Thursday, 19 October 2017

Sending Hugs - Stamping on Parchment project

Hi there.
Thanks for popping in!
Sat in a hotel in the Harrogate vicinity,
all ready for the Parchment Show Set-up tomorrow.
Show’s at the Cedar Court Hotel on Saturday.

Yep, day to get up here,
day to set up,
day to do the job,
day to get back home and recover.
It’s a good job I love the people I work with!
Who cares about being sandwiched in the middle of the van cab 
for 7 hours, when you’ve got Paul and Dave for company ????

Mind you, we nearly came to blows.
Food was a farce today. 
Talk about tempt the poor cow on the diet!!!

I had M&S prawns and strawberries for lunch,
they had sausage rolls and pork pies.
Then for tea, I had sushi, satsumas and water
they had burger king, chips and coke.

It is so hard to stick to a diet regime when you’re on the road, 
but this time I am adamant.

There’s a particular dress I want to get into next year.....

let’s craftabit!

Let’s play fill in the blanks...

on the b - - -  of a sheet of P - - - - - - - -.
Use a b - - - -   a - - - - - - -  ink pad.

Stamp the W - - -  C - - - -  into the centre, and allow to d - -.
Flip to the b - - -  of the p - - - - - - - - and place on a 
 P - - - - - - - -   E - - - - - - - -   M - - .

Do some w - - - - - - - - . 
Let it rest between sessions,
and try not to be i - - - - - - - - !

Make a  f - - - - around the stamped image using the 
n - - - - -   s - - - - - -  G - - - - -  p - - - - .

Working on the b - - - , 
use the No. -  tool to emboss a h - - - - - - - - on the letters.

See how  w - - - -  it is!

Let’s   d - - - - - up on the frame!

Use an e - - - - -   p - - - - -  to rub out the colour in the leaves.
Then colour in again with a  g - - - -   p - - - - -.

Do this on the b - - -.

T - - -  the parchment with a  r - - - - and b - - - -.
It really helps if the r - - - - has a strip of  G - - - - -   g - - - attached to the base!

There we are!!
Mount on  w - - - -  card, and then on  m - - - - - - -    p - - - -!

n - - - !

T - - -  F - -  B - - !!

Love & Hugs,

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

The Busker

Hi there.
Thanks for popping in and taking the time to read this blog.
I know it takes me a lot longer to write it than it does for you to read it, and at first glance one could easily be lulled into believing that you are the passive reader, the audience, the less significant.

But actually, you are crucial.

If you didn’t pop in every day, would there be much point in my blogging? Would I actually still spend hours daily, making art projects, taking photos, teaching and sharing if you weren’t here for me to share anything with?

I wonder whether the busker on the corner of the street asks himself what for, if there’s nobody passing by, nobody stopping to listen, nobody throwing a copper in his cap.

But I think I would keep playing even if you didn’t stop by,
because bloggy play is good exercise for me too.
It is the quintessence of mindfulness, and great for humility.

Just as I’m sure the busker also sings on, because he can, and probably also because he lives in hope of an audience, of a crowd.

It’s not about numbers, or popularity, or ego.
(Edging Goodness Out)
No no no.
It’s enough for me to know that my Dad reads this blog every single day! How cool is that?! And he reads it out loud to my Mum too !!!

If only one person stops to listen, 
the busker suddenly comes to life, and performs.
An audience of one is all it takes.

I know my audience is bigger than that nowadays.
But it wasn’t always that way.
Which is probably why I mostly stop and give the busker time and a little money. I’ll always buy the CD for a fiver too.

So yes. When I always thank you for popping in, 
I really really mean 

Thank you.

Love & Hugs,

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Chewsday - Jellyplate and Candyfloss!

Hi there.
Thanks for popping in.
Do come in and stay a while...
the kids are on their way back to the States this afternoon,
and the house is pretty empty again.
Dave is working in the garden, and on occasions like this, 
a little arty playtime is a good distraction.

Out with the 8"x10" Gelpress plate
Out with those fantastic strip stencils Mel designed.
Funky Island Strip Stencils

Strip. Now there’s a word which makes me shudder!
I have put on so much weight!
Talk about a foodfest for a fortnight!!!

I really must go on a diet.
Just bananas? I only like green ones though.

Spread some Banana yellow acrylic paint over the plate and stencils with a brayer.

Lift most of it off again with copy paper, 
leaving just a strip in the middle, like a midriff!

Scrunch up some copy paper and pat the midriff! 
Let it dry.

What about Candy Floss? Surely a little of that’s ok? 
It’s mostly air after all!

Blot the sides, leaving a wider band
- just as a reminder!

Pat gently with a paper towel
and let it dry.

Bananas and Candy Floss. Could be a winning combination!

