A blog devoted to the cards I make in my tiny upstairs space. When my sister stays there, she calls it an "artist's garret". I'm not an artist, but am an enthusiastic cardmaker - hence the title "Cardmaker's Garret".

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Peace in Three Variations

This week's Merry Monday challenge is:

A great challenge for me as I love "peace" as a theme for Christmas cards.  I got out one of my favourite dove stamps and did three variations on it, using three different embossing powders.  The one I'm taking over to Merry Monday is up first:

Then I did versions with very pale embossing powder and smaller sequins, and with rich sparkly embossing powder and no sequins.

It's hard to fully capture the richness embossing powder adds to the image so I thought I'd give you close-ups of the heat embossing in the same order as the cards above:

I love getting lots of my Christmas cards made well ahead of time and I'm grateful to the challenges out there that give me inspiration and incentive!  Thanks for stopping by!

Stamps - Penny Black dove, A Muse sentiment
Ink - Versamark
Paper - white cs
Size - A2
Accessories - top card: Cosmic Shimmer Steel Blue Aurora ep, large blue sequins;  middle card: Cosmic Shimmer Arctic Lake Lustre ep, small clear sequins;  bottom card: Recollections Blue Blaze ep;  all cards: fun foam to pop up focal panel

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Meet My New Puppy (and a Card)

Finally the weekend for picking up my new puppy and bringing her home arrived.  Meet Tessa:

She is more formally known for Kennel Club registration as "Eclipse Tea for Two".  Eclipse is the breeder's kennel name, Tea for Two picks up the "T" of Tessa, refers to the fact that I now have two dogs, and is in honour of my Mum who passed away in January - she and I shared many many cups of tea together, and I so long to be able to tell her all about Tessa.  I got my love of dogs from her.

Here she is with me and Snow, the mother dog:

And just so he's not left out, here's one of me with my 12 year old dog, Will (from the same wonderful breeder - his official kennel club name is "Eclipse Shakespeare's Sonnet"):

He's not overly thrilled about Tessa coming home with us, but I'm sure he'll come round.

Now on to the reason why you're visiting my blog.  I couldn't help but do another card for CAS Mix Up's June challenge:

I made a card for my father and it seems appropriate to post it on Father's Day:

I have a stamped sentiment, a die cut bird / branch, and my others are watercolouring on the die cut and dry embossing.

I die cut the "Happy News" die and then watercoloured it. I cut it twice more from scrap cs and glued the three together to give it more substance.

I tried to line up the branch with a logical spot on the dry embossed background as if it were part of the same branch.
You have until June 24 to link up a card for the CAS Mix Up challenge.  As well as following the "Stamping + Die Cuts + Other" part of the challenge, please remember to keep your card clean and simple.


Stamps: PTI sentiment
Paper: rust and cream cs, watercolour paper
Paper Size: A2
Ink: Memento Rich Cocoa
Accessories: Cuttlebug embossing folder, Penny Black Happy News die, watercolour paints

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Butterflies Two Ways

This is my reminder card for the June CAS Mix Up challenge.  I'm really enjoying being on their Design Team and I love the challenges Loll and Bonnie come up with each month.

I needed to make a birthday card for a young friend who loves sparkle and purple and mauve.  So I incorporated the challenge guidelines - a stamp for my sentiment, die cuts for the butterfly and the circle, and my choice - a stencil and sponging on the right and a splat of brusho on the circle.

I made the butterfly stencil myself by cutting the Memory Box Reverse Butterfly Collage die out of cs.  I sponged through it using three shades of Distress ink.

The brusho splat was made by sprinkling a tiny bit on coated cs, spritzing with water and letting it run and air dry.  I stamped the sentiment with Staz On because it was coated cs and cut out a circle with a stitched circle die.

I love the glitter cs I used - full of great shades of mauve, blue, and purple and it co-ordinated perfectly with the inks I used for sponging and the tones in the brusho splat.  I used a white glitter cs for the top layer of the butterfly.  I popped it up with foam tape.

You have until June 24th to link up a card for the challenge.  For more information, especially on the options for "your choice", head on over to CAS Mix Up.

Stamps - A Muse sentiment
Ink - black Staz On, Distress Shaded Lilac, Dusty Concord, and Seedless Preserves
Paper - white and black cs, coated cs, purple and white glitter cs
Size - A2
Accessories - Memory Box butterfly dies, Lil Inker stitched circle die, homemade stencil made using a Memory Box Reverse Butterfly Collage die

Monday, 13 June 2016

Distressed Berries and Scored Borders (and a Sweet Puppy)

I've done another card for the great CAS Mix Up challenge "Stamping, Die-cuts, and Your Choice".

I stamped both the berries and the sentiment, die cut the berries, and for my choice, I used scoring and sequins.

The Penny Black "Berry Merry Christmas" stamp was inked up using a few shades of red Distress markers for the berries and browns for the stem.  I then lightly spritzed with water and stamped on watercolour paper.  It was die cut with the "Berry Cluster" die.  I glued the stem to the shimmery cream card base and popped the berries up on foam tape.

I used a "thank you" sentiment as I thought it would make a good Christmas thank you card.  It is stamped and then heat embossed.  Once it was in place, I scored the borders.

I don't have any red sequins so coloured some clear ones with a couple of drops of red alcohol ink in a small plastic bag.

On another note, I just found out which of the puppies is going to be mine.  It will be this sweet girl:

Here are the four puppies at 8 weeks old.  Mine is the one on the far left.

I get to bring her home on Saturday so expect some more photos next week!

Stamps - Penny Black Berry Merry Christmas, Savvy Stamps sentiment
Ink - Versamark
Paper - shimmery cream cs, watercolour paper
Size - 4.25" square
Accessories - Penny Black Berry Cluster die, reds and browns Distress markers, Scor Buddy, sequins, red alcohol ink, red embossing powder

Monday, 6 June 2016

Happy Little Stampers Mixed Media "Texture" Challenge

The June Mixed Media challenge at Happy Little Stampers opens today:

I went with quite a CAS mixed media card, using a stencil and embossing paste to provide my texture:

My media are embossing paste, brushos, ink, embossing powder, and sequins.

I used Dreamweaver white embossing paste with a flower stencil on heavy coated cs.  It created a nice raised texture.  When the paste was dry, I sprinkled turquoise and purple Brushos over it and spritzed with water.  The colours came alive and ran all around the textured flower, but not colouring the flower - they did pool a bit more darkly along the edges of the paste but that just gives a nice outline effect.

I added a stamped and heat embossed sentiment and a few sequins, and popped the panel up on foam foam.

Whether you make very detailed complex mixed media cards or more CAS versions like mine, we'd love to see how you add texture to your mixed media cards!  Link up your card here.

Stamps - Gina K hello
Ink - Versafine Indigo
Paper - white cs, heavy coated white cs
Size - A2
Accessories - Designs by Ryn anemone stencil, Dreamweaver white embossing paste, turquoise and purple Brushos, clear embossing powder, fun foam

Saturday, 4 June 2016

Happy Little Stampers "Twine" Challenge

It's June and time for another Happy Little Stampers challenge:

I have a roll of red and white twine, perfect for Christmas, so made this card as my Design Team card:

I stamped and heat embossed the ornaments and used their matching punch.  I then punched tiny holes in the tops and threaded the twine through the holes and around the branches of the die cut evergreen bow.  I popped up the ornaments on foam tape and only stuck down the top of the pine bough so that it also has some dimension. I added a Happy Little Stampers sentiment and popped the whole panel up on fun foam.

Come and join us at Happy Little Stampers and show us your Christmas cards using twine!

Stamps -  SU Delightful Decorations, HLS noel sentiment
Ink -  ColorBox Cranberry and Evergreen
Paper - white and dark green cs
Size - A2
Accessories - red/white twine, SU ornament punch, Memory Box pine needle border die, Ranger Rich Red embossing powder, Stampendous Pearlustre Emerald embossing powder, foam tape, fun foam

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

CAS Mix Up - Die Cut for June

It's time for another challenge over at CAS Mix Up.  This month it's "die cuts".

Your card must include some stamping, at least one die-cut, and then one or more of the "your choice" options listed on the right hand side of the CAS Mix Up blog.

For my card for the Design Team, I chose dry embossing, gilding flakes, and heat embossing for "my choice".

I covered a piece of cs with sook wang tape, removed the protective layer, and covered with gilding flakes.  

I die cut the bird on the branch and added it to a dry embossed background.  The branch is stuck down flat but the bird is popped up with a bit of foam tape.

I cut another piece of the gilding flake covered cs as a border.  It seemed a shame to hide all of that lovely piece behind my focal image so I cut a square out of the middle of it and set it aside for a future project.  I cut the same size square out of a scrap of cs and filled in the gap so that it had substance behind the dry embossed piece.  

My stamping is a simple heat embossed sentiment.

You have until June 24th to join in and add your card (remember to keep it CAS!)
to the challenge.  There is some wonderful inspiration from my fellow Design Team members and our Featured and Guest Designers.   

Stamps - A Muse sentiment
Ink - Versamark
Paper - PTI Vintage Cream cs, scrap cs
Size - 4.75" square
Accessories - Sizzix embossing folder, Cosmic Shimmer Autumn Leaves gilding flakes, Penny Black "Perched" bird die, Recollections Champagne embossing powder, foam tape

Vintage Santa with a Sack

This week's Merry Monday Christmas card challenge is "It's in the Bag" .

The only image I have that fits is a vintage-looking Santa carrying a sack.

I stamped him in brown and decided to only adding red - somehow just colouring with one colour makes it seem more vintage to me.  Likewise sponging the edges in brown.

I pulled a stamped text background out of my UFO box - made ages ago at a friend's house.  I added the same brown sponging to the edges of it.

Thanks for dropping by!

Stamps: Tim Holtz Santa, unknown text stamp
Paper: PTI Vintage Cream, scrap of red cs
Paper Size: A2
Ink: Ranger Potting Soil, Distress Brushed Corduroy, SU Real Red
Accessories: Nesties label dies, coloured pencils