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

Thursday, 27 October 2011

What I'm up to this weekend

Another rather late post I'm afraid, as I am working my way through a long list of things to do and it seems as soon as I strike though one job, another two are added. I do feel as though I am treading water rather than getting to the other side of the pool as it were. Still, like the frog who was drowning in a jug of milk until he realised that all his kicking had churned it into solid cheese and he could simply hop out, one just has to keep going! So, if you are still awaiting a reply to an email, please bear with me and I will get back to you soon.
One thing that appeared on my list this week was a two day date at the new Hobbycraft store in Crewe (at the Grand Junction Retail Park). So, I'll be there tomorrow from 9.30am and Saturday from 9am. I have a mixture of Ranger and Martha Stewart products to show techniques with, as well as stamps of course. Then, on Sunday, I'll be at Crafty Company in Fleetwood. I have some new Martha Stewart Quilling punches which I'll be using, as well as Best Creations papers and stamps from myslef, Andy Skinner and the Gorjuss range. The quilling punches are great for creating large dimensional flowers - I'll take photos over the weekend to share next week.
Last weekend was a hetic one too, and Saturday at Grovenor House Papers in Kendal sped by as it was such a busy day. There were lots of demonstrations by Janet's staff and various guests and it was great to see everyone enjoying themselves. The shop is in a lovely setting, overlooking fields of sheep, though I think we were all too busy to enjoy the views! Great to see so many familiar faces there. On Sunday I went over to H G Arts & Crafts in Poynton for another busy day...hello to all the ladies and gents (yes...men came to this one!) welcome to my blog.
Remember to alter your clocks and watches on Saturday night...they spring forward and fall back, so, by my reckoning, that gives us all an extra hour's sleep this weekend! Lovely.
Well, I have a few more things to add to my travel bag, a final cup of coffee, a refreshing shower and then a good night's sleep before an early start tomorrow. Hope to see some of you over the weekend and hope everyone enjoys that extra hour of sleep!

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

My funny Friday!

Hello all, back as promised with a few pictures and to hopefully give you a bit of a laugh with my funny Friday story, which started after I checked into my room in Chester-Le-Street. This was a "superior" room in the pub/hotel that I usually stay at when I'm in the area. It's cheap and cheerful, if a bit (well, quite a lot) noisy up to about midnight. However, this room had a whirlpool bath, a four poster bed (without the scary drapes!) and an extra large TV as well as a sofa.
Never having been in a whirpool bath I had no idea how to use it, but one of the staff told me what buttons to press and advised me not to add too much bubble bath. As there were no toiletries in the bathroom I brought some back with me after my usual few hours walking round the shops stretching my legs. I was going to call David but found my phone had switched itself off for some reason. However, it came back on okay and I rang to say "hello" before filling the bath. I added a tiny drop of the bubble bath and then got in and pressed the button to start the whirlpool effects. I then realised that the flat disc beside the button was to set the force of the jets, so I cranked it up and was all set to enjoy the relaxing massage. However, despite the teeniest amount of bubble bath, I watched in amazement as, within a few seconds, the soapy suds began to rise alarmingly! Within moments I could just about see over the top of the bubbles which had now become the consistency of meringue - I felt as if I was inside a Baked Alaska!
Needless to say, I had to switch off, empty the bath and then spend about ten minutes or so showering the suds away before refilling the bath with plain water. It was very funny and I wished I had had my camera as I could easily have taken a picture without showing any naughty bits! The massage was lovely and I was all set for a relaxing night. I set my alarm for 8.15 - almost a lie in!
Unfortunately the bar had "music" thumping out which was directly below my room, so I just turned up the telly and tried to ignore the noise. I eventually got into the big bed which had heavy, carved wooden posts at each corner and was quite high up from the floor. I soon drifted off but woke shortly after to nip to the bathroom whereupon I cracked my head on one of the posts and nearly knocked myself out - as David said, good thing it was my head!
Back into bed and I was out like a light and looking forward to a good sleep. Next thing, I heard my phone alarm going and could tell it had been going for a while whereas I normally wake as soon as the alarm tune starts. I felt really groggy, (unlike me) flicked the lights on and stumbled into the bathroom. I brushed my teeth, had a wash and then put the kettle on, putting my fruit tea bag into a mug. I started to get dressed but felt so unusually tired that I sat on the bed while the kettle boiled. It seemed a bit dark and I checked my phone which showed about 8.25am now, so I put the BBC news on and carried on getting ready. My eyes still felt sleepy and I was looking at the TV and the time and trying to figure out what the first digit was......and, you guessed it, it was a three!
Yep, I had got up at 3.15 and spent fifteen minutes getting ready before the penny dropped! When my phone had switched itself off it had then gone to the default time and I hadn't realised. After a mixture of annoyance and relief that it was still a good few hours before I really needed to be up, I got back into bed but it took ages to drift off again. Then, to cap it all, at around six fifteen the darned street cleaning machine came down the main road and that was it, I was wide awake again!
What a night. Needless to say, I didn't exactly feel at my best on Saturday! Thankfully, the bed at the hotel on Saturday night (in Scunthorpe) was the most comfortable I have ever slept in and I made up for the previous night with a really marvellous sleep. Oh the joys of travel!
Anyway, here are just a few pictures of some of the samples I have been making for the coming weekend's demonstrations in Kendal and Poynton. Here are a couple of different cards featuring my cheeky elf stamps...
..."Merry" Christmas seemed very appropriate for this little chap!
Next up is one of the Gorjuss stamps. This character makes me laugh as he looks as if he is melting away beneath his scarf! I coloured him with Promarkers and added pencil scribbles to give him a texture. I've used the Donna Salazar die cut alphabet again for the word. Everything has been Distress inked or Stained to give a more grungy look to this card.
Next up is a card that features a combination of stamps by Andy Skinner and myself. I created an alcohol inked background that I spritzed with Stazon spray cleaner. I then stamped Andy's fir tree (from his Winter's Tale set) several times, masking off the base to achieve the varying sizes...this stamp is brilliant for this effect. Some torn card made the snow and I then added the Postbox from my Christmas Post stamp set. I made a couple of "envelopes" to pop into the post box and added the greeting from my Silent Night set. To finish the scene I swooshed some watered down Faded Jeans Distress ink for shadows and highlighted the trees with Liquid Pearls. The last featured card is made using my Build a Snowy Scene stamps to create the focal image. I then cut out the postcards from Graphic 45 Christmas Emporium paper (Believe) and layered everything up. A few extra details were cut from the paper and added and then I simply scribbled the red lines around the card to frame everything. A proper Victorian card! Finally, for feline fans out there, I thought you might like to see our little (quite big actually!) charmer, Thomas, in his current favourite spot on the box seat where he can keep an eye on me working whilst he's lounging on his favourite blankie - thank you Joanne! I love the way the sunlight has just caught his white fur and whiskers. He's really got a lot softer in the last month and has finally stopped nipping and scratching...he's just giving my finger a gentle suck here!!! Aaaah, what a sweetie pie!
Well, must go as dinner is almost ready and I need to tidy up a bit before I relax for the evening.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Interim post!

