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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Gifts Galore

Everyone loves getting gifts.Gift with a bow I love giving them too, especially if I can decorate them beautifully. I feel it adds a little of yourself to the gift, adding a personal touch. An added benefit is that you never run out of wrapping paper!

I always make my own cards and now I also make my own gift wrap. It’s especially easy if you have an A3 printer as you can print out slightly bigger paper. If not, just print two sheets of A4 and join them. Get creative in hiding the tape – it’s really not difficult. I do it all the time with A3 paper too.

Here’s a photo of gifts I gave a friend yesterday for her birthday:


Not just for cake-toppers… I attached a cut-out of the bird to a wooden skewer and threaded it through the ribbon on the gift for just an added bit of whimsy.


The very simple card (my friend loves ‘plain & simple’)…

009a        021a  

The images I used are all from my all-time-favourite-vintage-image-site : The Graphics Fairy. Karen has the most amazing images you can use for absolutely anything!

Here are the images I used: click images for link to original images

 bird Robin vintage graphic--graphicsfairy009bsm    &        image

I grabbed my faithful Photoshop and edited the images till I was satisfied with them. In this case I changed the images to black & white, removed the background to the botanical & also tweaked a few other settings.

The gift paper print is printed on ordinary A3 white printing paper. The card and bird cut-out were printed onto white cardstock.

Here’s a free printable A3 sheet of the wrapping paper – my gift to you!Winking smile


christmas signature

Monday, December 5, 2011

North Pole Snow

Another day ticked off our advent calendar… (Actually in our case it’s another chocolate for Shannon from her little “Advent house” and another tiny Lego goodie to build for Reece from his Star Wars Lego Advent calendar) :0)

I promised the recipe for the North Pole Snow (sherbet) I made to go along with the Reindeer lollipops yesterday.

North Pole Snow (sherbet Christmas treats)

  • 1 cup of icing sugar
  • around 1/4 teaspoon citric acid * (or to taste – a little at a time. I added the citric acid to taste when I made mine as I made a lot for the market)

Mix together well.

*Citric acid is available at supermarkets/ baking supply shops.

*Here’s the printable label I made:

north pole snow_label

click on label for downloadable A4 printable sheet

  • Print out the label sheet onto A4 cardstock, cut out the labels.
  • Glue each label onto the front of a small zip-lock bag with a glue gun.
  • Fill the bag with the North Pole Snow and delight tiny people with a bag of snow and a reindeer lollipop. The kids love dipping the lollipops in the sherbet!

I also made a few Christmas trees with this design from the Silhouette Online store. They are really cute and easy to make – especially once my Silhouette had cut them out for me.


Each tree had a bag of the North Pole Snow inside and instead of gluing the label to the bag, I attached it as a tag to the top of the tree at the closure.

PS: I can’t guarantee your entire kitchen won’t be covered in fine sticky ‘snow’ – especially if there are little people involved in making these!

TIP : To assist in getting the snow into the bags, I used a small funnel – much easier (and less messy) than using a spoon.

My little entrepreneur selling at the Christmas market at school :



christmas signature

*I cannot recall where I got the little snowman image from. I coloured it myself, but the design is not my own. If it is yours , please do let me know so that I can provide credit to you. Or, if you would rather I do not use it here in my free label printable, please advise.

Sunday, December 4, 2011


I know, I haven’t blogged for ages, but November passed by in a flash!

This past month consisted of hot sunny days mixed together with a whole lot of school exams, a splash of school Christmas market day, and a good dollop of everyday life. Finished off beautifully with the thought that Reece’s school is now finally closed for the year and Shannon doesn’t have to go, except to get her report card next week.

In between the monotony of helping the kids studying for their exams, I also got to be a little creative! After the exams, Reece had a market day at school where they have to sell goodies – preferably with a Christmas theme.

Reece was (naturally) more interested in how much money he would make. I was all for the ‘making’ but not in his definition of ‘making’ - I saw it rather as an opportunity to be creative!

So here’s what I made:

Reindeer Lollipops



These turned out so well that I want to share how I made them:

Shopping list:

  • lollipops (Fizz Pops) for the reindeers.
  • brown paper
  • raffia, string or ribbon
  • wiggly eyes
  • mini red pompoms
  • darker brown cardstock for antlers

How to:

  1. Cut squares of brown paper – big enough to cover a lollipop. (I’d say around 10-12cm square/ 4 inches square). I couldn’t find brown paper, so I had some brown paper packets lying around and used those.
  2. Cover each lollipop in brown paper and tie at the base of the sucker with raffia.
  3. Glue on the nose and eyes – I like to glue these all close together as it gives the reindeer a cute expression.
  4. Cut out and glue on the antlers** 


Note: You can always draw on eyes and a nose with pens or paint if you don’t have wiggly eyes or pompoms. My pompoms were part of a package in a rainbow of colours- I just picked out all the red ones.

