Merry Christmas Mid Week Paper Craft Party Design Team

I wanted to try something a little bit different for today's theme "Merry Christmas".  It's nice to use designs which are specifically made for Christmas but sometimes you just have to challenge yourself so today I want to show you how you can use a design which isn't for Christmas.  

I'm using #217 cute cat with balloons digi stamp.....okay so you're wondering how this can be turned into a Christmas card...right?  Well here goes - I printed the design onto water colour paper and coloured it in with a selection of watercolour pencils (prisma and faber castell).  Next I added white circles randomly over the card with acrylic paint - I used a pen top dipped into the acrylic.  I also used the presents from #189 presents and gifts 10 in 1 painted those with watercolours and added some gems to add texture and I like sparkles on my gifts.  The tree I made from air-drying clay and embossed it with a rubber stamp before cutting it out with a cookie cutter - let dry over night and then painted with acrylic paint and added glitter.  The banner 'Let it Snow' is #226 Christmas Tags and Sentiments.  Oh and the santa hat is done digitally because I forgot to make one before I'd started editing (hope I'm forgiven for that but it looks pretty cool).

I hope you like my idea of using a non Christmas design and making it Christmasy. 

So as you know I added the digital hat to the cat in the above design well I had a play and did this using Picmonkey which is a free online photo editor.  I didn't get time to print it and add colour to the whole design but hopefully it will have given you another option of adding elements to the digi stamps.   

Hope you've enjoyed reading my post today. 
Please pop over and see what the rest of the design team have been making over on Handmade Harbours Midweek Paper Craft Party.



Beaded Bead Tutorial

I made this beaded bead back in 2010 and submitted to Beads & Beyond jewellery magazine where it was featured.  Since then I've taught a few workshops here in the UK and USA at an artfest.  As I don't have a studio to run workshops from now I have decided to put the tutorial up here for you to use for free.  

TITLE - ANANTA (Endless. Infinite)

TIP - For extra security and bead strength go through all the 6mm beads again tying half hitch knots every so often.  Once you are satisfied tie of the thread and apply a drop of glue to the knot.  Always follow thread route.

Beading needle,
Beading thread (I prefer KO)
Matsuno seed beads size 11,
2 bead caps 14mm,
x8 Jet Black AB 6mm round Czech crystal (MC)
x12 Half Silver 6mm AB round Czech crystal (SC),
x3 head pins,
Sterling or plated silver 0.8mm wire (approx 10cm),

Flat nose pliers, and wire cutters


1.  Take a comfortable length of thread and thread onto needle.  Add 4 alternate beads and tie together to form a square – leave an 8inch tail.  Go through all beads again exiting a SC bead.


2. Add 3 beads (MC/SC/MC).  Go through all the beads again exiting (SC).  Repeat this one more time


3. Fold in half so that the 2 SC beads meet each other.  Add a MC bead pass needle through the next SC, add another MC crystal go through the last SC bead to form a square.  Go through all 4 beads again exiting one of the SC beads. Tie a half hitch knot to secure. 


4. Pick up 7 seed beads and pass needle through opposite SC diagonally.  Pick up 2 seed beads and pass needle through the 4th seed bead of the 7 beads that have been added.  Pick up 2 seed beads pass needle through the first SC bead that you started from.  You now should have a kiss of seed beads.  Repeat until all sides are covered with kisses,


5. The finished bead.


6.Making the Pendant

Cut a piece of wire approx 10cm and create wrapped loop at one end.

Thread the following in sequence onto the wire-
x1 6mm SC crystal
Bead cap
x2 6mm SC beads
Your beaded bead –push one of the 2 beads added previously into the middle of the beaded bead
x1 6mm SC bead
Bead cap
x1 6mm SC bead

Create a wrapped loop at the other end. 

Wire wrap x3 of the 6mm SC crystal beads to one of the wrapped ends of the pendant.  Slip onto sterling silver chain or coordinating ribbon/faux suede.

Here is an image from the Beads and Beyond article

This necklace is made with different sizes of the beaded beads for a dramatic necklace.

I hope that you enjoy the tutorial and you will link to what you have made.  Please note that this tutorial is for your own personal use and not to be sold. I would be grateful if you do make the beaded bead and post it on your blog that you link back to this post.

Have fun any questions please ask and I'll try to answer as soon as I can.


I'm linking up with
Go check out some lovely crafters.


How to make bookmarks or gift tags from scraps of paper

Gather your ingredients - scraps of paper, glue and a sheet of card to stick your scraps onto.  I used an A3 size card you can use A4 which is what most crafters have in their stash of cards.

This is what I call the "eww" stage because it looks like a 5 year old's work.

Next start adding paint - I used acrylic paint and added it using a crumpled up piece of bubble wrap - randomly.  You can use anything you like to paint with fingers, crumpled up paper towels, an old credit card etc.  

I then used a stencil with white acrylic paint to sections of the background.

  Over this I added spots of gel medium (with my fingers) and sprinkled some embossing powder (the turquoise bits) into it and heated it with a heat gun - on top of this I did the same again but this time I added some gold embossing powder.  

I also added some fibres which added texture but lost its sheen as I went over it with paint and glue - so you may want to leave it out or add it at the end.

These 2 pictures show a close up of the embossing powder and the texture it creates.  The more I heated it the bubblier it got - just make sure you have a good ventilated room - embossing powder is meant to be used with embossing pads to adhere the embossing powder but I like to experiment and gel medium worked really well (didn't give off any smell but just to err on the side of caution make sure you don't over heat it).

After the background has dried you can cut them to any size you want.  I cut mine to 12cm by 6cm.  I then mounted these onto coordinating card and cut around them so the clean card showed around the edges - you don't have to do this I just think it finishes the tags/bookmarks off and it covers the back of the original background - mine got glue and paint in parts.

Now you don't have to do this stage but I added some embellishments just to make them that more interesting and unique.  I used some odds and ends I've had in my collection box - you can use images out of magazines, text from newspapers in fact anything you like. 

To finish off I punched a hole at the top and added some fibres.

I hope you enjoy the tutorial.

Same Elements Different Look & Handmade Monday

It's time for Handmade Monday over on the Handmade Harbour blog.  My post today looks at how you can use the same elements but make each card different and unique.

I don't know about you but I get bored making multiple card that look the same (unless they are for an order).  I also like to give my customers unique cards to buy.  

I made the following using some text paper which I had printed and cut into triangles and mounted onto co-coordinating background paper.  The circles are lengths of quilling paper from my quilling days many moons ago - I have quite a collection.  I like how the tight coils lend themselves to the design of the trees as baubles and tree trunks.

I added a silver snowflake which was cut from a tree garland and the greeting is a rubber stamp from Stampendous.

I made different size coils with the quilling paper and added them in a line to make them look like a tree. 

I've also linked up with the following blogs.

Have a wonderful and creative week.