Wednesday, 18 October 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 437

Well I'm on it. My real desk is covered in something involving my little sister's birthday, so I can't show ya that. Instead, behold the dining table - tis a workroom extension.....
Me and the Coven are off for a weekend of scrapbooking, deep in the Dorset countryside. So here is the beginnings of getting ready. The photos arrived in double quick time and I laid them out like this last Friday so that I could see clearly and formulate a plan. They are all still there. Not only that, they are a bit more curved now, thanks to a couple of warm days! They are today's priority. Well, till lunchtime, then I'm off to visit my Mama. So whilst I'm doing that, please blog your work desks, link here and let us visit. And don't forget to tell me if you'd like a new WOYWW badge! 

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Retro-active

Do you know the expression that says something about being so busy that you'll meet yourself coming back? Well, I think I've cracked it. You may have read of my panic to get Christmas cards made for a Charity sale. For a change, I used forethought and wisdom and made our family cards as well. So now, apart from a few for workshops, I seem to have put Christmas behind me already! Which means that I'm using Autumn as a theme.

I like Autumn, it lets you get away with a variety of colours that would otherwise be a bit mismatched. Copper colour base mat, black embossed card (a new folder) and gold cord. You wouldn't, normally, would you! You can see, it's the same leaf, actually a PSX stamp. Blimey, PSX.
The text is stamped on a bit of oak veneer that I may have stolen from the scrap bin at work. It's a Hero Arts stamp; I can't say how old, but still very useful! I used Pixie Powders to colour the leaves. It involves baby wipes, water, wet desk, shiny fingers and some swearing I'm afraid - as much as I like the results, I'm not good at the method! There's shadow across the card, and a rich golden autumnal light. Totally real too...I took the picture at about 5pm the other evening, gorgeous autumnal evening.


Unlike the rubbish light of this card...I don't know if you can really see what I've done! This is a Judikins stamp. I used black pigment ink and a pearly green embossing powder so the trees have a touch of colour. The rest is just adding tiny dots of wet glue which I foiled when dry. I like the card stock used for this. Very old 'rust gold' pre-folds, from back when Clarity was using the Imagina label.

Not only have I stepped back into Autumn, I've been using some very retro stamps and marques. There's nothing like a bit of up to date reminiscing!

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 436

This time yesterday, all was clear, calm and tidy. I had cleared up and put away and washed off; I needed my desk space to do the business month end etc. Yawn.. Normally I would use the dining table. But that's a little busy at the moment.....


A part of the legacy from my friend Mary. We needed to spread them out to see them and decide what we could use, keep etc. Would that there was room to keep them all. And time to use them!
Anyway, my real desk is back to being a crafter's nightmare...
Late yesterday I set to finishing some Workshop samples; it's next week and once again I seem to have managed to convince myself that I had a week in hand. Lordy, it all just goes by too fast!
I was playing with Distress Inks and solid stamps, but they aren't great inks for that, so I gave up. Then I had another idea that involved those Pixie Powders.(Like Brushos, but pearlescent). It is my mission to come up with a way to enjoy them without making heaps of mess. Ha! An empty mug, the spoon is a give-away - I only keep the spoon in a mug if it's hot chocolate. Inevitably there's scissors, and today, even two pairs of glasses. It's not fully productive, but when you've got a room full of stamps to sort and pick over, it's difficult to concentrate!
Show and tell will you? we'd like to see how you're doing, what you're doing and what you've got. Link your WOYWW entitled post here and some of us will pop round. This whole thing is based on reciprocal visits - if you aren't getting many visitors, you probably aren't making many visits. If you don't visit at all, but just link here, eventually people will recognise your blog link and pass it over. You have to participate in the community to get something/anything out of it. That's not unreasonable, huh! 

Housekeeping: there's a new WOYWW logo and therefore a new badge...lemme know if you'd like one!

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 435

Post WOYWW Crop blues have hit my desk. I've achieved that 'caught in time' look that photos are meant to reveal, for sure. There lies stuff that I used in preparation for going to Llandudno and didn't put away. And now there lies stuff as a result of unpacking after being to Llandudno.

The pizza box and white carrier are new to me stuff that I plan to use for a card making marathon day I'm involved with. We're using stash left to us by a dear friend and crafter called Mary. So, to honour her stash and her memory, we're calling our day of card making, 'A Marython'. Geddit. 
You can see my new(ish) tractor seat stool too. Happy to report it's incredibly comfortable. But in these early mornings, a nightdress isn't enough to prevent the seat feeling very cold on first use! The Crop was amazing. Proper commentary and photos are available on better blogs than this; I can't tag them yet, several were waiting till today to talk about their experience. Ooh err!
Please link your WOYWW post here, visit and be visited. That's the ticket. Or as we Welsh speakers say - 'there's lovely'.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

