My photo
A very warm welcome to my teeny, tiny part of the huge world of blogging. This is where I am hoping to share my passion for making hand made greeting cards. So - why "Always with a Heart"? Well this is for two reasons. Firstly, it is because every card I produce always carries a heart on it somewhere. This can be big and bold or small and almost hidden - the fun sometimes is just trying to find it! Secondly it is because I put my heart into everything I produce. I hope that any visitors enjoy seeing what I post. If you drop by then please leave me a comment so that I know you called. It would be nice to know that you have found my heart in what I do.

SKETCH LIBRARY

Monday, 28 December 2015

FIVE FAVOURITE CHRISTMAS CARDS OF 2015

Hi Everyone

Happy Monday .. .. it is Monday isn't it?!?!?!?  The days are yet again all mixed up LOL!!

I hope everyone has had a good Christmas.


Sadly I didn't get chance to photograph and post to my blog many of the Christmas cards I made this year .. .. they were just made and gone in a mad flurry.  But there were certainly quite a few that have become my favourites this year .. .. and will no doubt be being repeated next year too:

This one was made lots of times in various forms
and various sizes and I loved them all!

This one was a teeny, tiny Tuesday favourite using one the sketches from my library.
 Love the cute image and for me you can't beat the traditional colours of Christmas.

Another favourite I repeated a few times which used a pre-loved stamp I gained from Ebay a few weeks earlier.
Had to smile because when it arrived it ended up sold by 

someone who lives about three miles away.  

Of course Christmas isn't Christmas without a sprinkling of those cute Penny Black Hedgies!!

Just love the Stampin' Up! window die on this card 
.. .. and I am looking forward to using it again next year. 

So there we go.  My favourite Christmas cards of 2015  .. .. ..  hopefully in 2016 I will get my act together and make more throughout the year so that I am well prepared.  As always I am busy making lots of rash New Year Resolutions ready for the weekend  -  lots of things I need to improve on!!

Yesterday was the wedding day of my lovely Snowflake bride.  No real snowflakes for her but hopefully a day filled with special memories for lots of people.

Enjoy the rest of your Christmas break.

Love

Friday, 25 December 2015

HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE !

Hi Everyone

Well, Christmas Day is here and Santa will have been off-loading his sleigh with goodies for all those who have been good.

Have a lovely time everyone .. .. and for all those I know (and even those I don't) who will be struggling over the next few days .. .. please know that I will be thinking of you often and wishing I could make things different for you.  If I had a magic wand it would be working overtime so everyone could have their Christmas wishes come true.

Thank you to everyone who has called by my blog and left lovely comments or sent encouraging emails .. .. you are all very kind especially considering that this year I have struggled a little to keep my little blog active as the wedding work has been so busy, and struggled even more to keep up with what everyone else is doing.  

To finish, here is a single shot of the last Christmas card I made in 2015 .. .. dedicated to all the lovely visitors to my teeny, tiny part of blogland (and if you can spot the heart you have done very, very well indeed!).


Take care everyone and enjoy this special time.

Love



p.s.  The package didn't arrive :-(   -   so much for ordering early for Christmas!!

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

OK .. .. PANIC OVER

Hi Everyone

Happy Wednesday, and happy Christmas Eve Eve!!

OK .. .. so the panic is over. 

A calmer and more relaxed atmosphere is starting to descend on the House of Hearts and we are "nearly" ready .. .. .. .. but keeping our fingers crossed that the post lady delivers a package we ordered last month in readiness for Christmas.  We have come to the conclusion that the original one that they posted out went astray so a second has been dispatched. Oh .. . I do hope it arrives.  Two more chances!!!  (Nah .. .. not today .. .. just one more chance now!!)

My lovely Snowflake bride has been and collected all of her wedding goodies ready for her big day on Sunday .. .. we only just managed to get everything loaded into her car.  In fact at one stage we thought it was going to take two trips LOL!!

Mr Heart broke up for Christmas yesterday, finishing with his works Christmas lunch .. .. .. so in a rash moment of madness (or was it envy?) I decided I deserved an office party of my own so took myself and my wedding website designer (aka my youngest Son) out for our own "works Christmas lunch". We really enjoyed it. I think that's the beauty of last minute surprises.

