Violet Butterfly

Yellow and violet are colours that are prevalent in my garden at the moment with all the pretty spring flowers that are in bloom. So with a number of challenges in mind, I created this journal page using a yellow and violet colour combination, some recycled materials and a lovely new Postcard Butterfly stamp that I just couldn’t wait to use (grin!).

I started by recycling some book pages which I ripped and stuck to my page using Liquitex matte gel medium. Then I used a yellow pastel coloured acrylic paint which I diluted further with white gesso and painted over the whole page varying the shade of the colour. Next I mixed some pastel purple acrylic paint with white gesso and stamped it onto the page using some recycled bubble wrap; to do this I wrapped the bubble wrap around an acrylic block which gave a stronger and cleaner stamped finish as I dipped it in the paint and applied it to the page. Next I added some leftover pieces of butterfly decoupage paper using Liquitex matte gel medium and when the gel medium was dry I outlined all the collaged pieces with a black Derwent marker. Then I stamped some Ground Espresso Distress Ink using corrugated cardboard from some packaging in a criss cross pattern and covered the whole page with splatters of white and black DecoArt acrylic paint. I stamped a Butterfly Postcard stamp from Stampendous using black Archival Ink onto a piece of yellow and white paper and also the butterfly image from the same stamp onto some purple paper that I recycled from an old notebook. I fussy cut the images out and along with some yellow leaves, a piece of recycled beige card from some packaging and a spotted purple card leftover from card making, I edged them with the Ground Espresso Distress Ink and a blending tool then stuck them onto the page using glue dots, double-sided tape and foam tape. To add some shine to the purple butterfly wings I covered the black dots with Glossy Accents. Then I added some purple flowers and metal vintage embellishments which I accessorised with some tiny yellow and violet pearls, which finished the page.

We have quite a few yellow flowers in our garden including daffodils and forsythia as well as purple crocus and hyacinths, and both of these colours can be found in these pretty pansies that are in our planters which we can see from our kitchen window.

This variety has quite big flowers, aren’t the colours of this yellow one amazing!

If you are interested, here are some fun facts about pansies:

  • The pansy is a member of theViola family.
  • Their name comes from the French word, pensée, which means thought or remembrance.
  • Pansies are one of the oldest cultivated flowers and are also one of the most popular plants in our gardens.
  • In the language of flowers, the pansy represents thoughts of lovers and in the 19th century this flower was used in love potions.
  • Pansies are edible and their petals have a mint flavour; they are often added to salads and desserts.
  • The flower is used as a natural dye.

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 Alison/Craftytrog, who is hosting the Recycle and Collage challenge over at Art Journal Journey as I used stamps recycled from packaging and recycled book pages, packaging and leftovers to create this page!

With the stamped butterfly as my focal image and butterflies being part of the animal kingdom, I’m also happy to be able to join Fashionable Stamping Challenges and their Animals challenge.

With the stamping I used to create this art journal page, I’m also joining in the fun at the Craft Stamper Take It, Make It Challenge and their April Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included).

I’m also joining the Color Wheel! challenge over at the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge as I used a complimentary pair of colours, which are opposite each other on the colour wheel, yellow and violet to create my mixed media art journal page.

I was also inspired by Corrie’s use of book pages on her Design Team creation over at Country View Challenges so I’m also joining their Pimp It Up! (reuse or alter something) 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:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Aldi Script Ready Mixed Paint (Pastels – yellow, purple)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Ground Espresso)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black, White)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Stamps made from bubble wrap and corrugated cardboard recycled from packaging
  • Stampendous Cling Rubber Stamps (Butterfly Post CRP147)
  • First Edition Deco Maché Decoupage papers (Vintage Butterfly FEDEC112)
  • Paper Bundle from local craft shop (Yellow and white circles)
  • Recycled purple memo paper
  • Recycled beige card from packaging
  • Leftover purple dot card from card making
  • The Handmade Paper Company (Nature’s Touch of Art)
  • Wilko (Flower Embellishments) leftover pieces
  • Poundworld DécoTime (Vintage Stickers 54748)
  • Trimcraft (Adhesive Pearls SCDOT056)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Wilko (Sticky Dots)
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape
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Songbird

I was so excited to use a new bird and verse stamp set that I recently purchased that I decided to create a page using some of my most treasured design papers, postage stamps and metal decorations that I have had in my craft stash forever – I hope you like it!

