Tuesday, 7 April 2020

The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #69 Anything Christmas Goes.

Good morning! I hope you're all keeping safe and well at home, with plenty of time to do some stress-busting crafting!

It's a beautiful spring morning here in S-E Hertfordshire, so it seems a little odd to be thinking of Christmas! However, we have a new Challenge at The Holly and Ivy to keep you company during lockdown.

I have dug out a Concord & 9th Turnabout stamp to make a background, this is the Holly Berry Turnabout.


I used 3 shades of green ink and one of grey for the leaves, and 4 shades of red and orange inks for the berries. The gold-embossed sentiment is from an old stamp set by Lil' Inkers which is now out of print. The ribbon came from my stash.

Finally I added dots of Crystal Stickles on top of the berries.

Go and see my teamies' creations on the blog and be inspired!

Thanks for looking, and take care.

love, Mags B x

Friday, 3 April 2020

My Time to Craft! #429 Easter Cuties

It's 5.15 pm and I have just realised it's Friday! Not only that, but there's a new challenge over at My Time to Craft! Our theme is Easter Cuties so any adorable image related to Easter (Chicks, Bunnies, Eggs....) will be great!

I have used a VERY old wood-mounted stamp from Penny Black called Bun Bun. Its copyright date is 2008, so it's now 12 years old!


I colouredher with Copics, die-cut her with a Lawn Fawn Stitched Circle die and layered her onto pearlescent green card.

The yellow spotted paper is also very old, and the green card is a snippet. I used a Lawn Fawn Grassy Hillsides Die to cut the edge of the card. The flower sequins are from my stash.

Do hopalong (geddit?!) to the Challenge blog ro see the Easter Cuties that my teamies have made, and to say hello to 3 new members of our Design Team: Judith and Tracey and Cazro, who is returning for another stint on our loopy and lovely team!

Thanks for looking! Stay safe and well and CRAFTY!

love Mags B x

Monday, 30 March 2020

Dream Valley Challenges #222 Spring Colours.

Hello! It's a beautiful Spring day, and I have been sitting in the garden having a cuppa - still in my coat, because it's a wee bit chilly! Thebirds are getting very active, and a neighbour's tree is covered in pink blossom. Also, the grass needs cutting!

And we have Spring Colours as our theme at Dream Valley! Our sponsor is the gorgeous All Dressed Up - Wendy's images are so pretty!

My spring colours are pink and green.


The elegant dancer is dressed like a cherry blossom and is about to twirl across the stage! She is an older stamp called Looking Gorgeous which came via Little Darlings Rubber Stamps. The flowered background paper is from an old First Edition pad, and has a spot gloss finish. I used an old Spellbinders die to cut the frame. It looks coral in the photo, but in real life it's more pink!

The green ribbon is from my stash.

Go and see the lovely examples left on the blog, then pick your favourite spring colours and join in!

Thanks for looking, and I hope you're all keeping safe and well.

love Mags B x

Tuesday, 24 March 2020

The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #67 Anything Christmas Goes.

Hello! I hope you are all coping with having children at home/lockdown. Ye Olde Manne and I have been self-isolating for the last week, going out only to shop for essentials like bread, milk and beer. Thankfully, I began picking up an extra can or two every week at the beginning of last year, in preparation for Brexit, so we have soup, fruit, tuna and corned beef in the larder! We will probably get a bit tired of corned beef.....

Anyway, it is what it is, and I hope you're finding time to craft. Creating something is such a good stress-buster. Even more so when you make Christmas cards and see that bit of stockpiling increase - and The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge is here to help!


I used a very old Hero Arts set to stamp and emboss three ornaments, then fussy-cut them out. I added some DMC floss plus some very thin, springy and bloody-minded silver thread, for the hangers, first making holes for the thread to go through.

Then I added the ornaments with some foam tape, under the bows. The paper comes from my stash and the gold-embossed sentiment is from an old set by Clearly Besotted. There were a couple of tiny snowflakes with the sentiment, and my kraft layer looked a bit bare, so I stamped the snowflakes round the edges using Versamark. It scarcely shows, but it does break up the solid brown.

Go and see my teamies' creations, they do such a great job making lovely and varied cards. Something for everyone!

Thanks for looking, my lovelies. Stay safe and well.

love Mags B x



Friday, 20 March 2020

My Time to Craft #428 Off the Edge

Good morning! We have an intriguing theme at Mt Time to Craft which is Off the Edge. That's when you die-cut (or trim!) around your image to make a shaped edge - here is a video from Penny Black to give an example.


I didn't have a die for this Simon Says Stamp image, which is from the Stronger Together stamp set which was in this mont's card kit, so I used my scissors to trim it. I painted the leaves using watercolours, then splattered the card with green, yellow and gold paint.

The hello die also came with the kit, I cut it from some pealised green card. Then I lined the inside with a snippet of checked paper and finally rounded the bottom right corner.

I should have made this a side-folding card rather than top-folding, because cutting along the fold at the top was a bit tricky!

My teamies have done some lovely work to show you, do go and see!

Thanks for looking! Stay well!

love Mags B x

Tuesday, 17 March 2020

Dream Valley Challenges #221 One For the Boys. And why washing hands kills that ruddy virus.

Oops! I'm a day late with my post for Dream Valley, I apologise! Following on from the last Challenges theme of 'One For The Girls' we now have One For The Boys.

Our sponsor is the amazing Bugaboo Digi Stamps. Unfortunately my printer is making everything look blurry and I wasn't able to use the fun images we were sent so generously, so instead I used something I already had.

This is Gus, isn't he wonderful?


The sentiment reads: 'Growing old is mandatory... Growing up is optional.'

I used old papers from my stash plus 2 of Love from Lizi's Gold Matt Peel-offs. I added Glossy Accents to Gus's spectacles and two stitched circles die-cut from a scrap of gold card as embellishments.

My teamies have made some fab cards to inspire you, showcasing more of Bugaboo's fun images, do check them out!

Thanks for looking, and have a good week.

love Mags B x

PS I was talking to a friend who has just finished a Bio-Med degree, and he explained why we're supposed to Wash Our Hands. The Covid-19 virus is surrounded by a fatty membrane, which is destroyed by soap (or strong alcohol hand gel.) Makes sense!

He also said it's really important not to touch your face if your hands haven't been washed because the virus enters your nose, mouth or eyes to infect you.

I wish we had had all this explained to us weeks ago!

Stay safe and well, my lovelies.

Tuesday, 10 March 2020

The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #67 Anything Christmas Goes.

Hello, my dearios! I hope you and your families are all keeping well. We have another Challenge at The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge for you to get a head start on those Christmas cards!


I have used a pre-coloured image from an old collection by Lili of the Valley. They now do downloadable pre-coloured images for printing at home, but sadly not this cutie. I trimmed the image down a bit, then layered it on silver mirri card (I love silver with blue for Christmas cards!). I added Spectrum Noir shimmer pen to all the stars.

The background paper is from a long-out-of-print LOTV paper pad which I have had for years! The sentiment is from Craft Creations and is also very old!

I am using up stash!!!!!

My awesome teamies have made some beautiful projects to inspire you, do go and see!

Thanks for looking, and have a good week.

Cheerio, my dearios!

love Mags B x

Friday, 6 March 2020

My Time to Craft #427 Farmyard Animals.

Hello, my dearios! This year seems to be racing by, how can it be March already??? And now it's time for another Challenge at My Time to Craft! which has the theme Farmyard Animals. Think sheep, cows, pigs, chickens.....


I used an image from an old Simon Says Stamp set called 'Birthday Farmyard Animals' which is sadly out of print. I coloured the Chickie with Copics and die-cut a panel with a stitched rectangular die, leaving space for the ribbon and sentiment.

I blended Broken China and Tumbled Glass Distress Oxides over white cardstock for the background, then used the same inks and Simon's 'Screened Leaves' stencil (also out of print) to give a tone on tone background. I really like how it turned out!

My teamies have made some gorgeous creations in so many different styles, do check them out!

Thanks for looking, and have a good weekend!

love Mags B x

Monday, 2 March 2020

Dream Valley #220 For Girls Only.

Hello there! Sorry I'm late with my post for the new Challenge at Dream Valley but I have been playing a demo of a new videogame that comes out next month and got a wee bit carried away. Yes, I'm a nerd.

However, here we are with our new Challenge For Girls Only. Our sponsor is the amazing Crafty Ribbons so of course I used ribbon on my card!


I used an old Miss Anya stamp from The Greeting Farm. I can't tell you the exact name because she has lost her packaging. The background paper is from an ancient Basic Grey pad which is long out of print, and I echoed the colours in the Copics I used on the image. I added Spectrum Noir to the flowers and a blob of Glossy Accents on her heart barrette.

The ribbon is Lilac Grosgrain Ribbon from our sponsor. I added a wooden heart from stash, coloured with Copics and Glossy Accented. The embossed sentiment came with a magazine.

My teamies have made the most gorgeous creations, do go to the blog and have a look!

Thanks for looking and have a great week!

love Mags B x

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #66 Anything Christmas Goes.

Apologies for the late post! I made a second card with the Simon Says Stamp December 2019 card kit. This uses the stamp set Gnome for the Holidays which is very cute.


My teamies have done sterling work to inspire you, go to The Holly and Ivy and be inspired to join int!

Thanks for looking!

love Mags B x

Friday, 21 February 2020

My Time to Craft! #426 Rubber/Clear stamps only - no digis!

Hi, guys! We have another fun Challenge for you at My Time to Craft! which is to Use a Rubber or Clear Stamp - not a Digi! So have a good look through your stamps and pick your favourite!

I have used a sweet image of Viking Tilda from Magnolia. She is in gorgeous red rubber (Magnolia doesn't do digis) and I had forgotten how beautifully it stamps.


"Ho jo to ho! Ho jo to ho!"

When I was 17 I saw the opera 'Gotterdammerung' with Kirsten Flagstadt as Brunhilde. She was a large lady, dressed in a white robe with a horned helmet, spear and shield, and with quantities of glorious red hair. What a voice, too!

So obviously this Tilda had to have red hair!

The papers are from my snippets drawer, I think they resemble the forest and the river Rhine. I made it for a very musical friend who doesn't really 'do' cute, but she likes it!

Go and see my teamies' gorgeous creations, they will inspire you to join in! Remember - No Digis!

Thanks for looking, and have a good weekend!

love Mags B x

Monday, 17 February 2020

Dream Valley Challenges #219 Hand-coloured Image

Hello, my lovelies! We have a new challenge for you at Dream Valley which is to use a Hand-coloured image. Our sponsor is Di's Digi Stamps - go and check out her adorable images! So cute!

For my card I used a fabulous stamp set by Love From Lizi which was in the February card kit but which should be available to buy separately in March. It's huge, and full of the most gorgeous retro flowers!


I stamped this bouquet in black pigment ink and heat-embossed it in clear embossing powder. I used my Inktense Pencils to colour , then fussy cut the image.

The background card has been stamped in Versamark with a little sprig from the same stamp set and also clear heat-embossed. I added the bouquet with foam tape and used some of Lizi's peel-offs as a partial border, then finished it off with Nuvo Drops.

I need to get out my Inktense Pencils more often, I'd forgotten how vibrant the colours are!

Have a look at the gorgeous cards my talented teamies have left to inspire you on the Challenge blog, then get out your favourite colouring medium and a pretty image and join in the fun!

Thanks for looking, and have a great week!

love Mags B x

Tuesday, 11 February 2020

The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #65 Anything Christmas Goes.

Good morning! It's so cold today, and the last dregs of Storm Ciara mean it's also quite windy still. My heart goes out to those suffering from the floods, I can't imagine how awful it must be to lose everything like that. I hope the Powers That Be get off their bottoms and do something to prevent it ever happening again.

However, life goes on, and today it's time for a new challenge at The Holly and Ivy.

I have used items from the December 2019 card kit by Simon Says Stamp.


The sentiment is from the Gnome for the Holidays stamp set and I used the adorable Lil' Gnome die to paper piece the image, colouring his nose and beard with Copics. All the papers came with the kit. I added a red and gold ribbon from my stash to 'ground' the Gnome.

