Wow, I noticed the dates. It's been months since I added anything to this blog! Well, I have been doing other things.

It has been even longer since I had challenges on my mind, but this card has been entirely inspired by them.

Yes, there are three challenges I would like to enter this in, and I had all three in mind before I started this creative process.

First there is Sheilagh Roxbury who has been encouraging people to take part in her challenge, in the Cards Galore group on facebook. I just missed last month's so I really wanted to make sure I entered this time around. This month's theme is decoupage. As luck would have it I had just come past this cute little bee going through my stock, and wondered what I would use it for. So that decision was made quickly.

Then Kanban started a brand new challenge, obviously they require the use of their products. And guess where I got that gorgeous topper from...? Oh, yes! So I took base card and a frame for adding a sentiment, or name or number from Kanban goodies too. With an anything goes theme to get them started, I was lucky of course to be able to fit it in so nicely.

Then I read that Delicious Doodles are having a die cut challenge this time around. Well, the topper and the sentiment frame were die-cuts too, but I doubt that is what was meant. It is a whole different kind of die cut. Luckily I had these fine pink die cut trellis hearts that work well with the image echoing the hearts already in there. 

In a sense the card remains unfinished. I would like to add it to the stock to sell . It currently consists of only one card, so any addition would be welcome. So I wanted to leave room for sentiments, name, age, or whatever in the top corner and/or on the little frame. I may end up using it myself too, but at present haven't immediately got an occasion or person in mind. I am sure you all have enough imagination to have an idea of the finished product!

I could use it for the swap I run on facebook, together wit a fantastic admin team. We call it "We love our Card Swap" a name selected by the group members. That says enough, doesn't it... Our theme this month is 3D so decoupage would be fine, but I really want to challenge myself to make my first ever K-card using the pro. Watch this space...

Please let me know what you think, and, ehmmm, wish me luck. ;-)

You now scrapping is not my thing, but with Serif I can just about manage it. And I do feel I owe it to Marleen to take part in the Cards Galore Scrapbook Challenge, especially now that I'm part of the cards galore admin team.

This months team is Kids. Now as you know we particularly  dislike having recognisable pictures of ourselves and especially our little boy on the internet, so I have a job looking for something suitable. But this self portrait he took with the camera he got for christmas last year, has hardly left him recognisable, and I still love the effect it gives in this autumnal page. It really suits him.

So here's my entry.

It has taken some time, but we have 11 PRIZES.

They have been allocated using random numbers.

So keep the tickets that came with the cards you bought at the ready and check this list:


All winners should get in touch via, let us see the ticket and give us the details of where to send their prize.

Thank you all for your support in buying the cards!
Het heeft een tijdje geduurd, maar we hebben 11 PRIJZEN.

De lotjes zijn willekeurig getrokken.

Hou je lotjes die bij de kaarten die je kocht zaten en kijk deze lijst na:

Winnaars kunnen zich melden via, ons hun lotje laten zien en het adres geven waarnaar de prijs gestuurd kan worden.

Dank u voor alle steun in het kopen van de kaarten!

I have been making cards to sell for two causes.

Gold ribbons came falling out of the sky during the André Rieu concert in Maastricht which I took my husband to for his fiftieth birthday. My parents paid as a special treat, knowing just how much this would mean to him. We started picking them up and rolling them. The people around us soon joined in and handed the rolls to me. The atmosphere was so magical and inspiring that I immediately thought I should use them for crafting something special. It was obvious it would be cards, the design was to follow later on. However it was clear to me very swiftly where the money should go.

The idea is that I donate the materials and my time, so the full price of the cards can be split between two pots. 

One cause is the Friends of Ichthyosis , which was set up and organised by a dear facebook friend of mine, Melanie Bradley. She has touched me deeply with her stories about her and her life with this disease, which she has passed on to her lovely little girl, and with her courage and tenacity. 

The other half will go into a fund to enable my husband and I, and hopefully our little boy too, to return to Maastricht for the next André Rieu concert .  I love it too, but my husband so deserves this intensely special treat which means more to him than I can explain here.  Everything he does in looking after me, as I have complex health issues which keep me bedbound the majority of the time,  and our six year old son  who has multiple special needs is beyond admirable.  He really does deserve this relatively small treat. Because of my health we can only go if we stay overnight, and because of our financial situation I need to devise a way to create the funds.

The cards have been given a simple design, so I would be able to produce many. They have an insert without text, and hence can be used for any occasion.  They are available in light blue (the colour of
Friends of Ichthyosis ), and in purple and light green , and other colours might follow. The embossed swirls  repeat the background of the Friends of Ichthyosis  site, and the butterfly is sometimes used as their symbol.

