Blackbird Café

Today’s page was inspired by lunch at The Blackbird Café which was a special treat for us from our dearest friends for looking after their little puppy; I have to say it was a joy looking after her and we didn’t need to be rewarded in such a way, in fact we should have been paying them (grin!).

I started by adding strips of lime green, butterfly and pink/white decoupage paper onto the page using Liquitex matte gel medium. Once dry I added more colour using Peach, Watermelon, Guava and Kiwi Faber-Castell gelatos smudging the colour with my finger. Next I used some Kaisercraft stamp sets and black Archival Ink to add the tiny dots to the background, the lace around the edge of the page, the birdcages and the wording which reads “Be happy. Be bright. Be you”, “Times like these are extra special” and “Stop. Smile. Breathe. Life is beautiful”. Then I used the same black ink to add the bird and dots of chain for the birdcages using a couple of Hampton Art stamp sets. To finish, I added clear gems to frame the wording and a tiny white flower to each of the birdcages.

You may remember this café from a previous post.

It has a lovely atmosphere and is decorated in a shabby chic style …

… with lots of birds and birdcages.

For my lunch I had a Chicken and Bacon salad, which was so delicious! You can see I’m also sharing my pot of green tea and …

… as T Stands for Tuesday here’s my hubby’s chocolate milkshake too – yum! Happy T Day everyone!

Of course I couldn’t forget this little miss that we looked after for our friends, her name is Ellie and she is a Cavapoo (a cross between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Miniature Poodle); isn’t she super cute!

Thanks so much for treating us to lunch and allowing us playtime with Ellie too (grin!).

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Gill from gibbyfrogettcraftations and her Anything with Eyes challenge over at Art Journal Journey as I had fun creating this page and I know how much Gill like birds so I thought I’d join her fabulous challenge.

I’m also happy to join in the Texture challenge over at Country View Challenges with the texture of the decoupage and stamped background as well as the gems.

I’m joining the Letters and/or Numbers challenge over at Moo Mania & More with letters that make up the wording on my page.

I’m also joining in the fun at Simon Says Monday Challenge where the lovely Alison from Words & Pictures is in the Designer Spotlight; the challenge is ‘S’ is for? and in this case S is for Special Treat from our dearest friends as this was the inspiration for my art journal page and also S is for Stamp Sets as I had fun creating the texture, bird design and wording using lots of stamp sets for my page too.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Poundworld (Patch Paper DS9454)
  • Faber-Castell Gelato (Peach, Watermelon, Guava, Kiwi)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Oh So Lovely CS211, Tiny Dots CS360)
  • Hampton Art cling mounted rubber stamps (7 Gypsies Vintage – Birdsong ICO151, Doodlebug Design Inc. – Thankful ICO162)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Poundland (Design Gems 175751)
  • Home Bargains Special Occasion (Mini Decorative Stickers 22740)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
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Springtime

Our new challenge over at Try it on Tuesday is Springtime.

As usual, you have two weeks to create your art, you can use any medium and digital is always welcome. Don’t forget to check out the wonderful inspiration provided by the Design Team over at the blog too!

Inspired by springtime flowers, I collaged the background of the page using Tim Holtz Collage Paper and some white paper that I had stamped using a lilac stamp; they are stuck in place using Liquitex matte gel medium. As I was experimenting stamping the lilacs using Magenta, Purple, Moss, Bud Green and Chocolate Spectrum Aqua Markers to give a watercolour effect I thought I would use them on this page rather than throw them away. Then using black Versafine Ink, I stamped the “springtime” wording using an alphabet stamp and also added some clocks, both from Docrafts, as well as some bees and butterflies from Hampton Arts. The daffodils are fussy cut from an old flower book and stuck in place using Liquitex matte gel medium. When the gel medium was dry, I outlined them with a black Uni Pin marker. To finish, I coloured the wording using light green, yellow and pink Uni Posca paint pens and then covered each of the letters with Ranger Glossy Accents to give a 3D effect.

Whilst out walking around Glasson Dock for my birthday we saw lots of beautiful daffodils along the roadside.

These daffodils look just like the ones on my page (grin!).

As T Stands for Tuesday I’m sharing our pot of green tea that we had at a lovely café in Glasson Dock – Happy T Day everyone!

