Friday, 26 November 2010

Kimono Challenge

Here is 'Kimono Girl' (an ATC) I made for the current challenge being set by Shelley over on her blog Wild Frog's Artwork & Creations.

  She says "Please join me and submit any type of artwork that contains a kimono. Folded, stamped, digital, painted, etc. New artwork or old artwork that you still have laying around. Anything goes!"

Shelley has a tutorial on her blog for a simple kimono but ages ago I bought some paper kimono patterns which I've never used and thought this was the idea opportunity to have a go with them.  As usual though, any instructions other than absolutely straightforward sends my brain into turmoil,  and I failed at the first hurdle!  However, I looked closely as the picture which came with the instructions and just did it my way (regrets, I've had a few, but then again too few to mention ...... oops sorry, got carried away!)

Not bad for a bodged effort - lol.

Shelley's challenge runs until 2nd December and she's offering a grab bag of some unmounted rubber stamps to the winner! 

Compendium of Curiosities - Challenges Nos 22 & 23

These two pieces were both created following the challenges set by Linda on her blog Studio L3 working from Tim Holtz book 'Compendium of Curiosities'.

Challenge No. 22 Alcohol Ink Splatter

(Technique detailed on page 52 of the book)

The alcohol ink colours I used were Cool Peri, Cloudy Blue and Pink Sherbert.  I hadn't used this combination before, but love it and will be using it again!
Most of the effect is covered up by the detailed stamp (Stampers Anonymous 'Pattern Pieces' CMS 012).  I used an archival ink for the rubber stamping but it wouldn't dry properly even with the heat gun.  In the end I used some embossing powder over the top which has sealed in it (hopefully!).
I had some lace and buttons which matched the inks perfectly so they became the accents of this very girly birthday card.

Challenge No. 23 'Double Distress'

(Technique detailed on page 40 of the book)

Nothing girly about this birthday card!  I embossed Grunge Paper with one of Tim Holtz Alterations textured fade embossing folders and coloured it with the following inks and distress stickles

The obscure man image is from Paperartsy, stamped and coloured with more distress inks.

I know I'm too late for the no. 22 challenge, but still wanted to record my efforts!

Thanks for looking - and if there's any where you are, stay safe in the snow!

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday Week 77

It's that time of the week again when we can all have a good old snoop around the desks of other crafters - go and have a look at Julia's blog Stamping Ground for more details and links!

On my desk today is an unmounted set of stamps called 'Vintage Sewing' from Creative Expressions and the Kling-On stuff I'm presently sticking them onto.  It's a bit of a laborious and sticky job, but worth doing in the long run.

Over the back you can see two small sheets I've been playing around with using the alcohol ink splatter effect from Tim Holtz book.  I discovered what my favourite alcohol ink colour is - 'Cool Peri' and I love the combination of it with 'Cloudy Blue' and 'Pink Sherbert'.

Here's another reveal of what's in three more of my little drawer units

Ranger memory glass, tape and frames.

Stampbord squares and accessories and other alterable surfaces - coasters and those little formica chips (from DIY stores).

Dominos in various sizes.

If you visited my desk last week you would have seen the footstool I had taken apart and ripped the fabric from.  I finished the revamp this week and am really pleased with how it turned out.  More photos and details are in my previous post, but here's what it looks like now.

In the words of Bugs Bunny 'That's All Folks', and thanks for stopping by - if you let me know you've been, I'll come along to visit you too.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Footstool Revamped

Here's the old footstool revamped.

This is how it looked before

I've had this footstool for many years and when we moved into our present house (about 11 years ago) I put it under my craft desk pushed to the back and that's where it stayed - until now!

Here's what I did to transform it

Took the top and legs off and carefully ripped off the fabric.

I kept the old foam cushioning on.

I removed the covered buttons from the lid.

I used the old fabric as templates - much easier than measuring everything!

I covered some buttons with the black material and laid them out onto the fabric for the lid.

Using my trusty old staple gun, I attached the fabric around the bottom.  I love this fabric, but unfortunately didn't have enough of it to do the lid too.
The fabric is called Dress Forms by Michael Miller.

To cover the inside of the lid, I used the same fabric as for the top, it is a cream coloured brocade I've had in my material stash for ages.   As the 'Dress Form' fabric is black and white, I wasn't sure if using a cream coloured top was a good idea, but I think it works fine.  Ideally, I should attach some trim to cover the staples up - but that's for another day.

Apart from finding the corners difficult to re-cover - getting an acceptable mitred look wasn't easy, the only other thing I had trouble with was attaching the buttons to the top.  I decided to use the thread from the original buttons, but it wasn't long enough so I couldn't pull the thread through to the inside of the lid - doh!!  This means that the buttons are not as tight or as cushioned as they should be.  However, as I'm not a professional upholsterer, nor will I ever be, I think I did pretty well!

I didn't have to do anything to the legs (apart from dusting them!) as they were already black.

I've gone a bit mannequin mad lately as I bought a wire mannequin standing approx three foot high and two smaller ones which can be wall mounted.  One day soon I hope to make over the sewing area of my craft room and then all of these mannequins and the footstool can be nicely displayed -  if only I could get Kirsty Allsop in to give me a helping hand!

