Saturday, 30 April 2011

Storing Clear and Unmounted Rubber Stamps Tutorial

Good Evening!

I would like to say thanks for the lovely comments I've had about my newly refurbed craft room. It has always been a joy to work in there, and I know I'm very lucky to have a room of my own. I've often joked that if I had a gas hob and a shower in there I would never need to leave my room!

I'm going to be showing you how I did the lettering and vinyl decal over the next week or so, but I had a question as to exactly how I store my clear stamps after I posted a piccy of my CD's which you can see here, so I thought I would do a kind of tutorial to show you exactly how I do this.

 Here's my folder where I keep all my images of my clear and unmounted rubber stamps. I try and keep this {as much as I can} in occasion categories such as Christmas, girly, masculine, flowers, sentiments etc. The folder allows me to add new sheets within a category whenever I get new stamps. It was my aim once I'd got this system up and running to stamp and categorise them as soon as they were bought, and get them into the CD's , but with the best laid plans this hasn't happened, and at the moment I must have about 100 packs of clear stamps to sort categorise and store! So this is how my system works.

 I take my set of stamps, and decide which category it will fit most. In this case I'm storing the 'Born to Shop Go Green' stamp set, so in this case it will go in my girly section. I'm using the lid of an A5 storage box as an acrylic block, placing all my stamps onto this to stamp onto a piece of white card. I used to stamp them with an acrylic block, but found placing, inking stamping and cleaning took so long, it's much quicker this way and just as effective, after all you only need to make out the image, it doesn't have to be perfect. I use a dye based black ink so it dries quickly too.

When I use a lid instead of an acrylic block, I make sure that I press down within the lid to get the best impression possible.
If some of the images don't come out fully, it doesn't bother me, after all it's only as a reference point to remember what stamps I have. Can you imagine trying to find a particular stamp with all your CD's on a rack together - it would be like trying to find a needle in a haystack!

I use CD cases to store all my stamps. I get my cases from a local printers for about 20p each, but you can also get them from Tesco {and other leading Supermarkets, I'm sure!} in packs of 10, I usually pay about £3.50 here. Please note: You need to get the normal size CD cases, not the jewel, slim CD cases as these are not thick enough to store even Clear stamps and therefore will not close. Remove the inner section where you normally would store the CD by prizing at the spine edge carefully. This can be discarded {unless you can find another use for it of course!}.

Once my stamping is complete, I 'stick' the clear stamps {or unmounted rubber on ezymount} onto the inside of the cases. This is why I have the stamped record of the image in an easy to find way. Both sides of the CD case can be covered with clear stamps, meaning that depending on the size of the set, you can group some together. Rubber stamps on ezymount can only cover one side because of their thickness.

The stamped sheet is then given a number, and I also make labels with my Brother label printer to stick on the spine of the CD case. The CD's will be in numerical order on the shelf, but not necessarily in the folder as they will be put in their particular category.

 If the CD case only contains a particular stamp set then I will also write the name on the spine too.

Now, I hear you ask, what do I do with the lovely images printed onto acetate that illustrates the stamp set? Well, sometimes I cut to size so it will fit into the CD case, but usually I make a card from it!

I made this card using the acetate image of the topiary tree from the packaging, and fixed it to white glitter cardstock using red glitter brads. In fact all of this card is made with scraps! I LOVE making cards from scraps and recycled items! I made the sentiment panel on my laptop, as can you believe I must have about 500 sets of clear stamps, and I've counted 547 woodmounted stamps, and I HAVEN'T GOT a new home stamp?!! The mind boggles!

Supplies: Image: Topiary Tree from packaging of 'Born to Shop Go Green' Papers & Cardstock: Born to Shop Go Green A5 Paper Pack; Papermania Glitter Cardstock; Core'dinations black & white cardstock; Greeting: Made with fonts Accord light SF and LD Charming Bold.

Well, I really hope you found that truly helpful! I enjoyed doing it, and at least it was another stamp set confined to a CD case!

Friday, 29 April 2011

My pottery Painting Result!

Here is the results of my pottery painting at Live, Love, Create in Brigg. Joesph and I visited the studio last week and spent an hour having a great time. Joseph painted a land rover in camouflage colours{which I'll post another time}, and I did this lovely tile - They have ideas for you to try out for yourself so that's what I did.
  I found the whole experience absolutely fantastic and I can't wait to visit again and have another go. The pottery looks so much better once it's been in the kiln and glazed, all the lines within the paint disappear, and the tile takes on the shiny effect.  The flowers are placed on the tile using the blunt end of a match stick! What a clever idea! I drew the pattern onto the tile with a felt tip pen, which burns off in the kiln.

They also had a playground party yesterday at Joseph's School, and all the children were given a commemorative mug, featuring the school name, the royal crest and the date of the wedding. What a lovely and generous thought. I hope he'll treasure it forever.

Well, Katherine Middleton is Just arriving at Westmister Abbey to become a princess, so I'd better sign off! Have a great day, whatever you plan to do xx

Pomp and Ceremony

Well today is the BIG DAY! I can't really say I'm a staunch royalist but I've been so looking forward to this day. I remember Prince Charles getting married to Princess Diana back in 1981' {and Prince Andrew to Sarah Ferguson, but no one seems to be mentioning that!} and it left such an impression on me. I'm going to be encouraging Joseph to watch and so far he seems pretty excited to do so! I wish them all the very best as they start their married life.

I'll hopefully have my pottery painting to show you later today which as you will see is very fitting for this big day!

Love, Clare x

Thursday, 28 April 2011

See What I Bought Yesterday...

Yesterday I decided to get a couple of hours out and about and popped to my local garden centre, which isn't really like a garden centre at all, well it is of course cos it has plants and gardening things, but when I say it's not like a garden centre I mean because it's like a department store.

I had a lovely time walking around all the lovely displays of this and that and even added to my slowly growing pile of christmas gifts that I've started to aquire. I'm adamant I'm not leaving it to the last minute as I usually do, my only trouble will be remembering who I've got what for, and where I've put them all when the time comes!

As usually happens with these trips, I end up bringing myself something lovely home as well as for others and this trip was no exception.

Mmm, these are my lovely new Yankee Candles - you really can't go wrong with a Yankee candle. As you can see though I really do like the sickly sweet ones, and the creamy caramel is gorgeous! My absolute fave is Creme Brulee which they discontinued yonks ago, but I managed to find some online and bought their whole stock! Sorry if anyone else likes it, but I got there first *sticks tounge out*. The only trouble is that I don't want to burn them as I probably won't be able to find them anymore, so I just keep them in a box, take off the lid periodically, and have a good sniff.

 Now, come on! Just how super cute is this?! It's a dinky tape measure in the shape of a button, which you can also use as a pin cusion, but I won't be sticking any pins into this baby, I could mark or hurt it or something! I shall keep by my desk at all times in case of a measuring emergency. It's one of those things that you don't really need, but just have to have.

I saw a while back that someone had bought this book, and had posted on the internet how good it was. You even get everything you need to make the bag on the front too! I can't wait to get stuck in!! I've probably mentioned this before, but my Mum and Dad got me a sewing machine a few Christmas's ago and I haven't got around to using it yet {well, not really, only sewing a few stiches onto a scrap of cloth} so this will give me the push I need. I've also bought some material to do a project to make something from 'Making Magazine' , but I'll leave that surprise for another time!

Anyhoo, gotta go, time to pick Joe up from the Childminders, them pop to pick up his pottery painting that he did last week. I did something too - I'm so excited to see it - I'll show you what I did if it turns out okay!

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

What's on your Workdesk Wednesday no. 99

Please bear with me on this one...its the first time I have joined in with WOYWW and so I'm a little unsure as to what I'm doing! Please point me in the ring direction if I've got the wrong end of the stick, or not done something quite right!
Needless to say my desk is a little bare at the moment what with having a craft room clear our and sort! I'm painting up an old cassette holder I picked up from a charity shop, so there's White acrylic pain, a palette and sponge brush on my gorgeous new WRM mat. Also business cards from various crafty persons, an apple pie case {naughty!} and my Yankee `Good Morning’ candle. My camera is also present, but that's because I took the picture on my phone.
Maybe my desk will be more exciting next time?!
Love, Clare x

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Time to Reveal the Revamp!

Whoa! Are you ready for this??! I'm so excited and even though it's not completely finished {when can we EVER say a room is completely finished?} I can wait no longer! I probably the only one excited about this, but I can tell you it's definitely given me a new lease of life.

The only before pictures I have posted on my blog are these just showing part of my room and also the colour of the walls as was. There are more on my old laptop but for some reason I can't seen to turn it on at the moment! When I can I'll edit this post.

Well, it's taken a good few weeks to get from that to this, and there's still more to do, but I'm getting there. I've had a masshouive clear out, and now most of the children and adults in the local area are beneficiaries of my clear out - and I wouldn't have it any other way. If I can spread my love of craft to others, then I've done my job.

SO where so I start? At the beginning would be a good place!

 I've painted the walls with Cape May by the New England Paint company, it's probably just white to the untrained eye, but you and I can tell the difference, right? ;) I kept the colour above the picture rail just to add a soupcon of colour, but mainly because I couldn't be bothered to paint all the mountainous artexing peaks! I treated myself to a new clock {IKEA} to nicely contrast with the walls and a new 'sideboard, cupboardy thing', which now looks better than 4 of those mismatched plastic drawer things that were all different heights. I've also got a new gorgeously pink scalloped edged WRM magnetic craft mat, which is gorg! Also, I've added some poles, and magnetic strip a la IKEA, great for punches and scissors and the like. I also have the gorgeous white carousel from Create and Craft {on the sideboard} which is such good quality, and my be-utiful giraffe print tote bag from Craft Superstore.

 This is now looking to the direction the previous photo was taken. I've made the wall decal myself, and it was soooo easy to do, with help from my Silhouette{close ups to follow}. I LOVE that machine! I invested in some new boxes for my expedit shelves, and these are made from frosted perspex. As I could see through them, I thought this looked too untidy, so I bought 14 sheets of 12 x 12 patterned paper and had them laminated. These fit nicely into the front of the boxes and make everything look uniform, and no longer untidy. The room will make the room look untidy, soon enough! ha ha.

Here's the wall decal in more detail. The 'dream' and 'inspire' words are made from Silhouette Pink Vinyl. It's so easy to do! I'll do a tutorial on how to make your own later in the week. The 'Create' word is made from letters bought from decopatch. They are like a papier mache, and they come white. Tutorial to follow about this!
 Mmmm, droool...buttons, brads and flowers! I just LOVE my buttons, brads and flowers and must have spent two full evenings sorting these beauties into colour schemes. I have displayed them in colour schemes too. At the back there is a large jar with flowers, to the middle a medium jar with buttons, and to the front a small IKEA jar with brads. Like a rainbow of fruit flavours!

 I also found these handy little plastic baskets on a trip to IKEA too. They are great for storing 6 x 6 paper pads {you can get two next to each other with the spines showing - I'll take a piccy}, but here I've used them for my scrap paper and cardstock. I've already started putting vinyl signs on them to denote the colour, but I'm waiting for more colours of vinyl to be delivered so I can finish this! Can you see, I have no purple scraps! I also have a large one for patterned paper.

 I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this! The frame is from IKEA, and I printed off the 'Get Excited and Make Things' onto glossy photographic paper. It was sooo easy and fun to do and now adorns my wall behind my desk. It makes me smile every time I see it.  You are allowed to print this out for your own use, as long as you are not selling and making profit from it. See here for details!

