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!

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Catch Me If You Can!

Happy Sunday everyone!  Did you see today's Belgian Grand Prix?  Wow!  What a race that was, talk about exciting! 

I'm sure I may have told you this story before but years ago I had the privilege to drive a little bit of the circuit (in a road car I hasten to add) from the start/finish straight, through the infamous Eau Rouge and up to Le Combes.  Couldn't go any further round because of deep snow though, but just to be able to say "Yeah, I've driven Eau Rouge" is a wonderful thing - and it has stopped many a male conversation dead in it's tracks, lol.

Anyway, thinking of F1 has lead me to my creation today for this week's LESS IS MORE challenge - honestly, you need to start worrying about the way my brain works sometimes ......

The challenge for this week is to combine three past challenges so I have chosen these:
  • Week 6 - OLC Off The Edge (several drivers went off the edge today)
  • Week 7 - Masculine (lots of very fit young drivers - woah, down girl)
  • Week 9 - A Touch Of Red (what else but Ferrari)
So here is my card:

And the ingredients are:
Stamped Image:  Penny Black "Chase Me"
Colouring Medium: Distress Inks
Sentiment: Hero Arts from Birthday Messages clear set
Stamping Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black and Lady Bug

Thanks for popping over to see me, it is so nice to have friends round.  Hope to be able to visit you very soon.

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 27 August 2011

To Have & To Hold

Afternoon peeps, happy Saturday to you!  Well, what a funny ol' day it's been - rain, sun, rain, heavy rain, sun, heavier rain, sun.  We've had no internet for most of the day and then just when I'd settled down to watch the qualifying for the Belgian Grand Prix we had a power cut - aaaargh!  Thankfully it wasn't off for long so calm was restored.  Honestly, no F1 for a month while the teams have their summer break and the power company does that to me.  What are they trying to do to a Squirrel's nerves?!

Anyhoo, the Toad asked me to make a wedding card for one of the girl's in his office.  Now I don't know about you but I find it difficult to make a personal card for someone I've never met so I had to wing it a bit with this.  Let's face it, Toad had no idea of the wedding colour scheme, he couldn't even remember what colour Claire's hair is and he shares an office with her!

Here's what I made:

Ingredients for this card are:

Colouring Medium:  Distress Inks
Sentiment: Wild Rose Studio Contemporary Wedding Words
Papers: Wild Rose Studio Wedding Bells
Other:  Nesties and Anita's Silver Outline Border Peel-Offs
Cardstock:  Partners "cobweb" embossed ivory satin card
Challenge entered:  Hanna And Friends "LOTV"

And while I was playing today, I chose this image for my mum's birthday card:

Isn't she such a sweetie?  This is another Lili Of The Valley called Milly Hello and again she is painted in Distress Inks.  Now I need to work out what to do with her!

I noticed while I was painting that my brushes are wearing out - they are developing frizzy tips!  And that is not something a girl needs to be suffering from.  I guess I know what I'll be buying when payday comes round again.

Hugs Sxx

Friday, 26 August 2011

Ooh, get me, going all arty!

Pleased to report that craft space is now MUCH tidier and I managed to find some surface area too!  And one of the things about clearing up the junk is that you find lovely little treasures that you had forgotten about.

This afternoon I found half a packet of 6x4 glossy photo paper.  I also found, deeply buried, my brayer.  So with paper in one hand and brayer in the other what else could I do but have a little bit of a play.  Now, when you get to the picture you are bound to shout "Hang on a minute, that's not brayered" and you would be right.  The brayered version went straight in the bin.  I was using Distress Inks and they dried instantly so no room for mistakes with a roller!

Instead, I used Bev's cloud technique with hand-cut templates and an old sponge.  The inks I used were Broken China, Tumbled Glass, Spun Sugar, Scattered Straw and Chipped Sapphire.

