Thursday, December 20, 2012

Competition Winner

We are pleased to announce the lucky winner of our December competition is Julie Smy, she will be receiving a whole load of parchment goodies worth over £50.  We will be doing more competitions in the new year so watch out for them and don't forget to like our Facebook page
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Friday, October 12, 2012

Perforating Grids, Multi Grids & Siesta Grids Guide


As the title suggests, there are a few different grid variations to choose from.

Generally, if you are talking about a grid for parchment craft then you would be talking about a Straight Grid. This is a grid with holes all the way over it, all at equal distances from each other in vertical/horizontal lines.
There are 2 versions, fine and bold and they have different names depending on the brand of the grid. 

The only difference between the fine and the bold grids are the size of the holes, the needle you use should fit the hole nicely so when you pierce the parchment through the hole and make a perforation, it becomes a nice round perforation and every hole you make will be the same. So, if you were to use the bold grid then you will need a slightly thicker needle than the fine grid.

You will also see on the market the older type mesh grids, that are perfectly good to use although it’s more difficult to get uniform perforations because of the ‘movement’ in the mesh.
How to use a plain Grid

As you can see from the picture below, you can use a grid to make perforations in your parchment and also to emboss dots and it is exactly the same whichever grid you use. 
 If you have ever done cross stitch, counting across your pattern to work your stitches on open weave embroidery material, then you have a slight advantage for using grids as a counting method is used to transfer your pattern to your parchment exactly the same way as in cross stitch.  Saying that, it is not difficult and with a little practice you will be on your way.
To way to use a plain or diagonal grid place your parchment on the top of the grid and tape it down. Put your pattern to the side of your work so you can count the holes according to the pattern and perforate using a single needle tool .
In the following example the black dots (Fig 1) are perforations on the front of the parchment, (the white holes are just the background holes of the grid)
(Fig 2) shows where you would emboss with the PCA sun tool (Pergamano star tool) to make the circular embossed dots (on the back of the parchment) and then where you cut with the scissors to make the octagonal shaped holes shown in (Fig 3)
Then are also a multitude of various ‘fancy grids’ like the Pergamano multigrids and Siesta Grids. These are much simpler to use as they already have patterns and borders on them, eliminating the need for counting.

How to use a Multi Grid

Place your parchment on top of your grid and tape it down.
First of all you emboss the sections you would like to emboss and then turn the grid over leaving the parchment in place and perforate through the holes according to the pattern.
The example below is of Pergamano multigrid 21, available from Wightcat Crafts www.wightcat.com
It is a sampler made from the complete grid, made by my friend Maggie Byford, this is to show how the whole grid would look but also, to show how you can take parts of it for your own parchment work, not forgetting that you can make extra layers for a 3D look.
Extra samples below are from the girls in my classes, one of them used the grid to make segments to cover a box which looks fantastic. There are also a couple of cards to show how you can use it to make your own cards as well by adding glitz and glitter to give that extra bit of sparkle.











Sunday, October 07, 2012

Good News!!!


Update from Wightcat Crafts
Good news!! www.wightcat.com is back up and running, there was a technical problem with the servers so all is well. Even so, the site is very secure and no personal details are ever stored on the website so there is no risk to our customers :)

Important Information from Wightcat Crafts


Important Information from Wightcat Crafts
Someone has hacked into our website and we are trying to sort it out, please be patient, in the meantime our new website will be www.wightcatcrafts.com which will be up online within the next 48 hours. If anyone needs to contact us please email wightcat@hotmail.co.uk

Friday, October 05, 2012

Paper Folding with Pretty Papers

I love pretty papers, and we have so many pretty papers, including parchment papers and vellums, in the shop that I thought I'd play around a do some paper folding which seems to be in my mind at the moment. I happened to be surfing around the Internet...as you do....and saw something like this on my travels so thought I'd have a go with some pretty pink flower fairies vellums. I used A4 papers for the back so its actually quite large, measuring about 50cm in diameter, but of course it can be made a lot smaller and I thnk a teeny weeny one would make a great embellishment for a scrapbook page or a card, but this one is perfect to hang in the shop window.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Latest News!



Winners of the Prize Draws we had at our recent Parchment Craft Exhibitions
Harrogate Exhibition
S. Hunsley from Hull
E McCain from Tyne & Wear
Bristol Exhibition
May Neilson from Exmouth
Dawn Stephens from Finchley

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

PCA templates


I have started using the new PCA Templates, and they are so easy to use. This sample above is using the pansies from Christine Colemans pattern pack 31 using one of my favourite colouring techniques, dry pencil colouring with  fabercastell polychromos pencils  and then I used several of the PCA templates to do the surrounding border.

I used TP3102E which is a variety of different sized ovals....this one is great to be able to emboss an oval all in one go without any glitches!

Then I used the Scrolled Rectangle border TP3117E, this is the 2 outer rounded corner rectangles with the scrolls in the middle, again it has various sizes, so you could use it in the middle of a card too if you wanted.

Then I filled in with cross hatching, again using another template, Fine Cross Hatch Diagonal, TP3151E and VOILA!! My card was finished :)  Hope you like it!

Tuesday, July 03, 2012


We have started updating our website, so far this week we have added the new Perga Colours which we were lucky enough to get in time for Bristol and we now have in stock at the shop.
I have been playing with my new set and I have to say, they are really nice. There are 30 colours in the box, (10 more than the old packs) and they are also dual ended so you can get into all those tiny spaces as well.

http://www.wightcat.com/crafts/perg-pens.htm

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Things that make me go 'yum'

Sorry folks, this was Saturday's post from the shop that got missed.

Really, I wanted to share with you our display of new Parchment products. The first lot came in and whizzed out again for pre-orders, but there are some on the shelves now.

I don't really do parchment (well, ok, I don't do parchment at all). But the vellums and papers really caught my eye, and the stamps are also delicious. Can I say 'delicious' to describe stamps? They totally make me go 'yum'.

In other news, Hilary and Steve have recently been visiting trade shows and looking at new products. Crafting has changed a lot over the last few years, especially as the economy has tightened and everyone is feeling the pinch. I think we are all looking for the best value for our money, getting the best products we can as well as ways to stretch our crafting supplies. The good news is that there has been lots to see at the show, and I think our ranges in the shop will start reflecting some of these new trends and techniques - and always with an emphasis on value.

Speaking of shows, of course, we go to the trade shows as attendees because we're retailers. But if you are coming to Bristol or Harrogate (more details on our home page ) then we will be there complete with shop.

We spent this evening choosing colours for a new range of 12x12 cardstock. It's been a while since we updated and there are some fantastic tones out there. I am really excited to get my little hands on it for some scrapbook pages. Things that make me go 'yum', indeed!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Saturday at the shop

Gosh, hello there.

The last couple of weeks have whizzed past...and now we seem to be in the grip of the frozen winter that we thought we'd missed. Perfect weather for crafting, though.

I've been a bit slow on the sample front as I am now studying a new course and it's taking me a while to work out how to fit everything into my day! But that doesn't mean the shop is quiet...oh no.
FaberCastell Polychromos pencils  are restocked and now sold individually. Just the display makes me happy. There's something about colours in order, isn't there?

And this is so new it isn't even online yet...Sublime Egyptian cotton DK. I am so in love with this I can't tell you. My self-imposed yarn ban (until I finish the two projects that are currently in progress) is going to fail, I can tell you. Every single colour is beautiful, and the yarn has the most gorgeous sheen. 
In the meantime....Mindy also has new colours and patterns in Sirdar Click, and I can vouch for the feel of this yarn as I'm wearing it right now.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Kate x

Monday, January 30, 2012

Changing colours

I'm never really ahead of the curve on craft trends. It always takes me a while to get in to something, and so it took me a while to get in to Promarkers.

And while I'd heard that you can use them to re-colour other things (like gems, and peel-offs, and stickers) I had never tried it. But my friend is getting married and I'd offered to make the invitations, and on the sample I'd used a pretty pink gem. She loved it - which was great - except I ran out. 
So thank you Mum and Mindy, for reminding me that I could use a pink Promarker to turn my little clear gems into perfect pink ones.
And then I realised that the white alphabet stickers that didn't work on my scrapbook page, would look perfect if they were pink. And in doing so, completed what might be the longest scrapbook page ever. Thankfully, I love it. That perfect pink was worth waiting for.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Hunkydory Lady in Red

Some Hunkydory kits look more enticing than others, and when I first looked at the packet for these Lady in Red luxury cards I wasn't too sure how they were going to turn out.

I needn't have worried.


These kits are gorgeous. I say it every time, but the quality of Hunkydory kits is astounding. The silk cardstock is thick and glossy, and the cards are all pre-scored so they're easy to fold.  


The silver foil edging is really hard to photograph, but trust me - it looks fabulous. And I think these illustrations are really beautiful. (I love red shoes.) 


These are the pyramage cards, with four layers to each image. There are four designs in the pack.
But wait!

The leftover images from the pyramage cards....make the invertage cards.

I know it was late at night when I was putting these together, but I thought that was pretty clever.


The same four designs are repeated, and this time instead of the stepped card, you get a box and frame to put these in. Each box has a foldout piece on the back so it will stand upright, and a hook so you could even hang it on the wall.



