'What you do speaks so loudly, I can't hear what you say.'
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tuesday, 17 September 2019

It's time for a 

NEW CHALLENGE 
at 

HOT, HOT, HOT!
We'd like to see your interpretation using hot colours, a visit to a hot country, a hot, comforting drink...and so on. LOTS of options!
ANYTHING hot!
We look forward to seeing your creations.
Hope you just have fun, get inky and share your art with us.
You have TWO WEEKS to enter... 
We look forward to visiting your Blogs.

The first thing I thought of when I saw the theme title was African sunsets...and knowing that I had the perfect stamp, that's exactly what I aimed for. Unfortunately, it didn't quite work out as planned, lol...what's that quote? 
'The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray'?

I embossed my sun - BIG mistake! When I stamped over it - then embossed the Versafine ink again, the embossing just blended - eek! If I'd thought about it logically, I would have known that, but hindsight is a wonderful thing... 
I wasn't able to start again, so I had to think 'on my feet' and decided I had nothing to lose by trying to 'tidy it up' with my trusty black Posca pen! Fortunately, it worked - phew! 
I was even quite happy with the result, even if it was a bit of an adventure...scribbles and daubs gave me the sketchy look I was looking for, even if my inks didn't streak across the setting sun as I'd hoped they would... most of it is hidden anyway. It didn't help that I turned the card the wrong way when I started to add colour. I'd carefully positioned my sun so that the tree and the elephant would only cover a little part of it. H'mm! More haste less speed, methinks! 
I really didn't think this through before I began, but hopefully, I'll remember for next time 😊 
I used Oxides, Distress Ink (Aged Mahogany) and Archival inks in yellows, oranges and reds. It certainly looks hot...😉 and those poor elephants look absolutely exhausted!

I really hope you'll play with us in this challenge - it's a great theme and if you check out the rest of the DT's fab art, you'll see lots of different ideas sparked by it. Great inspiration! I'm always amazed by the variety of interpretations.

Thanks for calling in today

Back soon

Cath
xxx

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Hello there!

Thought I'd just pop in and share a few cards I made this week. The first one is the birthday card I made for my brother, who's 60 tomorrow. I took it to him yesterday because he lives at a distance, so I can show you - not that he would ever dream of looking here...
It's the second one I made, so was deliberately simple, with one of the quickest and easiest stamps I've ever used - I love it. It never fails to make me smile and it just seemed perfect for him - especially as I decided I hate the one I set out to make! Very little colouring on it, just embossing and it doesn't need anything more, unless I feel like adding to it.

I'll show you the first one I made. I do love the stamps but they just don't work together...or maybe I just didn't quite get them straight and that spoiled the effect. Whichever it is, the card will now be cut down to be used for an ordinary birthday OR I'll cut out the images again and use them somewhere else - individually. It's a shame the cupcake isn't a separate stamp - it just feels as if it should be central. Love the way they're both looking at it longingly, though and that's so typical of my brother!


This one was made after seeing Brenda's Allsorts' card last week. I loved it and loved the colours...so I had something in mind, then woke up wanting to use pink and grey - Hickory Smoke, Victorian Velvet and Spun Sugar, one of my favourite colour combos...so the card was born. I do love Lavinia stamps, with the occasional Inkylicious image - they work so well together. I stamped the ivy and shrooms in grey and in Victorian Velvet as well as black, just to add some depth and shadow. The stencil, another of my favourites, made the perfect spotlight. I also used Brilliance Moonlight White to add to the effect of the lamp and on some of the stencilling. I did rather mess up the wings, adding glitter glaze after using Posca pens - yikes - they bled with the liquid and covered the wings, so they're not as crisp as they should be. I like the way it turned out, though, with the grey edging adding a little atmosphere. I added a little bling in the form of jewels, because it seemed to need a little something in the centre.


And just for you autumn lovers, I made a leafy card...in pink and grey! I know it isn't very realistic, but I still like it. I still have a pink and grey thing going on, I'm afraid.



