Monday, 20 December 2010

Last Commission of 2010...

...I'm still crossing my fingers as I type this that the birthday 'boy' really is called John, and is 65, because if he's not I've got a quick repair job to do!

This card (and box of course!) was requested by a lady who's seen lots of my commission cards over the last few months and wanted something special for her husband.  The main brief I was given was 'travel' which is definitely very different from anything I've done in the past, so as usual I had a bit of a panic before coming up with this design.  First the box....

which you'll notice is a perfect match for the card itself...

Once again the card is 8 inches square, and all the images were sourced from the internet.  Thank goodness for Photoshop as I couldn't find a map background that I liked.  This one started out larger and multicoloured so I cropped it and converted to a sepia tone so the landmark photos would stand out more.  If I'd been better prepared I would probably have asked about destinations that were significant to John, but as it was I just chose some iconic, easily recognisable images. I've since heard that Egypt, the USA and possibly Italy do feature in the couple's travel plans, so I hope John likes it!  I'm also hoping he's not a big stamp-collector as he might notice that the postcard says its from Hawaii but the stamp is Belgian (Photoshop strikes again, lol!)....All that aside I'm really pleased with the way this has turned out :-)

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Mirror, mirror on the wall...

another of those projects that evolved as I went along. I had the basic idea for a decorated mirror in my head but originally was going to do a faux-mosaic look with pink papers. After fiddling about for a while trying to work out the best size for the squares and the spacing I considered covering the whole of the front of the frame with the paper.  Eventually I came up with this design...

The dangly ribbons are to clip hair-slides etc on to keep them tidy.  I've seen lots of similar things in blogland but liked the idea of using them with a mirror.  The flowers at the ends of the ribbons are cut from fleece using the same Hello Kitty Sizzix flower die as I've used for those on the mirror.  I've weighted them with pennies to help them hang properly.  The lettering was cut with my Craft Robo Lite and the paper is a Pink Petticoat download.  

The mirror incidentally was bought from Ikea over 10 years ago and never used (it was pine but I've painted lightly with white acrylic), and I've just checked the website and they still sell them!  Think I'll pick up a few more next time I go...

Reindeer? No I think its snow....

I started a tradition several Christmases ago of making an ornament for my friend Catherine as part of her Christmas card.  Unfortunately I don't think I have photos of any of the previous creations but they range from a classy cross stitched mini stocking (which is the one that started it all) to an extremely tacky felt Christmas tree caked in sequins.

This year I've aimed for a more classy feel, and gone with felt again. I found this fab t-shirt tutorial with a reindeer motif.  I was just going to use ordinary synthetic craft felt but my local craft shop didn't have any browns in and I've been stuck at home with the snow.  I was just about to give it up as a bad job when I remembered I had a brown felted jumper lying around somewhere, and voila, everything fell into place...

I love the texture of the felt (the jumper was ribbed).  The antlers were also a 'make-do' that has worked out very well - they're made of 2 pieces of papermania self-adhesive flock-type stuff stuck back to back . My original plan was to use a glittery pom-pom for his nose but good taste won the day and I decided to needle-felt his nose on to this one. A couple of buttons, a jingle bell and a bit of running stitch and I love the result.  I think I'll have to make one of these for my own tree, maybe mine will have the glittery nose ;-)

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Calorie-free Cupcake...

I've wanted to make one of these cupcake pincushions ever since I first came across these beauties by Betz White over 2 years ago...

Hers are made from recycled felted knitwear but no matter how hard I search my local charity shops I just can't find wool garments in these gorgeous pastel colours.

So in the meantime I've compromised and used fleece fabric and I'm pretty pleased with how my first attempt has turned out...

I've made this one as part of the Christmas present for my best friend who bought me Betz's book 2 years ago and has been waiting to see a cupcake ever since!  I did make the 'cherry' myself, felting your own beads can be very addictive...

I've got an idea now for something else to go with this, so watch this space....

Monday, 29 November 2010

Hello Kitty...

This is a clock I've made for my sister who is busy decorating 2 bedrooms in preparation for (hopefully) adopting 3 gorgeous sisters.  Please keep your fingers crossed that all goes to plan!  I've got loads of block canvasses sat around so offered to make a clock for each room.

This is for the eldest of the girls who is 6 and will have her own bedroom with a Hello Kitty theme, please excuse the clashing yellow background on the photo...

Its a 12 inch square canvas with the background painted in 2 shades of pink.  The Hello Kitty image has been coloured with acrylic paint for the white areas and Promarkers for the rest.  I was going to use rub-downs for the numbers but found these stickers (5 sheets for £1) in our new local pound shop, and yes you've guessed it, I coloured them with Promarkers!