It was llovely in Llandudno

I know I'm late to post about the WOYWW Crop, but it hasn't stopped me musing and thinking and enjoying the fresh memories. The thing about the photos that several have already published is that it shows me things I missed. Some of them feature me rather too often as well, I'm very sorry.
It was lovely, no doubt about it. Margaret worked long and hard to ensure that we had good facilities and maximum food comfort. And she did it all in her smiling and warm way. Having been involved in Crops, workshops and large craft numbers for some years, I know how hard Margaret worked on her own, and believe me dear gal, nothing went unnoticed.
Actually, not true. No-one can have noticed the clock ticking around so fast. I didn't. Want to see what I did in a 6 hour craft day...
The image was pre-stamped, some years ago. Long story. Can you just see the light blue/green colour around the snowman outline? It took me all day to do that. On just this one.
There was a decent trade of gifts and ATCs too. I managed to distract attention from my lack of ATCs to trade by giving out a new WOYWW badge. Phew.
Look - Elizabeth made a little fabric tray and a matching ATC for me. Well, in truth she had made one for everyone.
And Annie was offering a choice of gifts for heaven's sake. This little paperweight had my name all over it.
And my ATC box is becoming a source of technique references! Look at these lovelies. From left, these are from Sarah, Christine (top), Neet, Dolores (top) Margaret and Anne.
There was craft chat. Techniques and products were talked about all around. There was life story chat. Family chat. Journey chat. Parking chat. Weather chat. Food chat. even football chat at one point! Thank you Margaret, for a day that reminded me totally that WOYWW is actually a tangible and useful thing. That friends are friends, online or in person. And that the miles make a difference, but don't count at all.

Friday, 29 September 2017

It's WOYWW Crop weekend!







Join us, if you can, this Saturday 30th between 10am and 4pm. 

Emmanuel Christian Centre
Lloyd Street
Llandudno
LL30 3YA

There is parking at the hall - please park as economically as possible. If the car park fills, there's pay and display parking on the Prom. Which suggests that we'll be by the sea! How exciting. And possibly bracing.

Margaret has planned, planned and planned and will collapse from exhaustion about twenty minutes after we finish on Saturday afternoon, I've no doubt. We're all looking forward to welcoming each other. Don't forget!

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 434

I am still playing with the snowman die. I've finished now though, I think this is the last of the card stock that I can use. That, and the stamps at left suggest I'm still making Christmas cards. I am, but I'm not, really. I have a few to do for workshops and a card-making event and that will be it. But now I'm seeing the end of the requirement, I'm really feeling the vibe! The DVD case at left houses my Christmas dies. I like to keep them separate whilst I'm working with them, but eventually they will be returned to the bulging file proper place. There's a pile of tidy trays at right, all clean at once! I put them in the dishwasher after a workshop. Thoroughly clean and also, wonderfully static free. For a minute. Those glasses are a cheap pair of readers. 2.5 magnification, apparently. Well, they're not as good as my new prescription glasses, so colour me horrified! No wonder I can't do colouring, cutting or colour matching at night!
Really hugely looking forward to seeing some Deskers at the Crop this weekend. Meanwhile, show and tell about your desks, please!

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Seasonally Corrected.

Christmas. New stock keeps arriving and tempting me. For which of course, Shopkeeper Gal has to shoulder the blame. It has nothing to do with weakness or lack of will power or any such nonsense. I have been very caught up in it all though. We've had a couple of lovely sunny autumn days that have let me focus on the present. Then when it all turned to wind and rain again, I had a go at an appropriate card. Which turned into two.


I die cut this scene from some pearlescent paper in my scrap box. I intended merely to sponge some colour through it to create a background for the real/intended card. Turns out I wasn't the usual heavy handed (or 'enthusiastic') with the inking and found myself quite liking the coloured die cut. So as you can see, I glued it to a wood effect card panel and called it a card. Genius, me. Ignore the word 'dreams' underneath...it's packaging tape. I forgot to crop the photo. Well, genius doesn't always extend to everything, does it!

This was my intended version. The background is coloured by sponging Distress Inks through the die cut ( I believe that makes it a stencil). Then I die cut another of the scenes from textured brown stock and glued it into position over the ghostly white trees that the removal of the stencil had created. I'm perfectly sure you know what I did. But explaining it makes me feel very important, as if I blog about crafting or something. The 'lovely' is a Heidi Swapp die. I'm assuming the warm tones of the inks is what allows me to get away with using pink. You'll have to ask a proper artist about colours. my limit is colouring and then gluing, frankly.
Note that this lovely tree scene speaks nothing of the tedium of raking and collecting the fifty kerjillion leaves involved at some point. Yes, I have garden chores that I'm putting off. How could you tell?

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 433

I ended up in a stew of so much last week that I've only just caught up! I managed to tidy my desk sufficiently to finish the cards I had committed to, so then decided to back pedal a little and do some real seasonal stuff. As is my habit, I put the last piece on the card, put the glasses down and went to do some real work. It's a skill you know, being able to walk away like that. In any other life scenario, it would give me the guilts and would cause me to have an unhappy conscience, but because this only affects me, it seems ok!
The keyboard is looking precariously balanced now I see it in the photo, so will remove that to it's correct place momentarily! A basket of finished Christmas cards is visible at left, and my need to always use more than one pair of scissors is evident as usual. I made both cards using the positive and negative of a die cut. The colour is just sponged distress inks. Missteejay  wondered where I got the pink egg shape sponges that I use for such things. 99p each in the make-up section at Home Bargains. I have one per colour, not per shade..i.e one for reds, one for blues. Even though as make-up sponges they are a bargain, a pound each could still run into ridiculous amounts of money just to improve a blended look! The 'tube' is a roll of wrapping cellophane waiting for me to er, wrap things. Everything else is as always!  
Please share your early autumnal offerings then, lets see what's doing it for you this week. 

Friday, 15 September 2017

On going to a Crop

We're on the road for this year's WOYWW Crop. Tripping up to Llandudno to be embraced by Margaret's warm and welcoming hospitality. I'm not entirely sure that 'Crop' adequately describes the day, but it's as close as we can come, I guess, to anything a crafter would understand. Because we all know each other, but in many cases have never met, there's an instant camaraderie, a warm welcome for everyone. I really hope that no-one would be too nervous to come on their own. If that is you, message me and we'll meet in the car park and I can walk in with you; so you won't be on your own.  I'll be excited though, so will probably announce your arrival in a shouty, not very subtle way! 
Classic decoy photo. This is NOT Llandudno. The San Francisco range seen from the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.
It's not a 'location' event, or a workshop at which you are to be amazed and impressed. There's tables and chairs and facilities.The rest, we bring with us. That is, hours of chat, quite a lot of tea and coffee and oh so much food! The idea of making it a Crop rather than just a big old meet in a restaurant is that we can swap and display our crafts, and work on something too. A few people manage some inking or cutting; I always think it's handy to turn to the desk if you encounter an awkward multi-second silence!


At some point over the last few weeks, I did think that I would organise myself to take some project or other to work on. I've done so little scrapbooking this year that it would be lovely to make a start on catching up. And then, of course, there's the upcoming Season and my desire to have both business and private greetings cards to send that are actually hand made. It's a good opportunity. But I fear, my need to know more about every one that's coming, (more nosiness) and my well documented procrastination skills will mean that I bring nothing and do nothing. And that will be just fine.

The Crop is such a good opportunity to glean info from Deskers, to match the person to their stash, to find out if their blogs truly reflect themselves, or whether their writing changes them. It does happen. Some of us are far more shy and lacking in opinion than you would expect. Seriously, you'd be surprised.


And another decoy. This isn't Lladudno either. I think there are less rock vistas in Llandudno.
I know that Shaz is bringing her huge collection of dies...I can often be bribed into doing some cutting for you. Bring card stock if you think that sounds like an idea you'd like to take advantage of. In years gone by (! that phrase!!) the Crop has been timed to slightly co-ordinate with the WOYWW anniversary and so we've collectively taken advantage of the meet to swap our anniversary ATCs. We're way past the anniversary date this year.  There is no need to make a specific Crop ATC, but if you want to, that would be nice. I think a maximum of about 15 would do it.

There will at some point during the day be a call to pay subs - to cover the cost of hiring the hall and paying for the lunch. The charge will be £10 a head for Deskers and we charge the husbands that stay to/come back for lunch a £5. Margaret will have run herself ragged to fill us up within budget; I'm pretty sure that you'll love it. We also do a little fund raising for a chosen charity each year - this year it will be for Margaret to choose; she works for a couple of charities so it will be lovely to make a contribution as a thank you, don't you think. See. Even talking about the Crop makes me all friendly and charitable. Told you that you often find people out of character when involved with WOYWW Crop!

It all happens on 30 September. Read HERE.
I would be a fibbing if I said I'm not looking forward to it. And the seaside. And more Welsh Wales. 

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

What's On Your WOrkdesk? Wednesday 432


Well gentle Desker, I did clear up. And, I have sort of cleared up between cards over the weekend too. You can see the edge of the bin, it's perched on my seat..I was about to clear and tidy again when a much better idea came to me. So I walked away. I had been working on a Christmas card as you can see, using a specific die. I don't think it's there yet...somehow the snowman is too, erm......white. The thin nib pens are out because I was drawing stitches around an earlier attempt. See the Versacolour ink pad at the right there abandoned at a jaunty angle by my right-hand-tools? That's my white pigment ink pad. Yep, whitest I own. Thank goodness for White embossing powder! Deckchair is untroubled by card blanks (which is enough proof that I tidied, frankly), or my iPad. That's because I used it to take the pic this morning and have put it somewhere. Probably next to the coffee that I really need. Join us will you? Show and tell about your work space, it will be nice!

Friday, 8 September 2017

Making do...

 Occasionally, I find that the 'thing' I intend to create simply will not come out of the (considerable) stash I own. Or,I get to a crop and discover that I've failed to pack a staple ingredient for a particular idea. These moments are good for me. They cause me to assess and evaluate and in very many cases, come up with a different plan, making the best of what I have to hand. 

