Crafting with Jo....

... a little bit of life, a little bit of craft...

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Basket Tutorial...

Hello there!

Tonight, a while after being requested, I am sharing (finally!!!) the tutorial for making the little basket I made with the Tonic Kensington handbag die. This is the box that I was asked about.

It is very simple to recreate, and is just the Handbag die used upside down, and fastened up at the top, which becomes the base. Here's how... 

Firstly, take your elements from your die set - you will need the bag base, the side panels and the verso edge from the decorative lace panel (the outer edge). Cut out the sections below from Kraft cardstock. 

Next, you need to connect the pieces together. So, starting by putting tape on your side panels, or you can use wet glue (more ideal, but a little time needed for it to dry completely) along the tabs at the side. You can see the tape over at the right hand side of the picture.

Be careful you crease the side panel only at the outer edge tab and across the base.

Fasten your box together on the last side, ensuring that all edges are running evenly.

Fold all the flaps at the top and bottom in. To create the base and lid of your basket, you will need to cut some extra pieces of cards to a rectangular shape as shown.

The measurements for these are piece at 13cm x 7.25cm, and one piece to 6.25cm x 12cm.
Score these two pieces at 1cm all the way around.

The last piece you will need to cut as shown is for the top embossed lid. Cut this layer to 10.5cm x 4.75cm.

In the scored sections, you will need to cut little snips into the corners as shown.

Use your glue, or a little red tape to stick the little snipped areas under the lid to create neat corners.

These are your two completed lids. Put them to one side for a few minutes until you complete the rest of your box. 

Use the verso edge from outside of the lace panel in your set to cut out two pieces of kraft card.

Once cut, choose an embossing folder and run each piece through your machine to emboss the design. Make sure the pieces go in the same way each time to keep the pattern uniform. You will also emboss the piece of cardstock you cut earlier for your lid top.  

Colour around the design using your Distress Inks, or chalks to get the effect you want. Repeat this on all three sections.

Stick the embossed panels onto the sides of the basket using wet glue. Take the lid section made to fit the smaller end of the box (which would have been the top of the Kensington Handbag). This will be glued onto the bottom of the basket to seal and finish it. It is now the base of the basket. 

**I hope that makes sense - basically, you are creating and fastening the Handbag upside down!**

Once the smaller end is securely fastened, you can attach the embossed panel to the lid of the basket, fold in the flaps and place your lid over the top. This way, you can fill the basket with your goodies and it will be sealed perfectly.

This is how your basket - (aka upside down bag) is going to look, now it's completely up to you if you want to attach a handle, and decorate up as you wish.

I hope you find this tutorial helpful. If you have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to leave me a message over on Facebook, or by emailing me, or leaving a comment. 

Until next time! xxxx

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Manchester Event City Feb 2016

What a busy February we have had... 

Firstly, we had our first show at Sandown Park, doing workshops for Tonic and very busy they were too. We only had small classes all day, but it was lovely to catch up with some familiar faces and see some new ones too. 

And this past week, we have been up in Manchester with the show at Event City. We had workshops to run from the Thursday though to Saturday, and boy, it was busy all weekend. Every class was fully subscribed, and alot of fun and giggles were had!

The team working on the stand were myself, Jo, and two new teamies, Denise Carey and Pam McGlade. It was Denise's second show with me, and Pam's first. 

We were all very nervous going back - I don't know why, but they say it's good to be nervous!!!! 

Denise has worked on the shows before so is very familiar with how things go, and she is well acquainted with doing workshops and classes, after running her own shop for a while until recently. She loves all things crafty, from cardmaking to decorating MDF items and sewing. 

Pam has also worked on the shows doing demonstrations and workshops for a few years. She loves all things crafty from papercrafting to bookfolding, so a few lessons were had on an evening too! Pam loves fiddling with bits of paper to create stunning flowers too! 

Here are two of our class attendees to came along to make our projects. We were using the Flip Flop dies, two from the range, this one which says Forever my Friend, which we created in blue and yellow, and also the heart one 'Love is....' that we did with red, black and white. A little more romantic for Valentines day. 

Over the weekend we had above 300 attendees that came along and made a card. Quite a few had never made cards before, so die cutting was very new to them. But they found it quite easy and enjoyed it thoroughly. 

So.... if you see a craft show near you, check it to see if we are nearby. The next one we will be attending is Glasgow at the beginning of March and then the NEC and ExCel. 

We hope to see you soon!

