Friday, 29 April 2016

My First Craftwork Cards Online Craft Class is Live Tonight!

Hi there everyone!

How are things with you? The weather here is so changeable! One minute it's sunny and the next it's blowing a gale and hailing!

Tonight is the first Online Craft Class with Clare on the Craftworks Card blog! This will start at 7pm and there will be posts every 30 minutes with the last post at 9pm. There will be step by step photographs along the way and we would love to see what you make!

Here's a sneaky peek of what you will be creating!

If you would like to know more about the class, click here and there's also details of what you will need so you can get everything gathered, and instructions on how to shut the world out and give you two hours of peace and quiet. Sorry, only joking, I'm not a miracle worker!

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Desk Tidy Bin and Pin Cushion

Hi Everyone!

Today I thought I'd share something completely different with you! I had a day off prepping for shows on Monday so thought I would do some sewing. I haven't done any for ages so I had to scrabble around to find everything, particularly material!

I had wanted to make a desk tidy bin for ages, but never had the time to get around to it, so this was my opportunity. Because I'm not experienced at sewing I had a look on the internet for a pattern to use and I found this one from Etsy.

It was really easy to make once I got used to the way the pattern was written, and surprisingly it used only a small amount of material. I decided to make two at the same time as I had my machine out, so why not!

The material is from Ikea (you see, good for furniture, storage AND material!) and it was a small piece I had so I must've got from the off cuts section. I used a neutral colour for the lining, and I used ribbon for the strips that hold the bag to the pin cushion. 

The pin cushion is filled with rice (pudding rice) to be exact, and is a good weight to hold it on my desk. 

I'll use it for scraps of paper and my backings from double sided tape etc for when I can't be bothered to turn around and throw bits in the bin on an ad hoc basis. 

I can see me making many of these :) when I have time of course!

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

My New Craft Room - Part 2.

Hi there everyone,

I hope you enjoyed seeing part 1 of my craft room tour yesterday. Here's the rest.

Underneath the worktop height area are my expedite shelving and I used two of the spaces for A4 paper separators. These are guessed it...Ikea. Here is have my watercolour and linen cardstock, coloured A4 cardstock,  kraft cardstock, white and black cardstock. 

Just underneath my worktop I have three paper trays, one is for copy paper, one for craftwork cards digital paper and one for stamping cardstock. 

This is my stamping and circuit cartridge area. I hardly use the circuit cartridges as I tend to just use the cuts digitally available on the Cricut design studio, but they are there like a comfort blanket if ever I need them. The next shelf up is some of my clear stamps. they are rammed in like a good 'un. I have tried to classify these and not done too badly. next shelf up is my very small collection of wood mounted stamps. At one time I had over 600 of this type of stamp but no where to store them, and they were very rarely used as they couldn't be seen. So they had to have a cull, and I just kept my most versatile and favourite ones. I also use a two tier cake stand to store my colour sprays and distress stains. Top shelf is masks (in a recipe flip book), my stampin'up stamps, and again more clear stamps!

These four shelves house my collection of more ribbon, paper pads, 12 x 12 paper and cardstock, stickers (alphabet etc) in the green spined book, stationery, and miscellaneous stuff. There is also my jewellery making goodies on here too. 

Finally, there is the last shelving unit. In the drawers is my stash of wool, and then there's my stash of biscuits, most haunted DVD's four red folders with even more stamps, notebooks, magazines and various books. I also have a masshouive collection of 12 x 12 patterned papers and cardstock down the side, which I'm thinking of moving as it's very hard to get to, probably to the centre of the run. Down the side of these are boxes in numerous sizes in case I ever need a box to send samples etc anywhere. On the stand is some of my sizzix big dies, embossing folders and some of my less used metal dies.

Well I really hope you have enjoyed the tour of my craft studio. I now it will probably change numerous times ad infinitum but I love it up there. My crafty haven!

Monday, 25 April 2016

My New Craft Studio - Part 1!

Hi there everyone!

Today I thought I would share with you my new craft studio. This was built May/June of last year and I have been working in it since probably October/November of 2015 and I LOVE IT! It is my own little haven of craftiness that I can take myself to on a daily basis and get away from people, mess and just be at one with my inkiness.

In a previous post I wrote about having the craft studio built and you can read more about this here. At the end of that post I was waiting for the interior to be insulated, plasterboarded and painted and Peter was in the process of putting the internet up there. We also still had a bit of painting to do on the balustrades. Well not much has changed on the outside re: the painting, but wow! has it changed on the inside like you wouldn't believe!

