Bloggy Got Back

Friday, July 25, 2014

Watercolour Calendar Journaling

This calendar spread continued my birthday week theme with more celebrations (the butterfly was a label on one of my gifts) and I got my creative mojo back. This time I sprayed through a stencil for lovely background colour and used another fav technique of found words from a large print book. 
click on any photo to see it larger
This was the stencil and spray that I used - it's actually just some diecut paper but holding up quite well so far.

I used the same technique as I did HERE of spraying through the stencil for the left hand page, and then pressing the right hand page over so you get a print from the remaining ink. No proper photo sorry because I didn't expect to be blogging about it :-)
Sam's birthday is a week after mine
I'm enjoying including photos in the journal, and also included a blank party invitation to journal about his friends' party. 
I love this entire spread, due in no small part to all the colour...

You can see all my calendar journal pages in my flickr set HERE. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Star Books

In May, I had a weekend away with some girlfriends. We shopped and shared and laughed, and I taught them how to make star books. I took a completed book to show them what they were going to end up with.
This was our lovely messy creative table :-)
My pages are the butterfly ones in progress on the left. That book will be finished when I have another creative session with my quilt group in a month or so. 
When my son saw the sample, he said he would love one. He turned 10 in June - so here is his, made with photos instead of my usual 'creative bits'
For other photos of star books my friend and I have made go here and this link leads you to instructions by Lynn Davis to make your own star book.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Me Time Messages

One of the free online classes I mentioned in the last post was Me Time Messages at Miscanthus Crafts. Clare Lloyd has created a series of instructional videos for a large envelope cover and smaller envelopes that fit inside. These contain your own messages and the envelopes are done using techniques for mixed media art journaling. I had some time last week, so thought I would have a go. All the instructions are posted HERE. For the big cover, I decided I would use a file folder turned into an envelope so that I could include stitch. Started by covering the folder and first envelope together with masking tape and a layer of gesso, then I made the large cover envelope first.
First layers of paint and stamping.
The white is paint on various circular objects and a stamp. The black is staz-on ink. Then added tapes and gold paint through a stencil
The butterfly is my own hand-carved stamp and this gold stamp pad works brilliantly ;-)
Some more white details added with my awesome white sharpie pen - highly recommended
Photo and found words heading added - folder ready for stitching
click on any photo to  see it larger
Machine stitched details added - some subtle in purple, some bolder in black
Folder stitched up the sides to become envelope - back view
Envelope front complete
Then it was onto making the first envelope. Here's the message being tucked inside before I seal it and start decorating
I blended the leftover paint from the file folder cover with some blue, and added the white circles straight away as well because I liked them on the cover
Then I got my instructions round the wrong way and I did modeling paste before spray - turns out that worked well for me. I mixed some of the purple paint from the cover into the modeling paste and added some glitter. Instead of carving into it, I pressed a stamp into the wet paste mix to leave a lovely impression
Then I stamped onto the back of the envelope with the wet paste that had transferred to the stamp. There wasn't enough glitter showing on either, so I added an extra sprinkle to the top of the paste patterns before they dried
Once dry they were quite dark, so I was happy to then add some starburst spray (in the instructions this step came before the modeling paste) - this spray adds a gorgeous shimmer to the work.
The instructions suggested addding an ink pad to the edges and raised surface of your work, but I wanted to add metallic rub-ons. I have 2 sets 
You just apply them with your finger, and look at the effect

To finish, I stamped my words onto inky newsprint, tore and glued down. This is the back finished.
For the front, I decided to add another photograph of me. Once printed onto photographic paper, I distressed it with some sandpaper, followed by rubbing some copper metallic rub-on into the marks. Love the grungy look of that. I had also printed the quote onto photo paper. When I stuck it down I was worried they were a bit white, but thought I could live with it. Happily, I decided to add some gel medium over the top, and that picked up some of the colour from the spray which is water-soluble. So my words blend more with the background now and I love the finished result. 
So that's my cover and envelope #1 finished.
This project is fun. An absolute beginner gets full guidance from the videos, but I enjoyed adding my own touches - the colours, swirls, stitching, butterflies, and old book text are all things that you'll find recurring in my art. Looking forward to envelope #2.
PS I added a label below to search for this as a Handmade book - you could use these techniques on an envelope book like this tutorial or this one
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