Thursday 31 May 2012

Tags of 2012 - May, Just!!

Here's Tim's Tag which you can look at here.

Here are mine. As always lots of compromises but I think I managed the basic techniques of stamping on tissue paper, making a 'medallion' (made mine with faux metal, not bad but not great) and the faux porcelain flowers. Think I need to practice those (!)but it does make a different embellishment. I did some leaves as well and liked the way they turned out. The tag on the left seems a little unfinished (not enough layers?) but I can't think what else to do at the moment. I shall put it aside and maybe it will come to me.

Anyhow that's that for now, just squeaking in as is my usual habit.

Wednesday 30 May 2012

What's on Your Wordesk, Wednesday #156 - The third anniversary!!

I have been missing for a couple of weeks as I have been on holiday and I wasn't going to join in again this week as I haven't done thing since I've been back except enjoy the sunshine. Then I remembered it is a very special WOYWW, complete with ATC swaps so, as I have one ready made, I thought I would post something.

My break was to the Isle of Sheppey with my mum and sister. We always take our crafty supplies when we go away in case the weather is inclement. Amazingly this year we needed something to do to stay inside out of the heat!! So here's all my crafty supplies just dumped on the desk when I returned.

The keen eyed among you will spot the Christmas theme - we usually do a session on Christmas cards and this year was no exception. I think I made about 20 in the end which together with ones I did at the beginning of the year puts me ahead of the game I hope.

Here are a fewof the cards I made. I need to find envelopes and bag them up. I particularly liked my patchwork card which is a great way of using up all the little leftover bits. Unfortunately,  didn't make much of a dent in my stash!!
Anyhow, if you want to see what other folks are up to on their desks this week pop on over to Julia Dunnits 'Stamping Ground' and join in the fun!! It's sure to be a mega bloghop this week with the anniversary and I will do my best to get round as many as I can ... though I have never even got near the whole way round yet!!

And here's us being silly at the seaside......
I am joining in with the WOYWWATC swap. I have a special ATC for the participant below me on the list and five more to give away via my blog.  So leave me a message - I'll have to send to the first five who request as the comments may go on for too long to make a draw sensible. And if there is no obvious way to contact you via a profile/blog/website I will move on to the next person. But I will always respond to a request to trade!!! Hope to catch up with you all during the course of the day but for now I am off to work. Happy Anniversary everyone!!

Monday 28 May 2012

May giveaway winner is......

Shary!! I have left a message for you, please contact me with your address.

Thanks once again to everyone who took part, I will try and find something nice to tempt you to play again in June!!

Sorry I haven't been about much, been on holiday but hope to catch up with a few things this week.


Tuesday 22 May 2012

One for the Boys.... Try it on Tuesday Challenge

Well with Father's Day on the horizon our new challenge is to create a project for the 'boys' in our life!! For my Design Team piece I decided to try a twisted easel card. My shabby union jack background was printed out from a CD and then overstamped with stamps from Indigo Blu's 'Pomp and Pageantry' set. I made the rosette myself from a strip of the same paper. A Tim Holtz die cut of course for the car and I coloured a chipboard swirl and triple embossed it to make an unusual shiny stopper for the card. I made the little bunting from odd scraps of card and string.

Want to play along? Then pop over to the Try it On Tuesday blog to read the fine print and check out the challenge. Add your link and we'll pop over and visit. Every challenge will now run for two weeks so there's plenty of time to get your entries in. Hope to see you there.

Cindy x

(I shall be away when this posts - IF it posts!!- so should you stop by and leave a comment it won't be visible until I return ....)

Sunday 20 May 2012

More Special Cards........

Just another couple of 'special' cards to share. It's really been the year for it.

First a 21st Birthday stepper card.

I love this dotty background paper and the Kanban 'Carnaby Street' Toppers. I'm hoping I've got a kind of retro trendy thing going on (!?!)

LOL, what do I know, young people are so difficult to make cards for.

Still, I like it!!

And another leaving card for someone who is taking VR from work. I don't know this lady very well as I have never worked with her and the person I asked to give me a brief (her twin sister) couldn't really tell me what she liked - so I just played it safe. However I hope she doesn't have a butterfly phobia as that is one big flutterby!! This is from another Kanban kit, (as is the background card) although I forget what it was called. I love the colours in this kit but I have hardly cut into the papers - they always look too lovely to use!

Cindy x

Thursday 17 May 2012

Faux Metal Flowers - this is NOT a tutorial.... but it might help.

You may recall I tried out 'Clearly for Art' to make flowers for April's Art Draw and that I said although I followed a Wendy Vecchi Tutorial which I found on 'Scraptime' (do check this out if you haven't already) my flowers didn't really look like Wendy's. LOL, I suspect she had had a little more practice than me, who always expects to get it right first time.
Anyhoo, I don't do tutorials when they are out there already from much more experienced people than moi (and it also implies a sort of logical thought process which I am often, sadly, lacking) but I thought I would watch the video again, have another go and post a few photos and make a few (hopefully helpful) observations. I think that there are some of you out there who have bought this product and given up, but honestly, even if you only ever make these flowers do have a go, they are seriously COOL. (Actually they get quite HOT but more about that later).

I am going to paraphrase the initial steps - go watch Wendy's vid for the full 101.
BUT, here is how I did this.
Firstly I  have used clearly for art - Wendy uses the blackout one on her video so right from the word go we are expecting a different effect. I used regular pva to provide a key because I haven't got the other stuff. Just splosh it all over and leave to dry. When it's dry get some Ranger Clear Rock Candy crackle paint and splosh that all over too. The thicker you do it, the thicker cracks you will get. Leave to dry. Then get out your alcohol inks. You really need the metal  mixative ones to give a metallic effect, I don't know what it will look like if you just use ordinary alcohol inks, but it probably wouldn't look that bad.
So I just used Gold and Copper because that is what I have. Pounce it all over (you know this) with your applicator. Then I added all sorts of other colours, more metallics, etc etc until I was happy with the colour. Watch the vid.
'dull' side up
OK so that is all pretty easy. Here is where I might add a few helpful hints. I cut my basic flower shapes out using the Tim Holtz Tattered Florals die. (Don't throw those little bits that are left away - see what I did with them here. Tip, if you have put a sheet through the die cutter, there is space to cut out the two smaller dies again from the waste between the flowers. Waste not want not.)
Shiny side up

Some of them I decided to use shiny side up, some of them the dull side (I only alcohol inked one side, you could do both but it does take the edge off that nice shiny surface).

embossed dots

I stamped some of them using archival ink with my dotty stamp on the 'rough' side'.

That was kind of subtle so I stamped some others and embossed with black embossing powder. Now it was more in my face, but OK.

Now I wanted to shape the flowers. To do this you need to heat the CFA with a heat gun and it will go all floppy. You have about10-15 seconds after you stop heating before it goes rock hard again. The good news is if you don't like it you can re-heat it again and again until you are happy. The bad news is it gets very HOT, making it hard to mould unless you have asbestos hands together with an extra hand to hang onto everything and deal with the heat gun. To help with this I found a few little containers to use to help me mould the flowers. Lids etc. Things that won't melt. Like this.

I had a pokey tool with a flat end to push down on the centre. The other thing I found was that it was easier to mould heating the 'rough' (pva'd and rockcandied) side than the shiny. Just something about the way it wanted to curl. Still works, but different. And if you are using this die, cut into the second smallest flower before you heat it so you have more room for manouevre. For the larger flowers you can try and shape each petal at a time, but if you inadvertently heat the one you've just done it will collapse again. So if you have a choice don't use the hairdryer type heat gun as it is harder to direct the heat.

I highlighted the edges with my gold paint dabber. A krylon pen would be good too but can't find mine. It's fairly subtle but finishes it off I think.

Now you have your shaped petals you just have to stick them together as  normal. I tried pinflair and glossy accents. Both worked OK.

