My book and music paper haul..

Hi there

I’ve been on the hunt for secondhand finds for my journals and yesterday I found some books and some music paper …. Yaaaaaayyyy!!

I am hunting for an Edith Holden book and an Alice Wonderland too but no luck yet! I did find Alice Through the Looking Glass in one of my charity shops in town. I was chuffed to bits with that.

Some lovely big print so I can photocopy that as the paper is shiny in this book. These are in the ‘public domain’ so out of copyright so no problem with that.

The Walrus and the Carpenter poem!

But yesterday I went off shopping with my daughter to a nearby town… Hemel Hempstead, she was after birthday pressies for her fella. So wondering through the shopping centre… I had completely forgotten there is a secondhand book shop and so we had a little rummage around in there. Billie (#1 daughter) does love to charity shop and this one was purely books.

I found a few gardening and bird/wildlife books I liked.

Then Billie came back with a couple of vintage classics Wuthering Heights and Andersen’s Fairy Tales, great covers on them and Wuthering Heights was a bargain as it was falling apart inside.

Oh then she found the music paper box. Well some great finds in there…. some old Hymn sheets, a Bach book and a full Gilbert & Sullivan The Yeoman of the Guard Scorebook. I was so chuffed with that…

Yeoman of the guard. .. look at that… sorry about the low light but it is yellow anyway.

Had a lovely time rummaging came to a total of £7.

My first of many hauls I think…. need to get to some car boot sales now. I’m after some upholstery fabrics for journal covers.

Until next time I hope you enjoyed my little haul…

See you soon

E xx


Art Journal Prompts and more… May – Trade It

This group is run by the lovely Nina Ribena and this year she has changed the group a little. It was a weekly challenge and she has altered it to a monthly challenge but she will come up with a different idea each week for that months challenge theme and it also includes more ….. so basically not just art journal pages but we can do ATC’s (Artist Trading Cards), Tags, Postcard/Index cards and Inchies etc. so anything within Mixed media really… all these will become clear!!

So May has been ‘Trade It’ month and Nina has organised a swap within the group where each week we make a different thing and now at the end of the month we send the swaps off to our partner.

My partner is in Canada…

Week 1 … ATCoins.

Yes just to confuse you Artist Trading Coins because they are round…

They are 2.5″ round to be precise… there was some leeway on the size but I have a circle die for my Sizzix Big Shot so I cut all mine out with that. Saying that I have 2 one has pretty little hearts around the edge so I used a mixture of both of them using my painty papers as the backgrounds. I then stamped, glued or stuck down stickers to decorate them.

These are just a few to be getting on with, I did cut more but haven’t used them yet, theres always another day!

A few Alice in Wonderland inspired … I love Alice in Wonderland especially the Tim Burton films

These are a new stamp set which I just love and will probably use often 😊😊

And a few butterflies, dragonflies, bees and birds stamps 😊… I always love to use nature themes.

So they are all backed with card and now ready to go.

I need 3 of these for the swap.

Week 2 …. Postcard/Index card or a Tag

I have opted for a tag I haven’t done many just one is complete for now … which is all I need for the swap, the size is 6″ × 3.5″.

First I embossed the tag with a butterflies and flowers embossing folder in my Big Shot… then I added a napkin over the top with blue and pink butterflies on it ( thank you Noit) when it was dry I used my new metallic Gelatos over the top to bring out the embossing but I was a little bit heavy handed I’m afraid. But I still like it.

Added the white die cuts which I slightly distressed to tone them down a bit.

I think I will be doing more I like the effect… see if I can not be quite so heavy on the highlighting next time. 😊😊

Week 3…. ATC’s (Artist Trading Cards) these, as it says in the name, we trade.

I believe there are groups on FB that’s what they do, just trade them within the group.

They are mini cards 2.5″ × 3.5″ so here are a few, I made some up using my Make a Mark cards I did back in March and other painted up card. I’ve cut them into 3’s well except the pink ones I only had enough for 2 as they are from some leftover painted card and then all I needed to do was decorate them.

Told you I liked that ‘dancing in the rain’ stamp set

This has a painty kitchen towel background with some extra stamping and stencilling on, then the ladies on top. I really love these. ❤

Happiness cards

There is a long story about this green background where I was going to use it in a completely different project but I won’t bore you with it…. but they turned out lovely with the die cut flowers to decorate them.😊😊

And these are my steampunk ones… I so love steampunk.

I’ve got so many ideas now for others that I need to write a list so I don’t forget to do them 😂😂

I didn’t realise I only need 1 ATC for the swap I thought it was 3 so that’s very easy.

