Thank you for taking time to visit, and I hope I am even a tiny bit helpful as I have been helped and blessed by so many others. I have been doing Calligraphy since teens, and card making for many years as well. In 1990 I delighted in the joys of stamping with ink and embossing after a trip to Cairns, Qld. In 2009 I discovered the brayer, 2010 the Cuttlebug, also have now taking to reading up on crafting blogs and lo! Here I am, on one of my own.

I live on the coast of eastern Australia. I am a Christian. I trusted in the LORD down here at the beach, amazingly it is not far from where I now live. It was over 50 years ago, after a Beach Mission Service at the age of 12 years

Friday 28 January 2011

Lili of the Valley Challenge 82 *Male Birthday Cards* - always a bit tricky!!

Well here we are with another Lili of the valley Challenge (see here) , I am not very good at doing challenges but thought I would have another go… and when I read it I thought of my little man..called - Lazy Afternoon

I do so like him, I only have two stamps from the wonderful array at Lili of the Valley, one day will treat myself to some more but I decided to try this little man out in the watercolour paper, Distress inks with the watercolour pens I had seen on You-tube. Always fun trying out new methods and did it tapping the stamp pads on the acrylic blocks and mixed away with the brush as demo-ed.
Now for me watercolour paper is new medium too so it was new in many aspects, and the lady for whom this card was ordered was very, very pleased with it for her husbands 85th birthday too. I write poems for my cards as well and she was so pleased over all she promptly ordered some more cards.
I loved the way the shades of the paper picked up the Broken China and other colours of the distress ink ( I have a thing about stripes).
I do hope you enjoy seeing this too, and may God bless your day wherever you might be,

Shaz in Oz. x

Wednesday 26 January 2011

Happy Australia Day, Australia! +What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 86

Today is the 26th of Jan. and so that is why I have begun with the happy Australia day!! and it is a corker of a day! lovely and warm ( about 29C max.) and a swim at the creek is on the agenda hopefully, at high tide - a great way to celebrate! Looks good, eh??.. this was two days ago and I was too busy to swim..but will today all being well! A great way to celebrate!
A special prayer for all in Qld, NSW & Vic. suffering from floods and praying God will indeed bless Australia!

This Monday evening past my sisters and I made our annual pilgrimage to Weight Watchers... sigh! after Christmas and New Year, one must face the inevitable! Thus the books on my workdesk!
The last few days all my spare time has been spent studying the new programme as it has changed quite a bit this year. We go each year till we get to where we want to be and then skip the rest of the year (so we can put it all back on!).. kind of!?
... Oh, I know that is not our plan or Weight Watchers but it does seem to be what happens, and I know from the faces there that we are not the only ones that do this! Maybe it is something to do with being women, or being the age we are, or all of that?
I thought I would also do another calligraphy post as I was asked to do so on my first Wednesday two weeks ago!! Better even up the score.. cards are well and truly winning thus far.
So here is my very first piece of work done on vellum in dip pen and Textura text done not that long ago. To see the detail more clearly you might like to click on the picture. Tried several re-loads and resizes to get it clearer but this is the best I could do.

It is hanging in my bedroom, it is done in gouache and gold leaf (23carat) and I love it! It is from Jeremiah 9: 23, 24, and it is a beautiful passage.
Chap.9:vs 23) Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches:
vs[24] But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD

So there you are Lizzy here is another calligraphy post just for you! I will try and be more regular in them. I actually have to get back into it as have orders so maybe you will see the work in progress in the weeks ahead! God willing!

Oh, and to join in the fun of WOYWW, make sure you drop by Julia's Stamping Ground!   Happy WOYWW, everyone!

PS. for those of you who kindly asked.. my family and I were mercifully spared from the floods but we know folk who were not and so pray for them and the many many others, and yes! our celebrations today were in some part tinged with sorrow.
On a brighter note, my swim was superb!! : D

PPS. Re the illuminated work: it is all done by hand, the scroll-work included.. no stamping etc as I was asked. That is why I dont do as many posts as they take so long..30 to 50 hours depending on size as opposed to a couple of hours.

For the record all colour (and black) and painting is done in Gouache, which is sort of water-based paint and the gold leaf is built up with a glue size then gilded. I was supposed to pounce the vellum with a powder similar to Embossing buddy to stop the dip pen gripping into the vellum as you write - but did not find out till I had finished it! Not necessary on paper but vellum is different.
Ah well! next time, would have helped a lot if I had known..