A number of blog challenges inspired my design too, including our current theme over at Try it on Tuesday of The Call of Spring – Mood Board, where I was inspired to use the blackbird and the panel design from the photo inspiration. There is still another week to participate in this challenge, so please pop over and take a look, it would be great to see you there!

I started by selecting some vintage design papers that have been sitting in my craft stash for a while; this included a pretty white flower, a lovely text design and a note paper with tabs which are all from a paper bundle of odds and ends from my local craft store, and also a beautiful blossom paper from a design pad. I cut the papers and also some images from a wallpaper sample into various sizes, edged them with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and collaged them onto the page using a UHU Stic. Once the first layer of papers covered the page I applied some white gesso using my finger to give more of a worn look and create more depth. Next I stamped the bird stamp from a Stampendous Songbird stamp set onto some American Crafts design paper using black Archival Ink and also Pistachio and Cottage Ivy Memento Ink for the branches and leaves.  The verse is from the same stamp set and reads:

“When dewdrops sparkle in the grass
And earth’s aflood with morning light,
A blackbird sings upon a branch
To greet the dawning after night.
Then I know how fine it is to live”.

The stamped images are edged with the black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and stuck into place using a UHU Stic along with some smaller pieces of design paper, lace trim and some Crowded Attic stickers by Tim Holtz. The yellow feathers and “Spring” wording are rub-on transfers by Royal & Langnickel and the two postage stamps are from my hubby’s childhood collection; as you may know he gifted them to use on my art journal pages so they are very special to me. The postage stamps are from Costa Rica 1938 which celebrates the National Exhibition of 1937 with a purple orchid called Guaria Morada and also a Hungarian postage stamp from Magyar Posta 1958 featuring some pretty pink crocus type flowers. To finish, I added some metal decorations of flowers and a bird sitting in a tree which are secured using brads.

As T Stands for Tuesday I’m sharing my cuppa of green tea and a yummy Hot Cross Bun filled with Crumbly Lancashire Cheese from our local cheese factory – delicious! I’m saying a big hello to Bleubeard and Elizabeth and the rest of the T Gang – Happy T Day!

If you are interested, here are some facts about Hot Cross Buns:

  • A hot cross bun is a spiced sweet bun made with sultanas, currants or raisins and marked with a cross on the top.
  • The traditional method for making the cross on top of the bun is to use short-crust pastry however some recipes use a paste consisting of flour and water.
  • The buns mark the end of Lent and are traditionally eaten on Good Friday in the United Kingdom, although they have been in our supermarkets since just after Christmas (grin!).
  • Generally, they are split in two, toasted and served with butter, but here in the North of England we often serve them filled with cheese and my favourite has to be Lancashire Cheese which is a regional white cheese. The one in my photo is the Crumbly version of this cheese made locally by Dewlay – yum!

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 that I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to be able to join the lovely Rosie from Rosie’s Bastelwelt who is hosting the Spring challenge over at Art Journal Journey.

Using some of my most treasured design papers, postage stamps from my hubby’s childhood collection and precious metal decorations on my Vintage Style art journal page means that I’m able to also join in the fun over at A Vintage Journey, where the theme is Treasure.

With my neutral coloured page, I’m joining in the fun at the Simply Neutrals Tuesday party over at Apple Apricot as dear Susi highlighted this challenge in one of her posts recently.

