Welcome to Squirrel's slightly nutty world of rubber stamping, papercraft, cats, Formula 1 and a variety of other off-the-wall topics. It's fabulous to see you and I hope you enjoy your time here. Please do pop back and visit me again soon!

Monday, 31 January 2011

LOTV - Not Square

Those sneeky little fairies over at LOTV this week have a challenge that is Anything But A Square.  Hmmmm! 

Perhaps I should call this one "Used To Be A Square", LOL!!

I started off with a 6x6 card and sort of took the scissors to it.  Cutest little LOTV fairy from the new releases, and an LOTV sentiment.  Papermania and Making Memories papers, couple of flower punches, some Card Candy and a sprinkle of Glamour Dust and there you have it.

Hugs, Sxx

Happy Birthday Delphine!

That cheeky, but adorable, little French minx known as Delphine has a birthday today


Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 30 January 2011


Wotcha!  Hope you are having a fabbie Sunday....mine's been quiet so far....got back from Church to see the end of the Australian Open tennis final.....hmmmm......bacon sandwich......a quick nap with Vince curled up on me (he's better than any sleeping tablet, but only in the armchair)...and then a little play while there is actually....wait for it.....yes.....SUNSHINE!  Whooo!

One little card, for two super challenges today:
DUTCH DARE CARD CHALLENGE have a recipie (3 papers, 3 flowers, 3 gems, 1 ribbon) and

Here's my card:

Ain't he just the cutest bouncy bunny?!  LOTV Spring Bunny With Daffodils, and I've painted him with distress inks.  The papers are all from the same K&Co collection which is, I think, called Daffodil.  Ribbon with the green bubbles is Anita's, EK Success retro flower punches and the pearls and gold borders are from my stash.

Here's a close up of the bunny:

Thanks for popping over, catch ya's all later.
Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 29 January 2011

Waaaaaaay Out Of The Comfort Zone!

Morning all, happy weekend to you!   Sending big, warm, furry hugs to those of you who are not feeling well - Dr Squirrel prescribes chocolate and cuddles.

Now then, this morning I have had to climb, kicking and screaming, out of my comfort zone to make a card for my sister-in-law's birthday.  She is a crafter too but has a style that is all her own.  She doesn't do stamps!  Aargh, how is that possible?!  So, rather than make her something she wouldn't actually like (seemed a bit selfish to make one that I liked when she's the one that's got to look at it) I had a go at trying to make something like she would.  And blimey, it was difficult!
Starting from the back, dark green lace paper is Papermania from the Verde Capsule Collection, cream, pink and green butterfly paper from Laura Ashley, small butterflies are an EK Success punch, the large one is Martha Stewart, tiny flowers are EK Success, leaves are Martha Stewart.  I had to get one stamp on here at least so used the LOTV birthday sentiment with a green Memento ink.  Gems and pearls are all from stash.

It was an effort so I hope that it pays off!

Before I dash off, quick reminder that my January Candy closes in two days (link in sidebar) so you still have til midnight on Monday to enter.

And my resignation - I am resigned to not being able to get back my pretty floral background so the new Squirrel's World look is clean and simple.  Bit like me really, only I'm more on the simple side.  Bit of a grubby little Squirrel really.  Less said about that the better I think..........

Catch ya all laters!  Hugs, Sxx

Monday, 24 January 2011

Aaargh, it's all gone ****s up!

No, you are not in the wrong place ..... something went horribly wrong when I updated my Shabby Blogs background code.....so this is a temporary look....had to go back to a basic template for now....will try and sort out properly at the weekend.

Hopefully normal service will be resumed without too many more tears!


Sunday, 23 January 2011

Celebrating Friendship (inc.PBSC January Sales Challenge)

Afternoon all, how ya doing?  It's been another grey cloud day here in the east of England - more of a day for curling up on the sofa with a mug of hot chocolate and good book than doing anything energetic.  We had planned to pop over and see my Oldies today but when I phoned, mum advised not to go over as poor old dad has a streaming cold.  I know you won't read this dad but I hope you are better soon, love ya.

So, as there was no parental visit to do, I've had a little play.  Both these cards are for very dear friends, one for a birthday and one for a "just because".

PENNY BLACK SATURDAY CHALLENGE have "January Sales" as the theme this week and I managed to purchase this Flutter Bye cutie in the sales from The Glitter Pot (satisfied grin).

