Monday, 4 December 2017

Get Creative – Christmas Crackers and Coasters

Hello …………….. Christmas is getting closer and I’ve been busy, busy, busy getting my Christmas Crackers and Coasters done. It’s something my sisters and I have done for years. I have to give credit to my sister for the measurements because I lost mine and she kindly let me use the coasters idea which was hers.

If you want to have a go, the step by step is below.

There’s a bit of prep but it’s worth it in the end.

Cut a sheet of white cardstock to 71/2” x 9”, and 3 smaller pieces at 2 ¾” x 7 ½” and about 4” x 4”.  

On the 7½” x 9” and 2 ¾” x 7 ½” and 4” x 4” white cardstock either brayer a light coat of Dylusions Pure Sunshine, then a layer of Cherry Pie and lastly a layer of Postbox Red and leave to dry. OR brayer a light coat of Dylusions Pure Sunshine onto a Gelli Plate and pull a print, then a layer of Cherry Pie and pull a print. Lastly a layer of Postbox Red but before you pull the print lay a stencil onto the Postbox red layer, pull a print with a spare piece of paper, lift the stencil then pull your last print.  It gives a lovely effect. Don’t clean your Gelli plate in between each layer.

For the embellishments

On the other 2 ¾” x 7 ½” piece of cardstock draw some black lines using a Faber Castell Pitt artist pen big brush. I used a stencil and sorry I forgot to take a pic, but here’s pic of the left over paper.
Cut two thin strips [about 1/8” and two wider strips [about ½’].  

Use the Stencil-Art star stencil, Dylusions Fresh Lime paint and a sponge to stencil stars onto the red 2 ¾” x 7 ½” piece of cardstock. Remove the stencil and leave the paint to dry. Line the stencil up again and outline all the stars with a white gel pen.

Cut a star shape on the other coloured 4” x 4” piece of cardstock and stamp with Black Archival Ink. I found a scrap of white cardstock and cut the star shape then stamped with Twisted Citron Distress ink.

 Now to assemble
Score the 7 ½”x 9” cardstock [on the 7 ½” side] at 1 ¾, 3 ½”, 5 ¼” and 7. Score the 9” side at 1 ½”, 2” and 2 ½” at the top and the bottom.   Fold all scorelines with a bone folder. Make sure that the  1 ½”, 2” and 2 ½” score lines are folded : mountain, valley, mountain. see pic below.

Use a punch or decorative scissors to decorate both the top and bottom of the 7 ½” side.  Glue a narrow strip of black and white paper just before the first score line on the top and bottom.

On both sides of the 7 ½” side of the 2 ¾” x 7 ½” coloured cardstock glue a piece of the ½” striped paper behind leaving a small bit showing. On the long side, score at 1 ¾, 3 ½”, 5 ¼” and 7”. Glue this down the middle of the cracker; make sure you line it up so that cracker and embellishment score lines are aligned. Use a bone folder on each score line to make sure you get a proper fold.
If you’re using cracker snaps now is the time to glue them to the inside of the cracker. Don’t use a strong adhesive as you’ll never pull them apart.
You can use an envelope punch board or cut triangles for the next step. On the 9” side fold the first score line over. Punch with the envelope punchboard in the middle of the 1 ½”, 2” and 2 ½”score lines [in other words at the 2” score line]. Do the same at the opposite end.  Fold the next score line over and repeat. Do the same for all the score lines on both sides including the ½” strip. If you don't have an envelope punchboard, cut small triangles.  
Use glue or double sided tape on the ½” strip [on the long side] and carefully lay this side beneath the other to make a tube.
Tie each side of the cracker with a double piece of string and glue the stars down. Whew you’re done”.

Traditional Cracker

Instructions are identical as above, except for the embellishments.  Splatter some brushed pewter and iced spruce distress spray stain over white cardstock. [I took the lids off and tapped the black part of the lid that screws on until I was happy with the coverage] decorate the 7 ½’ edges with decorative scissors or a paper punch and add some trim.

Spray some Brushed Pewter distress spray stain onto the craft mat and smoosh a piece of 2 ¾” x 7 ½” paper into it until you are happy with the coverage and leave to dry. Use a sponge or Distress Ink Applicator to apply Pine Needles and Festive Berries Distress ink onto a slightly smaller piece of paper but here spray with the Ranger Distress sprayer here and there but only pulling the trigger halfway. Use decorative scissors or a paper punch to decorate the edges. Colour small tag the same way.
Colour the roses using Festive Berries Distress Spray Stain and ink the edges of a tiny little bought tag with Pine Needles Distress ink.

When the cracker is glued together put the embellishments together and add a tiny father Christmas cut out to the tag. [I adhered the roses using Ranger glossy accents.]
Ideas for inside the crackers are: crystal key rings, lip balm, nail polish, mascara, small compass small sharpie pen.
Use some shredded paper in each side of the cracker to keep the little gifts inside.
For the coasters I simply cut circles then stamped them. Make sure you use waterproof paint and/or inks otherwise if the bottom of the glass is wet it might stain your table cloth.
A bit of a job but so worthwhile.
160 gm cardstock
Dylusions Pure Sunshine, Cherry Pie, Postbox Red and Fresh Lime
Brushed Pewter and Iced Spruce distress spray stain
Brayer, bone folder, [Gelli plate, envelope punch board and stencil are optional]
Faber Castell Pitt artist pen big brush
Adhesive and narrow double sided tape
Border punch or decorative scissors
Black and Watering Can Archival ink
Ink Applicator and Pine Needles and Festive Berries Distress Ink
Ranger Distress sprayer
String and White organza ribbon
Shredded paper
Silver trim

Monday, 27 November 2017

Christmas Gift Wrapping : Pillow Boxes

According to my calendar Christmas is a month away and its time to get my gifts organised and wrapped.  I love, love, love to make my own gift wrapping, so today’s project is about Christmas Pillow Boxes. They really are easy to make and you can make them almost any size you like.  I also like to add a tag to my gift wrapping so that they can be recycled to somebody else.

To make the pillow box that holds a gift card [2 x 4” when finished].
Trim your cardstock to 51/2 x 41/2”. On the side measuring 51/2 inches long score lines at the 21/2 and 5 inch mark using either a score board or an embossing tool. You should have a flap on the end of the paper that measures ½”. 
Turn the cardstock over to the inside and on the side measuring 41/2” draw two lines, each a ¼” wide one below the other at the top and bottom.


Use something round, [I used a saucer on the small box and a side plate on the larger one] and line it up with the edge of the pillow box. Draw around it with a pencil. Do the same on the other end and cut along your traced lines with a pair of scissors and trim off the pointy ends of the 1/2” flap.

Place the pillow box on a mouse pad or something similar; line your saucer up facing the other way [towards the inside]. You want to make an eye shape. The edge of the saucer needs to touch both corners of the paper you've just cut. Hold the saucer firmly, [you don't want it to slip] and use an embossing tool to score around the saucer. Do this on both ends.
Leave plain or decorate.


Stamp the bird from the Tim Holtz Bird Crazy Cling Rubber Stamp and the Christmas hat from the Tim Holtz Crazy things stamp set onto a piece of scrap using Black Archival Ink.  I cut them out using the matching dies. 
 Colour them by scribbling a bit of the colour from Distress markers onto a craft mat and pick up with your water brush and colour as you like. When the bird and Christmas hat are dry glue the hat onto the bird and attached to the gift card pillow box.
 Glue some trim at the top and bottom of the pillow box.  Open the pillow box out and apply a strip of double-sided tape to the outside of the flap. Stick the flap down to make a tube. Gently press and fold in your scored eye shapes at each end of your pillow box.

Bigger Pillow Box
Trim your cardstock to 81/8 x 81/2”.

On the side measuring 81/2" long score lines at the 4 and 8" mark using either a score board or an embossing tool and a steel ruler. You should have a flap on the end of the cardstock that measures ½”.

On the inside of the pillow box draw two lines, each a  ½” wide one below the other at the top and bottom. Remember that the first pillow box holds a gift card so it doesn’t need too much space inside. This pillow box will take something quite a lot bigger and bulkier than a gift card. 

For the next steps follow the above instructions but don’t close the pillow box yet.

To decorate
Secure the Stencil-Art A6 stars stencil onto the pillow box using masking tape. Squeeze a little Dina Wakely lime acrylic paint onto your craft mat Pick up the paint using a sponge. Pounce it few times on the craft mat to make sure there isn’t too much paint on the sponge and then pounce the sponge over the stencil until all the stars have been stencilled. Carefully lift the stencil and leave the paint to dry. When the paint is dry replace the stencil matching the stars as best as you can and trace around all the stars using a white gel pen.

Draw a bauble shape onto card stock and cut it out, using it as a template to trace and cut out three baubles from a left over piece of background paper. [The paper was made by spraying Dylusions Cherry Pie and Bubblgum sprays onto my craft mat and swishing the paper around and drying. Ink around the edges of the baubles with black Archival ink then draw two corresponding circular lines near the top and glue on bits of music paper and attach all three to the front of the pillow box.

Open your pillow box out and apply a strip of double-sided tape to the flap. Stick the flap down to make a tube.

Gently press and fold in your scored eye shapes at each end of your pillow box.

Supplies I used:
Kraft cardstock
Glue and double sided tape
Scissors / craft knife
Pencil, Ruler and Bone folder
Tim Holtz Bird Crazy and Crazy Things Cling Rubber Stamps and Sizzix Thinlits Dies
Black Archival Ink, Ground Espresso Distress ink and a blender tool
Distress Markers
Water brush
A little trim
Candied Apple, card pumpkin and Hickory Smoke Distress Markers
Stencil-Art Stars stencil
White Gel pen
Dina Wakely Lime Acrylic paint
Dylusions Cherry Pie and Bubblgum sprays
Scrap of left over background paper
Scrap of left over music paper
Experiment with two A4 pieces of cardstock to make quite a large pillow box.

Monday, 20 November 2017

Trust your Intuition

Hi everyone, Angie back again with an intuitive art journal page. Sometimes its good to just let go without a real plan in mind and trust your intuition, hence the title.

I used a combination of Ranger Dylusions and Adirondack acrylic paints for my background, applying them with different sponges, adding a bit of white right at the end.  [these Adirondacks, I must confess have been in my stash for ever], then I used a pencil to write some words onto the page.

I didn’t have the Stencil Art Stendala Stencils then, but I do now and they’re gorgeous, and so I used a round stencil from my stash on the bottom left and right top, using different colours on different parts of the stencil.  You will notice that later I went over the stencil in some places with a bit of white.
I pulled out some more stencils that I thought I might use, including a homemade stencil cut from the Tim Holtz mixed media dies, and without much thought began layering different stencils and colours onto the page.
I knew I wanted something big and bold for my title, so out came my PaperArsy Everything-art alphabet stamps and surprize, surprize my clear embossing ink and Ultra thick black embossing powder.

You will notice that I also used the Dina Wakely media tools and some Wild Plum Adirondack acrylic paint and Dylusions Lemon Zest to do some mark making.
 I stamped the word “trust” then embossed with shiny black embossing powder and my heat gun. However, it really seemed a bit lost on the page so I painted a black strip just below it using Dylusions black paint. When the paint was dry I stamped the words “your intuition” with clear embossing ink and embossed with White embossing powder, and heated with my heat gun, only to find that I had spelt “intuition wrong”.  I used a piece of newsprint and the iron [not set on steam] intending to only iron off the misspelt word, but I managed to iron off both words, so started again. 

I ended off by scraping some black Dylusions paint around the edges of the pages.
In retrospect I should have used White Ultra thick embossing powder on “your intuition” but for some reason I didn’t and I’m sorry now, but this page is about just going with the flow. I still like it; it’s bright and cheerful and the title certainly makes one think.

See you next time.
Ranger Dylusions and Adirondack acrylic paints
Small sponges
Assortment stencils
Tim Holtz mixed media dies
Dina Wakely media tools
PaperArsy Everything-art alphabet stamps
Clear embossing ink
Black and white embossing powder
Heat gun

Monday, 13 November 2017

GIRLS just wanna ……… have fun- Collage

Hi everyone.  Its Angie I’m back after quite long break.  What started off as a routine angiogram ended up with a month’s stay in ICU.  I’m much better now and itching to start crafting again, so ........ here goes.

All the backgrounds in my colourful journal are already painted with Daler-Rowney Aquafine Watercolour paints and have been enhanced with both stamping and stencils. I think I’ve shown how to create this background in a previous project but I'll show you some pages below.
and ..............

So onto the border. I simply measured and drew the border, then used white and black Posca pens to colour in the each block.

As you can see the backgrounds in this journal are quite colourful and I had already decided that I needed black and white images, so the minute I saw the image I’ve used in a magazine I knew immediately that I wanted it in this journal and at that moment I decided on the title as well. Normally I change my mind a 1000 times but not his time.
I first scanned and resized the image then fussy cut it out and glued it down with a glue stick. The reason I used a glue stick is because I only have an inkjet printer and the image will not therefore be waterproof.
I went over the girls’ hair with a black Posca Pen and drew a crown for each of the girls then used a little Silver Stickles to highlight them, then outlined the edges of each girl with a black Charcoal pencil. I also used Ranger Distress Glaze on the image which also helps to waterproof it.
I used a combination of the Tim Holtz lower case foam stamps and my small alphabet stamps to create the title with black Archival ink.

I hope this project will inspire you all to use magazine cut-outs in your artwork.

For the background I used an assortment of Daler-Rowney Aquafine Watercolour paints.
No 12 Round water colour brush
Archival black ink
White paint
Wilted Violet and Picked Raspberry distress inks
Stampotique – Kate Crane mixed media stamp
Black and White Posca pens for the border
Black and White image from a magazine. You can print a coloured image and print it in black and white if you want to
Silver Stickles
Glue stick
Small pair of sharp scissors for fussy cutting image
Black Charcoal pencil

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Create your own MAGIC...

Hi Everyone,

I have to confess that working with the Chameleon Markers was an uphill battle for me.  But I am very stubborn and no marker was the boss of me!  I am so glad that I stuck to it!  I just had to share my joy of finally figuring it out!  (Thus also a short video today!)

Colouring the Daisies with Chameleon Color Tone Marker and Tops:

The background:

Squeeze out Dina Wakley Media Heavy body paints in Sky, Turquoise & Ocean on the page and blend with a card (old credit card).  Use your finger to add a tiny bit of Night (this is a very dark blue colour).

Do the same with Dina Wakley Media Heavy body paints in Blushing, Ruby, Fuchsia & Magenta. Build up each layer by adding more blues and pinks as you go, making sure that each layer is dry before adding the next. I love the texture of the Modiagliani paper in my small art journal.

Use a make up sponge and add white paint through the Stendala 1 A5 stencil.

Use Typo Quotes 3 stencil and add the quote with a Posca 1-M Marker in Black.  Also use this stencil to add the border at the bottom of the page.  The swirls at the top were drawn freehand with Posca 1-M Markers in Black and White. Add a highlight to each petal with the white marker.

Products used:

  • Pro-Art Blending Card 
  • Stampendous Daisy Mix Stamp Set (CRS5082 and Diecuts (DCS5082)
  • Chameleon Color Tone Markers - PK5 Fuchsia, YL2 Summer Sun, PK3 Bubblegum, BR4 Burnt Umber, PR4 Purple Grape, V02 Mauve, GR4 Evergreen, GR1 Apple Green
  • Chameleon Color Top YL2 Summer Sun
  • DIY Art Journal 150x150mm – Modigliani 200gsm
  • Dina Wakley Media Heavy-body Acrylic Paints - Sky, Turquoise, Ocean, Night, Blushing, Ruby, Fuchsia, Magent & White
  • Posca Paint Markers PC-1M Black & White

Monday, 16 October 2017

Do More of What You Love ...

Hi Everyone,

Thank goodness warm weather is with us again!  We had a taste of Summer (skipping Spring entirely) and then overnight we were back in Winter!

I am so happy to release my new range of Stendala's (Mandala Stencils - how's that for originality?)  These stencils can be used in a variety of ways - to doodle & colour, as background texture and with Texture Paste.

I am using Stendala 2 (STBP046) to create a colourful Doodle Mandala combined with the new Typo Quotes 3 stencil in my small 150x150mm Stencil-Art Art Journal (SAAJ150)

1.  Draw the outline of the mandala with a Black Posca Paint Marker PC-1M and paint the background with black Daler-Rowney Graduate Acrylic Paint. I used a wet paint brush dipped in water to thin out the paint a bit.

2.  Draw the detail of the mandala lightly with a 2B pencil.

3.  Colour the shapes with Zig Clean Color Real Brush Markers.  Some of the colours I blended out with water and others I blended with each other.  Make sure that there are no hard edges.

 4.  Add doodles and details with a black and white Posca PC-1M paint marker.

5.  Use the Typo Quotes Stencil to add the quote with a white Posca PC-1M paint marker.

Products Used

Stencils A5 - Stendala 2 (STBP046) & Typo Quotes 3 (STNL010)
Uni Posca Paint Markers PC-1M Ultra-Fine Black & White
Daler-Rowney Graduate Acrylic Paint 120 ml Tube - Black
Zig Clean Color Real Brush Markers Set of 12

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Create Your Own Happiness

Hi Everyone,

Stencils are such useful tools to create art journal pages.  In the project I am sharing today, I used an old favourite (Butterflies 3) and one of the new Quotes (Typo Quotes 2) Stencils.  

The Butterflies 3 stencil (STDS016) is a layering stencil with the the outline of the Butterfly at the top and the details at the bottom.  Use a pencil and lightly draw the outlines of the butterfly.  

Use any watercolour paint and start applying paint from the butterfly image to the outsides of the pages, making sure that the watercolour paint is darker around the butterfly and getting lighter towards the edges of the page.  Add more paint if you want it darker or remove paint with a clean brush if you want it lighter.  This is the beauty of watercolours - you can always add or remove paint!

Add the details to the Buttefly with Sakura Koi Coloring Brush Pens.  This water-based inks can be layered or blended with water.

Outline the wings of the Butterfly with a black Posca Paint pen and add some details with White.

Finish off the Butterfly with a white Posca Paint Pen and add a Border, again making use of the black and white Posca Paint Pens.  

Use a pencil and lightly draw the outlines of the quote and "colour in" with a black Posca Paint pen.  Add highlights on each letter with a white Posca paint pen.

Products used:

Stencils - Butterflies 3 A5 (STDS016) & Typo Quotes 2 A5 (STNL009)
Qor Water Colour Introductory Set 12 Colours - Quinacridone Magenta
Soft-Grip Golden Taklon Round Brush Size 6
Uni Posca Paint Markers PC-M White & Black