Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Some More Stamping

These are some more ATCs I made using layers of stamping and lots of ink. (Yes, I now have multi-coloured fingers that won't come clean). The star on the top one is triple embossed chipboard which I've stamped into, and on the bottom one I've used some tiny bits of Stickles to highlight the flowers on the tree.

Tuesday, 30 December 2008

A Bit of Stamping

This is a stamped ATC I made a couple of days ago. I created the background using three colours of ink and the Tim Holtz Idea-ology Timeworks Masks, which I got for Christmas and absolutely love! I stamped some text on the background in turquoise and stamped the main image in Timber Brown Stazon then added some brown around the edges. I stamped the words "tick" and "tock" on separate card and tore them out then inked them in turquoise, and then finally added some turquoise seed beads at the opposite corners.
I've joined a rubber stamped ATC swap, so there will be more to come shortly!

Saturday, 27 December 2008

I'm Back!!!

Well, I just realised I haven't blogged for over three weeks! There are a few reasons for this, but mainly I've been very busy with Christmas and also haven't been feeling too good and have been totally lacking in inspiration.
Anyway, I was lucky enough to receive a melting pot for Christmas (thanks Matt! :) ), and lots of other bits and pieces, so am finally beginning to get some inspiration back (and some spare time too).
The ATC on the left is one of my first experiments with the melting pot. I mixed up some UTEE, silver embossing powder and reinkers, (yes, I know you're not supposed to use reinkers in it, but why would that stop me?). I poured some of the mixture directly onto the ATC and stamped into it. Then when it was almost cool I trimmed the excess off the edges and dumped it back into the melting pot to be used again.I painted the ATC below the UTEE in pewter and then dry brushed over the UTEE with the same colour to pick up the raised bits. I used antique gold metallic rub on over parts of it. Finally, I stamped the words "tick" and "tock" into air dry clay and used the same paint and metallic rub on on those.
It's available to swap if anyone wants it - you can email me from the link in my profile.
I've also done some other bits and pieces with the melting pot, and will put the results on my blog when I've made them into something.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Happy Birthday Cindy!

This is what I made for Cindy for her birthday. I know I'm a few days late saying happy birthday, but I didn't want to post a picture until I knew she'd seen it.
I won't go into full details of how I made it, but I've used rubber stamping, a gel medium image transfer, moulding paste which I've stamped into, acrylic paints, a plastic lizard, fabric, buttons, Liquid Pearls, paper roses, sticky ribbon, a watch face, wire and some micro beads (I think that's everything but there may be one or two other things that I've forgotten about).

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Blog Candy at The Artistic Stamper

Jennie at The Artistic Stamper is giving away Advent blog candy every day from now until Christmas Day. Click on the link to the right to go to Jennie's blog and leave a comment for a chance to win.

I am extremely lucky and am today's winner. I'm very excited as I never usually win anything. Thank you Jennie!

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Three Ms - Metal, Mesh and Messy

Yep, I'm still alive! I haven't been feeling very well, hence my lack of posts lately. I haven't done much arty stuff either, which is not good, although I have managed a few ATCs.

These ATCs are for a swap I'm hosting on the DoCrafts forum. Each ATC must have an element of metal, mesh and something messy (eg. paint, ink, etc.)

On the top one, I created the middle section by freehand embossing some copper, heating it until it went all nice and orangey, painting over it lightly in black acrylic and then sanding it lightly with fine grade sandpaper. I created the texture around the edges using extra heavy gel medium, copper mesh and plasterboard tape, painted with copper acrylic and a black acrylic/PVA wash. The words were painted on shrink plastic in acrylic and then shrunk.

The background on the second one was done using two different types of mesh. I painted over it with a thick layer of acrylic and heat dried it to create some texture, then added copper embossing powder around the edges. I made a tile from Makins Clay, which I rolled with a piece of lace on top to create the texture. The face was also made using Makins Clay. I made it in a mould and then pressed a flower bead into it three times, leaving it in place the third time. I painted the tile and the face the same colour as the background, stuck them on and then went over the whole thing with some copper metallic rub-on to bring out the texture.

