Saturday, December 21, 2013

Christmas at CSI...

My last challenge at CSI: Color, Stories, Inspiration is also the last case file for the year as everyone is busy preparing for their own Christmas and precious time with family.

I have loved playing along as Special Deputy for this month and hope you have also enjoyed the challenges. The overall inspiration from the combined colour scheme and associated visual stimulus, the evidence and testimony at CSI is just amazing!  I find journaling quite difficult on my layouts, generally because I struggle to find a suitable place for it, so being required to do so is quite a challenge for me.  My favourite element though would have to be the colour inspiration.  I just LOVE colour and enjoy experimenting with different combinations that I would not attempt otherwise.

Debbi does an amazing job putting these challenges together and I found the visual stimulus and testimonial prompts to be profoundly inspiring.  Thanks Debbi.

So, onto my take on the final Case File for 2013, #103...


And here are the case file details:

And some close-ups:

Solving the case went something like this:

As required.  I'm not really a fan of what I consider to be 'Christmas green', so kept this touch to a minimum. I quite liked the green and red surrounded by lots of crisp white though... and I think the 'chestnuts roasting' colour really offset the Christmas colours enough to make it not so cliched.  I also really loved the distressed red shutters, so tried to emulate that effect by touching up the red with some gesso when it dried.

Circles and stars!  Love combinations of these shapes, so sort of made them the 'star of the show' if you like. Circle chipboard rings, punched paper circles, gears, epoxy Prima 'sugardots', buttons, doily, letter 'L' and flowers... accompanied by several Studio Calico fabric star stickers.
Distressing - all of my circles, including the photo have been sanded around the edges.  
Paint - not one mm of this page escaped the ordeal without some type of paint smothering!  lol  
Something Transparent - I printed my journaling on to transparency.
Metal Accent - Prima 'precious' zipper, 'L' letter and gears.
Twiggy Accent - Tiny snippet from a Prima vine, including 2 leaves and a little twiggy swirly bit.  :)
Brackets - Around my journaling.
Rub-Ons - Rub-on butterflies at the top of my photo cluster.

I was really inspired by the { hue.ol.ogy } tag at the top of the inspo pic for my testimony, so decided to put it in similar brackets.  I drew inspo for the content from the prompt link and decided to make it about a favourite Christmas carol, or words from it.  I had this really special photo of my youngest little guy all snuggled up in bed, so thought it just went together perfectly.

Thanks for popping in for a visit.  I'll have to take a break from challenges for a little bit I think, to concentrate on getting a couple of Christmas crafting projects (aka presents) finished!  lol

All the very best for a fantastic Christmas to all my scrapping friends... and anyone else who pops in to say 'hi' from time to time!   I hope you all have a fabulous break with your special people and stay safe and happy.

Oh, I might be back before Christmas to share some tags and cards... will see how I go! :)

Cheers for now,


Sunday, December 15, 2013

On the case again...

Amidst all of the Christmas shopping, school end-of-year events and parties, uni preparation for dd#1 and holiday planning, I have managed another guest detective challenge over at CSI: Colour, Stories, Inspiration... just in the nick of time!  lol

Initially, not a colour combination I would normally gravitate towards - although I do love orange - I was pleasantly surprised by the way the colours came together on the page.  This case file is also accompanied by a fabulous sketch by the equally fabulous Em Stafrace.


Here are the case details and sketch:

And some closeups:

I loved Em's sketch and as I love circles, I totally went with it - and then some... albeit a rather compressed and skewed version!  :)

My case work...

Colours:  All there!

Evidence: Circles - photos, chipboard rings on either side of the photos (inspired by the golden rings), button, gears and cogs, flowers, doiley, punched paper circles ... yep, circles are covered.  Leaves and branches in the Prima vine that I completely butchered to fit around my photos.  Feathers/birds in the rubon that I applied to transparency and cut around so I could mount it up on a branch. Gold accents are achieved with the gold acrylic paint that I swiped over the leaves, metal number and cog.  Finally, dots in the form of paint splashes and specs.

Testimony: I actually drew on the evidence and photo prompt for my testimony, using the 'flying the nest' analogy for my daughter leaving home for the first time and moving away for university.  My journaling is surrounded by leaves though I guess.  :)

As always, the inspo over at CSI is amazing, so please do yourself a favour and check it out.

Happy Christmas shopping everyone!  I'm really close to calling it done, now for the wrapping and making everything pretty...  :)


Saturday, December 7, 2013

December at CSI

Hello lovely scrappers!

I'm still here and have been diligently creating... although not much that I'm able to show just yet unfortunately!  I'll be able to announce some big news soon ... well, big for me anyway!  :)

It's December over at CSI:Colour, Stories and Inspiration too and I've been lucky to have been invited to act as a Special Deputy for the December challenges... thanks to this entry for a special case file challenge back in October.

Brilliant challenges and fantastic Case Files, CSI is a really fun site, and this month is no exception.

This is my first monthly challenge layout:

|one day|

I just ADORE this Case File, the prompt pic and colour scheme in particular:

... and here are some close-ups:

Like any good detective would know, solving a case is all about the background work, so here's a quick little step-by-step on how I put mine together:

 Firstly, I adhered some Tim Holtz 'Melange' Tissue Wrap across the top of a piece of white cardstock with modge podge.  Let dry before coating with gesso.

Tear the top section off a second piece of white cardstock that has been liberally coated with gesso.  Layer on top of the first piece of cardstock.  Randomly stamp partial images with a script stamp in black ink.

Take a chunk of seasponge and dab texture paste onto the top page in your desired pattern and allow to dry.  Apply colour mists or watercolours over the texture paste and when dry, swipe with gesso to highlight the textured pattern.

OK, so here is my casework...

The Scene:
LOVED.  IT.  This colour scheme is just so striking that I immediately fell in love with it.  I would not have used the olive green if not prompted to do so and I’m so glad it was included in this palette.  What a gorgeous non-traditional Christmas scene.

The Evidence:
Numbers - I used numbers with the Prima Mecahnicals Vintage Trinkets.  Something about numbers just resonates with me and I love using them on layouts.
Silver Accents – Silver galore on this page!  The graphite Glimmermist has the silver mica fleck and I have used that extensively in a watercolour application to shade the upper section and border.  I also dabbed the ‘christmas baubles’  (gems) with silver acrylic paint, in addition to swiping it across several other accents and around the border just as a highlight.  There’s also silver in the metal chains, the metal number 2 and sprays of gems on each side of the photo.
Something Dangling – My baubles of course.  J
Something Shiny – All my metals accents and swipes of silver paint.
Circles – Everpresent on my layouts, I’ve included circles in the Vintage Trinket number 1 and gears.
Christmas Holiday Accents – baubles!
Twigs – I really loved the twigs in the inspo pic, so used a snow scene in the picture with lots of bare twigs in it.  I also enjoyed playing with the patterns in the texture paste and highlighting them with gesso to bring them forward.  I think the effect is a bit twig-like too.
Something TransparentVintage Trinkets ‘Us’ Lightbulb
Ovals – I think my baubles (which are really just glass pebbles) are somewhere between circles and ovals, so I must have both bases covered there! 

I journaled about the holidays in a sense as it documents a kind of holiday dream I have, to experience a white Christmas again... but this time with my hubby and kids.  It’s been a long time since I lived in the UK with my family for 3 years as a child.  I also used cursive text in the title and in the script background stamp and used the word ‘family’ in my journaling.  

Do pop over and have a look at what the full team of designers and guest designers have prepared for you this week.  It's AMAZING!

Thanks for dropping by, and stay tuned for more December challenges.  :)



Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I Finally Managed a Challenge

Hello again... I know it has been a little while (again), but my creative urges are back with a vengeance!  I've got some exciting news that I'll have to hold onto for a little bit, but can't wait to share! ;)

Busy as always with kids right now, what with Maddi almost finished with Year 12 and commencing a new and exciting chapter next year... leaving home for uni!  Very mixed feelings about that as you could imagine.  Lachy will start Prep next year and Claire and Coop are plodding along somewhere in the middle.  All are really busy with sport, various jobs and doing an awesome job on their grades... couldn't wish for more really.  I hope to return to work next year, so organisation will be key for us, even more so than usual.  I'm looking forward to having more interests outside the home.  It's definitely the right time for me.

My interests inside the home is what I'm here to show you today though!  :)

I've actually participated in a challenge.  As luck would have it, the colours I was putting together for the following layout fitted in perfectly with the special challenge over at CSI this month!  This special Case File No. S535-2 is the second Case File created in collaboration with Scrap365, UK's biggest and best scrapbooking magazine.

Head on over to check out the details...

Case File closes October 31, 2013

The colour palette is really quite an interesting Scheme and not the sort of colours I would normally play with.  It's all about finding the 'balance' of colours in the palette that appeals to you.  I love orange, so I made that dominate.

As far as the Evidence goes, well I don't think I'm able to create a page that doesn't involve circles, tearing, stencils or buttons, so that base is covered.

Ok, so I'm a little off topic as far as the Testimony goes, but I figure the newspaper stamping in the background covers the 'reading' theme to some extent?

Our trip to Tasmania last Christmas has left me with a gazillion beautiful nature shots... in fact I don't think I'll ever scrap them all in my lifetime, but I am having fun trying.  :)

|mountain getaway|

I used a real mix of old and new on this page, but obviously Finnabair's Sunrise-Sunset Collection for Prima features quite clearly, as does her gorgeous newsprint stamp.  Some old Tim Holtz Ideology stickers, Prima and Pink Paislee rub ons, 7Gypsies metal gears, Prima flowers, torn strips of washi tape and corrugated card, various buttons and brads and some randomly meandering thread helped to paint the picture too.  Oh, and no layout is complete without the everpresent sprays and paints!  :)

The next project on my desk now is a mini album of my trip down to Melbourne with DD#1 to see P!nk... and plenty of the sights and culture of Melbourne.

Cheers and thanks for stopping by.


Friday, July 5, 2013

I Scrapped!

Yep... I scrapped!  It's been a while I know, and I had to do a little dusting before I even opened any of my scrap supplies.... but I did it!!  :)

Too many things were battling for attention and the time I was dedicating to scrapbooking was sadly compromised, so much so that I felt it was affecting the standard of my work... and therefore my enjoyment of it.  I consequently stepped down from many of my creative commitments and endeavours, but that familiar itch was always there.

Anyway, I finally had to do something about persistent itch and what better way to do that than to showcase a photo from our Christmas trip to Tasmania?  With a gazillion shots of the stunning Cradle Mountain, I am definitely spoilt for choice for the next 12 months when it comes to the availability of material to scrap!!

So here it is... a 'just because' page to blow away the cobwebs.  I might start browsing for cool challenges next.  Any suggestions?

Oh, and my apologies for the shocking photos.  Hubby has taken both of my good cameras with him on his 'boy trip' to the Kimberley, so my iphone camera had to do!

|2 beautiful 4 words|

Up close and personal...

Lots of Prima papers, buttons and flowers, gesso, glimmermist (painted on, not sprayed) and stamping.

I had almost forgotten just how much fun the 'gettin' messy' part was!!  lol

It was great to be back in amongst it... I'm already planning my next one!

Cheers for now,


Friday, February 1, 2013

The Final Leg

Day Forty | 24 Jan 2013:

On the road from Yamba to the Sunshine Coast, we are greeted by the rain, which continues all the way to our destination, Caloundra.  The Sunshine Coast is anything but sunny.  

Over the next two days, we sit and listen to reports about the aftermath of Tropical Cyclone ‘Oswald’, as it dumps it’s payload from the top end of the Queensland coast, right down to the bottom (and even into NSW), causing major flooding.  It appears we have rounded off our tour of natural disasters fairly competently, first fires, then earthquakes…. now flooding!

A Chinese dinner on our last night in Caloundra sees Lachy making his first attempt with chopsticks... so cute!

Day Forty Two | 26 Jan 2013:

Happy Birthday Australia… and happy birthday dad!  We spend Australia Day on the road, bound for Roma.  We have to detour way out west in order to avoid flooding and road closures, but it’s well worth it to ensure we make it home safely and in time for the kids to make day one of school!  

Fortunately an incident free day of travelling, albeit a wet one.  Small pleasures are sometimes the best ones, but I just loooove travelling in the rain, so I am more than happy to be on the road today.

We are pleasantly surprised when we decide to dine in the motel restaurant for dinner.  Wow!  An award winning little al a carte spot with the most awesome lighting.  I take a bit of an interest in these amazing light shades.  Cool huh?  Oh, and the food was incredible... roast chicken and vegetables has never looked so good!  So glad we dined in-house!!

One more sleep and the adventure is over!  :(

Day Forty Three | 27 Jan 2013:

It rains heavily all night and we are concerned about the state of the roads and crossings.  Our luck seems to have run out when we reach Rolleston however, when we discover the road to Springsure is closed due to flooding.

 After waiting for an hour and a half with no change, we decide to try an alternate route via dirt roads.  A soggy, but successful option in the end.

Home Sweet Home! :)

Sooo, after:

… forty three days away from home, no less than 7,000 kilometres travelled, a gazillion litres of fuel consumed, nine different beds slept in, two dead camper batteries, one exploded car engine, countless spectacularly beautiful scenes, an immeasurable number of memories and some of the best times that we have had as a family, ever!  Oh, and six very happy campers…


... we pull back into our driveway with that bittersweet feeling that the holiday is over, yet we have returned to everything that is homely, comfortable and familiar.  And Gus is of course super excited to see us!

With no time for reflection or contemplation, it doesn't take long before the organisational board (that I would be completely lost without) is covered with timetables, schedules and planners... evidence that six busy little bodies are cranking up their activities and getting into the swing of the new school/work year!

{sigh} ... I need another holiday!!  ;)

Thanks so much for coming along for the ride. I hope you have enjoyed (or tolerated) the temporary deviation of my blogging content and, whilst I seriously underestimated how busy our trip was going to be ... and consequently how little time was going to be left over for all things creative... I am committed to completing and sharing my travel journal!!  Watch this space...  :)



Sunday, January 27, 2013

Farewell Tassy...

Day Thirty Four |  18 Jan 2013:

A relax day again today as our Tassy Tour starts to wind down.  I organise myself and the kids to go it alone for the next few days as Troy organises the camper for it’s journey back over on the ferry.  My cousins and their combined partners and kids all arrive in the afternoon to spend the last two nights with me and the kids before we fly back to Melbourne to meet up with Troy… then the driving starts in earnest again with our 2,500km return roadtrip!

 ... peace...

... last chance beach play...

Day Thirty Seven | 21 Jan 2013:

Regrettably our last day in Tassy.  Four full weeks of sightseeing and spending time with family has just not been enough.  We are already talking about a return visit to see the things we just didn’t have time to see… and re-visit the places that we know we ‘have’ to see again!  Tasman Peninsular, Bay of Fires, Cradle Mountain… the list goes on.

Fond farewells at the airport as mum and cousin Shaz see us off… with the combined cousin offspring in attendance too!  We are all amazed at how well they have all hit it off, so much so that we all make arrangements to meet up soon, somewhere in the middle of Tassy and Central Queensland!


Day Thirty Eight | 22 Jan 2013:

Goodbye Melbourne, hello long road home!

The kids are awesome and travel sooo well today, so we make a lot of ground.  We make it all the way to Swansea, just to the South of Newcastle…. almost 1,000km in a day!

Day Thirty Nine | 23 Jan 2013:

Swansea to Yamba… gorgeous little holiday spot on the NSW coast that Troy spent many a vacation in as a boy.  It would be nice to spend a little more time here, but the first day back to school is fast approaching and we still want to spend a couple of recovery days with Troy’s folks on the Sunshine Coast.

Whatever it takes to pass the time right?

... and something you don't see everyday...

... and finally, we get some Yamba sand between our toes!  :)

Over the half-way mark now, but the excitement is definitely not over yet!  :)

More to come.