Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Lulworth Castle

Another layout from Debden.......

Last summer whilst on holiday in Dorset we spent a day at Lulworth Castle. The castle was built in the early 17th Century and has changed little over the years.

During the summer visitors to the castle can watch dramatic battles on horseback at the spectacular summer jousting contests held in the magnificent castle grounds and whilst at Debden I created a layout of a couple of the photos I took of the horse display.

I used some very old patterned papers from Scenic Route and I think 7 Gypsies, a scrap of vellum for the journaling, card stock flourishes and title cut on the Cricut and stickled, a making memories metal frame, photo turns and brads. You can see more of my photos of the castle. park and horses here on my photography blog

Monday, 28 March 2011

Funny Faces

Another layout from the Debden weekend this time using photos of Steven taken nearly 7 years ago. In just over a fortnight this little boy will be a teenager. Yikes!

The layout was based on a layout by Davinie Fiero and I used squares of BasicGrey 'Lucky' paper which were all machine stitched round the edge. More scraps of BasicGrey were used for the title which was cut on the Cricut and to make the concertina flowers

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Gibraltar Point

Another layout from Debden.

For this layout I used some photos of Lara taken at the Gibraltar Point National Nature Reserve in Lincolnshire last October. I used a sheet of Prima's My Mommy and Me - North Park paper. I didn't feel too much embelishment was needed so I just added some buttons in co-ordinating colours, layered up some images of the owls cut from a second sheet of the paper on 3D foam and added journaling along the bottom on a transparency.

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Ice Queen

This layout, which I put together at Debden, was based on a layout I saw on Lisette Gibbons blog. When I saw that Lisette had used papers from the BasicGrey's Offbeat collection with an icy layout I realised what a perfect colour match they would be to some photos I had of Lara playing in the snow on Christmas Eve.

I had intended using several sheets of paper from the collection but in the end used just a tiny piece of the sheet called 'unexpected'. I teamed this with white and pale blue Bazzill card stock, ribbon, lace, 'Swell Noel' Layered Glittered Snowflakes from K&Co (which I seem to use on EVERY snowy layout!) and some unbranded silver alphabet stickers.

I have lots more photos of Lara taken on that day whilst she was playing in the snow so I think the Offbeat collection will come in very useful when scrapping them. Not a collection I would have instantly thought to use with snowy pictures but in this instance they are perfect.

Friday, 25 March 2011

Just the Girls

Here's the first of the layout I created at last weekends retreat.

As the journalling explains, being the photographer of the family means I don't have many photos of myself and have even fewer photos of myself and the children. This photo however of Lara and I, which was taken over four years ago at Bideford in Devon, is one of my favourites and I've been meaning to scrapbook it for ages.

I have been following Nichol Magouirk's weekly 'From Start to Finish' videos on Two Peas in a Bucket since the beginning of the year and when I saw her 'You and Me' video a few weeks ago I just knew it would be great for this photo. Do check out Nichol's videos - I love here style and the videos are excellent with lots of tips and design ideas.

I used patterned papers from Cosmo Crickets Girl Friday Line, Bazzill Card Stock. Date Sticker from October Afternoon, Title cut on the Cricut and various little embelishments (buttons, brads, punches, charms and rub ons). I don't use Kraft card stock very often but I kinda like the look and may try using it more.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Blossom Babes Debden Weekend 2011 - Part III

Having shown you yesterday the gifts I made for my friends at Debden, I thought today I would show you some of the lovely gifts I received. I'm only going to show you the handmade or hand decorated gifts because the other gifts (sweeties, chocolates, soap and stash) although equally lovely have all been eaten or part used! Sorry but chocolate eggs and Haribos were just too yummy to resist. LOL.

This yummy cupcake in a box came from Gilly. Every day whilst I was away I intended eating the cupcake but the food provided at Debden is so filling that I could never find room for the cupcake. I soon remedied that when I got home though and shortly after taking this photo - the cupcake was no more. It was delicious.

Anita gave me these two cuties. A sweet little flip flop shaped decorated box and matching chocolate bar. The sweeties in the flip flop are also no longer with us! LOL

Sue gave me this beautiful heart which she had deco-patched and embelished. So very pretty and I'm sure took a long time to finish. If I had a craft room I would have it on display in that room but as I don't, I've hung it on the inside of the door of my scrap-cupboard so that every time I open the door I see it.

And finally Lynn gave me this teeny, tiny personalised storage box full to the brim with pretty, pink embelishments. A few of the embelishments found their way onto the layouts I created whilst away so thank you Lynn. (Oops just realised I've photographed the lid upside down)

Thank you too to everyone else who gave me a present. I really do have the most thoughtful crafty friends ever.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Blossom Babes Debden Weekend 2011 - Part II

Today I was going to show you one of the layouts I created last weekend at Debden but instead I've decided to show you the little gifts I made for my friends. We often swap little presents at Debden. Sometimes those presents are homemade, sometimes edible (yum yum), sometime useful and sometimes just pretty.

