Ice-cream or Doughnuts, that is the question….

Ice-cream or Doughnuts, that is the question….

Hi there!
Thanks for popping in.
Hope your weekend is going well?
Things are pretty manic here, gearing up for TV 
tomorrow and Monday.
We are putting on 7 hours of new Groovi.
All Groovi, and very exciting.
New ideas, new plates, new techniques.
If you are a stamper, and you’re not into parchment, 
don’t moan. 
Just switch me off this time. 
We did all stamp shows last week!
Most of our revenue comes from Groovi at the moment, 
so we have to go where the demand is. 
No, we aren’t neglecting our core product – customers are, 
and we are responding accordingly. 
Between you and me, 
I am far more comfortable with a brayer and a piece of torn paper than with scissors and a pricking tool !!! 
But actually, I am enjoying the Groovi trip, 
and am also enjoying learning the new techniques along the way.
If the bathers on the beach all wanted ice-cream, 
– and were queuing up for it –
would you try and sell them doughnuts ?
I really enjoy the product design;
creating the whole system to work together. 
But in order to create an intelligent system you have to use it !!!
Paul and I were working into the small hours last night, 
prepping and staging demos.
My neck and wrists are stiff today!
Hey ho! I could think of worse ways to make a living!
Here’s the outline of a nice step by step I have prepared for tomorrow, using a couple of fab new plates, and framers.
The thing about parchment art is it takes as long as it takes, 
so I have to accept that the TV shows are going to be a little less snappy and a little more laid back…
Frame first.
Octagon on the inside

New Farmhouse Plate.
But only up to the tree.
I want to lose the tall tree and shorten the house…

Shuffle the parchment across, 
so that the side of the farmhouse is in the frame,
and emboss it into place, avoiding the tree trunk.

Join the lines up.
No building permission, no tree surgeon.
We’ve knocked 30 foot off the farmhouse and taken down a tree which was causing havoc with the foundations and blocking out the light. 
If only it were that simple….

Oh. Hang on. Needs a door or two…
No chippy required either!
Time to add a little interest with the new Texture plate.
If you peep through the parchment, you can see it.
Nine cool pattern areas. 
The zig-zag in the roof and the jaunty lines in the frame.

So why the octagon inside the square frame?
I wanted to create small pockets of interest, using the new Grid.

You do this piercing / pricking from the front.
See the straight grid underneath?
I cannot believe that an acrylic plate with loads of holes drilled in it could throw such a new light on parchment!!

It works quickly with the single needle tool.

 I also like the dotty effect you get by using the No. 2 embossing tool on the grid. You do this from behind.
Paul and I were laughing last night.
I was whizzing along, using the grid like a washboard and whistling through the stages.
Then it occurred to me that traditional parchers might be horrified if I skim across the grid this way…
Works though.
So now I’ve got my lovely landscape prepared for a splash of colour.

Tune in tomorrow and see what’s next…..
Sky 663   Freeview 39  Freesat 817
or IPTV on the internet at
Sunday 2pm.  5pm  
Launch of new Monday Special at 8pm on Sunday.
Monday 9am  12 noon  4pm 7pm
Lot of live hours, lot of adrenaline, lot of pressure.
If you have ever done live TV, 
you will know what I am talking about. 
So I think it’s just best to get in the groove and go with the flow.
One more really good thing:
At you can now watch show back a week.
So if you miss a show, you can click the TV Schedule yesterday for example, scroll down to the show you missed,
and click watch this show now
So Janice and Cathie from the States and Canada!
You can stay in bed and not have to get up in the middle of the night to watch!!!
Have a great weekend,
love always,

87 thoughts on “Ice-cream or Doughnuts, that is the question….

  1. Must say i prefer stamping ,but i am a member of Groovi club but need more stuff when i can get it , as for Ice cream and donuts think i want both as long as there jam in donuts xx

  2. I like both your stamps and the Groovi system. I have never had much success with stamping though and have found myself hooked on Groovi! I am hoping however to practice more this year with stamps and have recently bought some more from you. Looking forward to seeing the shows. Love the look of the new texture plate!