I sealed the finished canvas with Mod Podge then glued on the marabou trim with a hot glue gun before attaching the clock mechanism.  Simples....

My sis has yet to see the clock in real-life but I sent her this pic and she loves it! Just clock number 2 to create now, as well as some other bits of stuff I want to make for them - its great having lots of little girls to craft for!

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Fairy Special Birthday Wishes...

this is the card I made for my niece Adel - yes an unconventional spelling of the name, but it means personalised gifts/cards can be even more special as you don't come across them in the shops.

The image is a digi-stamp from Cardmaking & Papercraft magazine, given as a freebie if you bought the mag or available to buy individually from the website. I paper-pieced the image digitally using papers from Zoe Pearn but left her skin and hair blank and hand-coloured with Promarkers. I've used Stickles on the wings and crown, which played havoc with trying to get a decent photo, sorry!

I've used rub-ons to add her name and age, although I'd usually do this digitally before printing too.  The spotty backing paper is also from Zoe Pearn and I ran the scalloped card base through the printer too so it co-ordinated perfectly.  Finished off with a little quilted star.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Here come the girls...part 2

This is the 2nd of the cards created for Ivy.  I wanted the 2 cards to be completely different and think I've achieved that while still keeping them feminine

The image and backing paper are from 2 different Debbi Moore Glitter and Glitz CDs.  The image is actually from the Art-Deco Christmas CD but there wasn't a suitable matching paper so I used one from the Magic Moments CD.

Other than a little bit of Photoshop Elements trickery to create the sentiment box the card was very simple to put together. It doesn't shop up very well in the pictures here but the ribbon is a forest green chiffon mounted onto textured silver card. A generous sprinkling of stick-on gems adds instant glamour. 

 This is the first time I've used these CDs (since buying them last Christmas!) but I love how this one turned out so think I'll be using them a lot more now!

Monday, 11 October 2010

Here come the girls...

from 80th birthday cards for men to 80th birthday cards for women, well just the one woman, but 2 cards.

Sticking with the 8 inch square card and matching box formula that has been so popular I decided to go all out feminine on this card.

I loved these decoupaged teacups but as with a lot of my crafty stuff, I didn't want to 'waste' them but thought they'd be perfect for this special card.

The background paper is from a Zoe Pearn digikit called Little Joys.  I used Photoshop Elements to add the text which I then dry-embossed after printing to give a bit of dimension.  I just used my embossing tool over the text from the front to start with, then turned the paper over and embossed the same lines from the back to give a raised effect on the front.

The roses are all from Hobbycraft and I've accented the scalloped border (trimmed from scalloped 12 x 12 paper) with clear dew drops bought from Crafty Emma's Store. A couple of peel-off butterflies coloured with glitter on the back to fill in some empty space and there we have it...

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Look before you stick...

today's card is another of my 'special' commission cards, for a gentleman's 80th birthday.

Part of my brief was that he is a tour guide at Auckland Castle, the official residence of the Bishop of Durham, so I decided to make my own backing paper using text from their website. I printed it onto parchment style paper, then crumpled and tore it and inked it with distress ink to make it look antiquey.

The waistcoat stamp was borrowed from a friend and stamped onto paper from a DCWV Latte stack.  I stamped it twice and layered it up for a bit of dimension.

The peel-off was from a charity shop buy (5 sheets of peel-offs for £1) stuck onto more of the parchment.

And 'look before you stick'? Well, having played about with the layout before sticking anything down, I realised at the last minute that I was about to draw attention to 1 particular word in the text that could cause a bit of a distraction....

Can't imagine what that might have done to an 80-year old and his pals :-s

 A quick shuffle round saved the day!

Monday, 27 September 2010

not just for Christmas....

I'm kind of doing this backside first - showing the non-xmas cards made with papers from this digikit from Sweet Shoppe Designs before the actual xmas cards I've made, but I have my reasons...

As you might have guessed I've made this one for my sister's birthday which is on Friday.  It's a bit of a sore point that I often get her cards to her late, one year she rang me on the morning of her birthday (a Sunday) and had a 30 minute rant about not getting her cards in time.  Soooooo, this year I'm determined to be prepared and will despatch this card today!

Its such a miserable and dull day (weatherwise) today that I don't think I'd get any decent photos of my cards today so popped this one into the scanner.  Unfortunately the xmas cards I made with the same kit have a bit of dimension to them so aren't quite so scanner friendly.

I've used a fabulous new image, Lulabelle Shopping, from Digistamp Boutique for my card as I thought her dress was ideal for a bit of digital paper-piecing to perfectly coordinate with the backing papers. I really do love Zoe Pearn's paper designs and have a few of her digikits now but did hesitate about buying this one as I don't do a lot of xmas cards but I've managed to use 5 different papers in this card.

Lulabelle's hair and skin are of course coloured with Promarkers.

I'm entering this card into the September monthly challenge over at Digistamp Boutique, the Charisma Cardz challenge, Anything Goes,  and the Allsorts challenge, Plain and Simple.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Exploding box

This is a commission from my ex-boss (not to be confused with X-Box!) - the one I made the retirement card for. It's for her grandson who's about 7 months old now.

Lots and lots of matting and layering, with the design made up as I went along! I only had 2 sheets of that particular gingham card in my stash and it matched my aqua cardstock and ribbon perfectly so it was a while before I committed to where I was sticking anything.

The little image is from Digistamp Boutique - Simpy Baby Collection, so simple but so cute, and the wording panels all done on the PC.

And this is it opened - I made a mini-box inside too which was intended for her to hide her gift of money inside, but I think may be too small?

I'm considering making a matching card with pocket to tuck inside the lid of the larger box - watch this space!

Edited to add - I went with the matching card idea, with a little pocket on the inside to tuck a cheque into, using some of my leftovers from the box.

And I'm pleased to report the customer loved it!

I'm entering this into the Digistamp Boutique Monthly Challenge for September.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Fabulous Shoes

Another commission, this time from my work colleagues for our manager who has taken early retirement.  The only real brief was 'she loves shoes'.  As she's seen most of the work I've done lately I wanted to try something a little different and remembered I had a freebie digi of a shop-front somewhere. Unfortunately I can't remember who this one was from, will have to have a search of the web.

The brickwork and other aqua items were coloured with Promarkers and the green polka dot and pink stripe papers are downloads from Pink Petticoat. It doesn't show in the picture but I put acetate in the windows.

This is the view from another angle to show the dimension - the awning is popped up with a couple of generous dollops of pinflair glue gel. If I do a similar card again I probably won't cut around the doorway as there was only a very narrow strip left to attach to the base card

The card measures a massive 7 x 9 inches but I think it would've been too fiddly in a smaller size.

Edited to add - have found the website for the freebie, Crafty Boutique by GTC

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Bubbling over...

...with fun and birthday wishes.

This is one of my favourite cards of the year, using my favourite Pink Petticoat Vintage Rose papers for the background and digital paper-piecing on the image, which is also from Pink Petticoat, from a set called Lola Rose - You Make Me Feel Bubbly.

The frame is hand-doodled and the skin and hair coloured with Promarkers. Fonts used are Auburn and Hiccups.

Monday, 23 August 2010

80th birthday card

not a lot of blogging lately as all of my time is being spent on either commissions or building up some stock for my first craft fair, which is now less than a week away!

This is a commission I was asked to do for an 80th birthday.  The brief was 'mauve' and the birthday 'girl' had sent invitations to her friends featuring the Jenny Joseph poem 'Warning' so I based the card on that.

For some reason I can't get the photo to upload the right way round here, the hat should be in the top left corner and the flowers bottom right but you get the idea...

The hat was cut on the craft robo lite from a free file found on the UK Scrappers forum. I designed the word 'eighty' myself on the robo and the wording on the white mat was done in Word.  The flowers were bought from Hobbycraft and the leaves are from the wedding cake flowers my colleague gave me a few months ago.

Of course there's also a matching box - I should be able to make these in my sleep now but still get the measurements wrong...

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

I've got a website!

Came across a link to Weebly a couple of days ago and thought I'd have a go at building me a website.  It's pretty basic and sometimes frustrating using the templates to format it (I don't know HTML - one of the things on my learn-to-do list but not quite as satisfying as making pretty cards, lol)

Anyway the important thing is Cupcakes and Custard has a website for potential customers to look at instead of just my facebook page, now all I need to do (as well as make lots more cards/canvasses) is to make some business cards ready for the Craft Fair...

Monday, 16 August 2010

Too busy crafting...

to get round to blogging!

But, here's a quick peek of one of today's creations - I'm trying to stock up for the craft fair I'm doing on Sunday 29th August - not long now, eek!

