Winter Wonderland Decorations

Today I have something different to my normal Art Journalling … as you may be aware, I like to create a seasonal window display. I have always struggled to source winter decorations for my tree branches as they need to be appropriate for January and February not just for Christmas, so I decided to have some fun and create my own using items I had in my craft stash. Here they are … what do you think?

As winter was my inspiration for these decorations, I used a white colour palette and some sparkle, which reminds me of frosty mornings and snowy days: I was thinking winter wonderland! I chose music, birds and hearts to link to my love of this season; linking to Christmas time festivities and of course Valentine’s Day. Even though each item is unique, they are brought together as a collection because I used the same materials to decorate them. You can find out how I created them below.

Love Heart

Love Heart

The large heart is a luxury gift tag which I stamped using three different stamps using Emboss ink; the stamps include a music stamp from the Musicality clear stamp set by Docrafts, a Diamond Background stamp and also a Serpentine Background stamp, both by Art Impressions. I covered the Emboss ink with white Stampendous embossing powder and shook off the excess powder onto a piece of scrap paper. I also tapped the heart 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 on the back of the tag as well. To add a little contrast I applied Toffee Crunch Memento Ink very lightly to the front and back using a blending tool which highlighted the embossing more. I added a piece of music decorative tape diagonally across the tag and edged it with pearl strips that I had cut to size. I stuck a piece of diamante decorative chain wire along the length of the decorative tape, securing it with Glossy Accents. The “Love” sentiment is a wooden embellishment which I painted first with white gesso and then I embossed it with the same white embossing powder. I stuck it onto the heart along with some pearls and pearl feathers using Glossy Accents. To finish, I added a piece of white paper twine and organza ribbon.

Bobbin

Bobbin

For the bobbin, which was kindly gifted me by my mum who uses lots of gold thread for her Christmas cards that she embroiders, I applied three bands of the same decorative tape around the central cone. Then using the slit at the top of the bobbin, where the thread in normally secured, I secured the end of the diamante wire and wrapped it around the central cone securing it again at the bottom. I then edged the top and bottom of the bobbin with the same pearl strips and also added some pearls and pearl feathers to the central cone using Glossy Accents. To embellish the bottom of the bobbin I used a metal heart, which I recycled from an old necklace, by painting it with white gesso. When the gesso was dry, I covered the heart in Emboss ink and then white Stampendous embossing powder. It’s very important to remember that this heart is metal and therefore conducts the intense heat of the heat gun so I suspended the heart while heating it and waited until it cooled before touching it. Once cooled I distressed the heart with a craft knife and added a pearl to both sides. I then threaded some white paper twine through the heart and up through the bobbin to suspend the heart at the bottom. To finish, I tied some of the white ribbon into a bow around the paper twine at the top of the bobbin.

Small Heart

Small Heart

For the small heart, I used a wooden hollow heart shape tag and covered the front and the back with the music decorative tape and then I edged all the sides of the heart with pearl strips that I had cut to size.  I punched a hole through the tape to thread the piece of white string back through. It is decorated with some diamante wire, pearls and pearl feathers using Glossy Accents to stick them and I added a piece of the organza ribbon to the top of the heart to finish the piece.

Bird

Bird Frame

The bird decoration is a wooden frame embellishment which I covered in white gesso and white embossed on both the front and the back. I cut decorative tape to fit the bottom section and added a string of pearls and feathers to the bottom edge using Glossy Accents. Along the top frame I adhered some of the pearl strips and wrapped a piece of the diamante wire onto the right-hand side securing it with Glossy Accents. Again this piece is finished with white paper twine and ribbon which I tied in a bow.

Fairy

Frost Fairy

I used another luxury gift tag heart and coloured it with the Toffee Crunch Memento Ink using a blending tool, then I covered half of the heart with the decorative tape. I created a frosty leaf by painting it with white gesso and then white embossed it. For the fairy which is a wooden shape, I painted white gesso and embossed it and then I added a piece of wire and a pearl to form a band around the fairy’s waist. I stuck both the leaf and fairy to the heart using Glossy Accents. Next I added a piece of the decorative tape diagonally across the top left-hand corner over the leaf and edged it with the pearl strips and added the diamante wire along its length. I curled the leaf edges to show the heart shape more and stuck the pearl and pearl feathers to the top right-hand side. To finish, I added a piece of white paper twine and organza ribbon.

hot-chocolate

As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m sharing my hot chocolate and a special winter treat of lebkuchen – yum! Wishing you all a Happy T Day!

Challenges

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

I created these decorations to adorn my home so I’m pleased to join the “Home Sweet Home” theme over at Try it on Tuesday.

The “Mini Marvels” challenge over at A Vintage Journey gave me the perfect motivation to create my winter inspired decorations in readiness for display in December. They meet the “Mini Marvels” criteria with the largest decoration (the Bird Frame) being 4” and all the rest being smaller. I hope you like the “Shabby Chic” look of these winter decorations.

I really enjoyed using the white colour palette to create my winter wonderland decorations, so I’m joining in the fun over at  Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their “Snow White” challenge.

As I used stamping on the Love Heart decoration for the white embossing, I’m pleased to join the “November Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included)” at the Craft Stamper Take It, Make It Challenge.

Inspired by Alison, I’m also pleased to be able to join PaperArtsy where the theme is “Shades of White”, thanks so much for inviting me to join in the fun!

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 these decorations:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Tsukienki Memento Ink (Toffee Crunch)
  • Tsukienki Emboss Embossing Stamp Pad (Clear)
  • Stampendous Embossing Powder (Detail White Opaque)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Diamond Background T-3335, Serpentine Background T-2773)
  • Docrafts Creativity Essentials A5 clear stamp set (Musicality DCE907112)
  • Wilko (Luxury Gift Tags – Hearts)
  • Crelando Decorative Tape
  • Poundworld (Pearl Embellishments)
  • Home Bargains Special Occasion (Decorative Chain 26253)
  • The Brighton Bead Company (Pearl and leaf strand)
  • The Works (Wooden Craft Words)
  • Bobbins
  • Recycled metal charm from old necklace
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Hollow Heart Shape Tags)
  • The Works (Wooden Frames CRO282/TW1)
  • The Works (Fairy Shapes)
  • The Handmade Paper Company (Nature’s Touch of Art – Leaves)
  • Wilko (Paper Twine)
  • Organza ribbon (White)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
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Hello Sunshine

Whilst out shopping with my mum recently, we saw cushion which she thought was perfect for me because it had “hello sunshine” written on it. To my surprise she picked it up straight away and said she was buying it for me (grin!). When I see it, it always makes me smile so I thought I’d create a page to share this happiness with you – I hope my page brightens your day and makes you smile too!

Inspired by the cushion design I started with the colour yellow. I sprinkled Yellow, Lemon and Dark Brown Colourcraft Brusho powders onto my page and then I spritzed them with water and watched the magic happen as the colours burst into life. While the Brushos were drying, I cut the flower petals out of some used dried teabags that I had saved and stamped them using black Archival Ink and a stamp set from the Tilly Daydream Collection by Docrafts. I stamped half the petals with a dotty ribbon design and the other half with a wavy ribbon design; these dots and lines were chosen to depict the fabric print of the cushion. I used the same black Archival Ink to stamp “hello sunshine”, from Bella Blvd by Hampton Art, in the centre of the flower which is also a teabag that I had cut into a circular shape as the words and circular design match the cushion. I stuck the teabag pieces to the page using a UHU Stic and when the glue was dry I outlined them with a black Derwent Graphik marker. To create more interest in the background, I stamped dots from a Woodware Françoise Collection stamp set using Mustard Seed Distress Ink; being a similar colour to the Brushos they add a subtle texture. Then I stamped a dotty garland from Craft Sensations, around the edges of the page using black Archival Ink. I added more detail by colouring the centre of the dots that I had stamped on the flower petals and the background using a white Uni Posca paint pen. Then to depict the cushion design, I coiled some pearl decorative wire to decorate the centre of the flower and used Glossy Accents to hold it in place. For the leaves surrounding the daisies, I stamped some leaf images, from the same Hampton Art stamp set, onto a teabag using black Archival Ink, fussy cut them out and stuck them down using a UHU stic. To finish, I arranged the daisies around the leaves with some of the pearl wire and stuck them into place using Glossy Accents.

Here is the wonderful cushion that my mum bought for me, it has pride of place on our rocking chair which sits in the bay window of our Beach/front room – I love it!

