Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Corrugated Bird On A Branch Card, Christmas, Female

Some of you will know that I've started using my husband's photography equipment for my blog photo's...  which means I'm on a bit of a learning curve to say the least.
What doesn't help however, is when this card was all finished up, photo's were taken on Saturday morning for me to edit, I say to my husband that they look blurry, he says no they don't...  and so I edit them anyway.   And then I show him and he agrees with me that they look blurry!
I mean, seriously?
Do you have any idea just how long it takes me to edit?!!

So there's been a three day delay getting this card online (he went away the following morning for two days with his beloved camera)...  and truth be told it still kind of looks a bit blurry to me - even though I took a new batch of photo's and edited them just yesterday.  But this card is heavy on texture and glitter spray and camera's don't seem to like that shine so much.
Oh well...


Do any of you Memory Box fans remember the Twigs and Berries die set?  If you do, you'll probably see straight away that's where I got my inspiration from for this months Memory Box 'Stencils' Challenge.

Take a look...






Here's a close up shot.  See what I mean about lots of glitter spray?





This card was such fun to make.

I've used three different Memory Box stencils (two current and one discontinued, but truth be told the discontinued one looks a lot like paint splatters anyway so it's easy to swap out if it's not in your stash).  Then I've cut out some circles, added a bird made from corrugated card (the wing's from a Poinsettia die), added extra branches, lots of glitter spray, some berries, torn paper edges, white acrylic paint...  and then basically I've just sandwiched the whole thing on to an embossed background that's been lightly Gessoed first (using watered down Gesso) with some 3D glue gel.  

It's a very 'me' style card...  kind of pretty but messy looking!
Speaking of 'me'...  When I told my husband that this was a 'me' style card, he said,  'I'm not surprised.  If you were a colour you would be brown'.
Brown with green accents, I think.  But I was very surprised by his astute observation...  Which leads me to ask the same of you.
If you were a colour, what colour would you be?
Get's you thinking, doesn't it?





Supplies Used:

Stencils:
Memory Box 'Leafy Stems'
Memory Box 'Sprinkle Dots'
Memory Box 'Splatter Spray'

Dies:
Memory Box 'Elodee Bird Background'
Poppystamps 'Small Luxe Poinsettia Background'
Memory Box 'Woodland Branch'
Memory Box 'Grove Branch'
Circle dies - I used MFT and Spellbinders, but any small ones will do.

Inks:
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Peeled Paint'
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Bundled Sage'
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Forest Moss'
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Frayed Burlap'
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Walnut Stain'
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Gathered Twigs'
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Black Soot'
VersaMagic 'Cloud White'

Other:
Texture Paste - White
Acrylic Paint - White
Enamel Dots - Red
Crafter's Companion 'Spray and Sparkle' - Pearl Diamond




Challenges I'm Entering...

Branch die cuts, bird and snow banks made from snippets)


Christmas In September


Challenge #31    'No Patterned Paper'


Add a Bird and/or Colours


Challenge #42    'Anything Goes'




If you've been kind enough to stop by twice in one day (once for this post and once for the last post), then thank you so very, very much.  Your kindness means a lot to me.

Take good care of yourselves...  and don't forget to answer my question - if you can!

Donna. x

Ornamental Tag On A Bag, Christmas, Female

Do you ever get weeks when you feel like you're chasing your tail and still not getting anywhere?
If so, I know exactly how you feel as craft wise, it's been a long hard slog this month!
Let's just say that more and more I'm beginning to realise the merits of CAS designs. 

...  Of course, this makes me think of dogs.  They have this thing about chasing their tails, don't they?


Anyhow...


I have a fairly simple offering to share with you today.  It's taken many detours and caused me many a headache...  until I eventually figured out that sometimes simple is best.






  It's been made specifically to play along with the latest Poppystamps challenge that's due to end today.

I've included a few close up shots so you can get a better look at the tag...








The challenge over at Poppystamps for this month has been to emboss, deboss or heat emboss.  I went with heat embossing and finally had my first playtime with my Stampendous Frantage Kit (which is what is covering the main body of my tag).  I basically chucked on a bit of everything so I'm quite pleased how the glitter particles have spread themselves out so nicely.  Not so pleased about that odd bit of whatever it is up in the top right corner, though.
At least it looks less out of place in reality.  Photo's can be very unforgiving, you know!