** I used a Silhouette die cut for the antlers from this cute Reindeer treat box from Pebbles in my Pocket , but you could easily draw similar ones out onto cardstock and cut them out by hand. They are about 1 1/2 inches high. You glue them on slightly to the back of the lollipop ‘head’ – almost like a headband.

I selected just the antlers and copied as many as I could onto an A4 sheet and cut them with my Silhouette.

How to separate the antlers from the treat box design:

Select the whole design, then click on “Object”, then select “ungroup”, then delete each of the other pieces of the design except the antlers. Move the image to the top left corner, then duplicate the antlers in rows.


PS: I’m certainly no expert at the Silhouette software, I just plod along on my own, occasionally using the ‘Help’ function and eventually figure it all out. Winking smile


swallow bird vintage image graphicsfairyblu2bI’ll be back tomorrow with the recipe for making “North Pole Snow” which the kids could dunk their reindeer lollipops in. There’s also a free printable label…..

christmas signature

Friday, October 7, 2011

Ready for a weekend?

I certainly am!

Today I am sharing some photos I took this week of a part of our garden we affectionately call “The Secret Garden”. When we bought the ground, and were planning the building of the house, there was this natural grouping of wild Black Protea trees growing which we immediately earmarked for a perfect little secluded garden.

Over the past 6 years of living here, the garden has transformed a little season by season. This year, my husband has been planting Bromeliads and air plants in old twisted tree branches/ trunks which he has collected from all over.

Summergarden 2011

I love the pretty entrance with the metal pergola and gate smothered in a crimson creeping rose and flanked by a purple potato bush which has made its home in a dead Protea tree. It looks so welcoming and through the gate you can just see the little 4-seater concrete table and benches.

This is where we like to have a sundowner over the weekend. In fact, my husband often ends up gardening here, pruning his Bonsai’s or planting a new log full of colourful Bromeliads while I chat away sipping wine. My parents inevitably join us and the kids pop in from time to time or run around on the lawn. The dogs are always around- especially if we’re also snacking on biltong!

Talking of wine, I have been wanting to make a little sign with this saying for ages. I just love it! So I thought I’d share it with you today in celebration of the weekend approaching.


To download, simply click on the sign - printable A4 size.

The pointing hand and background are both from The Graphics Fairy.



Wednesday, October 5, 2011

If the shoe fits…

Here’s my first design for the new digistamp drawing challenge at CDAC.

The theme for October is “Sparkle, Twinkle or Shine”. Although there are already so many digi drawings of shoes out there, I decided that after all, a girl can never have too many shoes now, can she?

shoesI ended up playing around with the shoe idea and made these two ‘shoe quotes’ – if you like them, click on the image to view larger, then right click to save.





Have a fabulous day!


Saturday, October 1, 2011

Sunflowers ‘n sunshine

Just thought I’d share a card I made for the CDAC Progressive Challenge #3. I used this pretty image from Just Inklined


This is how my card turned out.. {amongst my husband’s Bonsai trees :0)}

cdacpc3_sunflower_ small

I used background images from The Graphics Fairy; coloured the image in Photoshop then added my fav’ distressing action “Rub-on” from Atomic Cupcake.

The gingham is my own paper design which I used in a bracket shape I created in PS. I used cardstock I had lying around as the card, layered everything up with some hessian (burlap) under the bracket shape and added some string. I created the tag in PS, added an eyelet and tied it to the string and adhered it to the card with foam squares.

I’m off now to watch my son’s athletics again. Got to be at school at 07h45 (on a Saturday?!! – oh I am a good mother!! LOL!) and should take till lunchtime. Then it’s off to take the kids to see the Smurfs movie. (Who would have thought my kids would get excited about seeing a movie about these little gnomes I used to collect as a child?!!)

Have a great Saturday!


Monday, September 26, 2011

“You could make that” Giveaway


Nan has this gorgeous blog called “You could make that” where she shares tutorials, loads of eye candy and her lovely paintings….

She and I enjoy many of the same things even though, as she says, “we live around 9000 miles apart”, in different countries and on different continents. She’s over in Wisconsin in the USA, and I’m here in Gauteng in South Africa. It would take me an 18 hour flight to New York, and another 4 hour flight to Chicago (correct me if I’m wrong here) and then a 3 hour drive to get to her part of the world! Blogging sure connects people!

A quick heads up to pop on over to this site: (click on the button)


Isn’t his pillow adorable?  -  I love the soft natural colours of your bedroom, Nan!


Nan made two of these lovely pillows and so she has one of these as a  giveaway…so do pop by! She’s celebrating having almost 300 followers!

To qualify for entry into the giveaway – you need to

  1. Become a follower
  2. Leave a comment, stating you’re a follower.
  3. Mention the giveaway on your blog and add her button to your blog.


Printable Bookmarks

Links have been repaired! Sorry for the mix-up!!

Today I have some printable bookmarks to share with you.

They are so easy to make. It’s a case of print, cut, a dab of glue, an optional embellishment and voilĂ , ready to use.

There are four bookmarks to choose from -

Alice corner bookmark example

1. Alice in Wonderland

a good book corner bookmark example

2. Book Quote

vintagebird corner bookmark_example





3. Vintage Bird

4. & 3D Vintage Bird background  & here is the bird. (same as Vintage bird, but the bird is printed separately from the background).

Here’s how to make them...

corner bookmark instructions

  1. Cut out
  2. Fold back the two sides (A & B) so they fold back onto each other.
  3. Trim these sides a little if necessary so you don’t see the back sticking out from the front.
  4. Dab glue onto side B. Glue the two backs together by flapping side A over side B.
  5. For 3D : Add the vintage bird using foam squares to pop it.
  6. Add an embellishment – optional.
  7. Your book page slips into the little pocket opening of the bookmark.

All graphics courtesy of the Graphics Fairy.

Linking up here:


Have a great week!


Saturday, September 24, 2011

Digi friends

Happy Saturday! A little cooler here today, but it’s weekend nonetheless! Yay!

Here is my latest digistamp design. My last one for the “two legs, four legs or both” digi drawing challenge over at CDAC.


Thanks for popping in.

Enjoy your weekend!


Thursday, September 22, 2011

World Rhino Day

rhino day

Today is a day very close to my heart. We regularly go to the bush to enjoy seeing our beautiful natural African wildlife we are fortunate to have here in South Africa.

Not once have we been and not seen a rhino – often more than one. These beautiful pre-historic animals are protected in a reserve with very a aggressive anti-poaching system in place. They are, however, still targeted every day.

Almost everyday in South Africa, a rhino is murdered for its horn and the carcass left to the scavengers. Sometimes these poor animals are not even dead, they are left to suffer. That is the reality of rhino poaching. All for the greed of men, all to make money.

Today is International Rhino Day. Let’s save our rhino’s for our children and their children. Make sure we still have the “Big 5” in years to come, not just the “Big 4”. It won’t be the same will it?

Here are two anti-rhino poaching labels I made today using a label from the Graphics Fairy which I altered. Grab one or both, and display them on your blog to make more people aware of this terrible crime.




For more information on how to help make others aware, CLICK HERE


Have a great day!


Monday, September 19, 2011

Mini cards with apples

Hi everyone, another week and another set of cards…

I received my new set of digistamps for the 3rd Progressive Challenge over at CDAC, so I’m making cards again like crazy! In fact, I have quite a little stash of cards piling up.

I find this is so handy to have. It’s so quick to grab a card when I need one in a hurry.

Here’s the original digi image from Glitterbabes:


I coloured the image in Photoshop, then added a couple of filters, distressed the image with an action from Atomic Cupcake (rubon), then I added a background from The Graphics Fairy and finished it off with a deep red border.

I bound the cards together with a strip of gingham fabric just for some extra prettiness. I love the Autumn country feel of the finished cards.



Hope you have a great week!


Linking up to image

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Tuesday Tutorial : treat cones

Today is laundry day in our house. So while the washing machine is busy with its cycle, I was browsing around the internet and found this cute tutorial for making a sweet treat gift.

I got thinking how pretty it would be as a hostess gift, or perhaps a teacher’s gift filled with chocolates or soaps. It would also be ideal to put birthday money or a gift card in.

So, after adding another load of washing, I used some images from The Graphics Fairy and created two gift cones. {Nothing like being creative to make the task of doing the laundry so much more pleasant!)

001 copy

The hydrangea paper cone:

008 copy

The Toile paper cone:

010 copy

The finished cone is around 9 inches (23cm) from top to bottom.

Toile Cone Gift BagDOWNLOAD

Hydrangea Cone Treat BagDOWNLOAD

Note: I found double-sided tape worked really well to secure the cones so you don’t see any cellotape on the outside.



I’m linking to: