Saturday, September 27, 2014

An altered cuff with a metal embellishment in a zipper bezel!

Another cuff!!  This is the one I created for the swap that more closely follows the guidelines provided for the Altered Cuff Swap on AFTCM.  I started with two strips of sky blue cotton fabric.  I stitched the lace, piping and teal bias trim to the right side of one of the pieces using my sewing machine.  I cut an elastic to serve as the closure, pinned it at one end, laid the other piece of fabric right side down and sewed both ends and one side being careful not to capture the lace in the seam.  I snipped the corners and turned it over.  I added the white and turquoise ebeads over the teal bias trim using white embroidery thread and then added the buttons using turquoise sewing thread being sure to leave enough room in the middle for my embellishment.  I used clear thread to attach the embellishment to the middle of the cuff.  I really like how the zipper teeth create a bezel for the metal piece!!  After that, I turned it back to inside out and sewed two short seams from each end, snipped the corners and turned it back to right side out.  I pressed the whole thing and hand stitched the opening closed.  I thought it needed a bit of something so I used white embroidery thread to add blanket stitching to both sides.  That was better!! I added yet more stitching - French knots in between the eyelets in the lace and a stitch in the center of each eyelet to help keep it from rolling up.
The embellishment was created using an old earring, a piece of zipper, some sequins and clear thread.  You can check this post for the construction details.  I submitted it to one of my groups in their Zipper Challenge.  

Felted wool cuff with layered flowers

I created this felted wool cuff for an Altered Cuff Swap I am participating in on AFTCM.  I used felted wool that my daughter gave me along with some coordinating fabric.  I pieced three pieces of navy together to create the base onto which I sewed the teal flower die cuts (TH) using turquoise thread.  I used heat and bond to adhere two strips of fabric together to create the smaller flowers.  They were die cut using the smallest flower on the Tim Holtz Tattered Flowers die.  I sewed them on over the teal ones stitching over each petal as close to the center as possible.  As a final embellishment I added a large turquoise sequin with a gold bead in the center.  I added two small snaps as a closure for this cuff!!    I really like how it turned out!!  
Upon rereading the guidelines it would seem that I have strayed too far off the mark and will be making another that complies more closely.


Friday, September 26, 2014

Zipper Challenge

On MMS, they issued a Zipper Challenge - create something using a zipper!  I decided to use part of a zipper as a frame on a project I was working on.
I cut one side of a zipper just long enough to frame this metal embellishment and sewed the ends together and then sewed a basting stitch through the fabric part of the zipper and gathered it in to create a flat bezel.  The metal  embellishment is an old earring from which I removed all of the innards and replaced them with turquoise sequins. I placed it over the zipper bezel  and sewed them together using clear thread.  Worked out perfectly for what I wanted for the project I was working on which I will share later.


Alcohol ink & ATC birthday card

This card features an ATC I made a few years ago.  I had these scraps of alcohol ink background left over from a "make & take" at the local scrapbook store - Scrapbook Lane - which is located in the Pharmasave in town!!
I cut some of the scraps into 1" squares and glued them down the two sides of a black card front and then measured the space in between and cut two pieces for top and bottom to complete the frame.  I added the ATC in the center using 3D foam tape.
The ATC was created using a slide mount (SX), an image printed on transparency, an alcohol ink background and a quote handwritten with a silver gel pen.  You can check out the details here.
I stamped the tiny greeting (SU) just below the ATC using black ink.
I love the vibrancy of this card!!


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Baseball zig zag card

I joined a swap where I needed to create a zig zag card with a baseball theme. Wouldn't you know it I had this baseball player image in my stash.  I actually had two of them so decided to make two cards.  I created the layout of this card digitally in Corel Draw so it could be printed on white cardstock which would reduce the layers and ensure it could be mailed for first class postage.  I created a background using black dotted lines which mimic a baseball uniform.  I added the baseball image (CLKER) on the left hand side and inserted a little birthday greeting then added the bats (CLKER) at the top of each section.  I duplicated another card on the other half of my sheet, laser printed it and cut them apart by cutting between the bats.  It gives the cards a cool decorative edge.  I folded the cards between the bats, sponged all the edges and used my stipple stamp (SU) with brown ink on a few of the edges.  I added a bit of watercolour to the bats and created a shadow on the baseballs.  I added the layered images of the baseball players on the right hand panels and left the center ones for a personal message.  Love how these worked out!!  They have a bit of a vintage look which I like.  


