5 Aug 2017

Less Is More #340 - Tropical Fruits

Hello there. Well, here we are in the first week of August already - boy that time is sure whizzing past this year.

As it is the first challenge of the month we have a new sponsor at the Less is More challenge and it is


It is also our colour challenge this week


Hmmmm.... I totally forgot it was 'colour' week and made something with images of tropical fruits! Never mind, at least it automatically uses the colours of tropical fruits too!

Luckily some of the rest of the design team made cards with the colours but without the tropical fruit images so there is some fab inspiration on the challenge blog for you.

Tropical fruits

This is a stamp set that I have had for a while but haven't had the chance to use yet. Simple stamping and colouring on the base card with a sentiment on a raised panel is all that was needed for this card.

STAMPS: Hero Arts Lia Griffith (CL930), Clearly Besotted Laugh out loud sentiment
INK: Archival ink in olive green
OTHER: Distress Markers in a variety of citrus colours, string, 3d foam, White Linen Card.


Well that's it from me for a couple of weeks now. I am travelling back home to Portugal today with my two eldest grandchildren so I've decided to take a couple of weeks break to enjoy my time with them.

Hope you get the chance to join in with the challenge this week.
See you after my holidays.

Sharon xx

29 Jul 2017

Less is More #339 - Pierce

Hello my crafty friends. Hope you are all well. Things are good here and at the time of typing this post (on Friday morning) my daughter was in labour and before I finished typing we had a new grandson! Yippee. Time for lots of Nanny cuddles!

But first, it is the 5th Saturday in the month and that means we have a lucky dip challenge at Less is More this week and it is time to get piercing. So get out those brads, eyelets or sewing needles, or simply use a pokey tool to pierce your project. There's lots of scope for this one and I can't wait to see how you interpret it.

A short post from me today as I only had time to complete one project, but I hope you like this one.

Rainbow Stitching

I used a very old piercing template that I've had for years and pierced the holes into a piece of card I made with distress ink blending. After stitching the design I simply finished the panel with some pearl bead centres and the tiniest bling gem.

DIES: Tattered Lace sentiment
DISTRESS INKS: Mustard Seed, Carved Pumpkin, Picked Raspberry, Candied Apple.
OTHER: KARS bling bling doodles piercing template, White card, Black card, Black thread, Pearl centres, Gems

I'm entering this one into:
Double D Challenge - Black and White with a pop of colour

Unstampabelles Challenge #70 - Every Day is Special - twist lots of colour

I'm sure if you visit my other team mates they will not disappoint and will probably have a few extra cards on their personal blogs. You can get to the main challenge by clicking HERE.

Thanks so much for stopping by.
Have a great week and hope to see you again soon.

Sharon xx

22 Jul 2017

Less is More #338 - No Stamps

Hi there. How are you? I'm enjoying a little break in the UK at the moment.....still waiting for grandchild #3 to be born. It was due on 20th so we are a couple of days overdue at the moment but I have everything crossed that it will make an appearance very soon now.

Anyway, on to this week's Less is More challenge and it is recipe week.


Gulp! It has been ages since I have not stamped on a project but not to be deterred I have 2 cards and a picture to share with you today. So let's take a look at them.

1) Stencils

My very first thought was to use just stencils on my project. So I created this colourful card with stencil laid on top of stencil. The colourful background was created first then the leafy stencil applied on top of it and inked with deep black for a bit of drama.  It has been finished off with a couple of die cuts as I wasn't quite happy with the layout - it looked a little unbalanced but I'm much happier with the finished result.

I'm going to enter this one into the following challenges:
Crafty Sentiments - Clean and Simple of Fussy and Fancy. This is a Clean and Simple entry
Incy Wincy Designs - 1 paper layer
Unstampabelles #70 - Every Day is Special with a twist of lots of colour

STENCILS: The abstract background is Clarity Stamps, Imagination Crafts leaf swirl
DIES: Concord & 9th Butterfly Card Dies, Tattered lace sentiment.
DISTRESS INKS: Salty Ocean, Seedless Preserves, Picked Raspberry, Mustard Seed and Black Soot.
OTHER: Liquid Pearls in gold and lavender lace, White linen card, Water Spritzer.

