card making, how to, papercrafts, tutorial

Creative Process – A Teenager’s Birthday Card

When I make birthday (or anniversary or get well soon or whatever) cards, I don’t just make a load of generic cards and choose one for the recipient (though maybe I should, it would be far less time consuming), I really make them for that person; with them in mind. Their tastes, their aesthetic. And so on.

This card was for my eldest niece, for her fourteenth birthday. Being fourteen she needed something grown up enough, but also not too grown up (did that make sense? Probably not!). I chose the First Edition ‘Sweet Nothings’ paper pad by Trimcraft to make this card, as it has some seriously pretty papers in it.


And the paper I chose for the base of my card is one of the textured papers with this beautiful wood and floral pattern on. I made the card 6×7″ (it needed to be slightly taller than 6″, you’re about to see why.

So I wanted to stitch my niece’s name onto the card. I printed off her name in one of my favourite fonts to stitch with (‘Beyond the Mountains’). This font does however often do this strange thing where it cuts off the bottom of some of the letters when you print so I filled in those bits with pencil.

I lined the template up to where I wanted it on my card and poked in the holes. If you’re new to paper stitching you can read my how-to on it here. Words are a little harder than shapes but it’s the same basic principle. Just make sure you have your printed template handy so you can use it for reference, sometimes all you can see is a load of holes and it’s hard to know what’s what.

I chose to stitch in white, as the cream thread I have is a bit of a yellow cream and so wouldn’t work with this card. But this turned out to be a bit of an error too as once the word was stitched it was quite hard to see. It shows up better on the picture above but in real life you had to squint to read it!

To solve this problem I decided to fill in the letters with some colour, using this ‘tea dye’ varnish, so that it would be a fairly subtle colour. As you may be able to see I did accidentally paint some of the thread, I don’t have a very steady hand, but it doesn’t matter too much!

Once that was all done and dry it was time to do the rest of the card. Whenever I’m doing a project like this I have a little root through my ephemera packs to see what I have to match, then throw it all into a little basket so it’s handy.


Then, well, I stuck it on! I had a play around first, seeing what I wanted to put where, and I usually take a couple of photos on my phone to see what I like best. This is what I ended up with:


It’s a mix of pieces from the cut-apart sheet from the Sweet Nothings paper pad, and some punch outs from it too. Then some random things I found in my ephemera root around!

The paper you can just see behind the card is what I used to line the inside. Because of the stitching on the front I had to cover up the mess of washi tape and knots that was behind it! IMG_3991

Being a teenager, my niece wanted money and make up for her birthday. I’d already wrapped the make up I’d bought her but I also made a little cash envelope using my WE R MEMORY KEEPERS 123 punch board. Which I stuck down with a velcro dot on the inside of the card so it would be easy for her to remove.


I also wrote ‘for you’ on a black label with an embossing pen and embossed it with gold powder.

On every card I make I emboss this ‘handmade with love’ stamp too for something to put on the back of the card.


The last thing to do was to make an envelope, again using my 123 punch board. I chose what I thought was a suitable paper from the First Edition pad…IMG_3999

…and once it was punched I also did some simple decoration on the front of the envelope, adding her name with alpha stickers. Which I forgot to take a picture of, woops!

So there it is, one of my homemade, personalised cards. Because of the stitching, which can take an absolute age, the whole thing probably took me about 90 minutes. But I love making my cards really special for my family and close friends.


Oh I forgot, I added some flat back pearls too! That’s it… I think!

Thanks so much for reading, let me know if you’d like to see more card making posts 🙂



Grace ❤ @ms.paperlover


Brimbles, hauls, unboxings

Brimbles Box – June 2017 – and some news!

Hello Paper Lovers! So, my first blog post (sort of) is a last. The last Brimbles Box that is.

I’ll talk more about that at the end of this post; for now, let’s look at what was inside this box.

The first items I pulled out, as ever, were the 12×12 papers. This box had two double sided papers, and one cut apart. Here are the double sided:


I just love the blue watercolour on these, it’s absolutely stunning. I’ve almost always had trouble deciding which sides of the papers to use with the Brimbles Box, and even though there’s two provided so you don’t have to decide, I still struggle! I think the white side with the waves would be perfect for a sea themed scrapbook page. The blue side with the white dots would make a lovely cover for a travellers’ notebook insert, but also a great sea-themed birthday card. Ahhhhh decisions decisions.

Next is the cut apart:


My goodness I love this. The mix of the watercolour, the images of the mermaid and jellyfish, and the photos of the shoreline and the lighthouse are just so up my street. So much so I may have to purchase another from the Brimbles store while they’re still in stock!

Next is the postcard and sticky notes


The sticky notes I’ll use these in my journal mostly, or to decorate happy mail. The larger one with the purple watercolour would look really nice on the front of an envelope with the recipient’s address written on it. Sticky notes like this I tend to think of as ‘partially pre-glued ephemera’; and I’m pretty sure I’ll be fussy cutting that mermaid out a fair few times. She’s too pretty to hide out in the black hole that is my sticky note drawer.

It may take me a while to use that postcard, however. Not because I don’t like it, quite the opposite actually. It’s just too pretty and it’s the last one and I just need to hoard it for a while before I’m emotionally ready to use it (stationery is very serious, people).

Ok, what’s next….ooh stickers, yay!


Mermaid stickers, woop woop.

Ok first is the ‘planner’ stickers. For me these stickers sheets are darn well near perfect to decorate my personal size inserts. I love the little arrows so much, always have. They’re so handy for pointing out and drawing attention to the reeeeaaally important stuff you have to get done that week.

The decorative stickers are just…drool.

Mermaids are my favourite fantasy creature. Well, other than dragons, and Tolkien’s Dwarves, and dæmons from His Dark Materials…

Ok, Mermaids are one of my top five fantasy creatures. But they also mean the sea and I LOVE the sea. So yes, point being. These stickers are lush.

I’ve been a fan of Anna’s artwork since forever, but that mermaid (and the little crab dude!) is one of my favourite things she’s ever done. I think it’s the way Anna painted the hair and tails that is just so very beautiful. (Fun fact, I had blue hair for a time when I was way cooler than I am now).

Anyhoo, time for the last two items…


The ephemera matches the stickers, and is as equally beautiful (note to self: must not hoard, must use!)

Then we have the ‘mermaid treats’ bag. Which is very, very pretty. I am just loving the turquoise sparkly mermaid. I will not be using it for stationery or craft related reasons, however (sorry). I’ve decided to be hilariously ironic and use the bag for my ‘on the go’ pill case (because it says ‘treat’, geddit?!). I take a lot of tablets, and I have to have a supply in my handbag for when I’m out and about. I’ve been using the current ‘meds bag’ (a very cute cat pencil case) for a few months now, so I figure I’m allowed to change it up. Plus, did I mention the turquoise glitter? Of course I need to see that every day!

So there we are, the June, and the very last, Brimbles Box. It certainly went out with a bang!


Though I completely understand Anna’s reasons, I’m still a little sad that it’s over. I got my first box in November 2015, so for over 18 months I’ve had the beautiful contents of a Brimbles Box to play with.


The monthly sticker club is still running, woohoo. So you’ll still be able to get pretty stickers made from Anna’s original art work plus other matching stickers. YAYS.

Oh, also, yours truly is on the Sticker Club Design Team.




Here’s a link to some info about the Monthly Sticker Club. I highly suggest you go check it out if you haven’t already… there are glorious and wonderful things in the works.


So you’ll be seeing my monthly blog posts for the design team both on Anna’s blog and here. Whether I change or edit them slightly for my own blog remains to be seen, we’ll see how it goes.


So for now, a fond farewell to the Brimbles Box. And a big HELLOOOOOO to the Sticker Club (which yes, has already been running for a few months but you get the point).

For now my dears, thanks so much for reading. As my blog is shiny and new I’d super appreciate it if you could follow me by clicking the appropriate buttons that are in the sidebar, or subscribing by email, or via bloglovin’ (also in sidebar).