Smartie Time

One of the earliest memories from school is ‘Smartie Time’ and it always brings a smile to my face. This was when I was in Infants School so I must have been 5 or 6 years old. Smartie Time took place every Friday and each pupil in the class received a little cup of Smarties (here in the UK they are sugar-coated chocolate confectionery – similar to M&M’s) and the teacher would take us through the letters that we had learned during the week. Smarties are synonymous with letters of the alphabet due to the packaging having letters on it, so I suppose they linked in well to our learning at school. You could be called a Smartie if you remembered them all too. I’m very pleased to be able to join this month’s theme of “Back to School” being hosted by Bleubeard and Elizabeth over at Art Journal Journey – thanks for the inspiration!


I covered the background with a thin layer of white acrylic using a baby wipe and then stamped blocks of the alphabet using Memento ink. To do this I formed the wood mounted letter stamps into a block pattern and held them in place with elastic bands before inking and stamping them. Smarties always came in a box at school rather than the usual tubes so I created a box shape out of Smarties packaging and some blue paper. I fussy cut the word Smartie and added letter stickers to another piece of blue paper for the word “Time”, then I used double-sided foam tape to stick them all onto the box. I stuck on additional sweet images using a UHU Stic and edged the box with a Navy Spectrum Aqua Marker and secured it to the page using double-sided foam tape. Next I stamped the slogan “Only Smarties have the answer” using Archival Ink, and added the balloon images and flowers which are stickers and were chosen to match the colours of the sweets themselves. The letters and numbers are gel stickers which I arranged in a wave like pattern on the page. The hexagonal shapes which detail a letter and question are from the top of the new Smarties packaging – you will find the answers to the questions somewhere on the page too (Clue – the answers are always on the packaging somewhere). I like that it turned out so colourful and fun!

Here are the questions if you can’t read them (and the answers are detailed below too):

  • What K do you boil water in?
  • What N is a short sleep?
  • What G is a place to keep cars?


To create this page I bought some Smarties to use the packaging, well it might have actually been for the chocolate too! Needless to say we enjoyed eating them whilst I completed my page! A number of things have changed about Smarties over the years, they used to come in a cylinder-shaped tube which had a plastic disc lid. After the Smarties were all gone it made a neat toy as you could “karate-chop” the tube to fire the lid across the room – I loved the popping sound of the plastic lid and seeing how far it went! Smarties no longer come in this packaging and the colours have changed too – there are now blue Smarties which I never had at school. If you want to learn more about Smarties and their history, which actually date back to 1937, here’s a link.

(The answers to the questions are – Kettle, Nap, Garage).

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Colvin & Co Artist Acrylic (White Titanium)
  • Memento Dye Ink (London Fog)
  • Range Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Marker (Navy)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line Marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Dovecraft lower case alphabet stamps (WDW Alpha Stamp DCVW0030)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Alphas Folk DCE907115)
  • Leon (X-large Colour Paper Pad)
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • Wilko stickers (Flower Embellishments)
  • Home Bargains wall stickers (Fairy Door 34356)
  • Hobbycraft Laser Stickers (Letters 5681871002)
  • UHU Stic
  • Zig Memory System 2-Way Glue (The Dual Action Glue Pen)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape
  • Nestlé Smarties packaging

Glasson Dock

As you may know we enjoy to go out walking and we found the most wonderful circular walk at Glasson Dock. This is such a beautiful part of the world and we had such an amazing time I decided to create this art journal page.glasson-dock-ajp

The background is Distress Inks, I put the blue and yellow ink on an acrylic block and used a wet brush to pick up both inks and drag them horizontally across the page so thin lines of colour could be seen. Then I added a red and white border to the page using washi tape. I fussy cut a picture taken from the Glasson Dock visitor’s guide and stuck it on the left hand side of the page making sure I connected the boat sail rigging to the mast using a black fine line marker and white gel pen. I also used some of the text from the guide and then added different nautical stickers and rub-on transfers which remind me of our visit. The Lantern O’er Lune is a lovely café which we had lunch at and I cut the name and lantern image from their takeaway menu. To finish I added the lifebelt which is a fabric motif.


We started at the dock itself and walked along the old railway line by the sea front. The railway line was built purely to service the dock which was a busy port in it’s heyday for Lancaster.


The river is tidal so the boats can be seen sitting in what it appears to be a field, where the receding tide has deposited them and they await its return to float again.


The path follows the river for a short while and then goes through countryside and farmland, leading us to the Lancaster canal where we admired the boats and canal barges. We then turned off to follow the canal branch back to Glasson Dock which has a series of six locks along its relatively short

After our walk we went to the Lantern O’er Lune café for sustenance. We had a Cumberland sausage, caramelised onion and cheese panini and chips with our pot of Green Tea for two. As T Stands for Tuesday I’m pleased to be able to join the T Gang today – Wishing you all a very Happy T Day!


Then it was my turn to choose our dessert to share, so we had a Ginger & Lemon cake which was served warm with honeycomb ice-cream – it was so delicious!


Glasson Dock is an interesting place. It’s still a working port, but it’s only accessible by boat for the 45 minutes prior to high tide each day as the tide goes out so far, the boats would get stranded on the sand. After lunch we were lucky enough to see boats arriving and going through the lock into the marina. The road bridge across the lock has to be swung out of the way to let the boats pass.

We had such a wonderful day!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Salty Ocean, Mustard Seed, Mowed Lawn)
  • Sharpie Permanent Fine Point Marker (Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line Marker (Black 0.1mm and 0.8mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Nautical Translucent #FOR 998T RUB-ON)
  • Poundland Fun Stickers (Sailor 982)
  • Habico Iron On Motif (LifeBelt C-07429A)
  • The Works (3 Washi Tapes)
  • UHU Stic
  • Guide and Menu leaflets

School Days

I recently discovered a piece of my school scarf that I had stored in a drawer along with a number of other keepsakes from my school days, so I decided to create this page. I’m pleased to be able to join Bleubeard and Elizabeth who is co-hosting this month’s theme of “Back to School” over at Art Journal Journey.


The background started with Distress Inks, which I applied to an acrylic block and spritzed with water then dripped onto the page and smooshed with a baby wipe. I found an old ink pen in my school pencil case, which hasn’t been used for many, many years. I dipped it into some water then flicked it onto the page to see if there was any life left in it – I love the colour of the ink and the splatters it created! I used Letraset transfers to add the title and letters, some of the letters are not complete, which I like as it gives it an old worn feel. I added a strip of decoupage paper down the centre of the page which depicts different ruler images and still thinking of the theme, I choose the “School” definition from my dictionary which is again from my school days. Next I added 3 clock toppers to depict time, I found time went really slowly when I was at school – did you? These were all stuck in place with a UHU Stic and I outlined them with a black Uni Pin marker. The attendance certificate is a vintage sticker from Tim Holtz Idea-ology collection. To finish I used Velcro to attach the piece of my school scarf, which has a white name tag that my mum sewed on all those years ago, and I also pinned my “Captain” badge onto it. I love that I have used so many elements from my school days to create this page!


I was “Captain” of my class for a year and green was our assigned class colour; it was nice to be chosen to oversee my class and I remember being so happy to purchase my badge from the school shop.  This is where we used to collect our yearly school photo too, I always enjoyed school as you can tell from my photo above! I loved the colours and design of my school scarf and I only kept a piece of it because it’s made of wool and I would never wear it because I find it so itchy against my skin. I’m so pleased I created this page to display the scarf and badges rather than have them sitting in a drawer – I think they look fab!


Here are some items from my school days. My well loved and worn Hymn book which now sits on my bookcase, I remember using it every day at school assembly – I just loved to sing! My Recipe book which contains recipes from my cookery lessons at school such as scones and apple pie as well as a chart which converts degrees Fahrenheit to Centigrade – I still use this book today! My trusty Dictionary, I’ve never been very good at spelling and I remember taking it with me on my first day of Secondary School. I now use my dictionary for my Art Journaling and it has adorned many of my pages. And finally my favourite pencil case which is a bit faded now and was such a beautiful rich navy blue and green tartan. It is still in use today and amongst all the other pens, three fountain pens from my school days are safely stored. All these items bring back such happy memories!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Tea Dye, Brushed Corduroy, Black Soot)
  • Waterman Fountain Pen and Ink
  • Uni Pin Fine Line Marker (Black 0.1mm and 0.8mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Letraset Transfer (Helvetica Bold Condensed 5mm RDC0251)
  • Vivi Gade Decoupage Paper (Helsinki 25586)
  • Oxford University Press 1978 pocket dictionary
  • The Works (12 Paper Toppers)
  • Tim Holtz Idea-ology Salvage Stickers (Crowded Attic #TH92898)
  • UHU Stic
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Velcro (Black Self-Adhesive)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape
  • School scarf and badge


I’m often in the kitchen baking and now September has arrived, I find myself busy again. I’ve been making Bramble Jelly to serve on scones, in rice pudding or on toast with peanut butter (my hubby’s favourite), as well as Plum Jam which is a fabulous filling for a Victoria Sponge. So I’ve created a journal page to celebrate this fruitful happy time.


To create the background I started by applying Liquitex acrylic paint with a baby wipe, then I used Memento Ink to stamp two butterfly images from Hampton Arts, a doily stamp from Dovecraft and a homemade stamp which creates a soft grid texture. The words are stamped using the same ink and refer to the jam and jelly I made.


I added the bunting next which are stickers and then used up some card toppers from my craft stash which link very well to the theme with the lovely little pot of jam detail and a Victoria Sponge recipe. The sign with home baked cakes and the saying “The diet starts tomorrow!” is cut from a retro style postcard. I also added the packaging from the kit that contained the sealing covers, waxed discs, rubber bands and labels which I used for my jam and jelly making. I fixed them all in place using a UHU Stic or double-sided tape and the addition of the red gemstones was the finishing touch.imag2116a

Every year we head out on our tandem to go blackberry picking, it’s so much fun, although you need to watch out for the thorns and nettles! This year we got two big tubs full of fruit to make into Bramble Jelly, which tastes superb – so fruity and delicious!


Another yearly tradition is making plum jam with Victoria plums, which we buy locally from our favourite greengrocers.


Plum jam is a lovely filling for a Victoria Sponge cake, here’s one I made to celebrate the stash of preserves that we made. The sponges are filled with the plum jam and fresh cream and on the top is a sprinkling of icing sugar. As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m having a nice cup of tea with my cake and saying a big hello to all of the T Gang … Happy T Day!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Parchment)
  • Memento Dye Ink (London Fog)
  • Hampton Arts 7 Gypsies cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue ICO134)
  • Dovecraft Curiosity Corner clear stamps (A5 Lace and Doilie DCCS009)
  • Dovecraft upper and lower case alphabet stamp set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Homemade wooden block stamp with Plasterboard/Drywall tape
  • Home Bargains Wall Stickers (Fairy Door 34356)
  • Hunkydory Birthdays for Her Luxury Card Collection (Birthday Bake)
  • Hunkydory Magnificent Men Luxury Card Collection (Grill King & Nice Buns!)
  • Postcard (Retro Days original design by Martin Wiscombe)
  • Kitchen Craft packaging
  • Poundland (504 Gems)
  • UHU Stic
  • Express It double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Crab Friday

With family staying for the week, we decided to celebrate by having Friday’s special of “Crab and Chips” at the Queens in Lytham. We managed a dessert too – a yummy raspberry and white chocolate meringue with ice cream. We had such a wonderful time and the food was so amazing that I created a journal page to remember our visit.


I started the background by covering one half of the page diagonally with “The Daily Catch” greaseproof paper that the restaurant serves their fish entrees on – our crab was served on a sheet just like it! (I cheekily asked for a clean one for my journal page). The other half of the page is covered with decoupage paper; I choose pink and white to match the raspberry and white chocolate meringue that I had. Both papers are stuck down using a UHU Stic and Liquitex matte gel medium. The blackboard pieces are made from a tag which I covered with a layer of black acrylic paint and then decorated and wrote on with a white gel pen, I used a UHU Stic and double-sided foam tape to fix them to the page. The meringue sign is a piece of white mixed media paper on which I stamped the wording using Memento Ink. The circle outline is a Spectrum Aqua Marker and once I had cut it out I fixed it to the page using a UHU Stic, then I added the sparkly pink hearts and a meringue which I created from a napkin. The restaurant name is taken from their leaflet which I stuck to the page using double-sided foam tape. The dot borders are stickers, as are the words, which remind me of the lovely time we had. To finish I used a UHU Stic to stick down the crab alongside the chip image and I added a black gemstone to the centre of the blackboard tag hole.


The dressed crab and chips was incredibly popular and tasted so good – yum!  The newspaper design greaseproof paper alludes back to the old days when they wrapped fish and chips in old newspapers.


I spotted the meringues on this wonderful display as soon as I walked through the door. There is a choice of Strawberry, Lemon or Raspberry and White Chocolate.


The meringue was lovely and soft in the centre, and the raspberry swirls turned my tongue bright pink! It was drizzled in white chocolate and I was delightfully surprised to find lots of white chocolate chunks embedded in the meringue too – delicious!


The fun continues in this restaurant as they serve third of a pint glasses of beer in a cricket bat! It’s a great idea for those of us who like to try a variety of beers and can’t make up their mind; I shared this one with my hubby. From left to right the beers are Theakston’s Old Peculier, Caledonian Flying Scotsman and Caledonian Golden XPA. As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m saying a big hello to all of the T Gang … Happy T Day!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Memento Dye Ink (Love Letter)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Marker (Scarlet)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Alphas Folk DCE 907115)
  • Dovecraft upper case alphabet stamp set (WDN Alpha Stmp DCVW0050)
  • Poundworld DecoTime (Paper Patch DS9454)
  • The Works (Hang Tags)
  • Daler Rowney paper (Mixed Media 437 150 400)
  • Caspari Chatsworth Napkins (Peony)
  • The Works (12 Glitter Heart Stickers)
  • Poundland (Design Gems)
  • Sandylion Kelly Panacci Scrapbook Collection (Stitches & Borders KSCB102)
  • Greaseproof paper
  • Leaflet
  • UHU Stic
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

I like Coffee, I like Tea

My family and friends always enjoy a cup of coffee; I don’t drink coffee myself but thought I would pay homage to this popular beverage by creating this page. I’m also saying a big hello to all of the T Gang because T Stands for Tuesday … Happy T Day!

I like coffee I like tea - AJP

I diluted Faber-Castell Big Brush marker ink with water and used it to paint brick shapes onto the page, gradually layering on more colour to shade the bricks. To add texture I stamped over the bricks with a stamp from Kaisercraft using the same Big Brush marker. Next I filled the area around the bricks with colour by painting Distress Ink which I diluted with water and then I stamped a leaf tile image over the top using the same ink. The different coffee drink names are stamped using Archival and Memento Inks and shaded using a slate Spectrum Aqua marker. To finish the background I splattered some black acrylic paint over the top. The page and cappuccino image borders are decoupage paper, which I stuck down using a UHU Stic. The cappuccino image is cut from a postcard which I bought from a local shop as I liked the retro look; I used double-sided foam tape to stick it to the page. To finish I cut hearts from a brochure using a paper punch, fussy cut the cup of coffee from a magazine and added the images of pastries from a card topper set.


Cappuccino is my Mum’s coffee of choice when we go out. At our local café it’s always served with a cinnamon biscuit, which she kindly gives to me – yum!


As we have family staying with us this week, we went to Alices Tearooms again over the weekend and sat outside in the sunshine, near the “Painting the roses red” rose bushes. Our guest had this very pretty Mocha!

When I think of coffee, a certain song pops into my head and always makes me smile! Maybe you have heard of it … it’s called “The Java Jive” and is also known as “I like coffee, I like tea”. The only bit of the song that I know is …

 “I love coffee, I love tea

I love the java jive and it loves me

Coffee and tea and the jiving and me

A cup, a cup, a cup, a cup, a cup!”

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Inks (Cracked Pistachio)
  • Memento Dye Ink (London Fog, Rich Cocoa)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Sanguine 188 B)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Marker (Slate)
  • Liquitex Artist Color acrylic (Ivory Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamps (Sketchy CS878)
  • Rubber Soul wood mounted stamp (Leaf Tile 276K)
  • Papermania 2 pack A-Z clear stamps (Leftover Alphabet PMA9071102)
  • Tonic Studios Paper Punch (Classic Heart 858E)
  • Hunkydory Magnificent Men Luxury Card Collection (Grill King & Nice Buns!)
  • Poundworld DecoTime (Paper Patch D59454)
  • Postcard “Retro Days” series from the original design by  Martin Wiscombe
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape