A Walk in the Park

To celebrate my mum’s birthday this month, she chose to go to Stanley Park where there is an Art Deco Café called “Parks” for a light lunch. We had a lovely time and I wanted to capture our visit as well as my mum’s favourite spring flowers namely daffodils, tulips and iris which I always buy and arrange for her as part of her birthday present.

Firstly I added three strips of plasterboard/drywall tape to the page and applied Blueprint Sketch, Twisted Citron and Hickory Smoke Distress Inks with a blending tool. I wanted the tape to act like a stencil so I removed it revealing a white grid pattern. I stamped a tree stamp by Art Impressions using Rich Cocoa Memento Ink and then I used an A6 Docrafts stamp set to stamp a bigger tree onto my page as well as a piece of brown patterned paper from a Design Pad. I cut out the tree from the paper using the stamp outline to guide me and positioned it over the tree I had stamped on the page using a UHU Stic. On the bottom of the page I added the daffodils, iris and tulips that my mum loves so much, I cut the flower shapes from pieces of napkin which then melted into the page when I used Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to stick them down. Next I added the names of the flowers and the month which are rub-on transfers. The wooden frames are from Poundland and I created different pictures to remind me of our day out together. I filled one with the same napkin flowers, another with the logo of the café we visited which is from a leaflet I collected whilst we were there and the last one with a piece of card that I stamped with a recurring “Happy Birthday” using black Archival Ink. I embellished each one with a strip of green ribbon and a mini gel star sticker and stuck the framed picture to the page using Glossy Accents. To finish I covered the tree with cherry blossom flowers and dotted some fallen petals amongst the spring flowers, these are mini gel stickers and depict the lovely pink blossom we saw whilst we were in the park.

As we were “Out and About” celebrating my mum’s birthday, I’m pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

I thought you may like join in our celebration; this is the view as we walked though Stanley Park which is in Blackpool. Visiting the park brings back many fond memories from my childhood because we use to visit regularly to feed the ducks at the lake, walk the paths to see the different gardens and, possibly my favourite thing in the world when I was young, to jump up and down on the outside trampolines.

This time we went to the Italian Gardens which is situated in the centre of the park and has many flower beds, a large number of benches and a central fountain made from Italian marble which is surround by sea horses.

There are great columns and a number of statues in this garden, this includes a pair beautiful of Medici Lions situated either side of the steps that lead to the café. I used to stand and look at them in awe when I was a child, they are so magnificent!

The “Parks” café overlooks the Italian Gardens and was built in a traditional art deco style. It is an imposing building and a focal point of the park.

The inside of the café is so beautiful; it is such an elegant setting with its original art deco features and palm trees.  The menu of breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea seems a bit pricey to me but the quality of the food is excellent.

We all had the most delicious ham and cheese toastie for lunch and I had a ginger beer whilst my parents both had coffee. As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a Happy T Day!

These are the flowers I bought for my mum and arranged in a lovely metal jug, she loves the combination of the yellow daffodils, red tulips and blue iris – don’t they look bright and cheery!

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 (Blueprint Sketch, Twisted Citron, Hickory Smoke)
  • Memento Ink (Rick Cocoa)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (P-1398)
  • Docrafts A6 clear stamp set (Build a tree  DCE907130)
  • Crafter’s Companion Vintage Floral Collection Acrylic Stamp (Floral Sentiments VF-ST-FSENT)
  • Napkin from a café
  • Poundland Design Pad (Changing Seasons CRO701/16PL1)
  • Parks Art Deco Café leaflet
  • 151Adhesives Plasterboard & Drywall Tape
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Spring Sentiments #ROY-506 Rub-on)
  • Poundland A Beautiful Life collection (Wooden Frames LCWDN001)
  • Green ribbon
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Gluepen
  • The Range double-sided tape

Visiting Paris

I have happy memories of visiting Paris in the springtime. It’s such a beautiful place and so romantic, it has many iconic landmarks and the most wonderful patisseries. So with Paris as my inspiration, I’m pleased to be able to join this month’s theme “Out and About” being hosted by Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

I chose some of my favourite colours of green and blue to create the background using Chipped Sapphire, Peacock Feathers and Peeled Paint Distress Inks. I applied the ink pad directly to an acrylic block, and then I sprayed it with water and pressed the block onto my page. I filled in any white gaps with watered down Chipped Sapphire ink using a paint brush. I then stamped a Serpentine background using the Chipped Sapphire ink, some small script stamps using the Peeled Paint ink and some postage mark stamps using Jet Black Archival Ink. Then I added fine splatters of white and black acrylic paint using a paint brush. I stencilled Texture Paste using a Wheels Stencil from Ranger by Dina Wakley Media, and because the inks bleed into the wet paste and colour it, I had to paint the wheels with white acrylic paint when the paste had fully dried in order to give it a clean white finish. I used paper from a design pad, choosing two different designs which reminded me of French design wallpapers and cut them to the various sizes. I distressed the edges with pinking shears and applied Black Soot Distress Ink with a blending tool. The Paris images and postage stamps are Stickeroos from Penny Black, and once the stickers where in place I stuck everything to the page using a UHU Stic and double-sided foam tape. I embellished the papers and images with a black rhinestone frame border and then to mimic this frame effect and lighten the page, I continued the dots around the edge using white acrylic paint which I painstakingly applied with an embossing tool; I really like the 3D effect. I added the word “Paris” which is from the same Penny Black Stickeroo set; I stuck them to some card first before sticking them to the page, outlining them with a black Uni Pin marker and adding the white dots. To finish the page I added clusters of green gemstones on both the background and the images.

We visited Paris as a special birthday treat and I remember the magical Eiffel Tower with its wonderful iron lattice-work. It looks so spectacular all lit up and twinkling, apparently there are 20,000 light bulbs which are used to make the Eiffel Tower sparkle every night.  Today almost 7 million people a year visit the Eiffel Tower and it’s believed to be the most visited paid-for monument in the world.

The metal work is so beautiful and the tower stands at 324 metres (1063 feet) tall including antennas. I was amazed to find out that it comprises 18,000 metal parts which are joined together by 2.5 million rivets, it sways around six to seven centimetres (2-3 inches) in the wind, during cold weather the tower shrinks by about 15cm (six inches) and that it takes 60 tonnes of paint to repaint it every seven years.

The Arc De Triomphe is magnificent; it stands at the end of the Champs-Élysées and looks such a powerful structure. It is 50 metres (164 ft) high, 45 metres (148 ft) wide and 22 metres (72 ft) deep. We found out that it was built to honour those who fought for France especially during the Napoleonic wars. In fact, the construction was ordered in 1806 by Napoleon himself to honour the Grande Armee, the name of the French army at that time. It was completed in 1836, long after Napoleon’s death in 1821.

I remember standing under the monument looking up at all the amazing carvings; it was so ornate and pays tribute to the wars fought as well as those who fought in them.

You wouldn’t believe the number of patisseries that are dotted around the streets of Paris! They all sell the most amazing sweet treats – yum! There is so much choice and they had the most lovely chocolates and Easter eggs 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 (Peacock Feathers, Peeled Paint, Chipped Sapphire )
  • Ranger Archival (Jet Black)
  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Ivory Black)
  • Colvin & Co Artists’s Acrylic (White Titanium)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line Marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Ranger Texture Paste
  • Art Impressions wood mounted stamp (Serpentine Background T-2773)
  • The Works (Clears Stamps CR0274/TW3)
  • Ranger Dina Wakley Media Stencil (Wheels MDS45588)
  • The Works 12×12 Paperstack  (Vintage Experience)
  • Penny Black Stickeroos (Je Taime #10-199)
  • Hobbycraft (Rhinestone Stickers Green)
  • Hobbycraft (Black & White Frame Adhesive Gem Design)
  • Decorative Scissors (Zig Zag)
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Happy Daffodils

March is here and the daffodils are in full bloom which heralds the coming of spring. There seems to be an abundance of them around the town this year and these cheery yellow flowers always make me smile. So to welcome the arrival of one of the first plants to light up our gardens I decided to create a display of my own.

I started by stenciling a honeycomb pattern using a Creative Expressions mask and Pébéo modelling paste and left it to dry thoroughly. I used my new set of Spectrum Aqua Markers to create the background, the colours I choose were Kingfisher, Tan and Desert; I applied them to an acrylic block and spritzed them with water and then I pressed the block or dripped the ink onto the page. Using the same Aqua Markers I stamped a daffodil tile design onto the background and splattered the page with fine dots of the diluted Aqua marker pigments and Black Soot Distress Ink. To make the tags, I used a cream glossy tag and applied the same black Distress Ink to the edge and across the whole surface using a baby wipe. Then I stamped the daffodil tile design using the same Aqua markers to decorate the tag background. The daffodil image is from a magazine, I tore it in half, ripped the edges and applied the black Distress Ink to them and I stuck them to the tags using a UHU Stic. The original image design was monotone except for a yellow wasp, so to accentuate the daffodils I coloured the flower, stems, leaves and words using Derwent Inktense pencils, a Moss Spectrum Aqua Marker and a black Derwent Graphik Line Marker. I found the wasp detracted from the daffodils so I covered it up with some vintage butterfly washi tape. I added some black paper twine and stuck them to the page using double-sided foam tape. I also flicked yellow and orange Derwent Inktense pencil ink over the background to connect the daffodil colours from the tag with the rest of the page. Next I added stickers from the Idea-ology Salvage Stickers collection called Crowded Attic by Tim Holtz, which I edged using the same black Distress Ink. To finish I added the words which are rub-on transfers and the shiny yellow and orange mini gel stickers.

As this page is about seeing daffodils when we’re “Out and About” in town, I pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

As part of our volunteer work for St. Anne’s on Sea in Bloom, we were involved in planting daffodils around our local town. It was nice to admire the fruits of our labours when we were out shopping this weekend; we had added a layer of daffodil bulbs in these tubs and it’s so wonderful to see their yellow heads prettily bobbing in the breeze.

Last year in October, we also planted bulbs along one of the main roads into our town.

Now these beautiful daffodils say “hello” to people as they drive into St. Anne’s on the Sea – what a lovely happy greeting!    

As T Stands for Tuesday my drink of choice is hot water today and we are also having American pancakes with blueberries, bananas, whipped cream and Maple Syrup  – yummy yum yum! The maple syrup comes all the way from Dave’s Sugar Shack in Maine, our friends kindly sent it to us as a present. These pancakes are actually the ones we had on Shrove Tuesday, which ties in nicely with the daffodils as they are often called the Lent Lily because they flower when Lent starts and tend to have finished flowering by Easter. I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a Happy T Day!

Do you know any fun facts about daffodils? Did you know:

  1. The daffodil is the flower for March.
  2. The daffodil is the national flower of Wales.
  3. In the Victorian days, daffodils represented chivalry and today they represent hope.
  4. Daffodils signify the coming of spring.
  5. The daffodil is a common decoration during Chinese New Year.
  6. A gift of daffodils is said to ensure happiness.
  7. Daffodils contain a toxic sap which is harmful to other flowers. Before arranging in a vase with other flowers the daffodils should be soaked in water for 24 hours. Do not re-cut the stems as it will re-release the toxin.

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 Modeling Paste High Density
  • Papermania wood mounted stamp (39454)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Honeycombe)
  • Magazine Spectrum Aqua Markers (Kingfisher, Tan, Desert, Moss)
  • Tim Hotlz Distress Ink (Black Soot)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Derwent Inktense Ink Pencils (Sun Yellow 0200, Tangerine 0300)
  • Poundland (Die Cut Tags 117106)
  • Wilko (Paper Twine 0314169)
  • Hobbycraft Decorative Tape (assorted Black & White 5971481007)
  • Tim Holtz Idea-ology Salvage Stickers (Crowded Attic #TH92898)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Spring Sentiments #ROY-506 Rub-on)
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Asian Delights

With the recent Chinese New Year, our new Thai cookery books and shopping at an Asian supermarket, I was inspired to create this page.

asian-delights-ajp

The background is painted using Distress Ink which I applied like watercolour using a paintbrush and diluting the ink with water on an acrylic block. I was amazed by the texture I achieved just with my painting and I think the vibrancy of the colours ties into the Asian theme too.  Next I stamped ink from a Terracotta Spectrum Aqua marker using a Kaisercraft stamp, which merged with the background because Distress Inks are reactivated when they become wet, which I like. Next I tore pieces of black and gold card from the Eastern Promise themed topper pack from Hunkydory and edged them with a gold metallic marker, and then stuck them to the page with double-sided foam tape. I also added butterflies which I punched out of the same card using a Tonic Studios Simplicity punch. The oriental style dream tag, birds and red sun, flowers and butterflies are stickers by Penny Black. I really like the transparency of the stickers and added some shadow around them with an Aqua marker then doodled around them using a black Uni Pin marker to add further definition. The gold lines, flowers and dots are outline stickers which I outlined with a black Uni Pin marker to make them stand out more.  To finish I added some green rhinestones to add extra sparkle.

goodies

We love cooking and eating Chinese and Indian food and as we enjoyed our visit to The Giggling Squid Thai restaurant so much, we bought a couple of Thai cookbooks to add to our growing cookbook collection. Of course that meant a trip to our local Asian supermarket to stock up on ingredients as most of them cannot be found in our regular store. This included Thai basil, galangal, shrimp paste, chilli bean paste and a variety of curry pastes for our new Thai recipes, black beans and oyster sauce for our Chinese cooking and creamed coconut for our Thai and Indian curries.

fruity

Before you enter the Supermarket itself, you are greeted with a lovely array of fruit and veg. We always stock up on fresh herbs, Cyprus potatoes and fruit – this time we treated ourselves to lychee, yum!

spices

The shelves are full of goodies, this is the spice section where we bought our Kaffir Lime Leaves for our Thai recipes and on opposite side of the aisle are all the nuts and dried fruits.

tea

They have a wide range of tea and coffee, we always buy our favourite Chinese Gunpowder Green Tea.

teapot

Here is the green tea in our glass teapot from Japan, it makes two mugs of tea, just enough for hubby and me. As T Stands for Tuesday I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang – Happy T day!

I’m also pleased to be able to join Linda’s theme “50 Shades of Red” over at Art Journal Journey.

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 Marker (Terracotta, Slate)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Peeled Paint, Mowed Lawn, Peacock Feathers, Chipped Sapphire)
  • Script metallic pen (Gold)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamps (Sketchy CS878)
  • Hunkydory Crafts Luxury Topper Collection (Eastern Promise EAST104)
  • Penny Black 2006 Stickeroos (Butterfly Party #10-181)
  • Tonic Studios Simplicity Punch (Flora & Fauna Butterfly 916E)
  • Magenta Style Outline Stickers (Daisy Gold 93326G)
  • Hobbycraft Outline Stickers (Gold Scenes 5934211001)
  • Hobbycraft Stickers (Green Rhinestone 5971511004)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape