Sunday, January 31, 2016

Slings and Arrows

I rarely find myself with a make that might fit more than one challenge, but the stars aligned this time so here I go with a journal page!    I am aiming at Paper Artsy's Hearts Challenge, Emerald Creek Dares Valentine's is NOT in the Air challenge , and Anything But Cute's Ring out the Old, Bring in the New challenge.

The hearts will be obvious, the no-Valentine's bit I hope also (as we are  allowed to speak of love, just not in a Valentine's style).  The new - well, a We R  Memories Gemstone embossing folder, and new Lindy's Stamp Gang Queen Sheba Silver embossing powder.  Oh yes, and a new Faber Castell calligraphy pen in sepia....

You'll see the old as we go along, lol!

I started with a piece of Bristol card, and swiped a good bit of Ground Expresso Distress Paint over it, spritzing with water, and moving around with my fingers before it dried and became permanent.  I went over a few areas again with the same technique, to get a nice mottled effect - not because I knew what would happen, but just in case it would matter.

Next, I used a stencil I've had for a long time but never used, to put some ancient script on this background.  I used PaperArtsy French Roast with a makeup sponge....making sure to dab off a bit before applying to the stencil.

Then I took some Lumiere gold and silver paints, and covered a piece of card, again with a makeup sponge, and sponging a bit of silver over the gold.  I then embossed a piece of this prepared cardstock  with the We R Memories Gemstone embossing folder.  This is part of a set - I used the more angular one. I got this paint idea from the internet, but cannot now locate who inspired me....if anyone knows, please let advise so I can give credit where due!  I then sprayed with a Tattered Angels glimmer spray in Kraft, which dulled it down just a smidge....

Next, I cut two lovely flourishes from the same paper using a wafer die - I cannot identify it although it has the detail of a Memory Box die.

I took a piece of plain cardstock, cut a narrow freehand heart, and tried out the calligraphy pen.  

Feeling ok with this, I then cut the heart from the Lumiere-painted cardstock, and lettered it.  However, I actually ended up liking the back of the piece better, because it was messier - so I applied some more paint using the left-overs from the sponge I had used for the back, and re-wrote the Rumi quote.

I got the (excuse the pun) brilliant idea to spritz on some Heidi Swapp gold spray to this heart.... and of course did not clear off the work table, so it got on my background - yikes!  I quickly sprayed some water on the background and smooshed it around with my fingers.... and actually like what happened.  The letters look carved - nice!

I decided to cut a nice, round heart from the gemstone-embossed piece as a counterpoint to my heart with the quote. You can see the two identical flourishes here as well - one has yet to be cleaned of all the little cutting bits...

 So now I just put everything on the background as I liked.... and I decided I needed to put a bit of a silver border on my heart with the quote... using the almost sheer Queen Sheba's Silver EP from Lindy's Stamp Gang.  It is lovely!

And now everything can come together....

Thank you for stopping by, and if you've time, please do leave a comment  - I read them all with great appreciation for your thoughts, and for you!  xxx Lynn

Embossing with Frillie & Funkie!

I was thrilled to see the new challenge about embossing of all types at Frillie and Funkie this month!  I adore embossing, mostly using folders, but I also love my embossing powders.

I am intrigued by alcohol inks, and am determined to explore them more thoroughly this year.  As one of my tags for Linda's Christmas Tags challenge, I used some green and red alcohol inks on a very regular pattern, seen here.  I loved the result!

I am also a fan of luscious design, and own a number of intricate embossing folders, and wanted to try this technique on something without the regular pattern.  I love rich brocade fabric, even though I cannot imagine how to actually use it in anything!   This does remind me of such brocade - but here I turned it into a Thank You card for an old friend who sent me some lovely earrings out of the blue....

I started with Bristol Paper card, and covered this with Ranger's foil tape, without regard for wrinkles, as knew they would work themselves out once I sent it through my Big Shot with an embossing folder.

Next, I applied my alcohol inks in shades of deep pink and various blues - accented with gold fixative, of course!  I let the inks flow and pool...

 and used my heat tool to speed the drying.... it appeared the gold was lost.

I was pleasantly surprised, though, to see it emerge once things had completely dried. Unlike my last make with this technique, I did not sand, although the lighting here sometimes suggests that....

Here are some more detailed shots - I can't help myself as I love all this color and detail, lol!!  Feel free to skip ahead!

In this last photo, you can see that I edged the piece with gold embossing powder (from Ranger)....I did this several times to make it look aged and not as regular as it looked from using the Versamark ink pad along a straight edge which also had a straight margin from the embossing folder, which you can just see on the upper right of the above photo.

Once satisfied with the panel, I applied it to a black card made by folding an 8 x 11 inch piece of black cardstock in half....

and heat embossing once again with the gold powder a stamped "Thank You" from my stash.

I will of course enclose a note, but in the meantime, I am pleased with this card (as I am not a card maker by any means!)

I am entering this into the current Frilly and Funkie Challenge.

Thank you so much for stopping by, and if you've time, please do leave a comment - I love reading them and hearing your thoughts, and am always glad to hear from you!

xxx Lynn

Saturday, January 30, 2016

January Tim Tag - Whew!

Well, after barely making all 12 tags for Linda's wonderful Christmas tags challenge after a previous year of not making it, I thought I'd give Tim's January tag for 2016 a go, as last year I only completed four.... we'll see how I do this year, lol!

This post is uncharacteristically short, as Mr. Holtz has thoroughly laid out all the steps, including revisits to his original step-outs for these two "remixed" techniques.

I've not tried the chalkboard bit before - it was a bit dicey as I had not used the Frosted Crystal Antiquities embossing powder previously and couldn't tell if I was overheating, per his caution to avoid that.  But at last, it seemed to come together, even though my choice of the "Love You" framelit set was, in hindsight, too detailed to really do justice to this beautiful stamp set.   Ah well, live and learn.

After placing everything with foam dots on the chalked-up torn tag background, it was way too plain, so I peeled everything off and added some random script stamping, again using the Frosted Crystal powder, now that I had the hang of it, and re-chalking.  Much better!!

I adore the Industrial technique, as it satisfies both my bling and grunge desires at the same time... and it highlights the dry embossing so wonderfully, regardless of style.   Here is the tag in full - with the word band, another little bit at the top of the chalkboard, and a very light silvery seam binding bow.

Now I just hope I am not skidding in on the tail end of the month from here on out!  But, I suppose, better late than never!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and if you've time, please do leave a comment.  I appreciate each one, and every one of you!

xxx Lynn

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Bits & Bobs for Crafty Individuals!

Well, I went all over the place with this one!  After looking through my collection of Crafty Individuals stamps, each of which is lovely, I finally settled on the Dragonfly Collage, the French Script, and the Butterfly Trio.

Here you can see the gorgeous Dragonfly Collage, and the French Script.....and just a hint of the Butterfly Trio, but more of that to come!

I aged some paper with various Distress paints (Aged Linen, a touch of Milled Lavender, and a few touches of Gathered Twigs), and once to my liking, I stamped the Dragonfly Collage in Wendy Vecchi's Potting Soil Archival Ink.  After distressing the edges physically and with some Distress Ink, it looks like this:

Next, I aged some paper using Vintage Photo and Gathered Twigs, and splotching it with water spots.   Then I stamped with Ranger Archival Ink in Cobalt using the French Script stamp.   I also physically distressed the edges using my scissors, and then with some more Distress Ink in Ground Expresso.
And now it looks like this:

I think my craft sheet wasn't too clean, given the green and what looks like red but is actually residue from a copper Lindy's Stamp Gang spray!  That's because I thought my substrate would look like this:

But this turned out to be too glitzy for my ephemera, which include an old portrait I got on e-Bay some time past, and lots of die-cut doilies and lacy things, for which I used the Tim Holtz Wallflower paper.  It has a wonderful vintage look, which I wanted....but it sure is hard to get that bling in with those vintage colors!

Last, but not least, I turned to the Butterfly Trio.... with the idea of "ghosting" it on some acetate stamped with alcohol inks, per these instructions.  So I applied some Pesto and Mushroom alcohol inks to a small piece of thin acetate, along with a tiny bit of gold mixative -  I can't get away from the shiny! I cut it with the Scroll On-the-Edge die, and it looked like this, kind of like a pretty piece of stone:

Following the technique, I then stamped with archival ink in Black Jet.... and immediately began to remove it.  As I feared, the stamp's image is quite delicate, and gets rather lost in the maze of depth and color on the acetate, but you still can just make it out...if you look REALLY hard, lol!

And as I rather liked the scrolling and the green, I left it in the piece.... but here is what the stamp itself looks like - it is one of my favorites.

After adding a few bits and bobs from Graphic 45, which were grunged up with Ground Expresso and Vintage Photo, I stained a Kraft Resist 12 x 12 panel with Picket Fence Distress Stain, and assembled my pieces.  The final make looks like this:

I can think of several story lines for this.....but my favorite is that she lives in the countryside perhaps a widow, a governess, or unmarried but ensconced in the family digs....and collects things she likes to paint.  Or maybe she is one of the first but unknown female botanists.... or maybe this is all a flea market find!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and if you've time, please do comment - I appreciate every one, and each of you!

xxx Lynn

I am entering this into the Crafty Individuals January Challenge .

Friday, January 22, 2016

To Everything There is a Season

I was stunned and ecstatic that Lys chose my "Card Gone Haiku" piece for her Top Talent in the Our Creative Corner Topsy Turvy challenge!  Unusually for me, I knew immediately what theme I wanted - something with trees and the sky, as we have been experiencing some stunning stormy skies, brilliant blue skies, and intense winter skies recently.  I absolutely love looking at the tree branches against those gorgeous backdrops!   I muddled about what exactly to do with this inspiration, and had thought I might make a little accordion book where each page was a season, with perhaps a quote on the opposite leaf.  But that bordered very closely to the second Wanderlust project, and I didn't want to chance that type of duplication, however innocent.  Well, ok,  it is also because I readily tire of doing the same thing over again, and do want to participate in Kate Crane's great project..... so began looking for something else, lol!

One of the things I love most about fall and winter is the cosy feeling inside in the evening with candlelight.... I rarely use the real thing for fear that my ever-curious cat will cause disaster in her perpetual quest for a personal best in entertainment experiences.  Instead I have some lovely strings of little white lights around the window, that I leave up all year - they make me happy!  Another image that has been in my mind is the candles I have created in my art recently, here and here, to which others resonated as well in the comments.  And so, in the lovely ways of the interior mind, I came up with the idea of a small vintage candle thingy - not really  holder but a casement around a candle, with images of trees against the sky in all four seasons.

Because I wanted a vintage look, I knew I wanted to use the Cabinet Card steel rule die, and hoped that the corresponding mini Mover and Shaper Cabinet insert would accommodate the Impression Obsession background stamp I  had in mind - and hooray, it did!!  I made my frames from cereal-box weight chipboard for sturdiness, and for the same reason cut an inside and and outside frame, between which I would sandwich my windows.

I thought about using acetate for the windows, but wasn't sure my ability to get color where I wanted with alcohol inks was up to par for this, so went with fairly thin white cardstock, so I could color them with Distress Inks.  Above you see on the right top my pattern for trimming a scant amount from the cardstock windows so no white would show once they were placed between the inside and outside frames.

Now - what about those frames?  I settled on a vintage silver look.  I toyed with the idea of embossing foil tape and grunging it up with some black ink, but given the thin dimension of the frame once the insert was cut out, I decided instead to use a detailed background stamp, using Versamark ink and detailed silver embossing powder. So first I painted them with black acrylic paint on all sides and edges.

  Then I stamped and heat embossed - I like how it came out.

Next, to the windows!  I took my mini Distress Ink pads, and chose some colors for each season.  Then I swiped them on my craft sheet (and ps, Santa was kind - I do have a new cover-the-whole-table craft sheet - just have yet to put it on, lol!)  As in a prior "sky" project, I did not smoosh the windows around, but just laid them down in the water-spritzed ink and lifted up - I wanted the colors to pretty much stay where they were.

For the winter sky, I used a tiny bit of Distress Micro Glaze to preserve some white in the "clouds", before laying down into a blend of Hickory Smoke and Pumice Stone Distress Inks.

Elsewhere, I simply laid the cardstock down into the ink, and once up and dry, flicked with a bit of water for additional interest.

 Here, you can see all four seasons.

 And here they are stamped, in Wendy Vecchi's Potting Soil Archival Ink, one of my favorites!

And framed:

All that is left is to put them together, with strong double sided tape, although I left the protective covering on in the inside....

 And then add some battery-operated tea lights!

 Here are some details of each window, when lit up from within.

Thank you so much for stopping by, and please leave a comment if you've time.  I love reading them and hearing from you!! xxx Lynn