Monday, 29 November 2010

Gingersnap Challenge *Vintage Hues*

This is my entry for the GS *Vintage hues* challenge. I used a photo of the wedding of my Great Uncle Benny, taken in 1927. My Mum is the bridesmaid second from the left - the only one who is smiling and evidently enjoying herself! - and sitting next to her on the left is her older sister, who was nearly always scowling... The bride and groom don't look too happy either! But it is a photo I like very much, and it is hanging in my hall together with some other reminders of the *good* (?) old days....
I used an embossed paper for the background, which has been distressed with antique linen, stormy skies and chipped saphire, as were the flowers - made from the tattered florals die. The centres are from prima. The flourishes have been cut by hand out of sheet of paper from as SEI stack, that took the longest, working with a little pair of nail scissors.... The alphas are cut with a Sizzix die, *Cherish* has been cut with a Bosskut die. Was, as usual, fun to make, thanks for looking!

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Challenges - *The Stamp Man* & *Simon Says*

Both these challenges are Tim Holtz and distress themed. *The Stamp Man Challenge* has to have something TH in it and a Xmas theme. I made a black and white tag, as it is very frosty outside today, so seems to fit. The black tag has been cut with a TH die, as have the winged heart and bird die cuts. The Santa is an old Sizzix die. I left the chipboard white, and distressed them with silver & soot black stickles. The tag background has been stamped with a text stamp using clear ink and white embossing powder. Added some die cut white lace at the bottom and a silver ribbon.

The *Simon Says* Challenge was to use distress inks. I cut a tag from cardboard, which I distressed by partly pulling off the top layer. Then I used distress inks in crushed sage, Victorian Velvet and tubled glass, before embossing with a mixture of bronze and clear embossing powder, and perfect pearls in pink, gold, interference blue and green. Added a TH timepiece and a nostalgic angel cut out. The pearls are from Prima.

Friday, 26 November 2010

Gothic Arches Challenge *Harvest*

For this triptich arch I used a harvest photo with pumpkins and corn-cobs, which I blurred a little in my photo programme before printing it, to give it a softer look and to emphasise the colours more than the objects. Cut an arch out of embossed paper, which I distressed with TH ancient linen and wild honey. The photo was cut to match, but half a centimeter smaller all round. Added a lace doiley which was distressed with the same inks and some scroll, bird and flower motives. Was fun to make, as always, and successfully kept me from doing my h*******k! Thanks for looking!

How to scare your parcel postie without really trying….

One day this week I decided to do some crafting before I got showered and dressed. Needed to get some sanding and painting done, so pulled a sweatshirt over my pjs and got to work. The work took longer than I had thought, thus, when the doorbell rang just after 2 p.m. I was – shame on me!! – still not properly dressed.
Before I reveal more, I wanted to say that I have a good friend B. And she recently gave me a sort of miner’s light, with a stretchy band to fix it round my head. As I have had a lot of eye operations, I don’t see very well, and need a good source of light directed exactly there where I am working.
So far so good.

I was dressed in my grey and white striped pjs, with pink mice on the top, a bright red sweatshirt with alpine embroidery, my grey and white animal slippers – always a pretty sight! And my head-mounted spotlight. Oh, and sage green fingers from painting, and the foam brush held firmly in my left hand. Not really looking my best.

OK, I pressed the intercom, and a voice asked me if I could accept a parcel for a neighbour who wasn’t home. Sure, I said! The Postie staggered up the stairs carrying a giant parcel, and stared at me as if I was an apparition from Mars.
*You been looking for something?* he asked.
*No, why?*
*You’ve got a spotlight on your head.*
*I was just painting.*
*Really?* he said rather doubtfully.
Hmm, I had forgotten it was switched on. No problem. Pressed the switch, and asked,
He grinned all over his face.
*Now you’re on blink modus, Lady. Better be careful, we’re near the airport. A plane might land on the house!*
With that he gave me the thing to sign, dumped the parcel, and disappeared with leaps and bounds down the stairs.
Then I went and looked at myself in the mirror.
PS: Another parcel came today, this time for me. He didn’t ring my bell, but gave it to the lady downstairs.
And the moral of the story?
There isn’t one. At my age, and especially at home, I can wear what I like, when I like. If the Postie doesn’t like it, that’s his problem!
PPS: The doorbell just sounded. I’M BUSY!!!

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Some Quick distressed Xmas cards....

As I love my TH *on the edge* houses die, I decided to use it for some quick cards. Some have a distressed background, using different blue inks together with Victorian velvet and wild honey. Some have been stamped with a sentiment or some small motives, others have some angel and/or star die cuts. Some have just been applied to a wine-red background. I will be experimenting more with this theme at the weekend, as it really is time to get those cards done....Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Woohoo - I am a *Ginger Gem*!!!

