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by Julie Brooks

Polite notice. All designs are copyright protected. I hope you will be inspired by my designs but please do not copy them. Thank you.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

What dreadful weather!

Hello there

Well, what dreadful weather we've had today. I don't know what it's like wherever you are, but here we've had a big grey cloud hanging over us all day up until about half an hour ago, with heavy rain and gusting winds battering our homes and gardens, attrocious conditions to be out and about in. But now the sun has come out so at least the school children won't have got soaked going home from school, although I would imagine they were pretty drenched when they arrived for lessons this morning.

And this dreary weather has sent us running to the local chippy in search of comfort food, and our wood burner has been keeping us cosy and warm for several hours now. It definitely felt wintry for a few hours there.

Even my son felt like doing nothing more than pottering on his computer and staging various scenarios with his Playmobil, so the school work was put on hold until tomorrow.

Now, what have I been up to in the crafty department today I hear you ask. Well, I had a little play with some paper flowers, stitching them together with button centres, with thoughts of using them on a card or picture or something, but then went off at a complete tangent - which I seem to do a lot of these days - and instead decided to play with my heat embossing tool again! I used a big clear stamp which I bought at the WOW! Embossing stand at the NEC with clear embossing ink to cover a turquoise card with pretty flowers and swirls, and I then heat embossed it with WOW! metallic copper ultra fine embossing powder. The effect is fab and has to be one of my favourite things at the moment! I then stamped some butterflies (Craftwork Cards Butterflies and Blooms stamp set) onto more turquoise cardstock, using metallic copper pigment ink, then again embossed with the copper powder. I cut these out - apparently the term for this kind of cutting is "fussy cutting", but I've been doing it all my card making life so I'm not sure what the "fuss" is all about!!! (sorry, couldn't resist that) - and adhered them to my card with foam pads, along with a central elegant message (Craftwork Cards) which I inked around the edges with a turquoise chalk ink. Along the bottom I added a strip of beautiful antique lace which I bought from The Ribbon Girl recently, and finally decorated with some adhesive pearls and some liquid pearls. I'm really pleased with how it looks and I hope you like it too.

Pop back soon to see what other adventures I've been having!

In the meantime, take care and thanks for dropping by.
Love from me xx

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

On today's menu ......

Hello everyone

Hope you're all having a good week. Mine's going quite well. My lovely son is actually knuckling down to do his school work without too much of an objection which is great, although I suspect the motivation comes from the knowledge that he only has about ten weeks of school left now before the holidays (he's accrued lots of extra hours so that equates to more weeks off!). Still, whatever the motivation, I'm not complaining! AND, I managed to get a bit of crafty time yesterday too - bonus!

So, yesterday I made a pretty little Get Well Soon card featuring the very gorgeous Warren (Craftwork Cards), and I did a bit of altered art in the form of decorating a very plain photo frame with a simple and uncluttered stamped design incorporating some heat embossing. I must admit I'm not very brave on the altered art side of things yet but I'll get there!

Anyway, I hope you like them and as always, your comments are welcome.

See you all soon!
Take care,
love from me xx

Monday, 23 April 2012

A new name for my blog

Hello everyone

Just a quick post from me to let you know I've changed the name of my blog from Beebaab Designs Blog to Julie B's Crafting Journey, so when you receive a notification about a new post you'll know it's still me!

And to all my new followers - welcome and I hope you will enjoy reading about my crafting journey.

I'll be back soon with more crafting news.

Take care,
love from me xx

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Some crafting time, at last!

Hi folks

Hope you've been having a good weekend despite this very confusing weather we're currently enduring. I've had another busy week with home ed and haven't been able to get into my crafty space at all this week as my husband was ensconced in there working on some graphics stuff for an upcoming conference .... until yesterday afternoon, when I finally, FINALLY, got a brief opportunity to be in amongst my lovely craft products and actually make something! So I made an anniversary card, as we've been married 12 years this weekend - how time flies! I had to be quick though, and do it on the sly while husband was busy elsewhere!

So, with only half an hour to get something made, I wasn't able to use many techniques or do anything very fancy, but I'm pleased with the finished card and I hope you'll like it too. I used Craftwork Cards latest paper collection - Sweet Pea - Peas in a Pod - plus a square from one of their Moorish range embossed squares sheets. I used my favourite new punch - Fiskars Squeeze Punch Small Scalloped Heart - to make the two hearts which I fixed to the centre square, but not until I'd inked the square to bring out the embossed pattern and added some copper embossing powder which I heat set to produce the fine speckles you might be able to make out behind the hearts. I also added a stamped flourish on either side of the card which again I heat embossed with copper powder. The sentiment was from a sheet I produced a while ago, which I inked around the edges to tie in with the rest of the design. Finishing touch was three Sweet Pea Candis.
See you soon.
Take care.
Love from me xx

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Better late than never!

Good evening everyone,
I hope you're all having a fun week?
I've been busy for a few days on a top secret (but lots of fun) project, as well as being back to the normal daily routine of teaching my son now that the Easter holidays are over, so don't have much to show you today, but I did manage to create two beautiful gift tags earlier this evening and I hope you like them. I've used chalk inks on both of them, together with Craftwork Cards Butterflies and Blooms clear stamp set butterflies along with a double spiky flower on one tag (along with a stamped text background), and on the other I've used a die cut butterfly (again, Craftwork Cards) and punched and embossed some little flowers, to which I've added seed beads for the flower centres. I love both of the colour combinations I chose. As with most of my projects there's a hint of glitter glue here and there, and I've used Craftwork Cards Sentiments clear stamp set on both tags. They're very humble compared with some of the amazing creations I've been looking at on various blogs, but I think they're very pretty whilst still being very useable. Enjoy!

See you soon,
love from me xx

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Gift tags as promised

Good afternoon everyone

I've noticed that there are a few more people reading my Blog so welcome to all of you and I hope you're enjoying reading about my projects as they progress. Please leave a comment, even if only to say hi, as I love to hear from you.

So, in my last post I promised I would show you the tags I've been making and I do now have a couple of photos for you. They are quite humble compared with some I've seen on recent Blogs, but I'm very pleased with them and I think they are both decorative and functional, and hopefully others will think the same!

These first two were done fairly simply using stamps, glitter and Sakura Metallic pens. I love them both for their relative simplicity and their overall look.

Now these two tags were a different story, and actually started life as a bookmark! Unfortunately when I came to stamp the sentiment in the centre of said bookmark I managed to stamp it a bit skewy so that meant the bookmark was no good. However, I salvaged the two sections with the butterflies on and, hey presto, two lovely tags! So, the design for these goes something like this: The background pattern is done using watermark ink and a stamp (actually the same stamp as in the left hand tag in the other pair above). Then I inked over it with two distress inks, applying several coats and blending where the two colours met in order to achieve the finished look. When that was completely dry I added the butterflies. The two sections were mounted on black card and then mounted onto the tags, which I had also inked in order to get the two-colour effect, but I did the orange closest to the pink sections of the design and the pink closest to the orange sections, providing more contrast. I then inked some tiny flowers, cut them out and adhered them for added interest, adding a small silver coloured floral embellishment to the centre of each.

I hope you like my designs and I'll be back soon with more crafty news.

Take care,
love from me xx

All designs are Copyright Beebaab Designs

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

My latest projects unveiled

Hi folks

Gosh, can't believe that's another week gone already! Did you all have a good Easter? I hope so. I did and finally was able to enjoy some chocolate after deciding to give it up for Lent. I can't say I particularly missed it, although there was one occasion when sorting some out for my son when I realised how much I was noticing the aroma of it and I have to admit to feeling slightly deprived at that point! I enjoyed being able to indulge again but have realised that I'm not as bothered about it as I thought I was!

So, Easter is behind us and it's time to get on with some new projects, but in the meantime here are a few photos of some of the projects I've been working on in the last couple of weeks - hope you like them!

I love this card! I used various stamps for this including Penny Black (for the dandelions), Kaisercraft (Tigerlilly - for the butterfly) and Craftwork Cards (for the sentiment). I stamped the design using Distress Ink (Pumice Stone) and then coloured the butterfly in subtle skin tones using Promarkers. I also used Platinum Stickles Glitter Glue to add various sparkly highlights to the dandelions, grasses and butterfly. I mounted this onto a lovely beige coloured pearlescent card which I discovered in a goody bag I'd bought from Craftwork Cards a while ago - it works perfectly with the design and really shows it at its best.

