Thursday 30 July 2009

What goes around ...

This morning I sent off a little something through the post to Kirsty my partner in all things Copy & Paste-y [more on that over on Copy & Paste next week].

This afternoon I gave my cousin a scrapbooking starter kit complied from my stash after she expressed an interest in starting scrapping. Frankly, who could blame her for wanting to capture memories of this perfectly perfect little one? Wouldn't you want to scrap every single photo of that face? Then, as these things tend to go, my latest Gauche Alchemy Acme Kit arrived to replenish my stocks!

Quite apart from loving what's inside them, I even love the act of opening up their kits. They're always packaged so nicely, this time everything was wrapped in an old dressmaking pattern and pink rope. Bliss!

The Acme Kit contains a mix of vintage and modern ephemera alongside traditional papercrafting supplies:

Then, because they're really rather nice, Amy and Heather threw in one of their cute Colour Kits for me to play with too!
Over on the Gauche blog they're in the process of assigning alternative names to their colour kits. This one [obviously] is the pink kit which has been newly re-named 'Pink Parts'!! It now sits alongside 'Blue Streak' and 'Banana Hammock' [I'm sorry, but I still snigger every time I read that one!!] in the Gauche Alchemy online shop and, if you think you can stay [just] within the bounds of common decency and help them re-name their purple kit then pop over there now. You can win a kit too ....

And yes Hannah Banana your eyes are not deceiving you that is a pink plastic flamingo you've spied there!! Karma was obviously paying me back, very specifically, in kind for the cocktail flamingo I donated to you on Wednesday!!!
Do you reckon if I gave you my old car tomorrow I'd be rewarded with a brand new one next week?

Lastly, I've been invited to bring a little something along to the party Shimelle Laine's holding at this weekend. Think more 'paper crafting project' than 'bottle of white' [although I can see no reason why I shouldn't do both!]. You can find out more here, there'll be lots of other guests there and to continue in my karmic strain ..... I'm now extending that invitation to you: Friday night 'til Sunday night; you; me, Shimelle; a bunch of others; paper crafting; prizes; printables; other things which don't begin with 'p' ....what do you say?

Maybe see you there?

Until then - be careful what you put out there. I've learned that apparently good crafting-supply-gifts beget good crafting-supply-gifts. Stick to that rule and you can't go too far wrong might just prevent the boomerang of karma curving back on you and cracking you over the head!


Monday 13 July 2009

The Twittering Machine

'The Twittering Machine' Paul Klee

Once I'd grown out of decorating my bedroom with posters of long haired men I used to have a print of the Paul Klee watercolour on my bedroom wall. I wonder if Klee had really envisioned a future where people would log themselves into a machine, turn a crank and spout forth insights into their lives [and minds] in 140 characters or less? Who knows.

I didn't think I'd bother signing up for it but I did and, 96 updates later, I love Twitter. I enjoy having to concentrate every possible permutation of the things going on in my world at that moment in time, into one vaguely coherent tweet.
Kirsty and I have often wondered how we could work the creative possibilities of Twitttering into a challenge for our Copy + Paste Project blog ... and now some-like-minded-challengers have beaten us to it.
Dare 142 over on The Dares scrapbooking challenge site read: 'Twit-dare. Tweets + photos = instant scrappage'. I agreed I put this together:

I already had the photo and was intending to scrap it to remind me of a really nice summer day I had to myself a few weeks ago. I took another similar photo last week and think I'll repeat this through the the next few weeks, using Tweets for my journaling on those too, to create a series of snapshots of how I filled my summer days.

For this first page I decided to use only items which have come from my Design Team 'Quirky Kits'. The majority of it came from the latest Juicy Fruit Quirky Kit [which is still available from Crafty Templates ] with the addition of a journalling card, the Kim Smith 'Pow Paper' and a label left over from past kits.

The bright Rose Moka ‘Pique-Nique’ papers are ideal for summer scrapping. Ideal. And yet ...

... after weeks of wondering if I ought save the melon patterned paper and handmade felt embellishment on the off chance that we might, at some point, have some water-melon-related photos to scrap, at the crop on Saturday, I finally decided to put them to good use on this page instead.

I'm really pleased I did - the colours work perfectly with my photo and it all combines to give the whole layout a warm summery feeling. Perfect really. Only ....

....upon my return from the crop, where I'd just used up all my melon related goodies, after stepping through the door what should I see sitting on the kitchen work top, grinning at me in it's green, globular glory?

Yes, that's right. A water melon.

One which will just have to remain un-scrapped!


Sunday 12 July 2009

Bits, bobs and miscellany.

This is really just a quick 'Hello' and a touch of blog-keeping, there's no grand narrative or cohesive link between everything and while you may not care'snot how I like to do things ...but I guess I'll survive.

OK then, first up .....

I wanted to share a great layout my friend Hannah made for her Banana Frog 'Project of the Day' today, here's a peek ...

.... now click here to see the rest of it.

I actually sat opposite Hannah while she put this loveliness together at our local crop on Saturday. Did you know our teeny tiny crop had spawned two Design Team members for Banana Frog?
Maybe the community centre was built over some creative lay-lines, maybe it's something in the water which we make tea with [and we do have a lot of tea] or maybe it's something
Jean puts in all the home-baking she brings!

Whatever it is it suits me just fine. While there yesterday I made 3 layouts, bought 3 new stamps, intercepted a glorious packet of ephemera before it ended up in the bin and ate 4 of Jean's homemade mini cheese scones. Now that's a good day by anyone's standards, surely???

When I got home form the crop I found that the lovely, lovely Sharmaine Kruijver had passed on a blog award to me from her own blog '4 Squirts and a Dollop of Cream'.

The info on the award says: "The Love My Friends Award is given to those bloggers who aspire, inspire and share the most beautiful of human attributes: art, wisdom and friendship. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more."

How nice is that? Thank you so much Sharmaine. I seriously doubt that this particular post would win any prizes for inspiration and wisdom ... but do [usually] try ... so I'm very happy that Sharmaine thought of me. :)

As for passing this on to 8 more people ... I hope I don't have my award revoked if I don't fulfil that part.

Next on the agenda then.... what do you think of when you see this little container of blackberries?:

I bought them on Friday knowing how much James likes them, it wasn't until I got them home dod I recognise the potential of that cute little box to become an altered shrine type project.

On the other hand, when he arrived home from work, James stepped through the door, said 'Hello', spotted the fruit and immediately said 'Ha! I wonder why you bought them. For the box?'.

And while the answer to that was, tryuthfully 'No' - it was a nice little added bonus. Needless to say, if I do get round to making anything with it'll be the first to know.

So, that just about rounds up my round-up of random events and now we're all up to date I can go into next week with a blank page to fill ... and to fill you in on.

See you then then. Here's to a wonderful week.

Tuesday 7 July 2009

A dodo, a duvet and Danielewski.

This weekend I bought a dodo and I've named her Pickwick and that's really all I have to say on that front.

[This Wiki entry may explain why I've named a ceramic sculpture of an extinct bird after a Dicken's character. It will also explain why the large soapstone egg pictured in the middle this post is called Alan. Nowhere in that Wiki page however will you find an explanation of why or how I thought this was a perfectly sane thing to tell you about ...until I began writing it down that is!].

Anyway .... you remember at the end of my previous blog post [the one about the jersey fabric necklace] I mentioned that we'd bought a new duvet cover that we'd have to now make room for in our tiny linen cupboard? Well, what I forgot to mention was that the said new addition was almost impossibly lovely:

During a thunderstorm yesterday I suffered the heat and humidity to iron this beauty ready for it's debut airing. It was creased because I always wash my new bedding before sleeping in it based on advice from two sources to not trust the 'substances' used in the manufacturing process .

Unsurprisingly, the first word of advice on this came from my mother. More surprisingly perhaps is that this was seconded by an anecdote told to me by a beautician while she gave me the only manicure/pedicure I've ever paid for. An anecdote which began with her purchasing some new underwear .... and ended with her lying naked on a bathroom floor. An anecdote about allergic reactions. Obviously. Where did you think that story was going?

The two additional pillowcases were ones I found in my Grandma's cupboard when we cleared her house and I love how the colours and prints both compliment and clash with the new ones.

So, while all this may be endearingly new, very pretty and especially happy-making, I'm left with the recurring issue of how to fit the bed linen I've just taken off and laundered back in the cupboard without having to throw anything away. Which is where the book I'm currently reading comes in:

I won't give too much away because it's a mystery / horror / thriller / completely magnificent yet impossible to define novel filled with suspense and I don't want to spoil anything for those who haven't read it yet. So,allow me to just mention that the story centres [quite literally] around a vast and inexplicable space which opens up within a family home instilling fear and terror in all who learn about it.

It's a magnificent work of literature recommended to me by someone who knew my proclivity for postmodern style fiction and I can well imagine studying it at degree level, there's so much to be intellectually unpacked from it and yet ...

... right now,

.... as my tiny, single-shelved, much strained, linen cupboard threatens to explode and vomit its contents clear across my craftroom, sweeping me away in a suffocating, yet colourful, cotton tidal wave ....

I find myself sitting here and comtemplating that, on the off chance that a sinister cavernous room suddenly appears inside my house.... I might just be able to find a use for it!