Be your own kind of beautiful

Today I was inspired by a seahorse mosaic that you can find in St. Anne’s on the Sea where I live; I always love seeing artwork when I’m out and about and this dancing seahorse is one of my favourites!

I started by covering the page with Salty Ocean Distress Ink by stamping the ink pad directly onto a blending mat, spritzing with water and pressing the mat onto the paper a number of times to build up splashes of ink to depict seawater.

Then I applied Cracked Pistachio Distress Stain through a circular stencil from Inkylicious and also blotted the stencil onto the page to mop up the excess Stain. Next I used a mosaic dot stamp using both Peacock Feathers Distress Ink and Platinum Planet Brilliance Ink; firstly through the circle stencil to add more details to the large circles that I stencilled and then to the rest of the background so it looked like bubbles of water. I outlined each of the stencilled circles by stamping white acrylic paint using a plastic tube and then smudged the white gesso over the circle. When the paint was dry I coloured it with the Platinum Planet ink using my finger. I added more bubbles by stamping some dot stamps from Paperbabe Stamps using Shabby Shutters Distress Ink and then I splattered the page with some white acrylic paint which finished the background. The foliage is tissue paper which I die cut using Tim Holtz thinlets and my Big Shot machine which I then stuck to the page using Liquitex matte gel medium; I wasn’t to careful how I stuck them down as I wanted them to look like they were floating and moving in the water.

My dancing seahorse is fussy cut from a colouring book and coloured using Gold, Yellow, Sunset and Amber Spectrum Aqua markers to match the seahorse colours of the mosaic. Then I used a blending tool to blot Rusty Hinge Distress Ink onto the seahorse to add texture and give it more of a 3D look. It is stuck in place using matte gel medium, detailed using some black Derwent Graphik markers and a white Uniball pen for its eye. The words “Be your own beautiful self” are cut from a 3×4” card by Kaisercraft, stuck in place and outlined with a black marker pen. To finish, I added some silver and blue sequins to the background to add some sparkle.

This is the pretty seahorse mosaic and the words say “Golden sun rise on our sands moonlight pass us by. As seahorse dance among the waves. Our sandgrown spirit flies”. I particularly like the words as it mentions being “sandgrown” which applies only to the Flyde coast area where I live and literally means someone born by the seaside; I happen to be a Sandgrown’un too (grin!).

This is the other beautiful mosaic, this time of a pretty mermaid and the verse reads “We dream fondly of seas. Her waves lap softly on our shore. While mermaids songs drift onwards. Our peace to breathe once more”.

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

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 aka BioArtGal and her Polka-Dots, Stripes, Plaids and Patterns challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my circle patterns on my background.

I’m also happy to join in the Under the Sea challenge over at Country View Challenges with my seahorse art journal page.

I’m joining the Anything Goes challenge over at Paperbabe Stamps with my dancing seahorse too.

I’m pleased to be able to join in the fun over at Creative Artiste Challenge Blog for their Anything Mixed Media Goes with my mixed media art journal page which included inks, paints, papers and sequins.

Don’t forget that you still have until over a week to join our Hot, Hot, Hot! Challenge over at Try it on Tuesday too, maybe you can use hot colours like those I used for my seahorse; it would be lovely to see you there!

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

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Salty Ocean, Peacock Feathers, Shabby Shutters, Rusty Hinge)
  • Inkylicious Stencil (Sun & Moons)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Stain (Cracked Pistachio)
  • Docrafts Papermania Mini Cards & Stamp Set (Capsule Geometric Krafts PMA105308)
  • Tsukineko Brilliance Pigment Ink (Platinum Planet)
  • Paperbabe Stamps Stamp Set (Birthday Wishes)
  • Art Discount Acrylic (White)
  • Sizzix Thinlets Tim Holtz (Garden Greens 661206, Wildflower Stems #2 664164)
  • Recycled dark and light green tissue paper
  • Animal Kingdom Suduko & Doodle Book
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Gold, Yellow, Sunset, Amber)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm, 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Kaisercraft 3×4” Cards (Life’s Treasures CM108)
  • Poundland (Assorted Sequins)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
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Have the happiest of days!

Today we have a new challenge over at Try it on Tuesday called Hot, Hot, Hot!

You may choose to use hot colours like me or maybe your creation may include a hot drink or even a hot destination; you can interpret it anyway you chose as long as it’s Hot, Hot, Hot!

For more inspiration please pop over to our blog where you will find some amazing inspiration from my Design Teamies too!

