Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Monthly swap - Winter Wonderland

Cute as a Button Designs Pocket Letter Group are excited to announce our November swap - Winter Wonderland. Francesca has a lot of wonderful wintery themed digi stamps, digital papers and pocket letter sheets to purchase and print off in the comfort of your own home that will tie in nicely to this theme.

What would you go for? Blustery windy day? Snow day? Christmas - traditional or fun? With so many choices we are sure to have some lovely pocket letters being swapped.

Here is some inspiration, the Tangled Lights pocket letter kit. Isn't it amazing? I ADORE pocket letters, and can't wait to see what our members come up with from the array of stamps, papers and kits to download. Come on and join us. Closing date for entry is 15 November when partners will be picked, and then you have just over two weeks to post your swap off.

Saturday, 31 October 2015

DT Inspiration Pocket Letter #2 - Alice in Wonderland

I'm so enjoying being part of the DT team at Cute as a Button Stamps and Designs. I was wondering which digi stamps to use next, and happened upon some characters that are close to my heart. I adore the book Alice in Wonderland and it was my favourite book as a child. So when I saw these amazing stamps, I knew I just HAD to have these as my next project.

I used my Promarkers again to colour these gorgeous characters in, and I hope you agree, they came out lovely - really vibrant and clear.

I used some metallic key design paper for the background from Kanban Mechanica paper pack.

The wording and pocket watch are from some papers I bought on eBay with original John Tenniel illustrations.

You can purchase the digi stamps from the Cute as a Button online store:

IMG00043 Alice Digi Stamp

IMG00044 Mad Hatter Digi Stamp

IMG00045 Queen of Hearts Digi Stamps

Don't forget, we now have a new Facebook group dedicated to pocket letters, join us at Cute as a Button Designs Pocket Letter Group for the opportunity to join in with chatter, challenges and swaps with other CAAB and pocket letter enthusiasts. We look forward to seeing you there.

Happy Crafting!! Michelle xx

Spooky Snoopy

Well it's officially Halloween, and so for my last Halloween make for this year, here's a cute card I made with one of my favourite cartoon characters from the 70s. Loved Charlie Brown and Peanuts - and Woodstock was so fun! Loved his laugh!

Monday, 26 October 2015

Halloween or Fall themed Challenge

Wanted to share this amazing digi stamp by Francesca Lopez - Cute as a Button. She's so adorable with her little cat too.  I coloured her with my Promarkers and then fussy cut her out and used her on my latest pocket letter, of course, Halloween themed!

I had some papers left over from some other Halloween pocket letters I have been making, and they went perfectly with the image.

She forms part of the new challenge on CAAB's latest Facebook group - Cute as a Button Designs Pocket Letter Facebook Group. It runs until 9 November and you need to use a CAAB digi stamp from the store to enter.

And here's the pocket letter I created with her.

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Pocket Letter Addict? - Me?

Hmmm well, yes, okay - I freely admit - that the past six weeks or so I have been engrossed - in pocket letters!! I joined up with lots of swaps and joined lots of groups, and yes, I have been very very busy creating these wonderful ways of contacting people from all over the world, that are just as bonkers about crafting as I am! I have created a varied mix of themes, and received some wonderful ones back. I have long term health issues and chronic pain so it's not always possible for me to do crafting, but when I can, it is so therapeutic and takes my mind off it all. I have a LOT of pocket letters to catch up on - as had a couple of weeks where I couldn't do much of anything - so I shall be busy busy this half term catching up! Here are some I have made recently:

New DT position for Cute As a Button Design Pocket Letter FB Group

Wow it's been over a month since I last posted - how can that be possible? I have to say, I've been so busy with my new passion - pocket letters, that I haven't had a chance to come on and update my blog. Very remiss of me!

All that is now changing though, as I have recently been made part of the DT team for Francesca Lopez's Cute As A Button Designs Pocket Letter Facebook Group. Now I hope that most, if not all of you who do any sort of card making and other papercrafts, would have heard of Francesca. I first heard about her when looking for Digi images for my cardmaking. Now, I adore stamps, I really do, but noone can have an infinite store of actual stamps at home, and digi stamps give you that flexibility to acquire something that's been designed by someone very talented, in a theme we want. I did a search and found Cute As A Button (CAAB) and fell in love with the beautiful images there. Wow! So to be accepted to join the team was an honour indeed for me.

