Hi, Thanks for dropping by.

My name is Eileen but to friends in the card making world I'm known as 'ikki'. (which is pronounced I-KEY) From where or how this came about I'm not sure - it just got shorten from my original craft name of Ikemo by various friends along my crafting way! I started crafting whilst recouperating from an accident, and from my first attempts with peeloffs and paint - I was hooked! Now my passion is my BUG! and now BEADING!

In the Cupboard you will find ideas, news, tips and techniques to help you get more from this fab little machine. So come in - join the fun and Cuttle with me!

Thursday 31 March 2011

Tippy Thursday

Hi folks, when I got up this morning I had a list of "to do's" - big mistake! Just about everything has gone off plan starting with a visitor who wanted to chat, and drink tea! Then I remembered I had a Golden Wedding card to start for tomorrow - and on.....and on.... still I'm here at last and this is my card.... 

The Cuttlebug alphabet is excellent for adding that personal touch and on a mottled beige cardstock the Crafts 2 You heart folder shows up really well.    The centre panel doesn't show up well, which is a pity because  the centre heart is  made of beads.  Not made by me I hasten to add, something I found in my stash from an age ago - Surprising what you find when you start looking through boxes!

Which brings me to the lace stamp that I used in the LIM challenge - Sorry, I have no idea of the maker - it was a buy off Ebay and something else I found in a box not used before -  I have a lead and will try to follow it up but suspect it's very old and out of production.

Something that is going to be in PRODUCTION VERY SOON IS CHOCOLATE BAROQUE.  Yes, Glenda is going live tomorrow - if you pop back around lunchtime I will be able to give you the link so you can join in the celebrations! 

I will also be doing the draw for the Diamond  Card Crafts Mandala Board  so today is your last chance to put your name in the hat. 

Wednesday 30 March 2011

Using your Eazi Scoreboard

I recently received from Phyllis, the owner of Diamond Card Crafts, instructions on how to make this fab notelet box using the Eazi Scoreboard (from an original idea by Ann Smith )with silver Mirri Card also with 3 A6 cards

grid lines, flower and butterfly design

Using grid lines and flower design
grid lines, flower and diamond design

To make the box: 

A4 Card - score all around on Box 2 (1" line) then mark centre and bottom of card on line 7... move this line in-between lines 3 and 4 - score both (this is the spine of your box)

then cut a 'V' out along all corner scored lines as you would for making a box - adhere glue and stick.... the centre section (where you scored lined 3 and 4) cut up to the horizontal (box 2 line)

A6 cards will fit nicely into your notebook.
  Thanks Phyllis for this super idea which would make a lovely gift.
Diamond Card Crafts are donating one of their Mandala Boards to one lucky crafter - you have until 3lst March to put your name in the hat here

I have received this message from Rita, but unfortunately I have no experience of this problem. CAN ANYONE ANSWER THIS?

"Hi, I have the Big Shot Express (due to dexterity problems) and am wondering if any one who as this machine as trouble with the Marianne creatables I broke one on Sunday it cracked when going through the machine.I have a few and am now nervous about using them and Ikki'scards are so lovely. Rita."

Tuesday 29 March 2011

Would you - Could you HELP?

I saw this appeal over on the LIM challenge blog and thought what a wonderful idea! 

"St Luke's Charity Cards Challenge

A monthly cardmaking challenge supporting a Sheffield hospice through the donation of handmade cards to sell.

What is St Luke's Hospice?
St Luke's is a hospice which cares for people aged 18 and above throughout Sheffield who have incurable illnesses. Their aim is always to control the patients symptoms, alleviate pain, and give them the best possible quality of life – all free of charge. It costs £6 million per annum to keep St Luke's open, and government funding, via NHS trusts only provides one third of the funds required, which means the Hospice has to raise a staggering £4 million each year to provide this vital end-of-life care.

