Saturday, 28 March 2015

Oops! I missed a birthday..................

Hi there everyone,

I hope you've all had a good Saturday and are looking forward to another pleasant day tomorrow.  For those who have to work I hope it's an easy day for you.  I've had a lovely day in my craftroom so the cold, wet and windy weather has not bothered me in the slightest and I now have something to blog about ;-).

A couple of weeks ago I was really annoyed with myself because I missed a crafting friends birthday (for some reason it was not in my book) and as I have been the lucky recipient of some of her fabulous artwork I decided to make her a little gift.  This is a very photo heavy post so either get comfy or skip to the end, lol!

My starting point was this piece of cotton which had been painted with Fresco Finish paints and PaperArtsy Crackle Glaze. I did this piece in a workshop last year with the fabulous Lin Brown and the crackle was amazing but by the time I finished with all the layers I add, you will see that by the end the crackle has been lost.

I added some stencilling.........and some more layers of watered down Fresco Finish .......

and then some stamping....... before adhering the fabric to a piece of card cut from the box my dog's dry food comes in ;D.  Love these boxes because they are quite strong!  I cut the piece in half to create my two covers......

and then mixed some Golden interference paste with Grunge Paste before applying through a stencil.  I didn't add enough of the interference paste for it to make a lot of difference as it's very subtle so will try more next time.  I still liked the softly tinted result though.  I also mixed more Grunge Paste with a spot of Brown Shed FF and applied this randomly through a piece of lace.  I saw the very talented Michelle Webb demo this on the PaperArtsy stand at StampMagic (Doncaster) a couple of years ago and love the texture it gives.

When the pastes were dry I added some inked stencilling and also spritzed with a shimmer spray allowing it to form a few runs in the texture. 
And here's where I forgot to take pics of the next step!
 I sanded the Grunge Paste to remove the spray from the peaks and to make it smooth and was really pleased with the result.  It looked and felt almost like marble!  I then added just a little Treasure Gold to the raised areas and the edges of the covers.

 I  also took some lace and dunked it in puddles of watered down Fresco Finish but I can't remember what shades of green I used, lol!  I  think it was Sage with a bit of Toad Hall and the other colour was Brown Shed.  When it was dry I hand stitched ribbon and ric-rac to one edge before adhering it to the covers.  I stamped the butterflies from my new Prima set of Finnabair stamps onto card, coloured them with pencils and cut them out.

This is the completed back cover with some pieces of die cut trellis which has been overstamped with a fab script stamp from a PaperArtsy Hot Picks set and had the Treasure Gold treatment.

And this is the completed front cover with the two larger butterflies layered on top of each other.  I also gave these two several coats of PaperArtsy Gloss Glaze which has given them a gorgeous subtle shine but I can't get the camera to pick it up.

I used my much neglected Bind-it-All to create the album/journal and tied a selection of ribbons to the O-wires.

 Inside I have put lots of blank pages of different types of watercolour paper, paper for acrylics, vellum and canvas and of course, with the O-wires it is possible to open it up to take the pages out to work on them.

Over on the PaperArtsy blog for the next 2 weeks the challenge theme is for us to use various texture pastes in different ways and as always there has been some fantastic inspiration from the DT guests already this week (Elizabeth Borer's project tonight is amazing) so I'm entering this project.  I had already started it and intended using Grunge Paste when the challenge was announced so it fits in very nicely ;-).

I hope this makes up for missing out on her birthday card when the recipient receives it.  

Lesley  Xx

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Simple cards but made with lots of love.

Hi Everyone,

Not often I do a midweek post these days but my lovely IT lady has been this morning and sorted out a few issues I had with the laptop after having a new hard drive installed so I'm back on familiar ground for editing photos, etc., ;-) has to be a sign of old age when you hate any change in your old and much loved programmes, lol!

Anyway, on this gorgeous sunny Spring day I have a couple of clean and simple cards I made recently for two of the special people in my life. 

The first one was for my Mum on Mother's Day and I took some inspiration from a card I found here.  I used the gorgeous 3 step Lotus Blossom from Stampin Up, the sentiment from Chocolate Baroque and the alpha letters to spell MUM on the tags are from a really, really, cheap foam back set and I cannot for the life of me remember where from.  I raised the little tags on foam pads for a bit of dimension.

