Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Chiswick - how to cut circles using a Swivel cutter.

Welcome to another Chiswick post. This week i am focusing on their amazing little Swivel Cutter. The swivel cutter is made to, and allows for easy cutting of curves, circles and other designs out a variety of lightweight materials such as paper, vinyl and plastic. The cutter has a 360 degree swivel blade that also allows for easy cutting inside of templates. I love circles and so the swivel cutter is an important part of my basic tool kit. I used the swivel cutter to cut an accent circle over my photo on my layout - this draws the attention to my photo and also helps with visual flow of the layout.
I used the swivel cutter together with my stencil to cut a border circle. I also used my paper distresser to add some distressing to the outside of my cut circle. After i adhered the circle to my layout i also added some coloured hand sewn detail.
some die-cut elements out of the basic cardstock range available from Chiswick works really well for thin intricate dies. I also used the swivel cutter to cut out my stamped leaves on this layout - it made it really easy to cut out and navigate around the tight corners.
more sewn details of my cut circle
to add colour to my layout i used some of the Chiswick ink pads to stamp a leaf design onto plain cardstock, and then added some clear glitter for a shimmer effect
The Swivel cutter comes packaged with 2 extra blades so you will be covered for a little while before having to buy more replacement blades - the replacement blades are easily available from your local craftshop
Position the blade the right way inside of your circle stencil so that the cutting part is facing towards you
place pressure onto the blade and then pull it towards you in an even motion
the blade will move around the edges of your stencil and change direction as it is needed. this give you a continues action and a clean cut without having to lift your hand each time you need to change direction or go around a corner. To view all the available products from Chiswick, visit their website - and to find your closest craft store you can contact Denise on 031- 569 6116

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Wholesaler - layout featuring Secret Treasures Dies.

I am a paper scrapper at heart – so there’s something really special about being able to create elements using just paper for cards and layouts. Above anything else I choose to use paper on my layouts with a few smaller embellishments, but ultimately paper rules my creativity.
I combined some of the beautiful die-cuts and chipboard elements alongside texture paste and paint on the background of this layout.
 So naturally when I create dies is one of my favourite elements to include. I can use small scraps of paper and cardstock to cut different elements out of to add as accents on my layouts, I can add different techniques to plain pieces of cardstock and I can dress them up or down as much as I like to.
For my layout I chose to emboss my die-cuts – this enabled me to pick up on the beautiful and dramatic turquoise-green in the patterned paper I used, and also the neutral brown I used as my matting to ground the elements. I used three different dies on this layout to add to my outdoorsy feel. I used the beautiful rocking horse die, tiny birdies and the beautiful large leafy die – all of them perfectly fitting into the design in their own unique way dressed up in a shiny new coat of heat embossing

Die-cut your elements out of plain white cardstock of medium weight
Cover the entire element with a layer of Versamark ink. Press the ink repeatedly onto the die-cut for an even cover of ink. Work on a sheet of scrap paper for the inking part or on your craft sheet.
Move the die-cut onto a clean sheet of paper and cover liberally with embossing powder. Shake off the excess powder.
Heat the element using your heat gun until the powder is fully melted. Leave to cool down before handling the die-cut. You can add another layer of embossing for a really smooth finish.
Tips and hints

  • Embossing two or more layers will give you a really smooth finish
  • You can decant your embossing powders into small plastic tubs with a plastic spoon making it easier to use. I store my powders this way so that I can easily return the excess powder into the container. Spooning the powder onto your elements over the tub also makes for less waste
  • The golden rule of embossing can be applied to most embossing powders – when it goes shiny, it is done heating.
  • Once an element has been embossed, the embossing powder needs to cool down before handling. If you touch it while the embossing is still hot, you will leave your finger print behind with a really unpleasant burn
Products used
Couture Creations Secret Treasures Collection: Rocking Horse [CO723518]
Couture Creations Secret Treasures Collection: Bird Song [CO723522]
Couture Creations Secret Treasures Collection: Panama Branch [CO723529]
Crate Paper Oh Darling Accent Stickers [683381]
Crate Paper Oh Darling Dainty Darling [683373]
Crate Paper Oh Darling Sweetie Pie[683369]
Crate Paper Oh Darling Dress Ups [683368]
Crate Paper Oh Darling My Girl [683370]
Crate Paper Oh Darling Chipboard stickers [683383]
Crate Paper Oh Darling Standouts [683390]
AC Thickers Baby Boy [732452]

to find your favourite goodies visit and have it delivered to your favourite craft and scrapbooking store!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Chiswick - create backgrounds with a basic tool kit.

Hello again - hope you are having a creative week. this week i got to play with a firm 'old-school' favourite. it's one of those tools that you can't live without even if you are a seasoned crafter! The 9pc Eyelet tool kit is functional in so many ways, but this week we are using it to create custom backgrounds - you can repeat this same technique on your cards, layouts, tags and other crafty projects. and as always you can pop along to the website here to see all their crating goodness.
I created this tag using an inky background, and then used my eyelet tool to make different sized holes into the tag itself, before backing it with a bright and cheerful pink cardstock for a 'pop' of colour. i used pink as an accent colour here to compliment my greens and blues.
To start off gather your toolkit and the working pad - this is so that even when you make holes, you don't ruin your pink Chiswick cutting mat with loads of different marks on it. Insert the hole size you are going to use first by screwing it into the handle tip.
Place the handle with the nice soft grip on your tag in the position you want the hole. Use the craft hammer and pound onto the back of the handle. Once should be enough but may require more blows depending on the surface or pressure.
TIP: i recommend you do this step on a nice firm surface or even on the floor to avoid making too big a noise when you are doing this late at night!
Once you are done and happy with the placement of all the holes, add adhesive to the back of your tag and adhere it to a sheet of pink cardstock. The cardstock fills in the holes and adds a nice colourful pattern to the background.
you can create fun elements using this method i.e Print a swirl on paper and then use it as a guide to create a pattern using your eyelet tool to make holes in the swirl. the printed swirl will act as a template only. remove the printed swirl to reveal your swirl consisting of holes. then back it with patterned paper and you have a custom element for your cards or layouts
combine your holes with buttons, diamante and pearls for a gorgeous effect.
to add some detail to your cardstock use a white ink and add white splats of ink to it before using it behind your holes. this will make for a fun effect peeking through
a fun way to use those favourite tools! oh and you could of course add an eyelet or two to the holes to make them even prettier adding texture and colour at the same time!
Chiswick Products used
9Pc eyelet tool set cr1100
Burnishing paste 25ml Verdigris pa2240
Dye ink pad - brown rs3299

to find your closest craft shop stocking your favourite Chiswick goodies contact
Denise on
031- 569 6116 or visit

Monday, April 14, 2014

Couture Creations - Botanical gift tag.

Welcome to my first post for the Couture Creations Design Team - so exciting!
When I first laid my eyes on the quick release die paper I couldn’t believe that you would actually want to waste such pretty stuff! I mean seriously how would I cope? But then I started thinking, yes sure I could use small pieces for those intricate dies, but I would much rather use it to create something pretty like a gift tag or card. And so that’s what I did

I added a decorative strip of plastic die cut to the bottom of my tag for visual interest
the Sew Jo patterned paper worked perfectly under the delicate plastic strip adding colour and pattern without being invasive
hand dyed ribbon, buttons and a stamped sentiment was used a decorative details
the embossing adds a hint of texture - this may be my new favorite embossing folder
Here's how i created the elements for my tag
For the bottom of my tag i wanted to add a decorative strip. I used the packaging from one of my embossing folders and simply cut a piece of plastic from the front part. I used the Art Deco Border to cut the plastic packaging into a delicate and decorative edge
to add colour to the plastic packaging i used alcohol inks. The die cut strip was sewn onto the tag over a strip of patterned paper from my Sew Jo paper pad
I coloured my manilla tag with distress paint to add some colour to the base. You can use your heat gun to dry the paint quicker but i prefer letting things dry naturally
Once the paint was dry i covered the entire tag with a layer of adhesive - because i did not want the adhesive to show through the release paper i used a glue stick. I added the release paper and then burnished it to make it stick to the tag permanently. Trim off any excess release paper from the edges of your tag using your Couture Creations scissors.
Emboss the tag using the Velvet Tea Lights embossing folder. I love how the embossing adds a subtle texture to the release paper without interfering with the design on the paper at all
i hope you are inspired by this beautiful range of products and the stunning release paper!
Couture Creations Products used