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

Friday, 26 September 2014

Mixed media frenzy

Hello all, I'm finished,done and dusted (well, not literally) for the day and everything's packed up ready to set off for the Craft Range in Burnley tomorrow. Should be a very fun and informative day with all sorts of demos going on. Mine will not be stamping, for a change, as I'll be using all sorts of products to create mixed media canvesses, cards etc. I finished this journal yesterday....
....I eally enjoyed making this, though it took quite some time working on the front and back covers and the spine. The "hinges" wrap around from the back to give a more substantial look to the book. My tip, if you are going to be using messy products on a ready made journal, is to wrap the pages in cling film before you start - makes life much easier!
As well as more substantial items, I've used the same techniques to make cards and here are two that I'll have with me tomorrow...
A certain someone has been trying to be helpful again, if you can call plonking himself on my work table as being helpful! This was his contribution this morning....
....though it took me longer to get that foam square backing off his nose than it did to get it off the foam square itself! What a fidget!
My other little pal decided that it was better just to leave me to get on with things without her interference so she just lazed about in her latest preferred sleeping spot on the back of the sofa....
.....she is just adorable - when she's not hissing and lashing out! Anyone coming to the demo tomorrow will be able to spot the latest result of her flailing claws on my hand!
Speaking of the demo, as I'm not a fan of wearing aprons (even my Ranger one!) I shall be wearing my old scruffs - including a top that's actually got a few holes in it. So, please don't think it's my normal standard of dress - not that I've ever been the snappiest dresser in the world!
Oh, if you haven't already left a comment below the blog candy giveaway post then please do so before midnight on Tuesday when it closes. Here's the link to the post that you need to comment on -candy time.
Oh yes, here's a photo from my occasional "this day last year" spot.....
.....a whole year since I repaired and painted my front door! Can't believe it was twelve months ago, although there are definitely a year's worth of little teeth marks at the bottom corner again where Tara has been trying to chew her way in - why she can't ring the bell like everyone else I don't know!
Well, that's me finished for the day, so I'll sign off and hope to see some of you in Burnley tomorrow. I hope it's going to be as sunny a day as it's been here today - just lovely. Have a great weekend everyone.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Saturday

Just a quick post this morning whilst I'm having a coffee to warm up...bbbrrrr it was a chilly start to the day. Mind you, not quite as cold as it was when I got up yesterday morning and found that I'd left the front door unlocked and ajar all night! That gave me a chill in more than one way.....good thing I live where I do! It's not something I normally do (though I confess that it has happened once before - ages ago) but I will be double checking things from now on.
As I type there are about forty Starlings chattering and fighting for room on my bird feeders - another sign that Autumn really is here and it does remind me of something that I look forward to at this time of year when their numbers swell and the spectacular swarms, or murmurations, start. Luckily for me, this area is one of the best in the UK to see them and, if I'm lucky, they will be creating their spectacular swirling shapes right overhead. I'll be keeping the camera charged up and handy!
On Monday Heather came round for the day and we had a lot of fun, supposedly being creative but messing about might have been a more accurate description! Heather wanted to alter a box in the style that I've been using on my mixed media canvasses and somehow (between all the nonsense!) got it to a stage where she can finish it at home. 
Heather has had a recent transformation too - losing loads of weight and finally taking the plunge to dye her hair - so we were taking photos so she could update her Facebook image. This also resulted in some silly photos in my garden....and confirmed why we don't like taking "selfies" as they looked pretty horrendous! This is about the only one I dare show, or Heather will punch me! Lol!
It's a nice one of Heather and, luckily, I don't mind looking a prat!
This was the table part way through the day....
....the lid of the box in the background and the pieces that I was working on at the front.
I'm working on  more mixed media pieces today in readiness for Saturday's demonstration event at The Craft Range in Burnley....
.....as you can see, there will be lots going on, so it's going to be a really interesting and fun event to come along to. Hope to see you there!
Well, the sun is finally making an appearance from behind the clouds, so I am going to go back into my Doo Lally room, turf the permanent fixture (ie Thomas) off my table and carry on with work for the rest of the day. Have a good one everybody.

