Monday, September 24, 2012

Fall Projects #5 & #6

 I have been a baaaa-ad blogger!  I actually have TWO projects to share with you...so hang on to your hats!

The first is a fun "folk art" style card. And the technique I wanted to share with you involves using your "colorless blender" Copic market to add texture to images that you color. The stamped image is from Papertrey Ink's "Autumn Hills" set.  I love all the little bits and pieces that you get in the stamp set...I used two of the companion stamps to "spiff up" the inside.

Don't you just love that "peek-a-boo" die cut strip down the right side of the card?  That is a fun Memory Box die called Piestra Tile.  The detail it adds really means that you don't have to do much embellishing  to your card...it does all the work for you! I did add just a touch of Chestnut Liquid Pearls in the centers of some of the lacey cuts.

You will want to watch the video either here or on YouTube because it explains how to use your colorless blender to add texture...no shading required.  Expert colorists use this technique all the time - but it is easy to do even for us "beginners!"




Project #6 was so much fun to make. I used the Papertrey Ink Shape Series: Pumpkin die to make a couple of shaped cards.  I have loved seeing other card makers do them...and I found out they are super easy to make - especially with the die set.  Both of these cards were made with the same set. For the first one I used several different pattern papers to cut the sections for the pumpkin...this is a great project to use up paper scraps.
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These dies can cut paper and ....FELT! I used some rust colored felt to make the second card. If you are going to cut out felt with these dies, I really do recommend that you use 100% wool felt...this is one of those times that it is worth getting the higher quality product.  100% wool is denser than craft felt - and that makes it easier to cut.

I added some stitching to the sections to give them a bit of definition and some brown floral wire twisted around a paintbrush to imitate a pumpkin vine. I can't wait to send this to one of my friends that loves fall and is always on the hunt for "the perfect pumpkin."  Maybe I can talk her into thinking THIS one is the "perfect pumpkin" to adorn her mantle!


I have created a video for this project as well...and most of it centers around making a decorated glassine bag....to add all the parts and pieces of the jack 0'lantern card...not yet put together.  I am going to send it to my youngest niece. She is already a little crafter...and I think she will enjoy making her own card to give to a teacher or a friend.

You all know I can't resist a good pun...so with a little "selective stamping" (a technique explained in the video) I was able to change Happy Halloween....to Happy OWL-oween. *insert horrible attempt at a British accent.* In the video, I also show you how I created that cute little owl...I especially LOVE the eyelashes on her googley eyes!






I numbered the sections and made light pencil marks on the base so it will be easy for my niece to put her Pumpkin Puzzle together. If you have any young crafters in your life - this would be a great project to do with them.

Hope you are having a great FALL...and that the weather in your part of the world is allowing you to have a little extra time outside!  I hope to be back soon with another project...so stay tuned.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Fall Project Series #4 - Inspired by Louise Nelson


I am SO EXCITED to share this project with you! I had so much fun playing and experimenting...and I am pretty sure I am not quite done with the "creative play" that started with this layout.

As I told you in my last post, I have been enjoying the art of Louise Nelson...a designer who lives in Australia. She does some SERIOUS - outside the box creating.  You can check out her blog here. Her projects have such a wonderful sense of movement and feel very organic.  I have been wanting to try and apply some of the things that she uses on her layouts, and this fall layout seemed the perfect time.

See what I mean? She creates backgrounds that I would describe more as "back drops" for her overall design...I love it! I couldn't wait to try to create my own take on the inspiration that I find when I look at her projects.

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Louise uses "gray board" (raw chipboard) for her base and often uses gesso in a sprayable form to create her subtle backgrounds with stencils and masks.  I knew these were two things that I would concentrate on when I started experimenting. I haven't ever seen a "sprayable" version of gesso...so I decided to create my own...and you know me...once I start mixing it rarely stops!

To make it a bit easier to follow - I've done a video highlighting the techniques that I used.  You can watch it here...or over on YouTube if you prefer.  I will put some close-ups of the project and the process down below so you can see the results a bit better.



Here is a close-up of the focal image. You've seen those felt die cuts before, right? Sharp eye! I always keep the "leftovers" from previous projects and you never know where they may show up!


 I am totally loving the SPLAT! I think it takes away the "edges" and gives a softer look to the background.


Here is a close-up of the secondary focal image area....just added a bit of stamping and another die-cut sprig.


All these fun layers just make me happy!


And here are a few of the extra bits and pieces you could use if you don't have exactly what I used...remember - "raid your stash" when trying something new!


And finally, I know most of the folks that visit my blog are "lurkers" - and that is totally ok...but I want to get your opinion about my next series (we're not done with this one - but I am thinking ahead), so if you would humor me and leave me a comment I would really appreciate it. Here is my idea..

I know a lot of us do some form of "December Daily" (Ali Edwards) or "Journal Your Christmas" (Shimelle Laine) mini album project...and I was thinking that I would do a series in November sharing how I prepare my basic project to get ready for December. I would focus on some fun techniques and products and by the end of November we could have our Christmas Journal to the point that we only need to add pictures and a bit of journaling from the day.  What do you think of this idea?  Would it be something that you would be interested in seeing?  I wouldn't do a DAILY video - but I would probably cover 2-3 pages per video. Let me know what you think...and if there is anything else you would be interested in us doing after we finish our Fall Project Series.

Gotta run - but I will be back soon with another Fall Project!  Have a great week...and be sure and save some time for Creative Play!

Monday, September 03, 2012

Happy Labor Day and Fall Project Series # 3

If you are here in the US - today is Labor Day...unofficially a day for the last BBQ of the summer, a signal that fall is coming (not soon enough for me) and the last day we can officially wear WHITE (yes, I know that dates me...but growing up my Grandmother always told us we could only wear white after EASTER and before LABOR DAY...and I always listen to my grandmother).



It was also a good day to catch up on a few projects, get the house straightened up and do a bit more decorating for fall. And I was excited to get to put together the little tablescape that I envisioned when I saw this cute filigree pumpkin at Hobby Lobby.  It needed a few more elements...and I wanted to bring in some of the colors of fall....so I picked up a variety of wooden acorns to go with it - knowing that I could find a way to add color to them (I forgot to take a "before" picture...but they were all brown like their tops - I didn't do anything to those).

I did do a little video to show you the process...it is a simple collage technique with stamps, tissue paper and gel medium.

If you would like to see the whole tutorial, watch this video.






I like using this technique on anything that does not have a flat surface...and of course you know that I like using it to create mini album covers or backgrounds for cards or scrapbook pages.  It is a pretty good "go to technique" for you...and I hope you try it out for yourself!


I think you will notice that I used a few of the felt leaves that I created during my last project...am sure they will show up again during this Fall Project Series.

And just to give you a bit of a hint of what to expect in Project # 4....check out the picture below.




I have been really enjoying an artist from Australia - Louise....and her blog: an uninterrupted view.  I love the way she uses white space and a really ORGANIC feel to all of her layouts.  Here are a couple that I could just stare at for hours and still feel like there is so much left to explore.  Double click on each of them to see them in a larger format...and be sure and go check out her blog for more inspiration.
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My next project will explore taking some of the inspiration I found in Louise's art and creating a fall scrapbook page.  I am still experimenting....but I am having the BEST time...so I think you will want to come back for #4 in our series.  In the meantime, have a great week...and be sure and take time for some creative play.