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs, like Try it on Tuesday, as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Wendy from Wendy’s Art and Craft Journal  and her Having Fun challenge over at Art Journal Journey as my page links to having springtime fun.

I’m happy to be able to join the Easter and/or Spring challenge over at Country View Challenges with my springtime page.

I’m also joining in the Beautiful Blooms challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge with the stamped lilacs and pretty daffodils on my page.

Over at The Artistic Stamper, their challenge is New Growth, so I’m pleased to join this challenge too with my springtime page.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Magenta, Purple, Moss, Bud Green, Chocolate)
  • Versafine Ink (Onyx Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pen (Light Green, Pink, Yellow)
  • Docrafts Papermanina Tina Higgins wooden stamp (Lilac PMA9061108)
  • Docrafts Creative Essentials A5 clear stamp set (Steampunk DCE9071102)
  • Hampton Art Graphic 45 cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue ICO134)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies Vintage cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO151)
  • Lion White Paper
  • Tim Holtz Collage Paper (Halloween #TH93727)
  • Oxford Book of Flowers
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium

Thank you – Hello Springtime at AJJ

As it’s the end of the month, I’m sharing the last page for the Hello Springtime challenge over at Art Journal Journey which I’ve been hosting this March, so thanks very much to everyone who joined in the fun!

I appreciate all your kind comments and support throughout the month and thoroughly enjoyed visiting your blogs and seeing all your wonderful Hello Springtime artwork so I created this page to remember you all and to say thank you!

I used my garden as inspiration for this page as it is coming to life now springtime’s here, so I decided to create a garden wall with pretty flowers to showcase all the names of the people who joined the Hello Springtime challenge this month at Art Journal Journey (AJJ).

I started by covering the page with a thick layer of Parchment Liquitex acrylic paint and sponging a mixture of Christmas Green and Swedish Blue Liquitex acrylic paint over the top. Once the paint was dry, I stencilled a brick design using a mixture of red, yellow and black acrylic paint to create the brown colour and when dry I loosely outlined the bricks with a black Uni Pin marker to give them more definition. Then I used a texture stamp from Tim Holtz using Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink to give a grungy look to the areas not covered with the brick design. For the foliage, I stamped Cottage Ivy Memento Ink using a stamp from Kaisercraft. Then I used my Dymo LetraTag label machine to create all the names of the people who joined the challenge this month which took some time as I cut each of them out and then stuck them in place along the brickwork. For the “thank you”, I stamped the banner and thank you using a couple of Hampton Art stamp sets using black Archival Ink onto some card by Docrafts. I fussy cut the banner out and gave it more of a worn look using Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink and a blending tool. I cut the AJJ logo out, and stuck it and the thank you banner in place using double-sided tape. I also added the “March 2019” and “Hello Springtime” labels that I created using my Dymo machine and then to finish, the sparkly flower embellishments using Ranger Glossy Accents.

I’d also like to that Gerrina who entered my challenge after I photographed my page. I have now added Gerrina’s name to my page too (grin!).

I had so much fun creating all my pages for this challenge and I hope you did too!

I’d like to say a special thanks to Susi and Bleubeard & Elizabeth for asking me to be a guest host, they provided such valuable support and encouragement, thanks so much!

I have also been overwhelmed with everyone’s participation and lovely comments; it has been such a pleasurable experience – thank you all! Jo x

Tomorrow is a new month and brings a new challenge at Art Journal Journey and I can’t wait to see what the new theme is and say hello to our new host – I hope to see you there!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Parchment, Christmas Green, Swedish Blue, Cadmium Yellow, Cadmium Red)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Cottage Ivy)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Brushed Corduroy)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Magnolia Grove CS822)
  • Tim Holtz Collection Stampers Anonymous (Urban Tapestry CMS061)
  • Hampton Art cling mounted rubber stamps (7 Gypsies Vintage – Birdsong ICO151, Doodlebug Design Inc – Thankful ICO162)
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Dymo LetraTag Label Maker and White paper Labels
  • Art Journal Journey logo – computer printed
  • Docrafts Papermania Capsule Collection Tags (Elements Wood PMA174318)
  • The Range (Craft Embellishments CRO824)
  • Stix2 double-sided tape
  • Ranger Glossy Accents

Treasure Map

I enjoyed practicing and experimenting with different techniques and mediums to create this page. As I created this page, it reminded me of the kites at the St. Annes Kite Festival and I was also transported back to my childhood and into the fantasy world of pirates and looking for buried treasure (grin!).

