Melt It! – Four Seasons

I’m so excited and honoured to be a Pinworthy Guest Designer over at A Vintage Journey and my seasonal heart decorations are inspired by their challenge – Melt It! Julia is the host for this challenge and kindly provided the following brief:

This month we’re asking everyone to MELT IT! Get out the UTEE (ultra thick embossing enamel), beeswax, encaustic wax, embossing powders or good old wax crayons and a heat tool and get melting to create something in a vintage; shabby; mixed media; art journaling; industrial, timeworn or steampunk style.

So today I’m sharing how I created a heart decoration for each of the four seasons and as I love creating my art journal pages and projects using mixed media, I chose to create these decorations in the Mixed Media Style for A Vintage Journey. I had so much fun melting both embossing powder for the backgrounds and also embossing enamels for the birds on my Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter decorations (grin!).

These decorations are wonderful additions to the seasonal window displays that I create throughout the year, which you may be aware of from my previous post.

I started by stamping the heart tags with different stamps using Emboss ink, the stamps included: a rose design from a Penny Black stamp set for spring; flowers and swirls from the same Penny Black stamp set and also a flower design from Hampton Art for summer; some leaves from Royal & Langnickel for autumn and finally snowflakes from BoBunny for winter. I covered each of them with white Stampendous embossing powder, shook off the excess powder onto a piece of scrap paper and also tapped the heart to make sure any stray powder was removed. Then I used a heat gun to melt the embossing powder by sweeping the gun over the stamped images, taking care not to direct the heat in one area for too long until the embossing powder melted to a glossy finish and became smooth and dimensional. I repeated the same process to decorate the back of the heart too, making sure I suspended the heart when heating the embossing powder to ensure the reverse side did not stick to my craft mat. Next I applied two different Memento Inks for each of the hearts using a blending tool, which emphasised the melted embossing powder beautifully. The ink colours I used were Pistachio and Angel Pink for spring, Lilac Posies and Dandelion for summer, Morocco and Toffee Crunch for autumn and Summer Sky and London Fog for winter.

The branches and foliage for spring, autumn and winter are die cut using Garden Greens Sizzix Thinlets by Tim Holtz from different design papers with my new Big Shot machine. They are coloured using Spectrum Aqua markers which I applied like watercolour by scribbling the marker onto an acrylic block and picking up the ink with a wet paintbrush; the colours I used were Bud Green and Moss for spring, Chestnut and Sepia for autumn and Chocolate for winter. I used some tiny maple leaves that I had in my craft stash to decorate the autumn branch which I coloured using Crimson, Orange and Gold Spectrum Aqua Markers. All of these paper elements are stuck to the heart using a Zig Memory System glue pen. For summer, I used some sunflower border stickers by Docrafts Papermania.

For the birds, I used some wooden bird shapes which I covered in Emboss ink and Stampendous Frantage embossing enamel; this enamel was a Christmas present so this is the first time I had used it and I love it, it’s such an amazing medium to use (grin!). I shook off the excess enamel pieces and then I used a heat gun to melt the embossing enamel until it melted to a smooth glossy finish. Be careful not to touch the melted embossing enamel until cooled as it gets very hot when heated. For spring I used Aged Hunter, for summer Aged Silver, for autumn Aged Marine and winter Aged Scarlet. The birds are stuck in place using Ranger Glossy Accents.

Next I embellished the spring branches with some pretty flower beads to represent spring blossoms using Glossy Accents and the winter berries using Christmas Red Stickles from Ranger. The wording is stamped onto thick paper using a Dovecraft alphabet stamp set and different Memento Inks; Rich Cocoa for spring, Cottage Ivy for summer, Elderberry for autumn and Blue Danube for winter. They are stuck down using the Zig Memory System glue pen. To finish, I added a piece of white paper twine and also threaded some flower, metal and bevelled glass beads on a piece of thread and tied them with some ribbons around the twine.