Week 4…. Inchies, Twinchies and Thrinchies

Basically 1″ squares, 2″ squares and also 3″ squares. I think Nina made up the 3″ squares to make life a bit easier for those that struggle with small ( that’ll be me then!!) 😂😂 Thanks Nina for that ❤

I decided to make just 3″ ones or Thrinchies. I had these lovely flower squares which are all sparkly but they where about 2.75″ so just a little small but I glued them onto black card which finished the size off lovely. Added some mini birdie squares in a small corner collage, then using brads attached a metal leaf charm to each one.

I did a little corner doodling with a white pen to finish them all off.

They are all done now and with a little folder I created to put them in its now off to Canada.

Thanks for popping in… please don’t forget to leave me a comment I’d love to hear from you. 😆😆😆

Till next time

E x

Art Elements Monthly Challenge… Tide/Rock Pools

Oh dear….. I completely forgot that I signed up for this this month and I got the email this morning from Lesley Watt from Art Elements blog and thought oh drat….. thinking cap on…. what the heck shall I do.

Hunted through my ‘stuff’ for inspiration then…. ping!! 🙄

I ordered the new Craft Box for this month from

and this one was a Nautical themed box.

So what did I find — lots of anchors and seasidey sort of things, so dug out things that were appropriate and looked through my stamps and stencils for other bits…. I wasn’t having much luck, my stash wasn’t really cutting it!!!

I found a tag I already had die cut so the Distress Oxides came out and got laying down a background.

What I did find was a large foam shell stamp, so I decided to spritzer it with water then stamped the background oxides…. the water lifts off the colour and leaves a ghost stamp which I really loved…

Was very happy with that… once it had dried I then did a bit of stamping

As you can see I found a few charms too they will be added at the end…

These I had but the stamps came from the ‘Craft Box’ stamp set and it also had some cool mini shells as well

So they were very cute I liked them…. now what to use for a focal image…


Right all finished…

I added my starfish which I hand drew and then made a template to cut it out… along with a little fishy, added some coral oxide ink plus some details and there we go…..

Oh yes I also added…. A Message in a Bottle to the tag ribbons with a few little glass pebbles and some metal shells.

I thought it was a rather fun idea 😊😊😊

I hope it was worth the visit… ha ha ha!!

Here is an updated finished photo as I’ve given it some tweaking…

Thanks for coming by….

E xx

Below are the list of participants in the challenge so you can continue on your blog hop around everyone else’s posts.
















AE Team Members:











These got missed off the original email so I hope they will work ok

Sidetracked from Make a Mark March….

So I did say I was going to show other Make a Mark March work…. well I’m afraid I fell halfway through….

Lots of other things were happening and I just got a bit overwhelmed. I find prompts can be a bit stifling sometimes as I like to do what I want to do. So I am going to be doing lots of different things from now on …. but only what I want to do and when I want to do it.

This was my last MMM which had 3 prompts in one… Pink, Smoosh and rubber bands.

Pink is obvious of course, but I smooch 3 different pinks on then the blue marks are from a rubber band wrapped around a pencil. I added the sun with my homemade circle stamps and the trees are stamped onto tissue paper, I thought it made a nice scene. I might make it into a card I think 😊😊

My art journey keeps taking me off in different directions and one is, as I mentioned last time, making my own journals…. bookbinding. I am working on a couple at the moment figuring out how I want to put it together, watching lots of videos on YT and buying some digi kits to use as some of the pages.

I’ve found some cool kits on Etsy and my printer hasn’t worked so hard since my daughter was at college …Ha ha!!

I will show them when they are done. … Steampunk and Alice in Wonderland are my themes and I’ve just found some Harry Potter inspired kits too…..

I’ve had a little play at tea dying paper ….. the jury is still out on this one …

Here’s a little sneaky peek on my Alice kit from ArtyMaze on Etsy. Its such a beautiful kit I love it…. I have a few more from other shops as well but I will let you know when the journal is together better!!

That’s it for this time

Catch you all later

E x

Creating Homemade Stamps

Oh I’ve been having a great time creating my own stamps from kids fun foam, stick on foam pads for chair feet and also carving out my own designs with a lino cutting tool.

Here are a few…

I’ve even used pencil erasers/rubbers too…

I’ve got so many ideas now that I’ve been watching You Tube videos on Gel plate monoprinting… just need time to get on and do it.

I used to make stencils years ago when I was into my paint effects for my house, back in the early 90’s … showing my age now!!

I might have a go at making some larger simple design stencils for gel printing but I need my gel plate first which I hope to make my own this week. Its made with Gelatine, Glycerin and water. You can put alcohol (Isopropyl) in it to but I don’t have to do that… so I won’t! I will show how I get on with that when I give it a go…. I have all the things I need now so can’t wait to get printing with it!! 😆😆

I am a YouTube-aholic. I been watching bookbinding techniques too and I’m going to have a dabble at that too. I have made a start on it..

So much to do…. so little time!!! Ha ha she says now she’s in semi-retirement!

Busy, busy, busy…..

Until next time

Bye for now

E x

Make a Mark March

I am a member of a Fb group called Art it Out and this month we have a different prompt every day through March for Make a Mark March.

I have got a bit behind now as I had just a mad week last week. But here are my first 5 days

Day 1 MMM

Acrylics in MMM shapes with some flowers thrown in for good measure …. I do like flowers. Then some lines with posca pens in black and white.

Day 2 Markers

I do love copper so here I’ve used a copper sharpie marker, the crosses round the edges and round the dots. The crisscross circles are a homemade stamp using the foam pads you buy to go on the bottom of chair legs to stop them scratching the floor. All applied over a Distress Oxide ink background, lots of doodling with the posca pens around the circles and dots… good fun.

I love making stamps…. I’ve been having a great time with that too. (See separate post for that)

Day 3 Lines

Here I used an old gift card to make the spiky pattern over acrylics applied with my fingers… in sort of a line pattern, another of my homemade stamps with lines carved into it then I’ve applied white posca pen over the top… and a bit of stencilling through some punchinella. They are this long card shape so I can cut them up to make ATC’s (Artist Trading Cards) with them. 😊😊

Day 4 Bubble Wrap

I made a watercolour background then stamped the Bubble wrap over in acrylics, they do make cool marks, I love these colours but it needed something else so I stamped this large stamp over the card and embossed it but I’m afraid it didn’t stamp to well in the middle. It was a new stamp so it may be that or it was the card curling up that didn’t help! But again it will be cut up for ATC’s so it will get some form of embellishments over the top.

Day 5 Black & White

I used my black 6″ × 6″ hobbycraft journal for this one… I really enjoyed it. I put down some Gesso with my fingers then went to town with black distress inks and oxide ink through household throwaway items used as stencils… such as an onion net bag, punchinella … not sure if I used bubble wrap on this one! Stencilled texture paste through a jumbled numbers stencil in white but it went a bit grey as it blended with the distress inks so I just rubbed over it in black but I think it needs highlighting as it is difficult to see. Then I stamped the flowers out on separate card, cut them out and added some doodled spots here and there.

So for the rest of the month (once I’ve played catch up) see other posts coming up….

I am really having fun Making Marks for March…

See you next time

E x

Bit late for a New Year

Well I have been neglectful in writing and so the reason being…… I have 2 blogs….🤔 I also have a blogger blog as well as this one.

I’m not a very prolific blogger but having 2 makes me forget to do both of them. I have done posts on my other blog so forgetting to do this one!! Naughty!!

I do find doing this one easier to post on… that said…. here I am not posting anything this year to date!!

So here goes a bit of history for anyone that’s interested…….

last year back in June I had an extremely bad fall at work (I am/was a School Dinner Lady) I hit my head and split it open, ending up with 32 stitches in it. I landed on my knees and now this has exasperated my hip and I have since found out after having it X-ray ed that I now have arthritis in my right hip along with my back and also a little in my other hip which at the moment isn’t bad.

I went back to work in September (struggled back to work) but I kept going finding it very difficult to be myself as I was before. So just before Christmas I was able to hand in my notice as in January I become 55, at this age you are able to take out your private pensions.

Birthday Girl with my dessert of course!!!

So that’s what I’m doing I’m ‘Semi’ retiring from work for about 6-9 months. I also feel I need to recover fully from my fall so giving myself chance to do what I want to do and just be a lady of leisure for a while.

This is me leaving work….. so happy!!!

I do have a mammoth task of getting my house sorted out and I might let you in on that from time to time but generally this blog is for my artwork…. art journalling and mixed media.

I started my crafting many many years ago teaching myself how to make jewellery, I also did many other evening classes along the way from pottery, 3D Design and Stained Glass ending up taking myself off the work grid and doing an Art foundation course.

After all this I found glass beadmaking known as Lampworking and tried my hand at that.

I’m not too bad but since my fall I couldn’t do it as my workshop is up the garden on the back of the garage. This time of year it’s a bit cold so I’m waiting for better weather to get going again. I won’t be able to sit for hours like I used too but I will go back to it.

I do love to make things but I just couldn’t sit around doing nothing while I was recovering, so back last summer I found Art journalling on YouTube.

I am more of a maker than a drawer or painter but I do love paints so mixed media is fun because it combines them both in a way …. so here we are back in the present once again. 😊😊

Here are a couple of pieces I’ve made recently

Dancing Fairies Silhouette

Playing with my new Distress Inks and stamping and stencilling.

New Direction

Now this was using my brand new Distress Oxide inks I had those for my birthday… love them. More playtime needed with these I think!!!! 😆😆😆

I threw everything at this page I stencilled the heck out of it… Ha ha!! 😂😂

So I hope I haven’t bored you to death…. my art journey continues. But I do hope to get back to my beadmaking soon.

So I promise to have a shorter post next time….

Bye for now

E x

Fun with watercolours

Watercolours are fun…. but I prefer to  use them unconventionally.  

I’m not a realist… I love abstract, comical, whimsical and some fantasy too.

So I was trying out one of Marta’s (#MaremiSmallArt) videos where she was painting a circle in different colours then adding water to make it run down the page. Her doodles turned into flowers or trees.  Not me…. mine seemed more …bird like!!

Comical and with the long (legs) streak seems to be like puppets!!

Puppet Birds

They also remind me of ‘Angry Birds’ they all seem to be a bit cross!!! So here is my Whimisical/comical fun doodling. Generally I’m not much of a doodler but I really want to get drawing more so I need to get doodling more often I think!

I loved doing this too..

I laid down lots of different colours then drew a Kandinsky-esque abstract style over the top. As I said abstract art is a favourite and that’s what I need to get back too. I really could do with a circle template thingy and maybe ovals and triangles too! It would make life so much easier, I drew these circles with a compass but it was in pencil so it was a bit rough when I tried to go over with a pen. Silly me should of found some lids or something to draw round, that would do it!!

As for this one…

I kinda gave up on it as it wasn’t going to well.  The cheap watercolour paper was clogging my pen and I was getting really frustrated with it. I will try again on different paper next time.

So until next time

Bye for now

E xx

Inktober 2017 Resumed…

So my next drawing was on 

Day 16 – Fat…. here is my Pumpkin Witch in her costume…

Day 17 – Graceful 

Day 18 – Filthy…. too much ‘Eye of Newt’!

Day 19 – Cloud….. poor Desdemona she constantly has a dark cloud over her 

Day 20 – Deep

Day 21 – Furious. … Sally does look very…

Day 22 – Trail…. very quick sketch of a winding river

Day 23 – Juicy (oranges)

Day 24 – Blind … oh yes gotta do it

Day 25 – Ship …..Titantic of course!

Day 26 – Squeak…. some Munching guinea pigs… oh how I love piggies!!

That’s my lot…..  I fizzled out then and didn’t finish…. I was going to do the last day which was Mask…. but never got round to it.

I love masks and was going to do my daughter Billie in her Halloween cat mask… thought you might like to see it anyway…

She loves to dress up in costumes…. she always goes to Comicon and goes in a costume of some sort… 

So that’s it for this time….

I have had lots to catch up on and I think I’ve nearly done it all so far!

Hope to have something more recent next time…

Bye for now
E xx


New Inktense blocks paints

Oh boy I was so excited to receive my new Inktense Blocks. … Mummy has spoiled me again. 😊😊😊

My Dad used to paint…. so a bit of nostaglia I think for her,  reminding her of the paint he so loved!! Watercolours to Oils and everything inbetween.

So I swatched them out so I could see at a glance what each one is like, they are watercolours in block form so can be used in different ways

Pastel or wetting them to get the colour or lay the block down then add water.

Totally in love with them…..

I added water to the block and here they all are….. 😊😊😊😊😊

So glad I got the 36 set. Got a little money offer deal so they werent much more than Prima or Jane Davenport 12 pan sets. So… well happy!!

Here’s a Kandinsky-esque bit of artwork I did. I did it on cheap watercolour paper so it’s not as good as it could’ve been!! But I am pleased with the result. I think I will do more… 

I used this piece as my Art Journal Prompt for week 38 – Abstract. 

I’ve got so many still to do but here is 

Week 40 – Collage

I am trying to get to grips with faces, I love eyes, I was given some old Avon cosmetics books so did a bit of fussy cutting out….. hair next!!! 😊😊

More prompts to come!

Inktober 2017

I also tried to join in with Inktober last month… its a daily challenge to draw by Jake Parker, who started it a few years ago. He lists a month long of daily prompts that you can follow. Or there were a couple of other lists from other people…. Drawlloween and Whimsyween by James Burke. 

I wasn’t completely successful but I did do some of them….
Day 1 … Swift…  my Evil Eye ( I did it swiftly.) 

Day 2 – Divided

Day 3 – Poison 

Day 4 –  Underwater (an Evil Mermaid… thing!)

Day 5 – Long….. this is Sally long in the mouth… ha ha!

I enjoyed creating her… she pops up again.

Day 6 – Sword 

Day 8 – Crooked

Day 7 – Shy (here’s Sally again)

(Wrong way round… ooops)

Day 9- Screech

My bat …. so I was doing quite well till now!!

Day 10 – Gigantic…… wasn’t good!!!

Day 11 -Run…. these are awful

Day 12 – Shattered 

I lost it for a few days…. I didn’t like one of the prompts and left those out…

I will resume in a separate post….

This one has got rather large.

So to be continued…
Till next time

E xx