The second card was for my lovely Son's birthday last weekend and this one was almost a shameless casing of a card I found here with just a few little twists of my own.  I used PaperArtsy Fresco Finish paints to stiple through a Tim Holtz and a TCW stencil.  The sentiments are from various little sets I have in my stash and I mixed in some script designer paper too.

I really enjoyed making these simple cards and they were well received by Mum and Jamie.

I'll be back in a day or two with another birthday card which hasn't arrived at it's destination yet. In the meantime have a good week all.

Lesley  Xx

Sunday, 22 March 2015

This one's a first.......

Good Morning All!

Wow, what a gorgeous sunny Spring morning we have here. The nasty cold wind has gone and although it's still cool out of the sun for me it is perfect and just how I would love every day to be (sorry heat lovers). It makes me want to do stuff ..... any stuff either outdoors or in!

After being without our laptop for several days so I couldn't blog, we now have it back with a new hardrive but some of our old programs (which I understand and therefore love ;D) are missing so I still need to get our techie lady back to tweak things a bit.  The main one for me is the program I used purely for resizing my pics for blogging so I don't have much I can share till it's sorted hopefully next week ......unless I want to wait hours for photos to upload, lol!  I do have a birthday card I can finally show though and it was made using a technique I had been wanting to try for a while.....

This card was made for one of my crafting friends, Kirsten and you can find her fab blog here, and I used the currently popular bokeh technique.

 I was a bit nervous after I first applied the colours to the card as, for me, they were very bright, lol, but a few weak washes of Snowflake Fresco Finish toned them down perfectly but still allowed the lighter circles to show.  I made my own stencil with various circle dies & long reach punches and was really pleased with the final effect.

I stamped and coloured the JoFY flowers onto separate card as well as the base card so that I could cut them out and give some dimension and I also added some Dew Drops here and there.  The sentiments was stamped onto some twill ribbon and the circle stamp is from a Dylusions set.

I was really pleased with how this turned out and will definitely be using this technique again.

Have a lovely Sunday everyone.

Lesley  Xx

Swap time again!

Another Sunday with more than one post ;-)!  Just scroll down if you missed the first one.

This week we've swapped our second lot of tags and ATCs in our little group of crafters but I don't have my swaps yet.... they're on their way ;-)!  I can't really give any details on what I did with these because I forgot to make some notes and I've slept a few times since I made them, lol!  The theme this time was birds and as I have quite a few bird images it was a bit difficult to choose which to use.


I obviously applied colour to my craft mat and spritzed liberally with water before swiping the tag through but for the life of me I can't remember what medium I used, lol!  Possibly it was Fibralo pens???  The image is a Chocolate Baroque one.

Same background technique with some stencilling and stamping on top.  The main bird image is a Stampendous one and one of my favourites.  The lattice die cuts, etc., are bits left from a previous project.


I found a couple of Stampbord ATCs that I had played about with a few years ago just as backgrounds so decided to be good and use them.

 I sanded a lot of the background off before stamping the PaperArtsy owl.  I masked him off and stamped the Inkylicious trees and then added all the colouring and did a bit of scratchwork.  Love doing that on Stampbord!  I then added microbeads all around the edges.

I sanded this one right back before stamping with Watering Can Archival (wish I'd used black now) and clear embossing.  I did some scratchwork with lots of it in each corner and I think I edged with a Krylon pen.

I hope the recipients like them and now it's time to get on with the next swap offerings.

Lesley  Xx

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Now........this is getting silly ;D!

Happy Sunday Morning all!

Er, I allowed myself some more playtime yesterday before a couple of days I have coming up with our 3 yr old grandson Charlie ....... starting later today when his Daddy drops him off for two sleepovers.  He's only been for 2 one nighters before accompanied by big Sister Izzy and never stayed anywhere else without Mummy but I think he'll be ok.  He'll certainly get all my attention plus lots from Grandad so he should be fine.

Anyway, I have another entry for the current PaperArtsy Challenge theme of miniature.  Do go and check out the fabulous inspiration that the PaperArtsy Guest Design Team have been showing us for the past  couple of weeks!  Strictly speaking my project is just small rather than 'miniature' but I hope it qualifies.  I made a 2 inch square pot from Stampbord tiles (which I'm showing warts and all, lol)!

I used the black side of Cut n Dry to apply Buff Fresco Finish paint from JoFY's new limited edition to five 2 inch square Stampbord tiles.  I followed this with some leafy stencilling using a mix of Nougat with a spot of Buff and then bumped the stencil and used the same two colours but with more Buff in the mix. 

I then stamped part images from 3 different Hot Picks stamp sets using Black Archival ink (and the first wart is my inkpad needed a good re-inking so the blacker areas are not brilliantly stamped) and a quote from one of Lin Brown's word sets onto 4 of the tiles. Next I randomly stamped a PA mini script without a block into the blank spaces.

I then spent a relaxing hour or so painting the images using Prawn, Southern Skies & Lavendar lightened with Nougat and touches of Tinned Peas for the stems and then doing a bit of scratched highlighting.

I edged each tile with Treasure Gold (second wart alert, lol! I accidently caught the face of the 2nd tile with TG so it now has a smudge on it) before gluing them side by side to a 2 inch strip of PaperArtsy designer paper.  I left a half inch extra at one end to form a tab when assembling the pot.  I stuck 2 more tiles back to back and glued a square of the paper to the unpainted tile.  Making sure this was on top I then applied glue all round the edges of these tiles, laid them with the paper side up onto my craft mat and folded the strip of tiles around the edges, overlapping the tab with the final tile.

To finish the pot off and also to help strengthen the corners I applied dries clear liquid glue and filled the gaps with mini beads.

Ok, off to link to the challenge and then to get myself prepared for our little visitor.  See you in a few days time .......

Lesley  Xx

Friday, 6 March 2015

Has it really been a month???

Hi Everyone,

Er, I went from the sublime to the ridiculous didn't I? Three posts in 24 hours and then nothing for a month, lol!  All I can say is thanks for coming back and I hope everyone is well ;-).

I haven't been idle on the crafting front but I can't share what I've made for a few days yet but hopefully next week I can show more.  Last weekend I had a lovely visit to Stevenage for the Stamperama Show.  It's quite a drive from home so I travelled down on the Saturday afternoon and met my friend Lin for a bite to eat in the evening and a good old natter.  Thanks for coming to keep me company Lin, it was lovely!  Then on Sunday I was at the show bright and early and met up with my lovely buddy Judith plus Lin & Helen (who did a fab blog post with lots of pics of the show here) and throughout the day many more friends from the infamous PATwits, lol!  Lots of fabulous shopping mainly at the PaperArtsy stand buying all those wonderful new stamps and paints that have recently been released.  We watched some gorgeous demos from Leandra and Lin Brown.  I could have stood watching all day!  It was such a good day and a special time with Judith as we haven't had a catch up for almost a year.  The drive back wasn't very pleasant as it was windy and wet with lots of spray but it was well worth it.

Anyway, this week I've managed to make a little something for the current PaperArtsy Blog Challenge.....'little' being the operative word!  The theme is all things miniature and there has been such an abundance of fabulous inspiration from the PA designers and I have so much stuff in my stash that could apply to this theme I was spoilt for choice but after my Stevenage trip I decided I had to tackle the absolute tip that was my craftroom to make room for my new PA stamps more than anything (they now have their own box instead of being squashed in the filing cabinet).  While I was rearranging I found a sweet little birdhouse that I'm sure I bought from PaperArtsy a few years back.  It's only 9 cm high so definitely small, lol, and I immediately thought it would make a cute little home for a pair of owls from Lin Brown's new stamps so here ya go!

I used all Lin Brown's new limited edition Fresco Finish paints plus Hey Pesto, her cute little owl stamp and a leafy one from a new JoFY set plus a couple of stamps from older JoFY sets.

 I had a sheet of clear shrink plastic already painted up with Snowflake FF from a previous project so stamped the owls, leafy bits and words onto this colouring with pencils for the owls and Lin's FF paints for the rest.

 For the 'roof tiles' I stamped a JoFY border onto newspaper print and dabbed it with watered down Hey Pesto FF.  I kept an old Times issue because their ink is really good and doesn't rub off or bleed.  Er, I don't read The Times, lol, or any newspaper come to that preferring to get news from the TV or internet but I was really pleased when I was given this issue as a freebie when shopping at a newsagents ;D.

Sorry if some of the pics are a tad blurred, it's still rather windy this morning so everything kept moving, lol!  I'm off to link up to the PaperArtsy Challenge and then get a move on with my day.  Hope you all have a good Friday and thanks for visiting.

Lesley  Xx