Saturday, 23 January 2016

Altenew January 2016 Blog Hop winner!


Happy Saturday! I'm popping by today to announce the randomly selected winner of a $30 Altenew  gift certificate from the January 2016 Blog Hop. So, without further ado, the winner is:

Congrats, Barb! Be sure to email Altenew at to claim your prize and happy shopping!

Fear not if you're not a winner here as there are plenty more prizes to be won! Check out the Altenew blog today where you'll find even more winners and links to more blog peeps announcing even more winners. Good luck!

Right, I must dash as I've got some serious crafting to do for a few magazine commissions (perk of the day job!) and for the blogeroo too so I need to go make myself a lovely cup of tea to get the mojo warmed up. I hope you have a super weekend and you're keeping toasty and safe if  you're caught up in that crazy snow storm across the pond!


Friday, 22 January 2016

Altenew & Freckled Fawn collaboration blog hop!

Thank You

Happy Friday! Woo hoo – the weekend it just about here and I'm kicking it off here on the blogeroo with a fantastic blog hop as two awesome companies join forces: Altenew & Freckled Fawn! You should have hopped across here from Adrienne Alvis; if you haven't, then be sure to start out at Altenew HQ. :)

Freckled Fawn kindly offered the Altenew Design Team some of their yummy products to work with for our blog hop projects and I couldn't resist trendy arrow-shaped paperclips, geometric washi tape and cool puffy alphabet stickers. :)

Thank You close up

As I sat down to play with these new pretties along with my stash of wonderful Altenew goodies, I found that the products complemented each other perfectly.

tips and tricks
  • I stamped my card front with triangles from the Sohcahtoa stamp set (one of my favourites) and found they co-ordinated so well with the triangles on the washi tape. 
  • To try and keep the design balanced, I purposely stamped the triangles on the card base facing upwards as they are on the washi tape. 
  • The paperclip at the top helps to guide your eyes to follow the design through the sentiment. The 'you' is a partially stamped sentiment from Label Love and overhangs the focal point slightly to balance with the overhanging paperclip in the opposite corner. 
Well that's my card (and detailed explanation!) for today's amazing blog hop. Don't forget to comment along with way as there are TWO Freckled Fawn Capture embellishment kits and TWO Atlenew $30 gift certificates up for grabs for randomly selected comments along the hop. Comments must be left by Tuesday 26th January by 11.59am EST.

I won't keep you any longer as you're sooooooooo near the end of the blog hop. Next on your hopping adventure is the final stop at the Freckled Fawn blog. Happy hopping and have a fabulous weekend!


Monday, 18 January 2016

Altenew January 2016 Blog Hop!


Happy Monday! I'm kicking off the working week celebrating the Altenew January 2016 release as part of a fabulous blog hop. You won't want to miss out as there's prizes to be won along the way! You should have arrived here from my talented friend, Aga. If you haven't then be sure to start out at Altenew HQ. :)

Well. Where's a gal to start? With 10 brand-new stamp sets released I was spoilt for choice! However, one set really hit a soft spot with me: Teachers Rule. Before my day job as an editor of two papercrafting magazines,  I used to teach and support students in a secondary school. I just couldn't resist inking this set up. :)


The multi-step stamp sets that Altenew are renowned for, now come in the form of an apple! I love this idea and wanted to show a different look you can achieve with this concept by stamping the shadow layer with VersaMark ink and dusting it with gold Perfect Pearls.

Teacher close up

I added a little shadow to ground the apple by painting below it with Altenew's Frosty Pink ink mixed with water. I also added some splashes of Perfect Pearls mixed with water too for a fun, inky, shimmery look too. It's hard to capture in a photograph but trust me, it's there!

So, what's next? Well how about some lollypops? You may know them as popsicles, but they're ice lollies over here!

You're my favorite2

This background and sentiment are stamped from the adorable Way Too Sweet stamp set. Containing a fun mix of sweet treats and punny sentiments, this set is so sweet it's giving me toothache!

You're my favorite close up2

This was a super-quick card to create and could be made in a variety of colours. I can't wait to stamp the yummy cupcakes from this set in the future. :)

My final project for this blog hop (believe me, I couldn't have made way more but you've got hopping to do!) features the versatile Mini Blossoms stamp set.

miss you

I love the scale of flowers in this set – perfect for creating both focal points AND backgrounds. I used a rock 'n' roll technique with Altenew inks to ink up the flowers and leaves with darker edges. It's such a simple technique, but adds so much dimension.

miss you close up

Well, that's your lot from me today, but before you hop along, make sure you leave a comment on the Altenew blog by Friday 22nd January as they're giving away $50 gift certificates to THREE lucky winners! It's also worth commenting on this post as I'm giving away a $30 gift certificate too! Please leave comments here by Friday 22nd January to be in with a chance of winning.

Right, I must let you hop along as there's plenty more to see! Next on your hopping adventure is the fabulous Anna Kossakovskaya. :)


Sunday, 10 January 2016

Inspired by the best day ever!


I hope that you're having a lovely weekend! I'm playing a little bit of catch up here and thought I'd share a card with you that I recently shared on the Altenew blog. It shows a fun ways of stretching your stash, including using a small stamp to create a fab border.

hello angle 
I've also used a yummy vellum foiled sheet from Crate Paper's Hello, Love collection. I couldn't resist. The colour combo is inspired by what can only be described as the best. day. ever. Our Wedding Day. Today marks our first anniversary and I can't believe it was a year ago today I married my best friend (sorry it's soppy, but it's true!). Here are just a few memories of our special day:

Wedding Day

Well that's enough soppy, lovey-dovey antics from me. If you're looking for a crafty fix then be sure to stalk Instagram and Periscope for the winter CHA 2016 show. It's full of the hottest products for 2016 from the best companies and lots of creative peeps meeting up. I've been glued to it this weekend and it's on my bucket list to attend it. However, this year (and especially for today) I'm going to spend my time glued to Mr Gray. :)


Monday, 4 January 2016

Fabulous florals...

Have a fabulous day

Welcome back to the sneak peeks of Clearly Besotted's January release! If you've only just joined in the fun, then be sure to check out Day 1 and Day 2 (especially if you're a fan of punny cards!) All of the new goodies will be available to purchase from tomorrow night at 10pm GMT.

You may, or may not, be glad to hear that I've stepped away from the punny cards for today with this card featuring stamps from the Minature Florals Collection II set. I wasn't kidding when I said that there was something for everyone with this release! Clearly Besotted design stunning floral-themed stamp sets like no-one else IMHO. This set works fabulous on its own or paired with the larger versions of the flowers you'll spot from previous Clearly Besotted sets. I'm thinking of beautiful cards co-ordinating with miniature versions as tags for a future project!
tips and tricks
  • I'm not brilliant when it comes to horticulture so I'm not entirely sure what colour these flowers should be. I'm a true believer in artistic license with such things so go for whatever colour you please! 
  • I heat-embossed the flowers onto vellum and coloured the majority on the reverse (no need to stay inside the lines!) using cheap anything-but-fancy pencil crayons. I then added a touch of shading and sparkle on the front using Sakura Gelly Roll Stardust pens. 
  • There's some serious fussy-cutting going on with these vellum flowers, but following a raised, heat-embossed line makes it much easier than you think. 
From punny stamp sets to seriously stunning floral stamp sets, there's a lot to check out in this release! I won't keep you any longer as I just know that Stephanie will be sharing plenty more sneak peeks with links to the rest of the talented Design Team's wonderful creations. Enjoy!


Sunday, 3 January 2016

You're purrfect (& punny!)


Welcome to day 2 of the Clearly Besotted sneak peeks of the January release! If you missed yesterday's 'hoppy' sneak peek you can check it out here. All of these goodies will be available to purchase from 10pm (GMT) 5th January.

I'm back with yet another punny card today. What can I say? I just can't resist them! Today's card features the set, You're Purrfect. I love cats so I was very happy when this set landed on my desk! The hardest part of this card was deciding which cats to feature as there's a total of eight cute kitties to choose from. I couldn't possibly just stamp one, so I came up with a design that would let me have four. :)

tips and tricks
  • In order to stamp the cats in a straight line, I lightly drew a line across the card front as a guide. If you've got an acrylic block long enough you can position the stamps on the card front and pick them up together onto the block. It means you only have to stamp once too!
  • I wanted to show that these cutie-patootie sets are not only for colouring. I think they look fab as an outline image, but if you wanted to add some colour and you're not confident at colouring you could aways paper-piece them.
  • I rounded the top two corners of the card to complement the circular sentiment. It's just a little finishing touch that adds a bit of interest.
  • Although the sentiment doesn't say 'Valentine's', this would make a lovely Valentine's Day card for someone who loves cats (Hmm...I wonder if Mr Gray has his Valentine's card or even our first anniversary card organised yet? *wink*)

Well I think that I'm almost out of puns for now, so if you've not hopped across here from Stephanie's, then take a peek over there because not only does she have gorgeous samples to tease you with, but there's links to everyone else on the Design Team sharing inspiration galore with January's release!

As always, thank you so much for stopping by here today!


Saturday, 2 January 2016

Hoppy birthday (& New Year!)

hoppy birthday

Happy (or should that be, Hoppy?!) New Year! I hope that you've had a wonderful time over the festive season; I can't believe it's all over and now we're here ready to see what 2016 brings!

Well one thing that you can be sure of is that the start a new month means that it's time for another fantastic release of goodies from Clearly Besotted! We're kicking off the sneak peeks today of the January release and it's got something for everyone (I know, I say it every month but it's true!) The new release will be available to purchase from 10pm (GMT) on January 5th. :)

Today's punny card comes courtesy of the fabulous 'Jump for Joy' stamp set. My pun-loving heart skipped (or hopped!) a beat when I saw this wonderful mini set, and you just know that this little guy was destined for googly eyes, right?

tips and tricks

  • I blended Peacock Feather & Broken China Distress Ink onto the bottom of the white cardstock to represent water. To add a little more detail, I flicked water onto the ink to bleach it. 
  • I have a serious addiction to Glossy Accents and it's so fitting for the waxy lily pad and frog. I like to fussy-cut the images first, stick them onto cubes of blu-tac and then coat them in Glossy Accents. Then I can simply move them away from temptation to dry by holding the cubes. 
  • Confession: I mixed two sentiments from two different sets to create this customised sentiment. The word 'birthday' is actually from a set available in February (I didn't realise until I'd used it!) so you're getting a very early sneak peek of new set. Oops!

I really wanted to add some meaning to the 'hoppy' sentiment so I opted for an old-skool-stylee concertina-folded strip of card below the frog to add a wobbly dimension. So simple. And fun. :)

hoppy birthday close up

If you haven't already, then be sure to pop across to CB HQ (aka Stephanie!) to check out some more sneak peeks from the rest of the Design Team. I guarantee that it's the perfect way to get a serious mojo-boosting kick of inspiration. :)

I'll be back tomorrow with another sneak peek of the fabulous January release, I hope you can join me! Thank you so much for stopping by today!



I am on various design teams and receive free product to use and promote. I geniunely love the products of the companies and all opinons are honest and my own.

I'm flattered if I've inspired you and you want to CASE anything of mine, but please don't enter it for commercial publications or competitions.
Thank You!
All designs, text, and photographs on Crafting Confessions are ©2009-2016 to Amy Gray unless stated otherwise.