Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Birds Postage Stamp Card

Well, there's only two more days until the launch of the Clarity Stamp Challenge Blog.  My next post will be showcasing my project for it; I'm really looking forward to sharing it with you. I think it's going to be a fun thing to be a part of.

In the meantime here is another of my cards made for Clarity's German shows. It uses a selection of Clarity bird and stamp stamps.

The pale blue background is the Small Matrix Feather stamped in Tumbled Glass Distress Ink. I managed to find some blue gingham ribbon in the mess that is my ribbon box that matched it perfectly.

The green card is embossed with a Cuttlebug folder - Birds and Swirls.

I cut out an aperture in copier paper for each stamp, so that I could stamp and colour the images through it. The green I've used for the grass is Lettuce Adirondack.

Stamps Used
Geese from the Remountable Village Set
Cockerel from the Remountable Farm Set

I do love the Stampstamps. You can really personalise them for the recipient by what you put in them.


Monday, 25 February 2013

Kate Crane PanPastel Class

On Thursday I had a great day at a PanPastel class. It was taught by the very talented Kate Crane at Art  From the Heart in Harrogate.

This is the little tag book I made.

These are the individual tags before they were made into a book. They are a great way to try lots of different techniques. We did blending and sponging, stencils with a watermark resist, stamping with pastels, building layers with moulding paste, and patterns e.g. plaid.

Most of the other ladies in the class were art journalers and used to this style of stamping. Their work was fantastic....then there was me! It's very different to what I normally do but I really enjoyed the challenge. My tags aren't as "arty" as the others but I was pleased with what I ended up with. At one point it was looking decidedly dodgy, but I think it all came good in the end.

There was a huge collection of stamps by Stampers Anonymous and Tim Holtz to choose from and I was totally spoilt for choice. You can probably see that by the random nature of what I picked. I can't resist snowmen so I had to use that, then I saw the soldier, and I love Geocaching so the compass got chosen. I'm not quite sure why I picked the Halloween ones, I guess it was because I was using orange, but they are fab!

My moulding paste tag went a bit wrong so I cut that one up and rescued the parts I could. I decided to keep the paste part in as it will remind me what not to do - my paste was too thick and I was heavy handed with the PanPastels. My placement was a bit dodgy too, before I cut it up the poor woman looked like she had a giant booger coming out of her nose!!!!!!

Once we'd finished the fronts we stuck pages of an old book to the back of the tags. It was fun trying to find interesting bits to use!

I arranged the tags so that the different colours and sizes could be seen. Everything started to come together then.

I was sat next to a really talented crafter, Michelle Webb, and she was a great help to me. One of her tips was to use a black Adirondack Paint Dabber to edge the tags with. The front and back covers are stuck to mount board and this gives them a great finish. 

My favourite tag was the snowman one, so I made that into the front cover. That stamp is now on my Wish List.

If you would like to read more about these techniques Kate did an article on her tags in December 2012's Craft Stamper magazine. I'm sure a lot of you will have it.

I'll have to have another go and use my Clarity stamps. I think it would look good and I have a bit more of an idea what to do now.


Saturday, 23 February 2013

Postage Stamp Village Card

I can't believe it's less than a week until the launch of the Clarity Stamp Challenge Blog. I've seen the rest of the Design Team's cards and they are beauties. Now I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone else comes up with.

This is another of my cards for Germany. I really enjoy using the Postage Stamps as you can do such a lot with them. 

This one uses them with the Remountable Village set.  When I first got the Postage Stamps I had to cut the masks by hand. This was rather fiddly and wasn't my favourite job. Then I got my Cameo and I now use that to cut them out. Just recently Clarity started selling their own masks for fiddly stamps. It's such a time saver; there is a lot of masking on a card like this.

I started off by cutting out the little apertures on some copier paper so that I could stamp through to create the scenes. As they are so small I tend to use sponges, rather than a brayer, to add the colour.

After the scenes were complete I masked off all of the stamps so that I could colour the background. 

The top left stamp is cut out and mounted on some 3D foam pads to add a bit of interest.

The postage stamp mat was bought from the Silhouette Store and cut on my Cameo.

Stamps Used

I'd best get back to work now; I'm busy making samples for next weekend's Clarity shows on Create and Craft. With that and the blog launch it should be a good few days for Clarity fans. 


Thursday, 21 February 2013

Clarity Alliums with Highlighter Pens

I had a fab day out today. I've been to a PanPastel workshop taught by Kate Crane at Art from the Heart. It was a lot of fun, although I was totally out of my comfort zone. Most of the ladies were art journallers and my style couldn't be more different! I'm really pleased with what I created though and I'll be blogging it when I've added a few finishing touches.

I got the idea for today's card from an article by Paula Whittaker in August 2012's Craft Stamper magazine.

The secret ingredient is highlighter pens!

You colour in pieces of card with the pens (for this card I used orange, yellow, and pink) and then go over it with Walnut Stain Distress Ink. I kept the colouring quite random as I liked the effect it gave, almost like woodgrain. This was a happy accident after some dodgy colouring!

I then stamped on my much loved Clarity Alliums in Archival Black and finished it off with a little bow and "Happy Birthday".