And in my parcel this morning was this stamp - Penny Black Winter Sky - I fell in love the instant I saw it.  It just brings memories flooding back of childhood autumn/winters with a bright, crisp, fresh day, the bare branches and the rooks cawing away waiting for the fields to be ploughed and the rich smell of the freshly turned soil. 

Oh my gosh, came over all nostalgic then.  Anyways, much better than the sound of kids screaming and the smell of fuel fumes from cars being left running so the screen demists that we get these days.  One day we will win that jackpot and it'll be straight back to the countryside for me!

Hugs Sxx

Heaps Of Stuff And CANDY WINNER

How I wish that I was tidy
How I wish that I was neat
How I wish I was methodical
Like others down out street.
I tried to stem the rising tide
I tried to hold it back
But I have been the victim
Of a heap of stuff attack.

Yes, heaps of stuff come creeping,
They clutter up the hall.
And heaps of stuff are softly
Climbing halfway up the wall.
At each end of the staircase
Is a giant heap, a stack;
One to carry up the stairs
And one to carry back.

In a heap of stuff invasion
They settle everywhere -
They grovel on the lino
They tower on the chair.
You're searching for a jacket,
"Is it in here?" you shout,
And, opening the cupboard door,
A heap of stuff falls out.

But heaps are many-faceted
And heaps are multi-faced
And what a heap is made of
Will depend on where it's placed.
Now if it's in the passage
It is mostly boots and shoes
And if it's on the sofa
It is magazines and news.

If it's in the shed
It's broken propagating frames
And if it's in the bathroom
Well, it's best to say no names,
And if it's in the bedroom -
Your own and not the guest's -
The heap of stuff is mostly made
Of socks and shirts and vests.

For a heap is indestructible,
It's something you can't fight.
If you split it up by day
It joins back up at night.
So cunningly positioned
as from room to room you trek,
Increasing all the chances
That you trip and break your neck.

But step into my parlour
Now I've forced the door ajar;
I'll excavate an easy chair -
Just cling there where you are.
And together we'll survey it
Till our eyes they feast enough
On the tidiest home in England
Underneath the heaps of stuff.

Pam Ayres

Happy Friday everyone!  So why has the Squirrel broken into verse I hear you ask, well, on my long overdue day off, after the postie delivered my latest parcel of goodies (only a small one I hasten to add), I looked around my craft space in the conservatory and realised that I needed to have a SERIOUS tidy up.  It's like an overstuffed sofa out there, scraps of paper that I've saved to use but which are, in all probability, far too small to be of any practical purpose, those tiny little cellophane packets of gems and beads that come with a certain magazine, half used packs of envelopes, again from said magazine, tools that I have rarely, if ever, used but could not live without at the time.  And stamps.  Oh. My. Word.  I have a problematic stamp addiction indeed.  Packets of pens and pencils, watercolour pencils, watercolour paints, ProMarkers and Copics, Distress Inks (pads and ReInkers), rulers, protractors, scoring boards (why on earth do I have three different scoring boards for Heaven's sake?).  So my five minute tidy up has turned into a mammoth event, and I've had to walk away from it for ten minutes before I break down into a wimpering heap in a corner full of other stuff! 

So, my point of the verse?  It needs a section about craft stuff in there, and quickly!

OK, ramble over.  Now let's get down to business, the winner of my Sugar Nellie rubber stamp candy.  Mr RNG has been cranked up, left to whirr for a bit, and he has selected .........

Number 11 and that is you UMA (A Sense of Uma)

Well done my little chickpea - could you confirm that you are still interested in the stamp and I'll get it in the post to you pronto.

That's me done for now - back to my heaps of stuff and who knows I might get a card done later!

Hugs Sxx

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Mind The Gap!

Evening all, hope you are all fine and dandy.  Well, I had some good news at work yesterday (which I will share with you when it has been officially announced in the office) which will take a huge weight off my shoulders - one that has been there for the past nine months or so.  Sadly it does not involve a pay rise!  So to celebrate I have snuck in a day's holiday at short notice so tonight is the start of my four day weekend (yipee).

Normally on a Thursday night you would find me making my entry for the LOTV challenge but as Lili's Fairies are on holiday there's no challenge this week.  Sob!  But that didn't stop me getting the stamps out.

Now, why do my gatefold cards always end up with a gap in the middle?  It doesn't seem to matter how I do it, that pesky gap always appears.  I found a packet of rather neglected and somewhat sun faded marble effect cards that I bought in Lakeland, ooh, maybe five years ago?  One of the pink cards was faded down to white on the outer edge so my weird little brain said Well if I cut that bit off, and do the same to a blue one, I can make a gatefold.  I measured so carefully, I cut using a guillotine, I put the cards together, yes, all is well.  Then I glued them together and that **** gap appeared!  How?!?!

Anyway, here is my card for tonight - haven't searched for any challenges but it will be Squirrel's Law that over the next few days there will be heaps of pink/blue/gatefold/birthday challenges appearing and I'll be stuffed because I published this before the challenge!  Happens a lot.  Beginning to wonder if I'm partly psychic.  Or is that psychotic.  Not sure, lol!

Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Image: Lili Of The Valley Rosie With Cake
Colouring Medium: Distress Inks
Card Base & Matting: Lakeland Marbled Pastel Cards (long since discontinued) and
Co-ordinations Card
Sentiment: Lili Of The Valley Circular Sentiments
Decoration: Marianne Creatibles frondy thing die, Tesco tiny flower punch, Sizzix corner die, Magnolia Old Lace border die (which nicely covered that gap!)

Thanks for visiting - I hope you have entered my little Sugar Nellies Followers Candy (ending at midnight tonight) - if not, now's your chance.

Hugs, Sxx

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Two Things

First Thing
Crumbs, I've had a game and a half trying to get signed in to Blogger this morning!  Anyone else having trouble again?

Anyhoo, I'm here now.  Last night I couldn't settle until I had undertaken some drastic surgery to my disasterous Little Festive Robins card which involved a large pair of scissors and a craft knife.  Here is the new version of it, which I am much happier with and as it is using mostly Basic Grey papers from the Jovial pad I shall enter it into the Basic Grey challenge - Anything Goes

Second Thing
Some time ago, after a day out to London visitng the museums, Toad and I found a little stray at the railway station on the way home.  It was dark, it was cold, and there laying in the bus lane was a child's toy rabbit.  It was yellow and plush and oh so cute.  Being the softie that he is, Toad picked it up out of the road before it could get run over and sat it on one of the benches in the bus shelter.  As the bus drove away I looked back and this tiny little thing looked so lonely and it mad me feel quite sad.  On the way home we made up little stories about why that rabbit was out on its own so late at night and by the time we got home it had a whole series of adventures under its belt.

So what brought all this to mind?  I was rummaging in my Sugar Nellies box and found my Little Cotton Rabbit stamp and the memory of that lonely little bunny came flooding back.  I wonder what it's up to these days .......

Hugs, Sxx

Monday, 22 August 2011


At last, a card that has gone right!  Third time lucky springs to mind after the two weekend cock-ups.

This is one of my new House Mouse stamps called Spa Time.  Very simply painted in Distress Inks and layers with First Edition Love Letters paper (although it is almost thick enough to be card).

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 21 August 2011


Well, for those of you who couldn't see yesterday's smudged ink, I thank you - but it is there, in bright orange near her hair!

And today's smudge ...... I think I must have caught a virus this weekend called Smudgititus - I spent ages painting this fiddly design from LOTV called Little Festive Robins - it was a challenge to try and sort the ivy, from the holly, from the bird box.

 Anyhoo, once painted, I started faffing about and decided to go for the CAS look but instead of sticking to that, the idiot part of my brain said "Why don't you ink edge a layer", so I did, with Poppy Pearl "fast drying" Archive Ink.  Yeah, right, fast drying in my book is dry as soon as it hits the cardstock, not twenty minutes later like this was.  And yes, another dirty great finger print.  Which I had to cover with a slightly oddly placed sentiment.

