Sunday, November 23, 2014

How Long Has It Been?

It seems like forever since I took part in a crafting challenge and did a blog post to go with it.

In my defence, I do have my left arm in plaster again.  I have had corrective surgery to the broken wrist that I had in January this year.  I will be out of the cast before Christmas, thank goodness.

However, I am not very good at sitting around doing nothing and have managed to make something for the current challenge at The Craftroom which is to create something, anything, in 3-D.

I purchased this cutting file from the Silhouette store hoping it would be easy enough to construct in my current disadvantaged state, lol.  I’m pleased to say that it was.


I do have another 3-D project almost completed, just waiting for the finishing touches to arrive in the post.  Hopefully I will have time to share that one too, before this challenge ends.  If not, I just may share it anyway.

Thanks for stopping in to take a look – I am off to rest the wrist.

Esther  xx

Monday, September 15, 2014

New Tag : The Letter J + Die-Cuts

The current challenge at Dragons Dream Tag It On is to make a tag incorporating the letter J and die-cuts.  Having the Cameo means that I can pretty much die-cut anything – I love that!

I had several ideas in the first five minutes, as you do, but this is what I went with.


My son has been learning Japanese at school for three years now so I kind of had to really.

The Japanese Doll is a shape from the Silhouette Store.  She does look a bit cross-eyed, I admit, but still quite cute.  As per the challenge rules, at least one stamp had o be used as well.  I dug out the Japanese text stamp from Kaisercraft and the lantern of one from a set of about 6 different lanterns but I have no idea of the manufacturer.  Few coloured sprays of ink and it was all done.

Esther xx

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Letter “O” and Rust–TIO #173

Julie Ann has set the recipe for this challenge and while I has all sorts of ideas for the rust factor, I got somewhat stuck on the “O” factor.  I had a word floating around in my brain that refused to go away so I decided I simply had to work with it.


I knew I had a stamped Magnolia image that would be perfect (I don’t actually own stamp, I had stamped several that belong to Shell quite some time ago) but it took me forever to find it amongst my treasures.

I already had the textured tag ready so I hand drew the wall for the patient to sit on.  I used Rust Hinge and Wild Honey distress inks to colour the tag and Gelatos to colour the image.  I used Archival Sepia to stamp the dragonflies and the stars and Archival Black to stamp the text onto fabric.  A few droplets of water onto the inked tag and it was good to go.

A big thanks to the team at Dragons Dream Tag It On for placing my Party Dress tag in the Top 3 for the last challenge.  Still haven’t wiped the smile of my face!

Please pop on over there to see what the design team have done – they rock!

Esther  xx

Sunday, August 10, 2014

The Letter P with Cogs

It sounds like a strange combination for a tag challenge and yet, this is what Elizabeth would like to see over at Dragons Dream Tag It On.  As usual the design stars have produced some great tags.
I knew almost immediately what I wanted to do and here it is:
It’s pretty much as I expected it to turn out.  It’s such a shame that the camera doesn’t pick up the pretty shimmer in the dress and letters.  I used 3 different sprays from Lindy’s Stamp Gang over a stamped image of a steampunk dress from Aly’s Inky Fingers in the UK.  I added stamped and fussy cut layers along with some tiny watch parts that I wish I could remember where I bought (I really want some more now).  The letters were cut on the Cameo, the font is called Gearbox and they fit together perfectly.
Here is a closer look at those wee watch parts.
Why not play along with the team and produce a tag of your own – don’t forget, it must contain at least one stamped image.
 By the way ....  My last tag was named in the top three !!!  So excited !!!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

A Summer Garden

Hazel has set the current challenge at The Craftroom blog to create a project with the theme of a Summer Garden.  Ironically, it snowed briefly at my house the evening after I created this.

I had the chance to watch some online shows, live and recorded and they gave me the perfect inspiration to make this tag especially for this challenge.


The videos I watched were from Limor Webber and Prima Live.  I stamped my image first and then protected the face with masking fluid.  This dries to a rubber-type surface and then simply rubs off when you are ready.  Before I got to that part, I used texture paste through a stencil, various colour sprays, Gelatos, partial text stamping and fluid ink splatters.  I grabbed flowers from my stash (most are Prima, I think) and set to placing them around her face.  Once I rubbed off the masking fluid, I coloured her features with my distress markers.

It’s a reasonably heavy tag but I love the pretty colours that I have ended up with.

Esther  xx

Thursday, July 31, 2014

The Craftroom Challenge

It has been quite a while since I have been able to take part in the fortnightly challenge at The Craftroom.