Enjoy Today....

Good evening all..... 

Yes, don't be shocked, but I'm back again with a blog post for you. I have tried to get things uploaded for a while, but the phone went on the blink and I couldn't find the cord for my camera to download the images. *sigh*. 

I hope you have all been keeping okay whilst I've been absent. We have been better here with a few problems this last few weeks, but we've shaken ourselves off and had to carry on... and are feeling less battered and bruised than before. 

However... I now have time to share with you a card I made for the shows from Sandown Park, the Weekender which featured the card layering dies - Bowscale and Harrop - by Tonic Studios. 

The card I wanted to share with you today, uses the Bowscale die to cut the layers into the stamped image  - so using the smaller parts of the dies - and you can then layer them up into a more dimensional card.

I started by stamping the image, which is from Dreamees, and I embossed in the Tonic Nuvo Gold embossing powder before colouring in with Tonic pens. There's a little technique I used, which I will come back to after Friday!!

You can see that I used a couple of the Bowscale dies to fit onto the image, which I had trimmed to fit onto the card front and layered onto gold mirror card. These were then stuck back onto the card with foam pads on the outer and inner sections to give dimension. You can see this more clearly on the bottom picture.

The die cut was our sentiment dies - Enjoy Today - and I love that wording. Cut once from white card and once from mirror card and simply layered together to create the drop shadow.

I finished off the card with the Tonic Nuvo Glitter drops. I hope you like the card today - I'm going to go and upload another one now... take advantage of finding the right cable me thinks...!

Thursday, 14 January 2016


Oh Bella.... sweet little Bella... such a cutiepie isn't she? 

Hi all... Today I'm sharing another stampy-coloury-image from the Reflections collection by Tonic and this time it's little Bella that is making her appearance. I love everything about this fairy, from her little feather, to the haircut which reminds me of my daughter's when she was this age, to the oversized shoes that she's happily poddling about in... just wonderful. 

When I started the card, I chose to colour the image with Nuvo pens that matched in with the colours within the topper I chose. So, I used the lighter yellow, 401, and the greens. 

I wanted to place the sentiment underneath the frame and have the fairy Bella sneaking a little look into it, which is why I chose one of our frame dies to pop on the frontage of the card. I used foam pads to lift the frame away from the sentiment, and again on the fairy to give her a little more depth on the card too. 

As you can see, I added some glitter glue to her wings to add a little bit of sparkle, and also to the feather and headband in her hair. Once all the flowers were stuck in place and the card was more or less finished, I chosed some of our fantastic Tonic Nuvo drops in Crushed Grape colour, and placed some dots into the centres of the flowers on the frame. 

I must admit, I'm not one for a busy card, but I love how this one turned out... and as usual, it had to pass the 'sitting on the craft desk for 24 hours to see if I still like it the following day' test. And it did. So here you are. 

You can be the judges to see if you like it too. I hope you do, as I thoroughly enjoyed colouring little Bella and giving her a little Character. I imagined all the little things that she would get upto.... but then that's another blog post for another day!

Until next time....

Happy Crafting everyone xxxx

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Upon reflection.....

Hi everyone... 

This week has been a bit of a 'blurgh' for me... I've not been very well, and had  shows in Peterborough with these fantastic sets of  Reflections dies and stamps. How cute are they?! I have thoroughly enjoyed playing working with them. 

I'm getting better now, but think I had a bit of the ol' flu bug - very achy, sore all over, eyes were squinty, and I was grumpy. Ok... grumpy isn't part of the flu, but me + ill = grumpy Jojo!

But you know what they say - "When Life gives you a hundred reasons to cry, give life a thousand reasons to smile." So, feeling ill, grumpy, and everything else besides, I am giving myself lots of reasons to smile - beginning with this gorgeous little thing below. 

Let me introduce you to Cerys. She is one of our little Reflections set. This is the stamped image that comes with the collection, in which you will get seven design dies, seven verso edges, seven character stamps and the book of toppers (30 in all, 3 of each seven fairies and 3 of three different verses). 

On this card, I opted to do a half easel card, using the stamped image and one of the toppers from the book.  The side where the verse is placed was left flat, and the fairy image created the easel. 

I took great delight in colouring little Cerys. She is so sweet and the teddy is super cutesy! I used a mixture of blues and browns for the colouring, to match in with the verse topper. The pens I used were the Tonic Nuvo pens. If anyone wants to know colours I have used, please ask and I will list them below for you. 