As you can see I still need to paint the veranda balustrades but I just knew that once I got the inside to the point that I could actually start getting my stuff into there I wouldn't be interested in painting! Having said that I promise that the first good few days of weather I'll be doing this then the painting is finished. We have also planted a few roses and bedding plants to the front of the craft studio to make it look pretty.

 Mr. P has also put up my 'We Can do it' metal sign. it's a bit chilly for it at present but it's a lovely place to sit out of an evening and enjoy the garden and sun set.

My bunny planter doubles as a door stop on the entrance to the studio. The double doors are great for when I have lots to get in and out.

The first thing you get to as you walk through the doors is this view. Yes! Mr. P has finished the lighting and all the plastering and painting has been completed. We might paint the end eaves white but the middle ceiling beam will be yacht varnished. I had a worktop fitted as a desk and then stepped up to worktop height (which you will see better on later photos. I got the higher shelves with the jars on for my buttons and flowers from Ikea. And don't you just love the light shade? Also from Ikea. 

On the back wall is the main bulk of my crafty stuff. Nuff said 

Underneath the worktop height area is the classic crafter's friend - the expedit shelving unit, now renames as Kalax. I also have the new favourite for Crafters - the Raskog trolley, in my fave colour. I have two of these as I couldn't resist. More on these later.

This is to the left of the door. Again I have Expedit shelving. the top boxes in these are turquoise material and the bottom are white plastic - very sturdy. Here I keep my kettle, coffee. You know -the  essentials. I have no running water so I fill my kettle each morning and refill whenever needed. I do have a mini fridge to keep my milk cold though. I have my sewing machine on here (in the centre).

The two boards either side of the window are my magnetic boards for the main dies I use regularly. There is also a couple of ribbon holders on the side of the cupboard to the left of the picture which is just the tip of the iceberg. I love ribbon. 

Here is the first of my Raskog Trolleys. This one is my stamping trolley. The top tier has my acrylic blocks, misti, stamp scrubbers, baby wipes and also holds pots for my brushes brayers, pens, scissors etc. The second tier holds various inks and embossing powders, and the bottom tier holds my gilding flakes, acrylic paints, masking fluids. It's brilliant, I can just wheel it to my desk when I need it. 

This is the raised worktp height area. I just love how Darren (the carpenter I used to fit it for me) has managed to step up from the desk to the worktop so neatly. To the left of the picture are my Stampin' up inks and distress inks, then theres my pro markers next to that. This is where I keep my A4 guillotine too. 

This is on the other side of the craft studio. On top of the unit (again Ikea) is my Minc machine and my laser printer. Underneath this is my Cricut Explore and Silhouette Cameo. I have drilled holes into the back of the unit to allow me to put my leads etc through to keep everything neat. And yes there is room for 2 electronic die cutting machines in my life! 

Underneath these are just some of my stamps. I love stamps. Can't get enough of stamps.  There are 4 drawers of stamps all in CD cases in these drawers. I think there's about 350 CD cases in these drawers. My other stamps are stored in other areas. More on that later.

Then I have my collection of bins These are labelled (I used vinyl with my Silhouette Machine) as general waste, cardboard and plastic. I'm going to change the plastic one to paper, as where we live the cardboard and plastic go in the same recycling bin. Duh! On top of that is my ink jet printer I use the laser jet for my Minc machine (which I've only really just got) and the ink jet for my Craftwork Cards USB printing). 

Here is the second Raskog trolley. I don't use this to the best of my ability but I like my 'hack'. I fitted the top tier upside-down so I could use it to hold my Big Shot Plus. The next tier has cardstock in a rainbow of colours cut to A5 size and my Craftwork Cards Candi, and the bottom tier has numerous tools. hot glue gun, corner chomper, crop a dile etc.

The drawers to the left hold my glues, foam pads and less used tools, adhesive gems, circle cutter, rulers, ribbon (yes more ribbon), and the bottom drawer is batteries, cameras chargers etc etc.I use those removeable hooks for my heat tool and hot glue gun so they are always to hand.  

This is the 'flight deck' of the whole room. My lovely desk! e had a satellite dish fitted to the studio so I could get TV as an ariel wouldn't work due to the trees that surround the studio. I also had a freesat box too so it made use of that. The TV also has a DVD player so I can have films on in the background when I'm crafting. hen there's my computer. In the end we didn't use ethernet cable (Peter accidentally cut it short by about 5 metres, the studio is 100 metres from the house!), we got a contraption that you plug into your router in the house and an electric socket, then another plug goes in a electric socket where you want the internet. This then plugs into your computer and hey presto! It's great - fast enough to watch videos and most importantly speak to Sheila Halliwell, my best friend on Whatsapp! What more could a girl ask for! 