Travel back in time if you will, to 1662 England. Charles II was King, the monarchy newly restored. Women were being executed for witchcraft; paper crafting was probably not a thing. But other crafters have left their marks.
This fire surround was fashioned above what had been a fairly ordinary fire place. It's not as grand as it looks (although it is, of course).

The first panel above the fireplace is probably the front or back of a chest, a dowry or merchant's chest most likely, because it is so decorative. The 'shelf' of moulding above it, and the pieces of moulding around the other panels look as though they could have come from windows or frames of some sort. The date is carved into the patterned piece of moulding. The next two panels are drawer fronts, (close up, keyholes are clearly visible). The larger centre panel is possibly from a panelled door..and so it goes. So you see, 'necessity is the mother of invention' is not a new concept. You knew that. But isn't it remarkable that we can see 500 year old evidence of it. I expect the house owner wanted to impress somebody and the imposing fireplace was probably a fashion, a window onto wealth and prosperity. Who knows. 


I was a bit giddy about this fireplace, it's just in one of many rooms in a lovely old house that is now a school. And the reason I saw it - Mr Dunnit was commissioned to fit a new doorway, and he needed an extra pair of hands. So while I wondered about a bit taking photos and remarking on the incredible pillars in the main hall, he started to assemble the new doorway, with the pillars duplicated as uprights for a glass door.
I can't imagine how it would be re-purposed, but I hope that 500 years from now, there's still evidence of beloved's work. 

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 431

Honestly, I don't know where to start with the clearing up. I've tried to do too many things simultaneously and it just doesn't suit me! 

Sorry about the light, it's definitely starting to appear a little autumnal, and I don't like it! So, anything of interest? Hmmm, just some disorder I think. The pile of envelopes at the far left should be in the basket at near right. That would free up some space. In front of the deckchair, you can see a pile that's done the slide...there are card blanks and a packet of silver mirror and mat card and some baby wipes and well, I'm glad you can't see it from the side, to be honest! There's a packet of Sugru in the pink tidy tray, it's a bit of a mending staple around here.  In the centre is an acrylic box that contains my Christmas dies and that's there because I really am about to clear up. So, show off your much better organised space will you, I need to be reminded!
Put WOYWW in your post title and link here. Please. Thank you.

Friday, 1 September 2017

Sunshine, Tinsel and Glitter.

Way back in the 90's, we visited my parents who were then living in Sydney, Australia. It was New Year and therefore summer. The schools were enjoying their long summer holiday and quite a few of the smaller independent shops were closed, enjoying an extended break after a frantic Christmas season. Consequently, when we left towards the end of January, there were still some Christmas decorations to be seen when out and about. It taught me two things: - tinsel collects dust just like every other damn thing, and it looks sad. And that in my opinion tinsel looks a bit tawdry in the sunshine. Roll on a decade or two and I'm at my desk, ruefully trying to add glitter to cards that I'm making at least 3 months early.
Dies: Marianne and Stampin Up,  Cuttlebug emboss folder. Patience and fiddly, time consuming stuff by ME.

I'm not unfamiliar with making Christmas cards this early, but I never seem to have the sparkle or tinsel mood and I wondered if it was just me? I can make a dozen different cards and forget to put anything vaguely sparkly or glittery on them. I know it's not necessary all the time, but it is pretty unusual for a Christmas theme not to have something, even if it's just a swipe of Stella's winking. Although my cards tend not to be classy enough for the 'less is more' option! I suspect that my favourite cards for Christmas will be the handful I make in December; you know the ones I'll forget to photograph, post off in a panic thinking that as I'm so pleased with them I'm bound to remember how to repeat them. I know making Christmas cards at this time of the year is a bit divisive; some of you throw your hands up in horror at the very thought, and others are quietly getting on with them. If you're in the latter camp, don't forget the glitter!


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

What's On Your Wordkdesk? Wednesday 430

This is late afternoon sunshine, taken yesterday whilst I had the thought in my head. I'm still doing multiples and still reasonably enjoying it. At front left are my Moon Sparkle paint brush pens. (The ones that have Wink of Stella printed on them under the labels). They are very much my go to for colouring at the moment. Very much. The landline phone is sitting on top of the Bluetooth speaker, and the heat gun is actually in the way - when I get to it this morning, there will be some reorganising to do. I don't think there's room for 'push back or side'! The basket at right on top of the trimmer and stamp positioner and cleaner pad and probably something else, contains the finished multiples. It's nice to bunch them together, I like to see my achievement! The rest of the stuff is just that - stuff...fall out from doing stuff. No point saying it's because of the five minute here and there thing - you know it's not; it's just the way I am!
We are about to enter the month of the WOYWW Crop, anything you'd like to know, please refer to the page linked above or ask by comment, email etc. It's all a bit exciting really!
Now then, please share the way you are. Your desk is brilliant, your works are inspirational. Put WOYWW in your blog post title and link it here! Thank you!

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 429

Sorry about the number typo last week. It's evidence of fat fingers and of course, doesn't come up in a spell check, so it took me a while to spot it! Ah well, as long as we're here, no matter the number, particularly!
I'm doing that five minutes here and there thing - spot breakfast! And in those five minutes here and there, I'm trying to batch make cards, 13 each of five designs. I could easily have said 'No' when asked, but it's for the charity that I drew a lot of support from during the brain surgery months, so I'm delighted to. It's forcing time management out of me and that's a jolly good thing. Ho Ho Ho. Under the plate with the toast is my folder of dies and some blank cards. Centre is the unglued prototype of the next design..I'm about to scuff a bit of ink down the sides of the mount, hence the egg sponge. At right there's a tangle of ribbon - chosen and then discarded as a possible embellishment for this card. There's my coffee (it's that early, I haven't finished it yet!) and a mess of bubble wrap. I'm starting to collect it to use in a workshop next week. So that's me! Share with me and some others, will ya? Put WOYWW in your blog post title and link it here. Visiting today will be interrupted by a trip to see my lovely Mama and Sissy. Another nice afternoon, I hope! See you at your place.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 429

Well, I'm back from a fab fun and lovely stay in Welsh Wales with Jan. I went last Wednesday morning, so I haven't done much at my desk at all. I don't care!
The penguins that look like badgers are to be cut out and mounted onto silver cards, just like the finished one you can see. That's about my limit for making multiples. I like the image though, so there will be variations, I don't doubt! There's a couple of cut out sausage dog images just visible above the orange highlighter pen. There's nothing wrong with them, so they will be made into cards. I stamped and coloured them as potential images for a workshop card, but coloured a few images in different ways before I settled for another. Do you like the snowflake border die? I do, very much. Bizarre isn't it, in August. And talking of bizarre....

Here's my lovely Jan, wandering lonely as a cloud....the tide was out and the brooding clouds made us feel very small on this magnificent beach. And then the clouds blew away, the sun came out and we forgot about being poetic and insignificant in the face of nature and had another great chatty, walky, fun afternoon. Proof if you need it, that we did at least walk off the cocktails!

I'm sorry for the longer post, I had to brag about seeing Jan. Now, please show us your desks and tell us what you're up to - we're waiting to see. Link here please, with WOYWW in your blog title. Don't forget there's a new logo in the margin or a couple of posts back if you'd like it.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 427

Yes! It's got cards and stamps and sticky and work-in-progress type stuff on it! Hurrah!
The light isn't terrific this morning, but at least there's visible proof that I haven't been in procrastination mode all week! You can just see a few strips of shiny bobbly background on the white cards. I made them with the bubble wrap and Pixie Powders and a water spritzer. One of you lovely Deskers had been doing it, and I needed to copy. If only to prove that the Pixie Powders aren't the messiest, most uncontrollable and therefore most hateful product I've tried this year. This technique does offer redemption, I must say! There's penguins, waiting for their glitter pom-poms to dry. And no, that's not a euphemism. There's the ATG gun thingy with the tape broken, about 100 feet from the end of the reel. Really annoying. Mr Dunnit's patience will be required for that. It saves broken tape gun, broken window, hysteria, tears and snot, see.
So there y'are, y'all. I will be visiting from foreign shores. Well, shore. I'm going to stay with LLJ for a few days and so we might well be commenting in tandem!
Have a great Wednesday. After you've recovered from the shock of my productivity, share yours too - link your blog post here, and PLEASE put WOYWW in the title!

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 426

The staged one....where I actually clear up and show the packets of stamps that you've seen in a clump resting on my iPad deckchair thingy! Staged also because I took the photo yesterday afternoon - I'm up and at it and away early today so don't want to have to encounter publishing problems (which always occur when I'm in a hurry...!)
I don't actually know that the stamps are very much easier to see than last week, but I've tried! Amazing to think that minutes before, and again not long after this shot, it was dark and raining - 'sunny with showers' the forecasters cheerily describe it. Urgh.
So, you can see the stamps are all from Woodware....(I think I'm fangirling Francoise!). One of the reasons they are like that is because I was doing the thinkventory thing. Arrange them in front of me and let them talk to me. Inspiring me for Christmas stuff in the summer requires a lot of rubbery wordsmithing from them I can tell you!
The little striped bag is the only new thing this week, it contain 3 buttons in a turquoise, shell like material. For my scrapbook. Of the American holiday. Sometime.
Show and share then, gentle desker! Oh and...there's a new logo (see previous post) if you're interested.
Cool. See you online!

Monday, 31 July 2017

Housekeeping... a new logo!

You may have the WOYWW logo and link in your sidebar. If you have, thank you! Regretfully, you now have a picture from Photobucket telling you that hosting of the image has expired. Sorry about that, it's not very pretty and I was hoping to beat them to it. Epic fail!
WOYWWers, Deskers, gentle reader...there is a new WOYW logo!

 My Creative Director (Sissy Stephanie) told me that the original logo was old and out of date in style, so she whipped up a couple of others to choose from! And because things have moved on so far, I don't think it will need a hosting service if you want to add it to your sidebar as a link. First, copy this image to your computer. Or save it...whatever you have to do.
On Blogger, go into the dashboard, select Layout and then select 'Add a Gadget'. It will pop up a menu full of gadgets you can add, so at this point, don't get carried away.Go to 'Image' and click the + sign at right end of the box. This throws up another page into which you type the URL for this blog - www.stamping-ground.blogspot.co.uk - and then add the picture. Click the 'shrink to fit ' option box too. It should load and take it's place in your side bar. Don't forget to delete the gadget with the out of date (Photobucket) logo!
Of course, there's no rule that says you have to have the logo on your blog, or indeed if you have the logo, you don't have to make it a link. Whatever works for you. Either way, you have to admire my Creative Director's forwardness in telling me how out of date I am. Again. It reminded me of a one sided discussion about my pearly pink lipstick a few years ago.....

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Take Note...

At about this time of year, I treat myself to a new notebook. It's usually quite slim and will eventually contain my Christmas lists. Slim so that I can carry it in a handbag whilst shopping, and lists - of course- because my memory is not up to the job of keeping catalogue of who's getting what!

This year, I have no need to purchase. The lovely Kathy showered me with journal/notebooks as a gift when we met in the States last month. (Last month..it's slipping away from me already!) And I've started using this....it reminds me of Kathy, our meeting, the sunshine, the Native American vibe that runs through so much of our trip - oh everything!


Kathy is a Sheena Douglas fan ( like so many of us), and has used her faux leather technique to cover these books. Aren't they amazing. And truly, even when handling them, there's little concept of their being card, especially as each cover has a beautiful inside to enjoy too.


I'll be honest and admit that I was embarrassed by Kathy's generosity and promised to share the bounty. Sissy Stephanie had first choice, and as you may know, I sent one on Kathy's behalf to Shaz in Oz (THIS post, if you'd like to see it)



So that means there's still more sharing to do! If you'd like to be in with a chance of owning one of these hand stitched treasures, please comment to that effect. If there are more than two, we'll do a random drawing. I think it will make Kathy blush to see that I'm carrying through my 'threat' to share her skill, but really, these do deserve to be loved and used don't you agree!


The real beauty for me is in the using. A gifted notebook in which to write notes about gifting. Perfect circularism. Or something. Thank you again, Kathy!

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 425

Well there's an improvement! I cleared up yesterday and will be tinkering with card making as and when I can get to it. Hurrah! That lovely black and white file is a ring binder with plastic pockets with magnetic sheets. It's full of my dies. It's not completely full, but crikey, it's heavy! As you can see, I was cutting out some leaping reindeer. Jut to try the die out really. Not feeling the whole Christmas card thing to be honest! The splattering of pens was caused by having a need for one colour and a too full pencil case! But that's OK, they'll all be wedged back in shortly, and that will make the desk look considerably tidy!
Share share share, am in need of looking...will take you with me today, more appointments and waiting is the forecast!

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Gifting....

It seems to have been a while since I posted anything that I've made. I talk a lot about what I'm going to do.....!
Before we went to visit her, my sister was excited to tell me that her friends had already extended invitations to us for food and coffees and warm, friendly socialising. I decided a few hostess presents were necessary. Well of course, I left it quite late! I did have a lot of fun using up some scraps and trying to come up with a few ideas to encompass a few occasions!
Stickers on white card, cut out. Words from an embossing folder by Cuttlebug, I think.  It's quite old now, but I use it a lot, so in terms of purchase value, it's been a great one! 

Same again, stickers and blah blah
This is the inside of both the sticker-made cards.

I used but 'doctored' the text that came with this lovely fox from Francoise for Woodware.  This ended up as a workshop card too, I liked the red fox!

These graphic florals are by Woodware too. You can see there are subtle differences in mounting and more obvious differences in the colouring. These actually illustrate very well the sort of trials I make before I end up with a card I'm happy with for a workshop. In this case, the card that won as a workshop sample was mounted on yellow and all the flowers were coloured in yellow. I think they look more striking in a single colour. Not what Mother Nature would say, for sure!

These are pretty basic cards, all die cut, so not a lot of brain work involved, but the paper by Kaisercraft is incredibly pretty if you ask me. The green strip across them is the reverse of the floral paper, so very good use of a big old scrap!
I'm going to keep trying this process. Very often I make a couple of card fronts (I nearly always make a front rather than working on the card itself..it's cheaper to throw away and than a pre-scored card. And it keeps my card-to-envelope tally pretty even!