The current challenge is little different, being driven by an inspiration board from Debi.

I do have a bit of lime green “thing” going at present but chose to take a slightly different tack with my entry. This is the card I have made.


I love water lilies and Monet’s painting of them sprang to mind immediately so I chose to make a small 3-d water lily using a cutting file from The Silhouette store.  It was fun to put together although it was little fiddly owing to the fact that I had reduced the size quite dramatically.  The shape for the stamped sentiment was cut on my Cameo too.

Here is a closer look at the lily.  There is no way this would fit in an envelope for posting so it is likely to sit on my craft table for while, where I can look at it for a bit longer.


Thanks for stopping in to take a look.  Why not grab some inspiration from Debi and join us at The Craftroom.

Esther  xx


Sunday, July 27, 2014

Altered Clock

I had picked up a clock in an emporium-type store a month or so ago and have been itching to alter it.


I mean …. how could I not ??

After seeing a few altered frames/clocks etc on friend’s blogs and on Pintrest (of course, lol) it was the great Prima Live show by Trina McClune that set my mind racing.  You can see the recording of the show here.

I removed the inner clock face and workings along withe the glass, leaving me a fantastic, deep, distressed frame to play with.  and here is the result of around 2 1/2 hours in my craft room last night.


Here is a closer photo showing a bit more detail.  My mother does tatting – an almost lost art of lace making with thread and a wee shuttle and the white lace is some that she has made for me.  The paper I used was Websters Pages and the various flowers are from Prima.  The resin Eifel Tower came from Typo and the Butterfly from a lone pack that I found at The Warehouse.  The photo was taken by Duo Photography at a shoot we did last November.

Thanks for taking a look – I would love to know what you think.

Esther  xx

Friday, July 25, 2014

Hope …

The current challenge at Dragons Dream Tag It On is to create a tag, incorporating at least one real stamp, that is based on the colour Brown and the letter “H”.


My manila tag was sprayed with Vintage Photo distress ink and stamped in random areas with a prima honeycomb stamp.  I then added some “smooshed” brown Gelato to modelling paste and used that with a crafters workshop feather stencil.  My stamped sentiment is from Artistic Outpost.


Thanks for taking a look – it’s been a while, huh?

Esther  xx

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I made a Lighthouse

I have wanted to get this cutting file kit for ages and with the current challenge at The Craftroom being Sun, Sand and Surf it was the perfect time to buy and get crafting.
I have used the Seaside kit from SVG Cuts and having the designer edition of the Silhouette software means that I am able to open the cutting files with no fluffing around.
This is the SVG Cuts version:
Pretty cool, huh??
So I got cutting and assembling and this is my version:
The lantern section lifts off so you can pop in a LED tealight.  I am super chuffed with it.  I didn’t like my original stripes.  I could find the “right” cardstock in my stash so I took them off and used some washi tape instead, following the guidelines on the main body of the structure. I also opted out of putting vellum behind the windows.
They have a YouTube video tutorial on how to put it together but, in fact, I didn’t even watch it.  It was easy enough to work it out.  I am looking forward to making some of the other pieces in the kit too.
Esther xx

PS:  Mari from Creative Card Crew has suggested that I enter this on her challenge site too.  Thank you so much Mari!!  Another fantastic challenge site to follow.  Yay!!!

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Letter R + Music

Those are the guidelines for the current challenge at Dragons Dream Tag It On.  As always, at least one “real” stamp must be used.

So many ideas flowed through my wee brain – until I got to this one!  I just couldn’t shake the song so I gave up fighting and went along with it instead.  It doesn’t help that my son has bit of a Michael Jackson thing going on right now, lol.


And yes ….  My Robin really does rock.


After stamping my bird and various section of music, I coloured my background using my new Gelatos.  Yummy fun, I can tell you.  (I have been watching untold You Tube video’s on their use so I just had to have my first really good play)

I stamped another bird image and coloured that with Gelatos too.  Then I made a spring from a light gauge beading wire and taped it to the back of the cut out image. I then made a wee hole in the tag and fed the spring through to a point where the Robin sat in the right place and taped it in place on the back. So … now he “rocks”.

The cardstock for the title was coloured with Gelatos too and then cut on my Cameo.  I stamped some coloured seam binding with the same music stamp and it was all done.

Thanks for taking a look – why not pop on over to take a look at the other examples – there are some real beauties, I promise.


