Monday, 24 December 2007
These are my Christmas cards this year. I always do a batch of similar cards, as I don't really have the inspiration to do them all different! I have a couple of individual cards made- it's amazing how skilled my one year old is at using the Cuttlebug, and inking the edges of the cardstock! (Well, he can at least hold a crayon to scribble on the inside for his Daddy. Next year he can play with the craft stuff!) Anyway, for these cards I made some backgrounds using Distress inks (Water/craft mat plus sprayed) then cut them into squares, heat embossed the central images and then embossed around the edges. All of the images on these are Paperartsy, apart from the snowflakes, which are Katzelcraft.
Happy Christmas to you all, I'll be posting if I have anything new, otherwise I'll be enjoying Christmas with my family. Have fun!
Friday, 21 December 2007
Well, I've finally done it and changed my editing software, and I'm so glad I did. I was using Paint Shop Pro 8, which I've had for a while, and loved to use as it was really instinctive for me. Sadly, when I switched to Windows Vista, PSP8 suddenly didn't want to play, and became a torment to use instead of a pleasure. So I looked up loads of reviews, and decided to give Photoshop a try. Adobe offer a free 30 day trial, so I downloaded it. A few days of figuring it all out, and here we are! Now I've had a play, and figured out how to do all of the things I could do before, and I love it! My next thing is to try some digital scrapbooking, but don't expect to see the results any time soon, as I am really busy as always, and don't have time to play.
Anyway, here is another CJ entry for the UK Stampers journal I'm in. I really enjoyed this one, as I got all inspired by one of my favourite movies! This is Pat's journal, and her theme is 'love'. Her stamp is the heart stamp (from Clever cuts), and in the introductory page she wrote that she liked interactive elements, and wanted the colours to be red and pink. I was hit by the quote from 'Moulin Rouge', which you can see in the third photo, and thought immediately of the beginning of the movie, where the red curtain opens to reveal the Paris landscape.
The curtain was a free download from a website about toy theatres, stamped with Paperartsy and Zettiology stamps to create the gold braid effect. The wrought iron and Tour Eiffel stamps are Paperartsy, the stars are Field of Sky (again!) and the moon is an image from the 1902 movie 'Le Voyage Dans la Lune'. The heart stamp was stamped and embossed twice on acetate, then glittered on the reverse, and the words printed on the computer. The curtain has a card track to make it pull up and down fairly straight. I hope Pat likes it! Thanks for the inspiration.
PS The glue on the red heart isn't dry in the photos, but it was dry when I sent it, honest!
Thursday, 13 December 2007
Since I am crazy busy with Christmas and family things, I thought I would take the time to show a card I made in September. I don't want to show my Christmas cards until they are in the post, as I want them to be a bit of a surprise to those personal friends and family who will be receiving them. And other photos of things I have done haven't yet been cropped, as I am in the middle of changing my editing software. Luckily I had cropped this card ages ago, but had no time to blog it.
This is an acetate card, I got the instructions from Splitcoast Stampers, and what you can't really see is that I have stamped all over using a Cherry Pie leaf stamp, and clear embossing powder. Kym sent me the powder, it is from her shop Stamp Galaxy, and it is so clear that it doesn't photograph well! Most clear ep's are slightly yellowish, and this one isn't. Thanks Kym! The main image is Non Sequitur, stamped in Stazon on acetate, and the gold panel covers up the message on the inside! Clever, eh?
Monday, 10 December 2007
I have a charity Auction for Cancer Research on ebay for the next 10 days.
We commissioned Daphne Roberts ( the boss!), to make some multi media canvases for us for our trade show in Feb 2007.
As they would be gathering dust after the end of this year, we decided to auction them off on Ebay for Cancer Research. Both Mal and I have family and friends who have suffered from Cancer, and thought this an appropriate way to raise money for a cause close to our hearts.
I have set the minimum bids low, and hope that some of you will bid to raise money, and have a great piece of artwork too! They will make a fab Christmas present if you could bear to give them away!
This is the link to my shop on ebay where they are being auctioned.
happy Bidding and any questions please ask
Friday, 7 December 2007
I have made a couple more cards with my Magnolia stamps, and have another CJ entry to show, but right now I'm going to enjoy my Friday evening Indian meal. Yummy!