I'm playing along with the following challenges:-

Lavinia World Challenges, Anything Lavinia goes


Simon Says Stamp Wednesdays, Bling (jewels and glitter)

Simon Says Monday, Stamp It!

Moo Mania & More, Use Stamps

Addicted to Stamps, For a Lady/Girl

Alphabet Challenge, M for Masculine


Thank you for popping in

See you soon

Cath
xxx



Thursday, 5 September 2019

There's a RESIST challenge on Daring Cardmakers and I just HAD to play along - it's my all time favourite technique but although I had all kinds of ideas when I first saw the post...I ended up using a background I made a few weeks ago, that was sitting, waiting to be used 😉 At least I didn't miss it - I often do!

As I already said, I love resist techniques of any kind and especially love Versamark resist and Faux Batik. I was playing around with stencils and wondered if I could get a resist effect with Versamark...so, I tried daubing Versamark ink through the stencil, heat setting it, then smooshing inks over the stencilling. This was the result. Although it isn't perfect, I do like it.  I think it may well work better with contrasting colours, whereas I used Salty Ocean and Cracked Pistachio Distress inks AND photo glossy card, which mutes the colours even more. I wanted something to signify energy and grabbing hold of life with both hands because of the VI swirl stencil, but this was the only real rubber stamp I could find to fit that idea. I used Memento ink anyway, and that didn't work perfectly either, so I had to deepen the stamping with a black permanent pen and didn't really like it. BUT in my determination not to be too perfectionistic, I'm leaving it 😊 Just don't look too closely!



For my son's birthday last week, I made him one of my favourite card designs - more with his daughter in mind. She loves to see Nanny's cards 😊
The background is sponged Oxides and splattered water drops, the images - stamped, coloured and fussy cut - are Katzelcraft's Les Animaux, my favourite stamps of the year. I have possibly made a card that looks very similar to this before... but I like it.

I'm playing with Seize the Birthday with their option of using a square card. 
I'm happy to also be able to play with the following challenges:-


Creatalicous, Anything Goes with optional Humour

Time Out, 'It takes both rain and sunshine to make a rainbow.'

Addicted to Stamps and More, Make Your Mark.


My final card was a play around with some florals and my favourite Paperartsy birds. I stamped and die cut the flowers, then drew the stems - background DIs. The birds are coloured with Bluebell Promarkers. The flowers are watercoloured.  

I'm playing with:-

Stamping Sensations' Anything Goes with Flowers
and 
Moo Mania & More, Use Stamps


Thank you for calling in today!

Back soon

Cath
xxx

Tuesday, 3 September 2019

Good morning, peeps!
Tuesday means we have a brand new challenge at
and the challenge theme is...
BOYS & GIRLS or CHILDREN

Please feel free to create anything you like, using any medium and link to our challenge.
We'd love to visit your blog some time during the next fortnight.
Don't forget to go see the lovely artwork from my teamies..We are blessed with some very talented designers.

I made a simple card for this, starting by stamping and clear embossing my image, to create a resist effect, then smooshing Distress Oxides over the card. The faces and little girl's arms were bleached to remove the colour, then coloured with Prismacolor Pencils and Paint over Pens. After trying several colours for matting and layering, I opted for the white behind the black frame, but it looked too plain, so I dry embossed the top and bottom, though it's not very clear. I did manage to cover the stamped black shading on the little girl's arm, then managed to lift some of that when colouring later, so I gave up...it IS just shading. It's not a stamp I use much but it's one that I designed and was very pleased with at the time.

Thank you so much for calling in today

I look forward to visiting your blogs to see your own creations 😊

Cath 
xxx

Sunday, 1 September 2019

Hellooooo!!! Yes, I'm still here - honestly. I'm sorry I haven't been around much but I've had a difficult few weeks/months... but I have made a few cards and even got to finish a couple of them today, so I'm happy 😀

This is one I started ages ago, when I was making my last Paperartsy  'efilump' card and stamped several of them to use later. Unfortunately,, me being me, what started out as a CAS card acquired a dotty background - of necessity. I don't know how I so often manage to get marks on my beautiful white card, but I do -  more times than I can count - but fortunately - now - I just laugh and use it another way. So on this one I just stencilled various coloured dots and circles. Although I did prefer it CAS, I don't think it's too bad. My blog title is no mistake - I spend most of my life with inky fingers!

 I love these words and have been trying to get them from a certain company for months and months - possibly for more than a year - but seem to miss them every time I get an email to tell me they're back in stock. I was delighted when I spotted some very similar words by another company AND that one was IN stock, lol - and much cheaper. 

Penny Black and More's September Challenge is Animals, so I'm happy to be able to play along with them - I have no doubt I'll be back if I get to stamp again this month... I love quirky animal stamps 😉


This one was borne out of frustration because I just wasn't managing to get to play very much at all. I decided to use a background from my basket and use up some of the many die cuts I have lying around. I love the idea of some dies, but then rarely use them because I still find it hard. It almost feels like cheating, even though I know it takes a lot of skill to use them well! It's a very simple card, but I'm afraid it had to be on this particular day. I did add some smooshed oxides and spattered some water drops to create added interest - I think the card was made with Brushos. I then quickly coloured the daisy stems with Oxides, glued them in place and stamped a very simple sentiment. I did layer the petals on the centre flower, but not very successfully...they would've looked much better if I'd used some thin foam tape, but I was keeping it simple, with the aim of actually completing the card! 
 Just realised I used the same shade (or similar) as the previous card...that was accidental, but it is a favourite of mine.

I stamped a Celtic script (Chapel Road Art Stamps) background first, using Oxides, before adding the die cuts.


This was another 'one I made earlier' background, made with Ecoline inks when I was doing some backgrounds for 'A Riot of Colour' swap on KCUK. I just stamped these elegant flowers over it, then added more circle stamping and some colour to complete .It's not often I use yellow as a main colour!.


Although they're very stylised flowers, I'm going to link to Stamping Sensations' Anything Goes with Flowers challenge
and also to Friendship Challenges' Circles challenge.

My last card is using one of my favourite little girl stamps - isn't she cute? The background is Oxides with a bit of stencilling...a lovely, warm colour combo. I think I was influenced by Paperartsy Blog's current theme of 'shrooms'...but again, I was just trying to keep it simple and even so, it took me a few days to complete!  The borders are a Dylusions border I stamped, cut out and edged in black. 


I'm happy to link this one to the Creatalicious Anything Goes (with optional humour) challenge.


Thank you so much for calling in today...



I'll be back soon(ish)



Cath
xxx

Tuesday, 20 August 2019

Good morning, all!

Time for a new challenge over at 
😊
In My Garden
Show us what's hiding in your garden...or even what you'd like to discover hiding in your garden...
All media welcome and we look forward to visiting your blogs to enjoy your creations!
Don't forget to visit the challenge blog to see the inspiration from the design team members by clicking the link above...the challenge will last for the next two weeks.
Have lots of fun!

This is a great challenge for this time of year, when so many flowers are in bloom, some on their way out until next year as the summer draws to a close. There are still 'riots of colour' to be enjoyed everywhere you look 😉 - for the time being at least.

My offering began life as a gelli print, made with pink, white and blue acrylics and a dotty stencil. I began by overstamping various text and graphic stamps in Versa Clair and Versafine inks, clear embossing them to seal over the acrylics. Then I played with 'that stamp' again...I really do love this VI bloom! This time I stamped it onto text paper from my stash, cut them out and drew in the drippy stems with a Posca pen, adding a few more spatters of black and white paint. 

I'm playing in the More Mixed Media Challenge of ATG plus optional Bright colours.

Thanks for calling in today

Hope to see you soon

Cath
xxx

Saturday, 10 August 2019

Acrylic paints, Paperartsy stamps and lots of doodling for this journal page I'm linking to Art Journal Journey, where the challenge been chosen by Gill is Anything with eyes...
I've had these Paperartsy stamps for ages and not used them...shame on me. I do love them, so decided it was time to give them an outing 😊 The fab square flowers are from one of the plates, as are the leaves. I'll definitely be using them more after this...they're fun to colour. I think they'd make a great Anniversary card, too. More Mixed Media's current challenge is ATG with the option of Bright colours, so I'm playing along with them, too.