The background on the third one was done in a similar way to the second, except that this time I dry brushed it with two different colours of acrylic rather than using a metallic rub-on. I used aluminium mesh on this one. The house was stamped onto aluminium which I coloured with alcohol inks and then embossed. I rubbed over it with some sandpaper to bring out the embossed lines and make it look distressed.

The background on the final one was done again using different types of mesh. I painted over it with black acrylic and then covered it with red and gold embossing powder and stamped into it. The main image is stamped onto alcohol inked aluminium and the words and stars were painted onto shrink plastic and shrunk.

Tags and Awards

I just wanted to say thank you to all the people who have tagged me or given me awards lately and to apologise for not having acknowledged them. I am grateful and very honoured, but I've got two young children and what little spare time I have gets spent doing arty stuff, so I just haven't had time to acknowledge them. Thank you all anyway!


Monday, 24 November 2008


The background on this ATC is made using paper that I scrunched up and applied two different colours of ink. I then unscrunched it and spritzed it with water and a bit of green and blue Radiant Rain Spray. I added sandpaper at the bottom which I sprayed with gold shimmer spray, some gold decorative sand and some tiny pebbles picked up from the beach. I've also added a piece of real driftwood. The seaweed is made from various fibres and the seahorse is made from polymer clay and painted with Twinkling H2Os.

Think Monday Think ATC: Cloth and Paper

This is my entry for this week's TMTA on the theme of Cloth and Paper. I wanted to create a traditional looking Christmas ATC for this one.

The main image is a gel medium image transfer onto linen. (The linen an offcut from the bottom of some too-long curtains that I bought a few years ago, and it's proved to be extremely useful.) I'm quite pleased with how soft the transfer has turned out as I think it suits the look of the ATC. The background is a printed image of some Christmas music, which I've coloured using distress inks. I added some printed papers at the corners, some sparkly mesh and a strip of printed paper along the bottom. Then I layered on the main image and some fabric holly leaves with some stick on gems for the berries. Finally I added the star brad at the bottom, and the words which I made using a Dymo label maker.

Friday, 21 November 2008

Round Robin Journal - My Page for Susan

This is my journal page for Susan, on the theme of "Woman". I started off by inking the background in shades of purple, blue and aqua, then spritzed it with water and heat dried it. I then sprayed on some gold Cosmic Shimmer powder and heat dried it again, then stamped the text in shades to match the background. I stamped the man image in black Stazon and added a piece of sequin mesh at the opposite corner I then added the flourish and the word "woman", which are Grungeboard which I've painted with acrylics then added crackle medium with metallic rub-on over the top to show up the cracks (unfortunately this doesn't show up well in the photo). Finally I addded the flower and leaf at the corner of the stamped image, with a button for the centre of the flower.

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Wednesday Stamper - Snowflakes

This week's theme on Wednesday Stamper is Snowflakes. I've made an ATC for this, which I've called Snowy Days. I've used a printed and cut out vintage Christmas card image of a girl throwing snowballs and mounted it onto a tile which I made firstly by inking with distress inks, then covering with three layers of clear UTEE with some silver embossing powder around the edges, and then stamping into it with a snowflake stamp. (And yes, I forgot to cut out the bit between her feet. I've cut it out now and it looks much better, but it's too dark to take a new photo!) I also used distress inks for the background, stamped snowflakes onto it in white pigment ink and embossed them with holographic powder. Then I added some silver embossing powder aroud the edges. The big snowflake at the bottom is stamped in white ink on navy blue card and embossed with holographic powder. (As you can probably imagine, both the snowflake and the background are a lot more shimmery and sparkly in real life.) Finally I added the gems down the side and the printed words.

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Some Friendly Plastic ATCs

These are for a Friendly Plastic themed swap being hosted by Sheena (Doggrooomer) on the DoCrafts forum. I absolutely love using Friendly Plastic so this was one I couldn't miss, and it also gave me the chance to make some nice textured backgrounds using my new gel mediums and moulding pastes.

For the top one I made the background using Golden light moulding paste and course pumice gel, painted it with balck acrylic and then dry brushed it with gold and metallic red acrylic paint. I heated some triangles of gold Friendly Plastic for the wings and then stuck some smaller triangles of the black snakeskin effect FP on top. I then dragged a needle tool through the FP from the centre to create the bat wing effect, I made the head using a mould and then heated the wings up a bit more and stuck the head onto them. Finally I made the small squares by layering two different sized squares of FP on top of each other and dragging the needle tool through it from the centre to give them spiky corners. I added gems in the middle of the squares and in the eyes of the face by heating the FP a bit and sticking the gem straight into it. I stuck the FP pieces onto the background using silicone glue. (I find silicone glue works well with FP because the FP is light and the glue is flexible.)
For the second one I created the background using Golden light moulding paste which I made wiggly lines in using a coarse bristled paintbrush, and then painted over it using some lovely shimmery watercolour paints, and addded some metallic rub-on over the top to pick up the ridges. The Friendly Plastic is done in three layers. For the bottom layer I started with three strips, which I spiked the edges of using a needle tool and then pressed some mesh into the middle of. I pressed the mesh in using the needle tool so the FP would ooze up through the gaps. Next I created a layer of marbled FP by heating up strips and then pulling a marbling comb through it, first in one direction and then in the other. I then heated the bottom layer again and stuck the marbled layer on top. Finally I made the face using a mould. I had a slight mishap with this one, in that I ended up with a bit at the top of the head where the black showed through. (I didn't quite position the FP correctly in the mould). I don't do wastage, so instead of throwing it away I decided to make a feature of it by sticking a gem in the middle of the black bit. (I think it works even if nobody else does). Finally I heated the FP again for about 20 seconds and stuck the head onto it. I left it to cool and then stuck it onto the background using silicone glue.

I created the background on the third one using Golden extra heavy gel medium, left it to dry, (OK, I admit, I helped it out a little bit with my heat tool), and then painted over it using the same shimmery watercolours as on the one above. I rubbed over it with silver metallic rub-on and added a narrow border of silver embossing powder using Versamark ink to stick it. I created the Friendly Plastic flowers by cutting some small triangles of FP and arranging them in a circle so the points were touching in the centre. I heated the FP up and then pressed a medium sized plastic gem into the centre. I placed a small piece of shiny mesh in the centre of the ATC and then stuck the FP flowers on top of it using silicone glue, which also holds the mesh in place. The shimmer doesn't show up well on the photo of this one and it looks much more colourful in real life. If anyone knows how to take good photos of shiny things and doesn't mind sharing, please let me know your secrets!

For the last one I also used the extra heavy gel medium for the background, drew hearts in it using the end of a paintbrush and painted over it in bright pink acrylic. I left it to dry(!), and then painted over the top with metallic acrylics in shades of gold, blue and purple. I used two layers of Friendly Plastic on this one. The first layer was made using four squares of FP which I placed together to make a bigger square, heated and then made the holes in it using a wet embossing tool (I dipped it in cold water before making each hole - this stops it from sticking to the FP). I put this aside and then created the heart. I started by marbling some strips of FP in the same way as above except that this time I placed the strips so they were touching. I didn't have a heart shaped cutter, so I let the FP cool a little bit and then used my needle tool to cut to FP into a heart shape, wetting my fingers and pulling away the bits around the edges. (I've put these bits aside and will use them for another project on another day). I heated the bottom layer of FP for about 20 seconds and then stuck the heart on top. I stuck it onto the background with silicone glue and then added a heart at the bottom using micro beads.

Makin's Clay Pendant

This is my entry for this month's UK Art Raffle (there's a link on the right). This month's theme is circles - whatever you make must have a circle on it somehere.

I started off with a circle of Makin's Clay which I'd rolled with lace over the top to get the texture. I then made the face using a mould and stuck it on and added some rolled strands of clay for the hair. I made holes at the top and bottom using a fine embossing tool. When it was dry I painted it with black acrylic and added some shimmer using a mixture of Mica Powders and PVA glue.
Finally I added beads which I attached with with wire and some black thonging.

