Happy New Year! 2018

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year filled with love, peace and happiness!

I went for a grunge look today and started by applying acrylic paints to the edges of the page using an old plastic gift card. The paints I used were Navy Liquitex acrylic paint, a metallic gold paint and then also some white and some black DecoArt acrylic paint. I also used the same paints to stamp stars and hearts around the edge of the page using an Urban Stamps set by Docrafts Papermania. I used up the excess paint by applying it to some white paper and also to the centre area of the page. Once the paint had dried I used the same star stamp with black Archival Ink to add more detail to the stars and border. Next I added some previously stamped white tissue paper from my craft stash, using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to stick it in place; the stamps used include a chandelier, postage marks, words, starburst, Art Deco border, numbers, scroll work and music sheet. These pre-stamped images are leftover from pages that I have created as I often stamp the image onto tissue paper and then place it on my page in order to see what it looks like first (grin!). When the gel medium had dried I applied a very thin layer of Pébéo white gesso to blend them into the background more.  Then I used some sparkly gold glitter tape to add the sun burst pattern to the page and added the “Happy New Year!” sentiment and “2018” which are foam stickers. I added shadows to them using a black Derwent Graphik marker and a black Derwent Inktense pencil. Then I splattered the page with white and also black DecoArt acrylic paint using a paint brush. The stars are made from gold outline stickers which I backed with a starry night paper from The Works and grey script paper from Craft Sensations along with some white paper which I had applied the leftover paint to earlier. I cut the stars out of the papers and stuck them down using double-sided foam tape, this finished the page.

I hope you all had a wonderful time over the holiday season! Here are our New Year drinks, a Poinsettia cocktail for me and a homemade Christmas beer for my hubby – cheers and wishing you all the very best for 2018!

With this drink related photo, I’m saying a big hello the T Gang at T Stands for Tuesday  and wishing you all a Happy T Day!

Challenges

I’m glad that I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with so much inspiration and it’s a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people too. The New Year brings some new exciting themes, so here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Erika N, also known as BioArtGal, who is hosting the “New Year, New Adventures” challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my Happy New Year journal page.

I’m joining Moo Mania & More and their “Somebody/Something/The New Year” challenge – Happy New Year!

With “New” Year celebration, I’m also very happy to join the “Something New” challenge over at  Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge.

I’m also pleased to join the fun over at Country View Challenges and their “Anything Goes” challenge.

As I created this mixed media page to welcome and celebrate the New Year, I’m also joining the “Ring in the New” challenge over at the Mixed Media Monthly 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:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Navy)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (White, Black)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • Derwent Inktense Pencils (2200 Ink Black)
  • Docrafts Papermania Urban Stamps (12 Days of Christmas – Icons PMA907909)
  • White paper
  • White tissue paper pre-stamped with various designs
  • The Works Paper Pack (The Night Before Christmas HCPAP003X15)
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Soft Colours CR0730/R)
  • Wilko Glitter Tape (Gold)
  • Outline Stickers (Gold Stars)
  • Trimcraft Alphabet & Number Stickers (Glitter SCSTK013)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • The Range double-sided foam tape
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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

Poinsettias

Tis the season … for beautiful poinsettias to adorn our homes and my more traditional Christmas page celebrates these pretty flowers with some additional sparkle and shine (grin!).

I used a poinsettia napkin to create the background which was 3-ply so I split it into its separate layers. I started by sticking the second layer to the page using a UHU Stic and then I cut it to fit the page; this napkin layer covered the page in lightly coloured poinsettia images. Then I ripped the top layer of napkin around some of the poinsettia images and used Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to stick them down so I could outline and define the poinsettias using a Derwent Graphik marker without the ink being absorbed and leaking into the napkin. When all the glues were dry I distressed the light poinsettia images using some tacky masking tape to rip and remove patches of the napkin. I then covered the page with a layer of Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to ensure all the napkin edges were held in place. When dry, I added the glittery gold flowers, holly garlands, circles and dots which are all outline stickers.  Then I added more sparkle and shine by outlining the poinsettia petals using Icicle Ranger Stickles and by adding dots of Christmas Red Ranger Stickles to the poinsettia centres, gold flowers, circles and berries. It was well worth taking the time to apply the Stickles as the twinkley detail and finish looks amazing. The focal poinsettia saying is a sticker by Penny Black which reads:

“These Poinsettias are opening wide to wish you Cheer for the Christmastide”

I mounted the sticker onto some recycled card that I had covered with glittery gold by using the outline sticker surround. I then cut the card to size using some serrated scissors and edged it with a gold metallic marker. I also arranged some of the holly garland outline stickers around the edges and coloured the berries using the Christmas Red Stickles. It is stuck into place using double-sided tape which finished the page.

Every year I make a yummy cocktail which is also called a Poinsettia, they are made with 1 part Cointreau (orange liqueur), 3 parts prosecco and 3 parts cranberry juice. Here’s my cocktail pictured with my hubby’s home-brewed Christmas beer. In the background you can see a stollen that I made as a special Christmas treat and of course my cute little poinsettia. As T Stands for Tuesday I’m sharing our drinks with the T Gang and wishing you a Happy T Day!

Challenges

I’m always enjoy taking part in Challenge Blogs, 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 poinsettia flower celebration.

The challenge theme over at Try it on Tuesday is “Twinkle Twinkle” and I’m joining in the fun with my sparkly poinsettia page.

I’m also pleased to join the “Christmas with optional Reds, Greens and Rust” challenge over at Country View Challenges.

As I created this page to display in my craft room and bring some Christmas Cheer, I’m joining the “Christmas/Winter Holidays” challenge over at the Simon Says Stamp Monday 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:

  • Poundland (Luxury Napkin)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • Outline Stickers Gold Holly Garland (Art No. 202490)
  • Docrafts Anita’s Outline Stickers (Flower Blossom Gold ANT810143)
  • Ranger Stickles (Icicle and Christmas Red)
  • Recycled white card
  • Penny Black 2007 Stickeroos (Joy to the World #10-197)
  • Fun Cut serrated scissors
  • Script metallic marker (Gold)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Oh, Deer!

I’m so excited that December is here as I can put up my Christmas decorations; I started on Friday and it took me a couple of days to complete this task (grin!). I thought I’d create a page with the help of this deer who seems to be celebrating by decorating his antlers with Christmas baubles too (double grin!).

My idea was to create a snowy silver birch woodland background so I started by applying some torn pieces of white napkin using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to add some texture. Then I added Brushed Corduroy, Spiced Marmalade and Hickory Smoke Distress Inks like watercolour by applying each ink to an acrylic block and then using a paintbrush to apply them to the page. I then sprinkled some Dark Brown Colourcraft Brusho powder over the top, spritzed with water and watched the powders explode with colour. I dried the page with my heat gun and then I applied a thin layer of PVA glue here and there in order to seal in some of the colour. Once the glue had dried, I applied a thick layer of Pébéo white gesso over the top using a palette knife and used the heat gun again to create some lovely texture as the gesso bubbled under the heat.  I emphasised this texture by using Silver Grey, White Sparkle and Apple Green metallic lustres by Craft-T products. I love how the gesso enhanced the background texture and that it looks like silver birch bark covered in snow. Next I ripped some branch and berry images from a napkin and stuck them around the edge of the page using a UHU Stic. With the background completed, I tore some silver Curling Ribbon (that was recycled from a present) into thin strips and then curled it with some scissors. I arranged the red and green baubles which are stickers and tied the strips of ribbon to them as if they were hanging down the page. I fussy cut the red reindeer from an old magazine and as the reindeer had white writing across it I covered it with small pieces of the red paper that I tore from the off cuts and coloured the edges with Crimson, Burgundy and Scarlet Spectrum Aqua markers. I mounted the reindeer image onto a piece of white card and outlined his eyes and nose with a Derwent Graphik marker so they stood out more. He is stuck onto the page using double-sided tape and I wrapped the ribbons around his antlers as I stuck him down so it looked like the baubles were hanging from them; this took a little time as it was quite fiddly. To finish, I added more sparkle to his antlers using some little silver dots and some red and green bells which are from the same sticker set as the baubles.