This challenge was set up by a St Luke's Supporter who has seen first hand, the amazing care given to patients through St Luke's. The aim is to promote the good work of the charity, provide a fun and welcoming challenge community in which card makers and crafters can come back month after month to play in our challenges, and by sending their cards to the charity, provide a little something to help them keep their doors open.

So, if you feeling creative and want to play along with us, please do - no matter what your age or ability, all are welcome, and if you can "spare" the card you make too, then all the better :-) THANK YOU!"

A couple of years ago I had a breast cancer scare but fortunately  further tests proved negative - I was lucky but both my parents were not and I lost them both to cancer. After my experience I made an appeal to my crafting friends to donate a card to the North Staffs Breast Cancer Unit and received your wonderful support and your donations raised £400 for the benefit of future patients, so now I want to offer my support. If you would like to know more about the charity cards challenge in aid of St Lukes Hospice please follow this link.  Hope you'll feel able to join me, as crafters we can help in a big way.

Monday 28 March 2011

Less is More Challenge Week 8

This week's challenge over on Less is More is to use a DL sketch card - I thought at first - okay not too hard!  However, I was wrong because although I thought I had conquered the white space on square or A5 cards, the amount of space hanging about on this size made me quite uneasy.   Having searched about for a stamp that would be suitable and would you believe finding none that I fancied or just right, (I'm sure you will know what I mean!!!!!)  I decided to try to use a couple of old favourites in a different way along with a never used stamp and a new Nellie Snellen die. 
My collection of this and that - made this
The lace border I stamped in Black on white card and cut out - it surprised me how much like lace it looks!
 The NS Eastern die No.2 - makes a perfect mat for the
Nestie Large Classic circle No3 die
I cropped the Hampton Art stamp and coloured with Marvy Le Plume pens (also forgotten and unused for ages)
  The See D's rose I stamped onto shrink plastic (guess what? - yes, another much underused purchase)
I feel rather chuffed with my finished card ....

I love this stamp but had grown tired of using it, but by cropping the image it looked completely different and revitalized!
Another lesson learnt from the LIM challenge - there life in the old dog stamp yet -  thanks ladies you are doing a great job making me think and look in the cupboard at my forgotten stash! 
Mind you, you didn't managed to stop me buying at the NEC yesterday, but then I wasn't alone was I Chrissie!

Sunday 27 March 2011

Draw for a Mandala Reflections Board

As promised the other day, due to the generousity of Diamond Card Crafts I have a free draw for you of one of their boards.  This is the Mandala Reflections Board......

The Reflections board was designed to be used with card, paper or parchment allowing you to make beautiful cards, toppers and tags. Now you can make stunning paper crafting projects by adding layers and dimension.  There are 26 shapes on the board, it's easy to use and you can either emboss straight on to your card or round a stamped image.

The board will be highlighted on Create and Craft's Paper Clinic on Monday morning in their 11am to 1pm. show.  This is a card was made by Phyllis the owner of DCC on a previous C&C show and illustrates how effectively you can use the board.
I think that if you like matting and layering and don't have the dies you need, this board is a brill alternative. 

If you would like the chance of winning this prize, you can have up to 3 entries!

1) Just leave a comment at the end of this post for 1 entry

2) Become a follower of the Cupboard and leave another comment stating "follower" for your 2nd entry. (If you already follow the Cupboard, please still leave me another comment so you get your second entry)

3) Post a link of the draw on your blog and leave another comment stating "link" for a 3rd go.

You have until Thursday 3lst March when I will close the draw and use the random generator to pick a winner. Good Luck!

Thanks Diamond Card Crafts for donating this super gift.

Friday 25 March 2011

Bunny Hop Day 5 - March 25th

Links for todays Bunny Hop

Jerri Jimenez

Julie Overby

Be lucky!

Sandwich Recipe for Embossing without magnetic mat

Following my post yesterday:

To make an embossed shape on card without using an magnetic mat and without cutting the card you would used the following......

The sandwich for the Bug:  A / tan mat / card / die cut side down / possible shim(s) / 2 B plates

For the JT:  A (white plate)  / black mat / card / die cut side down / B (black plate)

Hope you find this helpful.  I will post this info on Embossing Page, or you could check the labels sections.