Hello folks, this is another quick post, an interim one before a more interesting one tomorrow, as my camera is dead and I have just got some fresh batteries...bit dark to take piccies now though!
I'll post some pictures tomorrow as well as tell you about my comical Friday night at the hotel in Chester-Le-Street!
However, I did want to pop on here, just to say that, if you haven't already seen it, do go along to Andy Skinner's blog where he is auctioning off two of his wonderful art pieces in aid of Children in Need. The auction ends at midnight tonight (18th October) so there is still time to bid for either the Time Machine or the Gothic style bottle...both are really stunning.
Okay, I'll be back tomorrow!

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Packed and ready

The bags are all packed and ready to go again...where did this week vanish to? I'm sure that I am losing at least one day in every seven!
I've been prepping a few things today, ready for my demonstrations in Washington (Tyne & Wear) and Scunthorpe, including die cutting some letters ready for adding to tags and cards. I've packed all the inks, the stamps, punches, Lost & Found papers and post it notes, so I'm all set. Not too early a start tomorrow either, for a change!
Anyway, this post is a real quickie, and only because I said I would post again before I went away. So, have a great weekend everyone and make the most of the remaining glimmers of warm...ish weather!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

October is here!

Hello everyone...suddenly it feels like October usually feels! It's gloomy and been pouring with rain solidly here for the last two days and Thomas has hardly even ventured outside at all. He has a bladder made of iron!
Welcome to all the new readers and followers from dow
n Essex way - and elsewhere. I had a really good weekend in Wickford and Billericay and met up with both familiar and new faces, and there was a lot of fun along the way. Not that you can see much sign of it here, as everyone, including me, was concentrating hard! This was on Saturday at In 2 Crafting in Wickford, where John was taking photos throughout the day for their blog at in2crafting.blogspot.com if you'd like to see more of the piccies (and spot if you're on any of them!). On Sunday I was at Pinnacle Crafts in Billericay - no photos of the day I'm afraid as I was loaded up and didn't take my camera away with me. Here are some of the things that I made over the weekend though....a couple of simple tags using alcohol inks over PI coated gloss card to create the tartan effects and using Gorjuss toppers for simple main images. I used letters from the Donna Salazar Spellbinders alphabet dies for the JOY message, whereas the SNOW uses Grungeboard letters, inked and then topped with Liquid Pearls. I do enjoy making tags at this time of year as they can be quick and simple, or more ornate and it's also a great way of using little offcuts of papers, ribbon etc. I'll have more tags to show you next week as I'm planning to make quite a few on this coming weekend's demonstrations. This card is another one featuring Gorjuss images - these are from the clear set "Snowman" GJCSA6008 - and I couldn't resist popping the extra Robin onto the snowman's carrot nose! The words are from my Silent Night clear stamp set, which has a selection of Christmas greetings to suit most card styles. I used Ranger Core-dinations cardstock for the background...love that colour! This little card was just to show the Palm trees from my Nativity stamp set being used for a non Christmas theme. I used my Stazon spray cleaner technique over an alcohol ink monoprint to create the background (I used Pool and Clover ink colours) and then stamped the trees before colouring the bottom of the panel with black ink and adding some upward black strokes for the grassy effects. I put a few drops of Sailboat Blue alcohol ink onto my craft sheet, and used a paintbrush to sweep the blue across the panel to represent the ocean. I drew the boat with a black pen - if you have a stamps of a boat, or other suitable silhouette, you could use that of course. I then used a white pen to add a few highlights and a fine black pen to draw some simple birds. My final card to share today is made using my Build a Snowy Scene and Christmas Post stamp sets. Some masking and Distress inks were all it took to create a traditional Christmassy scene...the foreground trees are a little small for accurate perspective to be honest, but....I don't mind...I just like the overall appearance! So, I had a really good weekend and no travel problems either, although my train to London was about ten minutes late due to....idiots stealing cables again. This has been happening more often as people are after the copper apparently, and it is creating havoc for the railways....and passengers of course.
I shall be on my travels again this coming weekend, with demos at Dainty Supplies in Washington, Tyne and Wear on Saturday, and at Stephen H Smith's garden centre in Scunthorpe on Sunday. Hope to see some of you there, but I'll be posting again before the weekend. Meanwhile, keep warm and dry everyone!