As usual my teamies have made some fabulous cards in all kinds of styles to inspire you, so do go and see!

Thanks for looking, and have a good day!

love Mags B x

Friday, 7 February 2020

My Time to Craft #425 Love me, Do!

All together now: "Love, love me, do! You know I love you! I'll always be true! So pleeeease! Love me, do!" (Cue Harmonica.)

Yes, I remember that Beatles song from when I was young! Now all of you will be singing it all weekend! And perhaps you'll join in at our new Challenge at My Time to Craft! too!

For my 'Love' card I have done some paper piecing, using more papers from the Nitwits Perfect Pair digi papers that I used on Monday.


I used pearlescent pink card for the die-cut heart outline and the mat. The heart die came from Simon Says Stamp and unfortunately is no longer available. I backed the outline with a scrap of white card and cut around the outside, then glued the patterned paper in the apertures. I used foam tape to give the heart some dimension.

The sentiment is from Good Gab by Paper Smooches, and I filled in the little heart with some Nuvo Glitter Drops. I like that sentiment, it makes me smile!

My teamies have created some lovely interpretations of the theme, do go and check them out!

Thanks for looking, and TGIF!

love Mags B x

Monday, 3 February 2020

Dream Valley Challenges #218 Love

Hello, my dearios! It's time for anotherChallenge at Dream Valley where our theme is Love.

Our sponsor is The Paper Shelter who kindly sent one of their adorable images for us to use. Unfortunately my printer broke down, so I couldn't use the image, but luckily I already had the gorgeous Victorian Beauty printed out. (This is the original image, the current one is slightly different but still gorgeous.)


She is a delight to colour, and I love the flirty glance she's giving as she checks her hair! I fussy cut her and raised her on foam pads, and cut a pink frame with a Spellbinders Romantic Rectangles die (sadly no longer available.)

I used papers from Nitwits' Perfect Pair collection, so pretty! The place where the two papers join is edged with a Love from Lizi Matt Gold peel-off.

The Valentine sentiment is from an old Clearly Besotted sentiment set, which sadly is out of print, and embossed it with Ranger's Rose Quartz Embossing Powder.

Finally I used Tonic Nuvo Drops in Enchanting Pink.

This lady is definitely ready for Valentine's Day! On the day itself I will be doing the Church flowers, using pinks and red roses! Vibrant colours to cheer up the gloomiest February day!

Thanks for looking, and I hope you all have a good week.

love Mags B x

Wednesday, 29 January 2020

The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #64 Anything Christmas Goes.

Afternoon, all! I apologise that I'm a day late with my post for The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge. I had a rather long dental appointment yesterday, and when I got home I spent some time sleeping off the anaesthetic, and, I'm sorry to say, forgot my post!

However, here is my card! One of my New Year's Resolutions is to go back into my stash and use older items as well as snippets of papers. Here is the result:


The elaborate Merry Christmas die, from Sara Davies' Signature Collection for Crafter's Companion, was a magazine freebie and unfortunately is not available on the CC website. I used a snippet of gold card to cut it out and glued it onto a snippet of white pearlised card. The background paper is also from the snippets drawer. I added Nuvo Drops in red and white to give some festive bling.

Do join in our Challenge, it's such a great feeling to see a pile of Christmas cards mount up, knowing you won't have a mad rush to get them all done in November!

Thanks for looking, and I hope your week is going well.

love Mags B x

Friday, 24 January 2020

My Time to Craft #414 Inspired by Disney

Hello, my dearios! We have a lovely Challenge for you at My Time to Craft which is Inspired by Disney. That is INSPIRED BY... since Disney's images are all copyright, of course, and they come down like a ton of bricks on anyone who uses their images without permission.

So you could be inspired to use Mermaids, or Princesses, or a Chinese theme, or pick a fairy tale and put your own spin on it - just don't use any actual Disney images! And let us know what inspired you, too!

I have a beautiful digi from Sassy Studios (which sadly no longer seems to be trading) called Snow Queen Portrait, which reminds me of 'Frozen.'


For my winter birthday card, which is 5" x 7" for a change, I used shades of blue and white. The papers are from my stash, and long out of print. I layered them on blue and silver mats. I added White Blizzard Nuvo Drops to the centres of the snowflakes, and also to the Queen's hair, but they don't really show in the photo.

The silver-embossed sentiment is from an old Clearly Besotted stamp set. I added 2 snowflakes that came in a pack of 'Table Confetti' from my local supermarket one Christmas.

Go and see how my teamies have used our theme as inspiration for this challenge and come on down and join in!

Thanks for looking, and have a great weekend!

love Mags B x

Monday, 20 January 2020

Dream Valley Challenges #217 Spots and/or Dots

Yes, it's already time for the second Challenge of 2020 at Dream Valley! Our new theme is Spots and/or Dots and our sponsor is the fabulous Crafty Sentiments.

I have made a birthday card for a little boy, using the adorable Gaffi. Well, he's a giraffe, so definitely has spots!


The papers are from an old Echo Park pad called 'Petticoats and Pinstripes' which is sadly out of print. The gold-embossed sentiment is from Lawn Fawn's Scripty Sayings. I added Nuvo Drops to embellish, not sequins, because the little boy this is intended for would probably pick off sequins and try to eat them!!

Go and see my teamies' lovely work, and check out our sponsor's gorgeous images!

Thanks for looking, and have a great week!

love Mags B x

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #63

It's never too soon to make Christmas cards! And to prove it we have our first challenge for 2020 at The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge where as usual it's Anything Christmas Goes.


I used the Radiant Ornament Layering Die Set from Birch Press Designs for my focal point. I used up snippets of coloured card stock and made the middle layer and the hanger from silver mirri card. I made 24 to this design in 'assembly line' fashion, while watching tv. It was very relaxing.

The sentiment was an old one from Penny Black, I like how it's laid out to resemble a Christmas Tree, and I used co-ordinating ink to match the coloured card.

Pop over to the challenge blog to see my teamies' gorgeous Christmas creations!

Thanks for looking, and have a great week!

love Mags B x

Friday, 10 January 2020

My Time to Craft #413 New Stash!

Hello! Happy Friday! Christmas now seems a long time ago, doesn't it? However we have a new Challenge at My Time to Craft which will bring back some of the excitement of Christmas Day - New Stash! It's a chance to show off any lovely new inks, stamps, dies, paints etc that you received.

My lovely daughter bought me the gorgeous Peony stamp and die set by Reverse Confetti.


Instead of colouring the images I stamped them onto snippets of patterned paper and added a little shading with my Prismacolor pencils. The background has been dry embossed with an old Spellbinders folder, it scarcely shows in the photo but irl it adds a subtle background. The sentiment is from Lawn Fawn's Simply Sentiments stamp set. I added shimmer with a Spectrum Noir pan and finished with dots of various Nuvo Drops.

After several days of cleaning and tidying it was great to get back into ye olde crafte hovel to create!

Thanks for looking, and have a great weekend!

love Mags B x

Monday, 6 January 2020

Dream Valley #216 Anything New

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a lovely Christmas. Ours was much busier than expected, I got a message from my Dear Daughter on December 20th:

DD: Mum, can the three of us come and stay with you for Christmas?

Me: Yes, of course!

DD: That's good, I've already booked our flight from Dublin on Sunday!

So we did a lot of unexpected food and presents shopping and had a good time with the Grandson and his parents.

Now all is returning to normal, and we are bringing you the first Dream Valley challenge of 2020. The theme is Anything New.

Our sponsor is the wonderful Bugaboo Stamps. I have used their delightful AKV House image, I love its quirky look!


The striped paper is from American Crafts Dear Lizzy Stay Colorful pad, and I matched the Copics I used to the paper. The sentiment is an old one from LOTV. I also used some Plum Pudding Nuvo Crystal Drops in the bottom corner.

Do join in with the Challenge - it can be anything New: New Job, New Baby, New Home or New Stash or anything else you can think of!

Thanks for looking, and have a good week!

love Mags B x