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.

Sunday 19 September 2010

Alcohol Inked Notebook

This is a close up sneak peek of an alcohol inked notebook I have made for the Artistic Stamper Creative Team Blog. Hope you like it and will find it easy to follow!

Friday 17 September 2010

Gingersnap Creations Blog - Altered Spice Rack Tutorial

Over on Gingersnaps I have my second tutorial of my 'Muse' Month! I have altered a wooden spice rack to house all those lovely little inky bottles!

The stamps I have used are the Wildflower and the Crackle stamp sets CI226 and 116 from Crafty Individuals.

I do hope you will like it.

Wednesday 15 September 2010

Gingersnap Creations Blog Challenge - Using Inchies

Over on Gingersnap Creations Blogspot they are having a challenge to use inchies. I haven't actually made inchies before! I thought I would use this compartmented tray which had housed some embellishments. I painted it with crackle paint and then rubbed Apple Lace and Sunshine Satin Silkies into the paint. I used Emerald Gold Silkies on the leaf swirl which is a Tim Holtz die cut. I made the inchies by stamping various Crafty Individuals stamps, punching them out with a one inch hole punch, then mounting on white card and glazing with Glossy Accents. I made the bird and bird cage in shrink plastic, and added some tiny buttons and a metal flower from a Primark necklace. That necklace seems to be going a long way!

Wednesday 8 September 2010

Gingersnap Creations Blog - Using Punches Challenge

Over on Gingersnaps today, they have launched a challenge to use punches.

This is my entry:-

The punches I have used are square and corner rounders for the shrink plastic tiles around the edge, and a crown punch for the border along the top. I don't use punches very much anymore as I tend to use my Cuttlebug - I guess a lot of us would say that, so that's why it is set as a challenge!

I hope you won't mind that I have used Sheherazade as my main image again. I felt she fitted with the Ancient Ages focus of the month but to be absolutely honest, I bought this gorgeous stamp set a few months ago and have resisted touching it as I was saving it for this opportunity, so I am going mad over it now! I popped her on Stampbord this time. First of all I carefully dabbed the colours, coffee and mauve, where I felt her face and the rest of the image would fall, then did a bit of scratching back, and wrapped silver trim around the edge of the tile. Her forehead 'jewel' is actually a tiny piece of the silver paisley trim I used on the lantern last week. I added silver stars over her head, again to represent the 'thousand and one nights'.

The main part of the item is one of the deep papier mache frames you can get from the Artistic Stamper now. They are so useful (and good value!). I painted it with Crackle Paint and then rubbed in a range of Silkies colours from Imagination Crafts. They have a huge depth of colour and shimmer and are my current fave thing (and likely to remain so).

I must admit the crown border was an afterthought because I didn't think I'd been 'Punchy' enough and it was looking too much like the next challenge, the Inchies one! It was fiddly so I popped each tiny crown on sticky tape and then stuck them on. I am not sure this really added anything much to the piece. The other confession, as if that wasn't enough (!) was that I forgot that the frame had a right way up when I stuck the tiles on, as it has a hanging hole on the back and I completely messed up! So I would like to give it to one of my friends now but they would have to prop it up instead of hanging it, and it would be a reminder of my flaws!

The tiles were made by punching 2 ins square pieces of cream shrink plastic and rounded the corners. I used a selection of stamps from the Sheherazade set but also my Paisley Elephant set and a Basic Grey Moroccan set as I felt they had an Arabian Nights feel to them (in my mind, anyway!). I stamped with StazOn and then used non-alcohol based permanent markers. After I had shrunk them I used purple and blue Silkies as my background colour.

Tuesday 7 September 2010

Bread and Butter Pudding!

Jack just reminded me that I never did show you the uses my heat gun gets put to:-

This was 18 months ago so I can't find the photo that had me in it - honest! Is it really that long I have known you, Jack?

Gary Rhodes, eat your heart out!

Monday 6 September 2010

Art Themed Stampbord Mirror

Do you remember this, some months back:-

Well, it has gone through a re-incarnation into this:-

.... using the Artist Plate from the Artistic Stamper.

Gingersnaps asked me to do a tutorial which should be up today, and their focus for this month is tiles, so I thought this would fit the bill. So if you would like to know how it was made (it is a really straightforward project) please do pop over to Gingersnap Creations Blogspot and have a look!

Sunday 5 September 2010

Artchix Happy Hour Heart

I made this wooden heart wall hanging using some of my remaining Altered Element items which seem to be lasting me a long time! The heart itself is extremely thick wood and very solid and was a lovely present from my friend, Petra, along with lots of other bits and pieces which will be appearingon future projects.


I used Crackle Paint and Cosmic Shimmer powders first of all, then did an image transfer of the Artchix image and adhered it to the centre of the heart using gel medium, so that the colours underneath showed through. I then dotted the surrounding area with glossy accents and shook on some Deko Ice in Amber, and some Flowersoft. I then added some distressed bits of music script, some lace, a button, a metal flower from a necklace, and finally, a friendly plastic art mould key.

Saturday 4 September 2010

Gingersnaps September Muse Interview and Create Blooming Art

Sitting here in my jimjams but thought I had better let you know that it looks as if I have been busy during the night as my interview is up on the Gingersnaps Blog. I mentioned before that Ali and Shar had asked me if I would like to choose the items or should they, and I was happy for them to choose. They have chosen a nice variety of things. The one I chose as my own favourite was the first one I blogged with, the Artist Palette Wall Hanging, using the Artistic Stamper Artist Plate;-

I have a tutorial on the site on Monday which I do hope you will like, and which also uses the Artist Plate, which is one of my favourites.

I am joining in some of the challenges on Gingersnaps this month and I hope you will too, as there are some great themes.

Over on the Artistic Stamper Creative Team Blog I have a little wall hanging using a new frame Jennie has brought out, with the new Flower Blooms stamps. The depth of the frame was perfect for tiny dominoes.

Sorry I started to type this earlier and got hit by a bad head but I thought I should say I am not still in my pyjamas at 4.30 pm! I would like to say a huge Thank You to Shar and Ali for giving me the opportunity to be their September Muse. Just to show that I don't take myself too seriously, and that I don't have a big head as well as a bad head, I thought I would give you the alternative interview with me, as I don't often share much personal and non-arty information. So here are a few facts about me that you probably don't know, mixed in with some bare-faced lies:-

- My Mum and I once went for a swim in the sea with Cliff Richard, just the three of us,

- When I was a kid I drank some bleach and ate a tube of Airfix Glue (on separate occasions) - Mum had the Toxic Substances Advice Line on Speed Dial!

- Not known for my drinking, I went to a Hen Night in California, got very drunk, smoked a cigar, hit my head on the underside of a table, and woke everyone up coming home at 4 am singing 'Wey Hey we're the Monkees' (and I swear I don't know the words),

- I worked in a Psychiatric Hospital for 16 years and one of the delusional and psychotic patients said I was the loveliest girl who worked there!

- At a dinner-dance at the Hilton, the waiter dropped 8 portions of steak chasseur on me from a great height, smothering me from head to toe, including my hair, in front of 200 people. They let out huge cheers and clapped as I exited the room, and the staff had to sponge me down in the ladies' changing room.

Don't think even those of you who come for play-dates at my house will know if all this is true - we will see!

Wednesday 1 September 2010

September Muse - Gingersnap Creations Blogspot - a Sultry Sultana!

I've been a little quiet on my blog lately as I have been working on various items for blogging in September. I mentioned a few months ago that I had been given the great honour of being chosen as September Muse for Gingersnap Creations Blogspot, which is a US challenge blog. And now at last, September is here! They are interviewing me on Saturday 4 September and interspersing it with some photos they are choosing from my blog - don't know what they will choose, so that is an added excitement! Then I will have two tutorials, one on 6 September and one on 17 September. Obviously I would be thrilled to bits if you have a look when the time comes, I will need all the support I can get!

I have been asked to join in as many of the challenges as I can manage, starting with one today which is Ancient Ages. I decided to depict the tale of Sheherazade, (I think there are lots of different spellings so I have gone for the one on the rubber stamp). This was the tale of the Persian King, who, having been betrayed by his first wife, took his revenge by killing all his wives after one night together. Sheherazade was a beautiful and very learned girl, who had studied poetry, philosopy, and history. On the first night, she told the Sultan a wonderful tale, and as dawn broke he was desperate to hear the end of the story, but our heroine said that it would have to wait for the next night, so she was given a reprieve. This continued for a thousand and one nights, during which time he became bewitched by her, and she bore him three sons, and became his Sultana.

The card was made by cutting an onion shaped card blank, then sponging Silkies through a stencil called Small Kasbah, both from Imagination Crafts. I added the image of Sheherazade, and then her name on tissue paper so the background could show through.

I also used tissue paper directly onto the glass of the lantern, and added an onion shaped paisley rubber stamped shrink plastic tag, coloured with pencils, and some paisley silver braid. I then decorated the candle with her face, again on tissue paper, and added stars around her to represent the Thousand and One Nights. I gave her a bit of make-up and some jewels on her forehead in each example.

It was very difficult to photograph as I wanted the lantern to be lit, and for the light to shine through her face. I made several failed attempts and this was the best I could manage, but I quite like the effect of just having her beautiful down-turned eyes showing: it looks quite sultry.