Archive for the ‘Hints and Tips’ Category


Oh Hello Everyone,

Well how lucky are you to have Lauren and Teddy up on the blog today??   What an exciting week it has been with the launch of our very first Facebook A2Z Papercraft Challenge, so today we thought we would show you the cards Teddy made to inspire you, it is after all an Inspiration Challenge for March.  This is the picture to give the inspiration.

Now doesn’t that picture give you great ideas of boys and play and boats and sand and beaches and pennants and blue and stripes and so much more!!!
So here is the first thought, a lighthouse on the headland surrounded by crashing waves.
 The background at the top is done with white ink in a Sizzix Embossing Folder from a due pack from Tim Holtz and I believe it is called rays, the bottom section is wax resist done with scrunched wax paper ironed onto glossy white cardstock and then inked with blue.  Hint: the more you scrunch, the smaller the pattern and more wax on your paper.
The gorgeous 18th Birthday Card Size Ebony from A2Z Scraplets came as is, coloured heavy card, so I left it as it was for this card.  The baker’s twine is made by me (I love to save money using my stash items) and if you would like to know how to do it, here is a link to Pictorial Tutorial Making Twisted String.
The next inspiration came from the canvas of beach scene on the right hand wall, look at those gorgeous beach boxes on it.  So cute.
This one is a beach house using a Kaszazz Stamp coloured with Ranger Perfect Pearls (love using these to make shimmer paints, keep them in the palette and let them dry and they work the same as watercolour paints.
Birthday Boy is from the A2Z Scraplets – Birthday Set 1 Ebony and it is covered with a lovely thick coat of Ranger Glossy Accents, love this stuff because it keeps its dimension and dries so thick.
This next card is one Teddy has made several times, it is such a fun card and inspired by the blue teddy sitting on the cabin of the big boat toybox.
It is an uneven gatefold card and kept closed by those lovely turn mounts.  The Teddies are stamped in blue on vellum and then layered on navy then white.  Little paw prints are stamped randomly over the card front.
We are loving these A2Z Scraplets Arrow Words in the February Release, they are just gorgeous and there are so many to choose from with colours available too!!!  This one has been left the colour as is and coated with Ranger Glossy Accents.  (I need buckets of that stuff) 🙂
The last card is a masculine card (sometimes so hard for us to do) and it is inspired by the overall nautical and ‘boaty’ feel to the picture, and we turned it to a very ‘aged’ project.
This card has lots of DTP edging with Ranger Distress Ink Walnut Stain and the curled corners add to the overall ‘old’ look to the card.  Backgrounds are stamped with Lucy’s Stamps Aged Cube and Rabbit Proof Fence (the text), edges torn or distressed, inked and curled.  The Happy Birthday is a Stamp-It Australia greeting.
Love the A2Z Scraplets Birthday Boy Set Cardinal and covered the birthday with Viva Crackling Colour Transparent very thickly as we find it really does give a great crackle.
The Anchor is die cut from a coke can, love to recycle things.
Hope you like these cards and find something in them you can take to call your own.
See you next time…. Lauren and Teddy

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Hello Everyone,


Teddy has decided to share his fabulous texture paste recipes, we love playing with this stuff on canvas and on cards.


Before we bet onto the gooey stuff we will show you a canvas made with it (mixed with paint for colour of course).



And some cards too, I love playing with this stuff, and I love stencils too!!







Great effects with paint on the stamps too.


So now for the recipes 🙂

Rough Texture Paste

1/2 cup Baking Soda
2 Tablespoons white school glue or PVA
1-2 Tablespoons White Acrylic Paint
(some water may be necessary)
Instructions:  I took an air tight container and put in my baking soda.  I then added the glue, acrylic paint and started mixing.  I used a couple of disposable chopsticks to mix it up.  I just mixed to get a smooth consistency, I added a few drops of water to get it to the consistency I wanted.  There are many types of texture mediums in the store, from light to heavy, so the amount of water you add will depend on the heaviness of the texture you are looking for.  Done!

(The mixture keeps well in the air tight container……..some of the moisture float on top,  just give it a stir and it will be good to go!)

Smooth Texture Paste

1/4 cup Talcum Powder (I used Johnsons Baby Powder, Make it smell good too!!)
1 tablespoon White All purpose School Glue or PVA
1 tablespoon White Craft Paint
Some Water
Instructions: I began by mixing all the above ingredients with a bit of water until I had the consistency I was looking for.  I tested the texture by letting the medium drop from my stir stick.  If it flattened out quickly into the rest of the mixture, I added too much water.  I fixed this by adding more of the talcum powder until I felt the texture would hold nicely when applied to a mask.  Personally, I like the talcum powder version better than the baking soda!  Just use an old credit card or a pallet knife to apply the mixture to your mask or stencil….you’ll love the results!
So that’s it for Teddy this week, hope you like it 😉
Hugs 🙂



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Hello Everyone,


Teddy has decided that we want to keep a record of all our information we have collected over the years, so he wants to do a Thursday Tip article each week (well we will see how long this lasts anyway).