I really don't like how this turned out so I think I shall cut it down to save the image and start again.  I guess even Squirrels are entitled to an off day!

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Too Tired To Do It - Too Stubborn To Quit

Afternoon all, I said I'd be back and here I am!  For my earlier House Mouse post today please follow this link.

Before I start rambling, I must say A BIG HELLO to my new followers - six of you have signed up in the last week (welcome aboard guys) and today Tilly has made it that magic 500.  Could you email me please Tilly (address in sidebar), I may have a little surprise for you ..... !  Ooh, and don't forget, my Sugar Nellie Candy still has five days to run if you are interested.

So, what do I have for you this time - well, a bit of a sorry tale really.  This week LESS IS MORE have a themed challenge of Things That Move.  After a bit of furtling about in the stamps hoping for inspiration - let's face it, most of my stamps are cute critters in one shape or another so they would all qualify - I picked out my new Gorjuss Girl "Ruby" on her swing.  She moves, the swing moves and, unless it's like Vince, the cat moves, eventually.  And as most cats are Cute & Cuddly I will enter this for TOTALLY GORJUSS too.

So I set too with the old Distress Inks and got painting.  So far so good.  Then I had the idea of making her "out of the box", and that's when the trouble started.  I really should have checked my hands first - as I was working my way around her legs with the craft knife I suddenly became aware of two dirty great bright orange finger prints right where I did't want them!  Aaaargh!  Being completely wiped out after another horrendous work week (nearly nine months of this madness now) but being too stubborn to give up, which is what I should have done, I trimmed the image a bit neater on the sides, losing one smudge, but the other one, despite numerous attempts to lift the colour off with a clean damp brush absolutely refused to move.  So, you have a card complete with forensic evidence in case you should ever catch me commiting a crime.  Sigh. 

Anyway, here's the card:

I used the cloud inking technique with hand cut templates for the card base and then when the image was glued on, I carried the clouds over into the image background.  Couldn't find a make-up sponge so had to make do with a little bit of yellow sponge - bit too clumsy for a decent effect but it's passable.  Hero Arts sentiment to finish.

The phrase "quit while you're ahead" comes to mind but since when have I ever listened to sensible advice, lol!

Hugs, Sxx

Feelin' a bit peckish?

Morning all.  Just a quickie post from me as I'm supposed to be getting ready to go out instead of sat here chatting to you, and Toad is not know for patience when it comes to food - yep, grocery shopping, oh joy.

And on the subject of food and drink (did you spot the clever link there?!) over at SIMON SAYS STAMP this week that's what their theme is.

A simple little card for you

Yep, one of my newly acquired House Mouse stamps - this one is called Mudpie Munch and he certainly looks like he's ejoying that clover!  Dovecraft Tea Shop papers, a Magnolia Old Swedish Lace border die and a Craftwork Cards sentiment with a pearl from stash.

Right, I better get a wriggle on - be back later.

Friday, 19 August 2011

For The Man In Your Life - Winter Wonderland (DT)

Hello all, and welcome to another chilly, snowy, festive Friday ....... yes, I know it is still August, but come on, it'll soon be Christmas!

Welcome to another Winter Wonderland challenge - this week we are looking for your Christmas cards for the man/men/boys in your life, and we have two brilliant sponsors too

Crafty Emma's Store who are offering a £10.00 gift voucher for their online store (excl. p&p).

Our second sponsor is Squiggle Stamps and they are offering one lucky winner 2 digis from their online store.

And as always, the DT have put their heart and soul into providing some Yuletide inspiration for you so don't forget to show them some love.

Here is my card:

Poor ol' Santa - probably too many plates of mince pies on his rounds!  This stamp is from High Hopes and I've painted in Distress Inks (what else would you expect from me these days, lol) and the papers are this year's Christmas collection from Dovecraft, and they are seriously yummy!  Oval sentiment is a Woodware peel-off greeting.

