Sunday, 31 July 2011

My Month in Numbers 2011: July

Hello you.

I'm probaby going to have to pretend that we're not as far through the year as we actually are. Because it's all downhill from here toward going back to the day-job, back to coat/scarf/thermal-wearing and back to dark, dank, afternoons and going home in the same darkness you got out of bed in!

There have already been far too many glimpses of new scrapbook paper ranges with a Christmas theme popping up for my liking. Ranges which I avoid looking at with the same effort at self-preservation as the Ancient Greeks treated eye-contact with Medusa or the students of Hogwarts did with the Basilisk.

And yet I can't ignore the fact that July is indeed over and all I can do is quantify it and then move on into August ... keeping a woolly hat nearby.  Just in case.

Here's my month ... in numbers [if this series is new to you, you can catch up on the idea here]:

Speaking of woolly hats ... I've actually already resorted to wearing one once this month ...

2 =the number of outdoor 'Great British Summertime' events we attended during which we got drenched in rain.

The first was the Mela [an Asian festival] where all we could face was a quick walk around, followed by a mad grab for takeaway curry and a mad dash back to the van out of the rain to eat it!

The second event was a local food fair held in the front of the 19th Century Bowes Museum. Sounds idyllic doesn't it?

Yeah, well ... it looked like this:
We may have got wet but we bought cheese and a driftwood heart sculpture, plus we escaped the downpour for an hour by having lunch in their lovely restaurant so ... all was not entirely washed out.

One reason - apart from the obvious - that I don't want to be wearing a winter hat just yet, is that I've just learned how to do this ...

3 = the initial number of strands of hair required to put in a 'waterfall braid' following a tutorial I spotted on Pinterest:
What it didn't mention was that it requires:
  • at least all 10 of your fingers and, if I were you, I'd gain the assistance of 10 - if not 20 - assisting fingers if you can! And it also requires ...
  • at least 3 times the upper-arm strength and stamina that I am currently in possession of.
Looks pretty though. If 'pretty' is what a grown-up wants her hair to look though? Personally I would never have actively sought out a hair-style tutorial,  but this one was just there on Pinterest, pinned by someone I follow ... and I tried it.

Pinterest is like a gateway drug to all manner of hobbies, recipes, tutorials etc you had no interest in before ... but now you've got a taste of them ...

Speaking of addictions ... and Pinterest ... if you've been tracking my monthly shoe habit through my Month in Numbers posts this year ... you may be interested in the following pin ...

£7.00 =how much I spent on thse perfect lovelies:

17 = the number of days I've been running the Going Postal project and pinning all your post-themed blog posts to the Pinterest board:

If you've not joined in yet, the full details are here and you still have two whole weeks to take part.

A few feet = how much the squash plant in our greenhouse grew. When we bought it in a 3" pot we had no idea it would get this big.

4x6 feet = the size of the greenhouse which the squash plant is currently seeking to colonise.

In the grand scheme of Life's Irresponsible Moments - buying a squash plant without checking its growing habit is not so bad.
  • It's not like I bought a puppy in my dinner hour.
  • Or got my favourite line from Clerks tattooed across my back [It's filthy. You'd be shocked.]  
  • And it's not even as if I ran with scissors ... nothing like that ... 
But still ... maybe we should have read up on veg growing before we brought the edible Triffid home  to our postage-stamp sized back garden.

Especially since ...

1 so far = the number of fruits which grew, ripened ... and then dropped off in my hand ... a little prematurely:
[A pose which shall forever now be known as 'doing a Mollie Makes'].
Since the unfortunate dropping-off incident I've had a rather graphic chat with my friend and favourite pumpkin-titillator Kirsty Neale who revealed to me the Facts-of-Pumpkin-Family-Life.

Considering how we're both girls who both dropped biology lessons as soon as possible in school, in favour of  the cleanliness and structure of Physics ... she's now inducted me in the dark-yet-apparently-essential-art of fertilising squash plants yourself!

By hand-pollination.
Or, as Kirsty scientifically put it: "by rubbing bits together". 

If I can ever look you all in the eye again after this ... I'll let you know if it works!


If you ever join in with your own Month in Numbers post let me know and I'll add a link to it in my post. [And because I've been brought up properly, I'll drop by and say Thank Yoooooou too!].
  • Craftyclaireliz of The Crafty Alchemist has joined in once again this month with another scrapbook page featuring her numbers. You can read her post here
  • Jennifer of Jennifer's Jumbles joined in here  with a lovely post featuring the new addition to her family. Warning: if you don't like photos of beautiful children, don't look! 
  • Jayne of Paper Wool + Thread added her numbers to our grand total here.
  • Kate from Nanna Kate joined in with her numbers for the first time here

Thanks for stopping by today, I've got mounds of things to share with you in the coming weeks ... if only I could collect Frequent-Blogger points! Now that would make a good number for next month's post!

I'm back tomorrow with another Going Postal scrapbooking idea so I guess I'll see you then then.

Julie x

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Shimelle's 4x6 Photo Love: Guest spot


There've been a lot of  'post' posts over the last fortnight and with two more weeks of Going Postal left to run ... there'll be quite a few more. But how about today we take a small break and swap the post for planes?

Today I'm guest designing on July's installment of Shimelle's 4x6 Photo Love class over on Two Peas in A Bucket and this page is my contribution:

If you don't already know, Shimelle's class format [which is a free class involving both a video tutorial and PDF download on Two Peas] takes you through a different way to use 4x6 photos each month and all previous classes are still available to view. When the class began in January she added one photo to the page ... and she's increased the number of photos by one each month.

Note to self: when someone begins an email with "OK, don't totally freak but ..." ... brace yourself for the prospect of then having to fit seven 4x6 photos on a scrapbook page:
  • Shimelle provided me with the sketch she's teaching in the class;
  • She directed me to use a concertina-style and ...
  • I've just installed a new photo printer. Phew. 
If I'd asked my old printer to print 7 4x6 it'd have glared at me like a beligerant teenager ... then roll its eyes and give the impression that it was about to do as I'd asked ... then it would have chewed up my photo paper. Sarcastically.

The new one did as it was told. Hence the photos: 
You can check out my little 'How To' related to this page over on Two Peas here.

Regular, long-standing readers might remember me blogging about my Airshow escapades last year:
This year, I may not have had a treasure hunt to keep me occupied, but I did have two parents to look after. [Don't worry, they were my parents. Not just two random parents thrust upon me at the gate!]

They were pretty low-maintenance though ... so I still had plenty of time to take photos:
Alpha stickers are by October Afternoon + DoCrafts Forever Friends.

 Even if they were photos of ... well ... of things that weren't planes:
Another go at journaling on to correction tape - fast becoming a favourite technique!
 I've mentioned this before but I wonder ... are scrapbookers the only breed of photographers who frequently take photos of people taking photos?

 Plus I also take lots of shots of wordy things and signs:
And Shimelle's page design meant me fitting more of all those typical-Julie-shots on a single page than I would ever usually attempt:
Don't forget to swing by Shimelle's class to see two more examples of this page style.

Thanks for stopping to look today. I'm going to be back here tomorrow with a My Month in Numbers post for July because it's seemingly and alarmingly the end of yet another month!! Who can we complain to to stop this happening?? Who?

Is there a petition we can sign?

Julie :-)

  • Don't forget to check out all the Going Postal giveaways which are still open [check my right-hand sidebar for links or scroll back through my posts].

Friday, 29 July 2011

Going Postal: *The Ribbon Girl* Divine Twine Giveaway!

Hello again

Because I'm nice ... and because I have even nicer shop-owning friends, I'm squeezing in another 'Going Postal' giveaway this week!

This is for anyone who's a little bit Air Mail inclined ...
Click to visit The Ribbon Girl store.
Or, more accurately, it's for any 5 of you who're Air Mail inclined as The Ribbon Girl have kindly given me 5x10metre bundles of Air Mail Divine Twine to pass on to you!

