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, 29 September 2009

Hubble bubble

Here are my rather scary witch ATC's as promised - sorry the picture isn't great, but it's been a dull old day here. I had great fun doing these, so there may be some more to go into Heather's swap. I reckon you wouldn't want to meet the one in the middle on a dark night!

Hope you like them anyway, and looking forward to seeing what I get in return! I shall endeavour to organise a swap myself as soon as I have got through this busy period, so watch this space! Lindsay

Monday, 28 September 2009

Land of the Living....

....How terrible is it that it feels as if I have been cut off from the Land of the Living whilst our broadband was kaput?!?!?! No emails and no blogging as well as not being able to check simple things like train timetables without hanging on a phone for fifteen minutes! However, I'm back up and running with a wireless connection now which has solved the problem, so I am trying to catch up with everyone and everything now. I will check out everyone's blogs but I might not leave messages or I'll get nothing else done!
I have a busy couple of weeks ahead now with new designs to work on, lots of samples to be made and workshops to prepare for a big event with several hundred people attending - yikes! I did indulge in a sort of day off today though, and I spent an hour or two making ATC's for the Witch themed swap that my sister has organised - check out Heather's blog and join in if you are able to...I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone does for this one, as there are pictures of Victorian ladies to download and alter. I'll post photos of mine tomorrow...but I must warn you, they are a bit scary!
Personal Impressions have made last minute arrangements for me to be at Dawn Bibby's Design Studio in Accrington this saturday from 11am - 4pm, so hopefuly I'll get to see some of you there. I'll be stamping of course, as well as signing copies of my book and swapping ATC's too. On Sunday, Leonie will be teaching an afternoon workshop there but I'm not sure if there are any places left on it.
Well, this is a quickie post just to say hello, but I'll pop back tomorrow and add those photos. Lindsay

Tuesday, 22 September 2009


Hello everyone - I'm typing this at my local internet cafe as my broadband service has been down for a week now - absolute nightmare! My service provider is arguing with me instead of fixing the problem, even though we have had my laptop checked out twice on their say so. Am getting really furious at the situation now and will be phoning them again when I get home.
So, no emails and no blogging as well as a lot of work that I'm meant to be doing has been held up because of this. I'm taking the opportunity to catch up with everyone's blogs whilst I'm here!
Had a lovely day at Strikes in Blackpool on saturday. Caught up with Joanne and also my sister and parents came along too. I'm sure that Heather has posted something on her blog about the day. No photos to show you of course because of my predicament! Finally did some ATC swaps too and will post pics of them if and when I get back on line....can you tell that I am fuming about all this!?!?!
Also had a great time at Topaz on Sunday - the ladies all made three terrific cards and all went smoothly...we even finished on time and I did a mini demo by request on using Distress inkpads!Well, I just wanted to sign in so will keep this short and hopefully post something more positive sooner rather than later. Keep your fingers crossed for me folks! Hope to see some of you at Strikes in Chester-Le-Street on Saturday. Lindsay

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

I'm still here!

Hello all, sorry I have been absent for a few days. It was a very busy weekend as I was travelling a lot and had a demonstration on Monday too, so I had yesterday as a proper day off - I was banned from doing anything remotely to do with work! Did me good though, so it was back to making samples again today.
I had a lovely time at Sew Simple near Norfolk. It is a really great shop, very spacious and well stocked and in a lovely setting too. Lorraine and her staff had set out a great display area for me and I had plenty of room to work...though it didn't take me long to use up all the space with my clutter of course! Here are copies of my book and you can see my favourite K&Co snowflake embellishments in the left hand basket.
There were lots of tables for me to display my samples on, so just as well that I had been busy and made plenty! I was using alcohol inks, amongst other things, and had a surprise when I came to use the blending solution as when I unscrewed the lid there was no nozzle on the bottle! Silly me had been decanting an almost empty bottle into an almost full one, and I had forgotten to replace the stopper....I said that I needed a rest! So I had to sprinkle the contents by putting my thumb over the bottle neck...had a nice clean thumb by the end of the day! Unfortunately I had little time to take photographs, but will definitely rectify that this coming weekend. Hello to all the lovely ladies who came along to see me.
My journey home on the Saturday evening was uneventful until the train got to Sheffield when a horde of Manchester United football "fans" boarded the train. There were lots of railway police on the platform and I thought they were going to leave us to the mercy of the chanting, swearing "fans". However, around ten burly policemen got on the train too, much to my relief. We were delayed for over fifteen minutes whilst they tried to settle the horde down, but with little effect. One guy ignored the instruction to stop swearing and chanting and was immediately grabbed by an officer. This set them all off again and there was quite a bit of scuffling. One policeman escorted me into the front carriage as they were trying to contain them in the rear one, but there was some overspill. If it wasn't so serious it would have been hilarious to hear all the yobs (no other word I'm afraid) complaining about the police behaviour whilst totally unconcerned about the disruption that they were causng to all and sundry. It would be good if the police were always in such high profile on weekend trains.
Sarah is drawing (well, her husband Ewan is) the winner of her blog candy tonight, so good luck to all who left comments for her. I hope whoever wins really enjoys their treasure. I must get organised and do another one myself.
On Monday I was at CJ Cardcrafts in Edgeley, Stockport, so hello to everyone who popped along to see me there - hope you can all remember how to use the different pens that you bought!
I'll be at Strikes (Burnside) Garden centre in Blackpool on saturday where I'll be showcasing Christmas stamps, Nestabilities and Distress inkpads amongst other things. Hope to see some of you there...if you are a blogger, do introduce yourself as it's always good to put faces to names. I am not even going to mention bringing ATC's with you for swapping this time....oh, I just did! My sister will be popping along at some point in the day too, so she may well have some for swapping too....there's an incentive!

