Saturday 29 June 2019


Just in time for our challenge over at Sweet Stampin this week - the sun has arrived in the UK - but it's come in with a bang and temperatures have soared - we get all or nothing over here!  Our challenge is Fun In The Sun.

I chose to use one of my all time favourite Stampin Up sets which is very old. So old in fact it's on wooden blocks - at the time I thought I would never move away from wooden stamps but it just goes to show how you change your mind.

I started off my card using a cloud stencil and some Distress Oxide ink from Tim Holtz in Salty Ocean.  The sun is from another retired SU set called Kinda Eclectic and I've just used half of the stamp in SU More Mustard.  The beach scene used a few more SU sets - High Tide and Wetlands to create the sea and the sand.  I added some paper from Kaisercraft at the bottom with a rope effect and a touch of blue twine.  The sentiment is also from Kaisercraft paper set called Beach Shack.


Wednesday 26 June 2019


I recently found a new stamp company when I was at a craft fair called Card-io.  I have seen some lovely examples of how to use their stamps and managed to get a set to play with recently. It is perfect for the challenge over at Inkspirational which is Garden.

The set I've used is called Garden Hosedown.  I masked off the top and bottom of my card.  Using some Tim Holtz Distress Inks in Bundled Sage and Fossilized Amber I gently sponged the background.  I used various inks for the images and masked off a part for the sun.  The sun's rays are from a Stampin Up retired set Amazing You.  I added some flowers and leaves and the birds from SU High Tide.  The sentiment is from another retired set from SU called Cottage Greetings.  I added a few coloured rhinestones to the centre of the flowers.

I think I'm going to need a bit more practice with these stamps and maybe some more which include their lovely flowers and leaves, but it's a start!


Tuesday 25 June 2019


Such a broad spectrum for our challenge at SU only challenge this week - Birthdays - well for me it's even more relevant as my first grandchild Hazel made her appearance on Wednesday 19th June - 6 weeks earlier than we expected but she and mum are doing really well.  So exciting!

I've used a retired set here called Happy Hour together with some retired SU DSP called Have a Cuppa.  I added a strip of the same paper turned over on the left hand side and cut the bottom with a retired banner punch.  I added some of the gorgeous  Organza ribbon - now also sadly retired.

I'm also including this in the As You See It Challenge - a great challenge this week called My Favourite Colour to Wear is......

Mine is definitely red and you will see all different shades of red in my wardrobe - but especially the muted reds rather than the really bright ones.  I love the colours red and green and use a lot of red in my home decorating too.  I'f I'm needing a pick-me-up then I will definitely grab something red to wear.

I'm also including this in Just Add Ink challenge which has a sketch which I think this one follows.

I'm popping by Retro Rubber also with this retired set.  It's been a while since I've joined in with other challenges and it's nice to play along - it helps to keep you motivate I find.



Our sketch challenge this week at TSOT also has the extra challenge of Summer Fun. Sadly summer seems to have left the UK again with lots of clouds and wet weather.  

I've used a retired set from Stampin Up called Happy Hour.  I've used Wild Wasabi card stock as the base and some retired SU papers called Fruit Stand.  I thought the drinks looked really summery and I've added a touch of Spectrum Noir shimmer to make them sparkle.  I used a retired framelit to cut out the sentiment and some retired sequins.


Tuesday 18 June 2019


The sketch at TSOT this week is as follows with the added option of adding nature. 

I don't need much persuading to add nature theme to a card and decided to use some of the new Stampin Up DSP paper Bird Ballad.  I paired it up with some retired DSP Tranquil Textures because I liked the combination of the colours.  I added them to some Always Artichoke card stock and added some of the pretty Laser Cut speciality paper.  

The sentiment is from Clearly Besotted Your So Tweet II set which I thought went perfectly with the birds and it was popped up on dimensionals.  A few sequins at the bottom finished off the card.



I loved this sketch we got to work with over at Hand Stamped Sentiments this week - I hope you enjoy using it too.

