Tag Archive: Tonic Studios


Niece’s 13th Birthday card

Where does the time go???!!! I cannot believe my eldest Niece is in here teens!! (she was born when I was at University so that makes me feel REALLY OLD!) As it’s her ‘coming of age’ card, I wanted to make it feminine but not girly and I wanted to make it a bit interactive so I wanted to make another rocker card.

When the Tonic Studios Fairy collection was released Jodie was on Create and Craft TV demonstrating how versatile the fairies could be if you cut off their wings and when she showed a card made with Breena without here wings I HAD to make it for my eldest niece (so the idea for this card has been about 2 years in the making!!)

I die cut Breena from some 300gsm black card stock and embossed it so all the details were clear, then I carefully cut off her wings. To give her a dress I stuck some Centura Pearl in Teal behind the die cut and trimmed off any bits that peaked out from behind it. I wanted to just highlight her necklace and belt so I used a silver gel pen to colour in the cut outs for a little extra detail.

Having gone to all the effort of stamping 13s all over the card base I was loath to cover them all back up again with die cuts, so for the sentiment banner I die cut a stitched banner from vellum and adhered the Tonic die cut on top with Quicky Glue pen. Once I was sure the glue pen had dried I put glue pen on the reverse of the vellum banner over the back of the die cut so the glue wouldn’t show when it was stuck to the card base.

I had made some flowers that were all different colours and made the centres from nuvo Crystal Drops, left them to dry overnight and the Crystal drops had all cracked!!! 😦 I was so sad – they would have been so cute! But I didn’t want them on the card in the state they were in, so plan B kicked in… I die cut several ‘Camellia complete petals’ flowers from black card stock and the co-ordinating ‘Camellia open petals’ from Teal Centura Pearl and the leaves are from the ‘Camellia open petals’ in black card and the ‘Camellia complete petals’ from vellum (to tie in with the banner). The black stars are waste from another Tonic Fairy die set.

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Just as a finishing touch I wanted to add some matching bits to the inside of the card too, so I added the same sentiment with the frame and a flower and leaf.

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I hope you like this card? Crafty hugs everyone and come back soon for more inspiration!

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

Punny birthday card

I fully appreciate that this card may not be to everybody’s taste, so excuse me if you don’t like the pun. I have made this card for a lovely, funny woman who did her PhD where I’m studying and has gone on to pastures new, but is still in touch with lots of us at the Institute. I will be seeing her on Wednesday for her birthday meal at Wagamamas, so I thought she would appreciate the mushroom based pun…

I have a confession – I bought the dies used for this card for my niece’s fairy birthday card and was going to make toadstools, they got buried under some cardstock and I totally forgot I had them (how embarrassing!) So I didn’t put any toadstools for the faries on her card… So rather sheepishly, I’m glad I can use them for this card instead… The dies are by Leane Creatief called ‘Mushrooms‘.

I wanted the card to be really plain so that the punny sentiment could hold its own, so I cut a Neenah Desert Storm mat and some green cardstock as a larger mat. The mushroom dies I cut from cream card and inked through the dies with my finger dabbers with Iced Spruce and Old Paper Distress Inks. I cut the grass from the same green card as the mat so as not to introduce too many colours to the card.

The sentiment is die cut from some chocolate card using my Memory Box ‘Parker Alphabet Uppercase’ dies.

I used Hi-Tack glue to adhere all the die cuts, bending the mushrooms and grass a bit for dimention. To add even more dimention I added some Nuvo Crystal Drops in Dark Walnut to the corners.

When the Crystal Drops had been left to completely dry I stamped the sentiment inside the card with VersaFine Sepia ink.

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I think this could work as a masculine card too, the colour sceme is very unisex.

Do you like punny sentiments on birthday cards? I hope this card inspired you and you come back soon to see what else I create!

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

Best friend’s birthday card

My best friend is having an afternoon tea for her birthday celebrations this year (so many friends are scattered about and some have small children so an afternoon thing means she can see as many friends as possible and they can all get wee people home in time for bed and no need for baby sitters), as she is having an afternoon tea party, I wanted to make her a tea themed card!