Next to that is my stand I got from Ebay. Still a lot of space for things! I use this for my stickles glue, re-inkers and alcohol inks.

The drawers to the left hold my glues, foam pads and less used tools, adhesive gems, circle cutter, rulers, ribbon (yes more ribbon), and the bottom drawer is batteries, cameras chargers etc etc.I use those removeable hooks for my heat tool and hot glue gun so they are always to hand.  

I have two A3 craft mats. One on the black side (inches) and one on the white side (Cm's) this allows me have both forms of measurement to hand. If I'm working with white card I work on the black mat and if I'm working on black card or dark colours I use the white mat. it works really well. under this is a plastic clear mat from ikea. It's meant to be a desk protector, but I use it to put inks on and it protects my surfaces. 

I have a shelf (Ikea, are you noticing a pattern here?) that stores my nice things including photos of me and Peter, my teddy my son Joe bought for me with his hard earned money for Mother's Day, my alien from Disney World, My mini me Michael Jackson . I also use the removable hooks for my scissors. I have a different pair for paper and ribbon. 

Wow! This is a long post! I will show you part two tomorrow!

Sunday, 24 April 2016

All Change Please!

Hi there,

I really hope this post finds you well and enjoying the brighter weather we seem to be having each day.

Since I last posted there have, yet again been some drastic changes to my life! I was working at Wren (they are an East Yorkshire kitchen bedroom and bathroom manufacturer), living with Peter, Joe,  two greyhounds and two cats and generally enjoying life. even though I was happy, I was having pangs of regret about letting my crafting career slip, and especially as I had just had built and amazing craft haven at the top of the garden, and I really wanted to get back into it as a career, but I really thought those days were behind me. I remember saying to my best friend Sheila 'What can I do? I just maybe better forget it!'

Then, one day, out of the blue I received an email from Sue Taylor. I was sat on the sofa casually checking my emails and within a few seconds of receiving this email you could have knocked me over with a feather! Literally. It was a good job that I was sat down or I would've fallen down. It was like I had quietly asked and Sue had answered. A few emails back and forth, and a couple of meetings later, and I was the New Starter at Craftwork Cards. I believed in fate and destiny before, but boy! did this cement my beliefs!

When I looked into it, it had been 3 years - 3 years since I last appeared on Create and Craft, but with Julie's help it was like coming home. everyone has made me feel so welcome to join the Craftwork Cards Clan It's truly an honor and a pleasure to be working for such an esteemed high quality craft brand, and with such wonderful people.

Its been 2 months since my first shows representing craftwork cards and it's only now that I have had a chance to write this and update my blog. What a whirlwind it's been. It's like Fate said to me "c'mon kid, you asked so I answered. Now buckle up cos this i going to be the fastest ride you've ever been on!"

So let's cut to now. So it's not too boring. I don't want you falling asleep, then waking up at 3am with dribble down your chin and you blaming me for your wasted evening.

Every Friday at 10m n the Craftwork Cards Blog I feature a card I have made. It's called 'Craftwork Cards makes with Clare' - Catchy eh? On the last Friday of every month I hold an online class. A couple of weeks before I will put a list of what's required for you to make the card and then on the night at 7.30pm the first step of the project (along with pictures) will be posted. You can join in and make the project as I will post another step and picture every 30 minutes. Then it's your opportunity to post what you have made and leave a comment for everyone to view your masterpiece.

I've recently done a couple of shows with the Chambray and Lace and Vintage backgrounds paper pads and 'Say it with Words' Chalkboard and Finesse pads and so I thought I would share with you just a couple of the projects I made with these brilliant kits.

This card uses the 6x6 Kraft card blanks. I cut up the finesse word panel for a different look. I also added Stardust stickers glitter to the letters and added handwritten lettering to the Kraft candi. The rose panel at the bottom is the off cut from the finesse word panel which I colored in with pro markers. 

On the next card I embossed the paper from the Vintage paper pack and sanded it back to give a distressed look. I then added a little lacy ribbon and again cut around the chalkboard panel.

I really hope you like these cards.

I've also just completed a couple of shows on Create and Craft using the brand new collection from Craftwork Cards called 'Fabulous Fashionista' and let me tell you, it really is fabulous! Everything in the collection is just to die for! It's just so sophisticated and classy! I'll be sure to post a couple of my projects on here very soon.

Tomorrow I thought I'd share my new Craft Studio with you in all it's glory! Thanks for stopping by!