Then off to Mum to deliver her parcels and this card I made  for her:




This used:

Memory Box Die:  Snowflake Heart
Computer Generated Sentiment
Pink Petticoat Backing Papers
Glitter card in silver and aqua
Aqua Glitter
Ribbon, Pearls and a Gem from my crafty stash box

Not quite my last Christmas card.  Just one more to make for a lovely lady we are going to visit this afternoon.  An amazing lady in her 90's who just loves to receive a handmade card .. .. and after giving them to her for years she would wonder what had happened if she didn't get one this year.

Sadly I haven't been able to do the same for everyone this year .. .. must get something in place to make sure they are done good and early next year!!!  (Famous last words no doubt!!).

Love


Friday, 18 December 2015

PANIC !!

Hi Everyone

Happy Friday . .. nearly the weekend!

Today is always the day that starts panic in the House of Hearts .. .. .. as today is Mr Heart's birthday .. .. .. which means that this time next week it will be Christmas Day!  So close and yet still so very much to fit in!! 

Having said "panic sets in" ... .. .. I have to admit that I think that only applies to me!  Christmas always just seems to happen for everyone else in a lovely relaxed manner .. .. whereas I set myself up with a huge list of  things I want to get done.  Perhaps one day I will learn how to "get ahead of the game"  .. .. but I somehow doubt it if I haven't managed it after all these years.  Even if I was all up to date I would think of something else "I really want to get done"!!!  LOL!! .

But one huge thing I don't need to worry about this year is the Christmas dinner! This year I am having it cooked for me! Yay!!! Treat of treats!!

Anyway, here is the card I made for Mr H's birthday using another pre-loved Penny Black stamp I gained recently.




This used:

Image:  Penny Black "1587K" So Glad to Catch You!
Sentiment:   Docrafts Papermania "Relations" and a computer generated one too
Backing Papers:  Craft Sensations by Grafix "It's a men's World"
Die-Namics Die:  Blueprints 14
Silver Embossing Powder
ProMarkers
Metallic Cord

and that is it!!  Happy Birthday Mr Heart!!

I was asked what I had used to make the small star hole in the Christmas tags I posted on Tuesday .. .. it is a Fiskars star hand punch that I have had for many years that looks like this and is super strong. It punches through the front and back of a folded tag in one go:
I find it really useful .. .. along with another one that punches a tiny heart LOL!!

Right time to get started on the day - I have an order to finish and get into the post today .. .. .. not looking forward to the queue at the Post Office!!!

Have a good one everyone and I hope to catch you again soon.

Love

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

CHRISTMAS TAGS - FOR TEENY TINY TUESDAY

Hi Everyone

I hope life is treating you well .. .. .. and that you are "on-track" for a lovely Christmas.

Lots happening here and I seem to be juggling rather a lot of missions at the moment .. .. .. but I am enjoying each and every one of them so that is good!  I could just do with Christmas being another couple of weeks away!!

What a shame I need to sleep.  It feels like such a waste of time LOL!!

Anyway, just about all of the Christmas presents are bought .. .. they now just need wrapping and delivering .. .. .. but as always you get the Christmas tag box out and you only ever find the odd one or two "naff ones" left over from last year.  

So this morning I decided a little bit of Teeny Tiny Tuesday could be utilised in making a little batch of tags. Not the fantastic, super duper artistic tags that Mr Holtz specialises in .. .. just quick and simple ones .. .. 

The first two sets use a couple of Papermania metal stencils that my local craft shop were selling off as a "buy one get one free" offer.  I stencilled through them with some Sparkle Medium from Imagination Crafts.



But the favorite type, which I make every year are these little beauties.  



They are made by adding a strip of wrapping paper down the edge, which uses up the offcuts, but also means they will match a wrapped gift perfectly, It also reduces those peel offs that I have had for years! It amazes me how they are still super sticky after all this time.  (I am sure they multiply when I am not looking!).  

So there we go .. .. an appearance from the House of Hearts!  Shock horror!!!