Wednesday, 5 December 2007
This is my first ever entry in someone else's journal! If you recall, I am in a circle journal with 9 other people from UK Stampers, and the idea is that we send a journal around with an unmounted stamp, and everyone does an entry with that stamp. Well, this is Petra's journal, and she has chosen a journal made of envelopes and tags. Each player decorates an envelope, then uses Petra's stamp on the tag. Petra's stamp is a sort of hippy-chick from Time to Stamp, quite a challenging one really! First of all, it made me think of 'Hair', then I started to think about 'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds' by the Beatles. Hence the colours etc! (Check out the 3rd photo for the lyrics if you need an explanation).
The envelope is covered in paper made using the usual water/craft mat/Distress Ink technique. The diamond stamps are by Limited Edition, and the swirl stamp is from Paperartsy. The 'tangerine tree' is done using stamps from Aud Design, and the 'cellophane flowers' are also Aud Design. They are yellow and green, coloured with alcohol inks, but didn't photograph well.
The tag inside was inspired by those star charts, which show the night sky as a join-the-dots picture to explain the constellations. After sponging on some distress inks, I used Field of Sky to stamp on my stars in silver, then used Petra's stamp with Versamark and clear holographic embossing powder. As you can see from the photo, when you tilt the tag the image of the woman becomes clear, tilt it back and she's invisible!
I'm up to my eyeballs in birthday cards again, I have three to do this week. Then I have a flurry in January, and that's it for a while! I think that in February I need to sit down and make a few, so I'm not always playing catch-up. But I did take the time to make some arty ATCs for UK Stampers. I got really inky and pricked my fingertips (I used hand-sewing on them!), but afterwards I felt really good. Sometimes you just need to go where your muse takes you, it's really therapeutic. I forgot to take photos, though, sorry!
Thursday, 29 November 2007
Has it really been three weeks since I last checked in? As you can see, I have been busy. As well as making all of the cards, I have been to lots of baby parties, and held our own for my little one year old. Happy birthday to them all! The last of the parties was today, and although they were fun they were also exhausting! Babies, cake and toys equal noise and grizzly little ones after a couple of hours. And I'm sure it only gets worse as they get older!
As you can see from the photos, I have a couple of new toys. First of all, I have some new stamps, the fairy is from Wendie Rhodes and the boy with the balloon is Magnolia (the other two Magnolia stamps were kindly sent to me by Kym, thanks so much, Kym!). Then my lovely husband bought me a Cuttlebug for Christmas, and said I could have it now, bless him! Other than those, I have used H20s for all of the colouring in, and stamps from Stampendous, Aud Design and Forth Dimension. There's also a little Glossy Accents, Brilliance and Sakura glaze pens thrown in for good measure.
I found it interesting doing these cards. The colouring in was really good fun, but the designs were hard to do! I think grunge is much more my usual style, but I will have to get good at these cutie things too! Wish me luck!
PS I owe a couple of Ladies a RAK over on 2Peas. I haven't forgotten, just didn't make the time to organise it! Will sort this weekend.
Thursday, 8 November 2007
The background is silver peel-offs on brushed silver mirri-card, dabbed with alcohol inks. It is about 15cms square. What you can't really see from the photo is that there are layers of acetate separated by strips of foam board, so the piece has depth, and each element is floating above the previous one. The first layer is a Paperartsy image, stamped in Brilliance ink and embossed with Chiaro Flo embossing powder from Stamp Galaxy (really clear, really fine detail powder). The next layer is the image of the little girl, stamped onto a piece of text (some sort of computer manual, I think!), also in Brilliance. The first two clocks are also on that layer. The next two are on the top layer, and the piece is sealed with a metal tape, aged with alcohol inks.
Things are incredibly busy at home, even more so than usual since all of the babies I see regularly are one this month! I can't believe a year has passed since all of my friends from my Ante-natal classes started to have their babies. Dan was originally due on November the 11th, so this time last year I was on tenterhooks waiting for my first contraction! He was actually nearly two weeks late, and I spent that fortnight doing anything I could to get things started. I can still barely face fresh pineapple, after eating it daily for a fortnight! We are having a party on Saturday, it'll be so much fun! (Next year they will be crafting...!)
Tuesday, 30 October 2007
All three ATCs use free collage images, and it had to be children for me, as they are little angels (awww!) The first uses printed vellum over a stamped background (that Anna Griffin stamp again), and Anna Griffin butterfly wings. The second is on a sparkly card, and uses the new Paperartsy Christmas stamps (don't you love that swirl!) heat embossed in white. The last one uses an Inkadinkado flower stamp on the background (in Brilliance ink) and for the wings, heat embossed in gold. Thanks for looking!
Monday, 29 October 2007
This is hello and goodbye to my first circle journal. For those who don't have a clue what I'm talking about, the idea is that you work with a group of people who each creates a journal and then it gets sent from person to person until it eventually comes home, full of other people's artwork. This one has the clever idea of sending an unmounted stamp around with the book, for people to use as a starting point. My stamp is from Non-Sequitur, and I chose it because it's an interesting image for people to play with, but I won't struggle without it for ten months!
The journal itself is handmade. I made the cover using traditional book-binding methods, then used my Bind-it-all to hold the inside pages together. The cover paper was made using the craft mat/water/Distress Ink technique (using Vintage Photo and Aged Mahogany) then stamped with a Judikins cube. I added pockets to the cover and first page, one for the 'rules' (and contact info), and the other for some tags. I love tags and have chosen to ask participants to make one as a sign-in. I can't wait to see all of the fibres etc at the top when it's complete, it'll be so textural.
I did the first page before sending the journal off and I thought I'd get the Oriental thing out of the way by doing it myself (the stamp is from an oriental plate). The red is painted with Hot Cinnamon H2O, and the text stamp is Judikins.
So far, one other person has completed their page in my book, and I love it! I was trying not to peek, but I knew it was on Photobucket so I couldn't resist. It's completely different to mine, and has a clever quote too. I have the next person's journal, and will be completing my entry soon. It has tags and envelopes to decorate, so it should be fun!
Sunday, 28 October 2007
-A CJ for UK Stampers, where we are sending a journal plus an unmounted stamp around to ten participants,
-Some ATCs from September's 3 for 3 swap, also on UK Stampers,
-A 'peel-off' challenge, which actually turned out to be quite arty,
-My returned jam ATCs, decorated by the hands of two other people,
-Birthday cards for some babies,
-Christmas ornaments for yet another swap!
My life is pretty busy at the moment. Like most crafter's I am planning my Christmas obligations already, there isn't much time left, really! My little one is coming up for his first birthday, and we are subtly changing our lifestyle to accommodate our little 'cruiser' (he's not walking yet, but he loves to get around on his feet). I am not crafting every night as I used to (wasn't I lucky to be able to do so before :-)) but I am still photographing all of my work with a view to sharing when I can. So I hope I will get some time very soon to share the above projects, until then, bye for now!
PS Thank you to those who played along with the 2Peas challenge. The winners were Sandy(Colorful) and Jan(Far North) who produced beautiful cards using my tutorial. Follow the link with the class to see their work.
Saturday, 6 October 2007
I don't know if you remember, but 2Peas' stamping board staged a very successful weekend event called World Stamping Weekend. Well, this time you have a week to get involved and have some fun! There are loads of challenges and classes, and this is one of them.
In this class, I am going to demonstrate my three favourite techniques using Perfect Pearls. The challenge part for you is to use all of those techniques on one piece! The RAK for the best piece is a bag of ribbons and embellishments which I promise to photograph tomorrow! Judging will take place next Saturday, and all entries must be in the 2Peas gallery and have SOF Pearls in the title. Here is the thread to link to. Click on any of the photos for a closer look!
Note: I have used Perfect Pearls here. From what I have read, the difference between PP and other powders is that PP contains a gum that acts as a fixative. So if you are using other brands, just remember to use a spray fixative or varnish.
Stage one- Creating a background.
This is the Craft mat/ Distress Ink technique with a little added Perfect Pearls. You could also use Nick Bantock Dye Ink in the same way. Or feel free to play with whatever you have! Be warned, this technique is messy and you will get inky fingers. It’s all in a days stamping!
You will need:
Distress Ink or other dye ink (not water resistant!)
Craft mat, cutting mat or other plastic surface
Water in a spray mister
Smooth watercolour paper or card
- On your craft mat (or other plastic surface) dab your ink pad(s) randomly, leaving some gaps. Make sure the area you cover is a little bigger than your chosen paper.
- Use a dry paintbrush to get a little powder and flick it over the inked craft mat. I like to have a few little ‘drifts’, to give a more obvious effect.
- Spritz your craft mat with water until there are tiny even beads of water/ink visible.
- Place your paper on the wet, inky mat, and move it around a little. Lift the edge and check the coverage. If there are any gaps, then put it down again and move it around some more.
- Put the paper to one side to dry. You can use a heat gun if you are impatient!
Now for the next part…
Stage two- adding pattern
This is a really simple stage (isn’t it all?!) to add some pattern to your background paper. You will need to make sure your paper is really dry, as the powder will cling to any moisture.
You will need:
A small paintbrush
A soft brush ie. a blusher brush, or a dry tissue/cotton wool.
A stamp with a swirl-type pattern
- Ink up your chosen stamp with Versamark
- Stamp it onto your background paper to create a pattern.
- Using the small paintbrush, generously dust on some Perfect Pearls. You can use more than one colour and blend if you like. If you swirl the brush around as you go, you can move the powder along the design so as not to waste it.
- Blow off the excess powder.
- Using either the soft brush or a piece of tissue, gently rub all over the design to take off any unwanted powder. This also sets and polishes the powder.
And now for the last part…
Stage three- Adding your design
This last stage utilises something I found out by accident, and creates a two-tone effect.
You will need:
Distress Ink or similar in a darker colour
A small paintbrush
A soft brush or tissue/cotton wool
- Stamp your design in Distress Ink or other.
- When it is nearly dry, add some powder. Swirl it around with your brush, it doesn’t have to be really even.
- Brush off as in stage two.
And this is the finished piece... All stamps by Cherry Pie.
Thursday, 4 October 2007
These are the last steps for Mission: Collage.
Here are the final 5 steps:
1. Scratch: Use a sharp instrument to scratch anywhere on the surface of your collage.
2. Text: Sally lists specific examples of what to do with a book page during this step, but I am going to open it up and say that you can place any text (as long as it is not magazine, since we already used that technique) onto your collage.
3. 3-D: Apply something dimensional to your project..any embellishment you like as long as it is not flat.
4. Write: Write any word or phrase, in any medium you would like: pen, pencil, ink.
5. Surprise! One last step that you can use to add your unique spin to your project! Let your imagine run wild with this one!
I finished! I actually finished a week ago, but life with an almost-walking baby can be very hectic! Here's the run-down of what I did:
1. Scratch. I used scissor points to scratch. It worked best on the paper, as it had a white core. The foam board I used for the base was black, not good for scratching.
2. Text. I stamped 'Time Flies' onto the photo.
3. 3d. I added some really old buttons from my button tin. I love all of the circle shapes!
4. Write. I wrote 'butterflies' in black pen (sort of a pun- butterflies, time flies. Not that funny, I'm afraid!)
5. Surprise. After wracking my brains, I added a small butterfly image, stamped in a shimmery ink- now you see it, now you don't!
Now I need to arrange to send it off to my swap partner, Neda. She emailed to say her son was recovering from knee surgery- I hope he is doing well!
Thanks, Julie, for taking the trouble to organise this. It was a really good experience for me, and I have been really touched by all the comments. Even my best friend, who is a brilliant scrapper, said it was good! And I have done some more collage work since, which I will blog about later.
PS My little one (who is currently on my knee, trying to get to the laptop to bang it) said 'Mama' for the first time yesterday. Say 'ah'!
Wednesday, 3 October 2007
More later, gotta go!
Wednesday, 19 September 2007
1. Pattern: Use any medium you want and make a pattern on your collage- lines, dots, secret message in Morse Code...anything you want.
2. Draw: Fancy sketch or simple drawing; use pen, pencil or ink to highlight something that is already on your collage or draw a new shape on your project.
3. Sand: Go out to the garage and grab some sand paper! Use the paper to make a distress accent on your collage.
You can see I drew some mini-swirls around the edges for my pattern. Then I drew around the numbers, and added some scallops. The sanding doesn't really do a lot here. The base for the piece was black, so sanding doesn't bring out any highlights, but I did try!
It will be a couple of days until I can show the end product. Wednesday is my busiest day of the week, I do baby-related things all day. And to cap it all off, Paul is looking after Dan this evening, while I meet some friends for dinner! I'm really excited, and I know Daddy and Danny will have a great time without me.
Off out now, the busyness begins!
Monday, 17 September 2007
1. Smudge: Wet your fingers and smudge any of the chalk, pastel, crayon, charcoal on your project.
2. Magazine: Attach a page or piece of a page of magazine to your collage and then use a damp cloth or baby wipe to remove areas of ink from the magazine you put on your collage. Cheap magazine pages work the best. Scrub a dub dub!
3. Stamp: Anywhere, anykind, any amount. Caution: be careful about what kind of ink you choose to stamp with...there may be wet areas again on the project before we're finished!
Mmmm. I have got an idea of where I'm going with this, but I will confess that I'm really not sure about the magazine page! I chose to use a page from the Waitrose magazine as it had a list which looked quite interesting, but when I attached it the writing was a bit intrusive (it was food related stuff) so I rubbed it off. Of course, I had used gel medium to attach the page, so you can see the reversed text from the other side of the page, which I quite like! But then I used some Distress Ink to take the colour down from the pure white, and it really absorbed into the paper in some places, but not evenly. Luckily there are more steps to do, so I will make it better! The stamps are from Aud Design.
More tomorrow, it will be the penultimate stage!
Sunday, 16 September 2007
Here are the next three steps:
4. Chalk/Pastels/Artist Crayon: Apply to random areas of your project- you can draw, add shapes or simply add color here and there.
5. Photograph: Use a new or vintage photograph and attach it to your collage. You can sew, glue, staple, transfer..you name it. Your picture can have neat, crisp edges or you can distress the edge, use decorative punches or scissors.6. Charcoal: Use charcoal to add another layer of depth to your collage. You can color any areas you would like with the charcoal! The other day I posted a quick charcoal how-to here.
I added purple and pink chalk in places around the piece. It mostly shows up on the torn edges, which were previously white. The photograph is from the Vintage Resources page on Art-e-zine, it's from a selection of images you can download for a small donation. I haven't used any of these before, but this one is perfect for me as I have a thing about butterflies. The image was printed out onto card, cut out with deckle-edged scissors (which I rarely use, but I thought it gave a sort of vintage postcard look here) and covered with fluid medium in a gloss finish. I then added the charcoal around the edges and around the image.
I'm still not sure where I'm going with this, but I'm enjoying the uncertainty!
Saturday, 15 September 2007
Julie has been posting 3 steps at a time, I am sadly behind at the moment, but am catching up! Hopefully I will be finished early next week.
The first three steps are as follows:
Your collage can be on any surface as long as it will "take" the techniques. For example, cardboard, canvas, cardstock, etc. I am not sure your collage will work on glass or metal.
Having said that, he we go! Today's techniques are: Paint, Paper, Ink
- Paint: Anything you can apply with a brush. Place paint on your surface to be the starting background of your collage. You can use all one color, mix and match, whatever!
- Paper: Attach paper onto the painted surface for an accent to the background. Any type of paper will do!
- Ink: Doodle, spill, splatter, dab, you name it! Add some ink to any areas of your collage.
The next stage involves charcoal, which I didn't actually have, but today I went and bought some from...a supermarket! I has the blender stump and everything! And I thought I would have to go to an art shop!
I am really busy at home at the moment and the photos are backing up a bit as I haven't had the time to blog about them. I have also been tagged by Michelle at Faerie*Dust*Dreams, I will do my bit soon! (Michelle does amazing collage and altered pieces, I love the crown she has as her header.) It's nice to be busy, but it does take away from my creative time a bit. But I have a little notebook, so I am sketching away whenever I have an idea!
Thursday, 13 September 2007
Wednesday, 12 September 2007
I was thinking of Isa's Alpha challenge when I made this, although it has nothing to do with the letter 'K', but I am inspired by the idea of black and white plus one other colour. I had also watched a demo with Glenda Waterworth from Elusive Images on TV where she did layers of 'spotlight stamping', with the colour on the second and, in her case, third layer.
The main stamp is Anna Griffin, stamped in Versafine on white cardstock. The spotlighted area is the same stamp used with Brilliance Orchid Pink. The slide mount is stamped (Hero Arts) and distressed using Stazon, as it has a glossy finish. The black butterfly is stamped in Versafine, the pink in Brilliance with added Stickles glitter glue. Thanks for looking!
Tuesday, 11 September 2007
After being stuck for a good 'K' word for Isa's alpha challenge this week, I was suddenly struck with inspiration: Kimono. I bought some new stamps recently from Non Sequitur, and had yet to ink them up. The oriental look is so popular at the moment, so I wanted my first effort to be good. I am quite pleased with this, but not with the photo! I may change it tomorrow if I get the light and the time.
To the challenges. Isa's challenge, other than using the letter 'K' was to use black and white, plus one other colour, and to use a script stamp in the background. This week's Wednesday Stamper theme was handmade paper. This card combines both challenges.
The background paper I stamped the text stamp (by Judikins) on is a Japenese Mizutama paper. It has tiny metallic flecks in. The geisha figure was stamped on the origami paper and on white paper, then carefully cut out. The letters for the word are from my stash (All My Memories, I think!). And that's about it, pretty simple for me! All it needs is a new photo taken in daylight, so that the flash doesn't light up all the reflective surfaces. Come back tomorrow!
Edited to add new photo, The flash has gone but it has a slight colour cast. I think it's time to make a lightbox!
Thursday, 6 September 2007
This weeks letter is J, with the extra options of using a bright yellow and making a Christmas card. As you can see, I have done all three. I couldn't think of another word other than Joy, but Christmas is not the season to get all funky for me, I love it in all of its traditional glory!
The stamped panel is a yellow metallic watercolour background, stamped with the Hero Arts script in Distress Ink Vintage photo, and the Hero Arts harlequin background in Versamark, then brushed with Perfect Pearls. The other panel is an image transfer of a K and Co Christmas paper, transferred using Matt Medium onto gold Mirri card. Then both the panels were edged with Versamark and gold embossing powder. The letters for the word 'Joy' were changed to gold with my new Sakura Pen Touch pen (the budget alternative to a Krylon pen), then distressed by touching it whilst still wet. I did the same to the stars. The cardstock is Bazzill.
As usual, you can't really see the overall effect in a photo. Doing an image transfer over a bright gold card gives a real depth to the translucent image, rather like the gold backing on costume gems. And many thanks to Julie and Carrie, who have both done photo step-by-steps on their blogs. This time I found it easy, and only made a couple of holes in the image with my fingernails as they are quite long! The tip I really liked was to use a baby wipe to take off the backing paper, I found it much easier than a wet fingertip (and much safer, as no jar of water waiting to be knocked over!)
PS I was really surprised and delighted to find that my Wednesday Stamper entry for last week is on the Sampler. Thanks so much, Wednesday Stamper!
Wednesday, 5 September 2007
If anything in the room is still usable by tonight, you'll hear from me then!
Monday, 3 September 2007
I have made a cute card! I know this is not my usual thing, but a soon-to-be five year old girl would not really appreciate alcohol inks and image transfers (yet!). It's a waterfall card, and for anyone who hasn't come across one of these before, Splitcoast Stampers has the best instructions that I have found.
The base card is a plain white DL size card, stamped with Aud Design flowers and Brilliance Pearlescent Orchid ink. The squares are also white card, covered with paper from Karen Foster Design, with fun foam die-cut letters (cut in my Sizzix Sidekick, it works fine!) The band across the front is fun foam, held on with brads, and the strap which is the mechanism is covered with Karen Foster paper, and stamped with my MSE clear alphabet. I haven't taken a half-open photo, but as you pull the fun foam flower, the letters flip to spell 'Tyler'.
I took a photo of the inside of the card too. With all of my cards, I like to add a computer generated insert, and recently I have started stamping inside as well. I think it adds a nice finishing touch. And I do the envelope, does it sound like I just can't stop! This card is in the post now, so I did stop...eventually!