Thanks for looking x

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Thank you Cindy!

This is what I received today in the post from the lovely talented Cindy.

Every month Cindy has a giveaway of something she's created and I was the lucky random winner last month.

You can read all about this beautiful hanger on her blog here.

I chose the colour green as it will hang in my craft room which has elements of green in it.

Many thanks again Cindy, you're the best!


Wednesday, 17 November 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday (week 76)

It's Wednesday again (so soon!!) and Julia over on her blog Stamping Ground is again sharing her work desk with the land of blog and asking others to do the same - and as usual there are well over a hundred bloggers who have done just that.

The above photo shows what's on mine at the moment.  It's a footstool - that's to say it was a footstool until I took it apart and started ripping off the old fabric!  Here's what it looked like yesterday

It's been in hiding under my craft desk for the last ten years so I thought it was time for a revamp.

I've taken the fabric off the bottom section and have just started the top (which lifts up revealing some storage inside).  I think the covered buttons on the top may be a problem, but I'm sure I'll sort something out!  

I haven't decided which fabric to use for the recovering yet - I did have some in mind, but discovered I don't have enough of it!  I may still use it, together with some contrasting fabric.  I may keep the little legs black or I may paint them - decisions, decisions - lol.

I've been showing some of my little drawers on previous WOYWW posts, so here's the next three

Chipboard shapes of all sizes and varieties

Friendly Plastic with tools and cookie cutters

Ten Second Studio metalwork tools, moulds and DVD.  (I keep the actual metal sheets elsewhere as they don't fit in the drawer)

That's about it for now, thanks for looking, I'll come and look at yours too if you let me know you've been.

Monday, 15 November 2010

Not another matchbox!

I didn't think I'd be altering any more matchboxes this year (after the 25 I did for A Swap For All Seasons a couple of months ago), but the final challenge of the year on my favourite Flickr swap group Art 'n' Soul is for just that ie "alter a matchbox and put a tiny surprise for your swap partner inside".

The matchbox I altered isn't one of the tiny ones - it measures approximately two by three inches (when closed).  I decorated it with scrapbook papers and rub ons from La Blanche, gold lace trim and a couple of holly buttons also duly altered.

My gift also isn't all that 'tiny'!  It's a stuffed fabric heart with wings and a charm.  The fabric I cut using Tim Holtz Alterations 'Heart Wings' die by Sizzix.  I thought this would make a nice little decoration for the Christmas tree.

On the other side I used a couple of the poinsetta flowers I made a few weeks ago with an embossed flower punch.  You can also see the reverse side of the heart and the red embossed mock velvet fabric.

Here's what it looks like inside the matchbox (the inside is decorated with Christmas sheet music coloured with shimmery gold Perfect Pearls, but you can't see it in the photo)

The closing date for this swap isn't until 11th December, so there's still plenty of time if you want to join in!

Thanks for looking x

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Compendium of Curiosities - Challenge No. 21 'Perfect Distress'

Phew, just in time!  Linda over at her blog Studio L3 sets a challenge every Monday from Tim Holtz wonderful book of techniques 'Compendium of Curiosities' and today is Sunday, I'm late!

This week's technique is 'Perfect Distress' as detailed on page 38 of the book.  

 I made an ATC using Mona from one of Tim Holtz Stamper's Anonymous plates (Mini Classics CMS 062).  I used 'Tumbled Glass' and 'Pine Needles' Distress Ink and 'Blue Patina' Perfect Pearls.

Mona was mounted onto old book text and that mounted onto the card I was practising the technique on.  A couple of dotty ribbons and some gems finished the ATC off.

I also used a Tim Holtz bird stamp (Stampers Anonymous Artful Flight CMS069) to try out the techinque - using the same colours of Distress Ink, but this time 'Perfect Copper' Perfect Pearls powder.  I haven't 'made' the bird into anything yet, he may end up on a card.

Speaking of 'perfect coppers', if you're in the UK, wasn't Scott Maslen just unbelievable on Strictly Come Dancing last night - swoon, swoon - lol

Friday, 12 November 2010

Art, Heart & Healing - Week 3

This post is about what I've done for week 3 of Tam's free art course, 'Art, Heart and Healing'

This week, there were three parts.

Firstly we had to decorate the front of our board books to incorporate an altered photo of ourselves.  As I didn't have any printed photos of myself (yeah, a likely story - lol), I used one of my niece Chloe aged about three.  It's the photo I use for my profile picture on various sites, so it does represent me in that way.

Secondly, we had to create a 'celebration' spread inside the book

Lastly, we had to make an 'empathy monster' - you can see mine (as yet un-named) at the top of this post.  The idea of this little chappie is to be empathic towards you (although he cannot speak - as we know it!) he's a great listener - and has a beautiful kind eye!

He has a lovely heart too

Most importantly of all, he loves me!

I believe there's only one more week to go - another painting, I'd better get practising again

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday, week 75

We went to visit my sister today, she lives at Southend-On-Sea so we had to go check out the beach - well not really, but we could almost see it from the shops!  It was a beautifully sunny day but very cold with it - so we had to keep going in the shops to keep warm!

The photo above is a side view of my desk and on it is what I bought in a couple of charity shops - all for under £5!

I can never resist old music sheets and these are from musicals shows which I love.

This huge bundle of red and green braid I thought would be useful for Christmas projects and the small reel of gold thread.

I couldn't resist the lilac coloured lace - and the little packet of tissues with oriental figures on - so sweet!

You can see part of a wonderful ATC (top right of photo) which I received today from the wonderfully talented Donna (Doings of Doone) - for being one of her first fifty followers - she's one very generous and busy girl!  Thank you again Donna if you're reading this.

I promised to show the contents of three of my little boxes (drawer units) each week, so here's this week's offering

Beads (mainly seed beads) which I keep in colour order

More beads - some larger and glass ones and some old junk jewellery.  The little drawers are deep enough to hold small glass jars too which is really useful.

I emptied the contents of this last drawer out so you could see all what was in it.  Several smaller sub divided boxes with black and white beads and some star shaped 'beads' too which are quite sparkly.  The tubes contain tube shaped beads and there are also some bells in packets.

Well, I think that's about it for this week.  I am of course linking this post to Julia's blog Stamping Ground who first asked the question 'What's On Your Workdesk' and if you hop along over there you'll be able to visit over 120 desks!

Thanks for looking and if you leave me a comment I'll be straight over to have a nose at yours, or just to see what you've been getting up to!

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Birthday Card and matching accessory!

I'm sorry to say that I really find making birthday cards a chore so
I made it a little more interesting for myself today by making a matching emery board holder.

Now they're finished I'm glad I took the time and trouble and I hope my sister-in-law will like them.

Here's the emery board holder open

My tutorial for making one of these little holders can be found here.

Thanks for looking xx

What a lovely surprise!

It's a miserable wet and rainy day here in my part of England and when the postman knocked on my door this morning he was soaking wet but still managed a cheery greeting with a smile as he handed me an unexpected package.

Wrapped in an old dressmaking pattern was this delightful notepad covered in a fabric I recognised instantly.  It was from Sherry in Nevada City, who a few months ago won the second prize in my giveaway and when I sent it to her I enclosed a few yards of this fabric.

What a thoughtful, beautiful gesture this gift is - thank you Sherry, you certainly brightened my day - I love the notebook!   You've also given me a idea as to what to do with the rest of that fabric now!

Isn't Blogland a wonderful place to be!

Sunday, 7 November 2010

ATC: 'Girl Band' - for Everyone Wins!

I made this ATC for the 'Everyone Wins Prize Giveaway Challenge' over on June's blog Dezinaworld

The challenge was to make one piece of paper art using one of June's images.  I used the three dresses above from one of her fabulous free collage sheets which you can see here along with many others.

I started with a text background, coloured it with paint and water soluble crayons.  I stuck the dresses on with gel medium and then painted in the bodies.  Finally a little bit of rubber stamping here and there - and a new girl band has been formed!  Looking at the face of the first girl, maybe they should be called 'Funny Eyes'!

June said "EVERY single person that joins in the challenge will win a prize to spend in my store".  .... so, it'd be rude not to don't you think!

Many thanks June and I hope you think that my girl band has got the X factor!!

Saturday, 6 November 2010

A Blog Award

I've been given this award by a lovely talented blogging friend - thank you again Mrs A!

I now have to state three things which makes me different from everyone else and nominate five other blogs.

Here's my three things (although I'm sure they're not exclusive to me!)

1.  I can juggle with 3 oranges all at once

2.  I once spoke to the English actor Leslie Phillips on the 'phone (ding dong!)

3.  When I was about three years old I got some sweets stuck in my hair which my Mum couldn't comb out, so had all my lovely curls cut off (my hair's been in a short style more or less ever since) 

My five nominations are:

Terry - Terry's
Deborah - The Rusty Cage
Susan - Little Imperfections

Lastly I need to show The blog award badge in my side bar and link it back to Digi's with Attitude challenge blog.
On the subject of attitude - how's this for a positive quote

"I wish I was a glow worm,
A glow worm's never glum.
'Cos how can you be grumpy
When the sun shines out your bum!"

Friday, 5 November 2010

Dress Up - November

It's the penultimate month of the 'Dress Up' project hosted by Margaret over on her blog Alice and Camilla.  Every month since the beginning of this year we have been creating a dress and also a wardrobe for them all to live in.

This month I've made a party dress (come on Barbie, let's go party...)
for a fireworks ball.  Remember, remember the 5th of November!

The back of the dress is deep pink silk (as are the straps and sash belt).

Then a layer of lighter pink lining fabric

Finally, part of a pink bath scrunchie (unused I might add - lol)

All the fabrics are machine stitched together and the bath scrunchie folds were held in place with some sequins here and there.

Here's the dress in the wardrobe

The other ten dresses are currently being dry cleaned ready for the big finale next month.

As December will be the last month of this fantastic project,  I think the final dress will have to be something rather special - I'd better start thinking now!