I just love these cards, I think they're quite beautiful. After all the sweetness and light of Christmas, these monochrome cards with a splash of red look stunning.

I don't normally post about prices on the blog, but I just wanted to let you know that this kit which makes 8 cards is currently only £6.99, which I think is a real bargain.


Kate x


Saturday, January 21, 2012

Saturday sock yarn

Last week, Mindy took a delivery of some very exciting yarn. Patterned sock yarn, to be exact. 
It looks beautiful just stacked up there on the shelf....
....but Mindy has also been knitting with it... 
 ...and it looks pretty amazing knitted up as well! The sock pattern is free when you buy a ball of yarn.

I love variegated yarns, they make knitting so much more exciting. These ones really, really make me want to knit socks. I think I should probably finish the projects I'm already working on, but I'm definitely adding these to the list!

Kate x

Friday, January 20, 2012

Something different - cross stitch


If you receive our newsletter, you will have seen that we are now stocking Mouseloft Cross Stitch Kits.

They are great if you've never cross stitched before, or used to cross stitch in the dim and distant past before you discovered papercrafting (like me!)

I tested a sample yesterday for you and this little ladybird took less than two hours start to finish, including a break to chat to someone.

The Tiddler range is the perfect size to make quickly for a card, tag or other crafty gift. The kits come with everything you need and the lengths of thread are pretty generous too. Enjoy!

Kate x

Friday, January 13, 2012

More Art Deco ladies in decoupage

These are my favourite. Maybe that's why I'm saving them till last?

All these cards are on 4x4 blanks, so the image itself is only about 3x3. Beautiful.


Mirror card is really difficult to photograph, but there are gold highlights on all these decoupage images, so I had to use some as a mount.


These cards don't even need a greeting, I think. Just lovely as they are. I double-mounted this one but that's as much 'extra' as it needs.


This one is my favourite of all. I used some embossed card, but you could run a background through the Cuttlebug for extra texture.

Thanks for sharing my decoupage ladies!

Kate x

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Art Deco Die Cut Decoupage

Oh gosh, I wish fashion was still this glamorous.

 Also, I wish I was this thin and elegant!
 And hats! Can we bring back cloche hats?
I think this one is best kept for special occasions only, though. Imagine turning up to work in that!

You can find this decoupage sheet here.

My final group of elegant ladies will be appearing tomorrow!

Kate x

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Polka dot decoupage cards


These decoupage flowers are some of our new stock for January. They are die-cut and super quick to assemble.
Because they are so simple, at first I couldn't think how to arrange them on the card without any kind of background shape or element.
Then I realised that actually, this was perfect for me to add my own backgrounds and greetings, and make a much more varied range of cards.
I love how this banner looks like it's floating, but actually it's just using silicone glue instead of 3D pads. (Shameful crafting admission: I've only just started using silicone glue, that stuff scared me!)

You might also notice that these cards have a watermark on. There are so many websites out there that take images and use them as their own - and even places like Pinterest where people blog images without the original source - that I felt it was about time I laid claim to my own work. I really hope that these images inspire you to get creative. And if you post your own work online, you can find out how to make your own watermark brush in Photoshop here

I've also been trying out the Art Deco Decoupage that's new in the shop...that'll be up on the blog tomorrow!

Kate x

Saturday, January 07, 2012

New Die Cut Decoupage



Hello,

I’ve been putting the first of the new products for the year up on our website today.

We have 2 new Die Cut Decoupage series. They are in stock & available right now in the shop.

There is the Art Deco Series & the Polka Dot Flowers Series….with a special offer to buy the complete set in each range.


Art Deco Die Cut Decoupage



Polka Dot Flower Die Cut Decoupage


Hope you like them

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Pinterest inspiration to life

Phew! I can't believe Christmas is over. I feel slightly bloated from eating far too much chocolate, and totally ready for a new year of creativity.

Have you heard of Pinterest?

In case you haven't, it's a website for collecting links to all sorts of inspiration. A bit like the corkboard I used to have pinned up by my desk...except this is all online and so each image links back to the original source.

Pinterest is a great place to spend hours collecting inspiration...but I wanted to make sure that I did something with all of this eye candy. So, I present: Pinterest to life. I'll show you how I've used an image from Pinterest to create something myself.

Check out this image on my Pinterest board. These lovely cards are by Danielle Flanders. Simple, colourful...you can practically hear my brain whirring with ideas.


And here's my version. I used a coloured card blank, and rounded the corners of the white card front. Then I used a collection of flower stamps across the card, stamping right over the edges. I only have small sentiment stamps, so instead of putting the greeting over the flowers I used the white space at the top. I left off the machine stitching, and replaced the string with ribbon, because that made the card more 'postable'. The colours I've used are much softer and more autumnal, as those are the inks I had to hand.

