Ladies Camera Club

27 May 2010

Product testing/playing

Before I did freelance craft work, before I ran my own craft shop and before I moved to Wigan - I used to work for an employer who told me what to do and I did it. I pretty much spent 20 years of my life doing that and getting by; sometimes hating it but could never pluck up the courage to start being self employed.

When the craft industry went stellar around 2003/2004 I started a die cutting business that proved to be a "good 'un". I nurtured it and sold my products both retail and trade. I simultaneously crafted and ran the business to such a point where I had to choose between crafting to live or living to craft. In 2007 I sold my die cutting business which is still a going concern today. I then started doing photography full time supplementing that with freelance design for a logo design company and still having a good hand in UK craft magazine work. The best part of this option is that its so much more easy going just being able to "pick and choose" what I want to do. The down side is that there is no regular salary and you can only get paid for work you physically do. So in sum, you have to weigh your options up. And with Mark having a bad run of redundancies last year, its got to the point where I almost went back to full time employment. I mean I was within an inch of doing it.
So these days Im tied up with my CD-Roms for Create and Craft, Magazine work for Crafts Beautiful and Aceville Publications, photography work, teaching and product testing (a-ha, save the best for last!). Recently I have been product testing a different sort of Promarker by Letratset. As the product is still being modified I can't share that work with you - but its been great fun. And more recently I have been testing and using Tonic products. I honestly don't sit here and think I am the guru of crafting but what I do enjoy doing is pushing the boundaries a little and bringing something different from the product. Take the snowflake and heart punch. I did something similar the other week using an oval punch but I loved that the heart punch can replicate a petal with the stroke of a craft knife.

**Ribbon ruffle video demo coming soon!**

I then thought about using an accent punch on the heart which I think makes it look lacy and romantical!
Darned acetate cards - they are so static and pick up a ton of fluff!!

Use the accent punch on a piece of card

Then punch a heart shape over it

To create this beauty
and then you can stuff them on a snowflake to make a lacy flower as well - swit love!
I then played with the border system and punches to create this gorgeous border here, which is already strong in the craft market at large.

Run brown cardstock through the border punch system - remember, the punch can be used in both the border punch and as a stand alone product

So you run the bordered card through again but this time switch punches and replace it with an accent punch

I feel that the throw away scallop is too nice and used the "throw away"shape on top of the pink card (see above).

These border systems from Tonic are such a brilliant way of creating borders or single punches to your projects and they have lots of different border edges to choose from and even more accent punch to compliment them - giving you a TON of different possibilities. And there are even more to come. Nudge nudge, wink wink.

Ive also been making other things today - just "because"

A post-it note holder with ribbon pen holder

Cheap supermarket note books (10p each) covered to give as a sweet gift

Another cheapy notepad (15p) covered for a quick gift

And a card using the very last of my favvo cosmo cricket paper

And that, my friends, is the sum of my very busy day (aside of scoffing lemon drizzle cake with my friend, Mazza)

Ooooh let me finish with this. My lovely girl was laying with the dog tonight and she came out with this piece of Ellie philosophy:
Belle: Mum, I know that love makes you feel better.
Me: Oh, how?
Ellie: Cos when you are loved you fall asleep and when you sleep, you heal.

Loves ya xx


Darcy said...

wow how grown up does she look there!! great projects, you have been super busy. off to drool over punches.

Katy said...

owww man alive i love you cards you rock them chick.

And most of all miss Bell is far to cute and what a lovely thing to say ***sigh***

Fiona said...

Great to see all your fab projects made with cheapy stuff (my fave) but not looking at all cheapy! Also the punch tutorial and of course the lovely photo of Ellie.

Bettyann said...

Hi there..Im not home yet buy I heard that yourfab gift arrived at my house..Thanks Ktisty you are the of newgrandbaby will comeassoon as I get home....

Just_a_bean said...

Loving the way to use the punches! Off for a play...

Sue said...

WOW!!!! Don't know how you find the time to blog, but so glad you do:)

Loving the cards, note pads, well everything:)

Lovely photo of Ellie. What a lovely thing she said.

Tracey said...

Some great creations Kirsty - love them. Interested to hear about the new type of Promarker too. Tracey x

Thinkie said...

great cards and gifts!

mustavcoffee said...

Ooh! You have been busy, what a lot of great ideas, clever lady:-) xx

Sharon said...

Lovely picture of Ellie! i just had to have a look at some of those Tonic punches and i have to admit to purchasing a couple..... Love the cards - beautiful!

Anonymous said...

that's a beautiful photo of Ellie x(caroline )

Kate said...

WOW how busy were you!
Love the notebooks!
And how wise is Ellie? Wise beyond her years I think! ;-) Love the pic of her.

mumtomanyuk said...

Still reading your old stuff. Only got to Jan 07. Gonna take me all year to catch up. Then I will know you inside and out. Does that worry you? LOL

Lubbly-jubbly... love what you do with those punches. Beautiful.

Elli is a dream girl. Just seen your email.Will answer soon.

Have spent all my time reading your blog and drooling over the 3 disks that arrived yesterday. Can't wait for your next one to come out.

mumtomanyuk said...

Have you tried using an unused but dry tumble-dryer sheet to take the static cling off your acetate?

hello gorgeous said...

am LOVING you shared an insight into your always wonder where people start! ;o)


hello gorgeous xxx

Deb said...

Gorgeous cards. Was thinking today about buying one of those Tonic punch system thingies. Reading this has swung it for me. I'm getting one! See what an inspiration you are? :-)

Debsg said...

You reap what you sew Kirsty and you obviously worked your socks off. So glad you've been successful. Loving your bloggings :)