Tuesday 28 June 2016

Sending love - Groovi

Hello Friends,

I've made a card for a special friend this morning.  She's a neighbour from the opposite end of the close to me.  She's one of the most kindest ladies I've ever met, full of wisdom, intelligence and life stories, which she draws upon, at times when she's needed for comfort and advice.  A couple of years ago she became a real friend, when my husband was having an awful & stressful time.  She is a counsellor and is a masseuse, the perfect combination for anybody who is dealing with 'stuff'!

Over the last few days I've thought about her and thought about her because she is German.  Not only am I worried about my own family, with deep European connections in Germany and France but my worries go much further - for anyone in our country from any nationality right now.

On my walk this morning I saw this most gorgeous lady and my first instinct was to rush over and hug her, as soon as I saw her, offering my sympathy and support.  Apparently I've been the only one....what does that say about my neighbourhood?  I thought I lived in a lovely Oxfordshire location.

I can't dwell on this.....the only way I know how not to beat myself up, and for it taking me so long to check to see how she felt/how she was coping, was to make her a card to reassure her that we loved her, she was very welcome here in our close and we were totally here for her, if she needs us.

It's a Groovi parchment shaker card.  I mixed my crafty stash again, I'm liking the mix, I hope you are too!

Please try and find some time to connect with any international friends you have right now, maybe they need you, just a hug and a kind word is enough, we need to 'share the love' right now.

Love to you all and happy crafting.

Carole x

Wednesday 22 June 2016

A touch of "Groovi" - birthday card

Hello crafty friends,

Have you ever been too busy that you forget to smell the roses?  Said "yes" before you thought?  Dived in with both feet and wish you hadn't?

That's been me over the past couple of weeks and possibly months, if I were to be honest!

I've been neglecting some stuff (again!), my house, some of my best friends and certainly my poor family, who seem to be witnessing me at the end of my tether, more often than they're used too ;) !

I've been struggling with allergies again, every time I go into the countryside, it seems, my hands swell, then my eczema breaks out and ..... and.... I'm frustrated with not being able to do much other than the bare essentials around here!

Today my hands are not too bad.  I was going to tackle some of my housework, I really was!  I'd even emailed a friend telling her I was going to start with my ironing.....

....then I decided to catch up on some emails first and saw this beautiful card and remembered it was one of our friends daughters birthday today.  We had a great weekend, out in the countryside (I know, I shouldn't have gone but I did!) having a picnic with a group of our friends and the young lady whom I've made this card for was amongst us.  She is a gorgeous girl, growing up very fast, who definitely deserves a little bit of my time and a pretty card!  She's one of those special girls, whom has actually turned into a carer for her mum, who has a disability.

So instead of "catching up" with stuff I really can do tomorrow (so long as I remember to say "no" to any opportunity that comes my way), I decided to "smell the roses" this morning and make her a special card, one with her name on.

I had another friend in mind when designing/making this card, a good friend who has purchased some Groovi products from me, whom is feeling a little overwhelmed ;)!  I wanted to make a card to show how to include/incorporate just a little bit of Groovi!  I think with Groovi, you do need to give it a little bit of time, you do need to rub the back of the vellum with a tumble dryer sheet and not forget that you can stamp onto vellum and add die cuts etc on top, which is a great place to hide the glue that sticks the vellum to the card.  Also with Groovi you need a little time to think backwards when adding names and writing!

I used the Groovi Plate Mate to add the "Grace" and the trellis plate to add the two areas of texture.  I did have to move the vellum on the trellis plate to get a smaller pattern ;)!

The other products used were stamps and punches from Stampin' Up, my old and well used Spellbinder Nestabilities and Maja Design paper.  For the sentiment banner, I used my Silhouette Cameo - swapping the blade for a pen to write the sentiment, it's so easy!

I hope you also find some time to craft, crafting definitely is the therapy I need right now ;)!

Thanks for popping by to take a look today.

Carole x

Friday 10 June 2016

Groovi - Wren & Daisies

Hello crafty friends,

I've been trying to catch up a bit around here, you should see this place!  The dust must be an inch thick, my ironing pile was getting to the point where it was hindering us as we walked up and downstairs - it collects on the top banister and....and....and....

I must be the only woman who can't multi-task!  If I've got something to do or something on my mind, I can't concentrate on anything else!

I've still got quite a way to go to get the place "ship shape" but at least I feel happy to blog knowing that some of it has been done!

I'm sharing another card today that we made on the Parchment course, I stood in for last weekend.  It's made with one of my favourite Groovi plates - Wren & Daisies (to be totally honest, I really love the daisies!), I think the daisies make a gorgeous frame especially teamed up with the Groovi nesting squares.

This is the card I actually demonstrated in class, which I didn't get to finish off, until today!  The ladies in class all wrote "best wishes" on theirs, using the sentiment Groovi border plate, they loved that plate so much that I sold them all, even my own!  

It's my eldest daughters birthday today and she loves daisies so I've decided to finish the card off for her.  I purchased the "Family Relations" border plate a little while ago and hadn't used it, I was pleased to put it to good use today!

We didn't have time in class to emboss the backs of the daisies and leaves, we only coloured the centres in yellow and the leaves in green.  Finishing off the card today, I decided to put in a little extra embossing time, I'm really pleased with the embossed lines on the leaves especially.  To be honest the card was already sewn onto the base card, as I demonstrated how to do that in class, so embossing those daisy petals wasn't very easy ;)!  I'm sure my daughter won't notice it's not absolutely perfect ;)!

Right, I've got more tidying up and cleaning to do before both of my gorgeous girlies arrive later!  

Have a great weekend......you probably won't be hearing from me for a few days, I'm going to be spending some time with my girls!

Have a great weekend, hope you have some time to craft.

Carole x

Tuesday 7 June 2016

Groovi Sentiment on traditional style card

Hello crafty friends,

The card I'm sharing with you today is a mix of traditional parchment craft and Groovi, finished off with a perfectly cut card, shaped specially for the design.

For this card I traced one of the patterns from the booklet in the Pergamano starter kit.  I traced the design with a white pencil, which seems to be the professionals preference these days, I understand!  I embossed the lines from the back and did a little shading using the embossing tool which came in the kit.

I scored the vellum on the fold line and folded it neatly, then I used the two needle split tool to prick out the design (both front and back together), it's quicker and much easier than using snips/scissors for a traditional picot edge.  When I first learned about parchment craft, many many years ago, the 2 split needle tool didn't exist.  I sure am pleased it exists today!

For the sentiment I used a Groovi border strip.   I made the base card by scanning the image into my Silhouette Studio software, where I was able to make a made to measure card!

Thanks for popping by today.

Happy crafting.

Carole x

Monday 6 June 2016

Groovi lessons & courses at Denman.

Hello crafty friends,

I'm back after the most wonderful weekend at W. I. Denman.  In my last post, I shared with you a few pictures of how my classroom looked before all my students arrived.  In my blog post today I'm sharing pictures of all my very lovely and very talented students.....

....here is a picture of Val & Maureen

Sue & Eileen

Gillian & Susan


and last but by no means least, Gay.

I took these pictures on the final morning and they were all still smiling.  The group was a very pleasant one to teach.  We did all work very hard, there was quite a lot to get through on the course but we did get through it, with lots of smiles and laughs.

In these pictures you can see that they were all getting into the groove with Groovi!

I'll be back soon to share some pictures of the projects we made.  Until then, happy crafting.

Carole x

Saturday 4 June 2016

Parchment Craft at W. I. Denman

Hello Crafty Friends,

I had the most wonderful day!  I was ready, I didn't have one last minute thing to do yesterday before setting off to set up at Denman at 15.30.  I arrived a little early and was shown to a room I hadn't seen before,  the Seminar room.  The room is in the main house upstairs which overlooks the gorgeous grounds.

Take a look at the views from our windows....

With views like that and the fact that is was warm and sunny, it didn't take me long to set up ;) .....

....so that I was able to enjoy a little bitter lemon drink with ice and a slice before dinner, with a couple of the other tutors tutoring this weekend....

Dinner was amazing, I enjoyed tomato and courgette soup to start, pulled pork with veg for my main and then the most delicious lemon posset with red fruits for desert, sorry I didn't take pics of my food, but believe me it was beautifully presented and delicious!

After dinner I went up stairs to my classroom and sat peacefully by myself for 10 minutes, whilst I waited for my students to arrive.  Every one of them gave me a warm smile and seemed to like the classroom.  After our introductions, we started on the bookmark that I posted yesterday and looked at the other projects that I'm hoping they'll be able to make - it was really lovely to see the smiles on their faces when they saw what they were going to be making.  I'll share the projects on here after the course.

Denman is a wonderful safe place for ladies to go and stay, relax, enjoy good food and make new friends, I feel I've met lots of new friends today.

Hope you have time to craft this weekend.

Thanks for stopping by.

Carole x

Friday 3 June 2016

Parchment Craft - Bookmark & Silhouette Cameo

Hello Crafty Friends,

I'm just about ready to set off to W.I. Denman, where I'll be filling in once again for Liz Colyer, their regular Parchment Craft tutor, who is unwell.  I do hope that she will soon be better.

I've been working on this class and practicing for a few weeks now and I'm very happy with everything I've made and that I will be teaching to 8 ladies, who are looking for an introduction into Parchment craft.

I'll be teaching the first session this evening.  This evenings session will be all about the traditional methods of tracing line art onto vellum, together with some simple embossing, using a ball tool.

I found this free bookmark pattern on-line, it's a really elegant and simple design and should be a great one for them to start with.

I made a perfect mount for the finished parchment work, in the Silhouette Studio software and cut it using my Silhouette Cameo. You can see how easily it was to slide the finished piece into those slots (top & bottom).  Of course, it does all fit perfectly into a Pergamano bookmark sleeve :)!

I always try to go that extra mile for the ladies that I teach and I'm sure they'll appreciate that this bookmark is enhanced by the use of my Silhouette Cameo skills!

I'm nervous, please wish me luck ;)!

I'm teaching all weekend.  I'll try and blog some of the other projects we make when I get home on Sunday!

Hope you have time to craft this weekend.

Thanks for popping by today.

Carole x

Thursday 2 June 2016

Groovi Nested Squares & Butterfly Wreath Plates

Hello Crafty Friends,

I was going through my pictures of cards, ones I'd made recently that hadn't actually made it to my blog yet and found this one.....

I did the Groovi work on a scrap of vellum to see if I could work out how to get three perfect small squares, at an equal distance apart, in a rectangular frame.  It was all done using the Groovi Nested Square plate and was easier than I thought.  I did end up with a large gap at the bottom, which I had planned but it seemed a little too big so I used one of the Groovi Border plates to fill in the space.  

I used accents from the Butterfly Wreath Groovi plate to fill the small squares with tiny flowers.  

Once I'd mounted my work onto the turquoise mat, using the Groovi corners punch and mounted that onto a slim piece of white card stock, it was too long for a normal size of card!  Look how I mounted it, so that I can stand it up....it's a craft coloured punching strip from Anna Marie Designs, folded in half!  Genius!  I think I'd do that again and would be happy to send it someone - maybe ;)!

Thanks for popping by, I hope you've enjoy my card today.

Happy crafting.

Carole x

Wednesday 1 June 2016

Groovi Baby plate - Wee Shops & Tree

Hello Crafty friends,

I am back today to share with you the other "new home" card I needed to make, which I mentioned in yesterdays post.

It's almost the same as yesterdays card, but not quite!  I've used the same great sketch, the same gorgeous papers and the same Groovi baby plate with different card stock!

This time I made the vellum a little larger than the plain blue mat I'd cut, to show the finished embossed Groovi work.  I placed it onto my Groovi Straight Grid and pierced a few holes in each corner so that I could use the backstitch stitch to sew the finished work onto my card.

As you can see I used the same grid down the right hand side of the sentiment and the same stitch ;)!

How lucky I am to be able to make just the right sentiment on my Silhouette Cameo!  I'm chuffed with this one, I can tell you.  I think it's perfect for a lady starting a new life, in a new town!

Thanks for popping back today, I hope you've enjoyed looking at my card.

Happy crafting.

Carole x

Tuesday 31 May 2016

Always with a Heart - Sketch 22, Groovi & Tinker N Co

Hello Crafty friends,

My friend Jules, over at Always with a Heart left me a comment on my blog post yesterday, which reminded me to go and check out her blog this morning.  I'm always inspired by her work, her sketches, her stories and her photography.  Everything is clean, neat and easy on my eyes.  Please pop over and take a look, if you've got a moment.

Today I noticed that she'd been given the opportunity by Tinker N Co Digital to do a "give away" to five of her blog readers.  I'd not heard of them before so I hopped straight over, using the link, as you do ;)!

I found the most gorgeous downloadable papers and more in store.  I quickly chose Two Little Birds, as I needed to make a couple of "new home" cards and I often think of birds when I'm wanting to make cards for people who've moved!

When I've got Jules on my mind, I hop straight to her sketches - for my card today I chose number twenty two!

I really enjoyed my morning making this card, it was nice to mix up my Groovi kind of cards with one of Jules sketches and the gorgeous paper I purchased from Tinker N Co Digital.

I did phaff a little though trying to attach the vellum - I decided to sew it on!  I used the Pergamano four needle tool to make the holes, they were a little bit too small really for my double thread, but I learned from it!

I cut the papers and wrote the sentiment with my Silhouette Cameo!

Hope I've inspired you to craft today.

Thanks for popping by.

Carole x

Monday 30 May 2016

Groovi - Meadow Grases & Occasions Border plates

Hello Craft Friends,

I'm sharing a card that is a little bit more masculine with you today. I've attached the vellum in quite a different kind of way than usual, to the base card for this one.....

....I used a whole piece of A5 vellum (Clarity) for the parchment work, which I wrapped completely around the card stock.  I attached it using my Tim Holtz tiny attacher, stapling the little stripped blue flag onto the card, which secured the vellum on the top left.  I hid the staple with the little red heart.   I then needed to secure the bottom part of the vellum towards the right side, so I searched my crafty stash and found the little dragonfly brad - I've had that brad for years and now I wish I could get some more!

It was more by luck than judgement that the "with love & best wishes" fitted perfectly ;)!

I finished off the card with some Stampin' Up Linen Thread which I left loosely with just a knot.

I hope I've inspired you to get out your Groovi stash and get into the Groove :)!

Thanks for stopping by and happy crafting.

Carole x

Sunday 29 May 2016

Groovi Tag - Butterfly Wreath.

Hello crafty friends,

I've got another Groovi kinda tag for you today.....

I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out the hexagons, the Groovi diagonal grid plate for the outside embossed dotted edge and three of the accents that are on the Groovi Butterfly Wreath plate.  The sentiment is from a Groovi border strip.

I'm sure Clarity will bring out a nested hexagon plate soon, they do know that we NEED one ;)!

Hope you have a great week and are able to get crafty with your Groovi stash.

Carole x

Friday 27 May 2016

My Clarity & Groovi cards story!

Hello Friends,

I have been trying to work out how long I've been playing with the Groovi Parchment system, I checked back through my emails and have found my first Clarity order, ordering my Groovi stash...I'm not saying how much I spent but I can tell you - I got a lot of plates!  My order went in at the end of February so to my reckoning I've only actually been having a go with them since the beginning of March.

I'm also a very slow crafter, I'm someone who has to think about my crafting and procrastinate for a while!  I really do like to get perfect results, I want everything neat and tidy, just as I vision a card to be.  I expect it's the teacher in me, I've taught card making for lots and lots of years and have always wanted "my ladies" to go home with cards they'll be wanting to keep, not send!

So with all this in mind, I wanted to give the Groovi system the best possible chance, especially bearing in mind that I am supposed to be a retired craft teacher and have been pulled out of my retirement by W.I. Denman to cover some Parchment courses for a very poorly Parchment craft tutor.  I knew I'd have to give this Groovi system the best chance I could, so I've taken it really slowly and enjoyed every moment.

Speaking to the head of Denman after the course I covered in January, she asked if I'd consider being a regular tutor and be able to include Parchment craft if necessary.  I told her that I was happy to cover what I could in the Parchment courses that were already booked, the best I possibly can but if she was looking for a new Parchment tutor, I'd really only want to use the relatively new "Groovi" system by Clarity.  I'm not a person who'd want to step on anyones toes, I'd like to consider myself as a fair and considerate person and I really thought I'd retired from my craft teaching (due to health & safety issues and requirements in rented hall type of accommodation - two fire officers and a first aider, don't get me started on that again!) and was trying to get to grips with what I was going to do "now" to keep me occupied!

So I've not had all that long and I've made a few mistakes trying to work backwards with the Groovi system.  When I worked in a craft shop many many years ago and when my boss was trying to teach me how to do Parchment craft so I could teach the class ladies who attended my classes there and demonstrate in her shop (I had to call any of my classes/demonstrations where I taught Parchment - "playing with vellum" as the shop had a Pergamano tutor and we sold Pergamano tools) I was taught how to trace properly with ink, where on the vellum to start tracing so that you knew where the fold line would be, how to do the white work from behind etc....., so getting into the groove with Groovi working backwards, caused me to make a few mistakes, meaning I couldn't make a folded card out of my Groovi work, if you see what I mean.