You may remember the Winter Wonderland Decorations that I made last month. I had a few requests to show them again when I had created my winter window display, so here they are (grin!). As you can see I made a few more of these decorations and trimmed them with lace, and as it’s December they are being displayed with some Christmas decorations too.

They look so magical at night with the fairy lights!

As T Stands for Tuesday I’m sharing my green tea in some new mugs that were bought for us, their design reminded me of the reindeer page (double grin!) – 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. Being a new month there are lots of new exciting challenge themes too, so here are the ones I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Sheila from Orange Esmeralda over at Art Journal Journey and her “Let’s Celebrate” challenge with my reindeer celebrating Christmas!

I’m joining the “Christmas” challenge over at Country View Challenges with my Christmas themed page and it was lots of fun also including their option of using reds and greens as part of my page design.

With my snowy reindeer scene I’m also joining in the fun over at A Vintage Journey and their “Winter Wonderland” challenge with my “Art Journaling” and “Mixed-Media” style page as it was created to remember the joy of putting up my Christmas Decorations this year and I used lots of different media to create it.

Being inspired by Chris and the fabulous textured backgrounds that she created for her happy snowman and baubles, I’m also joining the “Torn, Ripped and Burnt” challenge over at PaperArtsy with the torn and heated elements that I used to create my silver birch textured background and happy reindeer with baubles.

I’m also pleased to join the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge 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:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Brushed Corduroy, Spiced Marmalade, Hickory Smoke)
  • Colourcraft Brusho Colour (Dark Brown)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Craf-T Luster Rub-ons Color Kit #4 (Silver Grey, White Sparkle, Apple Green)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Crimson, Burgundy, Scarlet)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Poundland (Luxury Napkins 70371)
  • Old Magazine
  • Bauble Stickers from Charity Shop
  • Recycled Curling Ribbon (Silver)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Card Making Fun!

Today I have three cards to share with you that I created to send to my friends and family. Fortuitously these designs also coincide with some challenges that I wanted to join. The cards are for a friend who has just moved into her new house, another is a birthday card for one of my family and the last one is to wish one of my special friends a very Happy Christmas!

Home Sweet Home

I used 6×4” white card stock and applied Twisted Citron, Mowed Lawn and Salty Ocean Distress Ink to a large acrylic block and spritzed it with water. Then I laid the card facedown on the top of the block and pressed down so that the ink transferred onto the card. I did this a couple of times to use up the ink on the block until I was happy with the coverage. I dried the ink using a heat gun and then stamped the birdcage stamp by Dovecrafts using black Archival Ink. I surrounded this image with the pretty tree branches from a new stamp set by Inkadinkado using the same black Archival Ink; I love these stamps, the tree branch designs are beautiful! Next I stamped the “Home Sweet Home” sentiment using the same black ink and a Bellissima alphabet stamp set by Docrafts Papermania. I edged the front of a white blank greetings card with the black Archival Ink and a blending tool and then I cut the Home Sweet Home design to size. I edged it with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and stuck it on the top using double-sided tape. To finish, I used a black Derwent Graphik marker to emphasise some of the stamping so it stood out more and also added some blue circular gems for a bit of sparkle.

I’m pleased to join the “Home Sweet Home” challenge over at Try it on Tuesday which inspired the sentiment on this card.

I’m also pleased to join a new challenge today thanks to the lovely Avril who is on the design team over at Fashionable Stamping Challenges as my card also links to their “Nature” challenge.

The silhouette design I created means I can also join in the fun over at the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge and their “Silhouette” challenge.

Skateboarding Monkey

This fun card is created using a 6×6” green card base. Firstly I cut a piece of striped paper to size and then I stamped the sentiment using black Archival Ink and an alphabet stamp set by Hampton Art. As you can see I bunched up the word “Birthday” so it looked like it was being pushed out-of-place by the skateboard. I stuck it into place using double-sided tape. Next I added the monkey and star-like flowers which are foam stickers and also some glossy dots and tiny flowers designer vinyl stickers from Craftime. To finish, I used black and white Uni Posca paint pens to add small dots to the background and sentiment.