  3. Love the idea of the grove plates and you seem to get fab results but because I have arthritis in my fingers I cannot grip the tools I have to forgo all parching however your stamps and handles are great to use, xx

    1. Hello Charlieann,

      I have noticed Marie Simms has added something to her tools to make them fatter. Don't know if this will help you. Also Paul Church showed us a different way of holding the tools if you have dexterity problems. Perhaps Barbara could show us again on her shows.


    2. Hi
      You can get all sorts of pencil grips, I think that is what Maria uses. There are lots of different shapes to help children with pencil control when they are learning to write. High street stationery shops sell some so it may well be worth a try just with a pencil to see if they would help. Chris x

    3. Hi, I have put the grips on my tools which has helped me. I get the foam ones which go on very easily. I have got a pack of 5 from Amazon recently and these are nice and squishy. No more hand cramp! Xx

    4. If you need a more chunky grip than the type Maria has on hers you could try the stuff i use. It is called Plastazote Tubing. It comes in 1m lengths and can be cut to the length you need. The tubing comes with different size bores through the middle (think a pencil with the lead missing) i get mine from Essential Aids but I've seen it on amazon and other mobility sites. I think it is the middle of the three sizes that works with the groovi tools. Can't check for certain just now.
      Hope that helps.
      Alison xxxx

  4. Love my Groovi, although I need more practice! Today I am going to my craft group where I have signed up for techniques that I haven't done in a while. It will be nice to just sit and craft without disruption along side other crafters.
    I am !looking forward to watching demos on catch up as Sundays are always busy with church and family to time.

  5. I'm loving it all, say no more …. bank balance and hubby are a bit more unsure but they'll come round 🙂 Looking forward to the shows, might have to record as Mum is coming to lunch but I got her looking last time! She's just picked up knitting needles after so many years as she's to become a great grandmother, I think she's unpicked a few times but she says she's not going to be beaten!

    Have a good weekend and shows x x

  6. Morning from a sunny Devon, good luck tomorrow and I know that I will be watching and recording. And it is so true, one has to go with that the "customers" want, not what you think. I find this with my card making.

    I just love it all and sometimes it does one good to look at new things as it is a learning curve of life. No point sitting doing the same "old thing" as I feel we do not grow.

    Well good luck and big crafty hugs Pen x

  7. I've always been a stamper too, but now I've tried the groovi, I love it. Any craft is good craft you just do your own thing with it. I love colouring so I enjoy that part of it too.
    Don't you listen to the haters Barbara, there will always be someone to criticise but a lot more people will love it. Xx

  8. As a personal thing, it would be doughnuts AND ice cream, although it would not be good for my losing weight. I love stamping and inking, and mixing stencils in with them, but I also really love the mindfulness of the Groovi and parchment in general. Mixing all three things can create something really special. Of course, you have to go with the flow in the crafting market, especially as it is taking off worldwide. We know you will never forget your inky side so go with it. Have a great time tomorrow and Monday. Safe journey. xxxx Maggie

  9. Really looking forward to what's new groovi wise. I'm absolutely loving it, just wish I had enough pennies to buy everything groovi but alas us pensioners have to just bide our time and get it but by bit . But meanwhile it's lovely playing with what I have . Have good fun on telly Barbara and hope you don't stress too much xx

  10. Well started of as paper craft buying packs glueing together and having go at parchment , then I see you on TVs started stamping of which I love no more matching cards as can make my own backing papers and know also back to parchment with lovely groovi really loving it but first love is stamping still need to try both together. Well see you tomorrow enjoy your day and tomorrow and Monday be with you xxx

  11. All your demos are fascinating to watch, and am looking forward to seeing the next stage in the Groovi system. I'm thankful for catch up tv which I will tune into when I get home from seeing my lovely family. Now it's like having ice cream on top of my doughnut! Wishing you all a good day tomorrow x

