Tuesday 24 March 2009

Smouldering damask

Well, it could have been smouldering but in reality I did manage not to set light to anything here - soot stamping is a bit of an adventure, you know!

I love this new backgrounder stamp (it's being released on Friday, 27th March), it manages to be detailed and still pack a dramatic punch. I thought it would lend itself to a sultry kind of look and that soot stamping might be a good thing to try for that, too!

I actually did the negative soot stamping technique, stamping the backgrounder in Versamark first and then running the piece over the candle flame as you usually would. Once it's nicely coated in soot, you can wipe gently with a tissue and the soot sticks more to the Versamark than the rest of the piece and you get a nice variation in tone and a textural look, too. A quick blast with a spray sealant (or in my case, cheap hairspray!) and you're done.

If you're having a go at soot stamping yourself, I found the key thing is to keep the piece moving all the time and don't go right out to the edge since the edges are where it's most likely to catch light! You can always stamp on a piece of cardstock that's larger than you need and then trim to size once you've sealed the piece.

Stamps (all Cornish Heritage Farms):
Double Damask backgrounder (releasing Friday, 27th March)
Motivational Centers

Paper: Smooth white, Epic Laid Black (Prism)

Ink: Versamark by Tsukineko

Detail embossing powder (copper)
Vintage lace
Flowers by Prima Marketing
Crystal brad by Making Memories
Sewing machine and thread

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday 12 March 2009

Tree Hugger!

It's "Ways to Use It" challenge day on SCS today and guest hostess Michele has asked us to go green. We could interpret that as the colour or to reuse/recycle or any combination of those!

We have young silver birch trees in our garden and just this morning I peeled off some of the loose, thin bark thinking it might be good for a papercraft project - so I think I have the ultimate "green" material here!

I washed it carefully and left it to dry between a couple of sheets of kitchen towel with our big AGA kettle on top to keep it flat! I then stuck it to some copy paper to make it sturdy enough to use and stamped the tree trunk and the sentiment words with Stazon.

I've reused by making the tree with scrap paper from my desk too, I just turned it over and used the back of experimental bits and pieces!

Stamps (all Cornish Heritage Farms):
Spring Trees (Kim Hughes collection)

Paisley Backgrounder

Everyday Petites (Mona Lisa Moments line)

Kraft shipping tag
Silver birch bark!

Scrap copy paper

Tim Holtz Distress ink by Ranger (Peeled Paint)

Stazon by Tsukineko (Timber Brown)

Glaze pen by Sakura (red)

Inkssentials white pen by Ranger

Prismacolor pencil

Jute twine

Thanks for stopping by, hope there are signs of spring in the air where you are (unless you're reading in the southern hemisphere in which case signs of spring would be worrying - I wish you a pleasant autumn instead!).

Thursday 5 March 2009

Make a Wish

Over on the Bubbly Funk forum, Karen has decided we need to be challenged out of our pure papercraft zone! The first challenge is to alter a tin. I scratched my head for a while as I didn't fancy tackling the great big tin that had amaretti biscuits in it last Christmas and then remembered I'd bought a little candle in a tin in Poundstretcher a while ago, intending to turn it into a little Christmas gift but didn't get round to it.

I'm going to start here with "things I have learned about tomato paste". I made a card last week using a tomato paste tube and uploaded it to Splitcoaststampers. I was feeling quite pleased with myself as I remembered to call in "tomato paste" rather than the more typically British term "tomato puree". Little did I realise that its name was the least of the differences!

Tomato paste in the US typically comes in cans so most people had no clue what I'd used. I did a little research and apparently some Italian grocery stores stock it in tubes and I even tracked it down on Amazon.com in the "gourmet foods" section - so, if you're reading this in North America and want to get your hands on this stuff, you now know where to try! It's much less wasteful than a can if you're cooking for small numbers, BTW - just pop the top back on and put it in the fridge for next time.

So, all that was by way of telling you that I used a tomato paste tube here! Just snip the top and bottom off your empty tube with kitchen scissors then slit up one side. Flatten it out and wash it and you're ready to go. I have yet to meet a tube that was not a rich gold colour inside - the acid from the tomatoes apparently oxidises the metal and turns it that colour. The circle for the lid here is cut with a Nestie and the whole lot is embossed and then sponged with Stazon which is then polished off the high spots. It's all glued down with Bostick.

I stamped a plain Prima hydrangea with a script stamp and sponged the edges with Vintage Photo ink.

Stamps (Cornish Heritage Farms):
Spanish Script backgrounder
Birthday Centers

Stazon by Tsukineko (Timber Brown)
Tim Holtz Distress by Ranger (Vintage Photo)

Candle tin
Tomato paste tube

Cuttlebug Embossing folder (Textile Texture)
Hydrangea by Prima Marketing
Vintage button
Classic Circle Nestabilities by Spellbinder
Linen thread

If you're blowing out a candle today, don't forget to make a wish! Thanks for stopping by!