Saturday, 17 June 2017

Father's Day Weekend

This weekend is Father's Day and my wee dad is worth a million special days
Anyone who has met my dad loves him, hes just a proper dad hands one, supportive and strict when he needs to be but we all love and respect him loads. 
so as a tribute to him I am devoting todays blog post to my Dad.
Dad is from a Family of 15 (14 Siblings)
This photo is of his mum on her 65th Birthday
with his siblings
(Left to right)
Back Row
Thomas, Bernadette, Bridget, Mavis, Seamus, Annemarie, Dad (Eugene), Elizabeth, Michael, Eileen
Front Row
Kathleen, Daniel, Molly, Nana, Jack, Margaret

Sadly many of them have now passed away due to mostly cancers which ripped the family in bits mostly my Aunt Molly as she is the eldest she feels that she should have went before the younger ones, but sadly life doesnt work that way. 

My nana was pregnant with my dad, when her and my papa and the twins (Mavie and Bridie) came to Scotland from Carndonagh in County Donegal in Ireland, They left the 6 older kids with family until they found a house and got settled as they didnt know anyone in Scotland.
Dad was born in the Sept 1947 and his childhood wasnt the easiest as you can imagine a large family of 15 and only one wage coming in, Papa had an allotment and they grew their own potatoes and vegetables which helped bulk up the meals as money for meat wasnt always an option especially for large family's but they did what they could and they didnt starve, infact even now I hear stories from childhood friends of dad's that "auld Mrs McClure" always had an extra place at the table, and this is something I have noticed that runs in the family, right through the cousins and 2nd cousins we are always able to make space for one more (or 2 on occasion) 
Dad went to work in the shipyards when he left school as a riveter then he went to work in Chrystlers Car factory and then one to the job he loved the most laying the roads, there is many names for this proffession and dad used them all haha x Tarmacadam, Asphalter, Road Construction Engineer, Highway Operative, Steamroller Engineer, but they all covered the same thing, laying tarmac and asphalt to the roads and flattening them, but he loved working outdoors and enjoyed the banter and the team he worked with, in the 70's the company he worked with one of the managers branched out on his own and asked dad to foreman the main team and choose his team, Dad right away done the "irish" thing and brought his brothers on board, Thomas and Michael, also his Sister Elizabeth's Husband Tam and his Sister Mavie's husband Maurice and in time a few of the nephews also joined the squad but never lasted long the younger generation found the work hard and couldnt cope with the heavy work load. Dad also had his 2 best mates (I still call them uncles now) Uncle Sammy, and Uncle Alan. and he worked there happily for many years and we loved it in the weekends we all jumped in the back of the manky, bogging tar and oil, dirt filled transit van where they sat on old cushions on the floor (way before the law stepped in on safety) and went down to the beach, collecting whelks and mussels we all loved it and had an amazing childhood.
Dad met mum and they fell in love, they married Aug 76 and I was born in Jan 77
Them on their wedding day
Me on my christening day 
with both mum & dad x

Dad was very hands on when we were growing up, Dad worked days on the roads and Mum worked in the pubs as a supervisor so Dad looked after me and my 2 younger siblings Laura and Eugene Jnr
Then an Amazing papa to the 5 grandkids.
Even our best friends kids call him Papa and have a special bond with my dad 

Dad in his element surrounded by his "weans" 
Jordan, Jayden, Dad, Mum, Jack, Leah and Mirin
this was taken on 1st January 2017 

Love you always Dad xxx

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Technique Tutorials on Youtube

This week I have been making some cards that are more technique based and give you more ideas for what to make to add an extra element to your card designs.

So I have done an acetate window card and also a spinner card using an apeture window which I have cut out using the layering framelit dies from SU love the sizes of them as they are PERFECT for cardmaking. 

Super cute x these are predominately made to be used as tags 
but when I saw the set these are the cards I saw being made x I adore them they are super cute x 
and the inside is just as pretty 

These are some of the new cards I have made recently

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Serene Sundays

Sundays are the quietest day in my house especially at the moment with my eldest being on holiday at her Majesty's expense :( 
but Wee Jayden has stayed over night with my parents last night he stays with them most Saturdays and comes home Sunday teatime it gives him that wee bit of one on one time with them which he has missed out on a lot with us not living as near to them as we did when Jordan was younger. 
Ian & Scott (Jordan's Best Friend and Adopted son to us) and Scott's older brother Craig are driving through to visit Jordan 100miles round trip x that we are doing 2/3x a week 
I tend to email him though as I find that best for me, it helps to message him at night when I am feeling it hardest and can picture his wee face the next day reading a wee letter from home.

Also while all this has been going on I have been crafting a lot to try and occupy my wee brain as I am not really sleeping very well 2/3hrs at a time and even then I am restless.
I have been doing some youtube videos also which I had been avoiding for a while due to the fact uploading used to take forever but I have recently upgraded to a faster broadband and it is 8x faster uploading which is brilliant x so there are a number of new tutorials and process videos on my youtube channel x  Karen McClure's Channel so please pop over and have a wee look.