Including the bird and verse stamping as my page focal point on my spring songbird page means that I’m pleased to join Fashionable Stamping Challenges and their Springtime challenge.

I’m also joining the Forest Friends challenge over at Stamping Sensations as you find songbirds in the forest which is my stamped focal point.

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 Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Pistachio, Cottage Ivy)
  • Stampendous Cling Rubber Stamp (Jumbo Songbird CRS5029)
  • Design Paper Bundle
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Authentic Vintage CRO730/R)
  • Wallpaper sample
  • The Works Design Pad (Classic Vintage CRO707/TW7)
  • American Crafts 2×12 Paper Pad (DIY Shop 366665)
  • Tim Holtz Salvage Stickers (Crowded Attic #TH92898)
  • Dovecraft Creative Ribbons (Sweet Paris Lace DCCR24)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Bird’s Nest #ROY-563, Spring Sentiments #ROY-506)
  • Postage Stamps (Costa Rica 1938 celebrating the National Exhibition in 1937 featuring a purple orchid called Guaria Morada, Hungary Magyar Posta 1958)
  • The Works (Metal Decorations)
  • UHU Stic

Vintage

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

Thanks to those of you who joined us for the Love is in the Air challenge and I hope you will be inspired by our Vintage challenge too, it would be great to see you there!

For my art journal page, I started by covering the page in pieces of napkin using Liquitex matte gel medium and then applying Pébéo white gesso using a palette knife.  Once dry, I aged the page to tie into the Vintage theme by using Dark Sepia, Sanguine and Cold Grey Faber-Castell Big Brush marker. I did this by applying the markers directly to the edges of the page and smudging them with my finger and I also scribbling the marker onto an acrylic block and dragging the block over the surface of the page so it highlighted the gesso texture and creases of napkin. Next I used a cutting die and my Big Shot to create tile shapes, which are stuck to the page using Liquitex matte gel medium and when they were all in place I covered them all with a layer of matte gel medium too. I coloured the edges of the tiles using Willow and Ink Black Derwent Inktense pencils and highlighted some of the gaps between the tiles using a white Derwent Inktense pencil. Then I covered some of the tiles with white gesso and a Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker to give them more of an aged look. The pretty purple violet flowers are rub-on transfers by Royal & Langnickel which I layered over the top of one another to build up the design and intensity of colour. I added the butterfly 3D sticker and then splattered black DecoArt acrylic paint over the whole page using a paintbrush. The ivy is die cut using Sizzix Thinlets by Tim Holtz and coloured using Leaf Green, Moss and Sepia Spectrum Aqua markers and a black Derwent Graphik fine line marker. They are stuck to the page using a Zig Memory System glue pen. I added the letter button stickers and applied white gesso and then matte gel medium over their edges so they looked more in keeping with the Vintage style. I also used the Willow and Ink Black Derwent Inktense pencils around them giving a worn look. For the doily, I coloured the edges using Tea Dye Distress Ink and a blending tool, and also the Dark Sepia Big Brush marker. I tied a bow in the middle of a piece of purple satin ribbon and then threaded each end of the ribbon around the central circle of a doily and stuck the doily in place using double-sided foam tape. I cut some thick purple paper using a Spellbinders die and stuck a butterfly image on top, which I had edged with the Tea Dye ink and Dark Sepia marker, using double-sided tape. To finish, I added one of the violet flowers, from the rub-on transfer set, to a vintage metal embellishment and stuck it in place using Ranger Glossy Accents.

I hope you will join in the fun over at Try it on Tuesday where you will find fabulous Vintage creations from the Design Team too!

Another rainy day meant another lovely walk around Lytham Hall with our friends. This time I had a piece of lemon and poppy cake with my pot of green tea and I was amazed how the vintage china and pretty purple flowers on my cake matched my Vintage page – Happy Serendipity (grin!). As I’m sharing my drink I’m saying a big hello and welcome to the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday and wishing you all a very Happy T Day!

Challenges

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

I’m pleased to join the lovely Rike from rike’s art, who is hosting the Animals A-Z challenge over at Art Journal Journey as B is for Butterfly on today’s page!

I’m joining in the fun over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Add a Die Cut challenge with the vintage tiles, square frame and ivy leaf dies that I used on my art journal page.

I’m also pleased to join the fun over at Country View Challenges and their Anything but Cute 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:

  • Dunelm Napkin (Grace 30220549)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175, Sanguine 188, Cold Grey IV 233)
  • Derwent Inktense Pencils (Willow 1900, Ink Black 2200, Antique White 2300)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Leaf Green, Moss, Sepia)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Pentel Hybrid Gel Grip Pen (White)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Tea Dye)
  • Spellbinders Nestabilities Card Creator Die Cut Systems (Pearl Effects S5-194, Unknown)
  • Sizzix Thinlets by Tim Holtz (garden Greens 661206)
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Design Block)
  • American Crafts Papers (DIY Shop 366665)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Purple Paradise CRO701/PL3)
  • Docrafts Papermania 8×8” Labels (Botanicals PMA157234)
  • Dovecraft Premium Paper Doilies (Painted Blooms DCDLS010)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (KPE1229G)
  • Home Bargains (Love Letters 22738, Beautiful Butterflies 22742)
  • Recycled Satin Ribbon (Purple)
  • Poundworld (Vintage Stickers)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

A Sprinkle of Magic

I couldn’t wait to use my new Big Shot die cutting machine which I received for Christmas so I created this page (grin!).

You may have seen that I referred to it in my last post and I was amazed at how many of you guessed correctly (double grin!). I’d also like to thank everyone for all their lovely wishes of congratulations when I became a member of the Try it on Tuesday Design Team too, I’m overwhelmed by your kindness, thank you!

To create the background, I added Hickory Smoke, Tea Dye and Milled Lavender Distress Inks by applying the ink pads to an acrylic block, spritzing with water and pressing the block onto the page. Then I stamped a couple of snowflake designs from BoBunny using London Fog, Toffee Crunch and Lulu Lavender Memento Inks. Next I created all the lovely leaves from different design papers using my new Big Shot; I chose a blue colour palette to give a wintry and frosty feel to the page. I used a holly die to create the leaves and had such fun using the Big Shot to produce them all, as you can see I made quite a few (grin!). I edged each of the leaves with a grey Faber-Castell Big Brush marker to make them stand out a bit more from the background, which took quite some time! Then I layered them onto the page using glue dots or double-sided foam tape and a Zig Memory System glue pen. Once in place I also curled the leaves so they looked more dimensional. The pretty bird and fence posts are fussy cut from last year’s calendar and are edged with grey Faber-Castell Big Brush marker; the calendar features British Birds and this one is called a Great Tit which frequents woodland and gardens alike. They are stuck down using a UHU Stic and I added some of the leaves around them too. Next I added a pretty winter scene tag by Pion Designs, a sticker from Graphic 45 and also some words which I cut from an old magazine, mounted onto a piece of thick paper and stuck into place using double-sided foam tape. The words read “A sprinkle of magic” which reminds me of frost and snow this time of year. To finish, I added Icicle Sparkles to the snow on the fence posts and lots of blue gems using Glossy Accents.

I had so much fun using my Big Shot and having never used a die cutting machine before, I had a fun adventure finding out how it worked and how to use it (grin!). I have a very limited supply of dies at the moment but couldn’t wait to get creative so made do with what I had and I love the page that resulted!

If you have any suggestions of brands or actual dies that you would recommend and couldn’t live without, then please let me know by leaving a comment below. This will help me decide what to put on my wish list as I really don’t know where to start (double grin!).

As I included my cuppa in the photo above, I’m pleased to join Bleubeard and Elizabeth and the rest of the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday – sending you all Happy T day wishes!

If you are wondering, here’s the photo of my craft room from my last post, you can see my new Big Shot on the left-hand side (grin!).

Challenges

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

I’m pleased to join the lovely Erika N, also known as BioArtGal, who is hosting the New Year, New Adventures challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my winter page that I created on my Big Shot adventure (grin!).

With my wintry page I’m pleased to join Moo Mania & More and their Frosty Winter challenge .

With the blue colours that I used to create this page, I’m also happy to join Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge and their Winter Blues challenge.

Including stamping means I’m also able to join in the fun over at The Artistic Stamper and their Anything Goes challenge.

I’m also pleased to be able to join Country View Challenges and this month’s Anything Goes challenge.

As I used stamping and other mixed media to create my art journal page, I’m pleased to join 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:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Hickory Smoke, Tea Dye, Milled Lavender)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (London Fog, Toffee Crunch, Lulu Lavender)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Cold Grey IV 233)
  • BoBunny Stamps (Snow Day #13705563)
  • The Range Festive Collection (5×5 Dies Holly)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Pure Frozen CRO701/16PL4, Contemporary Christmas CRO701K/P4)
  • Festive Silhouettes free with magazine (Luxury Stamp Set and Foiled Paper)
  • Poundland (Glitter Sheets 116432)
  • British Birds Calendar 2017 – recycled
  • Pion Design Glistening Season 12×12” paper sheet (Tags – PD6612)
  • Graphic 45 Cardstock Stickers (Place in Time 4500617)
  • Hobbycraft Decorative Embellishments (Blue Round Gems 566538101)
  • Ranger Stickles (Icicle)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Zig Memory System 2 Way Glue (The Dual Action Glue Pen)
  • UHU Stic
  • Wilko (Sticky Dots)
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Vintage Christmas

Tidings of Comfort and Joy!

I hope you’re having a wonderful Christmastime and wishing you all a very Happy New Year!

Today’s page is inspired by Christmastime and all things vintage! I started by covering the page with a music sheet from a book of Christmas carols that I picked up in a charity shop (thrift store); you may know the carol and I liked that the title referenced both Christmas and the New Year. I ripped the page into three pieces and stuck them down along with some gold, gold star and gold holly tissue papers using a UHU Stic. When the glue had dried I added Toffee Crunch and Rich Cocoa Memento Inks to the edge of the page and papers using a blending tool. Next I stamped a snowflake design from the Woodware Craft Collection using Emboss ink, then I covered it with white Stampendous embossing powder and shook off the excess powder onto a piece of scrap paper. I also tapped the page 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. The gold trees are relief stickers by Crelando and the vintage images are cut using serrated scissors from an old magazine and a 12×12” paper sheet of Tags from the Glistening Season collection from Pion Designs; they are edged with the Toffee Crunch ink and arranged on the page using double-sided tape and some fabric washi tape. The “December 25” sign is a Victorian Christmas 3D sticker from Docrafts Papermania which I stuck down with a glass candy cane decoration. The candy cane is from an incomplete set of wine charms purchased at a charity shop; wine charms are small ornaments that you attach to a wine glass at a party so you know which glass is yours. I also tied some white paper twine to a round wooden tree tag and added it to the page. The white ribbon is recycled from a Christmas cracker and I tied it into a bow. To finish, I added lots of glittery gold snowflakes which are stickers.

I’d also like to thank the Allsorts Challenge Blog for my early Christmas present of the Pion Design paper and the Toffee Crunch Memento Ink that I used to create this page. I won them over at their challenge from Swedish House Crafts, along with some other goodies too (grin!).