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Crafts Beautiful

Two posts in one day...I'm making up for lost time! I just thought I'd share these pictures of some new projects that I did for the November issue of Crafts Beautiful magazine using the beautiful My Minds Eye Lost & Found Christmas collection. The papers are a really lovely mix of quite vintage images and colours but with a modern twist and a good lashing of glitter! I also used the matching brads and dimensional stickers as well as my Christmas Collage stamp for the card's focal image.

I have to thank my big sis, Heather, for suggesting I make a Bunting decoration! I really liked the way this turned out and I was especially pleased that I was able to use the MS Holly border to punch around the triangular shape. Certain of the punches will allow you to be a little more experimental and daring with how you use them. So long as you hold the punch upside down then you can check that you aren't cutting through an area you've already punched - I also found it easier to start at the point at the bottom as this one is harder to punch around otherwise. I have found (by accident!) that I can also use this particular PATP set to punch around squares and rectangles that aren't the standard size, simply because the holly leaves are a fairly random pattern. It's also just a really lovely design that I like using!
The Triptych is made from a base of mount board and is really simple to make. Embossing all the edges with gold powder takes extra time, but is worth it for the extra neatness and stability that it adds. Patterns are included in the magazine of course, and you could enlarge or reduce this...I quite fancy making some Triptych ATC's. Hope you like them. If you want any more details about Crafts Beautiful, just check out the link in my sidebar. I've had a nice day colouring in, so I have a little stack of images now, all ready to add to my backgrounds and cards this weekend. Hope to see you in Essex!

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Quiz winner!

Hello all, and firstly, many thanks for your get well wishes - much appreciated. I think I caught a bug from one of my many brushes with "Joe public" on the trains! David said I was more susceptible as I was tired and it was my body saying "you need a rest!". Many apologies to the ladies who were booked onto my workshop on Wednesday...I can't remember when I last had to cancel something! Hopefully, you will all be able to come to one of the future classes.
I feel tons better now and am going to have a day of colouring some stamped images to use on my demonstration days this weekend in Essex. I'll be at In 2 Crafting in Wickford on Saturday, and I'll be using Distress inks, stamps, punches etc. On Sunday I'll be at Pinnacle Crafts in Billericay, where I'll be focussing on Alcohol inks, Adiroindack inks and stamping ideas. Hope to see some of you on one or other of the days.
Now to the quiz....well, what a tricky one this proved to be!!! The main bug bear has been questions 1, as people have interpreted the definitions of what is edible in very different ways! Question 19 also threw up an alternative answer that I hadn't foreseen! So...I have been a bit flexible about those. Taking this into account, the two top quizzers were Carole and Joanne W, so we had to draw a winner. I thought it would be fun to get Thomas to pick the winning name, and, as you can see, he closed his eyes to be completely fair!
But then, being an awkward pusscat, he decided to jump down onto the floor so I had to place the mat with the papers down there. He was very decisive though, and he was certain he wanted the one on his right! And, as you can see, he was keen to see who he had picked! So....well done Joanne, please email me your address so that I can get your prize out to you. Well done to Carole too, who was the quickest off the mark with her answers - Thomas says "mmmrr, mmmeowww, mmmrrow"....I think that means, "sorry"! Thank you to all of you who entered, and hope you enjoyed the brain excercise. I'll get working on another quiz soon, so watch this space.
Okay, I'll pop the answers on the original quiz post further down.....no groaning at the answers now!

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Message from David

Lindsay is not too well and has asked me to say that she will post the quiz results and winner in the next couple of days. Unfortunately she has also had to cancel tomorrow's (wednesday) workshop in St Helens.
It's nothing serious, just a "lurgey", probably caught from one of her many train journeys!
Just check back over the next two days to see the quiz results. David