I blended the wings of the fairy into the colours of the dress, then I added some silver dotty highlights to give her a little bit of shine. This was from the metallics set. 

I just love this image, it's supercute and really suits my style. The stamps are so simple to colour - no very small areas to get stuck with, they are very open designs and not too intricate which is perfect for new crafters. 

Did you buy the Reflections collection? Have you received it and had a play? 
Show me what you came up with - I would love to see. 

I will be back tomorrow with another little card to share. So until then, 
Happy Crafting everyone! 

Friday, 8 January 2016

From Glam to ......


Hello again. 

I told you I would come back and share another glamorous Kensington bag with you today if I could.... although this one is slightly less glamorous, as it started life out as a fishing box. That's what I wanted to make with it. But I couldn't find my fishy-wishy that came in my Tonic Rococo Pets set, so I had to turn it into something a little bit different. That's why the basket has brown ink on it. 

So how are you today? Have you dried out? It was a rubbish old day here in London yesterday - very wet, and cold, and I just couldn't get warm all day. The heating in the room was set to 24 degrees to see if I could warm up, and I was still freezing. I think I will bring my hot water bottle next time!!!!

I have three shows left to do today down here in the Studios, then I am making my way back up north to finish off samples on Saturday, ready for shows on Sunday for the CHA launch. But of course you will be able to catch Jodie up on the shows on Saturday. Exciting times. And something I am hoping you will love - cute and sweet comes to mind. 

Onto the basket, and you will see that it's a slightly different version of the handbag. It has been turned upside down and a base created for the 'top' section. And a top has been made to slide over the 'base' section. As I say, it was meant to be a fishing basket, but had to decorated up differently... so I bought on the bling. 

I hope you like it... you can fill with choccies or whatever you decide... 

Until next time. xxx

Kensington Glamour....

Good Evening all.... and can I just say before I start - Happy New Year from a very wet and cold London. I am down near Heathrow (actually on the flight path into it - VERY EXCITING!!!!!) doing some shows for Create and Craft USA over the last few days. The planes that are arriving, come straight over the front of the hotel - I swear I could see people supping their last bits of coffee! It's great to see the planes so close. I think it's the Gemini in me - the nosiness - that wonders where they have been, where they're going, what they're doing and why!!

Besides my airplane spotting adventures, I know I've been a bit lousy on the keeping-up-the-blogging front, but things have been a bit bonkers, what with Christmas coming around so quickly and work commitments etc. You know how it is.... blogging was the last thing I needed to get round to doing. I know I should.......... really, I should! It is actually very therapeutic to sit and waffle to myself on here. Haha. 

Anyway. What goodies do I have for you today? Well, as you may guess, I want to share a few little makes from the Kensington Handbag Pick of the Week. 

I say Pick of the Week, with a slight tongue in cheek as we had tons of stock, only for it to last a couple of hours and 31 minutes! And then it was gone. That quick. So, until it returns sometime in the future, I thought I would tease you with some of my completed little bags...!

This little cutie patootie is an image from Linnie Pink, one of my friends from Facebook, and she does the most wonderful CD roms. All the girls are so sweet, and this one was just perfect for the type of bag I wanted to create. I printed off the image onto white cardstock, then cut around it with the dies so I knew exactly where she was sitting on the page. 

A slightly different version of the handbag with this one, as I created a valentine's theme bag. So perfect for Wedding favours or just for giving a few little chocolates (or diamonds!) for your loved one. The top has been left up for this one, and the clasp attached to the top edge on both sides. This makes the little fastener. Very clever... and all the hard work is done for you. 

The sides on this box have been creased along the score lines so that you can shape it more to a triangular box, rather than the one above which is left more square. 

This box is also more of a triangular, and created in much the same way as the one above. But I kept it a little simpler coloured, quite elegant and added a little bit of lace and a butterfly to finish. 

So..... how about elongating the bag? You can indeed do this, and when I get a minute, I will do a little tutorial on how to do it. It's very simple and takes hardly any time at all. 

The embellishments on the front are cut from the die set and the glitter border was created simply by adding some double sided tape along a piece of Tonic Mirror card and then sprinkled along the sticky bit. Easy peasy. You can see the texture of our fantastic Tonic Essentials cardstock too... that beautiful weight and woven texture is a dream to work with and makes your projects look so elegant. 

I will post a few more of my makes hopefully tomorrow - but at the moment I am in London and the Wifi in the room is a little hit and miss..... !
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