Sunday, 18 March 2018

Nature Journal and a blog break

Hello friends and thanks for dropping by. Today I have another spread in my nature journal to share:
I keep hoping I can share more Spring like pages, but Spring still keeps us waiting here, so today another more wintry page to share, though I suppose the catkins are in a way little harbingers of spring.
We have had a lot of stormy weather and seagulls tend to come a bit more inland. There are a lot around where I live and I have tried to capture some in flight.

I love pussy willow and have several branches around our house, so here is one painted in watercolour.

I always like to decorate the empty corners of this journal with random collage elements, just to add a little more interest, on this spread I have used mostly washi tapes.
Once I had finished painting and drawing I did some stencilling across both pages to tie them together.
And that is pretty much it for today's page.
This will be the last time I am posting for quite a while as I am off to Australia on Wednesday with a stop over on the way. We will arrive on Saturday but there is no internet in the place we are staying...

I have a very few scheduled design team posts, but that will be it pretty much until I am back at the end of April. I will try and catch up whenever I can, but meanwhile wishing you all the best for the next few weeks and like always, thank you for your visits! They are always appreciated!

Thursday, 15 March 2018

The Egg of the Phoenix for MMM #46

Hello lovely visitors, today I am sharing a project that took me right of my comfort zone 😉
I made it as a mid month project for the Mixed Media Monthly challenge blog where our sponsor this month is Marabu. They very generously sent each member of our team a stencil, Acrylic Art Spray, an Art Crayon, and Acryl Mousse. Unfortunately mine did not arrive for the start of the month, so that is why I am only posting my project now.
On the graphic this month you can see our theme:
Image may contain: text
My stencil or rather mask was the quirky bird, and my colours were kind of dark red and pink, which I mixed with some gold highlights.

I have acouple of step out photos:
I spread the mousse over my panel with a pallette knife, mixing it with some gesso. I added some strips of old book paper and a torn bit of rice paper.
More colour added, trying to blend the collage elements into the background.
And here the finished piece. I placed the mask on the background and then blended around with the art stick and spray, also using part of the mask to add the additional flowers. While working on the background, I completely lost my bookpaper strips, so I decided to add a paper crown which I just hand drew around the head of the bird on some bookpaper, cut out and then adhered to the bird on my panel.
I computer generated the quote and added some gold acrylic paint still with my finger.
A few doodles and white paintsplatters, plus a little shadowing with a Stabilo All pencil finished it all off.
I guess many of you have been to the challenge blog already, but if you have not, do check it out, and if you would like to play along don't forget to add our graphic to your post so that you can be in with a chance to win.

Thanks for your visit like always and have a creative week!

Saturday, 10 March 2018

Fairy Boxes and a new discovery

Hello friends, hope life is treating you well. Today I have somewhat of a personal post. Many of you know that I have two little granddaughters who live in Australia, and as I only get to see them at the most twice a year, presents are always part of these visits.... (I am going over again at the end of this month).

You may remember that I made them each a little mini album with photos of themselves using the G45 Fairydust collection, well, here are a couple of little treasure boxes to go along with them. They are little wooden boxes I purchased at a craft store, I painted them and then used some of the leftover papers to decorate them.

I decorated both the out and the inside of course and tried hard to make them match their little books more or less.
One of their favourite things to do is "craft" as they call it. Anything that involves colouring, painting and sticking, so each of the boxes will have some crafty goodies inside.
I found these great little kits online, and I thought I would just tell you about them in case you are interested. They are basically woodless coloured pencils, some strips of sandpaper and a little wire brush. And this is what you can do with them: You rub the colour on the sand paper over your paper substrate. Some colour will come off, but then using the wire brush, you can scrub way more colour grains off onto the paper, then you rub with your finger and you get super colour effects.
At its most basic you can just blend the colours together, so easy to do and a great tactile experience too:
Here I did a little picture on watercolour paper, but I soon came to the conclusion, smoother paper is better.
The next one I copied more or less from their website, it was done on smoother paper which I think is much better.

Stencilling of course works great too:
I used a slightly different technique for the stencilled ones, on the one on the left I stencilled first and then blended colours around it, on the one on the right I put colour down first and then used the stencil on top of that, it creates a slightly softer effect.
Any smudges can be removed with the help of a normal eraser.
 Here is a link to a video that shows you many more techniques.

The website is in German but here  is a link that takes you to an English pdf. There are many more gorgeous examples in their online shop. And they ship internationally too.

Now before I finish I want to make clear I am not affiliated with this firm in any way, I just thought it would be fun and something different to share. With the little ones we will use them for colouring Easter Eggs, we will also make some little lanterns, I may post some of the results at a later point.

Thank you for popping in, your visits are always very much appreciated!

Thursday, 8 March 2018

Geliplate fun

Hello lovely visitors. After watching some videos on youtube I decided to dig out my geli plate and have some fun making backgrounds. I had a couple sessions and landed up with a bunch of prints, but then, what to do with them all?

Well another video by Kate Crane gave me some ideas and here are the results:
I used Paper Artsy and Decoart Media paints, stencils and stamps, and with one of my prints created these 3 cards. There will no doubt be many more projects to follow, so stay tuned...
I added some more stamping (the heart is a Finnabair stamp which I fussycut), some messy stitching, some washi tape and some words computer generated. The cards are tiny only 3 x 3 and then double matted on manila crd stock to make the fiished cards 4 x 4".
Here basically exactly the same idea, some further stencilling and stamping scraping with a credit card and just having some messy fun.

And here finally a third one. These little cards will be handy for quick gifts and will also be easy to send through the post, always a good thing. While I was at it, I made some matching envelopes. As I had used some of the Prima Lavender collection to embellish my cards, I used some more of those papers to make the envies.

Well, that's it for now, - hope you are all having a good week, and thanks for your visit like always!

Monday, 5 March 2018

Rabbit in the snow

Hello friends. As almost all of you will know, the UK was hit by the so called Beast from the East, - icy blasts and piles of snow. It was this wintry weather that inspired this latest couple of pages in my nature journal.
On the left, my attempt and wintry thistles
And on the right a rabbit in the snow, wearing its wintry coat...

To tie the two pages together, I used some background stamping, stencilling and washi tapes, like usual in this journal.

I tried to choose washi tapes that had a wintry feel to them, so mostly monochrome in colour.

I found that when you take close up photos of your work, you suddenly notice things you had not seen before, some are good, others not so good. Here I am happy with the way the eye has a 3D look, while the inside of the ear and fur could have done with more careful painting. Ah well, you always learn more, that's what this journey is all about.
Because the cover of this journal was made with the Eileen Hull journal die, it's great that I can slip it out from underneath the elastic when I am working on it, and then when I am done, I can slip it back like you can see above.

Well, that's it, I can't wait for this weather to stop and some sunshine to return, meanwhile, stay warm and cosy and thanks for your visit like always!

Friday, 2 March 2018

Vintage Folio for A Vintage Journey's March Challenge

Hello lovely visitors, it's the first Friday of the month and that means a new challenge is starting at A Vintage Journey.
March is our birthday month and there are a lot of exciting changes coming, as you may have seen already, if not make sure to head over and check them out.
The wonderful Brenda who is our host this month chose "Share your Treasure" and this is what she had to say:
Treasure can be described as wealth or riches we store or accumulate, a collection of valuable, interesting or useful things, bits and pieces we highly value, articles that we hang onto that we’ve bought or found and might never be able to purchase again. What is in your crafty or artsy treasure trove - those items we squirrel away to keep for something special? Maybe some elegant embellishments, that hoard of ephemera or memorabilia found in a junk shop, a tin of old buttons, rusty keys or diamanté jewels, a paper pad you get out and stroke then put away again, some beautiful fabric or lace you can’t bear to part with. We invite you in this challenge to share a project that includes a part of your treasure trove, just let us know what it is so we can see it and comment on it and remember our focus styles and genres to work in (which can be seen under out blog banner) if you would like to be considered for being chosen as one of our top 3 Pinworthy mentions.
Well those that know me know that my greatest treasures can all be found in my craft room. There is no doubt about it, I am a hoarder of stash, and one of my great loves is design papers! So for this project I decided to dig out some of my most beloved treasured papers and create this vintage folio. By the way, this was very much inspired by one created by Cathy Clement from Kathy by Design, which she made for a challenge at the Frilly and Funkie blog a little while back.
I used mostly papers from Blue Fern Studios. They are hard to come by in the UK but The Mad Scrapper, a wonderful little shop not too far from where I live stocks them. (She has an online shop too if you are interested, with many stunning paper collections hard to get elsewhere).
The folio's base is a trifold card made from Kraftcard, and then I added loads of flaps, pockets etc, either glued to the base card, or inserted with the help of washi tape.
Below I will show you some of the main pages, just flipping through from left to right.
Inside left of the original gatefold. (all the pages were inked with 2 of my new Oxides, Bundled Sage and Forest Moss). They are decorated with various paper dolls, washi and other ephemera, mostly by Tim Holtz.
The little tag came from a paper collection by Stamperia (another treasure). Again hard to come by in the UK, but being a treasure hunter I found it at Craftelier, if you are anything like me and live in the UK, it's worth checking out, - they have a huge selection of stuff and very reasonable prices!

I found that different collections can be easily combined if you use the same inks on them. I also used the same sets of back ground stamps (Stamperia and Andy Skinner) through out, to make the project coherent.

This is the final page, the bit sticking out is the back of the front cover.

The little book closes with a clip to which I added a bit of seam binding (another idea from Cathy Clement, - thank you Cathy)!

The dies used to decorate the front are by Sue Wilson. The flowers are from my stash of treaured ones, both the flowers and seambinding where coloured with Distress Spray in Antique Linen.
Finally the topper was cut from a scrap of one of the Blue Fern papers, I covered it first with clear gesso and when dry with Decoart Crackle glaze, highlighting the cracks with Antiquing Cream.
Well that's it, sorry for this very long post, I hope you got some idea of the nature of this project.

Thank you for your visit and do check out my teamies' amazing work and even better join us in our challenge and show us your treasures!!
Happy crafting and creating,

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Just got a whole lot of new stamps from a brilliant place called the Stamp Smith. This is the image that I first saw on Docraft and really liked. I asked the friend who has used it in an ATC, where she got it. Well she borrowed it from a friend who got it from ebay as a one off. But.... it had a title. I googled the title, and hey presto found the site. They have great stamps and offer a really friendly fast service. I highly recommend them!

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