Monday, 7 October 2013

Just a note... let you know that I am taking a break from crafting for a while.  I will be back at some point, but I'm not quite sure when.

Take care

Maria x

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Anything Goes With Wood - Craft Room Challenge DT

Hi, firstly, my apologies for my absence of late.  My partner's brother died a couple of weeks ago so it's been a very difficult fortnight, and unfortunately this will be a fairly short post as the funeral takes place tomorrow.

Over at the Craft-Room Challenge, it is time for a new theme, this time chosen by our fabulous leader (and also a very good friend) Zoe - this is what she would like to see:

Anything Goes With Wood

Zoe says:

When I saw the stand at a local craft show I had to get a selection of goodies to try, wood is a great medium to work with and this time we would like you to include something made of wood in your entry.   Real wood not an image be it twigs from the garden, some bark, or a wooden embellishment from the craft shop.   Anything just keep the wood as the main focus.

My creation is a very simple one using a wooden frame I bought at Port Sunlight from IndigoBlu, which I stained with Walnut Distress Stain.:

If you know me, then you will know that I love using wood and mdf - once sanded a bit, it's absolutely fantastic for stamping directly onto and beautiful treasures can be created.  These frames are great for using with 3d embellishments because of the deep recess.  I've stamped a SU flourish all around the edge of the frame and attached a just a TH embellishment at the top.  Inside  the frame, I've mounted an image by The Stampsmith, stamped onto card coloured with DI and stamped around the edge with an IndigoBlu crackle stamp and the same SU flourish as on the frame.  The gorgeous lace trim is attached around the edge, which was a gift from Lynne at Adorn (thank you so much Lynne :-).

Our sponsor this fortnight is:

who is offering a fabulous prize to the winner of the random draw.

The rest of the team have made such stunning samples to inspire you, as well as our Guest Designer, Annie with her beautiful altered wooden box, so please pop over and have a look.

Have fun, I hope you can join us.  

Thank you for leaving such lovely comments for me to read, I really do appreciate you taking the time to visit me, so thank you again.

Maria xxxxx

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Always and Forever


Just a very short post this evening.  Unfortunately I have been absent for a couple of weeks due to a family bereavement, but I hope to be back shortly.

As you know, I was thrilled to be asked to be a Guest Designer at The Stampsmith Challenge & Blog, and this is the second project I created, inspired by the song "Always & Forever" (do you remember the song?):
A small mdf wedding keepsake which has been covered in a mixture of Kraft cardstock and co-ordinating dps by Melissa Frances.

The main image on the front cover is from the plate "Thank Heavens For Little Girls" - it has been trimmed to fit inside the bronze frame, then covered with Ice Resin.

The inside of the third page features another Stampsmith image from the "Wedding Bells" plate, which sits behind a painted and crackled chipboard frame:
There are two pockets in the album for special mementos and a Kraft frame, which I've left open at the top, for a special personal photograph to be slipped into.

Various charms and embellishments have been added to the front page - all the pages can be seen in the photo collage below:
There is still plenty of time to join in the challenge - just create a project (using at least one Stampsmith stamp) which has been Inspired By A Song.

I'd to say a big "hello" to my new followers, and also a huge thank you to all my regular visitors for your continued patience - it really seems to be one thing after another this year.

Maria xxxxx

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Inspired By A Song - The Stampsmith Challenge (GDT)

Hi, I hope you are all well and ok.  Those of you who know me or who follow my blog will know that The Stampsmith Challenge is a firm favourite of mine and that I absolutely love their stamps. A little while ago, I was extremely honoured to be asked to be a Guest Designer with them for the next few months, so I would like to say a big thank you!.  The theme for September is:

'Inspired By A Song'

With all the new mdf I recently acquired, I decided to make a wall hanging, which was inspired by the song by Martina McBride "In My Daughter's Eyes" - the words to this song are beautiful and so touching, and really took me back to that overwhelming feeling I had for my daughter once she was born.  She's 19 now and has made me a very proud nanna, and of course, that feeling always stays.

This was definitely a labour of love, lol.  The base was undercoated with Gesso, painted with a couple of layers of chalk paint (sanding in between), stamped with lots of words relating to Mother/Daughter, repainted, and sanded again. Around the edge, I used some Paperartsy Grunge Paste, stamped into with a CI crackle stamp, and then painted it with the same colour as the background, highlighting the raised areas with Treasure Gold in White Fire.  The trim across the bottom also has pearls added and a seam binding bow.

The gorgeous Stampsmith image, from the plate "Thank Heavens For Little Girls" was stamped in Coffee Archival Ink and matted onto some music dp, then onto Kraft.