This year I decides to give something edible in a pretty package.

The square acrylic boxes were from Denami Designs and after decorating them with ribbons, a punched butterfly and a scalloped circle stamped with a 'for you' stamp also from Denami Designs I filled them with mint imperials.

I think the girls liked them and they certainly looked pretty altogether.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Blossom Babes Debden Weekend 2011 - Part I

Last weekend I spent a few very happy days in the company of some of my crafty friends. We scrapbooked, made cards, ate, drank, chatted and laughed. Boy did we laugh.

We spent the weekend at Debden House in Loughton, Essex. This was (I think) the fourth or fifth time I had been at Debden with my friends and this years visit was slightly earlier in the year than previous visits.

Signs of spring were already visible with a blanket of small blue flowers beneath this tree.

Not sure what the flowers were but they were really pretty.

There were also daffodils in bloom and tiny narcissus

Primroses were dotted through out the garden.

And on some of the trees blossom was already on show.

I'll be back soon with more photos of the layouts I created whilst at Debden.

Book Review - Spellbound by Jane Green

Fantastic Fiction Review: Alice knows she should be happy. After all she has a handsome husband, a beautiful house and membership to all the most exclusive clubs in London. So what if the rumours about her husband's skirt-chasing are becoming harder to ignore? When Joe's indiscretions force a transfer to New York, Alice hopes it might be a fresh start. And when they find a beautiful old house in Connecticut Alice is overjoyed. For a while she and Joe seem as happy as newlyweds. But then the late nights and unexplained absences start again. What should Alice do? Stay and fight for him? Or leave with her head held high?

I've had this book for sometime and decided now was the time to read it. Jane Green is a writer I am familiar with and whose books I usually enjoy so I was expecting to enjoy this one. The book, Jane Green's sixth book, didn't fail to meet my expectations. It was a real page turner and I couldn't wait to find out what would happen to Alice and whether her suspicions about Joe's infidelity would be confirmed. Predictably it all turns out good for Alice in the end, but when alls said and done ...... we all like a happy ending.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

D is for Dimension

This month on Scrapology we have scrap lifted a stunning layout by the very talented scrapbooker Gabrielle Pollacco. I have followed Gabrielle's blog for sometime and am in awe of her layouts and especially her handmade flowers and other embelishments.

Here is my layout.

The young woman in the photo is my paternal grandmother - Fanny Hills (Née Ansell). This was the first time I had scrapped a heritage layout but I felt the style of Gabrielle's original layout lent itself to a heritage layout.

The papers were really, really, REALLY old K&Co papers. The lace was stained with coffee (LOL) and the flowers were handmade using this tutorial by Gabrielle herself. I used a variety of re purposed buttons for the centres of the flowers and I was really pleased how they turned out and I am already planning to make more.

This was Gabrielle's original layout and sketch.

Please visit Scrapology and see the beautiful layouts created by the other members of the design team and to be in with a chance of winning a prize.

Book Review - Postcards from the Heart by Ella Griffin

Fantastic Fiction Review: Life is looking up for Saffy. She has a great job, a gorgeous flat in the most desirable part of Dublin and - after six years - it looks like her boyfriend, Greg, is going to propose. Greg (just voted the 9th most eligible man in Ireland) is on a high, too - he's about to swap his part as a heart-throb in an Irish soap for a break in Hollywood. His best mate Conor wakes up every morning with Jess, the most beautiful woman on the planet but, even after seven years and two kids, she won't get married. He spends his days teaching teenagers and his nights writing the book he hopes will change everything, including Jess's mind. But their happy endings are playing hard to get. It seems everyone's keeping secrets - one night stands, heartbreak, grief and loss are all in the mix. It's going to take some tough questions and even tougher answers before anyone's being honest - even with themselves. POSTCARDS FROM THE HEART is a book about four friends in their thirties. It's about love, lust, life, death, balloon rides and missing hamsters. But most of all it's about figuring out how to stop saying 'I don't' and how to start saying 'I do'

This debut novel was recommended on the Chick Lit Plus and whilst I have a tendency to read books by authors who have a proven track record of writing good stories I was interested to read Ella's first book.

It did take me a while to get into the book but this may have been due to my lack of reading time in recent weeks rather than the story line because once I did got into the story I really enjoyed it. I loved the characters - Saffy who was certainly too good for the ultra-vain Greg, and hard working Conor and Jess who were so right for each other were believable characters. The humour written into the story was witty and had me laughing. Ella Griffin is a great story teller and I look forward with anticipation her next novel.