There's not too much to say about how this was put together.  As well as heat embossing the main body of the tag (and the clasp and peg) I've layered up the snowflakes at different heights, also added layers to the main body of the tag and clasp for extra durability, sprinkled on some glitter from the Frantage Kit for one of the smaller snowflakes and added on a sequin, gem and tiny pearl...  as well as adding the main snowflake embellishment to the centre of the whole thing, of course.
Then it was simply a case of making a quick bag from a sheet of ink splodged A4 watercolour paper, adding the JOY embellishment at the bottom, tying on some glittery twine...  et voila.
It's easy when you know how, isn't it?

...  And yes, I do know that technically the front of my tag is the back and vice versa.  But when's a little thing like that going to stop me?!





Supplies Used:

Dies:
Poppystamps 'Lavinia Snowflake Ornament'
Poppystamps 'Costello Ornament Background'
Memory Box 'Alphabet Tile Letters'

Punch Board:
We R Memory Keepers Gift Bag Punch Board

Embossing Powders:
Stampendous 'Frantage Encrusted Jewel Kit' - White
Ranger 'Liquid Platinum'

Other:
Crafter's Companion/Spectrum Noir 'AquaTint Inks 'Perfectly Primary'
Silver twine
Snowflake Embellishment
Sequin
Gem
Pearl
Raffia - White
Craft Peg



Challenges I'm Entering...

Powder, Powder


Gift It


Christmas In September


Challenge #31   'No Patterned Paper'






I'll be back later on today with another post...  and then again on Friday!

See you, then...  if you have the time, of course :)

Donna. x

Saturday, 10 September 2016

Engagement Card, Pears, Female

 I love my Memory Box and Poppystamp dies.  But you already know that, don't you?
They take up well over three quarters of my collection and get used a lot...  but I'm not brand loyal to any one company (is anyone..?) so if I see something I like, I buy it.  Simple as...  My only caveat (other than can I afford it?) is that it has to compliment my existing collection OR I know that I will use it a lot.

Speaking of simple, there's just something about the old Quickutz dies that I love.
Yes, I know...  they aren't trendy or popular and most of you probably have a neglected stash somewhere or other.  But I haven't been crafting for that long compared to most of you and missed the boat when these may well have been 'in'...  so I'm making up for lost time with a collection that currently totals about fifty.  And I still have a few more to go!

As I'm trying to 'use' rather than just hoard my stash, (I've borrowed this phrase from the very lovely Jeanne Jachna), I've paired this Lifestyle Crafts/Quickutz 'Pears' die with a ring I made from a tiny Poppystamps die, a sequin and a gem stone.
One other die for the hearts, one for a decorative strip running left to right, an embossing folder for the bow, a stencil, some watercolours and shaving foam (used to create a very 'clean' looking marbling technique), 3D glue gel, the use of a paper tearing ruler, a stamped and heat embossed sentiment...  and this card was done.




I've included a close up or two of the ring as I'm quite pleased with how it turned out.  Using embossing powder on the band makes such a difference, don't you think?  I so love adding dimension...







Now I'm seriously not a fan of messy techniques, so playing along at CAS Mix Up this month was a real challenge for me.  As it is, I've already been working (again) on my issue of using black for this challenge...   AND I've started using my husband's very intimidating looking camera for my blog posts.
(Still a long way to go on that one)! 

Baby steps.
This works for me.
Recognising what I don't like to do (craft wise), then just giving it a few teeny tiny tries.  I guess it's a bit like aversion therapy although seriously, it'll never work for me when it comes to spiders!
We had a HUGE, sprint running beastie in our house the other evening.  My poor husband gets the honour of depositing them outside.  Don't laugh, but after he's caught them I make him take them out the front door and across the road!  It may well be ridiculous, but it makes me feel better!


So...  a 'clean look' marbling technique with minimal shaving foam and paint it was.  It won't win any prizes, but at least I gave it a shot.  
 Do you think I would prefer it if I bought some alcohol inks and floated them in water instead?  Maybe I should investigate that thought before buying as I refuse to buy what I will never use...  which is obviously very different to bought but just haven't got around to using yet!!!
I'm sure you understand...

Oh, and just before I forget...  I should probably mention that although you can't see any evidence of it in the photo's I did actually use two black inks on the stencil.  Bottom layer Brilliance 'Starlite Black' and top layer Tsukineko/Memento 'Tuxedo Black'.  By putting on a thick bottom layer and dotting on a second lighter layer you get the depth of a darker black with some added shine from the Brilliance Ink underneath.





Supplies Used:

Dies:
Quickutz/Lifestlyle Crafts 'Pears'
Poppystamps 'Paper Chains'
Paper Smooches 'Tiny Hearts'
Impression Obsession 'Tied Line'

Stencil:
Crafters Workshop 'Butterfly Collage'

Ink:
Brilliance 'Starlite Black'
Tsukineko/Memento 'Tuxedo Black'
Ranger 'Perfect Medium'

Embossing Powder:
Ranger 'Liquid Platinum'
Stampendous 'Clear Detail'

Embossing Folder:
Spellbinders/Celebrations 'Fabric Weave'

Other:
Crafter's Companion/Spectrum Noir AquaTint Inks 'Essentials'  - Black and Gold
Stamp from stash
Sequin
Gem Stone Embellishment
Shaving Foam
Paper Tearing Ruler
3D Glue Gel




Challenges I'm Entering...




(Large scrap of white used, plus tiny snippets on pears, ring and hearts).





Challenge #163   'Anything Goes + A Sentiment'


Week 380   'Anniversaries and/or Special Occasions'


CFC #156 Dimension & Bling




Enjoy your weekend...  and thank you so much for taking the time to stop by.  It really is appreciated far more than you know.

Donna. x

Friday, 2 September 2016

Circular Tag, Butterfly, Female

It's Tag You're It Friday time again, people...
and that can only mean one thing.  A new challenge to create a tag based on the inspiration of our Featured Artist.

I hadn't made a small tag for quite a while, so I took the opportunity on this challenge to do just that.
How small is it?  Well, it's not tiny.  About 7.5cm.  That's about the size of an apple or small orange - wouldn't you say?  It's easily less than half the size of some of the tags I've made lately, but then I like that as the sentiment I've used ties in quite well.

Now, for those of you that know me... please do not adjust your monitors.  You really are looking at a black butterfly!




Yes, I know.  Pick yourselves up off the floor.

I'll show you our Featured Artist's tag and you'll soon see why I've chosen to do this...



Melissa has created such a sweet double tag, don't you think?
Pretty colours.  Dotty background.  Black focal sentiment.

I took the curve at the top and simply followed it right round - that's how I got the circle shape idea for my tag...  and I stuck quite closely to the colour scheme and also used flowers and leaves.
See how my flowers are quite dotty - like the back tag on Melissa's design?  I've even used three shades of pink!

I snuck in a bigger sentiment than the word 'smile', dropped the ribbon and made my black focal image a butterfly.  It's 'artistic license' as Melissa hasn't used one...  but my butterfly serves a secondary purpose that does still tie in.  You see, by taking a hole punch to it and threaded it on it's effectively now the smaller of two tags - making it a double tag, just like Melissa's.
(Don't you just love it when a plan comes together).

To stamp the leaves on this tag, I used the MISTI.
Why?
Because although it might not seem obvious, I've actually used two colours.
The first 'layer' was stamped using Antique Linen Distress Ink.  Then I went back over with a second layer, using a Tsukineko/Memento 'Bamboo Leaves' Marker and lightly misting before stamping.


Now before I stop to give you my list of supplies used...
How's your week been?
Me?
I've been ill in bed with a heavy cold most of the week.  My Steamer Cup, Olbas Oil and Balm Tissues have been my best friends...  and they still are as I'm only just 'on the mend' and haven't crafted all week - except for a very brief mess around with some die cuts that I may use in a future design.
So if I normally stop by and leave a comment on your blog...  I haven't forgotten you - I promise I haven't.
I'm hoping to catch up with you all over the course of this weekend...  and then maybe I can make a start on playing along with some challenges from Monday onwards.
That's my plan, anyway.  x






Supplies Used:

Die:
Memory Box 'Snow Globe' - Large

Punch:
Holtz/Sizzix Butterfly - Large

Stamps:
Penny Black 'Nature's Gifts'
Tim Holtz/Stampers Anonymous 'It's The Little Things...'

Inks:
Ranger 'Perfect Medium'
Holtz/Distress 'Picked Raspberry'
VersaCraft 'Cherry Pink'
Tsukineko/Memento 'Rose Bud'
Holtz/Distress 'Mustard Seed'
Holtz/Distress 'Antique Linen'

Marker Pen:
Tsukineko/Memento 'Bamboo Leaves'

Embossing Powder:
Ranger 'Liquid Platinum'

Other:
Twine
Flower Beads from stash
Hole Punch






Challenges I'm Entering...

Pixies Crafty Snippets Challenge
(All snippets)


(I had hoped to create something especially for this challenge, but as I've been unwell and didn't want to miss out I'm sharing my NBUS tag instead.  Both stamps used are from my NBUS collection).


Words To Craft By
W2CB #32   'A Single Step'
The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step.  ~~ Lao-Tzu
(I think that learning to appreciate the little things in life is just as important as celebrating the big milestones...  and a journey worth taking.)



SOS #267   'Learn Something New'
(I had been watching YouTube video's where they share stamping an image lightly in Antique Linen before using watercolours - to create a no line effect.  I wanted to see what would happen using the same principal just for stamping, so did one layer of leaves in Antique Linen Ink before using a Green Marker Pen and Misting for the second layer.  Result?  Slightly mottled, gentler image than just stamping with the marker pen, and the Antique Linen does peep through in places).


Challenge #163   'Anything Goes + A Sentiment'


Challenge #130   'Not A Square'




I'm off to get a drink of water before I link up my tag to these challenges...  then I think I'm back to bed for a bit with my hot water bottle.  'Moosey' (My hot water bottle cover is a moose.  Much loved and another of my firm friends when I'm not well) will be calling for me soon, I think!

Have a lovely weekend, and take good care of yourselves...

Donna. x

Monday, 22 August 2016

Vellum Flower Tag, Gesso and Glitter Spray, Female

Are you playing along with the current Tag You're It challenge?

If you are you will know that our Featured Artist is a lady by the name of Michelle Short.
Michelle created a tag full of colour, with one single flower that had a lot of petals!

Here's my version of Michelle's tag - made into a card so I can play along at CAS Mix Up, too.









Cards with shiny surfaces are notoriously difficult to photograph, so here's a close up shot that shows the colours in a truer light...
(If you look closely, I think you can even see some sparkle).






When I looked at Michelle's tag, I was struck by the intensity of her bright, bold colour choices.  

Let me show you so you can see for yourself...






To make this design 'me' however, I had to look past those beautifully vivid colours and see what else I could see.
A bold black outlined flower stamp with a coloured centre that draws the eye in, lots of petals, some text...  and a very pretty splodgy/dotty background.  
I can work with those, I told myself...  and set off to create my tag.  

I decided that I wanted to make something that was the 'polar opposite' to Michelle's tag, yet it still holds true to many of her design features.
I knew immediately that I only had one stamp that was similar to Michelle's.  The outline isn't as bold, but good enough for what I wanted to achieve.
Stamping the flower image onto vellum a few times - twice for the bigger flower, once for the first, (plus one bigger flower centre),  gave me my 'multitude of petals' look.  
But can you see that those petals don't really look like vellum?

Here's how I did that...

Use Black Stazon Ink and stamp image directly on to the tag.
Then...
Use Black Stazon Ink to stamp images directly onto vellum.  (Reminder: Two large flowers, one small flower, plus one large flower centre).
Flip vellum over so the stamped images are on the back, tape down (otherwise the vellum will curl like crazy) and apply a few thin layers of White Gesso
Leave to dry.
Then...
Cut out one big flower.
Do the same again, only this time leave out a few petals at random intervals whilst cutting.
Cut out the large flower centre and the smaller flower.
Using a Red Marker Pen, carefully colour all of the centres of the flowers.
Leave to dry.

BEFORE assembling the flowers...  
Colour the flower stem with Green Marker Pens, add splatters of Twinkling H20's to the tag (not a colour lift like Michelle's design, but it still gives a splodgy look - even if mine's much more sparse)...  and add an embossed sentiment.  (I stamped mine in Black Stazon Ink again, but before inking up in Black I inked up in Perfect Medium embossing Ink first.  Just stamp the text as normal, then add a clear embossing powder, shake off the excess and heat set. 

Now to assemble the flowers...
Put a small dot of glue behind the centre of the small flower, align with the stamped image on the tag and glue into place.
Do the same with the large flower, then layer on the flower with partial petals, followed by the flower centre.
Leave to dry, then shape petals on the large flower using the side of a thin paintbrush to curl around.
Mask off both flowers from the rest of the tag by placing scrap paper under the petals.  Make sure that the tag is completely covered by scrap paper and that only the flowers are showing.
Then...
Spray with Glitter Varnish and leave to dry.
(Not only does the Glitter Varnish leave a beautiful finish to the petals, it also acts as a sealant for the water soluble Marker Pen that were used for the flower centres).

Once the main body of the tag was done, I added a ring link.  This was made by gluing three layers of the die cut together (see Supplies Used for the die used), and then adding a layer of Crackle Accents to both sides and allowing to dry.  
Once dry, the link was thread through a Chain die that was treated to a layer of Silver Gilding Wax.  (I had to cut the link to do this, then glued it back together with a spot of Collall Tacky Glue).

All that was left to do was to make a quick background.
I used an Embossing Folder on a piece of Kraft Core Metallic card, sanded it to see some of the core beneath...
...  and then glued everything into place - using 3D Gel to add dimension underneath the tag.
Then I mounted the whole thing onto silver card stock for colour continuity.

It's not as complicated as it all sounds - I promise!
I'm just a very 'wordy' person!



 Why don't you come and join in with us at Tag You're It!?
The current challenge started on Friday so there's plenty of time to play along.
We'd love to see you there. x







Supplies Used:

Stamp:
Uniko 'Pure Florals' - Cosmos

Dies:
Mama Elephant 'Tags A Lot'
Poppystamps 'Delicate Chain'
Poppystamps 'Righteous Rings'

Ink:
Stazon 'Jet Black'
Ranger 'Perfect Medium Embossing Ink'

Marker Pens:
Stampin' Up 'Raspberry Ripple'
Stampin' Up 'Gumball Green'
Tsukineko/Memento 'Bamboo Leaves'

Embossing Folder:
Sizzix/Tim Holtz Alterations 'Distressed Frame' 

Other:
Twinkling H20's  - Pearl Blue
Pebeo Gilding Wax - Silver
Tim Holtz Kraft Core - Metallic
Stampendous - Clear Embossing Powder
Collall - 3D Gel Glue
Crafters Companion 'Spray and Sparkle' - Pearl Diamond





Challenges I'm Entering...

CAS Mix Up Challenge
(I chose Stamping, Spray Varnish, Markers and Twinkling H20's 'Splatting')


Simon Says/Wednesday
Make For The Border


Pixies Crafty Snippets Challenge
(The whole tag's made from snippets)!





I hope you had a good weekend and are ready for whatever today brings your way...

'Crafty Hugs' to you...

Donna. x



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I went out early this morning and came home to be greeted by some lovely Happy Mail...  
My first Pocket Letter from my very lovely craft friend, Hazel Kingvig-Paul.
Thank you so much, Hazel.
You sure did brighten my day.

I couldn't quite fit it all into the one photo, though...




Isn't it amazing?
So much thought and attention to detail...
...  And what a lovely way to use up some of those odds and ends that I know we all have.

Sending you a very big thank you 'hug', Hazel. 
Mwah. x

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Graceful Branch Oval, Flowers and Brusho's, Female

Memory Box have a new challenge this month with the colour theme 'Yellow'...  and given that not that long ago I was able to face my aversion to this colour on their Tic Tac Toe challenge (June 2016) I decided to embrace it head on...  well - as much as I was able to, anyway!

Here's my card...









...  and one close up shot.





Believe it or not, the background set within the oval is actually made from two Brusho colours - Grey and Yellow.  I find that Brusho acts a lot like a colour wash if you spray it enough times on watercolour paper AND you're not too heavy handed when applying the powder!

This was a relatively easy card to make.  
Once the background was done it was simply a case of cutting and shaping a few dies, a smidge of Paper Distressing, adding Inks, Lace and Twine/Cord and Dew Drops...  and no glitz, shimmer or bling in sight.  Dew Drops don't count as 'bling' do they?
As I wanted this card to have quite an 'earthy' feel to it, I've even distressed the two purple flower centres a little.





Supplies Used:

Dies:
Memory Box 'Graceful Branch Oval'
Memory Box 'Fabulous Phlox'
Memory Box 'Peaceful Butterfly Wings'
Memory Box 'Flower Mound'

Ink:
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Mustard Seed'
Tim Holtz/Distress 'Walnut Stain'

Brusho:
Grey
Yellow

Other:
Twine/Cord
Holtz Distressing Tool
Lace
Dew Drops





Challenges I'm Entering...

(All snippets - Except for the dark green card)


Close To Nature


Challenge #55   Doily and/or Lace


Made For The Border



There's still time to play along with these challenges.  Will I see you there, listed in the Mr Linky section...  I wonder?

'Bye for now...

Donna. x




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