I love Pinterest for ideas, but I love it even more when I can use those ideas to make something of my own. I want to spend less time reading website and more time making things. This is just the start!

Kate x

If you'd like to 'follow' me on Pinterest, you can find me here.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Playing with paper


When you own a craft shop, sometimes it's hard just to create because you love it. There are always deadlines, samples, displays to create, and sometimes it can all be a bit too much like actual work. And that's no fun. So, to combat those post-Christmas blues and kickstart our 2012 creativity, Mum and I got together with some paper, paint and glue.


I'd forgotten how much fun it is to craft with someone else. Especially someone who gets it when you squeal with glee and clap your hands because something looks amazing (we may both have done this).

I especially love it when you get useful tips. See that little dish with my glue in it? It's a milk bottle lid. Top tip, thanks Mum.

In between having fun and endless cups of tea, we have also been planning workshops for the shop in 2012. I'll let you know more once we've finalised the details.

The next time I post, it will be 2012. Happy New Year, everyone.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

2011 review

Hmmm....2011. Where did that go, then? The week between Christmas and New Year is, for me, always a time to reflect on the year that has gone, and make some plans for the year to come.

For me, crafting in 2011 was about new products. Some things stay with me throughout - I think scrapbooking and cardmaking will always be a part of my crafting repertoire. But this year I definitely noticed myself trying out new products and techniques, which I'm really pleased with. I feel like I've made a great start, and 2012 will be all about learning even more. So before I come up with some plans for next year, in no particular order, here is my 2011 Top Five:


1. Promarkers. I know, I know, I'm late to the party. No change there then! But I'm so glad I discovered these little beauties. My stamps have all gained a new lease of life and I love the bright, vibrant colours that Promarkers give. I will admit I was a little bit nervous in the beginning - there are a lot of tutorials and blogs out there and I had the impression that there was some 'secret' to Promarker technique. I'll tell you now - there isn't. I'm sure there are lots of ways I can improve, but even my first efforts are pretty pleasing.


2. Border punches. These aren't new either, but this year I've moved away from just using them on scrapbook pages and they've really helped my cardmaking. I love pretty trims, and I feel a bit daft for taking so long to bring these into my cards. Now that I have, I can't stop!


3. Greetings stamps. Something else that has completely changed the way I make cards. These fabulous sets of clear stamps on an A6 sheet are reasonably priced, great quality, and really versatile. I used to either write my greeting, or look for a sticker, but these stamps give me dozens of options and look much more professional. They are absolutely the most useful stamps I own.


4. Yarn! Specifically, the Sirdar Bonus range. I first started using this last year, on my first crochet blanket. Since then, Mindy has expanded the range to include almost every colour you could need. And I'm using quite a few of them in this ripple blanket. It's also deliciously soft and has beautiful stitch definition when you crochet.

5. Wooden crochet hooks. Apart from being gorgeous, they are also easy to use and much lighter in my hand than the metal ones. I've also managed to develop a new technique for crocheting which doesn't make my wrist click, so I'm hoping to avoid any craft-related RSI in future.


...and, 6. Paint Fusion. I'm sneaking this in, because it's not a product I use. But Hilary has spent a lot of this year perfecting her technique and doing some amazing paintings. It's so exciting to see someone learning something new and loving it so much - and deservedly so, because the results are amazing.

What products have you enjoyed this year? I am so excited for 2012!

Kate x

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Wherever you are, whatever and however you celebrate.

May your Christmas season be happy and healthy.


Friday, December 23, 2011

Working on it


This is my desk, tidied.

Gran's gift this year will be the same as last year - a selection of handmade cards that she can use for any occasion. So right now I am in the midst of bright colours, birthday sentiments and lots of flowers.

Did you make any Christmas cards? I'll be honest - mine were shop bought this year. Card making is a challenge for me (which is why it's taking me so long to do these cards for Gran) and Christmas cards were not on my priority list. I think I might have to do a batch of birthday cards for myself, that way I don't have to make any more cards for another year!

In other news - Wightcat Crafts will be the main craft supplier at the Bristol Parchment Exhibition, 24 June 2012. Exciting times!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Getting in the mood for Christmas

I think it's kind of hard to think about wintery snow scenes when we are having a fairly mild winter at the moment. (I am writing this in advance...if by the time you read this it has started to snow, I apologise!)

For various reasons, I am not doing a lot of Christmas crafting this year. But these tunnel cards are quick and easy and look lovely...I think I might break my card-making block for these!

K x

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