 This started life as a black drawered unit {I think I have a picture on my old computer somewhere}. I took out the drawers and painted the unit with duck egg satin paint. Once it had had about three coats {and that took ages!} I stuck the drawers back into the unit using 'No Nails' - wow that stuff is so quick to dry, and strong. I also used this to stick the Create letters to the wall. I also want to introduce you to my full set of Promarkers. I coloured a circle sticker and wrote the name, before sticking to the end of the pen for easy selection. The pen layers are separated by coasters which fit the compartments perfectly.YUM!

Finally {for now!} This is my collection of clear stamps - my love, my joy. I still have LOADS of sets of stamps to sort out, but here on the shelves I have 293 - count 'em. CD's full of clear stamps. I know obscene, but they are my Achilles heel!

Well, I hope you've enjoyed a look around my room. Any questions, I'd love to hear them!

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Happy Easter!

I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish each and everyone of you a very Happy and Peaceful Easter. Joseph was visited by the Easter Bunny this morning, and he was very pleased with the couple of chocolate eggs he received, hopefully I will get to partake too, and there were no eggs for me :(

Well, my craft room revamp is so very nearly complete, I can almost taste it! I just simply can't wait to show you the photographs, and believe me, there will be lots! that's mainly I've been doing over the past couple of weeks, along with work of course. we've also moved the guinea pigs outside fir the summer, so I can imagine they are a lot happier with fresh air and grass on tap!

Oh, I knew I had something to tell you! Whilst Sheila and I were living it up at Ally Pally, and David and Joe were visiting family, the next door neighbours hedge caught fire and is currently looking very sorry for itself. Apparently, nothing obvious caused the fire, and our neighbour was asleep on the sofa when the fire started. He must have got such a shock! As usual the other neighbours on the cul-de-sac were brilliant, stretching their hoses and bringing buckets of water, so that the blaze was nearly out by the time the fire service arrived. Nothing of great importance was damaged, and everyone was safe which is the main thing...a hedge can be replaced!

Anyhow, I PROMISE, photos of my craft room will follow next week, along with some snazzy new projects I've created for my room.

Lots of love and Happy Easter!

Clare x

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Feel Better Soon!

Hi there, and a happy Saturday to you all!

Supplies: Card Blank: Craftwork Cards. Stamps: Penny Black Love Blush; Sentiment Stamp - Paula Pascual/Personal Impressions. Letraset Promarkers: Flowers: Red, Poppy, Crimson, Burgundy, Leaves:
Leaf Green, Pear Green, Forest Green. Background Paper {inside panel} Pink Petticoat Mocha Grannies Wallpaper.

I coloured the roses using the three shades of red mentioned, and when finished, added a touch of the blender pen to the centre of the petals to remove some colour. I decoupaged the petals also for a more reaslitic effect.

What a wonderful day it has been today - the sun has been shining, and I don't know about you, but it always gives me a rosy outlook on life too. Over the past few weekends I have been working on decorating my craft room, and having a good old sort out, and the transformation is nearly finished. It's so much better than before and I can 't wait to show you the results, including some new storage ideas (well, new for me anyway!). I have a few finishing touches to achieve, so as soon as I've done this I'll post some before, during and after pictures on here.

This afternoon I've really enjoyed myself making the card above. Again, it's on the clean and simple theme, and I just love this style at the moment. The stamp is from Penny Black, and I coloured with Letraset Promarkers. The gorgeous card blank is from Craftwork Cards, I just love these little cards! I covered the inside back panel with paper downloaded from Pink Petticoat. The sentiment stamp is one of the lovely Paula Pascual's designs from Personal Impressions. It's for my friend Chris, who had an operation yesterday. I hope it cheers her up.

Anyhoo, we have another and final Performance of our Festival play tonight, where I play the dippy and naive Joyce (do you think I'm typecast?!) so I'd better get the grease paint on!