For my hot coloured page, I started by creating a background of orange and yellow Liquitex acrylic paints. When dry I applied some red Liquitex acrylic using a sponge through a retro stencil from Creative Expressions. Next I added some modelling paste using a palette knife through a circular mini stencil also from Creative Expressions and left it to dry. They are painted using a white Uni Posca paint pen so they stood out more. I stamped a Worn Rings stamp from Gummiapan using Love Letter Memento Ink and covered them with some of the orange and yellow paint so they faded into the background more. I also stencilled some dots using Fired Brick Distress Ink, blotting them with a baby wipe so the colour was less intense. Then I splattered the whole page using white acrylic paint. The yellow circle that says “Have the happiest of days!” is from a birthday card from my dearest friends which I’ve wanted to use for while and seemed perfect for this page; I fussy cut it out, stuck it in place using a glue stick and outlined it using the white Uni Posca paint pen. I also added a yellow butterfly which I fussy cut from an old nature book and some yellow flowers adding some orange rhinestone to their centres which finished the page.

This weekend we harvested the apples from our garden; we picked 18 braeburn apples off one tree which was wonderful as we only planted this apple tree last year.

I used some of them to make my homemade spiced apple cake with salted caramel frosting – yum!

As T Stands for Tuesday, here’s a cup of Hot Cinnamon tea with a piece of the cake which I just couldn’t resist (grin!) – Happy T Day and have the happiest of days!

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

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blog,s 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 Erika aka BioArtGal and her Polka-Dots, Stripes, Plaids and Patterns challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my patterned background.

I’m also joining the Use a Stamp challenge over at Moo Mania & More with all the stamps I used on this page.

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

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

  • Liquitex Basic Acrylic Color (Cadmium Orange, Cadmium Yellow, Naphthol Crimson)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Mask (Retro Christmas)
  • Creative Expressions Mini Stencil (Eclipse Circles)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Gummiapan Stamp (Worn Rings 11050601)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Love Letter)
  • Dot Stencil
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Fired Brick)
  • Art Discount Acrylic (White)
  • Recycled Birthday Card
  • The Illustrated Book of Nature
  • The Works (Mini Paper Flower Embellishments, Rhinestone Flower Stickers)
  • Pritt Stick
  • Stix 2 glue dots

Untie the ribbons

Our new challenge over at A Vintage Journey is Box It Up, which is being hosted by Julia. Here’s what it is all about:

“This month our theme is boxes! Perhaps you will make a trunk or suitcase, some kind of package to hold a gift, or maybe make a card or journal page showing presents. Just remember to ensure that you create in one of our preferred styles of vintage, shabby, mixed media, art journaling, industrial, timeworn or steampunk”.

I thought this motivational quote suited Julia’s challenge perfectly, so I included it on my art journal page along with the gift box which I had fun creating for this page too (grin!).

To create the background I completely covered the page with some yellow Liquitex acrylic paint and once the paint was dry added pieces of script and sheet music Collage Papers from Tim Holtz and some tape measure design decoupage paper from Viva Gade using Liquitex matte gel medium. I added a little more of the yellow paints over the top of the tissue paper to intensify the colour and also applied some white gesso around the edges of the page using my finger. Then I diluted Dark Sepia, Sanguine and Cold Grey Faber-Castell markers by scribbling them onto a blending mat and spritzing with water and applied them with my finger over the white gesso which gave the page a lovely translucent glow. Then I added some Gold Champagne Faber-Castell Gelato and Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker to the edge of the page smudging them with my finger.

I created the gift box from some spotty paper and drew the lines onto it using the Dark Sepia Big Brush marker, shaded it using Caramel Faber-Castell Gelato and added shadows using the Cold Grey Big Brush marker. Next I used a star stencil to apply modelling paste with a palette knife and left it to dry; the stars were then painted using a white Uni Posca paint pen and Parchment Liquitex acrylic paint. The words are letter stickers from Docrafts which I covered with matte gel medium to hold them securely in place. I did the same with the flowers which are stickers from Kaisercraft. Finally, I added some strips of red organza ribbon to the box using double-sided tape and finished it with a bow.

I enjoy collecting positive and motivational quotes for my art journal pages and had fun creating this page with the gift box and ribbon to depict the words I added; it was based on the quote “Each day comes bearing its own gifts. Untie the ribbons” by Ruth Ann Schabacker.

For more inspiration, please pop over to see the amazing creations from my fellow Creative Guides over at A Vintage Journey too, it would be lovely to see you there!

I also have quite a few motivational quotes displayed around my home too, here’s one that greets me every morning, it hangs on the mirror in my bedroom …

… and this one hangs in my craft room (grin!).

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

Challenges

I’m pleased to join the lovely Erika aka BioArtGal and her Polka-Dots, Stripes, Plaids and Patterns challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my polka-dot gift box.

I’m also joining Paperbabe Stamps and their Challenge #101 – Sketch; I flipped the sketch to the left so the circle is represented by the gift box on my page and the logo by the sentiment I used.

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

  • Liquitex Acrylic Color (Cadmium Yellow, Yellow Oxide, Parchment)
  • Tim Holtz Collage Papers (Halloween #TH93727, Botanicals #TH93705)
  • Viva Gade Decoupage Paper (Helsinki 25586)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush marker (Dark Sepia 175 B, Cold Grey IV 233, Sanguine 188 B)
  • Faber-Castell Gelatos (Gold Champagne, Caramel)
  • Star Stencil
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Uni Posca Paint Pen (White)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Changing Seasons CRO701/16PL1)
  • Docrafts Papermania A4 Ultimate Die-Cut & Paper Pack (Folk Christmas PMA160933)
  • Kaisercrfat Sticker Sheet (The Looking Glass SS206)
  • Recycled Red Organza Ribbon
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Pritt Stick
  • Stix2 double-sided tape

Blackbird Café

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

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

You may remember this café from a previous post.

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

… with lots of birds and birdcages.

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

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

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

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

Challenges

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Card Making Tutorial at A Vintage Journey

Hello Everyone!

Today I’m over at A Vintage Journey with this month’s card making post. I always make cards for family and friends, so I’m pleased to be sharing a Shabby Chic style card that I made for a forever friend of mine.

I hope that you’ll pop over to A Vintage Journey to see my tutorial which includes lots more photos and full details of how this card came together. If you are interested, you can also find a full list of materials that I used below.

As I’ve been enjoying the summer flowers in my garden and we have lots of lavender flowering at the moment, I was inspired to included lavender as part of my card design.

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

Happy and creative wishes! Jo x

Challenges

I’m pleased to join the Gold challenge over at Paperbabe Stamps with the gold ribbon I added to this card.

I’m also pleased to join the Tim Holtz challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Work it Wednesday with all the Tim Holtz products I used to make this card.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this card:

  • Kraft Cardstock
  • Sizzix 3D Texture Fades A6 Tim Holtz Alterations (Botanicals 662716)
  • Annie Sloane Chalk Paint (Old White 01)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Tea Dye, Vintage Photo, Mowed Lawn, Milled Lavender, Seedless Preserves, Mowed Lawn)
  • White Cardstock
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology Collage Paper (Botanical #TH93705, Halloween #TH93727)
  • Recycled white paper coloured green with Mowed Lawn, Forest Moss, Pine Needles and Twisted Citron Distress Ink and purple with Milled Lavender and Seedless Preserves Distress Ink)
  • Sizzix Thinkets Tim Holtz Alterations (Wildflowers 661190, Wildflower Stems #2 664164)
  • Recycled Purple Chiffon Ribbon
  • Cream Lace
  • Recycled Gold Ribbon dyed using Mowed Lawn and Forest Moss Distress Ink
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology (Quote Chips #TH93563)
  • Home Bargains (Sweet Hearts)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Stix2 double-sided tape

In my garden there is …

Our new challenge over at Try it on Tuesday for the next two weeks is In my garden there is …

I created a page full of flowers, insects and happy sentiments which remind me of my garden so far this year and over at Try it on Tuesday there is more inspiration to be found in the amazing creations from my Design Teamies! We hope that you will join us too!

I started by creating blocks of papers to collage on the background of my page using matte gel medium; they were free with a magazine which featured stamps and papers from “The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady”. They have a lovely cottage garden look and feel, with pretty flower, foliage, bird, bee and butterfly designs, which I thought depicted my garden beautifully. Once the gel medium was dry, I scribbled Coconut and Kiwi Faber-Castell Gelatos along the edges of the papers and smudged the colour with my finger. Then I used a foxglove stamp, which was also free with the magazine, using black Archival Ink and then coloured them using Red Violet, Blossom, Sunflower and Bud Green Spectrum Aqua markers. I fussy cut an oval image of a bird in its nest as we have had so many young birds visiting our garden this year and added some Graphic 45 stickers which read “Love”, “Smile”, “Dream” and “Bloom where you are planted”; they are all outlined with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker. Then to finish, I added a pretty yellow 3D butterfly.

We have had many flowers blooming in our garden and the foxgloves looked particularly beautiful earlier this year!

As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m sharing a pot of tea that we had with our friends in the gardens at Lytham Hall – Happy T day!

Challenges

I’m pleased to join the lovely Gill  from gibbyfrogettcraftations  and her Anything with Eyes challenge over at Art Journal Journey with the birds and insects I included on my page; sorry I haven’t joined your fabulous theme as much as I would have liked too this month!

I’m also joining the Butterflies challenge over at Moo Mania & More with all the butterflies on my page.

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

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

  • The Country Dairy of an Edwardian Lady design Papers and Stamps – free with Simply Cards & Papercraft magazine
  • Faber-Castell Gelato (Coconut, Kiwi)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Red Violet, Blossom, Sunflower, Bud Green)
  • Graphic 45 Cardstock Stickers (Seasons Decorative Stickers 4501629)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Home Bargains You & Me … (Beautiful Butterflies)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Pritt Stick

Wish you were here

Our challenge for the next two weeks over at Try it on Tuesday is Wish you were here. Where will you take us? Maybe you would like to travel far away or even stay at home, the choice is yours!

For my art journal page, I decided to go to Venice and if you pop over to Try it on Tuesday you’ll find some more wonderful Wish you were here creations by my Design Teamies to inspire you too!

I had found one of the plastic bags from Venice had degraded into lots of pieces when I unpacked some holiday ornaments over Christmastime, so I decided to keep the pieces in my craft stash to use in my art journaling.

Being from Venice, I thought that they would be perfect for my “Venice wish you were here” inspired page, so I layered the bag pieces to form the background using Liquitex Matte gel medium. When the gel medium was dry, I flooded the page with watered-down Cracked Pistachio, Peeled Paint and Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink and left them to dry; I love the amazing texture that resulted.

Then I splattered the page with the both the Peeled Paint and Chipped Sapphire inks using a paint brush and added some diamond shapes using a stencil from Creative Expressions; first using the Peeled Paint ink again and then using some Black Soot Distress Ink. Using black Archival Ink I stamped the decorative shield design from Kaisercraft onto the page and also the “wish you were here” wording from Hampton Arts onto tissue paper; the wording is stuck onto the page using matte gel medium. Next I cut out a picture of Venice from a free travel advertising magazine, backed it with white paper, stuck it onto the page using double-sided tape and edged it with some black Glitterations border stickers.

I stuck a postage stamp to cover some writing on the magazine picture using double-sided foam tape; the postage stamp is from Romania showing a painting of Venice by N. Darascu, circa 1972.

Then I added three pieces of white and black striped ribbon to the page along with a postage stamp from Italy showing Coin of Syracuse, circa 1955; both of the postage stamps were kindly given to me to use for my art journaling by my hubby as part of his childhood Stamp Collection (grin!). To finish, I added some pretty diamante pieces using Ranger Glossy Accents to add some elegance and sparkle.

We have been to Venice a couple of times which is located in North Eastern Italy and is a series of islands that are separated by canals and linked by over 400 bridges.

Of course Venice is well known for its Gondolas which we have been lucky enough to travel in.

We are always amazed by the beauty of the architecture along the Grand Canal and the only way to travel is by boat which appeals to me as I love being on the water (grin!).

As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m sharing our Aperol Spritz which is a very popular drink in Italy along with some traditional cuisine from Venice. Aperol Spritz is an aperitif cocktail consisting of prosecco, Aperol and soda water; it originated in Italy and is now available worldwide. Our drinks are pictured with some cicchetti which are small snacks or side dishes that originated and are typically served in traditional “bàcari” (cicchetti bars) in Venice. Cheers and Happy T Day!

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

Challenges

I’m pleased to join the lovely Gill from gibbyfrogettcraftations and her Anything with Eyes challenge over at Art Journal Journey with the ladies eyes on the Italian postage stamp that I included on my page.

I’m also happy to join in the Layers of Texture challenge over at Country View Challenges the background texture that I created from recycling the pieces of bag.

I’m pleased to join in the fun over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Anything Goes challenge too.

I’m also pleased to be able to join Creative Artiste and their Anything Mixed Media Goes challenge with all the mixed media I used to create this page.

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

  • Recycled pieces of plastic bag (degraded) from Venice
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Cracked Pistachio, Peeled Paint, Chipped Sapphire, Black Soot)
  • Creative Expressions Mini Stencils (Vintage Diamonds)
  • Kaisercraft Clear Stamps (Decorative Accents CS852)
  • Hampton Art Bella Blvd cling mounted rubber stamps (Sand & Surf ICO226)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Recycled white tissue paper
  • Recycled travel advertising magazine
  • Docrafts Papermania Glitterations (Black Borders ANT8181015)
  • Postage stamps from hubby’s childhood collection (Posta Romana – Romania showing a painting of Venice by N. Darascu, circa, Itali – Italy showing Coin of Syracuse circa 1955)
  • Home bargains Always & Forever Collection (Decorative Diamante Chain 26254)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Stix2 double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape
  • Ranger Glossy Accents