I really enjoyed joining A Vintage Journey to Melt It! and create my Four Seasons heart decorations. I hope you are inspired by this month’s challenge too and are able 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:

  • Tsukeniko Emboss Embossing Ink Pad (Clear)
  • Stampendous Embossing Powder (Detail White Opaque)
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Toffee Crunch, Angel Pink, Rich Cocoa, Lilac Posies, Dandelion, Cottage Ivy, Morocco, Toffee Crunch, Elderberry, Summer Sky, London Fog, Danube Blue)
  • Stampendous Frantage Embossing Enamel Holiday Kit (Aged Hunter, Aged Silver, Aged Marine, Aged Scarlet)
  • Spectrum Aqua Markers (Bud Green, Moss, Crimson, Orange, Gold, Chestnut, Sepia, Chocolate)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush artist pen (Cold Grey IV 233)
  • Penny Black Stamp Set (Clearly in Love 30-009)
  • Hampton Art Studio G Clear Stamps (Series 11 VS4911)
  • Royal & Langnickel Clear Choice Stamps (Pressed Leaves MIN-CCS102)
  • BoBunny Stamps (Snow Day 13705563)
  • Sizzix Thinlets Tim Holtz Alterations (Garden Greens 661206)
  • Dovecraft Essentials Alphabet Stamp Set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Crafter’s Companion Luxury Designer Paper Pad (Angelica & Adam Collection A&A-PAP6-M)
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Design Block)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Changing Seasons CR0701/16PL1)
  • Wilko (5 Heart Gift Tags)
  • Craft for Occasions (C2026 – wooden bird and bunnies)
  • Docrafts Papermania Signature 3D Floral Borders (Sunflower Burst PMA8011000)
  • The Brighton Bead Shop (Assorted beads – flower, glass, metal, bevelled)
  • Thick black thread
  • Recycled ribbons from Christmas Crackers
  • Satin ribbon (Green, Pink, Tan, Blue)
  • Ranger Stickles (Christmas Red)
  • Zig Memory System 2 Way Glue (The Dual Action Glue Pen)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Glue Pen
Advertisements

Love is in the Air

The new challenge theme over at Try it on Tuesday is Love is in the Air – think Hearts, Valentine’s Day, Love etc.

This challenge runs for the next two weeks and I hope you will join in the fun with your Love is in the Air creations, I look forward to seeing you there (grin!).

My art journal page today is a mixed media collage and it involved lots of fussy cutting which I love (grin!). I started this page by stamping a heart background stamp onto the page using Rich Cocoa Memento ink and stencilling a Vintage trellis design from Dutch Doobadoo using Angel Pink Memento Ink with a blending tool.

Next I fussy cut the heart branches, birds and birdcages from an 8×8” sheet of design paper. The design paper was two-sided so I also fussy cut lots of hearts and swirls from the other side. Once all the fussy cutting was complete, I stuck a sheet of napkin, with a pretty lace, music and cupid design, over the top of the stamped and stencilled background using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium; I chose Memento Ink as they do not reactivate when wet so the inks do not bleed into the gel medium or napkin. As I covered the napkin with a layer of gel medium, I collaged the pieces of heart branches, swirls and birds on top while it was still wet. I ensured that the design flowed by matching up the lines and layering the images together and also covered all of these pieces with a layer of gel medium too and left it to dry.

Once dry, I coloured all of the hearts using a Blossom Spectrum Aqua Marker which I applied like watercolour; I did this by scribbling the marker onto an acrylic block and using a wet paintbrush to gradually shade the colour. I really like the way the colour intensifies as it shades across the hearts. I also added more definition around the hearts using white and brown Uni Posca paint pens. Next I added the red lettering which is from a Die-cut & Paper Pack set by Docrafts Papermania and then added some shadows to the whole design by applying diluted Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker with a paintbrush. To finish, I embellished the tree branches and swirls with some small red gem stones to add a little sparkle.

I really enjoyed creating this page and over on Try it on Tuesday the Design Team have created some fabulous creations for this challenge, so please pop over and take a look.

As we have had some high winds of late, instead of walking with friends on the beach we have taken refuge by walking in the grounds of Lytham Hall. This of course means that we went to the café there and this is the saucer that my cup was partnered with, it reminded me of the birds on my page (grin!).

You can see how my green tea was served here, in a pretty teacup along with the saucer and of course I had my usual slice of delicious ginger cake which I just couldn’t resist – yum (grin!). 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 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 be able to join the lovely Rike for rike’s art, who is hosting the Animals A-Z challenge over at Art Journal Journey with the “L is for Lovebirds” that I included on my page.

As I included red on my page, I’m also joining in the fun over at The Artistic Stamper and their challenge is Roses are Red (use the colour Red) challenge.

I’m also joining Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge and their Love is in the Air Challenge.