Esther   xx


Friday, May 30, 2014

Some Layouts–At Last.

Finally – I have completed a few layouts.  They are simple in design, with photo being the real focus, but I like them.


This photo was taken with some of the girls who attended a fundraising, scrapbooking, getaway in Okiwi Bay.  It’s in the French Pass area of the beautiful Marlborough Sounds.  Some of us stayed with the awesome Brenda McKay and some stayed in the house right next door!  We had a fantastic time raising money for the Bevan Fund, doing challenges and completing projects of our own.  We had auctions and raffles and food galore.  Beth was a whizz in the kitchen and I’m pretty sure no-one went hungry.  We also had great fun teasing Trina McClune about being “famous” – check her out on The Live with Prima Ustream channel.  She really is famous, lol

If you can possibly see your way clear to donate to the Bevan Fund it would really be appreciated.  Bevan is the son of one of my very special Scrapbooking friends who is in dire need of assistance in order to enable him to spend  his last months/weeks/days with his children in Australia.  The background story is on the Give A Little site.



This photo is of my daughter and her partner in London earlier this year.  I have no idea what the building is behind them but I really loved the photo.

They had what sounded like a fantastic but very full-on month.  The went to  Berlin,Budapest,Paris, Venice, Vienna, United Kingdom, Singapore and Bali (Not necessarily in that order though).

I think they went back to work for a rest after all that.



This photo was taken earlier this month after my Bestie of 35+ years had completed her very first half marathon.  She is a legend in her own lifetime and I just love her to bits!!  Andrea has always been there for me when I really needed her and even when I didn’t realise that I needed her.  I can only hope that I am as good a friend to her, as she is to me. (PS: I am somewhat in love with her spa pool too, lol)

Thanks for stopping by and thank you for considering a donation to the Bevan Fund.

Esther  xx


Sunday, May 25, 2014

Craft Room Challenge

The current challenge at The Craftroom is to Recycle.  Once again I wanted to do something a little bit different.  I created  little mini album but felt very “Ho-Hum” about it.  I will show it to you anyway (and then show you my 2nd project, which I actually like, lol)
So – lets not even talk about that one.
On to project No.2
I was trolling through Facebook, as you do, and my good friend Brenda McKay had put up a link to a Prima video by Limor Webber.  I was instantly excited because I am due to attend 3 of her classes at the end of June.  The link to her video is here.
I just happened to have some of the packaging that she use had used so away I went.  This is my version of her project, a recycled wooden box.
I found a scrap of canvas amongst my off cuts (I knew I had some, somewhere) and used archival ink to stamp the background.  Even though I cut, stuck and coloured it in the same order Limor did, it doesn’t make sense to me.  I really wanted to colour, cut, and then stick it in – it just seems more logical, lol
So, the elements are all just loose bits and pieces I had hanging around my desk.  I didn’t really have to search for anything (other than my scrap of canvas) I was done and dusted within 30 minutes and yet still felt pleased had I had actually done, and completed, something creative.
Thanks for stopping by – always so good to see you.
Esther  xx

Sunday, May 18, 2014

The letter Q and the colour Gold

This is the current challenge at Dragons Dream Tag It On.  Not surprisingly, Queens and Gold Crowns came to mind but, being just a little bit stubborn, I didn’t want to do the most obvious.

I perused the dictionary, and viewed the Google images but nothing really gelled.  I got the word Question stuck in my head and simply couldn’t shake it so this is what I came up with.


I started by spraying my tag, then painting with gesso.  I added some torn washi tape (which is not all that easy to tear vertically, by the way).  The words are stamped (first ever use for that alpha stamp set) and I used a gold marker to highlight the letters.

I added a rose, again highlighted with the gold marker, Gold topped pin and gold beads.

Can you finish the Quote (another Q word, you will note)?  I couldn't help but add references to arrows and outrageous fortunes, lol

See you again soon – thank you for stopping by.

Esther xx

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Tag It On #165–Letter B and a Flower

It’s time for a new tag over at Dragons Dream Tag It On and I was keen on this recipe – I had several ideas and this is what evolved from them:


I had a tag in my stash that I had cut from a printed digital paper and I layered my 3D elements (flowers from my stash and leaves cut on the Cameo) over the print and stamped my bees by colouring the stamp with distress markers.  Doing the stamping this way gave me the opportunity to leave out the postmarks on my 2nd and 3rd bees, which I thought was pretty cool.

Here is a better look at the 3d-ness (that is so not a real word, I’m sure):


A short sweet post today – thank you for stopping by.