Anyway, I worked really hard and enjoyed designing and making the Parchment design on the front of the card I'm sharing below, only to realise once I'd finished all my Groovi(ing) it was on the wrong side of the vellum!  I've been looking at it for ages, it has reminded me for more than a month now that I have to concentrate.  Anyway today was the day, it is a great design, I'm totally pleased with how it turned out so I chopped it away from the wrong side of the A5 vellum I'd used, added a bit of Groovi Diagonal Grid work on the side and mounted it onto a card!

Phew!  I hope you like it!

I hope you've enjoyed my Groovi story.  I do have more samples to share, which I will over the next week or so and I might even start up a Groovi kinda class, just a small one or even two, back around my dining room table, like I did before I rented halls, if any of "my ladies" remember that!

So if you've read my little Groovi story and you'd like to come and play, my contact email is over there on the right hand side of my blog ;)!

I am a retailer of Groovi, thank you Barbara & Paul at Clarity, but I'm not taking orders and shipping items, Clarity does that best, I'll have a little stash of plates, tools and vellum for you to buy if you come along to a Groovi session at my place in Oxfordshire or attend one of my courses at W.I. Denman, for that matter ;)!

Oh and if you are local to me and want to pop by to see what Groovi stash I've got available to purchase, then you can email me and we can arrange something, for sure!

I hope I've inspired you to get into the groove with Groovi, as you will have seen over the last couple of blog posts.....imjustlovinit ;)!

Happy crafting and thanks for reading Groovi my story.

Carole x

Thursday 26 May 2016

Groovi Diagonal Grid tags

Hello Friends,

I promised you yesterday that I'd post a picture of the tags I made using the Groovi Diagonal Grid plate, for the East Sussex Federation designer day at W.I. Denman.

I showed the ladies how to emboss the dots and prick the holes around the hexagon vellum piece and how to do a little bit of white work on the stamped butterfly.

From a previous lesson I'd got many yellow circles and dark red hexagons left over, so decided to mount the vellum onto those.  I joked with the ladies, I told them I hadn't got enough of each for them all to have the same and that when they'd done their parching onto the vellum hexagon they were to come up and we'd decide together whether they'd mount theirs on a yellow one or a red one.  They did laugh when I told them my plan.....I told them if they'd made a mistake (or two) they might like to choose the yellow one, as the mistakes wouldn't show up so much and if they concentrated and made a perfect one, they'd probably choose a red one!

I do love Denman, it really is an amazing place for ladies to go and relax, stay over in beautiful accommodation, take a workshop or course, be fed really well and the grounds.....well, they are delightful.

Better get on with some work and practice my own Parchment skills, I have a beginners class to stand-in for in a couple of weeks!

Happy crafting and thanks for popping back again today.

Carole x

Wednesday 25 May 2016

Groovi card & tag - Designer day at W.I. Denman

Hello friends,

I thought I'd share a card with you today that I had the pleasure of making with 24 ladies, all from the East Sussex Federation of the W.I., a couple of weeks ago at Denman college.  I was standing in again for the lovely and very talented Parchment tutor, who was unwell and unable to show the ladies the traditional way of Parching ;)!

I had two groups of 12 ladies for a couple of hours each.  They worked in pairs, whilst one lady got into the groove with the Groovi Plate Mate and Groovi Meadow Grasses plate, her partner was having a play with the Groovi Diagonal Grid plate.  Both sessions were fun but crazy, I guess being a new/stand-in tutor it will take me a while to work out exactly how long it takes to teach 12 ladies something totally new - and a few of the ladies hadn't really crafted before either - I wasn't expecting that!  At least the ladies seemed really pleased with the cards they'd made, which makes me smile as I type this, thinking back :)!

Check back tomorrow if you'd like to see the tag they made using the Groovi Diagonal Grid.

Thanks for popping by again today.

Happy crafting.

Carole x

Tuesday 24 May 2016

Groovi & Silhouette Cameo - a perfect match!

Hello Crafty Friends,

I'm back today to share a card I made for a friends husband, he celebrated a special birthday yesterday.

I've been playing around with ways to attach my Groovi Parchment designs to the fronts of cards.  This is one of the most simple ways I found, using my Silhouette Cameo.  I first designed the Groovi Parchment section, measured it and made a perfect frame for it!  It really couldn't be easier to attach a vellum design to a card without any adhesive showing :)!

