Monday, 9 May 2016

Figure it out

My dad celebrated a "round number" birthday recently but didn't want to make a big thing of it. So I decided to use number punches rather than featuring BIG numbers on the card!

I started with a loose explosion of turquoise courtesy of some Brusho and stenciled brickwork over the top with white pigment ink. The script is stamped with Distress (which kind of disappears over the pigment ink - nice effect if unexpected!).

The big cog is a couple of die cuts stuck together for a bit of body (I didn't have a chipboard shape of the right size and I don't have a suitable steel rule die to cut my own - if you own the die that cut this cog, you'd be OK to cut your own from something like mountboard).

I used metal stamps and a hammer to emboss dates around the edge of the cog, added a little sand texture paste in some areas and dots between the dates with glue. Once those hardened, I painted the whole thing black and then dry brushed acrylics over that base layer (metallic Espresso and then Bronze) to bring out the textures. The texture paste gives a corroded or rusty texture under the paint which you might be able to see better on the close-up view.

I brushed out excess paint on a bit of scrap card before dry-brushing the cog and that got used to make the matching dots - I just punched/die cut circles and domed them out with a stylus tool. A few tiny turquoise nail art gems, a stamped sentiment and wonky stitching finish it off.
I thought this would still fit the current That's Crafty challenge which is to use numbers/figures on your project, even though the numbers are fairly subtle rather than in your face. Lots of the supplies I used are available from That's Crafty, too!

19th Century French Script and Essential Messages by Hero Arts

Paper: Bristol Board

Tim Holtz Distress ink by Ranger (Blueprint Sketch)
Adirondack pigment ink by Ranger (Snowcap)
Memento Luxe by Tsukineko (Tuxedo Black)

Brusho (Turquoise)
Dutch Dubadoo stencil (Bricks)
Cog die cuts
Metal punches
Decoart acrylic paints (Black,  Metallic Espresso, Bronze)
Decoart Texturizing paste (the sand ones in the current Media range would be perfect)
Nail art gems
Sewing machine and thread 

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, 30 April 2016

Karate hybrid!

I got it into my head that a karate theme would be ideal for a friend's son celebrating his 7th birthday since he's just done his grading for his purple belt. Do I have any karate-themed stamps or other supplies? Well now you mention it, no I don't :o/

Time for a hybrid approach, methinks...

I turned to a good old Google search and happened on the ideal image at craftsUprint. OK, the bargain price of 64p was a little less bargainous when you factor in that I had to get other stuff to make the minimum checkout amount but it got me out of a hole and hopefully I've chosen other images that will come in handy for the peskier members of the family!

As usual, I went my own way - the image is on a decoupage sheet and although I did a bit of minimal layering on the karate dude (main image, layer that's jacket and head, separate belt) I ignored the main backdrop and cut my own circle from red card, inked the edge for depth and added a big, hand cut number to tailor the card for the recipient.

The image is pre-coloured (although I did add a bit extra shading with Copics, particularly on the belt) so it's just the cutting out that's time-consuming here.

It's always harder to impress a seven-year-old than his parents I reckon - the card was declared "cool" so I think making it hard on myself paid off!

6x6" card base
Karate Dude printable decoupage sheet from craftsUprint (there's a Karate Girl, too - hooray!)
Sentiment from Essential Messages by Hero Arts
Red and black card
Tim Holtz Distress ink by Ranger (Fired Brick)
Memento Luxe ink by Tsukineko (Tuxedo Black)
Pinflair glue gel
Fineline marker
Copic markers

Thanks for stopping by -  if you're in the UK I hope you enjoy the Bank Holiday weekend!

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Easy watercolouring!

I needed to make a birthday card for my mum and having recently been on holiday (leading to the inevitable creative slump arising from being separated from your crafting supplies!) I needed something that wasn't too challenging!

I've had this stamp set for ages and not got round to using it. I thought a bit of watercolour painting with it might be just the thing.

I kept it simple with just a single panel of watercolur paper, stitched to the card base for a touch of textural interest once it was painted.

The jug, flowers, leaves and grounding are all Distress ink and I used a couple of watercolour pencils for the blue background wash. This is a really easy way to do a watercolour - just stamp with Distress ink and spread the colour with a damp brush.

I added some clear Wink of Stella to the tops of the blooms and a few extra highlights with a white paint pen.

Sweet Havana by Mama Elephant
Sentiment from Big Day Today by Waltzingmouse Stamps (no longer in business but watch the Gina K site in case it's a set that comes back via that route at some point!)

Paper: Ranger Watercolor

Tim Holtz Distress ink by Ranger (Antqiue Linen, Vintage Photo, Pumice Stone, Seedless Perserves, Shabby Shutters, Peeled Paint)
Brilliance by Tsukineko (Pearlescent Chocolate)

Derwent watercolour pencils
Clear Wink of Stella pen
Posca white paint pen
Sewing machine and thread 

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, 12 February 2016

Wax fish?

The topic over at PaperArtsy for the next couple of weeks is "wax". I'm trying to join in with a few more challenges this year and thought this one might be fun to play with.

I don't have any wax art supplies and for a first experiment I decided to just go with stuff around the house so a plain old tealight came into play! It's translucent enough to work as long as the layers don't get too thick.

I used an ATC cut from mountboard - I like to go with something small when I'm just experimenting with materials and techniques, it feels more manageable than a full card or canvas. I stamped the fish skeleton on the ATC and coloured the edges with wax crayons (just cheap kids' ones from the £1 shop). Then I tipped some melted wax on there and used a heat tool to spread it out, let it set and repeated.

Once the wax layer was thick enough, I used a pokey tool to draw round the shapes in the stencil and get incised lines. I brushed the wax crumbs off, replaced the stencil and added a little colour with a couple of Copic markers (just dabbing so the nibs shouldn't have come to any harm!). That left the surface sticky enough to hold some Perfect Pearls. In real life it looks much more layered and inscribed but wax and mica combined to make a bit of a photography nightmare, I'm afraid!

Having made the ATC, I decided to mount it onto a card blank with just a little inky stenciling and a stamped sentiment. I think it will make a useful masculine card to have in my stash.

After making this, I discovered that Bubbly Funk is closing its doors. If you fancy stocking up on some stencils (including the one I used here and others by the likes of Prima, Dylusions, Dina Wakely, TimHoltz...) you can get 50% off your order total - when you check out, just enter the code you'll see on the shop's home page to get the discount.

PaperArtsy Mini 100
Sentiment from Essential Messages by Hero Arts

Bamboo mixed media paper by Hanemuhl
black cardstock

Brilliance by Tsukineko (Graphite Black)
Tim Holtz Distress ink by Ranger (Tumbled Glass) 

Cell Theory stencil by Crafters Workshop
Tea light
Wax crayons
Perfect Pearls (Turquoise and Blue Raspberry)
Copic markers 
ATC and Corners die by Tim Holtz/Sizzix

Thanks for stopping by!