Sunday, 30 March 2014

Black Tulips.............PaperArtsy Challenge with inspiration from Jo Myhill.

Good Morning and Happy Mother's Day to Mums who are dropping by today........

.................and a special Happy Mother's Day to my own Mum (who I'm cooking dinner for today poor thing, lol), to my beautiful daughter Jenna who is doing a fab job as Mum to Izzy and Charlie and last but by no means least to my lovely DIL, Yvonne who is the best Stepmum ever I could wish on my granddaughter Alexa.

Now on to my creation for the PaperArtsy Blog Challenge for this week.  There were three designers who inspired me this week, Brenda Brown's fab tag, Deborah Wainwright's gorgeous Spring wreath and Jo Myhill's lovely tulips in a rusted planter.  Sadly, I only had time for one (because I fell asleep after tea last night ;D) and I chose the fun project by Jo Myhill because it involved rusting powder!  I bought some of this powder from PaperArtsy many moons ago and have never had the courage to try it so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity.  As usual I won't give the method details as Jo does that better than me over on the PA Blog and you can see her post HERE but there are quite a few pics.

I used a ring pull can for my planter & here it's just waiting for the rusting, oooer!

I got rather messy and very stinky with vinegar and the rusting powder and was rather disappointed with my results after about an hour of messing.

However, I tootled off for the supermarket shop and when I came back it had rusted rather nicely ;D! I wish it had run down the can more though like Jo's did but not bad for a first.

Now for a few pics of the tulips!

I took this closeup indoors to try and show the hints of Treasure Gold colours, Onyxite and Royal Amethyst.

And here's the whole thing.  Quite effective I think!

Off to do my link up to the PA Blog challenge now and then crack on with dinner preparations.  I hope you all have a lovely Sunday however you are spending it today.

Thanks for visiting and until next time .............

Lesley  Xx

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

How long did it take??????

Hi Everyone,

It's a gorgeous sunny morning here in north Notts but still with a nippy wind......... much better than all that blooming rain and hail we had at the weekend though so something to smile about!

I got no crafting time at all last week for various reasons, one of them being a certain little lady's 6th Birthday!

This was the Pink Pizza Party she asked for hence Daddy's hat and braces! She asked her friends to wear pink (even I had to rake through my wardrobe and find an old pink top :-( ) or purple was allowed at a push ;D.  She definitely doesn't take after her Mamma ....... Barbie Pink is my least favourite colour, lol!

The day after Alexa's birthday is her Daddy's so we had a lovely get together at the weekend.  It was extra special because Jenna (sister) managed to rearrange her weekend and turned up as a surprise and also one of Jamie's best friends from his Uni days made the trip for the weekend and they haven't managed a get together for over 3 years. His partner, Yvonne's family also made the trip from Chester to add to the pleasure.  Yvonne put in such a lot of work both for Alexa's birthday and Jamie's so bless you Yvonne from me, Mwah!

And now back to the crafting........

The reason for my post title is that nearly 4 years ago I had a fab weekend at a retreat organised by Glenda Waterworth of Chocolate Baroque (formerly Elusive Images).  My friends and I had a smashing time and there were some really good workshops but, me being me......slow, I only managed to complete one project which was a lovely vintage style necklace/pendant (a Lynn Robinson class) which I gave to Jenna.  When I had a craftroom clearout a few weeks ago I found the unfinished projects (along with a few others) and last night I finally got to complete one of them, Whoohoo!!!!!

One of the mirrors from 'you know where' painted, inked, crackled and stamped to within an inch of it's life, lol! (er, excuse the reflection of my arm ;D)

I think the paints we used were Golden products and I do remember the patches of crackle which you can barely find as it's so fine was Ranger's Distress Crackle Paint.

All the stamps were from the fabulous Chocolate Baroque catalogue.  At that time they were under the Elusive Images banner but I'm pretty sure they are all available under the CB name now.  As the workshop came to an end the only thing I hadn't done was decide what embellishment, if any, I needed to complete the mirror and it's taken me nearly four years to get there, Ha! Ha!

