Thursday, 18 July 2019

July 2019 - Counterfeit Kit Challenge - Challenge #2

Welcome to my somewhat neglected blog these days.

Today I'm sharing my take on the sketch Tina challenged us with.

I think you all know how much I love sketches and this two photo template was really appealing. I assumed that the photos were 6x4 and therefore, I'm not sure my page has the same proportions as the original, but other than that, I stayed pretty true to the design.

The double photo design was perfect to record a then and now version of me on this anniversary page for moving to Germany. How can it be 18 years already? It feels like yesterday even on days when I think about all the ups and down and changes we've gone through - enough to last a lifetime or two!

The photo on the left was taken at the leaving "do" I had when I left my job in Cambridge to make the big move, and the photo on the right is from just a few weeks ago when we were visiting a fabulous Baroque/Rococo Schloss in southern Germany.  I'm not sure I'm the same person as I was back then - yes, of course, a "bit" older these days - but I feel as if I'm totally different.

Anyway, this challenge gave me the chance to write a few lines about the topic and I'm happy to have been given the nudge to make it so close to the event.

I interpreted the line of stitching and flower element along the top as an extension of my title and a few gems.

The flowers on the edge of the page have changed into a flair, some gems and a little fussy cutting from the Shimelle word paper. I just picked out a handful of phrases that loosely fitted the topic of the page.

And again, the element on this side of the page transformed into another flair, some more dots and a few more phrases.

The places on the top of the photos were a final idea so that I don't forget to notice how the places affected the person in the photo!

Here's to the next 18 years. I wonder what that time will bring?

I hope you'll check out the others and how they've interpreted the sketch for themselves? You can find them all over at the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog here and don't forget to share if you make a page using this sketch - we love to see you using your kits!

You can use our Monthly Link-up page, post them in our Facebook Community, or share them on Instagram (we are @counterfeitkitchallenge or tag us using#counterfeitkitchallenge and #ckcjuly2019).

Monday, 1 July 2019

Counterfeit Kit Challenge July kit reveal and blog hop

Gulp! It's July and I find that quite shocking - it's the second half of the year and yet, I have no idea where the first half went!

But hopefully you're here for the Counterfeit Kit Challenge July kit reveal and blog hop and therefore, welcome.

You should have reached me from Julene's blog here - does she have a fabulously large kit? - and next up is Leslie here - did she delight you with her famous blue box? - but make sure you don't miss the whole hop (list at the end) and our wonderful Guest Designer, Kathy. We are thrilled to have her with us in July and she has been wowing us all with her creations so this will be a fun month.

Tina picked out the June 2019 kit from Clique Kits, Sweet Tea and I think you'll love it.

You can find all the details over at the Clique Kits site here

as well as a smaller kit here.

I was inspired by the larger kit and even though I'm not really managing a whole lot of scrapping right now, seem to have come up with quite a big selection. Maybe this will be the month I make more than two or three layouts.

Here's my kit, Mingle, named that way because I really mixed things up with old - almost vintage - and new products, designer collections and no name elements I've picked up recently, geometrics and softer, organic designs.

When I noted down the main elements I realised that the sheet of green diagonal paper reminded me of a paper that I was sure was in the Shimelle collection on my shelf.

I went searching and found this sheet - I think it's perfect.

And when I turned it over, I found strips of words which reminded me of the word paper in the original kit. Bonus!

From there, I went through my papers and picked out a couple more Shimelle papers in colours that seemed to fit the original including another word paper and a vellum speciality paper. I matched those up with a plaid, a woodgrain, a repeating design, some more geometric patterns and two sprig patterns from a no-name paper pad. That paper is THIN, like copy paper so let's see if I will actually use it. I'm a little unsure about it.

Then I added in a bunch of embellishments starting with a collection of doilies and a selection of flowers which were in the inspiration kit. The flowers felt very vintage and I rummaged through my small container and picked out a few different designs. I haven't used flowers for a long time and forget to use doilies even though I love them, so I hope this will inspire me to use them.

I fished out some older frames to include instead of the pink puffy frames in the original kit. I love using frames so I'm excited to get some used on pages. 

Two different simple Thickers, a small set of letter stickers, some random chipboard shapes (not so sure about the design of some of the sheet!), some gems and a couple of flair that caught my eye.

I'm missing some die-cuts which I've realised I'm very short of in my stash, and large word elements which I might cut on my Cameo. I've also noticed that certain paper designs are missing in my stash such as large florals, woodgrain and blues. Making a note - maybe I need to go shopping!

Thanks for dropping by. Here's the full blog hop list to keep you on track - make sure you stop at everyone's blog. Our kits are always so interesting and I love how we interpret the inspiration kit so differently.

Counterfeit Kit Challenges -
Guest Designer - Kathy McElfresh (Scrappy Kathy) -
Laura -

We always love to see your work, so please share your kits and projects with us!  
You can link up in different ways:

Monday, 6 May 2019

May 2019 - Counterfeit Kit Challenge mini card kit

It's been quite a busy time round here and the CKC blog with the Counterfeit Kit Challenge reveal on 1st, the Just the Gist post on the 2nd, Forgery on the Third on the ... well... 3rd, and then of course, {inter}National Scrapbook Day on the 4th.