I love Craftwork Cards products and these adorable Warren images are no exception! I coloured this one myself using Promarkers, adding Glossy Accents to Warren's nose and eyes. I used a gorgeous linen textured paper behind and punched and embossed some flowers, along with some foliage, from pastel pink and green cardstock, which I used to frame the centre picture. I added self adhesive pearls and Liquid Pearls to the flower centres. I have to say this is one of my favourite little cards and probably comes in the top 3 of cards I've produced.
This is one of a range of bookmarks I've made. I've used Kraft cardstock and added Craftwork Cards butterflies stamps from their Butterfles and Blooms Stamp Set, which I stamped on using Adirondack ink. I then added Platinum Stickles Glitter Glue to some of the butterflies and inked around the edges of the bookmark using Distress Ink in Walnut Stain. Punched a hole at the top, fixed it with an eyelet using my Crop-o-dile (recent purchase at an unbelievably fab price!) and finally looped some jute through. I love how it looks but what do you think?

This one was a bit of an experiment! I used flowers from a Kanban clear stamps set and Dew Drop Chalk Inks to create a floral background. On to this background I stamped butterflies using two from the Craftwork Cards Butterflies and Blooms set. They were stamped on with whilte chalk ink and embossed with white embossing powder. Using chalk ink for this was a bit of a risk because it dries quite quickly, but thankfully it was fine. The end result is something very subtle but also very pretty and I'm quite pleased with it. I added Liquid Pearls to the flower centres and then I inked around the edges of this section with a yellow chalk ink. I mounted it onto deep turquoise textured cardstock, punched the hole, fixed the eyelet and then used two different colours of bakers twine for the "dangly bit"!

Finally, this is a real work of art! I used watermark ink to stamp a background design onto white cardstock and then I inked over the top of this using Distress Inks in Victorian Velvet and Spiced Marmalade which I blended where they met to create the two tone, almost tie-dyed effect. Then I stamped the two butterflies and centre sentiment which were from a WOW! clear stamp set called "With Love" using Versafine ink and added a tiny dot of Stardust Stickles Glitter Glue to the centre of each of the watermark patterns. I mounted this onto black card and ... well, you know the rest by now!

So there you go, that's some of what I've been up to since my last post (or maybe just prior to it in the case of the cards!). I will be back tomorrow with a glimpse of my first gift tag designs for you!

Bye for now,
love from me xx

Monday, 2 April 2012

Where is this year going?

Hi folks

Hope you all had a good weekend and made the most of the lovely sunshine - another very cold spell looming on the horizon so just as I'd packed away the winter coats it looks like I'm going to have to dig them out again - that's England for you! And I can't believe it's already April - where is this year going? Mind you, the garden looks lovely with all the blossoms in bloom, daffodils and tulips turning their heads to the spring sunshine and a wonderful variety of birds all feeding and collecting nesting materials - I love the spring.

So, just looking at all of your blogs it seems you've all been extremely busy with beautiful cards and various other fab projects. Loads of inspiration for me and certainly a feeling of "Wow, I could never make that!" in some cases. You're such a talented bunch.

As for me, well I have two new projects underway which are very humble by comparison. I've decided to diversify a little more so as well as making cards and mini books I've just started on some designs for bookmarks and gift tags, and they're looking pretty good if I do say so myself. I'm using a variety of stamps (Penny Black and Kanban to name but two) and inks (amongst them Distress, Adirondack and VersaMagic), embossing powders, metallic gel pens (Sakura) and Stickles glitter glues, as well as lots of lovely papers and other embellishments. I'm having fun whilst creating something pretty which will not cost people a fortune to treat themselves to, and I think this is key with the financial climate as it is right now. I'm hoping to have the first few in my lovely local retail outlet within a couple of days and it will be interesting to see how they're received and whether they sell. I hope so because they're so pretty I can't believe people wouldn't buy them!

So no pictures today but tune in soon and I'll be able to show you what I've been creating!

Take care all, have a great Easter weekend next weekend and see you soon.

Love from me xx