About Me

I'm a freelance artist, designer and demonstrator and have been involved in arts and craft my whole life in one way or another. I design stamps for top British company Personal Impressions, under the "Lindsay Mason Designs" brand, as well as papers, templates and other crafting products. I'm a certified Ranger Educator and my first book,"Stamping", was published in 2009. I also design regular projects for Crafts Beautiful magazine and have made guest appearances from time to time on QVC. I've recently joined You Tube under the name of LindsayMason1000 where I'm posting short technique videos and you can buy my paintings and hand crafted pieces from my Etsy shop. My work takes me all around the country demonstrating stamping, papercrafts and general inkiness! When I'm not working, I love gardening, church & community activities, nature watching, journalling, music and theatre and just relaxing at home. Email me at: ljm.design1@virginmedia.com

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Normal service is resumed...I hope!

Many apologies for the looooooong time since I last posted on my blog. Unfortunately it's been nigh on impossible due to some sort of ad page that has been coming down over the screen whenever I've tried to add anything here. Gggrrr! No matter what I've tried it has just kept blocking my view of my page and made it a nightmare to try and post. Fingers crossed though (sshhhh...) it seems to have righted itself at the moment so I am hoping that I can resume normal service.
Well, lots has been going on here since my last post of course! So, as it would take way too long to give a detailed round up of the last three months (!) I will share some photos and just a few highlights....
I've been busy with my Studio Workshops...those of you who know how often I travel long distances, lugging heavy bags around, will guess what a nice change it is for me to be teaching from home! Above are Karen and Sandra during a recent class - getting messy with DecoArt Media Misters...my studio walls have been getting the odd spritz too!
Below are Linda and Cindie sanding back Chalky Finish for Glass which they had painted onto textured glass candle jars...just one of the projects they completed during the day.
More details of my Studio Workshops can be found in the sidebar on the left.
Back in April I was confirmed in Church. Although baptised (both as a baby and then again as a teenager!) I had never been confirmed so this meant a great deal to me. It was a very moving experience and one I shall always treasure. As well as the children, there were four other ladies and here we are with Bishop Geoff...
....we feel we have a real bond of friendship now.
The Summer seems to have taken a while to get going doesn't it? I haven't had many chances to sit in the garden, or even to do any gardening really...in fact, I'm ashamed to say that I haven't even had time to grow any vegetables this year and there are more weeds than flowers at the moment. Oh well, I can't fit everything in and there's always next Spring to think about. I think that will be a New Year's Resolution that I might be able to keep! There have been a few chances to enjoy the sunshine though...the garden bench is a lovely spot to sit and draw....
It's also Thomas's favourite sun spot and he loves nothing more that sitting beside me there. Here he is guarding my knitting for me!
Unfortunately, just as I got into knitting, I had that nasty bump to my head at Stitches trade show and, since then, I've found that I can't knit without it bringing on vertigo and nausea! Weird. However, I have taught myself to crochet (which is a minor miracle) and this doesn't have the same ill effects. Here's my first completed project....
....I'm only up to simple shapes, but that's okay...scarves, cushions, shawls and throws will do! Talking of throws, I did manage to finish the one I was knitting, and decided that it would look just right on the back of the sofa. Tara agreed and also assumed that I had put it there just for her! Needless to say, it is looking more like a felted blanket every day as she delights in paddling her claws up and down in it....never mind!
....How could you resist her charms? You could? What if she threw this look at you.....
......see what I mean?!?
As well as my usual work, I've been busy doing more with DecoArt products as I'm on the International Design Team. This is the latest project that I created for the Mixed Media Blog which has step by step photographs that you can find here. It's a great blog which is well worth bookmarking - regular projects with great instructions from a range of designers.
These are a couple more pieces that I created recently using DecoArt products. This card features Media Misters, Interference Fluid Acrylics and an Andy Skinner stencil....
This is a canvas that I recently added to my Etsy shop - also featuring the brilliant Media Misters.
I really loved the way the colours came together on this one.
I've been enjoying watching the local wildlife of course. The birds, bats and other creatures that I'm lucky enough to have a wide range of in the surrounding area. I was happy to see this big, healthy hedgehog a couple of weeks ago. He is obviously doing well on slugs, snails and worms as he ignored the cat food that I put down for him. Thomas was rather interested in him too, as you can see....
....Mr Hedgie was quite unworried by either me or Thomas and just snuffled on his way into the garden!
Well, this is a very random post I know! I've just picked a selection of photos and moments from the last few weeks, but there have been lots of other things happening too. I was the after dinner speaker at a local Tangent ladies group a couple of weeks ago, which was great fun...a few funny reminiscences as well as some simple demonstrations....it seemed to go down well! Design work has been ongoing of course, as well as demonstrations and workshops around the country.
A friend asked me to create a card for her to give to a male relative and I came up with this one....
...it's a card within a folded frame which allows it to be free standing. I used a Tim Holtz paper for the frame and then realised that the word "poison" was very obviously plastered across the top! Some Tim Holtz random rubs came to the rescue and did the job of disguising the offending word - you can see them at the top right above the aperture!
I was at Samuel Taylor's in Leeds a couple of weeks ago, teaching a mixed media workshop, This was the project that we created....
....a really lovely day and I'll be there again teaching another workshop on the 18th July - again, details of what I'm up to can be found on the left.
Well, this has taken a while but the blocking ad thing seems to have left me alone. I basically had to stay away from the blog so that whatever it was assumed that it was no longer worth pestering me I think! Hopefully it's done the trick and I shall resume normal service.Meanwhile,I do also have a Facebook page which is a public one, so you can always check that if I go missing again!

