Sunday, 31 January 2010

Last Day Of The Month...

Wow, January seems to have gone by in a flash and all of a sudden February is just around the corner.

I like February :) For many reasons; including my birthday and the half term holidays from school but also because it is the month when new goodies start to arrive for the shop from CHA and this year it is also the month when hopefully my new neice will make her entrance into the world (she is due on my birthday - 22nd - so as long as she isn't more than a week late she will be a February birthday too and her big sister was three weeks EARLY so here's hoping!

There is lots to look forward to here on the blog for February too. Tomorrow we kick start the new month with a great class by Ann Freeman, here are a couple of sneak peeks to whet your appetite!

Then on the third of February we will announce the winner of our January sketch comp. There have been two sketches added to the blog this month, there is still time to create your own take on either sketch and post a link to your layout in the comments section. We will look and send a prize to our favourite from the month.

Of course there will be more sketch challenges this month, the debut of our ingredients challenge which Ally Bright, Kirsty Riach and Julie Kirk are taking part in (thanks ladies for being the first to give it a go!), plenty of new shop goodies to show off and of course more giveaways, product spotlights and blog offers.

You will not want to miss a GORGEOUS Valentines inspired home decor piece we have coming up, again by Ann Freeman (she has been such a busy lady making some fabulous things for us to feature on the blog)

Make sure YOU come back everyday to see what is going on.

Saturday, 30 January 2010

Look what is coming...

On Tuesday our 7 Gypsies Avignon papers will be here not the embellishments yet because like so many of the manufacturers 7 Gypsies have the papers ready but the embellishments "to follow" - This is one of my biggest pet peeves with this industry - it isn't like a couple of weeks before they suddenly realised it was CHA - they knew the dates ages in advance (next years winter dates have been released) so why oh why can't they order the full line to be ready on time!!!!!!

In addition the American Crafts products that were ready to ship are in the same package as our 7 Gypsies. UPS have it scheduled for deliver on Tuesday.

In the middle of next week these will be arriving at our freight forwarders. Guess what, the papers are ready but the embellishments will be a few weeks! ARGHHHHH Once they arrive at the freight forwarder in California they will be sent to us along with whatever else has arrived!

Of course remember, when the bulk of our CHA orders has arrived we will be selecting the winner from our "Audience Participation CHA giveaway" so if you posted a suggestion keep an eye out here, it could be YOU receiving a box of new stuff FREE of charge!

Friday, 29 January 2010

And The Winner Is

Once again random dot orgs random interger picking service came to the rescue to select the winner of the Hero Arts stamps!

***Grrrr - Blogger is not playing nicely. I have the screen shot saved of the winning number selected which was number 14 but everytime I hit the insert picture button it causes internet explorer to stop working so you are just going to have to trust me on this one til I can upload the picture!!!***

Hooray - this morning it is being nice again!

Congratulations Sally - drop me an email with your address and I will get them sent out to you.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

Good News

The first of our CHA order is due to land early to mid next week!!!!! Exciting - we love this time of year when all the new stuff starts rolling up with the lovely UPS lady who brings our deliveries. It is busy but so much fun opening those boxes and checking off all the new goodies :)

Remember that to be in with a chance to win those Hero Arts stamps you must leave a comment on the End of the Month Giveaway Post before 6pm tomorrow. We will use Random Number dot org to pick us a winner and get those stamps a new home!

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Product Spotlight: American Crafts Zing!

Todays product spotlight is on the American Crafts Embossing Powder: Zing!

Prior to the release of zing I had dabbled with embossing with mixed results. I owned a heat gun which I didn't like using because it kept cutting out, and had tried a bit of basic embossing with black and white powders. OK I thought, this is something I have tried, it is alright but nothing amazing. The heat gun went in the cupboard and then in a box when I moved (nearly two years ago) and it is still in one of the many boxes that have not yet been unpacked (we have done a lot of building \ renovating so if it wasn't urgent it was stored!)