All of the rolled roses I made myself from ribbon, and just added some pearls, a couple of paper roses, and a couple of resin ones.  The Tim Holtz Idealogy Hardware was also painted with chalk paint, and again, highlighted with White Fire Treasure gold (I love how this turned out) - the word 'family' (Making Memories) underneath the plate was covered with Decoart Crackle medium, and then inked to show the crackle a little more.  A vintage style cameo sits amongst the roses, as does a metal heart, which was also painted with chalk paint.

The Tim Holtz glass vial contains the words to the song rolled up tightly and hangs from some chain attached to the hardware above.

A couple of other embellishments such as a TH ticket and a sentiment bar across the top finish this off, along with a picture hook across the back to hang it from.

I hope you like it, and if you have any Stampsmith stamps, that you can join in with the challenge.

Thank you so much for your visit - I have been unable to visit recently due to a few personal problems, but I really appreciate the comments which you leave for me.  

Enjoy your week.

Maria xxxxx

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

A Shabby Little Birdhouse - Something New / Craft Room Challenge DT

Hi, another fortnight has 'flown' by (excuse the pun :-)) and another challenge is upon us over at the Craft Room Challenge.  Your Bingo creations were amazing, I love to see how everyone interprets our challenges so differently.  This fortnight the lovely Debi is our hostess and she has chosen a theme of:

Something New
This is what Debi has to say:

For my theme I got thinking..... and  if you're anything like me, you either have a heap of new stash still waiting to be used, or your Pinterest Boards are full of techniques that you want to try but just haven't got round to it yet lol.  So I thought lets have a challenge that might get us using some new stash or a new technique.

Well, Debi is right - I have loads of new stuff I've not yet used, particularly alterables, so out came a brand new birdhouse which came in a little stash my other half bought me for Christmas.  I thought I may as well try a new technique/product while I was at it - Grunge Paste - I seem to have a bit of a fear of texture pastes, lol, but after seeing one of Alison's fantastic creations over at Words and Pictures I thought it was time to have a go, so thank you for the inspiration Alison :-)

I've undercoated the birdhouse with Gesso all over - the Grunge Paste has been sitting on my desk begging to be used, but being avoided all the time, so out it came - I put it all over the roof with a palette knife like buttercream frosting.  

Once dry I used chalk paints - a little cream sponged over brown - all over, and touched up the roof with some Treasure Gold in White Fire, then did a bit of stamping with an IndigoBlu stamp right around the base.  

I applied Deco Art Crackle all over the house and waited again.....then gave it a good sand down taking some of it back off for a more distressed feel.  I highlighted the crackle a little with some Walnut Stain DI.

Some TH word stickers, a bit of bark from the garden which was cleaned and inked then given the White fire treatment (couldn't find my twigs), a donut charm debossed with 'Happiness', and a couple of Tando birds painted and crackled.
A quote and stamp from Oxford Impressions' 'Birds' Nest' was used on the back, and vintage style lace trim and ribbon around the base to finish - not forgetting even more Treasure Gold White Fire on all the corners & edges.

I'm really happy with the shabby result I got on this - even though the roof does remind me a bit of a chocolate cake!

Our very kind sponsor this fornight is:

who sells a fantastic range of rubber stamps and other crafty stuff - click on the logo to visit their online store.

The rest of the Design team have made fantastic creations to inspire you for this challenge, as well as our Guest Designer this fortnight, the very talented Von from Messy Me.  

I'd like to enter my little birdhouse in the following challenges:-

Altered Eclectics - Anything Goes
Country View Crafts - Quotations and Sayings
Vintage Stamping Challenge - Wings and Things
Stamping Sensations - Wings and Things and a Touch of Vintage
Our Creative Corner - Words, Words, Words

Thank you for dropping by, I appreciate your visit and your comments.

Enjoy your week :-)

Maria xxxxx

Tuesday, 13 August 2013


Hi, I hope you're all well.  Just a short post, I'd like to share with you another mdf wall hanging, it's part of a set of three which I made to go together - the other two I will share with you another day.  I've used rubber stamps from Oxford Impressions Dressforms & Corsetry plate:

The mdf has been undercoated in Gesso then painted using cream and tan chalk paints.  Some background stamping has been done with stamps from the same set and also a SU script stamp, then some sanding, and yet more painting, and more sanding.

The image has been stamped with Archival Ink and coloured with SU Watercolour Crayons, and one of Tims words added underneath the image.  I've tried to keep it quite simple with clean lines, but with a bit of a shabby/vintage feel to it as well.

Some lace and trim have been added to finish, along with a button from my local market.

Enjoy your week, and thanks for dropping by.

Maria xxxxx