Monday 24 January 2011

Thanks Maggie!

An Award

The lovely Maggie from Silvercrafter Blog has given me an award.

Thank you so much

There are a couple of conditions for the award

You have been TAGGED and want to participate?
Then create a post where you post the 'LOVE BLOG' image.

You should also blog the persons link that gave you the award and inform her/him that you accept the award.

You can then choose 3 - 5 favourite blogs which you also link in your post, then each blogger will inform you that they have been tagged.

Dear bloggers:
The aim of this action is that we bring unknown, good blogs to light, so I would ask you not to blog fellow bloggers that already have 3,000 followers.As always, the hardest part is to pick who to pass this on to, there are so many bloggers I could give it to, so.......

these are three of my favourite blogs so ladies thanks for all your help and encouraging me, and thank you Maggie for choosing me also!
God bless,
Shaz in ozxx

Wednesday 19 January 2011

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 85

WOYWW - here 'tis again!!
The start of another Wednesday, and a topsy-turvy week with computer issues has not been all joy, but hey! I am here and I want to say a really big thank you to everyone who stopped by my place last week for first intro in WOYWW ... what fun it was! have made heaps more friends on blogs and seen (and learnt) so much!!

One new addition in my craft cupboard is a spice rack!

Mm! I know a spice rack, but hey! it was there, all beautifully crafted by my father (originally for his wife in their former residence) and on the scrap heap so to speak (no room in his new abode, nor in any one else's as a spice rack) and there was space in my cupboard saying: "yes, please!" and so here you see it with my embossing powders, glitters, brads and other odds and all around! :)

Here also is my table and the fun I have had with my brayer doing some marbled paper for cards (if you want to check these out there is post below on how to do this method), and on this table are:
1. the card I was looking for when I did in my mock marble post on Monday, will show it below in close up.

2. new things for the week -the other Cuttlebug Plus folder (I showed the first one last week) and when I said had two I was asked what the other was? and this is it - the fancy labels and have stamped one of the labels so you can see how it is cut embossed and then I also coloured through the back section. I stamped one of my new Our Daily Bread Stamps on the fancy label -ah!

3. The Brocade Window is also at the back (next to my bug) and it has a small roll of ribbon under the clear acetate film that is on the back of the folder and you lift this film and then use chalk or ink to colour the raised embossed portion. (hope I made this clear? see last weeks post if not sure)

This card is done with the green colours in my post for the marbled background and then stamped with my Lizard stamp (from MY Stamps in Oz in late 1990's) and the Pocket Silhouettes from Stamping up and then mounted rather simply, on a mock lizard paper, black and green card and ribbon.

Oh, and to find out what WOYWW is and to join in the fun, drop by Julia's Stamping Ground!   Happy WOYWW, everyone!

Monday 17 January 2011

Brayer Fun Part 2 - Mock Marble

Well, this is part two of last weeks set up on Brayer fun and today I will try and show you the method that I was talking about,at the end of the post on Stampscapes.
It is brayering and making marbled effect paper, as in this sample below!
I had the idea from three areas..
1. looking at the top of the Tim Holtz ink pads..
2. Looking at these two videos on You -tube gave me the idea of what to do - it may help you understand the method if you watch these a) erratic brayering see here        
b) a plaid or tartan brayer pattern see here
     Although it is nothing like either of these it is germ of an idea and so we go from there. The method is little like the previous method as I used Stamp Spots from Stampin’ Up when I first devised this method as this was all I had at the time. “Necessity is the mother of invention”, they say. I will put lots of pickies and explain to the best of my ability but please anything I have not made clear, please ask! :)
Chose two colours (I find two is best one dark shade one light but by all means vary if you want.) I chose for first one two Spots from Bold Brights - Pink Passion and Orchid Opulence.

You load up the brayer with the two colours, one at the either end and the other colour in the middle and then you begin your erratic roller coverage of the cardstock (Glossy White also from Stampin Up in my case).
Once you have this to your satisfaction you then take a Stampin Up Texta or dye pen in Basic Black (or any dye ink pen would be okay I imagine) put two lines around it as you go (hold pen in one spot and turn roller is the easiest way).

In this case the colour was still too bright for me so i decided to add a few squirts from Lively Lavender (Stampin Up) ink and then brayer over it that way till I was happy with it again.
Then Stamped with two stamps from Our daily Bread just for fun... may make it up for the Challenge this week, time will tell...I really should have heat dried the brayering before stamping it as it was not as sharp as it should have been as a consequence..

I then thought I would show you some green as this was the one that set me on this quest to get this green I now have some Distress ink so will do this sample with distress inks as have overused the Spots and dried them up!

The colours are: Peeled Paint and Mustard Seed as the main colours then right at the end to tone it down I used just a tad of the Pine Needles, as it was a bit too yellow.

So here are the three samples I have done for today.The third not shown before is done with Spots again - Tempting Turquoise and Glorious Green..

NOTE: Colours do fade in intensity as they dry ..
  Then below is a card done with Tim Holtz stamp - part of Tattered Sparrow (horror! I cut the stamp up to make it more versatile) and a Bible Verse stamp I have had for many years, mounted on a Cuttlebug folder, Gracie's frame.

Have done a gorgeous card on lime green marble which may post later.... any queries PLEASE ask me!
..and may God bless you all and keep you safe wherever you may be.

Wednesday 12 January 2011

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 84

Well this will be my very first post on the WOYWW challenge and thought I would join the fun today as have been playing with two new items and thought I would share a little about them.
In today’s mail from US came my anxiously awaited Cuttlebug Plus and have I been excited by them, they are beautiful! You can see one of them (I bought two) on my rather tidy desk (no! that is not usual). It is just that yesterday was a major clean up, and now I can’t find my Stardream papers… looking hard, and guess they are in a safe place!

The Elusive Image Stamps are my one and only which I bought off a UK eBay site. Love them, they colour beautifully, and so thought would use them for the 60th card I have to do and when  the Brocade widow folder came today thought I would try them together. I have a few words to say on these folders.
All the You-tube videos I watched said the Cuttlebug sandwich is A+B folder& card+ B plates. However there is no way it was going to go through my Cuttlebug, and yes! I did take the backing card off it (as on one site they said this is the issue).
I discovered the best thing for my machine is A plate + two shims (one thick one thin), and C plate worked for my machine. My advice is to try it out for your machine. And also you do not need the large plates which some sites (mainly Provo craft) say you need for these extra large folders.
They work perfectly for your standard plates, which are slightly larger than the folder. I then lifted the back flap on the folder and used foam to highlight the raised embossing with the White Chalk ink pad…lovely and fun!
What do you think?
Oh, and to find out what WOYWW is and to join in the fun, drop by Julia's Stamping Ground!   Happy WOYWW, everyone!

Thought I would update with a pickie of how the card looked here 'tis, plus a close up of details.
   It looks almost velvet-like with the white chalk ink on top of the Elegant Eggplant paper by Stamping up, I edged with with black card and Lively Lavender (Stamping Up) on white linen cardstock to finish. I used a ribbon in same colour to attach the Nellie Snellen ribbon tag, and few pearls to adorn. There are actually spots like empty holes (indents) in the folders so looks like you are meant to put bling of some sort there!

Tuesday 11 January 2011

Brayer Fun - Stampscapes + Enlarging Cuttlebug Folders Part 1

Well don’t we just love to play with things, folks? Saw a Stampscapes card on ShazSilverwolf's blog and wanted to do some so out they came!!( see here)

I discovered the brayer and then Stampscapes about a year ago... First the brayer, and then through You tube, I discovered this brilliant lady, Sandy Hulsart (her blog – one of them “Scenes with Sandy” is on the side of my blog under blog list) and if you want a great You-tube video, look here to see her explain. EDIT 2014 - Sandy has taken link off so doesn't work. I have done a video so look here, for sort of an idea.

These first three are brayer ones done with my Stampscapes stamps and the other one has them, plus Victorine Originals.

The brayered colours in all of these are mostly done with my Stamping Up Spots. Well, when I learnt that was all I had. Yes, I know - how do you do it with the spots?

I lined up three spots in row, on a piece of cardboard and fixed them with Blue Tac. They were dye ink spots not the pigment ink ones, but you can do it with pigment ink ones too! I have brayered with these (have Pastel spots in the pigment, my other two sets are dye ink) and then embossed them with embossing powder and then layered things on them. You need to roll the brayer forwards slightly twisting the brayer to get the blank bits covered as well. I use the Stamping Up Glossy White paper for these but have used a variety of papers. Try it and if it works - great! that is my motto.
Brayer background - I think the colours are as follows (did the brayering a while ago):
1.Birthday card – this is brayered from the top end of Kaleidocolor Blue Breeze, with touch of Garden Green (from Stamping up Spots). Stamps are Stampscapes (see site here) Rocks and Grass 301A ,Reeds 067B, Pebbles 256A, Oak branch 203G at the top and a favourite Gulls 302A , Lakeside Cabin small 147F (this is stamped one half on left and other half of it on the right of brayered sheet, so it looks as if you are looking to a gap in the distance).

All are unmounted stamps and makes it heaps cheaper to order; they are really great and have flat rate so if you can get a few friends together it helps that is what I did. Kevin Nakagawa at Stampscapes is really helpful and he sent us ideas cards too which have been great as well as on their website there are heaps of examples and tutorial ideas, I love it
The fine lined papers are from an A4 pack in 5 shades from KMart, “Creativ” brand, mounting on black card.
2. Birthday for brother in law -This is simpler card, notice the background (Cuttlebug folder Herringbone, done in Stamping Up, Blue Bayou paper) is done with by enlarging folder method (see small inset photo below - click on picture, & see the fact you cannot see join in folder at all on this one). If you want to know how to enlarge your Cuttlebug folders, please look for it in the Labels, below this post. Mounted in black card and "Creativ" brand again, and using these stamps – Reeds 067B and 304B, Lakeside Cabin small 147F, and Rowboat 166A. Colours of brayering are Stamping Up Garden Green, Cameo Coral and Not Quite Navy al from the Earth Elements range which are no longer available, (of course).

3. Birthday Card for Dad This brayered with just two colours, Not Quite Navy in Stamping Up and the Garden Green, three stamps - Rowboat 166A, Gulls 302A, Seaside Cove Small 308G.

4. Sunset Card: it is done with the colours of Adirondack that Sandy Hulsart uses on her You-tube video (Purple Twilight, Mountain Rose and Peach Bellini), mounted on the same “Creativ” papers and black cardstock, they seem to match so well. Stamps are the Gulls 302A, Crooked Limb 097E, and Victorine Originals (US) stamps - Grove of Trees; Unmounted Rubber Stamps; 3038 3039 ; these are on eBay and they have great unmounted stamps, top quality, I have just had another of theirs come today. I put a post it note sun on this one and have done it on seaside cove one too.
I have done two more cards but will put them on another post - that is enough for now. They are a different method with brayer (mock marbling) and are tricky to explain so will do another post for them.
Why I like these cards is that they make really great Male cards so I use them a lot for these. They’re so much fun.You never quite know how they are going to turn out and are real exploration of creativity.
Hope this is a help if I have not explained anything or you have trouble with my links please let me know.

{Edited note added - for other posts using Stampscapes stamps on this blog - please click on this link here.   
For the post on Mock Marble done with brayer - click here
The post doing brayer on acetate - click here - all other "brayer" posts click on the "Brayer" labels link below this post - thank you!} 

I am praying much for the folks in floods up north of here. Many homeless and worse still, 72 missing in the unprecedented devastation. We are wet here, but okay, but do have some friends affected so I am praying much for them. May the LORD bless you and those you love and keep you safe, wherever you might be.

Thanks so much for popping over for a look and a chat.
Shaz in oz.x

Saturday 8 January 2011

Red Black and white

Well, orders can be very specific at times, and so here is another quick post.
The request was a birthday card in black and white with a large splash of red for her granddaughter!! So I made this one here, with the red background, mounted on white cardstock.
The floral stamps are from "Wildflower Sprigs" by Stampendous (clear stamps). Lovely aren't they and quite versatile, too.
The butterfly stamp is part of a set from Victorine Originals (US).
The swirls stamped image is from "Wild Daisy Rd" set Heidi Grace Clear Stamps by Fiskars, it is bordered by the Taylor Eyelet Border die to make the edges to the bottom panel. A black and white spot ribbon with my Bow-easy making the bow. I have yet to master that Bow-easy!! A few diamantes in red and pearls to finish it off! (Note to self: to get some black bling.)
Have to get onto another order, a 60th again!! God bless and happy crafting!
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