Sunday, December 31, 2006

Sequel - Mini Stampbord Book

Hi All, and firstly I hope everyone had a great Christmas, and with this being New Years Eve, that you all have a fabulous evening to welcome in 2007. Wishing you all a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year !!!!

Back in October I had an entry on a mini stampbord book (Go There) and I have just got round to decorating the insides, (Flo said she looked forward to it). So here are the pics ! Difficult to photograph effectively so I have taken four shots showing left and right sides of the back and the front. The book is 2 inches square and when finished was somewhat thicker than I thought it would be so the ribbon I had used as a closure was a little stretched - but just managed to still close the book (must remember this next time).
Hope you like it now it's complete.

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Six more ATC's (Alphabet series)

More ATC's recently completed: Theme was 'Alphabet' in a series of 6:

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Sunday, December 17, 2006

'Inchies' swap on Talkcrafts Forum

Hi All, not posted for a while but back in circulation again now. I entered a challenge on the Talkcrafts forum. The challenge was originally inspired by another swap which was to produce 100 x 1 inch squares which were to be collaged and decorated !!! God (I thought), that's one hell of a lot !!!!

So instead Liz Gale suggested that we each produce 25 x 1 inch squares for a swap. That means that if 25 members enter, then we will all receive 25 in return, 1 from each of the 25 members submissions.
It was only when I started to cut the squares that I realised just how small they really were. I had no idea where to start but once I started to colour the backgrounds I seemed to have a rush of inspiration and flew through them.............in fact I produced over 60 !!!!

So here is a pic of my 25 which will be posted tomorrow. I look forward to receiving the others in return. The challenge ends at the end of January 2007.
I firstly created a watercolour background using acrylics and then collaged this with some stamping and mini pics and words. I used some mica paints and finally hand decorated with coloured markers, metallics and some small embellishments. Dying to do some more now !!!!!

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Saturday, December 09, 2006

'Altoids' tin challenge on Talkcrafts

This is my entry in another challenge from the Talkcrafts forum. One member had a number of unused (but out of date) tins of the Marks & Spencer curiously strong mints which she offered to send to members with a challenge to 'alter' the tin and return for a random swap. I entered and duly received my tin.

I rubbed down the tin with fine sandpaper and covered it all with gesso. then painted over this with acrylics in two contrasting colours. I then applied 6 x 1 inch paper tiles to the top of the lid with mod podge and applied raised letters to spell out 'BOX' after it had dried. I decorated the interier lid and bottom with printed photo paper in blue. I then used gold Krylon to decorate the outside of the tin. Finally putting a little glitterati fibres inside the tin in contrasting colours and closing with purple ribbon tied in a bow. My only regret is that I didn't put something inside the tin.............however I will do if I do any more 'altering' of tins. Here are the pics:

Here is a link to take you to a gallery where all the entries can be viewed

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Friday, November 24, 2006

My entry into 'Colours' CJ UKstampers

Here is my entry into the 'Colours' CJ, just completed. No one had chosen blue, so that was the one for me.

Hope you like it:

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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

My entry into 'Flora & Fauna' CJ (UKStampers)

Another entry completed in the UKSTAMPERS 1st CJ. 'Flora and Fauna' was the title.

I chose the theme of Flora for both pages and had a 'seed' of an idea. Any plant or flower begins its life as a seed and I ended up with seed packets as my embellishments in this case.

Each packet has an insert which can be removed. The words read 'Plant a seed and it will grow'.

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Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Well here we are again, time to send the next UKSTAMPERS CJ on its rounds. This time we have another 10 willing cj'ers raring to put their artistic talents to the test. My CJ title this time is 'Material Things'.

This came about because I am presently very interested in mixed media experimentation. This blends paper, fabric and embellishments into collage, books and all sorts of things with an arty feel. So my CJ is not really about 'possessions' of a material nature but more about the 'materials' we have all around us in everyday life. It's really a play on words in the true sense. All I am asking is that each contributor uses at least one piece of material or fabric in their artwork. The CJ is 7 x 5 inches, so a lot smaller than my last which is still doing the rounds. So here goes with the pics.

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Monday, October 30, 2006

November Canvas Swap

Just to post a pic of my entry for the November Canvas Swap organised by Trish Latimer on the talkcrafts forum It was the usual last minute dash to complete on time but I just made it.

I had the usual inspirational hiatus, but looked out of the window and saw the leaves turning their shades of red, orange and gold signifying that Autumn was with us. So I used Autumn as the theme for my artwork. This is the first canvas that I have done and found it a bit of a challenge. Now I seem to have a plethora of ideas to do more !! It's 5 x 7 inch canvas by the way.

There should be 27 participants so hopefully lots of variety and things to learn.

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Sunday, October 29, 2006

Mini Stampbord Book

In my endeavours to use different media types. I thought I would have a go at using the fabulous Stampbord as a base for a project. I bought a sample pack of the Stampbord and the largest pieces in it were 2 x 2 inch squares. So I decided to use two of these as the back and the front of a mini book with concertina pages. I had first to decorate the squares and used Ranger Distress Inks, Stazon, a flower stamp, a word card stamped with the word 'Bloom' and UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel).

The technique was as follows: Using distress inkpads in Broken China & Pine Needles I applied ink direct to the stampbord surfaces in a random pattern to my liking and then dried thoroughly with a heat gun. I then used black Stazon and a tulip stamp from Joanna Sheens Victorian Flowers plate to stamp both pieces of stampbord. I then used a piercing tool to scrape away the outline of the tulips back to the white stampbord surface. This gave more depth to the images.

When happy I then applied three coats of UTEE to build up a good layer and on the final coat applied the bloom card so it was completely embedded in the molten UTEE. This was to be the front of the mini book. I then used light blue card and cut it into 3 strips of 1.75 x 7 inch. These I folded in half and then in half again and then stuck them together in a concertina fashion. I then took a 7 inch length of contrasting ribbon and applied this with glue to the inside of the back piece of stampbord of set to the right. I held two small metal rings in place on the short end of ribbon by folding over the end and securing with a blue brad. This ribbon will then become the fastener to hold the book together when closed.

Finally the concertina folded card was glued to the inside of the front stampbord piece and over the ribbon on the back stampbord piece. At this stage I have not decorated the pages............but will use some mini images and inks to complete. I liked it so will do some more in different themes now.

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Latest set of 5 ATC's

First what a lovely day and second hope you all enjoyed your extra hour in bed!

Here is my latest set of 5 entitled 'Time Flies'. Anyone up for a swap?

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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

My entry into 'Good Old Days' CJ (UKSTAMPERS)

I am early again (by a week) !! must have had a sudden urge to meet & beat targets. I completed my entry into this CJ after wondering for a long time what exactly I should do. I plumped for a Divas theme and two colourways, one blue and one green. I used stamps from the Divas plate from www.artchixstudio.com .

I used versafine inks, Appli glue (coloured), Beadazzles, gold stars & ribbons to embellish. Also used a fan stamp and heat embossed with enchanted gold EP. All on background crackle paper.

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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

My entry in 'Wild West' CJ (UKSTAMPERS)

Well here we are again, my entry in the 'Wild West' CJ was finally completed on Monday. This time I could not boast being on time and was, in fact, a week late in sending it to the next recipient.

Here are the shots of both pages and also of the full spread. I used a variety of materials including some faux suede material in tan. On the left hand page I used background paper in terra cotta with tan stars as my base and applied the suede material in a fringe. I then used some brown gingham ribbon and held it in place with gold star brads. Above the fringe I applied a colour image of cowboys and indians and mod podged it in place (applying mod podge to the whole of the area above the fringe. I then bound a number of coloured feathers together with gold wire and applied the feather plume with a brown gingham ribbon knotted bow.

The right hand page had two sewn strips of the suede material applied top and bottom above which more gingham ribbon and brads was applied. I prepared a stampbord square which had been stippled with ink and embellished with a silhouette of a lone cowboy rider applied again with mod podge, and glued in place. The words 'lone, lone on the range' were stamped and applied in strips either side of the stampbord. Three ribbons tied in knots down the right hand side of the page completed the entry.

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Saturday, October 07, 2006

Heart Box

This is one of my attempts at decorating a plain heart box.

First I used acrylic paint to prepare the surface (Colonial Green for the outside and French Mauve for the inside and base - both DecoArt Americana collection). I then used a fine leaf design stamp and stamped the top of the lid with Versamark and heat embossed with Pink Pearls EP (ensuring that the inside surface of the lid was well supported to afford a flat surface for the stamp before embossing).

Next I applied a string of blue/green metallic beads to the lid edge with a hot glue gun at small intervals. I cut pink flower sequins in half and applied the halves to the lid edge behing the beads. I cut extra beads from the string and applied these with pink 'pearly doodles' around the lid edge.

When dry I applied an acrylic rose motif to the centre of the top of the lid. I used Adirondack 'bottle' ink and a natural sponge to stipple an all-over pattern on the sides of the base of the box, drying with a heat gun.

I applied a printed satin ribbon to the bottom of the box side and used the hot glue gun to apply silver and pink flower beads at intervals. Finally filled the inside of the box with Stewart Gill Glitterati Filaments (Astral Blue).

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Latest ATC set

I have just completed this set of three ATC's, to be sent to another male swap friend in Australia. The theme is 'Chinese'. I have used similar materials in each case to keep the theme intact.

In all I used EP chinese gold, stamping with Adirondack (espresso), Stazon (blazing red), Acrylic paints (lime green, pink, fern & orange), gold backing paper, vellum, stamps from www.tandastamps.co.uk 'Far East Plate 3', fly image and Japanese lady with parasol, vellum, square bronze brads, peel-off clear squares & decorative fibres.

The weather has been dreadful today here in Manchester today so I stayed in and crafted to my hearts content. Should have seen the state of the kitchen at 6pm !!! more craft stuff about 3 inches deep on every surface.........so had a ready meal, (after clearing the space in front of the microwave).

C'est la vie !!!

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Sunday, September 24, 2006

Clares 545 ATC Swap

Clare (Fairy), UKstampers forum suggested an ATC swap with 5 crafters each producing 5 ATC's in a series. Each crafter would then receive 5 ATC's back, one from each set.

This is my set, entitled 'Ladies In Waiting' (don't exactly know what they are waiting for though !). All have brayered backgrounds and are stamped with a series of my favourite stamps from 'Let's Face It' UM sheet from collagabilities. They are embossed with various moonglow & metallic EP's and finished with a swirl stamp using colours of Stazon.

Simple but effective I thought !

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Saturday, September 23, 2006

Trish Bayley's background technique

Trish Bayley provided instructions in 'Simply Stamping' Magazine Issue 6 on Textured Alcohol Ink Backgrounds and I thought I would have a go.

I used kitchen towel, nylon fruit netting & clear adhesive tape as my background materials. The
PVA was an evo bond type which dried clear and shiny. I had a major problem though with the application of the alcohol inks with the felt pad. For some reason the PVA reacted to make a very sticky surface once the inks had been applied to the surface and the felt pad started to fluff and stick terribly. I resorted to using liberal amounts of Alcohol Blending Solution to try to overcome this and just about managed this. Next time I will use other means of spreading the ink.............not sure what though !!!

Anyway I have pics of three finishes I produced. The first included the fruit netting whilst the others just had clear adhesive tape and kitchen paper applied with the PVA.

Pic 1 used Cranberry, Wild Plum & Red Pepper Alcohol Inks. Pic 2 Pesto, Espresso, Caramel & Terra Cotta Alcohol Inks. Pic 3 Wild Plum, Denim, Stonewashed & Egglant Alcohol Inks.

Very Pleased with the results though !

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