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
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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

Hello Lake Life

I love boats so living the Lake Life with our friends in Maine was an amazing experience! My page today captures the serenity of the lake, fall colours and also a Loon, which is a type of water bird that we saw on one of our boat trips around the lake (grin!).

I started by applying Hickory Smoke Distress Ink onto the page by stamping the ink pad onto an acrylic block and scraping the block over the page so the ink caught on the texture of the paper. I then applied water over the top using a paintbrush to disperse some of the colour across the page. Next I painted Salty Ocean Distress Ink across the page, keeping my brushstrokes horizontal, so it looked like water; to do this I applied the ink to an acrylic block again and picked the ink up with a paintbrush. We saw lots of beautiful fall colours reflected in the lake on our boat trips so I also added Mustard Seed, Fired Brick and Seedless Perserves Distress Ink the same way as I did the Hickory Smoke ink. Then I toned down the colours using Pébéo white gesso which I applied with my finger to vary the coverage; this softened the colours and produced a rippled effect so it looked like the water of the lake. The wording “Hello Lake Life” is a Pocket Card from Tim Holtz idea-ology collection, I added the letters to produce the word “Lake” by stamping black Archival Ink onto some card using an alphabet stamp by Dovecraft, cutting it out and sticking it onto the card. The Loon is cut from a notelet that my friend gave me and was used for the food shopping list. I defined the Loon markings, underlined the word “lake” and exaggerated the stripes on the wording using a black Derwent Graphik marker and a white Uniball gel pen so they stood out more. The fall leaves around the edge of the page are napkin which I ripped and stuck into place using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium; once dry I edged them with a Sanguine Faber-Castell Big Brush marker. I also stuck a couple of the leaves onto some recycled white card and when they were dry I cut them out and edged them with the sanguine marker. I arranged them on the page under the Pocket Card and added some cream jute flowers using Glossy Accents which finished the page.

I thought you may like to go boating with us, here is the view of the lake from the house and you can see the boat on the left-hand side.

It’s a pontoon party boat and is very luxurious …

… with it’s sofa type seating, as you can see my hubby was sitting very comfortably (grin!).

It afforded wonderful lake views with …

… some breathtaking reflections of the fall colours.

We even saw a Loon, which is called a Great Northern Diver here in the UK, who entertained us firstly by diving under the water and then by preening. We found out late one night that their call is quite distinctive and loud too (grin!).

I hope you enjoyed the boat trip and I think that the lake life would suit us very well, don’t you (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 join the lovely Erika from BioArtGal, who is hosting the Vintage or Modern challenge over at Art Journal Journey as this page captures happy memories of our Lake Life holiday.

I’m joining in the fun over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Anything Goes challenge with my Lake Life art journal page.

I’m also pleased to join the September Link Party #44 – Anything Goes over at Cropstop Blog with my page as I included some products from companies that they carry in their store.

I’m thankful for experiencing the Lake Life with our friends, so this page is also a reminder that you still have time to join the Thankful 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 (Hickory Smoke, Salty Ocean, Mustard Seed, Fired Brick, Seedless Preserves)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm, 0.3mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Dovecraft Essentials Alphabet Stamp Set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology (Pocket Cards #TH93208)
  • Loon notelet – shopping list
  • Party Creations Napkins (Autumn’s Elegance)
  • The Works (Jute Shapes U-83162)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Pritt Stick
  • Stix2 (Mini Craft Dots)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape
  • Ranger Glossy Accents

Thankful

It’s time for a new challenge over at Try it on Tuesday and our theme for the next two weeks is Thankful.

This could be a thank you card, harvest festival, Thanksgiving or anything that you are thankful for. For more inspiration please take a look at the amazing creations from my Design Team teamies over at Try it on Tuesday.

I’m so thankful to have spent time with our forever friends in Maine and this page was inspired by the beautiful autumnal displays, flowers and birds that I saw in my friend’s garden/yard celebrating Fall and giving thanks to the season – I hope you like it!

To create the background, I stamped most of the stamps from the Bella Rossi stamp set by Prima Marketing onto the page using Hickory Smoke Distress Ink, a script stamp by Kaisercraft using black Archival Ink and a leaf stamp from Crafter’s Companion using Antique Linen, Old Paper and Vintage Photo Distress Ink. I splattered the page with Morocco Memento Ink, by stamping the pad directly onto an acrylic block and using a wet paintbrush to flick the ink onto the page. To dull down the Vintage Photo leaves that I had stamped I covered them with white gesso using a wet wipe blending the colour across the page so it gave it an aged look. I used some washi tape that I had bought on my holiday, for the letters; it had the word “thankful” repeated on it so I cut and placed the individual letters onto the page, which finished the background. Next I cut out two pumpkins from some pumpkin beer packaging that I brought home with me and stuck them in place using a glue stick. They are arranged and layered with some square autumnal images which I cut from a sheet of Autumn design paper by Graphic 45 and also some autumnal leaves and pretty birds which are from a decoupage set by Docrafts. All the pieces are edged with a Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and stuck in place using either double-sided tape or double-sided foam tape. To finish, I curled the leaves to give more of a 3-D look.

