Tuesday, 23 June 2015

5 in 5 - June 2015 - MEETING MELANIE

If you follow my blog you will know that I have already posted my
'5in5' this month and that my friend Melanie is a regular contributor.  Well, yesterday we got to meet as she is visiting the UK and as there was still time to post this month it seemed fitting to add a second '5in5' to include Melanie....
We met at Hylands House and this offered opportunity to take a photo for this years photo Scavenger Hunt. On the list is a photo with columns and Hylands fits the bill nicely.

The house has an interesting history, and afterwards we walked round the gardens.  They look beautiful this time of year and the idea came to take some more 5 in 5 photos, so here they are:

 and Melanie with camera in hand (we are two of a kind!)

It was lovely to catch up again, sadly with Melanie living in Australia this doesn't happen as often as I would like but we plan to meet again before she goes home.
There is still time for you to join in this month too as you can link until 25th.

Or if you'd like to see other links or find out more about '5in5' you can do that hereThanks for popping by, and I hope the sun is shining wherever you are.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

5 in 5 - MELANIE - June 2015

 Melanie is my friend who lives in Australia and she loves photography. Every month Melanie has taken part in this monthly neme and we managed to find a way round her not having a blog by posting here. I love that we have found a way for her to take part!
This month (despite being in the middle of her holiday to South Africa) Melanie has remembered '5in5' and been organised enough to send me photos. I am impressed and very grateful! What's more I have enjoyed seeing other photos that Melanie has taken so I am taking opportunity to show you these too simply because it seems a shame not to!!  So over to you Melanie:
'We left Botswana on Thursday and it seems like a dream that we were so close to so many wild animals.  The lions were especially incredible.  They had no worry at all by a safari vehicle parking close to them.  The driver said if anyone were to get out or make lots of noise that would be out of the ordinary and that would cause unpredictable behaviour from the lions but things they are used to cause them no problems. Then the elephants there were literally hundreds of them.  One girl we spoke to said during one night at a nearby waterhole 400 elephants could pass by'.
But back now to 5 in 5.....
'My photos this month are taken in a place called Aulhas.  This is a small town on the southern most point of South Africa where the Indian Ocean meets the Atlantic Ocean.  There is an incredibly beautiful rocky shore here and a lighthouse based on the Pharos of Alexandrian.  This lighthouse was the third lighthouse to be built in South Africa and the light was first lit in March 1849. I climbed to the top of the lighthouse no staircase just ladders and the final of four ladders was very wobbly. Outside at the top of the lighthouse it was very windy, thankfully there was a rail to hold on to.  Hope you enjoy the photos'.

Wow!!  This looks an amazing trip!  

Melanie is next headed for UK so over the next month we plan to meet up and I am really looking forward to seeing her.  Mean while, a big thank you to Melanie for remembering and taking the time to send me photos while on her travels. I am full of gratitude.
And if this has inspired you to pick up your camera and take part in this challenge you have until 25th before this months link closes.
It's great fun and this post should answer any questions or give other information that you need.  And you don't need to go anywhere exciting to take photos, as my own post this month shows.
To see this and more links for this month just go here and
 hopefully I'll be back with more photos from Melanie and myself next month. I hope you will join us and thanks for popping by!

Sunday, 7 June 2015


Welcome if this is your first time of visiting my page, and if not welcome anyway! 

This month I decided to use set of MDF frames for my THAT CRAFT PLACE DT project. They come in packs of two:

And I also decided to experiment using a bag of MDF offcut pieces.  I used them on this project too, and these are some of the pieces that were left over. There's nothing more I like than using up bits!    

First I glued the shapes onto the frame using PVA, making sure that I kept the design flat at the bottom so that it would stand. 

If you plan to hang your frame this would not be a consideration. 

Next I covered the frame with PVA glue and a thick layer of thick embossing powder.

After gently shaking off the excess I used a heat gun to melt the powder, being careful to get into all the awkward corners.  After I checked for gaps, reapplied glue and repeated the process. 
As this was a contemporary design I wanted an image that would compliment the frame.  I decided this stain glass window, taken in Liverpool Cathedral, would be perfect. 
I attached the photo to the frame using double sided sticky tape and used the same method to attach the back.  I simply slotted the stand into the back and here it is!  I thought about adding acrylic wax to give more definition but for now I have decided the frame looks busy and may be better left as it is.  I often like to live with projects I make and come back to them later....  Do you do this too?
The second frame is quite different, but uses the same technique.
This time I used scrunched up tissue paper and glued it onto the top and sides of the frame using PVA. 

Once it was thoroughly dry I gave it another coat of PVA glue and a generous layer of thick embossing powder, making sure it reached into all the crevices.  I learnt through my first example that it is easier to emboss one half at a time, as this makes it easier to hold while you apply the heat gun.

I assembled the frame in the same way and this time chose a vintage style.  I love how the frames offer such variety and contrast and I have ideas for others brimming!!

But for now here is a list of products used, all of which are available from THAT CRAFT PLACE
MDF frames from TCP
MDF offcut pieces
Tissue paper
PVA glue
Thick embossing powder
Double sided sticky tape
Do check out the range of MDF, it is superior to others I have used and if you see Creative Expressions selling these products chances are they have been made by Lisa!  

Thanks for popping by and do visit the TCP facebook page for more creative ideas.

Friday, 5 June 2015

5 in 5 - June 2015 - A CHEST OF PAPER TREASURE

Welcome to '5 in 5' where on the 5th of
each month I post 5 photos that I have
taken in 5 minutes. 

Yesterday I wondered what photos to take for this months 5 in 5.
The garden is looking good and I had other ideas in mind but I decided to trust that the day would bring something special. 

And it did! 

Because when I visited a friend she showed me an old chest she has just been given.  Inside it was packed full of old newspapers.... decades old and fragile. 

And between these were vintage patterns and the most beautiful ledger with marbled paper cover and  exquisite handwriting.  We guessed the newspapers had been saved to make dress making patterns because there was a collar shape piece and other clues.
My heart was all a flutter!! 

Now, some people would look at this pile of paper and just burn it or put it in the skip unable to understand that to others this is pure treasure.

And I am ecstatic that this chest was rescued from this possible fate, and to know my friend Pauline will make good use of it and love it as much as the original owner.  This chest and its contents deserve that because you can tell by the carefully cut pattern pieces and notes in the ledger that this was work of love. 

I love all things haberdashery, it reminds me of my grandmother who was a dress maker and the hours we would spend together quietly sewing and chatting.  I am immediately transported back in time, and so it is with this chest.  

Inside there are envelopes addressed to Miss G. Harrison, living in London and dated 1933. 

I wonder what G stands for..... Gertrude? Grace?  I may never know.  There are ways of finding out if I really want to put the pieces together but for now I will just enjoy the patterns that Pauline gave me.  And I hope Miss Harrison would be happy to know that her work continues to give pleasure and be appreciated. I have ideas how I might use these patterns and I may be back one day to show you....

Meantime if you would like to join in this monthly photo challenge please link in below so I can come and see your photos. Here's the plan:

  1.  Choose a location.

2.  Have your camera ready.

3.  Set a timer for 5 minutes (I use my mobile phone).

4.  Take as many photos you can until the time is up.

5.  Choose 5 photos to download and share by using the link tool below. 

   Please note: 

You can take  your photos any time, they do not have to be taken on 5th!
And you have until the 25th of the month to add your photos to the link.
There are more details here
Thank you for popping by, your company and comments are always appreciated and special thanks to Maggie, Joy, Eileen, Helena and Melanie who took part last month. 

Tuesday, 2 June 2015


I am behind with my regular blog posts, not because I have been neglectful but because on top of everything else I decided to make a PhotoBox album, using photos from my Shetland adventure.  With over 4,000 to choose from it seemed the best way to show my photos but this is my first time of using PhotoBox and because I am redesigning each page layout rather than using the standard ones offered it is taking much time and steep learning! Luckily I am getting there very slowly.  The offer was time limited which put me under much pressure but I have just learnt that I can pay for an extension and I think this will be much needed. I can relax a little and catch up with other things!   

With every day already full I told myself I will not take on any new projects because then I heard about INDEX CARD A DAY CHALLENGE. This immediately sounded exciting because although I spend a lot of hours making things with paper I usually have a goal in mind and a time frame.  This challenge encourages you to take a small piece of card everyday and just play for no purpose or reason. Remember how we used to do that as a child! Sadly we have to be reminded as an adult....

I know how important it is to set this time aside so this gave me the nudge I needed.  And yesterday I gathered a stack of card that was cut to the size that I wanted and I plan to put some small basic materials in a bag ready to use.  Basically these are the same as I took to the Shetlands: a couple of sharpie pens, black ink pad, a pen for writing with, a small set of alphabet stamps, scissors and some scraps of paper and glue stick. I made a list of ideas for inspiration but plan to be spontaneous and go with the flow... and I am putting no pressure on myself.  If I miss a day, so be it, but as I have everything I need and plan to keep it simple I can do it on the go. Cards will be completed in as little as 5 minutes or more if I choose and as my Mum has a hospital appointment coming up I can doodle on a card while I am in the waiting room, or make a card instead of spending time on Facebook!  A game of solitaire must take the same time as it will to make a card... yes, this should be manageable! 

Yesterday I was printing photos and spontaneously decided to manipulate one of them:

I love how it turned out as I have a strong urge to make my own prints using wood and lino.  These cards will certainly be a good way to try them out, though adding more than one colour will be a challenge and learning curve!!   All tips welcome!

I copied the photo onto a word document so that I could position and get the image size to fit the card so that I could print straight onto it. I then added the words using small alphabet stamps and this is my Index Card for Day 1.  I am planning to make one a day through June and July, and you never know, this might become a routine I enjoy enough to continue.  But for now I'd best go and make day 2! 

Do let me know if you join in this challenge and where I can see your cards if you share them! I'll be back to share some of mine but
meantime thank you for popping by. 
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