Then, along came Zing. Jill saw it demonstrated at CHA last year and ordered quite a bit. I indulged her and thought ok, embossing powder... whatever! Anyway, straight off the plane from Anaheim before unpacking or even having a cup of tea she pulls out the example from the demo which was in her hand luggage. This was REALLY good embossing powder. It comes in opaque colours which are strong and vivid, in glitter finish which is super sparkly and metallic finish which unlike some of the metallics I have used before actually does look metallic!

So of course when the delivery arrived I actually wanted to try it... no heat gun! But that was solved with a Heat Buddy from Personal Impressions - MUCH better than my old heat gun just don't confuse it with a hair drier!
I loved the zing so much we decided to use it as a Make n Take for one of our retreats. In fact we have done Make n Takes with it at our last two retreats.

In April we used the Maya Road zoo chipboard keychains, co-ordinating stamps and some paint to create these dear little animals
and then at our November retreat we combined it with star shaped chipboard, more paint and a little Modge Podge to create these beautiful star decorations.
This really is a product that does what it says on the tin and the amount of Zing sales went way up once people had seen it in action. Not only is the finish on all types great but it is easy to use too - you can see the change as the powder heats and embosses so no guess work as to when it is done.

I added some additional sparkle to this layout of Olivia by embossing the frame around the photo with copper glitter Zing
In addition to embossing chipboard, paper and cardstock I had great fun creating the embellishments on these layouts using Zing on heat embossable acetate. I embossed the pattern on one side using black Zing and then on the reverse I embossed with either opaque, metallic or glitter Zing to give different effects.

These two layouts were examples for a class which had two colour options in the kit with different papers - however they both had the white platform thickers. To tie in the colour scheme on the Family layout I embossed the chipboard thickers with black opaque zing - so you could jazz up old chipboard letters with metallic or glitter zing powders!
For our blog readers only we have a discount code to get 10% off any Zing purchased between now and 27th February so long as your order before P&P comes to more than £5 - just type the following code into the promotional code box during checkout: BLOG270110

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

A Little End of the Month Giveaway...

While I was card making the other day I was thinking about how starting card making had really got me more interested in stamping too. I have never really used stamping much on my layouts as I never had many stamps and never really "got it" but since I started making cards too I have used stamps more and more, still mainly on cards but I am now starting to incorporate them more into layouts as well.

So as I was reflecting on my new found love of collecting, admiring and occasionally even using stamps we decided to treat one of our blog readers to a set of Hero Arts "Birthday Wishes" clear stamps. Just leave a comment on this post before 6pm on Friday and we will select, at random, someone to send the stamps to. They are great as they have lots of different greetings (Who just wants one Happy Birthday sentiment for all their cards?!) along with some cute little images too.
Good Luck!

Monday, 25 January 2010

Which Is Your Favourite?

The Basic Grey new releases are on their site, four new lines, two to be releases in February and two for April. In addition they are rereleasing some of their classic collections; Sublime, Black Tie, Phresh & Phunky, Vagabond & Fusion return to the shelves as part of their "Vintage" collection. There is also a Basics line from BG - remarkably similar, if a little more grunged up, to the Scenic Route Background papers which are of course no more since Scenic Route closed their doors
The four main new collections are below, post in our poll to the right to let us know which is YOUR favourite of them




A quick google finally found a few October Afternoon photos which people had taken at the show. From what I have seen it looks good. I have seen several lines (including one from October Afternoon) with kites on - looks like one of the next "favourite embellishment" although there are still plenty of birds (free and in ornate cages) and trees to be had!

As before, any exciting finds you come across on the net from the CHA show do post a link and let us know what you stumbled upon!


Sunday, 24 January 2010

A Scrapper Turned Card Maker!