Food on the brain!
If I don’t throw some Granny Smiths into the mix,

on top of the Bananas and Candy Floss,
and let it dry,

I will NEVER fit into my little Black dress ever again!
It’s not a good look right now, I can tell you!
Let it dry.

Bare my body on a Carribean beach? No no no.
Cover the lot with a layer of paint,

and while it’s still wet, peel the stencils off.

Flip the Gelpress on its Megamount 
and plant wet paint face down on the white sand -
er I mean card.

Flip it back,
rub the white card and peel it off.

Mega Print.
A right mixed salad!
Bananas, Granny Smiths - even a little Candy Floss,
and all on a Carribean Sea bed.

Let’s add a little colour.

Pick and Mix!!!

Use our Spot on Sponges to work the ink into the white areas.
(I’m still on the beach in my head!!!)
I would say gently massage into the gaps, 
but that would be wrong!

I love how the acrylic paint resists the dye-based ink.

Then out with the blade and ruler, and start slicing up the large piece into smaller portions of loveliness.

Like snacks, instead of a plateful.

The beautiful stencil shapes stand out more 
when there are less of them, see?

When you get up close, you really see the detail;
feast your eyes on just one skinny element!

And there’s plenty more mileage in that one arty cook off.

Musn’t forget to sign it and own it, right?

Thanks for humouring me and sticking with me to the end here!

Time to go cook a meal.
Crunch a carrot.
Boil a lettuce or something.
Dave? A little detox’ll do him the power of good.

Love & Hugs,

Monday, 16 October 2017

Carpay Deeum - Bright on !

Happy Monday!
Thanks for popping in!
It’s a beautiful sunny day, and we’re on our way out to Brighton as soon as Gracie gets back from the hairdressers!
She’ll only let my friend Carron near it, so by the time she gets home twice or thrice a year - she NEEDS a trim !!!

In the meantime, Mark is out for the count upstairs. The Jetlag hits you hard when you come east from California.

The fires are pretty shocking, aren’t they. 
So sad and sorry for the victims who have lost their homes, 
families - and lives.
Here we are partying and eating roast lamb, 
and there they are, in an inferno.
Mark lives south of the hotspot, in Oakland,
but friends and family have already been evacuated from Green Valley. Mark said the smell of smoke all around the bay when we left last Thursday was extreme. 

So tomorrow both Grace and Mark fly away again.
She to New York.
He to San Francisco.

I thought I would make a quick card to celebrate today with you though. Quick being the operative word!

Stamped out my two favourite stamps in the world
(I wonder why...)
on a lovely new Designer Paper leaf which is being launched by myself on HOCHANDA in a fortnight, on Sunday 29th October, 
the week before the NEC.


Trim and outline.

Mount on a white fold card.

See the wise old finger pointing the way?

I cannot wait to present these new papers and parchment papers to you. Look up Shenandoah, Virginia.
It must be one of the most beautiful places on earth.

#chuffedtobits #clarityrocks #madebyme

But now we are off to Brighton.
Got to make the most of it while they’re here.

Ain’t that the truth.

Love & Hugs,

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Roast lamb

Hi there.
Thanks for popping in.
Cor dearie me!!
All this partying is hard work!
I shall be glad to get back to work for a break!


The birthday celebrations continued this morning with 
Breakfast at the Spa! 
After which we finally waved tataa to Mum and Dad.  

Aunty Esther and I took a slow stroll down Mount Ephraim to the Pantiles. We had no choice there,
because Mark had gone off with my car keys!

But the sun came out, and we spent an enjoyable hour together, before she caught her train back home too.

Just enough time to get home, get the lamb in the oven, 
and set the table again for the next guests:
Grace’s best friend Lizzie and her fella. 

I know the kids love a good old English roast, 
and there’s nothing like a grateful eater - or 4 !!

So it was my absolute pleasure to cook for the kids.

So while I’m whizzing round the island, trying to dish it up hot,

Grace sees the comedy sketch in it.

You KNOW how hot I am getting here,
because you KNOW that this is the crucial part of the job.
Have already kicked the slippers off, burnt my fingers sharing out the roast potatoes quickly, and am now ladling the gravy double smart....

And here’s my No. 1 helper. 
Cool and collected, ready to assist, to stir the gravy, 
be the royal taster - whatever it takes.

Ahhhh .
But it was worth it.

And bless Grace!  “Nothing” she said, “nothing any restaurant could ever serve, would ever beat my mum’s roast lamb.”

Now that is indeed a compliment.
But guess what?
My Mum, the lady whose birthday we have been celebrating all week, taught me how to cook. And I know for a fact, that Grace could serve this meal beautifully too, if she were of a mind to.

I know a Sunday Roast is not a card, not a craft project.
but there are those who would argue 
that serving an English Roast is an art of sorts!

Love & Hugs,
Barb and the Happy Eaters!