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!

Friday, 31 August 2012

Definitely Nothing Like A Square

Evening all, yep, I'm back again, second time today - I thought if I don't get this posted now then it won't happen tonight.

LILI'S LITTLE FAIRIES CHALLENGE are asking for Anything But Square this week.  So I put my thinking cap on, took it off again because it hurt, and then went totally random with a shape ...... I don't have a large die cutting machine so one of those precision shapes with fancy edges is out of the question and a Cuttlebug is just that little bit too small really.  So I had to go it alone, just me, card, and scissors.  I know, worrying isn't it.

What is really worrying is what I ended up with .....

Looks a bit "anatomical" doesn't it?  Well, it is definitely original!

Ingredients are:
Stamped Image  LOTV Busy Bears (which I can't find on website any more)
Medium  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers  Prima Jack & Jill
Sentiments  LOTV Sentiment Tags
Extras  Marianne Creatibles leaf dies, EK Success and Tonic retro flower punches, Card Candi

Hugs, Sxx

Winter Wonderland (DT) Walking In A .....

Morning all, well, another Friday nearer to Christmas - not many left now.  Are you starting to panic that you won't have enough cards made?  Well, what more of an excuse do you need to join us at WINTER WONDERLAND to get those creative juices flowing?!

And as if piling up your Christmas cards wasn't enough incentive, we are sponsored this week by SIMON SAYS STAMP!  Whooo!  I wanna win!

Our theme this week is WALKING IN A WINTER WONDERLAND - so we would like to see a person or an animal walking, in winter.  Simples.

Here is my DT card:

Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Image - SCACD Sylvia Zet: Winter Wonder
Medium - Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers - Penny Black and Basic Grey
Extras - Anita's Glitterations Snowflakes

Hope you will be able to join us this week.  Hugs Sxx

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Two Teeny Tiny Cards

Ooff, Wednesday already, hurrah!  Where has the time gone?  Sorry I've not been around much this week so far.  My boss is away on holiday and I am frazzled by the end of the day and just seem to be falling asleep after dinner!

Anyhoo, just popped on with a couple of tiny cards for you tonight.

Ingredients for cards are:
4x4 card base
Both Stamped Images - LOTV Furry Festive Friends
Medium - Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers - Dovecraft Back To Basics
Extras - Holly Punch, gems, golden heart peel-off border
Dies - Nestabilities and X-Cut

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 26 August 2012

It's Still August

Afternoon everybody, how are you?  We are having a quiet Sunday - I've been faffing about with a couple of cards and Toad has been building a station for his model railway layout.  It struck me as very funny that you could buy flat-pack buildings.  You should see how tiny the pieces are - iddy-biddy - and it even comes with tiny sets of curtains for the windows!

With all the Christmas cards I've been making lately I've had to remind myself that it is still August and have made a summery feel CAS friendship card today that I would like to enter in the CRAFT Challenge of Fairies.

This is another stamp that I'd been hankering after for a little while and it finally plopped onto the doormat last week.  It's "Faye & Freddie" from Sugar Nellie.  I've painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers) and used some Prima papers to frame it and for the corners that are Cheery Lynn dies.  The sentiment is Hero Arts.

I've also been playing around with a Less is More challenge card but I think I might have to bin it and start again - it's just not floating my boat at the moment!

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Out Of The Frame

Morning all, hope you are ok!  I've been like a kid in a candy shop this morning as my new LOTV stamps arrived in a very exciting package yesterday.  It was soooooooooooo hard to choose which one to use first as they are all totally adorable but, after due consideration, my heart has gone with a certain little bear.

This week SWEET STAMPING CHALLENGE are asking for part of your image to be Out Of The Frame.  I love making cards like this so off I went.

Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Image  LOTV Teddy With Penguin
Medium  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers  Dovecraft Back To Basics
Extras  Papermania gems and Nestie Label die

Doesn't he look like he has a belly button?  I'll let you into a secret - he doesn't. It was another pesky cat hair that had sneaked onto my inked stamp.  Flippin' cat - I've threatened to shave him.

Hugs, Sxx

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Now, here's a statement ....

... that you won't hear from me very often.  Are you sitting down?  Are you ready?  Are you sure you're ready?  Nah, don't believe you, I'll give you a moment to compose yourself ......

This week's challenge from Lili's Little Fairies is Spots or Stripes - that is such a cool challenge, love it!  So, as soon as I got in from work tonight it was a quick cuppa and straight out to the "studio" to look for spots or stripes.  I found both.  I couldn't decide.  I used both, what the heck.

Sorry, I've must have picked up the wonky camera by mistake (it is the camera, honestly, cough).

Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Image  LOTV Delivering The Presents
Medium  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers  ALL from same pack of Dovecraft Back To Basics Vintage Christmas (yummy)
Sentiment  LOTV Happy Circular Sentiments
Extras  Dovecraft Back to Basics buttons 

Here's a close up of that cute little chap (got so carried away I forgot to take it before sticking the sentiment in place)

Oh, you are still waiting for that statement from me?  You sure you are feeling strong enough to cope with these momentous words?  Here goes then ......

I LOVE THIS CARD!!!!  For once, I chose the papers first so there was none of my usual paint-and-panic antics, and the inks behaved themselves so well, and I love the vintage feel of the whole thing, and I may actually "accidentally" forget this one is in the box and not send it out!

It's been a long week, I need a lie down.

Hugs Sxx

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

The Three Bears - but no Goldilocks

It's that time of year again - the bestie mate Julie-Pig's birthday, and here is the card I made for her.  Toad very generously bought me these stamps as my birthday present and I have to say, they are a joy to use.  Just stamping them made me smile.

Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Images - LOTV: Posy Trio
Medium - Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Sentiment - LOTV - Happy Circular Sentiments
Papers - a mix from various Prima and Basic Grey pads

Hopefully now the temperatures are dropping a little, I intend to get a bit more crafting done towards the end of this week and at the weekend.  Thanks for sticking with it while there has been nothing to look at!

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 19 August 2012


And for you modern thinkers, that's 40.4C.  That's the temperature this morning in my craft space.  Which is why I'm not out there!

Suffolk recorded the highest outdoor temperatures in the country yesterday with a 34.7C and it is supposed to be even hotter today.  Feels like it already.  I am seriously tired and grumpy!

Well this made me laugh, hope it does you too.


Saturday, 18 August 2012

Let's Pop Some Corks!

Hello from a very hot and humid corner of the UK!  I know some of you have cool and damp conditions, but we have caught the edge of the continental heatwave and here in the east it has been sunny sunny sunny and touching 30C.  I'm loving the sunshine, but not so keen on the heat, lol, is there any way to turn the sun down a bit please?

Anyhoo, it's not often I combine challenges for a card, I prefer to do one at a time, but today sees me being a bit lazy, having only made one card this afternoon.

I've used a previously uninked stamp that I've had a while. It was one of those "ooh I've got to have that" stamps ..... you know the sort I mean!

Ingredients for this simple card are:
Medium:  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers:  First Editions - New Leaf
Sentiment:  Hero Arts

You might just be able to make out the sparkle on the back paper, it made me thing of the bubbles in the booze!

16 ears, 32 feet, 8 noses - here's a close up of the stamp for you:

Hugs, Sxx

Friday, 17 August 2012

It's P.P.P.P.P.P.Pink!

Me again, second post today, for my earllier post for Winter Wonderland DT either scroll down or click the link here.

So, what am I back with?  You might have guessed from the title that it could be a little bit pink, but you're wrong.  It's not a little bit pink .... it's a whole lotta pink!

The IN THE PINK challenge has launched with their first challenge of Fifty Shades of Pink.  I know a lot of you are reading the other Fifty Shades book, but that is not one that will be appearing on my Kindle anytime soon.  You may have noticed from my Book On The Go caption in my sidebar that I have been working my way through the Sharpe series of books by Bernard Cornwall.  I started them in February and am now on my 21st and the last.  I never thought I would ever get excited about the Napoleonic Wars but honestly, these have had me, hook, line and sinker.  And Toad will tell you, I have learned (and remembered) an awful lot about the artillery power of the time!!

Anyhoo, I am rambling, you came over to see a card, so here it is:

Who said dragons can't be pink?!!  Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Image: Whimsy/Wee Stamps (Sylvia Zet) Autumn
Medium: Many shades of Distress Ink (ReInkers) pinks
Papers: Crafts Too
Extras: Martha Stewart doily lace border punch, Martha Stewart frond punch,
EK Success retro flower punch, Craftwork Cards Candi

Right, I have the ceiling fans on, two floor standing fans, the windows have been open since 7.30am, and it is still 30C in the "studio", but I shall be brave and venture forth once more - not wasting a crafty day!!

Hugs, Sxx

Winter Wonderland (DT) Winter Sports!

And a very happy Friday morning to you!  It is a happy morning in Squirrel Towers because (a) it is WINTER WONDERLAND challenge day and (b) I've got the day off work, wheeeeeeeeee!

Thank you for all your fabulous entries last week, you certainly loved that challenge, and choosing the Winner and Top 3 is going to be a hard task - glad it's not my decision this time.  Don't forget to pop over to Winter Wonderland on Sunday morning, it could be you.

So, let's see what you make of this week's theme WINTER SPORTS - sledging, skating, snowball fights, skiing ...... that kind of thing.  

As a bonus for you, we have TWO sponsors this week; we are so pleased to welcome a brand new regular sponsor CRAFTY-EMBLIES, and our regular sponsor KENNY K - Crafty-emblies are offering a £10 voucher and Kenny K are offering 5 digital images of the winner's choice.

I got a bit excited when I saw the theme as I have had this stamp burning a hole in the studio just crying out to be used:

The ingredients for my card are:
Stamped Image  Marianne Design - Ice Skating Don
Medium  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Sentiment  LOTV Circular Sentiments
Papers  Papermania Yellow Collection (yes, really, yellow - that's what it says on the pack!!)

I've had a few questions about how I achieve this type of background to my images and, honestly, it's not that difficult to do if you are good with a small pair of scissors!  All I do is make a mask for the image using either a Post-It Note or, if I am feeling extravagent, Eclipse Masking Tape - this one was a bit fiddly because of the skates and his hair (you can see I didn't cut too close around his hair).  Once the mask is in place, I use Distress Inks pads with an old, and now very tatty, Hero Arts sponge.  It's like a small round car washing sponge but with a finer texture.  I have tried make-up sponges but they are a bit too dense and slippery and I end up with skid marks, and no girl wants those on a card!!  Really, a bit of patience and it's not that hard.  It can't be, or I wouldn't do it.

Right then, time to get your skates on (stop groaning) and get a Winter Sports card made and entered in the challenge - what's keeping you?!

Hugs, Sxx

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Just what WAS I thinking??

Evening all.  Now, before we start on this, let me get the excuses out of the way first:

1.  It's too hot
2.  I'm very tired
3.  Had a really busy work week
4.  It's too hot
5.  My arthritis has gone Code Red
6.  My brain is fried
7.  I need chocolate
8.  I've not been sleeping well
9.  It's too hot

Any of those reasons could be the explanation for what I made tonight - honestly, even I was surprised.  But, I am prepared to share the bad as well as the good, so sit back and have a good snigger.  There's even no need for you to be kind, I know it's not good.

Ingredients for this nightmare are:
Stamped Image - LOTV
Sentiment - LOTV
Medium - Distress Inks
Papers - Crafts Too
Extras - Memory Box Snowflake Corner, Flower and Ribbon from stash

I've got a day off work tomorrow.  I intend to sleep in, have a gentle morning and then do some crafting, hopefully with better results.  I'll let you come back about 9.00am though as it will be Winter Wonderland time and it's my DT week!

Hugs. Sxx

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

That's Just Shocking!

I didn't get much crafting done at the weekend due to the final days of the Olympics and it being too hot in the studio (I like the sound of that, studio - much better than a cramped corner of the conservatory).  I was wilting after just 20 minutes on Saturday.

Anyhoo, the end result of these traumatic weather conditions is that apart from a couple of DT cards that I can't show you yet, I have nothing new.  How shocking is that?!

So, I have been having a rummage around in my pics for a card that I haven't posted yet and found this one

Ingredients are:
Stamped Image: Stamping Bella/Mo Manning - Angelina's Balloons
Medium: Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers: Dovecraft Back To Basics - can't remember if they are I or II
Sentiment: Hero Arts

I guess that means that I really need to pull the acorn out of my tail and get crafting, otherwise this will be a very empty blog soon!

Hugs, Sxx

Monday, 13 August 2012

A Furry One .....

Evening all - phew, what a 'orrible sticky old day it has been - I read somewhere that humidity tonight will be 97%!  That'll be me looking like a loo brush then, lol!!

Anyhoo, I've done the feathers, so here is the fur for Less is More's Feathers or Fur OLC challenge

For this one, I created masks for the FURRY bit with Eclipse Masking Tape and my Memory Box Parker alphabet dies (had two attempts as I had the mask upside down the first time - d'oh), and then masked around that with an oval cut from a post it note.  Inked with Shaded Lilac Distress Ink.  The friendship part is the end of a Hero Arts sentiment.  The kitty is from a Penny Black clear set, lightly coloured with ProMarkers.

I really smiled making this one as my mate Ali is a Glaswegian lass and every time she says furry it makes me laugh!

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Things With Wings

Afternoon all, hope you are having an enjoyable Sunday.  Today I have for you my entry to this week's Sweet Stamping Challenge - Things With Wings.

Stamped Image:  Bird Swing - Whimsy/Wee Stamps by Sylvia Zet
Medium:  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers:  Prima - Songbird
Sentiment: Hero Arts

Hugs, Sxx

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Have Feathers Will Fly

Morning all, another bright, hot, sunshiny day here in the East of England!  Regular readers will be all too well aware of my aversion to extreme temperatures, it makes my fur wilt, so imagine my horror to find the thermometer already at 33C in the craft room at 9.00 this morning.  Icky!!

So, flinging open the windows and putting the ceiling fans on I had a quick play with this week's LESS IS MORE challenge for a One Layer Card featuring Fur or Feathers.

I bought this set of Woodware bird stamps some while ago on a whim, thinking I would do so much with them, but I confess that this is their first inking!  I've used three of the six birds in the set and added a simple Hero Arts sentiment.  A light splash of colour with my FlexMarkers and done.

I'm not particularly happy with the composition of the card but will enter it anyway.  I will try and find the time to make another, perhaps a furry one instead.

Whatever you are up to today, I hope it's fun.

Hugs, Sxx

Friday, 10 August 2012

You did WHAT at lunchtime?

Last week, two of Toad's work colleagues went out for lunch, we'll call them A and B, but an hour later neither of them returned.  In the hustle and bustle of the office it was a while before anyone noticed they had not come back.  Some while later, B returns and was, not unnaturally, questioned about where she and A had been all this time and where was A now.  "She's in hospital" says B "She went into labour buying her lunch so I got her to hospital and now she's had the baby".

That has to be the best excuse ever for being late back from lunch!  A and baby Jack are both fine and well even though he was a bit earlier than expected.  Toad blames the fact that their lift has been out for weeks and everyone is having to tackle six floors worth of stairs every day.

Which early arrival brings me nicely to my entry for this week's Lili's Little Fairies - Monochrome Challenge (skin and hair permitted)

Ingredients for this little bundle of joy are:
Stamped Image LOTV Baby With Teddy
Papers Papermania Blueberry Capsule Collection
Punches & Dies Martha Stewart embossed button punch, Nesties star die (smallest),
Martha Stewart border punch, Memory Box Parker Lower Alphabet dies
Medium  Distress Inks (ReInkers) Salty Ocean and Tattered Rose
Amazing how different whites can be isn't it - I thought the spotty paper was white until I put the die cut letters on the card, which were just from a scrap of Rymans white card!

Thanks for popping over
Hugs, Sxx

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Luv Ya

Morning all, halfway to the weekend!  Wheeee.  Anyhoo, you may have seen this card over on the WITHOUT WORDS blog yesterday but just in case you missed it here she is .....

Mo Manning (Stampin Bella) Luv Ya
Painted in Distress Inks (ReInkers) by Squirrel 

These new Distress Ink Summer Colours go so well with these Papermania roses papers, they could have been made for each other.  Prepare yourselves to see a lot of blue and pink in my paintings for a while.

Only three and a half weeks now to the first WITHOUT WORDS challenge!  If you have not yet signed up to follow us it would be so lovely if you do and then you won't miss out on any of the colour fun!

Hugs, Sxx

Monday, 6 August 2012

Boys Toys and a Sneak Peek

Happy Monday all - the start of another week at work, but at least we will be back to full numbers this time as everyone comes back from their holidays .... the last two weeks have been tough.

Over at HERE COME THE BOYS the challenge is Boys Toys and as I was in the mood for making a male card it was the perfect challenge and gave me the opportunity to play with some new rubber - like I needed a reason, lol!

Ingredients for this card are
Stamped Image  Mo Manning (Stampin Bella) Bye Bye Boy
Medium  Distress Inks (Pads and ReInkers)
Papers  We R Memory Keepers - Travel Light
Extras  Memory Box cloud dies

Here's a close up of that cute little fella

And finally here is a WITHOUT WORDS sneak peek for you - if you want to see the whole thing then pop over to the blog tomorrow morning!  (I know, mean aren't I?)

Hugs, Sxx

Sunday, 5 August 2012

More Tea?

This week's theme over at SWEET STAMPIN CHALLENGE is Books and Text.  Now that got the old cogs whirring for a while I can tell you.

Ingredients for this card are:
Stamped Image  Whiff of Joy - Maya Tea Party
Medium  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers  From scraps box
Extras  Woodware alphabet text stamp, EK Success retro flower punch,
border punch, Card Candi, text from computer

Hugs Sxx

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Christmas at Squirrel Towers

I've made that many Christmas cards in the last few weeks that it is starting to feel more like October than August!  Except this morning it is somewhat humid out in the studio (oh, all right, the conservatory) and even with the windows open I was starting to drip.  Not very Christmassy!

LILI'S LITTLE FAIRIES are back on track this week with a new challenge for Christmas In July and rather than post the original card I made for this challenge last week I have made a new one.

Ingredients for this one are:
Stamped Image  LOTV Light The Way
Medium  Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers Making Cards magazine freebies
Sentiment  Craftwork Cards
Extras  Martha Stewart punched snowflakes and Anita's Glitterations borders

I've got a very clingy and miaowy little kitty today, not quite sure what's got under his fur but it is like having a Velcro pet.  Where I am, he is!  He can be ultra cute, but when you are busy, he can be quite the opposite!  Don't worry, I still love him.

Hugs, Sxx

Friday, 3 August 2012

Raspberry Ripple!

This is my second post today, please scroll down for my Winter Wonderland DT card or click here.

There is a lovely challenge this week over at My Mums Craft Shop with the theme of Ice Cream Flavours.  Now being a bit on the dense side at times, I wasn't sure if I was meant to choose a flavour from the photo on the blog or if I could choose my own.  So I chose my own, lol.

My all time favourite ice cream has to be Raspberry Ripple, but that didn't go with my papers so I've gone for second, third and fourth faves, Chocolate, Strawberry and Toffee.

Ingredients for this yummy card are:
Stamped Image  Sweet November Stamps - Gertie
Medium  Part painted in Distress Inks (ReInkers) and part paper pieced from scraps
Paper  Also from scraps box
Sentiment  Craftword Cards
Extra  Martha Stewart heart border punch

If you would like to see how beautiful Gertie really can look in the hands of a true artist, take a peek at what Delphine did with her - her card is here.  I was lucky enough to receive this card from Delphine and it is even more beautiful IRL.  And it was Delphine's use of the stamp that had me running out to buy it!

Anyhoo, it's Friday, it's the weekend and we have nothing much planned for either Saturday or Sunday, so I hope to be able to do some catching up with you all and spending some quality time crafting!

Thanks for popping over to visit me, you really brighten my days.

Hugs, Sxx

Winter Wonderland (DT) Ribbons & Lace

It's Friiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiday!  Not quite five to five, so no CrackerJack pencil for you today, but it is WINTER WONDERLAND day!  Thank you for your fabulous entries for last week's challenge - don't forget to check back to the blog on Sunday to see who the Winner and Top 3 are.

So, to this week's challenge - it's a feminine one for you this time - Ribbons & Lace.  Oh gawd!  Regular readers will know of my ribbon phobia.  Actually I should, I think, expand that to a fabric phobia - so although my ribbon is real, it is pretty basic use of one, and my lace is faux.  So there.  (grin).

Our sponsor for this week is CRAFTERS COMPANION offering a £10 voucher for their fabulous store so that's extra incentive for you to join us for a fun time.

The DT have produced their usual high standard of amazing inspiration for you, and have been somewhat more adventurous with their ribbons and lace than I have!  Here is my card:

Ingredients for this are:
Stamped Image: LOTV Christmas Surprise
Medium: Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers:  Making Cards freebies (ages old)
Sentiment: LOTV (from the Postmarks collection)
Extras:  Magnolia Swedish Lace die, Martha Stewart border punch, Nestabilities die, star gem, Anita's Sticky Ribbon

Hope you will find time to join us this week
Hugs Sxx

Sorry about the random text highlighting - I have NO idea why this is happening!

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Nuts for Squirrels

OK, hands up, who ever thought it would be possible for me to resist a CAS challenge?  Oh all right, I can't, it's impossible.

A quickie for you tonight as it is heading towards pumpkin time and an entry for this week's CUTE CARD THURSDAY Clean And Simple challenge.

I've hankered over this stamp for so long that I nearly put the bunting out when I got an email to say she was back in stock!  This is Hazel And Nutty from Sugar Nellie - just look at that little squirrel's face, what a cutie!  Painted in Distress Inks (ReInkers), with a Hero Arts sentiment, echoed by another Hero Arts sentiment from a different set around the edges.  Matted on white card edged with Blossom ProMarker and tiny Papermania gems for the corners.  Fin!

See you all tomorrow morning at 9am (don't be late) with my Winter Wonderland DT card.

Hugs, Sxx

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Oh Yes!! Yes Yes Yes!

Bradley does Britain proud

Left: Tony Martin (Germany) Silver
Centre: Bradley Wiggins (GB) Gold
Right: Chris Froome (GB) Bronze
What a year for Brad
What next?
BBC Sports Personality of The Year (at the very least)
Sir Bradley?
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