Everything has beauty

I hope you had a lovely Easter weekend; here in the UK we have a four-day holiday for Easter and we have had some glorious weather, so we’ve been spending time visiting with friends, in the garden and out on our tandem (grin!).

As part of our ongoing garden project, this week we started landscaping the back beds of our garden so my page today reflects nature and earthy colour tones as I took inspiration from all the dirt we have been shovelling (grin!) along with the brick wall colours that we have been exposing and the birds that we have seen in our garden too – I hope you like it!

For my grungy background, I started by covering the page with Chestnut, Boulder, Dessert, Fawn and Topaz Spectrum Aqua markers by scribbling each of the inks onto a blending mat, spritzing with water and pressing the mat onto the page. Then I stencilled a Vintage Diamond stencil from Creative Expressions and Black Soot Distress Ink and added some pieces of decoupage paper using Liquitex matte gel medium. I used a palette knife to add some Pébéo white gesso over the page and once dry, I edged the decoupage pieces using a Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker smudging the ink with my finger. Then I stamped a Script stamp from Kaisercraft and also a grid patterned homemade stamp using black Archival Ink. I splattered the page with the Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush Marker ink by scribbling it onto an acrylic block, spritzing with water and dripping it onto the page. Then I used black Archival Ink to stamp the bird on the branch which is part of the Urban Tapestries stamp set from Tim Holtz and also the flowers in the foreground which is from a Carabelle Studio stamp set. To finish, I added two Small talk stickers from Tim Holtz and edged them using a black Uni Pin marker; they read “live gently on the earth” and “everything has beauty”.

I had a cuppa with friends at Bijou of Lytham last week, it’s a pretty place and I had a wonderful time catching up with some friends – here’s my pot of drinking green tea …

… and my friend’s hot chocolate with all the works (marshmallows and cream) – as T Stands for Tuesday I’m wishing the T Gang a very Happy T Day!

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 Wendy from Wendy’s Art and Craft Journal  and her Having Fun challenge over at Art Journal Journey as I had fun using all the different mediums to create this page.

I’m happy to join the Neutral Zone challenge over at A Vintage Journey with my grungy Mixed Media Style page.

I’m also pleased to be able to join in the fun over at Creative Artiste Challenge Blog, and their Creative Artiste’s #48th Challenge  – Anything Mixed Media Goes challenge with the different mixed media (markers, inks, decoupage paper, gesso) I used to create my art journal 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 Markers (Chestnut, Boulder, Dessert, Fawn, Topaz)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Black Soot)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Creative Expressions Mini Stencils (Vintage Diamond CEMSDIAM)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Homemade Wood Mounted Stamp – plasterboard tape
  • Tim Holtz Collection Stampers Anonymous (Urban Tapestry CMS061)
  • Carabelle Studio Art Stamp (SA60175 Dans la nature, il y a …)
  • Trimcraft (Decoupage papers SCDEC025)
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology (Small Talk #TH93193)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
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Spring Greetings – Art Journal Cover

I always find that I have a huge selection of scraps leftover from creating art journal pages, which for some reason I just can’t seem to throw away (grin!). I usually try to use them up on my art journal covers and as I often use the same materials that can be found in the journal, the covers then also remind me of the pages that are inside (double grin!).

As my journal holds some of the springtime pages that I created for my Hello Springtime theme over at Art Journal Journey that I am hosting, I gave the cover a springtime feel too – I hope you like it!

I started by covering the background with a book page that I recycled from a part-work magazine, using as I did to stick all the paper elements, Liquitex matte gel medium. Then I used some washi tape, with a tape measure design on it, over the seam where two pieces of the book pages joined together. Next I stuck some lattice die cut pieces, remnants of a recycled brown bag, leftover pieces of teabag and also scrap pieces of wallpaper to the page. I added the robin, branches and leaves which are ripped pieces of tissue and then the scene started looking more like springtime, so I coloured the leaves using a Bud Green Spectrum Aqua Marker. The flowers are cobbled-together using leftover pieces of hydrangea flowers from a wallpaper sample and rub-on transfers of violets by Royal & Langnickel, along with some stamped hydrangea flowers using Elderberry Memento Ink. They are loosely coloured with watered down Purple and Navy Spectrum Aqua Markers so the flowers blended together. I also stamped the “My Art Journal” wording using the Elderberry Memento Ink and added more colour to the lettering using the Purple and Navy Spectrum aqua markers again. The “spring greetings” banner, “grow” tag and “plant a garden” banner are Graphic 45 Cardstock Stickers and I used the tape measure washi tape to bind and finish the edges of the page.