...and this one is a card I started with Try it on Tuesday's Wish you were here challenge in mind, but decided to change my focus part way through. I've probably had this stamp for over 15 years - in fact, I have it in three different sizes and used to use it on the inside of the card and the envelope. It was called 'Melissa, looking out to sea...' so I stencilled and doodled the sea, added a hill and some grass along with the sun and clouds. I'm linking it to Allsorts' Sun, Moon and/or Stars,  or for a baby challenge because of the sunshine and to Ellibelle's Crafty Wednesday Challenge, where the challenge is Sunshine, Sunflowers or add something yellow. 


Always Fun Challenges are asking for Stencils, so I'm happy to play with them again this week.

Thank you for calling in today

I'll be back soon

Cath
xxx

Tuesday, 6 August 2019

Good morning, all!  Time for a new challenge on


Wish you were here...

This is a wonderful excuse to think about sea, sand, fun and holiday destinations, so let your mind run free and see what you come up with. It can be somewhere you're planning to visit, somewhere you've been or someone you dream of visiting... or your local beach, if you're lucky enough to have one close to you.
Any medium is acceptable.

Please don't miss the amazing inspiration from the team on the blog!
Hope to see you over there, soon 😊

This was a chance for me to think about the city I love most in the whole world...Paris!
I used Adirondacks and Distress inks for the background...I LOVE the fancy Paperartsy  'Paris sera toujours Paris' stamp but don't use it anywhere near enough, so I used it as a background element here.
The little bird on roller skates, holding a balloon, is one of my favourite quirky images and a last minute addition (sorry, TIOT girls) ...I can just imagine him skating all over Paris, maybe looking for love - probably a good idea in that very busy city and the air will certainly be much cleaner than in the Metro. 
I finished it off with a little French stamp - A L'aventure - which just means 'to adventure!' or we're off on an adventure! 
This is a journal page, btw - the Eiffel tower is  a VERY tall stamp - one I bought at the Carson show in California, many (14 or 15) years ago when I was staying with a lovely, lovely friend after the Trade Show. I have a feeling I bought it from Teesha Moore (Zettiology) but I couldn't swear to that...it looks like a slightly leaning Eiffel Tower when I look at it again...oops! It's about 9 ins long. The stencilling was added through a scrap of sequin waste.

I hope to see you soon over at Try it on Tuesday some time in the next two weeks... 
Have fun creating your 'dream destination' art!

Thank you for calling in
Back soon
Cath
xxx

Monday, 5 August 2019

I've had 'stamp envy' ever since I saw this stamp and the one time I could've bought it in person, it had sold out... So when I received an email from Visible Images, advertising a Summer Sale, I jumped at it and bought some of her fabulous words, too..

So here are my first plays with 'that stamp'.
I was (and have been) very much in CAS and subtle mode this last week, so I was using VERY subtle colours. This background was made using what was left on the splatter circle stamp after I'd used it, with just a touch of stripey stamping...to add to the 'chaos' 😉 
Some of my stitched square dies leave behind stitched frames, so this was just an experiment to try one out - I quite like it, though it's not trimmed straight. Somehow that adds to the whimsy of it for me and I quite like the effect.


This next one is painted with very pale pastel shades of acrylic paint that you almost can't see, but I'm in love with the colours. There's a gorgeous mint green, palest lilac and pale blue. I spotted them when I walked through the Range, on the way back from a hospital appointment and - even better still - they were three for the price of 2 😀
These words are from the extra set I ordered at the same time as the flower and are exactly the way I would describe the flower stamp.

This is a painted background, using those pale acrylic paints, lots of water and some white paint. Lots more splatters and splodges on this one...and 3 other stamps from the flower set.


Last, but not least, I wanted to do one in stronger colours, so I painted this one with Dylusions Fucshia acrylic, but still ended up fading it out with lots of water, and pale blue and white pencils, which I also streaked through the fuchsia colouring. I didn't want too much on this card, so added some texture paste through a dotty stencil, just to add a little interest without overpowering the flower.



I'm playing in the following challenges with these:-


Mix it Up Challenges, ATG (no optional, sorry)




Always Fun, Stencils


More Mixed Media, ATG optional Bright


Thanks for looking

I'll be back tomorrow, with a new Challenge from Try it on Tuesday.

Cath
xxx

Sunday, 4 August 2019

I noticed the Addicted to CAS challenge for this week is Bubble and immediately thought of this stamp... so I made a (very) CAS card with it.  Those bubbles were FAR more problematic than I expected. There are a few more stecilled bubbles in two opposite corners, but they're very subtle. I'll definitely do this differently if I do it again 😊 I may use the speech bubble, next time. Pretty nifty words, though.


The August challenge at Stamping Sensations is Things with Wings...one of my favourite themes. It just so happens I'd already made this card, too... so I'm playing with Seize the Birthday - no (optional) flowers on this one, sorry - and with Just Add Ink's 'Just Add a C' challenge, Crazy.. I really love that little Dachshund, who reminds me of one my childhood friend used to have.


As You Like It have a 'Favourite Flower and Why...' challenge, so I'm playing with them with this next card. It's not my favourite flower, but it IS my new favourite flower STAMP. Every so often, you find a stamp you fall in love with, even if you can't explain why...this is one of those for me. I love the shape of the flowers - far from 'perfect' and the way they look together.. and the stems! It was so relaxing to colour them in my favourite shades of pink and purple Neocolors. This fab Visible Image quote seems to fit them perfectly.
Thank you for calling in today...
I'll be back soon...
Cath
xxx

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Good morning!
I'm doing my last minute dash again for Art Journal Journey's 'We're all Going...' theme from the lovely Chris.

I had fun with this one, using Dylusions paints and Posca Pens.

I'm also playing along with Simon Says Stamp Monday challenge, Bright and Cheerful and Always Fun Challenges' Anything But a Card challenge.

This one was just a Sun, Sand and Sea playtime...everything's better with friends! I coloured the ladies with different shades of pink/tan but unfortunately, it doesn't really show up on the scan :-(

I'm playing with Daring Cardmakers' 'Whatever the Weather' Challenge with this one.

Thanks for calling in
Back soon
Cath
xxx

Sunday, 28 July 2019

Good morning, bloggers 😊 and Happy Sunday to you! 


Lately, it's been a real joy to see so many poppies and wildflowers springing up on all the spare land around this area ...I think the local council must have decided to sprinkle some seeds on them, just  to see what happened. Whatever the reason, it's a delight to see small patches of glorious colour as you pass by. It's certainly brought a smile to my face.


I played around with Inktense pencils the other day, to create a background around these delicate poppies... just painting random areas of turquoise, teal, blue and green, then stamping bits of words and texture over it in similar shades. I liked it, but it lacked definition, so I toyed with the idea of doing a little stencilling in black or dark colours, then remembered these die cuts. My original aim was to get an idea of where to stencil, but I actually liked the effect of the die cuts, so I cut them to look more as if they'd been torn and glued them in place, splattered some inks over it and voilà. 
(I have NO idea why this paragraph isn't in the same font as the rest of my post...it is in my edit version...sorry!)

This stamp was out to remind me to make a card for Stamping Sensations'  The Earth Laughs in Flowers challenge.


This was a stamp I won in an SSS Challenge, coloured in paler summer colours and CAS style to reflect the feel of summer. I'm playing along with Penny Black & More's Summer Colours challenge with this one and with Addicted to Stamps & More's ATG.


Playing around with various Lavinia stamps and an Inkylicious splatter stamp background, I stamped the 'lanterns' in the bottom right hand corner and wasn't at all happy with it... so, I added more ink, a bit more stamping and this is the end result. I know it's way too busy, but I can live with the idea of an overgrown wild woods space and the things that happen there in secret. You may have guessed that I love turquoise and lime together.
I'm playing along with the Sweet Stampin' ATG/Optional Magical challenge, in honour of J K Rowling's birthday and with Lavinia World Challenge's ATG theme. 