Here he is on his first day at Big School this year, he is gorgeous isn’t he, and what a great helper he is to me as my creative director in the craft room!!






Ink & Stamp Pads are the rubber stamper’s palette. A wide array of colors and types are available.



Acid free, quick drying, fade resistant and smear proof when dry, dye ink is fabulous for general stamping. These inks will dry on regular paper or cardstock, vellum, glossy stock or metallic coated stock. Dye ink is a semi transparent ink and lighter colours will not ‘cover’ image beneath it.  It and is also great for colouring with Alcohol Markers.


Examples of Dye Inks are Clearsnap Vivid, Stampin Up Dye Inks, Adirondak Dye Inks, Ranger Distress Inks (slower to dry), Memento Dye Inks




Acid free, quick drying, fade resistant and smear prof when dry, permanent inks are great for general stamping.  These inks are great for scrapbooking and stamping onto photos as they are archival safe (always check the label). When stamping on photos, do not heat set, but allow ample drying time for the ink to cure and become permanent.  These inks can be used on glass, plastic, acrylic or metal quite successfully when heat set and then allowed to cure for several days. (On a glass surface these inks are semi-permanent, since they can be completely removed with alcohol.)


Permanent Dye Inks are Solvent based and are perfect for using for colouring images with water based pencils, paints, chalks, crayons and other watercolour mediums.


Examples of Permanent Dye Inks are StazOn, Memories, Ranger Archival



Known for their very bright and opaque colors, pigment ink is thicker and slower to dry, making it perfect for heat embossing. Pigment ink will dry on any surface that is not coated, since it requires absorption in to the surface for drying. Heat setting with your embossing heat tool will speed the drying time when you do not wish to emboss. When using pigment ink on coated stock such as metallic, matte or glossy, heat embossing is required, since the ink will not dry.

Examples of Pigment Inks are Colorbox, Ranger Adirondak Pigment, Versacolor




These pads are filled with clear, slightly (blue) tinted glycerin base or a slightly pink pigment base which are all forms of embossing fluid which is especially formulated for use with heat embossing powders.  The slight tint makes it easier to see where the image that has been stamped is.


Examples of Embossing Pads are Clearsnap Top Boss, Ranger Perfect Medium, Tsukineko Versamark



There are hybrid inks that take the best qualities of both die and pigment inks.

Colorbox Fluid Chalk Ink  has the dense, matte lustre of chalk pastels in a fast drying archival ink.  So many beautiful muted chalk like colours that can be blended while still damp, or so very opaque for coverage when dry, they can be buffed to a shiny finish.  They are ideal for paper, foil, clay and many other surfaces, can be heat set to be permanent and waterproof.

Ranger Distress Ink has the slow drying and workability of a pigment ink as well as the lightness of a dye ink that it is. They stay wetter for longer allowing you to emboss, or to blend and shade like no other ink without getting lines from DTP techniques.  These inks ‘colour wick’, meanin they will spread when spritzed with water to achieve tone on tone effects.  The colours are extremely stable and will not bread down when wet or heated.  The colours are gorgeous.

Brilliance and Mica Magic ink pads have the opacity of pigment inks as they have added mica pigment to them, give a brilliant sheen while being very quick drying.  These are lovely to work with and create wonderful depth of colour and shimmer to any stamped image.




  • Store your stamp pads level and upside down. This prevents uneven ink distribution and keeps the surface fully inked.
  • To prevent your stamp pads from becoming muddy, clean your stamps when changing colors.
  • Solid color stamp pads in dark colors such as black, blue or dark purple work best for stamping images which you plan to color.
  • Only re-ink your pad with the same brand and the same color of ink with which it was filled when it was new.
  • If your stamp pad felt or foam comes adrift from the casing, it can be attached again with Super Glue.
  • With a little care and an ink refill, your stamp pads can last for many many years.  Ink refills are another session on their own, so many uses.


So there it is, Teddy has one completed for you.


Hugs ♥ 🙂

Teddy and Lauren

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Hello Everyone,


Beautiful sunny Saturday here, just the start of Summer and still lovely almost Autumnlike weather.  I like is very much, but I suppose January and February will bring me back to reality 🙂


A friend of mine showed me a photo of a card a while back and asked me to make the directions on how to make it.  Like she thought I could do anything, so I would hate to disappoint, so I did it for her with a couple of wrong starts and eventually got there.



