About Me

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My name's Alison but for reasons too long to go into I'm known as Cockney Blonde or CB for short. I've been rubber stamping for several years but now spend most of my time either knitting or crocheting. However, with the advent of a New Year I have bitten the bullet and am tackling my usually hated pastime of sewing. I've even bought 'Sewing for Dummies' to guide me on my way. I've been with my hubby Dave for 24 years and between us we have 4 kids and 5 grandkids. We also have 2 cats and a dog, the latter features as my 'photo' image. I used to be able to blog daily but these days I struggle to blog weekly. Hopefully now we are settled into our new home in the country, I can get back to a daily (well almost) update from the room I now have to share with hubby. No more personal crafting space for me!!! Thanks to all the blogs and sites I follow for all your brilliant inspiration, and thank you to everyone who finds the time to comment on my blog.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

How to keep your ears warm...

Good Evening. Hope you're all well.

Just a quick posting this evening to show you some of the ear warmers I knitted for the Christmas Fair last weekend. Unfortunately the piccies aren't brill and these were the best of the shots I took but I was doing the finishing touches the night before the Fair.

I also made some in a deep red colour and some were decorated with beads rather than buttons, but you get the gist. I sold 7 out of the 8 I made so I was well chuffed. I'm now busy knitting the next batch as I've received some orders.
Just to make it clear. You wear these like a headband but pulled over your ears to keep them warm. Great when you don't want to wear a hat.

Hope you like them, x

Saturday, 26 November 2011

More Bits for Christmas Fair

Just a last couple of bits to show you before tomorrow's Christmas Fair. Above is the final calendar and below a selection of quick and easy bookmarks.
I'm frantically finishing off some ear warmers and will share those with you tomorrow. In the meantime enjoy your weekend. I'm off to knit and sew in front of the TV as its a Strictly night, x

Rude Comments

Firstly this is a warning to any of my followers not to take any notice of a certain individual who is posting unpleasant comments on our blogs. I was told that my work lacked uniqueness and the text should have been printed lower....Whatever!

I clicked on the attached link and it took me to a Pakistani shop. There didn't appear to be any virus attached I just think its some very unpleasant individual who gets a kick out of trying to p--- people off. Well he/she failed. I also think its odd that other affected bloggers seem to be linked to each other in some way so I suspect they've googled onto one of our blogs and then looked at our sidebars to see who we follow. If said individual is reading this then let it be known that crafters are made of stern stuff and won't be affected by petty minded little people. Go get a life and leave us bloggers in our creative worlds.

To everyone else ie pleasant people...have a lovely weekend, x

Friday, 25 November 2011

A Very Poppy Birthday...

Good Afternoon, said I would be back. This time with a card using one of my fav images. I just love Poppies and this one's from Penny Black. I've coloured it with copics to blend with the DP which is 'Madeleine' by Prima. The copics by the way are: E27, YG91, 95, RV25, 29
 Here's a close-up of the ribbon bow effect that I tried and below the inside of the card stamped in Versafine Smokey Grey with just a hint of the poppy.
I'd like to enter it into the following challenges:-

Tuesday Morning Sketches #121 - Sketch
The Pretty Little Ribbon Shop #4 - Buttons and Bows
Paper Sundaes #96 - Beautiful Bows
Pile It On #47 - Anything with a 'P'
Fab n Funky #100 - Happy Birthday
Hope you like it and I'll be uploading another of these in my Folksy Shop, x

Hug A Mug

Good Morning Bloggers.

I'm not known for my early mornings but I'm beginning to think my age has something to do with me not needing as much sleep. I hope it doesn't last, lol.

Anyway, a quick post to show you some of the mug cosies I've made for the Christmas Fair. So simple and quick to knit up and ideal for campers, caravanners or even workmen to keep a drink warmer for longer.

That's it for now, off for some brekkie and I'll be back later with a card.


Wednesday, 23 November 2011

The Craft Barn Calendar Week 11 - November

Well almost there, only one more week to go in this brilliant Calendar Challenge.

Here is my page for November. Our challenge was to use grey, pale yellow and incorporate bare branches. I also had found this lovely November poem in an old book which I have been keeping for this page.

Not much to say really as I'm not sure where the stamp is from, I think I came by it in a grab-bag.

Anyhow, hope you like it and here's the challenge link:-

Less Is More in Less Than 10

Good Evening Everyone. After I had created this card I realised it fitted into the challenge over on our KCUK Yahoo Group so I shall be off to upload it there too.