Do hope to see you over at the challenge and am looking forward to all those wonderful "male" cards!

Hugs Sxx

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Having Trouble With My Creases

As regular readers will know, at the weekend Toad and I passed up the chance to attend the ritual annual sausage burning for his mate's birthday on the grounds of Health & Safety (Toad's health, my safety).

What I didn't tell you was that it had been planned, en route to said sausage burning, to take in the scenic beauty of a Sussex business park so that I could dribble all of the floor of The Glitter Pot store.

Now.  It's funny how things turn out.  From sales and orders for my cards (unbelievable, I know, but somebody buys a few occasionally) I had a happy little stash of crafty cash screaming to be released from the dark and cobwebby confines of my piggy bank.  Imagine the disappointment of having that promised adventure to a cash register cruelly and suddenly taken away from you.  And yes, dear readers, even though I was not in the slightest bit disturbed by missing out on the opportunity of potential food poisoning, I was a little bereft of a crafty spree being cancelled.

But I soon put that right!  I currently own the grand total of six House Mouse stamps.  Yes, just six.  I hang my head in shame.  However, after an impulsive visit to Rubber Stamp World this morning I am soon to swell those paltry numbers to a princely nine, and I've released some of that captive cash to roam wild and free again, returning it to its natural habitat.

And for those of you who have managed to reach this far and are now shouting "oh do get to the point missus", here is one of my existing House Mouse stamps called Birthday Cupcake (starring Mudpie and Muzzy).

I have painted this in Distress Inks and am quietly pleased with the result but I am a bit worried about my creases - in the bun case!!

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

First Day Of School

My roomie at work has a little girl who is starting school in three weeks so I have made this card to wish her luck on her first day

I've used Lili Of The Valley Back To School Girl and she is coloured in Distress Inks.  The red gingham was used because it is the summer school uniform colour, this paper is Joanna Sheen.  The other two papers are Basic Grey from the Oxford pad, and the "good luck" and the apple are from some papers that came with Making Cards mag.

And a close up

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Have you heard the one about the rugby player and the tart?

Hello peeps, how is your Sunday?  Ours has been pretty non-eventful, for which I am truly grateful.  Yesterday, we should have been heading for a BBQ to celebrate Toad's mate's 50th birthday but we were both so tired after a manic work week that neither of us could face a three hour drive for a sausage.  I did tell Toad that if it was the BBQ he wanted, I could burn him a burger for his tea.

Instead of that, I made my first ever Tarte Tatin!  I don't "do" apples so I used peaches for this one.

And with a good old fashioned dollop of double-cream - I thought I'd gone to heaven!  Can't tell you how relieved I was when it came out of the pan in one piece with no burnt caramel to be seen, I had visions of going into town this week looking for a new one.

And the rugby player?  Here he is:

Ingredients for this card:
Stamped Image: LOTV Rugby Mad
Papers:  Dovecraft Masculine Collection
Sentiment: Cut from a sheet of above papers
Colouring Medium:  Distress Inks and Twinkling H2Os

Just in case you can't make out the words, it says:  Rugby is a good occasion for keeping thirty bullies far from the center of the city (Oscar Wilde).

Here is the not very subtle inside

And to finish, here is a close up of that young man, complete with bruised shin,  filthy shorts and golden Gavin Henson boots

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 13 August 2011

's Not Fair !!

For 11 years I have woken up with the same man beside me.  For 11 years he has made me laugh, cry and everything in between.  For 11 years he has spoken words of wisdom, he has asked difficult questions, he had make thought provoking statements.  He even has chats with Vince.

And now it is all coming to an end.  Our local BBC Radio Suffolk Breakfast Show will never be the same again.  Mark Murphy is moving to do the football slot on a Saturday!  's not fair!  And who is going to put out an appeal at Christmas for those little plastic flip frogs out of Christmas Crackers just to keep Vince amused (they delivered a bag of about 30 one year).

This Mo Manning image sums it all up!  Painted in Distress Inks with papers from scraps box.

Hugs, Sxx

And in close up

Friday, 12 August 2011

Unchartered Waters!

The other day, when I was hopping around, I visited my old friend Paola, and two new-to-me blogs of Jane and Zoe.  I urge you to check out these ladies blogs, their colourwork is totally AWESOME.

So, what has me so excited?  These extremely skilled crafters have been demonstrating a technique that I'd not seen before and the results blew me away.  No black lines stamping!  Paola, Jane and Zoe have coloured with Copics and, as my Copic colouring is pants, I wondered what would happen if I coloured with Distress Inks instead.  The result was quite a surprise!

(sorry for rubbish photo - it's nearly dark here - will swap it for a better one tomorrow)

This is by no means the best painting I've ever done because it was rushed when I got in from work tonight but - Jane tells me that with the Copic colouring, the pink lines disappear altogether so you are totally reliant on adding tone and shade to get the definition - however, with the Distress Inks, the pink lines seem to ABSORB the colour of the ink you are painting with, hence the edges of the sunflower petals being (mostly) yellow (not a very steady hand tonight) and the leaf and stem edges being green, and Milton being shades of  brown.  You do need to think about what needs to be what colour - I could so easily have ended up with a brown edged stem - so I think I shall practice hard with doing the various section edges first before adding the colour wash.

Anyhoo, it was a venture into the unknown, and one I shall certainly try again when I've more time and had a decent sleep!  Hope you don't mind me sharing the first results with you.

(Really struggling to get a decent photo - with all this grey cloud it's like midwinter
- he's painted on WHITE card, not blue)

Hugs, Sxx

LOTV Thank You

Now, who'd have thought it - a LOTV card from me!  I am just so addicted to these stamps right now so when a new LILI OF THE VALLEY challenge popped up yesterday with the theme of Thank You I didn't need another excuse to get stamping.

I've made this for my bestest pal, Ali, as she has dragged me through this week, kicking and screaming, and she's listened to all my off-loading and patiently got me coffee while I've yawned my way through lunchbreaks.

Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Image:  LOTV Time For A Cuppa
Papers: Wild Rose Studio - Wintery Christmas
Flowers: EK Success Retro Flower Punch
Bits: Craftwork Cards Card Candi and a peel-off from stash
Colouring Medium: Distress Inks

Right, time to crack on, another busy busy busy work day ahead of me.  Sigh.

Hugs, Sxx

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Candy Time

As a little thank you to all my Followers (almost 500 of you wonderful friends) here is a little candy for you from Sugar Nellie called Festive Friends

This candy will close at midnight on 25 August.  Please link to your own blog as I would like to spread the word to all my Followers.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

When You Get The Urge......

Hello peeps, how are we all today?  Squirrel Towers has been a bit out of kilter - after Church and a bacon sandwich, neither of us could settle to anything much.  We had a go at Lego Pirates Of The Caribbean on the Wii (my birthday present from Toad) and managed to finish the level we had previously been stuck on but once that was completed we called it quits.  After a lot of faffing about doing nothing, Toad announced he was going for a swim.  I guess it has nothing to do with the swimming pool being right next door to the Adnams Brewery Shop ...... anyway, I wandered out to craft space and suddenly had the urge to make a Penny Black card.

Didn't know what I wanted to do so I just furtled through the boxes of stamps until one jumped out screaming "use ME", so I did.

Ingredients for this card are:
Image Stamp - Penny Black Bunny Bath
Sentiment - Penny Black Some Bunny
Papers - Papermania Hampstead
Border Punch - Martha Stewart Daisy
Flowers - EK Success retro flowers with Card Candi centres
Colouring Medium - Distress Inks

And the challenges that I'm entering with it
PENNY BLACK AT ALLSORTS - August Challenge - Free & Easy

I'm majorly behind with my commenting and visiting again - I am so sorry guys, I will make it up to you I promise.  Thanks for sticking with me.  I truly treasure each and every kind word you leave me.

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 6 August 2011

JMHS Anything Goes + Glitter

Hello peeps, and welcome to Squirrel Towers for the second time today!  You can find my earlier post with this link Red White & Penguin.

It's been aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaages since I got to play with the JUST MAGNOLIA / HANGLAR / STANGLAR challenge so I was desperate not to miss out this time for the Simon Says Stamp Monthly Special.  The theme is Anything Goes with the optional extra of Glitter.

My bestest bud, Julie-Pig, has a birthday coming up and I am determined that I am not going to forget it like I did last year (oh the shame of it!) and so I've taken this opportunity to make her card now.  Like me, Jules is motorsport mad - when we shared an office together it used to be tense on Monday mornings, depending on who had won the grand prix the day before, lol - she supported Michael Schumacher but I was a Damon Hill girl, and we all know what happened there!  Anyway, here is my card

I love this new Tilda with her chequered flags, just look at those saucy hips of hers!  She'd make a brilliant grid girl.  Painted in Distress Inks and then her shirt is glittered with Hero Arts Prisma Glitter.  Black checked and spotted papers are Crafts Too and the red is from scraps box.  Red and white Bakers' Twine from my darlin' pal Helen (thanks babes, I'll be buying more of this), a Hero Arts sentiment and 5 red gems for start lights, except theirs don't go round corners.

Hugs, Sxx

Red White & Penguin

Morning all, hope you are fine.  Things are somewhat subdued here at Squirrel Towers today, basically because I am so frazzled after the week I've had at work.  Exhausted only just begins to come near it.  So when I read this morning's LESS IS MORE challenge Your Own Flag Colours and an idea popped into my head, even though it was a daft idea, I just ran with it (actually, scrub that, not ran, staggered is better) to the craft room.

And there are some ideas that you get, that you can't move away from until you have put them onto card.  And this is one of those.  Hopefully now it's out I might have a better idea replace it!

I'm guessing that the red, white and blue is a bit of a giveaway, but there are several countries with that scheme so I will, just for the record, confirm that I'm in the UK!  I've used A Pile Of Penguins from Laurence Design and coloured with Royal Blue and Poppy ProMarkers.  Sentiment, stamped in Danube Blue, is a Penny Black.

Hugs Sxx

Friday, 5 August 2011

Walking In A Winter Wonderland

When I stood down at the beginning of the year from the three fabulous Design Teams that had been daft enought to have me , it was my intention to have a complete year's break - however, I had not taken into account the persuasive abilities of Marianne - so here is my first Design Team creation for Winter Wonderland!

The challenge this week is "White on White with a Coloured Image" and has been set by the lovely Suzi.  Do pop over to the challenge to see the knock-out creations made by Marianne's Team for this week.

And if that wasn't enought, the challenge is being sponsored by Sassy Studio Designs.

Here's my card:

Now, white on white is to me what salt is to a slug - it makes me want to curl up in a corner.  But I persevered and must give a huge vote of thanks to Mad Moose who started the spark of inspiration for this one, even though it didn't end up as originally envisioned!  I started with a 6x4 card and using my Classic Square Nesties I cut an aperture.  After running some white card through the Bug with my Swiss Dots embossing folder I layered that behind the hole.  Cuttlebug snowflake for the centrepiece with a HobbyCraft snowflake or three around the edges.  Sizzix flourishes, generously coated in Crystal glitter from Hero Arts, and of course, the most gorgeous little Fizzy Moon Christmas Bear with his message which I have coloured with Copics.  The colours seemed quite strong for a white card so I toned them down using the blender pen.  And finally, a few white pearls to finish.

Phew.   Right, that's me done, let's see what you guys can come up with!  See you over at the challenge.

Hugs Sxx

Thursday, 4 August 2011

A Rant and A Card

OK, let's get the rant over with first shall we.  When I received the last LOTV email newsletter, I was really surprised but very pleased to notice they had prepared a PDF file of all this year's Christmas images, including the new ones yet to be released on 25 August - I just wanted to be able to dribble a bit and plan what to spend my pennies on.

Anyhoo, on getting to the website the PDF file isn't there but there's a little notice saying it should be back up the next day.  So the next day comes, and the next and the next.  This morning I emailed LOTV to ask when it was coming back.  I got a very prompt and apologetic reply telling me that because of some problems with copying it has been removed from the website.

I thought about this for a bit, thinking it was some sort of a technical issue and then suddenly it dawned on me that some wicked person has been using those preview images for their own profit.  So to that person or persons unknown - thank you very much, you miserable, mean, dishonest, horrible, rotten, THIEVES!  When Judgement Day comes, you won't be going to Heaven, that's for sure.

And so dear readers, onto my card for this evening which is for this week's LILI OF THE VALLEY challenge of ROSES.

Now, I don't do a lot of fluff on my cards - it's not because I don't like it, but because it always turns out looking cluttered and too busy and then I get cross and upset and it ends up in the bin, so another plain and simple one for you!  The roses papers are all from the Wedding Bells collection by Wild Rose Studio.  The stamp, Emma Swing, and the Clear Additions sentiment are both LOTV, the flourish is Marianne Creatibles, and all the matting card is plain white coloured with a Sandstone ProMarker, as are the Candy Dots.  Image is painted with Distress Inks using Antique Linen, Old Paper and Frayed Burlap with Tattered Rose for the skin.  See, lots of roses!

Hugs, Sxx

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Patience Is A Virtue

I realised last week that I only own one Mo Manning stamp (oh the shame of it) so I quickly dashed off to correct that situation and ordered four more from Stamping Bella.

Here's a little card that I made using Patience - I think this has to be my favourite all time MM image.  The look on that cat's face is priceless.

Painted in Distress Inks (what else these days, lol) and a lot of fiddly cutting out later (why are cats so fuzzy?) I mounted it on some gorgeous Making Memories paper that I've had kicking around for ages.  All the papers are from the same pad.  Martha Stewart border punch for the faux lace, which didn't quite go round the oval, hence the flowers.  That fabulous Hero Arts sentiment and a couple of Card Candi and a few pearls to finish.

Here's a close up of the freshly trimmed image

Hugs, Sxx

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

I Thought And Thought And Then I Forgot

I've been meaning to post this since Monday of last week but my scrambled-egg-for-brains isn't retaining much at the moment.  I think I have Goldfish Syndrome!  The good news is that I did remember to send the card in plenty of time though.

My dear sweet friend Samantha has recently celebrated her 1st wedding anniversary and this is the card I made to send to her and Efisio.

I've used Sugar Nellie stamp Bubble & Squeak, distress inked, and teamed it up with these delicious papers from MME.  Martha Stewart punch-around-the page (which I had to "tweek" with a craft knife as despite the instructions it didn't line up properly), LOTV sentiment, some twinkling gems and some gold braid peel-offs.  I put one of the smallest twinkling gems in each of the wine glasses to look like tiny champagne bubbles.

I can't believe it was a year ago that we were celebrating the happy day!

Hugs Sxx

Monday, 1 August 2011

Penny Blackground

Is it really Monday morning already?  Who stole my weekend?  Come on, own up!

This week over at PENNY BLACK SATURDAY CHALLANGE the challenge is to make your own Penny Black background (or "Black"ground) and as I seem to be on a bit of a roll with making male cards at the moment I've made another one.

And would you look at that, another brown card!  Just loving these Basic Grey papers and am on my second pad of them.  I used the pup from a clear set to create the very simply stamped background and then the larger wood mounted version for the main image which I've painted in Distress Inks.  Some Coordinations blue card for contrast, Martha Stewart border punch for the central trim with a Hero Arts sentiment, and a hole punch for the faux brads.

Here's a close up of that devilishly handsome pup.

Hugs, Sxx
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