... and yes, you guessed it, I am going to share a couple of makes from the Chalkboard dies from Tonic.

I've decided to show you two ways to use the frames.

The first card that I want to show you is using the stamps and frames that come within the range. This one is called Special Occasion, and you will recieve the outside and inner designs, a lovely lattice insert and also the matching set of three stamps and the outside of the stamp which you can use to create a frame or just simply for placement of the stamps.

All of the stamps within the sets coordinate with each other and you can play to create multiples of different sentiments!

As you can see, I cut mine from black cardstock, then the inner section was stamp and heat embossed in white powder. I then took a white pencil and went around the outside of the wording to create a shadow... like the chalk had smudged ... and finished it off by colouring parts with coloured pencils.

Now... on the card below, I left it a bit more cute... and did what I love... came back to the stamping and used the dies as a frame to sit my Magnolia stamp in.

I chose Tonic paper and cardstock to layer and decorate, and the frame of the little Bumble was cut using the inner part of the die set.

I had to hold the die in place to draw around the edge where it met the feet, so that I could cut around them with a pair of scissors. This made them dangle on the outside of the frame so it looked like he was sat on it.

Little bumble (as I like to call this stamp) was coloured with the Tonic Nuvo pens, but I added a little bit of prisma pencil to the hair to give it a little extra oomph!

Glitter was sprinkled onto the wings to add a finishing bit of sparkle. And then I completed the card using a few dots of Card Candi from Craftwork cards on the corners.

Nice and simple... but this could easily have been a decoupage or other stamped image... the frames are so multifunctional and useful - and also very pretty!!

I will be back shortly to show you another couple of makes.... with a different frame set too!

Until next time. xxxx

A few days away...

Evening everyone...

Trying to find time to blog these days can be a little hard, but as I always promise to try my best something always comes up to stop me!

This past week saw me down in Exeter with the Tonic Workshop girls spending a fab time meeting lots of lovely crafters, then zooming up to Peterborough to do shows on the weekend for Create and Craft. Now, I've managed to catch up with myself so I'm quickly coming along to post a few pics of the workshops etc.

As you can see, the workshops were buzzing all the days that we were there... from first thing in the morning, right through to the end of the day. The Tonic Tangerines were given their paces good and proper and never disappointed... apart from the first day where we had problems cutting a die, only to realise that we had the spellbinders plates out and not the Tonic plates... so all was quickly sorted and normal business resumed. lol.

We had a selection of three cards from which the wonderful folks could take their pick, or mix and match to create something unique. These were displayed on an easel for the first time and I felt it worked really well actually... as people who were unsuccesful at getting a place could come along and take a photograph of the projects so they could recreate something at home with the dies.

All our workshop friends enjoyed their cards, even if they had never cut a die or made a card before... we set them off with their projects, showed them a few basics and off they went... and very successfully they made their cards. Some just cut, and cut and cut... and others made a card. But the ideas were in abundance, and not always as per the ideas on the Inspiration sheets.

Here was a lovely lady who joined our workshop and created her card using a different style. Beautiful it was too... Well done to all our ladies who came along... the feedback from the show was well recieved and I would like to thank you all for coming and making our time there perfect.

Here are two of the projects that were given as Inspiration...

The die collection that we used were the Tonic Studios Momento Frames. We finished the cards off with a few of the Tonic Nuvo drops in various colours.

I hope you will be able to join us at some point over the next few months at the shows to do a workshop. We will be at Glasgow SECC, Birmingham NEC and London Excel.

Until next time.... xxxx

Monday 14 September 2015

Little and cute.... now what could it be??

I. Am. In. Love. 

Yep. It's official I'm afraid and I am certainly not ashamed to share.... !

A couple of weeks ago I was down at Sandown Racecourse doing Workshops with Tonic Studios and I had a little walk around before the show opened on the first day. I came across Gordon and Justin who own Once upon a Stamp, and the first thing I noticed on their stand was the new collection of Lawn Fawn stamps and dies. Have you seen them? 

Oh my.... they are the cutest ever! And anyone who has followed my blog for the last seven years or so, will know that I love any cute, adorable stamps.... and these are just that!

They asked if I could help them out with a few samples for the stand, and I had to think about it for a nano second to say of course, so I spent that first evening with Sharon, in the hotel room, colouring, cutting and generally having a bit of stamping fun. Thoroughly enjoyed it and here are a couple of samples that were made up. 

I love these little Alpacas... they are so cute and not something I ever thought about using on Christmas cards at all! But just in case you are wondering - easy to stamp, colour and you get a coordinating die to cut around the shape. 

The papers are also from the Lawn Fawn collection and the stamps which had the sentiment 'Merry Christmas' too. The wording is a long fine stamp which is very easy to mould around a die cut shape as I have done.

The alpacas can be used in a few different ways and as you can see from the card below, depending on the colours that you use and the layout you choose to decide to make, you can create something completely different.

The wording on this card along the centre was a die which I cut straight along the centre. I also cut one from black and one from white and did a drop shadow technique to give it extra detail.

The snowflakes are also Lawn Fawn and come on a strip to cut out the various sizes and shapes out all in one go.

The thing I love about these stamps is that they require very little colouring, are very simple to use, as they have the outer edge die to cut them out. And they're cute. Cute cuts it for me every time.

I hope you like the projects today... I have a few more to show you over the next week or so, so please check back and there will be more to inspire you soon. xx

A well needed break....

Evening peoples....

I know it's been a little while since I've been here and posting a few posts for you, but I've had a bit of a busy time, and also a bit of a break, so time's sort of gone by kinda quickly.

We spent a few days away up in the Lake District in the last week or so, and I must say, it's been a well needed break. A bit of 'us' time with the hubby, with lots of walking, sunshine and wonderful fresh air!

We were up in Windermere but travelled around the area and managed to cram lots in over the few days we were there. Anyway, here are a few photos of our time away....

As you can see the weather managed to hold up very nicely whilst we were away, and only on the way home on Wednesday did it turn a little colder. It still didn't spoil the end of our holiday, as we took a slight diversion on the way home through the Yorkshire Dales.

What a wonderful time was had... and I am looking back to returning at some point very soon!
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