Friday, 24 December 2010

Happy Christmas!!!

Hello!

Well, it's Christmas Eve, and I wanted to make sure I posted a Christmas wish to you all. The last couple of weeks have been a bit strange: my father-in-law had a car accident a couple of weekends ago, and then last week my lovely husband, Alan, came off his bike whilst cycling in to work. Father-in-law is fine (and already driving his new car), but Alan has broken one hand and badly sprained the other, so hopefully you'll understand why I've not posted anything for a while.

Finally, we're all ready for Christmas. I'm starting to relax at last, and am looking forward to tomorrow. I hope you all have a fantastic time, and that this Christmas will bring you lots of lovely memories (oooh, scrapbooking opportunities!!) and lots of all the things you love, with the people you love best. Thanks for dropping by, and lots of love and Christmassy hugs to all of you!

Becki
xx

Thursday, 16 December 2010

November Thank You Card

Hello!

It's a bit late for me to be posting a picture of these, but I thought you might like to see the card I sent out this month as a thank you to my customers and hostesses.


The stamp set I used is called "Silhouette Sentiments" and is only available if you host a Stampin Up! Workshop Party. If your party nets sales worth at least £150.00 before shipping, then you can choose from a whole range of hostess-exclusive sets. This one is so versatile, that I can't imagine anyone NOT wanting to get their hands on it!

The colour scheme is an unusual one, which I found in the Stampin' Up! Colour Coach: Rose Red, Elegant Eggpant and Baja Breeze. I would never have thought of putting these colours together, but somehow they work amazingly. The Colour Coach really is the most amazing tool to have on hand - we all get into a rut with the colour-combinations we feel safe with, and it's so good to have this pocket-sized swatch book to breathe new life into our crafting. If you see me, at a class or a workshop, ask me to show it to you - you'll honestly wonder what you did without it.

Did you spot the pretty ribbon? It's our Early Espresso 1/8" Taffeta ribbon, and it goes with absolutely EVERYTHING! Seriously, it is just the most amazing thing to add to your projects. Without it, this card still looked good, but the ribbon on it just lifted it that extra little bit.

If you want to earn this gorgeous stamp set, get in touch with me to book a date for your workshop party. I can't wait to share Stampin' Up! with you and your friends.You'll find my contact details in the sidebar.

I hope you like the card. Thanks for stopping by to look.

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Some Convention Photos - At Last!

Hello!

I've been meaning to post some photos from the Stampin' Up! Convention for ages now - I'm still sorting most of them out. Here, in the meantime, are a couple of pictures of my lovely upline, Bekka, accepting one of the many awards she received at the gala dinner. I'm so proud of her, she did amazingly, and is one of only nine Demonstrators who earned the Incentive Trip to Prague next year.



The photos show her receiving her award from Shelli Gardner, the CEO of Stampin' Up! I was really impressed by this lady. She spent the whole of Convention having her photo taken with eager demonstrators and she was so gracious and genuine with each one. I spent some time talking to her as well, and she really made me feel as if she was truly interested in me as a person - a real skill to make everyone feel like a valued and interesting individual, when all she must have wanted to do was to run and hide and get two minutes to herself!

I'll show you more Convention photos when I've sorted them out. Thanks for dropping by; see you soon.

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Sunday, 12 December 2010

A Really Pretty Christmas Card - Not Mine, This Time!

Hello!

I wanted to show you this card I was given last week.


Isn't it lovely! This card was made by Helen, one of the lovely ladies I have got to know through this wonderful thing that is Stampin' Up! When Helen and I first met, at the Open House event I held in June, she had never done any stamping and was quite nervous of it (I'm sure she won't mind me saying this). Well, she's doing amazingly and in the last week she had a stall at a local craft fair to sell her cards! I'm so proud of her, and am so pleased to have had the opportunity to get to know here and to share with her my passion for the fabulous projects Stampin' Up! sells, and the gorgeous things you can make with them. Thanks for the card Helen - we love it!

I'd love to see what you make with the things you buy from Stampin' Up! If you have projects you'd like to share with me, just click on the email link in the sidebar and send me a picture.

Thanks for popping by. See you soon.

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Friday, 10 December 2010

A Variation On A Theme - Wedding Invitation and Favours

Hello!

One of the things I love about stamping is how you can make what is essentially the same project look totally different, just by swapping the stamp set and colours that you use. I'll show you what I mean. A couple of weeks ago I did a workshop party for a lovely lady who is getting married next year, and who wanted to see some ideas that she could use for her big day. She loved the All In The Family stamp set and wanted to use this if possible. I love this set too, but it isn't one I would naturally have reached for to do wedding stationary, but I love a challenge and it was a fabulous opportunity to have a play and come up with something a little different. It sruck me that I could adapt the card shown above, along with the projects we made in my November Christmas Decorations class, to make something that would be perfect for my hostess' wedding. This is what I did:



The cone and pouch are made in the same way as the Christmas versions I made in my November class, but using our beautiful Elegant Soiree Designer Series Paper, teamed with Very Vanilla grosgrain ribbon in two widths. The colour scheme of Baja Breeze and Soft Suede was a direct lift from the DSP, and these are the colours I used for the little couple's clothing. I LOVE the way that everything Stampin' Up! does co-ordinates so well!! The cute little people were coloured in using our inkpads and blender pens (if you use a light touch you get a really soft colour - ideal for the Pink Pirouette I used for their faces and the lady's little feet) and of course you really couldn't get the positioning as accurate without the Stamp-A-Ma-Jig - one of my favourite tools ever. On the card, you see the little people in all their glory, and I've used the versatile So Swirly wheel to pattern the bottom of the card base.

The card was based on this one, which we made at our November training. A beautiful card, and a really fresh look for Christmas. But isn't it amazing how different it looked when I used a different stamp set and changed the colours?!





Here are some close-ups of the wedding set:






I was thrilled that my lovely hostess really loved the samples I'd made for her, and she bought the All In The Family stamp set immediately. I was so pleased to have been able to show her this stamp set in action, so she could see how to use it before she spent her money. I always tell my hostesses and customers that when they buy from Stampin' Up!, they get me thrown in with the price, so they need never be stuck with products they don't know how to use, or can't think of any ideas for. It is one of the real privileges of my job, to be able to offer this personal service.

If there are any Stampin' Up! products you'd like to see in use, then give me a call or drop me an email and we'll schedule a workshop party for you. I'd love to join you on your creative journey!

Thanks for looking.

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Five Cards for a Fiver - Mark Two

Hello again!

I ran another "Five For a Fiver" class at the weekend. This time, I used the gorgeous new set, "Welcome Christmas", which I really love, with its very traditional images. This, too, is one of the sets available as part of a "Bundle Up For Christmas", so if you order the bundle you get to choose a free reel of exclusive ribbon. And this is one bundle that you will NOT want to miss out on! The Designer Series Paper that is the other part of the bundle is not available in the UK Idea Book and Catalogue, and it is To Die For - some of the papers are FLOCKED!!! It is so gorgeous no description can do it justice, and I just keep looking at it and stroking it so far. Maybe eventually I'll actually use it, but it is just SOOOOOO pretty!

Anyway, here are the cards we made. They use Rich Razzleberry and Baja Breeze, along with Whisper White. I hope you like them.


 And a close-up of each of the cards:







I will be holding more Five for a Fiver classes in the new year. Keep watching this page for more details. They're a really great way to kick start your creativity.

Thanks for dropping by; I hope you like the cards.

Hugs,

Becki
xx 

Monday, 6 December 2010

Christmas Decorations Galore

Hello!

I thought you might like to see the decorations we made at my classes in November. I loved doing these! We used the Jolly Holiday DSP (gorgeous!!) along with stamps from "Season Of Joy" and "Contempo Christmas", and I collected together a bunch of my favourites from the ideas I've seen online and in swaps, so I owe a huge thank you to the many extremely talented ladies who inspired this class.



Decorations nowadays can be so expensive, but I wanted to show people that they really needn't spend a fortune on sparklies from the high street, when it's so much more fun to make your own. These decorations are meant as a starting point - there are so many ways in which you can adapt these.


I first made the Christmas Star a couple of Christmases ago, having found a brief tutorial online, but I can't remember for the life of me who posted it. Monica does, though, have an excellent video tutorial on her blog.
Imagine making a garland from the individual sections of the Christmas Star, or even stringing several of the stars together to make a feature above your fireplace! And if you visit Bekka's blog, you will see that you can make the loveliest Advent Calendar if you make twenty-five of the Christmas Cones. Fill them with chocolate or other goodies, or even just with tinsel and hang them where they will sparkle in the lights.


These gorgeous little boxes can be filled with whatever you want, and make an ideal way to give small gifts - jewellery would look lovely presented in one of these, for example. They can either hang on the Christmas tree, or simply nestle in a basket on your coffee table. I adapted this box from one that Monica gave to her team members at Convention, and she put a lovely little watch in for each of us - it was such a lovely surprise!


I love these little treat bags! I learned how to make these at a training day organised by Bekka and Monica a few months back, and I think they look fantastic made up in this Christmassy paper. These are really small, but you can make bigger ones just by increasing the size of the paper that you use. I used six inch squares to get this size (they're about two-and-a-half inches tall). Bekka has instructions for these pouches, so if you want to know how to make them, pop by her blog and drop her a line. (Please note: the instructions for this project are NOT included in my Class Instructions.)


This gorgeous box is adapted from one made by Stevie (SasB on the In Love With Stamping Forum) as a recent training-day swap. Hers was a lot smaller than mine, as I wanted the punched-out ornaments to fit onto it, and it makes such a pretty tree decoration. The box opens at the top, so you can put whatever you want inside, or if you wanted to, you could glue it shut so it is just a pretty ornament.

Two really simple projects to finish with. The first is this pretty little bauble, made from several punched-out ornament images. So quick and easy, yet so effective!



Finally, I dressed up a circular mint chocolate to make a sweet (in both senses of the word) Christmas tree decoration. This is a shameless CASE of one of the swaps I received at a recent training day, and I love it - but  I can't remember who made it, so I can't give them credit! If it was you, please email me and I'll pop your name and a link to your blog on here.


I have written instructions for all these projects (save the treat pouch), if you fancy having a go at them yourself. All my instructions take you through the projects step-by-step, illustrated with detailed colour photographs at every stage, and I'll email them to you within twenty-four hours of receiving payment (or as soon as I get back, if I'm away when your request comes through). just click on the link in the sidebar.

I hope you like these projects, and thanks for looking. Hugs,

Becki
xx

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Season Of Joy - Five for a Fiver!

Hello again! My goodness, it's been a busy November!! I can't believe I've been out of the Blogosphere for so long!

I wrote this post ages ago, but then took forever to take the photos, so it's a little late, but hopefully you'll like the cards anyway. I ran my first "Five for a Fiver" class a few weeks ago, where people could come along and make five cards for the princely sum of £5! I decided to use the "Season of Joy" stamp set, along with the "So Swirly" jumbo Stampin' Around wheel, as these form one of the bundles in the current Stampin' Up! "Bundle Up For Christmas" promotion - where you can choose from a range of yummy and exclusive ribbons absolutely free with any of selected product bundles.


I love these stamps - I've used them so much! These cards are really simple but I think you can see how easily you can make really effective Christmas cards using a limited range of products and colours. I used Real Red, Old Olive and Very Vanilla throughout and teamed the stamps with some of our fantastic punches. Isn't the new Scallop Trim Border luscious??!

Here is a closer look at each of the five cards:






If you'd like to recreate these cards, then why not get in touch to order your Christmas Bundle now? My details are in the sidebar, and (so long as you live in mainland UK) I can have everything you order delivered to your door - you'll have loads of time to get all your Christmas cards finished.

Back soon. Thanks for popping by!

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Friday, 12 November 2010

Back from Convention - Roommate Gift

Oh wow! The Stampin' Up! Convention is something you really should go to - it was just a fantastic weekend!!! I'm still sorting through all the photos I took, and I'll show you some as soon as I've ploughed through them, but in the meantime I thought you might like to see the gift I made for my lovely roommate, Tara.


I love how this turned out. The frame was from Ikea, and I sealed it with white acrylic paint before wiping my Baja Breeze inkpad across it and then buffing with a baby wipe, which gave a lovely distressed effect. I was worried about the ink running if it got wet, so I varnished it using Crystal Effects. I added a variety of punched-out flowers made using the Boho Blossoms punch (I've only just got this one and it's going to be a firm favourite!) along with the Scalloped Circle punch, over-stamping some of them with the "En Francais" background stamp, to add a bit of visual texture. They were layered together and finished off with some of our gorgeous new rhinestones, then glued on with more Crystal Effects. The colours used are Soft Suede, Crumb Cake and more Baja Breeze. Gorgeous combination!

The wording in the centre was stamped using my "Jumble Alphabet" set, which I got free as part of my reward for hitting part one of my Stampin' Start, which is a sales reward programme Stampin' Up! has set up for its new demonstrators. Now I love my stamps, but there is nothing better than FREE stamps - hee hee, I LOVE my job!!

Tara was a brilliant roommate to share Convention with, she's great fun and we had a ball. I really hope she liked her pressie. I was really touched by the gift she gave me - she made me a gorgeous bag-charm, which now lives suspended from the zip on my "go-everywhere" black backpack. I'll take a photo to show you, 'cause you'll love it. Do pop over to her blog to say hello.

Back soon, with more photos to share. Thanks for visiting.

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Monday, 1 November 2010

Special Offer - Bundle Up For Christmas!

Hello!

Don't you just love a special offer?! Stampin' Up! do some great ones, and they have just announced a new one, which means that you can get a spool of beautiful, exclusive ribbon absolutely FREE with the purchase of selected bundles* of Christmas gift-giving products.


Choose from these bundles:

Description Wood-Mount Item Wood-Mount Price Clear-Mount Item Clear-MountPrice
Gifted Bundle Gifted Set and Jolly Holiday Designer Series Paper 124051 £35.70 124052 £30.70
Welcome Christmas Bundle Welcome Christmas Set and Christmas Cocoa Specialty Designer Series Paper 124063 £36.90 124064 £31.90
Season of Joy Bundle Season of Joy Set and So Swirly Stampin’ Around Wheel 124055 £36.45 --- ---
Delightful Decorations Bundle Delightful Decorations Set and Ornament Punch 124058 £37.45 --- ---
*Bundles and ribbons available while supplies last
Choose from these ribbons:
Picture Description Item Retail Value
Mistletoe Ribbon Originals 116792 £11.50
Sleigh Bells Ribbon 116795 £8.50
Riding Hood Red 1-1/4” Striped Grosgrain Ribbon 113099 £10.25
Real Red 3/4” Polka-Dot Grosgrain Ribbon 115608 £10.25


Contact me if you want to take advantage of this fantastic special offer.

**I've just realised that the first table hasn't reproduced very well on here (sorry!) - click on this link to be taken to the original, on the Stampin' Up! website.**

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

October Thank You Cards

One of the nice things about running a Stampin' Up! business is that I have the opportunity to say thank you to so many lovely people. Here are the cards I sent out to my customers and hostesses this month, to say "Thank You", for letting me show them our amazing products, and for giving me their orders:



The cards were based on the swaps I took to our monthly training. This is what the swaps looked like:


I love the way the two cards look totally different, even though the images are identical. All I've done is swapped round the order of the colours in the layering and the base card.

The pretty branch image is from one of the new sets in the 2010-2011 IBC, Hopeful Thoughts, and the colours used are Poppy Parade and Soft Suede. The sentiment is from Basic Phrases. I inked up the image stamp using my Stampin' Write marker pens,. It's a little more time-consuming than inking-up with an inkpad, but so worth it to get multi-coloured images; as you can see, the effect is stunning.

The ribbon on the Soft Suede card is the new Poly Ribbon (available in all five on the new In Colours, I used Poppy Parade), whilst on the Poppy Parade card I used Early Espresso Taffeta ribbon. I haven't really used much ribbon in the past, but these are the most amazing quality and just beautiful to look at and touch. I've used an entire reel of the Early Espresso Taffeta already - it goes with EVERYTHING! - and I've only had it for a couple of weeks!

Ooh - did you spot the bling, too? I've popped a couple of our new Basic Rhinestones on each ribbon and the photos just don't do them justice! They are the most gorgeous, clear sparkles and they come on a card with LOADS of them. As Craig Revell-Horwood (do you watch "Strictly Come Dancing"?) would say: A-MA-ZING!!

Thanks for looking!

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Credit Cards Now Accepted!!

Yaay - it has finally happened! Stampin' Up! has arranged it so that we can now take MasterCard and Visa credit cards, as well as Visa debit cards, in payment for Stampin' Up! products you buy from us demonstrators!

I'm so excited to be able to offer you this, as I know how much easier it will be for you all. Just think - you don't need to remember your chequebook any more!

Any card details taken will be kept perfectly secure, and you have the option of choosing not to let Stampin' Up! keep your card details for use in future purchases if you'd rather give me the information every time. So there is no need to worry about paying in this way. If you have any questions then don't hesitate to ask - that's what I'm here for, after all.

Back later on with more cards for you to see. I just wanted to make sure you knew about this exciting new development and that it didn't get lost mid-post.

Thanks for looking.

Hugs,

Becki
xx

Monday, 25 October 2010

October Hostess Thank You Gifts

Hello!

I wanted to show you the little gifts I made for the lovely ladies who hosted Stampin' Up! workshop parties with me this month.


Before each workshop, I made a set of these cards in the two colourways shown, and stamped the envelopes to match. Then, at the workshops, I demonstrated how to make this little gift wallet that will hold them beautifully. I deliberately chose a non-Christmassy greeting for the wallet itself as even I can't get away with giving actual Christmas gifts in October! Here it is:


And finally, here is a picture of the open gift wallet, with the cards peeking out of it:


I enjoyed making these, and really hope my hostesses liked getting them! The cards were adapted from one we made at one of Monica's and Bekka's training days a while back, and use the gorgeous Dasher stamp, along with one of the first SU sets I bought (and I still use it all the time), Lovely As A Tree. The green colourway is Old Olive, Whisper White and Cherry Cobbler cardstock. Dasher is stamped in Cherry Cobbler and the trees in Certainly Celery, while the background is brayered with, of all things, Pink Pirouette. The second colourway uses Crumb Cake card and ink (brayering and trees), teamed with Cherry Cobbler card and ink and, of course, the ever-present Whisper White card - so easy to brayer on 'cause it's soooooo smooth.

Hope you like them. Thanks for visiting!

hugs,

Becki
xx

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Christmas Decorations Class Bundle is Up!

Hello!

For those of you who come to my classes, the Class Bundle for the November "Christmas Decorations" class is now up and can be found here. Ordering it will get you a FREE place at the class (normally £15) and, if you order before the 8th November, you'll get free shipping as well. Email me or call me to buy, and to book your place at the class - I'd love to see you there!

Hugs,

Becki
xx 

Monday, 18 October 2010

Ornate Flowers Desk Tidy and Matching Cards

Hello!

Well, what a week! I did two workshops last week, and had a fantastic time at both of them. Mine has to be the best job in the world, I get to spend my time meeting lots of lovely people and crafting with them - could there be anything better?

I'll post photos of my workshop cards soon, but I have another workshop later this week and want them to be a surprise for anyone who reads this and is going to be there. I'm so looking forward to it, I haven't met this hostess before but she sounds lovely. Tina, I'm really looking forward to getting to know you and your guests!

On Saturday I held my usual monthly class, and this month we made a pretty little desk tidy with some matching cards. I love this type of class. It looks a lot more complicated than it is, and I love seeing people's confidence grow when they leave with something that they are so proud of. Here is a picture of the desk tidy:


And from another angle:


The papers are from the gorgeous Greenhouse Gala pack in the new Ideas Book and Catalogue, and they are more beautiful in real life than you can possibly imagine. They are designed to co-ordinate with the Ornate Flowers stamp set, and the pretty Chrysanthemum image that you can see in the photos comes from that set. I used this set throughout the class, and we made four cards to match the desk tidy, using each of the four stamps you get in the set. Here are the cards all together:

And each one separately:








We stamped the focal images using the Stampin' Write markers to ink up the stamps. It gives such a lovely effect and really brings the stamped image to life, as you can see. My ladies were a little unsure to start with, but when they realised how easy it is to do, they loved the technique as much as I do.

As you can see, we stamped the envelopes too. I don't usually include envelopes in my classes, but couldn't resist the change to show my lovely ladies how easy it is to co-ordinate your envelopes with your cards; it takes no time at all and makes all the difference to how the recipient feels about the card - they will love it even before they have opened it. A perfect way to make someone's day, so much nicer to get through the post than the usual bills in brown envelopes!

I've just realised I didn't take a picture of the desk tidy WITH the cards - doh! I'll try to pop one on here tomorrow, but it's dark now, and I've learned from experience that taking pictures of cards by the lights we have here is Not A Good Idea.

I took the project to an SU training day yesterday have been asked to make the instructions for this class available. I'm really touched that my fellow demonstrators like what I've done, as I am so conscious that they are all so very talented, so thank you ladies, I drove home with a big smile on my face. You'll see a Paypal button in the sidebar, and for £4.00 you can get hold of full, step by step and illustrated instructions for both the Desk Tidy and the cards. I'll email them out to you within twenty-four hours of me getting the payment confirmation.

Thank you for visiting, and I hope you like the project. I'll be back soon with pictures of the swaps Alan and I took to our training day yesterday.

Hugs,

Becki
xx