Today I woke up to a freezing, grey November day -not a good incentive to get out of bed. But I did, staggered to the kitchen to make my first coffee and settled at my computer for *breakfast* - coffee and computer. I gave up toast because of the detrimental effect of crumbs in the keyboard, although I will admit to an occasional currant bun, they don't crumble so much! But not today.
Switched the computer on, looked through my mails and usual sites, and saw that I had been chosen to be a *Ginger Gem* for my entry *Colours of Autumn* - woohoo! Last week *Simon Says* and this week *Ginger Gems*!!A good start to my day, and a big incentive to keep on meeting new people and trying new things in crafting!

Sunday, 21 November 2010

LIIU Challenge No 6 - Recycling

Now, for this challenge I was planning on recycling a small drawer to make a little show-box. Well, I am still thinking of recycling it, but need to work on it much longer than I had planned, so decided to do something else. Bought a rather tatty wreath in a charity shop for 50 cents. Took it home, cleaned it, and pulled off the few remaining roses, they must have been the last roses of summer! Then I sprayed it with snow spray to make it look wintery. You will be pleased to hear that the table and part of the floor also looked wintery - moral - put down some old paper first, or you need to be cleaning afterwards! Then I took the silver ribbon off a box of Xmas candles I had bought, straightened it, and wound it around, before winding some wire with mini-baubles around, too. Used a hot glue gun to get it all stuck. The flowers have been die-cut with TH *Tattered florals*, put together, distressed, and given a bit of bling with silver stickles. The centre has been made with a mini mirror circle. Stuck them on with the glue-gun, too. Then I stuck on the little sleeping angel, which was part of a Xmas bouquet last year. The card at the bottom has been distressed with TH inks, the houses are a TH on the edge die, Santa and the stars have been stamped, the birds have been cut with a Martha Stewart punch, and the tree and sentiment have been hand doodled. Was fun to make, even if it wasn't quite what I had planned, but it is all recycled, total cost 2,50€, and I still have a lot of snow spray left....Thanks for looking, I'm off to clean the floor and table in the kitchen!

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Tag - *Things that make me happy* - Simon Says Challenge

Made this tag for the *Simon Says* challenge. Things that bring me happiness is such a huge notion, that it is hard to fit it onto a little tag or card. I cut the tag from recycled card, distressed the background and stamped & embossed the bird-cage and foliage on it. The large bird has been stamped, cut out and decoupaged, the 2 small birdies have been cut with a Martha Stewart punch. The large bird, foliage and bird-cage stamps are all from Tim Holtz, as are the inks. I gave the large bird a bell (from an Easter Bunny!) and added a mini post-card as title. The gems and pearls are from Prima. Was fun to make, as always, but now I have to do some housework before my place is knee deep in paper snippets! Thanks for looking!

Monday, 15 November 2010

Gothic Arches *Baubles* Challenge

This time the challenge was to make an arch with *baubles*, a good excuse to use up some *bling* from my stash that has lately been gathering dust. I used a photo of a distant relation, taken in 1918 when she was 3, and evidently a little lady of fashion. She still loved to be fashionable when she was over 90! I mounted the photo behind a die-cut arched door, which can be opened or closed. I like it closed, where the photo behind can just be glimpsed.... The arch behind has been cut with a scalloped circle die from Sizzix, using paper from the DCWV *Fairy Tale* stack. The edges have been distressed with TH ink. Was fun to make - as always! Thanks for looking!

Friday, 12 November 2010

Simon Says Stamp and Show your Favourite Tim Holtz Stamp!

Impossible to have just one favourite stamp from TH!! As I love nearly all of his things, I have made a tag using lots of different techniques, as I always have different favourites! The tag is made of corrugated cardboard from an old box, and has first been embossed with my favourite TH embossing folder. Then I swiped it with archival black and clear embossed it. Then came the perfect pearls in pink, gold and interference blue, which I heat embossed again. Then I used my favourite bird-cage die, cut from an old chocolate package. The bird has been die-cut from cardboard, clear embossed and then brushed with the same colours of perfect pearls before heating. The nest has been made from some fibres, the metal charm is from LaBlanche, with a flower embedded in glossy accents. The *admit one* ticket has been stamped with archival ink, clear-embossed and then cut out and fixed with jump rings to the cage. Was fun to make, as always, but difficult to photograph and get the colours! Thanks for looking!

GC78: Spicy Supply Challenge - Sewing Notions

The background for this has been made with sticky backed canvas, printed with a virtual collage, and decorated with various bits and bobs from the sewing box. The prints I used for the collage are taken from an old German Ladies' Magazine, showing the latest fashions and sewing tips from 1900, and an old bill, which I scanned & distressed. The photo is of Miriam, when she was about 4 months old - I had been sewing, she was sitting next to me on the couch, and enjoying playing with the tape measure. I die cut the lace around her pic. The bowler hatted gent in the right corner was once sewn into a garment, it is part of a little plastic bag which held the spare buttons. The cards in the top left hand corner once held darning wool, and the little cut-out doll and dress were taken from an Israeli magazine from the 1950's. The buttons are also from my button tin, and the leaves are from Prima. Was fun to make, especially looking at all the old bits and bobs in my sewing tin, which is always a journey into the past. Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

The Night the Synagogues burnt....Reichspogromnacht 1938

In the night from November 9th/10th 1938 the Nazis started a pogrom. The action had been planned for weeks, all local SA and SS groups had been informed. During the evening, SA & SS groups started to smash the windows of Jewish shops and houses, Jewish families were pulled from their beds, their belongings smashed to bits or thrown out of the windows, people were arrested without any reason, many were beaten up and badly injured, and then the synagogues throughout Germany were set on fire. More than 7000 Jewish shops and businesses were also destroyed. Police and fire brigade had been ordered to attend, but only to prevent people helping or to insure that the fire did not spread to neighbouring, non-Jewish properties. Many photos show passers by just standing, watching. Others show the fire brigade standing in front of the burning houses and laughing. Hospitals and doctors were forbidden to treat the wounded, although many did, in spite of endangering themselves. More than 20,000 people (including my great uncle and his father) were carried off to prisons or concentration camps, where they were repeatedly beaten, and only released when their families could prove that they had documents and tickets to leave Germany. Between three and four thousand people died either during the night or later as a result of their injuries or subsequent beatings.. Some or them disappeared, probably beaten to death and *disposed of*.
The pogrom was *sold* to the German and international media as an *act of spontaneous people’s anger* to revenge the shooting of the German Ambassador Von Rath by the 17 year old Herschel Grynszpan in Paris. To *punish* the Jews for the damage they had caused (!) a *punishment tax* was levied to pay for the costs of the burnt out synagogues and their demolition, which amounted to the amazing sum of 1,127billion Reich mark. This night was called *Cristal Night* by the Nazis to make it sound like something harmless, where just a few windows got broken. In reality it was a long planned vicious pogrom, which should have shown the rest of the world what Hitler was up to. Those who managed to emigrate from Germany after this were *lucky*, even if they lost everything they had, those who stayed ended in the concentration camps, where 6 million Jews from the whole of Europe were murdered, including all of the family of my grandmother in Berlin.
This is in memory of them, and all who lost their lives as a result of this madness that engulfed the whole world.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

GC 75: Random Redhead Challenge - Arches

As I find arches fascinating, I decided to try this challenge, but this time I did something different. I picked my favourite pics out of the slide-show at the bottom, and made them into a virtual collage where the pics get exposed one over the other. I printed the picture onto sticky-backed canvas from Ranger, which I them stuck onto a slightly larger canvas. I used TH inks to distress the sides and edges and parts of the picture. I also stamped the top of an arch at the bottom of the pic, using clear embossing ink and perfect pearls in gold to heat emboss. Then I cut a thin arch out of some scrap paper and stuck it on. Although it is not possible to see each of the arches clearly, I like the effect of light and shadow this has made, and how the arches merge into each other. The pics were taken In Israel in Acco (Acre) and Achsiv. Achsiv is mentioned in the Old Testament, it was a little Phoenician Harbour and village. Today you can swim in the remains of the old harbour, while enjoying the view of the ancient houses, which are set into a wonderful garden leading down to the sea. Acco is also an ancient port, which has been *visited* at various times by the Saracens, the Crusaders, and Napoleon, to name just a few. The old harbour can still be seen, many ancient, twisting streets full of arches, Mosques, houses and the ruins of the wonderful crusader castle. The pics above show (1) the selected pics, (2) the collage, and then the finished picture. Underneath I have made a slide show of some more photos. I think I will be trying this again ! Thanks for looking!

Friday, 5 November 2010

Pictures of autumn , some ATCs and a card....

After the rain and the wind of the past few days, most of the autumn leaves have flattered from the trees, forming a wonderful, red and gold carpet of leaves, which is lovely to walk through, kicking them up again and again.... But sometimes rather dangerous, too. The leaves act as a camouflage for the *mines* planted there by some dogs. I'm not blaming the dogs, either, just their owners!
Still, I will be very sorry when the red-gold beauty is finally swept away, leaving behind a cold and grey November.
Took a few photos of my favourite trees, of the sun rising over the airport, and of the trees in front of my balcony. And I made my October ATCs, which are going out rather late this time. Shame on me, as it was my turn to choose the theme, which I did, just didn't get round to making them (hangs head in shame).