I bought the Sizzix ‘Tea Time‘ Bigz die and was going to use it for scrapbooking/art journalling, but it was so perfect for this project I just HAD to use it!! I was in need of a change from square and rectangular cards and wanted to create a rocker card for my base. I used the largest die from the Tonic studios ‘Celtic Dream‘ die set and cut some white Centura Pearl hint of silver card – because it is 300gsm it’s nice and sturdy to use as a base.

I cut the Tea Time from some patterened paper in my stash that had little coloured polka dots on it that made me think of Emma Bridgewater pottery, when I was working out the layout I wanted I realised that I would need two saucers, so I cut a second set of cups (I’m sure I’ll find another project to use them on!!) and used my bone folder to give the cups some gentle rounding and dimention. To add some extra shading to give even more feeling of dimention I added some shading with a Spectrum Noir pen where ther would be shadows. I decided to use the tags that had been cut out of the spotty paper and just use the reverse (unpatterned) side and inked the edges with Vintage Photo Distress Ink and pierced a hole with my pokey tool to get some white string through the top.

To continue with the afternoon tea theme I thought about cake, but I don’t have a die that makes a cake the right proportions for the card, and I’m too much of a perfectionist to fussy cut something (I would spend FOREVER snipping and not being happy, then realising I’d ruined it and starting again and after about 5 trys get moody and not want to finish the card, so that was best avoided!!) so instead I decided on a doily. As luck would have it I fell in love with the Marianne Creatables ‘Doily Star‘cut out of vellum on a card I saw on Pinterest (which I now can’t find on my pin boards!! D’oh!) but I thought doilies are also synonymous with tea and cake, so I grabbed my doily star die and cut out some vellum to get a really dainty, different feel to the card base.

I originally wanted a little banner with ‘happy birthday’ stamped on it to be peeking out from behind one of the cups, but it drew too much emphasis to the cups and I wanted something to draw the eye from the doily towards the cups and saucers. I die cut my banner from cream card using the Sue Wilson Creative Expressions ‘Stitched flags‘ and stamped the sentiment from Lawn Fawn ‘Hats Off to You’ using Archival Ink in coffee.

As I was looking at what I had for the card so far it was all very monotone and pale and really needed a pop of colour, I thought about some flowers over the doily but as this is a rocker card I couldn’t put too much weight on that side or it wouldn’t stand correctly. I um’d and ah’d about what to do and eventually decided that as my Christmas dies were still out on my desk that I could just cut some holly leaves for a little colour, but not much weight.

I don’t know why, but after looking at the layout again I still wasn’t happy with it and still wanted to have something more. I was wandering about personalisation and remembered my Whimsy Stamps ‘Spell it Out’ stamps and matching die. I had seen some adhesive stickers that were wood effect Scrabble tiles and I wanted to create my own version of these, so I first stamped my woodgrain in Sahara Sand ink on cream card, then stamped the letters with coffee Archival Ink and used the matching die to cut them out.

I assembled my card using Hi-Tack glue and foam tape for the cups to maintain their dimention. It was only AFTER I had assembled the card that I thought ‘it would be really good if the cups and saucers were glossy…’ so I painstakingly added glossy accents to the cups and saucers when they were attached to the card base and left it to dry overnight.

The last thing left to do was to attach the tea tags to the cups, which was fiddly!

So… here is the finished card, which rocks very nicely, I’m quite proud of the engineering feat!!

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I hope you aren’t working over the festive period (or too ill) and are finding the time to get crafty! Let me know what projects you are working on!

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

Niece’s 10th Birthday card

OMG!! I just can’t believe my middle niece is 10!!! Where does the time go???

I wanted to make a fairy/magical/mythical card for her (because she won’t believe in the magic for much longer… [cue ‘Age of Not Believing’ from Bedknobs and Broomsticks running through my head]) so I got out my Tonic Studios fairy collection. I’ll be damned if this was the first die set the TODO really struggled with, I just could not get the dies to cut properly, I won’t lie I was in dispair!! Then I thought ‘I’ll just try a metal shim’ and thank the Gods, it worked!!

I saw the Tonic Studios YouTube ‘How to make a z-fold pop-up card tutorial‘ video and I though ‘I’ve just got to try that!!!!’ So I bought an A3 piece of Centura Pearl white hint of silver card and cut it as instructed to assemble the card base.

I then had to think about how I wanted to decorate the card… I knew I wanted a bit of a woodland scene with fairies in it, but wasn’t sure what the whole thing would be ‘about’ then I saw an inspirational quote online that said ‘write your own story’ and I thought ‘write your own fairytale’ could be the overall theme of my card. I wanted a brown/green colour scheme for the card to give the idea of the fairies in the forest, so where possible that’s what I tried to stick to.

If the theme of the card is writing then I needed a script stamp for the background. I stamped the script stamp repeatedly on Centura Pearl cardstock with Archival Ink in Coffee. Then I cut some dark brown card to mat and layer the scrip stamped sections to layer on to the Z-fold.

I die cut the second largest Presscut ‘Smaller Book‘ die from green card for my book cover, then cut 3 of the third largest die from cream card for the pages of the book. I stamped the sentiment on one of the pages using coffee Archival Ink and the Waltzingmouse Victorial Alphabet stamps. Lovely old story books have gold gilding on the pages and I wanted to re-create this so I used my Cosmic Shimmer metallic gilding polish on the edges of the ‘pages’. I used my bone folder to get a natural bend in the pages, then adhered them together with HI-Tack glue at the ‘spine’ of the book and foam tape under the pages to maintain the curve of the pages.

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I’ve had the Tonic Studios ‘Fairy Door’ for AGES and not used it once, but now I wanted to use it for the big reveal. I die cut a full door and surround from green card, then I cut just the door from kraft woodgrain card (from Simon Says Stamp, but they only do the white one now) and stuck this over the top of the green card. I wanted to have the second half of my sentiment behind the door, but at the moment I only had the card base behind the door and I wanted it to be dark behind the door. I die cut the whole fairy door again from black card, stuck it behind the green die cut and used tape to hold all the little bits in the black cut-out. Because I was going to be sticking the door over the Z-fold I die cut a few more doors (just the top half) to build it up to the same height as the Z-fold so the door would be flush with the Z-fold and not bent by being stuck to multiple layers.

Most importantly – you can’t have a fairytale or a fairy door without a fairy, so I die cut Fae Ella from both black card and Neenah Classic Crest card. I coloured her in using Spectrum Noir pens, then adhered the black die cut as a drop shadow.

I die cut several foliage and leaf dies from green card to adhere to the pop-up elements to give the feeling of the forest.

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Do you know anyone with a birthday around Christmas? What do you do to make their birthday cards extra special?

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

Crafty kittens!

Hmmm… The kittens are adorable, but they are annoying too!! I had made a 50th birthday card using loads of die cut letters and managed to keep them out of the paws (and mouths!) of the kittens, stuck the card together and just had to add the nuvo Crystal Drops to leave them to dry overnight and suddenly Inara jumped up on my craft table and trod on the three top drops and trailed her little tail through the bottom drops!!!!!!!!!

Inara is fine – as I was there when she did it I was able to wipe as much of the crystal drops off her paw as possible immediately with a wet wipe.

So here is what I managed to salvage of the card! (I tried to colour in the top drops with alcohol markers in an effort to get them to look better, but it just didn’t work!!)

And here are the kittens helping me with photography…

Note to self – if anything needs to dry or set I need to put it in a cupboard in future! I still love them both to bits, despite their naughty ways!!!

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

Mother’s Day card

Yesterday was Mothering Sunday in the UK and I would like to share the card I made for my Mum.

My family have had several dogs, cats and a guinea pig over our lives, but at the moment we have one elderly Birman – they are now my Mum’s favourite breed and she doesn’t think she will be able to live without their gentle temperament in her life, so I’m sure there will be more Birmans to come. They have distinctive colouring – like a Siamese, but with white ‘mittens and socks’. As they are Mum’s favourite breed I wanted to colour the cats on her card to look like Birmans.

Here is a picture of our Birman out in the garden a couple of summers ago – can you tell my Mum’s favourite colour of flower?

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I don’t use patterned papers very often, and I wanted to put some on this card. I thought about what colours I wanted in the card, but couldn’t quite find a paper that was right, but then I found my April Rose Illustration paper pack and the blue paper with pink roses I thought would work nicely with the image, so I decided to use this one. I tirmmed the paper and attached it to a cream C5 card base.

I bought the Crafter’s Companion Mulberry Wood ‘Love You’ stamp set last Summer intentionally for Mothering Sunday (I can be organised sometimes!!). I stamped the image and sentiment with Memento Tuxedo Black ink onto Neenah Classic Crest card. I coloured the cats with Spectrum Noir IG1, IG4, IG5, IG7, BGR2, BGR3 and PP1. The flowers were coloured with PP2, BP1 and HB3, the leaves were CG4 and LG5. I outlined the flowers and cats with TB1 to ground them and coloured the earth with EB3 and EB6.

My most recent purchase has been the Tonic ‘Ornate Frame‘ dies and I wanted to use them to mount the image and sentiment, but there wasn’t an ornate frame that was the right size for the image – one was too big and one was too small! So I die cut the sentiment using the ‘Ornate Frame’ die and the image with the Tonic ‘Art Nouveau’ die. Then I die cut the outer frames from Stampin’UP! Smoky Slate to mirror the cats coat colour.

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Once I had the layers cut out I used 1mm foam squares to layer the image and sentiment on the frames and I used 3mm foam squares to attach the frames to the card base.

To add some interest I wanted to have some flowers in the card and I wanted to mirror the pink flowers on the patterned paper and in the image. I used some white paper blossoms by Hobbycraft and coloured them using Spectrum Noir pens in PP2 and BP1. I attached them to the card with Hi-Tack glue.

To add a bit of bling I used my Wink of Stella GL.VIOLET 080 on the purple flowers in the image.

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I hope you like this card and maybe it inspired you for your own card making. What did you get up to for Mothering Sunday? Wishing you a good week ahead!

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

 

Lose yourself to dance

Now that she is at Grammar School, my eldest niece has become a complete ‘tweenager’ and her younger sisters are ‘so childish’ and she is desperate to be seen as a big girl, so I had to make her a birthday card that wasn’t ‘girly’, but more refined/edgy/grown up. All three of my Nieces love their dance lessons. Last month my eldest Niece performed in a dance show that was put on by her school – the children from all years (11-18 years old) were given the opportunity to either dance, choreograph, do lighting and sound or costumes and the show was amazing. Because of her love of dance I decided to make my her this card with a dance theme.

I like the song by Daft Punk called ‘Lose yourself to dance’, so I thought it would be a really nice sentiment to use on a card. Unfortunately I don’t have that sentiment as a stamp, so I used my new Crafter’s Companion ‘Contemporay Alphabet’ dies to create the sentiment from some white card.

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Everything on this card is a die-cut! I have seen the Tonic Fairy dies used on cards with bits cut out to make them appear as women rather than faries and so I used both the ‘Rococo Fairy Lilly’ and ‘Rococo Petites Fae Ella’ dies and snipped thier wings and flowers off to create silhouette dancing girls.

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I bought the ‘Bohemian Designer Series’ 12×12 paper pack because I loved the colour combinations. As I think the colours are lovely and the patterns are very trendy in fashion at the moment I decided to use this as my background. The Ikat pattern paper made me think of the light-up dance floor in Saturday Night Fever in the dance scene with John Travolta, so I thought it was apt for a dance-themed card. I started with an 8×8 white card base and layered the ikat pattern paper on the card front and attached the die cuts and stuck them down with Nuvo Glue Pen.