Friday, 27 March 2015

Bit of a catch up

It's been a busy time here in Doo Lally Land! I was at A Maze of Memories in Long Crendon a fortnight ago which was, as always, a really great weekend. I was there for two days this time, with a workshop on the Friday and then a demonstration and Make n Takes on the Saturday. Lots of fun with all the ladies who make my trips there so special. Here are a few pictures from the weekend....
 ....lots of concentration here!
 ....adding colour to the book boxes that everyone was creating.
 ....Make n Take day!
....more concentration on Saturday!
I got back late on the Saturday night after a fairly straightforward journey and then it was a busy week ahead filled with all kinds of events. Church on Sunday of course, which always inspires and settles me for whatever is coming up. On Monday evening I was one of the "St Chad's Four" team for the Town Quiz which saw lots of teams competing for the annual trophy. We didn't win but we didn't do too badly either...my history and sport knowledge were pretty useless but I redeemed myself in the Colours and Music rounds!
Tuesday evening was taken up with a meeting of the PCC and on Wednesday I was back at Church for part four of our Lent course where we've been talking about the plight of Christians in the Eastern countries - quite an eye opener at times. 
On Thursday morning two of my good friends treated me to a trip to a garden centre that's a bit further out than the one I normally manage to get to. The displays there are always gorgeous and they had lots of Spring like colours and themes in readiness for Easter of course. I loved these lambs and sheep!
And I couldn't resist posing with King Kong outside in the garden area....
I can't imagine what Tara and Thomas would make of him if I'd brought him home for our garden!
This week has been a little quieter on the social front, but I've been enjoying the glorious weather and have been making a (very slow) start on getting the jungle outside looking more like something resembling a garden. I've been making myself getting at least one job done out there every day so I cleaned out the mini pond and refilled it on one afternoon, pruned all the roses and the big lavender bush another day. The lavender has, unfortunately, largely died,so I was very sad to have to cut away large parts of it where it had just become dry and woody. I'm hoping that the rest of it will fill in the bar patch as it always makes a fantastic display in the summer and is noisy with bees for months on end.
I was amazed when looking through my photos to realise that by this time of the year I have usually got trays of seedlings filling the conservatory. Ooops....I appear to be way behind! Partly for this reason, and partly because I really don't want to turn the conservatory into a full time greenhouse again, I've decided to just buy trays of young Sweet Peas and tomatoes etc this year. I bought one or two last year and they did really well, so it will mean less mess and more time to spend on getting the garden tidy as a whole.
I also put up a new arch over my garden bench as the original one was very flimsy and blew down in the strong winds. Thomas decided to enjoy the sunshine after I'd tied all the climbing roses onto their new support and I joined him with my knitting as it was such a gorgeous day!
Talking of knitting....Heather has, somehow, managed to get me totally obsessed with it! She brought some odd balls of yarn and needles and I decided to start a throw made up of six inch squares. My skills stretch no further than plain knitting and I don't do increasing or decreasing either (!) so I'm pretty much left with squares or scarves! The one on the bench is a scarf in progress and here are the piles of what I've been creating in the last couple of weeks or so....
....the beige squares at the back are actually quite a bit bigger and are for cushion covers - there will be four squares per cushion front but I haven't decided yet whether to have the backs also knitted or to use a natural linen fabric instead. The two colourful piles are the ones for the throw - plain and random patterned to alternate. My ongoing scarf and the latest square are at the front. I'm really enjoying it and it's something that I can do in the evening or when I'm on the train...the cushion squares were all done on my journey to, and from, Oxfordshire!
I decided to get a throw for the sofa last week too as, although it's really sturdy and comfortable, the fabric was almost threadbare in places and looking really scruffy. David had been part way through re upholstering it (there was no job he wouldn't tackle - and do well) and it's not something I could do - I certainly didn't inherit my mum's sewing skills! I ordered the throw online and it turned out to be a rather more limey shade of green than the one I'd expected! Never mind, it's bright and cheerful and Thomas seems very happy with it....
All my new stamp sets are in the shops now and mine arrived at the end of last week....
....quite a lot as you can see! I just need to make samples with them all now! Talking of samples, here is a sneaky peek of what we'll be creating at my workshop at Craft Range on 11th April...
....it's a canvas using the Deco Art Media range of paints and pastes. I'll show the full canvas at a later date!
Meanwhile, my Studio Workshops are filling up, so here is an update on them:

Tuesday 5th May - fully booked
Thursday 7th May - one place available
Wednesday 20th May - fully booked
Wednesday 3rd June - three places available
Thursday 11th June - two places available
Thursday 25th June - three places available


These are full day Mixed Media workshops in my studio. They are small classes of no more than three people so lots of personal tuition.The cost is £50.00 per person per day, which includes all materials, refreshments, lunch and a goody bag to take home. Please just drop me a line on ljm.design1@virginmedia.com or PM me through Facebook if you're interested.

Right, back to work for me now. I'm working on a new range of stamp designs and a couple of commissioned canvasses so lots to get on with!

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Whoops!

Apologies! I made a mistake in typing my email address in the sidebar with relation to my new Studio Workshops....thank you to Dawn for pointing this out to me.
So, to clarify, my email address is ljm.design1@virginmedia.com   - if you have emailed me and had no reply, please contact me again with the above address and I'll be sure to get back to you.

Friday, 6 March 2015

At last!

Gosh, it's been a while...mostly because something has been messing around with my access to blogger and keeps sending up a page that interrupts me whenever I've tried to post. I think it's something to do with Virgin having "updated" whatever it is that they update and my system doesn't seem to support everything as it did before. Gggggrrrr!
It's also been a really busy time here one way and another....Stitches trade show was as manic as ever - even more so this year, as I was working on both the Personal Impressions and Deco Art stands. Here are some images from the show.
The Deco Art stand and the make n take area that myself and Mark Gould were manning.
I was adorning T Shirts with Andy Skinner's latest stencils and So Soft paints.
One of my hand painted samples using the So Soft paints.
A Mixed Media hanger...I wanted to do something with a more Summery feel.
There's always time for some fun however busy we are of course!
With Andy...the Master of Mixed Media! And the thorn between two roses at dinner with Andy and Mark Gould...
My new stamps were previewed at the show but, due to the pre production sets not being ready, I haven't been able to make any samples to share with you as yet. You can check out the new sets here though  and they will be hitting the shops from around the 15th March...fingers crossed!
I'm happy to say that I'm now on the Deco Art International Design Team which is really exciting. My first step by step project on the Mixed Media Blog can be seen here and there is a new button in my left sidebar which will take you straight to the general Mixed Media Blog. 
I've also been really busy with Church of course...lots of special services lately, including Ash Wednesday and St Chad's day. I was in Chorley on Wednesday for a full day's seminar on courses that we'll be running in the Summer so that was very interesting - if a little long! 
My garden is looking extremely neglected...probably because it has been! I am just waiting for the weather to warm up so that I can get out there and hack through the jungle of weeds, clean out the micro pond and mow the lawn at last. 
Thomas and Tara are beginning to spend a little more time outside again and I can tell that Spring is approaching by the fact that I am finding cat hairs attached to my clothing again..the moult has started!
 I've also decided to start running small (very small!) Mixed Media workshops from my little studio here.I can only take up to three people per session and these will be full days priced at £50 per person which includes all materials, refreshments, including lunch, and a goody bag of papers, ribbons, die cuts etc to take home. You can check out the first dates in my demo/workshop list on the left or you can request a specific date and I will try to fit it in for you.
Right, I will crack on as I have a large amount of dies to cut in preparation for tomorrow's workshop at Craft Range in Burnley!

Saturday, 7 February 2015

A Stitch(es) in Time"