The pocket letter side is very new - it's literally only been up for about two weeks, and we are busy working in the background to create a fun, interactive group for people to create pocket letters using the CAAB designs. Francesca has even designed specific Pocket Letter Kits to make it easy to create stunning pocket letters with everything you'll need - from the 9 designs for the cards, and embellishments to add to them.

There will be a monthly competition whereby Francesca will provide a FREE image for you to use in your pocket letter design, and the winner will be awarded with TWO CAAB images of their choice from Francesca's shop - how great is that!

So, please check out the new Facebook group that will showcase these gorgeous images, have regular challenges showcasing the CAAB images and those monthly competitions with the opportunity to get a free CAAB image and win prizes, plus of course, a place to show off your work using your CAAB images and kits. It's a place to talk about all things pocket letter related.

Do come and join us in one of the newest pocket letter groups on Facebook:



We look forward to seeing you there.

Michelle xx

Friday, 11 September 2015

Autumnal colours and birthday season

Hi! Been a while since I last wrote on my blog, I have been busygetting my son into the new routine of secondary school which of course is much more structured - and strict - than primary. He has settled in amazingly well,. I am so very proud of him.

This time of year starts the influx of birthdays in my immediate family, starting off with my niece. She is now 3, and it just doesn't seem possible really, and feels like she must still be a baby, surely? But no, pre-school beckons and before we all know it, she too will be starting school. I didn't quite know what to do for her card. I made a very pink and girly card for my cousin's daughter but wanted something that evoked the season as well as something apt for my niece, so I rummaged in my old stamps I have collected and came up with a favourite by Elisabeth Bell - Picking Apples for Sugar Nellie. I love this stamp and haven't yet used it on a card so thought this would be the right time. I stamped her on smooth white card and coloured her in with Promarkers and a touch with Ranger Distress markers. The background was done with ink and a sponge to give the autumnal colours to tone with the BPs. The patterned and green paper were gifted to me by a good friend so not sure what they are, but think they may have been part of a Christmas pack but the colours went really well for the Autumn theme and the Core'dinations papers in dark brown and the russet I used to coordinate with the other papers and love the texture..I used beech leaf die cuts for two of the sentiment tags and three sizes from a nesting die set for the image, number 3 and Happy birthday sentiment.

I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Make My Monday Challenge Blog - Something Beginning with F
Artistic Inspirations - #139 Anything Goes/Twist of School
Wednesday's Creative Inspirations Blog - #326 Vintage
IndigoBlue Blog Challenge - #31 Frame It!
Elisabeth Bell's World - 4+ Papers (EB Design)
Dragonfly Dreams Challenge - Let's get Girly

Thursday, 13 August 2015

ATCs and Xmas tags, pocket letters and embossing

Wow it's been a while since I wrote here - sorry about that - I have been crazy busy with crafting, summer holidays and doing normal stuff - just doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day right now.

So what have I been doing recently? Well, I made a few items I've never attempted before, some came out okay and others I'm more pleased with.

Firstly I did my first attempt at ATCs - the theme was animals. Never having done them before, I read up -and plenty of people used old playing cards, so I rummaged and found some dubious cheap 'tarot' cards and thought they'd do. I covered the one side with various pieces of DS papers I had in my scrap pile that I tore up and then layered it with stamped images and various die cut pieces like a frame, butterflies, flowers etc, then I covered with Mod Podge and added the little metal embellies. Okay for a first attempt.

My next project was for a set of three Xmas tags - in July. Hmmm I wanted something a little different and had seen a technique I really liked the look of on You Tube - triple embossing - and thought these tags would be the perfect thing to practise on. So I used pignment inks to stamp on paper and then with clear embossing powder I heated it up three times and on the third time I used a rubber stamp with white or gold ink to press into the molten embossed powder to form a pattern and left to cool. I made a mistake and used pigment ink on part of the reverse (little cute baubles at the bottom in different colours) and had to emboss those to set them - but it started to melt the front so I did it quickly and hoped I didn't ruin the fronts. Again, this project went okay.

Next, I did a pocket letter swap - I had never heard of these and so again, used the internet and You Tube to research. It took me a long while to get going with this one and it took a whole afternoon to do, but I actually really enjoyed it once I got going! These are playing card sized cards again - so ATCs but simplified. You choose a theme, and then using that theme you choose items to add to decorate the cards, but also what little gifts you will put in the various pockets of your letter. One pocket is reserved for the letter to your swap partner, but the rest can be filled with ribbon, pegs, stickers, die cut pieces, etc. I loved finding bits to add - and even added a tea bag which is a traditional item used.