Wednesday, 19 July 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 424

It's a shambles. Still.
I'm doing that five minutes here and there thing, and it doesn't involve tidying and sorting. I will...because it's driving me nuts! You can see the Summer workshop schedule, which is there to prompt me to at least think about the next workshop. Below that, you can see a few packets...they are new clear stamps. And on the right next to the tape gun - there's a new die. All Christmas themed. Shopkeeper Gal made me, she said I needed them. The brown paper bag at left contains squashed pennies and other such nonsense souvenirs from the USA. The little wallet thing at far right is full of tickets and receipts from our hols...you'd think, wouldn't you, that I was getting ready to scrapbook! The truth is naturally, more to do with not having put them away properly!
Share your work space will you? Especially if you're feeling a bit smug about how tidy it is compared to mine!

Saturday, 15 July 2017

There IS a difference...this time it's food....

Did you know that Mr Dunnit and I were recently in the United States? I'm sorry to go on. Actually, I'm not really.I hope my observations aren't too boring for you; I'm not offended if you choose not to plough through them, honestly!  we spent time with my sister in Eagle, Idaho. And we did a road trip to visit places -we drove from Eagle, to Twin Falls, then to Salt Lake City, then Kanab, then Flagstaff. We turned around after a couple nights in Flagstaff and went back to Eagle via Page and Orem.  There's so much to say, and frankly, putting these observations on my Blog will help me enormously in five years time when I start the scrapbook pages. I want to point out some differences in our cultural lives....food is one:
Of course, breakfast is the first thing...the bacon comes with the pancakes....I re-jigged it for eating purposes. I had heard of, but not tasted the maple syrup-on-bacon-pancakes thing. I didn't care for it, but it didn't stop me re-arranging the combination. Best ever - a breakfast that includes a pudding! Whilst we toured, we ate huge breakfasts at a variety of roadside diners. Where possible we chose independent diners...my word they were amazing. Every one of them was a potential film set!
'At home' in Idaho, Billiam was concerned that we try all the traditions and so this is the famous 'biscuits and gravy'. I know it looks like mushrooms, but it's actually quite highly herby and peppery sausage in the gravy. The 'biscuits' are rather like savoury scones, slightly less doughy perhaps. For five days I enjoyed coffee with 'Half and Half' in it. Then my sister told me it wasn't half fat milk it was half full milk and half cream. No wonder I liked it.
Biscuits and gravy, courtesy of  Billiam, chef of the day.
Most of the eating out was done on our road trip. At 'home' in Eagle, we did home stuff and ate home food. As you do!  It took me a few days to get used to the way that a server will clear the plates of anyone that's finished. Here, it's considered rude to clear until the last person has finished. In the States, not so. I lost the last few bites of several meals until I cottoned on and spoke up for myself! It's politely done, the most common phrase is 'let me get that empty tableware out of your way', which is very nice. I was always left eating on my own, I'm very slow. I talk too much.
The best Milkshake I've ever had..a cup full of soft ice cream swirled with huckleberries.

Very noticeably, Americans eat a lot of cheese. And they know their cheeses. Wherever we ate, there was cheese. Every sandwich, 'enhanced' with a slice of Emmental or Gouda or Swiss something or other...no matter what other contents were between the slices of bread. Of course, burgers - Feta was very popular on burgers in Boise. Parmesan by the bucket load, added to hot chips (very nice), sprinkled over salads, and an addition to pizza, but ironically to us, not offered when we actually had a Bolognese. Of course, Macaroni Cheese appears on menus in Diners and five star restaurants alike...sometimes called different things, but Mac and Cheese it was. At Boise airport there were two places to eat and neither of them had a single savoury item on the menu that didn't include cheese. Largely the cheese is an addition that over here, we wouldn't have thought of, or noticed the lack of. For someone that can take or leave it, it became a bit of a habit to ask 'hold the cheese'!

And that really is a huge difference that was immediately obvious. 'Hold the cheese', 'add such and such', 'put the whatever on the side'. Massive menus that are then manipulated to suit the eater. It must drive the kitchen and washing up staff absolutely crackers. Didn't seem that way though. Nothing seemed too much trouble, to be honest.
Well, actually, one thing did. Getting a drink. Alcohol. I know and was expecting the rules to change from State to State, and I know in particular that in Utah it is less 'easy' to drink than other States. But we were a bit surprised when turned away from a restaurant-bar in Utah because I had no photo ID. We wanted a beer and a steak - we had been able to smell the grill from down the street. They couldn't let us in without ID even when we promised not to try to order drinks. Wow. Wasn't expecting any exceptions; rules is rules.  And yet, somehow, at 52.11 and 56.5 years old, it did seem a bit silly. Especially as the next night, we went to a ballgame (Go Bees!) and managed to buy a couple of beers without so much as a whisper about age or ID. Mind you - it was expensive enough to probably prevent under-age drinkers from even trying. EIGHT dollars, and it wasn't even a pint! I have no pictures, but I do have the plastic glass, one of my more expensive tacky souvenirs!