In the intervening years I have picked up so many more techniques and one I've long wanted to have a go at is the fabulous Hels Sheridan's UTEE flowers using my Melt Pot so last night this is what I made.  The rose in the centre of the flower is one from the very first batch of paper roses I had a go at many moons ago.  The flower behind it is cut with the Sizzix Gulian Spirale die and I have to admit I'm really not too keen on this die.  It's the usual excellent quality Sizzix product but I find it very hard to shape.  I'd be interested to hear if anyone else has any tips for using it.

The leaves are a fab size and another Sizzix die called Arbor.

I got a lovely sense of satisfaction finally completing this project and it was interesting to note how another four years experience has changed what I would do with it now.  The main thing would be much less stamping!  Talk about overkill, lol!  The stamps are all beautiful individually but too much together in this way.

I really enjoyed making the a la Hels Sheridan flower and my OH was very impressed.  I even used another of my first paper roses and a couple of leaves left from my Green Lady project to make a brooch.

 Sorry for the loooooong post and thank you if you managed to stick with it to the end, lol!

I hope to get more time to play again this week so see you again soon.  Till then ............

Lesley  Xx

Sunday, 16 March 2014

The Green Lady - PaperArtsy Blog Challenge with inspiration from Julie Ann Lee.

Happy Sunny Sunday Everyone!

............... or I hope it's as sunny for you lovely kind visitors as it is here this morning, so sunny it made taking photos of my entry for this week's PaperArtsy Blog Challenge impossible to take without some shadows especially at 8:00 am with the sun just peeking over the garage, lol!  Never mind, I'll put up with ;D!

Anyway, this week over on the fabulous PaperArtsy Blog it was my Twitter friend (hope to meet her at Ally Pally next month :D), Julie Ann's turn to be main guest designer once again and as always her project over the 3 days was full of fun and imagination not to mention wonderful inspiration.  A visit to her own blog is always fascinating not only for her lovely designs but I love the stories she often weaves into her posts.  Her 3 mini canvasses (HERE) this time were based around The Green Man and I have to say I love the garden ornaments you often see in garden centres of this character.  Now, I didn't have any of the ceramic masks to use for the face (really wanted to use a face and not a substitute flower or something) nor anything that looked like a suitable male face so I decided to use a stamp from a set of faces which I've had for years.  I have no idea whose the set of stamps is and I think probably they are nolonger available but one of them suited my purpose and became THE GREEN LADY!

As I said, there's lots of shadow!

Here's my canvas (somewhat larger than those Julie Ann used) and my pieces of Fresco treated card. I later added quite a bit of watered down Honey Dew to tone it down a bit but the effect I wanted was dappled sunlight through a thick canopy of trees. 

A few pics were taken very late at night so the colour is a bit lost here.  I didn't have a suitable stamp for the background so I decided to apply Fresco paint through a woodgrain mask and then heat embossed with clear EP.

The stamping  was done with Archival ink and clear embossed.

On the top edge of the canvas I applied Fresco through my new Lin Brown stencil (from PaperArtsy) and clear embossed as before.

I didn't have the lovely leaf stamps from PaperArtsy (must rectify that one) that Julie Ann used so I used some others from my stash, stamped onto my card and cut them all out, shaped them and clear embossed about half.  As it was the early hours of this morning by this time I didn't have time to get them cold enough to crack but I still liked the contrast between shiny and matt surfaces.

To save time I didn't do the shrink plastic flowers either (although I do love Shrink) but die cut flowers from some sprayed background card I had in my stash ......... just look at that fab shimmer ............. and a butterfly.  I also cut a second layer for the flowers from some gorgeous burnished metal mesh I bought when out for lunch with my buddy, Jo, last week and layered them with a brad before adding them to the side. I also added a few tendrils of rusty wire.

I hope you like my female alternative to Julie Ann's wonderful Green Man.  I had such a lot of fun with this once I got going.

Well I'd better get my skates on as we have visitors calling in later and first I have to do a supermarket shop (groan!!!).  I hope you all have a lovely Sunday followed by a pleasant week.  Until next time ............

Lesley  Xx

Sunday, 9 March 2014

PaperArtsy Blog Challenge - Joanne Wardle inspiration.