As happiness soothes my soul, I’m pleased to join Elke from Meerwolkenleben who is hosting the “Landscapes of the Soul” challenge over at Art Journal Journey.

With the autumnal yellows, browns and a spot of orange I’m joining the “Mixed Media with Autumnal Hues” challenge over at Country View Challenges.

Creating my page using these autumnal colours allows me to join a new challenge today over at A Vintage Journey, whose theme is “Crazy for Autumn Colour”, and I’m pleased to have focused on their “Mixed Media” genre as I have used different mediums to create this page and also their “Art Journaling” genre as it is a personal record of my mum’s lovely gift which was my inspiration.

It also makes me happy to be joining the “Not a Card” challenge at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge with my art journal page.

I had fun using all the stamps on this page so I’m also pleased to join the lovely Guest Designers and Design Team over at Stamping Sensations for their “Autumn Glory” challenge

I’m also pleased to join the “October Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included)” over at Craft Stamper with my unique teabag stamped 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:

  • Colourcraft Brusho Crystals (Yellow, Lemon, Dark Brown)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Mustard Seed)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pen (White)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.8mm)
  • Docrafts Tilly Daydream Mini Clear Stamp Set (Ribbons TIL907104)
  • Hampton Arts Bella Blvd cling mounted stamp set (Surf & Sand ICO226)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Françoise Collection stamp set (Flower Style FRSWS003)
  • Craft Sensations (Clear Stamps CRO274/16R2)
  • Used dried teabags
  • Home Bargains Special Occasions (Decorative Chain 26253)
  • Hobbycraft Wired Paper Flowers (Daisy 16101642)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic

Music makes my heart sing

I love listening to music when I’m crafting and have quite an eclectic taste, for when I feel like classical music, then Johann Strauss II is by far my favourite with his joyful polkas and waltzes, his music seems so happy to me (grin!)). What could be better than listening to “An der schönen blauen Donau” (The Blue Danube), which inspired my colourful musical vintage page today.

I started by experimenting with a new technique of adding Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to the whole page as a base for Faber-Castell Gelatos. Once the gel medium was dry I scribbled Snow Cone, Lime, Boysenberry, Margarita Mix gelatos over the top and used a wet finger to blend the colours. This was really easy to do and the gel medium created a slippery surface for the gelatos to glide over and is definitely a technique I would try again. Next I used various stamps to create the patterned background using Memento Inks. This included a Diamond Background stamp by Art Impressions using an aptly named Blue Danube ink, a circle and heart stamp by Sugar loaf Inc. using Bahama Blue, a Flower Tile stamp by Rubber Soul using Grape Jelly, a Serpentine Background stamp by Art Impressions using Summer Sky and a 4-Point Star Background stamp by Art Impressions using Lilac Posies. Then I rubbed some of these stamped images with a baby wipe to remove some of the ink and gelato which created a beautiful translucent effect. To finish the background, I added the roses, moulding, ballerina, music sheet and script images from a stamp set called Musicality by Docrafts using black Archival Ink. I really like the layers of stamping and the translucency of the colours and I enjoyed experimenting with all the techniques I used to produce them. Next I covered the page with a thin layer of gel medium to seal the colour and to allow the rub-on transfers to adhere easier to the page as the gelato has a tendency to coat the back of the transfer stopping it transferring to the page. I used an alphabet letter set of rub-on transfers to create the wording and went over the letters with a white Uni Posca paint pen so they stood out more. The hearts are wedding place cards from Dunelm which I stuck to the page using a UHU Stic. I used a paper punch to create the flowers using some sheet music, coloured the edges of the petals using Kingfisher and Peacock Blue Spectrum Aqua Markers and stuck a pearl Gel Stone Sticker in the centre.

I arranged the flowers on the hearts with some lace flowers, silver metallic ribbon and a blue enamel Vintage flower from Poundworld using Glossy Accents. Then I added some pieces of wire pearl decorative chain which I also used to swirl across the page using Glossy Accents to stick it into place, this finished the page.

It’s a new month and I’m pleased to join the lovely Yvonne from Meggy’s way over at Art Journal Journey for her theme “Colour in my World” with my colourful page and I think music colours my world too – Happy September!

As I used metal decorative wire and metallic ribbon on my page, I’m joining in the fun over at Country View Challenge where the theme is “Metal”.

With the vintage look and feel I created on my page, I’m also joining the lovely Astrid who is part of the Design Team over at The Mixed Media Monthly Challenge for their “Vintage” theme.

A few weeks ago I was talking to Susi about the Vienna Opera House in Austria and my love for Strauss, which inspired this page. Does anyone else watch the Vienna Philharmonic’s famous New Year’s Day Concerts?  It’s televised here in the UK and I always watch it – I love it! Of course Austrian composer Strauss always features at the concert and you can watch the “An der schönen blauen Donau” (The Blue Danube) being beautifully played by Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra at the 2011 New Year’s Concert on the YouTube link above.

If you are interested here are some facts about the music:

  • “The Blue Danube” is the common English title of “An der schönen blauen Donau”, which is German for “By the Beautiful Blue Danube”.
  • Johann Strauss II (1825 – 1899) is part of a famous musical dynasty being the son of Johann Strauss I. He wrote more than 400 waltzes, polkas, quadrilles, operettas, a ballet and other dance tunes. He is also known as “The Waltz King” and he composed this particular waltz in 1866.
  • Strauss adapted it into an orchestral version for the Paris World’s Fair in 1867 and it became a great success.
  • Words have been written to accompany the music but the instrumental version is by far the most commonly performed today.
  • When Strauss’s stepdaughter, asked the composer Johannes Brahms for his autograph, he wrote down the first bars of The Blue Danube and “Leider nicht von Johannes Brahms” which means “Alas! not by Johannes Brahms”.

As T Stands for Tuesday I’m sharing a drink with the T Gang and wishing you a Happy T Day!

We currently have family staying with us for the week, so I’m sorry that I haven’t had any time to blog and visit everyone recently. We had a fun weekend and I thought this photo matched the look and feel of my page, so here’s my Green tea and for those of you who are coffee lovers a cappuccino (just in shot on the left-hand side) at a local café we visited (grin!).

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:

  • Faber-Castell Gelato (Snow Cone, Lime, Boysenberry, Margarita Mix)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Danube Blue, Bahama Blue, Grape Jelly, Lilac Posies, Summer Sky)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Kingfisher, Peacock Blue)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pens (White)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Diamond Background T-3335)
  • Sugarloaf Inc. Anita’s wood mounted rubber stamp (26645)
  • Rubber Soul Sylvia Yu 2006 wood mounted rubber stamp (Flower Tile 1539-K)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Serpentine Background T-2773)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (4-Point Star Background G2983)
  • Docrafts Creativity Essentials A5 clear stamp set (Musicality DCE 907112)
  • Dunelm Wedding Collection (Place Cards)
  • Bosworth Violin Studies
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Old English White #ROY-864 Rub-on)
  • Poundworld (Vintage Stickers 54748)
  • Home Bargains Special Occasion (Decorative Chain 26253)
  • Home Bargains Sticker Mania (Gel Store Stickers 74749)
  • Lace border
  • Metallic Silver Ribbon
  • Floral Paper Punch
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic

Carnival

Every summer we attend our local carnival weekend and we always have so much fun watching the parade that it inspired this page! I’m pleased to be able to join Bluebeard and Elizabeth at Altered Book Lover again for the “Summertime Love” theme over at Art Journal Journey.

