Sunday, 20 April 2014

You Light Up My Life

 Good Sunday morning all!  This happens to be the second card that I made when my die prototypes arrived in my hands.  (The first card was my daughter's birthday card last October!)  I just fell in love with this background from the Italian Collection and couldn't wait to see it all done up!  I cut it in coconut white card and inked the leaves with Shabby Shutters distress ink through the die to bring out the embossed vein.  I used Spun Sugar to add some pale pink to the flowers.  I decided to leave a wide border on the background so that I could add mounting foam and raise it for dimension.  I added the background over a piece of white glitter card so a bit of the bling shows through the die cut.  Using some white felt, I rolled it and made two flowers for my card.  I stamped my sentiment and tucked the end under the roses which I seated on some white tulle and added some pearl strings.  I finished this really simple card with a double white mat with a pierced inner layer.  Finished dimensions are 7" x 9" in size.

It is time for the Sunday Comment Game winners.  This week's winners are:

Grannysue!!!
Foxyg!!!
Margaret Corgi owner!!!

For the extra qualifying post of April 16th, the winners are:

Helen Barker!!!
Gingernuts!!!
Lynda McKittrick!!!

Congratulations all!  Please email me at americansue1@gmail.com to confirm your address and claim your prizes.

I think that I need to address some of the issues that were brought up a few days ago.  When I moved to the UK eight years ago, I didn't know many people and because my work is done from home, didn't have a chance to really get to know anyone to make friends.  When I started my blog  and it began to grow, it was truly the first time that I felt connected to friends here, even if I hadn't met most of you in person, I began to get to know you through the comments left on my blog.  You, my blog family,  became my lifeline here and continue to do so. People always ask me if it is hard to keep up a daily blog and my answer is always the same, no, it is the easiest thing in the world to do.  What is hard however, and sometimes really heartbreaking for me, is to get to know so many people through my blog, read their comments every single day for months or even years and then they leave.  I always notice and sometimes I email them to see if they are okay, but the truth is that I never know why and often I see these same people commenting on other blogs.   It becomes very evident when I need to look back in the blog for something and then I see the names that have left and wonder why. Was it something I said or did?  Who knows, but I don't want anyone to stop commenting please because it is one of the things that keeps me blogging daily.   I always know that you are there reading the blog when you leave a comment and it just feels so much more personal to me then.  When I finish a card I really like, I actually get excited about being able to share it on the blog because I know I will get your feedback on it.  I don't want to lose that, it is so valuable in my life.    However, I also think we all need support in our lives at some point.  You were all there for me when my father passed away a few years ago, you helped so much, I cannot tell you.  I love the fact that my blog feels like a great big extended family and everyone cares for each other, everyone rallies to help with charitable causes, everyone is lovely and warm to each other.  It does pain me when I feel like someone doesn't feel welcome here as I want it to be a welcoming place to come for absolutely everyone.  I know that I cannot please everyone all the time, but it is in my nature to try.   I don't really know what is considered blog etiquette in this situation either, but I do know that I don't want anyone to stop coming to the blog.   While I don't really have any issues with anyone leaving the comments about issues in their life, perhaps we could just try to keep it more positive and that might help everyone feel like it is a little less weighty and more upbeat.  I truly hope that doesn't offend anyone, but hopefully will just bring about a sort of compromise that everyone can live with.   I will say that  I have been checking into adding a forum to the blog but I am reliant on the computer skills of others to help me bring this about, perhaps that is the answer here, I do not know.  If you have any suggestions , please email me directly.  All for now, Sue x











Saturday, 19 April 2014

Congratulations

 Hi guys!  Today is the day that I have been looking forward to for quite a while as I'm really excited about actually showing off my dies on tv (wish me luck!)  I know that they have been out for several months now but I have been making cards with them since October so there are loads of samples that I haven't shown off yet!  This card is one of my favourites and would have been perfect for the wedding shows I just finished!  Using the Heart Striplet die, I cut it four times using the outside cutting edge each time.  Next I used just the outside edge and cut four backing pieces out of silver card.  I glued the decorative striplet piece (which I cut out of milk card) to the silver backing piece and added mounting foam to the backs.  Using my Basketweave embossing folder, I embossed a piece of milk card and matted it on silver.  I arranged my striplets so they were in a square and overlapping on one end.  I thought they made such a pretty frame like that.  I cut a length of silver satin  ribbon and made a flower from it following the exact same technique that I showed in my very first video found here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pu4JS2HlCb4   I seated the flower on some silver seam binding and added a stick pin and some dried baby's breath.  I stamped my sentiment and cut it into a flag and tucked the end under the flower.  I finished the card some flatback pearls around the striplets and a double pierced milk mat.  Finished dimensions are 8" x 8" in size.  I hope you can tune in for today's shows at 9am, 12 noon and 6pm and Sunday at 11am and 2pm!

I didn't forget either to do the drawing and  the winner of the Wednesday card giveaway is:

Julie laz!!!

Please email me at americansue1@gmail.com to confirm your address and claim your prize!

You may have noticed (how could you miss it! LOL) that I have put up a link to all my YouTube videos on the right hand side of the blog.  If you click the link, then look in the upper right hand corner, you can click to become a subscriber.  This means that when ever there are more videos loaded on to You Tube, you will be sent an email notifying you of them (no need to wait until they are posted on my blog that way!)  If we can get the subscribers up, I think I shall have to celebrate that with a giveaway too!  All for now, Sue x









Friday, 18 April 2014

You Are So Sweet/ Sneak Peek

Good morning crafters!   I thought I would show you a card featuring my Faux Quilled Leaves die set.  They are finally back in stock and on the shows this weekend. This card is flat and uses a technique that I call "inlaid die cuts".  I have done a video using another set of dies on this technique so if you prefer the visual method of learning, then it will be along in the next few weeks sometime.  I started with two pieces of card, one periwinkle blue and the other coconut white.  I stamped my sentiment (from Bold Sentiments from Cr. Exp.) on the lower piece of the white using a black Archival ink pad.  I put a small piece of double sided tape between the two colours and lined up the edges so they were even.  I cut the leaves out three times in a row so that the die went through both pieces of card at the same time.  This is necessary because, once cut, you will carefully take the pieces apart and nip any area that is still attached, then reassemble the card with the top from the blue card and the bottom from the white card.  They should align perfectly back around the die shape.  You then just need to cut three more of the leaves out of the desired colour.  I picked black as I loved the way it just pops out at you.  There are two basic ways you can finish this card from this point.  The easier way is to glue a piece of acetate to the back of the now reassembled background, then you can just put glue on the back of your die cut and carefully slot them back into place.  Or you can tape the dies in place from the back, just catching the edge of the die so the tape doesn't show.  You could also use a sticky adhesive sheet and fill in with glitter the area that is still exposed.  They will all give similar looks, it just depends on how much shine or bling you want to show.  I wanted a simpler look for this card, so I taped the dies back into place (which did take a while to do) but there is no shine from acetate.  I finished the card with a bit of matting and a double white pierced mat layer.  Finished dimensions are 7 1/2" x 8 3/4" in size.












Thursday, 17 April 2014

Double Stacked Aperture


Hello crafters!  I think you will like this one as it shows the California collection and one of the
 matching stamps and how to create different sized apertures.  Those beautiful Faux Quilled Blooms
 make an appearance as well!  By the way, the stamp that I have used on the card today is called "Golden Gate" as we had not yet named any of the stamps when we filmed the videos.
 In case you didn't see, I did the drawing for the blog candy so if you missed it, please scroll down
to the post below this one.


Buy from Joanna Sheen







Finished dimensions are 7" x 8 1/2" in size.  All for now, Sue x

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Blog Candy Winners

Hello fellow crafters!  Finally I have been able to get everything sorted and get along to my Blog Candy drawing today!  As always, I will work my way up to the Grand prize winner.

The winner of THIRD PLACE Prize is.......................................................................
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Suejimbel!!!


The winner of the SECOND PLACE Prize is ......................................................................
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Rachel Taylor!!!

The winner of the GRAND FIRST PLACE Prize is....................................................
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Camelot67 (Margaret A)!!!!

Congratulations all!  Please email me at americansue1@gmail.com to confirm your address and claim your prizes.  We will do our next blog candy drawing when we hit the 5000 follower mark and I think I will have to find some very special blog candy for that one!  All for now, Sue x

Wednesday Weekly Card Giveaway

 Hello bloggers!  This is just a whirlwind of a week for me!  I can tick off Ally Pally and the Wedding shows from my list, but I still need to do my drawing for the blog candy as we have just hit our target of 4900 followers (I will post it later on today!).  I have also been asked to do my dies on Create and Craft on the weekend.   A few months ago I said on the blog that we wouldn't be bringing my die line to C & C and that was because they were requiring a period of exclusivity.  They are no longer requiring that so I am happy to show off the dies as I have had many requests to see them on the tv.  A bit more prep for those shows and I will be ready to go.  Please note that they have amended the schedule for those shows and I have added the changes to the right hand side of my blog for you.  After that I leave to see my Mom again, just in time for her 91st birthday!  Busy week ahead!  Today, however, is a giveaway day and I decided to go with this card as I had several emails wanting to see it after the show a week ago.  It showcases the Cascading Fern background from Justrite Stamps.  I stamped it using a clear Perfect Medium pad on to lilac card.  I heat embossed it with white detail powder.  Using my new Art Deco embossing folder, I embossed the pattern into the card for more texture.  I cut the background into three equal strips and matted them with a thin white mat.  I mounted them with foam on to a larger white background. I tied a piece of Mauve seam binding around the card and taped the ends to the back.  Using my Classic Rose die set, I made a flower out of coconut white card.  I inked it with Shaded Lilac distress ink lightly around the edges of the petals then "sugared" it with Ice Snow.  I seated the flower on a messy bow tied from Mauve seam binding and white tulle.  I added a few leaves to it and made some matching stick pins.  I stamped a sentiment from the Bold Sentiment set and cut it into a strip and cut the ends into a flag.  I tucked the end under my flower.  I added a Lilac card mat before adding my double white pierced mats to complete the card.  Finished dimensions are 7" x 7 3/4" in size.  If you would like to be included in the drawing to win this one, just leave me a comment.  I will announce the winner on Saturday's post.  I have included a few pictures of some of our blog family that I met up with at Ally Pally last weekend below.











 Jean Phillips and myself.  Jean has been on the blog from the early days!
 Clare W (with her white bow) and Elaine Lewis with me here.
Tres and myself!  Tres made a gorgeous flower and wore it on her lapel!


There were lots more pics taken during the day, but not on my camera!  It was a fab weekend!
All for now, Sue x

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Stained Glass Window



Hello my crafty friends!  Let's make a stained glass window card.  It is really easy and I will show you how in today's video segment.  It isn't too long either so I do hope you will enjoy it!

Buy from Joanna Sheen








Finished dimensions are 7" x 8 1/2" in size.  All for now, Sue x

Monday, 14 April 2014

Sneak Peek

 Hello crafters!  I had an absolute blast at Ally Pally Sat. and Sunday and it was so nice to finally meet so many of you that leave me such lovely comments daily!  I am hoping that some of you that took pictures will email them to me so I can post them on the blog (hint, hint)  later in the week.  I managed to get home and get all the drawings done and caught up from the weekend, but the rest will have to wait until Tuesday or Wed.  For today, I thought I would show you a sneak peek at one of the cards from my wedding show this evening.  It is only an hour this evening but Create and Craft have extended freeview hours so my show will be able to be seen at 9pm tonight.  Now I have never done a wedding show, but I have always wanted to so they have kindly allowed me.  The show is geared mostly towards those individuals that make wedding invites, cards, stationery etc, however as you can see from this sample, that I have also included some cards that you may just want to make if you are going to someones wedding as well.  I had this pretty pearly paper in my stash for ages and I pulled it out for this card.  For the background of the card, I embossed some detail into the paper using the Tracery mask.  For the bottom portion of the background, I used the reverse side of the paper and added a thin strip of the striped patter.  I used one of the edgeability edges and inserts to create a border between them.  I added flatback pearls to the border as accents.    I cut several simple ovals for my focal element.  I stamped the wedding cake on milk card, coloured it with pale blue and silver mica powders and cut it out and mounted it up on the ovals.  I used the Blossom Five die set to create the pretty roses and added a spray of them along the side of the oval with some cream jute.  I tipped the flowers in the matching mica powder by swiping a clear perfect medium across the tops and edges of the petals, then dusting them with the mica.  I stamped my sentiment and embossed it in silver.  I cut it out with the Fancy Framed Tags Two dies and added it to the bottom of the card with foam pieces.  A double pierced milk mat was added to finish the card.  Finished dimensions are 6 1/2" x 8" in size.  I do hope you can join me for the show this evening and Tuesday morning at 10.

Thank you for your patience in announcing all the winners this week.  The first announcement is for the Wednesday Card Giveaway.
This week's winner is:   Yvonne May!!!


For the weekly Comment game, the winners are:
Jacquie J!!!
Annie Pennington!!!
Susan White!!!


For the extra qualifying post of Wed. April 9th, the winners are:
TOB (Theresa)!!!
Sue from Wiltshire!!!
Hilary!!!

Congratulations all!  Please email me at americansue1@gmail.com to confirm your address and claim your prizes!  All for now, Sue x