Stamps Used

Happy Birthday by Chocolate Baroque


Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Thank You Card

This is a very simple card but I was really pleased with how it turned out.  It's one of the samples I made for the Clarity shows on German TV (HSE 24).

The base card is a Jennifer Wambach design bought from the Silhouette Store and cut on my Cameo.  I sized it so that the Allium heads fit the top panels.

Then I stamped two more inside and added a red bow so that it could be seen through the hole when the card is folded up. I think it brings it all together.

Stamps Used


Sunday, 17 February 2013

Oriental Birthday Card

This was made for my Dad. Happy Birthday Dad. x

I chose the Asian stamps from Clarity for his card as he used to keep koi carp and still has a lot of oriental touches in his garden.

Unfortunately when I made my samples for TV using this set I didn't have the Cherry Blossom stamp or the Oriental Bamboo mask by Splodge Away. It's a shame as the cherry blossom would have finished off the top of my Oriental Scene Card perfectly. I've since rectified that and I couldn't wait to play with them all on Dad's card.

I started off by running a square of card and the bamboo mask through my Grand Calibur to emboss it. I then inked through the mask using Black Soot Distress Ink and Cut-n-Dry foam. This made a dramatic black background.

I always think of black and red when I think oriental, so that set the tone for the rest of the card. When I made the original samples I made a note of the colours I used to colour in the pagoda with, so I was able to use them again for this. It saves a lot of time when you remember to do things like that!

My original idea was to stamp the cherry blossom on the bamboo frame and hang the lanterns from it,  but I couldn't figure out how to do that with the black background. In the end I put the cherry blossom in the scene and hung the lanterns from a line I drew in a black Sakura Glaze pen. The dangly bits on the lanterns were too fiddly to cut out so I replaced them with some embroidery thread. Sally-Ann also did this on one of her gorgeous cards.

Stamps Used
Geisha and lanterns from the Remountable Asia Set


Friday, 15 February 2013

Some Bunny Loves You!

I used to make ATCs years ago, so when Barbara Gray and Claritystamp decided to bring them back I couldn't resist having a go.  The theme for February is "Love and Cherish".

My card is inspired by Barbara's demo on Create and Craft this month and a beautiful card by Linda Spencer. I mixed the two together and added my idea of a heart shaped moon. 

I have used Coated Clarity Card for it, so that I could flick water onto the sky to give it a romantic starry effect.

When I'd finished it I thought it would make a fab Valentine's card for Hubby, so I made a larger version too.

I do love those bunny stamps!

Stamps Used
Bunnies and grasses from the Remountable Bunnies Set
Love from the Birdcage Set

I also have a guest designer today - Hubby!

He's a last minute sort of person and usually disappears to the supermarket the evening before any occasion to buy a card. Unfortunately we had quite a bit of snow here on Tuesday so he had a bit of a problem! Knowing what he was up to I told him not to bother. I'd rather have an intact car (and Hubby :-)) than a card.

So he decided to go and play in my craft room and this is what he made.  

It's so much more special than a last minute supermarket card!!!!

He started off cutting bits on my Cameo but then changed his mind, so the inside is beautifully decorated too. I was impressed to see that he'd even backed the bit where the ProMarkers bled through. It's good to see that he's been paying attention!

Unfortunately he failed to notice that my ProMarkers are all stored according to colour, so I have a bit of sorting out to do today..........


Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Painting Bunnies Card

It's a close call between this and my Hungry Bunnies card, but I think this one just edged it as my favourite from February's shows. I probably spent more time making it than the rest of them put together. I would do a little bit and then leave it for a while before I did the next part. As I got further into it I was worried that I would do my usual trick and mess it up just as it's nearly done. Thankfully that didn't happen.

As always I started off on copier paper to make sure I got the stamps in the right position - so that the scene looks good and the perspective is correct.

One thing I realised straight away was that the Quirky Tree would be a nightmare to mask. For this reason I curved the hill so that the green of the grass was mainly behind the trunk giving me an easy shape to cut out. It didn't matter if I got a bit of the blue sky (Tumbled Glass Distress Ink) on the tree as that wouldn't really show through once I'd coloured it with ProMarkers.

There was a lot of masking in this card - the bunnies, easel, paint brush, palette, sheep, and house all needed them.

I kept the scene that the bunny is painting quite simple. I copied the grassy hill and again enlisted Hubby's drawing skills to recreate the house in miniature. I think she looks so cute painting. That easel could have been made for her.

I was so pleased with it when I'd finished and proudly showed it to Hubby. His comment was "Why do you have weeds hanging from the sky?".  Men!

It's art, darling. My "weeds" can do what they want to!  :-)

Stamps Used
Bunnies and grasses (or weeds as Hubby calls them) from the Remountable Bunny Set
Easel, palette, and paint brush from the Remountable Artist Set
Sheep from the Remountable Farm Set


Monday, 11 February 2013

Rose and Scroll Card

This is another of my samples from the Rose set. The card blank is made with the largest die in the Spellbinders Grand Nestabilities Labels 11 set. I cut that out of some brown 12x12 card and then cut another for the front in some cream card.

I stamped the ink bottle first with an Espresso Adirondack ink pad (this is used for all of the stamping), then built up the scroll around it. As I had to extend it slightly to fit everything in I photocopied it to make a mask. Once I had that I stamped the roses so that they looked like they were behind the scroll. Some of the roses were also masked where they overlapped.

The roses and background were coloured in with ProMarkers.  Budding Rose, Dusky Rose, and Antique Pink for the roses and Tan for the background. I added some Antique Paper Distress Ink with an Ink Duster to give a slightly aged look, especially to the scroll.

The rose embellishment is made with cream Shrink Plastic and coloured with the same colours. I went quite lightly with them as the colour does intensify when you shrink it.

Glossy Accents were added to the ink bottle to give it the look of glass.

Stamps Used
Pen, Ink Bottle, and Scroll stamps from the Remountable Artist Set


Saturday, 9 February 2013

Leafy Swirl Rose Card

I made this card as a sample for the Large Rose stamp. I didn't know when I was making it that the Leafy Swirl stamps were also going to be on the show. It was one of those lucky coincidences but they do go very well together.

A while ago someone asked a question on a forum about what size cards people like to make. This was my answer "I think 8 x 8 is probably what I use most. I also like 6 x 6 and A5. Although for DT cards where I don't have to worry about envelopes, I just make them to fit what I'm making. Today I've made an 8.5 x 21cm card. It looks rather cute!"

They jokingly replied "Isn't that cheating?'. I guess in some ways it is but it also makes a lot of sense.

For this card I wanted to have the rose in the centre with the flourishes coming out either side of it. I stamped that out and then made the card to fit the topper. I think it ended up about 9 or 10 inches tall!

I stamped the sentiment onto some vellum using a black Stazon ink pad. The feather was stamped onto card and cut out before attaching it so that it looks like its just written the signature.

The ink bottle down the bottom is covered in Glossy accents to make it look like glass.

The red mat is white card coloured with the same red ProMarker as the rose.

Stamps Used
Pen and ink bottle stamps from the Remountable Artist Set


Thursday, 7 February 2013

Quirky Tree Card using Perfect Pearls

This card wasn't actually as fiddly as I thought it would be. It uses Barbara Gray's technique of stamping onto the protective sheet of some double sided adhesive film and cutting away the different areas with a craft knife. Mica powder is then brushed onto the sticky areas. I used Perfect Pearls.

I started off by cutting out the trunk and branches of the tree with my Fiskars FingerTip Craft Knife.  I find it a lot easier than a regular craft knife for doing things like this. Once I'd peeled all of the protective sheet away I brushed on the Heirloom Gold powder. I then did the same for the leaves using Green Patina. After that I just cut cut away a couple of pieces for the foreground and punched a circle out to do a moon. I finished it off with some Blue Patina and Perfect Pearl for the sky.

I wanted the tree to really stand out so I stamped that onto some acetate, using black Stazon, and placed it on top. This is attached by some brads.

The background is made using the Quirky Hedge. I stamped it onto the black card using Versamark ink, then brushed the same colours of Perfect Pearls that I used for the tree onto it.

Stamps Used


Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Hungry Bunnies Card

This card seems to have had the most interest in it, so I thought it would be a great one to start with.

The question I keep getting asked is how I came up with the idea. It's summed up by the saying "Necessity is the mother of invention". 

I was making the samples during the snowy weather and looking out of my craft room window all I could see was white. I then saw the bunny with his paw sticking out and thought he would look really cute building a snowman with his bunny friends. Then came the problem - I don't have the large Clarity Snowman stamp. I'm not one to give up though, so I tried to think of ways to get around it. 

My first idea was cutting one on my Cameo, but I decided that it would spoil the look with everything else being stamped. 

Then out of nowhere I thought - bunnies - snowman - carrot nose - bunnies would want to eat that!!! I did consider just putting the carrot, hat, and buttons on the ground but then the ideas really started to flow (melting snowman and the wording) and I couldn't stop smiling to myself.  :-)

When Hubby came in from work he got "Jason, can you draw me a melting snowman, please?".  By this time I'd done the rest of the stamping so it was a bit of a daunting task for him; although I'm sure he knew I would have been very understanding if he'd messed it all up!!!!!! He said afterwards that he hadn't felt under so much pressure since he last left Afghanistan....

Stamps Used

Snowflake from the Winter Wonderland Set


Sunday, 3 February 2013

February's Clarity Samples and Exciting News

It's a very exciting "Clarity Day" today. Barbara was on Create & Craft and I have been asked to be on the Design Team for the new Clarity Stamp Challenge Blog. We're all huge Clarity fans and it should be a lot of fun.

The challenges start on the 1st March and I hope you'll all join in. I've just finished my project and I can't wait to share it with you.

Here's the group shot of today's samples. I will be blogging them all individually over the coming days. 

I knew the Bunny stamps would be a huge hit. I absolutely love them and as you can see I had a lot of fun with them. One of them may also be making an appearance in my project for the Challenge Blog, but that's all I'm saying. I look forward to seeing what everyone else makes with theirs. The DT samples were all so cute!


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