To encourage you to buy generously, my friend Shelley Mimi Bo has offered to hunt down some wonderful prizes to be raffled. Each card gives entry into a random draw,   The winners will be made known HERE on this page.

Each card costs 2.50 GBP. That's 4.00 USD, to any American customers. If you buy five, you get 25p discount per card, buy 10 and it's 50p less per card, so 11.25 GBP for 5 cards and draw entries, and 20 GBP for 10. That's 17.90 and 31.80 USD. Payment can be made in cash, by bank transfer or through PayPal.

You can order in the comments here, with Melanie or with me.  Better still: you could help us sell!  
In any case, do get in touch, and do help spread the word - by referring people to this blogpage for example...


Deze kaartjes  heb ik ontworpen met de bedoeling voor twee aparte potjes centen te verzamelen. 

De gouden linten die worden gebruikt om de vlinder te maken, kwamen uit de lucht gevallen tijden s het André Rieu concert in Maastricht. Mijn ouders trakteerden ons hierop om mijn man zijn vijftigste verjaardag te vieren, wetend hoe belangrijk dit voor hem zou zijn. We verzamelden ze, en begonnen ze op te rollen. De mensen naast ons deden al gauw mee en gaven mij hun rolletjes. De sfeer is daar zo wonderlijk en inspirerend dat  ik meteen bedacht  dat ik ze wou gebruiken om iets speciaals mee te knutselen. Dat het kaartjes zouden worden was wel duidelijk, het ontwerp zou later pas volgen. Waar de opbrengst naartoe moest gaan wist ik onmiddellijk. 

Mijn tijd en de materialen geef ik, zodat de volledige prijs van de kaartjes  verdeeld kan worden over twee goede doelen. 

Het eerste goede doel is de Friends of Ichthyosis ,  dat werd opgericht door een facebook vriendin van me , Melanie Bradley. Haar verhalen over het leven met deze aandoening, die ze ook heeft doorgegeven aan haar lieflijk dochtertje, en haar moed en drijfkracht hebben me diep geraakt. 

De andere helft gaat naar een spaarpotje dat moet dienen om mijn man, en hopelijk ook ons zoontje, dit jaar opnieuw mee te nemen naar het André Rieu concert in Maastricht . Ik hou er ook van, maar mijn echtgenoot verdiend deze zo intens speciale traktatie enorm. Ik kan je hier onmogelijk de emotionele lading van deze uitstap beschrijven. Alle s wat hij voor mij doet, omdat ik door een complexe gezondheidsproblematiek bijna volltijds aan bed gekluisterd leef,  en voor onze zesjarige zoon die op verscheidene vlakken extra zorgen nodig heeft , is meer dan bewonderenswaardig. Hij is deze relatief kleine beloning echt wel waard. Mijn gezondheidstoestand verplicht ons te blijven overnachten, onze financiële toestand verplicht me te proberen een apart potje te sparen. 

De kaartjes zijn simpel ontworpen, om er veel te kunnen maken. Ze zijn voorzien van een inlegvel zonder tekst, zodat ze voor verschillende gelegenheden gebruikt kunnen worden. Ze zijn verkrijgbaar in lichtblauw (de kleur van 
Friends of Ichthyosis ), en paars en lichtgroen, er kunnen nog andere kleuren volgen.  De reliëf krullen geven  de achtergrond van de website van Friends of Ichthyosis  weer,  en de vlinder wordt wel eens gebruikt als hun symbool.

Om jullie aan te moedigen veelvuldig te bestellen, heeft Shelley Mimi Bo, en vriendin van me, aangeboden mooie prijzen op te sporen om random te verloten. Iedere kaart is voorzien van een lot. De winnaars zullen HIER op deze pagina bekend worden gemaakt. 

Een kaartje kost €3,15, per vijf komen ze op €2,80/st of €14/5st, per 10 is het nog €2,50/st of €25/10. Er kan in cash, per overschrijving of met PayPal betaald worden.

 Bestellen kan hieronder in de commentaren, bij Melanie of bij mezelf. Beter nog: je zou ons kunnen helpen bij de verkoop!  Laat in ieder geval iets weten, en zeg het verder, bijvoorbeeld door mensen naar deze blogpagina te verwijzen...  

Having mentioned my card swap group, I hope that you will all go and take a look, become members and start swapping. The group is called 'We love our Card Swap', and I can tell you we certainly do!

We love it so much, that we wanted to celebrate the fact that we have reached 100 members. So this month, we decided to raffle a prize among those who take part.

Stamping dragon designs have offered a gorgeous digital stamp! Check it out. I am sworn to secrecy but can tell you that the digi on offer can be seen on this page...

Taking part is easy and fun. This month adults are to make a star-shaped card, the children a card that has stars as a theme. Become a member of the group, make your card, and announce on the group wall that you've done it. The first week of October we will post a list of swap partners. You contact each other for addresses and send each other your cards. Then of course stick around for the next theme or style!

Swapping is how I first got into card making, and look at all it has brought to my life! It has been amazing, I have learnt so much, and have made so many warm-hearted people many of whom have become friends.

I hope this swap group c

Well, I've just noticed quite how long it has been since I have blogged!

I have been busy mostly with orders, so I started my gallery instead. But now I have a reason to blog again, as I am entering another challenge.

This one got me nervous. My dear friend Marleen is involved with the cards galore scrapbook challenge. In fact I think she set it up and runs it. I promised her faithfully I would start to take part, since she has been so supportive to me, and her and her children are now active in the card swap group I run myself - with the help of Jan and Maria, my lovely admin girls.

Learning to scrap, one step at a time, is the least I could do in return. I am so glad I have got the Serif, as I doubt I would have made anything at all without it. For some reason scrapbooking scares me. Being able to just fiddle about on the computer, with the safety of undo buttons and such, eased that a bit. 

The theme this month is patchwork, and I think that fitted nicely with these pictures we took on outings with our little boy this summer. We have serious qualms about putting recognisable pictures on the internet, especially of children. So I chose these three photographs in all of which he looks the other way. Anybody that does know him, would know it is him, but there is certainly not enough visual information there for anybody to be able to approach him out of the blue on that basis.

Despite they still show his character, and his inquisitive nature so well. I can't but smile and feel a warm glow inside when I look at this page now, with the three together. I hope some of that comes across.

Please let me know what you think.

For some reason I'm finding it hard to blog lately. I always feel I want to write alongside my cards, rather than just post a picture and say which challenge(s) I want to enter them in. That would seem so cold and heartless, and crafting is anything but.

So I have entered the odd card straight from facebook, just upload the picture, post the link, done.

I had thought I would do the same with this one. It was a bit rushed this morning, knowing we would be going out for the day, and wanting to get it done as the challenge finishes tonight, and I do want to support Emma in the challenges she sets up. So I got the card done, to send along with a couple of others a s a thank you, but for this challenge, to post via facebook you need to be a member of a particular group, which I wasn't yet. I requested the membership and then had to leave, without being able to post.

Well, would you believe it, tonight facebook won't let me on... So here I am. Perhaps the universe is gently hinting that I should be using my blog more.

Well, having said all that, I will have to hurry, or I will still miss the deadline. So, as mentioned before, I would like to enter this card in to Emma's Crafty Challenge. This month we were asked to follow a sketch, which I tried to do as closely as possible, even looking at colours and shades and such. I am very pleased with the results. I made an effort to use the goodies I was sent by the friend the card was for, and used some of the new stuff I ordered just last week. It's amazing what a boost all this new stash has given me to get going again. I had been too ill to be able to for a while, and eventhough I had recovered, I wasn't quite getting back to the card-making like before. Well, it seems I am now!

Recently I had my very first order of cards, and more keep coming in. I am so flattered at this, especially as customers tend to give me a lot of freedom to be creative. This must mean they like what I do, surely. It also means I can use the opportunity to fit in with a few challenges. This is one of those cards.

I was inspired by the idea of making your own paper flowers, and had seen a few different techniques which I wanted to put to the test.

Crafty Calender Challenge of 'Flowers in Bloom' seems a perfect challenge to enter for this.

There's also Craft Your Days Away with their Bingo Card. I always find those difficult, I must say, but this time it worked out well on the diagonal from left top to right bottom: flowers, ribbon/lace, and gems. In this card they just formed a natural part of the build-up.

And on a completely different, and very summery note, the Allsorts Challenge is focussed around 'ice cream colours' which appear abundantly on this card as well.

So I would like to enter these three challenges, and keep my fingers crossed the teams like my work. Do you? Please leave me your comments, I love to read what you think.

Today is my husband's 50th birthday - a very special day. So I made him this special card.

He is very much into cars, posh ones and vintage ones alike. So I thought I'd wink at his age by adding the contrast between the two types of car. The top image is decoupage, and I used silicone glue so that I could shape the paper to mimic the car shape. That doesn't show up very well on the photograph. It says 'Abraham' on the car. Over here there is an expression used for men at the age of fifty. For some reason they get called Abraham and are assumed now to know where Abraham gets the mustard (don't ask, I don't know). Women at fifty are Sarah's - nothing to do with mustard in their case, that much I do know.

The little milestone in the decoupage picture says 50.

The man in the car happens to have an amazing likeness to the love of my life. I just had to use this image, it was perfect for him.

The ribbon is glued on the front, and then lifts to the inside to keep the tag there. On the tag it explains he has a surprise to come. It gives him the option either to keep the tag and be patient, or to hand back the tag and find out what the surprise will be.

Also the base card from Hunky Dory not only has the vintage car, which he thought may well be a Rolls Royce (much appreciated!), it also has a faint reproduction of a street map. He reckoned it was Paris, as it has the Seine on it, and wondered if this is a hint towards the surprise... It suits him, though, in any case, as he is a geographer. Through a turn of circumstances he had never been able to use his training in his work, and has turned to teaching in the last couple of years, which has taken him back to the subject he truely loves. It has brought him to life again. Well, they do say life begins at fifty! 

He is most definitely the special man in my life. So I'd like to enter the card in two challenges around this theme: Lexi's Creations and Love to Create Challenge. Here come the boys happen to have an anything goes challenge on, so that's a perfect one to enter as well.

Wish me luck!

I hope the teams like this card as much as my hubby did when I handed it to him just after midnight, as his birthday started. He had a great big smile from ear to ear for ages as he just kept looking at it.

Always love to read your comments!

This butterfly card is one I made for the very first order I received. I was given a lot of freedom, and this is one of the things I came up with.

I would like to enter it into Emma's Crafty Challenge, for which the theme this month is monochrome.

Well, it had been my intention to create a step-by-step log on how I made these Spring Fest cards. It definitely was a slow and steady process, as I am limited in what I can do, so I had to spread the work over the course of about a month. Unfortunately, that left me unable to blog about it. Apart from the cards themselves there was so much else to organise for the party, which obviously took priority. So I'm afraid I can't even show any photographs of the work in progress, or anything. I might catch up with some later.

In any case, I suppose it was all pretty straight forward really. I continued to work task by task. Next step was sticking the cut pieces on to each other. The challenge was learning how to get them centred, and accepting that good enough really is good enough. I asked the advice of some more experienced crafters and ended up working out a system that worked for me. I would take hold of the card with tweezers at the top, and hold my fingernail at the bottom to steady it. It took a bit of practice, I got better and better at it as I went along.

The other thing I learnt is that you do eventually run out of things. Next time I should check my stock of tape and such in advance. 

I first prepared the orange on green, and green on orange matting. Then the base card needed folding, and the spine needed breaking so that they would stand up as an easle. I ended up engaging my husband in this, as I lacked the strength.

Meanwhile I could get on with cutting the photographs to size. Hubby had taken some gorgeous shots of our little boy, all dressed up in his suit and tie, out in the garden, and printed them off on photo paper. I soon learned I had to cut them by hand, as I would always miss the edge when I tried to use the cutter. Then back to the tape, tweezers and fingernails...

Then the squares were ready to be stuck on the base card. Careful with the top ones: they only needed tape on the bottom half, so the top would come up with the easle! Also careful to put the picture in the right direction. As it is a twisted easel the picture changes direction when it is put up.

Well, actually that is the order it should have been done in. As I was waiting for new tape pens to arrive, I started on the embellishments before sticking the pictures on to the easel. I took a bit of a risk, not knowing whether I would be able to stick them on relatively straight, when the surface was raised by the sachets of chocolates underneath.

I worked out a way to get the sachets attached to the cards in such a way that when they come off for people to eat the choccies, they are still left with a nice decent card that looks complete. I used ribbon, layering it on high tack tape so that I had loops. I did three loops, then a flat bit, then three loops again. I made some flowers with punches and stuck those on the flat bit. Then I strung the ribbon to tie the sachets with through the two loops to the side of the flat bit. I filled the tuile with 25 chocolates beans eachs, scooped it together, and tied it with the orange ribbon. Then curled the ribbon with scissors and Bob's your uncle.

I did manage to stick the ribbon on in the wrong direction on five cards first, despite being very careful and thinking it all through. Ah, well, lucky I saw it before I did them all! 

I still felt there was more I could have done to them, but I lacked the time. I guess it is always the same for any card.