 Lastly and more recently, I produced my first embossed card - I didn't know what to use - I am limited to what embossing folders I have - so I scratched my head and again - used one of my favourites - butterflies and a lovely trellis pattern I have. So I used two embossing folders and a lovely set of papers which have a thick luxurious feel and a glittery look on some of the pages. Again not my finest work, but I'm pretty pleased with my first attempt and it's being given to a friend of mine so I hope she likes it.

That's it for now - and no challenges to enter right now - although I'm hoping to be entering more in the following days and weeks.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Bows and Lace

It's been a while since I last wrote on my blog. It's been a busy week or so, what with school finishing and catching up with some card making and craft challenges I've entered.

I've created two cards and for the first time, a set of 3 ATCs. I'm happy with the cards - they are familiar territory - but not entirely convinced about the ATCs, but more about those later.

My first card that I created was for a challenge that was to include lace. love the Shabby Chic style and thought I'd use that style for this card. I used some lace that I recently purchased, which is a lovely cream colour, plus I layered card and paper that coordinated with the lovely bird and nest image I found on some card I was given. I'm pretty pleased with the result.

I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:

My second make is a card for a challenge that the content needed to begin with G. I was limited in time so i chose a lovely image I've not used before. It's from the Gorjuss range, and it's a little decoupage set I was given when i bought some stamp sets. I adore this little girl and this image is just so cute with her bunny. I layered her up - it was a gloomy day so neither of my images came out really bright, but I think you can see enough detail.

I'd like to use this image for the following challenges:

Friday, 17 July 2015

Book Inspired Challenge

What a week! My son has been unwell and off school since Wednesday - and so close to the end of term too! Been nurse and porter for him for the past three days so not much time for crafting.

I managed to do a little mixed media heart hanging decoration this evening for a challenge in a Facebook group I admin on - Flourishing Crafters. It caters for all different crafts and experience. Novices and professionals alike and everyone in between are welcome. Our latest five day challenge was to create something with the theme of our favourite book. We had some lovely entries and I decided to create something other than a card for a change and went with this.

I used acrylic paint to coat the heart and then layered up with paper and stamped images, die cut pieces and some felt shapes and finally a brad holding a little key. Can you guess what my favourite book is? The stamps I used were Indigoblu's Alice II and the scraps of paper were from Kanban's Mechanica paper pack.

I really enjoyed making this and shall carry on experimenting with different mediums and methods! I hope you like it too.

Saturday, 11 July 2015

Elisabeth Bell 'Post Box'

Have had a glorious Saturday here in the south of the UK, and taken advantage of the lovely weather with lots of washing. Spent time outside and the cats have been sunning themselves and then taking shade underneath my chair when they got too hot. I do love our long summer days and it's almost the middle of July already! Another couple of weeks and it'll be school holidays!

Anyway, back to my latest make. This is in fact take two of a previous make that I wasn't 100% happy with, so the backing and sentiment will look rather familiar. I have started collecting Sugar Nellie stamps - as I said in my last post, and adore one of my latest purchases - Post Box by Elisabeth Bell. I was so inspired by it that I decided I'd forego my original image and replace it with her. So here's my latest make. I love the composition of this stamp design and decided my Inktense pencils and water brush would be the best medium to use for colouring it. I added a lovely green ribbon to coordinate with the backing paper and contrast with the pink, and a little quirky bow made from green and white bakers twine. Hope you enjoy! I've done a little close up photo of the girl so you can see the detail. She's so gorgous!

I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Monday, 6 July 2015

Sugar Nellie in the Pink

 Sugar Bowl Challenge - Sugar Nellie Anything Goes

It's been an overcast Sunday here but still nice and warm. Been a busy one so didn't get around to making a card until late, and I expect it'll be after midnight when I publish this post so will show it to be Monday.

For this card, I wanted to use a colour I don't go for very often - pink! Why? Well, firstly because I have some gorgeous paper I wanted to use, which has pink in it, and also there's a challenge I wanted to enter that was entitled 'Pink and Girlie'. Being neither pink nor particularly girlie, I scratched my head. I have some adorable stamps I recently purchased secondhand I was keen to use, by Sugar Nellie - and intrigued, I looked on the good old net to see what I could find, and came across yet another blog challenge, yaaay! Not that I'm addicted or anything. Shhhh don't tell anyone, but I decided to enter that one too hehehe, so with two requirements in mind - pink and girlie AND it had to be a Sugar Nellie stamp, I came up with the following. Bear in mind it's not my usual style please, but overall I think it's cute. There are a few things I'd change next time, but that's the joy of crafting - enjoyment and learning.

I used a pink card stock base, some gorgeous paper from Jenny Ellory called Parisian Dreams, and the pretty stamp 'Flower Girl' by Sugar Nellie - I believe it's a few years old now but it's new to me and I LOVE it. I embellished with coordinating pink and green flatback pearls, a doillie, pink ribbon and a lovely sentiment that's one of my favourites right now - I decided to stamp it on the same coloured paper and attach with 3d foam pads to add a little dimension.

I'd like to enter this card in to the following challenges:

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Let There Be Cake!

 Cute Card Thursday Challenge - We Love Cake!

What another glorious day here in the south of England! Too hot for my cats who have been either in a shady spot in the garden (read in the overgrown grass) or indoors in a cool corner behind the tv. My youngest seems intent to sleep out the day and then venture outside when it gets cooler in the evening. Don't blame her - being black she overheats really quickly and doesn't like the heat one bit.

So - back to card making! Today I put my thinking cap on. Have a few birthdays coming up and also have some inspired blog challenges I wanted to enter so I have come up with the following. It's mostly inspired by one of my favourite things to eat - CAKE! I recently bought some lovely cupcake themed papers, brads, and stamps, but it didn't sit right so I had a think and came up with this cute topper inherited by a lovely friend. I wanted to get it bright and summery and so used a variety of papers and matched the colours when colouring the images with my Promarkers.

And here it is - very cute and quirky I think. Instead of using 3d foam pads or matting the sentiment, I used one of the lovely oversized brads I received in my pack to attach it.

I'd like to enter this card into the following blogs::

Friday, 3 July 2015

100% Stamping - Nature Inspired

 Virginia's Views Challenge

It's a glorious day here, has been in fact for the past few days. Extremely hot - almost too hot but don't like to complain about such glorious weather!  In fact, it has inspired my latest make - oh and my extremely unkempt front lawn - I like to call it a wildlife haven and that's the excuse I'm sticking with.

So - for this card I used 100% stamps. Every single image was stamped with inks being applied to certain parts of the stamp to build up colour. I'm especially happy with my dragonfly which came out amazingly well first time. I love the colours on his wings.

I'd like to enter this card into the following blog challenges:

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Napkin Fold Card

 Flourishing Crafters Challenge

I created this card for a Facebook challenge and we were tasked with making a Napkin Fold card. I'd never made one before and had to alter the sizings as didn't have any 12x12 card, only A3 as largest. It turned out okay, a few things I'd change when I make one again - and I will, as it's fun to do and surprisingly easy as well! So here it is - my attempt at a napkin fold card. The inside has been left purposefully blank at the moment so that the right sentiment can be put in once I know who to send it to. Enjoy!

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges

Inspiration Destination Challenge Blog - Anything Goes Challenge #39
Cute Card Thursday - Challenge 379 - Stars and/or Stripes 

My favourite animated cat of the moment has to be Simon's Cat. He reminds me a lot of my eldest cat, Mischief (or Mizzy Moo as he is known). Here are links to a couple of my all-time favourites. He captures cats personalities so well, I think.

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Alice In Wonderland Inspired

First Blog Challenge

Well here it is - my first ever entry into a craft/card challenge via my blog. How exciting!  This challenge is on Trimmies Craft Challenge - Inspired by a Book  and is sponsored by Scrappers Delights.

I decided on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland firstly because it's my all time faourite book, but also to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of its publication. The images I used were digistamps from Make it Crafty.

It's rather dark and gloomy today so the photo isn't the clearest, but it should hopefully be clear enough to see.

I adore using stamped images, but if I'm lacking in certain stamps and I have a fixed idea in my head, then I shall look for digistamps and enjoy colouring those just as much. These were coloured using Promarkers. I'd put the Cheshire Cat propped up more next time but he's cute there lying at Alice's feet.

I'd also like to enter the same card into the following June Challenges

Update 2nd July. I can't believe it! I've won second place in the Top 3 at Trimmies CRAFT Challenge. I'm over the moon. How lovely that my first card entered has won such lovely recognitiion. Thank you to Helen at Trimmies CRAFT Challenge for nominating me xx