Here are some of the projects I have made over the last few days 

Videoed this one as a tutorial called Frame your Stamp Card so pretty and elegant with simple technique.

This is the exact same technique with an added step which is the stamped layered background also have videoed this on my youtube

My favorite little piggy stamp x 

Vintage Fathers Day Card I made on the tutorial for youtube

My Sample that I made prior to the video

Gorgeous Daisy Delight Bundle just makes the most gorgeous cards x 

This was also the same stamp set Daisy Delight but showcases some of the other stamps available

This was my prototype for the framed your stamp tutorial I absolutely loved it and knew I needed to do it as a tutorial for everyone else to learn the technique.

These I purchased from ebay for under £17 including shipping I got 40 daubers in case and they ink beautifully, 
I am going to buy another set this week and then in a few weeks time buy another few so I have them for each of  my ink pads x they are a nice compact size so not bulky in the least x really really pleased with my purchase. 
To mark all the colours I punched out 3/4" circles and coloured them with my stampin' write markers on both sides and using a spot of anitas tacky glue stuck it on some clear acetate which I have cut to fit inside the box its superb and easy to do x 

Todays agenda is to try and work out some space for my SU order which is due delivered tomorrow 
I got my HUGE scary order on Friday and took me hours to find a home for everything and my order on Monday isnt a tiny one either I have 10 dies and 14 stamps and lots of other bits and bobs, cardstock, adhesive, ribbon and twine, ink, and water colour pencils I do have my derwent ones but these being the SU colours I think they will be useful x 
also have some embellishments so I am excited x 

I also got the SU planner that is in the new annual catalogue its beautiful and I am going to purchase some additional a5 planner pages for it so I can have my addresses and phone number etc also added into it and make it more functional to my specification. but it is beautiful have already added my July birthdays in and special dates for July because if I hadnt added them I would have kept it as a "precious" item and not used it which would have been foolish.

Anyway hope you all enjoy the last of your weekend x Lots of Love and Hugs Karen xxx

Friday, 9 June 2017

Masterboard Technique and Projects

This is a technique I learned years ago and I use it a lot 
as it maximizes the usage of your stamps and also saves you money on your Designer Papers aka DSP.

I love the easiness of it, Invest in your inkpads and stamps
they will be a long term investment and can be used time and time again
otherwise DSP is used and gone.

Anyway these are projects made that I used as a sample for my recent youtube video

I used 1 A4 sheet of cardstock (but you could easily use copier paper)
The stamp set used for this design was SU Paisley and Posies 
being a Paisley girl born and bred it was only right to choose this design ;)
The colours I chose for the project I got from a Colour Generator 
The colours I selected  by choosing SU Subtle's 
and they generated 5 colours from that family for me and they were
Calypso Coral
Wild Wasabi
Marina Mist
Soft Sky
Blushing Bride

Heres a closer look at the projects made from that 1 Sheet of A4

I made this one on camera

The stamp set used for this set was Oh so succulent
and the colour used again were chosen using the generator above and it was
Pink Pirouette 
Blushing Bride
Wild Wasabi
Pool Party 
Wisteria Wonder

The First Section showing the technique can be watched here 

Here are some close ups of the projects made

I also got my first big order of the new SU Annual Catalogue
havent had time to play yet as I also bought some clear cases for my clear and cling stamps which I previously had in a ring binder but barely used due to the fact it was a nightmare to find anything so I have been organising them x still have 2 more packs of cases coming with my next order and hopefully have them all finished off and just maybe can organise a shelving unit for them all so they are neat and tidy and give my drawers back for my laces etc x 

Heres a quick photo of the stamp sets I purchased x

Anyway hopefully have some new projects for you over the next few days x 

Happy Crafting xx 

Thursday, 8 June 2017

My Week

This Week I have struggled mentally to cope day to day so I am having to break my day up into sections and morning till lunch, nap, dinner, evening with the wee one and bedtime its the only way I can get through the day.

My eldest son is at the moment in a young offenders institution for breaking his curfew he was place on September last year, he faces his trial on Monday so it is all coming to a head and I am really feeling it.
I have came to rely on him so much and I miss him incredibly day to day without him is unreal and bedtimes are the worst when you lie awake thinking about him alone in a cell just hard.
But Ian and Jayden and Jordan's friend Scott went to visit him last night and all said he looks well and I spoke to him for 10mins on the phone on Monday night and he has said he is doing well, the other boys on the wing are cool and have been helping him with cigarettes until his day to go to the shop (he has been now mind you) So I am pleased hes coping well enough its hard all round.

So to keep me with my thoughts busy I have been crafting little and often, a lot of stamping sentiments and cutting them down to size. so when I am making cards I have the sentiments stamped ready to go.

