Monday, 31 March 2014

Family, friends and fun...oh a little bit of craft too!

The weekend before last I was super exciting as I was to off to meet some of crafty heroines and buy some crafty stash!  Shopping and girly gossip what more does a girl need?!?! I left hubby at home to have boys day with our Newf, Fergus, and headed to the NEC with my lovely mum and sister there was lots of giggling and gossiping!

If you have never been to the Hobbycrafts show at the NEC but love crafting or Sewing you NEED to go, it truly is a crafting/sewing heaven...and your bank manager's worst nightmare!

The hall was packed with craft stalls selling all sorts of goodies; papers, cards, stamps, dies, glitter, inks, there were demos, workshops and take & makes to join in with too.   We spent so long looking around the craft hall we didn't even get to see the Sewing and Fashion, Embroidery & Stitch halls so next time we are going for 2 days - can you tell I'm smiling as I write this!

I was lucky enough to meet and have my photo taken with the very talented Barbara Gray, I'm addicted to buying Clarity stamps and masks and love to watch her In The Classroom shows on tv.  To me she is not just a crafter she is a real artist!

Probably my most favourite crafter is Carley Duff.  Watching her show on a Thursday lunchtime is a Joy!  Not only does Carley bring fabulous products to us but she brings a ray of sunshine, and her enthusiasm and passion for craft is contagious!  I should know I am well and truly struck down with it and there is no cure!  Her show is very interactive.  She always answers emails sent into the show and has a Barmy Crafty Army on Facebook.  I was also lucky enough to meet some of her design team, Donna, Gill & Michelle.  There are such a lovely bunch of girlies and it was a wonderful atmosphere around their stand - full of fun and laughs!

Here are some pics of me meeting the 'girls' and my stash from the show.


Create Blog Challenge #24 Card ~ Colour Inspiration Block

My card for the Creata Blog Challenge #24.

Products used;
Creata Patterned paper
Creata Silky Card
Tattered Lace High Heel die
Woodware Flower punch
Xcut Four Petal Nesting die

Friday, 28 March 2014

Creata Challenge and Good Luck card

This was made for a friend as a good luck in your new job card.  I also entered it into the Creata Facebook Challenge.
Products used;
Creata DARK mirror board
Creata 15x15 double sided pattern paper pad
EK Success Punch
Caroline Bestie Stamp by Sherri Baldy
Bundled Sage Tim Holtz Distress Ink
Handcrafted ribbon rose and sparkles from stash
Joy flourish dies

Graph It Markers used;

Thursday, 20 March 2014

The Year In Books: February Review(s) and March's Choice

I can now share with you my review of Watch by Moonlight.  I came across this book by chance at a boot sale, it stopped me dead in my tracks when I saw the title and was so delighted to find it was, as I had hoped, based on my favourite poem The Highway Man by Alfred Noyes.  I have to admit it's been sitting on my shelf for a while, as although I was eager to read it I also didn't want to be disappointed, similar to when you see a film based on a book, personally I've yet to see a film better than the book!

'On a storm-tossed British night in 1763, a fine gentleman rides up to an old inn and requests shelter. His name, he tells Bess, the innkeeper's beautiful daughter, is Jason Quick, a man of wealth and honor. But there is blood on his sleeve. And his appearance is followed soon after by the arrival of the king's redcoats on the trail of a notorious bandit known as the Golden Fleecer.There is much about this bold, enigmatic stranger that frightens Bess, but there is something that draws her to him as well. And Quick himself is undone by the exquisite loveliness of this dark-eyed miss whose lustrous black hair cascades well past her waist. Soon there are no secrets between them, as Jason reveals the truth to the lady who has, in an instant, become his eternal love. It is he whom the redcoats seek, the daring highwayman, the most wanted man in Dorset.For Bess -- who long ago resigned herself to a life of toil and drudgery yet has never strayed from respectability -- the shock of Jason's revelations cannot dampen the fire that now burns in her breast. There is a tender heart within him, and a nobility to his criminal purpose. And no love in history has ever been more fated...or more dangerous.One more brazen robbery and Jason Quick can fulfill the sworn duty that has determined the course of his life. Then he and his lady can begin anew together in the far colonies, across a vast ocean. But treachery breeds in unexpected corners and dastardly traps are set in the shadows -- even as the highwayman sits astride his stallion beneath his true love's window and vows, "I'll come to thee by moonlight, though hell should bar the way."Kate Hawks, a stunning new voice in historical fiction, renders atale rich in atmosphere, passion, adventure, and intense emotion -- a magnificent, heartfelt retelling of one of the most enduring love stories of all time.'