I started by drawing a faint outline of the map using a pencil and then applied some Tea Dye Distress Ink using a blending tool which I then dabbed with a baby wipe to create an old worn look to the map. I then added an outline so the map had a defined edge using a black Uni Pin marker to create a border around the edge of my page. I coloured the border using Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink and a Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker by applying the ink to an acrylic block and painting the inks using a paintbrush. Next I outlined the land with Baked Earth and Willow Derwent Intense pencils by applying the pencil directly to the page and using a wet paintbrush to blend the colours. I also added small dots of Chocolate Spectrum Aqua marker around the edges of the land too. The mountains are drawn using the same Chocolate Spectrum Aqua marker and shaded using a Tan Spectrum Aqua marker. I stamped the pirates ship sitting in Pirates Cove using black Archival Ink and coloured it using Derwent Intense Pencils, I had fun stamping the wording “Yo ho yo ho …” too. In fact I spent quite a bit of time stamping all the wording on this map using individual wooden mounted letter stamps from Dovecraft and black Archival Ink; making up the different names and places was great fun too! I embellished the different places with a crab, starfish and tropical flowers which are rub-on transfers and also a sandcastle, some sea shells, tropical flowers and a treasure chest which are stickers. I made some of the elements from card toppers too, like the sea monster and mermaid tail and the gold in the treasure chest is made from gold outline stickers and pearl gems. All the pirate flags are stamped using black Archival Ink and the palm tree is hand drawn, fussy cut and coloured with Derwent Inktense pencils. The map trail that joins the different places together and big black “X” are also hand drawn using a black Uni Pin marker. Next I painted the sea by concentrating the colour along the shore line and adding the waves using Salty Ocean Distress Ink; I did this by stamping the ink pad onto an acrylic block, spritzing with water and using a paintbrush to apply it to the page. Then I stamped a compass by Graphic 45 from Hampton Art using black Archival Ink on the top of the page.  The banner is also a stamp by 7 Gypsies from Hampton Art and is stamped using black Archival Ink onto the page and also onto a piece of white paper. I coloured both of the banners with the Baked Earth and Willow Derwent Intense pencils and stamped “Treasure Map” in the centre of the one I stamped onto the paper using the letter stamps and black Archival Ink. I then cut out the central section of the banner with the wording on it from the paper and stuck it over the one that I had stamped onto the page. To finish, I outlined the banner with a black Uni Pin marker.

We enjoyed the St. Annes Kite Festival last weekend, it started with night kite flying and fireworks on Friday night.

Many of the kites reminded me of my page including this crab …

… these fish bobbing along …

… this parrot who I can just imagine saying “pieces of eight” …

… and of course the many sea monsters (grin!).

New to the festival this year was a land yachting demonstration which was great fun to watch too!

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Yvonne from Meggy’s way, who is hosting A World of Fantasy challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my dreams of buried treasure.

I’m pleased to join the Picture Inspiration challenge over at Paperbabe Stamps as I used the rock/pebble colours and you can find beaches and seashores as part of my art journal page design.

As “B” stands for “buried treasure” and “beach”, I’m pleased to join the I spy with my little eye something beginning with “B” challenge over at Stamping Sensations.

As my treasure map goes round and round, I’m also joining the Going Round & Round challenge over at The Artistic Stamper too.

I’m also pleased to join in the fun over at Stamps and Stencils and their It’s been a while … Anything Goes challenge.

As my page links to childhood, I’m reminding you that your still have time to join our Childhood challenge at Try it on Tuesday too!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Tea Dye, Brushed Corduroy, Salty Ocean)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Derwent Inktense Pencils (Baked Earth 1800. Willow 1900, Poppy Red 400, Field Green 1500)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Chocolate, Tan)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm, 0.5mm, 0.8mm)
  • Home Bargains (Mini Stamps & Ink – Pirates)
  • Dovecraft Essentials Alphabet Stamp Set upper and lower case (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Hampton Art Graphic 45 cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue ICO135)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies Vintage cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO151)
  • Craft Planet Metallic Waterfall Stickers (Beach PO#9622)
  • Eco Craft Go Create (Hunk of Junk Pirate Island)
  • Hunkydory Luxury Toppers (Eastern Promise)
  • Magenta Style Outline Stickers (Daisy Gold 93326G)
  • Home Bargains Sticker Mania (Gel Stone Stickers 74748)
  • UHU Stic

Amour

Today I have created an art journal page to celebrate love as I’m so looking forward to the wedding of some very dear friends next month. I used my favourite blue Brusho colours to create the dreamy background and thought that Paris would be the perfect city for Amour (grin!).

I started by sprinkling Turquoise and Ultra Marine Colourcraft Brusho powders onto the page and spritzed them with water. I love watching the colours burst to life as you add the water and as Brushos are made up of the different component coloured powders that create the main colour, purple can be seen on the page too from the Ultra Marine powder. Once dry, I stamped Eiffel Tower image onto the page and also onto some blue/grey spotted design paper using a stamp called “City of Love” by Penny Black and black Archival Ink which I used for all the stamping on my page. I used the same “City of Love” stamp to add the black swirls along the edges of the page, as well as the two hearts and the word “amour” over the background. Again I stamped these images onto the blue/grey paper, fussy cut them out and edged them using a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker. Then I stamped a leaf tile stamp from Rubber Soul, two birds sitting on a branch from Dovecraft and the word “Paris” from 7 Gypsies stamp set by Hampton Art directly onto the page. Next I added some diamond-shaped border stickers by Kaisercraft and also silver outline stickers along the edges of the page; then I outlined them both with a black Uni Pin marker, which took quite a while as the outline stickers are quite an intricate design. I then added the stamped blue/grey paper images to the page sticking them in place using a UHU Stic. For the main Eiffel Tower image, I layered it over a white doily and it is stuck into place using double-sided tape. I then added the black round brads to the “amour” signs, lots of flowers which I had embellished with blue gems and also a glittery silver butterfly which finished the page.

Paris is such a lovely place to visit, here is the Eiffel Tower when we visited some years ago; it looks spectacular by day and by night (grin!).

The wrought ironwork is amazing, if you want to find out more about the Eiffel Tower please check out my previous post.

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Gill from gibbyfrogettcraftations who is hosting the Inspired by … challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my love inspired page.

I enjoyed using all the different stamps to create my Amour page design, so I’m also pleased to join the Anything Goes challenge over at Stamping Sensations.

I’m joining in the fun over at The Artistic Stamper and their Colour it Blue challenge as they have chosen my favourite colour as their theme this month.

With my vibrant Brusho coloured page, I’m also happy to join the Bright and Cheerful challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge.

I’m also pleased to be able to join the Written Word (add some text in some form) challenge over at Country View Challenges with my Amour art journal page.

I’m also very happy to join the lovely Design Team over at PaperBabe Stamps and their Anything Goes Challenge.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Colourcraft Brusho Colours Crystals (Turquoise, Ultra Marine)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Penny Black 2007 wood-mounted stamp (City of Love 3800K)
  • Rubber Soul wood-mounted stamp (Leaf Tile 276K)
  • Dovecraft Clear Stamp (DCCS014)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies Vintage cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO151)
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Vintage Glory 154898)
  • Kaisercraft Sticker Set (Fly Free SS289)
  • Docraft Anita’s Outline Stickers (Timeless Borders ANT810117)
  • Dovecraft Premium Paper Doilies (Painted Blooms DCDLS010)
  • Brads (Round Black)
  • Poundland (Accessories Pack 60911, Gem Florettes 117128)
  • The Works (Wooden Craft Butterflies CR1292)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Flora and Fauna

I am so delighted to be hosting Art Journal Journey this month and my challenge is

Flora and Fauna

For this challenge Flora refers to plant life and Fauna to the animal kingdom. In nature, flora and fauna compliment each other, so it’s up to you to decide whether you include only plants, animals or combine the two together.

I started by selecting stamps of plant life and animals from my craft stash; for Flora I chose a tree, some different flowers, leaves and fruit and then for Fauna I chose a bird, some insects including a bee, butterflies and a dragonfly, a hedgehog and some paw prints. I stamped my flora stamps onto white tissue paper and my fauna stamps onto brown tissue paper using black Archival Ink which I used for all of the stamping on this page. Well that’s what I thought anyway, but as you can see this is correct for all except the bee, I think he must be flying onto the white flora tissue paper to find the flowers (grin!). Then I ripped the edges of the tissue paper and stuck them onto the page using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium along with some gold star tissue paper and homemade papers which I made sometime ago using brown tissue paper and a Script stamp and also white tissue paper and a Sheet Music stamp. Once the gel medium was dry, I also stamped the corresponding wording “Flora” or “Fauna” directly onto the page alongside each stamped image and edged them using Willow and Ink Black Derwent Inktense pencils and a black Derwent Graphik marker. Then I added two different brown washi tapes, the thicker one depicts a flower, butterfly, bird and squirrel to tie into the theme and they are all edged with the Willow and Ink Black Derwent Inktense pencils. Next I arranged some wooden tiles for the “Flora” and “Fauna” wording and also some colourful postage stamps from my hubby’s childhood collection which portray different flora and fauna. The postage stamps are stuck to the page using a UHU Stic and as you can see I kept the flora ones at the top of the page and the fauna ones at the bottom to correspond with the tile wording that I had added. To finish, I stamped different words onto white tissue paper and stuck them onto the page using UHU Stic; they detail types of flora and fauna:

  • as flora refers to plant life the words I added included flower, fruit, tree, leaf, fungi
  • as fauna refers to the animal kingdom I included the words bird, reptile, fish, amphibian, insect, mammal.

I hope that this art journal page provides you with some ideas for your designs and that you are inspired by this month’s Flora and Fauna theme over at Art Journal Journey too. I am really looking forward to visiting you and seeing all your wonderful creations!

As some of you know, my art journal pages are inspired by things I see and do and I often share photographs along with my journal page to illustrate this. So I thought I would share a couple of different Flora and Fauna collages using photographs that have featured on my blog over the last couple of years – I hope you like them! This first one reminds me of springtime as most of the photos were taken this time of year.

This one reminds me of summer walks and happy discoveries!

If you are looking for my post featuring the new challenge over at Try it on Tuesday or T Stands for Tuesday, please click here.

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs, like Art Journal Journey, as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

With the page focusing on stamping and animals, I’m pleased to be able to join Fashionable Stamping Challenges and their Animals challenge.

I’m also joining the Anything Goes challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge.

With the collaged tissue background and all the stamping on this page, I’m also pleased to join the creative challenge over at The Artistic Stamper where the theme is Backgrounds.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Derwent Inktense Pencils (Willow 1900, Ink Black 2200)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Sanguine 188 B)
  • Hampton Art Graphic 45 cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue ICO133)
  • Hampton Art Bella Blvd cling mounted rubber stamps (Sand & Surf ICO226)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO135)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Tree P-1398, 4 Point Star Background G2983)
  • Papermania wood mounted rubber stamp (Daffodil Tile 39454)
  • Magenta wood mounted rubber stamp (Flowers & Dots 2111D)
  • Royal & Langnickel Clear Choice Stamps (Pressed Leaves MIN-CCS102)
  • Hampton Art wood mounted rubber stamp (Cherry Background KN2466)
  • Eco Green Recycled Rubber Art Stamps (Petal Party #04309)
  • Free Stamp Set with Craft Beautiful Magazine (Winter Wonderland)
  • Stampendous wood mounted rubber stamp (Tiny Paw AA017)
  • Sugarloaf Inc. wood mounted rubber stamp (26551)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Clear Magic Singles (Sheet Music JGS111)
  • Dovecraft Essentials Alphabet Stamp Set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Tissue Paper (White, Brown)
  • Postage Stamps from my hubby’s childhood collection (Ghana, Rhodesia, Trinidad & Tobago, South Africa, Bulgaria, Ceylon, Australia, Hungary, Romania, Dominica, Kenya)
  • Crelando (Decorative Tape)
  • The Works (Wooden Alphabet Tiles)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic

Christmas Greetings!

I always look forward to Christmastime and I love sending cards to wish family and friends happiness and good cheer (grin!). I am very thankful when I receive cards too and have created a page to celebrate this by using some of the pretty Christmas postage stamps from the cards that I have received.

I started by stamping different postmarks and texts using Memento Inks to create the background for the page. The stamps included a set of The Works Clear Stamps, the Tropical Travelogue stamp set from Graphic 45 by Hampton Art, the Birdsong stamp set from 7 Gypsies also by Hampton Art and finally the Letters to Santa stamp set from Docrafts Papermania. The Memento Ink colours I used were Love Letters, Pistachio, London Fog and Teal Zeal. Next I cut the envelopes containing the postage stamps to shape, using a pair of scissors with a serrated edge, and stuck them to the page using a UHU Stic. The silver frames and borders are outline stickers, some of which I coloured black using a Sharpie permanent marker and black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker.  I also added some postal mark outline stickers and embellished the postage stamps and frames using some snowflake and star stickers. Then I edged inside and around some of the frames using a Derwent Graphik marker and also around the edges of the page using the black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker. The red glitter star embellishments and small clear, red, and black gems finished the page.

You may have seen some of the Christmas cards I made this year in previous posts. I also make sweet treats to give to friends instead of Christmas cards. As you can see, I made quite a few bags this year which were for all our Love My Beach friends.

Each bag contains 3 pieces of Maltesers Fudge and a piece of Maltesers Tiffin (Maltesers are also known as Malt Balls).

I was curious to find out more about Christmas cards, if you’re interested here are the facts I discovered:

  • Sir Henry Cole and John Horsley invented the Christmas card in 1843 and sold them for a shilling. In 2000, an original Cole and Horsely’s card fetched £20,000 when it was auctioned in the UK which can be seen here.
  • A few years after the first card was made, the UK Parliament passed the Postal Act which allowed people to send letters and cards for just a penny.
  • Early Christmas cards tended to be flowers, fairies and exotic designs and rarely showed the religious or wintry scenes we see today.
  • In America, a German printer Louis Prang started mass producing cards in 1875 and until then, they were considered a luxury that only the rich could afford. By 1881, over 5 million cards were being produced every year in the US.
  • In Victorian England, the Post Office delivered cards on Christmas Day in the UK. Postmen were often known as robins because of their bright red uniforms and robins became a popular card Christmas card motif.
  • Every year in the UK alone, an estimated 1.8 billion Christmas cards are sent and received. The average UK household sends out about 50 cards each Christmas.
  • 45% of all cards sent are for Christmas but only 15% of these Christmas cards are bought by men.
  • Designing and making personal Christmas cards is one of the most popular craft hobbies in the UK.
  • An estimated £50 million is raised for charities by selling their Christmas cards each year.

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Sheila from Orange Esmeralda who is hosting the “Let’s Celebrate” challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my celebration of Christmas Greetings!

I’m joining the “Christmas” fun over at Moo Mania & More and sending Christmas Greetings!

As the challenge over at Country View Challenges is “Christmas with optional Reds, Greens and Rust” I’m pleased to be able to join this challenge too.

Over at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge the theme is “Party!” so I’m pleased to join them with my Christmas Greetings celebration!

May this Christmas bring you love and joy. Season’s Greetings and a Happy New Year!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Love Letters, Pistachio, London Fog, Teal Zeal)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.5mm)
  • Sharpie Fine Point Permanent Marker (Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • The Works (Clear Stamps CRO274TW4)
  • Hampton Art Graphic 45 cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue ICO134)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies Vintage cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO151)
  • Docrafts Papermania Mini Clear Stamps (Letters to Santa PMA907917)
  • Docrafts Anita’s Outline Stickers (Postage Stamps Silver ANT810103, Straight Line Borders Silver ANT8101017)
  • Crelando Relief Stickers Christmas designs (12 Sheets IAN289011)
  • Christmas-Craft (Glitter Embellishments XRR0038)
  • Oaktree UK Eleganza Craft Stickers (3mm 418 Gems Red No. 16)
  • Poundland (Design Gems 175751)
  • UHU Stic