What is St Luke's Hospice?

St Luke's is a hospice which cares for people aged 18 and above throughout Sheffield who have incurable illnesses. Their aim is always to control the patients symptoms, alleviate pain, and give them the best possible quality of life – all free of charge. It costs £6 million per annum to keep St Luke's open, and government funding, via NHS trusts only provides one third of the funds required, which means the Hospice has to raise a staggering £4 million each year to provide this vital end-of-life care.

This challenge was set up by a St Luke's Supporter who has seen first hand, the amazing care given to patients through St Luke's and whilst donations are now closed we would like to thank all our donators for their wonderful contributions.

Tuesday 11 December 2012

Final Winners

Hi All

Sorry for the delay in announcing our winners but I've been ill so only have the energy today for getting it all sorted.  Anne also pointed out that with all that went on last month, I didn't post the winners from our October Simple Christmas challenge either - so - I'll start with that one first.

Our winner for that challenge who wins the lovely Christmas set from Waltzingmouse stamps is Sarah G with her lovely simple but very cute reindeer card

And our runners up for that month were 3 Stampin Up Lovlies - Zoe, Vicky and Lindsey with their super CAS creations.

Now, for our final ever winner for our Traditional Christmas challenge who is the recipient of our tripple prize package of stamps and die is Ruth - do check out her blog to see all the cards she made as there are many more in this style which is just super traditional and very beautiful.

Our final runners up were Sarah and Mihaela with these lovely cards with traditional flower and bow embellishments, and Vicky with her super CAS and very traditional holly card (well were are a CAS DT at heart!)

Finally - I just wanted to thank everyone who has played along being for one challenge, all of them, or something in between - you really have made a big difference and I will continue to update on any future sales next year so you can be assured your hard work and generosity will not go to waste.  I also wanted to say thank you for all the kind, kind, words you  left on the blog - I had NO IDEA we would be missed as a challenge so it was lovely to read how much you all liked playing along.  I know the DT and I missed making our cards this month so we miss it too!

Thanks again and all that is left to say is to wish you all a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS and ALL THE BEST FOR A HAPPY AND HEALTHY 2013 :-)


Wednesday 21 November 2012

A final reminder

Just wanted to pop in with a reminder that you have just a few days left to enter this final ever challenge from St Luke's Charity Cards Challenge - all you need is a traditional Christmas card.  Here's a final bit of inspiration from me for you - a very simple card, one die, one stamp, an off cut of patterned paper and some metallic ribbon.

I also wanted to thank you all for the lovely comments you've left about the challenge - I had no idea we'd be missed so much.  I will get around to visit you all personally soon, but it's been a difficult month so far and unfortunately my Father in Law passed away in the early hours of Monday so we have a lot to organise ahead of the funeral next week.

Thanks again for all your support - I do hope you all throw one last entry into the virtual hat so you can try to win our final prize.

Thursday 1 November 2012

A final challenge

This is going to be quite a difficult post to write, but, as you can probably already guess from the title of the post, this is going to be the final challenge from St Luke's charity cards challenge and this one is JUST FOR FUN, we are no longer accepting any new cards to sell on behalf of the hospice.

The idea for this challenge came to me a little under two years ago when I looked at the box full of cards I had made for challenges but had no recipients for and thought that up and down the UK there must be other card makers who were in the same boat.  What if we could something useful with these brilliant cards?  As my father had died 3 years before in St Luke's hospice of lung cancer, I thought that collecting these cards to sell on their behalf would be a perfect way to give a little back.  I thought we would get maybe 20 or 30 cards each month and that it would take a while to build up enough stocks for a sale, but I was so overwhelmed when you lovely, generous and creative people started to send not only your challenge cards but also boxes full of others.  I need to do a final count but I estimate that we will have received around 2250 cards in the 18 months we've been running which is not bad for a half baked idea!   The problem has been in the selling of the cards - it's been a tough year both due to the bad weather and resulting low fair turnout and cancellations, but also for me personally as my father-in-law now has terminal cancer and my mother is now housebound which means I just haven't had the weekends to give up to attend fairs in the last 6 months.  Even though the cards go to the hospice, there isn't anyone there that does anything with them, it's all me and I'm afraid I just don't have the necessary time to commit currently.  I have been frantically investigating other methods to sell the cards - I had always hoped when I set up the challenge that the cards could stock the hospice's charity shops across the city, but now I've looked into this a little more the prices they put on cards in the shops just does not match the quality of cards you send us and therefore I just didn't feel comfortable with asking you to donate anymore knowing they wouldn't fetch a fair price.  The staff at the hospice were also not able to track cards donated or sold so we would have no information going on the blog about your donations or the money they had raised - again not something I felt comfortable with.  Therefore I have no option but to stop the challenge.

We still have a few prizes from our kind sponsors so I thought the best thing to do would be to go out with one final challenge but this is one is being run just for fun and as a thank you to you all for all your previous donations.  You can still link up your cards and be in with a chance to win this one final bumper prize worth over £30.

This is the final challenge, but I won't be totally closing the blog will stay active as there is still a job to do with all the stock you have so kindly donated already.  Again, the hospice don't really know what to do with them (they suggested storing them in their cellar!) so they will be stored by me  at home until next year and will be taken to St Luke's own summer fair (I will continue to man the card stall there for them each year as a volunteer) and if I get a little more time next year I will try and do a few more fairs until I run the stocks down.  Any new sales will be updated on the blog from time to time, so if you're a follower you'll get the updates as they happen.

All that's left to say is a MASSIVE THANK YOU for all your support and we hope you had a little fun while it lasted

And so to that final challenge - we're leaving you with an easy one - all we want to see is a traditional Christmas card - you can interpret that in any way - traditional colours, religious theme or other traditional Christmas imagery.  And here are my wonderful DT members with their final inspirational projects for you - thank you ladies - you've all been a real pleasure to work with and have made this challenge what it is - couldn't have done it without you :-D

Thanks again to all who have joined in with our challenges - you've all made a great contribution to the work of the hospice and for that I can't thank you enough.

Tara x

Wednesday 31 October 2012

Simple Christmas

Firstly, I want to apologise for not getting around to comment on many of your wonderful couples cards last months - some of you know but many don't, my FIL is currently suffering from terminal cancer and we are doing a lot of running around to help care for him so we are very time poor at present.  I will get around to look at all your cards to vote in the next few days but please accept my apologies if I don't leave a comment - I will try to keep on top of it this month.

Now to the challenge, it probably comes as no great surprise that we're doing a Christmas challenge this month - the supermarkets seem to have given over half their shelves to cards, wrapping and chocolate already - and we are down to about 11 weeks to go I do believe.  So, here we are with a gentle reminder that you really should start to make your Christmas cards now and if like me, you need to make LOTS of them, then a clean and simple (and therefore quick to repeat) design is definitely the way to go.  So our challenge this month is clean and simple Christmas cards - think clean, graphic and lots of "white" space (open areas of any colour).  Unlike our previously unpopular CAS challenge though - this one does not have to be one layer so you can still layer it up if you like.

We have a gorgeous, and appropriate set from our most regular sponsors this month - Waltzingmouse - with their "Twas the night before Christmas" set which is brilliantly useful for Christmas cards of any style.

Our wonderful DT have come up with some A-MAZ-ING inspirational cards this month which are sure to get your creative juices flowing:



So now, it's over to you - find our your Christmas stamps and papers and get creating.  We'll be back in a few days to announce last months winner and again mid-month to provide you with some more inspiration.

Thursday 18 October 2012

Simple Christmas - Are You Playing?

There's still time to play in our clean and simple Christmas card challenge this month.  We've had some stunning entries to far but you've still got a couple of weeks to get your entries in.

Here's a little more inspiration for you - this year I'm going for a Christmas tree theme in a lot of my cards - all quick and simple and easy to replicate.  Here are a couple of my designs that I just tweak slightly to make them more interesting to mass produce.

With just over 10 weeks to Christmas - it really is time to get those fingers inky - so what are you waiting for?  We look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Monday 8 October 2012

Couples winners

So, are you playing along with our Christmas challenge?  I do hope so - we're loving the entries that have come in so far.

It's time to announce the winner of the lovely set of LOTV stamps from last month's couples challenge.

Our overall winner was Louise - we really loved your unusual take on the challenge - the lovebirds are gorgeous and the simple one layer layout is fab.

Our runners up were Di - with her cute penguins, Elinir with this gorgeous easel card,  Mary with the cute pairing of dog and owner, and Susan with another fab cosy looking couple.

Thanks ladies - winners badges are on their way........

Sunday 30 September 2012


It's time for a new month long challenge again - are you ready to get your stash out and play - we do hope so as our numbers seem to be dwindling.   This month we hope you find our challenge easier - we just want to see couples - not necessarily of the romantic kind (although Anniversary and Wedding Cards are amongst our best sellers in the donated cards).  As long as you card features a couple in some form - people or animals - it all counts.

This month we are again being sponsored by one of our regular sponsors - the fabulous Lili of the Valley and we have two super cute boy stamps up for grabs.

Here's the inspiration parade this month - a whole host of couples from the furry, to the feathered and scaly with even a couple of humans thrown in for good measure - check out the links to our fabby DT's personal blogs for more details:

Sylvie (to follow)

So now, it's over to you - link your couples up below and do tell your friends to play along too - we love to see new players join in the fun.