Tuesday, April 15, 2014


Hello Everyone

Today I have my layout for Challenge #28 that is up at Scrap Africa. This challenge is all about distressing with a difference :) You need to distress using household items... stumped? Go over to the Scrap Africa blog and just check out what the rest of the DT has to inspire you.

Here is what I came up with.

I used this sketch from the April challenge over at Purple Pumpkin - I love triangles at the moment, and this sketch was so nice to work with :)

Here is my layout.

I kept fairly true to the sketch and used coffee to distress.

There is a quote on the photo that says:
We don't see things as they are, we see things as we are. Anais Nin

My Journalling (on the back of the layout) says:

I love old stuff, and I have often felt that I was born into the wrong era I think I should have been born in the early 20's I think, I love the clothes and cars and the buildings. The older, more worn or rusty the more I like it. Like this car. We went away on a girls weekend to a tiny little town called Ficksburg, for the cherry festival and on the way home we stopped at a little farm stall on the side of the road, out in the middle of nowhere, and there was this old Morris Minor in front of the stall all rusty and broken and totally beautiful. I took loads of photos of her too, and as I was clicking away I couldn't help but wonder what her story was and even in ruin she maintained her dignity - the quote seemed perfect for her and that got me thinking if we don't see things as they are but as we are what does that say about me. 
It says that there is beauty everywhere if you just look. It says we are not defined by others think or say but by what we think or say. It says that I am comfortable growing older. It says I have a story. It says I am worthy and I am beautiful. It says my life has meaning and it says even when I am gone I will be remembered.

Here are some close ups.

I used gorgeous papers from Maja Design that were perfect for the colours in my photos. I used the coffee to distress some of the triangles too and love how this fit with the worn rusty feel of my photo. I doodled around the edges of the papers too and did some random stitching here and there.

I used the coffee to do some stamping, the cup rings and splats, and the cogs fit with my theme perfectly. Firstly they were painted with the gold distress paint from Tim Holtz and once they were dry I used distress stains on them in Wild Honey and Mowed Lawn. When that was dry they were given a coat of crackle paint and the a swipe of dark brown stain and immediately wiped off. The flowers and cotton were tucked in and the title added. The arrows were inked with the walnut distress ink and a stencil.

Lastly I added a couple of butterflies and some bling.

Thanks so much for stopping by to take a look, and thank you for the comments that you leave. They always make me happy.


Saturday, April 12, 2014


Hello Everyone

It's that time of the week again :)  Stunning new case file over at CSI. This week it is also teamed up with a sketch by Em Stafrace.

Don't you just love the colours?

Here is Em's fabulous sketch.

And, here is my take on this case file.

Here is how I cracked the case.

Scheme - the colours are all there.
Evidence - white background, jewels, hearts, arrows, doodling/penwork, 
Testimony - All about me prompt  - I got my favourite comfort food :).

The quote on the front says
Take time to enjoy the simple things in life.

My journalling on the back of the layout says:
I hate cooking, seriously, I hate it - it ranks right up there with cleaning toilets. BUT... I do love Mac Cheese it is not only my favourite comfort food it is my favourite food of ALL time. I can eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner and so I figured if I love it so much I had better learn the cook the best version of it and I do love to make this dish. In fact I have perfected it. This dish of mine is NOT for the feint hearted though, it is loaded with calories and I mean loaded. I have tried many peoples and places versions of it and over time I have tweaked it until it is perfect for me, and anyone who has ever tried my mac cheese will agree - my MIL would only eat it if I made it so that says something. This is my comfort food - it absolutely triggers my happy side and thinking about cooking it makes me happy and seeing people go back for seconds is the best thing ever for me. There is nothing better than a plate full of hot steaming mac cheese on a cold winters night, or to make you feel better when you are down, this is real food.
It is made with loads of butter and full cream milk. Three cheeses, bacon, onion and mushrooms, tangy and creamy and topped with tomatoes, golden cheese and breadcrumbs... When I dish it up I hear my butt groaning :) "Please step away from that plate" .... hahahahahahah fat chance.
You might be wondering what we had for dinner once I had finished this layout ;)
YEP! Mac Cheese, and enough leftovers for dinner tonight while we watch a movie.

Here are some close ups.