As I used the reds, pinks and hearts on my art journal page, I’m also pleased to join the Photo Inspiration 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:

  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Rich Cocoa, Angel Pink)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Blossom)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pens (White, Brown)
  • Hobbycraft clear stamp (A6 Heart Background 50351HC)
  • Dutch Doobadoo A5 Dutch Mask Art (Vintage)
  • Dunelm Napkins (Grace 30220549)
  • 8×8” Design Paper Sheet – free gift from local craft store
  • Docrafts Papermania A4 Ultimate Die Cut & Paper Pack (Folk Christmas PMA160933)
  • Docrafts Papermania 3mm Adhesive Stones (Red 351607)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium

Blue Danube

Every year we enjoy watching the famous New Year’s concert from Vienna, Austria, which features my all time favourite classical music by Strauss. This art journal page celebrates one of the most well-known waltzes by Johann Strauss called the Blue Danube and takes inspiration from the beautiful roses at this year’s concert.

Over at Try it on Tuesday, the current theme is Fire and Ice where you are asked to use hot or cold colours like the hot reds and cool blues on my page. I hope you are inspired to join in the fun, this challenge runs for another week and it would be great to see you there!

I started by tearing the edges from a piece of music sheet detailing the Blue Danube Waltz and sticking the torn pieces around the edge of my page using a UHU Stic. I aged these papers using Brushed Corduroy and Black Soot Distress Ink and a blending tool, and also a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and Derwent Graphik marker smudging the inks with my finger as I applied them. I then added a colour wash of Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink by stamping the ink pad directly onto an acrylic block and applying the ink using a paintbrush to apply the ink onto the page which I had already spritzed with water. I also pressed the ink onto the page from the acrylic block to create pools and dots of blue colour and then I dried them with a heat gun. Next I stamped a series of stamps from the Musicality stamp set by Docrafts using Danube Blue, Paris Dusk, Teal Zeal and Bahamas Blue Memento Inks ensuring that I stamped around the music sheet to completely cover the background. Then I curled the edges of the central piece of music sheet and stuck it onto the page using double-sided tape.

I used my Big Shot to die cut the leaf swirls from gold metallic paper, I also die cut the green leaves, using the Garden Greens Sizzix Thinlets by Tim Holtz, from some green design paper. I coloured and edged them with Leaf Green Spectrum Aqua marker to intensify the colour and they are all stuck into place using glue dots and a Zig Memory System glue pen. For the roses, I used a rose stamp from the same Docrafts Musicality stamp set and black Archival Ink to stamp them onto a pale pink design paper which I backed with white card. I coloured these roses using Rose Pink, Begonia and Sunflower Spectrum Aqua markers which I applied using a paintbrush like watercolour; I did this by scribbling the inks onto an acrylic block so I could pick up the ink with a paintbrush. They are also edged with the Rose Pink Spectrum Aqua marker and layered on top of the leaves and swirls using double-sided foam tape, which finished the page.

If you haven’t seen it here’s a link to the Blue Danube Waltz being played at the New Year’s Concert Vienna Philharmonic 2018. I love the New Year’s concert and some of you may remember me featuring it last year on one of my posts, where I detailed some interesting facts about the Blue Danube and Johann Strauss too.

Before we watched this year’s concert we celebrated the first day of the year in style by having a breakfast of smoked salmon with scrambled eggs on a toasted English muffin. I also had a glass of Bucks Fizz, which is orange juice and prosecco (or sparkling white wine or champagne could be used instead); sharing this drink means that I’m joining the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday – cheers and wishing you all a very 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. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

Over at Moo Mania & More the theme is Inspired by a Song which gave me the perfect excuse to create my Blue Danube page, thank you!

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 New Year’s adventure!

I’m joining in the fun over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Layer It Up challenge with my layer music sheet, dies and stamped roses.

I enjoyed using all the stamps to create this page so I’m also pleased to join the Anything Goes challenge over at The Artistic Stamper.

As I used stamps for the focal images on my page, I’m also happy to be able to join Fashionable Stamping Challenges and their Anything Goes challenge.

With my cool blue background, I’m also joining the Cold and Frosty Colours challenge over at Stamping Sensations.

Again and again I’m drawn to use my Distress Inks to create backgrounds and my Memento Inks for stamping, and as these are some of my favourite mediums I’m joining the Allsorts Challenge Blog and their Old Favourites 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 and Black Soot Chipped Sapphire)
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Danube Blue, Paris Dusk, Teal Zeal, Bahama Blue)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Markers (Leaf Green, Rose Pink, Begonia, Sunflower)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.8mm)
  • Docrafts Creativity Essentials A5 clear stamp set (Musicality DCE907112)
  • Sizzix Thinlets by Tim Holtz Alterations (Garden Greens
  • Swirl Leaf Die – unknown
  • Music of all Nations Music Booklet
  • Gold Paper
  • Poundland Design Pad (Contemporary Christmas CR0701K/PL4)
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Pastels & White CR0260/PW)
  • Card – recycled packaging
  • UHU Stic
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape
  • Wilko Sticky Dots
  • Zig Memory System 2 Way Glue (Dual Action Glue Pen)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

My Favourite Things

I’m thrilled and honoured to be able to join the Design Team at Try it on Tuesday and I’d like to thank the wonderful team for inviting me. Being part of this team is very special to me as Try it on Tuesday is one of the first challenge blogs that I ever joined and I have very fond memories of when I made their “Top 5” and was subsequently asked to be a guest designer for one of the challenges!

A little about me:
I live by the sea in the North West of England with my hubby and I started Art Journaling just over 2 years ago as a way of expressing my life through words and pictures. I love using mixed media and I’m captivated by the variety of techniques and materials that can be used to create so many different styles of art. I’ve always been a creative person, and this has now become a passion of mine which I like to share with others.

Here at Try it on Tuesday we have a new challenge theme every two weeks and we would love for you to join us. Today we are launching the My Favourite Things theme where you are asked to use a favourite technique, stamp, stencil, ink or paint etc, which gave me lots of inspiration when I created this page.

I started the page using one of my favourite techniques using Spectrum Aqua Markers and an acrylic block; I did this by scribbling Sea Green, Kingfisher and Peacock Blue onto an acrylic block, spritzing the block with water then pressing it onto the page. I love the way the ink blends and imprints the page with colour creating some lovely textures. Next I selected my favourite hearts and circle stamp from Sugarloaf Inc. and stamped it on the page using Bahama Blue Memento Ink. Then I used an “Art is” stencil by The Crafter’s Workshop to stencil some black DecoArt acrylic paint using a sponge and I also splattered some of this paint over the page using a paintbrush. This stencil is a favourite of mine as I can really relate to the words which read:

When the paint had dried I used the stencil again to add Pébéo modelling paste over the top of the black paint using a palette knife. After the paste had dried I coloured it with Black Soot Distress Ink using a blending tool and then some Boysenberry, Snow Cone, Coconut and Kiwi Faber-Castell Gelatos by simply brushing the gelato directly over the top; gelatos are one of my favourite mediums too. Then I splattered the page using a white Uni Posca paint pen. Next I chose another of my favourite stamps to stamp the birds sitting on a branch directly onto the page and also onto a piece of patterned paper from a Design Pad from Crafter’s Companion. I fussy cut the birds out of the paper and stuck them over the stamped bird images on the page using double-sided tape. The “My Favourite Things” wording is formed from Label Letters from idea-ology by Tim Holtz which I mounted on three tags. The tags are covered with the appropriate word definition from my old school Oxford Pocket Dictionary using a UHU Stic; the edges of which are stamped with the heart and circle design from Sugarloaf Inc. using the Bahama Blue Memento Ink and Twisted Citron Distress Ink. They are edged with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker as well as Black Soot Distress Ink using a blending tool and then stuck to the page using double-sided tape. I also punched some hearts from the dictionary paper using a Tonic Studio paper punch; they are stamped, edged and stuck to the page the same way as the tags. I used the Label Letters again to add the names of the favourite things I used, to remind me of how I created this page. To finish, I stuck some paper flowers next to each of the words using Ranger Glossy Accents.

I thought you may like to see where I create my art, here’s my craft room. My hubby built the units for me and I painted them with chalk paint – I love it! My new Christmas present is on display too, can you guess what it might be (grin!).

I had fun using some of my favourite techniques, inks, paints, stamps, stencils, and labels to create this page. I hope you will join in the fun over at Try it on Tuesday too, if you need more inspiration take a look at the wonderful creations from my fellow design team members.

I’m so looking forward to finding out what your favourite things are too!

How to join us:

  • As long as you stay within the challenge theme you can make whatever you like such as a card, altered project, ATC, scrapbook page, tag, mixed media or anything else you might like to try, including digital art.
  • Simply go to our Try it on Tuesday blog and use the “Inklinkz” tool to link directly to your post (and not just to your blog).
  • Remember to incorporate our Try it on Tuesday link in your blog post too.
  • You can find the full set of guidelines here.

I’m also joining the Craft Stamper Take It, Make It Challenge and their January Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included).

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 (Sea Green, Kingfisher, Peacock Blue)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Bahama Blue)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Faber-Castell Gelatos (Boysenberry, Snow Cone, Coconut, Kiwi)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Black Soot, Twisted Citron)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pen (White)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • The Crafter’s Workshop 6×6” Stencil, Designs by Jamie (Mini Art Is TCW261S)
  • Craft Sensations (Clear Stamps CRO274/16R1)
  • Sugarloaf Inc. wood mounted rubber stamp (26645)
  • Crafter’s Companion Angelica & Adam Collection (Luxury Designer paper Pad A&A-PAP6-M)
  • The Pocket Oxford Doctionary
  • White card
  • The Works (24 Assorted Craft Tags)
  • Poundworld (Gem Florettes 117128)
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology (Label Letters #TH93072)
  • Tonic Studios Paper Punch (Classic Heart Sider 858E)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

New Year Goals 2018

This time of year we always write some goals to give us focus, keep us on track and get the most from our life together which makes me and my hubby very happy (grin!). So I created a journal page to store our written goals so we know where they are and can easily look at them throughout the year.

I started by covering the page with a Vine background stamp in alternating blocks of Grape Jelly, Lilac Roses and Lulu Lavender Memento Ink and then Danube Blue and Bahama Blue Memento Ink. Then I edged the page using Navy and Purple Spectrum Aqua markers smudging the ink with a baby wipe and my finger. Next I stuck some leftover gold outline sticker surrounds on the page, mainly around the edges, to add more detail. The doves and olive branches are fussy cut from a Christmas card and are edged with a metallic gold pen. I stuck the branches down first using a UHU Stic and when the glue had dried, outlined them using a black UniPin marker and added some shadows using a Slate Spectrum Aqua Marker. I also recycled the envelope from the Christmas card, which had the most beautiful rich gold interior, to make two compartments to store the cards which detail our goals for previous years and also our current goals. They are stuck to the page using double-sided tape and adorned with the pretty doves using a UHU Stic. To finish, I added the words using gold letters and numbers to depict the year, which are peel-off alphabet stickers.

What could be better when writing your goals to have a nice cup of green tea and a slice of homemade Christmas cake (grin!). As I’m sharing my drink it reminds me to join T Stands for Tuesday and say a big hello the T Gang – sending you all Happy T Day wishes!

I’m pleased to say we made very good progress on our goals last year (grin!). I suppose they could be called New Year resolutions as we write them in January, but I have to say that we view them as goals as they are stepping points to our more long-term aspirations and we find they sometimes change and adapt during the year as we try things out.

Now I’m wondering if you have any goals or resolutions for the New Year too?

If you are interested here are some facts about New Year Resolutions:

  • Making a New Year’s resolution is a tradition where a person resolves to change a trait or behaviour, accomplish a personal goal or otherwise improve their life.
  • It is thought making New Year Resolutions dates back to the ancient Babylonians, about 4,000 years ago when they celebrated the New Year on the first new moon after the spring equinox. The Babylonians made New Year’s resolutions to keep themselves in good standing with the gods and they made practical resolutions such as to get out of debt or to return borrowed farm equipment.
  • Nowadays, the success rate for New Year’s Resolutions is low as often the goals are unrealistic, people don’t track their progress, they forget about them or too many goals are made in the first place.
  • Popular resolutions are:
    • Diet, exercise and weight loss
    • Enjoy life and be more positive
    • Save money
    • Learn something new
    • Be more organised
    • Give more time and money to charity
    • Be a nicer human being
    • Make new friends
    • Spend more time with family
    • Take a trip

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 N, also known as BioArtGal, who is hosting the “New Year, New Adventures” challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my New Year Goals journal page.

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

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

As this mixed media page rings in our new goals for 2018, 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:

  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Grape Jelly, Lilac Roses, Lulu Lavender, Danube Blue, Bahama Blue)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Navy, Purple, Slate)
  • Script Metallic Pen (Gold)
  • UniPin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Vine Background T-2845)
  • Recycled Christmas card and envelope
  • Magenta Style Outline Stickers (Gold)
  • Dovecraft Peel-off Stickers (Alpha Caps G DCPO-05)
  • UHU Stic
  • X-Press It double-sided tape

Christmas Robins

I love robins and Christmas gives me the perfect reason to transform our beach room into a robin wonderland (grin!). So I’m sharing a robin Christmas card that I created for my mum and dad; it has extra relevance as my mum always embroiders me a robin themed Christmas card and also makes us a Christmas pudding every year so I thought I’d return the favour (double grin!).

For the robins and holly leaves, I used a Clear Magic Stamp Set called Robins from the Woodware Craft Collection and I used Spectrum Aqua markers to colour them. I started with white card stock to create my 6×6″ card, and then I created a holly border by painstakingly stamping the tiny two leaf and berry stamp many times using black Archival Ink. The holly leaves are coloured with Bud Green and Evergreen Spectrum Aqua markers and the berries with Scarlet and Crimson aqua markers. For the focal panel, I used another piece of card stock and stamped a Christmas pudding and single robin image and also a single robin stamp, both using black Archival Ink. Then I took a piece of red and white striped sparkly paper and cut it to size so it covered the bottom half of the card. Then I positioned the paper over the card and stamped the Christmas pudding stamp again on the top of the paper. I cut it out leaving a Christmas pudding and plate shaped hole in the paper which I lined up with the stamped image on the card so it looked like a tablecloth. Next I coloured the robins with Desert, Terracotta, Chestnut, Chocolate, Scarlet, Crimson and Burgundy Spectrum Aqua markers using a wet paintbrush to blend the colours. The Christmas pudding and plate are coloured the same way; for the Christmas pudding I used the Terracotta, Chestnut and Chocolate aqua markers and for the plate I used Charcoal and Peach aqua markers. I also used a gold aqua marker to colour the beaks of the robins. Then I stamped “Merry Christmas” with a Holiday Ribbon wood mounted stamp by Hero Arts onto thin card stock using Cottage Ivy Memento Ink and stuck it over the corner of the focal panel using double-sided tape. To finish, I positioned the panel in the centre of the card using double-sided foam tape so it was surrounded by the holly border.

My beach room (front room) is decorated with robins and this is my latest robin addition, she is called Rosy and she’s having fun hanging off one of the wall lights (grin!). This year we also received two homemade Christmas puddings from my mum and although it’s not a favourite of mine, (unlike my hubby who loves Christmas pudding), I like mine served hot with custard – what about you?

If you are Interested here are some interesting facts about Christmas Pudding:

  • Christmas Pudding originated in England and dates back to Medieval times in the 1420s.
  • They are a type of suet pudding and contain sugar, treacle, suet, raisins and spices.
  • Christmas Pudding is also known as “Plum Pudding” or “Plum Duff” although the pudding has no plums, instead it contains raisins which in old Victorian times were called plums.
  • Figgy pudding is a type of Christmas pudding which was originally made with figs.
  • Putting a silver six-pence coin is an age-old custom that is said to bring luck to the person that finds it.
  • These puddings are traditionally steamed in a cloth, however like many people these days, my mum uses a basin.
  • Brandy is sometimes poured over the pudding and set alight to make a spectacular display, my mum still likes to do this at Christmastime.
  • Christmas Pudding can be served hot or cold with hard sauce, brandy butter, rum butter, cream, custard or my mum’s white brandy sauce (grin!).

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my art 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 “Christmas” Challenge over at Moo Mania & More with my Merry Christmas card.

I’m joining in the fun again over at Fashionable Stamping Challenges and their “Celebrate” challenge as this card is sent with love to celebrate Christmas.

I’m joining the “Christmas” challenge over at Country View Challenges with my Christmas card which includes their optional reds and greens as part of the card design.

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

I’m also joining the “Christmas” challenge over at The Artistic Stamper with my robin stamp designed card.

The Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge is “Christmas/Winter Holidays” so my Christmas card is perfect for this 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)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Bud Green, Evergreen, Desert, Terracotta, Chestnut, Chocolate, Scarlet, Crimson, Burgundy, Charcoal, Peach, Gold)
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Cottage Ivy)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Clear Magic Stamps (Robins FRCL030)
  • Hero Arts wood-mounted rubber stamps (Holiday Ribbons LL036)
  • White card stock
  • The Works Designer Paper Pack (The Night Before Christmas)
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape
  • 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