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Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Sea Themed card

I wasn't sure what to do for the recipient of this card, as I am not that sure of his hobbies, then I remembered he used to sail - so I used one of my sea-themed digikits, and put into practise one of the hints that Michelle was demonstrating on Create and Craft, by using one of the "menus" on the programme that I hadn't discovered!
I imported the background, and then the anchor, and then played about with the effects in the little drop-down menu just to the right of the transparency slider - which before you click on the menu says "normal".  I played about to see what effect I got and then clicked stamp mode and created the pale anchors on the background.   I can see I shall be using the effects in this mini menu quite often.
As you can see the anchor was used again as an embelishment, but for this I used the normal styles menu and converted it to "metal".  Amazing to think that the anchor on the background and the one on bottom left were one and the same when they started!
Honestly I do think CAP2 is the best thing since sliced bread, and I am still learning what you can do!

Silver and Blue

I finally got around to making a necklace and some earrings to go with the bracelet (centre) that I made a few weeks ago.
I used the larger Beader's Companion blue cat's eye beads for the necklace, and the smaller ones for the earrings.  When Sarah was demonstrating the snowflake beads, she made some barrel shapes with smaller beads each end of the clusters - so I decided to do this for the necklace, so a tad different from the bracelet, but I had made that before she demo'ed on Create and Craft!   I am tempted to do a variation to match the bracelet to see which I prefer.
I do love the effect of the snowflake beads, and shall be making some other colour variations.  I fancy pearls with them next time!

Monday, 29 July 2013

Card for a Train Lover

Decoupaged card created with image from Just Inklined The Best of La Pashe cd.   Insert created in CAP2 using the same image.  

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Revamp and more Cloud Clay flowers

the tilting board - paint fusioned
Many moons - nay, years ago - I made myself a tilting icing block for my cake decorating.  This was when extension work was all the rage, and you need to tilt your cake away from you to pipe the base of the extension work, or do embroidery so that it layed on the cake; and toward you for piping the fine pipe lines.
It was made from some off cuts of wood I bought at the local handiman store, some strips of square wood, and a length of piano hinge.  It has two pieces of wood that "live" inside the board and give me the choice of two heights.
For years it has remained unpainted (always intended to do it but never got around to it).   When I didn't do quite so much cake decorating and started using the computer more, it became a slope for my keyboard!  Having trained as a touch typist on the old manual computers originally, I wanted the keyboard to slope.  Now that I use the laptop most of the time, I have got used to typing "flat", but when using the main computer, I still prefer to have the keyboard at a slope - much less strain on the wrists!
At last I have got around to painting it.  Black gesso as a base, and then fusioned using Sheena Douglass Wild Rose stamp and Rose stamp, with some freehand leaves.  There was also a little bit of painted decoration on the ledge, but when I gilded it most of it was obliterated, but you can just make out some little roses.
Tilted board with large prop, and smaller prop also shown
I have at last got a new supply of Cloud Clay (from the Craft Barn).  It is like gold dust and the Craft Barn is the only place I know stocks it, and have waited patiently for it to come back into stock!   I have tried using stamps with other light air dry clays, (i.e. Fimo - which is great for modelling, but just doesn't work in the way I wanted to used it.)

small canvas with hibiscus blossoms and leaves and a butterfly using cloud clay
The advantage of the cloud clay is that you can roll it out, stamp into it, and then immediately cut the stamp out from the clay, and shape it as you want before leaving it to dry for a short while.  The recommended time is about 12 - 24 hours, but with the current hot weather, it is dry enough to paint in a couple of hours!
The flowers and leaves were made with the last of my white clay (which was beginning to get a bit "past it" as it was a couple of years old, and the butterfly was made trying out the new black cloud clay that I bought when I bought my replenished supply of white.  
Not quite so please with this as my previous attempt.  It was an experiment using paint fusion stamps, and attempting to use the paint fusion technique on them, that didn't quite work as I wanted to, but you have to try to see if it will work don't you?   I think I shall go back to using Sheena's fantasy flower stamps for this technique.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Ruby Wedding Cake