Finally don't worry if anything bubbles up when you are heating, it doesn't seem to have any lasting effect. But if you are working in a confined space and making a few flowers at one time DO open the window. Just in case. I went out to use the facilities and when I came back in to my room it seemed a little 'fumey'. Probably heat and alcohol inks don't ya think? So be careful.

I think I can see a future giveaway.........

Cool Huh?
May Art Draw
and of course, just a reminder that if you haven't done so already, you can join in this month's giveaway here to win this little trinket box complete with faux metal flower.
Back soon, Cindy

Wednesday 9 May 2012

Last Minute Challenge - SHOES!!

Talk about cutting it fine!! Wanted to enter something in this new challenge blog 'Out of Hat Creations'. After seeing it on a blog I made this last night before I went to bed and have only just remembered I was going to upload it!! So here goes. The theme is 'A girl can never have too many shoes'. I've probably not followed all the instructions but I'm sure they won't mind, I'll do better next time.

What's on Your Workdesk? Wednesday #153

I know we all say it, but Wednesday again? Really? Yes it is, and that means it's time to hop around the crafty blogroll that is hostedby Julia Dunnit at Stamping Ground each week. Everyone posts a piccy of their workspace and invites you in for a look... Pop on over and join in the fun if you dare!!

Not too much 'me' art this week, have been fulfilling commitments, decorating (yuk yuk double yuk) and finishing off commissions so the desk hasn't got a lot new on it. The bodyform thingy must have been there 6 months at least, I think it's rooted. I have at last got my velcro dots so I can sort out my ink blending pads - that box is just a mess!! Next week's priority job I think!

Because of the restructure at work we have a rake of VRs and retirees all leaving at once and I have been asked to make some of the cards.
Just thought I would share this one I am working on.

Here's the brief:
- feminine
- loves Provence
- loves flowers
- can you put a duck on it somewhere
- and a Dodo. Just a little one. Somewhere.
- oh, her name's Pam.

The dodo is going inside, in the corner of the insert.

Job done?

PS. I am very late. Scheduled post failed to post. C'est la vie, but I'd written it so I'm posting it!! Cindy x

Tuesday 8 May 2012

TioT - Down by the Beach!!!

Well it would be a nice idea - as long as it was somewhere hot and sunny!! It's so cold in my craft room I need some fingerless gloves on (can't type with mittens LOL).

Anyhow just quickly posting my DT entry for the current 'Try  it on Tuesday' challenge.

I love this stamp which I picked up for a song in a sale last year, there is something very calming about the image. The words are from a Crafty Individuals set (CI-272). I used mainly distress inks to colour in my picture, with just a touch of promarkers here and there.

I do hope you will pop over to TioT and see the other DT submissions and add your own entry. Projects can be in any medium as long as they fit the theme. See you there!!

Sunday 6 May 2012

May Art Draw - 'May I' share this project.....

I am sharing the May Art Draw with this month's challenge at Scrap our Stash. This project has been made with items that have been languishing in my stash for quite a while. Even the Clearly for Art which I have been using lately (it's all gone now!!) had been stuck in a file for over 6 months and I thought I had better use it up before it got mistaken for a sheet of acetate!

For the "MAY I?" Challenge you have to complete your project by getting inspiration from someone elses blog and that is what I did   for this month's draw. The item on offer is this altered wooden box which has been made over using some great techniques demo'd on one of my favourite altered art blogs 'Zuzu's Petals'. To create her wonderfully textured boxes and canvases Louise uses fusible/fantasy film and in response to requests from followers she generously posted a tutorial here.

I found this great fun, although I had some problems getting the film to 'stick' initially. Also although Louise did suggest that we "heat the holy crap out of it".... I may have taken this a little too literally - some of the film looked decidedly singed when I was done (nothing a touch of gold paint or metallic rub on couldn't fix LOL).

It was totally coincidental that I had also been making some rather yummy metallic looking flowers and this one really seemed to go with the box so I decided to stick it on the top rather than add lots of small embellishments like Louise has. However I have another larger box to do that may well get a lot of extra layers!! To finish off I put one of my Tim Holtz tags of 2012 inspired butterflies inside. It's wired in but the recipient could easily take it out and use it on a project.

The box is quite small, no more than 2.5" x 2.5", but if you like blingy texture and would like the chance 'win' this box then leave a message on this post before 9.00 pm on Sunday 27th MAYand I'll put you in the draw. Overseas players welcome. Please feel free to link from your own blogs if you have the technology (as per last month, if I see you have I will put you in the draw twice but no pressure!!). Alternatively maybe you will be inspired to follow the tutorial and have a go, I'd love to see what you do!!

That's it for now, hope  you like what I have made. I have a little more information to impart re making the flowers so will probably do a post about them when I have a minute but, unfortunately, decorating calls!!

See you later,

Cindy x

Thursday 3 May 2012

Time please! I have a question for you....

Do you ever have a moment of clarity? I have suddenly realised that despite almost constant crafting of one type or another the reason I don't enter many challenges is that I rarely make things without a person or a reason in mind - either it is to be a giveaway or a BRAK/RAK of some kind. I see a challenge that suits or inspires me but then I can't post it within the challenge time frame because I don't want to spoil the surprise if it is to go to someone in the future. Doh, it's only taken me about four years to realise why I keep missing the boat.

Don't know what the answer is to this dilemma but after yesterday's post decided maybe this ATC was finished after all! Made it for a 1:1 swap but for once was also conscious of the theme at Artful Times this week which is 'Time'. I also recalled that the Sunday challenge at Hels Sheridan's blog   'Ink on My Fingers' was 'Red' (sigh, if I had a tenth of Hels' talent I would be a happy bunny). So this week we have a 'twofer' as I am linking to both challenges.

So there!!

and just to be tidy, here are the other three with some minor finishing touches.

Wednesday 2 May 2012

What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday? #152

I'm writing this late Tuesday, just before the clock ticks over to Wednesday - with working most Wednesdays I have to try and be ahead of the game. I have just had a tidy up as it has become impossible to work without doing so (the pushing back technique won't work any more) and anyway I do prefer to come home to a tidy workspace (!?!) Mr.Mojo has been visiting so this week I am going to show you some of the works in progress on my desk rather than one big mess which is what I usually end up doing. And to try and tempt you back one of the WIPs in the photos will be the giveaway for May, I just don't know which one yet!

First my little makeshift desk space next to the pc. Two arty birthday cards completed, one with it's own box. (I realise YOU can't actually see them but you never know who else is looking!!) A flowery canvas I just started (I'm very proud of those crinkly flowers made from scraps) and I have a load of buttons out. No longer really sure why. You can also see my little word stamps, I think they were from 7 Gypsies. It is a set of eight stamps, they sit in their plastic box and they always stamp just fine without using an ink pad. They were one of the first stampy things I ever bought, they must be AT LEAST five years old and I wish had more!!

Here we have some of the results of the stamping marathon I spoke about last week - enough to make two 4x4 mini books. No prizes for guessing what the theme is!!

Been playing with my Clearly for Art film. Will post about these bits and bobs when finished, probably Thursday, hopefully with better photos.

Some ATCs, for a 1:1 swap, they're not quite finished. I was aiming for a Tim Holtz style, not sure I've got it.

So you may be asking why I think you are interested in all this. Well every Wednesday loads of arty bloggers get together for a ginormous blog hop to see what's on each other's desk. It is the brainchild of Julia Dunnit of Stamping Ground. So take yourself on over and join in. I will be late, as usual, prowling into the early hours. But for now I must get to bed, I'm bushed. Happy WOYWW all, thanks for popping by, I'll catch up with you later.


What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday #781

  Morning deskers, welcome to our weekly Wednesday Blog Hop - WOYWW. As you may know,  Julia has stepped down after many years of commitment...