Friday, 20 April 2007

I know it looks like a sewer.......................

.............but it's actually a well in a pub!

This was one of the photos from our girly night out in Lancaster last Friday - four of us hit the town and had a fab evening of food, beer and flavoured vodka (pear drops getting a thumbs up from all 4 of us. The well is in one of the rooms in the pub we started the evening in. It has a toughened glass sheet over it so you can do a 'walk of faith' type thing (hence the inclusion of feet on the photo). It really made me feel queasy, and that was at the start of the evening!

As the weather was fab on Saturday we were invited to our second barbeque of the year. Is that a record in April? We were still sat outside at 11pm, albeit with the help of heat from one of those chimnea fire things. Unfortunately I couldn't get too close to it as it was chucking out a few sparks and I wasn't wearing suitable footwear - namely my fab new Crocs. After a bad day at the office on Friday I decided I needed a bit of shoe therapy. I bought a pair of 'faux' crocs last summer but decided I really needed a pair of the genuine article. Yes, I'm at least a year behind the trend but who cares - I'm comfy (and look ridiculous if you ask my OH!). The flower and bee Jibbitz were a little extra spend on e-bay :-)

The weather was still fab on Sunday so I decided to make the most of it and get out in the garden. I was going to try and do a bit of crafting in the sunshine, but no matter how still I think it is the minute i take any card or paper outside it starts flying around like it's in a force 10 gale. So I took the opportunity to sort out my garden furniture - the annual sanding and teak oil session was Sunday's afternoon entertainment.

After enjoying the sunshine over the weekend I managed to squeeze in a bit of crafting during the week.

The first one is a get well card for a relative who's in hospital after a fall which resulted in a broken hip!

The papers are by polar bear, die cut stars are zip e slim, screw head brads are from Carolyn's and the lettering is quickutz ginger.

The next two are birthday cards for a friend who's birthday it was on Thursday. The first one was 'commissioned' by my sister with the brief "I want a skier with a pink drink in her hand". The birthday girl has just returned from her first ski-ing holiday and is known for her love of pink wine! Here's the finished card:

The doll is Sizzix die cuts with the addition of hand cut skis and a quickutz wine bottle. I was limited in the colours I could do as the doll die cuts were left overs from an e-bay purchase ages ago (I don't have the doll dies). The ribbon is from Paperchase and a peel-off from stash.

This is my card for the birthday girl:

Paper is Basic Grey Urban Couture. It's green and brown although it doesn't show up too well on the photo (I'm no David Bailey as have no doubt gathered). Blooms are from Dunlenm Mill. The flower centre is a flattened bottle cap (from Wilko home brew dept - not an expensive crafty one) and it's filled with a die cut piece of the background paper. The smallest Sizzix circle on the red die is a perfect fit for the centre of a flattened cap. Circle clip and ribbon is from Carolyn's. The sentiment is printed onto the background paper as I don't own any rub-ons.

Well that's all from me!

Ruthie x

Wednesday, 11 April 2007

DCM Midweek Extra

This was the midweek extra dare from the girls over at Daring Card Makers:

It's time for our Little Extra - a midweek bonus task to keep you busy. This week we have a very simple recipe for you to followAll you need to do is make a card featuring 5 circles, 3 squares and 1 flower - that's it. Simple, eh? We're looking forward to seeing what fabulous ideas you come up with for this one

So here's my interpretation of the ingredients:

5 Circles: silver brads x 5
3 Squares: of mountboard cut using a Cuttlebug die and inked with black ink (used to mount the photos)
1 Flower: 1 photo of a pink flower taken by me, reproduced 3 times with the saturation levels altered in photoshop (3 for the price of 1 :-) )

Extra bit: Sentiment printed using dymo tape

And here's the finished card. it looks a bit squiffy on the photo but it is straight in real life - I think!!!! (Never mind it was just for fun)

Thanks for looking.


Monday, 9 April 2007

Climb Every Mountain

Well I've had a fab Easter weekend. We spent Saturday night and Sunday with some friends who are part of the Bowland Pennine Mountain Rescue Team. Some members of the team had hired the team's Smelt Mill base in the Trough of Bowland and we were invited to join them for a barbeque on Saturday night and a lazy Sunday in the sunshine.

So this was home for the weekend:

Smelt Mill from the River ; View down the River ; Daffs in the garden

On Saturday night we barbequed in the garden, well the boys did, what is it with men and fire, albeit in this case gas powered fire? The food was good, as was the wine and beer. As a result Sunday morning wasn't quite as pleasant!