And finally, I have completely and utterly won the prize. Solved the puzzle. Got an answer. Our American cousins eat fruit with their savoury 'main meals' because....there's never room for pudding!
I can't count the number of meals I had that turned up and included a fruit salad. We were invited to supper at a friend's and enjoyed beautifully grilled steak with a strawberry and blueberry salad. Absolutely delish. And for once in the whole trip..just once, my eyes weren't bigger than my belly.

Since Blogger last updated, I'm struggling with basic editorial, font sizes, alignment, picture placing.....anyone else?
These two lines of text really illustrate it!











Wednesday, 12 July 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 423

Well, this may  be a what's not....over here at my place, it's all going on, and I have only cleared my desk off in order to work at it. I have not tidied..the cleared 'stuff' is in a pile on a chair. But, now I have the workshop ready to roll, I can get to tidying and straightening. I need to. It's driving me crackers.
Look - early morning coffee, and ta na! In the basket, my first Christmas card of the season. I have to say Season, because in crafting retail world, it IS the Season. Demand is there for those that are hugely well organised, and so...one of the cards in this weeks workshop is for Christmas. The lovely stars and stripes pencils were part of a gift from my American Sissy, and there you see the real book of 'Me'. It's not in the same place with dust on it, like so many features on my desk - it's in the same place because it's actually a convenient place to keep it and write in it! It has some very pertinent questions in it...I may have to leave it for publication with my will!
Share what you're up to, will you, we need to see, especially if you're one of the hugely Seasonally prepared! I'll be late to visit, I have an appointment with the neuro rehab team at Southampton hospital. They've been amazing in helping me work off the worst of the facial palsy and I think this will be the last visit!

Friday, 7 July 2017

Presumption of friendship

I've never met an American I didn't like. The young and burly Homeland Security guy that I met at immigration may have scared me a little, but he was perfectly pleasant. And wonderfully efficient. The young man in Utah that took $200 dollars off us after our car was towed...extremely nice, very friendly and almost apologetic. Obviously, I haven't met the entire nation, and I fully accept that there will be exceptions. And I'm big and ugly enough to accept that not everyone is going to like me.
Taken from a bus in Utah;  Zion National Park, I think!
Our recent trip has reinforced the belief that everyone will be polite and friendly, in response to polite and friendly. I love that the guy at the table next to us in the Bakery at Kanab, Utah recognised our accents and wanted to tell us all about his trip to Great Britain, that the girl who served us Pizza in Flagstaff, Arizona thought we were Canadian, and that a very nice young woman in Anthropologie,(back in Eagle, Idaho) admired my sandals, which caused me such surprise that her kind enthusiasm for my accent left me a little word shy. See how I got three States into the story? We met a lot of people.
I had a message from Kathy that she lived a mere 5 hours from Idaho, read my blog and would like to meet. So....we did.
Mike wore a collared shirt to meet us on account of our being British. Perfect!
Now if ever the presumption of friendship is thrown into question, you can quote this 'incident'. Kathy is not (yet) a blogger, but she reads WOYWW and follows several of us Deskers. You will have seen her desk on WOYWW422 (the wrongly numbered one). We may never have met, but we already know that we have craft in common. And then, the rest comes naturally. I think both of our husbands came because it's a long journey...but also, it's 'strangers off the internet' again isn't it, and if either of us had indeed turned out to be axe murderers, our heroes were there to defend us. In reality, we had a lovely meal, lots of soda (because it was hot, man and we had a lot to talk about). Four hours after we met, Mike started to make noises about going home, after all, its over a two hour trip. It only took another 40 minutes to get us to the point of departure....there is always so much to say. I hope, Kathy, that you're reading this in your wonderful craft space and thinking of the nice afternoon we had together, and I really hope that we can repeat it!
Oh, and just as a by-the-way...I didn't buy anything in Anthropologie. Strong and sensible shopper!





Wednesday, 5 July 2017

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 422

It really is 422 gentle Desker. Many of you noticed that by going away, I stepped into a time warp and well, cocked up the week numbers! LLJ reminded me yesterday to repeat last week. Making sense? Oh good.



It's nice and warm, so the door is open, and gives you a great view of 3 weeks growth on the building site. The pink flower is an ever-lasting sweet pea which we dug up last summer. Despite the trunk being as thick as my wrist, it appears that we didn't get the better of it! The rest of the green is just weeds and I shall be out there, regaining control, any day now. My desk is piled with stuff. Top right are bits from card making and some bits to scrapbook that survived the clean-up before we went away. Apart from the ice cream tub, the rest is leaflets, souvenirs, purchases and a couple of gifts from our US trip. The 'Me Journal' at front right was a gift from a new friend..seems she got me totally and utterly, huh! The wrapped and be-ribboned gift is from my Sissy for my birthday. She's organised! In the ice cream box there's a plastic beer glass from the Bees stadium in Salt Lake City. We went to a baseball game. The opportunity for plastic souvenirs was immense and irresistible. I'll talk more about some of these things soon. If that's a promise, show us all your, huh? Link here and we'll visit. I thank you.