Leafy wrist cuff

 Played with felt last week and came up with this leafy cuff for my daughter using scraps she donated to me.  I have limited colours but thought I could make a leaf cuff work.  I chose scraps that were big enough to cut with the TH Tattered Leaves die and cut 12 leaves.  I used wool thread which I obtained at a local thrift shop  - also limited colours.  I found some to coordinate with all of my leaves and did the button hole stitch around all of them hiding my ends in the felt.  I wanted to add a bit of colour so used gold thread in my sewing machine
and added the veining in each leaf. Now came the fun part - layering them to create a pleasing arrangement.  Once I liked the placement, I pinned them to each other to maintain their order and stitched them together.  I used regular sewing thread and hand stitched each leaf to the one below it where they overlapped.  I used very small stitches and did not go all the way through the felt so the underside looks as nice as the front.  I added two little black snaps as a closure which could be moved if it didn't fit perfectly.  As it was, it was just right and she liked it!!


Friday, September 12, 2014

Washi tape Collage card!!

Our god daughter has a birthday next week and I made her a wahsi tape collage card!!  Super happy with how this one turned out!!  I started with an alcohol ink background  which I had sitting on my desk from a fun day with my sister.  I had stamped it with a script stamp but they had overlapped a bit and made it a bit darker which I found distracted from the whole.  So, I just covered it with washi tape!!  I used a whole strip of the diagonal black and white design which very nicely started a trend so I continued with some pink and polka dots and then a piece of checker next to that on both the top and the bottom!! It was working out well!! I then mounted it to a black card front.  I dug a checkered heart ( Meljens)  from my image stash and watercoloured it to coordinate, added some glittery details with a pink gel pen, fussy cut it out and added it to my card front using 3D foam tape.  I watercoloured my laser printed greeting (CLKER) and thought it needed just a bit of something so I added some pink heart punchies below it!  Just what it needed!!
I have not created a collage card in quite a while and think I will have to try the technique more often!!  It was fun to play with all the elements to make a pleasing design!


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Red ornaments on glittered snow!

I would like to say that I have been inspired by the snow of recent days for these cards but I created the background paper and picked out the ornament punchies over a week ago!!  I created the background paper by rubbing dimensional snow paint from a jar onto white cardstock with my finger until it was completely coated and left it to dry. The ornament punchies (SU) are some that I received in a prize from one of my groups. I loved the red colour with the little bit of glitter they had so I thought they would look great on my glittery snow backgrounds. I trimmed my backgrounds to 4" x 5.25" and embossed them with Christmas embossing folders (SX CB).  I punched several leaf branch punchies (MS) from green cardstock and added silver cord hangers to my ornaments.  I positioned the  ornaments on my background first and adhered them with a little strip of 3D foam tape and then positioned the branch punchies so that they could be made to look like they were hanging from them by drawing a black line (Sharpie) between the two.  I glued the branches on with white glue using a fine tip applicator and added a stitch using green thread to ensure that they would not fall off as the card was handled.  I then glued this layer to a white card front!!  Pretty happy with how these worked out!!  I made two of each which adds four to my Christmas card stash for this holiday season!!  That brings my total to 82 from the 78 I had after I made these elf shoe ones.   I have one more sheet of snowy glitter paper so I will have to come up with a design for four more!!
Have you started your Christmas cards??  I have been making a few every month so that they will be ready by the time I need them.  It is not too late!!  You can start today and have fun making them over the next couple of months!!


A couple more ATC cards!

Here are a couple more cards I created using ATCs from my collection!!
The one on the left features a beautiful koi fish image that was quite glittery.  I layered it over an alcohol ink background I made a while back adding a rust and blue layer along with a flagged strip with blue rhinestones which were coloured with a sharpie marker!!
On the right I layered the leaf ATC onto another alcohol ink background which I bokehed and stamped with a flourish in red.  I added the flagged greeting that coordinated in colour.
These are quick and easy cards because the focal elements are ready to go!!
How many ATCs have you collected?  Do you have them put away or on display? Do you think you will convert some into other projects like cards?


Monday, September 08, 2014

Subway canvas - Love is . . .

I have been wanting to make a subway art canvas for quite a while and in the last few days I have finally managed to get all the elements together and make it happen!
I bought an 
8 x 10 art canvas at a local discount store and painted it with red acrylic paint in several shades and added a few gold highlights.  I created the subway art in Corel Draw using a wide variety of fonts with the theme of Love is. . . .. 
I reversed it using the Reverse Function in the laser printing process which worked great.  I applied a generous coat of Modge Podge to the canvas and laid my printed art carefully over it (printed side down) and rubbed gently to make sure that the two surfaces were in contact everywhere.  I left it to dry overnight. On hindsight, there was a bit too much glue in some places which created a few ridges.  Those ridges dried and became permanent fortunately they do not detract from the look of the finished piece.  
I generally followed this subway art tutorial at Full of Great Ideas  but I think it is absolutely necessary for the glue to be completely dry before you begin to remove the paper.  As it was, I did lose some detail in some of the letters as I was removing the paper which I touched up with a black fine tip Sharpie.  I followed that with a coat of matte Modge Podge which blended the colours in the letters and covered up any little bits of paper that I had not removed.  I am a happy crafter!!  I will be adding a ribbon hanger and it will be good to go.  I will certainly be making more of these in the future.  
 This is loosely patterned after the bible verse but the verse has so many nots in it that I went looking for words that portrayed positive attitudes and attributes that would provide inspiration for everyone.  I added the I AM and the YOU ARE at the top as a reminder that we must set these goals for ourselves and it behooves us to appreciate these qualities in those close to us.  It is also a reminder that it takes two to create a good relationship and both have to work at it regardless if the relationship is with our spouse, partner, parents, siblings, extended family, friends, etc.  


Fairy Door

 A fairy door!!  
Everyone should have one just to stay in touch with the other dimensions of life that blur in our awareness as we grow older!!
I did some research when I joined this swap because I had never heard of them before.  What a cool concept!  It keeps the child in us alive!!
It took several weeks to really work out the concept of how I would create the different layers and what features I thought would be necessary in my creation. 