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

A few samples for the weekend!

I just managed to snap a few pictures before the light faded here after a lovely sunny day, but it is depressing how early it is beginning to get dark now. Anyway, the pics are not the best as I had to rely too much on the flash, so the colours are odd and there are some reflections. First is my new alcohol ink container. Since I got all the new colours I just can't fit them into my original tin, so I took a cardboard chest that I have had hanging around for a few years (!) now and covered it with aluminium tape. This is really easy, even for an awkward shape like this, because it can be cajoled into odd corners and curves and is quite flexible. Once I'd covered the chest I then piped on some dots and the words "alcohol inks" onto the lid using 3D paint. Once absolutely set I then covered the lid with more tape and then began to burnish it down. You can use a variety of tools for this - I usually use something large, like a bone folder, to begin with and then scale down to a medium sized embossing tool to add texture and to coax the foil around the letters and shapes. The tape has another bonus in that any overlapped, or untidy edges are made just about unnoticable once it is all burnished down.
Next I chose three ink colours - Eggplant, Sailboat Blue and Purple (oops! I forget the name of the purple one!) and used the felt applictor tool to colourise the entire chest, being sure to get into all the nooks and crannies. I then went over the rim on the lid with the purple, just to create a contrast. Once dry (only takes a minute or two) I used a cotton bud soaked in the alcohol blending solution to carefully remove the colour from the raised shapes, dabbing them with tissue before the solution had time to remove any surrounding areas! A hole poked through the lid allowed me to attach a purple tassel which I secured into position with Glossy Accents and a large gemstone was the finishing touch.
It isn't a perfect creation, and my lettering is less than smart on this one, but I just wanted something bright and cheerful to keep the inks in and this does the job. The domed lid even allows room for the applicator tool, so this will be coming with me at the weekend!
The first card is a variation on a theme of my Silhouette Trees stamp over a sky background, but I used alcohol inks on gloss card this time to create the sky. The colours were Pool, Stonewashed and just a tiny drop of Stream and a miniscule dropette (!) of silver added to a felt applicator tool. I used a few squirts of blending solution to really weaken the shades before stamping them over the card twice. I made a paler moon by taking out the colour using blending solution on a cotton bud. I stamped the trees using Archival black ink and then added snow using the Inkssentials white pen. I cut away the section of card below the trees, stuck the image onto white card and trimmed it into a square. Some simple pale blue shading under the trees and a touch of clear silver sparkle from a glitter pen completed the look once it had been matted onto my card blank. So, a similar card to previous ones, but the sky looks very different using alcohol inks.
The second card is made with a combination of my Script Robin stamp and the clear PI set designed by Kirsty Wiseman, as I thought they would work well together. I am using Peppermint Twist papers in my demonstrations at the moment, so I grunged one of them up using Walnut Stain and Spiced Marmalade distress inks - I liked the result because the Christmas trees are glitterised, so they rejected the ink, making them stand out. I used the paper to cover the card blank. I then distressed a piece of cream card using the same shades, before stamping a selection of the stamps over it using Archival permanent inks. I bleached out the bulbs, holly and the stamp, using a waterbrush (and water - not bleach!) before adding a touch of colour to the holly. A lovely piece of gold net ribbon was all I wanted to add to complete the look.
Well, hope you like the cards. I hope I'll have chance to photograph some more on saturday. I have never been to Norfolk before, so I am looking forward to it. Surprisingly, although the train journey is four and a half hours each way, I don't have to change so it's a straight run...always welcome when lugging kit around! Hope to meet some of you there. Lindsay
PS Check out Sarah's blog again as she now has pictures of all three ATC's that she wil be giving away....not to forget Ewan's handmade brownies which are infamous!

Monday, 7 September 2009


This post is in response to the many of you have asked me to write about our beloved cat Cherry, who we lost over four years ago now, and who all my "Cherry the Cat" stamps designs are inspired by. All our pictures of Cherry were taken before we had a digital camera so I have taken pictures of some original photographs with a mix of success. Hopefully they will convey her pretty face and sweet nature though.
Cherry first came into our lives when she was "living rough" with a completely black tom cat in and around the gardens. At first I thought that she may belong to one of the houses nearby as there is quite an itinerant student population, so people and pets come and go. However, it soon became apparent that these two were, indeed, strays, and so, of course, I began to leave food for them. The big tom was very wary and also very pungent! His dainty white companion was more approachable and soon decided that the indoors looked more appealing to her. We were, as now, in the habit of feeding the birds and squirrels, and the latter would run up the tree and onto the window ledge to get peanuts from our first floor window. Cherry was so determined to move in that one day she did the same (obviously having observed all this!)...up the tree, onto the ledge and through the open window, much to our surprise! Thus she laid claim to us and our very special relationship began.

I should say here, that "Blackie" (I know, it's original!) remained an outdoor stray, who wouldn't let anyone near him except for me. I fed him and he even let me cuddle him, but he wouldn't come inside and he eventually stopped coming around sadly.
All was well with Cherry until one day, whilst asleep on my lap, she suddenly began to stiffen and then kick. David was sure that she had been poisoned and we had some heart stopping moments till she came around, panting, exhausted and ravenous. It turned out to be epilepsy - probably why this adorable creature had been turfed from her original home. We learned to live with Cherry's fitting because, when she was given tablets to lessen them (these were an option I should say) she became like a zombie, frightened even of us. So, we would have a month of normal life with Cherry and then she would have clusters of fits for a few days. An epileptic seizure causes lack of control of everything, so there was always lots of cleaning up to do after one of her attacks...but we loved her so that was okay, if very wearing sometimes.
Cherry was the gentlest of creatures, she would sit beside our open window with the birds feeding a few inches from her...she didn't try to hurt them and they became used to her. One of the pictures shows (if a little blurrily) a curious pigeon peering in at a sleeping Cherry! She was nervous of everyone except the two of us, yet David witnessed her standing her ground when two huge dogs were straining at their leads and barking to get at her in the garden! She never once showed annoyance, frustration or disinterest to us, and was always happiest being cuddled and stroked on one of our laps. Mind you, she could sulk if she felt that her dinner was late!

In 2002 she went out and was missing for a week. We searched everywhere and put up posters till we eventually had a phone call that someone thought they had seen her. We found her and, of course, she was spoiled even more rotten after that! However, a few months later she went missig again, this time for two weeks, and later in the year she vanished for three weeks. I almost gave up, but David was out at all hours of the day and night, searching and calling for her and, eventually, we found her while we were driving slowly around and calling. We realised that her homing instincts had been damaged by all her fits, so she became an indoor cat for the last two years of her life.
Sadly, Cherry began to decline and become withdrawn, and, more worryingly, she stopped eating. After many visits to the vet, blood tests, etc the terrible news came that she had feline Aids - probably contracted when she was living rough all those years before. She began to go into a rapid decline and we reached the point where we knew that the following day we would have to make that dreaded last visit to the vet. I slept on the floor with her that last night as she was so weak and withdrawn. The next morning we drove to the vets, Cherry in my shoulder bag (she hated being in a box) and braced ourselves fro what we knew must be done. As soon as the vet saw her he said that she had gone, so she spared us that awful decision. David was relieved but I admit that I felt cheated of saying a proper goodbye to her. I carried her back to the car and David walked up the road as he was too upset to drive at that point. As I sat in the car with her on my lap, stroking her lovely little white head it began to snow....I can't tell you what a comfort that was....Cherry was pure white and it felt as though it was a message to say "Don't worry, she's safe now, I'm looking after her for you." We took Cherry to my parents' home and she is buried under their Cherry tree with flowers and a headstone that I painted to mark her grave. It simply says "Cherry - our little Angel".
That was December of 2004 and there isn't a day goes by that we don't think of her. Anyone who has been fortunate enough to have the unconditional love of a very special pet will understand.
Well, I hope that wasn't too sad a tale, as we shared fourteen years with our little friend and she gave us love and happy memories. The Cherry the Cat stamps are my way of celebrating her and all those happy memories. Lindsay

Carlisle and an ATC

Hi folks, hope you all had a lovely weekend wherever you were. I had a great time up in Carlisle on Saturday and "hello" to all the ladies and gentlemen (including some extremely patient ones!) that came along. No ATC swaps again....mmmmm...I shall be getting a complex! Hope you are all managing to create those Distress ink skies, just keep practising and it will suddenly come right. As well as my Christmas stamps, I was also using Nestabilities and here are a couple of samples from the day.....this one is my Script Robin coloured with Le Plume pens, spritzed with water using a Mini Mister and stamped onto white card. I then cut him into an embossed circle and matted him over a scalloped circle. Simple card, but kind of fresh with the lovely colours of the Peppermint Twist papers. Next is are two cards using my Sitting Snowbaby stamp. The first uses the "I Believe" Peppermint Twist paper which has a lovely Santa and Reindeer silhouette in one corner. I stamped my Tree Line silhouette image across the bottom twice and then cut the paper along the bottom edge of the trees. I mounted the paper onto white card and cut it to fit just inside the DL card matted onto silver. I used an Inkssentials white pen to create a snow effect on the trees and did a light blue colourwash below each tree. I stamped the Snowbaby onto frosted shrink plastic before colouring and miniaturising him and attaching him to the card. A clear silver glitter pen added a touch of sparkle. The third card features the Snowbaby again, but this time he is set into a frame made using Nestabilities scalloped circles. The gorgeous snowflakes are from the Spellbinders Snowflake Wonder set cut and embossed in plain white card. The sentiment is from the clear stamp set "Christmas Sparkle" by Sue Dix. Above is a picture of my typically messy table! Well, half of it anyway, with a copy of my book near the corner. I had a lovely big area to work in at the Carlisle shop, but I still managed to create a bit of a tip! Thanks to the lovely girls there who looked after me and kept me supplied with fruit teas all day. Lastly is a picture of the ATC that I have created for Sarah's Blog Candy. Apologies that the image is not very sharp...I was being a little ambitious with my camera I think, and the light wasn't too good.It does look better in "real life" so to speak! I decided to do a hand drawn one so that it would be an absolute one off. It's a simple, cutey cat with some sketchy lines for a bit of depth and a little dimension added with some 3D pearl accents. Just leave a comment on Sarah's blog to be in with a chance to get your paws on this, an ATC from Sarah and one from my sister (check their blogs to see them) all very different in style and technique. Plus there are paper and stamp goodies to win as well!
I have another few days of sample making ahead - Alcohol and Distress inks as well as stamps - for Saturday's demonstration at Sew Simple in Taverham, Norfolk, so hope to see some of you there....ATC's will be swapped - or else!!!
I was thinking that I may be reporting sad news about Matthew, as we hadn't seen him for a few days. However, we may have just been unobservant as he has been here today and is now so well recovered that he is not so easy to spot anymore! He sat and soaked up all my compliments on how sleek he looked this afternoon, and seems to thrive on it...it's okay, I already know that I'm eccentric! Well, cheerio for now, Lindsay

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Quiet few days

I've spent the last couple of days getting used to using my new Cuttlebug with the Spellbinders Nestabilities and Shapeabilities...there's a mouthful of a sentence! I've been up to my eyes in circles, scalloped ovals, snowflakes, labels and hexagons and combining them with Christmas stamps. I'll try and get some pictures taken tomorrow before I pack them up for my trip to Carlisle where I'll be on saturday at Houghton Hall Garden Centre. I'll be using my favourite Distress ink pads too of course...I always manage to squeeze them in somewhere!
It's been a quiet few days other than my sample making and we haven't been anywhere (apart from grocery shopping...how exciting!) but then the weather has been the sort that makes it quite easy to stay indoors.
Check out Sarah's blog (on my bloglist below) as she is giving away some brilliant blog candy of papers and stamps etc and she is also including ATC's from herself, myself and my sister Heather - I still have to make mine and send it to Sarah, so that is on my agenda for tomorrow. To be in with a chance of winning, just leave a comment on Sarah's blog.
Heather has posted pictures of a few of her ATC's, so if you haven't seen them yet, pop over and have a look.
"Matthew report" is that he is now making remarkable progress. His feathers are looking sleek again, his tail is growing at an incredible rate and today he even managed to put his crippled foot down, not bearing weight, but at least he could balance better.
Well, not a lot to report today, but I just wanted to say hello and will post new card photos asap. Lindsay