[They also gave me a bundle of my very own too... presumably to prevent me getting greedy and keeping the prizes for myself! Not that that could ever happen ...]

The Ribbon Girl, run by friends of mine, is an online haberdashery-shop-of-loveliness  ... or, in their own words:

"The Ribbon Girl specialises in supplying small quantities of ribbon, twine, 'vintage' style lace and seam binding ribbon, tiny pom pom and ric rac trim, buttons, charms, Zva Creative pearl and crystal flourishes, wool felt squares, embellishments, mulberry flowers and accessories to card makers, crafters, scrapbookers and cake decorators."

To find out more about them you can visit them at:
Now ... before I forget ... I've got a giveaway of my own to explain haven't I? OK then  ...


To be in with a chance of winning 1 of 5 bundles of Air Mail Divine Twine you'll need to:
  • Visit The Ribbon Girl store and have a mooch around and then ...
  • Once you've gorged on the haberdashery pretties ... come back to me and leave me a comment mentioning another item they stock which has caught your eye. [There'll be something. Lots of somethings in fact!]
  • The deadline for entries is 1pm [UK time] Saturday August 13th.
  • I'll then pick 5 winners at random from a list of names and announce winners on Sunday 14th August.
But, there's a bonus chance to win:  As I know The Ribbon Girls / the purveyors of all things ribbony / aka: Andrea and Mary personally, I'll put your name down twice for the giveaway draw if, in your comment, you:
  • ALSO mention an interesting occupation of someone you know! [eta: just the most interesting you know, I don't mind what it is!]
[BTW:  The Ribbon Girls are so nice, they didn't ask me to run the giveaway like this. It's me who's making you work for your 10 metres of AirMail Divine Twine!]

OK ... Now go!  Run toward that haberdashery [just give me two seconds to get out of your way before mowing me down!].


  • I'll be back here tomorrow with something - shock - not postal related! [Yet, now I think of it ... it does have the words 'Air Mail' on it somewhere if that counts?!]
  • And I'll be back on sunday for July's installment of My Month in Numbers. [Which you're also welcome to join in with! ... But you'll have to use your own numbers of course ... because why would you use mine? That's just weird ...]
Julie :-)

  • Don't forget to check the Going Postal Pinterest board which has bulked up during this week - you all seemed to hit your posty groove at the same time!
  • And do keep your posts coming, remember you DO NOT need to make anything new, or anything at all for this. As long as it's related to mail and links back to here, it's fine!

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Going Postal: General Greetings - Enjoy!


Last week when I said 'Hello'  ... or rather, last week when I said that I said 'Hello' frequently in cards, I also said I'd blog the other 'General Greetings' I find myself using over and over. So here it is ... enjoy ...

No, really ... it's 'Enjoy'. Look:
If you're new here, click above for full details on the 'Going Postal' project.
 I actually think that 'Enjoy' beats 'Hello' as my favourite, recurring, greeting.

Sometimes, after making one of my collage-style cards, if I'm going to add a greeting to the collage, it really needs to be clear and simple and 'Enjoy' fits the bill perfectly. Especially as the cards can be as jumbly and eclectic as to feature a Japanese comic-book background; a heart banner and a paw print ... like this one:
Some of my cards [including this one!] are now available in my etsy shop.
In fact, I like this greeting stamp so much it lives on the shelf directly above my desk [on its cotton-reel plinth, next to a frog eraser wearing a crown. Obvs] ... so it's always within reach:
But, like 'Hello' + 'You' go together ... 'Enjoy' too can be ably assisted by the addition of another word or two, like ...

'The Little Things', which I added to the bottom of an already greeting-laden card!:
The 'Enjoy The Little Things' stamp is from Sparkle Clear - Messages by Hero Arts.

