Lovely garden flower dies …

lovelyflowerdiesOn Thursday this week I’m launching a new set of garden flower dies as well as some nifty edging dies too! I confess I have totally fallen in love with the cards we have all made for the two shows, so if you have time on Thursday 27th, there’s a show on Create and Craft TV at noon and another at 3pm.

This card uses the lily of the valley option from the set of garden dies. The main image is from the Jane Shasky double CD – one I keep beside my computer as it is my real ‘go to’ answer for card making!

This sample was made by Suzanne and it’s really pretty isn’t it? It’s not too difficult (many of the nicest cards are straightforward) and needs few instructions apart from noting that the case, the lenses in the pair of glasses and the tea in the cup have all had a quick coat of crystal lacquer. This adds some lovely highlights and just finishes the card perfectly.

The other thing worthy of a mention is the green tinged edging that’s made by swiping a distress ink pad gently around the edge. This ageing, or distressing, looks so effective and is a very simple technique to apply.

So whether you set your recorder, or watch live, do tune in to see all the samples. The set of edger dies is in the afternoon and I have some really fun ideas for you to copy!


Wisteria tunnel

WisteriaThanksWisteria looks amazing however it appears in your garden – but one of the most beautiful displays I have ever seen was a tunnel of wisteria, grown over metal arches. This card reflects the same feel.

You need a set of nesting dies – there are many that would work, it just needs one of the ends to be curved. You could use any arch window die – or as Sylvie did when she made this particular card as a sample for my July TV show – a Spellbinders labels 10 die and then hand cut the straight pieces with a good craft knife.

Thomas Kinkade is an excellent choice for the cottage at the end of the tunnel but there are images in our Sung Kim pads too – or even a stamped image if you prefer. Build the tunnel as you go along, place the first layer and then add some wisteria onto that (I like Glossy Accents and a cocktail stick). I find the easiest way with our flower dies is to cut loads out of good white card – I use Elegance Satin 300gsm from our website, and then use pens (Promarkers work brilliantly on Elegance Satin) to tint the flowers to the shade you want.

Gradually build the layers adding wisteria as you go along, remembering that the bottom has to remain level. Finally, add a little sentiment at the top.


Patchwork and Roses

FloralThatchThe idea for this card came from the saying “roses around the door”. I was trying to get the feel of a country cottage with patchwork and roses growing around the door. We used to have roses climbing up the front of our cottage but sadly the ivy got the better of them and now we just have ivy round the door, which really doesn’t have the same ring to it, does it?

Thomas Kinkade is always a good ‘go to’ product for cottage designs and this is from the Thomas Kinkade Card Collection Volume One. The backing papers are from the Joanna Sheen Backing Paper pads Volume 3.

This is a very simple card to assemble – just use a Spellbinders oval nesting die to create the aperture and then get to work on the roses.

The Wild Rose Signature Die is a pleasure to use, the diecuts fall out of the die beautifully so no scrabbling about and there are various different ways you could colour the flowers. You can just cut them from assorted pink/lilac/pastel coloured card. Or, alternatively, you can cut them from white card (our Elegance Satin 300gsm) and work on them with Promarkers. It really is easier than you may think. Just scribble across all the edges using the chisel end of the pen (don’t panic or try and colour it all completely) and then take a lighter colour and again using the chisel end, cover the entire flower, focussing especially on the joins between dark and light. Then if you want to blur the joins even more, take the blender pen and use that in circular motions to mix it all together.

I like adding self-adhesive pearls in the centres but you could just have, say, some yellow card behind them or leave it as it is. I use Pinflair glue gel to attach them to the card, then they will be movable for a little while.


The perfect hanging basket!

HydrangeaBasketI love hanging baskets and every year I promise we will have really splendid ones as you see in commercial places like pubs and shopping centres. I have discovered my problem – they all rely on an automated watering system, hence the beautiful and prolific blooms. I, however, have to rely on a Richard watering system, which although wonderful, amazingly hard working and… (what else should I say?) – just doesn’t seem to want to water the hanging baskets many, many times a day and do you blame him? He did try suggesting we had plastic flowers in the baskets this year – and I said I felt my Mother would send down a bolt of lightning onto him if he did that!

This card shows one of many ways to use our brilliant Signature hanging basket die, together with the Signature Busy Lizzie die and the Signature Sabrina Lace Border. The embossing folder is called Tied Together and must, I am sure, have been one of the best-selling embossing folders of all time.

Layer some embossed white card over a gentle mustard or mid-green card. Layer a smaller panel of white card with the same green and some pink. Assemble the card with the embossed layer, then some Sabrina Lace, then the smaller panel. Now put the hanging basket in place with the filling/soil made by cutting out some beige card or white card coloured with pens.

Now cut lots of the Busy Lizzy flowers and colour those with pens too, you could cut them out of pastel card if you hate using pens. Attach the hanging basket to the smaller panel using glue gel to raise the basket slightly. Now arrange your flowers and leaves as shown.

As an important embellishment, there is a self-adhesive pearl on every visible junction of the embossed card and a little dot of glitter in the centre of the flowers. Add the chains from the die and a ribbon bow and you’re all set!


An Ocean Birthday


This was a sample made for my July TV show by Sylvie which I feel didn’t get enough airing – I just love it and the ideas used here are really worth showing you.

Start with an 8 x 8” white card blank and then layer some of the beautiful blue marble paper from our Joanna Sheen Backing Papers Volume One onto silver mirri.

Cut several pieces of the Louisa embellishment (Louisa Lace Border Signature Die). Try the 300gsm Elegance satin card on our website – it works brilliantly. Cut another piece of white card to about 5” square and colour it with distress inks. To get that wonderful bubble effect – flick tiny amounts of water at it once you have coloured it. Then draw round the splodge with a white gel pen to create bubbles.

Now cut several Ocean corner pieces (Signature Ocean Corner die) and 3 or 4 Sammy Seahorses (I chose that name – makes me smile every time!). Colour them all with Promarkers and assemble the seahorses one on top of the other and then apply a layer of crystal lacquer.

Now assemble the card. Add a layer of dark blue net/tulle between the middle panel and the back of the card and add the Louisa pieces to the back of your middle panel before you stick it down rather than trying to glue it afterwards. Add all the corners and then the seahorse and fish.

Add a final row of Louisa bits and a die cut Happy Birthday to finish the card.