  12. Fabulous new plates and I can't wait to see and record your shows, my daughter tells me since I found crafting I'm a new women! You also reminded me of many happy times with my nanny with "I scream you scream…….. Fabulous memories xx

  13. I'm a stamper but like parchment too, only because of my disability I can't do it. Doesn't bother me though and I still love to watch the groovi shows as they are inspiring even for us stampers and they're fun, too. So, keep on grooving – as long as you don't forget all us stampers 😉 Oh, and as for ice cream or donuts, I'll have BOTH, thank you, especially hot donuts 🙂 Ooh I'd better stop – LOL. Enjoy your shows xx

  14. Hi Barb,
    I love stamping now – although that was due to Clarity, as before I never seemed to be able to get good results and I remember seeing you on C&C years ago and was so inspired that I thought I would give stamping another go. Hey presto! Brill results straight away. Now I love Groovi and have been really pleased with the results from it although I'm not perfect yet by any stretch of the imagination. I am now attempting to combine stamping and Groovi which is a whole new journey. I've had a sneaky peek at all the new plates for the weekend shows and I think I'm going to be bankrupt before much longer! I keep thinking to myself that I'll only get one or two things and wait to get others and then before I get there you've borough out other " must haves" !!!!! Still crafting is my guilty pleasure so what the heck! Good luck for the shows, love and hugs Alison xxxx

  15. Oh dear, I can see there will be items I will just HAVE to get as soon as I have some more pennies! I love stampy inky things and love Groovi to so I never know which to buy now!
    I quite understand that you must respond to the market but I am sure you will not forget stampers. Stamps and Groovi that work together would be the best of both worlds for me.
    Have a good two days xx

  16. I must say I'm not into Groovi, but love to see the wonderful work that others have done, and am constantly amazed by how patient people can be! I love the gelliplate and how it makes you deal with things being more experimental and less than perfect – it's also made me braver using colour – never expected so many life lessons from one little block of gelatin!! Hope your sore hands and wrists recover by tomorrow, Susan x

  17. Well in answer to the original question its "both" of course (can't believe there was an "or" around ice-cream and doughnuts – silly Barbara!)!! Regarding the main thurst of today's post, I love stamping and all the techniques you demo with the brayer and the gelli plate etc but I do also love the groovi and totally get that, as a business, you have to go where the demand is. I'll be tuning in tomorrow and no doubt will have a few more things to add to my wish list by 6pm!

  18. Afternoon Barbara got an e mail from hochanda yesterday went on the website wow so much new groovi to see so looking forward to the shows so much inspiration I love my groovi cannot do all the intricate patterns due to my fibromyalgia and athritic pain in my hands wrists but I still love what I can achieve and it helps so much with the depression I still do my stamping /stencilling gelli plate when I can so go Barbara groovi all the way hugs xxx

    1. Afternoon Donna Dorothy Diane pam Brenda morag gilly thinking of you all happy crafting dear blog friends lots of hugs comming your way hugs to all on the blog xxx

    2. Afternoon Sheila, hoping to craft this afternoon. Looking forward to watching the shows tomorrow. Sending hugs my friend that today is a pain free one for you. Xx

    3. Hello Sheila, I've been crafting this morning, nearly forgot about making a Mother's Day Card for Grandson to give to Mam!!
      We've actually got a little sunshine today, what a lift! Can't wait for tomorrow's shows either. |Hugs xxx

    4. Hi Sheila! Hope that you have had a good day – we went out today, enjoying the sunshine and blue skies! It was cold, but beautiful. Had lunch out in Wadebridge and then made our way home. Many hugs on their way to you,Gilly xxx

    5. Hello dear blog friends I mannage to do a little groovi with my baby mate this afternoon in bed now resting pleased you mannage to get out gilly and you crafted morag hope you mannage crafting this afternoon Donna xxx

    6. Hi Sheila I've been to see my sister today to have lunch and a catch up. Just given her the groovi starter plate for her birthday and a voucher to help her on the journey- she's going to enjoy that! Hope you are ok and will be well rested for tomorrow xxx

