Tuesday, 27 January 2015

PaperArtsy Challenge #2 - Shiny Stuff

Hi Everybody,

It's a bit nippy isn't it and going to get a lot worse over next few days by all accounts but shouldn't grumble as it probably won't be as bad as the poor folk over the pond in the US have it right now (it's being shown on the news as I type).  Stay safe any visitors who drop by that are struggling over there at the moment.

Things are still a bit busy here this week as my brothers & I have to get Mum's bungalow emptied by the weekend so we can hand the keys back next week.  It's a very difficult thing to dispose of someone's home while they are still alive but have no say in the matter :-( and I have to say it's giving me a few sleepless nights but we're getting there and it will be done with soon.  I just hope I've chosen the right treasures to save for her!

Ok, on to the crafting ;-D!  It's the 2nd challenge theme over on the PaperArtsy Blog and this time it's 'Shiny Stuff'! What a fabulous theme as there are so many things you can use to create shine and it can be subtle or 'in your face full on bling' and the inspiration from the Guest Designers is stunning so do hop over and take a look.  I want to have a go at everything, lol!  For my project I used a lot more shiny stuff than I would normally but I'm actually really pleased with the result.  See what you think! .......Er, sorry for the photo overload!

I started with a 6" x 6" wooden frame (from the charity shop again ;D) from which I'd ripped some awful embellies.

I used the products below to layer paint and add shine, plus gilding flakes.

I die cut the butterfly border from White Greyboard (PaperArtsy) and the word Love is a Wendy Vecchi Art Part and I covered both with gilding flakes.  I applied the pale, creamy colours of Fresco Finish to the frame with Cut n Dry foam and then applied patches of the 3 Treasure Gold colours.

Previously I've always applied TG as the last layer but this time I wanted to try using it underneath FF so I applied a mix of Nougat and Dusty Teal FF all over, again with Cut n Dry. Once dry I then sanded back to the TG and buffed it with a soft cloth.  Sorry for the glare in some pics but the 'process' ones were taken at night. 

The flourishes were stamped with a Versamagic ink and all the script with Watering Can Archival.  The butterflies were stamped with Archival onto a scrap of co-ordinating paper I found, cut out and then coated with FF Metallic Glaze.  All the stamps used are from PaperArtsy sets. The random embossing is Frantage with a few mica flakes added.

This pic shows the lovely effect of the TG showing through the FF.  I was really chuffed with it ;-)!

More 'Shiny Stuff', lol!

I deliberately took the photos of the finished project early this morning in a mix of dull daylight & my lamp so that I could capture the shine properly so apologies for the shadows. 

I totally enjoyed making this frame and I think I'm going to take it down to Mum so see if she would like it in her room .........bet she does cos she's always been my biggest fan, bless her!

There is an extra week to make an entry for this particular challenge because next week Leandra and the team are revealing all the new stamps and stuff being released.  The sneak peeks already have me drooling so I can't wait to see and it might give me chance to make a second entry to the challenge!

Righty Ho!  Off to get my 'proper' day underway.  Hope you all have a good one and manage to stay warm and cosy.  See you soon!

Lesley  Xx

Friday, 16 January 2015

The new PaperArtsy Challenge to kick off 2015!

Hi Everyone,

I can't believe it's already two weeks since we saw in the New Year and very belatedly I would like to wish everyone a very Happy and Healthy 2015.

The year has started with mixed blessings here as although I could wish that my Mum had gone to her own home fit and well from hospital, unfortunately that is never going to be the case and I am relieved that she has not been sent home to spend many hours alone and unable to move about or not safely at least.  Last week she went into a nursing home and so far seems relaxed and happy especially as she now has her own TV to watch, lol!  I am deciding which of her bits and pieces can go to make her room look as homely as possible and at the same time rescuing lots of lovely old photos before her bungalow is cleared.  It's time consuming but I'm really chuffed to have managed an entry for the first 'new style' PaperArtsy Blog Challenge of 2015!

The format has changed and I really like how it's shaping up so far so if you haven't seen it up to press do stop by and check it out HERE.  There is to be a theme every 2 weeks and the first one is 'Fragile Papers' which Leandra introduced with a lovely post and video to kick start us all.  I can't honestly say I have taken inspiration from any single designer on the blog over the past 2 weeks other than Leandra's talking about fragile papers but Aneke's lovely project using tissue & napkins would have been if I had seen it before I made my project, lol!  There have been some fabulous, exciting posts so far with tons of inspiration and sneak peeks at gorgeous new PaperArtsy stamps coming out in February......... I need to get saving ;D!

Ok, on to my project!  It's a little wooden box which I picked up for 50p in the local charity shop and I decided to turn it into a sort of double shadow box.  So far I have only done the outside (ran out of time) but I will finish it so watch this space, lol!  I have quite a big collection of paper napkins which I have never yet used on any project so when Leandra announced the theme for the challenge I knew immediately that I wanted to use napkins and tissue.  I forgot to take pics of some stages but there are still lots of photos so here goes.

I used the JoFY Limited Edition 2 Fresco Finish paints with Chalk covering the whole of the box inside and out. 

The napkin I wanted to use has beautiful oriental imagery and reminded me of willow pattern plates but in cherry red and white instead of white and blue. 

I almost dry brushed  roughly over with Turquoise FF.  I then tinted some Grunge Paste with the Turquoise FF and applied it in random areas through a stencil (forgot to take a pic).  When it was dry I highlighted with White Fire Treasure Gold (my favourite and 'go to' TG)

Above I adhered some of the top layer and the middle layer of the napkin onto Clearly for Art Whiteout before using PaperArtsy Grungy Flower die to cut out them out.  I also cut some in Tim Holtz Kraft Glassine which I stamped in gold with a Chinese script stamp I've had for years.  The lovely Lucy worked with some plastic and tissue to make flowers for her fragile papers project HERE.  I highlighted  the edges with a beautiful blue limited edition Treasure Gold.

Here I adhered the paler middle napkin layer to some toning tissue but the tissue colour showed through & obliterated the design, lol! Never mind I still liked the result and it made quite a strong material to use for die cutting lots of cherry blossoms.

I used the Kraft Glassine to die cut the branches and then set about playing with the positioning and sticking all the flowers on, 

Here you can see the TG highlights and I hope, the pretty little bird!

I also gave some Chinese coins the TG treatment to use in the flower centres.

I randomly painted watered down Cherry Red and Turquoise FF onto Cream Waxed Tissue from PaperArtsy and then stamped a border from a Lynne Perrella stamp set LPC021 using gold ink.  I tore it into strips and adhered it to the 'spine', top and bottom edges of the box.

So that's the finished outside.  I wonder what to do with the inside ;D!

If you stuck with me through that lot, thanks very much and you now deserve a cup, mug or glass of your favourite beverage.  I'm off for a mug of coffee & to do my linkup to the PaperArtsy Challenge.  See you again soon I hope.

Lesley  Xx

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

A Final Piece of Christmas!

Hello everyone,

Finally ....... a blog post!!!

First of all I hope you have all had a wonderful Christmas.  Mine has had some lovely bright spots when we managed to spend time with our children & grandchildren, courtesy of our Son and Yvonne, his lovely partner, who hosted us all for a fab Christmas Day dinner and then again on Boxing Day.  Yvonne's family were also there so it was a really lovely time.  We made it home on Boxing Day evening by the skin of our teeth because of the really heavy snowfall we had .  Half an hour later leaving and we would not have got through ........ which would not have been good for our little mutt who we'd left at home!

I am still spending a lot of time visiting my poor Mum who is still in hospital after her fall on the 4th November & broken hip but hopefully that situation will change in the next few weeks.

Anyway, this post has a dual purpose.  First of all to point you in the direction of the Craft Stamping Quartet blog I share with my buddies and below is a little peek at the project I just posted over there.  I'm quite proud of it so I hope you have time to pop over and have a look.

And for my final piece of  Christmas I have a few quick photos of some of the Christmas card designs I managed to make.

This last one I made to give to the staff (with a little gift) who have been looking after Mum for the past 7 weeks or so.  It was a bit hard to photograph as it's pearlescent card in ivory & pale gray.

Well tomorrow sees the last day of 2014 and I for one am not sorry to see it go.  I hope that 2015 is a better year for us all and I wish you all much health and happiness for the coming year.  Thank you all for your visits and comments throughout the past year.  They are very much appreciated especially when I have been such a bad blogger.  I live in hope of a much more productive year to come, lol!

Lots of love and hugs to you all
Lesley  Xx

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Phew ......I do like cutting it fine!

Hi Everyone,

I have a quick share today which is an entry I've managed to make for the Chocolate Baroque monthly blog challenge.   As most of my friends know we're having a particularly tough time of it in this neck of the woods because two weeks ago today my Mum had her second fall in 2 days and unfortunately broke her right hip so most of my time has been spent at the hospital since then as the Alzheimers is making Mum's care particularly difficult and the hospital do not have the staff to give her 24/7 attendance.  When I've managed to stay awake after late meal times every evening I've been so glad to retreat to my craftroom but it's been a bit heavy going so I'm really pleased I managed to complete this card almost at the last minute (challenge closes tonight).

I'm not going to give any 'how to' details today as I have the unenviable task of dropping in on a couple of nursing/care homes in preparation for doing battle with social services so here's my challenge entry.

It was early, raining and very dull when I took the photos so they're not very vibrant and the dusky mauve pearl contrast card looks grey in the pics but never mind.  I found this quite a difficult colour combo but am quite chuffed with the end result and the little bits of white highlighting on the baubles (and touches of white splatter on the inked base card which was intended, lol) just lifts it a bit.

I hope everyone has a more pleasant day lined up than me (visiting potential nursing homes & then Mum) and I just remembered it's mine and OH's 42nd Anniversary today .................. we both forgot until OH remembered late last night, lol!

Lesley  Xx

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Oh Boy, on my own this time!

Hello and welcome,

Thanks to you all for your visit by my blog especially if you've detoured via the fabulous PaperArtsy Blog.  For anyone that's come straight here, I was so chuffed to have the chance to share some Christmas cards, on the PaperArtsy Blog, that I created using the beautiful bauble stamps from Elizabeth Borer's stamps sets that I helped to launch at the end of August.  The main aim of my designs was to show people who are fairly new to stamping that it's relatively easy to create elegant cards with beautiful stamps and just a few other basic products.

Careful matting and layering with co-ordinating coloured cardstock featured on all three cards to create a frame to display the lovely baubles but there is only one card, as you can see, which uses the stamp as  traditional baubles.

Card #1  

 I stamped a 'flower' from the slim bauble by stamping in a circle and masking to create the illusion of petal layers.  I coloured the petals using Fibralo pens and then cut it out.  I also stamped, coloured and cut out a few individual baubles and after shaping them slightly with a bone folder I layered them over the flower with a little silicone glue.  

I often mock up my designs on scrap paper before committing them to cardstock and I'm really glad I did in this case as firstly I decided that my original was a bit too much (see below) and I also didn't like it centred on the card so the final piece was cut out and attached to one side as you can see and I trimmed some of the petals to fit to the corner.


I finished the card off with a metal flower and threaded narrow ribbon through a button and tied a dinky bow for the centre.  The sentiment is an Inkylicious stamp from my stash as I don't yet have any PaperArtsy Christmas sentiments.

Card #2

For this card I created a different style of flower using another of the bauble stamps.  This time I stamped in Versamark and embossed with a metallic blue embossing powder before colouring with my Fibralo pens and cutting each petal out.

To form the flowers I stuck a hole reinforcer to a punched circle of card (this made it easy to keep the petals balanced equally and also gave just a little dimension) and then arranged the 'petals' as shown below.

I created a co-ordinating card matt by scribbling the same colour Fibralos as I used on the bauble onto my craft mat, spritzing with water and then loading this onto a paintbrush to flick onto a sheet of card.  I dried each colour with a heat gun before applying the next one.

I used the same splattered card to die cut the snowflake rosettes and punch out some separate snowflakes and then dabbed them all with 'dries clear' glue before dipping into clear glitter.

Card #3

For my final card I love the shape of this bauble so wanted to use it in the traditional manner which meant I needed something to hang my baubles from.  I stamped out the beautiful art deco style mistletoe border twice and after colouring I cut them out and applied them to the card with 3D foam.  This time the sentiment is a Chocolate Baroque stamp.

 The baubles were shaped slightly from the back with the acrylic wire working tool you can see in the photo.  I've hardly done any wire work but that tool is so handy to have in my kit, lol!  I attached the baubles to the card with silicone glue to keep some dimension.

I created another layer of card to matt again scribbling Fibralos onto my craft matt and spritzing with water but this time I picked it up with a piece of natural sponge and dabbed it onto the card.  This is such a simple technique but very effective.

The photo below shows this layer perfectly and also the dimension to the border and  baubles.  Oh, nearly forgot to mention I put little dots of the Ranger white enamel stuff on the mistletoe berries and dots of white Posca pen on the baubles...... love my white Posca pen, thanks for telling me about them Sam ;-)!

So now I have three beautiful cards to kick off my Christmas card making this year ....... wow, that's early for  me so something else I have to thank Darcy and Leandra for, lol!  I hope you'll agree they do look rather elegant ;D!

Thanks so much Darcy and Leandra for letting me loose on the blog tonight and once again I hope I showed these lovely stamps off as they deserve.  I need to crack on with more Christmas cards now before I lose momentum, lol!

Thanks for your visit folks and if you haven't already been by the PaperArtsy blog do hop over as there's lot more fabulous inspiration as well as my cards.   See you again soon!

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Quick Post? Me???

Morning Everyone and thanks for stopping by.

I had a lovely day on Sunday at the StampMagic Show held at Doncaster Dome.  Lots of fab exhibitors including my favourite, PaperArtsy, but also it's the perfect opportunity to meet up with quite a few of my Twitter and Facebook friends and have a good catch up.  I'm useless as taking photos on these occasions but if you would like to see some nice ones hop over to my friend Sam's blog where she posted some smashing ones.

And ...... speaking of Sam, yesterday was her birthday so I can now share the card I made for her.  I had planned on making something painty and inky last week but life threw a bit of a curve ball and it was Saturday evening before I got chance to make her card, hence it ended up in CAS style. 

I diecut two of the Tim Holtz/Sizzix leaf sprays from different shades of green card (green is Sam's fave colour so she ended up with lots of green cards from her crafting friends, lol) stamping a PaperArtsy script over the top layer.  I then layered one over the other before adding to the card.  I matted and layered onto the base card and stamped the sentiment which is a lovely Chocololate Baroque stamp.

When I'd finished I thought the top layer didn't have enough definition so I used a toning green pencil to carefully add a fine outline all the way round.  It's hardly visible but definitely had the desired effect I think and created more dimension.

At StampMagic Darcy and Emma were giving fab demos on the PaperArtsy stand and Darcy showed us how to make a sheet of copy paper with Fresco Finish paints and PaperArtsy stamps into the gorgeous bow you see above, which she then very kindly gave to me along with the strip left over.  So, when I got home I created the little card and gift tag using the scrap piece.  I used Darcy's set shown on her blog as inspiration and she is going to be making a little video which I assume will be added to the other brilliant PaperArtsy videos, showing how to make the bow.  I'm really glad about that as I want to make some myself and can't remember the measurements for cutting the strips, lol!

That's my blog post for today and I now need to get some chores underway.  I have Grandaughter Alexa coming for TWO (she keeps stressing the two to make sure she's not short changed, lol) sleepovers at the beginning of next week and then Izzy and Charlie for two nights at the end of the week.  There definitely wont be any blogging next week that's for sure, lol!

Till next time..............

Lesley  Xx

Monday, 13 October 2014

'Morning Monday ........ here's a bit of cheer!

Hi Everyone,

I really, really hope not many of you have the horrible weather we have here this morning but I think if you're in the UK we're all in the same boat!  It's dark, rainy and very blowy .... roll on the weekend when we are supposed to have a mini heatwave!  At this time of the year that won't be mega hot so I will be able to enjoy it if it happens, lol!  Anyway, I have a quick tag to share today which I hope adds a bit of cheerfulness to your day.

Regular visitors may remember at the end of August I spent a lovely weekend with my PAtwit buddies and the equally lovely Lin Brown where she taught us many things and we got the chance to play with lots of stuff new to us.  On the Sunday we all made lots of tags using different products and techniques but as usual I didn't finish any of mine at that time.  Having a bit of a tidy of my workdesk this weekend I found the pile of tags which I'd covered up to protect them from the lethal sunlight in my craftroom (aka conservatory) and this is the first one I decided to finish off because it made me smile and sort of summed up the way the weekend made me feel. 

Lin's friend Karen shared the workshops with us and kindly brought in her full set of Spectrum Noir pencils for us to have a try with so I'd stamped some PaperArtsy images from the latest smashing Darcy sets (hoping to buy these next Sunday ;D) and started the colouring but didn't finish it.  I did like the Spectrum Noir but can't really say I saw any difference between them and my Derwent Coloursoft.  I would love a full range of pencils though but no idea which to choose ...... I see lots of people singing the praises of Polychromos (spelling?) and Prisma.  If anyone has a preference or can tell me the difference I'd love to hear what you think.

Anyway, I'm waffling again, lol!  I used my Coloursoft pencils and Derwent blender pencil to complete the colouring on my tag and added a bit of background stamping using a couple of my JoFY sets from PaperArtsy.  I stamped out the words from some cheap little peg alpha stamps I bought in the supermarket years ago, doodled round them and cut them out to complete the tag together with a bit of ribbon and some paper covered wire.  The wire is my latest Eureka! buy as I've wanted some of it for ages but could only find it online until last week when I visited a local wholesalers and found a big roll of it in their floristry section.  It will cerainly last my lifetime I think, lol!

I hope my tag cheers up your Monday morning.  See you again soon.  Oooh yes, nearly forgot it's the StampMagic show at Doncaster Dome next Sunday........can't wait!

Lesley  Xx