Friday 31 August 2012


Before I post with details about our new September Challenge, I wanted to let you know that we are totally delighted to welcome Brenda Brown - to the little CI 'team', alongside Sylvie and Gio, who I introduced to you all in my last post.  Brenda has often used our products in the past and has made some simply gorgeous projects with our stuff and generally, so we look forward to working with her and seeing her CI work blossom even more.

Here is a taster of what we can expect - and her first 'official' project for us:

And the close ups of each section of the triple frame:

Loving this travel themed creation!  Brenda has used rubber stamps CI-161, CI-307, and CI-308, along with images from Life's Journey 1 (A4 Sheet), and papers from Background Book 1 to decorate her triple frame.

Thanks Brenda - and I had better get back to work!

Back soon everyone,

Jean x

Sunday 26 August 2012


Hi Folks

We are soooo excited as we have some new 'team' members to introduce to you.  Due to retirements it was time to invite some amazing new crafty ladies into the CI fold.  I am going to show you a couple of the new pieces by two of the ladies tonight - and we have truly gone cosmopolitan indeed.  We have the lovely Giovanna from Italy, and you can find her blog at  Gio has made a delicious, fun packed, working clock for us as her first 'official' project, although she often works with CI products, and is also a team member on the The Craft Barn Blog.

And some close-ups:

The lovely ladies here can be found on our Elements plate CI-323, and the butterflies and clock faces are from CI-347 & CI-353.

Our other lady this evening is Sylvie (Nefertiti) from France, and you can find her blog at  Sylvie again often works with CI products, and has been very busy working on an inspirational Challenge project for us for September, and tonight I am going to just give you a little sneaky peak of what is in store for you: -

And -

Thank you to Gio and Sylvie - looking forward to seeing more work from you both!  And do check back with us folks for more details about the September Challenge at the beginning of next month.

The other very exciting news of the moment is our introduction of some wonderful craft cutting dies.  We have had a few designs on our site recently, and you liked them!  We then made a decision to get our dies made in America, so that we could offer you the best of the best quality thin metal dies, with the sort of slippery teflon style coating that makes using small detailed dies easy and truly delightful.  We picked four classic designs to begin with and here they are:

You will find all these lovely dies on our website pages HERE.  We would love to know what you think about them?!

I have been busily enjoying playing with them, and have a few little projects I can show you tonight!

As well as the 'In a Gilded Cage' die I used the two butterfly masks we recently released in the background, plus ferns and butterflies from two of our Elements Plates to embellish further.  I also added some vintage lace from my stash.

Then I have another card to show you again using the bird cage die, plus the Victoria Corner die.  Here I cut the bird from the die image, and used it on the cage instead.  It is fun to play around with the dies - chop bits off, and use in different ways.

On this card I also used the birdcage mask in the background, which gave a rather nice shadowy effect.

Finally this evening I made a little framed affair.  I used a Tando Square Frame, one of our new Tree Images from the Matt A4 Sheet, the birdcage die and the Victoria and Albert swirl.

Thanks to all who take the time to leave a kind comment - always much read and appreciated.  Hope you enjoyed our new team members work and the new dies.

Bye for now,

Jean x 


Tuesday 21 August 2012


Will it ever stop raining in the dismal North of England?  I have to take my brolly with me wherever I go, as it seems to rain every day at some point!!!  What happened to the drought earlier in the year - we've had enough rain to keep us wet for the next five years at least.  Hope it holds off tomorrow as we are all off to Whitby, as it is Malcolm's birthday, and he does so love Whitby, and his favourite meal is - yes you've guessed it - fish and chips.  Better take the brolly again - just in case!

In this post I want to do a little bit of catching up on some of the crafty projects still on my computer desktop that have been sent over to me by various members of the 'team' at different times.  All thoroughly deserve their moment in the spotlight.  So here we are:-

I will start with a few of lovely Lynne's projects - you can find more of Lynne's lovely creations on her blog -

Such cool details!

Lynne has used CI-331 as her main image, plus a bird and birdcage from CI-329 in her details.

Here we have a beautiful use of the perfume bottle stamp CI-341, plus an image from one of our little books.  Lynne also used one of our very useful little white frames around the image which you will find if you click Here.

This is such a pretty hanging - loving that lace, and Lynne has used CI-337 in this creation, with a little piece of Stampbord in the middle of the design:

Might have to find my bags of Stampbord again me thinks!

And to finish Lynne's lovely display just for tonight I have a rather gorgeous affair using CI-344 - a rather nice little Bingo bird!

Now I have to show you three fabby dabby domino pendants made by Carol aka Ginger -

Carol has used images from our A4 Domino sheet which you can purchase Here.  Carol has a FOLKSY SHOP where you will find a great selection of her goodies for sale - go take a little peek, you know you want to!

Sue Abbott has made these little beauties - ATC's and suchlike, using our products:

Love, love, loving those sewing themed ATC's - using our new lace stamp CI-350, and our classic sewing stamp CI-328.

And finally for tonight I decorated some cream tags simply using the so swirly swirl from CI-351. I recently treated myself to some Distress Markers, which are fun to use to colour direct onto your rubber to get that fine detail in several colours that complement each other.  So these are straightforward and easy to do, but nice for attaching to little presents etc.  Thought they might be nice for Christmas present wrapping too.

Oh and I added some dots in the background and a very rough drawn line around each tag.

Night all,

Jean x

Tuesday 14 August 2012


Yes indeed - we have new products on board, and I have been playing nicely with them in the last few days.  As you know before that I was suffering from some sort of nasty little bug, but I think I am over the worst, although still off my food (which is probably a blessing in disguise - just have to keep the weight off now!).  Many thanks for the good wishes abounding in the last lot of comments, I'm sure they helped me on my way to recovery - what nice people you are!

Anyway back to new stuff ........
We have eight new mask designs - all great fun to use in your cardmaking, altered art, journaling, and other forms of crafting. They are inexpensive and a joy to use with sprays, and ink pads and foam, and paints and whatever else you can think of.  You will find them on the CI Website HERE, and I'll pop images of just three of them below, so you can get the idea.

Here are some snippets of what I have been doing with them:

And I have also been decorating some tags:

I used the Beautiful Butterflies Panel Mask in the background of this tag, plus a part of CI-302 transferred to calico using TAP (I will have an article in Craft Stamper soon using TAP), plus bits of old lace and a dangly earring.

Close up:

Then another tag using the lovely Victoria and Albert Swirl Mask, plus CI-347, again transferred to cotton using TAP:

And another close-up:

Both tags started out as printed Shabby Tags before being transformed.

Then I made a card again using the above Swirl mask and our hearts Elements Plate CI-342 - lovely jubbly!

So go on be experimental and lets see what you can come up with!!

Also mustn't forget our four new Matt A4 Image Sheets which you can see if you click HERE.  Two of them I'll pop below -

And I have very quickly made a card with one of the tree images (love these - beautifully photographed by Malcolm!)

I used three masks in the background here - the Butterfly Panel, the Flowers Panel, and one of the Victoria Corners, plus strips of paper and lace and pins.  I also used a sentiment from CI-256.

Do let us know how you get on with your masks.

Before I sign out for tonight I must just show you some very pretty images from a couple of projects you will find instructions for on You Tube.  The projects have been made by JULIE at paperpathway
and the first one below is the cover of a book - and you can follow the 'how to' details at

And the second project is an adorable mini book in a box -

Full of CI images!  You will find the full project at

So pull up a comfy chair and settle down to enjoy the show!

Bye for now,

Jean x

Friday 3 August 2012


I have been suffering this week from some sort of horrible stomach thing - yuk! - so have been slow to put this little tutorial together.  I am still not fully back to normal but I'm going to give putting some instructions on here a go tonight, as promised recently.  Hopefully it will all make sense but if you have any questions please ask!  This is the clock in question and it is a joy and quite simple to decorate: -

And here is how I went about decorating it:

I used a Tando Clock with mechanism, which you will find on our website HERE, plus background papers from our SHADES OF SUMMER 6" x 6" book.  I used CI rubber stamps - CI-206, CI-231, CI-248, CI-329, CI-350 and the clock face stamp CI-352.  I added paint and stencilled images to the top chipboard section plus pearls, micro beads, and a little bit of coloured muslin to the inner sections to embellish.  I used Copic pens to colour the stamped images, and added chain as shown. I also made myself a template for the extra background surround layer and little 'cuckoo' door.  If you would like a copy of this template when you buy a clock blank please let us know and we will enclose one for you.  Some further brief instructions will follow (with pics):

1.  Cut out pieces of background paper to fit behind each of the four top sections.  Adhere these four pieces of paper to the base chipboard clock piece.  Use the 'roof' section of chipboard as a template to draw around and then cut out some plain coloured paper to fit.  Adhere this paper to the roof section.  I then stamped this with the lace stamp CI-350 in black.

2.  Paint the top layer of chipboard with your chosen colour of paint (I used a Farrow and Ball matchpot for colouring, but any acrylic paint or similar will do).  Stencil and/or stamp pattern onto the painted surface.  Then paint all the edges of the chip, and glue (strong glue) and assemble all the chipboard parts.  It helps if you use bulldog clips to hold the pieces together while the glue sets.

3.  Gather together your chosen stamped images to decorate your clock (I stamped on background papers), and colour with Copics or similar.  I also layered up the main stamped images onto coloured card and cut around again, just to make them stand out.

4.  Use the micro beads, coloured muslin, pearls and stamping to decorate your clock front, to suit yourself.  I added chain to 'suspend' one of the birdcages.  Stamp, cut out, and add the clock face to the centre.

5.  If using my template - cut out your plain coloured card backing piece and the little door.  Add some 'hinges' with a black pen to the door, and a pearl for the 'handle', and glue the door to the clock.  Cut out an extra circle of coloured plain card to represent the 'pendulum' and glue this to the base of the clock on top of the template piece of coloured card, as shown in the main photograph.  I also stamped the backing coloured card around the edges with the lace stamp CI-350.

I also glued a little stamped nest behind the door and added another coloured background paper strip to the edges of the roof.  Decorate further with stamped flowers.

6.  Decorate the chipboard 'weights'.  Cut two lengths of chain, make slits and insert through the front of the backing card and glue to the reverse of the bottom edge of the clock with strong glue, and then glue the ends of the chain to the back of the 'weights', so that they dangle down.

7.  Finally pierce a large enough hole through the centre of the clock face, through to the back, in order to insert and assemble the clock mechanism.  Pop on the hands starting with the hour hand, then the minute hand, then the second hand.  Press each one down firmly as you go.

8.  Pop in a battery, place on the wall and listen to the soothing tick!

Would love to hear if you have enjoyed this post!

Bye for now,

Jean x