There was a lot of activity both on the blog/s and behind the scenes to get it all ready so I was happy that I'd decided to go for a mini-kit this month - a couple of hours and the cards were done and ready to be sent out, even with all the stitching and detail I added.

First off, let's remind ourselves of the inspiration kit - the March 2019 My Creative Scrapbooks main kit:

My Creative Scrapbooks March Main Kit

I loved how summery this kit was with all the travel works, the flowers, the happy aspects. It has pineapples and flamingos and tropical flowers and all of that reminded me of the Simple Stories papers in the "Hello Summer" collection for which I had some of the papers and also the die-cuts.

So that's where I started for my "Greetings!" card kit.

I picked out cut apart sheet featuring a rather gorgeous flamingo which I knew I would use on a card and then added in the stripe and the spots of which matched up patterns in the original kit. I then included the die cut pack matching the collection as well as a few die cuts that I had featuring little girls and some unicorns - all reminding me of the inspiration kit.

I included a stamp set that has yet to be christened as well as a sheet of phrase stickers from another Simple Stories collection and I thought both of these could be useful for card titles.

A few sheets of mini-stickers rounded off this mini-collection.

I then spent a couple of hours and from these three sheets of paper, came up with 7 cards. I still have some scraps so I might make up some more but for now, I'm happy!

I deliberately found ways to include something of each of the items in my kit, testing out designs and styles to see what I liked.

I had some pre-prepared card bases as well as a few regular white cards and added in one small piece of pink cardstock as a mat (on the card below).

Because I always go for the simplest of designs, mostly focusing on 3x4 cards from the cut apart sheets, I went to town with the sewing machine and added stitching on several of the layers and even round the designs (speech bubble, sun and pineapple). 

Fast and simple is the way I always go with cards but overall, I'm happy with the fun elements I've added here and think that they will be a nice addition to my card stash. 

Don't miss MF Susan's beautiful mini-kit and project on the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog today and of course, there's more fun to be had during the month!

We always love to see your work, so please share your kits and projects with us!  

You can use our Monthly Link-up page, post them in our Facebook Community
or share them on Instagram 
(we are @counterfeitkitchallenge and you can tag us using 
#counterfeitkitchallenge and #ckcmarch2019).

Saturday, 4 May 2019

{inter}National Scrapbook Day - Saturday 4th May 2019

I'm thrilled to be here for {inter}National Scrapbook Day representing the Counterfeit Kit Challenge in collaboration with Bash Your Scrapbook Stash! What fun. 

 It's also a private Facebook Community and its focus is most definitely using up your beloved scrapbook stash and being part of a warm, welcoming, happy, sharing community. 

That sounds familiar! Don't we always say that about The Counterfeit Kit Challenge community?!?

We thought it was a perfect complement to CKC and are excited to be joining them today to share the scrapbook stash love.

The Bash Your Scrapbook Stash group presents monthly and weekly challenges of a different nature to encourage their members to use their stash with specific items, techniques or tools to create scrapbook layouts, projects, cards, tags or even embellishments.

A short time ago today, our darling MF Leslie was on FB Live in the BYSS community presenting an extra, exclusive, just-for-iNDS-at-BYSS kit and a sketch challenge. If you head over to the community, you can find the replay and see what she has to say about kit making and her take on the kit. 

But of course, we wanted to share the kit and our own creations with you here on our own blog too as our own {inter}National Scrapbook Day celebrations!

We picked out the June 2018 Studio Calico kit, "Expedition" and hope that you love it as much as we do! It's got some constellations (who might love that I wonder?!?), some travel items, a bunch of pretties and some lovely colours so what's not to love?

Studio Calico describe it as "Set out on an adventure – the world is yours to explore! You’ll have everything you need to record your travels when you return home. We’ve combined bright colors, organic elements, and an outdoorsy, vintage vibe for a look that will have you dreaming of your next “Expedition"". 

That sounds like my kind of kit and the consensus among the team was that it was a winner!

Studio Calico June 2018 kit Expedition

But that's not all! We also have an EXCLUSIVE {inter}National Scrapbook Day sketch for you today, created by our wonderful  MF Susan. It's got so much to love with the full page design, the space for lots of journalling, the showcase photo and the oodles of room for interpretation.  

Sketch credit: Master Forger Susan

This is the original page she made from which she made the sketch so I'm super curious to see the different interpretations on this design:

The ladies over at Bash Your Scrapbook Stash will also be offering two exclusive to their membership challenges so if you want more more more, then I recommend you head over there and join in the stash bashing activities!


I decided to make a small (for me kit) with just four sheets of paper and a handful of embellishments but I very much took my inspiration from the Studio Calico kit.

Of course, if you know me you'll know that I was totally taken with the constellation paper and decided that was all I needed as a starting point for my own. 

I picked out an Echo Park star paper hiding in my "stars" collection(!) and selected a Crate Paper stripe that seemed to pick out the green from the constellation paper, a Crate Paper "Good Vibes sheet with geometric lines which I thought could match up with the map paper in the original kit and then a surprising choice of an orange and pink October Afternoon paper. It just reminded me of the yellow pattern in the Studio Calico kit! I know you might find it odd but I like the contrast. There is also a "forgery" sheet of paper which includes the same quote as the inspiration kit. Result!

The alphabet and sticker sheets from BasicGrey Aurora , some word stickers from Pinkfresh Studio, a Sutdio Calico stamp set, a sprinkle of veneer stars and sequins and a whole pile of printed labels finished off the kit. 

I know the mix of papers may not seem an automatic fit, but I've already made one page and love how they combined! 

I was really happy to use some older products including some very precious BasicGrey supplies (sob sob sob!)

There are two forgeries in her kit - the quote paper and the labels which were totally quick and easy to make.

I started off by finding a font which reminded me of the loopy font on the Studio Calico paper. I started off trying to design this in MS Word and quickly changed to Photoshop elements. I knew that I needed to cut the 12x12 paper down and the choice was to make it shorter or narrower. I decided to use the full width for the quote and sacrifice the length a little. So I trimmed the original patterned paper (again, a precious BasicGrey basic) down to 8.5" long. On PS Elements I wrote out the quote in the same format as the original and then moved the lines around until they were overlapping in the same way. Turning the text down the page means that I would be able to print it out onto my patterned paper. I think it's pretty close to the original and am excited to use.

The second forgery - the pile of labels - were fussy cut from sheets downloaded from the internet and printed out on heavy duty printer paper. That's a whole bunch of labels which will be so useful on this and many other kits.

She used the download on Kaitlin Staffer's blog here - go to the downloads page for a full array of fabulous labels in different colours. There are also may different downloads on Pinterest - just search for "printable labels" and be astounded at the results!

I haven't used Susan's wonderful sketch but you never know, I might get around to it later today or even over the scrappy weekend!

However, I made this relatively simple page, inspired by that wonderful piece of constellation paper which triggered a long-forgotten memory! 

I decided to use this 12x12 white cardstock that I cut out with my Cameo a loooooong time ago and thought the fun stripe behind it was such a great look. That way, all those colours wouldn't clash and I could bring together all my papers in a harmonious way!

See - that hint of pink and orange paper works so well as a contrast!

I had no photo at all of the original memory that the constellation paper triggered so I just used a photo from last week and then started my journalling from today and how that memory had just appeared!

I think this post is now long enough so I hope you were inspired by our extra kit today. Join in the fun over at the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog and FB community and the Bash Your Scrapbook Stash FB community. Make sure you say hello and share your takes!

Thursday, 18 April 2019

April 2019 - Counterfeit Kit Challenge prompt #2 - Hidden!

I'm back with a challenge layout today and am thrilled to be able to say that I not only used my April kit for layout #2, but I also fulfilled the challenge on the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog - Hidden!, and also my own Whimsical Musings prompt WM#325 - be inspired by a blue-toned necklace.

I do love it when I get multiple challenges completed in one layout - although there are others out there much better at it than me.

Here's a reminder of my take on the Hip Kit Club March 2019 kit, "Balconia" and you can find all the details for the inspiration kit over at the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog here.

Right, back to business...

I challenged the team with the following:

Challenge #2 - Hidden!

Easter is coming and many little ones will be participating in Easter Egg Huts in the garden. Create you own "hunt" on your page by including some hidden elements on your page such as journaling, symbolism or more photos. Let the hunt begin!

I decided to go for lots of hidden symbolism as well as a truly hidden-in-plain-sight element to my page. 

Can you see it? 

It's right there in the middle and I have to admit to being rather proud of it and ever so grateful for my beloved Silhouette Cameo which has earned its keep this week in more ways than one. When I use it, I truly love it and don't know why I don't use it more often!

So... if you didn't notice, here are some of the elements I included in my page.

  • I splatted gold and blue onto the background to mirror the state flag of Alaska where I bought this gorgeous necklace
  • the title is a nod to the flowers in the necklace which also happens to be the state flower of Alaska too. The actual words of the title are of course, double meaning as I really don't ever want to forget my trip and experiences during the holiday of a lifetime.
  • I also used blue and gold with the messy thread elements 
  • the softer colours of the patterned papers I used reminded me of the autumnal colours I experienced during my travels around the Yukon and my short stay in Alaska
  • I've included the constellations you can find on the state flag - subtle but clear to see if you know where to look!
  • and the best bit... I've cut out the state of Alaska from my favourite constellation covered Studio Calico vellum and laid it underneath the photo. You have to really look carefully to notice it and that's the effect I wanted. The focus is on the photo and the bead elements I've attached to the page as embellishments but the negative space on on the vellum is there to discover. 

I've been including hidden symbolism on my pages for a long time - colours, motifs, patterns etc - and find myself going back to this technique over and over which makes me happy. I hope you'll give it a try if this is something new for you. Make sure you link up to let me know how you get along!

Head back to the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog so that you don't miss any of the other shares today and of course, there's heaps and heaps of inspiration and community shares over on Instagram here and the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Facebook Community here.


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