Perhaps I am unusual but I started my paper crafting with Scrapbooking - lots of people seem to have been cardmakers and then gone on to scrapping but I am the opposite. I love to scrap, I feel like I am ok at it and it is relatively easy for me to sit down, play with paper and end up (admittedly not always quickly) with a layout.

Now cards always stressed me out! I WANTED to make cards, for goodness sake the amount of money I gave to Clintons every Christmas meant I really NEEDED to make cards but I just didn't get it!

Then a lovely crafting friend pointed out the blindingly obvious - treat the card as if it were a scrapbook layout but instead of photos and journaling the key elements were the sentiment and the embellishment. It is so simple but it was my little lightbulb moment. I would never say I am an expert card maker, or even a very good card maker, but making cards doesn't cause me so much stress now - it is also a great way to use up your scraps (both of my cards below were made with bits from my scraps box) and Suzanne will be doing a specific feature on card making with scraps very soon so keep an eye out for that!

For the first time last Christmas I made every single Christmas card I gave. I also made around 90% of the birthday cards I gave out last year too and aim to make it 100% this year!

On that point of treating a card like a scrapbook layout I thought I would have a little play this aftenoon at creating a couple of quick and easy cards using the two sketches we have had on the blog for this month.
This card was based on my sketch posted HERE but changed to a rectangular format and with a few adjustments here and there.

This one I used Ann's sketch posted HERE. i loved the photo placement and grouping in her layout so I used patterned aper to recreate the shapes and positioned the sentiment where she had her journaling space.

They were of course layout sketches but following the idea of pretending my card is a page I used them as my starting point. As always with sketches the end product doesn't always match the sketch exactly but the idea came from the sketch and that is what a sketch is all about - getting a design idea - if your final layout or card ends up identical to the sketch then that is fine, but if you develop it in a slightly different direction that is fine too - it's all good!

How did you get into paper crafting? Were you a card maker turned scrapper? A scrapper first and a card dabbler like me? Or did you wander through a whole host of crafts before settling on scrapping?

Friday, 22 January 2010

January Challenge

OK This is our first monthly challenge and the winner will get a £25 shop voucher to spend with us. Entries must be emailed to us as a jpeg attachment either a photo or scan resized to no longer than 1000 pixels along the longest side the closing date for entries is February 20th.

Now for the challenge...

When browsing Amazon I came across these books:

Listography Journal - Your Life in Lists By Lisa Nola

My Listography - My Amazing Life in Lists By Nola Russell

They made me think of all the lists we make in everyday life such as shopping lists, to do lists etc... and all the lists of things we have stored in our heads - places to go, favourite songs etc...

So your challenge is to scrap a layout, mini book or other project which includes a list. It doesn't matter what the list is of, just include a list on your project.

Hopefully this challenge will give you some thoughts and ideas to start the creative process - I know I plan on having a go at creating something with a list on this month now!

Thursday, 21 January 2010

ATDML Monthly Challenges

Round about this time each month you will see a post dedicated to showcasing some entries to our monthly challenge and revealing our winner who will win either some goodies or a shopping voucher.

The monthly challenges will invite you to work either on a theme or with certain product types to create either a layout, card or other project to meet the challenge. The deadline for challenge entries will be the 20th of the month with the new challenge being posted on either the 21st or 22nd of the month.

Tomorrow we will have our first challenge revealed. To enter you will need to email me a photo or scan of your layout, card or project resized to no larger than 1000 pixels on the longest side to - By entering you agree that we can display your work on our blog and \ or our site with you credited as the original designer.

Be sure to check back and see what challenge we have set for you as we head from January into February!

~*~*~ CHA ~*~*~

For the first time in 4 years neither of us will be making the trip across the pond to CHA which will sadly mean no photos from the show floor. We are disappointed not to be attending but the dates did not work well for either of us and we decided to place our orders from this side of the Atlantic this year. We hope to return next winter when the show will be moving from Anaheim to downtown LA.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Product Spotlight: 7 Gypsies Metal Edges

Todays product spotlight is on THESE 7 Gypsies Metal Page Edges. They come in a variety of colours and designs - for my mini book I used the straight black ones but some of the coloured fancy edge ones would also look gorgeous depending on your project subject and style.

My mini book really is mini and is only 4" square so it was really handy that the Metal Page Edge strips can be easily cut with a standard pair of scissors. Each one is 8" long so I only used one strip as I wanted the metal edges only on the front and back cover as I had pull out tags on the inner pages.

The Metal Page Edges add an extra sturdiness to the book covers which as anyone who makes mini books will know can come in for a lot of wear and tear. Of course you could add them to every page which would also increase the durability of the book.

Blog readers can enjoy working with these products knowing they got a good value deal as well as you can get 40% off the Metal Page Edges by entering the following code in the discount \ promotional code box: Blog-0110-EDGE
Just by way of an explanation - Ned was Elizabeths (my cousin and long serving shop tab keeper at the retreats) first car and sadly he went to the great scrap heap in the sky a while back! Before taking him to the afore mentioned scrap yard we had a laugh doing a mini photo shoot. The front and back covers are made with a close up photo of Neds seat covers!

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

CHA Sneak Peek Links

We have been spending more time today preparing and placing some CHA orders. Reading through the comments on the post about what you would like to see we have been speaking to the people at October Afternoon - they were very mysterious and said we wouldn't find images of the new product until after the show... so we will have to place that order a little later than we hoped!

We have been visiting the Websters Pages site and admiring the paper collections and the really exciting looking 12x12 embellishments and letter sticker sheets. Needless to say these will also be finding their way onto our shelves as soon as they are shipping them out!

For those who fancy a little look at some of the sneak peeks here are a few to try:

Here for Prima
Here for Websters Pages
Here for Maya Road
Here for Graphic 45

Oh and if you find a sneak peek of the October Afternoon that has been leaked onto the net do post us a link - we would love to see what we are hoping to order LOL!

Monday, 18 January 2010

Sketch Inspiration Number 2

This sketch was provided by Ann Freeman - who kindly took time to do this for me as well as get the class ready for next month :) - and she also sent an example of a layout she has done using the sketch.
As before, if you do use the sketch for inspiration why not add a comment with a link to your blog or online gallery so we can take a look. As I mentionned in the previous post we will look at all the layouts done using the sketches in January and send a prize to our favourite.
To be included for this sketch prize just comment on the relevant sketch post with a link to your layout BEFORE 6pm on 3rd February as we will choose our winner and post the result that evening!

Here is Anns sketch:

And here is her layout "Masterchef"

Sunday, 17 January 2010

*~* An Interview With Karen Leahy *~*

Many many of you will know Karen and her work from UKScrappers and various other online places. She has been a member of our Design Team since its inception and I don't think it would be an exaggeration to say that her work, posted under the name Scrapdolly, has inspired hundreds of people to develop their interest in papercraft and become scrapbookers.

We sent Karen some questions about her and her scrapping and she has given up a little peek into her scrap room and some ideas about the creative processes she goes through. The rest of the Design Team received a questionnaire also so do look out for interviews with them in the coming weeks!

1) When did you discover scrapbooking?

I first saw and heard about modern scrapbooking in 2003. I didn’t have a clue what it was to begin with. I say ‘modern’ scrapbooking because I always kept old fashioned scrapbooks from being a young child and all of my photo albums were journalled and embellished too.

2) What subjects do you scrap?

I scrap anything and everything. We travel a lot and so I make a lot of travel albums and mini books. I also scrap my cats a great deal and love to try and find new and quirky ways of capturing them and their personalities. Although we don’t have children of our own I scrap my god-daughters a great deal. I am a great believer in scrapping the mundane as that is the stuff that actually means so much when you look back years later.

3) If you had to choose one scrapbooking format 12x12 8.5x11, minibooks, atcs etc and only scrap in that format for a year, which would you choose and why?

I think it would have to be 8.5” x 11”. I have discovered over the past 18 months that I am not naturally a square scrapper. I like rectangles – both portrait and landscape formats. Somehow that size and shape really suits me. Plus I love the fact that cutting down the cardstock means some scraps that are very useable on the same page as journaling or title blocks and I love everything to coordinate like that. I would, however, find it really hard to give mini books up for a year. Not sure I could do it.

4) Describe your scrapping style in 5 words.
  • Simple,
  • coordinated,
  • linear,
  • plain,
  • simple!
5) Tell us about your favourite ever layout

Gosh – I am not sure I have a favourite but I have picked one I like. I had to pick a cat one and I like this because it is what I mean by a quirky page – writing as if I am the Fiki monster himself. It uses some of my favourite papers – periphery - and is just a daft bit of fun.

If I had to chose one which was meaningful it would be this one. My parents both passed away before I started scrapping and it is perhaps my greatest regret. They would have loved it and I could have found out so much more.

6) If you could take a class or do a workshop with one scrapping celeb or teacher who would it be and why?

I would love to do a class with Tim Holtz because I just don’t really ‘get’ all the inking and aging and layers and things. I love that sort of work and can’t quite get the hang of it. I think if I was taught step by step it might make some sense and I could tinker with the things I have bought a little better.

7) Show us your scrap area (don’t worry we can handle mess!) – attach a photo and describe the area in which you scrap

I am very lucky to have a dedicated scrap room. (Well I share it – Nigel has his own computer and digital editing suite in there so we can be creative together). It was fitted out with furniture Nij altered to suit my exact needs.

Of course, I have outgrown the storage now – but the idea was there. I love that it looks out over open heathland and is very tranquil.

I am very anal and have to put everything away after each page or project, so it is always very tidy.

8) What is your favourite manufacturer and all time favourite range from them. Why?

It always was Basic Grey in the old days, but they have gone very bright and patterned and some of it just scares me. However, it is one of their ranges that I think is my all time favourite – periphery. I used it to scrap so many of my Canadian Rockies pictures. The colours were just perfect….. very me, very soft and not too patterned.

9) Why do you scrap?

Scrapping is my therapy. I have a very stressful job and it is a creative release. I love any form of creativity but was never much good at painting, though I still dabble. I love photography and am one of those annoying people who likes to write every little memory down. Scrapping fulfils all of those things. It combines my memories, my love of photography and my need to be creative. I can’t imagine ever not scrapping. We don’t have children so when I am gone I expect most of my work to end up in a skip, but that doesn’t matter. I enjoy the act of creating; what happens to it later doesn’t really matter.

10) What technique or style would you like to try or master but have not managed to yet?

I have already said I can’t do the grungy, inky bit and I would love to be able to. I’d also love to be able to make the pages where there is oodles and oodles of stuff and yet they just look beautiful and not cluttered.

11) Do you make cards as well as scrap? If so can you show us some?

I do make cards as well as scrap and I often go through phases where I challenge myself to make a card every time I have some scraps left over. That determination doesn’t usually last long! I make cards from scraps and also use digital kits a lot, printing them out and making layered cards as a hybrid look.

12) How long do you spend on average per layout?

I am a bit of an instant sort of girl. It is rare for me to spend more than an hour to an hour and a half on a page.

13) How often do you scrap?

Every single day. It might be paper or digi but it is something creative every day.

14) What does your husband think of your scrapbooking?

He is very supportive. He takes an interest in what I create, helps come up with quirky titles, sees things when we are out to take photos of saying, ‘ you could scrap that’ and is also my biggest …. kindest …..critic, urging me to take things a step further when I need pushing

15) Do you pre plan your layouts or just sit and shuffle paper til it looks right? Describe the process you go through when creating a layout

I am much better at getting going on the creative front when I am doing design team work because the hardest thing for me is chosing the paper. Coming up with the design/idea etc is the easier bit for me. I can waste hours looking through papers, so to have a kit to work from is a godsend for me.

I have to have a title before I can scrap so my process is normally …. Get the photo, think of the title, find the right papers and card (that can take a while!!!) then plan the design in my head and go. I never really think about embellishments until the end (yes it probably does show). To me it is the photo, the title, the journaling first and foremost and then I think of embellishing it afterwards.

16) What colour schemes are your current favourites?

I love muted tones and soft colours and have a particular fondness for aqua, teal and a sort of brownish pink.

17) What colours do you rarely use and why?

I rarely scrap with yellow or orange . I am not really able to use bright acid colours successfully. I wish I could. I have an aversion to yellow in all aspects of my life …. No idea why!

18) Tell us 3 random facts about yourself.

  • I shattered my ankle, broke my leg and damaged my pelvis falling from a third floor window when I was twelve
  • I am allergic to banana
  • I can still recite the poem I learnt for my Speakers badge in Brownies when I was 7
19) How do you organise your layouts into albums (e.g. chronological \ date you scrapped them \ random \ by subject)

My albums are all themed, cat albums, Canada, Las Vegas, Emily, days out etc. I have lost count of how many. Dozens and dozens. I recently gave Emily all of her albums (and there were quite a few) as I need more storage room.

20) What is your favourite design tip, style or technique that you use on your layouts?

My layouts always have quite a prominent title because I guess I am an ordered sort of person. I am also quite anal in trying to get my layouts balanced. The technique I guess I use a lot on pages is sewing.

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Pretty Pretty

Have you been looking at the sneak peeks from CHA? We have done our Prima order, some lovely papers, some of the flowers and some more of those fabulous e line products which combine loveliness with affordable pricing! Perfect!

Take a look at the Prima blog to see their new releases. Also showing some sneaky peeks is the Maya Road blog and needless to say we will be doing an order with them too!

Got to go, I am posting this from Southampton, where I am visiting Elizabeth, but I will be back home tomorrow and will be posting the first "An Intervieew With..." feature on the blog so pop back tomorrow to learn a little more about opne of our ATDML designers!

Friday, 15 January 2010

Be Mine... Always - By Suzanne Torr

This is Suzannes first class of 2010 for us and isn't it gorgeous?! As she says in her class note intro it is so cold and dull outside that she decided to inject a little sunshine with this layout of her daughter Mia in her sundress and she is right - it certainly brightened up a very dull and grey day here in Suffolk when I uploaded it this morning.

Next month there will be another two classes, one from me and one from Ann Freeman (who is sooooo organised that hers is done and emailed to me already) I am loving the variety and range of styles and subjects we have got with this talented bunch of ladies on our design team.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

New Class Coming Soon...

The very talented Suzanne Torr has created the next class for our website which will be uploaded tomorrow. The class uses Pink Paislees valentines line "Cupid"
Here is a little sneak peek of Suzannes layout:

*** It's Nearly Over! ***

The ATDML sale ends this weekend but there is still time to grab some bargains. Most items in store are discounted by between 15% and 70% so come on over and stock up at bargain prices!

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

The Winter White Giveaway Winner

We had a lot of fun reading through all the titles and captions you came up with and there were some very inventive ones as well as some classics!

The winner is Katy with Brrrrrrrrrrr-illiant fun!

Katy, please email us with your address and your little box of white goodies will be winging their way to you shortly!
PS The photo is our village church next door to Izzys school (and where I got married) all covered in snow - it is mostly melted now but I needed a snowy pic for this post!

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Yorkshire Pudding & Pancakes

Around about this time each month we will be hosting a feature called "The Ingredients For A Layout"
I was thinking about this feature as I was cooking pancakes for my kids with left over yorkshire pudding batter. Pancakes and Yorkshire Pudding. Both Gorgeous. Same ingredients. Different outome :)
We will be sending out identical mini page kit out to two or three scrappers who will work with the kit and produce a layout with it. They will then send a photo or scan of it to us and we will put them up on the blog for you all to see what they did. We will pick our favourite and send a small prize to the winner.
Now this type of challenge has been done in various guises and formats in lots of places I am sure - we are not claiming it is an original idea but we like it :)

Our first three scrappers will be receiving their boxes in the next few days so keep an eye out for their work appearing here next month.

We selected our participants from those who contacted us about guest design team spots. We had more emails and comments than there were spaces so those who were not asked to do a guest DT spot this time have been asked to take part in challenges, product reviews and other features. If you haven't already contacted us but want to be on our contacts list for these kinds of features do drop me an email we love hearing from you and I keep a list of people on my pc so that I have names to hand if we need people for blog or website features.

If you have any ideas for articles or features for the blog then do also let us know - either things you want us to produce or if you have an article, tutorial or feature you could produce as a guest contributor to the blog.

Monday, 11 January 2010

It's Tough...

... to sit and compile CHA orders! As Jill is not making the trip across the Atlantic this year we have been sorting out a lot of our CHA orders in the past few days. Tonight we have been looking at American Crafts' new Thickers and some stamps that we have ordered (sorry, we are not allowed to post the pictures online yet) and we received notice that our 7 Gypsies Avignon papers and stickers have been dispatched!

We have been looking through all your suggestions below and will be placing orders with several of the companies mentioned - keep checking back to see what arrives in store and who gets the box of goodies :)

We have had a great response to the guest designer call - we have more people than there are spaces in the 2010 guest spots however those who are not asked to do a guest spot this time may be contacted to take part in blog features, product testing and mini challenges and of course 2010 will fly by and we will need a whole new bunch of guest designers again!

If you emailed look out for an email in the next few days - if you left a blog comment and your blog does not have a contact email for you please get in touch via email.
We will leave you with a picture of the lovely Avignon papers which are on their way as we speak.

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Product Spotlight: Luxe Frame Rub Ons

OK So these are not a new product but we think they are overlooked gems! When we first saw the Luxe stand at CHA '07 we liked the paper but we loved the rub ons! They rub on nicely (and not all rub ons do!) and the designs were good. They continued to bring out some great rub ons over the next couple of years (my personal favourites are the circle frames - remember I have a thing about circles?!)

For todays product spotlight I had a play with this set of rub ons - Square Frames.

I made a layout and a birthday card with them and thoroughly enjoyed creating both. The rub on frames were great for drawing attention to the photo in a different way to a plain cardstock mat, on the layout I cut around the bumpy edge of the pattern. On the layout I trimmed the edges straight and rounded the corners.

Here's what I made:

The Luxe rub ons, plus all our other rub on embellishments can be found here and for a limited time only (until Saturday 16th Jan 2010) blog readers can get an extra 10% off items in the Rub On Embellishments category by entering the code: Blog0110Rub into the promotional code box. This discount is only valid if your total order value before p&p is over £5.00

Saturday, 9 January 2010

Wonderful Winter White Giveaway

OK, so there is snow everywhere and I have a lot of snow photos of my girls in the white stuff as well as photos of the house and our village looking very picturesque. Trouble is I am going to need a lot of help thinking up snow photo titles.

Leave a comment with a layout title suitable for snowy \ wintery pages (doesn't have to be specific to my photos just a general winter or snow type title) and we will pick our favourite to win a white giveaway (a little box of white or wintery coloured stash)

For example in the comment box you type "Winter Wonderland" (except you won't actually type that because that is my suggestion!) and leave your name. You will need to check back for the winner next week - we will announce the winner on Wednesday.

Just a little bit of fun for a snowy cold evening!

Friday, 8 January 2010

Sketch Inspiration Number 1

In addition to the classes, product features and tutorials here on the Created By ATDML Blog we will be posting sketches to try and kick start your Mojo. These will come from various members of the DT and will include a sketch and the designers layout to go with it.

This sketch and layout is one of mine. I love the crazy brightness of the Scenic Route Garden Grove papers. In fact I love Scenic Route so I was very sad to see them go. Luckily we still have some of their products in stock!

I am also a big fan of circular designs on layouts, I used the handcut flowers from one of the papers around the bottom of the circle to add a bit of extra detail. Because my photo was so large I placed the title on top of the photo, another favourite design feature of mine.

Have a go at your own layout based on the sketch. If you want to play along then post your layout to your blog or in an online gallery and post the link here. I will sort out a little prize for my favourite :)

Finally, if you have not yet looked, scroll down to the product spotlight from January 4th - I have added a mini book from Jane Hewitt and a layout from Debbie Jewell since the original post.

Thursday, 7 January 2010

Design Team Gallery & Happy Birthday Jill!

First of all HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Jill! She has spent the day packing sale orders but finished it off with a nice meal out!

The January Design Team Gallery is now online HERE

This month the team worked with Prima papers from their most recent releases. These included Animal Bash, Wink, Blooming Retro, The Tropics, Paradise City and Indeed. Our Guest Designer was Cath Stannard. Below is a sneak peek of the loveliness that is in this months gallery, don't forget to stop by our site and see the gallery in full.

Wanted: Guest Designers....

Each month the ATDML Design Team Gallery is filled with lots of lovely inspiration.

To ensure that it is always varied and fresh we have a guest designer spot each month. The guest designer receives a pizza box of goodies and then has approx 3 weeks to create at least 3 items with the contents, at least 2 of which should be layouts.

The items you create are yours to keep, there is no need to send them to us, just clearly scan or photograph and send in jpeg format.

This month our guest designer spot has been filled by Cath Stannard do take a look at the gallery, which will go up today, to see her lovely work.

However the calendar for Guest DT spots is EMPTY for the rest of 2010!

If you would like a box of free stash and a chance to showcase your work in our gallery please either post a comment here with a link to your blog or online gallery where we can see your work, or if you prefer not to post on here you can email me - with Guest Designer in the subject line.

We obviously have a set number of spots to fill however if you are not asked at this time we will keep your info as we may need additional scrappers for product reviews \ challenges etc...

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Keep Them Coming!

Thanks for all the comments so far with your suggestions for product lines to look out for. Some of them we already had our eyes on (Jill has been gazing happily at the sneak peeks from G45) and others we definitely be looking into.

Keep all your comments and suggestions coming - remember it could be you that gets a box of free goodies when the CHA stuff arrives :)

The Design Team gallery will go live tomorrow - it will be going up on the 7th or 8th of each month - and we have some lovely projects for you. With our larger team we are working on a rotation system, each month 5 of the regular DT plus one guest will contribute to the Design Team Gallery, one of the other two designers will create a class for the website and the remaining designer gets a well earned rest!

Our guest scrapper this month is Cath Stannard. Check back tomorrow to see what Cath and the DT girls have done with their kits. This month also sees the welcome return of Dawn Evans to our DT, she took a break last year due to a busy work schedule but she is back onboard with her wonderful style of scrapping.

Right, must go - I haven't quite finished my last DT project... !

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

A Little Audience \ Customer Participation Please...

It is THAT time of year again, our inboxes are starting to fill up with manufacturers letting us know their offers for ordering at or before CHA.

This year, as always, we are looking out for which companies have exciting new releases and which new companies are set to take the scrapping world by storm!

So here's the thing, the customers desires are, or should be, one of the major driving forces behind any business and we want to know what you would like to see gracing the virtual shelves of ATDML.

Leave a comment here about what new products you would like to see us stock - if you have a link to the product then add it in the comment.

Someone who comments will win a free box of goodies from ATDML relating to the item(s) they highlighted for us.

Obviously the winner of the free box won't get it until the new releases come through so you will have to be a little bit patient, but hey, for some free stash it will be worth the wait!