Hello folks, I'm just having a coffee break from my Doo Lally room so I thought I'd have a catch up. Don't forget that, even if you don't "do" Facebook, you can still look at my pages as they are on an open setting. 
Anyway, I've been busy as I always am at this time of year, getting more things made for the Stitches trade show next weekend. I'm getting some good ideas for the next round of workshops too!
So, time to share a few photos!
I've made a few heart shaped pieces this week. Here are two quite different examples...
...this one involved a twig from my garden which I wrapped with tissue, painted black and then used Lustres over to spruce it up a little - no pun intended! The sunnier days are making me look forward to venturing back into the jungle...er...garden and this creation was inspired by thinking of Spring being on the way.
This heart with wings has a much darker feel....
.....I used some old wire to create the hanger...ribbon seemed far too pretty for this one!
All the pieces that I'm making for the show will be added to my Etsy shop when I get back from Birmingham.
You'd think that my two pusscats would be out enjoying prowling the fields now that the weather has improved but, no, they are still in semi hibernation mode, lounging about on bed or chairs for most of their time. Tara looked a little annoyed that I'd caught her in a rather inelegant pose!
I've been trying to capture some of the glorious skies that I've seen here lately. This one was quite dramatic because of all the vapour trails...I'm never aware of many planes flying overhead here, but I guess they must have been about on this morning!
The moon gave the evening sky a really eerie look reminiscent of a painting by John Atkinson Grimshaw, but I couldn't manage to really capture it on camera. The sky had an almost peacock blue cast that night.
 Well, the coffee is drunk now and I really should get back to work. One last photo which is one of my occasional "this day last year" ones. This time from the Event City show in Trafford where I was demonstrating Sizzix dies and having fun making birdhouses, tea cups, watering cans and dimensional flowers!
Take care and keep warm everyone...the weather's improving but it's still pretty nippy!

Friday, 30 January 2015

Mixed Media

Sorry it's been a while but I'm in pre Stitches mode now so there's not much time for posting on here which always seems to take me an age to do! I have, I confess, been using Facebook more (which I never thought I'd say!) because it is much speedier. Even if you're not on FB you can look at my page as I've made it a public one.
So, tomorrow is another workshop day, this time at The Craft Range, Burnley.We'll be using Mixed Media techniques to create a secret drawer book box and, if time allows, a little wall hanging plaque too. If you're coming along, then you may wish to bring some of your own embellishments to add to your project...Tim Holtz Idea-ology bits and pieces are good, or even broken bits of jewellery, charms etc. If you have a palette knife and a couple of flat brushes then bring those too but don't worry if you don't have anything - just bring yourself! I'd suggest "old" clothes as we will definitely be getting a bit messy!
Here are a couple of the book boxes that the ladies made on my last workshop, just to give an idea of the kind of thing we'll be doing....
This one was just my colours!
Lots going on in this one.
I've posted this on Facebook already that if anyone would like to attend one of my workshops, but can't get to them, I can always come to you. If you have a group of friends and somewhere suitable just send me a message and I'll get back to you with details.
If you want to contact me at the moment it's best to do so via my email (which is at the top of my blog page) or by PM on facebook rather than phoning me. I confess that I really do try to ignore the phone when I'm busy. Like anyone who works and can't take personal calls...it's just the same for me even though I am working from home...I sometimes think that because I'm at home it's not regarded that I'm really at work! Sometimes I've been stuck on the phone for ages when I really need to be cracking on with things! My mobile is also now giving up the ghost and I rarely have it switched on, certainly not when I'm home. It even charges me to listen to voicemail so I always hope people don't leave me messages! I know I probably sound like a real old misery now but yesterday was one of those days where the phone never stopped ringing and I couldn't get work flowing with all the interruptions. Bah Humbug and all that, I know!
As I said, I'm really busy now with preparations for Stitches Trade show - even more so as I'll be on two stands this year rather than just one. I will, of course, be on the Personal Impressions stand but I'm also going to be demonstrating and hosting make n takes for Deco Art too, so I have even more samples to make than normal!
Other than work it's been pretty quiet here apart from a couple of notable exceptions. We had a visit to St Chad's from the Bishop of Blackburn which made for a really interesting evening's service. He gave a very inspirational sermon delivered in his softly spoken voice which really drew one in. Earlier this week my sister and I met in town and went to a matinee performance at the Grand Theatre where we saw two ghost stories both starring Jack Shepherd. They were excellent - both classic tales and performed within very atmospheric and realistic sets. One featured a railway line leading into a very scarily dark tunnel...very evocative! There were several "jump out of your seat" moments too!
Hope everyone is keeping warm and cosy, although, at least here on the Fylde, it's a beautifully sunny and bright day today - better inside even so I daresay!
Well, I have drunk my coffee and eaten my banana so I will now get back into my work room. As it's the vestibule it's not the warmest room in the house but at least it's nice and bright. Hi Ho and all that...!

Monday, 12 January 2015

Workshops and demonstrations

Just a quick post to say that I'll be at Daisy's Jewels and Crafts near Coventry on Saturday, teaching a full day mixed media workshop. If you're coming along, and as the class is heavily subscribed, please do bring your own palette knife and paint brushes if you have any.You may also wish to bring any of your own personal embellishments to include in your project...keys, charms, watch parts etc - but don't worry if you don't have anything to bring!
I've updated my workshop and demonstration list and will be adding more dates as I get details. After Stitches trade show I usually have quite a few new events to list!