Tuesday, 26 January 2010


HAPPY BIRTHDAY FRENCH LIN.. Hi Blogland. Today is a very special friends birthday.. Now, I'm not going to reveal her age, but suffice to say she can get on a bus for free, if you know what I'm saying, and has been able to for a year now!!!
She is lucky enough to spend part of the year living in the South of France, most of the rest of the year she spends here at Pinnacles!!! Never a truer statement eh Lin!!..So, with the French theme in mind here is the birthday card I made for her.. Well, I say card! To be honest I think this is my biggest card/project/gift/keepsake, whatever you want to call it, to date.. And here's how I made it if you fancy giving it, or something similar a go...
LONG POST ALERT!! GRAB A CUPPA!!I cut out the Eiffel Tower image from the Destinations Cartridge on my Cricut Machine using Light Blue Mirror card. Yes I know! I use a lot of Mirror card, but it is so effective, and yes, sorry if you come in to the shop and it is sold out! that's usually because I've grabbed it first!! We do order an astonishing amount though! I cut out One image using the "Sites" function and Shift @ 5 1/2". This Cartridge does not have a "Shadow" function as such, but the "Sites" function and Shift does the same job and cut this image slightly larger and with less detail than the next Two images I cut out. Therefore, I then cut Two Eiffel Tower images using the "Sites" function, this time without using Shift, producing Two slightly smaller images with a little more detail.
As one of the smaller images will be going on top I wanted to give it a bit more of a structure effect, a metallic effect if you like.So I passed one of the smaller images through the Cuttlebug using the Herring Bone Embossing Folder. I lined the folder up with the centre of the image to give a more symmetrical look. Although the image was slightly too big for the folder and the feet of the Tower have not been embossedI still think it looks effective! Happy accident I say..I then cut out the words "Eiffel Tower" & "France" @ 5 1/2". For those who are thinking "emm you say 5 1/2" but the words are not the same size as the Tower itself which was also cut at 5 1/2"!" Correct!! all elements are cut in relation to the largest image. If I wanted the "Words" to be truly 5 1/2" then I would have selected REAL DIAL SIZE... I also cut the backing plates for the words at the same size and layered them together.I really like the embossed effect that colour on colour brings to this part of the project..Next, I cut out gates from the new Heritage Cartridge. From the very first time I saw these images I knew I was going to use these gates on something. They are so ornate and were very easy to work with. I cut the gate image twice at 5 1/2" using Black Mirror card and then using the "Shadow" function again at 5 1/2" onto Light Green Mirror cardand then stuck the Black onto the Green, giving a subtle shadow effect.
The whole idea of this project was to gain some dimension, as if you were looking through the gates up to the Eiffel Tower.Thumbing through my cartridge books I came across the Grand Canyon Image on the Destinations Cartridge.This I cut out again at 5 1/2" onto some path effect paper and hand cut off the excess paper.Taking Two pieces of A3 card stock I scored in from each side at 1", 2" and 3 3/4" from One side on both pieces. These folds were creased in a concertina fold.Measure down the side of the edge of the card 4", and from the inner most fold, line up your Ruler and cut off the excess card stock. Do this on both pieces of card stock.Again, this is to add dimension to the project.I then attached my Sky and Grass card stock,my path,then my City Skyline, which was cut from Plantin Scoolbook @ 3 1/2"and then the Eiffel Tower Image.. Phew! that's the inside done.. Do I still have your attention? I told you it was a long post didn't I!.. LOL!
So, happy with the inside, it was time to get started on the outside.
I Cut the Lamppost image form Christmas/Noel @ 11", firstly on Black Mirror card and then using the Blackout function onto Gold Mirror card, again at 11". I also cut the bases of the Lamppost at 11" (remember all elements are in relation to the largest image, unless Real Dial Size is on!). I also decided to emboss the bases, I know they are bearly going to be seen, but I am an up most believer that if you are going to do something you might as well do it right! I embossed them through the Cuttlebug using the Distress Stripes Embossing Folder,and then stuck all the pieces together,then in turn stuck the Lamppost's to the sides of the project using Hi Tac tape.Then taking the gates, I stuck them on top of the Lampposts.
We're nearly there!! Honest!I cut a tree image form the Heritage cartridges on to Black Mirror card at 9 1/2".And then cut it in half using a Craft Knife and Ruler. I ran a thin piece of High Tac tape down the inside of one of the inner folds of the card and stuck half of the tree to each side...Then DISASTER!!! As not all of the branches needed sticking down some of the tape was still exposed, and when I folded the card back up , yes you guessed it the tape stuck to the card stock, and yes it was High Tac tape so it was difficult prizing it off of the card stock with out ripping! But rip it did!!In heine site I should have used my de tacking powder first as this prevents any adhesive which you don't want to stick from sticking!! This I have now done, and to cover up my mistake I just extended the path a little further.. Phew!! panic over!So, here is a little close up of the gates themselves..And the final card.. I know Lin is going to love it. And I couldn't be prouder of my project, now I think I'll make one for the shop..
Thanks for checking us out
See you soon,

Monday, 25 January 2010

Happy Birthday! with a cherry on top.

Hi Blogland, how are you all doing today? I just wanted to share with you some cards which were made in our Copic and ProMarker lesson on Saturday..I love how this first one came out, evoking memories of more sunny days!! It's raining and cold here at the moment! The bright colours really do lift you I think.. This one is a bit more vintage.. I think I'm going through a bit of a Green phase at the moment, the colour just seemed to work perfectly with the image I guess..As some of you may be aware, the CHA (Craft & Hobby Association) Winter 2010 trade show is going on in Anaheim, California at the moment! This is where craft producers launch many of their new products and tempt us with their latest ranges.. So over the next few posts I would like to share with you some of the newest products making their way onto the shelves. The Slice goes HANDS FREE
Click here to see a video of the Hands Free Slice Machine in action...
That's right folks! I said HANDS FREE..Due Spring 2010...
Now, you know I love my Cricut! and one of the things that holds me back from using my Slice machine more is the fact that I have to hold it down to cut.. mmm, well, not anymore! You'll soon be able to purchase a collar and mat which holds your Slice machine in place so that you don't have too.. How cool is that!!?? Watch this space and I'll let you know when they are available for us to order and when they are coming in..
Check back soon for more updates from CHA.. There are amazing things coming out for the Cuttlebug!!, Spellbinder Nestabilities and Shapes and of course the Cricut.. Thanks for checking us out..
See you soon..

Saturday, 16 January 2010

All you need is love!!!

da, da, da, da, da.. Try getting that song out of your head today!! Hi Everyone.. Well, January is whizzing along quite nicely but all too soon we will be in February and you know what that brings, that's right Valentines Day!
We had a delivery this week of all the NEW Cricut cartridges.. It was not easy to make a decision of which ones to have, so YES I grabbed one of each before anyone could say "you have enough already".. Enough!!! pah!! NEVER!
My favourite is undoubtedly Hertitage.. OMG! the silhouettes on this cartridge are simply amazing and I have numerous ideas for Scrapbook pages and cards for these images.. To be honest there is not a cartridge I do not like and these are the other ones I grabbed.. Tie the Knot, Sentimentals, Easter, Mothers Day, Love Struck, Forever Young, Destinations, & Songbird.. I have Serenade coming at the end of the Month as well as my Gypsy, so that should keep me more than occupied well into Spring, if not Summer!!! As it was the first one I put my hands on I had a play with Tie the Knot.. Full of images for Weddings, Engagements and Celebrations in general,this is what I came up with..
I cut the Corset image @ 5 1/2" using some vintage looking patterned card stock, then using the Blackout function I cut the same image @ 5 1/2 with Gold Mirror cardand stuck the 2 together using Pinflair Glue..
I wanted to add a lace trim to the bottom of the image but I only had it in White, so using some Sandal Alcohol Inks I dyed it to a more vintage look therefore more in keeping with my project.
It needed a little something on the lace however. Cream beads would have been ideal, did I have any to hand?.. emm NO!.. So, you know me, if I can't find something I need, then I make it, or at the very least adapt something to fit.
I did have some Silver adhesive stones, so I took a Copic pen (Lionet Gold Y28) and coloured some of the stones in.. I could have used a Gold ProMarker, but it was too shiny a Gold and the Lionet Gold fitted perfectly. This is another great use for your Copic or ProMarker Pens, they also colour Peel Offs brilliantly!
To add a little more interest to the final card I punched a heart border into piece of shiny card stock left over from Christmas, New Years resolution fulfilled, "Use card stock I already have".. Check!! I used the Martha Stewart Lace Heart Border Punch, great for going through thicker card stock..
Finally piecing all the bits together and adding a simple Valentines sentiment has finished off the card.
I was really pleased with the outcome of this project so I made a couple more.
This one is in Silver, using Flowers and Bows from the Monochromatic Capsule Collection which is part of the current Do Crafts Essentials Promotion.This however is my favourite.. Valentines?, maybe.. Wedding? DEFO!I know it's difficult to see but I have punched into the background Vellum using the Martha Stewart Deep Edger Heart Punch, subtle, but effective.I hope you like these samples and they give you some inspiration to get going with some loving cards of your own.
Thanks for checking us out.
See you soon

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Going Copic Crazy!!!

Hi Blogland, I hope you are well! Just when you thought the snow had gone!! It was back today!! It has been snowing here for the last 6 hours. Fortunately it was only very fine wet snow and it hasn't settled.. Standing outside all I can hear is the drip drip drip of the snow we had last week as it thaws and melts down the drains... Let's hope that's the end of it and we can get some decent weather for 2010...
This weeks lesson at Pinnacles has been all about Copic and ProMarker pens... Most crafters have them. But, do you use them?? If you have ever seen Manga images you will know just how talented the artists who produce and colour these images are. Well this is my (very limited) attempt, not a patch on their work, but I love these pens just the same...I found some FREE images on the net to colour in and have been playing all week..Taking the concept of shade, tone, tint and shadow used with the Manga images has allowed me to take my colouring in of my image to the next level. In the past I would have generally just coloured the whole image in, but leaving White spaces really does add dimension to your image...
And using the same image, repeatedly gives you a chance to use the whole colour range available..This is my personal favourite, I am really pleased with how the shading came out. However, as much as I tried to find a background to go with the image I couldn't... French Lin to the rescue.. She was playing with some Inks and Brayered this amazing background for me... And my coloured in image fit's just perfectly... Merci Lin..
I hope some of these images give you the inspiration to take your ProMarkers or Copics out of their box. Yes, you know who I'm talking too.. and give em a go..
Thanks for checking us out.
See you soon.