Monday, May 28, 2012

Collage Mandalas

I created these for a swap on AFTCM - Mandalas.  I did a little internet research to see what others have created for mandalas and found lots of digital tutorials for creating them which were pretty interesting. But, I was wanting something that involved a more hands on technique so decided to search for collage mandalas.  I found several that were done in large scale on canvases so I just adapted the process for these 4x4 chunky book pages.  I did create a layout in Corel Draw before I started with  paper to establish what size each layer needed to be and then raided my collage bucket and found some papers that coordinated.  I started with a 4" x4" square, added a 3" circle with 12 3/4" punchies layered below the edge, 2 1/8" square, a 1 7/8" square, 1 1/4" square, four triangles and a gold 3/4" punch for the centers.  I added black lines to the green-blue one and white lines to the pink-yellow one after I glued all the layers into place.   I am really happy with the way these two worked out.  It is a fun process that has no rules so you can just create as you wish and really allow your inner guidance system to move you along.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Little fabric quilts

Started this quilting project last week.  I am wanting to make some fabric journal covers like Teesha Moore has created.  You can check out the tutorial  here!  I have finished the edges on these three. I think I will put together a few more with different fabrics. It has been a very long time since I did hand sewing but I have really enjoyed doing these. I am looking forward to using up some fabric scraps and these little quilts are so easy to take along to be worked up in the car or anywhere you might be waiting for a bit of time.  Once I have a bit of a selection I will start doing the inner quilting.  I love the embellishing she does with beads and so on once she has created the fabric journal covers.
I have used a mixture of fabrics - cotton, silky polyester, etc.  I used craft thread on some and embroidery thread on others.  She recommended the pearl thread which I think might be worth investing in.  I wanted to try it out with what I had just to see what sorts of results I was able to achieve.  So, now that I have started I hope to keep a little stack of blanks ready to go and work on these regularly - a bit of creativity every day!!


Thursday, May 17, 2012

Cardmaking - May - little boys

These cards were created with little boys in mind.  They feature decorative paper as the main element of the card which is a different way of approaching card making for me.  I love the little animals!!  I added two embossed and pierced rectangles and a colour printed greeting layered over a scalloped circle.  These are quick and easy cards!!
These fit in #8 envelopes which I purchased in bulk at an office supply store.  Some of the girls in class mentioned that they have been purchasing them at discount stores.  I thought they were a different size but  when I compared them this morning they are the same size so consider that option when buying envelopes.
THRIFTY TIP:  To make two #8 cards from an 8.5" x 11" piece of cardstock cut off two pieces that measure 3.5" x 11". The scrap that is left over (1.5"x 11") is exactly the right width for adding to the 11" (11" + 1.5"= 12.5") to make a 6.25" card (6.25 x 2 = 12.5).  Cut two 1.5" x 3.5" pieces and add to the two pieces you have already cut.  I usually hide the joint below an element or a layer.
In this case I added a piece of double sided tape below the two rectangles which holds in place the 1.5" x 3.5" piece I added to the front bottom of the card.  You could also choose to add a piece in a different colour which works just as well and uses up scraps.


Cardmaking - May - masculine

As you have probably already suspected I was featuring masculine cards this month.  Father's Day is coming and it is always good to have a few masculine cards in your stash.
These cards featured a decorative paper with bold stripes including gold which added richness to the look of the completed cards.  I echoed the gold by adding a layer below the images.  We sponged the images using a round template which left a nice white border all the way around the image - love that look! I coloured the details in the images using watercolour.  The images and the sponging template (transparency) were cut using my round Nestibilities.  I used the same bow technique I used on this card which involves punching a small hole in the greeting, pushing a loop of seam binding from back to front and inserting several small lengths into the loop.  The bow is formed by pulling both long ends to tighten it nicely.  It works very well with seam binding which is soft and pliable and makes a bow with very little bulk because there is no actual knot. The greetings were colour printed and trimmed with decorative scissors.  The digital images are from Arthur's Clip Art.  This site has a large index to help you locate the images you are looking for.
Take time to celebrate the best of the men in your life and let them know you appreciate them with a handmade card!!


Cardmaking - May - corrugated paper

Love the look of this corrugated paper!!  The red one on the right I bought years ago in a variety pack but I have since discovered a more economical option which is featured on the card on the left hand side.  THRIFTY TIP:  Check your recycle bin and look for any box that has been made up of fine corrugated cardboard. Cut it apart, lay a piece on a flat surface and wet the inside layer with a spray bottle or large foam brush. The water will be very quickly absorbed, then let it sit for a few minutes.  Start peeling off this wet layer by lifting an edge from one of the sides.  It should peel up perfectly.  If not, just wet it down a bit more and wait a minute or two and try again.  Gives you lots of corrugated paper in no time.  Want coloured corrugated paper??  Just paint with acrylic paint any colour you need for your project.
I added a large ribbon across the middle and layered on a colour printed image to which I added some photo corners.  These photo corners have been in my stash for a while and I was happy to get a chance to use them.  I liked the vintage scrapbook look, especially with the Eiffel tower image.  On one of the cards I stapled the corrugated paper to the card front and on the second one I simply glued it in place.  Just a different look!!   Added the three little diamonds to finish it off.  These digital images were colour printed but you could certainly consider using images from packaging or collage sheets or real photos.  All the images are from The Graphics Fairy. She has a  lot of images so use the search box to find what you are looking for.  Many of the girls at class were looking for more of this sailboat image.  Enjoy!!


