Archive for the ‘Crafting Challenges’ Category

Less is More Take 2

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

Oh, golly gosh! Aren’t I having fun zentangling! I have almost completed another A4 page zentangle, which, when I get started, I have found difficult to stop doing…”Just one more section” I say to myself, and 20 minutes later I surface to realise I should have started cooking dinner, or that I have missed an appointment (actually, I’ve never missed an appointment – but I have only just remembered one or two!)

Here is a detail from another “Thank You” card – this one using a little bit of colour. I actually think the green is a bit dark, and I might experiment using lighter or brighter colours next time.


And here is the card itself. I think I prefer this one to my other LiM card – the zentangling is a bit neater, I think, and I like the colour; even though it doesn’t have much “zing” about it, I think it adds another dimension.


Less Is More N° 145

Saturday, November 9th, 2013

This week’s challenge is a one layer card, with the theme of a Thank You card… and as soon as I saw the theme I knew what I wanted to do. I have been very taken with Zentangling recently. This is a type of doodle that I have been doing on and off for years – I used to do it during rehearsals when I did amateur dramatics…I have a script which I doodled (or, as I have now discovered, “zentangled” !) over the entire cover of. It was a script for “Ophelia” by Bryony Lavery, I think…


I was in a really b-o-r-i-n-g and tedious AGM this morning, so I started zentangling in my notebook. At the end the woman who had been sitting next to me asked if she could see it, and another woman asked if she could have the page! One said she would like it as a picture on her wall, and others suggested I put some zentangles on cards to sell…Well, I had been thinking about it!


Recently, zentangling has become “officialised”, if you like, with named patterns, and clubs, and entire blogs dedicated to zentangling, and even teachers taking courses in zentangling. And for all these years, I thought I was just doodling!


Since my “Opening Doors” course in September, Ange has been encouraging us to try to take time for ourselves, to do something we enjoy, to take a moment to breath. I find that zentangling really helps me to relax, to empty my mind and to concentrate on something while also being concentrated on myself. Sometimes I listen to music, sometimes I don’t…but I have found this a brilliant way to spend time for myself and with myself.


Here are two of my designs:





Sorry they’re such rubbish photos – if you click on them you can see them better, & they look better too!! Here’s a close up of the circles:




I knew I wanted to send a Thank You card to Ange – I need to send her a cheque (it’s coming, Ange, honestly!) – and as the zentangles have featured so heavily in my Opening Doors time, I thought zentangling was the right thing to do.


One of the inspiration cards by Chrissie also featured zentangling – and I thought I was being so original! – but no matter, here is my effort (another bad photo…I really need to improve!):






What do you think?


Less Is More N°144 (Take 2)

Sunday, November 3rd, 2013

Not liking my first effort, I tried another:


The little owl is sitting on a branch, surrounded by silvery stars.


The sentiment is a play on words, as “chouette” means “owl” but it also means “sweet/cuddly/cute”. Sothe basic sense is “You are too cute for words”


In fact, I recently found out that there are two French words for “owl”. This one, chouette, refers to owls without visible ears, such as this beautiful barn owl


or the dinky little owl

Whereas the Scops owl (isn’t he fab?!)

or the Eagle owl:

both of whom have visible ears, are known as “hiboux


Less is More Challenge N°144

Sunday, November 3rd, 2013

I suppose I should really save this post until tomorrow, so that I have something ready for Mags’ Post-Every-Day-In-November challenge…but having made the cards for the Less is More challenge I want to show them off! (Not that I like them that much!)


It was a tricky challenge this week – “Dark background with a Splash of Colour”. There was this inspiration photo too:

bigpreview_Fireworks Heart

but I was devoid of inspiration. Still I sorted through my bits and bobs, and found the shiny copper leaves my SiL sent as part of my wonderful birthday crafty stash…I knew I had a bit of copper water colour paint left, so I created this:


It’s a bit smudgy, as I forgot to let the paint dry (d’oh!) before turning it over. That necessitated the addition of the sentiment


(Roughly translated as “Happiness always”) which I found already written in my box of stuff. You can hardly see the mess, she says hopefully!


It’s alright…but not great. So I tried No 2.

Less Is More N° 143 Take 2

Saturday, October 26th, 2013

And here is my other card that I made for the “String or Twine” challenge.