I am in the middle of wedding work for my Snowflake bride at the moment.  Not long until her special day now!!  My last bride of 2015 .. .. and everything needs to be ready for collecting at the weekend. 

Enjoy the rest of your evening everyone.

Hopefully catch you again soon.

Love

Thursday, 3 December 2015

BERRY TREE

Hi Everyone

Happy Thursday!

I hope December has got off to a good start for you.

I am still in full on Christmas and wedding mode with work once again spread out all over the house!!

The kitchen is in use as it is the best place for cutting card to size ready for printing.  The worktops are at just the right height. I cut all my own card for wedding work as I haven't yet found anywhere that cuts everything perfectly square (much to my cost). Things only have to be a millimeter out to make things look completely not right .. .. but then I am ultra picky!! I feel I will never have a wedding couple that will be harder to please than me!! LOL!!

Mr Heart kindly agreed to me taking over the back bedroom earlier this year for wedding work .. .. and that is lined up with finished and part done wedding work.  I chip away at the weddings each day.

But Christmas becomes a mission all of its own.  I become like a kid in a sweet shop as most of my Christmas supplies get put away and only come out as the Christmas panic starts.  I buy Christmas goodies in the sales and stash them away ready for the excitement of festive creations.  So once production starts I delve into everything and make an almighty mess and the day always starts with a good tidy up before I can begin creating.. .. .. .. and today it seemed like a good idea to spread all the Christmas supplies out on our bed so I am not rummaging about and tripping over all the bits that get stacked on the floor ..  .. mmmmm... not sure Mr Heart will agree when he sees another room temporarily taken over!

I could read his mind earlier this week when he came home to find the kitchen piled up with stacks of cut card.  I just knew he was thinking "I thought being allowed the back bedroom was supposed to have kept everything up-stairs" .. .. but of course he didn't say anything.  He is super laid back.   I just apologised and commented about the worktop height being perfect for card cutting (and was secretly hoping that one day the back room can have something of an equal height).

Ooo.. .. and the dining room table has wedding supplies on it !!  But the bathroom is clear!  No crafty supplies in there (well except for a brayer that has had a clean and is having an air).

But hey .. . it shows I am keeping myself busy LOL!!

So after all of that .. .. a quick share of a card I really enjoyed making  .. .. I just love this card so much and am hoping to start a production line of them with different sentiments sometime next week (or the week after for the extra late Christmas makes!!).

So here we go:




This used:

Image:  Penny Black "4342K" Berry Tree
Sentiment:  Pink Petticoat 
Backing Paper:  First Edition Paper "Silent Night"
Distress Ink:  Stormy Sky
Stickles:  Xmas Red and Diamond
White Gel Pen
Ribbon from my crafty stash box

and that is it!  Probably a bit heavy handed with my water splodges but I think it looks OK.

Time to get cracking again .. .. still lots to cross off lots of lists .. .. but before I go I just wanted to share my official badge which arrived twice with two congratulations emails yesterday.  Woo hoo!


If you want to vote and be in with a chance of winning a crafty prize then tootle off to www.britishcraftawards.com .. .. you have until midnight on the 17th December to be "in it to win it". .. .. and if your favourite isn't listed then there is always an option of "other" where you can type in your own nominee.

The badge actually came with lots of other images etc for posting onto Facebook and Twitter but much to the disappointment of my lovely young wedding couples, I don't do any of those things .. .. it takes me all my time to keep my blog and website happy!! LOL!!

Right, Christmas songs on the radio and time to get the glitter out again!! 

Have a good day and I'll catch you soon hopefully.

Love

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

TEENY TINY TUESDAY

Hi Everyone

I hope your day has gone well.

The weather has been a little bit nicer here today .. .. with even a glimpse of a little winter sunshine and blue sky!

Today's share is a Teeny Tiny 3.5 x 3.5" Christmas card .. .. made with the help of Sketch Number Twenty One!  At last an opportunity to actually use it!!




This used:

Image:  Penny Black "Transparent 30-017" Holly Day Critters
Sentiment:  Computer Generated using font Angsana New
Backing Papers:  First Edition Paper "Vintage Noel"
Nestabilities:  Classic Ovals
ProMarkers
My Trusty Sewing Machine
Aspire Dekromounts Small Snowflake covered in Glamour Dust
Pearl and Gems from my crafty stash box
and that neglected sketch from my little library  .. ..


Time to be designing number twenty two!!

OK back to work .... my list is getting longer instead of shorter!!

Have a lovely evening.

Love

Sunday, 29 November 2015

SUNDAY SNIPPETS

Hi Everyone

I hope life has been being kind to you since my last appearance here in blogland.

All mega busy this end, hence my lack of posts.  My feet don't seem to be touching the ground at the moment .. .. and I swear blind that someone actually stole a whole week out of November!!!  Shame on them!!!

Christmas cards and wedding creations are top of the list at the moment and as I can't show you current wedding work I thought I would share a Christmas card that I put together this morning using a gorgeous pre-loved Penny Black stamp that I have took ownership of a couple of weeks ago called Snowy Park.  It has been sitting patiently waiting to be played with and today was the day .. .. .. yay!! Love it!!

So here we go:




I am taking this over to Pixie's Snippets Playground too as I managed to use up a few offcuts of card that hadn't even made their way into storage.  

On a Sunday (when I do manage to post) I am lazy and don't list my ingredients but if there is anything you want to know just give me a shout and I will do my best to help.

Enjoy your day everyone.  Super windy here and we have had so much rain that Mr Heart has had to empty the water butts .. .. AGAIN!!  Thank goodness it is only rain falling because if each raindrop had been a snowflake then I hate to think how much snow would be piled up!

Off to make more Christmas cards .. .. I only need another hundred or so .. .. eeeekkkk!!!!!!

Love

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

THANK YOU AND A NEW SKETCH

Hi Everyone

Just wanted to pop by to thank everyone for all the lovely comments and emails I received after my post at the weekend.

You are all very kind and your lovely words are very much appreciated.

Have to admit that the excitement of it all has been rather dampened following all the awful happenings in the world at the moment. Scary times to say the least!!  Who would want to be Prime Minster ?!?!?! (Mind you I wouldn't want to be Prime Minister at ANY time.  How would I pull my cardmaking in then?  Would I be allowed to take a bit of colouring into the meetings?  I doubt it very much LOL!!)

I did pop a new sketch into my library yesterday in the hope of being able to put it to use on a Teeny, Tiny card but sadly time wasn't kind enough to even let me make a card of those small proportions. In fact if I get to use it this side of the weekend I will be very surprised.

Can you believe the weddings for next year are kicking in already .. .. sample requests and proof copy invites coming out of my ears .. .. along with Christmas orders.  Eeeeekk!!!  

So now I have said how much I need to do I had better go and get on with it all!

Here is the new sketch that I added yesterday .. .. some of you might use it before I do!


I am really pleased people are enjoying using them. Wish I had started doing these years ago as it has certainly made for faster cardmaking for me.

Have a good day everyone .. .. catch you again soon (hopefully).

Love

Saturday, 14 November 2015

KNOCK ME DOWN WITH A FEATHER

Hi Everyone

Well I am here with some amazing news to share today that has made me feel "all giggly" inside.

Some of you may remember that last year I was surprised to be nominated in the British Craft Awards under the category of "Most Inspirational Blog" .. .. .. well knock me down with a feather it has happened again this year!  


It was totally unexpected, and once again I am nominated alongside names who I consider to be the Premier League of crafting  .. .. ..  whereas I am a Sunday League player.  Just look at the amazing folk nominated.. .. .. .. 


Barbara Gray  -  One Day at a Time
Anne-Marie Catterall  -  Crafting with Hunky Dory
Sue Wilson  -  PartiCraft
American Crafts Studio
Spectrum Noir
then .. .. .. lil' old me with my Always with a Heart blog


but looking through all the categories and nominees I then had the surprise of my life to see I had been nominated a second time under the category of "Favourite Card Designer".  To be nominated once was already amazing but to be in two categories is awesome.  Mr Heart confirmed that I was his Favourite Card Designer so that was good news!