Mona Lisa ATCs

I made these ATCs using a fantastic Mona stamp that I bought from Cherry Pie a year or so ago. Two of them are for this month's swap on UK Stampers, which is on a Da Vinci theme. I'm also using one of the Da Vinci Santa ATCs which I've posted pictures of below somewhere.
These are all done in a similar way. Firstly I made a Versamark resist background by stamping the background in Versamark ink and then inking over it. I then stamped over it with a text stamp, and finally added the main image over that.
(I'm not sure if I like the bright one, as I'm not convinced that the bright colours really work with this stamp).

Saturday, 15 November 2008

Round Robin Journal - My Page for Nicks

I am participating in a Round Robin Journal which has been kindly organised by Astrid, details of which can be found here. This is the page I have done for Nicks, on the theme "Instructions for Life". This one really got me thinking!
I started with a mountboard background and coloured it with distress inks and spritzed it with water and Cosmic Shimmer Spray. I stamped the brickwork onto it using brown ink and then the clocks and the phrase at the bottom in black. I stamped the face in the middle firstly straight onto the page so I knew where it would be positioned and then on a separate piece of card and coloured it in yellow and orange inks, (this ties it in with the colour scheme on Nicks' original page). I added streaks of gold metallic rub-on coming out from where the face was going to be positioned to look like sun rays and then stuck the face on. Next I created some words and phrases (some stamped and some handwritten) and inked them in matching colours. I painted some Grungeboard letters with acrylic paints in matching colours and stuck them on around the face, then covered some Grungeboard hearts with orange embossing powder and stamped into them. I then stuck on the hearts and the various words and phrases.

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Altered Playing Cards

I made these for a swap being hosted by Carol V on DoCrafts. The top one was made using two different types of image transfer. The background is book text which I coloured using distress inks. I then added the flowers using a Mod Podge image Transfer technique. The main image is a gel medium image transfer onto a piece of linen, and Iadded some cut out flowers at the corners. I actually changed this slightly after I took the photo by the addition of the words "little flower", but I'm far too lazy to take another photo (and it's too dark anyway), so you'll just have to imagine what it looks like.

I'm a bit disappointed because I ordered some new gel medium and some texturising and modelling pastes which I had hoped to play with today. I had an email telling me they were posted first class yesterday, so spent most of today looking out for the post office van because they never ring the doorbell. Well, it turned up eventually - during the half hour in which I was out picking up the boys from school! I have spent tonight practically begging Matt to go to the sorting office for me in the morning because I'm in work for the rest of the week and won't be able to go until Saturday.

Anyway, back to the ATCs. On the second one, I alcohol inked the corners of the card. (They're shiny cards and it was the only thing I could get to stick). I again added book text for the background and coloured it with distress inks. I cut out the circles and inked them in distress ink as well, then stuck them down and spritzed the whole thing with water so the ink woudl run a bit around the edges of the circles. I cut out the image of the little boy and stuck him on and then cut out the jester's hat from pieces of book text and inked it. Finally I stuck some more inked book text to the back of the metal star, added the works "little star" and attached it using a brad.

For the last one, I again used book text and distress ink for the background, and then layered on some paper that I created whilst experimenting with Mica powders a couple of days ago. It's done in the same way as the backgrounds on my mica powder ATCs below but using a light beige coloured paper. I then layered on the musical notes, the picture of the girl, the crown and the words and added a heart gem to finish it off.

Umm... I think I've caught prettyitis again. Pink and flowers in two ATCs in one day! Does anybody know a good cure?

Monday, 10 November 2008

More ATCs with Mica Powders

These are ATCs for Sheila's swap on DoCrafts. I created both of the backgrounds by scrunching up some black paper, dropping various colours of mica powders into a mixture of PVA glue and water (they float on top) and then painting the powders on, picking up some of the powder and some of the PVA and water on my brush, and picking up a different colour powder with each dip of the brush. The effect doesn't really show up very well on the pictures - in reality they are very shimmery and shiny. For the top one I cut flower petals and leaves from the same paper I used for the background and edged them and the card with gold metallic rub-on. I added a gold button for the centre and turquoise wire which matches the turquoise tones on the paper for the stem

For the bottom one I made the sun from Makin's Clay using a mould and painted it black and then painted over it using a similar mixture of PVA, water and mica powders. I then added lines of mica flakes to represent the sun's rays.

Think Monday Think ATC - Purple

This week's theme on TMTA is purple. I love purple and I got a bit carried away and ended up making three.
The one on the left is the first one I did, and I ended up rescuing it after it went wrong. I did an emboss resist background and originally stamped the image over it. Unfortunately it didn't show up because both the image and the background are a bit too detailed, so I embossed the image over the top. I still didn't like it because the detail on the image didn't show up very well when I embossed it, so I stamped it on acetate and layed it over the top, slightly offset from the embossed image so the embossing shows through a bit.

The top right one is aluminium which I've coloured with alcohol inks and embossed freehand, bent over the edges then sanded over the top. I've layered it onto aluminium mesh and card which I've coloured using reinkers dripped onto a baby wipe and pressed the card onto it. (It gives a lovely blended colour effect but if you ever do this, make sure you wear gloves, unless you want to spend the next two weeks with purple hands!) I've also added some tiny purple gems to finish it off.
Th one on the bottom right again has an emboss resist background, but on this one I've used a less detailed background stamp and have stamped the image straight on top. I've added a metal flower and some flower brads which I've coloured using alcohol inks, and have added a bit of Stickles around the edges.

Sunday, 9 November 2008

Black and Another Colour

These are my ATCs for Cazro's December Colour swap on the DoCrafts forum. I've made them a bit early, but I want to send them with the November ones to save on postage costs.

On the top one, I've created the background using green embossing powder on black mountboard. I stamped the image into Makins Clay and painted it black because I didn't have any black clay. I then added metallic rub-ons over the top in green with a little bit of gold. I finished it off by adding some ribbons and a star brad at the bottom.

The middle one was done using a lace stamp with Versamark ink and adding Perfect Pearls powder over the top. The heart was cut from Makin's Clay and texturised using a piece of lace. I painted it black and then added metallic rub-on. I've layered it onto black net and red mesh and have added some more black net and a heart brad at the bottom.

The final one was done by inking the whole background in turquoise, stamping the image in Versamark and embossing it with clear embossing powder. I then inked over it all in black, placed a piece of paper over it and ironed it until all the embossing powder lifted off. I then created the background for the main image by inking it in turquoise and spritzing it with water. I stamped the image in black Stazon, cut it out and stuck it on. I then added a piece of black ribbon and a paper flower at the bottom.

Mica Powders ATC

This one's for a swap being hosted by Sheila on the Docrafts forum. I've done the background by dropping mica powders into PVA glue and heating it. The stars are made from Makin's Clay which I pressed onto textured items to get the textured effects. I painted them black and then added the mica powders using Versamark ink. I've also added a bit of Liquid Pearls to give the shooting stars effect, but this doesn't show up very well in the photo.
I used both Cosmic Shimmer and Perfect Pearls powders for this one, just because I've got different colours of each.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Experimenting (Again!): Grungy Acrylic Paint Backgrounds

I decided to have a go at making some really grungy looking backgrounds using acrylic paints. I think some have turned out better than others but I decided to post pictures of all of them! I've been working on these over the last couple of days, as I've had to wait for bits of them to dry (ergh!) I think I might experiment a bit more and see what I can come up with.

The top one has a collaged background painted over with acrylic paints mixed with PVA glue in various shades of blue, green, purple and gold. I stamped the image on tissue paper and layered it over the top using Mod Podge. I added a border using my favourite paint, DecoArt Dazzling Metallics in champagne gold (I love it because it's so shiny!), and also some swirls, and then heat dried it to make it bubble up. I added blue gems at the centres of the swirls as a finishing touch.

Number two was done by painting acrylic paint mixed with PVA glue through the holes in some sequin mesh and layering it on in various colours. I've done a gel medium image transfer over the top which I wanted to look really grungy (although I'm not sure if maybe I've overdone it a bit). The hearts are grungeboard which I've painted with the champagne gold paint and heat dried to distress. The words and border are painted on and heated too. (And I didn't strategically place the hearts to cover up where I messed up the image transfer, honest!)
For the third one, I again used a mixture of acrylic and PVA in shades of blue, purple and green, and painted it over a piece of book page. I then scraped a flower design into it using the end of a paintbrush, although this doesn't show up well on the finished ATC. (If I did it again I'd use a smaller stamp to make more of the background). This is another one where I've used an image stamped on tissue paper then added paint around the edges. I've also added a row of cut out butterflies along the bottom.

These last two were done in the same way, and the background effect shows through much better on these. I've used paints in shades of red, green and gold, and again I've painted a thin border and heat dried it to make it bubble up. Sam is hosting a Da Vinci themed swap on the UK Stampers forum and I'll probably enter them for that but I'm not sure. I've borrowed the stamp from Nicks, who kindly offered to lend it to me after I fell in love with it when she sent
me an ATC made with it last year. I thought I'd better post some pictures of things I've made using it so she knows it's safe! (There will be more to come as my desk is a mass of works in progress. For some reason I seem to be flitting from one thing to another at the moment).
I've also been working on a few other projects (not all ATCs)that I can't post pictures of yet for various reasons, so watch this space!

Monday, 3 November 2008

Think Monday Think ATC: Angels

These are my ATCs for this week's challenge on TMTA.

This week's theme is Angels. I couldn't decide whether to do a stamped angel or whether to use a Victorian angel picture, so I decided to do one of each.
The stamped ATC has a background made using resist embossing, distress inks and water.
The Victorian angel ATC has an inked and stamped background, lace and printed images, and also a flourish stamped and embossed with sparkle embossing powder which doesn't show up very well in the scan.

Spooky Slide Mailer

This is an altered slide mailer that I've been working on over the last couple of weeks. It was originally going to be my replacement entry for October's UK Art Raffle (link on the right) after Matt nicked the first one, but unfortunately I didn't get it finished in time so couldn't enter.

The front cover is stamped into UTEE over black acrylic paint with metallic rub-ons over the top, with heated and embossed copper layered 0n top which I've painted with black acrylic and sanded, a Grungeboard skull painted with acrylic and covered with metallic rub-on and a plastic lizard painted in acrylic with metallic rub-on.

This picture shows a close-up of the detail on the front. (I love my new camera!)

I covered the inside left with tissue paper and painted with acrylic and added metallic rub-on over the top. The letters are stamped into clay and painted with copper acrylic with a black acrylic/PVA wash, and the skeleton is stamped and cut out. The inside right is painted in black acrylic and heated for texture, again with metallic rub-ons over the top. I painted the slide slots in copper acrylic and added a stamped on slide in the right one and some grungy mesh, micro beads, a plastic spider and a Grungeboard skull in the left one.

The back is a thick later of UTEE over black acrylic, which I've stamped into and covered with metallic rub-ons.
To finish it off I added fibres down the middle with a few beads.

This picture is a close-up of the detail on the back.

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Playing with Fabric

This is a fabric ATC I made. I used linen which I dyed with inks, lace (also dyed with inks), sparkly mesh, wool and beads. It's all hand stitched.

Thursday, 30 October 2008

Mica Powders

This is my entry for this week's Wednesday Stamper which is an open theme. I thought I'd take the opportunity to experiment, so this is an ATC made using mica powders (I've used a combination of Perfect Pearls and Cosmic Shimmer). I created the background by sprinkling the powders into a thick layer of PVA glue and heat drying to create texture. Then a I took a chipboard flower and coloured it by covering it with Versamark ink and dabbing the mica powders onto it. I set the powders and then covered it with three layers of UTEE and stamped the image into it. I attached it to the background and then added some micro beads in the centre and around it to make it stand out from the background. I hand wrote the word "shine" on gold pearlescent card, layered it onto some sparkly mesh and attached it using brads.

Bad Hair Day

I made the background on this one using three different types of mesh stuck into a thick layer of PVA glue which I heat dried and stuck on a clay face. I painted over it all with acrylic paint and then sprayed with Radiant Rain Spray and heat dried again. I then added some copper metallic rub-on and various fibres for the hair.