Thank you for calling in today

Back soon

Cath
xxx

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Told you I'd be back sooner than you think...
The CAS Stencil and CAS Mixup Card challenges for July are both to use alcohol inks and/or alcohol lift techniques, so I took out my tin of inks that hasn't been used for years, my glossy card and some stencils, and played for an hour or two.

I ended up with so many 'bits' of card that I didn't do anything fancy with them when I put the cards together, but kept them very CAS. 

I don't have any Lift Off ink, so I used blender fluid to 'lift' the inks, with very mixed results.
This is the one that worked best, and although it's a little larger than intended for a CAS card, I'm going to risk linking it because I like it. I dry embossed the card front for a bit of interest, but it does seem a little superfuous. 
This is one of my favourite stencils and it worked quite well. The strong black of the die cuts just makes the background stand out even more...


The next two are just alcohol inks in various shades, with a little overstamping in Archival ink over the stamped flower. (Sorry about the 'bits' on my scanner bed - I removed them and rescanned some cards, but obviously missed the second one).



This one did work, though you may have to zoom in to see it...I used paler inks, so it doesn't show up quite as clearly as it is in real life. The stencil was a daisy type flower and just adds enough interest to this simple card design, using one of my favourite Darkroom Door stamps. It's a great stamp for a man, too.


This one was just an experiment... I love to lift off ink with a versamarked stamp, spritzed with water, so I thought I'd try it here - not expected it to have any effect at all. I was pleasantly surprised that the Versamark and water actually left a bit of an imprint, taking off a small amount of ink. My stecilling gone wrong blended the inks in the background a little, giving a nice effect. The stamp is from Artistic Outpost (I think...I've had it for so long I don't remember 😉).


I'm also playing with

I know they aren't conventional stripes, but they are stripes of colour 😊
CAS on Friday, Use a Stencil
Stinkin Inkers, Stars and/or Stripes
and


Thank you for popping in...

See you soon

Cath
xxx


Good morning, Peeps!
Hope life is being kind to you...

It's Tuesday and so we have a brand new challenge over at 


Splatters and Splodges
We'd love to see your splodges and splatters of paints, ink or whichever medium you prefer to use...
This is a happy challenge. You can have so much fun with a few drops and dribbles here and there..what a great excuse to play!
(If you need one)
We'd love you to join us and play in this challenge!

The Design Team has created amazing samples, so please do go to see what my teamies have made!

That's exactly what I did - I dropped inks onto my page from a height (some via their spray mechanism, which I unscrewed) and tilted until it spread over the paper enough.
I sprayed a bit of water, too and let it dribble some more... then I added just a touch of mesh stencilling in a bluer blue than the ink I'd used because I wanted this to be blues and greens.

 I chose to use die cut letters to make a bold sentiment...(probably a bit too big because they do cover most of the splatters and splodges)...but there's time to do more. 
I thought I'd add the animals just for their expressions...and then I splattered them all with a toothbrush, using watered down blue acrylic paint and finishing off by shaking black and white posca pens over the top...
Not so sure Philomena Pig or Delilah Duck (whose feet were covered in ink and paint) were very happy about that, though Simon the Sheep was thoroughly enjoying it all, and even helped a bit with the splattering by blowing it all over my 'desk'... it definitely took Miss Miranda Mouse (you can tell she's a teacher) by surprise, though, especially when Simon splashed her with some huge water droplets!

I'm happy to play with the following challenges:-

Art Journal Journey, We're all Going to... make messy art! 
(Thanks for a great challenge, Chris!)
Country View Challenges, Blue and Green
More Mixed Media, ATG (definitely no Pastels option here, sorry)

Please do pop over to the main blog to see the inspiration from the very talented girls and we'd love to see you take the time to play...and share your results with us.

Thank you for popping in today

Back soon(er than you expect!)

Cath
xxx