I was not disappointed at all!  The book is beautiful written and could easily has been written at the same time as the poem.  Kate Hawks captured the pace of the poem and the wonderful story.  It was odd reading a book where I knew the ending, and part of me hoped it wouldn't end the same way as the poem but them it would not have been true to itself.  The characters came to life with complete personalities and background stories.  All in all this book is a good as I hoped it would be if not better!

10 KDS stars from me!

I read the above book so quickly that I was able to read another Quick Read (you can buy these in book shops for £1), Blackout by Emily Barr.
Publisher: Review
A tense and chilling Quick Read from the queen of psychological suspense.  You wake up in a strange room, with no idea how you got there.  You are abroad, in a city you have never visited before.  You have no money, no passport, no phone.  And there is no sign of your baby.  What do you do?  

I've never read an Emily Barr novel before and I'm not sure I would a bought this if it hadn't a been just a £1 and laying beside a till point when I purchased something else-clearly this book was saying 'buy me'!!  It's quite incredible that Miss Barr has managed to cram such a twisted plot in to so few words and make it enjoyable.  It's really very gripping and because it's so short you can easily read it in a just a few hours.  Not once did I see the ending coming...

9 KDS stars!

For my March read I'm going with a traditional chick lit novel by one of my favourite authors, Practically Perfect by Katie Fforde...  See you next month.

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Challenge Card

Dressing Table of a Lady

Square card blank
Creata Patterned Card
Creata Shabby Chic Kit
Creata Tres Chic Kit

Challenges Entered:  Creata Challenge #23 A Touch of Class 

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

How to be ULTRABLAND....

Like a lot of 'girly' girls I love cosmetics and other lotions and potions, but I happen to be extremely fussy and whilst I'm willing to pay good money for creams and cosmetics I want high quality products and value for money, don't we all!  My skin is very sensitive and also quite dry, over recent weeks my eyelids have been increasingly sensitive.  I felt what really needed tackling was the removal of eye make-up, I tried many cleansers and creams including ones specifically designed to remove eye make-up but I hadn't been overly impressed with anything, there always seemed to be a lot of scrubbing involved.

I've always been a huge fan of Lush but only every bought bath bombs and bubble bars, I've never really bought what I would consider to be essentials.  I contacted the lovely peeps at Lush via the power of Facebook and they recommended Ultrabland.  So off I toddled to my (almost) local Lush and they very kindly gave me a small sample pot.

'Based on an ancient Roman formula for cold cream, Ultrabland is beautifully simple and very effective. Made with almond oil, rose water, beeswax and honey, this cleanser removes all traces of dirt and makeup, without stripping away your skin’s natural defences.' text from Lush website

I have used cold creams in the past but I tended to find them a bit thick so I was sceptically.  Using my fingers to rub the cream onto my face, I left it on to do it's magic whilst I brushed my pearly whites (I even multitask my beauty regime!) and then using a reusable washable cotton pad (better for the environment than disposables) dampened down with warm water I removed all the cream.  I found a couple of gentle wipes over my eye area was enough to remove all trace of make-up, no scrubbing at stubborn eyeliner or mascara.

At £10.95 for a 100g pot it's definitely worth the pennies.  I found that I didn't need much, it smells beautiful and left my skin feeling nourished.  I purchased a full pot within the week, and I feel anything but Ultrabland! 8/10 KDS stars (a little pricey but worth the money.)
Stock Photo from Lush website