As you probably know by now, I love robins and this page reminded me of a robin we saw on a springtime walk last year. I think he had stopped by to say “hello”, isn’t he adorable (grin!).

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:

I’m also joining the Close to Nature challenge over at Moo Mania & More with my springtime art journal cover.

I’m also joining Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Create a Scene challenge 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:

  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Elderberry)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Purple, Navy, Bud Green)
  • Craft Sensations (Clear Stamps 154884)
  • Clarity Stamp (Word Chain STA-WO-10048-XX)
  • Leftover papers – lattice die cuts, recycled brown bag, teabag paper, wallpaper sample, tissue
  • Recycled book page from part-work magazine
  • Graphic 45 Cardstock Stickers (Place in Time 4500617, Seasons 4501629)
  • Michael’s (Washi Tape)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium

Bless this nest

Our new bird feeders have proven very popular so far this year and we have had a variety of birds visiting our garden, so I created a page to celebrate birds at springtime and I can imagine the little bird on my page is saying “Bless this nest” (grin!).

I’m also joining in the fun over at Art Journal Journey with my spring related page where I’m hosting the Hello Springtime challenge – I hope to see you there!

The background is collaged and all the paper pieces were ripped along the edge and then edged with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and stuck in place using a glue stick. I added tissue paper from an old dressmaking pattern and some leftover pieces of brown paper and then added the nest of eggs and a couple of feathers which are rub-on transfers from Royal & Langnickel. I then fussy cut the bird from an old magazine and used the green and brown paper pieces that surrounded the bird for the background along with some pieces of sheet music to represent birdsong. I stuck the bird sitting on the branch in place and also added pieces of paper to create a branch on the left-hand side of the nest so it extended across the page. Then I added the green leaves which are from the same set of rub-on transfers. Next I added some numbered Tim Holtz Salvage Stickers and stamped the background using a Script stamp from Kaisercraft and black Archival Ink. I added the wording which are wooden tiles and then splattered the whole page with black and white DecoArt acrylic paint.

The bird on my page is called a “Blue Tit” and the one pictured here was taken recently on the bird feeder in our garden. If you are interested here are some interesting facts about this bird:

  • It is a songbird that belongs to the tit family and can be found in Europe, Asia and northwestern parts of Africa belonging to a group of non-migratory birds.
  • They inhabit deciduous and mixed forests, hedgerows, farmlands, gardens and parks.
  • Their colourful mix of blue, yellow, white and green makes them one of the most attractive and recognisable garden visitors.

The nest on this page also reminded me of our visit to America last year as our friends had quite a few robin nests around their property, here is one of them, isn’t it amazing! I’m told that seeing these robins over in America is a sign of spring (grin!).

Challenges

I always enjoy taking part in Challenge Blogs, like Art Journal Journey, as 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 script stamp, numbers on the salvage stickers and alphabet letters and numbers on the wooden tiles I’m pleased to join the Numbers and/or Letters challenge over at Country View Challenges.

I’m pleased to join in the fun over at the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Anything Goes challenge with my Bless this nest art journal 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:

  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black, White)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Style Dressmaking Pattern
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Design Block 25 x 25cm)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Bird’s Nest #ROY-563)
  • Old Magazine
  • Bosworth Violin Studies
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology Salvage Stickers (Crowded Attic #TH92898)
  • The Works (Alphabet Wooden Tiles)
  • Pritt Stick

Hello Springtime

I am so delighted to be hosting Art Journal Journey this month and the challenge that I have chosen is:

Hello Springtime

Now it’s March, spring is just around the corner so along with Susi, Bleubeard & Elizabeth, I would like you to join in and say Hello to Springtime. You could include flowers, blossoms, new foliage, birds, birdsong, butterflies or any other nature on your designs or perhaps capture the changes in the season with sunshine and blue skies or even new beginnings as spring is a time of change!

For my background to depict springtime sunshine and blue skies, I scribbled Yellow and Aquamarine Spectrum Aqua markers on a blending mat, spritzed with water and pressed the mat onto the page. Then I stencilled a trellis design from Creative Expressions using Tea Dye, Frayed Burlap and Black Soot Distress Ink with a blending tool. Next I stamped a Music Sheet stamp from Woodware Craft Collection, a Script stamp and a Vintage Circle stamp both from Kaisercraft using black Archival Ink and painted some Pébéo white gesso using my finger on parts of the page to add some contrast.

I then die cut the “Hello Springtime” wording from some Tim Holtz design paper which I stamped using a blossom spray stamp from Stampendous and the black Archival Ink; the letters are stuck in place using Liquitex matte gel medium and once dry edged with black Uni Pin marker. Then I created the different springtime scenes which included: a little bird sitting on a branch and some feathers from Kaisercraft Anthology Collection with a Tim Holtz Pocket Card featuring Nest & Eggs; a pretty butterfly tag to which I had tied a piece of white thread; a Tim Holtz Pocket Card featuring trellis-work and yellow flowers and a little butterfly sticker from Kaisercraft; four clocks cut from a Tim Holtz Pocket Card, a tag from Kaisercraft Anthology collection which I tied another piece of white thread to and the Eiffel Tower from a die cut set. They are all edged with a Dark Grey Faber-Castell Big Brush marker, stuck in place using double-sided tape or a glue stick and accented with some pretty pink, blue, yellow and white die cut blossoms that we see at springtime. To finish the page, I added all the springtime words which are created using Tim Holtz idea-ology Label Letter Stickers stuck to some strips of a neutral coloured design paper from American Crafts.

I hope that you are inspired by this month’s Hello Springtime theme too and are able to join in the fun. I am really looking forward to visiting you and seeing all your wonderful springtime creations!

It has felt like spring the last couple of weeks as the weather has been unusually mild. This has meant we have had spring flowers appearing in our garden, birds visiting our bird feeders, blue skies and lots of sunshine. I’m not sure that it will last but it definitely felt like springtime to me (grin!).

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:

I’m pleased to join the Vintage/Past Times challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge with my vintage styled springtime page.

I’m pleased to join in the fun over at the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Anything Goes challenge with my Hello 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 (Yellow, Aquamarine)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Tea Dye, Frayed Burlap, Black Soot)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Cold Grey IV 233)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Moroccan)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Clear Magic Singles (Vintage Circles FRS665, Sheet Music JGS111)
  • Kaisercraft Clear Stamp (Script CS752)
  • Stampendous! (Cling Blossom Spray CRP136)
  • Docrafts X Cut A5 Die Cut Set (Folk Alphabet XCU503286)
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology Paper Stash (Halloween #TH93712)
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology (Pocket Cards #TH93208)
  • Kaisercraft Collectables (Anthology CT938)
  • The Range (Craft Tags CRO740)
  • Kaisercraft Sticker Sheet (Fly Free SS289)
  • K & Company Susan Winget (Floral Die-Cut Cardstock)
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology (Label Letters #TH93072)
  • American Crafts Papers (DIY Shop 366665)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Stix2 double-sided tape
  • Pritt Stick

Loving Life

I always find that I have a huge selection of tissue paper and paper leftover from creating other art journal pages, which I have either coloured or stamped. So in an attempt to tidy up a little (it hasn’t helped much – grin!), I decided to use some of them to create today’s page. I was also inspired by some challenge blogs too and as such, I hope you like the resulting page as much as I do!

I selected a black, white and yellow colour scheme for this page and collaged leftover pieces of white paper and tissue paper that had been stamped, whilst creating other pages, using black Archival Ink. Like all the collaged pieces they are stuck on the page using a glue stick. These stamped images included: grass and fern fronds from a Carabelle Studio stamp set; postage marks and bees from Hampton Art; postage marks from The Works; Vintage Circles from Woodware Craft Collection; blossoms from Stampendous; “kindness” wording from Docrafts; “discover” wording from Royal & Langnickel; script from Kaisercraft; and also a dragonfly from Eco Green Crafts. I arranged them on the page with some paper coloured with Yellow Colourcraft Brusho powders which were remnants of another journal page. Once the collage was complete, I covered the page with a layer of Liquitex Matte Gel Medium which allowed me to outline all the paper pieces using a black Uni Pin marker smudging the ink with my finger.

I added a pretty “yellow wagtail” bird that I fussy cut from my old nature book; he is stood on some torn pieces of black and white washi tape. I then added more pieces of the washi tape to the page background as well.

Next I stuck a yellow skeleton leaf onto the page along with a small glittery yellow flower which I embellished with a black gemstone in the centre. The yellow and white wording is from a Kaisercraft Sticker Sheet and they read “loving life” and “our story starts here”; they are both edged with a black Uni Pin marker and I stamped some small hearts onto them using black Archival Ink. I also stamped the hearts onto two small squares of leftover yellow sticker to make two small heart embellishments for my page. The black and white “love” wording is created using circular button letter stickers and the “love with all your heart” and “and so the adventure begins” wording are from a Tim Holtz Small Talk sticker set; they are all outlined using the black Uni Pin marker. To finish, I splattered the page with black, white and yellow acrylic paint.

My page reminds me to love life and appreciate the simple things like the pretty yellow flowers that we have in our garden at the moment. You may remember that we replanted our flower beds last year and as such we added these miniature daffodils which seem to be a bit early flowering (grin!) – aren’t they adorable!

We were also surprised to see these pretty crocus in our flower bed too, we didn’t even know they there (double 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 be able to join the lovely Rike from rike’s art and her The Colour Yellow challenge over at Art Journal Journey with the yellow I added.

I’m joining the Love is in the Air challenge over at Moo Mania & More with my Loving Life page.

Over at Country View Challenges their challenge is Black & White Plus One, so I’m happy to join this challenge to with my black, white and yellow page.

As I used black, white and yellow to create this page, I’m also joining Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Black, White + One Other Colour challenge.

Over at The Artistic Stamper, their challenge is Heart It!, so I’m pleased to join this challenge with all the stamped elements, love and hearts.

As the lovely Tracey is Guest Designing over at Frilly and Funkie, I’m also happy to be join the Frilly and Funkie Challenge which is Let Me Count The Ways, as I used three stamped Vintage Circles and three colours (black, white and yellow) on my 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:

  • Leftover tissue paper and papers stamped using various stamp sets and Jet Black Ranger Archival Ink
  • Leftover white paper coloured with Yellow Colourcraft Brusho Colour
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.8mm)
  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Cadmium Yellow Medium)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (White, Black)
  • Hallmark Cards Stamp Set  (Unknown – Heart)
  • Old book – The Illustrated Book of Nature
  • Michael’s (Washi Tape)
  • Nature’s Touch of Art (Skeleton Leaves Yellow)
  • Poundland (Accessories Pack 60911, Design Gems 175751)
  • Kaisercraft Sticker Sheet (Fiesta! SS738)
  • Home Bargains (Love Letters 22738)
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology Sticker Set (Small Talk #TH93193)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Pritt Stick
  • Ranger Glossy Accents

Sweet Winter Season

It’s been very cold and frosty this week, we even had a light sprinkling of snow, so I thought I’d create a page to capture the pretty frozen landscape.

I started by covering the centre of the page with Pébéo white gesso and then I added some Silver Metallic acrylic paint around the edges, gradually blending the gesso and acrylic into each other where they met. Next I arranged some images, wording, flowers and leaves from a Sweet Winter Season decoupage book and die cut some branches using Garden Greens Thinlets by Tim Holtz from some pink and brown paper using my Big Shot machine. They are all layered and arranged onto the page using double-sided tape or a Zig glue pen. I also die cut some snowflakes from grey/pink paper using two different die sets and stuck them onto the background along with silver snowflake relief stickers. I used some of the smaller snowflake relief stickers to decorate a few of the decoupage pieces, then to finish I added some tiny clear gemstones to add a bit of extra sparkle.

With it being so cold out, our bird feeder has been working overtime. We have had an array of birds visiting including a pair of Coal Tits; they have a distinctive grey back, black cap, and white patch at the back of their neck with beautiful creamy peachy coloured breast-feathers.

Coal Tits look similar to this Chickadee that we saw in the US when we visited last year. I have included a squirrel on my page but luckily we don’t have them raiding our bird feeder, unlike our friends in America who get chipmunks as well as red and grey squirrels on their feeders.

This little guy with his pretty grey and brown feathers is a Dunnock and reminds me of the little bird on my page; we see him in our garden on a daily basis feeding underneath our bird feeders.

Of course I wanted to also show you our resident Robin, although this isn’t the best of photos he still looks so sweet (grin!).

Challenges

I’m pleased to join the Anything Goes challenge over at Paperbabe Stamps with my wintry art journal page.

I’m also joining Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Anything Goes challenge 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:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Poundland Metallic Acrylic Paint (Silver)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush marker (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Sizzix Thinlets Tim Holtz Alterations (Garden Greens 661206)
  • Tonic Studios Christmas Trio Die Set (falling Snowflakes 1792e)
  • The Works Cutting Dies (Snowflake Garland)
  • The Works 3D Decoupage Book (Sweet Winter Season)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Changing Seasons CRO701/16PL1)
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Endless Love CRO206/A)
  • Crelando Relief Stickers (IAN289011)
  • Home Bargains Special Occasion (Mini Decorative Stickers 22740)
  • Zig Memory System 2-Way Glue (Dual Action Glue Pen)
  • Stix2 double-sided tape

Kin Toffee + Vodka

Today my page is inspired by a present that my hubby kindly bought me, Kin Toffee + Vodka which tastes delicious and is locally made in the heart of the Lake District. The box was gorgeous so I had fun recycling it to create this page (grin!).

The background is created using Kuretake watercolour paint set; I painted strips of Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna and Black paint diagonally onto a page that I had already wet with water, so that the paint colours bled into each other. I added more of these paints until I achieved the look I wanted, and then I also added some Lemon Yellow and Cadmium Scarlet watercolour paint to intensify the colours and add some contrast too.

Once the paint had dried, I added some tiny squares over the black watercolour paint using black Archival Ink and a stamp from the Docrafts Geometric Capsule Collection. Then finally I cut the vodka box packaging into squares and rectangles, and arranged them onto the page with an image of a bottle and glass that I recycled from a magazine; they are stuck in place using double-sided tape.

This toffee vodka is amazing and a little goes a long way, you only need a few sips in a glass; it tastes so yummy by itself and is a lovely treat served over ice cream too (grin!).

Kin Vodka is made in the Lake District as you can see by the packaging it is inspired by the beautiful area that it comes from and the great outdoors. It is hand blended and has rich caramel tones with a lovely smooth taste and a subtle warming kick – so delicious!

I’m sharing my drink related post over at T Stands for Tuesday and sending the T Gang very Happy T day wishes!

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 Alison/Craftytrog and her Geometric Shapes challenge over at Art Journal Journey with all the square stamped and collage square/rectangular shapes on my page.

I’m joining in the Alcohol, Drinks Or Inks challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge with my Toffee Vodka inspired page.

As I featured both stamped and collage squares on my page, I’m also happy to join the Squares challenge over at Moo Mania & More.

I’m pleased to join the “New” (Fresh Start) challenge over at Paperbabe Stamps as my page was created to remember my new Toffee Vodka that my hubby kindly bought for me.

I’m also joining Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Have a Heart challenge as my page features vodka that is made in the “heart” of the Lake District from my dear hubby.

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:

  • Kuretake Gansai Tambi Japanese Watercolour Paint set (Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Black, Lemon Yellow, Cadmium Scarlet)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Docrafts Papermania Gift Tags & Stamp Set (Capsule Geometric Kraft PMA105307)
  • Kin Vodka + Toffee Box packaging
  • Old magazine
  • Stix 2 double-sided tape