I used a heavy watercolour paper to start because I wanted to use my gelatos. I used the red, the orange and the yellow from top to bottom and misted them so that they would blend a bit and create a watercolour effect and  I used the teal and the turquoise from left to right (most is hidden by the photos). I did some stamping using a stitch stamp and added some washi tape to create the lines. I also stamped a butterfly and a mesh with butterflies.

The arrows, heart and title are chipboard bits that I just painted black. The quote was stamped with black archival in. The paint splats were made with black ink. I doodled around the entire layout.

I used my watercolour neopens to colour in the butterflies in the colours of the palette.

I chose to go with the watercolour and washi to create the lines of the sketch and I used the bold triangles to reinforce the lines and the colours.

I loved this case file and the colours they remind me of sorbet or something. So the food ;)

Thanks for stopping by to take a look. I hope you have a great weekend whatever you are getting up to. I am babysitting again tonight. YAY! I love my yummy time.


Saturday, April 5, 2014


Hello Everyone

It's the weekend baby! That means there is new case to solve at CSI and this week it is a cracker of a case. So are you ready for this week's challenge? Grab your forensics kits, CSI members, and get ready for some serious sleuthing as we open Case File No. 117.

Here is my layout.

I used this latest sketch from Sketchabilities, I love their sketches and they are so nice to work with.

Here is how I solved the case.
Scheme - the colours are all there.
Evidence - cogs/gears, circles, metal, ransom lettering, flowers, butterflies, arrows, numbers (stencil).
Testimony - Document a quirk.

My journalling on the front of the layout says:
There is nothing nicer for me than to open a brand new notebook. Crisp, clean, flat pages...and that smell of new paper is the best thing ever. The trouble is - once they have been opened they are not new for very much longer. Page One - always neat and tidy and then it just goes downhill from there. I don't think I have ever managed to use an entire notebook. :(

My journalling on the back of the layout says.
Lucky for me it said 'a' quirk :) I have so many I wouldn't know where to start but I do think that this is one of my worst ones. Notebooks. I love notebooks and I have them in my studio, in my bag, in the kitchen. I am a list maker. I have tried using computer calendars and documents for tasks and so on but it is just not the same. My trusty notebook is always right there just where I left it. So here's how it works. 
The new notebook gets lovingly unwrapped and opened up, the fountain pen comes out, the date is written - top right hand side and then comes THINGS TO DO: underlined (yes with a ruler) and we start ... Day one - fabulous! I set about my day dutifully ticking the things off on the list that I have to do. Then the phone rings, or some such other interruption ... and I have to write down a number, or a date or a time and there is nothing but a red ball point pen within reach and so I use it and as I have finished writing I am already hyperventilating. My page is ruined. Calm down, don't panic. Just breathe.  No worries *smiley face* I just tear it out and start all over again - and so it goes on. Now you have to understand, already in my mind this book is not perfect anymore and actually, what I want to do is just get another BRAND NEW notebook, BUT I persevere with this defiled and damaged one until I just can't anymore. Normally about a quarter of the way from the end. Then it gets given to Stephen (my housekeeper) for him to use for his shopping lists, or it goes to Simon (my husband - just in case any of you are confused) to keep next to his computer to write notes to himself on. Oh dear this is so exhausting I know but you did ask for a quirk. I have learned to buy notebooks that are spiral bound because it really really freaks me out if it is a sewn spine and then you can see the bits of torn paper or the other half of the page gets loose and falls out anyway. Just in case any of you are wondering - and I know you are - I am the same way with crayons and pens - you know the ones that come in a pack of colours? Yes those ones and because you use the black the most it runs out and the others are still fine. Sends me into a cold sweat - what do you do now? You can't buy black on it's own - it's ruined and it is time to find it a new home where it will be loved.
Before you tell me I need therapy - I know, I have tried. Do you know how hard it was for me to transition to mixed media from CAS? Baby steps. I just don't do mess, or untidy, or old. OMG you may have opened Pandora's Box here. *Gasp*.

Here are some close ups.