In the meantime let me tell you that the image and the sentiment are by Creative Expressions, both stamped directly to the card.

I can see me doing a batch of these quick and simple cards which will only need a small letter stamp.

Here are the challenges I'd like to enter it in:-

Totally Papercrafts #93 - Black and White
Allsorts #130 - One Layer
Less Is More - Silhouettes

Monday, 21 November 2011

Sewing in a Caravan

Evening Peeps, I said I would be back. This time with some more sewing projects completed over the weekend. It was so much easier to take some material, cottons, needle and scissors away in the caravan rather than all the papercrafting stuff I usually cart around. As you can see above, I've made some more lavender pomanders for the Christmas Fair, although the middle one I'm going to wrap as part of Mum's Christmas pressie. It will freshen up her bedroom if I hang it on the bed. It's actually made from an old serviette that she embroidered over 60 years ago. I wonder if she'll remember.

Here's another of my designed cushions. This time in really vibrant colours. Again with the pocket on the front and the hand-stitching up the centre to divide it into 2 smaller pockets. I added a couple of buttons for interest. I've decided to call these CB's Cuddly Cushions on the basis that a small cuddly toy can be housed in the pocket. See below. I'm going to pop this one on my new Folksy Store. If you want to take a peek just click on the piccie in my side bar.
Here's a close-up of Casey's little hippo keeping snug and warm.

This sewing malarkey is getting a bit out of hand now.....the sewing machine has ventured out of its cupboard.... I also have to admit to clacking away on the old knitting needles over the weekend, again making bits for the Christmas Fair. So far I've made 6 mug cosies. I'll upload these very soon. Again, another easy peasy thing to take caravanning.

As for the caravanning weekend. We had a lovely weekend on the Chatsworth Estate once a few minor problems had been sorted out. Firstly I didn't pitch the caravan correctly, so after picking hubby up from the station we had to hitch back up and manoeuvre it so that we could put the awning up in the correct place. This we left until the morning as by now it was dark and the light on the pitch bollard was out. I also managed to damage the electric cable although I've temporarily fixed it with some electrical tape, and finally 3 blinking lights blew on the car so that was the first job on Friday morning.

Friday we drove into Bakewell. I've never been before and it is a lovely town and we enjoyed a simple lunch after I'd got the car sorted out. Saturday we woke up to glorious sunshine and were able to walk to the Christmas Market at Chatsworth House (about 20 minutes). I must say we had far too many layers on as it got hotter and hotter. The dogs enjoyed the walk and Joss enjoyed hoovering up the bits of food that people managed to drop. Some mulled wine and several carrier bags of goodies later we walked back to the van to pick up the car and drove into the local village for lunch and some more Christmas shopping. We couldn't get over how beautiful the weather was for November. Of course, when we came to travel home yesterday it was foggy for the whole journey.

That's about it for now folks. So I hope you too had a good weekend and I'll see you all tomorrow, x

A Card at Last

Yayy! At last a card to share with you, although not one of my better creations. Too engrossed in the sewing malarkey, lol.

I've specifically made this for #2 Son. No point going over the top with embellishments cos his comment is always the same...'oh! that's nice', lol. Anyway while I'm at it I thought I'd enter it into the current ABC Christmas Challenge which is 'W' for Winter Sports

I've coloured Edwin with copics: E00, 21, 93, 15, 33, 35, 37, YG63, 67, BG13, 15, R27, 29 and the DP is Christmas Fancy by Dovecraft.

Hope you like it and I'll be back later with details of our weekend and some more sewing projects, x

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Just A Quickie

Just wanted to show you another couple of hanging pomanders I've made before I log off for the weekend.

We're off in our caravan to Chatsworth for the weekend to take in the Christmas Market. I went last year with a friend but this year hubby and son #2 are joining me. I think we're planning on visiting Bakewell on Friday and then the market on Saturday.

I'll be home Sunday but in the meantime I hope you all have a good weekend, x

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

More Sewing...I Need a Lie Down

Here I am back again with some more hand sewn goodies. Above are 2 cushions made from some lush Christmas fabric. I've added a felt flower cut from a spellbinders die and handcut felt leaves, embellished with a single pearlised pin.

Below are a selection of hanging pomanders. Basically they are made from stitching 2 character panels together, incorporating some ribbon and then filling with some cushion stuffing and dried lavender...Mmmm!
Hoping these will go down well at Mum's Christmas Fair, x

The Craft Barn Calendar Challenge Week 10 - October

Good Evening Peeps, hope you're managing to keep warm in this dull and damp November weather.

I can't believe I have managed to keep up with The Craft Barn's Calendar challenge. Only 2 more to go and then I'll have a full calendar. Yippee!.

This week the challenge was autumn colours and leaves. I started off stamping a complete sheet of paper to use as a background but by the time I'd trimmed it and straightened it and then trimmed it some more and then....you know how it is....I ended up with the piece you see, lol. The large leaf stamp is by Personal Impressions and all the colours are shades of Brilliance.

So having ended up with a smaller piece I decided to matt it onto some copper mirri card which I first embossed with a maple leaf and then overlaid a smaller die cut maple leaf.

I hope you like it and here is the challenge link:-


Sunday, 13 November 2011

Back Home and Calendars

Just a quick posting tonight to say we are back home from a lovely weekend in Perth with our friends Linda and Drew. We didn't have a lot of time together but what we did have Linda and I put to good use and made these quickie calendars for the Christmas Fair at my Mum's Nursing Home in a couple of weeks.

The top arrangement of beauty is Linda's work and the bottom piccie are mine. Thanks Linda for creating your masterpieces.

Hope you like them and hope you've had a good weekend, x

The Craft Barn 600+ Followers Blog Candy

Hey, look at this. I've just come home from a brill weekend in Perth to find that The Craft Barn have this fab candy on offer
Click on the link in my side bar to go to the site and see what its all about. You have until the 25th of this month.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

A 'Trying' Card

Back again with the 2nd of my posts for tonight. I can't believe that's 2 non-Christmas cards I've made, lol.

This one is using another LOTV stamp, one of their brilliant 'boys/men' images. Again I've coloured it in copics:-
E00, 21, 93, 31, 33, 35, 15, 18, C2, 5, 7, BG93, 96, Promarkers Tea Green and Grey Green.

The DP is 'Glitterati' by Memory Box.

I've used a lush black velvet ribbon as a trim. My other black ribbons were either too fine or too feminine. The swirl is a shapeabilities die.

I'll also be popping this one in my Folksy Store.

Whatever you're doing I hope you have a great weekend. Hubby and I are going to stay with friends in Perth. For those in the know she's a little lady with BIG boots, lol.

Here are the challenge links I'd like to enter it into:-

Sketch Saturday #180 - Sketch
Bearly Mine #23 - One for the Boys

Artifical Flowers

Good Evening Peeps. Hope you're all well. Its been another miserable day here in West Yorkshire, foggy, grey and generally dull and dark. That's the 3rd day in a row. I do hope we get a little sunshine soon.

Anyhow, here's the first of 2 postings this evening before I go away for the weekend. After many attempts to create this shaped card without losing the hinge, lol, I finally succeeded. I've used the Go Kreate Frilly #6 large and medium dies, also a nestabilitie scalloped circle.

The cute image is by those folks at LOTV which I've coloured with copics:-
E00, 21, 93, 31, 33, 35, B00, 02, RV000, 02, 34, YG03, 06, 09, Y000, 11, 13, 17.

One of the challenges I'm entering it for is CES #60 - inspired by a song and as soon as I saw this image I thought of 'Artificial Flowers' by The Beautiful South, one of my all time favourites.

The DP is Fairy Flora by Prima, and here is a piccie of the inside using more of that fabby paper.
I hope you like it and I'll be putting it up in my Folksy Shop. There's quite a few bits and pieces gathering on there now. Do take a peek, the link is in my sidebar.

Here come the challenge links:-

Pixie Cottage #95 - Sketch
CES #60 - Inspired by a Song (Artifical Flowers by Beautiful South)
Polka Doodles #44 - Shaped Card
Oldie But A Goodie - Buttons and Bows
CRAFT #128 - Cute