I finally decided that my door would be able to physically open.  I wanted it to open into a world that was airy and not defined by me so I decided to use metallic cardstock behind my door so the world everyone sees when they open it will be of their own making.  I found one on line that had this feature and I liked the idea of it right away.  I wanted my door to have a window to provide light for the world that lay beyond.  I wanted the frame to have a peaceful greeting.  
So last week I started on my door.  I cut two pieces of light weight chipboard to 5.5"x 8.5".  I painted all four sides with black acrylic paint.  While they were drying I went looking for the pieces I would need.  I found the little strip of wood that I used on the frame of my door.  DH is always bringing me little scraps of wood from his shop knowing that I like to add them to my creations!!  It was about two feet long and a 1/16" thick.  Perfect for the frame of my door.  Next, I located the tiles for framing my opening.  I have a stash of letter tiles I have collected over the years from games, etc and so I started there.  I had originally thought I would use Scrabble tiles to keep wood as a theme but when I found these black letter tiles I decided these ones were "the ones" because they would make the words much more subtle.  I laid them on my chipboard and figured out that I needed 22 to go around so started working out a saying that would work with that many letters.  Needless to say, the paint had long been dry but I now had the wood for my door and the tiles for my frame so I could figure out how big my door was going to be.  I measured three times and cut once!!  I cut both pieces of chipboard with the same opening and marked the backs of both of them so I could keep my layers in proper order.  My tiles were a bit shiny so I decided to paint them black with the bit of acrylic paint I had sitting from painting the chipboard.  Dulled them very nicely but not completely - perfect!!  I decided to build my door first.  I measured and cut my wood strip to make the frame all the way around.  I sanded their edges and dry fit them until I was happy how they went together.  Once I knew how much room there was between the frame pieces I decided on my window size - 1.25".  I used my circle cutter to cut the hole in the top layer, placed it on the back layer, traced the hole onto it and used the circle cutter to cut that one too.  Once I laid them back to back I was pretty close so I just tweaked both of them a bit with an exacto knife.  I decided to add some words, so I found a book page that would do and trimmed it to fit under the wood frame.  I found a scallop punchie in kraft and black (prize on one of my groups) and cut a hole in it as well to create a frame for my window.  Next, I worked on the hinges.  I originally thought two would be enough but when I got to this step I decided that three would be better.  I cut them using a latch die (SX) from leather using my Big Shot.  Perfect!!  I knew that I would need just a bit of play in my door to accommodate the hinges so trimmed just a smidge off the door.  Fortunately, I had allowed a border all the way around my wood frame so I did not have to change that.  Next, I dug out my jewellery findings in hopes of finding something that would work as a handle for my door!!  I found an old earring with this beautiful hoop and with a bit of jigging I made myself a door handle!!  With all the pieces of my door ready to go I started assembling.  I started by gluing my book page to the front of my door.  I cut triangles in the window opening and glued all of them to the inside front of the door.  I glued my wood door frame in place using double sided tape and then used a small drill bit to make the holes I needed through all the layers for my brads.  I drilled holes because I did not want to split the wood which easily happens when the wood is so thin.  I used tiny black brads.  They look like bolts!!  I positioned my hinges, used my awl to mark the holes, drilled them out, attached the hinges with double sided tape and added the brads.  Added my little door handle and glued the frame around my window.  I then glued the back to the front which left the inside of the door neat and clean with all the brad tangs hidden between the two.  I used a black permanent marker on the cut edges to remove the kraft colour of the chipboard on those edges.  Once the door was finished I completed my frame by gluing those two back to back.  Onto my tiles!!  They were hollow at the back so I needed to work out a way to glue them to my frame.  In the end, it was an incremental process.  I glued small squares of cardstock to the inside hollow using hot glue then added a square of 3D foam tape to that which gave me the correct depth to attach to my frame.  I positioned them on the frame to find that I had made a slight error - I had not trimmed my chipboard before I created the door so now I had a half inch on both sides of the frame that was untiled!!  I went looking for something that would do the job of filling that space.  I found a bike reflector (found object on one of my walks) that was the perfect size after I cut it out of its holder and trimmed it in half using a hack saw.  Sanded the edges, added several cardstock layers to the inside and two layers of double sided tape and they were ready to be added to my frame.  I laid out all the tiles and made sure they were all in the correct order before I started gluing them into place.  I started in the top left hand corner and did all that side applying LOTS of pressure to get the foam tape to stick completely to the chipboard.   Next, I started in the right hand corner and started placing tiles.  On my fourth tile, I realized that the last two were flipped though it was difficult to tell because they were an "H" and an "O".  I immediately applied some heat and gently lifted them up.  They did tear a bit of the chip board's painted surface but I was able to repair that and reposition the tiles!!  The little reflectors fit just perfectly at the bottom of each frame and will allow the door to been seen at night!!  A feature I had not intended but adds nicely to the design of my fairy door.  I cut a piece of silver metallic cardstock just slightly smaller than the back and glued it in place using double sided tape!!  The door jammed a bit after it was all assembled and I trimmed it a bit.  I should have waited a bit longer because after everything dried for a bit it may not have been necessary after all but what was done was done - a lesson learned.  In the end, the gap between the door and the frame is a little larger than I would have liked but it works well which is the important thing.  So, it has been pressing for the last day.  I will be packing it up today and sending it on its way to my partner!!
I thoroughly enjoyed the process of creating this little door and I look forward to finding a place in my craft room for the one I will be receiving in return!!


Saturday, September 06, 2014

More ATC cards!

Here are a few more ATC cards!! You can check here and here for a few more.  I am working on incorporating my large collection of traded ATCs into cards!!
I love this beautiful fish so decided to create a masculine card with it!!  I removed several layers of cardstock and adhered the image and layer to an embossed black layer which was glued to a green card front.  Because the ATC had the word "believe" on it I decided to add a wordy laser printed greeting from Pink Cat Studio that wishes the recipient a magical day.  I added some colour and glitter using gel pens, layered it onto green and added it to my card front using 3D foam tape.
The second card features a colour printed digital background from When the Scrap hits the Fun and I was lucky enough to find this beautiful ATC which coordinated perfectly!!  I added a little colour printed greeting and mounted the ATC to a black layer then added it to my card front using 3D foam tape!! I corner rounded all the corners to keep with the circle theme in the background.   Have not used that corner rounder on a card front for quite some time!!  Another masculine card!!


Friday, September 05, 2014

Flourished flower cards!

When I was working on thank you cards for my friend I stamped these flourished backgrounds (Impression Obession) to find that they were really not the right colour so I had set them aside along with some coordinating ribbon.  I found them on my desk this week in my efforts to clean up while my sister was visiting!!  She is on holidays and came for a few days of R&R and some crafting time!!  I needed two cards for my card exchange so decided I would use these supplies.  I found these pink Prima flowers which I received as a prize on one of  groups that coordinated with the backgrounds so I got started!!  I added a little white label die cut (TH) which I sponged and stippled (SU) in pink.  I punched slots (SU) for my organza ribbon on each end. I chose to remove the little bumpy centers of the flowers and replace them with a brown brads which will allow them to fit in the postal mail slot.  I added the flowers to the label using the brads.  I ran a length of ribbon through the slots, folded the ends to the back of the backgrounds adhering them with double sided tape and tied on a short length to the front to simulate a bow.  I am loving these scrolled greetings (CLKER) !!  I fussy cut two, watercoloured them in appropriate colours and adhered them below the flower element using 3D foam tape and glued the whole thing to a pink card front.


Thursday, September 04, 2014

"Through the Looking glass" chunky book page

I joined a swap on AFTCM for a fat book page with the theme of "Through the looking glass"!!  I decided to use a frame placed over silver foil for the looking glass.  I downloaded a frame from Graphics Fairy and digitally removed the horses that were inside the frame. I compiled my collage in Corel Draw - starting with the frame, inserting a tree (GF) and creating a stained glass look all the way around it using elements I created. Once I was happy with the look, I laser printed it on a transparency and trimmed it to 4"x 4".  I used alcohol inks and sharpie markers to add colour my design and then left it for a full day to dry completely!!  Once dry, I layered it onto a piece of silver foil which I cut just a bit longer to aid in binding if necessary and attached my looking glass to it using two little mini black brads on the frame.  I added an alcohol ink background to the back and bound the layers using black and white washi tape along the edges.  I added some very cool little metal fasteners which crimped on with pliers  - added just the amount of the industrial look I wanted.  I tied black and white bakers twine to one of them before adding it.  Really happy with how it turned out!!
It is off to my partner in tomorrow's mail!!


Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Four Elf shoe Christmas cards for me!

Cleaning my desk!!  I unearthed the remnants of this card this week and finished off another four elf shoe Christmas cards to add to my Christmas card stash!!  My last count (May) I had 74 so that brings my stash to 78 cards ready to go for this holiday season!!
I used a green sharpie to colour clear rhinstones for three of my cards because I ran out of the green ones I used before.  You can see in the photo that the ones on the left are a bit brighter - they are the ones I coloured with Sharpies!  What a great cost saving technique!!  Just buy clear and colour what you need!! I used glittery rickrack, flocked ribbon and added an embossed greeting to my cards.  A note:  Always thermally emboss BEFORE you use Versamark ink on your cards!!


Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Alcohol ink play!

It has been a couple of weeks since I went and played with alcohol inks with my sister while she was on holidays!!! Time is flying by!!  We had a wonderful day!  I demoed the "Polished Stone" technique and we made several sheets.  We also played with applying the ink in several different patterns - swirls, plaid, stripes, etc. - each attempt created very different backgrounds. We worked on both glossy cardstock and photo paper. The ink was absorbed differently between those two but both worked well.
 I came home with a pile of paper along with a variety of embellishments too.  We applied alcohol inks to foiled card, foil tape, plastic buttons and charms, plastic die cuts, tiles, etc.  It was a fun creative day and it was great to spend time with my sister and her friends.