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Enjoy your weekend and I hope you get a chance to do some crafting!

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

On Sunday it will be my Granny’s 95th birthday, the card is in the post, so I thought I would share it with you. I’m afraid this post is a bit picture heavy due to all the different flowers I made for the card – sorry!

I really wanted to try out a cascade card because they look so amazing, I also wanted it to have a woodgrain base and I had some Kraft coloured Simon Says Stamp Woodgrain Cardstock that I had bought ages ago, but just admired it and not used it, so I decided to use it for this project.

Note to self: when using someone else’s instructions for the first time, keep them right next to you instead of attempting to remember what they said or you WILL cut a slit in the wrong place and have to start all over again… AHEM!

So… with my kraft woodgrain base all slotted into place I started work on the front panel. I used Whisper White card stock and die cut the floral frame from the Samantha Walker Spellbinders Shapeabilities ‘Botanical Swirls and Accents’ set and used Pistachio Pudding, Crisp Cantaloupe and Strawberry Slush stampin’ write markers to colour the embossed design. I also die cut the leaves/branch from the same set in Pistachio Pudding card. I used the Memory Box Parker Numbers dies to cut 9 and 5 from Pistachio Pudding card. I used Hi-Tack glue to attach the branches behind the frame and Quicky Glue Pen to attach the numbers to the cut out. I wanted to be able to open and close the card easily so I didn’t want to attach the frame to both front sections of the cascade base, so the frame was attached with Hi-Tack glue to the left half of the card, and the cut out was attached to the right half, so the two halves could still move independantly.

For the back of the card I cut a piece of white card to fit on the right hand panel and stamped the ‘Happy birthday’ sentiment from the Waltzingmouse ‘Say it With Style’ stamp set and used roll-on glue to attach it to the back panel before too many flowers were added to the front panels and it would have been difficult to write on.

I used the four small flower shapes from the Crative Expressions ‘Camellia – Complete Petals’ dies to cut lots of flowers from Calypso Coral cardstock. I used the Heartfelt Creations Deluxe Flower Shaping Kit to make them more dimentional, then added some nuvo Crystal Drops in ‘Buttermilk’ to the centres and left them to dry overnight. I also used the ‘Camellia – Complete Petals’ smaller leaves dies to cut some leaves from Pistachio Pudding card stock and attached these and the flowers to the card base with Hi-Tack glue.

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When I saw the Heartfelt Creations ‘Blazing Poppy Petals’ stamp with matching die I couldn’t resist, so I wanted to use them on this card. I stamped the image on parchment in Memento Tuxedo Black ink and used my heat tool to dry the ink, then cut out the shapes with the die in my Grand Calibur. I coloured the petals with the chisel nib of my Spectrum Noir PP4 pen, which didn’t dry very nicely – a bit blotchy, but I figured it was just the joy of homemade… Again I used the HC Deluxe Flower Shaping Kit to add dimention to the petals, then used Hi-Tack to hold the petals together (so glad I did – parchment is not keen on sticking!!!) When the glue had dried I added a generous blob of nuvo Crystal Drops in ‘Ebony Black’ and sprinkled on a few black Rocailles, then left this to set overnight. I punched some leaves from Mossy Meadow card using the leaf punch in Ruth Hamilton’s Pick of the Bunch punch and stamp set ‘ Rose – Pansy – Camellia – Gardenia’, shaped them, glued a few toghether, then attached them with the parchment poppies to the bigger panels towards the back of the card.

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Having taken the leaf punch from the Pick of the Bunch set out, I figured I’d keep going so I created two pansies coloured with Spectrum Noir pens in OR2 and FL3.

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I had wanted to have a butterfly on the card somewhere because the Red Admirals and Peacocks are out in force in my Mother’s garden. I used a Martha Stewart punch to get a black outline, then stuck it to some parchment with Hi-Tack glue and when the glue had dried I coloured in the sections with DR4, then cut the parchment around the edges of the butterfly and stuck it to the card base.

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As per usual I had been taking my time, doing a bit here, a bit there, and suddenly I needed to post the card this week and the left side of the card was finished, the right… not so much – eek!! So, my lastminute.com nature kicked in and I decided to make some really quick and simple bits to stick on the panels – I had been planning to make roses, but that would have taken too long!

I used the Wplus9 ‘Fesh Picked’ stamps and matching dies to make some strawberries and leaves for the back panel. The flowers on the middle panel are the sepal punch from the Pick of the Bunch set punched in white with a dot of nail varnish in the middle, the leaves are Sizzix Susan’s Garden (658413) cut from Lucky Limeade.

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Phew!

Wishing you a lovely weekend, I hope you have some sun to get out in and enjoy!

DSC01403DSC01401Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree

I saw the Rococo Faries dies on a certain craft selling TV channel & had to have them (and in just the click of a button my Tonic die collection has tripled!). My eye was taken by this stunning card by Karen on the Tonic Studios blog – I just think it’s amazing! So I hold my hands up and fully admit that this card is essentially a total rip-off of the card Karen made, but I just had to have something that lovely in my life!

I loved the star trails arranged in a kind of infinity circle, but I wanted it in a ‘night time’ colour scheme so I could have stars & the Luna die together. I decided to use grey, dark navy and Centura Pearl Snow White Hint of Silver card stock. I already had the Celtic Dream Layering Die so I got to work on making the ‘base’ by cutting the second largest circle from two Centura Pearl sheets of card and one from the dark Navy. Next I tried the slightly more tricky bit of lining up the outside circle with the Celtic cut out bit on the grey card. Next I cut the smaller circle from Centura Pearl and the Celtic shape from Grey. I die cut 5 star trails from dark Navy and another 5 from Centura Pearl. Last but not least I cut Luna and the ‘Dream’ from the Inspirations Sentiment set from both Centrura Pearl and dark Navy. Phew! I had a bit of a sore arm after all that die cutting – such a shame it’s a workout for one arm only!

To construct the card I layered the grey cut out on the Dark Navy solid panel, let the Hi-Tack glue set. I also adhered the grey on top of the white Centura Pearl. In order to get the infinity star trail I turned the dark Navy cut outs around so the ‘back’ was facing outwards (this goes against my OCD so I would never have been able to create this card without the inspiration from Karen!) I had to cut off bits of the central star so there wasn’t a massive raised bit in the middle and used Hi-Tack glue to stick them all together to the central star, then I glued them down to the middle of the smaller grey Celtic circle.

This time with the Centrua Pearl Star Trails I again adhered them all to the central star so they became one piece, but added foam pads under the die so it would pop above the Navy Star Trails. Lining them all up so the central stars overlapped was fiddly, but I got there!

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I covered the back of the smaller Celtic circle with foam sticky pads and stuck it in the middle of the larger circle. I added the drops of White Opal Liquid Pearls to the outer Celtic circle, then set it aside to dry.

Whilst the Liquid Pearls were drying I started work on the circle easel card (I’ve always wanted to try one!) one of the Centura Pearl ‘circles’ was scored so it would hing on the bottom of the easel and hold the Celtic circles in place, then the hinge was attached to the base with Hi-Tack glue.

Later when the Liquid Pearls were dry I attached the Circles to the easel base and I almost had a card – woo hoo! I attached the two ‘Dream’ cuts and two Luna cuts together so the ‘shadow’ was the same way, then I attached the Luna die cut at the top left of the Celtic circles, tucking it between the two layers. The ‘Dream’ sentiement will be the stop to hold the easel in place so I put it on dimentional foam pads to raise it up. I spent ages working out where I wanted it, but when I was done I was happy.

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Last, but not least, I attached a few Navy stars that were from the waste of the Star Trail dies to the base of the easel to bring it all in together.

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I hope you like my first circle easel card! I think I like it too much to give it away… Enjoy the rest of the Bank Holiday weekend (I’m afraid I’ll be working!)

Sophia Hodgson Signature Tree