I used my ledger stencil on the background with white gesso, does it freak anyone else out that the white gesso on white paper never photographs as white on white :( ? Some splats using Tim Holtz distress stain in Antique Linen, and I also did some very subtle turquoise water colour around the layout. (Just under the arrows here)

I used odd letters to make up my title and also because of the notebook theme I took a Tim Holtz pen nib and smeared it with white Distress Paint and added that. I also used some black ink to make some ink splats.

The cogs were painted silver grey and then I used some distress stain on them in a yellow and a turquoise, inked the edges and then diamond glazed them. The butterfly is Martha Stewart's punch.

Thanks so much for stopping by to take a look and thank you for taking the time to leave a message.

Have a wonderful weekend.


Friday, April 4, 2014


Hello Everyone,

Back with another layout for you today and this time it is my DT layout for BW2

Eve has created a beautiful mood board and sketch for this months challenge.

Here is my layout

The journalling word this month is INSPIRATION.

My journalling on the back of the layout says:

Inspiration comes from the most unexpected places sometimes and if you are not fully present all the time you will miss it. There is so much beauty everywhere if you just look. It is in the colours of the sunrise or sunset, it is in the rythm of waves crashing on the shore, it is in the sounds of laughter as children play, it is in the eyes of your beloved pet as they greet you after a long day. It is in the smells of something yummy being cooked and all it requires is that you not only see but feel, smell and taste it too. It is this that makes me want to get up in the morning and go about my day, it is what makes me want to create even when the translation onto paper is less than perfect. It is what puts a spring in my step and a sparkle in my eye. This is what gives me life.

Here are some close ups.

I got this amazing doily stencil by Prima and I have been dying to use it and this seemed the perfect time. I mixed some mulberry paint into the gesso to colour it and in my stash I found the same colour glitter and while the paint was still wet I sprinkled it onto the gesso and left it to dry. Once it was completely dry I brushed off the excess glitter. I love how it turned out.

Because the doily pattern is so bold I kept the rest of the layout very clean and simple. I made a mat of some green paper and used two photos one I changed to black and white. I added some ribbon, a photo frame with some bling and a couple of flowers. Voila! 

Before I go I found this amazing giveaway, if you are interested you can take a look here.... :D

This is what you can win and I don't know about you but I love chipboard or balsa wood embellies :D

Thanks for stopping by to take a look, and thanks for the comments that you leave. 
See you all tomorrow for the new CSI reveal.


Thursday, April 3, 2014


Hello Everyone
Today I am back with another DT reveal and this time it is for Scrap Africa's Sketch Challenge #28. Here is the sketch.

And... here is my take on the sketch.

My journalling on the back of the layout says.

The twins were two months old the day of this photo, I can't believe that the time has gone so fast. Spence looked so adorable in his Superman outfit and of course I couldn't resist taking photos of them. Clint captured this photo of Spence on his phone and when he sent it to me I couldn't help but laugh. He is his daddy through and through and somewhere amongst all of my photos I have one of Clint at about the same age looking exactly the same. The Thorpe gene is so strong and the men are all peas in a pod, mini me's.
Spence is a hoot and he does not do anything that he doesn't want to and that includes smiling for the camera. He pretends he is asleep and closes his eyes, he pretends to drink his bottle and he pretends to cry and his little face just crumples up. He loves to cuddle, to be rocked to sleep, and he loves to have his little feet rubbed.  He is such a little character and it is so much fun to watch it unfold and develop and I am so looking forward to this journey.

Here are some close ups.

First thing I did was to change the photo into black and white and then rubbed out the area where the superman logo was so that I was left with that piece coloured.
I used a stencil and black gesso for the background and drew the circles with a black pen. The splats are made with red paint. I found a big S in my stash and painted it red and covered it with diamond glaze.  The stars were traced and cut and then matted  onto the red to make them pop.

The film strip is a chippie which I painted black and the title painted red.
 I tore some strips of paper for the top and bottom and added some red ric rac.

Thanks for stopping by to take a look and thank you for the comments that you leave they always bring a smile to my face.


Wednesday, April 2, 2014


Hello Again,
Today I have the reveal for the new sketch challenge over at OUAS Nadia Cannizzio has come up with another stunning sketch for this month...

This comes together with a journalling requirement which is...

"An event that changed my life..." 

You are free to interpret our theme ANY way you like. It is for your inspiration and this theme word DOES NOT need to be part of your title or journalling. But please make sure your layout is based on the sketch below and includes journalling (hidden journalling is fine). Acceptable journalling is MORE than just a sentence, or generic writing such as date/place etc. It needs to be present and at least 3 lines long. Remember, hidden journalling (under a photo/tag or behind your page) is perfectly fine but please DO let us know in your post where your journalling is!

Here is my DT layout for this challenge.

My quotes on the front of the layout say :
'Live the life you've imagined' and,
'You come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person, perfectly.'

My journalling on the back of the layout says:
I thought after the birth of my own children - which was life changing in itself - that nothing else could compare. I was wrong. The birth of these two perfect little babies has changed it all once again and this time in a way that is better than anything I could have ever imagined. Now I get to see the world once again through the eyes of the innocent, and see the wonder and magic that has been lost over the years. I have the time to really enjoy each moment of their growth and their milestones. I get to experience that feeling of overwhelming love for another new life and in this case two lives. I can tell you that you don't have to divide that love either, it multiplies with each child. This time I get to do it without struggling to hold it all together, on lack of sleep, lack of time and lack of money. This time I get to do it on terms that are perfect for me. I can just enjoy them and watch them grow and shower them with love and attention, spend time with them and I can get to do the things with them that I just couldn't do with my own kids. I get to just BE with them.

Here are some close-ups.


I used some papers from Maja Road that I managed to find here (these are seriously beautiful papers).
I also used a film strip that has words stamped onto it which fit my theme. The quotes were stamped onto the papers and then I added flowers and some die cut leaves.

I this side I stamped a film strip and added some more beautiful flowers from Petaloo as well as a zipper pull that says precious. I added some torn strips of washi tape to my layout too.

Thanks for stopping by to take a look, and for taking the time to leave your comments. It makes my day.


Tuesday, April 1, 2014


Hello Everyone

A new day, a new month, a new challenge. :)

This is always a busy time with all the new challenges coming out and my first layout is another collaboration challenge with Scrap365 and CSI, and here it is. You can find out how to play along HERE.

Here is my take on this casefile.

Here is how I solved the case.

Scheme - the colours are all there.
Evidence - stripes, flowers, circus themed, tie something, triangles.
Testimony - IW - fun, surprise, show.

My quote on the front of the layout says:
Goodbye, she said I am off to join the circus.

My journalling on the back of the layout says:

I don't ever remember going to the circus as a child. I know the circus came to town because we would see their tents pitched and the pens with the animals and the caravans for the performers but I don't actually remember going to the circus, and I always had this image in my head of what it would be like. 
All glamour... bright big top pitched, twinkling lights and bright banners, gorgeous costumes, wonderful acts, loud music, laughter,  oohs and aahs rippling around the tent and candy floss and popcorn a real carnival atmosphere and at the end of it all a show to top all shows and a night to remember.
In reality, when I eventually took my own children, it couldn't have been further from the truth.
The tent was tired, old and dirty and pitched in the hard earth, some of the lights were broken and there were no banners. The sign at the entrance was old, lop-sided and peeling. The animals in the pens were listless and tired looking. Inside the big top the chairs were hard and the ring was so small. I could see and hear the excited chatter of all the people coming in to claim their seats. The ringmaster came in and the show began. One act then another and so the evening went on, animals came and went as did performers in costumes that were less than glamorous and also looking a little tired and listless running through their performances as if in a trance.
We ate our popcorn and candy floss and there were ooohhhss and aaahhhss around the tent but mainly from the children who were completely enthralled by the show, and it was at that moment that I realised how jaded I had become - when did I lose that sense of wonder and the magic of the fair. As I looked into the faces of my kids with their big eyes and questioning smiles and the look of surprise on their faces as each performer came out to entertain us all I realised that their delight in the little things is the most magical thing of all, and we - the parents and older people - we are the ones that destroy that sense of wonder and excitement in our children and that is a great shame.

Here are some close ups.

Lots of layering. Ribbon tied around the outside circle and my quote written on the inside circle.
The triangle arrows and title was painted with black paint.

The image is one I found on Pinterest and changed it to black and white to fit my theme. I added the flowers and that was me done.

Thanks so much for stopping by to take a look. I appreciate the time you take to visit and leave me a message. It makes my day :)