I wanted to join the lovely Chris from Pearshapedcrafting and her wonderful “101 Ways to Keep Warm” challenge over at Art Journal Journey; I think skateboarding would be a good way to keep warm especially for me as I’d probably be laughing so much whilst I was trying to do it (grin!).

I’m also joining the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge as my fun monkey would love to join their “Furry Friends” theme.

The Best Christmas Ever!

I was inspired to create this card after creating my Winter Wonderland Decorations. This is a one layer card, so I started by masking off the top edge of a white 6×4” card and stamping some different stamps using Emboss ink; the stamps included a “Wishing you the best Christmas ever!” sentiment and a snowflake stamp, both by Clear Impressions, and also Diamond Background and Serpentine Background stamps, both by Art Impressions. I completed the embossing in layers, starting with the sentiment and then using the other stamps. Each layer of Emboss ink stamping was covered with white Stampendous embossing powder and then I shook off the excess powder onto a piece of scrap paper. I also tapped the card to make sure any stray powder was removed and then I used a heat gun to melt the embossing powder. I swept the gun over the stamped images, taking care not to direct the heat in one area for too long until the embossing powder changed to a glossy finish becoming smooth and dimensional. I repeated this process a few times to create a design that I was happy with. I then applied Chipped Sapphire, Peacock Feathers and Cracked Pistachio Distress Inks to the card using a blending tool, starting with the darker colour of Chipped Sapphire around the edge and blending to the lighter colour of Cracked Pistachio in the middle. I dried the ink with my heat gun and spritzed water over the top, blotting it with a piece of kitchen towel/paper to remove some of the ink. I also diluted the three Distress Inks by stamping the ink pads onto an acrylic block and spritzing with water, and then I flicked the inks onto the card using a paintbrush and used a heat gun to dry them. To finish, I added some white rhinestone flower gems and dots of silver Stickles to add some glitter and sparkle.

I’m pleased to be able to join the “One Layer Christmas Cards” challenge over at Stamping Sensations with my white embossed stamped card.

As I used the glittery gems and Sparkles on this card, I’m also pleased to be joining the “Glitter” challenge over at Allsorts Challenge Blog.

Family, home and Christmas all mean so much to me, so I thought I’d share some photos relating to all three of these things (grin!). As we live by the sea we don’t often get snow, however we did get a light dusting of snow one evening last year. It was beautiful seeing the snow falling although it had disappeared the next morning when we awoke.

This photo is very dear to me, it’s of a white Christmas from my childhood, yes the little girl at the front eating sweets is me (grin!). I’m with my mum and my sister and you can see our Christmas tree in the background too. I will forever remember that furry navy blue and red checked coat that I’m wearing as my mum made it for me!

This picture of me was taken some years ago, when we had light snow fall on Christmas Day. We were staying with family and we went for a lovely woodland walk!

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 each of the cards:

Home Sweet Home

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Twisted Citron, Mowed Lawn, Salty Ocean)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm & 0.3mm)
  • Dovecraft Clear Stamps (Birdcage DCCS015)
  • Inkadinkado Cling Stamps (Branches 65-32007)
  • Docrafts Papermania Bellissima  4×4” Clear Stamps (Alphas PMA907212)
  • Hobbycraft Decorative Embellishments (Blue Round Gems 5665381001)
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape

Skateboarding Monkey

  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pens (Black, White)
  • Hampton Art (Alphabet Stamp Set WM1037)
  • B&M Craft Goody Bag (Turquoise)
  • Wilko Little Steps (Safari Foam Stickers)
  • Craftime Designer Vinyls (B/W Boy & Girl PBDV02)
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape

The Best Christmas Ever!

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Chipped Sapphire, Peacock Feathers, Cracked Pistachio)
  • Tsukienki Emboss Embossing Stamp Pad (Clear)
  • Stampendous Embossing Powder (Detail White Opaque)
  • Clear Impressions (Woodland Christmas)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Diamond Background T-3335, Serpentine Background T-2773)
  • The Works stickers (Rhinestone Flowers)
  • Ranger Stickles (Silver)

Live, Laugh, Love

My journal page today is inspired by a sign we have hung in our kitchen “Live, Laugh, Love”. I’ve created it using some new bird stamps and two of my favourite colours of Distress Ink.

I started by stamping a Script stamp by Kaisercraft in the bottom left and top right corners of the page using black Archival Ink. Then to create glossy silhouettes, I stamped some filigree shapes from 7 Gypsies at Hampton Art using black Versafine Ink and applied black Papermania embossing powder over the top. I shook the excess powder onto a piece of scrap paper and tapped the page against the table to make sure I had removed any stray powder. Once the excess powder was safely returned to its container, I used a heat gun to melt the embossing powder. I swept the gun over the images, taking care not to direct the heat in one area for too long, until the embossing powder changed to a glossy finish becoming smooth and dimensional. Next I covered the page in Twisted Citron and Salty Ocean Distress Inks using a blending tool overlapping the colours and blending them together. I applied modelling paste through a stencil from Creative Expressions using a palette knife and left it to dry. Then I stamped a series of tiny heart outlines from a Christmas stamp set by Hallmark Cards and also some pretty birds sitting on branches by Craft Sensations using the black Archival Ink again. I really like the bird stamps as they look like they have been sketched onto the page and it was easy for me to mimic the stamp design using a black Derwent Graphik marker when I extended the branches to the edge of the page. The black chalkboard heart is a wooden tag on which I applied a rub-on transfer by Kaisercraft, I really like the distressed look of the sentiment which reads:

“LAUGH as much as you breathe and LOVE as long as you LIVE”

For the other sign, I got creative and used a thick piece of black card, which was recycled from some old packaging. I distressed the edges with scissors and stained them with a Sanguine Faber-Castell Big Brush marker to match the colour of the heart edging. Next I fussy cut the “Live, Laugh, Love” wording from a vintage die cut shape and edged it with a green border using the rub-on transfers by Kaisercraft. I stuck it to the black card using a UHU Stic and then I used a black Derwent Graphik marker to give it a distressed look and drew a stitch pattern around the edge using a white Pentel gel pen. I’m pleased how these details helped the sign to match with the heart design. Both the heart and sign are stuck to the page using Glossy Accents. I finished the page by adding some blue and yellow paper flowers using the Glossy Accents again and adding some small black glossy flower and heart designer vinyl stickers by Craftime.

I think both sentiments on this page are great mottos to live by and even have a sign in our kitchen with the “Live, Laugh, Love” saying (grin!). This saying seems to be very common in homes today as it is often used on signs and mugs. It originated from a beautiful poem called “Success” written by Bessie Anderson Stanley in 1904 and is in essence a summary of the very first line:

“He achieved success who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much; Who has enjoyed the trust of pure women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; Who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; Who has never lacked appreciation of Earth’s beauty or failed to express it; Who has left the world better than he found it, Whether an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; Who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had; Whose life was an inspiration; Whose memory a benediction”.

Challenges

I always enjoy using stencils on my pages so I’m joining in the fun over at Moo Mania & More with their “Put a Stencil On It” challenge and also Country View Challenges with their “Stencils” challenge.

As I used a lot of stamps to create this journal page, I’m also pleased to be able to join in the “November Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included)” at the Craft Stamper Take It, Make It Challenge.

The faux stitching around the heart and sign means I’m also joining the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge and their “It’s A Stitch Up” theme.

Including and creating the glossy silhouettes was fun so I’m pleased to join the “Silhouettes” challenge over at the Mixed Media Monthly 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:

  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Tsukineko Versafine Ink (Onyx Black)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Twisted Citron, Salty Ocean)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199, Sanguine 188)
  • Pentel Hybrid Grip Gel pen (White)
  • Papermania Embossing Powder (Black PMA4021006)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies Vintage cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO151)
  • Hallmark Cards Christmas clear stamp set
  • Craft Sensations (Clear Stamps CRO274/16R1)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Moroccan)
  • The Works (Chalkboard Tags)
  • The Works (Vintage Die Cut Shapes)
  • Black cardboard – recycled packaging
  • Kaisercraft Rub-on Transfers (Up, Up & Away Collection RB870, Lush Collection RB868)
  • Craftime Designer Vinyls (B/W Boy & Girl PBDV02)
  • The Works (Mini Paper Flower Embellishments)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic

Give Thanks

I was so excited to receive some happy mail from the lovely Nan! Every element was so detailed from the envelope which had the most stunning handwriting in orange and yellow ink and pretty autumnal leaves, to the beautiful hand painted sunflower card with honeycomb embossing, to the wonderful goodies I found inside (grin!).

So I created a “Give Thanks” page to recognise this kindness and incorporate some of the lovely Peanuts Thanksgiving stickers that Nan kindly gifted to me – I hope you like it!

I started with a neutral background of Parchment Liquitex acrylic paint which I applied using a baby wipe. Next I used two of That Touch of Mica Masks from Creative Expressions; firstly a honeycomb design to match the embossing that Nan had created on the card and secondly a leaf design to match the pretty leaves I found on the envelope. I applied Morocco and Dandelion Memento Ink through the honeycomb stencil using a sponge; these colours were inspired by the orange and yellow inks that Nan had used.

Then I stamped a hexagonal geometric shape using Rich Cocoa and Toffee Crunch Memento Ink through the leaf stencil onto the page, and outlined the edge of the leaf designs with a Sepia Spectrum Aqua marker. Before I removed this stencil I coloured the rest of the stencil design with the residue ink, that was left on the stencil from the stamping, using a sponge. Next I stamped “Give Thanks” onto the page using an alphabet stamp by Papermania and black Archival Ink, and then I darkened the letters using a black Derwent Graphik Marker so they stood out more.  To create the octagonal shapes, I created a template and used it to draw and cut out octagons from different papers; this included papers from the Into the Woods paper pad by Craft Asylum, a paper pack from my local craft shop and a piece of grid paper from my hubby’s old postage stamp album. I stuck one “Peanuts” sticker onto each of the octagons and then I edged them with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and stuck them to the page using double-sided foam tape. To finish, I added some sparkly green Bling Stickers and edged the page with the black Big Brush marker.

I was so delighted to receive this happy mail and here you can see the front of the envelope with the most stunning handwriting in orange ink surrounded by pretty autumnal leaves with a round moon postage stamp and the beautiful sunflower hand painted card (grin!).

Even the back of the envelope was a work of art with the cute bear and flowers. One of my favourite sentiments “Hello Sunshine!” was also kindly included; the sunshiny yellow ink is perfect and Nan’s handwriting always looks so amazing. I also found some wonderful goodies inside (double grin!).

The card now has pride of place in my craft room! I’m in awe of the sunflower that Nan painted; it looks so professional and is so detailed. Sunflowers always seem such happy flowers and happen to be a favourite of mine – it makes me smile every time I see it (triple grin!). Thank you so much for your thoughtfulness dearest Nan!

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:

As receiving this happy mail warms my heart, I’m pleased to join Chris from Pearshapedcrafting who is hosting the “101 Ways to Stay Warm” challenge over at Art Journal Journey.

I really enjoyed using these different techniques with the stencils and love the layers of colour and designs that resulted, so I’m also joining the “Stencils” challenge over at the Country View Challenges.

I’m joining in the fun over at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge too and their “Thanks/Thanksgiving” Challenge with my “Give Thanks” journal page.

I always enjoy using stamps on my pages and it was fun to add texture to the leaves by stamping through the stencil, so I’m pleased to join the “November Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included)” at the Craft Stamper Take It, Make It 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:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Parchment)
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Morocco, Dandelion, Rich Cocoa, Toffee Crunch)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Sepia)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.5mm)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Honeycomb, Take a Leaf)
  • Docrafts Papermania Clear Stamp Set (Capsule – Geometric Mono)
  • Papermania Alphamania A-Z Clear Stamps (Leftovers Alphabet PMA9071102)
  • Craft Asylum 6×6 Paper Pad (Into the Woods 480326)
  • Paper pack from local craft shop
  • Grid postage stamp album paper
  • Peanuts Thanksgiving stickers – a gift from the lovely Nan!
  • Poundland (Bling Stickers 2561793)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape