Saturday, 21 January 2017


We are enjoying a very special weekend celebrating my darling Hb's 60th birthday. How time flies...I cannot believe how he has reached this milestone...I am sure that we are still in our twenties..aren't we? 😊
We went up to London yesterday to enjoy a celebratory birthday lunch and we are being joined today by our dear family to continue with the celebrations.

London yesterday was so beautiful in the cold winter sunshine.
Just look at that sky...

 and our meal at Gymkhana in Mayfair was delicious.
Pink gin was a new one for us but a firm favourite now!

We're not huge fans of icing so I made a topper for his Victoria sponge birthday cake which I baked this morning.
I had already made this topper last week. I bought a couple of patterned mini rolling pins at a show some years ago but had never used them.

I had a practice and really liked this flourish pattern.

So I used it on my topper icing base. I crimped the edge

I piped and painted the border and made some cut out stars.

Here it is sitting on the table ready for everyone to arrive..

Would you like a virtual slice 😉
So my card today is of course his birthday card.
He loves grungy cards so I made him one for a very "special delivery". The background was made with distress paints. I had already added some remnant rubs as a resist. I played with lots of circles, buttons and embossing folders for some texture for the focal. The book page is from "A tale of two cities" one of his favourite novels. The stamped birthday sentiment is Clearly Besotted.

My card was made for these challenges;

Darnells' NBUS surprise challenge #8

Darnell is having an amazing giveaway celebrating her 5 years blogging. For this challenge I have used Kraft card as a blank and also as part of my focal.  Instead of colouring it with pencils I used it as part of my tied focal, the first time I have tried this. My never before used stuff is the type key embossing folder and the grey button from a set hidden away in my stash.

A vintage journey going round in circles I have circles in my embossing folder piece, my button and the 0 of my die cut 60!

Creative Moments something new my new is the grey button, from a never yet used set!

Paper Creator anything goes

Scrapbook and cardmaking,  Bastel-truam friendship/love this card was made with lots of love for my soul mate x

Right the family are due to arrive in the next half and hour so I must dash. Enjoy the rest of the weekend everyone and thanks as always for your kind comments and also for the lovely birthday wishes you left for my Hb on Thursday.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Cold enough for snow

Our topsy turvey winter weather continues here in the south of  England.  We are back to crisp cold days. So beautiful but so chilly. It is cold enough to snow but nothing more has happened since the short lived appearance of snow last week. This was the view from my backdoor as I let out Billy this morning. Needless to say he didn't stay out long.

More pretty Jack Frost patterns on my studio windows.....brrr
but once the sun came up the light was beautiful...I even managed a bokeh effect in my photos. Bokeh literally means blur and is used to describe the pretty blur//soft/out of focus background effect you can achieve in photography. Some people just call is background blur. I really do appreciate that "real photographers" will correct me and tell me that it is to do with the lens and not the camera but I'm not getting technical here and yes bokeh can be different shapes not just circles. 
I find that if I take a photo into the sun (NB you must never look directly into the sun) I often get a pleasing bokeh effect from my camera. 

It's far too cold to garden at the moment so in my "free"time I decided to combine some fun challenges which are running at the moment and also try out a new technique for me. Over at Darnell's blog she is running a NBUS challenge.This acronym stands for, in Darnell language, "never before used stuff!" And I have plenty. I wanted to use the song "Let it snow" for the challenge over at the Craft Barn. For A Vintage Journey I also wanted to do something new with circles. Frillly and Funkie are asking for winter hues...I used blue and white from their list and Craft stamper just want stamping. After looking at the Bokeh effect in my photos I remembered a fun circles technique I have often admired but never tried..of course.... making a bokeh background! Most crafters just use white pigment ink through a circle stencil but I thought I would make inky circles too!
I added drops of my distress re-inkers onto wet watercolour paper and just played around..... adding more colours, spritzing with water, blotting and drying.  I used the colours I had seen in my garden sky, the sun and the green of my lawn.
I carried on until I was happy with my inky circles.
Next I got my Clarity circles stencil I bought last autumn.
I then added white pigment ink to complete my bokeh effect

As the weather has been so cold I decided that I would make my backing into a card as the Craft Barn is asking for us to use the song "Let it snow". To me this song was made famous by Dean Martin. I stencilled the words at the top and then using my tree TH stencil added lots of pine trees.
Another item of NBUS...was inked up. My lovely Inkyliscious cabin stamp sent to me by my lovely friend Di of Pixie's Snippets playground from her recent giveaway. I used a Kraft card blank to mount it on after distressing the edges. I also added some more snow with dots from white gel pen.

I'm calling it a winter card as I rarely make Christmas cards until the autumn 😉
and a close up
I really had great fun making this and in the process I learnt a new technique which I will certainly use again.

I made my card for the following challenges;

A vintage journey going round in circles I certainly did..inky circles, bokeh and even dots for my falling snow. 

Darnell is having an amazing giveaway celebrating her 5 years blogging. For this challenge I have used Kraft card but instead of colouring it with pencils I used it as a card blank. I tried a new technique....making a bokeh background.

Craft Stamper take it make it January anything goes

The Craft Barn song challenge Let it snow to me made famous by Dean Martin...I added his name at the bottom of my card.

Frilly and Funkie winter hues they require us to use all or some of these colours...blues, white, silver or grey. I have used lots of blue and white as well as the other winter colours I saw in my cold wintery garden.

It has been so cold again today....yes cold enough to show. I must admit I do like a little of the white stuff so I will close with a few words from the fun winter song....

Well the weather outside is frightful
But the fire is so delightful 
And since we've no place to go...
let it snow, let it snow, let it snow....

Well actually I do have a place to go tomorrow as it's a very special birthday for my dear  Hb.... we're off to London for a special perhaps we'll delay the snow for a day or two if that's OK with you all?

Thanks so much for stopping by today and for all the kind comments you leave me. Keep snug.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Wintery walks

As the weekend was such a washout and it was mostly spent indoors I thought I would share the last of my photos of my recent walks when Bear came to stay. A lot of our many walks with Bear were on very cold but gorgeous blue sky days.  I shared our walk to the woods here .One day we walked to Carew Manor through Beddington Park and I snapped a  few photos of the beautiful church too.

We have such wonderful historical buildings in our area, Carew Manor dates back to King Henry V111 time and is now a school for children with special needs.
On the way home we even spotted a white heron

It might look warm in these photos but believe me it was freezing and as the sun went down the frost returned.

My project today is a nature inspired one. It's a birthday money holder I made, inspired by the wildlife we saw and these awesome greens and blues from our walk. I got inky with some distress inks and added lots of layers of stamps.
 These birds looked very chilled out sitting there.
 I used lots of circular date Crafty Individuals rubber stamps too.. below shows the inside.

It was made for the following challenges;

Allsorts wings on things my birds have plenty!
A vintage journey going round in circles I used lots of circular postage rubber stamps on my wallet.
Everybody art anything goes #394
Moving along with the times 1/3 something in the air.
Let's craft and create 1/3  things with wings
Simon says stamp Monday chill out  my birds on the line are totally chilled out, as we were on our walk.
A bit more time to craft 2/3 anything goes
The ribbon girls 1/3 any image
Craft Heaven 2/3 winter blues
Happy Little stampers mixed media layers I have given the appearance of layers by layering my stamps using different inks.
We love to create 2/2 anything goes mixed media
Crafty catz add ribbon

Thanks for stopping by today and for your kind comments. Enjoy the rest of the week.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x