2) Hot Glue

I saw this hot glue technique on Lilian's blog a short while ago and I have been smitten with this technique ever since. It is a great way to add to your stack of masculine cards.

This one is for :
The Male Room Challenge #65 - Mixed Media technique
Watercooler Wednesdays Challenge #128 - Heidi's Masculine Challenge

DIE: Whimsy Stamps Birthday Sentimentables
DISTRESS STAINS: Broken China, Peacock Feathers, Faded Jeans
OTHER: Hot Glue Gun, Watercolour Card, Copper Embossing Powder Water Spritzer, Pokey Tool, White Hammered Card, Foam Tape.

3) Summer Sunset Abstract

As an aside, I am making abstract pictures with this technique which I sell. Here is one of the ones I have kept for myself because the colours remind me so much of beautiful summertime sunsets where the rays of the sun hit waves on the sea. I used a sparkle gold embossing powder which looks incredible when the sun hits it.

I'd like to enter this into:
Artisitc Inspirations Challenge #183 - Summer Colours
Oh La La Challenge #233 - Landscapes
Stinkin' Inkers - Summer Heat


Don't forget to take a peek at the amazing inspiration from the rest of the design team and if you visit their personal blogs you may find some additional cards too.


Well I'm off to enjoy some quality time visiting friends and having a lovely meal out with my two daughters this evening (providing the baby doesn't time its birth to coincide! )

See you again soon and thank you so much for stopping by.

Sharon xx

8 Jul 2017

Less is More #336 & 337 - One Layer Coloured Card Base

Hello there my crafty friends. At Less is More we have a great challenge for you this week, and we are also linking up with AAA Cards. It's a challenge that runs for TWO WEEKS!
2017 Recognition
Our guest designer this week is our July sponsor, Kylie from Happy Little Stampers and she's made a fab card for us. Please pop over to see her and give her some lovely comments.

I have 3 cards to share with you today.

1) Raspberry Birthday

I work around 2 months ahead with my DT makes and this was my original offering for the LIM blog for this challenge, however, I ended up removing it  because Kylie had the same idea as me - same colour card and same stamp set! Great minds, eh Kylie?  But I loved this card so much that I am sharing it anyway.

It's a less than10 minute make; simple stamping on a one layer card. (This is my favourite HLS stamp set!)

This one is for:
Addicted to Stamps and More! #249 - Clean and Simple
Crafty Creations #345 - Anything Goes
Inspiration Destination #131 - Anything Goes
Through the Purple Haze #128 - Spots and/or Stripes (Thank you for selecting my card as the winner for your challenge #127)

STAMPS: Happy Little Stampers Mix Mash stamp set
INKS: Archival jet black ink, VersaColor ultimate white pigment ink.
OTHER: Raspberry coloured card base.

2) Black Sympathy

Here's the card that I substituted on the LIM blog. I love the sophisticated and elegant way this card looks.  Lilies are one of my favourite flowers (along with freesia) so I use these stamps at every opportunity. They are versatile enough for most occasions.

AND this card only uses 5 supplies in total so it is a very inexpensive card to make.

This one is for:
4 Crafty Chicks #358 - Stamping, no digis
Craft Rocket Challenge #39 - Anything Goes
Crafting by Designs - July - Anything Goes
International Art and Soul #11 - Flowers

STAMPS: Uniko Pure Florals: Lily
OTHER: Black Card, Detail Gold Embossing Powder, Versamark clear ink, China White pencil

3) Lilac Spread Your Wings

I wanted one of my cards to have a bit of glitz on it, so I used some embossing glitter on this one.

This one is for:
Art Impressions Challenge #212 - Bling, Glitter or Glossy
Cards4Galz challenge #51 - Butterflies
Watercooler Wednesday Challenge WWC#126 - Fiona's feminine anything goes challenge (Thank you for selecting my Christmas card in your honourable mentions for challenge WWC125)

STAMPS: Clearly Besotted everything changes II
DISTRESS MARKERS: Shaded Lilac, Wilted Violet, Cracked Pistachio, Hickory Smoke
EMBOSSING: WOW! Royal Crush embossing glitter, WOW! Opaque bright white embossing powder
OTHER: Versamark Clear Ink and Embossing pen, Sequins, Lilac Card.

Don't forget to take a look at the gorgeous cards that both the LIM DT and the AAA Cards DT have made.


Today is my 34th wedding anniversary so my hubby and I have a day planned out where we'll be enjoying some serious sunbathing and swimming around (and in) both the pool and the beach at a gorgeous club, then this evening we'll be enjoying a fabulous meal somewhere local. Ahhh! relaxation time.

Thanks for stopping by today and if you left me a comment - double thanks! I read and appreciate them all.

Hope you'll get the time to join in with us on this challenge.
See you again in two weeks.
Sharon xx

1 Jul 2017

Less is More #335 - Your Country's Flag Colours

Hi thare!

Time for a new Less is More challenge and as it is the first challenge of the month we have a new sponsor.


And it is our colour week challenge


As I am now based in Portugal I have used the colours of the Portuguese flag on both my creations.

1) Christmas in July

Well, I suppose it is traditional for us to start making our Christmas cards in June and July so seeing as the Portuguese flag is red, green and a bit of white, blue and gold, the colours are ideally suited to a Christmas card. I must say that my blue was a bit too dark and it looks black in the photo.

This one is for:
Addicted to Stamps and More! #246 - Holiday
Crafting By Designs - Get Ready for Christmas - June Edition
Fab n Funky #357 - Christmas Crackers
QKR Stampede Challenge #250 - Christmas in July or Anything Goes
Watercooler Wednesdays #125 - Kath's Christmas Challenge

STAMPS: Clearly Besotted laugh out loud Christmas
OTHER: Colouring pencils, Brads , inverted corner punch, red and white card, 3d foam pads

2) Scribble Birthday

Here I've used one of the stamps I received for winning the Lost Coast Designs challenge a few weeks back. Love this border and can see I'll use it a lot.

Once again, my blue splatters look black!

This one is for:
Crafty Creations #344 - Anything Goes
Sieze The Birthday - Anything Goes (birthday related)
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - Anything Goes
That's Crafty Challenge - Keep It Simple

STAMPS: Lost Coast Designs pencil tops border
OTHER: Mermaid Lagoon Re-inker and a splatter brush, Coloured Pencils, 3d foam.

That's it from me,
Please take a peek at the fabulous cards that the design team have created for your inspiration this week over on the challenge blog HERE.

Thanks so much for stopping by,
See you again soon.

Sharon xx

24 Jun 2017

Less is More # 334 - Sketch 20

Hi there! How is life treating you?  I've had a wonderfully fun and busy time with friends and family staying with us.  I do love to see them all. 

I've also had a bit of a time of it with our internet service provider though. We have had appalling service this last week - so much so that I've been unable to load any web pages on my PC at home and have had to go out to cafés and bars to use their free wifi to get any Blogging, Instagram or Facebook stuff done. Hence you may have noticed a lack of presence from me this past week. Hopefully it's just a temporary thing and I'm sure it is all to do with the ISP panicking about the amount of use the changes in mobile roaming will put on their service! 

Ah well, it's perfectly lovely sat in the sunshine outside a café with a tasty cup of coffee. There are worse ways to write a blog post, aren't there?

So, today's Less is More challenge is a sketch challenge and the design team have created some beautiful interpretations of the sketch over on the challenge blog


I have just the two cards for you today (due to time constraints and the inability to upload photos quickly at the moment).

1) Floral Dandelion Dreams

Once I'd finished this card I looked at it again and thought "I've seen something like this before"...then it finally came to me. My teamie Anita made a card a while back that obviously influenced me! The link to her card is HERE.

On this one I had a little play with my distress oxides. I masked the shape, created a stencil from a die and inked through it before over-stamping with the lovely dandelion dreams florals and then added some gems to represent pollen. The sentiment was fussy cut and raised on 3d foam.

STAMPS: Clearly Besotted Dandelion Dreams
DIE: Tim Holtz Alterations confetti
INKS: Versafine vintage sepia. Distress Oxides: fossilized amber, spiced marmalade, fired brick. Distress Ink: squeezed lemonade.
OTHER: Yellow card, White linen card, Post-it notes, gold gems, 3d foam.

I'm going to enter that one in at:
Addicted to Stamps #150 - Flowers (a second entry from me)
Stampotique Designer Challenge #276 - Stencil it - Mine is a hand made stencil from a die cut (Thank you so much for selecting my card in your top three for challenge 275)
Hand Stamped Sentiments #266 - Photo Inspiration - I used the colours and the round shapes from the inspiration

2) One for the men

I'm a bit taken by the bokeh technique, aren't I? I just had to try to give it a really masculine feel this time around.

This card is headed over to:
Craft Rocket Challenge #38 for the Men/Boys
Watercooler Wednesdays Challenge #124 - Masculine anything goes
Unicorn Challenge #22 - For the Guys

STAMPS: Happy Little Stampers Mix Mash set
INKS: Versacolour ultimate white pigment ink, Distress inks in pumice stone, hickory smoke and black soot.
DIES: Lawn Fawn Stitched hillside borders. Sizzix celebration words script.
OTHER: Black pearlised card, white card blank, 3D foam pads

Well, that's it from me for this week.
I hope you'll get the chance to join us with this super sketch.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope to see you again soon.
Sharon xx

17 Jun 2017

Less is More #333 - Personalise it

Hello there my friends.

Hope you'll excuse any brevity today but it's a busy weekend with loads of house guests and I apologise for the lack of photo staging on some of these photographs but I made the cards in April before I started staging photos and the cards were sent out to the recipients ages ago.

Anyway, Less is More is on our theme week and here is our cue card

Our fabulous Guest Designer is the talented Lucie from LucieG Cards who was our May winner. Please pop over to see her gorgeous card and leave her some of your wonderful comments.

Also, the design team have some fabulous inspiration on the challenge blog HERE and no doubt they will also have a few surprises on their personal blogs too.

Right to my cards. Even though it is almost Father's day in the UK, all my cards are for females!

1) Best Sister

These flowers look so feminine in pinks - I love them.

Here I've used the outer part of a die cut rectangle to make a frame for the stamping. The flowers were masked to add a little bit of inky blending around the flowers.

This one is for:
Addicted to Stamps Challenge #150 - Flowers
City Crafter Challenge #366 - Frame it
Fashionable Stamping #124 - make it feminine
Through the Purple Haze #127 - Pink

STAMPS: AlteNew Garden Treasure stamp set
DIE: MFT Inside out stitch rectangles
INKS: Versacolor 33 pink, Distress inks in spun sugar, worn lipstick, tumbled glass, shabby shutters and peeled paint, Memento Ink in tuxedo black
OTHER: White linen card, 3D foam pads,

2, 3 and 4) Extra Special

This is a group of cards that I sent out to people as a 'just because I miss you'. Again, simple stamping and a die cut rectangle is all that was needed but I think they look rather elegant.
This orange one is for
Creative Knockouts Challenge #198 - Anything Goes
Inspiration Destination #130 - Anything Goes

This purple one is for
Creative Moments #120 - Anything Goes (with option of flag day - which I didn't do)
Crafty Addicts #37 - Anything goes with the option of using die cuts
These ones are for:
Addicted to Stamps and More #246 - Anything Goes
STAMPS: AlteNew Extra Special stamp set
DIE: MFT Inside out stitch rectangles
INKS: Distress inks in spun sugar, worn lipstick, tumbled glass, shabby shutters, peeled paint, squeezed lemonade, mustard seed, shaded violet and wilted violet. Memento Ink in tuxedo black
OTHER: White linen card, 3D foam pads, star dust Stickles.


That's it from me for this week.

Thank you so much for popping by. Hope you will get the chance to join us this week.

See you again soon!
Sharon xx

10 Jun 2017

Less is More # 332 - One Layer Card - Sweet Things

Hellooooooo! How are you? Feeling good?  I am.

I love it when summer really arrives and we've been basking in temperatures of over 30 degrees this week in the Algarve. Not that I am one to bake in the sun...oh no! I spend a lot of time indoors or in the shade - but I love to feel the heat on my skin as I move from an inside area to an outside area. It always reminds me of being on holiday to feel that warmth.

Anyway, enough of that, you're here to find out about the latest Less is More challenge aren't you?

It's that fun One Layer Card week and we want to see you featuring sweet things. Gosh - there are so many possibilities with this theme.


Once again I managed 3 cards so let's take a look at them.


There really is nothing sweeter than honey, is there?  So using that as inspiration this card was made with a bit of stamping, masking and stencilling then adding a tiny bit of glamour dust for some twinkle.

This card is headed for:
Crafting By Design - Black, White and one other colour
Crafty Creations #343 - Anything goes
Create and Makes Challenge Blog #12 - Anything goes with an option of use yellow

STAMPS: Clearly Besotted In Print and Hero Arts Irreverent Birthday Messages
STENCIL: Tim Holtz Collection Layering Stencil Honeycomb
INKS: Memento Tuxedo Black, Distress Inks in squeezed lemonade, mustard seed and wild honey
OTHER: Crystal Glamour Dust, Quickie glue pen, White linen card, masking tape


I think I'm still in that summer mood after our Neapolitan ice cream colours last week. I've created a summer drink card that reminds me of lazy warm days having picnics!

Here I've used a couple of fruit stamps to represent some sweet flavoured water. I do like using a china white pencil to draw onto Kraft card and coupled with some Spectrum Noir pencils you can get some vibrant colours on there too.

I'd like to enter this into:
Always Fun Challenge #9 - Summer Fun
Aud's Sentiments #181 - Summer and + a sentiment
Creative Moments #119 - Anything goes with the option of Birthdays
Seize the Birthday - One Layer Birthday Theme


STAMPS: Images - Hero Arts Let's Get Fresh, Sentiment - Wow! Just Saying stampset 41
COLOUR: Spectrum Noir pencils and a china white pencil
OTHER: Kraft Card, Versamark clear ink, Wow! Opaque Bright White embossing powder


With a theme of 'sweet things' there had to be at least one cupcake didn't there? These are complete with a sugary frosting!

Here (for the first time ever for me, on an OLC) I've used the inlaid die technique with everything held together on the back with masking tape so that it remains a one layer card.  Why? because I made a mess of the original card and I really wanted to use the image.

I've also used a variation of the line-less watercolour technique and applied it to coloured pencils.  I think it works!

With this card I'm heading over to:
Addicted to Stamps and More! #245 - Photo inspiration
Tuesday Throwdown #346 - Sugar High
Mod Squad - Spark It Up

STAMPS:  Design Objectives Cupcakes, Wow! Just sayin' stampset41, Sweet Dixie Big Sentiments
DIE: MFT Inside out stitched rectangles.
INKS: Memento London Fog
OTHER: White linen card, Glamour dust, masking tape, quickie glue pen, WH Smiths coloured pencils


Well, that's it from me except to say there is lots of inspiration over on the Challenge blog from the rest of the design team, and possible a few extras on their personal blogs too.

Can't wait to see the sweetness you will bring to the challenge so I hope you have time to join us.

Thanks for stopping by today,

Sharon xx

5 Jun 2017

Happy Birthday to AAA cards

Well, this is new for me... a mid week post!

This is just to say HUGE congratulations to all the ladies at AAA Card Challenges on reaching their 3rd birthday. 

I just had to find time to join in the celebrations as I was lucky enough to be a guest designer there earlier this year.  So I made this sweet little birthday card.

This is one of those 5 minute cards that I love to make. I used some paper that I had coloured using brushos and die cut the dancing tulips, glued them to the card so their dancing heads were free to move in the breeze, added a satin bow and stamped the sentiment.  I used the offcuts in the die as leaves too.

STAMP: WOW! Just Sayin' stampset41
DIE: Memory Box dancing tulips
BRUSHOS: Cobalt Blue, Turquoise and Ultramarine
OTHER: Linen card, Ribbon, Mermaid Lagoon distress ink

I hope anyone reading this will head over to AAA cards and join in their birthday fun. There are loads of amazing prizes and lots of different ways to win too.


So congrats again ladies - keep up the good work.

Sharon xx

3 Jun 2017

Less is More #331 - Neapolitan

Hi! Great to see you.  Well, that's another week flown by and we are at the start of another new month - not only that, it's the 6th month in the year so we're almost half way to Christmas again. How on earth did that happen so quickly!!!!

As it is a new month, there is a change of sponsors at Less is More and for the whole of June we are sponsored by


And the owner of Stamplorations, Shery Russ,  is our guest designer this week. Please pop over to see the fabulous card she made for us.

So, the new challenge is a colour challenge and we've picked those lovely strawberry, vanilla and chocolate colours of Neapolitan ice cream. Well, it is the start of summer over here in the northern hemisphere so those are pretty apt colours for this time of year.


I managed to make 3 cards again this week.

1) Shake, Shake, Shake

....shake, shake, shake.....shake your booty! (sorry if that song ends up in your head all day!) Those Neapolitan colours also remind me of milkshakes. I didn't have any milkshake stamps so I made a fun little shaker card instead using one of the new stamps that I recently received. This particular stamp was a present from....well, you know who you are, so I made this to say thank you so much! Your generosity is really appreciated.

I simply coloured with promarkers and added a bit of stickles and beads to complete the card. I die cut the 'thanks' twice in chocolate and ivory and offset the two to give the impression of highlights.

I'm going to pop this in at:
Crafty Cardmakers #189 - Floral Profusion (hopefully I'll sneak in at the last minute!)
Inspiration Destination #123 - Anything goes with a twist of a shaker card
Passion for Promarkers #397 - Make a kinetic card
Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge - Going around in Circles

STAMPS: Uniko Background blocks doodle flower
PROMARKERS: Pale Pink, Baby Pink, Cerise, Vanilla
OTHER: Ivory linen cardstock, beads, acetate shaker foam

2) Neapolitan Stripes

Deckchairs! Stripy seaside deckchairs.

Yes, thinking of Neapolitan ice cream reminds me of summers in the UK and stripy deckchairs on the beach. Here I used masking tape and swipes of ink on the base card to give a stripy look that reminds me of those seaside deckchairs.

Then the splatter stencil gives a perfect representation of the splotches of dripped ice cream that always ended up on my dress.

I'm heading over to the following challenges with this one:
Addicted to Stamps and More! #244 - Clean and Simple
Crafty Creations #342 - Anything Goes

STAMPS: Stamplorations Journey
STENCIL: Artplorations Art Splatters
INKS: Versafine vintage sepia, Versacolor 33 pink, Versacolor 56 cinnamon, Versacolor 54 Brown
OTHER: white card, 3d foam

3) Using up the bits - 5 minute make

Finally, I made a super-CAS card that just uses the Neapolitan colours. This is inspired by all the wedding stationary and note cards that I've seen around lately. I used up a couple of the off-cuts from making a 3d picture earlier this week

This card is for:
Fairytale challenge #169 -  Things with wings
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - Anything Goes
The Paper Shelter #296 - Make it digital (I made the text paper - please read below)

PAPER: I made it from a letter written by my great grandfather, it was scanned and the colours of the ink were altered using photoshop software.
DIECUT: Cut on the scanNcut
OTHER: Organza ribbon, gems, white linen card, pink smooth card.


Don't forget to pop over to the challenge blog to see the fabulous inspiration from the rest of the design team.

Thanks for visiting, and I really hope you get the chance to join us.
It'd be really lovely if you pop by again next week too.

Sharon xx