I've used some of this gorgeous new papers from Stampin Up called Perenial Essence.  When I first saw them being used by Jane Allmark an SU Demo I really thought they had been inked - the word Monet screamed at me so I just had to have them.  Here though I've opted to use the more muted side without the flowers - the added purple paper is from SU Tranquil Textures.  I was pleased to see that Dandelion Wishes is still current so as I hadn't used it in a while I felt it needed an inking.  I actually used a very old ink called Bravo Burgundy as I don't yet have Blackberry Bliss.  I sponged the edges of both the sentiment and the dandelion and added some rhinestones. 

Sunday 16 June 2019


It's been a while since I've joined in with other challenges that I wasn't on the Design Team for - there doesn't always seem to be enough hours in the day.  However I was inspired by Inspired By when it popped up on my FB feed and I had just purchased another new little set from Clearly Besotted which had a lemon in it - so it was just the think to be given some ink!

I found the lovely striped paper in my stash and sorry I have no idea where it's from - but I loved the stripes.  I cut the front of the card slightly smaller and layered the stripe on the inside just to give the card a bit more interest.

I then used the Clearly Besotted stamp set called Feeling Fruity for the little mouse with the lemon and stamped them twice.  I used some Tim Holtz Distress Oxide in Pumice Stone to colour in the mouse and some of the Tri Spectrum pens for the lemon and the touch of pink.  The sentiment is from another Clearly Besotted set called Pawly Pals and I thought this went well with the lemons as we tend to head for lemons when we have a cold.  This was inked in Tim Holtz Fossilized Amber Distress Oxide and I used some stitched framelits to layer it.  I added a retired SU heart.


Saturday 15 June 2019


An unusual challenge for the Design Team and everyone over at Sweet Stampin this week as we give a nod to Queen Elizabeth's official birthday - her actual birthday is in April.

I thought right outside the box for this one as I don't have anything that is really royal but I do have this gorgeous new stamp from Pink Ink designs which I'm called my Fairy Princess - yes a very tenuous link to royalty.

This is a large stamp so needed a bigger card base than my normal size.  I inked it in black ink by Memento and then used my Tri Spectrum pens for the colouring.  The bee and the butterfly are from the same set as is the sentiment.  I added some Spectrum Noir sparkle to her wings to give them some shine and added a few sequins dotted about.



It's time for another blog hop with my Facebook Group Joy of Sets and my thanks to Andrea Parr for organising us all again.   I love how big my initial idea of a SU group incorporating retired and current stamps has become over the last few years.  Not only do we do blog hops but we also run monthly challenges, swaps, RAK's and our own Challenge Blog.  They are a great bunch of ladies so if you love crafting, all companies, all products, come and join us! 

Lots of the entries I'm sure will be new products from the Stampin Up Catalogue - however at Joy of Sets we don't only celebrate Stampin Up.  So I'm branching out and showing a new set I recently bought from Clearly Besotted called Pawly Pals.  This is a lovely little set with these cute images and the whole set cost me £3.70!!!  How's that for value and no I'm not affiliated with Clearly Besotted in any way lol!  I'm just clearly besotted!

 Pawly Pals

However, I have sneaked in a retired Stampin Up stamp which is also another thing I am passionate about - continuing to use retired stuff.  As a non demo I'm lucky that I don't always have to push the new products.  The sun at the top of the card is from Kinda Eclectic and has been inked in Tim Holtz Distress Oxide Fossilised Amber.  The clouds are from a stencil I picked up a craft fair and has been inked with Tim Holtz Distress Ink Tumbled Glass.

I inked up the cute little images in SU Basic Gray - one of the new style ink pads and so far I'm really liking them.  I used some Tim Holtz Distress Oxide in Pumice Stone to colour in the mouse and the rabbit and Tri Spectrum Blend Pen for the teddy bear.  The twine is retired Baker's Twine in Basic Black.

I hope you will join the hop and see what the rest of the gang have for you.  If you would like to join in our Facebook Group just click the link below - we have lots of fun with swaps, challenges, blog hops, RAK's all over the world. 

This month we are trying something different rather than the arrows and are listing all the participants below - that way there shouldn't be any hiccups to the blog list! 

Jane Allmark

Annette Ball 

Linda Hanford

Anne-Marie Maclean

Angie McKenzie

Vicki Millyard

Andrea Parr

Karen Pearmain

Susan Simpson

Rebecca Jo Unwin

Jennifer Arent


Tuesday 11 June 2019


We have a mix up challenge for you at TSOT #412 this week -

I chose to use both options and did a 'Z' fold for my technique fun fold card.  I used a retired set from Stampin Up called Build a Bouquet - this is a great set but you hardly see it being used any more.  The flowers are so big and bold so I stamped them all over the top and sides of the card stock in Mint Macaron and Powder Pink.  The dots are in Melon Mambo.  I then used some of the Garden Impressions DSP for the z fold - the sentiment is from Colourful Seasons stamped in Tranquil Tide and I added a butterfly in the same paper which had been punched out with a retired butterfly punch.  The pearls are non SU.



We have a Die Cut challenge for you over at Stampin Up Only this week.  I've tried my hand at doing a quilted style card for the first time inspired by Colleen Magness' You Tube video.

I've also used some of the SU Everything is Rosy DSP which was gifted to me by my crafting friend Andrea Parr.  Such gorgeous vibrant colours - my die cut comes from the die cuts which form part of this same set.  I added some of that gorgeous blue ribbon ad some of the new little sequins - remembering to take the protective coating off.

I love how this quilted style card turned out and will be trying a few more.  I hope it's inspired you to have a go. 


Tuesday 4 June 2019


We have a great image challenge for you this week at Hand Stamped Sentiments #316.

I chose to do a 'W' card which I had seen being done on You Tube by various SU Demos.  I don't often use purples so I was inspired by the slight purple of the flower in the image.  I used some  of the Tranquil Textures DSP, together with some Perfect Plum cardstock.  The flowers on the front are from the retired set Painted Seasons - inked in Perfect Plum and a very old SU ink called Ballet Blue.  These inks are quite old so it really helps to have a stamp positioner to be able to over stamp them more than once - I have a Tim Holtz one.

I decorated the inside with the dots from Painted Seasons in Perfect Plum.  The W Fold was also layered with the DSP - the sentiment is from another retired set. Apple of My Eye.  I added some of the Whisper White Flax ribbon to tie the card shut.


Monday 3 June 2019


Our challenge at Sweet Stampin this week is to celebrate World Oceans Day which is on 8th June.

I've actually just come back from holiday from Greece - a small island called Paxos in the Ionian sea.  A place to really rest and relax.  My card uses some designer series paper from Stampin Up called Tranquil Textures.  The inner piece has been sponged with Tim Holtz Oxide Inks and the sea is a stamp from Stampin Up's Wetlands set.  The little chair comes from the Colourful Seasons thinlets from Stampin Up.  The birds were from a very old Tim Holtz set that I can't remember the name of.  I've added some glitter to the chair and some pearl embellishment.s  


Saturday 1 June 2019


Wow - we are half way through the year already!  Doesn't time fly.  Our Grid over at The Joy of Sets this month has been chosen by Sandra Mastello. 

I went with Thanks, Pattern Paper and Punch for my card.  As usual I've used a retired stamp set called A Nice Cuppa which had the matching framelits to cut out the cup and the little spoon.  I've used some of the Tea Room Speciality DSP for the background paper which also has the little spoons on it.  I added a touch of non SU paper behind the pearlised doily.  I was gifted from Andrea Parr some of the Tea Room Copper vinyl stickers.  I'm not really a stickers girl but these are too pretty not to use so I added the spoon to the spooon (!) and some of the florals to the tea cup.

To be able to add a punch I used a retired SU Banner punch and cut it in half and layered it to itself.  The sentiment is from Thankful Thoughts.



It was my choice this month for our theme for June's challenge over at Sparkles Christmas Challenge  and I chose Reindeer.  I do love cards with Reindeer on them so it was my obvious choice.

The stamp set I've used is an old Hero Arts once called Winter Wonderland.  I started off by stamping the trees in Versamark and using some Silver Embossing powder on them.  I actually stamped them on to the same Designer Series Paper as the background - which is an old SU one - I loved the soft blues and the little stars.  I then stamped the reindeer in Early Espresso by SU. I used some stitched framelits to cut out both the stamped image and the circle behind in some silver paper.  The background paper has also been silver embossed using some stars from SU I think.  The sentiment is from the same set and I've just added some ribbons in blue and silver and white.

I look forward to seeing all your lovely Reindeer cards.