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

Monday, 13 October 2014

An aMAZEing weekend!

Sorry about the rotten pun in this post's title but, unless you're new to my blog, you should be used to my penchant for them by now!
Well, I was down at A Maze of Memories on Saturday and I travelled down to Thame on Friday where I was met by the lovely Christina and we set off to Waddesdon Manor which was built by Baron Rothschild in the French chateau style. As my train journey was several hours long, we only had a few hours to enjoy our visit, so we didn't go into the house but, instead, walked around the grounds and gardens which was just the job after being sat down for so long.
It's a very grand house as you can see!
We were just in time to join the guided tour of the aviaries and were really impressed with the conservation work that is being done with a relatively small set up. I didn't manage to get any decent pictures but Christina sent me some of hers, including this one of a Bali Mynah bird which were, at one time, so endangered that there were only five left in the wild.
Between the aviaries was an art installation that was mesmerising to look at and completely intriguing as to how it was done. At first it looked like a curtain of water droplets pulsing down at intervals to form a sort of flat waterfall effect but, as we got nearer, we realised that there were random words forming in the water drops. We were both taken aback when, as we watched, the name "David" appeared for a moment (these moments do give me goosebumps) but then, even more so when the name "Paul" appeared a few moments later...which is the name of Christina's husband. It was quite strange as the words are apparently randomly taken from the internet and we didn't see any repetitions. Somehow, in all the mad clicking that I did, I managed to coincide a snap with a word on a couple of occasions....
 ...it's very hard to convey how clever this work was.
We managed to get someone to take a few pictures of the two of us on the steps with the magnificent house behind us....
....and this one shows the sheer scale with the fantastic fountain in the foreground....
...the patterning on the left tower, by the way,is formed from climbing plants trained into the latticework design!
We had a couple of cream teas to finish the afternoon and then spent a relaxing evening at Christina's ahead of the busyness of the following day. I made a new friend....
 ....meet Topsy - Christina's gorgeous house rabbit. She was just lovely and so gentle...with a very twitchy nose!
Next day we headed over to A Maze of Memories in Long Crendon where I was demonstrating as well as hosting make n take sessions. As you can see, it was very busy! Everyone was having a great time either working on their card project or watching me getting very colourful, inky fingers!
You can see more photos of the day and what everyone made by going to AMOM'sblog where Christina has posted lots of images http://s187244897.websitehome.co.uk/2014/10/11/thank-you-lindsay/ I didn't get chance to take a single photo!
Thank you to everyone who came along to the demo day and a big thank you to Christina for her hospitality and brilliant organisational skills. Thanks too to Alli, Carolyn and Libby for keeping me (and everyone else!) supplied with drinks...as well as the very naughty cakes which had been baked specially for the day.
It was a fantastic weekend and I look forward to my next trip there.
After a very long train journey home it was really late when I got back and I had to be up early on Sunday morning for Church duties followed by going to our sister Church in nearby Carleton where Lynne and I were performing as Mabel and Mary the sheep again in our harvest puppet performance. As my fridge, cupboards and (most importantly!) cat food supplies were just about non existent, I had to get some shopping on the walk home and hiking four heavy carrier bags back really did wear me out! So it was time to put my feet up for the evening and just relax at last!
This week I'm getting things made in readiness for my demonstration at Time 2 Craft in Chesterfield next Saturday, where I'll be focussing on mixed media techniques. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, 5 October 2014

A weekend to lift the spirits

Good Sunday afternoon everyone, from a "rapidly getting colder by the minute" Lancashire! It's been a lovely crisp and sunny day but now, at approaching 4pm, the temperature is dropping like a stone and I've had to cave in and put the heating on - that's always a bad moment. Thomas is tightly curled up on "his" shelf in my work room and I've just found Tara cosily ensconced on the pillow on my bed so there's only me up and about!
After the dark and depressing news that we heard on Friday night I know that I wasn't the only one to be feeling very low and, as expected, I hardly slept. I was up very early - woken before the alarm by Thomas jumping up onto my head - nice! The day didn't start well as my train was cancelled and the alternative journey I was advised to take involved three changes and arriving at Port Sunlight an hour later than planned - gggrrrr. As an experienced train traveller though, as soon as I got to Preston I searched the screens and found another way though it did involve lots of rushing up and down stairs and dashing to catch connections with seconds to spare! I got to Port Sunlight in plenty of time after all though, so it was worth all the puffing and panting.
As usual, the Happy Stampers show was busy, busy, busy and being in the presence of so many enthusiastic people really gave me a lift. I was cheered up further by some lovely gifts that I was given....
....the gorgeous tag was from Ruth and the skirt of the dress is made from pleated tissue tape - lovely! The card at the top was made by Millie, who won the blog candy last week, and she drew the whole scene....isn't it amazing?! Thomas and Tara are both there as well as so many other tiny details. The Cats plaque was actually given to me by Chris at the Burnley demo last week but I've only just had chance to photograph it. Chris thought it would be something that I could artistically alter...I think you may be right Chris! The luscious poppy brooch was from Karen and it's fab - I shall wear it with pride and it will definitely be with me when I'm at the NEC in November. Wonderful gifts that all brought smiles to my face and thank you so much ladies.
Here's a picture that my friend Esther took when she saw the card that Millie had made...
 .....me, the card and the artist - Millie! Is that the only top I possess I wonder? I seem to be wearing it in every photo recently!
I had my sister Heather's company for the day as she travelled over and was soon acting as cameraman, coffee and sandwich gopher, personal shopper and table sitter during loo breaks (whose bright idea was it to paint the ladies toilets at Hulme Hall on a day when the place was invaded by hundreds of women?!?!! Hence some long queues!). After Heather posted some piccies on her Facebook page where she referred to me as "sister Lindsay", I thought I'd share this one her looking rather Angelic - ha ha...she'll really tell me off now!
What a lovely day it was and thank you for all the positive comments about my stamps and my mixed media work too...they really did cheer me up. Thanks too to Karen, Liz and George from Happy Stampers who, as always, made me very welcome and made sure everything ran like clockwork.
Here are the latest two mixed media pieces that I made last week and are now on the shelf in my Etsy shop!
This one's a large tag shaped wall hanger "Change Gear"....
 .....and this one is a canvas entitled "Wings"....
As people kept telling me yesterday, the photos don't really do justice to the colours as they really are. Very hard to photograph the metallicy sheen.
It was really great to have Heather with me yesterday, and it certainly made the train journey home more enjoyable having her company. Then it was a naughty Chinese takeaway for me and watching Strictly on catch up!
This morning I was up and off to Church early as I was on duty as well as being one of the puppeteers during our Harvest Festival service. The Church has been filled with stunning arrangements....
 ....this is the Font, filled with flowers, fruit and vegetables and surrounded by individual flower baskets which will be distributed amongst the housebound tomorrow. The flower guild ladies have excelled themselves! This is a view towards the Altar with more arrangements around the pulpit and Altar itself. There were boxes, bags and baskets filled with harvest offerings to be distributed tomorrow as well.
I'll be off back to Church in an hour as we have a special Harvest Evensong accompanied by Rossall School Choir...this is a renowned choir who recently sang in Westminster Cathedral so I'm expecting it to be a lovely evening.
I'll be walking back home in, doubtless, very nippy weather, so I'll be having a warming curry when I get back - that will be a very nice end to a lovely couple of days. Hope everyone else enjoyed the weekend  - keep warm!

Friday, 3 October 2014

Port Sunlight

Good evening folks. Hope everyone is looking forward to a great weekend whether staying at home or out and about - there are certainly a few good shows on tomorrow.
Speaking of which, I'll be at The Happy Stamper's show at Hulme Hall in Port Sunlight on the Wirral tomorrow. It's always a really lovely day there with so many great exhibitors and the hugely enthusiastic crowds! Hope to see lots of you there.
Well, this is just a very short post as I need to have a shower now and sort out something for dinner (not sure what yet....I'm at the "nothing much left in the cupboard till I do another shop" stage, so I'll be cobbling something strange together no doubt! 
Then it's a reasonably early night for me ready for being up at daft o'clock again!

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

And the winner is...

Morning everyone. Can you believe that it's the 1st of October? Crikey...how did that happen! Anyway, this means that it's time to announce the winner of my blog candy so I have used a random number generator to pick a winner.....

Enter a number:


Result:

45

The winning number being 45 corrulates to the comment from MILLIE MOSS who wrote ""If I don't get the chance to be the chosen one.....I'll just have to buy them......great collection as we've come to expect from you". Thank you Millie,but now you don't need to! Please send me your details either through my email, which can be found at the top of my blog, or pm me via Facebook. Congratulations and I'll get the stamps sent out to you asap once I have your details.



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.