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Autumn approaches

Thanks to everyone who came along to my demonstration at Crafty Corner in South Shields yesterday. It was great to meet you all and I hope that you will all be getting nice and inky with the ink sprays and spritzers! As promised, here are just a few of the cards from yesterday to remind you of what I was doing.
The snowman from my "Cold Hands, Warm Heart" set,stamped coloured and cut out and I used Stickles Icicles over his ruffles and pom pom buttons. The background is the Crafters Workshop Aspen Trees stencil that I used Distress inks through, adding less pressure as I moved down the card. The words are from my Inspirational Christmas Quotes set. Super simple!
This card is one of those that came from creating something else! I was inking a Sweet Dixie die cut dove with Versamagic and I decided to make use of the negative. I placed the dove onto a piece of card that I'd already decorated with Goosebumps spray and Distress inks and then stroked the ink over the image...thereby coating the die cut and creating the negative at the same time. I embossed the dove with both gold and silver powders and the card below with just gold.
I was showing how brilliantly Dylusions ink sprays work to create backgrounds on white card but here I used them on some manilla coloured card. By adding the opaque White Linen spray to the other, transparent, colours,it completely changed the look and toned them down. I used images from my Moon Gazer stamp set and a white gel pen to add highlights.
 Of course, as I hadn't been to Crafty Corner before, it was only right to do one of my faux bleached snowman scenes! This time, to ring the changes, I decided to work directly onto 300 gsm card that I had cut using the Sweet Dixie Holly and Star die. Those of you who have seen me demonstrating this technique before will know how simple it really is....just Distress inks blended over the card and then the snowy foreground, trees and snowman created just with brush and water...with a few details added to the snowman of course.
Of course, the cards I make on demo days do tend to be rather "unfinished" looking...often without greetings or those little extra dimensional extras - it's all about the techniques on the day!
I'd gone up to Newcastle on Friday (quite a trek) and stayed in a hotel right next to the rail station. A beautiful interior greeted me as I entered, including two magnificent chandeliers....
....they were e-nor-mous! I wouldn't fancy the job of cleaning them and they did give me a smile remembering the famous Del Boy chandelier moment!
Today has been a bit of a rest day as I was really shattered after all the travelling and getting home late. Church this morning followed by coffee with friends and then home to enjoy some sunshine in the garden.I'm making the most of the warmth as there are definite signs of the waning season...coming home last night it was already dark by 7.30pm (groan) and this morning I had to squeejee the condensation from my  windows - how depressing! To crown it, when I set off for Church, there were skeins of geese flying overhead, honking away....there we have it...autumn is on the way!
Still, the darker evenings do tend to herald good telly programmes! Downton was a real treat tonight...no spoilers though in case you haven't watched it yet! Good start to the new series though.
Well, I'm away to my bed now.My sister, Heather, is coming round tomorrow and we're going to be spending some time together in my Doo Lally work room....I guess that means we probably won't get much done if past experience is anything to go by! (Yack, yack, yack.....!).
Don't forget to leave a comment below the Blog Candy post (a few posts back) if you haven't already done so. It finishes on the last day of September. Night all.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

A little help

Good evening all, I hope it's been as glorious where you are as it's been here in Lancashire.What a beautiful, sunny day it's been.
I've had a little help in my Doo Lally room this week,or should I say a little help-er...and not so little either! Thomas seems to have decided that my work needs to be supervised - only trouble is that he doesn't leave me much room to do anything!
Not even sure that he approves of my work!
I'll be travelling up and across to Newcastle on Friday and then onto South Shields on Saturday morning for my demo at Crafty Corner. I've got lots of Christmas cards and tags made using my latest Christmas stamps as well as Sweet Dixie dies and various sprays and spritzers. Could get messy (could? Who am I kidding?!).

Talking of my pusscats, I had a close shave this week in the form of Tara - who else? What a little monster she can be! I was letting her out and she stretched her front legs right up as if to tell me to hurry up.I bent forward to give her a little kiss on her head and her paw came right up and into my eye - it was so fast that I didn't have time to blink. I felt her claw in my eye but, thankfully, no damage was done. She really can be a minx!
Thomas was rather unpleasant to be around yesterday as he was rather whiffy! I think he'd been curled up in the sun too long and he's also recovering from a bout of fleas...yikes! They do both have their drops but, living with open land so close by, and the fact that there are quite few farm cats about, fleas can be an occasional problem. He's been scratching, as they do, and was generally looking (and smelling!) a bit of a mess! I made the bold decision to give him a bath!
Never in a million years would I contemplate this for Tara - I'd be flayed alive - but I thought that Tom might just be okay with it - enough for me to give him a little wash anyway. Having read that a few drops of vinegar in the water is excellent for cat's that have had fleas, I added some into the warm bath water, changed into my old clothes and shut us both in the bathroom. 
Of course, as soon as I started to lower him into the bath his legs extended in four directions and he made rather a loud grumbling sound. However, once he was in the water,he placed his front paws on my shoulder and stood quite still as I gave him a really good wash! He even purred! Once rinsed off I got him in a big towel and dried him off and, after a few shakes, he trotted off very happily and sat in the sun. He seemed to actually enjoy the whole experience and he looked a lot happier!
Well, aside from feline escapades it's been pretty quiet here except for working on various samples and projects. I made a few jewellery pieces for my Etsy shop using metal bezels and Ice Resin. They are fun to make but the frustrating part is leaving them alone until the resin sets....sooooo tempting to stick your fingers in to check.....not a good idea! I hid them away till the following day so I wouldn't be tempted and then I was able to add chains, bows etc. This one is called "Fly Free", with the little bird,some metal flakes and a bow.
And this one is called "Soulful" which seemed to bemuse my nephew when he saw it on Facebook!
All my "stuff" for Saturday's demo is packed up now, so I don't have to think about that now until Friday. Tomorrow will be a mixture of a little housework (nnoooooo!!!) mainly prompted by the fact that my neighbour will be popping round to look after the two terrors. She always says that she doesn't notice the lack of housekeeping but I'm sure she must be thinking that I'm a real sloven!!! Lol! I'll also be working on some canvasses that have been ordered and then it's Church in the evening, although not a service. This time it's puppet rehearsals first and then we are hosting a concert called "A Little Night Music" which is songs from the shows. There will be refreshments and a raffle...I'm helping...with refreshments....not singing! So, it should be a lovely evening altogether.
Right, I am off to make a coffee and a sandwich before Bake Off, so I shall bid you good evening and hope to see some of you on Saturday.
Don't forget, if you haven't already done so, do leave a comment after the previous post to be in with a chance of winning my Blog Candy. All the details are below. You can't win it if you're not in it!


Saturday, 13 September 2014

Candy Time!

Hello all, I have some Blog Candy to give away! It consists of six of my latest Christmas stamp sets....
The six sets are Doo Lally Pip Angel Wings, Zendoodle Reindeer, Humourous Christmas Quotes, Zendoodle Christmas Trees Ready to Go, Christmas Baubles and Doo Lally Pip Stringy Snowman.
Here's a slightly closer look....
 ....and the remaining three.........
The sets are plain wrapped ones, that is, with none of the usual packaging, but they are exactly the same as those that are seen on the shop shelves! The stamps would cost around £36 to buy, so well worth winning!
To enter the draw for the stamps, just leave a comment below this post by midnight on the 30th September. If you can add a link to here from your blog, or Facebook page, that would be appreciated too.
I will randomly draw a winner on the 1st October so don't forget to check back to see if you have won.If the winner doesn't claim the prize within three days then I will draw again and so on.
Good luck everyone!

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

I've given in!