Rich fruit cake with sugrpaste and sugar roses and leaves
I took advantage of the weather today (as it was quite fresh and a lot less humid) to finish this cake for my sister-in-law and her husband for next week.  Because of the uncertainty of being able to do anything too elaborate in the recent hot weather, I kept it fairly simple.  (Apologies for the photo - took it under the shade of the umbrella, but still got my shadow across the cake - oops!)
Hope she likes it, I am a bit out of practise these days!
Am hoping the weather stays reasonable next week, as it is also her daughter's Silver Wedding on the same day, and I want to make and ice a surprise sponge cake for her if I can, but being sponge it will have to be a last minute thing.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Quickie Man's Card

Ran out of time to produce the zentangled card I wanted to do for my husband's birthday, (mainly due to taking advantage of the slightly cooler weather to do some baking and to make some sugar roses for an upcoming anniversary cake for my sister-in-law, so this was produced rather quickly in CAP2 using the Cheer's digit kit.
Used one of the layouts and altered it slightly.  However, did decoupage the bottles and found time to cut them out and add a bit of glossy accents to the age to give it even more dimension, which I left drying overnight ready to give card to him this morning!

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Sympathy Card


We all hate making them.  Created this one in CAP2 for the family of a friend who died suddenly a couple of weeks ago.  As it was her funeral today, I remembered that I hadn't put it on the blog.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Paint Fusioned Tray

I painted a couple of trays last year as Christmas presents, and decided that I would rather like one for myself.
I love the look of  black chinese lacquer, and wanted to try something similar.   I painted the tray with black gesso, and then having fallen in love with the effect of primary elements cinammon colour on black.  I overpainted it with some of that.  I then spray varnished it, before painting the roses on.    I used Sheena's Paint Fusion Rose stamps and leaves.
I had been playing with sponging effects, so decided to sponge white paint on the background.  White you say but it looks pink.  Well ....... although the background had been spray varnished, when I did the final top coat of varnish, the pigment from the cinammon was still leeching through, and as you can see as I brushed on the varnish it changed the colour of the white, and even tinted the leaves and roses.  However, this turned out to be a happy accident as I liked the finished result!   My husband wanted to know what material I had used, as that was his initial reaction to the background; and was amazed at how the flowers "pop" from the tray.   They certainly do look 3D on the tray in real life!
Naturally I had to incorporate a bit of my favourite gilding wax on the edges - using silver this time.

Another Button Box

My daughter liked the button box I made myself, and asked me to make her one.  Colour request was teal!
I made the colour by mixing together blue and green metallic paint.  I overstamped the lid with black stazon using one of Andy Skinner's texture stamps.  I then stamped the patchwork and and buttons onto card, painted them and glued them to the top.  I added a button, which I painted with the green metallic paint.
The base of the box was stamped using one of Sheena Douglass's daisy stamps, and paint fusioned.  I didn't cover the black of the stamp design completely so it give it a bit of a shadow.   Finally, the gold gilding wax came out for the edges.

A couple of other views:


Saturday, 13 July 2013

Crocheted Chirpy Bird

Crocheting - me? - you have got to be joking - but I couldn't resist this little fellow:

A crafting pal posted a link on Fb  to Kadi's blog with this little fellow on  http://kadi2tog.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/crochet-chirpy-bird-tutorial.html.   The blog then linked to a free down-loadable pattern on Ravelry, plus a very useful video on how to join stripes without a "stepping" in the colours.
Now those that know me well know that I don't "DO" knitting and crochet, but my youngest granddaughter has been a tad poorly this week, so I decided to have a go.   I am fairly pleased with the result, and in the process have learned not only how to do a "magic circle" to start off with, but also how to "join" stripes, and to increase and decrease - not bad considering my limit is granny squares normally!   He is by no means perfect, and I had a bit of a problem with the decreasing on the last two colours, so a bit of "creative" darning/embroidery ensued.  (Chatting to friends, they tell me this is quite common - phew - not just me then!).  I didn't have any safety eyes - so I crocheted some using the newly learned magic circle!  He is also supposed to have orange legs, but didn't have any orange wool, so used the gold that I used for the beak.
For once I actually relaxed and sat in the garden to make him, starting about midday and with a couple of breaks for visitors, meals and cuppas, I finished him the same evening - pretty good going for me!

Monday, 8 July 2013

Altered Art/Mixed Media ........

........  I think that is what the name for this is!  I call it mucking about!

I have spent the last couple of days making the most of the gorgeous sunshine and playing in the Den.

Sunday's Efforts:

I bought the Mask in the Works.  The granddaughter's saw it in the Den last week, and all wanted to paint it - so a trip to the shop was required to buy some more for when they come to play. 
Thankfully I got some more for them, so I was able to play with my one to give them an idea of what they could do.   Originally it was going to be painted black, but picked up my brown acrylic first and decided to go with that.  I hadn't realised my brush was dry when I started to paint - but I liked the effect so much I decided to continue.  I then applied some gilding wax around the edges and the eyes, and varnished it.
I painted a piece of card with acrylic to help stiffen it, and when dry stamped on the other side with my favourite stamps from Sheena Douglass.  Painting over the images with primary elements - in various shades, although basic colour was cinammon.  (Tip: go over the outlines when painting - gives a better finish when cutting them out afterwards.)  When dry these were cut out and adhered to the mask with some modelling paste, some gems added to the centres of the flowers, and a smidgen of gilding wax added to edges of flowers,  and pearl stickles applied over the eyes.
you can see all the flowers on this photo....

.... but this one is more realistic for the colour of the mask
My next project was starting an altered art book cover.

As you can see I used the same flower stamps for this - actually when I first stamped them I couldn't decide which colour I wanted for the mask - so having used the red ones - the remainder were relegated to the book cover - and influenced the colours on the background.

I coated the cover with thick masking paste mixed with black gesso.  I then used some Andy Skinner stamps to create the random effects on the masking paste - crackle finishes etc.  With a palette knife I scribed the initials into the masking paste.   With the hot weather it didn't take long for the paste to dry!

When dry I got a selection of metallic acryllics and brushed them randomly over the background, edged the book with silver gilding wax, and then added more onto the cover as well as some in two shades of gold.

Finally I used pearl stickles to fill in the initials, and attached the flowers with more modelling paste, and added pearl stickles to the centres.   Now to decide what to do on the back cover and the insides ......

altered art book cover

and by the way the temp in the den yesterday!

(sorry working backwards - story of my life!)
I have had this Indigoblu clock kit for some time, and finally got around to doing something with it.
I think the thing was jinxed, as I carefully cut all the numbers from the stamp sheet, and was very good and put them all back on the backing sheet - and blow me down the no. III has disappeared.  I ahve searched high and low and retraced all steps from when I cut them out - but zilch - even got OH searching the cut off bits of rubber which were all in a packet to make sure I wasn't looking through them.  It remains a mystery as I had been so methodical for once!   Hey ho! it will turn up when least expected! in the meantime I cut up the no. VIII and used that.
I crackled the background, cream over red - but you would never guess that - yes the crackle refused to play - thank goodness for Andy Skinner's crackle effect stamp to save the day.
I also used gilding flakes for the first time - which worked well, but didn't show up enough, so had to overstamp with stazon!  yes definitely jinxed this piece!
I stamped the flowers that came with the set and painted them, and then overstamped them again.
Not entirely happy with the result - but it was only a clock for the Den - and if it annoys me too much - I can either repaint it  or paint he back and start again!

The finished clock in the Den


Having got so frustrated with looking for the no. III for the clock, I occupied myself by creating myself a new button box.
I may add some painted designs to the bottom of the box, but in the meantime am pleased with the result so far.  aintd with blue acrylic and one of Andy Skinner's crackle stamps used on the top using Stazon.  I love the effect.  I then found some freebie stamps that came with a Magazine (think it was Homemade mag.)  Stamped the images and painted them with pale pearlescent acrylics.  I actually stamped the hexagonals to create the "quilt" shape so I could attach the item as one piece rather than individually.  The stamped items were stuck to the top, edges gilded and then varnished.  Finally I painted a button and addded it to the centre.
Button Box

Well I hope I haven't bored you with this long post -  I supposed I should have posted them all individually, but at least I hope I have shared some inspiration.

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Bloke Card


A quick card today for a man's birthday.   A case of Serif "Bloke" digikit to the rescue, as I suddenly realised I need to get it in the post today!  Thank goodness for CAP2!