It is very pretty and something very different.


shape card 1

a piece of paper 12 inches x 4 inches folded in half lengthways, and opened up and folded in half the other way, then the pieces cut away from the fold (left in photo above to the fold at the bottom.

shape card 2

then cutting away the bits we don’t want

shape card 3

Take a piece of cardstock/paper 6 inches x 6 inches and cut from 1 1/2 inches up from the bottom on the left to 1 1/2 inches down from the top on the right.

shape card 4

now turn the pieces around so that the long diagonal cut is on the bottom the tallest part of the triangle at the right.

Now measure 6 inches from right to left across the bottom and vertically up, as in the pic below. Do the same to the other piece.

shape card 5

so now you have 3 pieces like this, your folded base, and 2 panels

shape card 6

So now you need to cover the 2 panels with paper and assemble.

Then decorate as you wish, stamp, stick things on, do whatever pleases you!!

shape card 7

Really so easy for something so different, have fun with it.




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Hello Everyone,


It is getting so cool and that wind is not only making it cooler but it is so noisy!! Makes me think Winter is not going to be so nice this year.  Not so sure I will like that, but Spring follows, so I can stay inside till then if needed 🙂


So I made a card, how good is that?



I have done a card before with a very similar design.  I love it, with the really nautical feel to it in a style that is so great as a really masculine card.  The main difference in this one to the other I made is I have put the string vertically and the charm at the top.



The charm is really a die cut in aluminium (Marianne Anchor) and then it is heated and dipped in silver embossing powder and then heated again to melt it evenly.  Sometimes it needs more than one dip and heat, and when done I have sponged it with StazOn Timber Brown.  I love using embossing powder on other items, it gives such fantastic results.


Well I hope you liked this one, Teddy will be back later in the week to spill his adventures.


Hugs 🙂



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Hello Everyone,


I have had a great day today, playing most of it in my little craft room, making a rock star!!! But I will show you that another day.  Also found a photo taken in Spring of a bottle brush that the birds love to fight over.  Great hiding and great eating too I think.




The tree is a Callistemon, but I don’t know its more specific names, but he has a red honeyeater in it, because he loves the nectar in the bottle brush blooms.  Pretty bird, pretty tree.


So with that I will show you the other card I made today for the Alphabet Challenge over on Splitcoaststampers.  We are up to Letter I, so this fits in perfectly.




This is a great sentiment.  This card is a tone on tone with a Martha Stewart Punch Around the Page (my favourite one), ruffled ribbon with bow and a narrow ribbon both edged in gold, a butterfly covered with Ranger Inkssentials Glossy Accents (love love love that stuff) and some rhinestones.  Very simple, very elegant.


Little Tip:  When I ruffle my ribbon like this, I find the only tape or adhesive that works well and does not ‘let go’ later is the Ranger Red Tape, I call it redline tape.  You know the one I mean, it has a red backing and is super super sticky.  Oh my I need to get some more of it and it is on my shopping list, so don’t worry.

Well I hope you like today’s offerings, I will be back tomorrow for you.


Thanks for calling in to take a look, hope your day is going great.


Hugs :)

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Hello Everyone,


Today was a bit warm but the weatherman tells me that it is last of the warm weather and sunshine for a little while.  Well I will not complain if we get some more rain, it is so dry and we are only just keeping up with house water.


So with the promise of rain, I made a card.




How cute is this??? I just had to get myself one of these cut and emboss Marianne designable folders, couldn’t resist.  Just one will do as I feel I will get a lot of use out of this one with its lovely framed centre.


I have layered it over some mauve shimmer paper and added a Memory box Darla Butterly and Vivienne Butterfly.  They are just gorgeous.


Added some ribbon and a sentiment, just perfect in an easy peasy card with a huge WOW factor!!


So what do you think?? Huh?? Huh?? Good buying or not???


So now I will give you a hint that my friend Helen shared with me a while ago.  I used to hate Sizzlet dies, and so did she.  So there was something in a magazine and Helen didn’t quite agree and she sent an email to the designer concerned stating her opinion Sizzlets. (I had the same opinion.)


That they bent the cutting plates, that the foam squashed down after a little use and they never seems to cut easily without being a pain in the rear end.  So Helen got this little tip back.  BTW we had both tried the wax paper with limited succcess, still a pain.


So if you cover the foam and the back of the die with clear Packing Tape (yes that’s right, packing tape).  This gives the ‘ejection’ of the cut piece, and a shim on the back of the die to give a better cut.  And it does not give as much ‘foam creasing’ to the die cut.  And it does not bend the plates as much.  WOW did I hear you say!!! Well I said yay yay yay!!!! Helen is my Hero!!!


And the other good thing is that it works with other dies with ejection foam.  And the foam does not wear out or compress from overuse.  Well so far anyway.  I have covered quite a few of my Quickcutz and Bosscuts as well.


So there you go, tip of the week.


Hugs :)

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