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

That Spindle Challenge - WARNING, lots of photos

No cards today as I wanted to catch up with some blogging and also, at last, wanted to reveal to you all the finished article from my Spindle Challenge. Neet of Hickydorums Blogspot challenged a few of us to alter an old wooden loom spindle. Apart from coming up with a few rude suggestions, which I was told were not allowed, there was no remit. The top piccie is a clearer version of my teasing photo of last week. All I actually did to the spindle was add a coat of varnish and some fibres.
I then browsed through some of my old copies of Altered Art Magazine and basically my finished item was born out of two articles. The first was 'A Pyramid Quilt Book' in May/June 2005. Apart from the spindle, the base started life as an empty shiny box. First off I gessoed it to get rid of the shine and then I decided to adhere torn pieces of pre-printed design papers.
Then I came up with the idea of having an opening page on each side so some folded cardstock was added and then more torn paper. On the outside of each folded page I stuck an old photo, although this was done right at the end. By now I had decided to keep within a vintage theme. I've only shown you one here, but you get the gist. The bulldog clips are by Tim Holtz and the hardest bit was 'shoving' 4 fibres up a narrow hole in a spindle to attach to the clips. The fibres are prevented from coming lose at the spindle end by securing them to a large bead.
Then of course I decided that this wasn't going to work.....{This project kept evolving }. This was when the second magazine article came into play, 'Soiled Doves' in January/February 2008. This required multiple folded pages with hidden flaps and pockets. I love stuff like this. So starting with the above picture here is a run down of all four sides folded and then opened out.
 I did do some stamping, as it was part of a rubber stamping group challenge. I've also used tags, pictures (Crafty Individuals), ephemera etc.
 The DP I used was mainly from the Printery Collection and I also used distress inks in Shabby Shutters, Walnut Stain, and Antique Linen.
 And, of course, lots of fibres to stay in keeping with the spindle.
 Some of the gorgeous coloured papers were given to me by a good friend for a birthday pressie last year.
 I tried to make each side just slightly different to maintain interest. I'm sure there is probably more things I could add.
 I've also used old postage stamps which I always keep from mail I receive from abroad. They often have such wonderful designs.
 I love the saying below. How true it is in many walks of life.
 The final piccie. Hope you're still awake.
Thanks for looking. I hope you've enjoyed sharing in my project.

More Sewing...It's definitely a mid-life crisis

Good Evening Bloggers. Well, I'm back again with another sewing project. I definitely need to see the Doctor, this is just so unlike me.....

This time I've upcycled an old denim shirt of my hubby's which I rescued from the charity bag. I planned the cushion cover around the button fastening so that I could utilise it as the opening for the cushion to be inserted. The seams have all been stitched by hand again. I know I should get the machine out but it gives me something to do when I'm watching TV, which isn't very often. I may need to get the machine out if this new venture takes off.

I've listed it on my new Folksy Store if you wanna take a peek. Just click on the link in my sidebar.
Your comments would be much appreciated. Thanks for looking.

Monday, 7 November 2011

The Craft Barn Calendar Challenge Week 9 & Update on The Hole

Good Evening Peeps. Hope you're well. My poor hubby only got home at 8pm having got stuck on a train that was stuck behind a broken down goods train. He's now snoozing in front of the TV, lol.

This week's challenge over at the Craft Barn was to use old paper colour and red lines. I knew immediately I had the papers in my stash as I'd just used them on my spindle challenge (more on that to come). I'm not sure of the company but the paper stack is called 'Printery'. The image is by PaperArtsy and I've used a red pen to underline the numbers and letters.

Co-incidentally the challenge this week over at the Cupcakes is to use text so I'm also going to enter it into that one.

Not sure where I was up to in the tale of the hole but it is now all repaired, garden put back together and paving and drive jet washed. Three Managers from different departments came over Friday afternoon to meet with hubby and myself. It was clear that there are flaws in their communication skills and there are training issues that need to be addressed. I'm not going to say much more on here as its likely that someone will lose their job over this and as you never know who's reading its better for me to keep it brief. We have been promised a full explanation once all their investigations have been carried out. Hubby and I are waiting for their written explanation before we decide on whether we are taking it further. Watch this space.

Anyway, here are the challenge links:-

The Craft Barn Calendar Challenge Week 9
Cupcake Challenge #167 - Textalicious

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Little Saint Nick

Good Evening Bloggers. I hope you've all had a good weekend. I know I promised you an update on the 'hole' and also some proper piccies of my spindle challenge but I'm afraid that will have to wait for another day.

I don't seem to have stopped crafting today, trying to get myself organised for the Christmas Fair at Mum's Nursing Home at the end of the month. Anyhow, I did find time to throw together this card for a few challenges.

The image is by Inkadinkadoo, the DP 'Jovial' by Basic Grey and the Christmas Tree is grungeboard coloured with adirondack dabber in Pool. I've added some sparkle and stickles and hope it will fall into the various challenges below.

Thanks for looking and I'll see you all tomorrow, x

Papertake Weekly - Anything Goes +/- bling
Pixie Cottage - Sketch +/- Christmas Card
ABC Christmas - 'V' for Vintage
Delightful Challenges - A Sparkly Christmas

Friday, 4 November 2011

From Trash to Treasure - Art Giveaway

I've not had a chance to create any artwork today to upload as its been busy, busy, busy...ironing...yuk! then a wonderful couple of hours getting my nails and hair done. After the last couple of weeks it was a welcome release. Then at 4.30 three managers from various departments concerned with our 'hole' arrived for a meeting with ourselves. I'll give you an update on this another time as for now I want to tell you about an amazing giveaway over on Lin Stevens blog.

I found the link through another blog I follow, Lottie, http://atcsbylottie.blogspot.com
As I like to dabble in altered art from time to time I thought I'd take a peek....WOW! She makes some fabby stuff and is giving some items away to celebrate her three year blog anniversary. There is also a BONUS giveaway of some numerous stamps. How generous is that???

Why don't you hop on over to her blog and enter her giveaway. Here comes the link and thanks for the chance of entering this brilliant giveaway Lin.

FOOTNOTE: Don't ask me what I've done to get the 'messed up' text, haven't a clue, lol

Thursday, 3 November 2011

A Sneaky Peek

Good Evening Peeps.

I'm afraid this is all you're getting this evening. A blurry photo of an old loom spindle that I have been challenged to alter. I will reveal all after Saturday but for the time being this is it. Its a good job I took a poor photo cos I was unable to blue or distort it on Photoshop. I'm not very good with those programmes, lol.

Anyway, I'm sorry to say it looks a bit rude.....I can assure you its not.

Check back over the weekend and all will be revealed.

In the meantime if you fancy clicking on the link in the sidebar I have opened my first online craft shop and would appreciate any comments.

Bye for Now, x

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Twinkle, twinkle, little star...

Good Evening Peeps, hope you're all well.

I've been busy finishing off a challenge with a spindle so haven't had much time for cards this week. Of course that's on top of the 'hole' scenario. However, when I spotted a couple of CAS challenges I thought I'm sure I can do that PDQ and so I did.

I stamped the stars background (denami designs) with versamark direct to the card and then heated blue diamonds ep by CopperKate to get the glittery effect. The sentiment by LOTV was stamped with Memento black onto a spellbinders die. Finally I edged the frame and the card with a blue copic.

I think the total time was 5 minutes. Not bad...

Hope you like it and here come the challenge links:-

Winter Wonderland - CAS Christmas Card
Less Is More - Stars
Totally Papercrafts #90 - Glitter It

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Dinosaur Cushion and 'hole' update

Good Evening Peeps. I think I'm definitely going through a mid-life crisis, lol. First I started sewing with a felt bag for my grandee, then I get a tattoo done, and now I've gone and done the sewing thing again. I HATE SEWING!!!

I saw this fab material when I was away at my friend's. You know the one who helped me get the tattoo. Well, my little Scottish grand-daughter adores dinosaurs. I know, most little girls like fairies and pink.... So I bought this fat quarter not knowing what I was going to do with it. I then hit upon the idea of a cushion cover but when I bought the cushion insert it was too big...duh! So I decided to make a cushion and unstuffed the insert to provide the stuffing (are you following me???). Well, I then got a bit adventurous, she who doesn't do sewing, and decided to add a pocket which I divided with some nifty stitching to form two pockets. The idea being she can pop tissues in one and dinosaurs in the other, lol. Then with the scrap of material that was left I made the flower/bow thingy at the top. No material wasted, no dinosaurs hurt and all done by hand as I couldn't be bothered trying to fathom out how my neglected sewing machine works.

I hope you like it and I'm going to try my luck with a few challenges, x

CRAFT #126 - Colour Savannah
Dream Valley #19 - Anything Goes
Pollycraft #117 - Anything Goes


The leak was repaired yesterday, the hole filled in today and the garden will be jet washed tomorrow. The complaint was lodged with Northern Gas this morning and the lady rang my husband back and said something along the lines of  'I've made some enquiries and I believe everything has been put back and sorted'....my husband's reply was 'I think you're missing something here, we're talking about Health and Safety and therefore this isn't the end of the matter'. Her response 'oh right'.

Watch this space.....