Dancing is an art

I’m so excited and honoured to be hosting Art Journal Journey this August and for this month’s challenge you are invited to use your favourite quotes, sayings and poems to inspire your designs for the theme “Poetry in Motion”.

As some of you may know I really like to create pages with meaning and I’m often inspired by things I see and do, including quotes and my page today is inspired by these wonderful words:

I started by painting patches of white gesso over the page then I added Peacock Feathers and Cracked Pistachio Distress Inks by applying the ink pad to an acrylic block, spritzing with water and then pressing the block onto the page. I also dragged the ink pads over the edge of the page to concentrate the colour. With the quote in mind, I stamped some filigree images by Hampton Art using London Fog Memento Ink. Next I sprinkled Ultramarine Colourcraft Brusho Crystal powder onto the page and spritzed them with water and just watched the magic as the colours burst into life. I then added pieces of washi tape, which I had torn so the edges didn’t have such straight lines and flowed with movement.  I stuck down some torn pieces of music paper using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium and also dragged some of the Brusho colour from the page over the edges of the music to blend them in.  I added plasterboard/drywall tape to add more texture and then I layered on torn pieces of a baby wipe which I had previously used to mop up some acrylic paint. Before applying the baby wipe I stretched it so it looked like fabric and used matte gel medium to stick it down so the wispy edges danced across the page. The beautiful dancer image is fussy cut from a leaflet and stuck down using a UHU Stic. I stamped the words onto some paper by Craft Sensations, fussy cut it out, edged the paper with a black Sharpie permanent marker and stuck it to the page using double-sided foam. To finish I added two cream Button Heart embellishments.

I love the way this page has turned out and I feel the words could be applied to my art journaling and to the creation of this page.

I do hope that you are inspired to get creative by the “Poetry in Motion” challenge over at Art Journal Journey too! I’m looking forward to visiting you to see all your wonderful creations.

As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a Happy T Day! Today I’m enjoying a refreshing drink of apple juice with ginger beer, in my craft room while creating a new journal page (grin!). It’s served in one of my favourite glasses, which I bought during a tour of the Maine Mead Works in America whilst there on holiday.

Mead is an alcoholic drink made from honey, hence the bee which greeted us on their fabulous sign! If you look closely you can just make out this bee symbol on my glass too (grin!). The mead that they make is a modern style of mead which is similar to wine and is light and refreshing, whereas I think of mead as a winter drink served hot with spices. Both of which are delicious!

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

“Poetry in Motion”

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

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Peacock Feathers, Cracked Pistachio)
  • Memento Dye Ink (London Fog)
  • Colourcraft Brusho Crystals (Ultramarine)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO151)
  • Dovecraft upper and lower case alphabet stamp set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Music Book (Bosworth Violin Studies)
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Endless Love CRO260/A)
  • Used dry baby wipe
  • Leaflet
  • Crelando Decorative Tape
  • Home Bargains Self-Adhesive Button Hearts (Sweet Hearts 22809)
  • 151 Adhesives Plasterboard/Drywall Tape
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Thank You Party at The Taps

To thank us for helping at last year’s Lytham Beer Festival we were treated to free beer and food at The Taps, an award-winning pub in Lytham. We had such a wonderful time with our friends and fellow beer enthusiasts! Here is a page to show my appreciation of the great evening we had!