And, along with 'the little things' ... let me introduce you to not only my favourite accompaniment to 'Enjoy' but possibly my favourite greetings stamp ever. One which can be [and has been] used on all kinds of cards, collages, layouts, tags, gift-wrap and more ... :
It's by Purple Onion [I bought mine from 3DJean] and here it is on a card from last summer:
I just love it. The font, the { use of brackets} and most importantly ... I love the sentiment.

'Enjoy' is so useful because not only does it serve as a generic 'any time' greeting, I can also use them for any more specific grand occasion. Because whatever else you're trying to say - be it Happy Birthday, / anniversary / Good Luck / Best Wishes or any other special event ... what kind of person would you be if you didn't want the recipient of the card to enjoy it?!

I don't know about you but I can't ever remember sending anyone a 'Don't Enjoy Today' card or an 'Actually, I'd prefer it if you were miserable.' version ... and, until I do 'Enjoy Today' will suit me just fine.

Basically, it's all any of us can ever hope - and strive  - to do in life, isn't it. Which is probably what makes it so versatile for any given card-sending-occasion. 

So do you do 'enjoy'? Or do you have another general greeting to add to my collection?

Thanks for reading me today.

Julie :-)

I'll be back with another take on this theme next week - but inbetween now and then you can:
  • drop by the 'Going Postal' Pinterest board to see everyone's posty-projects to date;
  • send me links to your own projects [following the rules as set out here]; We're just about halfway through the project now - but there's still a fortnight for you to get your projects to me.  
  • enter either or both of the giveaways [see my sidebar for the links to them or browse back through my blog];
  • check back in here for something a bit diffferent on Saturday, another layout on Monday; another giveaway on Tuesday ... and more postal posts if I get time! 
And you can also accept my thanks for your lovely comments and support so far. :-)

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Going Postal: Digital Collage Sheets Giveaway

Hi, hi.

Another giveaway today and , in an attempt to make sure there's something for everyone, this one is very different in style to the Wild Olive giveaway of last week [which is still open to entries btw.]

Today's giveaway is a digital download of this vintage postcard file from Digital Collage Sheets:
I don't think you need me to tell you what Digital Collage Sheets specialise in do I? The name pretty much says it all, but you might be interested in browsing their website, their etsy store or their blog, for more [many, many, many more] fabulous digital collage sheets.

It's an ideal way to quickly get your hands on very specifically themed images and ephemera for a specific project - without having to seek it out in junk shops yourself.

To win the downladable file of these lovely vintage postcards all you need to do is:
  • Let me know in a comment below! That's it. 
  • When you do, please make sure that I will be able to contact you to let you know if you've won. Logging into an account where I can reach you before you comment would be super - or else leave your email or blog address.
  • Deadline for entries is 21:00 UK time on Monday 1st August, so that I can announce the winner in my next giveaway post on Tuesday 2nd. 
Later this week I'll have some more 'General Greetings' to share later this week along with a few new, appropriately postal-themed collages.

See you soon.


Monday, 25 July 2011

Going Postal: Scrapbooking 'Out of This World'


Quick survey for you. Does this sound familiar?
  • you stumble across something you haven't used for a while in your supplies;
  • you think to yourself "I've had those for years, I really ought to use them up";
  • you begin to use them; you see them depleting ... this should be a good thing;
  • But ... you begin to think "I've almost run out of those ... I'll have to get some more soon". 
Because, recently, with all these postal projects I've been working on ... that's how I've begun to feel about those postage stamps I was initially intending to 'use up'!

I mean, look ... there's at least 5 of them squeezed into this one close-up of my latest project .. at this rate I'm not going to have any left ...