I've watercolour painted Flutter Bye in distress inks.  The layout is borrowed from a Dawny P sketch for another challenge that I have already entered with a different card but the sketch was too fab not to use again!  Papers are Basic Grey from the very first pad of their papers I ever bought, the cover has long since been lost so can't tell you what they are called.  The sentiment is LOTV and the silver peel-off diamond borders are from stash.

My second card today isn't for a challenge, I just thought I'd share it with you.  There was a lot of hair-pulling over this one but it's my own fault for using such a colourful dp!

The image is Painting Rainbows from Sugar Nellie, distress ink painted.  DPs are, I think, Craftwork Cards but from an old collection called Tutti Fruity.  Matting card and corners is Little Sizzlets, the corners done with a Sizzlets photo corner die.  LOTV sentiment, Martha Stewart borders (thought the goo one looked like dripping paint) and EK Success retro flower punch with Card Candy and Martha Stewart frond punch to finish off.  This took an age - firstly with the painting and then getting the colours together.  But I'm happy with the end result - I think she looks as if she is painting the flowers (hopefully!).

Here's a close up:
Right then, that's me done for today.  I'm off to do something menacing to some mushrooms and then sort out work clothes for the morning.  Catch up with you all soon.

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Flat As A Pancake

Just for once, just once, I'd like to wake up in the morning and find that nothing is running, dripping, rasping, aching, creaking, groaning or falling off.   I am truly feeling every one of my 153 years right now.  What do you mean, I'm not that old?  Are you sure?

Feeling as flat as a pancake today and as low as these miserable grey clouds overhead.  Could do with a good dose of sunshine and some warmth I think.  Mind you, there has been some sun this week - we had one glorious, bright day - but I was shackled to my desk at work so didn't actually get to experience much of it.  Oh I am a right old grumpy pants so just ignore me and come and have a look at my cards.

I've got two for you today, and a few challenges to go with them:

And the challenges for this are:
CARDS FOR MEN - Let's Party
CRAFTY CATZ - Forgotten Stamp
STAMPING FOR THE WEEKEND - Get Warmed Up (colours)
CUTE CARD THURSDAY - 3, 2, 1  (stretching this one a bit, 3 papers, 2 of each candy dot, 1 handwritten sentiment)

The papers are a Papermania masculine collection from a year or two ago, the teddy in his brightest, bestest, party jumper is a Sugar Nellie Little Cotton Rabbits bear who has been sadly neglected of late, cardstock from stash, candy dots from stash and I did the sentiment myself (you can probably see the smudge).  Image coloured with ProMarkers.

And card number two:

Is for these challenges:
LILI OF THE VALLEY - Dawny's Sketch
STAMP SOMETHING - Something Cute
TRULY SCRUMPTIOUS - Colour Combo - Brown/Pink/Green

I love this LOTV image, it was one of the first stamps I bought from them, and it has had a lot of use.  Papers are a mix of Dovecraft and Little Sizzlets.  The very bad faux stitching done with the ProMarker line pen and the image is painted with distress inks.

Thanks for popping over, and I'm sorry for being such an old misery.  If you haven't got your name down for my JANUARY CANDY (Ice Skating Henry from Whiff Of Joy) then you still have until 31 January to enter the draw.

Hugs, Sxx

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

January Candy (CLOSED)

As it's been such a grey old start to the year so far, I thought I'd cheer things up by offering a little candy.

Some of my regulars may remember me rambling on about how I had managed to lose a stamp and ended up (after turning the house upside down) buying a replacement.  Well, guess what?!  Yes, two months later, the original has turned up!  How typical.

So the candy on offer is Whiff Of Joy's Ice Skating Henry - packet has been opened but Henry is still brand new and never used.
If you want to see what he can look like when he is coloured up, here's the card I made before Christmas using his replacement

Okay, here's the rules:
1.  Please leave a comment to this post
2.  Spread the word on your blog
3.  Email entries are fine if you don't have your own blog
4.  You don't have to be a follower but it would be nice if you were
5.  I insist that the winner emails me a picture of whatever you make with the stamp!

Closing date:  31st January (midnight GMT) - Winner will be posted a couple of days later so keep your eyes peeled.

Hugs, Sxx

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Happy Birthday.....

Well would you look at that, a post from me for four days in a row - that's got to be a first!  Good old scheduling huh?!

A very dear friend of mine is celebrating a big birthday at the end of this month (daren't tell you which one, even though she won't see this, she can read minds) and as we meet for a coffee at lunchtime most days I just had to use Coffee Break from Lili Of The Valley - if my legs were long enough to get on a stool that high, this could almost be me and my friend, except I don't have a purple hat.....yet.

Think I am addicted to these new Papermania Capsule Collections - these two were only delivered on Saturday and I've been using them ever since!  Martha Stewart hearts borders on the blue gingham paper, the calendar stamp is also LOTV and pearls are from stash.
Thanks for calling over to see me - hope to catch up with you soon!
Hugs Sxx

Monday, 17 January 2011

Little Old Ladies ..........

Monday again then......sigh....oh well, never mind, soon be the weekend again!  Now then....one of my mates, who is also one of my best customers for cards, made an interesting comment last week....she said "you don't have any old lady cards".....now, that made me think a bit.....did she mean cards picturing little old ladies....or cards for little old ladies.....the sort I would have given my nan.....lavender, lace and flowers...anyway.....here is a quick and very simple one.....any of you little old ladies like it?  (stop throwing things at me!)

Now they don't come much simpler do they.  Hero Arts Floral Wreath stamp, coloured with ProMarkers, a Penny Black sentiment stamp and a lovely Nestability shape.  I can see I need some practice with these L.O.L. cards.

Hugs, Squirrel xx

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Lili Of The Valley, Things With Wings

Once more into the breach dear friends, once more, or close up the wall with our English dead (William Shakespeare, King Henry V)  Funny how some challenges make you feel like this!  I had a right old tussle with this one from LILI OF THE VALLEY this week.....it didn't help that it took me AGES to decide which one of the delicious little fairies I wanted to use....then I changed my mind.....and changed it again....then I thought this sentiment was beautiful.....but which fairy to use with it.......!

In the end I settled on Dandelion Clock - she is such a little darlin', and I do think this sentiment works well with her.

Dandelion Clock is painted with distress inks.  The papers are V&A Linen papers and, oh my, they are delicious!  They are just so pretty that I nearly cried cutting into them (guess I'll just have to buy some more!).  I inked the edges of the flowered squares with Danube Blue Memento Ink to bring them forward a tiny bit, I also edged the sentiment shape as well.  Navy cardstock is Papermania, and I used two Martha Stewart punches for the double border....it looked a bit bare so I added the lavender pearl gems, and then a few more on the corners of the sentiment.  I actually made this yesterday but I wasn't happy with it.....something I couldn't quite put my finger on....but looking at it again this morning I could see it was because of the really hard contrast between the navy and the white so I softened down the edge of the circle with some pearlescent chalk.
So, there we go, that's my entry for the challenge.  Thanks for taking the time to pop over for a look-see.
Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 15 January 2011

2 Cards = 7 Challenges!

Happy Saturday everyone!  Ooooh, this has to be my most favourite day of the week.....work is over for a couple of days......I can chill and relax......no going to bed tonight worrying about Monday morning.....some decent easy-viewing on tv tonight......and it's Squirrel Stew for dinner!  What more could a small furry mammal want, apart from a little bit of crafting......so that's what I've been doing!

My first card for you started off with one challenge in mind, and then I went on a blog wander, and found a few more that I think it would fit nicely, so if you are sitting comfortably.....
Penny Black Saturday Challenge - Buffet (choose 4 items from 6 to use) (papers, 3 flowers, 3 gems, metal charm)
Our Creative Corner - Let's Play Dress Up (a simple sketch to fiddle with)
Oldie But A Goodie - Bright And Cheerful (PB stamp Butterfly Wishes)
My Partner In Crafting Crime - Something New (papers and big, fat pearls)
Stamp Something - Anything Goes

I've used Penny Black's Butterfly Wishes stamp, watercolour painted with distress inks (it was a bit of a challenge to make him look rounded - I've still got more of a tum than he has!), the papers are from my latest purchase of Papermania Capsule Collections - these are Blueberry and Boysenberry, and for once, all the papers in each collection work together really well, Sizzlets photo corners die, EK Success retro flower punch, Martha Stewart butterfly punch, those huge fat pearls are new to my stash but the tiny ones have been with me a while, can't tell you who made the sentiment - I got it from Lakeland when they still did craft stuff in their shops, and the metal charm paw print was from stash too.

Before I go on to my second card, I've done something stupid........I signed up for the Crafty Blogs rankings.  Considering I started the week at 923, I am thrilled to see that I'm slowly crawling my way up but.... I'm getting obsessed with it!  I know I'll never reach the top, but I'd be dead chuffed with being in the 100s, so come on over and visit me as much as you can, pleeeeeeeeeeeease!