I collaged pieces of the pub quiz, that we were given to complete as part of the evening, using a UHU Stic, and then I covered them with white gesso to tone them down a bit. To create a weathered and aged look, I used Distress Inks and a copper Scrumptious spray over the whole page, I think that it looks like the old plaster that was in the pub. I added more grunge detail using a Sketchy texture stamp from Kaisercraft, Memento Ink and the same Distress Inks. I then stamped the answers to the quiz questions under each image using black Archival Ink. Next I surrounded the quiz pictures and answers with a wood grain effect using Colourcraft Brusho powder and Liquitex matte gel medium to depict a wall and it’s wooden beams. The pub had lots of Gallery Walls of mirrors, clocks and frames so I cut out a variety of frames and mirrors from magazines and brochures and then filled them with a butterfly design paper and reminders of our time at the pub. This included images from the pump clips of our two favourite beers of the evening, a raffle ticket we were given to pay for our beers at the bar, The Taps signage and a ‘thank you’ which I stamped on a piece of the butterfly paper. I used a black Uni Pin marker and white Uniball gel pen to emphasis the wood grain on the wooden beams and to add detail to the frames and pictures.  There were lots of different lamps at the pub too so I added a lovely copper shade image which I fussy cut from a brochure. The number stickers are coloured black using a Sharpie permanent marker, they signify the number of beers we had and our first place in the pub quiz. To finish I added the pint glasses and coloured the beer using Spectrum Aqua markers, these colours match our two favourite beers.

As this page is telling the story of the fun time we had at the thank you party, I’m pleased to be able to join Erica who is hosting this month’s theme “Tell me a Story” over at Art Journal Journey.


The Taps has recently been renovated and has a lovely old pub feel with a modern twist. One thing that hasn’t changed is the large selection of quality beers on offer, with 12 hand pumps at the bar.


Many of the areas had Gallery Walls and I particularly liked this butterfly wallpaper and bank of framed mirrors – as you might have guessed this is the ladies toilets/restroom.


The quiz was fun; you had to work out the names of the breweries from the pictures provided. We managed to get eight out of the ten correct and won first prize, taking home some bottled beer.


My favourite beer was the Farmers Belgian Blue by Bradfield brewery in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, which is a dark winter beer with Christmassy berry flavours (4.9% abv) and was actually a blue purple colour when it was first poured before settling down to a normal dark chestnut shade. My hubby preferred a golden beer called Hopstar Saaz Blonde from Darwen, Lancashire which was brewed with extra pale malt and Saaz hops for a light refreshing finish (4%). As T Stands for Tuesday I’m joining the T Gang and wishing everyone a very Happy T Day!

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
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Tea Dye, Crushed Corduroy)
  • Michele Marsden Crafts Scrumptious Precious Metal Sprizer (Copper)
  • Colourcraft Brusho Colours (Dark Brown)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175, Black 199)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Markers (Yellow, Burgundy)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm and 0.8mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Sharpie Fine Point Permanent Marker (Black)
  • Dovecraft upper and lower case alphabet stamps (WDW Alpha Stamp DCVW0030)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Sketchy CS878)
  • Hampton Arts Doddlebug Design Inc. cling mounted rubber stamps (Thankful ICO162)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Urban Style CR0701/16PL2)
  • Pub Quiz page
  • Raffle ticket
  • Magazines and brochures
  • Anita’s Outline Stickers (Mixed Numbers Silver ANT8101013)
  • Hobbycraft Outline Stickers (Gold Harmony 5934031001)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

All Things Pumpkin

As you may know I love all things pumpkin, so today my page gives thanks to this autumnal treat. I’m also pleased to say a big hello to the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday – Happy T day!pumpkin-spice-ajp

The background is inspired by a great technique I discovered on one of my blog friend’s posts and I just had to try it out. Her site is called Blending Colours and here’s the post. Although I didn’t have the exact same products I decided to improvise and give it a go using Colourcraft Brusho Colours and Liquitex matte gel medium. So I sprinkled two colours of Brusho Powders onto the page then painted gel medium over the top using a wet paint brush (as I found it thins down the gel medium). I made sure that I kept the brush strokes in the same direction and was rewarded with this lovely wood grain effect. I really like the colour variation and think this is because each Brusho colour is made of separate colour components. Once the gel medium had dried I added a border using ink from a Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and an old plastic gift card and added highlights using a Uniball Signo white gel pen. Next I applied the sentiments which are rub-on transfers by Royal & Langnickel and the label from a bottle of Pumpkin Spice syrup. As we had discovered the syrup in a Moose Coffee shop I cut a moose out of paper from a Craft Asylum Paper Pad, then I outlined it with a black Sharpie marker and stuck it to the page using double-sided foam tape. To finish I punched out some hearts from the same paper and stuck them to the page using a UHU Stic, outlining them with a Uni Pin black marker once the glue had dried.  This new technique with the gel medium and Brusho powders is certainly one I will try again, I think there are endless applications for this effect.


Last week you may remember seeing Linda’s delicious pumpkin roll that she had baked. I was so impressed I decided to try making one myself. This is the recipe I found and although it rose too high making it a little thick to roll, it was still light and fluffy and tasted wonderful. Definitely one I’d have again and it was perfect with a nice cup of tea. Thanks for the inspiration Linda, although I’d love to try your recipe as it looks so much more professional than mine!pumpkin-ale

Our pumpkin beer is finally ready to drink, so over the weekend we decided to try it. It came out really nice with a lovely hint of pumpkin and the smell of pumpkin spices. This is the 27th batch of beer that my hubby has brewed, it’s a nice coppery colour and came in at 5.78% abv (alcohol by volume). We first had pumpkin beer on holiday (vacation) in Maine at Federal Jacks bar in Kennebunkport where they serve it with a shot of spiced rum added, so to remain authentic, we tried it that way too. It’s so nice and warming on a cold autumn day, though I limit myself to only one as it’s quite potent!

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 (Dark Brown, Yellow)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush artist pen (Black 199)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Sharpie Permanent Fine Point marker (Black)
  • Creative Rox Craft Asylum Paper Pad (Into the woods 480326)
  • Syrup label
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Thanksgiving Sentiments #ROY522 RUB-ON)
  • Tonic Studios Paper Punch Accent (Hearts Sider 830E)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range Double-sided foam tape


Moose Coffee

October means a week of Birthday celebrations for my hubby! So we went to one of our favourite places, Liverpool and discovered a wonderful café called Moose Coffee which inspired this page.


To start I added 3 strips of washi tape to the page and applied silver metallic paint with my finger and then a baby wipe. I used stencils to build up layers of metallic copper ink spray and Brusho crystal powers which I diluted with water to make a spray and then Distress inks which I applied using a blending tool. I edged the page by applying Faber-Castell Big Brush marker ink using an old plastic gift card and then added the pumpkin images which are rub-on transfers. The moose is cut from decoupage paper and stuck to the page using a UHU stic, it is outlined with Big Brush marker and the words “hot chocolate” and “pumpkin spice” are stamped using Memento Ink. I used the lovely takeaway cup from the café to adorn my page too, using my Big Brush marker again to edge them.


Liverpool has some beautiful architecture, here’s the wonderful café building, isn’t it fab!


I love this sign too – this metal work inspired the industrial look of my page and the use of the metallic paint and spray.jo-hot-chocolate

So when we saw all the syrups in the café window, we went in and asked if they had Pumpkin syrup. They did so instead of coffee we requested a shot of their pumpkin spice syrup in a hot chocolate, which is not at all common here in the UK so we got some surprised looks. They use real chocolate to make their hot chocolate drink and with the addition of the pumpkin spice syrup it was so very very yummy! In fact we liked it so much that we ordered a bottle of the syrup to add to the hot chocolate we make at home. I’m wishing a Happy T Day to everyone over at T Stands for Tuesday and a big hello to all of the T Gang!