This one uses some pom-pom string that came with a Christmas present last year…


I don’t know if you can see but the tag has a gold star embossed onto it. The sentiment is hand-written. I’m a bit disappointed in the pen I used – it wasn’t cheap, but for all it is claimed to be a gold calligraphy pen it is more yellow with a squidgey nib that doesn’t give much scope for calligraphy. Grr.

Less is More N° 143

Saturday, October 26th, 2013

I haven’t been crafting for a while: busy days and lack of crafting mo-jo have taken their toll. I’m not really sure I’ve got it back – I really haven’t felt at all inspired. I’ve tried various designs, but nothing has made me go Yay! For the last couple of LiM challenges I’ve not really had any equipment that I could use either…and I received a tree stamp for my birthday just too late to use it for last week’s challenge!

Still, the LiM Challenge this week is “twine or string”. I have that in spades. So here is effort number 1:

IMG_1770 IMG_1772

My blog site is being snippy about editing photos – whenever I try to rotate them a big black block takes over…so I photographed the full card landscape – which means you can’t see it very well. Sorry!


I used a couple of stamps that were a free set a couple of years back. The card stock was reduced from Noz, and the bakers’ twine was from Casa. It was a bloomin’ sight cheaper there than in craft shops, I have to say! The button is a replacement button that came with a cardigan I bought from Primark in the summer – let’s hope I don’t lose one from the cardigan now!!


I’m going to give this card to a friend whose birthday is tomorrow. She made the bridesmaids’ dresses and wedding dress for her daughter’s wedding in the summer, so this seems appropriate!!

Less is More Take 2

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

And this is my other effort:


As my photo editor thingy isn’t doing what it should, and I don’t have much time to faff about this morning, I’m afraid I’m inserting it on its side. You’ll have to tilt your head to see it!


Two little fabric flowers – made up of lots of tissue thin layers, which I’ve fastened together with a brad, and then blinged up – plus a little bit of matching ribbon. Hand written sentiment: The secret of life is to savour each moment


A friend and I are going on an aorganised walk this morning: Marche du Vendage – the walk of the grape harvest. I would guess it’s going to take us through some vineyards here on the Cote Roannaise . 

I’m also hoping for some tasting, and maybe some Saucisses cooked in wine to be available! Cathy’s here!! Must go!!

Less is More N°138

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

This week’s challenge is using felt or fabric. As usual there are some lovely cards already being linked to.

So, here is my first effort:


I’m really rather pleased, as I tried a new technique. Now to you crafty people out there, this is something you’ve no doubt been doing for years, but this is the first time I’ve masked off a part of a card to sponge/ ink. i was quite pleasedwith the results.


The little felt flowers I’ve had for ages & the blingy bits are all from my favourite discount store (as is the card I used!). Quite simple, but I’m happy with it.


The handwritten sentiment means “From the bottom of my heart”

Less is More N°137

Sunday, September 15th, 2013

Making another card again today – it’s become my regular Sunday afternoon activity, which is nice. I don’t often feel inspired during the week, but the LiM challenge is a good excuse to sit at my desk and play about a bit. I am always overwhelmed by the creativity and talent of everyone else – beautiful stamping, lovely techniques, amazing cards! Still, little by little, I produce cards which are a bit “outside the box” for me, and which are inspired by other people and their wonderful creations – so Thank You to those of you who pop over to see my card, and who have shown me lots of new techniques and given me ideas for my own interpretations.


The challenge this week is to produce a Get Well Soon card. 

Or, in French: Rétablis toi vite


I painted this using water colour based paints which I’ve had for ages. Of course, as it was a one layer card, I couldn’t paint it on watercolour paper and stick it on, so in fact the card has gone a bit wobbly with the paint. I used some “vellum” type card that I was hoping would be able to take the watercolour…but not quite!



It’s  certainly different to any card I’ve made before – but I’m quite pleased with it!


Less is More N° 136: Colour Challenge

Sunday, September 8th, 2013

The Challenge this week at Less is More is to use the colours Rust and Dark Green . These are lovely colours together, and there was a very dramatic picture to inspire us.


I went for a simple design:



As usual, it’s not a great photo – everything looks a bit skew-wiff which it isn’t (for a change!) but I quite like what I’ve made. I used a little flower cutter, from Artemio, with two shades of paper from my ScrapStore. There’s a tiny bit of bling in the centre of each flower, and the sentiment is handwritten.


Do go and look at some of the other lovely creations that have been made.


And if you are a cat lover, please read my previous post Cats Need You.

cat z