Here is the beautiful Fall welcome that greeted us at my friend’s house (grin!).

There were two pumpkins so I used two on my page.

Their garden/yard is filled with wonderful ornaments, flowers and happiness; this area housed bird feeders and bird boxes and could be seen from the kitchen window …

…which meant we saw some amazing birds; this included black-capped chickadees like the one above, tufted titmouse, yellow-bellied sapsuckers and white-breasted nuthatches. So of course I added birds to my page (grin!).

The yellow flowers and fall colours in their garden were also spectacular so these are included on my page too – Happy Autumn!

As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m sharing the fridge full of beer including the pumpkin beer which was in the box that the pumpkins on my page were cut from. You can find them on the middle shelf and this particular pumpkin beer is from Smuttynose Brewery. We were most impressed that they had a beer fridge and as you can see we had quite a selection of beers to chose from – cheers and Happy T Day!

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 Linda from heARTfullyinspiredby Linda, who is hosting the Creature Comforts challenge over at Art Journal Journey with the warm autumnal colours that I used to create this page.

Over at Moo Mania and More the theme is Autumn so I’m pleased to join their challenge with my Fall celebration page.

Inspired by my freind’s garden and fall displays, I’m also joining the Autumn Splendour challenge over at A Vintage Journey with my Art Journalling and Mixed Media Style page.

I’m joining Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge and their Take Flight challenge with the birds on my art journal page, one of which has taken flight (grin!).

I’m pleased to be able to join the Plant-tastic challenge over at Country View Challenges with the autumnal flowers and leaves on my page.

The challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Work It Wednesday is Give Thanks! so I’m joining them too with my Thankful art journal page.

Over at Stamps and Stencils their challenge is Spooky Fun with an Autumnal Twist so I’m happy to join them with my autumnal 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:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Hickory Smoke, Antique Linen, Old Paper, Vintage Photo)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Morroco)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Prima Marketing clear stamps (Bella Rossi #587499)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Crafter’s Companion Clear Stamps Autumn Morning Signature Collection by Sara Davies (Rustling Leaves S-AUT-ST-RUS)
  • Washi Tape
  • Recycled Packaging from a box of Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale
  • Graphic 45 Paper 12×12 sheet (Autumn Collective #4501622)
  • Docrafts Anita’s Foiled Decoupage (Autumn Birds ANT169593)
  • Pritt Stick
  • Stix2 double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Trick or Treat … and a special T Day Meet

For the next two weeks our new challenge over at Try it on Tuesday is Trick or Treat …It’s Halloween, so it’s time to join us with your Halloween creations.

I had so much fun creating my spooky art journal page by layering lots of colours using stencils/stamps and getting messy with black ink drips (grin!).  I hope you’ll join in the fun too and if you need more inspiration please check out the wonderful Design Team creations over at Try it on Tuesday!

I started by layering different stencils by Craft Sensations and using Distress Inks to create the background; this included a number stencil using Antique Linen ink, a Chevron stencil using Hickory Smoke ink, a rose stencil using Rusty Hinge ink, a clock and a cogs stencil using Vintage Photo and Brushed Corduroy ink. Then I stamped a Diamond Background stamp from Art Impressions and a homemade grid stamp using black Archival Ink and applied white gesso over the top to tone them down a little. Next I added the lines and drips of Carbon Black Liquitex Ink and I also splattered the page with the ink; I love the grungy look this gave the page. The filigree swirls, crow and birdcage are all stamped with black Archival Ink using a stamp set by 7 Gypsies from Hampton Art, and the trick or treat wording is stamped using the same ink and an alphabet stamp set, also by Hampton Art. To finish, I added some drops of Pumpkin Liquid Pearls by Ranger to the filigree swirls, crow, birdcage and wording.

Talking of treats, as you may be aware we have recently been on holiday in Maine, USA for the last couple of weeks visiting our friends. We were visiting Portsmouth in New Hampshire so I just couldn’t miss the opportunity to meet up with my lovely blog friend Erika aka BioArtGal – yay!

As T Stands for Tuesday, we purposely chose a Tuesday to meet up and honour T Day (grin!). I’m saying a big hello and welcome to the T Gang and wishing you all a very Happy T Day!

We met at the Portsmouth Brewery for a pint and a catch up, thank you Erika for choosing such a fabulous place to meet! My hubby joined us too and we all got on so well that we chatted for some time over a beer or two and then decided to have dinner together – I can highly recommend their yummy pastrami sandwich!

We sat in a booth that had this beautiful wall art above it …

… and found that they had a large beer selection; myself and Erika had the Murphy’s Law Red Ale and my hubby had the Dirty Blonde Ale.

The actual brewery can be seen through the glass as you sit and enjoy your food and drink …

… and even the toilet/restroom doors are made from recycled metal brewing vessels – so cool!

Erika even kindly gifted me a bag of crafting goodies too, I can’t wait to use them! Thank you so much for your kindness and wonderful company, we had the most amazing time!

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 Linda from heARTfullyinspiredby Linda, who is hosting the Creature Comforts challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my creepy Halloween page.

I’m joining the Inktober challenge over at The Artistic Stamper with all the layers of inks and stamping I used to create this page.

Over at That’s Crafty! Challenge Blog their theme is Spookilicious so I’m also pleased to join this challenge with my spooky Trick or Treat page.

Over at Stamps and Stencils their challenge is Spooky Fun with an Autumnal Twist so I’m joining in the Halloween autumnal fun too with my Trick or Treat page.

I’m also joining the Shades of Autumn challenge over at Stamping Sensations as I used autumnal tones to create my page.

With my Halloween inspired art journal page, I’m pleased to join over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Anything But A Card challenge.

I’m pleased to join the Anything Goes challenge over at Paperbabe Stamps with my spooky Halloween 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:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Antique Linen, Hickory Smoke, Rusty Hinge, Vintage Photo, Brushed Corduroy)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Liquitex Ink! (Carbon Black)
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Hampton Art 7 Gypsies Vintage cling mounted rubber stamps (Birdsong ICO151)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Diamond Background T-3335)
  • Homemade Stamp – wooden block and Drywall Tape
  • Hampton Art Ki (Alphabet Stamp Set WM1037)
  • Ranger Liquid Pearls (Pumpkin)

You are my …

We attended our friend’s wedding this weekend and what an amazing time we had! The venue was perfect and the bride and groom looked stunning and it was wonderful to spend time with some of my dearest friends too. So I created a page to celebrate this magical day with one of my favourite quotes by E. E Cummings which reads

“You are my sun, my moon and all of my stars”.

Don’t forget that there is still another week to join the Add a Quote challenge over at Try it on Tuesday, it would be lovely to see you there!

I chose a blue and white colour palette to match the wedding invitation that we received; stamping Chipped Sapphire and Salty Ocean Distress ink pads onto the CD, spritzing with water and pressing the CD onto the page to leave an imprint. I did this several times to build up the intensity of the colour until I was happy. Next I used a star stencil to apply the two Distress Inks, again using a blending tool and then covered them with a thin layer of white gesso to dull the colour and push the star design into the background. I used black Archival Ink and the Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink to add a planet and star constellation stamp from a stamp set called Stargazer by Kaisercraft, layering the images to add more depth and interest. Then I drew around the CD using a black Uni Pin marker outlining the CD imprints and added a sun stamp from the same stamp set using the Chipped Sapphire ink again. Next I added some silver circles and stars which are outline stickers and outlined them all using a black Uni Pin marker, which took quite a while (grin!). The quote by E.E. Cummings is also from the same Stargazer stamp set and is stamped onto some blue design paper using black Archival Ink. I cut it out and edged it with one of the silver outline stickers and stuck it in place using double-sided foam tape. To finish, I added some clear jewel gems in varying sizes to the silver circle and stars to add a little sparkle.

The venue was so pretty with the old barn buildings and pretty gardens! I even cried a tear at the ceremony as it was so beautiful with the vows they had prepared especially for each other and with the fabulous violinists playing romantic music and also the personalised readings – it was truly amazing!

You could tell the bride had planned the wedding well, as there were so many thoughtful details that we discovered throughout the day including sweets “Take a little, eat a lot, enjoy these treats, we tied the knot” …

… flip flops “Here’s a little treat for your dancing feet” and blankets “To have and to hold incase you are cold”.

We decided to enjoy the day and company rather than take too many photos, but as T Stands for Tuesday is celebrating its 5th Anniversary here’s a fun photo of someone’s red wine (grin!). There was quite a drink selection on offer – iced water, gin and elderflower tonic (my choice – yum!), beers (hubby’s choice – yum!), champagne and a selection of white, rosé and red wines. We were also served tea and coffee if you would prefer –  Happy 5th Anniversary T Day wishes!

Maybe you will join me in a little dance around the fountain too (grin!) …

… and in case you are wondering here is my sun, my moon and all of my stars; we had such a wonderful time!

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 Chris from Pearshapedcrafting, who is hosting the Arts for Art’s Sake challenge over at Art Journal Journey as I had fun using my new Kaisercraft stamp set and also experimenting by using the CD as a stamp.

Inspired by my dearest friends, I’m also joining the Get Sentimental challenge over at A Vintage Journey with my Art Journaling and Mixed Media Style page.

I’m also pleased to join Fashionable Stamping Challenges and their Use inks anyway you want challenge as I used inks and stamping to create this art journal page.

With the silver accents and sparkly gems, I’m also pleased to join Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge and their Add A Little Sparkle 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 (Chipped Sapphire, Salty Ocean)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • CD – old
  • Creative Stencils Craft Essentials (Stars MAOB0004)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Stargazer CS327)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Pure Frozen CRO701/16P4)
  • Starform Outline Stickers (Silver Circles 1144)
  • Crelando Relief Sticker Set (12 Sheets IAN289011)
  • The Works (Jewel Stickers)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Thank you so much

As you may know we enjoy walking and often walk with our friends and their dog, Chase. Last weekend we were lucky enough to look after Chase while our friends were away – she is such a lovely companion and a joy to be around!

As a thank you we received a gorgeous metal mushroom ornament for our garden which inspired my page (grin!).

I started by applying Brushed Corduroy, Ground Espresso and Frayed Burlap Distress Ink using a blending tool and then spritzing the page with water to activate the ink so it blended more. I also added splatters to the page by stamping the same inks onto an acrylic block and diluting with water, then using a paintbrush to flick the ink onto the page. Then I applied Pébéo modelling paste through a honeycomb Dinky Stencil from That’s Crafty! using a palette knife and left it to dry overnight. Next I stamped some green leaves from a Crafter’s Companion stamp set using Cottage Ivy and Pistachio Memento Ink; as the green was too bright I covered them with Pébéo white gesso and then used the honeycomb stencil again to apply Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink over the top. Next I used some Kaisercraft clear stamps to add more detail to the background, this included: a Script stamp using black Archival Ink; a flower stamp using Rich Cocoa Memento Ink; and a foliage stamp using Peeled Paint Distress Ink. The mushrooms are fussy cut from an old Nature Book that I bought from a charity shop (thrift store); I only chose ones which can be found in gardens in the UK. They are stuck into place using a UHU Stic and I added more detail using a black Uni Pin marker and white Uniball gel pen as well as some shadows using a Topaz Spectrum Aqua Marker. I added the words “how lovely” from a Kaisercraft sticker sheet which I outlined with a black Uni Pin marker and also some pretty paper flowers. To finish, I added the “Thank you so much” tag which I edged with Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink; this tag came attached to the metal mushrooms that we were gifted (grin!).

You may remember Chase from a previous post; here she is sitting in my friend’s garden.

This is the metal mushroom ornament, isn’t it amazing! I love the rusty look and it was the perfect gift because as you may know my goal is to sort out and replant our flower beds this year – this so thoughtful, thank you!

Some of you have expressed a wish to see my flower beds, this is what they look like at the moment. The plants are all new including two apple trees which have replaced some huge shrubs that filled the borders.

I’m aiming for a cottage garden look and to be honest I’m not much of a gardener so it’s been a big learning curve for me, which I love! You can see our beautiful walls and all the flowers which make me smile. We have also seen an increase of butterflies and bees in our garden already so we have their seal of approval 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 Chris from Pearshapedcrafting, who is hosting the Arts for Art’s Sake challenge over at Art Journal Journey.

With the distressed look and feel of my page I’m joining in the fun over at The Artistic Stamper where their challenge is Distress It!

I’m joining the Get Sentimental challenge over at A Vintage Journey with my Mixed Media Style “Thank you so much” page.

I’m also joining the lovely Wen and her Simply Neutrals Tuesday party over at Apple Apricot with my neutral coloured page.

As this page was inspired by the beautiful mushroom ornament in my garden, I’m also pleased to be able to join the In The Summer Garden challenge over at Country View Challenges.

Over at the That’s Crafty! Challenge Blog, their challenge is Close to Nature so I’m happy to join them with my mushroom art journal page.

I’m also pleased to join the Allsorts Challenge Blog and their In my Garden challenge as this page is inspired by metal mushrooms that you can find in my garden.

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, Ground Espresso, Frayed Burlap, Peeled Paint)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Rich Cocoa, Cottage Ivy, Pistachio)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Topaz)
  • That’s Crafty! Dinky Stamps (Reverse Honeycomb TC031)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752, Magnolia Grove CS822)
  • Crafter’s Companion Signature Collection by Sara Davies (Rustling Leaves S-AUT-ST-RUS)
  • The Illustrated Book of Nature
  • Kaisercraft Sticker Set (Secret Garden SS283)
  • Gift Tag
  • UHU Stic
  • Stix 2 Mini Craft Dots