Monday, 24 September 2012

Masks on Monday!

The Tando Creative DT girls are hopping today - we've been playing with masks and we'd love you to join us! If you didn't start at the Tando Blog you might want to check in there for details of how to be in with a chance of winning a lovely Tando prize during the hop (there are some details about what's happening for the Birthday Bash next week, too!).

Masks are great for one layer cards. I've used the new Distorted Hive mask for this one - I love the "movement" created by the distortion which makes it perfect for added interest when you're working with a single layer and don't want to end up with something that looks too regimented.

After sponging ink through the mask, the bees were stamped, bleached to get rid of the Distress ink in those areas and then coloured with Copics.Some colours bleach out better than others and I have to say that Mustard Seed was a dream! I added a little clear Spica over the wings for subtle sparkle. I managed to keep the colouring light enough that there's no bleed through so this can stay as a genuinely one layer card with no insert - hooray!

Distorted Hive mask (Tando Creative)
Queen Bee stamp set (Crafty Secrets)
Sentiment from Petite Posies (Technique Tuesday)
Tim Holtz Distress ink by Ranger (Mustard Seed)
Brilliance ink by Tsukineko (Graphite Black)
Copic markers
Copic Spica glitter pen (clear)
Corner Chomper

This is Tando Creattive Distorted Hive Mask used here:

The next stop along the Tando hop is Kaz who loves her masks so I'm sure there'll be a treat in store! Don't forget to leave a comment here before you go if you're playing for the chance to win a prize - thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

One layer birthday

A quick and easy one layer card today by way of contrast with the steampunky stuff in the last couple of posts!

The boy with the book was stamped and masked then the central square masked off with Post-It notes and sponged with ink. I inked the background stamp randomly and didn't press hard so there's a "hit and miss" kind of randomness to contrast with the very straight lines of the inked square.

I added a tiny bit of shading to the boy's skin and clothing with Copics, stamped a sentiment and called it done.

The stamp is from the Relish Reading set that I picked out as a prize when I won a Gingersnap challenge some time ago - thanks Rogue Redhead! I've seen quite a few cards made with the girl reading in a chair that's in the same set but this chap doesn't seem to get much of a look-in - a shame I think as he's good for more masculine projects!

Relish Reading stamp set (Rogue Redhead Designs)
White cardstock
Adirondack ink by Ranger (Espresso, Mushroom, Pebble)
Versafine ink by Tsukineko (Vintage Sepia)
Copic markers

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, 17 September 2012

Steampunk snowflakes

Handling lots of cog shapes for Andy Skinner's Book of Secrets workshop reminded me of the fact I've always thought that the smallest snowflake in my Spellbinder set looks like a spiky cog. That set me thinking about steampunk snowflakes and this is the result.

It started life as a coffee tin and I had fun trying out a different colour combo for a more silvery/gunmetal style finish. I  added some detail like a line of glue at the "shoulder" for a welding seam and cheap Christmas bead chain in the groove around the top of the canister where the original lid would screw on because I decided that one looked too heavy on it once I'd done all the decorating. I made a new lid that just rests inside the top rim (it's several circles of cereal packet board glued together - the texture is scrunched up tissue stuck over the top - with a little wooden knob glued into place).

Coffee tin
Die cuts
Flat back pearls
Bead chain
Deep midnight blue and Prussian blue Americana acrylic paints by DecoArt
Shimmering Silver metallic acrylic paint by DecoArt
Texturizing medium by DecoArt
Wooden knob
Tissue paper

Gosh - no stamping! It's been a while since that happened.

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, 14 September 2012

Book of Secrets!

I've been doing something new! I've never taken part in an online workshop before but I'm currently doing Andy Skinner's Book of Secrets one and having fun! Andy gets some fantastic finishes on his projects and steampunk is way outside my normal comfort zone so I decided to sign up and see what I could learn.

This post is a bit picture-heavy - sorry!

Andy uses a wooden box as the base for his tutorials but I decided to take the "book" part of the workshop title literally and I've used a real book as the base for my project. The people who owned our house before us left behind loads of "books by the yard" and we've never done anything with them. I chose one that looked extremely unlikely to have any financial or cultural value and set to work!

One of the things I struggle with on steampunk is the "more is more" aspect. I find it difficult to add lots of stuff and still feel happy with the overall composition. I think I did OK here and I didn't go for a straight copy of Andy's sample (trying to copy something is always a recipe for disaster at my craft table!).

The "power indicators" (flat back gems) were something that struck me as a fun addition to the mechanical components.

Andy adds dates to his large compass with metal punches. I liked the idea but didn't have the punches to achieve it. What I did have was an embossing tool with interchangable tips that my dad picked up for me at a car boot sale (thanks Dad!). I used it with a hammer to add detail right round the inside of the compass. I think it works quite well.

The spine has been given a leather-look makeover. It's not easy to tell that the book started life as a blue cloth-bound hardback and I think this would probably look quite convincing lined up with other volumes on a shelf!

I carved out a niche inside the book for the inner workings of the machine. I thought a butterfly would provide a suitably unexpected power house for a steampunk contraption and the light/bright colouring makes a nice contrast to the industrial tones.

Lessons for niche carving - be prepared to even up the right hand side once the pages are glued together as there's a surprising gradient on the pages of a closed book!  The slope on the left goes towards the spine and can't be seen but the slope on the right obviously goes into the niche itself.

Here's a detail of the texture on the cogs - nice and rusty!

Old book
Tand Creative chipboard shapes (Compass Duo and Cogs grab bag)
Die cuts
Lamp black, Burnt umber, Burnt sienna Americana Acrylic paints by DecoArt
Texturizing medium by DecoArt
Brads, googly eyes, flatback pearls and gems
Sun charm (saved from a freebie chiffon scarf)
Wings stamp set (Darkroom Door)
"Engine" and number from a retired B&O Railroad set (CHF)
Ranger Perfect Pearls
Copic markers

This is not quite complete yet - I need to do the back and as the niche only goes about half way down the depth of the book I've stuck together some pages so I have a couple of surfaces to decorate. I got distracted into trying a second project though, I'll share that soon!

The Book of Secrets workshop is running again at the end of the month - details of what it entails are here if anyone would like them.

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, 7 September 2012

Postcard extras!

I may have got just a little carried away with postcard making when I got going on the Bubbly Funk swap! I did an extra couple with the same sort of look and feel as the first but different compositions.

I used old music paper as the base layer on this one rather than using the music stamp as a background which has made the colour slightly different as it was a more yellowy base under the Bundled Sage ink.

I thought the ornate italic font of the sentiment went well on here!

Bubble border, butterflies and Copic colouring as before.

For the third one I wanted to mimic the vertical lines of bubbles that appear in the forum header. I made dots with a Versamark pen and heat embossed with white powder  before inking the background.

I used the same trick as I did on the original card of stamping with a Copic cap and tiny rubber washer  to make bubbles and then stamped the sheet music background and wording randomly over the top.

Wings set (Darkroom Door)
Bubble Border (Lost Coast Designs)
Aged Sheet Music Scrapblock (Cornish Heritage Farms, retired)

Cryogen white
Old sheet music

Brilliance by Tsukineko (Graphite Black)
Tim Holtz Distress ink by Ranger (Bundled Sage)

White embossing powder 
Copic markers

Thanks for stopping by, hope you have a lovely weekend!