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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.

Friday, 27 January 2012

New Year, new and exciting adventures in the world of card making!

Hello everyone and thanks for taking the time to read my blog.

I'm new to all of this so hope I can write something interesting, amusing and informative which you will enjoy reading! Technology is not my strong point and just to prove it, I had already typed this entry once but didn't think I had to post it before I made some changes to the layout of my blog page, so of course it disappeared and I've had to start all over again! Ah well, good practice for the old typing fingers (I was a secretary in a previous life)!

So, potted history time. I've been designing and making cards for about two years now. It started by accident, as a desire to find something crafty to do with my hands, progressed to "I could make our Christmas cards this year instead of buying them", and has since become pretty much an obsession! I am a hoarder, and have so many papers it's ridiculous, but I love all the designs and colours and have ideas springing up in my mind like fireworks on November 5th when I look at them. If only I could find enough time to really let this creativity flow! It's a challenge that's for sure, as my full time job is teaching my son, who has Asperger's Syndrome, or a degree of autism, and I've been teaching him at home for 3 years now, so that takes up much of my time. But it's very rewarding and I do get some "time off" occasionally, and when that happens I will be found hiding in my studio (back bedroom actually but studio sounds posher!) trying to conjure up some creativity with my extensive stash of card making products!

I think there are too many exclamation marks in here - note to self, stop exclaiming so much! Oh, there I go again, sorry.

Anyway, fast forward to present day, I have successfully sold quite a lot of my cards in the past 18 months and have taken several commissioned orders in the last year. There's a real feeling of satisfaction when I've designed a card and someone buys it - it's a massive compliment and tells me I must be doing something right! My designs have been published on my favourite website, Craftwork Cards.co.uk, and have appeared in Making Cards magazine. This again is a huge compliment, knowing that professional designers also like my designs.

So there we are, a brief history of my card making up to now.

So, what's got me excited today? Embossing! Or, to be precise, heat embossing. Whoever invented this deserves a medal at the very least! What a fantastic way of creating beautiful card designs. I love, love, love it! I'd wanted to try it for ages and bought some embossing powders when I bought my first batch of card making materials more than 2 years ago. They'd sat languishing in a drawer ever since, with the promise of "one day". This Christmas (2011) I was a very lucky lady and received from my husband and son a heat embossing tool - how excited was I? So, today, FINALLY, armed with some stamps, some inks and those embossing powders which no doubt had given up all hope of ever being used, I got experimenting. So much fun and such satisfaction as the powder turned into a beautiful raised shiny line on the card - pure magic! I'm in seventh heaven and can see I'll be doing much more of this in the weeks and months to come! Watch this space for photos of my projects! (I've already made my first card but it's a secret for now so I can't let you see it!)

Well, time to pack up for today and who knows what excitement tomorrow will bring. I hope you'll come back soon to read how I'm getting on and what my latest adventure has been!

Until then, bye, love from me x