For the card I used my Groovi Plate Mate for the letter blocks and letters, one of the Groovi background plates and one of the Groovi border plates.  I used Stampin' Up card stock, ink and stamp set for the rest of the card.

Thanks for stopping by today and happy crafting.

Carole x

Monday 23 May 2016

Groovi card using Groovi plates, grids & Stamps by Tina Cox

Hello crafty friends,

I've had a little bloggy break!  I can't believe it's been more than a couple of months since I posted but I'm back with you all now, which is all that matters, if you're looking for Groovi inspiration.

I really enjoyed a day out all by myself last Sunday, I went by train to the Parchment Guild exhibition in Bristol, it was totally inspiring.  I met so many very talented parchment professionals exhibiting and sharing their hints and tips there.

One of the ladies I met was Tina Cox, she designs wonderful patterns and cards for the Parchment Craft industry.  She has recently designed a new set of stamps purposely to use with Parchment craft work.  The set is called Butterflies and Flowers....here's my first card using them...

I used my Groovi square plate to make the simple frame, my Groovi grid to embellish the corners and my Perga Cutters to make the crosses in the corners - don't look too closely at those little crosses - I messed one up!

I used the 'rock'n roll' stamping method on to the front of the Parchment for the sunshine.  The Stampin' Up ink colours I chose were So Saffron & Crisp Cantaloupe.  The flower heads, leaves and stems were also stamped on to the front using Crushed Curry & Old Olive.  I embossed from behind giving them dimension using a fine stylus tool.

I hope you like my card, thanks for popping by.

Happy crafting.

Carole x

Thursday 10 March 2016

Crafting with Clarity & Groovi!

Hello Friends,

It seems that I lost my aim/direction for a while.  My life changed, I retired from all my crafting commitments and expected to be able to carry on crafting like before, only with no deadlines or thoughts about what "my ladies" wanted, I thought I'd be able to craft for myself!  I expected to get messy with some Art Journalling, I have all the gear ;) and I'm sure I want to do it!  I also expected that I'd be happy without the stresses that came with teaching and the planning of events and classes.

The truth though, was totally different.  I couldn't craft, I couldn't think about crafting, I didn't want to get messy with Art Journalling, I even felt it hard to make cards for friends and family for occasions that required cards!

I definitely needed a focus, I realised that, when I attended Stitches, the UK crafting Trade show.  I'm not used to crafting for me, I'm a crafter who wants to inspire other crafters and after teaching for more than 14 years, I suppose it wasn't ever going to be easy for me to retire from all of that.

Teaching at the W. I. Denman, (see my last post) was a blessing, totally out of the blue, as I'd never expected to be filling in for a sick tutor, but it turns out it was an absolute blessing.  I had such wonderful feedback from the ladies who attended the course I filled in for, and now Denman has asked me to fill in again in April, I'm really happy that I was "good enough" to be asked again.   Denman have also invited me to run some of my own courses, which will start in the Autumn.  My purpose is back and so is my will to craft.

Preparing for the Parchment course at Denman, really did inspire me again, to go back to Parching!  I'd been watching Barbara from Clarity on the t.v. with her new Groovi system since it was launched, it looked great and I certainly was kicking myself that I hadn't invested in it earlier!

So with the news and offer for filling in again for another Parchment class at Denman, I decided to send for some Groovi stash!  I didn't hold back, I bought all I "needed"!  My thoughts were that if I were going to introduce this system or even mention it, in a Parchment class, I'd need to give it a trial!  I'd need to give it a "semi-professional""okay", if you see what I mean!

Well, I love it!  Like everything though that I love and teach, I know I need to practice, practice, practice!  I need to remember all I learned from all those years ago when I was first taught all the basics and I need to put what I learned then and what Barbara at Clarity is teaching us now, on the t.v., into practice.  I think baby steps is the right way to go with this, I'm not trying to rush a card or rush anything, I'm taking lots of time to learn and practice again properly, I need to do things as best and as properly as I can, I'm such a perfectionist!

Here are a couple of cards I've made using the Groovi system.....

...this first one is a little bit messy!  The colouring isn't perfect, you can see the smudges and the Picot edging has much to be desired...but I don't have the right parchment grid for the right spacing for the Picot edge cutting and my eczema isn't good at the moment - I can hardly hold a pair of scissors!  I also wish I'd used a capital "J" for "Jimmy" on this card!

