Thursday 30 December 2010

Slide Mailer Christmas Gift

I made this slide mailer as part of Lynne's Christmas gifts. I painted it Bronze and then added some Angelina fibres and some accent beads. I made two large Fragments with Crafty Individuals stamped images, added some German Scrap wings, and two Cherubs made from a Krafty Lady art mould from the Stamp Bug.

Inside I added an image from an ATC Collection Pack, and then the two images behind the microscope slides which are from Crafty Individuals. I then filled in the little gaps top and bottom with Glossy Accents and Accent Beads. And Yes, the pink notebook was for Lynne - who else?!

I gave the advent calendar to my sister in law as she has three children so I thought she would appreciate it as they still have a tree and other decorations. She cooked us an amazing Christmas dinner which must have taken as look to prepare as my advent house did to make!

Friday 24 December 2010

Happy Christmas

Happy Christmas to all of you! Thank you so much for your support and encouraging words over the last year, and for the wonderful artwork that has inspired me so much on your own blogs.

As well as wishing you a wonderful day tomorrow, I also wanted to say that I very much understand that sometimes it can be a difficult time of year. I send my love and thoughts to those of you who have lost a dear one this past year, or for whom it is a difficult anniversary. I hope everyone is with those who love them over the next few days, that you are happy and safe, and in the warm.

Sending you peace and good wishes!

Sunday 12 December 2010

Caught in Crystal Tutorial

I have a tutorial on Gingersnap Creations Blogspot today, using Tim Holtz Fragments with the Caught in Crystal technique. Here is a sneak peek of the project I then used it to create:-

I love little trays like this that you can do collages in, and this one was from Elaine at the Quixotic Paperie, who do lots of lovely bits and pieces!

Thursday 9 December 2010

Jewellery Box with Fragments

I made this jewellery box for my dear friend, Pauline, for Christmas (I don't think she will look on here). The little papier mache lidded jewellery box by Efco has two drawers and a mirror under the lid. I got it from the Altered Element and it was going to be one of my projects for my November guest spot, before they announced their closure.

I hadn't intended on this type of design. I was going to cover it all over with decorative papers and stamping but once I had painted it with the pink Precious Metal Colour paint I didn't want to cover it up too much as it has a lovely shimmer. I was working on another project using fragments (For Gingersnaps on Sunday) and thought they would work well on the lid.

View of the Top of the Lid
 I used Crafty Individuals spring papers to stamp on, with their Queen of Hearts and Scroll stamps, which are two of my favourite sets.
There are two little drawers

There is a mirror under the lid

Sunday 5 December 2010

Pink Notebook Gift

I decided I would make a pink notebook as well, and this is the same process as the other day but with pink fusible fibres, which they call Red. I also used some crackle paste, some pink Shimmerz paint and some Silkies, along with the gold leaf and the beads.

For the centre, I used a piece of Crafty Individuals Spring backing paper, and made a one inch Stampbord tile using a CI stamp, then glazed it with Glossy Accents. I hope my friend will like it.

Thursday 2 December 2010

Notebook Christmas Gifts

I got bored of making Christmas cards! Felt like being a bit more messy! I like to make presents for my crafty friends at this time of year, as they know I can't afford expensive presents, and I think they know I will put a lot of love into what I make for them. I hope so.

You can get these irresistibly plain and good value notebooks from the Artistic Stamper, which are crying out to be decorated:-

 I love the fact that you can get the ones with the photo bit in the middle, and there are two sizes as you can see. First of all I decorated the 'frames' of both of them:-

This is a close up of the Angelina Fibres, melded to the frame with the heat gun. It's a new colour for me, I thought it would be gold but it is sort of straw coloured with a little gold running through. Unfortunately it looked disgusting at first, like the contents of my hair-brush! So I dabbed on some of the blue pearl paint I was using and I preferred this:-

This is the only one I have finished so far.This one has lots of gold leaf and I left the 'straw' as it was. I popped a little Crafty Individuals romantic 1920s Paris image into the frame. I have a particular friend in mind for the style of this one, although she might like the pink one I am currently working on .........!

Sunday 28 November 2010

More Christmas Cards

 Thought you might like to see a few more of the Christmas cards I have been making.

For the little angel from Crafty Individuals, top left, I coloured her with Pro Markers and used a fine glitter on her wings, then made some faux metal and put it through an embossing folder and then the Alterations Baroque die. The Three Kings by Elusive Images, kindly lent to me by Alison, were also coloured with Pro Markers. For the little angel bottom left I alcohol-inked some card stock and cut the border strip with a Cuttlebug die.

I made the Easel card using a wooden reindeer from the Altered Element and Nestie and Alterations dies. For the Elusive Images scene, kindly lent to me by Alison again, I used Pro Markers and cut off the greeting from the bottom, and used the Following Yonder Star from the Three Kings set, on an Alterations die. The edging on the left was again the Cuttlebug die.The card bottom left was made with the Crafty Individuals Partridge in a Pear Tree, coloured with Pro Markers and the edges corner-rounded and inked. The partridge bottom right of the card is from the Creative Expressions set. The card bottom right uses the same stamp sets but on shrink plastic, but I have used the remains of the paper cut from the edges of the bracket shaped card to make a pretty shape across the middle of the card.

The top two cards are again the Pear Tree sets on shrink, and the one on the right has a border strip across the middle which was part of the lower piece of card used to cover the bracket shaped card, with another, co-ordinating, piece for the top half. For the card bottom left I used the waste card from cutting out some reindeer, i.e. the negative, and bottom right I have used the Three Kings, this time on shrink plastic.

Wednesday 24 November 2010

A Partridge in a Pear Tree Card

This is another Christmas card I've made, using the Partridge in a Pear Tree set from Crafty Individuals. Love this image! I coloured it in with Pro Markers - I've never really been a 'colouring in' crafter but I am really hooked on Pro Markers although still learning.

Wanted to show you this card as I used a bit of my 'Faux German Scrap' - self adhesive lace sprinkled with The Stamp Man Moonglow two-tone embossing powder then heated. I really didn't intend to waste this on cards, I intended to use it only on gifts, but I am dreadful for using things just because they are on the table in front of me!

Tuesday 23 November 2010

Little Christmas Gift Box with Art Mould Frame

I haven't blogged for a while so I thought I'd show you a little something whilst I'm finishing off some other items to go with it. I am really pleased with this Krafty Lady Frame Art Mould I bought when I went to the Stamp Bug a few weeks ago and have made up several already, for bigger projects. Set on the diagonal, it was the perfect size for a little papier mache box from the Altered Element:-

The image in the centre is from the new Crafty Individuals Christmas Miniatures book, which as usual is gorgeous, and I filled it in with glossy accents. I made up the frame with friendly plastic. I maybe haven't shown the mould in its best light as it is very detailed, but I have lost some of the detail as I wanted to use some little bits of Angelina Jolie film, which of course fuses rather than melts. I decided I liked the slightly grungy but very shimmery effect, though.

Thursday 18 November 2010

Reindeer Christmas Cards

I had a lovely day with Alison on Tuesday and we were both making Christmas cards. As you can see I am having a bit of a reindeer craze, as I just got the Tim die, which I've now passed on to Alison:-

Some of the reindeer I have been cutting in mountboard and then triple embossing with a two tone plum embossing powder, from the Stamp Man Moonglow range. I had a thought the other day that if I use it to emboss the sticky side of some white adhesive lace it might make a sort of faux German scrap border, so I used this for the card top right. However, I mainly made this for using around boxes etc, so it will pop up again soon. As you can see, I have also used the negative of the paper I cut some of the dies out of, as it seemed a shame to waste it.

Thursday 11 November 2010

Advent Calendar

Over on the Altered Element Blog I have an advent calendar project which I made for my November guest spot. Sadly since I made it, Lynne has announced her decision to close. I feel so sad as she has been the most wonderful person imaginable to work for, and has managed to source the kind of goodies I had only dreamed of, and some I didn't know I wanted but now know exist. Where will we go now? I will let Lynne make the announcement in her own words here, but suffice it to say I hope very much that there are happier times ahead for her.

If you would like to know how I made this, pop over to the shop blog, but sadly as Lynne is not currently re-stocking, the Twiddleybitz calendar is no longer on the website. I hope it will give you a few ideas though, and is such a fun project to make!

Wednesday 10 November 2010

Hand Decorated Ribbons with Mannequin Tags

Over on Gingersnap Creations Blogspot, the challenge is Sewing Notions. Not sure if we use the word Notions in this way in the UK so I checked, and it means the sewing bits and pieces such as zips, buttons, ribbons, poppers, etc. I've probably added to the language barrier now, as it is probably just me who says 'Poppers' - I think they are snaps in the US!

I think I have mentioned before on my blog that a sewing theme always appeals to me as it is genuinely nostalgic for me as my Mum has always sewn, on her old Singer sewing machine and by hand. Consequently I found it hard to narrow down my ideas for once, but plumped for something I felt might be a suitable Christmas gift for my crafting friends. I wanted to colour and rubber stamp some plain ribbons, and wrap them around mountboard mannequins to give the effect of bought 'carded ribbons', with a sewing theme.

First of all, I cut out mannequin shapes on mountboard and coloured them with Pro Markers. I then stamped them with images from the Creative Expressions Vintage Sewing stamp set, which you can get from the Altered Element. I then used circle punches to make shrink plastic buttons, coloured and stamped in the same way.

I then coloured the ribbons with Pro Markers (love how well these colour ribbon!), and stamped some of the text and images onto them.

Finally I wrapped the ribbons around the matching mannequins and fastened them with pins, which had been topped with co-ordinating beads.

Wednesday 3 November 2010

Haute Couture Canvas - Gingersnaps Challenge

I made this little canvas for the Gingersnap Creations Blogspot challenge for this week, which is Haute Couture. I thought this new Crafty Individuals stamp, depicting two elegantly dressed ladies with a vintage Millinery advertisement fitted the bill. I added their scroll stamp and some little flowers to the corners, and some Deko Ice from the Altered Element, which I coloured orange to match the rest of the project. I used a vintage rose coloured braid around the edge, letting it sit slightly above the edge so it framed the image from the front.

Thursday 28 October 2010

Caught in Crystal 'Fragment' Wall Hanging

I decided to try an experiment to see if I could use the Caught in Crystal technique on the largest of the Tim Holtz acrylic fragments, using alcohol inks, gold leaf, and mica spray.
The Wording, and Vitruvian Man in a bottle cap
I used the Mona Lisa and wording from the Tim Holtz set, and some Da Vinci papers for the background the the Vitruvian man, and a brushes background stamp which I think is Lost Coast Designs. I popped the fragment on a piece of fabric coloured with mica sprays. The hanger is from the Artistic Stamper. The lace is coloured with a brown Pro Marker.
Close Up of the Caught in Crystal Fragment

Goth Wooden Arches

This is a bit of fun I made for Hallowe'en. It is a wooden arch, painted with Crackle Paint in Spiced Marmelade and sponged with Silkies. The stamps are a mixture of Stampotique and Inkadinkadoo which Hazel and Alison kindly lent to me as they were here for the day when I was making it. The words are computer generated and then image transferred so that the background shows through. The skull and crossbones are Grungeboard Icons, and I have added a spade charm to the tombstones on the back. The Scaredy Cat is actually the Cheshire Cat from my Alice set, on shrink plastic.

The idea was for it to be like a child's bedroom with the Keep Out sign on the door.

Friday 22 October 2010

Faux Mica Tile Frame

I have made this frame for a tutorial over on Gingersnap Creations Blogspot. Can you guess what I made the faux mica tiles from?!

Monday 18 October 2010

Art Journey Inchies Stampbord Mirror

I mentioned yesterday I had made loads of Stampbord Inchies with the new Art Journey set which I had intended to use on the copper frame for Petra, but decided it was over-doing it. So I have now made another of these mirrors, and apologies as I do seem to make these rather a lot! I dabbed the Stampbord pieces with Kaleidacolor Pastels, using more of the Peach and Pink on some, and more of the Mauve and Blue on others as I don't like the colours to merge with the ones next to them too much. Likewise I alternated between people images and abstract ones. I then sanded the edges, then edged them with StazOn in Gold, then glazed them with Glossy Accents and left them overnight, as I always dip my elbows into them otherwise! I then did my usual trick so that I could stick them together in a straight line, by turning them over and sticking them to each other with red line tape before sticking the mirror in place, otherwise it is really tricky. Who shall I give this to, I wonder?

A bit closer up!   

Saturday 16 October 2010

Stampbord Little Boy in Copper Frame

I have made this frame with a Stampbord coaster in the middle as a gift for my dear friend, Petra. She has invited me to a cupcake tasting at her home this afternoon. Her baking is amazing and she grows the fruit she uses herself. I am very lucky to have a wonderful friend who bakes, crafts, is on the same design team as me, and lives only half an hour away! I hope she will like the frame which is not at all what I intended to make. It is one of the large papier mache frames from the Artistic Stamper and they are great value and you have the benefit of a wide frame to work with but also a deep recess, almost like having a shadow box. I had intended to decorate the frame with Stampbord inchies to co-ordinate with the design in the middle which is from two Art Journey plates, Writing and Inchies. My lovely friend, Alison, was very kind and ordered from Art Journey for the two of us as I am not brave enough to order in a foreign language in case there is some small print I haven't understood. In this instance, though, it does help if you know what Winkel means! Anyhow, when she came for the day and delivered my stamp set she also lent me her brand new Inchies set, how cool is that! I did make all the Inchies but they will be on a mirror which I will blog soon. I changed my mind because I liked the Viva Croco Copper background so much, I didn't want to cover it, so I just added a few pieces of the leaf stamp on Grungepaper, coloured with Pro Markers to pull it together with the central design.

For the coaster itself I coloured the Stampbord with Kaleidacolor shades from the Pastels set, and then stamped the little boy and the arithmetic from the Writing set, and the sentiment and the scrolls from the Inchies set, and then glazed it with clear embossing powder. I normally use Glossy Accents but it was such a big piece. As there was a slight gap between the coaster and the edge of the frame I wanted to fill this in some way and I tried out various colours of cord and braid which wasn't quite right, so I have used one of my fave products, Deko Ice glass glitter, from the Altered Element. I added a little extra on the frame to again try to pull the design elements together but I stopped after a few sprinkles as it was just buried against the copper background.

Sorry the photos are so dreadful but the glaze on the tile was causing a lot of glare, but I hope you get the general idea! I hope you like it, and I hope Petra will be able to find a little home for it. Off to have a bit of quiche now before I go out, as I need to have something savoury before I start on the cakes!!

Friday 8 October 2010

Mon Ami Pierrot!

 I was sent this blank papier mache mask box and some other items (for another day!) from the Altered Element for my DT work this month. At first my mind was a bit blank as I was thinking of it as a doll's face, then when I started to think of it as a mask the rest was easy!  So I hope you like my Pierrot!

You will need:-

Papier Mache Mask Box
Shrink Plastic - White
Gel Medium
White Acrylic Paint
StazOn Jet Black
Glossy Accents

All from the Altered Element.

White Broderie Anglaise or similar
Black Marker Pen
White Tissue Paper

Harlequin Stamp
Any mask stamps

1. Paint the box inside and out with the white acrylic paint and leave to dry. Meanwhile, stamp a selection of mask stamps on white shrink plastic, cut out, and shrink.
2. Stamp the Harlequin Stamp on tissue paper with Black StazOn, and use the Gel Medium to adhere it to one side of the mask, down the centre.
3. Draw a diamond shaped eye on the other half and add tears, using the black marker pen, and add Glossy Accents to the tears.
4. Cut a piece  of the lace a little longer than you will need, fold over the rough ends, then use a gathering stitch to gather it into a ruff and stick to the bottom of the mask as shown.
5. Finally, adhere the shrink plastic masks around the sides of the box. Warm then slightly again with the heat gun so that they curve around the edge.

More Imagination Crafts Cards with Silkies and Stencils

Using Silkies through Small Kasbah and Bird Stencil, and Shrink Plastic Bird Cage

Easel Card made with Onion Shape to echo Moroccan style of Small Kasbah Stencil, smaller ones are shrink plastic, again with the Silkies

Silkies Through Bird Stencil. Bird captured behind Grungepaper Bird Cage Die Cut, painted with Silkies

Here are some more of the cards I made using Imagination Crafts Silkies and Stencils. Silkies 'take' really well on grunge and shrink plastic. I only needed one coat on the grunge and it dried almost instantly.

Tuesday 5 October 2010

Mosaic Card Using Silkies and Small Kasbah Template

This is another of the cards I made for Imagination Crafts, again using the Small Kasbah stencil, and sponging through different shades of Silkies.

Some Good News!

Sorry I have been very slow to give you my good news as I have had problems with Blogger. After a wonderful month as September Muse on Gingersnap Creations Blogspot, which I was sorry to see come to an end, I was delighted to be asked to stay on as Contributing Artist for a further term.

Ali and Shar have been great to work with, very relaxed, and that has made me feel more confident and comfortable about contributing, which has made me feel more creative. If you haven't joined in with Gingersnaps before, do have a look. They have some really good tutorials, with very original topics, and there is a very user-friendly index with cross-referencing so if you have a few minutes, you can have a browse and pick up some useful techniques and inspiration.

I am so happy to have been given this opportunity, and will pop the info on here when I blog for them, which should include some stepped projects/tutorials!

Children Framed Collage

This is a little collage in a frame I made with images and text from the new Crafty Individuals stamp CI 277 and an Art Journey set. The frame was painted with a coral acrylic paint then a crackle medium and then a lighter pink paint. The images were coloured with Intense pencils and an Aqua Marker blending pen, just as an experiment.

I am having huge problems at the moment with uploading photos on Blogger so I'm afraid I have been a little quiet.

Friday 1 October 2010

Trellis Card with Silkies

I recently made a batch of cards for a lovely lady called Sue, from Imagination Crafts, the company who make Silkies which are my new favourite product! The company specialize in mica based products which have a high degree of shimmer, but what sets the Silkies apart from other similar products I have used before is that they have very good coverage, so you can use them on grunge (covering that awful grey!), shrink plastic, and other difficult surfaces. They come in little nail polish style bottles with a brush, but you can sponge or brayer them on.

This isn't the card I intended to show you but I have been having massive problems with Blogger for several days, and have literally spent the whole day today trying to sort it out, as the kind people trying to help me can testify. If I can upload the other cards I will. For this card I used the Small Kasbah stencil from Imagination Crafts. The other cards I made used it in a Moroccan Screen style, but for this card I wanted it to look like a garden trellis with a plant growing up it, so I sponged Paris Trunk inks in Sprig and Sepia through the stencil. I stamped the fuchsia twice on white card and decoupaged it, curving the petals slightly. The main bloom has been coloured with Silkies to make it stand out, so you can see how opaque the coverage is over the veins, and the centre filled with Deko Ice from the Altered Element, which I coloured with alcohol ink. The others were painted with the pearly paint palette, also from Imagination Crafts.

Saturday 25 September 2010

Hallowe'en Alice!

Just when you thought it was safe to come back to my blog and there would be no more Alice in Wonderland obsession, Graphic 45 have kindly given me the perfect excuse! I don't normally celebrate Hallowe'en but I love these Alice with a witch's hat papers! I started off with a lovely frame from the Artistic Stamper
painted with Spiced Marmelade Distress Crackle Paint, also from the Artistic Stamper, and rubbed in some Silkies from Imagination Crafts.

I then positioned one of the papers over the roof shape and rubbed over it with an emery board to make an indentation so I could cut the shape accurately and stuck it on. The Mad Hatter clock was a die cut so I popped it in a Poundland frame, glazed it with Glossy Accents, and added a crown charm. For my main image in the frame I used a piece of the 12 x 12 papers and added some book text that related to the Cheshire Cat. I added a bit more book text below the clock and the die cut header. I then used the Oxford Impressions Alice stamps but coloured them in the colours of the papers rather than the classic Alice colours I normally use. I cut a witch's hat for Alice with a scrap of black card. For Tweedledee and Tweedledum I echoed the design of the papers by colouring their faces as pumpkins and giving them a mouth like a carved out pumpkin using a black pen. Don't they look scary now! I gave one of them a pumpkin charm to hold just in case it wasn't clear enough that they were meant to represent pumpkins! I folded their legs under the frame so they didn't cover the caterpillar (is he a caterpillar? I can't remember!), but unfortunately I forgot I had intended to pop them further to the right so they didn't obscure the book text about the Queen wanting to have the cat removed!

Finally I added scrabble tiles to spell Alice and glazed them with Glossy Accents, and stamped out a shrink plastic Cheshire Cat!

Hope you like this bit of fun!

Wednesday 22 September 2010

Gingersnap Creations Blog Challenge - Neutral Plus One Bold

When I saw that the Gingersnaps Colour Challenge was for neutral colours plus one bold, at first I thought it would be easy, but then the ideas wouldn't come. So I thought to myself, what is my favourite bold colour - Red. What does Red say to me, and I thought Poppies! I have this lovely poppy stamp on a ledger background from Crafty Individuals, and had just bought a piece of Tim Holtz Distressables paper with a ledger design, so that was then my starting point. I had planned on making a card but then realized that the paper was 9 ins x 9 ins, an unusual size, and I didn't want to cut into it, so I decided to make a wall hanging by cutting mountboard a tiny bit bigger. Having said all of that, I am very disappointed with my photos because I was fairly pleased with how the hanging turned out, but it doesn't look very good in the photos.

I rounded the corners on both the mountboard and the card and distressed the edges with my new Tonic distressing tool, scratched some lines on the paper, and inked all the edges and across onto the scratches to emphasize them, using Distress Ink in Vintage Photo, then adhered the paper to the mountboard. I added a plain Crafty Individuals ledger stamp in Vintage Photo and some of their clock faces. I stamped the poppy three times so I could decoupage the poppy head, which I then glazed with Glossy Accents and added black seed beads to the centre. I also had a tiny poppy stamp which I used in the same way, as an embellishment.

I added a clay art mould clock in gold, with brad legs for hands and an adhesive gem in the centre, top left of the design, and some neutral coloured buttons bottom right. I also added a pen nib and completely flooded it with Glossy Accents so it was set into it. I added some cogs made from the Tim Holtz die but on shrink plastic. To finish I punched some holes and added eyelets, and a piece of twill to hang it up with, with the words Made to Measure stamped on them, as I thought the ledger could be for an old fasshioned draper's shop, like the one my granddad had. I hope you like it and can see past the lousy photographs! Thanks for looking.

Tuesday 21 September 2010

Christmas Tree Book Ring Decorations

This was a wonderful idea of Helen's, when we saw her demonstrating last week, of making Christmas Tree decorations from large bookrings. I went straight back to the shop to get some of the big book rings and when I got home I realized I had some which had been too large for a previous project, so I can make loads! So thanks Helen for the brilliant idea!

I used Crafty Individuals stamps, and added glossy accents and a fine glitter, and Deko Ice dyed pink (from the Altered Element), around the edge. This is just a first play around with the idea but when I have more time I would like to try lots of more of these.