Spellbinder Bunny Hop Day 4

March 24th - Spellbinder Bunny Hop Day 4
Sherry Cheever

Beth Ping

Thursday 24 March 2011

Tippy Thursday - using Nestabilities to emboss a frame

First of all I want to thank you all for your lovely supportive comments that I have received over the last few weeks.  That you  find the Cupboard interesting and informative was my objective and to think that it is makes my work very satisfying and also rewarding.  So, my thanks everyone as I've said many times - the Cupboard would be a lonely place without you!

I also have PeeJay to thank for letting me know that I have lost a day! No wonder the draw for the Spellbinders Bunny Hop was closed on Tuesday - I have lost this plot completely - but I have been able to leave comments today on nunutoolies.blogspot.com/ and embellished-dreams.blogspot.com/.but don't leave it too long!

On Tippy Thursday I try to answer any questions I have received over the week.  Yesterday I received a comment from Rita asking how I had done something - it also baffled me for awhile until I realised that the post referred to a tutorial way back in April last year.  I called  the tutorial Double Embossing......

and the effect was achieved with a magnetic mat and a tan embossing mat.  The link to the tutorial is here.

As it happens, I have just completed a Chocolate Baroque DT sample with the same type of double embossing only on the JT machine WITHOUT a magnetic mat.  As yet it's under wraps, but I will try to do a post tomorrow if possible to show you how you can do this should you not have a magnetic mat.

Wednesday 23 March 2011

New Spellbinder dies in stock

I have just received a message from my supplier, Liz at Make a Lasting Impression that some of the new Spellbinder dies are in stock.  At £13.99 for tags and £15.50 for Nesties (POST FREE for UK) this is a very good price if you are looking to buy.   Have a look - but don't blame me if you're tempted - I was!
This link will take you to the right place....


Enjoy. ikki

Spellbinder Bunny Hop - Day 2

It would seem that the comments for the draw have closed, but there is some love work to view.

Debbie designs


Tuesday 22 March 2011

Spellbinders Bunny Hop - Day 1

Spellbinders Bunny Hop - March 21 to 25th starts today.....there will be 2 posts each day.....check out these links for todays opportunities to win the dies illustrated.

Linda Duke
Holly Simoni

Apart from the opportunity to win....you get to see the Spellbinders DT at work and how they are using their dies.


PS: Have you seen the free draw for the Mandala board?  Check out the link on my side bar.

Monday 21 March 2011

Less is More - Challenge week 7

Hi, I have been a bit short of inspiration and energy over the last week, but managed to pull something together for this week's challenge from LIM - a masculine card.......

The sentiment is from Hero Arts (H4938) which I bought 12 months ago from the NEC  - another one of those purchases which I just had to have at the time and which has sat on the shelf since looking at me waiting to be used for the first time! 

You will perhaps recognise the car from the new Chocolate Baroque miniature stamps Curiosities.
The trees are from the EI Tall Tree theme plate (UA5SP0252)

To get this effect I stamped the car on scrap paper, then cut-out the image to use as a mask.
After stamping the car in Brown Archival ink on a piece of cream hammer card, I heat embossed the image with a clear embossing powder, placed the mask over the image and then stamped and heat embossed the trees as a background.   I love the effects you can get with this masking techique!

I used a Classic Large Oval die (size 2) to cut out the image.  By leaving the cut in the die, you can embossed the edge with a embossing pen, and  also use the die as a stensil to colour the centre panel. 

I then cut another oval in acetate, ran this through the Bug in the distress strips folder to give a more interesting look to the embellishment, and fixed with brads.  Unfortunately this was difficult to show on a photograph but it was worth the effort because of the texture and sheen that it adds!   The Bug cuts only a medium weight acetate (have yet to try it in the JT) and embossing caused no problems.  The swirls are from Marianne designs.
Another enjoyable challenge from LIS - thanks ladies for the inspiration to get off my butt!  Now what else can I do?????

Saturday 19 March 2011

Crafters are giving a helping hand

Shaz of oz told me yesterday about Mo Manning's way of helping the people of Japan.....

"What's Cookin'? Mo has a new shop!

Update: just over 500 "What's Cookin'?" stamps have been sold for Japan and $500 dollars has already been sent to help Japan through Hands on Tokyo and GlobalGiving. Please keep spreading the word!

Not only is this little 'cook' on a limited time Sale for $1 to get you to sign up at the new shop -- but all proceeds from her while she's on Sale will be donated to help the people of Japan."

If you would like to help, check out this link :  http://digitalpenciltoo.blogspot.com/ 

Friday 18 March 2011

Friday Followers Gallery

A couple of weeks ago, Glenda over on the new Chocolate Baroque Design Team Blog offered two free download papers.  Today I wanted to show you a card made with these papers by Shaz. which I'm going to put in todays FFG.  The papers are still available to download - pop over the the CBDT Blog from the link on my sidebar to pick yours up.

Lovely card Shaz, and thanks so much for sharing your ideas with us.  You do some amazing work and your downunder blog is a pleasure to visit.

On the subject of Chocolate Baroque (formally known as Elusive Images), I have been asked by Jo-jo if  the stamps of EI are still available.  The answer is yes they are still obtainable, and once Glenda has overcome the assault course of the trails and tribulations of setting up a web site you will be able to purchase them from Chocolate Baroque.   Hopefully it will not be too long, which is exciting because the DT are working with new stamps as we speak! 

Thursday 17 March 2011

Tippy Thursday

Some news from Spellbinders - starting next Monday  for 5 days  (21st  to 25th March) there will be a Bunny Hop whereby you can visit two blogs each day and enter a draw to win the dies that are being shown on that blog.  Always worth a go - and hopefully one of us will be lucky!  I will post the link for you later.

I received a message from Jose saying that she had a problem with the Marianne Creatable Dies in that the frame cuts were difficult to get out of the die and some won't cut evenly,  also that on white card the die left a blue mark on the edge of the cut.  I have had a couple of dies that have left this blue mark, but after giving them a good scrub with a washing up brush and use, it seems to have cured the problem, but you could use a coloured card or paper, or alternatively ink the edges.  It's a shame not to use them because they are lovely designs.   However, I have noticed that new dies are made in a light blue colour, and I have not had this same problem with the one I have.  So perhaps the company has solved the problem for us.  As far as cuts getting stuck in the die - this can be a problem with any intricate die included Nesties!  You can run the die through with a wax paper this will help and will not damage/mark the card you are cutting.  If the cut is uneven it maybe that your plates are worn or warped - try placing the die in a different place than the centre, and running through a couple of times, even turning the die 90 degrees after the first cut if need be!  Getting the cut out - I use a fine needle, or a low tack tape to ease the release - and many of the die have a small hole(s) that also help - but I agree, you do have to be careful.

Jo-Jo has asked me if I have used any  folders in the JT machine other than Cuttlebug/Provocraft.  The answer is yes, but not the Creative Expressions folders - this company have a warning on their site stating that these folders are slightly thicker than others and suggest  in the Grand Calibur that instead of the embossing plate to use 8/10 sheets of A4 card.  (Starting with the lesser and working up until the pressure is sufficient on the folder without forcing the machine). This should be okay in the JT.

Thanks for dropping by, hope your day goes well. 

Thanks Shaz, I forgot to mention the about rubbing and polishing the die after running a candle over it.
Also good tip Aquarius, about the blue tac for geting the cut out.  From Tracy: an untacked 3D pad will lift out the bits, and the candle trick worked to. 
 TFS, ikki

Monday 14 March 2011

Diamond Card Crafts - Mandala Reflection Board

I was a little disappointed with C&C this morning, I don't think they showed you just how versatile this product is, so I've done a brief tutorial on how to use this board.....

you place your image upside down on the embossing side of the board, this way you can move the image about to find the shape that suits is best.

having found your shape you turn the board over and tape the image in place

I embossed this shape, but instead of cutting round the image, I used a ruler cutting from point to point.

  with cut and dry foam and a piece of card, I inked the edges

Mounted onto my card it looks as if the image is layered. 

If you haven't already entered for the draw for this  board, you will find the details below.
Be in it to win it!

Candy - Mandala Reflections Board

If you would like to see how this board works and you have the opportunity to tune into Create and Crafts - it's being demonstrated on their Paper Clinic show some time this morning between 11 and 1pm.

I hope to be able to post later, but I'm going to watch now and see what I can learn.

Sunday 13 March 2011

Less is More - Challenge Week 6

Another very challenging challenge from the Chrissie amd Mandi at Less is More - these girls certainly make you think out of the box, and now they have gone "off the edge"

This is my interpretation.....
The stamps are from Elusive Images
Brocade Backgrounds (UA4SP0239)
Birthday Words (UA5GW0257)

I have stamped the image on white slightly textured cardstock, partly off the page in Black Archival ink and heat embossed with clear EP.
To get the sentiment in the right place I have used a stamp position.

I have to say that despite my reservations of stamping straight onto the card - I love the effect!
Thanks LIM for pushing me!

Thursday 10 March 2011

Tippy Thursday - JT machine

I have today some information for you on the Joy Trouvaille A4 machine following the replies that I received from the questionnaire that some kind crafters offered to complete.

I asked the questions:

When did you purchase your machine and how long after purchase did it break or not?    The answers which in many ways good, is that all the machines that broke did so withinn the lst to 3rd time of using.  Mine broke on the 2nd.  It would seem that there was a batch of these machines on the market that had faultly gears.  One crafter told me that the company  she purchased her machine from had over 40 machines  faulty machines, and so stopped selling them!

I asked about replacement of machines or were they repaired - most were replaced, but refund of postage was a problem!  I have to say that Crafts too you (the distributor supplying my machine) did replace the gears, but I did have to do the repairs myself (or rather Dave did), and also  Liz from Make a Lasting Impression did offer to replace the machine but I chose the repair.

I asked: What operation were you doing when the machine broke?  The answers came back was - cutting a Nestie!
I also found that the machine was very stiff when embossing folders (some more that others - like sizzix and creative expressions).  I have noticed on C&C on their Grand Calibur shows that this is also a problem with this machine.  The answer they are giving (whilst waiting for Spellbinders to come up with a plate that will work - can you believe it!) is to use  8/10 sheets of A4 cardstock and the tan embossing mat instead of the top embossing plate.  Starting with the lowest and building the sandwich until you get a good impression that goes through the machine without force.  THIS IS WORTH TRYING IN THE JT if you are worried about the difficulty in embossing.  Strangely another machine that broke also had the same vicious backlash on the handle that I mention in my first review of the machine.

I asked about the instructions leaflet, was it clear and easy to use.  The answers varied, but Liz from MLI has kindly supplied a list of the sandwiches and you will find this on the embossing/die cutting pages above.  The leaftlet also mentioned using a Silicone mat in the embossing process - no one was using this, or had heard of it and no one was having problems (that is, of course, after the first machine had been replaced). 

I asked about tips for new buyers:  mark the plates yourself - double check the sandwich - never force  -Very good for maximizing use of A4 card to cut lots of shapes at one time – quicker than individually.  Also good for embossing/ cutting apertures in A5 card and  A6 opened out when you only want to emboss part of card  - great for embossing even embosses when it cuts which is a time saver and gives a very good impression - excellent if it doesn't break! - but this comment made me smile "wait for Cuttlebug to bring out an A4 machine"!  Since they haven't and did the CBv2 instead - what do they know that we don't????? 

It would seem that the machine is a bit tempermental and (like the GC and all machines) you cannot force the plates through without causing damage, but this is something we all know!  The manufacturer does not come out of this very well - I sent three emails and got no reply, even the company  selling most of the machine apparently did not get much support from them.

I hope you will find this news of interest and it will allay fears of using the machine.  I've started to use the machine again and I'm being very cautious but it is not causing any problems. Would I recommend it?  Not sure at the moment - it will take time and results.  I find if only doing a small cut or emboss - I still turn to my BUG!  Having said that the machine is very useful for cutting the Grand dies, of which only three of the smallest sizes will go through the Bug.

NB: In case I didn't, can I now make |it clear that I was offer a replacement machine by Liz, but I decided to go with the repair under no pressure. 

As an alternative to buying dies, I have a little surprise for you this weekend!?!?!?!in the way of a free draw.
Hope you will be able to drop by to see what it is.  

Tuesday 8 March 2011

Update on Embossing with a Stylus Pen

Update:  Apoligies if you have had problems viewing the tutorial on Embossing with a Stylus -  I have made an adjustment and hopefully you will be able to see it now.   If not, will someone please shout!  Thanks Jackie for alerting me. 

Less is More Challenge Week 5

At last a finished card for the LIM challenge for a pastel card.....

White, white and lavender.
  Lavender is one of my favourite shrubs in the garden.
The dies : Marianne Designs and Nestie Grand square
The stamps : from Sheena Douglas, and I'm ashamed to say both very little used!
Another challenging challenge from LIM - well done Chrissie and Mandi - you're making us think and think again about this white spaces!

Monday 7 March 2011

Top Tip - embossing with a stylus pen

Time restraints means that today I do not have the time to do my usual tutorial, BUT since I have many new readers I'm refering back to .........20th April 2009 and a tip that I consider to be my best of 2009.  It's one that you may have missed and I want you to know about it because it's soooooo useful!

Does the embossed edge on this illustration look the same? 

 One is done using the tan mat - the other with an embossing stylus. 
I often use this method of embossing the edge of a cut die - it's quick; it's just as effective; it will work on most shapes and if you haven't got a tan mat you will no doubt have a embossing pen. If you would like to see the full tutorial check out this link.

Have you ever visited this site:
http://melstampz.blogspot.com/2008/03/ive-been-bitten.html  there are over 200 ways listed on using your Bug (or any other die cutting machine), and I very proud that that some of my tips are on there including this one. 

Have a good day.

Friday 4 March 2011

Friday Followers' Gallery

Hi, Friday and time to show you more artwork from one of my readers. This work I'm delight to showcase Jo  who has made a card using one on my tutorials. 

Flippin Gardener

If you too would like to have a go at this interesting shape card - this is the link to my tutorial. which I have described as a pop up card because of the centre surprise.  Jo's card is different in that it's a different die and good use of stamps inside the card - pop over and check out her clever use of stamps.  

Thanks Jo, it's always a pleasure to see that my ideas work and I appreciate you crediting me and highlighting the Cupboard on your blog.

PS:  Message to Jacke and Dianne - I need a contact addy please.

Thursday 3 March 2011

Tippy Thursday - Joy Trouvaille A4 - New Wizard Shapeabilities Dies

JT machine update - My JT machine is working, but I'm finding that I still turn to my Bug!  Perhaps I'm just so disappointed and also cauious!  I still have not received any communication from the manufacturer, which is very disappointing that they just do not care!!  Thanks to all who replied to my request to complete a questionnaire - I will be in touch with you asap.

If you are interested in the new dies from spellbinders, pop over to Make a Lasting Impression (link on my salebar), Liz has some on sale at  £16.50 with free UK postage.  But, be warned - these are very tempting! 

I also pick up a post from Craft at Home called Big up your Bug.  Might be of interest to you and you can also from the link watch a video of using these large plates on utube.

If you have been reading my posts of WW - check out the page - see if you are going to join me.  This morning is my serious start day - on the scales this morning I have already made a loss on the last week and I think this is just due to thinking more about what I was doing and a little (I do stress I mean a little) exercise.  What a pleasant surprise to start the day!  Hope your day goes well too.