Esther  xx

Friday, May 2, 2014

Romance & Roses

The current challenge at The Craft Room has been set by Debi.  She confesses to be a romantic at heart and, knowing her only a little, I can well imagine this being the case.

I love to create 3-D paper crafts and when I saw this cutting file at SVG Cuts, I just had to have it!   There are several others on my current wish list too.

Having the Designer Edition of the Silhouette software makes it a breeze to open and cut SVG files but I have not yet upgraded to the latest version.  There have been a few issues with the new version and while the majority of the bugs have been fixed, I think I will wait a bit longer.

I digress – here is my entry for Romance and Roses:


I have made a smaller version as well that I have plans to use in my Christmas village – yet to be constructed.  Watch this space, lol

Thanks so much for taking the time to look, read and comment – it really does mean a lot to me.

Esther  xx

Friday, April 25, 2014

A Light-bulb Moment

Miss Shell has been playing with light-bulbs (she clearly doesn’t get out much, lol).  She mentioned in a blog post that she had thought about making some of those light-bulb vases that are all over Pintrest at the moment.  She spied some for sale online and there were a ridiculous price.  You can read about that here.

I sniggered a bit and dared her to make her own – which of course she did (within an hour or so, in fact).  Take a look at her success in her follow-up post.

Then – because she is a bit like that – she dared me and Vicki to have a go too. (Vicki had also made a comment on her first post)

So …….


……  I did.  Yay me.

Honestly – if I can do it, so can you.  Anyone else game to give it a go?

Esther  xx


Tuesday, April 22, 2014


The current challenge over at The Craft Room is simply “Dance”.  The design team have come up with great samples(as usual) so why not pop on over, take a look and join in.

Here is my entry:



I went back to the tried and true Distress Ink technique of “smooshing” a variety of colours on my craft sheet, spritzing with water and dragging my tag through it a few times.  The stamp is from Tim Holtz and the silhouette is traced and cut on the Cameo. The crystal droplets just finish it off nicely, I think.

Thanks for stopping to take a peek.  I do appreciate it.


Esther  xxx


Friday, April 11, 2014

Dragons Dream Tag it On #164

You may, or not, have noticed that I have not been taking part in the tag challenges over at Dragons Dream Tag It On very often of late.

I have struggled with the letter part of the challenges, mainly.  That, combined with putting my time and energy into my exercise/weight loss effort, means that I just haven’t had it in me.

I did actually complete #163 – The letter Z and a face but didn’t get a blog post written in time to link it up.  I will pop a photo in at the end of this post though, just to show what I came up with.

This fortnight May has set the challenge as “The letter S and the Colour Blue.”  Now this one was so much easier.


I trimmed the bottom off a Prima tag and added some lace and bakers twine.  I used a stamp (no idea what brand it is) that has some sewing pattern references.  I resized and printed off the spool from a Kerri Bradford kit that I have and wrapped it with blue sewing thread.  I added a doily stamped on blue canvas, a blue hat pin and the wee blue rose.  The tape ribbon is from Typo and the zipper pull was floating around on my desk (how fortunate).



As for the non-entered tag …..  I really struggled with this.  A version of my original idea had already been entered and being stubborn (who, me?) I wanted to come with something else.  This is what I eventually made.


I even had two faces, hehe.  I had fun paper piecing Tilda’s clothes and hair.  I coloured the birds and the giraffe with Gelatos and a water brush.  The stone wall is also stamped and then shaded with Gelatos.

So, there you have it.  Two challenges in one – so to speak.


Esther  xx

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Influences of the 20th Century

The Craftroom challenge at the moment is to create a project that is influenced by the 20th Century.

There were so many great events and historic moments between 1900 and 2000 that it was quite hard to settle on something.

I chose to do yet another tag, mainly because I am somewhat time poor these days and I really do find it a good medium to showcase techniques.


I had a new background stamp that came with a magazine and I have been itching to use it.  It was perfect for this tribute to Princess Diana.  I stamped it with Archival and coloured it with a combination of markers, leaving out the distress markers that I would normally use.  I added a scrap of lace, some pearls and the photo.  I used my Brother label maker with clear tape for the text.

Reasonably simple but elegant, I think.


Friday, March 7, 2014

Dragons Dream Tag It On #161

I missed the last tag challenge – I just could not come up with anything.

This time around the inspiration is the Letter “A”, tag that is not the usual shape and, as usual, to include at least one real stamped image.  I really had to put my thinking cap on for this and I am pretty happy with the result.


Out with the trusty Silhouette Cameo to cut the anchor and the title.  I haven’t used my Magnolia stamps for ages but I thought Pirate Matilda was simply perfect for this.  I coloured her with watercolour pencils and popped her up on foam.  I “finger knitted” some bakers twine for the anchor’s chain.


Thanks for popping in to take a look.  Why not join the fun at Dragons Dream Tag It On and see what you can come up with?

Cheers, Esther

Thursday, February 13, 2014

February Layout Challenge

A Facebook group that I belong to has a challenge to do a layout about something or someone you love.

I don’t usually do the whole soppy Valentines thing so I thought I would give the Hearts and Roses a wide berth and do something much more subtle.

February is also the month of our wedding anniversary and we ticked off 16 years this month.  After some ups and downs, re-assessment and moving house we have settled into a new happiness - one I reflect on and am grateful for, daily.

We had a professional photo session back in November and while we don’t have all the images yet (gotta pay them off, lol) we were able to select 3 or 4 to start us off.  There were some awesome photos taken that day and you will see many more when I finally get them all, but this photo of James is one I really love.


The layout itself was inspired by on I saw on Pintrest – some amazing layouts on there!  I used a patterned paper from the 9th Wave collection by 7 Dots Studios, added texture past through stencils from Maya Road and Crafters Workshop. I added Distress Ink sprays, distressed the edges with a couple of punches and doodled a bit too (I NEVER do that).  The wooden flourish is from my stash, as is the key and the charm.  The Library Card and Sentiment card were created on the Silhouette Cameo.

It was really good to do a layout for James – to be honest there are not that many.  I must rectify that from this point on.

Thank you for stopping in and for all the encouraging comments you leave.  It means a lot.

Esther  xoxo


Thursday, February 6, 2014

Tag It On #159

This fortnight at Dragons Dream Tag It On the requirement is to use the colour Green and something starting with the letter F as well as the use of at least one real stamp.

Green Frog sprung immediately to mind, lol – No decent frog stamp in my stash however, so I came up with a plan B.


My husband would agree wholeheartedly with that sentiment!


I stamped my image and used water–colour pencils and a water brush, punching it out and popping it up on foam for some much needed dimension.  I typed the sentiment out on a word document, changing the text colour to white and the background to a deep sage green.

Thank you for taking the time to see what I have been up to.

Take care,  Esther xoxo

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Prison That Is Parkinsons

I belong to a Facebook group for New Zealand Paper crafters and Beth has put up a sketch challenge for January.


I wasn’t sure how I would manage a layout, with one hand in plaster but was keen to give it a go because I really like this sketch.

My husband’s Cousin, Glenys, took an amazingly poignant photo of my Father-In-Law sitting in the shade of the pergola one afternoon and when she showed it to me I just knew I had to scrap it!  She was really moved by this image and said to me – “This is life for Uncle Jim now.  Locked in the prison of Parkinson’s and Dementia.”  I admit to shedding more than a tear or two for this once strong and capable man.


Take care of yourself and your loved ones.


Esther xoxo

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Let There Be Light

The latest challenge over at Dragons Dream Tag It On is to make a tag inspired by the letter “L”, using script in some way and naturally, at least one real stamp.


I used a Prima tag that already had script printed on it and stamped my lamppost, heat embossing it with fine detail black.

I made my own “washi” tape by using by script stamp on good old standard “invisible” sticky tape from the local $$$ shop. I used Archival ink and it set really well with little or no smudging.

All that was needed then was the finishing touches: tiny roses, homemade textured leaves, a bit of bling, some colour on the lamps and the phrase (excuse my less than stunning hand-writing – I just couldn’t figure out another easy way to add it to my tag with only having one had to use, lol)

Thanks for taking a look – I appreciate it.

Take Care – Esther xoxo

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Dragons Dream Tag It On #157

I didn’t think I could take part this time – I broke my left wrist a week ago – but where there's a will, there's a way!

Helen has set the guidelines of  “the letter T and stencil(s)” along with the compulsory use of at least one real stamp.

I set out several rows of cheap medical tape and used a stencil with Tangerine coloured paint (actually it’s called Ginger Spice but you get my meaning, lol)


I then stamped over it with my favourite Text stamp.


I covered my Tag with the tape, added some Twine and finished it off with a Timepiece.


I’m pretty happy with the end result actually.  Not too bad for “a one-armed parent”, as my son calls me, haha.