Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Crafting Cafe March Challenge - Welcome Little One

The theme over at the Crafting Cafe this month is "Welcome Little One", and there's still a day to enter and be in with a chance to win two images from the sponsor, The Stamping Boutique.

Here's my inspiration project.  I loved the vintage feel of the image, so chose some vintage papers to go with it, and added a little sepia-like tones to the palette.

I hope you like it.  Happy crafting!


What I used:
Image: The Stamping Boutique "A Little Girl with a Stroller"
Papers: Papermania Capsule Collection "Red Hot" A5, EK Success Overton House Designs "Caramel Toffee" 12x12
Tools: Fiskars heart border punch, Whispers permanent marker (brown), Papermania watercolour pencils
Embellishments: Anita's outline stickers.

Crafting notes:

  • The brown paper is double sided, with a very fine polka dot on the reverse.  To decorate the greeting, I used one of the hearts punched from the border, but showing the reverse pattern.
  • The greeting is a silver peel-off, coloured with a brown permanent marker.

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Layout 4 - I love...

I'm a member of the scrapbooking forum on the do crafts 'craft talk' site and, to provide myself with some extra inspiration, I'm setting a monthly sketch challenge there.  It was a recent decision, so I've set January to March's challenges all together.  The challenges are just for fun (no prizes) and, although they're on a forum on the do crafts site, they're not run by do crafts and you can use any products you like.  There are mostly no rules other than the theme, and the sketches are optional.  To take part you just need to be a member of the do crafts craft talk forum and post a picture of your page on your gallery there when you're done.

I've tackled the February challenge first.  The theme is "I love...", and I've used this sketch from the excellent pagemaps site, with their kind permission.


Here's my page.  I'd love any comments, and please come and join in with us on the forum.

What I used:
Papers: DCWV The Green Stack, Coordinations 6x6 Earth tones
Embellishments: Papermania dome stickers "Alphabet buttons" large and small, Doodlebug 'Simply Sweet' mini alphabet rub-ons in 'bon bon', birds from magazine freebie
Tools: Spellbinders "Foliage" leaf die, XCut heart punch, Papermania circle punches (from a brad making kit), Whispers brown Permanent brush marker 

Crafting notes:
  • I don't normally work with photos this small, as I usually crop photos before I send them for printing.  However, I'd expected to use these 3 photos as pictures of us within the woodland scene.  This layout is great for cropping landscape photos to more detailed portrait ones.
  • I wanted a very small border around the photos.  Rather than mat, I inked the edges with a permanent marker.
  • To add some definition to all the other layers and die cuts, I sanded the edges with sand paper.
  • I marked the line of the bottom circle using a pokey tool and a white gel pen.
  • I cut the circle by running a knife around a plate.  I cut it from the centre of a 12x12 sheet so that I can use the 'outer' as backing for another page.  As it's my last sheet of that paper, I gutted the circle too, so it's actually stuck down in two pieces.  I used the outer to position the pieces of circle correctly.
  • The dome stickers I used for the title looked odd and wonky when placed directly on the page because of the different thicknesses below.  I placed them on a thin strip of card instead and that fixed the uneven look.  It also added definition.
  • To write the journalling, I cut the strips but left them connected together at the side so that they stayed still while I was writing.
  • I haven't found a good pen to use on Coordinations paper - for this page I used a Whispers permanent marker, but by the morning the writing had faded, so I had to go over it.  Time will tell whether I need to redo the journalling...
Happy crafting!

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Layout 3 - The trial of 'Trial bike trial'

This layout was one of the ones responsible for my long spell of crafting block, so I'm *sooooo* happy finally to have finished it.  I started it in September last year, and had loads of fun transforming some plain gold card into a muddy scene with bumpy tyre tracks (see below).  Since then the page changed from a 2 page layout covering a whole day out to being a single page just about one aspect of the day (another layout planned for the rest of the photos).  The sticking point recently has been the journalling, and that's often the bit I struggle with the most.  That may be hard to believe looking at the tiny bit of journalling on this page, but that's often the challenge - trimming down a great wordy ramble to something that doesn't dominate the page but still has the meat of what I want to remember.  The same thing applies to a lot of my blog posts too, so I'll shut up now :-)

Here's the page, and some more detail on how I created it, I'd love to know what you think.

Close up of gears/wheels

What I used:

Papers: Black card, DCWV textured gold card
Embellishments: Papermania Chronology "gears", antique brass brads, Papermania adhesive letters, Woodware chipboard letters, Papermania mini brads
Tools: Purple Cows Deckle edged trimmer, That Special Touch "Tyre Track" mask, Spellbinders Nestabilities die set "Cogs"
Paints etc: Paper Artsy Grunge Paste, Paper Artsy Fresco Finish chalk acrylic paint "Mud Splat", Anita's acrylic paint "Earth Brown", Crafty Notions Creative Colour Spray "Walnut", Ranger paint dabber "Pitch Black", gold gel pen (for the journalling)

 Crafting notes:

  •  I used die cut gears to look like either gears or chunky off-road tyres.  They're attached with brads so they can turn.
  • The photos' staggered layout is intended to be reminiscent of chunky tyres again, or a crank shaft.  The deckled edges of the black matting are again to put chunky tyres in mind.
  • I haven't loaded up the page with many embellishments because I like clean and simple and because I didn't want to cover up any more of my tyre track paper than I had to!
  • Here's how I created the tyre track paper:

I started with textured matt gold card
Step 1: I roughly painted all over with dark brown acrylic paint
Step 2: Once dry, I roughly painted with 'mud splat' chalk acrylic paint,
then I went over with a wet paintbrush to blend a little

Step 3: I mixed mud splat chalk paint with grunge paste,
then applied messily through a tyre track mask.
I finished with a few squirts of walnut colour spray

Saturday, 7 March 2015

Layout 2 - Focus

I enjoyed making my first layout of the year so much that I started another page as soon as I finished it :-)

I kept the design clean and simple, which is my natural style anyway, but that also helps to cut down on procrastination.  By far the slowest part of the layout was searching for lettering that matched.  I never did find any, so had to alter some, see the notes below.  Here's the layout, I hope you like it:

What I used:

Papers: Sandylion CKOK "Lots of Flowers" 12x12, Born to shop "Go Green" A5, Papermania Capsule Collection "Spots and Stripes" mini square notelet.
Embellishments: Papermania chipboard die cuts "Tags & Frames" and "Flowers", Papermania adhesive die cuts "Alpha spots", Born to shop "Go Green" die cut decoupage greeting, Doodlebug "Simply Sweet" mini alphabet rub-ons in beetle black.
Other: ColorBox cyan pigment ink

Crafting notes:

  • I cut circle details from one of the other "Go Green" papers to embellish the chipboard flower and the date plaque.
  • The grey background of the alphabet stickers was a little purplish in some lights, and I found it jarring, so I altered it to match the chipboard embellishments by applying a cyan ink over the top.  Here's the difference it made - just the 'f' below is altered:

Thursday, 5 March 2015

At last! 1st layout of 2015

This layout isn't going to win any design awards, but it's super important to me, as its completion marks the banishment of the longest period of crafter's block I can remember suffering.  I've had several layouts on the go for ages but had got so bogged down I couldn't make any progress with any of them.  I decided to see if I could break out of it by starting a new 'easy' project, so I chose a background paper with a layout already on it - fewer things to decide = less procrastination!  This was the first time I've ever used a paper with a layout printed on it, as I've always considered it a bit odd, but it is really useful for scrapping more quickly.  The only snag was that the paper included a prominent banner down the right hand side with the name of the brand (why?), but I cut some paper from underneath where the photos go and covered it up so I could add my own words.  I also used paper gutted like this for the journalling blocks.

I couldn't find any tags or shapes quite the right colour for adding the photo dates and Bob's ages, so I painted some bare chipboard stars, to go with the stars on the paper.

This was also my first layout to feature pictures from more than one day.  I really like the comparison and I'm planning more like that.  Here's the page:

Happy crafting!

What I used:

Papers: Some bunny to love
Embellishments: Papermania alphabet stickers, Papermania Bare Basics chipboard shapes
Other: Artiste yellow paint