And again, as I did with the page I shared last week, the stamps I chose were selected mainly for  their colour and texture, but this time some of them co-ordinated [all be it loosely] with the theme of sculpture and 'other worldliness' too:

If you're a regular reader here [awww, thanks!] you'll probably remember my visit to the Jaume Plensa exhibition at Yorkshire Sculpture park a couple of weeks back - it's where I met the curtain of poetry I scrapped about here.
My first attempts at using correction tape to journal on to. As discovered on Pinterest!
Well, in a gallery space just beyond the dangling poetry we came across Plensa's Alabster Heads:
They we're amazing. Completely.
  • The luminosity of the stone gave the impression that these strange entities weren't really there under your nose, but that they were holograms or projections instead;
  • Their serene faces looked as if they were in suspended animation ... but that they could wake up at any given moment ... and ask to speak to your leader; 
  • Plus, their elongated shape totally confused the brain. Even though you were standing dead-set in front of them, your brain was screaming that you must be looking at them from an odd angle! 
Thanks to an old pamphlet on astronomy for the perfect caption and that Indian postage stamp was a great match too!
At one point - although the room was in a hushed, awed silence - I heard an elderly man jokingly say "Oh good ... I thought it must have been my glasses"!
Also while we were in there, while I sat on a bench directly opposite the head in the photo - watchful that it may blink at any given moment ... a man entered the room with a little boy of 5 or 6 whose initial reactions was 'Wowwww'. 
A wonderfully appropriate phrase cut from in a vintage comic book.

But then ... after one or two steps further into the space, getting nearer to the heads, he stopped moving, slid his hand up to his Dad's arm and gently but persistantly began tugging on his sleeve, apprehensive about fully entering the room with these magnificent - if a little spooky - creatures.

What was he thinking? That despite knowing it probably couldn't be true ... they might move? That they'd open their eyes? That they were somehow alive? That they were visitors from another world? 

Is it that why you hesitated little boy? Because if it is, let me just say ... 

Me too kid, me too.


  • Check back tomorrow for another giveaway;
  • Don't forget there's a full list of Going Postal posts in the right-hand sidebar >>, in case you missed anything;
  • And the Going Postal Pinterest board [which is filling up nicely] is here

I used lots of my Design Team goodies from 3DJean on this one, including: the Studio2Mers 'Cities' paper, from which the city-scape is cut; the chipboard stars; rose cabochon; tiny alphabets and the vintage comic book.
The backing paper and the butterfly are from the Crafty Templates' Quirky Kit I guest designed with last month.

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Going Postal: UKStampers Postcard Swap

Hi, hi.

A week ago I mentioned The Great Big Stitched Postcard Swap and I know some of you were interested enough to go and sign up for some creative-postal-interaction. But, if stitiching wasn't your your thing ...

... then how about a stamped postcard swap?

 Organised by Effie of Efemera-Ink, the monthly postcard swap is a relatively new feature hosted over on the UKStampers forum.

Now in it's 3rd month, this swap is open to all and is a great chance for you to get involved with something creative, interactive and fun from [almost] the start.

Here's a peek at a few of the cards which have already been delivered around the country:

Included here is work from Effie along with: Angel NorthPat Beaumont;
GlitterMonkey; Samantha Read; and Sid.

To me there are 2 key reasons you might want to join in with this particular swap:

1. In a world of virtual communication, this is a little glimpse of old-fashioned 'real' mail! So far, from what I've read in the forum, everyone has appreciated having a little handmade work of art land on the doormat alongside the inevitable bills and junk mail.

And, rather sensibly:

2. You only commit to the particular month's swap after you've completed your postcard,  which means there's no pressure at all to commit to any long ongoing swap. If you manage to get time to make one during the month then that's great - you add your name to the thread and later on you find out who to send it to. If you don't get time - then that's fine. You haven't let anyone down. You can dip in and out of this swap, as and when you can.
If you'd like to play along you'll need to do is:
  • sign-up to the UKStampers forum;
  • make your postcard;
  • then go to the swap thread and let eveyone know you're ready, willing and postcard-able!
I'm hoping ot join in with this at some point. Ironically it'll probably be once I've finished blogging about postal things for 4 weeks!

Here's to stamping and stalking the postie for a special swapped delivery!

Julie :-)

I'll be back soon with more scrapbooking with postage-stamps and another giveaway, until then, don't forget to:

  • swing by the Going Postal Pinterest board here to check out the project posted so far;
  • enter the Wild Olive Givaway here;
  • get blogging your own posty projects and share your own photos, memories, stories, ephemera ... likewise link me up if you've made something inspired by one of the projects on the pin-board already.