I really need to try catalogue my stamps better especially my sentiments and am thinking of maybe a notebook and number system (I am storing them all in SU clear cases now) so thinking stamp the sentiments in the notebook and number next to it with what stamp set it is in.
I hope that this would work, we will try it and see x 

Also placed another order for some more SU goodies and received and order from Jo's Price Designs
Will post the stuff I have got from Jo first

I love this pad and so country cottage feeling just perfect for backgrounds and for home decor projects

These pads by Grace Taylor are a perfect thickness for envelopes they are beautiful and so pretty x 
I already have a few of her pads but this one I love the blue tones in it xx

This is a newer pad from First edition I have a lot of their pads as I love the thickness x I feel in love with first edition when I purchased a few pads in Ireland a number of years ago and since then I have been addicted lol x and I love this one as it is girly but not too pinky girly if that makes sense x 

Another of my MUST haves x I actually bought 2 of these in 8x8 as I love that size for my cards and smaller projects also its not as "precious" as a 12x12 lol x 

Another staple in my craftroom silver mirror card I love this for word dies and small elements.

I have bought a paper from SU over SAB with hot air balloons and havent really used it much as I dont have anything to go with it and I am not going to have a need for a lot of this style to warrant buying the full suite from SU so this was a perfect compromise plus I love the heart in the center as I can then use that on other projects x 

I though "wrongly" I needed this ink pad as I like memento dewdrops for sentiments sometimes I have tuxedo black, london fog and I thought I had a light brown and purchased this but I already had it bummer x so this will be in a happy mail for someone soon no doubt x 

These are 3,6 & 10mm gemstones I love these for flower centers and for adding to cards also love that I can hand colour them with my alcohol markers so they match my projects I bought 2 packs of each as I never want to be without my bling haha x 

Now for my SU Goodies I have ordered this week 

A Little Wild Bundle thought these would be uber cute as gift tags for new borns x 

A must have for all crafters really and the font is wicked.

So many samples on the net using this set that I NEEDED it lol x 

I wasnt overly taken with this one but the dies are lovely and I think for the stamps they are versatile enough to be of good use.

This one I literally had in and out of my basket more than you would know as I kept thinking "hmm not really me" but I eventually decided to go with it and I am SO pleased I did have watched a few cards made using it and I love it and this it will be WELL used lol 

This one is just simply beautiful it was a design made by the lovely Patty Bennett
to celebrate her million dollar sales milestone and the story behind it is beautiful (I have linked Patty's blog post about the set above)
I also love that it is not a set targetted to one ribbon you could amend this to any support ribbon which I love x 

Awesomely Artistic - just stunning SOOOO many projects to get inspired by through pinterest and google when you type in this set name

Birthday Blossom - Pretty font and I like the versatility of the set.

Another must have the hardwood background stamp

who doesnt love mermaids?? I love the idea of the silhouette going to have fun with this set x  

My wee buddy Amanda has used this set a lot over the past year and I have always liked it but never fully committed to its potential until I looked properly x defo a MUST have xx 

Another must have its a word that in my house is said often, I have taught both my boys to always repair rifts before sleep even if it is a case of I think we agree to disagree and just let it be, Ian my oh of 20yrs is the worst ever he NEVER says sorry well thats a lie but he doesnt use it nearly as often as he should he finds it a very hard word to say. But I think it is a must have 5 letters and can build a million bridges x 

just perfect background extras x

I have wedding invites to make for a family member
(Ian's cousins daughter) but we are all pretty close and I am honoured to make them although it has been a bit of a :O shock trying to get my head around what to make but hoping these dies will help as I have an idea in my head just need to get it out and on to card lol

I had a 50% off item and these just had to be it x £44.50 a lot of money but for what you are getting they are great and I am thinking monogram projects and cards so I am sure they will be well used x 

Another layering set x perfect for me as I love my square cards especially at xmas time when I make SO SO many these will minimize measuring and cutting by hand x just run them all through the big shot ;) 

the lines to me look like waves and thought perfect for my mermaid :) also like the circles for tucking behind other layers etc x so think it will be handy

Other stuff I ordered was
DSP, Cardstock (a set for each family and the new incolour) 
Also some tear tape and glue dots, dimensional's.
Twine, Ribbon and Clips, and White Craft Pad, embossing powder and more stamp cases for my collection of clear and photopolymer I already own so I can fix them in to some sort of order.
and lastly water colour pencils I have my derwent watercolour and my derwent Inktense but having these in the SU colours will be useful.

I know that my shopping recently may seem extreme but..... my budget over the winter months and early spring is very very minimal and only essentials really so this is my time of year to stock up and put things away (like the adhesives and the cardstock)

anyway hope you have a good Thursday and all my UK friends get out and vote LABOUR for England and SNP for Scotland to keep TORIES out of number 10 x 
fingers crossed tomorrow morning will bring us a better future for the uk xx