  19. I am a stamper at heart and love the quality of Clarity. I started out on the Groovi journey for much the same reason as many others, having tried parchment craft a few years ago and found the lineart too tricky and the designs were so old fashioned. Then along came Groovi, I am now in love with this new craft and can understand the demand for it. I'm sure in a few years the balance between them will be evened out. Keep up the great work Clarity with all aspects of your second to none business! Xx

  20. I love all clarity products and am a member of the club for all three..Groovi is a new product so clearly this will be your focus for now and I'm sure we will get ideas and inspiration for stamping and, not forgetting your wonderful stencils as well…….recorder set for tomorrow as out to lunch for Mother's Day and I'm looking forward to relaxing and watching when I get back home x

  21. I'm so excited about tomorrow. Christmas every month!!!! or that's what it feels like!
    Your demo is gorgeous, can't wait to see it finished. Enjoy your shows, you will be brilliant as usual. xx

    1. Hi Morag! We started off with glorious sunshine and blue skies and we went out for lunch and enjoyed it. The rain came in later – but we were in the car, so it didn't matter. Hugs Gilly xx

  22. My problem is that I love everything! The more techniques I can explore the better. Groovi is fabulous and of course you have to keep your business head on. I must have the grid ( brilliant how you used it to do the dots ) and the texture plate means we can Zentangle our designs. I have a single needle tool and the Pergamano scissors at the ready so all I need now is the plate. Piercing and snipping here I come.
    Hugs from Chris X

  23. Different techniques for different situations and moods, I find. Stamps and stencil work are both done upstairs in isolation in my craft room whilst I can groove away downstairs watching the big television in the company of my husband. Then, of course, the really messy stuff is done in the kitchen but with Mike at home all the time presently, this has taken a bit of a back seat. The plate is a must-have for me as I spent many hours last night piercing an intricate design; to be completed tonight in front of the TV. Enjoy tomorrow – looking forward to it. ;~}

  24. I am looking forward to your shows tomorrow and Monday Barbara and although I haven't yet got into the Groovi thing I love watching you do it and will I'm sure give it a go in tbe future, but I have only really been doing the inky thkng with stamps and stencils for the past couple of years or so and as I have spent quite a lot on the inks and stamps I cannot, I feel, spend money on the Groovi for now. I think that I love ice cream and probably eat too much of it but if I have one doughnut (with jam of course) it is so yummy that I have to have more and more which is not good for my figure …lol.

  25. Afternoon Barbara, Wow,Wow, and triple Wow !! this is stunning, I love the new textures too and the grid, a stunning scene, I can hardly wait to see it with colour on it. Looking forward to tomorrow and Monday.
    Lots of love from Patricia xx

  26. Wish I could get your TV show. You in the UK are so fortunate to have so many opportunities and publications. I opened ParchmentCraftUSA out of desperation to access products easily here and to be a source for others. I have your Groovies and have been meaning to see what's new!

  27. Wish I could get your TV show. You in the UK are so fortunate to have so many opportunities and publications. I opened ParchmentCraftUSA out of desperation to access products easily here and to be a source for others. I have your Groovies and have been meaning to see what's new!

  28. Love the farmhouse design and although as yet I have not bought into the Groovi system I really enjoy watching you design with the different plates and think they are really clever. I know I shall eventually have to have a go. Good luck for the shows although I know you will not need it You will be great as always. good to hear we can now catch up on the shows.

  29. So looking forward to the new shows Barbara. As you said, with the new catch up shows, Janice and I will be able to watch them all now. The tutorial is great and can't wait to see everything you have lined up for us. As a lot of us are new to parching, it is wonderful to be able to take the journey with you. We are learning right along side you and learning all the tips and techniques and sometimes the mistakes which is great as they put us on the right track. I have all the times listed for the two days so I will be sure not to miss any of them. Hope you have a massage booked for Tuesday as am sure you will need it for your neck and shoulders to help them relax. You have been working so hard, you do need a day off to recouperate. You will be fabulous as always.

  30. Hi Barbara, it’s your company, your products, totally up to you what you showcase and what new products you design. I get stamp/stencil ideas from your Groovi samples/demos so your Groovi shows/blogs do still have inspiration for everyone. I’m sure in a wee while it will balance out a bit and customers will be back to dividing their crafty budget between your stamps, stencils and Groovi products. And there's also still your stamp and stencil club every month. So I don’t see how anyone can say you’re neglecting your stamp only customers! If this is all people have to complain about in life, what lucky people they are!

    Me, I like a bit of everything, or I’d get bored! I hope to be able to use all 3 together if I can get back into crafting properly. And you concentrating more on your Groovi products might give me a wee chance of catching up on all my want/need stamps and stencils since last summer!!!

    Ice cream in the summer, doughnuts in the winter for me please!!!! Do you do gluten/dairy free versions?!!!

    Oooh love that texture plate. Would it be at all possible to make it into stamps please? 🙂 I think there’s no doubt I’d be running my embossing tool over the grid too!!! My head still doesn’t get it that Groovi is about slowing down, taking time, and NOT needing to do everything as quickly as my body will let me!!!! Aye, my CFS and Asperger's are always constantly at war with each other!!!! When people have seen for themselves they've said it's a really bad combination to have! And unresolvable, unless they find a cure/treatment for CFS, and then no doubt I wouldn't be able to take it because of my Asperger contraindications to medication!

    Looking forward to the luxury of being able to watch and record your shows with my new aerial set up. As long as Daisy doesn’t chew through the cable that is! Which I’ve already caught her trying to do, I've given her a new toy she thinks!!!! Hope you’re having a lovely chill day today, allowing your body and mind to rest up before all those shows. Hope they all go really well, best of luck

    Love Brenda xx

  31. I'll try anything once but I always go back to stamping. I used to parch years ago and have lots of tools but back then it was something that took a lot of time and I wasn't very good with the mapping pen. I do now have the groovi system which is much easier to use.
    I've been working overtime today so no actual crafting for me but I have been virtual crafting. I've been planning my challenge card – I think it will be paint, ink and stamps with some parchment embellishments, well that's the plan anyway.

  32. Well,wishes from Virginia for the next few days on hochanda . I did catch- up last week and it was
    A thrill .,when hochanda started , this was one of my suggestions . Yippee ! Now not only me and Cathie can watch it but you all can also go back and catch the shows over and over . Joy now Janice

  33. Hi Barbara – really looking forward to seeing you on TV! I have to say that I would prefer doughnuts sometimes but ice-cream at other times! I really love watching the Groovi programmes – even though I haven't started to do this as yet. I am waiting until my health is improved, as I can't do a lot of crafting at the moment, so I can't justify spending on it yet, but I do know that I will! Meantime I really love watching how it is done. My husband had his own business for 20 years before he retired in January this year – so I totally understand how you have to constantly change in your business to keep moving forward. It certainly seems that you are going from strength to strength. Well done to all at Clarity! Hugs Gilly x

    1. Evening gilly are you not in the diamond club ? Hope you can soon do a little crafting it helps us through our illness sending lots of hugs your way xxx

    2. Hi Sheila! No I'm not, I have got so many dies and stamps that I can't really justify it at the moment. My O/T has told me to keep everything I do, to only 10 minute slots at the moment, so I am having to be patient – unfortunately! xxx

    3. You are doing the right thing as your OT will know best and the stress you must be under with you been so ill and your husband too will be taking its toil on you both if you have things to craft with now that's all you need getting out and about together is far more important thinking of you lots of hugs comming your way xxx

    4. Ah thanks Sheila! You understand just how it is, perfectly! I don't always feel patient, but you will know all about that too! Thanks for the extra hugs! xx

  34. I'm a stamper at heart, stamp me feet too! I do love the groovi products though. I find it's actually the easiest tool for a very quick, clean and effective card.

    Fancy having to work through Mothering Sunday! Worka and Holick will be in their element!

  35. I think that whatever works is fine, have to admit to whizzing across it myself at times. Time is so short occasionally. Will try to watch as many shows as possible then catch up on the rest. Parchment is having a revival at moment so you got to go with that, suspect Clarity might be largely responsible for the new interest. I just like all forms of craft so easily pleased. Safe trip to HOCHANDA. XX

  36. Parchment is now achievable for me using the Groovi system! It rocks…..Just as well we're getting a bonus at work this month!
    Looking forward to the shows Barbara – and fab that HOCHANDA now has catch-up so I won't miss out on the Monday shows….that' Monday evening sorted!
    Good luck with the shows Barb xxx

  37. Hello Barb,
    You have struggled for many years, and if this is good business for you, go ahead girl.
    Me, I enjoy traditional parchment craft, but love your brayer work and the gelli plate. I have joined the Groovi club, but haven't done any of it yet, as stamping and colouring are my main thing, especially after doing a couple of classes with you years ago. I am busy doing some traditional parchment cards with my pergamano tools – which can't be bettered in my opinion – but one day, who knows, I may start using the Groovi – there's room for everything in my craft world!!!!
    Maureen xx

  38. Hiya Barb I am a stamper but I get it – you need to go where the money is and if it's in the Groovi right now just go with the grove! I am enjoying seeing what everyone is coming up with and there are some really beautiful pieces of art out there now because of you and your Clarity team so I'm yelling out to all those stampers like me to just let it go! Unless you can all cough up a fair bit of dough, meaning buy stamps and stencils, let this stuff shine out. Dulling anyone else's sparkle just ain't on! Clarity team make sure you rest soon so you don't all get burnt out Karen xx

  39. I'm a stamper at heart and I've grown to love stencils too. I enjoyed trying the Groovi system at the Retreat, and I like my single border plate. I don't plan to invest in any more at the moment; no space and still need to master Gelli plate. Maybe then..
    I think you're dead right to push your innovative star new product. You know your business best and after all you're so successful and still building your fantastic team. I admit I enjoy the stamping shows more but any show you star in is worth watching, if only for your enthusiasm, teaching skills and sheer star quality. Carol

  40. I enjoy all ways of creating a picture, but I like to mix things up and change them to make them my own. I have had some pleasing results combining stamping and groovi and adding a bit of freestyle embossing on the parchment. I am thinking of trying glass paint on a groovi design to see if it works to make a stained glass type picture to hang in a child's window. I have used baking parchment to transfer a groovi design to watercolour paper by indenting it into the paper using the pointy end of the tool, mixed results with that one but I will try it again, the fish looked quite good as a background. I suppose I am trying to say you don't have to use things as they were intended, It's worth risking some disasters to find different ways of using a design you like xx

  41. Hi Barbara
    This looks fun! I'm really looking forward to watching you tomorrow and finding out what's new – I'm not at the snipping sat age yet but love how it looks. Safe journey – oh yes, can I opt for doughnuts and ice cream please!!!!
    Love Diane xxx

  42. Hi Barb, love the sample you have done here, looking forward to the shows today. If anyone feels neglected, they just need to go have a look on the website at what's new. I love the fact that you concentrate on either stamping or Groovi, I think that gives you more choice of what to watch. Travel safely and good luck with the shows. Bx

  43. Hi Barbara
    So glad you've made some texture plates makes your art work look really interesting having some different texture.Looking forward to the shows,you'll be great like you are every time your on TV.
    Glad your not giving up on stamping as it's stamping that brought me to crafting but enjoy everything groovi also.

  44. Have just eaten the doughnuts & tuned in for groovi !! I think maybe were hooked on both! Not neglecting stamping tho – there are plenty to choose from on the site already

  45. Glad to hear your seeing a good return on your investment in the groovi system. As a stamper I'm feeling slightly neglected, I will have to watch Sheena for my stamping fix this week.

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