Thursday 29 April 2010

What the difference a day makes ...

... 24 little hours.

Garden in the sun

Garden in the rain

Gloomy! Lets hope today's rain is only a blip and that the sun will soon be back, but I must confess the rain's been good for the garden and I've got a whole lot more work done!

Sunday 25 April 2010

And the winner is ...!

Wow! I'm staggered, flattered and thrilled by all your great suggestions for how to use my decorative tape that you suggested, following my Win! Win! Win! blog post and my FaceBook competition.

Here are some of your great suggestions:

  • Aldonka is looking forward to her beach themed wedding and would use the tape to provide the finishing touch to her invite envelopes.
  • PosiePatchwork would use the spotty tape tape to create some tiny bunting flags on string.
  • Keetepie would brighten up her dull filing cabinet with the country garden tape.
  • Toni Quandt would use hers as a border trim around her mirror and other accessories in her nautical themed bathroom.
  • Crafty Helen suggested buying some plain brown paper bags (like you get your favourite take away in!) and jazzing them up with the tape, making them into gift bags with matching tags.
  • Miss Bee is going to 'pimp her ride' and use the red spotty tape to brighten up her black dutch bicycle.
  • And, in the long hot summer, FaceBook fan Itsuko Koizumi will cover her window with the blue spotty tape, turn on her fan, feel the breeze and imagine its a cool, rainy day outside!

All your ideas were inspired and brilliant and it was so hard to choose the winners! But they are:

From the blog: TopCat76 who will be decorating cool boxes with the beach hut tape before heading out on picnics this summer.

From Facebook: Nicky Benton who is going to use the Cup Cake tape make her biscuit tin 5 year old proof!

And as a big Thank You to you all for taking part, we picked another couple of winners from the hat and the two winners picked at random are:

Amy who will 'use it on just about anything' and Katie Chilvers who has just set up a Cupcake bakery so I hope the Cup cake tape comes in handy!

Thanks again for all of you for taking part - I really do I appreciate you taking the time and effort to join in.
If you have any photos of where you've used your tape, I'd love to see them and share them with you all.

And here's what one 7 year old did with his tape!
dots and spots

Thursday 22 April 2010

Hot off the Press!

A little while ago, I blogged about quality control and how a print run of my cards didn't pass my own high standards and needed to be re-printed.

Not only did the great people at St. Andrews Press agree without hesitation, they also invited me - and my camera - along to see how my designs are turned into cards. It was fascinating to see the print process in action and see, first hand, the care and attention that goes in to this critical part of the dots and spots process.

Examining the design dot by dot - dots and spots seemed particularly apt as I saw how the printed cards would be made up from hundreds of dots.

Making final adjustments before printing.

The press whirrs into life - suckers suck up the card to enter the printing press.

The ink wells that provide all the colour.

The mighty machines that do the work!

Checking the colour levels of the first print.

Nearly ready!

Hot off the Press!

Into the guillotine for cutting and trimming.

And now head over to dots and spots to see the finished goods.


to Steve for taking the time to show me around and all the team for putting up with me,

on what sometimes seems like a daily basis!

Sunday 18 April 2010

Win, Win, Win!

I'm really proud of my latest product - original and unique decorative sticky tape.

Available in 6 great designs (and another 2 Christmas designs) in up to 4 vibrant colours, this tape will add the perfect finishing touch to your gifts and parcels, making them stand out from the crowd.

And they are great for all your 'crafty' projects - be sure to keep a roll or two in your craft or stationery drawer! Visit our website to see the full range of designs and colours:

I'm giving away a roll of your favourite colour and design to the person who comes up with the most original idea for using the tape and one other roll to someone picked at random, for taking the time to join in this fun give away.

Simply write a comment to this blog post, telling me your favourite design and colour, and your idea for the tape.

Below are a few ideas to get you thinking - how would you use our tape?

Red Beach Hut Tape

Sophie decorated her magazine files with Cup Cake and Hearts Tape

Add that finishing touch to a present.

Ordered some dots and spots goodies lately?
Look out for the decorative tape on your parcel!

Thursday 15 April 2010

"Read All About It!"

About a month ago, the phone rang out of the blue and I found myself talking to Gill Davies, a journalist who writes for 'Greetings Today' magazine.
Gill had been alerted to my designs by Coralie Keech, of Daisy Chain, Stratford upon Avon and she asked if she could feature me in the magazine.

A delightful telephone interview followed and then, on Monday, "Thud", as a copy of 'Greetings Today' landed on my door mat. Hurriedly, I leafed through the magazine to find my little feature - and I have to say I walked around all day feeling ten foot tall!

If you don't receive a copy of this great, great publication then you can read it online here (find me on page 29):

Greetings Today and you can "Read All About It!"

Sunday 11 April 2010

Quality Control

It was with great excitement that last week I took delivery of my latest range of cards from the printers.

However, that excitement turned to disappointment as I unpacked the cards - the colours just weren't right. They were washed out and pale and lacked the vibrancy that I hope runs through all my designs.

What to do? Dilemmas, dilemmas! Well, there was only one option. I wouldn't be happy selling the cards as they are - quality is important to me and I want dots and spots to only be associated with the highest of standards and the best products, so it was off to chat with the printers.

And the printers, to their credit, agreed wholeheartedly and will re-print the entire run and they should be ready next week, so a little later than I'd hoped but I can't compromise on quality!

dots and spots

Thursday 8 April 2010

New Prints

I just wanted to share with you these two new prints I've added to my collection.

They are prints of original pieces of my work, which are then embellished with paper, ribbon and/or buttons to create a truly unique piece of art.
Available in a frame, or mounted ready for you to frame yourself, they look great in any room (and make a great gift for those 'difficult to buy for' men in our lives!)

Camper Van

Sail Away

Detail from 'Camper Van'

And, for any of my lovely blog readers, if you'd like me to add a personal touch, like that shown above, just get in touch!

by dots and spots

Tuesday 6 April 2010

Sun, sea, sand & seagulls ...

... it has to be St. Ives!

It was lovely to escape to the seaside for a few days, to blow away the winter cobwebs and enjoy the sun and the sky (and, of course, you can't go to Cornwall and not have a pasty!)

And guess what - I discovered that seagulls have spotty tails!

A seagull's spotty tail - the latest inspiration for dots and spots!