Thursday, 26 February 2009

Altered Tin- Inspired by Van Gogh

This tin was for a swap on Zuzu's forum, and I was over a week late sending it because I had one of those last-minute ideas that complicated the project but I had to do it! Typical me! Originally, I was just going to decorate the outside of the tin and prettify the inside, but then I realised that the tin was the perfect size to fit slide-mounts (I have rather a lot of these, bought years ago and never used!). So I decorated the slide-mounts and joined them together to make a wallhanging.

Colour: Versamagic, Sharpies, watercolour crayons, Brilliance, Aurora ep, gilt wax, Distress Inks, Vivid Inks, Cosmic Shimmer powders, Barry M eyeshadow powders
Stamps: Paperartsy, Studio g alphabet, ISC butterfly
Other: Crackle Accents, Gesso, Galleria moulding paste, heavy florist's wire, bead, twig, metal from coke can, plastic slide mounts

The tin originally contained saffron, and had the pink flowers as part of the original decoration. I was inspired by a Van Gogh painting and was trying to capture the swirly effect of the background. The three slide-mounts all have Van Gogh paintings in. To capture the vibrancy of the originals I printed each painting on paper and on transparency- when you lay the transparency over the paper print, suddenly the image comes alive.
PS Plastic slide mounts do not like being heated with a heat gun....!
PPS I realise that many of the mediums I used are not supposed to be used on metal, but it's amazing what a few light coats of spray varnish enable you to do!

Monday, 23 February 2009

Triptych ATC

I put this onto one of the forum galleries, but have never blogged it- mostly as the photo I had taken before did not show the effect of the acetate at all well. This is my first ever stamp, bought in 1998 and just used for that year's Christmas cards. I had forgotten how lovely it is.

Colour: alcohol inks with metallic mixative, silver detail ep, Stazon
Stamps: All Night Media, Non Sequitur (word)
Other: Mirri card, acetate, metal tape, Pebeo gem
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Monday, 16 February 2009

Acetate tag

This is my take on the re-use, recycle theme. The tag base is made from acetate cut from dishwasher tablets packaging. Then the coloured parts are sheets from the base of my spray-box, so have been coloured with various shades of Glimmer Mist. The acetate was sprayed with Glimmer Mist, too.

Colour: Glimmer Mist, Stazon, Ranger white pen
Stamps: Paperartsy
Other: Papermania jewelled brad, eyelet and ribbon from my stash.
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Sunday, 15 February 2009

A Tag for a Forum Friend

I made this tag for a forum friend for her birthday, and on the day of her birthday I was delighted to receive a really gorgeous piece of mail art from her, using 'three in a round' from Stampotique, which is such a cool stamp. If I get permission to blog it, I will! This tag uses lots of Cosmic Shimmer powder, so you will need to squint at it and imagine the gorgeous interference mica effects it really has!

Colour: Distress inks, Cosmic Shimmer powders, Sharpies, Versamagic, Stazon, Brilliance, Liberon Gilt wax
Stamps: Tanda (feather) and Studio g (alphabet)
Other: Beads, fibre, metal corner, acetate, slide-mount, eyelet and wire, all from my stash.

The feather in the slide-mount is stamped twice; once with Stazon, then with Versamark brushed with Cosmic Shimmer. When I put the two images, I offset them slightly so that you see the shimmer behind the dark feather.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Altered Domino Swap, plus mini-tutorial

This month's Altered Art swap on UK Stampers had the theme of dominoes. We each altered a domino, then incorporated it into a piece of work of our choice. I like this approach, as everyone has a different way of treating their domino. The pieces were all so different and gorgeous. See the slideshow here. My piece is a stamp book holder, and I have done a mini-tutorial for it (scroll down the page to see it). I call it mini because I didn't have time or a second pair of hands to be able to take any photos. First, the how-to of the decoration :)

Colour: Watercolour crayons/water-spray/drinking straw technique shown by Jo Capper-Sandon in Craft Stamper, Versafine, Versamagic, Distress Ink
Stamps: Stampin' Up, Crafty Individuals (postmark)
Other: Mountboard, old book pages, stamps (from a package sent to me by Marina from Cherry Pie), domino (the stamps are collaged on with beeswax using my Melt Pot).

My piece uses such simple techniques to construct it that I wanted to share them. I first came across the mitre trick when Tricia Morris showed it on Craft TV Weekly, which is sadly no more. I have used this technique before, to make a box file, and for the covers of my two circle journals. The trick is to treat your object as if it were a book, with two covers and a spine. I am giving the dimensions I used for this piece, but any variation will work.

What you will need:
Mountboard or greyboard
Cover paper and liner paper
Wet glue- I use white PVA
Something to spread the glue evenly- a foam brush or credit card is ideal
Ruler and pencil

1. First of all, you need to decide your size and cut your mountboard pieces. My main pieces were: front 5cm x 8.5cm, base 3cm x 8.5cm, back 7cm x 8.5cm. I did not cut my sides or base at this point, as I wanted a really snug fit.
2. Work out the dimensions for your cover paper. Widthways is easy, as it needs to be 2cm bigger on each side than the mountboard. Lengthways, you will need to allow an extra 0.5cm each side of the spine for the piece to fold, plus 2cm each end. So my finished cover paper was 12.5cm wide x 20cm long. Decorate it, remembering that it is a wrap-around and the design needs to be multi-directional.
3. Mark your 2cm border on the back of the paper. Spread glue evenly on the mountboard pieces and glue down, making sure that they all line up at the top and bottom, and that you leave your 0.5cm gutters either side of the small spine piece.
4. Using your ruler as a spacer, draw a line across each corner of the cover paper, approx. 3mm from the corner of the cover, and at approx 45 degrees (you can do it by eye, it's OK to guess!) Cut along these lines.
5. Now we are going to fold in the long edges of our cover paper. First fold your flaps up without glue, to make a crease (just to make it easier to fold when covered in wet, sticky glue). Spread your glue along the first flap, making sure you get it right up to the edge of the mountboard. Lift up the whole piece, and press the edge against your work surface as you wrap your flap as tightly as possible around the mountboard (if you just use your fingers it won't be as even). You will know this is right if you can still see the shape of the mountboard- the paper shouldn't look domed. Repeat for the other side. Work the joints, smoothing the cover paper gently down into the gutters.
6. This next part is slightly fiddly. When you look at the corners of your piece, you will see that the cover paper overhangs the mountboard by 0.3cm on the long side. You need to use your bonefolder to tuck this excess around the corner and flatten it out. Do this on all four corners. Now you have a nice flat flap to fold up and glue, exactly like you did for the long sides, and when it is glued you will have a professional-looking mitre with no unsightly points.
7. Cut your liner paper 0.5cm smaller all round than your finished piece is (mine was 11.5cm x 19cm). Brush on your glue and, starting from the spine, smooth the liner down onto your piece, gently pushing the paper down into the gutters again. Now work the joins, and smooth it down anywhere it pops up, adding extra glue if necessary. Your covers are done!
8. To add sides and a base, simply measure your finished piece and cut your mountboard to fit. My sides have a slanted top edge, and my base is bigger by 0.5cm all round. Be aware that your cover paper will add bulk, so err on the smaller side when cutting. Add glue on three edges of the side pieces, and hold in position until the glue starts to set- with PVA this doesn't take long. Glue the base on, and leave the whole piece to dry overnight, using weights, clips or elastic bands if necessary to make a tight joint.

I hope this makes sense to you! If do you have any queries, please feel free to email me and ask- my email is on my profile. And if you make something using these instructions, link back to this post and I will come and admire your work!

Saturday, 7 February 2009

Faux sea-glass no. 2

This is yet another present for a friend, and spookily, the day I handed it over, it co-ordinated with what she was wearing!

Colour: Dee Greunig blending blox, distress inks, versamark, Perfect Pearls, Paint Dabbers
Stamps: Elusive Images
Other: Stampbord, UTEE, Crop-a-dile.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

January's Inchie Swap- Let's Celebrate

These are super-simple, as I couldn't think what to do for this theme! February's theme is 'Oriental' so I should be able to do something more interesting.

Colour: Glimmer Mist, Distress Inks, Brilliance Ink, Stickles, Sakura silver Pen Touch pen
Stamps: Cherry Pie (Klimt star) and Stampendous
Other: Wording from the computer, star sequin waste used as stencil, eyelets from my stash (hammered for texture)

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Art Raffle January- Shiny

This is the first Art Raffle of the year, and how could I resist this theme! My husband jokes that I am a magpie, as I love shiny things (I love rusty things, too, so that makes me one contradictory lady!) and naturally I wanted to play with techniques too. This is a tiny mint tin, the ones that you see at till points, pink, with a mirror inside. I have altered it to be a bag charm. I really had to make myself post this to Sarah, as I was actually very happy with how it turned out.

Colour: Plasticote enamel paint, Stazon, Stickles
Stamps: Paperartsy (swirls), Studio G (Alpha- it says 'yourself')
Other: Fusible film in various colours, 'love' phone charm, black velvet ribbon, clasp.

To create the effect, I painted the tin black (2 coats) and then used gel medium to stick torn pieces of fusible film down in a random pattern. Then I used first the heat-gun, then an iron to smooth and fuse the film so that it became shiny again. I trimmed it around the tin, then used the iron to round the corner. It reminds me of abalone shell!