SCARY PINK SATURDAY - HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

This weekend is Halloween - so it's a Scary Pink Saturday post - a new background, header and blinkie for all you horror fans!


My inspiration: dark, lonely street (probably raining just a little). No moon. Total silence, no passers-by... just the sound of footsteps... Do you hear an echo?....

BACKGROUND

HALLOWEEN 2010 - Copyright Susie Jefferson
 Copy all the code below, exactly as you see it, and insert into an html box right into your sidebar or footer. This one will also work with the new Templates AND WordPress (depending on your template, of course. I know it works with WP's Bueno). This background is 880 pixels wide, so will fit standard 3-col blogs and wider 2-col blogs.
<style type="text/css">
body {background-image: url("http://i659.photobucket.com/albums/uu313/1stFloorFlatComputery/8c29da51.jpg"); background-position: center; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-attachment: fixed; }
</style>
<div id="tag" style="position:absolute; left:0px; top:50px; z-index:50; width:150px; height:30px;">
<a href="http://1stfloorflatblogology.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">
<img border="0" src="http://i659.photobucket.com/albums/uu313/1stFloorFlatComputery/47e6b740.jpg"/>
</a></div>
HEADER

HALLOWEEN 2010 - copyright Susie Jefferson
Copy the image code below to install, or download to your blog if you want to customise it with your own text.
http://i659.photobucket.com/albums/uu313/1stFloorFlatComputery/a82a3af7.jpg
BLINKIE

HALLOWEEN 2010 - Copyright Susie Jefferson
 This is too big for a side bar - I designed it to go in your footer section. If you desperately want a smaller one for your sidebar, email me and I'll resize it. Again, copy the image code (below) to install.
http://i659.photobucket.com/albums/uu313/1stFloorFlatComputery/a0a85f3b.gif
Scare yourselves silly with these... ghosts, ghouls, and clowns (these used to terrify me when I was a child. NOT funny... Remember 'ITl by Stephen King?)  Did you see those teeth??

pink saturday

Happy Halloween everyone...and don't forget to visit Beverly at How Sweet the Sound to see all the other wonderful Pink Saturday posts!

LATEST UPCOMING CLASSES

Copyright Susie Jefferson
Copyright Susie Jefferson
Just to let everyone know...

My classes at Blade Rubber Stamps are filling up very fast, so if anyone wants to take one you need to book ASAP - here's the Classes page on the blog, and contact the shop to book (by phone or email).

Copyright Susie Jefferson
Copyright Susie Jefferson
I'm also teaching at Rainbow Silks, and my next class is Soldered Jewellery on Friday 5th November (next week!) where I'll be teaching everything I know - right from the basics, and also doing some very exciting wearable art projects. There are just a couple of places left, if anyone is interested. Again, contact the shop to book.



My next class at Rainbow Silks I am really jazzed about: Creative Metal Embossing. How to stamp on it, work with it (did you see my piece for Craft Stamper magazine?) and we'll also be making a book with a metal cover, front and back (sewn over tapes). Glorious!

Finally, I have tutorial ebooks in pdf format on my Etsy shop for those of you who can't come and see me in person.

TWO GREAT NEW WIDGETS TO ADD TO BLOGGER

Optical lens - copyright Susie Jefferson

I'm feeling a lot more cheerful this morning, now The Dirty Deed is done (ie: admitting defeat, throwing in the towel, wimping out, Admitting I Was Wrong, falling on my sword etc etc) and have transferred back to Blogger!

The deciding factor was finding these two great widgets, which won't add onto WordPress.com (although they will on WordPress.org if you are happy to pay for your template, pay to host it externally, have a Master's Degree in computer stuff plus the patience of a Buddhist priest...).

The first one is the great toolbar right at the bottom of this blog, by Wibiya, where you can add all the links you could possibly want (and choose the toolbar colour from around 30 options). I think it's a great idea.


The second is the gorgeous little Etsy thingie in my sidebar! Designed by Craft Cult, it's small, cute, beautifully designed.

Click on Widgets on the top toolbar, and choose from 8 really attractive (and totally different) layouts - there's sure to be one to suit you! A total MUST HAVE for any Etsy seller.

Great, huh? I'm a happy bunny again (LOVE new toys!)

WORDPRESS - MOVING BACK TO BLOGGER!

It's nearly driven me to drink!
It's with an aching head and a lot of soul-searching that I've decided to admit defeat and move my blog back to Blogger.