Friday, 22 July 2011

Going Postal: General Greetings - Hello!

Hi, hi, hello there.

Welcome to another 'Going Postal' cardmaking post. I've been planning this one in my head for quite a while and the more I think about 'general greetings' cards ... the more I think ... General Greetings ...

And, let me tell you something, when I manage to rise up through the ranks of the heat-gun-weilding Crafting-Army ... that's what you're going to have to address me as: General Greetings. 

Because I can whip-up a general greetings card at a moments' notice. I have so much general ammo in my crafting arsenal you might well say I'm a tiny bit obssessed:
I now sell my cards in my esty shop. You can click the photo for more details/views.
I don't have an especially large family and I don't seem to know many people who are getting married; having babies; retiring or moving house and fortunately I know no one who needs to 'Get Well'.

Plus, I'm pretty sure that most, if not all, of the people I know only celebrate the one birthday each year ... so there's never any great need for lots of 'Happy Birthday' cards and yet ... I really like making cards.

So, rather than stop making them ... I make general greetings cards. And I make them often.

I'm planning to share lots of cards in the coming weeks as part of 'Going Postal'. Cards which fit the 'general / generic / just a note /just because/ for no reason' theme, beginning today with the most general of general greetings: Hello.  

Here's my most recent:
 [The 'Hello' stamp is by Basic Grey. The sticky tape was printed using a tutorial by Kirsty Neale ]

Hello is just such a great word [in fact sometimes I even wear it. Please see Exhibit A]. I'm always open to adding yet another to my stash. And actually, I just did.

I found a Hampton Art sentiment pack on sale in Hobbycraft [Only £2.99!! For one of their 'foot long' stamp packs] which features this:
 It's only a matter of time before it ends up on the front of a card.But what - you may ask - do you do with so many general greetings?

Well ... I send them to friends, I include them in parcels and gifts plus every time I send off my projects to the magazine office, I always include one in the parcel. I know it's something of a business transaction ... but that shouldn't mean I can't send something personal to whoever I'm posting things to.
Click image to visit original post featuing the moustache cards!
And, in an entirely unintended consequence of my incessant card-sending, I've even been commissioned for projects based on the style of  some of the 'extra' informal cards I've included in the parcel with my actual 'work'!

So, hellos work. If you mean them. But sometimes hellos need a little company.

Like Romeo and Juliet;  Bert and Ernie ... cheese and onion ... 'hello 'and 'you' go so well together:
Click to visit original post featuring the camera cards.
And, because I'm not a stickler for a strict unadulterated Hello. Even an occasional 'Hi' and 'you' works:
Then there's a 'Hi, how are you?', for when I'm feeling especially polite:
[Stamps by Purple Onion]

Or ... if we're being really radical ... there's always the 'Hiya' option:
Click to visit original 'Shady Ladies' post @ Banana Frog
 And one for when I want to impress peope with my language skills ...

I know! You're impressed with my Spanish aren't you?

So, what can we learn from this? Well you now know:
  1. that there are some great general greeting stamps out there;
  2. that personally I send lots of general cards and that I'm a bit obsessed with 'Hello' style greetings;
  3. and that, generally, I must be a very nice person.
Well, at least that's my version of what this post has made clear ... if you disagree ... you can send me a general 'I don't think so' card to let me know! ;-)

I've got a couple more 'General Greetings' posts lined up to share soon so, if you too have a favourite generic sentiment, I'd like to hear it ... to see if they match up with the other two categories mine fall into!

And now, after a post all about Hello ... I'm going to bid you farewell. For now.

Julie :-)


  • I'll be back on Sunday with details of another postal-themed postcard swap;
  • Don't forget to check out the Going Postal Pinterest board where I've pinned another contribution this morning.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Going Postal: Etsy Treasury

Hello you. 

I'm so pleased that lots of you are seemingly postal-inclined too! 

To those who've left comments and who've blogged their projects already - thank you! If you haven't yet, when you get a chance, do hop over to the Going Postal Pinterest board where I've pinned the great projects which have been submitted so far. 

You can click on the individual images to visit the original blog post to read the contributions in full and it'd be great to think you're all leaving comments and supporting each other's postal-passions!

I've also pinned a freebie Air Mail themed printable on the pinboard and I'll add any other interesting posty goodies there as and when I find them.

This morning I went shopping, for exciting things like 'magic' eraser sponges and Monster Munch crisps. [OK, so  I didn't actually go out specifically to buy Monster Munch ... but somehow they just fell into my basket and - later on - my mouth.] and while I didn't come across anything postal themed while I was out ... I have been window shopping online ....

Here's the Etsy Treasury I put together after browsing around the postal theme:
Click image for more details on the lovely items.
If you haven't heard of them, an Etsy Treasury is basically just a collection of items you handpick and arrange in a photo-collage - as above.

You can make them on any theme you like, or even use them to create a wish list when you want  to help someone choose an appropriate gift for you ... or just make them for fun.

The most enjoyable part about it, for me, is using the Search facility to seek out and browse through items on a very specific theme, to discover things you'd never just 'stumble' across and then ... you get to arrange them into an attractive mosaic at the end. And you know how I love arranging things by colour and design!

I'll see you soon with some more crafty-posty-projects, until then: don't forget to enter the Wild Olive giveaway from yesterday's post.

Julie :-) 

p.s: To help keep track of everything, like giveaways, I've added a linked list to all Going Postal posts in the sidebar.

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Going Postal: Wild Olive Giveaway + special offer!

Hello pretty-post-loving peeps.

I'm delighted to bring you the first giveaway in the 'Going Postal' series. And doubly delighted that it's from the super-talented Mollie Johanson of Wild Olive:
Mollie has kindly donated two wonderful prizes to Going Postal from her wonderful Wild Olive etsy shop from which she sells her adorable stitching patterns and printable designs.

The first item you can win is a PDF embroidery pattern for Mollie's Teeny Tiny Commemoratives - the cutest postage-themed projects imaginable!

Mollie says:
"Commemorative Stamps are always fun to collect, but they are even more fun to stitch! Especially when they are teeny, tiny, and cute!

There are twenty Teeny Tiny Commemoratives included: Crayons, Piggy Bank, Suitcase, Coffee/tea, Flower Pot, Cake, Bowling, Jewel Necklace, Cowboy Boot, Tree, Letter, Thread Spool, Game Controller, Egg Cup, Chocolate, Book, Pear, Pennant, Football (American!), and Valentine.

4-page PDF has a cover sheet with instructions/tips, 1 page of color suggestions, 1 page of patterns and 1 page of patterns reversed."

If stitching's not your thing then how about getting your hands on the equally sweet Teeny Tiny Commemorative printable designs:

"Commemorative Stamps are always fun to collect, and both kids and adults will enjoy adding some printable stamps to some teeny tiny mail!

This printable PDF file contains 1 page of Teeny Tiny Commemoratives, 1 page with an envelope template, and 1 page of little lined notes. Print as many or as few as you need, and never run out!"

Either of these would make a super-sweet addition to your postal-themed stash... so let me tell you how you can get your hands on them:

  • hop over to the Wild Olive etsy shop, have a browse around, and then ...
  • hop back here and leave me a comment to say which of Mollie's other designs has stolen your heart [I'll guess there'll be lots of heart-stealing going on!].
  • Then - make it clear if you would prefer to win the embroidery patterns or the printable stamps - or if you'd like a chance to win either.
  • The deadline for entries is 1pm [UK time] Saturday August 13th.
  • I'll then pick 2 winners at random and announce winners on Sunday 14th August.
  • If you send me a project to pin to the Going Postal Pinterest board, I will enter your name in the draw twice - doubling your chances of winning [just remind me of that either when you enter, or later on after you've linked me to your project].
But wait!!

Mollie has been extra-generous with us and is offering us all a 15% discount on everything in her store for the duration of Going Postal!!! [Valid until 14th August]. All you need to do is enter the code: POSTAL when you make your etsy order!

So now all those extra designs which stole you heart can now be yours for less!

OK then,I'll be back soon with more postal projects, until then let me just say a big THANK YOU to Mollie for her generosity and a big GOOD LUCK to you in entering the giveaway!

Julie :-)

Monday, 18 July 2011

Going Postal: 'Beauty In the Garden' layout

Good morning/afternoon/evening. How's the world treating you today?

After having it sitting staring at me for a few days, daring me to open it and attempt to set it up successfully ... I've finally unpacked my new printer.

And now it's staring at me from inside the plastic packaging ... where I might just leave it until I can face the inevitable battle with cables and unexpected inches of dust lurking quietly behind the old printer which will begin when I swap them over.

For they must be swapped over as I have finally run out of both patience with and expletives at the deteriorating photo-quality of the old one. 

Scrapbookers need photos.And photos I shall have ... just as soon as I can face that instruction manual.

So, until then here's one I made earlier ...

When it comes to using postal-related supplies in your crafting, it doesn't mean that the project itself should be postal-themed. [Unless you want to make a scrapbook page dedicated to your postman ... an event which I'm not entirely ruling out ...]

So, my example today is a page not about postmen, travel, correspondence, or stamp-colllecting ... but about some flowers in my front garden.
In my use of postage-stamps I took a similar approach to the cards I shared here + here last week in choosing stamps mainly for their colour qualities and the way those colours combined with the papers I was using.

With scrapbooking you get the added dimension of being able to use the stamps to draw out the colours from your photograph:
Also, these particualr stamps have a quite old, faded and worn feel to them which helps with the romantic, old-fashioned, homey, domestic feel I adding to my page.

This same philospohy explains the use of a spray-inked doily and a vintage milk bottle cap ... in colours which co-ordinated with my photo and stamps ... naturally:
Likewise, the image of the thatched cottage and the little girl at the well [torn from a vintage comic book] again backed up the 'English Country Garden' feel I was building up on the page.

Iadded snippets of femininity with faded pink binding tape and trimmings I found at a collector's fair and some new crochet trimming which I stapled to the page. And a few colourful stitches held the Pink Paislee twine in place:

My title was equally faded, soft and worn-looking with one chipboard heart left bare while the other was given a swipe of with gesso and a quick stamp with an ornate border stamp:
Maybe you'd have taken longer to spot the postage stamps on the finished page if I hadn't pointed them out so directly. And maybe that's the point. As with many existing embellishments and supplies in your stash - stamps don't need to be the main focus of every page you use them on.

What they can be is an interesting adornment, a 'top note' to the main body of the page and a great support act to the colours and textures in your photograph and patterned papers.

If you combine postage stamps in a scrapbook page in the coming weeks don't forget to send me the link so I can pin it to the Going Postal Pinterest board, which has already had it's first submission!

And it's not just for scrapbooking, remember: the only criteria is that your post is new, has a postal theme somewhere in it and mentions 'Gpoing Postal' [as briefly as you want!] with a link. Check my inroductory post here if you need more info.

If you signed up for Beth Nicholls' postcard swap from yesterday's post you could simply blog the postcard you make and link me to that for example.

How are the rest of of you getting on with your postal-projects? I'm really looking forward to seeing what you do.

I'll be back tomorrow with a postal-themed giveaway from a very special guest!

Who knew postage-stamps could be so very exciting?

See you tomorrow!


Supplies: I made this using elements from my 3DJean Design Team items, including:
Backing paper, 'Constellation - 12' by Studio2Mers;
Smaller papers - 'Noir et Creme' by Collections Elements.
Vintage comic book pages;
Vintage milk bottle caps;
Chipboard hearts;
Rose cabochon;
Lost Coast Designs Flower border stamp;
Kraft alphabets.