So much for a lazy Sunday. At lunchtime we headed off for a walk in the sunshine to Langden Castle which is about 3 miles away from the base. About a mile into the walk the mountain rescue team received a call on their radio to attend an incident on one of the local fells. As a result our walking party was reduced by about half, but we [the non team members] carried on, regardless, enjoying the lovely spring sunshine. The team members rejoined our group after they had returned from their call-out; they received a message en-route to say they were no longer required. Finally the full group made it to Langden Castle. Trading standards should really be contacted about the 'castle' part of the name. It's actually a stone cow shed in the middle of nowhere! I really should have taken a picture as it has to be seen to be believed - maybe next time :-)

After the walk, we went back to Smelt Mill for a rest and a nice cup of tea. Then it was on to the next part of the day's activities - climbing and abseiling. Smelt Mill has an indoor climbing wall and so I couldn't resist having a go.

After a couple of climbs up the wall my friend Julian suggested I try abseiling. I have climbed the wall before but never tried abseiling it. I didn't have a problem climbing up the wall, but somehow hanging on a rope 30 ft above the floor was a different matter. After a bit of persuasion I managed to make my way out of the door at the top of the wall, and more importantly got down in one piece! After the first nervous attempt I managed a few more descents. It has to be said coming down is a lot easier than going up, particulary as I had been feeling rather delicate earlier in the day. This is the second time I've been on the climbing wall and it really is good fun. I'm not sure how I would be on real rocks though.

We had a really good weekend, so I have made this card to send as a thank you to the friends who invited us, and the rest of the team who made us so welcome:

The colours haven't come out that well on the picture but the details are as follows:

- Paper: Basic Grey Sublime (the green), Basic Grey Mortifica (brown/gold)

- Card: Paper Mill Shop (a very good replica of the Bazzill texture)

- Die cuts: Quickutz

- Brads: Making Memories

- Lettering: Quickutz 'Ginger' font. The letters were cut from chipboard (well the card from a Xyron refil and double layered) and then inked and covered with Anita's 3D gloss. I got the idea for this style of lettering from a challenge on Carolyn's forum (view it here). The challenge was set by CarolM. For more of her fab work check out her Blog

- Finishing: stitching and inking on the edges.

Making the card was a pleasant way to spend a bank holiday Monday afternoon, particulary as I did it while watching 'My Best Friends Wedding': total chick flick, but Rupert Everett YUM YUM!

If anyone has read this I hope you enjoyed it!

Ruthie x

Friday, 6 April 2007

I Dare You!

Well, i've finally got round to doing a dare from the Daring Card Makers blog. This week's dare came from Rhi - to make a card inspired by a piece of art.

This dare tied in nicely with a project I have been working on recently. For the last couple of weeks I have been trying to do Warhol style pop art prints using Photoshop. I feel like I've read a zillion tutorials on the web of how to do them and it was driving me potty. So today's dare inspired me to revisit my pop art project, and the insipration link which Rhi provided led me to yet another PS tutorial. Here's the result:

The mini in the picture is mine, although it took (quite) a bit of messing in photoshop to get rid of the background so I could pop art it. I'm still not 100% happy with the effect but it's nearly there. Once I get an image i'm completely happy with I'm going to get it transferred onto a canvas, which is why I started the project in the first place - the dare has been a happy coincidence.

I've kept the card very simple as I wanted the picture to be the main focus. I was toying with the idea of adding a sentitment. "Have a Cooper Birthday" crossed my mind during a moment of cheesiness, but I decided less is more :-) The only other embellishment, the screw head brads, are from Carolyn's.

I promise my next card will not involve a Mini (2 out of 3 cards looks a bit obsessive!).



Happy Birthday Sis!

It was my little Sis' birthday on Wednesday. For her card I decided to use a challenge set by CarolM on the Craftsbycarolyn forum. It's an envelope card. I made it a few weeks ago when Carol set the challenge on the forum, but in true Ruthie fashion I only finished it off on Tuesday night!

To celebrate we went to a local Italian restaurant on Wednesday night for some scrummy pizza and a little too much red wine! A good time was had by all.

The photos aren't brilliant but I'm sure you get the idea! (I need to work on my photography skills).

The paper and flower shaped clips are from Paperchase (i love their double sided wrapping paper - such a bargain). Ribbon, brads and spiral clips are from Carolyn's.

Ooh that's another post done!


Ruthie x