Thursday, 20 October 2011

My Memories Suite Winner

I am pleased to announce some good news! The winner of the My Memories Suite Digital Scrapbooking Software.  I used a random number generator and this is the winner it picked! Number 20 is Pippa of Pips Jewellery (do check out her great blog) . Have fun playing with it. I will be in touch with details of how to claim your prize.
I will be away from  home for the next week, for my father's funeral and to stay with my mum, I am taking some polymer clay bits as a distraction. My son is a lot brighter and in less pain now which is a relief. He is rather frustrated about how little he can do and I guess that will just get worse as time goes on!

Hopefully my next post will be of some new creations. Thank you all for your messages of support, it's been a real comfort at this difficult time.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Horrible week!

I have had a horrible week. My dad suffered a heart attack, and then a massive stroke and died very suddenly on Thursday. It happened in Bournemouth, mum and dad were on their way back from holiday. I went back to Brighton with my mum and sister and then had to rush back to Bristol as my son James (7) fell off the monkey bars at school, badly breaking his left arm just above the elbow (he's left handed typically!). He needed surgery to straighten the bone and will need another little operation to remove the wire holding the bones in place in about a month. He's in a lot of pain and off school. Needless to say it's all a bit much!

I think polymer clay will be what keeps me sane over the next while.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Even easier jewellery photography

You may remember me talking about my photography set up a while back. Here is the homemade light box set up

Well the tissue paper got torn in storage above my work area and actually if I want to take photos with the box I have to clear my bench (probably no bad thing but...). So I have the cheap, cheerful and super easy alternative to show you...

I have 2 lamps with 100W equivalent daylight bulbs (one is my angle poise I use for my work area and the other is a small, inexpensive photography lamp I bought, cheaper than a new angle poise lamp) I have taken some white tissue paper and stretched it across the lampshade, held in place with an elastic band. The tissue diffuses the light. The photos from my last 2 posts were taken like this and although perhaps not quite as good as in the full on light box I think they are perfectly acceptable photographs.

I probably still need to find some more interesting things to drape my jewellery over and a photography buff friend was recommending a light box made of mirror card - hmm must try that too sometime.

You can check out some other lovely photographs of crafted items in this beautiful collection from Craft Blog UK . There are also some links about photograph tips there too.

Now I just need to get organised to use these photos and to open that online shop people keep asking for.

Thank you for reading my blog, I really appreciate you taking the time and I hope you find it useful.

Monday, 10 October 2011

My Blue, Teal and Grey Stroppel Cane

I used the scraps from my last projects to make a Stroppel Cane, looks quite different using a limited palette.

Here's some of the things I have made with it.

Domed disc Stoppel Cane pendant

Little disc earrings

Longer pendant, think on reflection the stripes look better vertically, next time...

Domed doughnut pendant. The dangle is the bit cut from the center.

Playing about with the scaps, not quite sure about this but my husband likes it.

Me wearing the disc pendant, it has a little too much white to really go with this top but it's not bad.

I have collected together everyone's images of their Stroppel Cane things on a pinterest pinboard here.

Grey, blue and teal jewellery

Here's a top, new to me and the colours I mixed to make some matching jewellery.

I didn't really like the flower so didn't want to recreate the pattern, just make something that would go - using the colours as my palette. I had great fun playing around and trying new things, making up my own flower canes rather than using my old familiar favourites.
 Here's some of what I got up to

Flower pendant, matches top pretty well

Flower pendant - my favourite but too much white to really match with the top.

Another picture to show you the little petal dangle I added to help the cord hang right, got a spiral center on this side
Made with some scraps  - more to show you with that flower when I've finished it!
Me wearing the grey flower pendant

I am back to my clay bench now to make some inchies (1" square polymer clay tiles) to swap with the other participants at The Polymer Clay Event in Alfreton this weekend. I can't wait! Can't believe it was only a year ago that I first met so many of my polymer clay friends, feels like I've know you all for much longer than that. Last year I went along knowing no one, this year I am really looking forward to seeing my old friends!

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Stroppel Cane takes over the world!

Some of you have probably seen the latest from Alice Stroppel, her Stroppel Cane which is a great way to use up all those little cane scraps to get a striking result! It seems to be everywhere at the moment, and rightly so it's a fantastic project!

I had a play with it today, just using the scraps from my workbench, from my current project (I posted a picture of my palette and inspiration here on facebook - I will share the rest with you later) - haven't even looked at the scraps I have hoarded, yet!

Here's my first attempt - not enough contrast as I used grey as my dividing sheets and there was a lot of grey in the project.

so I used pearl as the dividing colour, I love this cane! Thank you Alice!

In my excitement I have popped the things I made with it in to cure before I took photos - I'll have to show you those later.

Well looking round everyone has had a go, I'm not surprised it is such a fab cane, quick, easy and impressive!
Here's some from  my polymer friends

Stroppel Cane Slide
by Arty Becca

Large Dome Pendant - polymer clay Stroppel cane
by Elsie Smith

Sheet of Stropple Cane
Sheet of Stropel Cane by Pips

The Stroppel Cane Number 2
In pearl by Pips
by Cate Van Alphen

Alice Stroppel's scrap cane tute and bangle made from it 
by Randee M Ketzel

If you have some polymer clay scraps kicking around join the Stroppel Cane Revolution!

Monday, 3 October 2011

My Memories Suite Giveaway

I am please to announce a giveaway! I have a copy of My Memories Suite Digital Scrapbooking Software  worth $39.97 to giveaway to one lucky reader!
I am running this giveaway with the help of Rafflecopter and you should see a box below that you can register your entries with. It's something  I haven't tried before so please contact me if there are any problems. There are lots of ways to enter. The 2 that give you the most entries are being a follower (old or new) of this blog, only fair to reward loyalty!The other is to visit and then leave a comment below this post to let me know which is your favourite digital kit. You can also enter by following me, @CaraJaneUK or @mymemoriessuite on Twitter or liking either of our facebook pages - MyMemories on facebook  Cara-Jane-Contemporary-Jewellery on facebook. That's a lot of chances to win so get busy!

Just in case you were wondering what you could do with My Memories Suite here's a couple of pages I made. It's quick and easy to use with lots of extra packs you can download, some are free and some you have to pay for but I am sure they would cost you less than buying actual paper and embellishments and you can use them time and time again and they don't take up any space in  your craft work area!

 Here's some pages I made from our family photos.
And here's a jewellery collection page.

Scrap booking isn't something I ever have time to do. I would love to have my photos organised and prettied up in scrapbooks. Every now and then I make a photo book and use the layouts given to put some of our recent photos in but I think in future I may just spend a few extra hours and make a pretty digital scrapbook and print that instead. 

I also have a discount code for all my friends, family and followers. Go to and enter the code  STMMMS65744 to recieve a $10 discount off the purchase of the My Memories Suite Scrapbook software and a $10 coupon for the store - that's worth $20! 

I know this isn't related to polymer clay but I am sure you all have photos to play around with, and it's a chance to get some free software. Good luck! And remember even if you don't win  you can use the discount code above. Have fun with your photos!