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A collector and stroker of paper and other crafting gorgeousness! Happiest when surrounded by my crafting friends and buried wrist deep in stamps, paper, ink and bling.

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Sunday, 31 October 2010

Corner Punches on a Circle

I love this technique as the end result always looks so pretty and elegant. One day soon, I'm going to use it on a Christmas card with dark colours, I think that would look scrumptious!  but for now I've used it for a very 'girly' card.

I started by cutting a circle and marking it into 8 pieces on the back, as if you were cutting a pie into 8 equal portions. Then I lined up my 'corner adorner' punch centrally along each line and punched. I continued around the circle punching on each of the eight lines. Hey Presto! A circle with a pretty cut out in it.

This was mounted on foam pads on top of a scalloped circle.

The motif in the centre is a textured rub on, but any stamped image, sentiment or embellishment that fits in the space would work.

The lacy mat is formed by using Martha Stewart Round the Page punches. The papers are from K&Co.

Of course, I couldn't resist popping on some tiny gems just to add a little sparkle. Yes, definitely got to give this a go on a Christmas theme.

Happy Crafting

Iolanthe x

Friday, 29 October 2010

Now For Something Completely Different.....

In my 'real life' I have a few people who have more than a passing interest in anything related to buses or trains. So when it comes to their Birthday cards it can sometimes be a challenge to come up with something a little bit different.

I created the background by masking off thin lines, to separate the various areas and created a frame around the edge of the card.

Once the areas are defined, I stamped part of a transport related stamp with versamark into each area, making sure that any of the surrounding areas had been covered. I then used a selection of chalks to colour over the stamped images. I love this technique, it always gives me a thrill to see the stamped images come back through the chalk.

The main focal bus image was simply stamped with black versafine and the edges softened with chalk and four little gold brads used on the corners just finished it off.

Thanks for stopping by.

Happy crafting

Iolanthe x

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Two For The Price of One

This card is for the Mojo Monday Sketch Challenge round or square:

All of the papers are from Basic Grey Indian Summer Collection and the gems are Basic Grey Bling it On.

This is the first time I have entered either of these challenges, so to be able to crack both with one card was very fortuitous. Challenges like this certainly get the creative juices flowing.

Thanks for visiting.

Happy Crafting,
Iolanthe x

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Simply Thinking of You

Flourishes Timeless Tuesday Challenge: The challenge was 'Anything goes, but buttons and bows'.

Today's offering is very simple and quite quick to do. I always think that, as a cardmaker, there are sometimes occasions when we have to hold back and not throw everything we have at a card. 'Thinking of You' is one of those phrases that covers a multitude of situations, where any other sentiment is simply not appropriate.

The sentiment is stamped with Encore Gold and embossed with detail gold embossing powder. The panel was then cut and embossed. Each of the panels was mounted on matt gold card to try and keep an elegant feel to the card.

I love the texture and pattern of the cuttlebugged panel. I didn't think this card needed anything else. Sometimes you have to know when to stop! LOL.

Happy crafting,

Iolanthe x

Monday, 25 October 2010

Missing In Action

Hi everyone, I've been missing for nearly a week. Life in 'the real' world has been very hectic and I haven't been able to spend much time playing in the evenings.

I also had to spend the whole weekend crafting on a retreat!  We had to craft, eat cake, craft, eat a delicious 2 course lunch, craft some more, eat more cake.... and so it went on from Friday night to Sunday afternoon! I know, it was a dirty job, but someone had to do it.

We all had sooooo much fun and the projects were amazing. A massive 'Thank You' to Gwen and her team for all their hard work. We had a fantastic time. I hope to post some pictures of our projects, but I need to finish them off first. Gwen is planning another retreat next year in March, so watch this space.

So,  last week I suggested I ought to make a card that doesn't involve Nestabilities........

I really love this stamp, but it is very big, so I decided to mask out a square and just stamp part of it. It is simply stamped in Encore gold. I then inked the edges gently before removing the masking tape to slightly distress and soften the edge of the stamped area.

Then I decided to use the same stamp, but this time give it the 'nestie treatment'......

This time I stamped through the nestie with versamark, covered it with Judikins Sticky Stuff and then added gold leaf. The edges were again inked gently with the gold Encore.

The edges of the background paper was stippled with gold Stickles.

Four little gold brads in the corners to finish it off. So, two ways with one stamp.

Thanks for stopping by

Happy Crafting
Iolanthe x

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Going Blue With The Cold

Brrr, there is a distinct chill in the air and the weatherman has mentioned snow for the first time and we are only in the middle of autumn!

So, dig out all things snowy:  paper, cuttlebug folders and rub-ons. I cuttlebugged the Nestie labels 17, (yes that one again!) with the snow dots folder, just around the edges to leave space for the lovely Artoz Santa rub on in the centre. Yes, he's a rub on, great when you are in a hurry, and now it looks like its snowing around him. A little dot of Quickie glue on the snowflakes, a dusting of Glamour dust and you can nearly hear the sleigh bells ringing.

The rest took 10 minutes....punch the bottom of the background with that lovely embossed zig-zag Martha Stewart punch and cuttlebug the top with a different snowflakes folder.

A strip of paper across the space, a length of ribbon and you're done. Then run the glue pen along the zig-zag channel and sprinkle a little of the magic sparkly stuff again.

And there you go! I am going to challenge myself to make a card this week that doesn't use Nesties! Oh, what have I said?!!!!

Before I go, please can I say a huge thank you to all of you who took time to join in the Waltzing Mouse Blog Hop and for taking the time to leave such lovely comments.

Happy crafting,
Iolanthe x

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Waltzing on a Blog Hop

Today I am participating in a blog hop. The idea is that you start here and hop from one blog to the next, to see what we have all created on the theme of autumn or harvest.

Since autumn is about thankfulness, I thought I would make my card a 'Thank You' card using the beautiful Indian Summer collection of papers from Basic Grey.

The card base is made from Nestabilities Labels 17. This is such a lovely shape, so curvy! The border stamp is from the 'Very Vintage labels 10' set and the sentiment from the 'Say it With Style' set. These stamps are so beautifully etched, every detail is crisp and clear.

I sparayed the Prima flower with some Tattered Angels Gold spray, and finished it off with a few pine sprigs. So, my first blog hop finished, I'm off to play!

Thanks for hopping by.

Happy Crafting

Iolanthe x

Saturday, 16 October 2010

A Touch of Velvet

Today's card was one of those that started to come together really quickly. I've had those gorgeous Prima Poinsettias for a couple of years and never got around to using them.

I decided that the lovely Marianne centrepiece needed lots of space around it to show it off.and let the gold sparkle through from behind. The bauble is 'heritage heirlooms' from Spellbinders which, I cut out of the most scrumptious burgundy velvet paper. I used a little Inkadinkado for the gold embossed sentiment and popped it on the top.

A couple of Marianne flourishes cut from the velvet tops it off.

Happy crafting,


Friday, 15 October 2010

Angel of Hope

Hi everyone,

It has been a very long and busy week in the 'real world', so no posts for a couple of days. I do have a weekend to myself though, so I'm hoping to get a whole lot done.

So, on to today's card. I just couldn't resist this stamp. She's called Angel of Hope, from Quixotic Paperie and I thought she was beautiful. I think I'm going to be using her a lot over the coming weeks.

I decided this time to cut her out, and let her fly among the snowflakes. I also got the chance to layer her up onto my new lacy squares Nestability. You know, I've just realised, every card I've posted so far has featured a Nestability. Hmmmm, maybe I should have called my blog Nesties Anonymous! I really must try to make a card that doesn't use them, but at least it means I don't feel guilty about buying them and they are not gathering dust.

Well, I'm off to play.

Happy crafting,


Tuesday, 12 October 2010

A Little Birdie House

Some months ago I went to a class with Gwen Fletcher where we decorated a little bird house. Of course I came home clutching another two that I intended to decorate for presents. And so, they got added to my ever increasing stash of 'things I'll get around to finishing (ahem, or even starting!) one day.
Well, yesterday was the day for one of the little bird houses. It was purely inspired by the view from my conservatory, sunlight through those beautiful autumn colours again.

The box was primed with cream undercoat, sanded and painted with two shades of acrylic paint. I used a pale peach and terracotta. I added some of the terracotta to the peach to mix my own shade, as I didn't want the terracotta to be too dark.

A quick sand, and a wipe over to remove any dust, and then it was simply a matter of adding some rub ons. These autumn leaves and acorns were just perfect!

I will give it a coat of clear matt exterior varnish, which will make it suitable for hanging outside, but then again, it might just live in the conservatory.

Happy Crafting,

Iolanthe x

Monday, 11 October 2010

Botanica Bella Trinket Box

What a beautiful day we had on Saturday. Warm afternoon sunshine streaming through those delicious autumn colours. There was only one thing to do ...... dig out those Graphic 45 Botanica Bella papers and decorate a box. These papers have been stored and stroked for well over a year, so time to get cutting!!

The box was primed with gesso, sanded and then painted with a pale cream acrylic paint. I ran a gold krylon pen along the top and bottom of the box, to add a touch of luxury.  All the paper pieces were inked with Vintage Photo Distress Ink.

The inside bottom of the box and the base are covered with a rusty red velvet paper.

Finally, I rubbed a bit of gold rub and buff over the cream edges of the box to 'shabby' it up a bit and give it some character.

I decided to leave it at that, rather than adding any further embellishment to the lid, (now come on, I managed to cut the paper, but don't ask me to cover it up as well.)  LOL.

So, a lovely afternoon in the sunshine and a finished project too.

Thanks for stopping by.
Happy crafting.

Iolanthe x

Sunday, 10 October 2010

All The Tens

So, here we are, labels 10 gets another airing on 10/10/2010. (Goodness, where has this year gone?)

I love this die for a shaped card. This time I have teamed it up with one of the lovely panels from Marianne  Designs. It is so delicate and fits really nicely. The labels ten and Marianne dies have been gently inked through with, yes, you guessed it, Tattered Rose, before stamping the sentiment with Adirondak Espresso.

Topped off with a few peachy pearls, some punched sprigs, and some Prima flowers and there you have it, a real 'girly' card.

Happy crafting,

Iolanthe x

Saturday, 9 October 2010

The First Noel....(Well Actually It's The Second)

This was one of those cards that I thought would come together really quickly. Wrong! I knew what paper I wanted to use, I knew I wanted to use the curved rectangles with this new Nestability labels die, and I knew I wanted to take out the oval from the centre of the 'O'. That would surely all come together really quickly. Wrong!

All went according to plan until I set out to find something that would fit inside the 'O'. By the time I'd finished I felt like Goldilocks.....this stamp is too big, too wide, too cute, too modern..... I settled on a little crib scene. Made the card up and thought yuk! Not enough space around the image. So, I took it apart and started again.

And that is why my second Noel card only has one of the Wise Men!

The papers are from the beautiful GCD Studios  Joyful Peace and Dovecraft Noel Stacks. The Noel is by Clarity Stamps and the king, who is one of three, from Inkadinkado.

Thanks for stopping by.

Happy Crafting

Iolanthe x

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Sssh, Want To Know A Secret?

The amazing Gwen Fletcher from The Stamp Pad, Saddleworth is having a crafty weekend in beautiful Saddleworth Friday evening 22nd October to Sunday 24th .

For those of you who don't know, Gwen is one of the team that designs and makes the beautiful sample cards for Barbara from Clarity Stamps on Create and Craft.

If you would like any more information you can contact her on 01457 874646 or hop over to her blog:

Come and stroke paper with us, you know you want to!

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Stack 'Em Up!

I don't think you could say that this is exactly keeping it simple! Any crafter who knows me knows that I cannot resist my Nesties. They get layered up all the time. This time I decided to try something a little different and threw in a Martha Stewart Corner punch for something a little different, and look, no Tattered Rose Distress Ink in sight, this time the ink is Dusty Concord.

I finished it off with some little lilac gems and Cuttlebug Victorian Corners.

So there you have it, all stacked up.

Happy crafting.

Iolanthe x

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Keeping It Simple

A simple card for today. This is such a pretty die, it was crying out to be made into its own shaped card.

The sentiment panel is Nestabilities Labels 9 inked through the die with, yes you guessed, its Tattered Rose again! LOL The stamp is a Clarity Stamp, stamped with Pumice distress ink, It almost looks like gold. This was matted onto some Bazzil bling. Topped it off with some little rose buds, which I gave the Tattered rose treatment and a few sprigs from a Mc Gill pine punch.

I just thought it needed a little something extra, so I added some tiny pearls around the outside.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by.

Happy Crafting.

Iolanthe x

Monday, 4 October 2010

Bring Back Beautiful Challenge

Well this is totally new to me, but I have decided to enter a blog challenge. I have never entered one before, but hey, I'm up for giving it a go.

The challenge is from Bring Back Beautiful, details here and it is to create something that you could give as a gift.

My offering is a gift box, card and gift tag.

The papers are from K&Co Life's Journey.  I've sprayed the roses with a mix of Tattered Rose distress ink in a mini mister with a hint of gold perfect pearls. All the papers and card have been inked with Tattered Rose. Gosh, I use that a lot!

So, my very first challenge!

Happy Crafting
Iolanthe x

Sunday, 3 October 2010

A Bit Of Christmas Clarity

Hi there, here we are on yet another awful day with the rain lashing down outside. Seems to me like a great excuse to stay in and stamp!

Today's offering is an easel card using a lovely new stamp from Clarity. My wonderful friend, Gwen Fletcher from The Stamp Pad, is the designer of many of the beautiful samples that some of you may have seen for Clarity Stamps, with Barbara Grey on Create and Craft.

I have chosen the lovely new deer stamp, I just thought he was so cute.

The card was cut using Nestabilities curved rectangles. The edges inked with Vintage Photo Distress Ink.

Papers are from the beautiful GCD Studios Joyful Peace Stack and the lovely Dovecraft Noel stack.

I'm off to make a wedding minibook, so maybe I'll have a couple of piccies tomorrow.

Happy Crafting

Iolanthe x

Saturday, 2 October 2010

So Who Is Iolanthe?

Since my crafting world is the one where I escape 'real life' to, I thought I'd use a different name.

Some years ago I played the tittle role of Iolanthe, in the Gilbert and Sullivan opera. Iolanthe was a fairy, who defied her Fairy Queen and married a mortal, a crime for which she was banished to the bottom of the river to live among the frogs..........

So I thought I'd like to be a fairy in blogland and share with you some of the things that make me happy in my other world, and maybe even spark some inspiration.......

Hope to be back later with a card. Maybe an angel inspired card rather than a fairy....who knows?

Here she is......

Sorry about the quality of the picture, I will have to hone my photography skills for this blogging lark, LOL.

She's such a sweet little angel, I couldn't resist her.

Happy Crafting

Iolanthe x

Friday, 1 October 2010

What To Do When Its Wet And Windy Outside.........SHOP!

As a committed paperstroker I need to feed my addiction, so where do I go? The Stamp Pad in Greenfield, Saddleworth. It is packed with goodies and gorgeousness! Fabulous strokeable papers from the best ranges including Basic Grey, Bo Bunny, Graphic 45, GCD and SEI, to name but a few. Owned and run by Gwen Fletcher, the shop is an Aladin's Cave of crafting delights.

Gwen is the most amazingly talented lady and all her staff are knowledgeable crafters too. So, if you are in the area and you need cheering up with some crafting retail therapy call in and tell her Iolanthe sent you!

Gwen is running a Crafty weekend in October and there are a few places left, so I will post details over the weekend. Imagine...a whole weekend crafting with no families and housework! I can't wait.

Happy Crafting

Iolanthe x