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:

  • Michelle Marsden Crafts Scrumptious Precious Metal Spritzer  (Copper)
  • Colourcraft Brusho Crystals (Dark Brown)
  • Poundland Metallic Acrylic Paint (Silver)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Brushed Corduroy, Black Soot)
  • Memento Dye Ink (Rich Cocoa)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush artist pen (Sanguine 188 B, Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Viva Décor Universal Stencil (Past Times 9002 703 00)
  • Creative Expressions That Touch of Mica Masks (Distressed Dots)
  • Ranger Dina Wakley Media Stencil (Wheels MDS45588)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Alpha Folk DCE907115)
  • The Works (Enjoy the Ride Washi Tape)
  • The Works Santoro Decoupage Paper (SNDEC043)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Bats, Cats & Ghosts #EDW355 Rub-on)
  • UHU Stic


This page was inspired by all the questions and interest I had in my last post about Pumpkin Beer. As you can see these guys are having lots of fun in the pumpkin patch!


I applied a very thin layer of light red Winsor & Newton Cotman watercolour paint with a baby wipe and then sprinkled Colourcraft Brusho Crystals powder over the top. I used three colours of the Brusho powders, dark brown, orange and yellow, and spritzed them with water, and then I watched the magic as the colours exploded on the page. These Brusho powders are amazing; there are so many different effects you can create with them. Once dried I stamped leaf images using Archival Ink, then re-stamped them off-centre using Distress Inks to give them a ghostly appearance. I added the ghosts which are rub-on transfers I bought in the sale at a local craft store. To finish I applied Faber-Castell Big Brush marker ink using an old plastic gift card and Uni Pin black marker to the edges of the page and some gold gem stones. This was a really fun page to create and makes me smile when I see the – BOO!


Thanks so much for all your interest in our pumpkin beer, we make beer throughout the year and pumpkin is one of our favourites. It’s subtly spiced and amber in colour with an ABV (alcohol by volume) of 5.2%. To answer some of your questions, it takes around 6 hours to make and 6 weeks until it is ready. This time we made 40 UK pints (that’s 50 US pints) and it will be ready in a couple of weeks, although it does improve with a little ageing – if it lasts that long! In the meantime I did manage to find a photo from last year, as you can see I always coat the rim of the glass it is served in with sugar and cinnamon – yum! Our inspiration for this beer comes from our holiday visits to America as pumpkin beer is readily available in the fall, unlike here in the UK. That’s why we get so excited when pumpkins are available in our stores as we can start to make our own pumpkin beer.

pumpkin-cityOne of the reasons we enjoyed our American holiday so much was the many pumpkins on display at farmers markets, farm stalls and just around town. It’s always such a lovely time of year to visit!

displayWith this month’s theme “Indian Summer – Golden October – Autumn”, I’m delighted to be able to join Valerie over at Art Journal Journey.

I’m also pleased to join the Halloween Party challenge over at Moo-Mania.

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 Crystals (Dark Brown, Orange, Yellow)
  • Winsor & Newton Cotman Watercolours (Light Red)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Festive Berries, Spiced Marmalade, Fossilized Amber, Brushed Corduroy)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush artist pen (Sanguine 188 B, Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • BoBunny stamps (Falling Leaves #12105154)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Bats, Cats & Ghosts #EDW355 Rub-on)
  • Poundland (504 Gems)


The inspiration for this page is Dragonflies. When I first started art journaling I explored the internet to learn more and I recall finding a beautiful dragonfly piece that someone had created. So I thought it would be fun to create my own, drawing from my memory to incorporate the things I loved about the piece; from what I remembered it had a yellow theme and included a doily and circle effect and squiggles around the dragonflies. So with my challenge sorted I set to work and here’s the page I created!

Dragonflies - Art Journal page

To start with I used Liquitex matte gel medium to adhere rectangles of decoupage paper to the page. I stamped the doilies using a grey Faber-Castell Big Brush marker as ink and for the circle details used three postage label stamps, a dot stamp and black Archival Ink. Then I smooshed and splattered diluted yellow and gold Spectrum Aqua markers and the same grey Big Brush marker on the top. I also stamped a Kaisercraft Sketchy stamp using a sepia Spectrum Aqua marker. As a finishing touch to the background I sprinkled lemon Colourcraft Brusho powder and spritzed with water, this is a really fun technique where you ‘ooh and aah’ as the colour literally explodes on the page in front of you. It really intensified the yellow and merged with some of the other inks I had used, which I like. I stamped the dragonflies using an Eco Green Crafts stamp and Archival Ink, then using a black Uni Pin marker I doodled squiggles around them. The coloured dragonflies are rub-on transfers which I outlined to make them pop out more. I also used the decorative leaf border on the page to add vertical dimension; it is from the same transfer set. To finish I stamped a couple of words to describe my dragonflies and added some vintage looking alphabet buttons to title my page.


It just so happens I have a metal dragonfly in my garden, it sits in my flowerbed and ties in beautifully with my page. As the theme over at Art Journal Journey (AJJ) this month is “In my garden there is…” I’m happy to be joining Yvonne and the others over at AJJ again.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

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

  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Markers (Gold, Yellow, Sepia, Slate)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush artist pen (Cold Grey IV 233)
  • Colourcraft Brusho Crystal Colour (Lemon)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Dovecraft Curiosity Corner A5 clear stamps (Lace and Doile DCCS009)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamps (Sketchy
  • Eco Green Crafts recycled rubber art stamps (Petal Party #04309)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Francoise Collection (Flower Style FRSWS003)
  • The Works clear stamps (CR0274/TW3)
  • Vivi Gade Skangen Decoupage Paper (Art No: 25561)
  • Royal & Langnical Tip of the Brush Rub-on Transfers (Insect Collection #TIP-1484 RUB-ON)
  • Home Bargains self-adhesive letters (Love Letters Item code: 22738)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium

Under the Sea

I recently purchased the Colourcraft Brusho Crystals ink powders and was so excited to use them that they inspired my next page.  They are small pots of highly pigmented coloured ink powder that give amazing effects when water is applied. Each pot seems to be a mix of different colours that make the finished ink come alive. I decided to experiment and have fun, so I choose two of the colours from the 12 in my pack (turquoise and leaf green) for my background to see where that led me and here’s my tropical island themed page – Under the Sea.

Under the Sea Art Journal Page

As you can see, the background is a burst of colour, although I started with turquoise and leaf green; it’s interesting to note that I didn’t add any yellow, the leaf green crystals produced the yellow aspect due to the mix of the coloured crystals in each product. I wasn’t expecting there to be so much yellow so this led me to add some emerald green Brusho powder to intensify the green element and mask the yellow a bit. Having tried different techniques I found that sprinkling the crystals onto a dry page and then lightly spritzing with water gave me the look I wanted. Once you have spritzed the powders, they almost explode with vibrancy in front of your eyes. With the background finished I started to look through my craft stash, to see what would complement the background and decided on my Tropical Travelogue stamps by Hampton Arts, which I stamped in 3 clusters onto the page using black Archival Ink. I applied exotic flowers, which are rub-on transfers and added self-adhesive gems to the centres. I hope you like the results as much as I do.

The sea and beach theme is very close to my heart as I live right near the beach with my hubby. It’s so lovely and I feel very blessed.

“If you are fortunate enough to live by the beach then you are fortunate enough…”

Every week we volunteer to help clean our local beach under a scheme called Love My Beach. It’s a great way to help the environment, care for sea life, meet people and give something back to our community. We always have so much fun too!

If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

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

  • Colourcraft Brusho Crystal Colour (Turquoise, Leaf Green, Emerald Green)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Marker (Slate)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm and 0.5mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Hampton Art Graphic 45 cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue IC0134 and IC0135)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong IC0151)
  • The Works clear stamps (CR0274/TW3)
  • Royal and Langnickel Rub-on (Fab Flowers #ROY1400)
  • Docraft metallic waterfall stickers (Beach PO#9622)
  • The Works stickers (Rhinestone Flowers)