' ' ' 'Crafty Endeavours: March 2014

Sunday 30 March 2014

Rock Paper (No scissors)

The Craft Barn Quote challenge this week is Flower and/or Travel. I went with the latter and intended  to use Rock Paper (yes you read correctly rock paper, paper made from rocks!). This is a paper designed with inkjet printing in mind but I saw someone trying out several mediums with it in a YouTube video. The brand looked different so I couldn't be sure I would get the same results, but I was curious to try... The quote is by Voltaire "Wherever my travels may lead, paradise is where I am", awfully optimist...

I tried watercolours first, in this case I used Neocolor crayons, and applied water with a brush, the wet paint dripped slightly when I stood up the card to produce an interesting effect. The paper doesn't absorb water like standard card does but does not damage it either.
I stamped my world map with Versafine black and painted the countries with a small brush and Neocolors. Further images were stamped with glue and I applied foils in several colours for metallic touches.

I penned the quote in silver gel pen and created shadows with a black pen.

I tried water based and alcohol based markers on this surface and the paper absorbed the ink so fast any blending was impossible. Curiously, I was able, by brushing vigorously, to shift and blend the Faber Castell PITT pen (India ink).
I also tried pastels but they just glided on the surface.
I had fun and discovered interesting properties about this paper that might come in handy...

A quick look at the shine :
I am also entering my page in the Pan Pastel UK challenge.

Thanks for coming by,

Saturday 29 March 2014

Inspired BY Pam Thorburn (3)

Pam is back on the PaperArtsy blog this week and had a play with the gorgeous Chatsworth papers.

As soon as I saw her layout I knew I had to make one of my own; well that and the fact I have a stack of photos waiting...

s I followed Pam's step by step so I will give here details of where I diverted:

My backing paper is an unloved scrapbook paper that I painted white around the sides, just enough to knock back the printed motif and the dark brown colour.
The main paper started as a dark red 12x12 with an all over damask pattern. I used stamps with pigment inks to ape the Chatsworth papers feel, applying pastels on top where it took my fancy. I also stamped the Reflection stamp (ESN07 stamp set) in dye inks in a few places but a lot of this disappeared behind the photo.

My embellishments are different of course and I spent an inordinate amount of time trying to create with dies my metallic lacy flowers. I didn't count the number of passes or shims combinations I tried but it was A LOT!
For texture I used 2 stencils instead of one, I had the chicken wire but in the smaller size so decided to add the hexagons as they are the right size. I coloured the stencilled areas after they dried because I wasn't happy with the green colour I had originally mixed.

Finally, I couldn't quite push myself to include as many embellishments that Pam did! In my defense, I thought pearls would look a bit odd teamed with a "man"'s photo...

Don't be shy tell me what you think,

Friday 21 March 2014

Spring is here...

Digital images are becoming more and more popular as is digital crafting or hybrid crafting. Personally I like handling my stamps directly and not being restrained in my techniques either by the ink used or the surface I am stamping onto. Still, I can see the appeal and thought I would better try for myself.

Uniko Studio provided freebies to enter their Hello Spring challenge and I selected the Simple Bloom flower and a speech bubble and sentiment. Using photo editing software I combined them and printed the resulting image on smooth cardstock.

For colour scheme I followed the Pan Pastel challenge to use 6 colours and used the palette below, also proposed on the Uniko Studio:

As a background I wanted to use a stencil I made with a Memory box die and initially thought I would use Distress inks but in the end I didn't have enough colours. Instead I used Versamark and applied pastels over it gradating from the darkest blue to the lightest and vice versa for the green.

I over stamped with the 3 Dandelions stamps (Lavinia) in black Versafine and coloured the printed image with coloured pencils.

With hindsight I wish I had done the green gradation lighter or even faded it out to the bottom and I feel the dandelions are not best placed but I do like the fact it is only one layer.

Don't hesitate to suggest improvements in your comments!

Imagination in Bloom

This is the theme for this month's Imagination Crafts challenge.

Since breaking my paper record in one of my most recent posts I thought I would use papers again but in a more restrained fashion. This time, I pulled out a Melissa Frances pad, freebie in one of the magazine, and opened it for the first time.

I used the Victorian Rose block from Impression Obsession stamp for the image, inked it with Versamark. Then I applied Imagination Crafts mica powders (Earthtones set, not sure if this is still sold) using shades of red for the petals and green for the leaves. With such a detailed stamp and with transparent Versamark on white cardstock it is not easy to actually see what is leave and what is petal so the colouring is not perfect. But it shines!

The photo is not very good, it's a cloudy day, and there is a glare at the top of the image which hides the motif somewhat. Trust me in real life, although subtle, the colours are there!

I added a die-cut mat in kraft cardstock to my sentiment and added pearls to finish.

So there you are something classic, soft and feminine for Mother's day...

Tuesday 18 March 2014

Wood embossing

Well I never tried before and I didn't think it was possible... but the DT at WOW Embossing Powders set that very challenge and although I considered a wood grain embossing folder or a wood stamp for the challenge, it seemed like a cop out. It had to be tried right?