WHY?
  • WordPress.com doesn't support a lot of widgets, in particular the Followers widget (can you believe it?) so I have no idea whether anyone is actually following the blog, never mind who they are! So I felt very isolated.
  • WordPress is very picky over code. An awful lot of the widgets and customisations I love (scrolling marquees, Amazon lists, Ebay marquees, my Etsy scrolling link) won't work - WP doesn't allow java code etc.
  • Videos (YouTube, Vimeo et al) are really difficult to install. More often than not, the link didn't work, so I had to give up on them.
  • Customisation: unless I PURCHASE my blog, I can't alter the colour or size of the text. Although WP does allow some customisation, you have to be an expert able to write CSS style sheets to be able to achieve this - and again, I don't think it works unless you buy your blog. I'm self-taught, not an expert, and it really is too complicated for me!
  • Full customisation - yes, if you buy one particular template (around £150) and also only if you host your blog yourself, ie: site it on a hosting service, paying an annual fee. Then WP will allow you to put in widgets etc, as we know them... to a point... You'd need to read all the whys and wherefores on WordPress.org (not WordPress.com - they are two separate entities!)
  •  Images: yes, they do have a limit. Then you have to pay. Ditto for videos etc. Plus they are difficult to install! Worse than Blogger - you have to set whether you want the pic linked (meaning someone can hot-link your image - so, how secure is that???) plus size, plus position, name etc. And sometimes it opens in another window, sometimes it doesn't (this is sounding awfully familiar...) and sometimes it wants to default into a gallery. Plus it's difficult to get in to edit - I found it easier to delete and start over.
So I'm very disappointed to have to admit defeat. 

I can write a bit of code, I can design and install Blogger backgrounds and coding for numbered comments, signatures et al - but I have to say I've had enough. I've given it a good two week's trial, and it's beyond me!

I've sorted my security issues with Picasa by setting my albums (which I didn't know I had) to Private, and will be using LiveWriter more often (see the Links list below this post to read more).

So I've reimported the posts from Techniques (sent to WP) onto 1stFloorFlat and will be deleting the WP very shortly... after yet another redirect message. I'm so sorry for messing everyone about.

MOVING FROM WORDPRESS TO BLOGGER

Guess what? WP will happily import from Blogger - but isn't so happy about you leaving them. However, I found this really helpful app which does it for you!

Download your WP code to your desktop, then browse for it using the button on the app exactly as shown. Once you've got the code in the window, click Convert and download that to your desktop. Go to Blogger > Settings and click Import Blog, browse for the converted code, hit Enter, and that's it! Simples! 

Here is the link: Wordpress2Blogger.

PINK SATURDAY - CHEERING MYSELF UP

Add caption

Gorgeous flowers always cheer me up, and it's been a very hard week... full of frustrations, mainly with Blogger and my link.

So I'm putting all that on the back burner for a while, and have decided to look at some eye candy to instill a little peace and tranquility.

Isn't the picture above a sublime image?  I find it very calming - I saved this pic as a bit of inspiration as I'm doing some digital scrapbooking with an eye to design. In this spread, I love the calmness and the space. Needless to say, I can attribute the picture but I can't find the blog link anywhere! Otherwise, I'd give it to you. So if anyone recognises this, please let me know. I'd love to see more of her work.




Again, I can't attribute this as I have no idea where I found it. Lovely, so unusual and a wonderful way to photograph a single bloom. I can see this as a wedding invitation!



Another glorious one - makes me think of summer skies. Now we're well into Autumn, it's a really evocative picture. Wish I knew whose it was, so I could provide credit. If it's you - please tell me!


Finally, a perfect winter rose. It's the colours...  a breath away from being frozen in winter air: preserved forever just as we see it. Unless we touch it, and it crumbles into dust...

My Blog Of The Week is Dreams Fulfilled - she has some great scrapbooking stuff, free for personal use, and there's a great Halloween alphabet you may like.

pink saturday

Finally, please visit Beverly at How Sweet the Sound to see all the other wonderful Pink Saturday posts!

DOT – AN ADORABLE LITTLE VIDEO

I adore stop-motion films - the 'hands-on' (literally) care taken in making them, the attention to detail...





It won’t surprise you that this one has been made by Aardman (creators of Wallace & Gromit).

A perfect little story-without-words, and just as sweet with the sound on or off.

Enjoy!

A HALLOWEENY PINK SATURDAY

I'm sure everyone is amazed to see I'm on WordPress - in fact, I've already moved my Techniques blog over, and am in the process of moving 1stFloorFlat as well. still here!

Why? Two reasons: the first is Blogger's continuing security issues and constant tinkering with their templates (some of my images now won't open up larger) and the second is that WordPress supports downloadable pdfs - so I hope to have some downloadable projects for you soon.

Meantime, I've been busy: a brand new blog background which will also work on WordPress blogs (I've tried it on the Bueno template) as well as Blogger blogs, including the new templates.

May I present STEAMPUNK...

Steampunk


You'll see it full sized as the background on my Computery blog, and also find the freebie download links and codes on Blogology, as always. The set includes two sizes of header plus a 'Thanks for visiting' button to go in your footer section (it's big).


Thanks for visiting button

Isn't this fun? And all thanks to Cecilia Swatton, who's got a massive new downloadable Steampunk image collection available:

Download from DigiScrap

Cecilia has kindly given me special permission to make these freebies for you!

AND NOW - A  HALLOWEEN VERSION OF 'LIBRARY'

Library - not just for Halloween

Here is my Halloween version of my Library background set (by popular request). Not too scary... for those of a nervous disposition who still want to join in the fun! Redolent of a Gentleman's Smoking Room, this is a little Steampunk-ish in itself.

Again, go to Blogology to get the download codes and installation instructions.

ENJOY!

Finally, don't forget to visit Beverly at How Sweet The Sound to see all the other Pink Saturday posts.

PINK SATURDAY - MOVING DAY!


Yes, you read it right... I'm moving my blog to WordPress, and if you want to read this Saturday's Pink Saturday Post, that's right where you will find it!

Here is my new blog address:
1st Floor Flat

Why am I moving?
  1. I don't like all the upheaval with Blogger just now: the security issues with Picasa, the constant changes, and especially that sometimes my images will open full size and other times they don't... for no apparent reason.
  2. I found that WordPress is now way easier to use, plus I can install my backgrounds (as you'll see) AND they have a downloadable pdf facility - so I can make my projects downloadable for you all!

So how could I resist? 


I've already moved my Techniques blog over, and am in the process of moving this one (a monumental task as I need to check every link and video is working correctly).

I shall leave Computery and Blogology and Freebies here on Blogger, and will continue making Blogger backgrounds for you all, etc, and offering help and advice with blogging and computer stuff in general. And as you know, if I can't help I can usually suggest somebody who can.

I'm hoping all you Followers will move with me too!

CARVE YOUR OWN STAMPS

I like carving my own stamps - it's easier than you'd think, and you can happily make things for sale or for digital products without any worries about copyright issues (as long as you draw your images yourself or use images from copyright-free sources).


Here's one I made, and the stamped image:



I did this some time ago, using an old lino cut set I found in a junk shop, using a (used) plastic eraser - Mars Staedler, if I remember correctly. Basically, I drew the image with a biro then started cutting! Took me around 10 minutes, start to finish. And things are much better now, with some really good ergonomically-designed cutters and "rubber" which cuts like a hot knife through butter. So no strain on the hands etc.

Here's a lovely little video by Vanessa Spencer for Stampington (she's one of my very favourite artists):





Sweet, simple and to the point! And some rather nice background music too.

Why not get carving?

MAD WORLD

Do you ever have a song playing in your head... you keep hearing it played everywhere, but can't find out the name of it? 'Mad World' is one of those songs for me.




One of my favourite songs - ever - is 'Mad World' by Tears for Fears, performed by Gary Jules for the film 'Donnie Darko'.


Last night, on the UK version of X Factor, I saw an amazing performance by Aiden Grimshaw.




For once, I agree with Simon Cowell, who said this performance and one other absolutley blew him away: the other one 'being on the American show' - which of course is American Idol.




And of course that other performance was by Adam Lambert.

It's it wonderful to be able to compare these. Of course, there is no comparison - I love them all - but what a different and individual interpretation each of them has given to this song.




Here's the original live performance by Tears for Fears on Top of the Pops (BBC) way back in 1982- it was actually fairly upbeat and rather cheery!

Hope you enjoyed them!

IT'S A MAN'S MAN'S MAN'S WORLD

'It's a Man's, Man's, Man's World' is a song that makes all the hairs on my neck stand up: I get shivers - it's one that when I hear it, I just can't get out of my head. I love, love, love it.


So you can imagine I was very excited to hear it on tonight's X Factor show. Here's Mary Byrne singing it.




Did you know James Brown wrote it?




This version is by Millabone, who has added some amazing visuals to the soundtrack.




And here's the great James Brown live - phenomenal!

Compare and contrast...