My lovely fellow nominees in this category are:


Jane Millard
Simonne Clay
Fleur Pearson
Jenny Hodges
Charlotte Stowell
and again .. .. lil' old me


Now at this point you might be thinking .. .. .. but my favourite isn't listed in either of those sections. .. .. well that's OK .. .. .. there is a final line in each category called "Other" and that is where you will get the chance to type in your own choice.

Like me you have perhaps wondered how people actually get on these lists in the first place.  Well apparently people have been asked on social media about their favourite designers, craft stores and products and the answers were used to compile a shortlist for all the different categories .. .. .. .. so "thank you" to anyone who mentioned my name and got me onto the short list. You are very kind.

I know that everyone says "I don't expect to win" .. .. but that is truly, truly true .. .. because probably like every other crafting person out there I never feel my work measures up and I am always striving to be better and learn more.  But I am loving this journey so very much and I feel the day you think you know it all would be a very sad day.  I never ever want to know it all .. .. I always want to keep playing, learning and experimenting.

Anyway, voting is now open until the 17th December and if you would like to take part then just head over to here and cast your votes and you will be automatically entered into a draw to win over £200 worth of crafting goodies (might mean re-arranging your crafty stash a bit if you are the lucky winner - but that's OK isn't it?  LOL!!).

So there we go .. .. my exciting news is out .. .. but now back to earth.  Time to make friends with Mr Dyson and Mr Sheen ahead of meeting up with a new "happy couple" later today.

Catch you soon and have a good weekend.

Love

Thursday, 12 November 2015

PHOTO OVERLOAD

Hi Everyone

I hope you are all well and finding a bit of crafty time for yourself.

We have a glimmer of sunshine today .. .. what a treat after the rubbish weather we have had recently.

Sorry I didn't make it as far as my blog yesterday . .. . it was a super busy day and it is looking like today is going to be the same, with orders to complete and wedding samples to make for couples interesting in booking for next year!  Woo hoo!!  Names already going into the 2016 Wedding Diary!!

So as I just know today is going to disappear in the blink on an eye I thought I would post my favourite makes from the new Quick Cards Made Easy Magazine that went on sale yesterday.

I worked on two commissions, the first being sequin shaker cards.  I loved this commission and here are two of my favourites:



and the following two pictures were my favourites for a Metallics Commission



Separate to Quick Cards Magazine I also did some work for a special Christmas Magazine that is out now .. Make Christmas Cards.  



a bumper pack of goodies included with this magazine and here are my three favourite submissions:





A bit of photograph overload I'm afraid .. .. .. but at least it gives you lots of hearts to look for .. .. some of which are not quite as easy to spot as others!!  LOL!!!

.. .. .. and for you Facebook fans .. .. Quick Cards are giving folk the chance to win prizes in their 12 days of Christmas giveaways. Head over here if you fancy testing your luck out - they are already on day 6!!  Always lots happening on their page so you might have to scroll down a bit.

Enjoy your day.  I hope it is sunny for you too.

Catch you tomorrow.

Love

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

TEENY, TINY TUESDAY

Hi Everyone

Happy Tuesday .. .. I hope you have had a good day.

Here with my teeny, tiny 3.5" creation which uses a fabby sentiment stamp I found on Ebay the other weekend .. .. I am sure when you look at it you will know why I am so happy at having won it.  I can't say as I have ever seen it before .. .. but it is perfect for my little cards.

I love looking on Ebay to see what Penny Black stamps are being parted with because quite often they are ones that are no longer available anywhere else.  

So here we go .. .. my teeny, tiny card and fabby new stamp:




This used:

Sentiment  Penny Black "3669F" Birthday Wish
Backing Papers:  Snippets of Pink Petticoat Papers
Die Set:  Die-namics Blueprints 12
My Trusty Sewing Machine
Glamour Dust
Josy Rose:  Nail Heads
Button and Metallic cord from My Crafty Stash Box
We R Memory Keepers Envelope Board for the envelope made with Pink Petticoat papers that had been printed onto both sides of  thick paper.

Ooooo . .. I love that stamp and my Sis will think it is brilliant too when she sees it.

.. .. and because I have used up a few of my mountain of snippets I am going to take a rather rare trip over to Pixie's Snippets Playground challenge .. .. thankfully I can remember the way!! 

Catch you again soon.

Love