Right, serious stuff, here is my second card and this is for
Dutch Dare Card Challenge - All Stiched Up

Poor Henry (Whiff of Joy), this is the third time he's been used - and all three times have been for knee replacement operations for friends!  This one is for our dear friend Ken, from church, who goes in on Monday.  He's been waiting for ages for the op and I think it is going to make such a difference to his life.  Papers are from a masculine collection by Dovecraft that I've had a while but still think that they are fabulous - isn't it a shame when really good collections vanish?  Orange and brown cardstock is Papermania.  I've painted Henry with distress inks (fast becoming my favourite method, as if you'd not guessed - and yes, I know, I still owe you a tutorial - when the weather improves I promise I'll do it), Martha Stewart border punch to add some interest, Martha Stewart button punch and hole punch for the frilly bits.  I went around the image with my pokey tool again and a Marvy le Plume pen to create the faux stitching, loving this technique just know (and it's all Helen's fault - she'll have me distressing next!).

Sorry that I'm rambled on so much, hope you are still awake - if you are, there is a technical question I'd like to ask you clever bloggers - anyone know how to make the panel (the bit with all the posts on) of my blog wider?

Anyhoo, now off to link to all those challenges, hope to see you later.
Hugs, Sxx

Monday, 10 January 2011

One For Fun

Yeah, I know, it's Monday - by the time you read this I shall be well on my way to work - so you see, I'm not really skiving, no matter how much my bodyclock hates Monday mornings ........... !!

This little lady from Lili Of The Valley is called Hello Cupcake - what a great name!  And perfect for a birthday, as I don't know anyone who doesn't like cake, do you?!  The sweet little sentiment is also Lili Of The Valley, from the calendar stamp sheet.  Works a treat I think.

The matting card is Coordinations and the papers are Papermania.  It was a real struggle to get the purples to coordinate, and even now I'm not sure I have the right tones together.  I do wish paper collections would follow through with one tone as the theme rather than confusing me! 

Anyway, here is the obligatory close-up:

Thanks for dropping by, hope to see you soon. 

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Penny Black Challenge - New Beginnings

Afternoon all!  Hope you are well.  Now, here's a question for you - when does afternoon become evening, and when does evening become night?  Often wondered that .....

Anyhoo, a little challenge card for you this afternoon and it is for PENNY BLACK SATURDAY CHALLENGE who are looking for New Beginnings.  I've gone with an engagement card.

Aren't these Daisy Bunnies the sweetest?  Stamped in Memento ink and watercolour painted with distress inks.  I used the same colours on both bunnies but one is watered down more to give the lighter look for the one I think is the girl bunny.  Had a bit of trouble with my flowerpots as the ink was drying too fast and I had to really get the brush wet, which of course had an interesting "soggy" effect on the Bristol Board.  Backing papers are from a Laura Ashley collection that I've had a while but never even opened (oh the shame) and the cardstock for matting is Coordinations.  Sentiment is one of the fabulous circulars from Lili Of The Valley.

Here's a bunny close-up:

Thanks for popping over to see me.  I'm now off to have a prowl round blogland to see what all you lovely crafters have been up to when I've not been watching.

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Oh Baby!

Don't you just love it when a plan comes together?!  My boss discovered that she has become an auntie again this week, a baby brother (as yet unnamed) has arrived for her niece, Isabella, so she asked if I would make a card for her to send to her brother and his partner (like I needed to be asked twice!).

And the card I have created fits perfectly with three of this week's challenges:
Creative Card Crew - New Beginnings
Dutch Dare Card Challenge - New Beginnings
Cute Card Thursday - Out With The Old

I simply adore this LOTV Baby Blanket stamp, I have used it soooo many times in the last year.  Image is stamped in Tuxedo Black Memento Ink onto Bristol Board and then watercolour painted in Tim Holtz Distress Inks.  To qualify for Cute Card Thursday you have to use old papers etc, and these papers definitely fit the bill - they are from a DCWV Stack that I must have had for about four years.  The card stock is Coordinations and of course I used my trusted Nestabilities on the Cuttlebug for those perfect circles.  The sentiment is also LOTV.  Buttons and DMC embroidery thread from stash and finished off with Pebbles Inc Candy Dots.

Here's a close up of the little fella:
Thanks for popping over.  Just about to put the kettle on - anyone fancy a cuppa?
Hugs, Sxx

You might also like:

Better Photos for LOTV Challenge

There is a glimpse of daylight this morning so I quickly snapped a couple of better photos for my entry into this weeks LILI OF THE VALLEY CHALLENGE - Rosie With Presents was just screaming out for her to be a little red head!  Unfortunately, Vince was trying to help me and I didn't notice the stray cat hair that had snuck into the picture until I uploaded it just now!

Not sure how well you can see the detail of her hair but I used one of those paintbrushes with long and short bristles, just damp, and it gives a lovely effect of hair strands I think.

Will pop back later with another card for another challenge.
Hugs, Sxx

Friday, 7 January 2011

Lili of the Valley Challenge - Lena's Sketch

Morning all.  Are we ever going to get daylight again?  I made this card last night when it was too dark to take a decent photo (hence the fuzzy one, which I will replace tomorrow) and it's nearly 9.00 Friday morning and it's still dark!!  Don't know about being a squirrel - think I'm becoming part mole!!

Anyhoo, a fabulous sketch by Lena over at LILI OF THE VALLEY CHALLENGE this week and I just had to have a play:

Now, you know me by now and how much I struggle with all these gorgeous embellishments - so it's another straightforward card for you this time, surprise!  This little lady was in my Christmas stocking and I've been itching to ink her up.

I've coloured her with distress inks using mostly Tumbled Glass, Spiced Marmalade, Rusty Hinge, Dusty Concorde and Tattered Rose.  There are a few highlight colours like Spun Sugar, Antique Linen and Worn Lipstick in there for good measure.

The papers are MME Fine & Dandy - True Blue, the corners are Sizzix Architectural Accents dies and the Candy Dots and gems are from the stash.

Thanks for popping over, hope to see you later.
Hugs, Sxx

Monday, 3 January 2011

Little Critters!

Last day of the holidays - boo, hiss - and himself decides that we'd go to the zoo.  Bearing in mind that it is January, perishing cold and bleak, you can image our shock to find on arrival that the carpark was at capacity!  It was more like sardine city than a zoo today.  Anyway, because it was so busy I've only a few pics for you.

It's back to the other zoo tomorrow, yep, work.  So I'll see you all again at the weekend.

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 2 January 2011

My wish for 2011 is a .........

........ solar power camera so I never need to run round the house like a loony again trying to find rechargable batteries that have actually been charged!!  There must be someone out there with inventing skills - if you can come up with the goods I'll only charge a 10% lifetime royalty for the idea!

I was a bit late starting to play this afternoon because the Toad and I were playing Raving Rabbids TV Party on the Wii - there is one section where you have to dance along with the moves ....... it is certainly entertaining, especially as the beloved one has two lefts.  It's on your left dear, no, your other left.  Bless his cottons.

A belated birthday card to show you today and the photo is rubbish as I had to take it on my phone (due to lack of camera batteries!).

I received this adorable SugarPlums stamp from my mate Zippy in my Christmas parcel from her (she did spoil me badly this year) and she is a joy to colour.  She wasn't such a joy to cut out as, shock, horror, I accidentally cut off the bobble on one of her antennae.  Thank heaven for black gems!  She's coloured with distress inks, the papers are Making Memories and the sentiment is Paula Pascual from Personal Impressions.

Thanks ever so much for popping over, I hope you are having a lovely relaxing Sunday, whatever you are up to.  See you soon!

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 1 January 2011

A Stitch In Time - Penny Black at Allsorts

Happy 2011 everyone!  Hope there aren't too many sore heads out there today.  I was tucked up in bed by 11.00 last night, but was woken again by the fireworks which went on for over an hour - obviously the financial crisis hasn't hit the pyrotechnics industry just yet!

My last card of 2010 featured a mouse and here we are with the first card of 2011 with more mice for you!  PENNY BLACK AT ALLSORTS January Challenge is All You Need Is Love and I think these little critters are certainly performing a labour of love with their stitching ........

I've used A Stitch In Time by Penny Black and painted with distress inks.  I've kept the layout of the card very simple as I think the image is enough without embellishments for this one.

The fabulous rich coloured papers are from Papermania's Persimmon collection.  I used my new pokey tool to make the stitch holes around the edge of the image panel and a Marvy le Plume pen for the green faux running stitch.

Thanks for popping by, hope to see you again soon.

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