Hi Everyone,

I've managed to make an entry for the PaperArtsy Blog Challenge again this the last minute as  usual, lol!  At least I have a good excuse this time though as I've been having a clear out of stash I've sort of outgrown.  It makes me cringe with guilt looking at the pile of stuff I'm finally turfing out of my craft cupboards but I know I will never use it so out it's going, some to the charity shop and lots to my little grandson's childminder where I'm sure it will give lots of pleasure although it does seem sacrilege to cut up all that pearlescent card........enough card blanks to stock a shop, lol!  It's taken me several days  to go through everything and I think my next job should be doing the same with my wardrobes and clearing out the stuff I've 'outgrown' in there too.  I'm just kidding myself if I think I'll ever fit in quite a lot quite a lot of that again, lol!

Anyway, on to my challenge make.  One of the designers this week was Joanne Wardle and I always find her deceptively simple looking cards impressive and not so simple to actually create.  This week's example, which you can find HERE, was no exception and I had to improvise a bit because I didn't have the relevant PaperArtsy stamps or indeed anything like some of them.

In fact, the only suitable PaperArtsy stamps I had was a different Lin Brown flower from ELB01 and I decided to use a different word stamp from the same set, HPXT03, that Joanne used.

For the slightly splattered circles in the background I used a circular foam blender to apply the paint circles and then spritzed with water to make them 'fuzz' round the edges.  I don't have the PA splatter stamp either but found a wood backed one (no name on it) that has survived my stamp cull (I've found new homes for a lot of my wood backed stamps).  The stitch effect line is from a clear set I've had for years and the rings were made with a bottle top.  What I did have though is the fabulous set of pretty JoFY Fresco Finish paints. I think I need to get another set of these limited edition paints while the going is good because I can't stop using them, lol!

That's it from me for today. Here's wishing you all a sunny Sunday with a pleasant week to follow,  See you again soon.

Lesley  Xx

Sunday, 23 February 2014

PaperArtsy Blog Challenge ... Jo Firth-Young Inspiration

Hello Everyone,

Blimey, my good intentions soon fizzled out didn't they! It's nearly a month since my last post (lol, sounds like Bloggers Anonymous) but to be fair to myself, family life has been a bit hectic again these past few weeks with emergency surgery for one of my granddaughters (scary) and a few problems to sort out for Mum. On top of that I've not been firing on all cylinders myself but enough of that, hopefully we'll have a little bit of calm now.

Anyway, all week we have been wowed with more wonderful projects from the PaperArtsy DT several of which I would love to have had a go at but as I had lovely little visitors nearly all week there was no time.  However, on Friday after everyone had gone home I found a little old spiral bound notebook under the TV cupboard in my craftroom .........along with a million cobwebs......... mucky madam!  Jo Firth-Young had shared a project the previous evening HERE where she had decorated some of these little books so I thought finding mine was a sign to get my posterior in gear and MAKE SOMETHING!!!  For once I remembered to take photos as I went along but some were taken by artificial light (last night) or early this morning and it's very dull here again today so I apologise if the quality is not brilliant.

This is the book I found and you can tell at one stage it had been left in the sun as the front and back are totally different colours, lol!

Because of the indented gold lettering I switched the covers round so that it would be on the back cover if it still showed.  I more or less did exactly what Jo did and used the same colours too as it was the first opportunity I've had to get messy with my fab new set of Jo's Limited Edition Fresco paints for PaperArtsy. (The colours are delicious!)

I don't have any of Jo's new stencils.....yet!  Whoohoo, can't wait for Ally Pally in April but choosing which PaperArtsy goodies to buy will be so difficult as I want nearly all the new products.  Anyway, I used a Wendy Vecchi stencil from my collection instead.

I don't have any of Jo's new stamps yet either so used ones I already have in my collection

And here is are the finished covers.  I was positive I had some PaperArtsy Matte Glaze (I have all the others) but can't find it anywhere so I had to go with Studio Matte Multi Medium which I really don't like. For a start it is not 'matte' and it leaves very visible brush strokes.  I also found it has taken some of the Frescos off the covers where the gold lettering is underneath. If you look at all the previous pics the Frescos have covered the lettering beautifully but if you click to enlarge the one below you will be able to see the lettering has been exposed again in the top left corner :-(

Oh well, a blind man would be glad to see it (as they say) and it is on the back (and upside down, lol) as for once I considered this possibility in advance!

That's it from me for today and I hope it's not another month before I'm back with my next post, lol!  Enjoy what is left of your weekend folks and for now .......

Lesley  Xx

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Whoohoo, and another one!

Hello everyone,

Well, I'm back with my second card for this year.  That's two in 8 days ;D!!!  I hope I can keep it up.

Again, I'm using stamps from Chocolate Baroque which I've had for quite a while but the main image I've never had time to use till now.  I chose these stamps particularly because I know that Emma, for who this card was made, loves CB stamp designs.  She also loves pink but I'm afraid I don't so I hope she forgives me, lol!

The main image is from A5 set Butterfly Flourish and the gorgeous swirl in the corner is from A4 set Butterfly Dreams.  The sentiment is also a CB stamp. (EDIT: After being asked the question I just checked up on the sentiment stamp and it's from an old Elusive Images (now Chocolate Baroque) set and is nolonger available :-( .  It's a shame 'cos there's some lovely sentiments and fonts on the A5 set). 

I stamped the main image onto white card with Archival black ink, coloured the butterflies with Derwent Coloursoft pencils and lightly inked the edges of the card with Versamagic Ink.  I cut a mat allowing a very narrow border to which I applied Flitter Glu (from Indigo Blu) and gilding flakes and then mounted the main image with double sided tape.

The background was created by blending several colours of Versamagic chalk ink and then I did random stencilling using The Crafters Workshop Mini Reverse Chicken Wire and Mini Art is.  I also used a small Heidi Swapp individual butterfly mask here and there but you can't really see that in the photos.  I then stamped the beautiful flourish using the Flitter Glu and then applied the gilding flakes.

I ghost stamped the sentiment first Versamagic Ink and then with Archival black ink.

The lovely leafy spray is a Tim Holtz/Sizzix die cut which was kindly sent to me by my Twitter buddy Sam.   Emma and Sam are really good friends themselves so I thought it was nice to be able to use Sam's die cut on this card and she had cut the spray from card which she had obviously coloured herself with what looked like spray inks.  It was so pretty and shimmery that I based the colours I used around it.  I layered up a paper flower which I coloured with inks and a touch of Sapphire Treasure Gold, a lovely metal flower which I also gave the TG treatment to in Sapphire and also Royal Amethyst then finished off with a little silk flower and pearl brad.

The background was matted onto coordinating card before mounting onto the base card and the main image was mounted on foam pads to give a little dimension.

I really enjoyed making this card and was pleased with the result.  Hope Emma likes it too.  It's odd how out of practice I am at making cards not having made many over the past couple of years.  Mustn't let that happen again as I love sending/giving handmade ones.

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

Lesley  Xx

Monday, 27 January 2014

First Birthday Card for this year.

Happy Monday All,

I hope this Monday is a good one for you.  It's rather cold here but nothing for us to complain about in this part of the Midlands.

Last week saw the birthday of Lin, one my lovely bunch of Twitter friends and it just happened to be the first birthday I had on my calendar for this year (I now have another that comes before it ready for next year ;D).  For the card I made her I used stamps from my Chocolate Baroque collection.

The main image is from Punky Romance and the butterfly/moth and the gears in the background on the base card are from Steampunk Butterfly.  The 'BE HAPPY' is from the Words of Wisdom A6 plate.  

The butterfly/moth (?) is stamped in Archival ink, coloured with Distress Ink, cut out and then embossed with clear EP before attaching by gluing just the body. The panel down the left side of the card is acetate coloured with alcohol inks and run through a cogs & gears embossing folder.  

The centre panel was stamped onto separate card (including the sentiment) with black Archival ink, coloured with Distress Ink then torn down either side before lightly inking with the same DI and attaching to the base card.

The large flower on the main image stamp does have a clock in the centre but I embellished it with a cute little clock charm to give a little more dimension.  I got the charm from a lovely bead shop in Harrogate where my Daughter lives, simply called BEAD ...... need another visit I think, lol!

That's it for today but I have another Birthday Girl in my diary for later in the week so hopefully if the postal service plays nicely again I will be able to blog her card by the weekend.  Until then .............

Lesley  Xx