Sunday, 16 September 2012

Christmas House Box

Ho Ho Ho.. Yes the September workshop was a festive theme, decorating a house shaped box.  Everyone managed to add their own style to their boxes and I am sure will add more treasure (if that is possible) later.  The snowflakes and wood items were painted with acrylic white paint, and pinned with decorated brass pins or glued to the box. Corner flourish and Tim Holtz Ornate Plate also painted. Edges and ledges lightly brushed with white using a dry brush technique to give a snowy finish over the Inca Gold
My Sample House Box

Pattern card used for sides and roof, glue dots added to the roof and White Flowersoft spooned over for the snow effect.  Viva Inka Gold in various colours available to cover the front and inside of each section.  Rub n Buff used on various items and around edges.  Tim Holtz Reindeer die cuts, pine cones, paper flowers, a vial full of snow (white flowersoft).  As you can probably see below, I used one of my Christmas reindeer earrings to hang from the lace (how cute with those goggle eyes), along with a lot of other baubles.  A little resin angel and wooden block from a Jenga type game to stamp the text on, edged with white paint. Oh and a domino with Snowman on (bottom left).
Close up of  house box
This is the empty room, with tables set up awaiting the ladies to arrive, before the reveal of the "secret" project.

Empty but prepared room
A very different view later in the day, everyone is concentrating on placing their items from the kits
Busy, Busy...
These are the boxes of embellishments ready to pass round along with the remainder of their kits and of course the box.
Part of the embellishment kits
On the photograph above you can see on bottom right, and below the brass pins I decorated.  I placed them onto baking paper over a foam pad, ready to sponge with white paint, some were also stamped with tiny snowflake image. A few of the brads were painted too.  I lightly brushed over the paint with Rub n Buff to highlight the texture of the paint.  There was of course a heap of other embellishments for everyone to choose from, including tiny snow covered trees to use within their boxes.

Decorated brass pins

I actually remembered the camera this time, so happy that I could snap all the houses as they neared completion.  Unfortunately I did not manage to photograph Pamela and Julies, if they send a photograph I shall add it to these amazing festive house boxes.

Victoria (work in progress)
Margaret B and Tanya

As this was a secret project and to show the sample box off at it's best, I placed it on a small table with the little light switched on within a cupboard used to store all the tables.  I left the room light off and opened the doors to reveal the project for the day.  Hee Hee I wish I could have had my camera to take a shot of the surprise expressions. JOY.  Here is a photograph (sorry for blurry image taken in semi darkness to show the glow) taken of the little battery night light, which we encased with decorated vellum, border punch used along the top edge and braiding along the bottom.

night light within house box

That is it, thanks to everyone who made it to this workshop, it was a smashing day, in fact the best ever.


Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Paper Mache Book Box

Decorating a paper mache book box became the project for August.  Black paint used to paint the box (I know black paint again, but read on) and dried thoroughly.  This was then transformed with a technique I discovered by accident.  It might not be new of course, but it was to me.

My sample box

Another Sample on fabric using transfer artist paper method

Both the above images are taken from Lynne Perrella design stamps available from PaperArtsy.

Using felt on an applicator, 2 – 3 colours of Alcohol ink (generous squeeze) then a line of Pearl Mixative over the top of the inks.  This was then pounced over the black paint, it takes a few minutes to dry and show the lovely pearl along with the ink colours used.  Normally you would not see the inks on black paint, but the pearl brings them to surface.  This also works on black or any dark card. 


I was lucky enough to spend the weekend at The Craft Barn Extravaganza  and the end of June (meeting up with forum friends and organized by Sara from Cardmaking Paradise website) for details of the forum see here    Two of these ideas I managed to use to embellish the book box.

Elle and Liz

First we used TAP a Transfer Artist Paper demonstrated by Jean Hardy of Crafty Individuals, wonderful stuff, and so easy to use, which I loved.  You could print an image using an Ink Jet printer then transfer.  But for this project an image was stamped onto TAP colour added with copic pens.  Placed face down onto cotton cloth and ironed to transfer. Further colour can be added using metallic gel pens.  This cloth was then attached to card using spray adhesive, then mounted onto black card stamped with text using Brilliance Pearlescent Ink Pad.


Christine and Angie

The next technique shared by the fab Liz Welch with her famous Friendly Plastic oozing technique that she has perfected.   Start with a small square of non stick craft sheet, aluminium foil placed over.  Cut the FP to suit the size of the cutter, in our case it is a small heart.  Heat the FP until shiny and flexible (careful not to overheat).  Place lace over, then cutter down, lift aluminium with FP and cutter etc. quickly and push from underneath using your fingers to ooz the FP through the lace.  Drop all into cold water to set, when cool remove cutter and trim round the shape.  Because the back is hollow silicone glue was ideal to adhere to box.

Close up of Friendly Plastic Oooozed through lace

Julie and ?


After we had cleared the tables away,  with a couple remaining, a few of us stayed on to make paper beads.  I had lengths of chain I cut to size and added toggles, beads and charms can be added later for a lightweight bracelet.  These so easy to make, I used a quilling tool and scrapbook paper.

Below are a few photographs of items I have made using the paper beads.  The fourth photo shows a super spinning earring holder (that my son found and bought for me) these show the various earrings I made to share with friends at the Extravaganza weekend.

Paper Bead Bracelet

Paper Bead Necklace and Earrings

Paper Beads stretch bracelts using odd beads between.

Earring Spinner with Paper Bead Earrings

Another great day spent with crafting friends.  Well that has brought all the workshops up todate, with September project coming up I shall have to get my thinking cap on, it is a good excuse to play with different ideas.  Until next time....

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Leather Suitcase - Tim Holtz die

The July workshop started off with assembling a leather covered suitcase album using Tim Holtz Valise die. I had been given a length of cream leather which I adhered to cardstock, embossed using an embossing folder then die cut.  Distress Ink used to colour the leather straps and RubnBuff for the corners. Brads and glue to add straps and handles.  As I had no time to prepare the sample I made mine along with everyone else on the day, not the usual thing for me at all and I am not that pleased with the result, must do better with the next one.  Still it was good to sit down now and then for a change.  Below is the finished sample. 
Leather covered suitcase album (sample)

I used different embossing folders for some of them, Annie made the one below, which I think is fabulous and I love the gold corners.


I had a bank of cut mixed colour cardstock ready to bind in the covers, using the bookrings.  Then everyone had a die cutting fest.  I provided all my dies and a couple of machines, others brought their own machines and dies and some swapped around and made as many die cuts as they wanted using some cardstock and chipboard provided and their own.

Next we used an embossing folder with a snowflake design with open area in the centre.  Ideal to use smaller images.  Perfect for small image stamps, copic pens to colour.  A touch of glitter on the embossed area as a finishing touch.  This is one of my favourite cards to make, simple and quick.

Cards using embossing folder

Oh forgot to mention the messy time we had with the shaving foam technique.  Paper plates were used with shaving foam, flatten the foam as much as possible and food colouring dripped and then swirled.  Card then laid face down and lifted, scraped and dried to give a colourful marble effect for use on backgrounds.  An old technique but one that some had not tried before.

Towards the end of the day I shared a technique I had discovered and it ended up with a request and a majority vote to do this at the next workshop.  Mmmmm get my thinking cap on and change around what I had previously prepared to do for that month.  I finally sorted out how we could use it and will give you details in the next post of how it came out at our August workshop.  More later....

Friday, 10 August 2012

Metal Embossed Tiles

This June workshop happened to also be on my birthday, how cool was that?  However lots of crafting to be done before indulging in a slice of chocolate cake!

My Sample Board

Everyone started with a black acrylic prepainted square MDF frame (oh dear I seem to be as stuck on black paint as I am on adhesive backed metal tape),  well I love them both as a starting point for so many techniques.  

When preparing the sample board, I used a embossing folder with just numbers on and by chance the section I used happened to incorporate my birthdate, how spooky is that? (6-6-48)

Back to details... nine 2” square foamcore tiles provided along with metal tape! Plus Art Emboss metal. 

Six of the tiles were covered with the ArtEmboss metal,  three of which were embossed using an embossing folder.  Three were stamped with an image using Stazon and hand embossed.  If deeply embossed, then filler applied to the back to hold the shape and allowed to dry before attaching to the foamcore. 

For the remaining three tiles,  a variety of small die cuts were provide, some of these were glued to the foamcore, the metal adhesive tape applied over.  A paper stump used to smooth the tape around the die cut, a stylus to add definition and other doodling.  Metal roller tools also used to create texture.  Alcohol inks pounced on the metal tiles.  Sanding blocks used to lightly sand the raised areas to show the metal colour. 

All nine tiles were then glued to the frame. RubnBuff added lightly around the frame.

 Lastly die cut flowers (metal tape over thin black card) were decorated using a fabulous technique you can find as a tutorial on Lin Browns blog here (scroll down on right hand side) and added as an embellishment to the frame.

Here is a photo of us all on this splendid day, taken by Theo, Tanya's son.

From left: Margaret, Marjet, Christine, Angie, Tanya, Me, Victoria, Annie, Maggie
Front: Liz and Julie

Most people had left before I realised I had not had a chance to take photographs of their work, but I managed to catch Liz before she left.  Here is her frame and it looks great with the added butterfly.


That is about it for now, will be back to tell you all about the July workshop.  Until then...

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Mixed Media Mosaics

This was my very favourite project of the year so far.  I would like to credit Laurie Mika and her wonderful book on Mixed Media Mosaics for the inspiration for the May workshop. Check out her website here   Although I have read, stroked and loved this book for a while (am I weird or does anyone else do this with a favourite book?), it was great to actually use her ideas for a project. 

I must say it was the most preparation I have ever had to do for a workshop, but the results were so worth it.  Fourteen ladies arrived and it was full steam ahead.

My mixed media mosaic sample board

9mm MDF boards were provided, (cut up by a nice chap at B&Q) I had prepainted them with gesso then top two coats of gold or silver paint, to enable everyone to get started on the more time consuming job of making the mosaic tiles.  A template was provided and glass tiles chosen and glued to form a border (they took an age to source, but pleased with them when they arrived).  Then the task of making the tiles from Fimo Light air dry clay, unfortunately it could not be polymer clay as it would have been impossible to have baked the tiles for so many on the day.  Not sure the hall would have approved our use of the kitchen oven either to cook our art pieces.


I then had to find out how I could provide rolling pins for the clay for so many without purchasing the expensive acrylic type.  I called into a local plumbing merchant, he suggested a 1" wide x 12ft length of plastic piping, nice and solid and perfect for the job.  A good few hours then spent cutting them to size and sanding/filing the ends.

Here are all the ladies busy preparing their tiles, lots of concentration required and decisions to be made as to their placement.  Another cuppa then?

Busy bees

Here are a few of the tiles cut, stamped and painted ready to place in the frame.  Sorry ladies I did not take a note of who the tiles belong to, so I hope I guess right with some. Let me know and I will amend!


 The clay was then rolled out (not too thin) and different size cutters used, or cut with a blade to various size tiles.  Rubber stamps used to impress design.  Some were painted with Viva metal paints.  Black acrylic paint was added to half of the clay to colour it. This gave a different finish when we used Rub n Buff on raised surface.  Everyone had been encouraged to bring along bits and pieces to add to the board along with the clay tiles to make it a mixed media project.  A few were provided as well.  I added a decorated domino to my sample board along with brass nuts, charms and stones.

Sample board

Domino added with tiles

When all the tiles were in place and there were of course slight gaps, (the air dry clay would take a while to dry and shrink very slightly) these were filled with accent (micro) or seed beads over PVA glue.   Bedazzled beads also used.

Here are a few of the frames while positions for the tiles are to be decided, not yet glued down and gaps to be filled in:-

It was the most enjoyable workshop and so good to see so many variations created by everyone. 
I will return with details of the Metal Embossed Tiled Frame at the June workshop. Til then...