The card is very similar to the box I made for the 21st birthday card last week.  I'm not happy with the proportions of this one (5" x 7", cut down from a 10" x 7" card so the fold is on the short side), will try it on an 8 x 8 square card next time.  A very simple card though, shapes cut on Craft Robo Lite - teacups were a free download from UK Scrappers website, the bunting I managed to 'design' myself! The papers are a selection from the Pink Petticoat Vintage Rose collection - think these are my favourite PP papers of all time...the 2 fonts used are called Auburn and Hiccups both from Kevin & Amanda, I think they complement each other really well...Edges were 'inked' with a Blush Promarker and teacups trimmed with a little bit of paper lace.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

my first exploding box

Create and Craft TV has a lot to answer for...! I was just about to make a 60th birthday card to send to a colleague and was planning to do a variation on the handbag  card.  But before I could put knife to paper I spotted an exploding box as one of the demo samples on Create and Craft and thought 'I can do that!'

So, the result of my first exploding box...I'm very proud of it!

The letters and numbers were cut on the trusty Craft Robo Lite, but believe it or not I added all the polka dots by hand! Glitter peel-offs from Papermania and flowers are leftovers from the Forever Friends wall decor sets.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010


I spent a happy day last weekend cutting up the lovely birthday cards I'd received and 'remodelling' or 'upcycling' them.  Will post more pictures soon but this is one of my favourites...

I forgot to take a pic of my cards before I got at them with scissors and guillotine but here's a pic of what this one looked like, its the one at the top...

with the addition of some black and ivory cardstock I came up with this

and then realised I didn't want to part with it just yet! So what's a girl to do but get out the craft box and recreate the topper.  The shoe is cut from vinyl using the Craft Robo Lite and the box from some cardstock that I got in a bargain pack last year and have never been able to find a use for until now!

Monday, 9 August 2010

Silver Wedding Card

another commission, usual 8 inch square format (to think I used to make mainly 4 inch square cards!). This one includes a shaker box cut from mirror card with nestabilities and filled with silver punched hearts and gems. The personalised text and sentiment are done with Meltdust from My Craft Studio  and the bow is gathered together with a 'make your own' brad from Papermania. Numbers were cut on the Craft Robo Lite from self-adhesive glitter vinyl

I went to town a bit on the insert of this one with a bit of 'bling'

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Teapot Mark II

It seems it's not just me who loves the Union flag teapot design... My favourite customer brought more work my way, this time a commission from her daughter for a 21st birthday card for someone who loves drinking tea...

she wanted one of my 8 inch square cards with matching box, and I have to say I love this box as much as the card - may just have to reproduce as a smaller scale card...

what do you think of the little handmade paper teabag peeking out of the cup...?

Papers are a mix of Pink Petticoat and My Minds Eye, cut on Craft Robo Lite. Self-adhesive paper lace made by Creatability, and rub-ons made myself with special rub-on transfer paper from Grafix (bought at Hobbycraft, about £10 for 4 A4 sheets so will be using it sparingly!)

Saturday, 24 July 2010

As British as....

this is my take on a card featured in a magazine this month. I made it for my best friend's birthday.

Papers are a combination of Pink Petticoat 'Daisy Bouquet' and a My Minds Eye magazine freebie (I loved the papers so much I bought 2 copies of the mag!)

This photo is a better one to show its an easel card

as you can see I've glued on a row of buttons to act as the stopper for the easel part. Not much else on the card apart from some self-adhesive paper lace and a bit of stickles...

And a quick peek at the inside too...

I've a feeling I'll be using a similar design more than once (but if I do another easel card I'll cover the back part of the easel too)!

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Graduation card number 2

for Heather's boyfriend, so it was a case of 'his and hers'...

Made in much the same was as yesterday's card, the backing paper was a free download from I found when looking for something with blue stars.  It wasn't wonderful quality but worked well enough for this card.

You can't really see the tassel in this picture, but its a much plainer one than yesterday.  The wording was cut from vinyl with the craft robo.

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Graduation card number 1

...made for the same person as yesterday's 21st birthday card.  Again the brief was 'girly'.

I used a scalloped edge 8" base card and the backing paper is cut from a 12" DCWV sheet. I ran it through the printer to add the sentiment then went over the lettering with Diamond Stickles to bling it up a bit...

The mortar board was cut using the craft robo (have had a lot of use out of it lately, lol!) and layered with 3d foam pads.  Don't you just love the tassel (which cost more than the rest of the card put together!)

And yes you've guessed it, there's a box too, although this 1 is a bit plainer than usual.  The tag was designed in Word after I'd used Photoshop Elements to recolour the ribbon on the clipart scroll.

Check back tomorrow for another graduation card...