Saturday, October 31, 2009

A challenge!!!

We've been away on holiday to Somerset for a week- had a lovely time, with great weather (when we went away this time last year, it snowed!!!). I can't believe I've been walking round in a tshirt at the end of October!!

Before we left, I posted a question on the DoCrafts ATCs forum asking what essential crafting kit people thought I needed. Long story short- my mate Tina (Furryboots) challenged me! The rules were that I could take my basic craft kit, inks and just four stamps. Yep, you read it right, only FOUR stamps!!!! I can use 4 stamps on a single ATC easily! I had a long think and a browse through my stamps and finally decided on these 4, mainly because I thought they'd be versatile.

Left to right, I took my old faithful Hero Arts Old French Writing, a clear swirl from a HOTP set, Fly by Hampton Arts and a gorgeous collage stamp.

Anything else I wanted to use had to be found whilst on holiday. I really, really enjoyed myself trying to use the stamps in different ways and scavenging bits and pieces to add on to my ATCs. I took several already made backgrounds, along with my Stazon and Distress ink pads. I loved it, I used my Distress Inks to watercolour, stamped onto the inside bag of a cereal packet, cut out words from cereal packets and the packaging from a toy, picked up a scrap of red tissue paper form the dance floor, tore up the white corrugated divider from a box of name it!!!!

Sooooooo- onto the results of my toil.....

These were both stamped onto red/yellow shaving foam backgrounds, stamped with lots of swirls in red and clack, then the main image in black. The left hand one is stamped onto the bag out of one of the kids' cereal boxes! For the right hand one I stamped the frame out again onto white and layered it up. The words are from some toy packaging.

These two both take the face from the collage stamp, but it looks completely different on each ATC. The left hand one is stamped in brown Stazon, the watercoloured using various Distress Inks. The right hand one has a background of acrylic blue paint spritzed with cosmic shimmer mist. I stamped the face and butterfly onto another piece of cereal inner bag, and layered it up with the frame from the Fly stamp. The Delicious word is from a cereal box.

I didn't realise how similar these two were until I posted them side by side. I tried to take elements of the two collage-y type stamps, but wasn't too precious about inking the stamps up, so it's quite a rough and ready look. The green ATC has a background made with a makeup sponge and Peeled Paint Distress Ink. The background of the pink ATC is made using a Tim Holtz barbed wire mask.

This is my favourite of the batch, I think because it's almost totally scrounged!! The blue checkerboard background is from toy packaging, the red tissue paper was picked up from a dance floor, the words are cut from cereal packets, and the bottom silver embossed piece is the foil from a tub of margarine! Even the stamped bird was an offcut from making another ATC. I'm amazed at how inventive I got!

So the moral of today's blog post is to try going without and seeing how inventive you get! I'm a bit fed up of these 4 stamps now, but I definitely had my money's worth out of them this week.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Believe!!! Altered canvas

This is my latest canvas- and one I'm not so sure of. It's not made with anyone in mind, I just had acrylic paints out and painted the base, and it stemmed from there. I sprayed sections with Cosmic Shimmer mists, but the glimmery effect doesn't show up well on camera. The letters are stamped with some fab stencil letter foam stamps. The owl stamp is Personal Impressions, the gate is Paperartsy and the branches in the background are from a Basic Grey set. There's also tissue paper, beads and mesh, all painted over with modge podge yet again.

In the corner here you can justabout make out where I sponged ink (Adirondack Lettuce) through some sequin waste to make a gorgeous dotty/honeycomb effect. I'm loving doing that technique at the moment, it's on lots of my ATCs!!! There are always a couple of techniques that are favourites at any one time, and I tend to use them to death then get fed up of them!! What's your favourite trick at the moment?

I'm liking the canvas more as time goes on...... :)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Christmas cards

I'm revisiting last year's Christmas stamps in the desperate hope of srumming up some inspiration for this year!!! I think I'll start with my special cards, and then see what creativity is left over for all the rest! Here are couple of child-friendly ones.

I think the main problem is that when I feel Christmassy and in the spirit of things it's too late and my cards should have already been made!!! I could go for totally alternative images from Stampotique this year, but I'm not sure the recipients would appreciate the cards. Watch this space, and I'll let you know how I get on.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Another altered canvas and an altered box

On Sunday I had a lovely crafting day, with lots of time to play with paint and inks. Bliss!!! I promised myself I'd make at least one Christmas present, but I actually managed to finish two!!!! I'd already painted a canvas in lilac for my cousin's daughter, Megan. Here's the finished canvas!

I painted the canvas with lilac acrylic paint, then sprayed opposite corners with purple Cosmic Shimmer Mist. I LOVE my Cosmic Shimmer misters. The stamps are from a Stampin' Up set called Garden Whimsey, and are stamped in Royal Purple Stazon. I tried Impress ink pads, but they didn't stamp at all well onto the paint (hence the flowers stamped on tissue paper to cover up the mistake!!!!) The letters are chipboard coloured with Stazon and I added purple stickles glitter glue and white gel pen for added definition. In the top left corner there's a scrap of purple mesh and three purple buttons.

The problem with stamping onto a canvas is that it's not a solid surface, so it takes a bit of fiddling around with something suitably hard underneath it!!

I also finished off a little wooden box I had already started. It's a gorgeous little box, so I left most of it as it was, and just painted the top of the box. I've also stamped the name of the person I intend to give it to on the side. I'm not showing you who it's for though, in case they see it on here!!

I stamped flowers on it in black Stazon, added a couple of decoupaged flowers in the centre on orange and red paper, and some red and orange Stickles glitter glue. Once it was dry I covered the whole top with glitter modge podge to seal it.

So now I'm 2 Christmas presents up and I really enjoyed myself. I've got a list of people I want to make things for this year- might save me a few pennies!!!!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Autumn colours

This month's Pass It Forward swap on Do Crafts had to have the word Autumn on. I made two in my crafty day with Kay yesterday, but the first one shown here is the one I'm using for the swap. The background is made with a shaving foam technique (I promise to blog on how to do it at a later date), and I thought that this one was lighter and looked like a sunset. The trees are a Lost Coast designs unmounted stamp, that I just HAD to have after trying Kay's out!!

This second one was actually my first attempt. Again, it uses a shaving foam technique background but this time I'd stamped over it with a leaf outline stamp before adding the trees. I stamped the trees first in a chocolate brown Impress ink....argh!!! Disaster, it was blurry and patchy and just awful!! I wiped most of it off with a wet wipe, but it darkened the whole piece. I restamped in Stazon but I still wasn't happy, so out came the trusty Cosmic Shimmer misters. A quick squirt of Mango Blaze and it looked all warm and glowing!!! Amazing what comes out of a mistake isn't it?

A little bit of faux stiching and a word stamped onto an offcut of cosmic shimmered card, and I'm happy with it!!

I made a couple more ATCs yesterday using shaving foam technique backgrounds.

Queenie is heat embossed round the edges with a pale shimmery golden powder that's just gorgeous. She's from a Paperartsy set with some quite rude ladies in it!!

On Creative Thoughts, I stamped the flower over the swirly background for a nice warm orangeyred effect, then restamped onto white card and cut out. Spot my favourite, some Stickles glitter glue in the centre :) This is a See D's mini stamp, great because it's unmounted with the image printed on the reverse, so you can work out where you're stamping it.

Roll on next week's crafty sesh with Kay!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Inky fingers rule!

What a fabulous day. Take one kitchen table, two friends and some white card. Add a load of ink and stamps and you get a really lovely crafty session! I managed to catch up on my owed swaps and make a few spares. I'll scan them in tomorrow and show you my latest work.

Both of my children got star of the week awards at school, and my son and husband both passed their Tae Kwon Do green belt gradings, so a successful week all round.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Weird girls

Wow, 2 posts in one day.......

I had a couple of new Stampotique stamps last week, they're from a fabulously horrible set by Daniel Torrente and Jill Penney. Click here to see more stamps. Inspired by a Craft Stamper article I came up with these 2 beauties.....

Whiner is my favourite for some reason!

The background is painted with acrylics quite roughly, I didn't take much time over blending colours in. I then stamped my girl image onto the ATC where I wanted her- I knew I'd want to stamp her again on white card to colour and cut out, but there are a few fiddly bits I thought might not cut out well, so by stamping her onto the ATC first I made sure I didn't miss any bits! Plus it helps with positioning the background stamps to have an image to work around.

The background stamps were from Prima stamps- the distressed checkerboard works really well, it allows the background colour to come through whilst still being quite dark. The other background is like a mesh- again from Prima. The crest is one I was sent as a freebie from an ebay purchase, which just happened to be lying about on my desk when I needed something! I nearly used a postmark.

I restamped the girl onto white card with Memento ink because I wanted to colour with Promarkers and it doesn't bleed into the pen colours. Finishing touches were those little phrases on cloth (from 7 Gypsies) and some white gel pen for highlights and faux stitches.

I now have a loooong wish list of stampotique stamps.......


Found this on Twitter and had to share - some very, very intricate hand drawn mazes. Knocks my doodling into a cocked hat (now there's a saying I'd like to know the origin of). Seriously- take a look, I'm going to get my pens out later, I can feel a maze ATC in the offing.......

Here's a few of my doodles in the meantime. I enjoy doodling for a while, but then I get a bit fed up and have to rein it in for a month or 2.