Cardmaking - May - little tag card

Love getting together with others to create so had a good time last night with my cardmaking group!!
Our first card featured a little tag greeting!! I printed up a few Happy Father's Day tags so anyone who wanted to could customize their card.  We debossed the front so that the tag could easily be slipped into the slot and added decorative paper to the left.  I used the SU window punch to create the slot and only glued the outside edges of that layer to create a pocket for the tag to slide into.  The watercoloured image was  layered onto the front of the tag holder and a small piece of ribbon was stapled to the tag.
I laser printed these are digital images - the leaf is from Beccy's Place and the bison is from Arthur's Clip art.  Several  of the other images I used were from Clker.
I love digital images because they can be sized to suit any project and always print perfectly!  There are many places where you can download images for free so check out the links I have on the right hand side of my blog to see what you can find for your next project.


Exchange card

Made this card up for the card exchange with my card group the other night.  The art was already created so it was fairly quick and easy to put the card together - embossed background, black seam binding and a black layer all on a yellow card front.
The digital image is by Melon Headz Illustration.  She has a wide variety of images so check out her site!!  I have used several other ones here .  I created the art at the same time that I created these ones.  I love the bold look of this image and the message is inspirational!!  We all need to be reminded of what is important in life!!


Monday, May 07, 2012

Panel Thank you cards

Just received my SU Avant Garde Collection CD today and have been playing!!  I created these single panel Thank you cards that fit in #8 envelopes!!  Loving those digital images!!  I sized the digital paper images in Corel Draw to suit what I needed for the cards and added greetings which I colour coordinated to the paper!!  These were quick and easy  -  I simply colour printed them!!


Thursday, May 03, 2012

Cards packaged for giving!

Here is how I have packaged the four fabric flower cards I made earlier today!  I made this card holder from heavyweight decorative paper and used my slot corner punch to make a slot for the ribbon which will help keep it with the holder once the package is opened.  It can be reused by the recipient to package cards or other items for giving.
If you would like the template for creating this card holder just follow this link or click card holder in my LABELS listing on the lower right side of this blog!!
I have added my best wishes inside a little Zentangle card which I have neatly tucked into the flap.

Fabric flower cards

 Here is a close up of the black netting like fabric I used on the front of my flowers.  They have so much texture!!  So they would be "the star of the show" I created some very simple backgrounds for them.  I added some "faux stitching" with a fine tip Sharpie marker to some bright cardstock and embossed them. Quick and easy!!  As I playing with the lay out I decided that punchie centers worked better than the stitching ones I had created with thread so I added those to the flowers using large glue dots.

These were fun to make and I am looking forward to adding more fabric and hand stitching to my paper crafting!!


Fabric flowers

 I acquired a stash of fabric from someone who was downsizing so I have been looking forward to using some of the smaller scraps in my art!!  I decided this morning that today was the day and that I would try making some fabric flowers!  I dug out a few different ones - satiny white, black, gray and white flowers and a netting with little discs all sewn in a very organic manner.  Very cool!!  After layering them I thought the sandwich was a bit on the light side for flowers so I dug into my stash and found some white flannelette which helped give the sandwich the weight I was looking for.
Above, you can see above a flower in progress.  The hand sewn stitches in red and yellow embroidery thread inside the hand drawn flower shape with all the layers pinned together. I started sewing in the middle, going around in circles to create the center of the flower, then added one long center stitch in each petal and stitches all the way around to be sure that everything was well anchored.  The two on the left were cut with the largest flower on the Tattered Flowers die (TH).  I accidently cut the stitching in several places when I die cut  them because it was difficult to line up on the die.  The other three were done free hand.  I drew a shape on the white backing, did my hand sewing and then cut around it.
I am happy with my first attempt at hand sewing in many years and have plans to feature these on cards very shortly!!  A fitting Thank you for the generous soul who gifted me with some fun fabrics to play with.  I am hoping to try some Teesha Moore type fabric journals as well.


Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Butterfly birthday cards

A couple of birthday cards for a couple of special girls who will be celebrating their birthdays together this year!!
I used a laser printed Meljens digital image of a butterfly which I watercoloured.  Added some decorative paper, ribbon and a greeting.
Love the little bows!!  I used this same technique here for a masculine card and slipped two individual pieces of ribbon into the loop instead of the two loops I inserted this time which created some very nice looking bows.  So if you are bow challenged this technique is for  you!!!


Cupcake birthday cards!

Prepped these kits for a cardmaking session here at home and the leftovers have been sitting for a while.  I hauled them out yesterday and made them all up.  Had a really good time watercolouring all those cupcakes in fun colours to coordinate with the decorative papers!   I added a bit of vintage seam binding/ribbon and a greeting to finish them off!!
It's great to have a few of these ahead!!


Birthday card

A birthday card for a girl who loves purple and pink!  She also loves paper crafting so I have sent a few card kits her way so she can have some of her friends over to craft!!
I started with a laser printed  fairy and butterfly image from Meljens blog.  I watercoloured it, layered it onto purple, attached it to a stamped and embossed layer of pink cardstock then glued the entire element to a dark pink card front.  Add a layered stamped greeting and offset that with a layered flower made up of punchies.