So I did and this is what happened:

Not only did it work but I love the look of the warm white (WOW Vanilla powder) against the wood. The stamped image look like real crochet!

I enhanced the colour with Distress inks both before and after embossing.
Keeping it simple I added some Core'dination die-cuts and a topper I have had for ages in my stash.

And if you wonder where I got my wood from... I salvaged it from the bin after eating one of Charlie Bigham's dishes. The wooden tray comes lined with baking parchment so with a bit of luck the tray is totally clean. Of course I only use the flat surface from the bottom and being quite thin it is fragile. Here I backed it up with cardstock to avoid any mishaps!


Sunday 16 March 2014

Of Art and Textures

The Craft Barn quote challenge continues with the words Art and Road. Of course I chose Art and had my heart set on this quote "Every artist was first an amateur." by Ralph Waldo Emerson. It lets me think there is hope...
Then I realised the quote didn't actually have the word Art in it!

No great designs here, I just wanted to experiment (i.e play).
First I used Inktense blocks to colour my background, then I used a script stamp with Versafine black.
Using an hexagons stencil I applied Texture paste, gloss medium and an iridescent medium to create 3 different looks. I stamped over some of my texture paste in blue dye ink, but this was somewhat lost in the next step, as I sprayed micas mists over the panel.
Finally I applied roughly some glue to the edges and used gold and silver foil, then to eliminate any residual stickiness I brushed some micas powders in red(ish) and gold.

No stamped image this time, I just wrote the quote and die-cut a label to take centre stage.

I am also entering the Pan Pastel UK challenge.

Saturday 15 March 2014

Inspired By Teresa Abajo

Although I enjoyed the projects by Julie Ann this week on the Paper Artsy blog, the Green men were too much for me, so I settled on a somewhat smaller project and did this tag inspired by Teresa Abajo. You can find her step by step here.

I followed Teresa's process, using the winged lady from ID02 as my focal image.
Shame my proportions are completely off and the lovely background is pretty much hidden!
I decided I would have a red button since a) it's my last one and b) Ellen Vargo, also a DT member for Paper Artsy swears by a bit of red!
It looks like an "On/Off" button. Maybe that's what makes her fly...who knows!

Thanks for coming by,

Tuesday 11 March 2014

Paper Chase

You know these lovely papers crafters have a habit of hoarding... Yes me too, have got loads that I daren't cut up or use, in the event I will need them for THAT project.
And there it is! Country View Craft's latest challenge is to use papers, lots of papers. I have broken my all time record and used 6 papers, one doily and 2 colours of cardstock!

The papers are all from the same collection (Curiosity Corner) and I used an Impression Obsession stamp on ivory cardstock as my focal point. Only the gem and pearls are not made from paper.

Downside is... I have increased my scrap mountain significantly!

Thanks for coming by,

Saturday 8 March 2014

Inspired by Joanna Wardle

This week Clare Lloyd came back to the Paper Artsy blog and produced colourful and whimsy creations with the new JoFy stamps. As much as I was inspired, I didn't have enough time for such complex projects (see her box/frame here)... but I did have time to follow Joanna's steps to create a one layer card, so here it is :

I did the splats by flicking a brush load of paint on my card, stamped my circles with a lid, and painted the stitched line as I don't have the stamps Joanna used. But I do have the flower from ELB02, so I used it to stick to Joanna's design as closely as possible.

If you are wondering... a splat stamp is a good idea, especially for the big ones, because it is hard to control the placement of the splat from a height and you need a lot of liquid to achieve the effect, which can spoil the cardstock... and everything around it!
I am also entering the Artful Times challenge.

Enjoy your week-end,

Wednesday 5 March 2014

Age is but a number

For the latest Craft Barn quote challenge I chose the word age and a fun quote perfect for women: "A woman should never be quite accurate about her age. It looks so calculating." by Oscar Wilde.
Along the same lines, I think a woman shouldn't be accurate about her size and this made me think about tape measures, which in turn called for more sewing inspired items!

For colour scheme I didn't have to think I just picked it from the Sprinkle of imagination challenge!

For the background I used water soluble wax crayons, then stamped with the Calligraphy mat 13 and some areas of the Small Bingo stamp, both from The Artistic Stamper. I tried several inks and settled on the Brilliance black, which turned out grey, because Versafine did not dry on the waxy surface and Archival, when it eventually dried, lost a lot of the detail. I figured that if the background stamping was grey instead of black I was using one more colour of the colour scheme and a lighter colour might even be better for the background.

I used an X-Cut die to create a stencil through which I applied texture paste coloured with black acrylic paint to create a frame. I also applied the paste for the dress form (also X-Cut die) stamping into it with the Calligraphy mat.
I tried a bit of wax crayon over the texture created on the dress form but I didn't like the effect so I changed tack and applied silver foil.

Metal die-cuts complete the page.

I am also entering the Artistic Stamper, Pan Pastel UK and Artful Times challenges.

Thanks for coming by,