I'm much happier with this second card, it still wouldn't win any awards, but I'm fairly happy how it turned out!

Check out the white work on these flowers!  Barbara reminded me on Sunday to do white work by gently embossing in short strokes and long strokes!  The mat I have is old, very old and I found it easier to put a layer of dark card on top of my mat and emboss on that, it stopped me from going through the Parchment.  I taught that trick to the ladies that I taught at Denman, it was a trick I never did forget!

On the first card above, I coloured in using my ancient Parchment crayons and used an old technique of dipping a tightly folded piece of kitchen towel into a drop of blending solution to blend the colouring strokes but it turned out messy!  On the second card I used markers, they were so much cleaner!  I never remembered using markers - back in the my day ;)!  Oh times have changed and I'm happy that they have, especially with the new Clarity Groovi system!

Thanks for popping by, I hope you feel inspired to try this system - get into the groove, it's satisfying - yes totally satisfying!

Happy crafting.

Carole x

Friday 26 February 2016

Parchment craft at the W. I. Denman

Hello friends,

I promised you a little while ago that I'd share with you some pictures of the Parchment craft course I taught at the end of January, as a stand in tutor, at the W. I. Denman college, very close to where I live, in Oxfordshire.

Here are just a few photos that I took, you'll be able to find many more pictures, taken by the college on their Facebook page just scroll down until you get to 2nd Feb :)!

This was my classroom for the 4 days....

The classroom was very high tech, check out all those lights, tv and camera so I could demo and my ladies could watch what I was doing on the tv!

This is Jane, she'd only ever been to one beginner Parchment craft course before, but her work was stunning and looked very professional!

This is Elvina,  her work was fabulous too!

Here is Elvina again with her friend Maureen, they were gorgeous, very supportive of their new 'stand in' tutor!  They were both seasoned Parchers and great at it.  They run a little Parchment Craft group in Jersey.

You can see Jean, Mary, Yvonne and Joan here.  They were all friends who meet together at Denman, they come from all over the country and were huge supporters of the regular Parchment tutor.  They were seasoned Parchment crafters who had all the gear and qualifications, I didn't know existed ;)! 

 On these next two pictures you can see Pat (also from Jersey), Margaret, Valerie & Sylvia, this was definitely my "quiet table".  These ladies were also regulars and huge supporters of the usual tutor too and very professional in their work and fast with it!  It's always the quiet ones that get the most done -I expect that's why I never get much done when I'm crafting in a group!

Here I think, are most of the projects finished by one of the ladies, apologies ladies, I can't remember who did all this gorgeous work, but nearly everyones looked the same ;)!

Here is a close up of the most difficult project we tackled, lots of pricking and embossing on the diagonal grid for this one!

and finally, a table I filled with other projects I'd made, hoping it would put the ladies at ease when they met me, hoping to show that I was a "good enough" teacher to be standing in for their course ;)!

I absolutely loved teaching these ladies at Denman, I am smiling as I type because I've got more dates for more courses I'll be running there, this coming autumn and winter!  It really is the most wonderful place to be!

Hope you've enjoyed looking at the pictures.

Happy crafting.

Carole x

Thursday 11 February 2016

Silhouette UK blog - weekly challenge

Hello friends,

As a lover of all things Silhouette, I thought I'd join the new challenge over on their new blog.

The challenge was to use this weeks free design from the Silhouette store, it's a cute little mail box - perfect for Valentines day!

To make this a challenge, as it were, I decided to try and copy the decorative parts.  I've never used the 'draw freehand' feature, apart from showing the feature when ladies come for a one-to-one class here with me.  I normally glide over it quickly saying something like "if you can draw, this might be useful, but I can't so can't ever imagine ever using it"!  Well I tried it today to make the the coloured boxes and you'll notice that I really can't even draw a nice line!

I personalised my letterbox with my husbands initials on the back ;)!

I hope you like mine, here it is....

NOTE:  when I started putting this together I noticed that the card naturally bends on the weakest part, the part where the opening is, to overcome that a little, I made an extra bit to protect it, as you will notice in the picture.  I also thought it was hard to put together and feel there should be a score line under the curved section on the side bits, I think there is one on their sample which you can see above!  So if I were to make this again, I'd definitely add an extra score line and curve the main part with my bone folder to avoid the creasing at the weak point!

Now all I need is to make and post a tiny card to go in it!

I hope you join in with the challenge.

Happy Silhouetting.

Carole x