I started by cutting different decoupage and design pad papers into squares and rectangles to create the background. The papers I choose have seaside theme images and colourful patterns to represent our town, the carnival atmosphere and the fun we had. They are stuck to the page using a UHU Stic and I incorporated some pretty patterned fabric tape into the background design as well. Then I added vertical black lines along the edge of some of the papers using a Uni Posca paint pen. Next I added all the embellishments with the aim of layering them and to only use one of each item or design on my page so that I created an eclectic feel to represent the parade and give the page contrasting pops of colour. This was also a good way to use up bits and pieces I had leftover in my craft stash. This included some cardboard bunting with buttons on from Poundland and glittery bunting from Poundworld, which represent the bunting we saw along the parade route. As there were lots of bands taking part and music played throughout the parade I also added some music note washi tape, along with some camera film washi tape as we and many others were taking photos. There were vintage vehicles in the parade so I added an image of an old vintage car which is a Victorian tag embellishment. I added some pink circle stickers with palm trees and flamingos by The Range and lots of different flowers to represent some of the floats we saw during the parade; the flowers included a lovely sunflower border by Docrafts, a mini white flower, a red rose (for one of the bands) by The Range, a 3D sticker, a blue organza flower recycled from a gift bag and some glittery blue flower rub-on transfers. I also used some foam craft stickers from Wilko; a flower shape, a star, a balloon and lollipop which some floats were giving out to children, a crown to represent the carnival queens in the parade, a lion to represent the jungle theme of one of the school floats and an ice cream as there were bicycle ice cream carts. I especially liked the lorry carrying children from a local football club who had water guns. Needless to say they were having great fun covering everyone in water, so I added a foam football to the page with a half circle of tear shaped gem stones to depict the water droplets from their water guns (grin!). There were actually many children taking part in the parade from schools, clubs and community groups, they are represented by “A,B,C” and “1,2,3” mini gel stickers that I added to my page. As well as the “Sand; Sea; Sun” wording on one of the decoupage papers, I added more words that I associated with the carnival using stickers from Craft Planet, rub-on transfers and a “Hidden Joy” fabric sticker by Little Yellow Bicycle. The garland flag and ticket represent the fun rides and stalls that were in the park as part of the carnival. To finish, I added a glittery heart, some buttons, a couple of ribbons that I had tied into bows and lots of gemstones to add sparkle and interest.

Thought you might want to join in the carnival fun so here’s our Town Crier opening the parade, as you can see we had beautiful sunny weather.

There was lots of music throughout the parade and my favourite was this New Orleans style brass band; they are called Red Rose and played great music, I also enjoyed watching the gentleman with his umbrella, he looked so happy dancing in front of his band!

If you prefer there was also a traditional UK brass band.

Or even bagpipes for those of you who prefer more of a Scottish vibe which was loud and fabulous too.

This is one of the many vintage cars that took part in the parade.

There were quite a few horses in the parade this year and the carnival queen was travelling in style in a Cinderella coach.

Here’s the children from the Football Club, don’t they look pleased with themselves squirting the spectators with their water guns.

There was also a troop of local gymnasts performing in the parade and if you look at the photo closely you can see one of them in mid-air.

I was in awe of the work that must have gone into all the wonderful knitted car – isn’t it amazing!

As we were walking by Anton’s café, we saw some friends sitting at one of the tables outside and they kindly asked if we would like to join them.

Of course we were delighted to and had a great time chatting and enjoying the sunshine. So as T Stands for Tuesday I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a very Happy T Day! Our drinks were a pot of green tea for me and a hot chocolate for my hubby, you can also see our friend’s cappuccino in the background which I’m sure will please any coffee lovers in the T Gang, namely Valerie and Elizabeth (grin!).

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:

  • Uni Posca Paint Pens (White, Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Trimcraft Deco Mache Decoupage Papers (Tiled Seaside FEDEC102)
  • VivaGade Decoupage Paper (Helsinki)
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Soft Sweetness 154897)
  • The Works (Fabric Tape)
  • Poundland (Handmade Embellishments 138127)
  • Poundworld (Paper Lace U-83197)
  • The Works (3 Washi Tapes)
  • The Works (Victorian Style Embellishments PO/19702)
  • Docrafts Papermania Signature 3D Floral Borders (Sunflower Stickers PMA801100)
  • The Range (Craft Stickers CR1243)
  • Home Bargains Special Occasion (Mini Decorative Stickers 22740)
  • The Range (Rose Garland CR0951)
  • Free & Easy (3D Stickers 002157)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (SYN14709, Summer #ROY-505 Rub-on)
  • Blue organza flower (recycled from gift bag)
  • Wilko Little Steps (Safari Foam Stickers)
  • Graham & Brown The Wall (Adhesive Jewels)
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • Craft Planet Metallic Waterfall Stickers (Beach PO#9622)
  • Little Yellow Bicycle Stickers (Fabric Favourites PD-220)
  • Trimcraft Garland Flags (Fun Fair HCGF001)
  • Ticket
  • The Works (Glitter Heart Stickers)
  • Buttons
  • Ribbon
  • The Range (Adhesive Craft Gems)
  • Poundland Self-adhesive gems (504 Gems 128133)
  • Hobbycraft Gem Sticker Strip (Assorted Pink Squares 5971461001)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape