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FROM THE ARCHIVE 28th February 2013 – And I still haven’t done any more drawing!

The Lady in the Big Hat #1 Personalized Announcements by FirstNightDesign I am delighted to tell you that I have just sold one hundred invitations of  The Lady in the Big Hat. I often used to draw …

Source: The Lady in the Big Hat Invites You… | First Night Design

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah

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Original & vintage art © First Night Design [www.firstnightdesign.wordpress.com]

Source: Sugar-Dusted Christmas Fruit Card | Zazzle

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Original & vintage art © First Night Design

Source: Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid! Card | Zazzle

If it’s something you mark, enjoy. It turns out my youngest niece adores Halloween!

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Thank heavens it’s two years later and, as some of you know, I’ve now had that cataract operation!

FROM THE ARCHIVE 17th April 2013

A lovely customer has bought 30 of these invitations, which makes up for the cataract operation mentioned in the earlier post being cancelled.  Right…

Source: Sail Away to a Party: Invitations


Thanksgiving Hideaway © Sarah Vernon

Thanksgiving Hideaway © Sarah Vernon

Original photograph by Mr FND adapted in Photoshop for Thanksgiving with textures from 2 Lil’ Owls and Grand Hotel monogram from The Graphics Fairy.


“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one’s own relations.”
Oscar Wilde, A Woman of No Importance


 

Photography Prints


“I celebrated Thanksgiving in an old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.”
Jon Stewart


Available at the following galleries:
Redbubble
Crated
Zazzle US
Zazzle UK
Fine Art America
Fine Art England

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid! © Sarah Vernon

Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid! © Sarah Vernon

It’s astonishing what you can achieve when you don’t know what you want or where you’re heading. Such was the case with Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid! I find it difficult — sometimes tiresome — to create for specific occasions or holidays but I thought I ought to try and do a new design for Halloween. I’ve never celebrated it myself but it’s a major holiday in America and increasingly popular in Britain so there’s definitely a market on both sides of the Atlantic.

Halloween Skeleton & Cherub Postcard
Halloween Skeleton & Cherub Postcard

Using my Skeleton and Cherub design, I added a background layer of dark brown in Photoshop’s Normal mode. Out came my 2 Lil’ Owls tool box and Beguiling-25 (Multiply) and Beguiling-24 (Pin Light) ultimately proved to be perfect. If I’d set out with the idea of having a glowing light within the skeleton’s rib cage, I doubt I would have managed it. None of this was realised without an endless assortment of try-out blends over several days. Of course!

Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid! 5x7 Paper Invitation Card
Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid! 5×7 Paper Invitation Card

Available at the following galleries:
Redbubble
Crated
Zazzle US
Zazzle UK
Fine Art America
Fine Art England

A slide show of some of my other Halloween designs

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Halloween @ First Night Design Zazzle US

Halloween @ First Night Design Zazzle UK

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Just imagine you’re living in the 19th century and want the perfect entertainment for Halloween. You could try The Haunting at the Theatre Royal. But beware the black cat!

Having just sold this Halloween card on Greeting Card Universe, it’s clear that people are already thinking about 31st October and being spooked out by kids trick or treating!

Just in case you were wondering, there was never — to my knowledge — a Victorian play called The Haunting. The image was created with various bits of family ephemera and Photoshop’s design tools, except for the black cat, which came (I think) from The Graphics Fairy.

The Haunting 4x9.25 Paper Invitation Card
The Haunting 4×9.25 Paper Invitation Cards at Zazzle

The Haunting Courier Bags
The Haunting Courier Bags at Zazzle

Available at the following galleries:
Zazzle US
Zazzle UK

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


From the Archives (27-08-12).

First Night Design

There’s an elegant lady in New Orleans who’s having a party!  Yes, I was delighted to start the week with 75 invitations sold.  I drew The Lady in the Big Hat with LiveBrush software which enables me to draw as I used to before Limited Cutaneous Systemic Sclerosis put paid to using my hands thus!

The Lady in the Big Hat #1 Personalized Announcements
The Lady in the Big Hat #1 Personalized Announcements by FirstNightDesign

Take care and keep laughing.
Sarah

View original post



“Those who are easily shocked should be shocked more often.”
― Mae West


The Lady in the Big Hat #1 11 Cm X 14 Cm Invitation Card
The Lady in the Big Hat #1 11 Cm X 14 Cm Invitation Card

I am always curious to know what customers are drawn to most and since Zazzle keeps adding search categories ‘backstage’, I nosed around in the ‘Most Ordered’ using the all-time option. I couldn’t have been more surprised except for top spot going to The Playbills Binder as it’s the only product I know sells like hot cakes at Christmas.

I never sell what I expect to sell! I guess there’s a lesson in there somewhere that we should never assume owt nor think we know what the reality is.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Planning a little shindig for Easter? How about delicious Hot Cross Bun invitations?

Hot Cross Buns Easter Basket #2 5" X 7" Invitation Card
Hot Cross Buns Easter Basket #2 5″ x 7″ Invitation Cards (US)

Here’s Delia Smith’s recipe for Hot Cross Buns.

Ingredients

 450g strong white flour
 1 level teaspoon fine salt
 4 level teaspoons, easy bake yeast
 3 level teaspoons ground mixed spice
 1 level teaspoon ground cinnamon
 50g golden caster sugar
 110g currants (I like pinhead)
 50g whole candied peel, chopped
 50g spreadable butter
 150ml hand-hot milk
 75ml hand-hot water
 1 large egg, beaten
For the crosses:
 40g strong (or normal) plain flour
 10g spreadable butter
For the glaze:
 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
 2 tablespoons of water

Equipment

You will need a large baking sheet with a liner or well-greased and a lightly oiled polythene bag

Method

First tip the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the salt, yeast, mixed spice and cinnamon then give it a good mix.

Add the caster sugar followed by the currants and candied peel then mix these dry ingredients together and make a well in the centre.

Next add the butter and pour the hand-hot milk and the hand-hot water over the butter followed by the beaten egg.

Now mix everything to a dough, starting with a spatula and finishing with your hands until it is all combined, evenly mixed and leaves the bowl clean. Add a spot more milk if it needs it.

Next cover the bowl with a polythene bag and leave it at room temperature to rise – it will take about 1½ hours to 2 hours to double its original volume.

Then turn the dough out on to clean work surface (you shouldn’t need any flour) and punch out the air.

Now divide the mixture into twelve using a palette knife.

Take one piece of the dough and shape it into a round then roll it between the fingers of each hand, keeping your hands flat, to form a fairly smooth round ball (this should only take about 10 seconds or so) then do the same with the remaining pieces of dough.

Arrange them on the lined or greased baking sheet (allowing plenty of room for expansion). Leave them to rise once more inside a large, lightly greased polythene bag for 45 minutes to an hour, or again until about double the size.

Meanwhile, if you want to make dough crosses, put the flour into a bowl and rub in the butter. Add just enough cold water to form a dough then roll it out thinly on a lightly floured surface to an oblong about 12cm by 16cm then cut it into 24 strips.

Pre-heat the oven to 220°C, gas mark 7.

When the second rising is up, brush the strips with water, to make them stick, and make a cross on top of each bun trimming away any excess dough with a small knife.

Alternatively you can use a small sharp or serrated knife to score a cross in the top of each bun.

Bake the buns for 15 minutes near the centre of the oven. Then, while they’re cooking make the glaze in a small saucepan by slowly melting together the sugar and 2 tablespoons of water over a gentle heat until the sugar granules have dissolved and you have a clear syrup.

As soon as the buns come out of the oven, brush them immediately with the glaze while they are still warm.

Then cool them on a wire rack.

If you are not serving them on the day that you bake them its best to freeze them as soon as they are cool.

Then when you need them defrost them and warm them through in the oven. If there are any left over they are wonderful, split, toasted and buttered on the following day.

Available at the following galleries:
Zazzle US
Zazzle UK

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah



‘We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.’
—Thornton Wilder


 

A few ideas for Thanksgiving, if you can get your head round it when vampires, werewolves, skeletons and sundry other spooky Halloween items are being thrust upon us from every side!

I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t also show you the matching tote!

The products below are for sale on Zazzle.Don't You Just Love Thanksgiving! Card 
Don’t You Just Love Thanksgiving! Card

A Bountiful Thanksgiving Postage

A Bountiful Thanksgiving Postage

Thanksgiving Rooster Letterhead Design
Thanksgiving Rooster Letterhead Design

Artful Pumpkins
Artful Pumpkins Wrapping Paper

For these and other Thanksgiving gifts at First Night Design on Zazzle, click here.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah

Related articles

If I was having a party this Halloween, I would definitely choose these invitations!

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


A lovely customer has bought 30 of these invitations, which makes up for the cataract operation mentioned in the earlier post being cancelled.  Right now I’d prefer to be on that dhow and sailing away from the frustrations of the real world.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


There’s an elegant lady in New Orleans who’s having a party!  Yes, I was delighted to start the week with 75 invitations sold.  I drew The Lady in the Big Hat with LiveBrush software which enables me to draw as I used to before Limited Cutaneous Systemic Sclerosis put paid to using my hands thus!

The Lady in the Big Hat #1 Personalized Announcements
The Lady in the Big Hat #1 Personalized Announcements by FirstNightDesign

Take care and keep laughing.
Sarah

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