Hi folks, the eagle eyed amongst you may have spotted the large "F" on the left side of my blog. Yes, I have finally caved in and gone onto Facebook...mainly to shut certain people up who have been pestering me about it for ages now! I'm still finding my way round it...probably offending people by not replying to things that I don't even realise they have sent to me!
Anyway, there we are. I shall still be blogging and trying to make sure that I don't get too caught up in this social media lark. As I only use my lap top for all this stuff and don't have a smart phone I certainly won't be on Facebook all the time.
So, I've had a mixed few days. Monday was a drawing day and then yesterday I went into town to meet my sister, Heather, as we both had M&S vouchers to spend from our birthdays. Heather found a top that she liked but I didn't see any clothes that took my fancy so I spent my vouchers in the homewares department. Two "owly" purchases...a retro biscuit barrel to keep my crackers in and a cushion that has an owl with the most appealing expression....he kept looking at me and I had to bring him home with me!
I keep looking at him now, so I know it was a good choice!
This morning it was a really fresh start to the day, that is to say, it was cold! So much so that Tara plonked herself in front of the fire and stared at me until I switched it on! 
Must admit that I needed the warm up myself too! I should also say that I don't normally have photos and canvasses on the floor, but things have been temporarily moved around to accommodate things I've recently made...I like to hang them up so I can look at them for a while and make sure I'm happy with them.
Once I'd got warmed up and, after a bit of prevaricating about what to do first (!), I went into the slightly chilly Doo Lally room and got to work on a few things. Thankfully, once the sun got a little higher in the sky it turned into a pretty warm day again, so I was able to ditch the socks and the sweat shirt that I'd bundled myself into!
This owl is a variation on the canvasses and mirrors that I've been making recently. I've given him cog eyes and used various dimensional patterns and textures for his wings, body and beak. He's about 4 1/2" tall and he is free standing.
I needed to be patient with these....
....they will be fully cured by tomorrow morning and I had to use all my will power not to keep poking my fingers into them to check if they were set! Why do we do that? The pieces will be being turned into jewellery once I can handle them without leaving fingerprints in the resin!
Then it was time to plant a few bulbs in the garden. I have lots to plant but I hate the job, so I just do a few every day when I can. trouble is, I forget where I've already put them!
Now my eyes are really straining to close so I think it's time to get to bed. Another work day at home tomorrow and then I will be at Church in the evening for puppet rehearsals...in readiness for the Harvest Festival services. Busy, busy, busy!!

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Sunday....my favourite day of the week

Yes, I really do love Sundays. It's the day to recharge my batteries and I'm always up bright and early so I can enjoy a leisurely coffee before strolling into the village to the sound of the Church bells calling everyone to the family communion service. 
This morning was also a Baptism service - for a very sweet little boy who was the only baby that didn't cry during the service, even when he had three very generous dishfuls of water cascading over his head.Our Vicar doesn't hold back when it comes to the water! The little chap got a round of applause and then the Vicar carried him round the Church so that everyone could welcome him. A lovely service.
After Church quite a lot of us go for coffee together...this used to be in the Church hall but it's been closed for some months now as there were too many problems with the building. Hopefully, it will be re-opening before too long once it's been overhauled. Meanwhile, we go to the local pub for coffee...too many of us for the little local cafes! It's a good chance to have a catch up and today I took some of my garden produce to give away. Just like last year, I found a huge marrow lurking under one of the courgette leaves and it was far too big for me to eat...not only that but my last attempt at cooking a stuffed marrow was a disaster!
Hard to tell from the photo but it really was a bit of a monster! It went to a good home though as did the lettuces that I took with me...crikey, not only enough for veg for me but a surplus! Of course, it will be harvest festival in a few weeks and in times gone by that would have been an ideal time to give some produce away. Unfortunately, as with most things, modern harvest donations have to be tinned or dry goods - just as much of a gift but not quite as evocative as the days when I remember all of us schoolchildren carrying baskets of fruit and vegetables into Church.
It's another warm and sunny day here and, after doing some drawing in the Doo Lally room I decided that I really couldn't stand being inside and missing out on the sunshine for the whole afternoon. I sat on my garden bench with my book for a while and then lay on the lawn to just enjoy a peaceful half an hour. I did the same yesterday and was quite surprised when somebody flew right over in a microlight aircraft - I wondered what it was at first! He circled and went over again, even lower....so low in fact that I waved at him as I lay on the lawn...and he waved back!
No microlights today but there was an even bigger surprise and (for me) much excitement when I decided to come back inside, went past the teeny tiny micro pond and saw this.....
......yes, I nearly shrieked (well I did actually!) when I saw a little frog sitting there quite happily on top of the tiny clay pot in the pond! I ran in to get my camera and, thankfully, he was quite relaxed about me taking his picture. I can't tell you how happy that one little amphibian has made me today! The idea that my old washing up bowl has become an attractive enough habitat to tempt a frog into it.....wow!
Cute or what?!
He dived into the depths (well, such as they are!) after I took his photos, but I popped out later and he was back on top of the pot again. Hopefully he'll make short work of some of the slugs that have started appearing again this last week or so.
Anyway, that's all for now...I'm just off to look at the pond again....