I love Christmas music and play it at every opportunity this time of year (grin!), so I was really pleased to find a book of carols in my local charity shop. The carol I used for my page is “God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen”, if you are interested:

  • This carol is also known as “Tidings of Comfort and Joy”.
  • It is a traditional English Christmas carol which is thought to date back to the 16th Century. It was first published by William Sandys in 1833.
  • This carol is referred to in A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, 1843:  “… at the first sound of ‘God bless you, merry gentlemen! May nothing you dismay!’, Scrooge seized the ruler with such energy of action that the singer fled in terror, leaving the keyhole to the fog and even more congenial frost.”
  • There have been many covers of this carol including Bing Crosby in 1947,  Nat King Cole in 1960, Nancy Sinatra in 1991, Mariah Carey in 1994, Glee in 2010 and many more. Each of the names is a link to their version of the carol – now I’m wondering which one you would choose to listen too?

I received a lovely surprise from my hubby, look what was waiting for me at elevenses with my cup of green tea – a yummy gingerbread Christmas Tree (grin!). As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a very Christmassy T Day!

Challenges

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

I’m pleased to join the lovely Sheila from Orange Esmeralda who is hosting the “Let’s Celebrate” challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my Vintage Christmas celebration!

I’m joining the Christmas” fun over at Country View Challenges where the theme is “Christmas with optional Reds, Greens and Rust”.

Over at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge the theme is “Party!” so I’m pleased to join them with my Vintage Christmas party!

I’m pleased to join the “Winter Wonderland” challenge over at A Vintage Journey with my vintage style page inspired by Christmastime, snow, carols and vintage wintry scenes.

I’m also joining the “Believe” challenge over at the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge with my vintage Christmas page as my design and colour palette was influenced by their inspirational photo – Merry Christmas!

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 (Toffee Crunch, Rich Cocoa)
  • Emboss Embossing Ink Pad (Clear)
  • Stampendous Embossing Powder (Detail White Opaque)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Clear Magic Singles (Snowflakes FRS027)
  • Tissue Paper (Gold, Gold Star, Gold Holly)
  • The Oxford Book of Carols
  • Pion Design Glistening Season 12×12” sheet (Tags – PD6612)
  • Old Magazine
  • Poundland (Fabric Tape 156456-GE16)
  • The Works (Pack of 9 Wooden Tags)
  • Docrafts Papermania Victorian Christmas (3D Christmas Stickers PMA805801)
  • Wilko (Paper Twine)
  • Re-cycled ribbon (White)
  • Crelando Relief Stickers Christmas designs (12 Sheets IAN289011)
  • The Pier (Wine Charms PLU2010838)
  • Christmas-Craft (Glitter Embellishments Gold XCR0037)
  • Fun Cut Scissors – serrated
  • UHU Stic
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape

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

Alphonse Mucha Exhibition

Whilst we were in Liverpool recently, my hubby treated me to the Alphonse Mucha “In the Quest of Beauty” Exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery. Mucha is one of my favourite artists, he is famous for his Art Nouveau artwork and the exhibition was amazing!

To match the pretty colours of the exhibition poster and booklet I started by covering the page with Watermelon, Guava, Peach, Butter Cream and Caramel Faber-Castell Gelatos and smudging the colours with my finger which I wet with a baby wipe. I applied two layers of gelato colour to achieve a brighter intensity of colour and then I used Earl Grey gelato around the edges of the page to frame it. Next I stamped a series of art nouveau designs over the background using Pistachio Memento Ink; this included a wood mounted circular design by Dovecraft, a scrollwork design by Royal & Langnickel and a flower design by Craft Sensations. I added the cream art nouveau border vertically on down each side of the page which is an outline sticker and then I covered the whole page in a thin layer of watered down Liquitex Matte Gel Medium using a paintbrush to fix the colours and stamped images. As Mucha always added beautiful flowers to his posters, I stencilled a flower design from Craft Sensations using Pébéo modelling paste, I used the stencil several times to build the image allowing the modelling paste dry between each application. I arranged some pretty paper flower blossoms on the page, sticking them down using double-sided tape and foam tape. I layered and curled the petals to give them more volume and used large pearls and clusters of pearls from Trimcraft, for their centres. Then I stuck the Alphonse Mucha exhibition booklet onto the page using double-sided tape and added a piece of lace trim along the bottom and a paper flower.

The lace trim is secured around two of the larger pearls so that it can be unfastened on one side to allow the booklet to be opened. I outlined a circular vintage die cut shape with a moss Spectrum Aqua marker and stuck it to the page using double-sided tape; I liked that it had text on it as we learnt so much from the exhibition information that was alongside the artwork. Then I added a butterfly from the same die cut pack using double-sided foam tape which finished the page.

We really enjoyed the Alphonse Mucha Exhibition, it was so informative and the artworks were breathtaking. As many of the artworks on show were originals no photos were allowed and in fact the lighting was subdued in the exhibition to preserve the art pieces. For photos and more information about this exhibition click here.

If you are interested here are some interesting facts we found out about Alphonse Mucha and his beautiful art:

  • Alphonse Mucha (1860-1939) was an artist and illustrator who was born in Czechoslovakia. We were surprised to find out how much he travelled throughout his career between Prague, Paris and America.
  • He rose to fame in Paris in the late 1890s with his advertising posters for the famous French actress Sarah Bernhardt. The first poster he designed for her was in 1894 for her production of “Gismonda” and it was so desirable that people stole the oblong panel prints from the hoardings. Following the success of the first poster, Mucha created a further six theatrical posters for Bernhardt. They were to revolutionise poster design with the use of the long narrow shape, the subtle pastel colours and the full-standing figure of the actress placed in a raised shallow alcove.
  • Following the success of theatrical posters, in 1896 Mucha created some 80 poster designs over the next five years for the publisher F.Champenois to advertise their products. We found out that the advertising posters reflected the modern rich Parisian life in La Belle Époque (The Beautiful Age) with a female figure central to the composition, flowers and beautiful decorative motifs.
  • Mucha’s fame also lead him to receive commissions to design product packaging and ornamental objects as well as advertising posters. We saw intricately designed perfume bottle boxes and labels as well as biscuit tins, labels and box wrappers at the exhibition.
  • Mucha had a long-lasting friendship with French Sculptor Auguste Rodin, who Mucha called Master (maître). There were many photos of them together as Mucha was a keen photographer too, in fact he also used photography to capture the female models he used for his posters.
  • His work inspired the then emerging Art Nouveau style and is easily recognisable with his distinctive graphic designs; he has inspired generations!

On exiting the exhibition I had fun trying on the different flower headdresses, which one do you prefer, we have spring, summer, autumn or winter (grin!).

Challenges

With the circle designs of the stamps, outline stickers and die cut, I’m pleased to join the “Circles” challenge over at Try it on Tuesday.

Mucha is well-known for his central female figures and elegant artwork, so I’m also joining in the fun over at Moo Mania & More for their “Make It Feminine” theme.

As my flowers design includes stencilling using modelling paste, I’m pleased to be able to join the “Stencils” challenge over at Country View Challenges.

I’m also happy to join the “All Creatures Great And Small” Simon Says Stamp Monday 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:

  • Faber-Castell Gelatos (Watermelon, Guava, Peach, Butter Cream, Caramel, Earl Grey)
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Pistachio)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Moss)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Dovecraft Wood Mounted Stamp (DCRS99)
  • Royal & Langnickel Clear Choice Stamp Set (Ornate Scrollwork Mini-CCS123)
  • Craft Sensations (Clear Stamps CR0274/16R1)
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Alphonse Mucha Exhibition Booklet – Walker Art Gallery
  • The Range (Crafting Lace CR0546)
  • Docraft Anita’s Outline Stickers (Delicate Lace Borders White ANT8101510)
  • Trimcraft Fall in Love (Adhesive Pearls LCDOT002)
  • Dovecraft Collections Back to Basics III (Paper Blossoms DCBL005)
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Vintage Die Cut Shapes)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • The Range double-sided tape & double-sided foam tape