Friday, 29 November 2013

Storage Idea for Claritystamp Stencils

Just a quickie today but I thought this might be worth sharing.

I only really started my stencil collection when Clarity started making them and I needed somewhere to store them. I haven't got the patience to put them neatly away in their packaging each time so they all got piled up in a 12 x 12 storage box. This was fine when I only had a few but when my collection grew it wasn't so good. They got tangled up and I couldn't easily see what I had. I was thinking it was a shame they wouldn't fit in A4 punch pockets, then I had an idea.

Like most crafters I've lots of things lying around waiting to be used. One of those is scrapbooks (I used to do quite a bit of it but it's been neglected lately) and they are a perfect stencil storage solution. Plus they look pretty in my craft room.

The 9 x 11 inch ones fit in a 12 x 12 album...........

..........and the 7 x 7 inch ones fit in an 8.5 x 8.5 inch one. I think that size is unique to K & Co. who make these albums but an 8 x 8 one would also work.

The smaller 4 x 4 inch ones will fit in a 6 x 6 album. 

I also have spare pages and extender posts so they should keep me going for a while, although my collection is growing quite rapidly..............

It's nearly the weekend so there's only one more sleep until Barbara is on TV (I'm going shopping today so hopefully I will be watching on my new telly) and two until the launch of a new Challenge on the Claritystamp Challenge Blog. Appropriately for this post, my project for this month features one of the Clarity stencils. I hope you'll be back to take a look. If you haven't yet entered this month's challenge you have until 8pm on Saturday to do so. There's a £50 Claritystamp voucher for the winner (chosen at random) so it's well worth entering.  x


Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Woodpecker Gelli Print Card

Yay, my Clarity samples are now in the post ready for this weekend's TV shows so I can relax a bit. It's been such a busy week!

I'm now doing my post-sample making craft room tidy-up. It's a bit more exciting than usual though - we're looking at buying a bigger TV for the living room so the old 32" one will be going in my craft room. Exciting!

The last card I blogged was my Woodpecker Card that was stencilled using just part of the Lone Tree Stencil.

This one uses the whole stencil and the Gelli plate.

The Gelli print was done in the same way as my Gelli Print Country Scene.............

......however this time I covered up the sky so that I had a clean area for inking the clouds. It gives a very different look to it.

I must confess that I did cheat a little with the woodpecker and he was stamped on a separate piece of card and stuck on.

I coloured a piece of card for the border with the same colour red ProMarker that I used on the bird. That way you don't have to worry about matching colours.

Now that my samples are made I really must start on my personal Christmas cards; I still haven't made a single one yet. Don't tell anyone but I was out shopping with my friend Connie yesterday and I was looking at them in the shops. I didn't actually buy any but it might yet come to that (I can't believe I just admitted that).

Lynne goes off to apologise to all of her beautiful Christmas stamps..................

Stamps and Stencils Used
Lesson 22 - Woodpecker Set


Monday, 25 November 2013

Woodpecker Card

This is the first of two cards that I made with the Woodpecker Set from Lesson 22 of In The Classroom With Barbara Gray.

The scene is all one layer so there's lots of masking involved! I didn't have the Clarity Masks when I made it so I had to cut them all out of Post-its by hand - that was fun! I've since bought them though so if I want to do it again it will be a lot easier!!!

The first thing I stamped was the Woodpecker. I masked him off, then used just the trunk part of the Lone Tree stencil as a template to draw around so it looks like he's clinging to it. I coloured it in with ProMarkers and added some green and brown ink with a sea sponge to give it a bit of texture.

I thought the "flowers" were Clematis so I coloured them in accordingly but I think I'm wrong as I noticed that the stamp is called "Leafy Branch". That's the beauty with stamping though, you can colour things in how you like and give them lots of different looks.

Once I'd finished the stamping I masked it all off and stencilled in the brick wall. I used several colours of Distress Ink with the 7 x 7" version for the main image and the 9 x 11" for the background.

Stamps and Stencils Used
Woodpecker Set - Lesson 22

Next time I'll blog the Gelli version.


Saturday, 23 November 2013

Rise and Shine!

Yaaaaay! My Crafty Little Blog has just passed 50,000 page views. Thank you all for reading it, I hope you're enjoying it.

I started this month's Claritystamp samples with my Christmas Countdown Calendar made with the Cottage Scene stencil and I'm finishing with my other design using it.

This one shows a Summer's day. The cows are in the fields and the sun is shining. I've also added the weather vane to this one; it is rather large in proportion to the house but it's great fun and makes a lovely focal point.

The black cottage part is done the same way as the Christmas scene - I used the Gelli Plate and some Daler Rowney System 3 Process Black paint with their Slow Drying Gel. I found the addition of the gel gave me a much blacker print than without it as the paint stayed wetter.

The scene is created with Adirondack ink pads, Ink Dusters and make-up sponges. It's a great one to play with, you can add as much or as little as you want to the scene. I've recently done a much busier version that I will be blogging soon.

Stamps and Stencils Used
Trees from Remountable Winter Trees Set - Lesson 21


Thursday, 21 November 2013

Fuchsia Anniversary Card

Fuchsias are such beautiful flowers and these stamps certainly do them justice.

I started off by using the Fuchsia Border stamp to create the border (isn't it appropraitely named?!) . The size of that set the design for the rest of the card.

I then used the Circle Dots Stencil and a pencil to draw the central circle. This enabled me to see where I needed to stamp the fuchsias. I rubbed out the pencil and masked off the flowers before stencilling the circle. The new Clarity stencil brushes are perfect for this as they give such a lovely soft effect. I also used them on the edge of the design.

As you can see it started off as a one layer card but I thought that there was too much white space. So I used a square Spellbinders die to carefully cut out the centre. I then matted it onto some black card.

Colouring isn't one of my strong points so I thought I'd stick with the stencilling theme and add the colour that way.

I cut myself stencils for all of the different sections out of some Post-it notes and used a dinky little stencil brush that came with a set of chalks to apply the ink.

I was quite pleased with how they turned out.

Stamps and Stencils Used


Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Sunshine and Flowers

There's not much sunshine here at the moment; it's gone decidedly nippy.

Hopefully this card will brighten up the day a little. Although the Sunshine stencil wasn't part of the same kit as the stamps I thought it complemented the verse perfectly.

It doesn't really shows up in the photo but I embossed the sunshine with my Grand Calibur before I applied the colour (don't forget to stamp the verse first as you get a better impression on a smooth surface).

I stamped out the flowers a few times and cut away sections to give them some dimension. They have been stuck on with Pinflair glue gel which adds to this.

Whilst I was watching Barbara demonstrating this set on TV I thought it would be fun to make myself a cappuccino using the same stencil, so I thought I'd share that too. I think I might have to go and make myself another, this blog writing lark is thirsty work!

Stamps and Stencils Used


Sunday, 17 November 2013

Kingfisher Theatre Card

I hope everyone is having a lovely weekend. Mine has been a really lazy one so far but that's all about to change as my next lot of Clarity stamps arrived yesterday. I have done the thinking stage and I must now put my ideas into action - I hope they work!

Talking of Claritystamps, you may have noticed that there's a new button on my side bar. If you click on it it will take you to Barbara Gray's fab blog where she's having a giveaway. There's Claritystamp goodies to be won so it's well worth taking a look. The winner will be drawn at the end of November.

I always enjoy making theatre cards and I though the Kingfisher stamp and Branch stencil would be perfect for it.

They are really easy to make - you just decide what size you want the front (mine is a 17cm square) and add 8cm to one side (so mine are 17cm x 25cm). Score each side at 2cm and 4cm then stick them together with wet glue when you've decorated them (I didn't take photos of this stage so I've just reproduced it with the stencil and white card for the photo).

I cut a replica of the stencil out in brown card using my Silhouette Cameo. Then I cut out an aperture in the card so that you can see through it. I added a little fish in the Kingfisher's mouth and they were coloured in with ProMarkers then stuck behind the branch. To make it more stable I backed the aperture with acetate.

I really liked the background that I'd created on my Kingfisher Gelli Print Card so I did a very similar version on this card. This time I did it with inks, a brayer and Ink Dusters though.

If I'd had the new Reed stamps they would have been perfect for the foreground but unfortunately they didn't arrive until I'd finished the Kingfisher cards. The Bullrushes were a great stand in though.

I do love the dimension that you get with these cards.

Stamps Used
Fish and Boat from the Remountable Harbour Set
Cows from the Remountable Farm Set
Trees from Lesson 21 - Remountable Winter Trees Set


Friday, 15 November 2013

Squiggles and Rocky Block - Part 2

What a day I had yesterday! I spent most of it making my next project for the Claritystamp Challenge Blog - I really enjoyed myself but when I'd finished I thought it looked like a child's painting. I was so deflated but Mum and Dad and Hubby said that they liked it. I took some time away from it, made a few changes and I think I've managed to rescue it. I'm liking it again anyway so hopefully that's a good sign. I guess I'll find out next month!

Don't forget this month's challenge is "Christmas" and you have until the end of the month to get your entries in. There's a £50 Claritystamp voucher for the winner (chosen at random) so it's well worth entering.

Anyway, back to this month's samples and following on from yesterday's post - This print was originally in the reject pile but it had a last minute reprieve.

I made it after being unsuccessful with my pink, white and black combination. This time the bottom layer is Pistachio but it has been given a grungy look by the residue of black paint left behind when I printed the top black Squiggle layer.

I rather liked the print but I hadn't a clue how to make it into a card so it went onto the reject pile and I made the western style card that I blogged a couple of days ago.

Inspiration finally struck when I found this flower embellishment that Mum had given me. The colours matched perfectly. I added some Black soot Distress Ink to the edges to match the grungy look of the card and stuck it on along with some black ribbon. 

Very simple but I thought it finished it off well. When you have a lovely Gelli print I always hate to cover it up too much.

Stencils Used


Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Squiggles and Rocky Block - Part 1

I certainly had a lot of fun making this card!

I know with Gelli prints you're sort of meant to go with the flow but I'm not very good at that. I usually have an idea of what I'd like to achieve and tend to keep printing until I get it!

I wanted to use the Squiggles and Rocky Block stencils together but I couldn't get a print I was totally happy with. So I kept on printing.

These are the rejects! 

I tried different colours, with and without an aperture, but I just wasn't sure about any of them.

I eventually ended up with a print I was happy with and the colour scheme led me to this western style card. Clarity have a fab "Follow Your Dreams" stamp that I thought would finish it off perfectly (the squiggly line reminds me of a path that has to be followed). 

Unfortunately I didn't have it, so I had to write it in by hand. 

I managed to rectify that at the NEC and used it to make a very similar card for my father-in-law's birthday.

Ooh I've waffled on today. I think I'll make this Part 1 and blog the other card made from this printing session next time.

Stamps Used

Stencils Used


Monday, 11 November 2013

Kingfisher Gelli Print Card

What a fab time I had at the NEC on Saturday. It was lovely to catch up with so many crafty friends and to meet some for the first time. The show was great and we spent a long time browsing all of the different stands. Hubby did take his Kindle to entertain himself but it didn't even come out of the bag, so I think he secretly enjoyed himself too.

This is another card done with Gelli technique that I love so much - a print of Buff Titanium that has had texture added with scrunched up paper, followed by the print of the tree stencil. Adirondack Ink is then added with a sponge to create the scene and the stamping is done in Archival Ink.

The kingfisher is added separately but I wanted it to look the same as the rest of the scene so I made another print with Buff Titanium paint and scrunched up paper and stamped it onto that.

I also stamped the bird quite a few times on copy paper and cut out the different areas to sponge colour through.

A black mat cut on my Cameo finishes it off.

I hope that makes sense but I'm feeling rather tired and headachy after such a busy weekend. It was worth it though.

Stamps Used
Trees from Lesson 21 - Remountable Winter Trees Set

Stencil Used


Saturday, 9 November 2013

Calligraphy Angel

Hello, it's Friday afternoon as I'm writing this but I'm scheduling it for Saturday morning, so hopefully by the time you're reading it I will be at the NEC! That is if there's anyone left to read it, as so many of my crafty friends are going. Hopefully I will get to meet some of you.

Talking of my crafty friends, Kirsty Goodwill (fellow Claritystamp Design Team member) doesn't live that far from me and a I spent a fun afternoon the other day helping her to set up her blog. It's now gone live and I'm sure she'd love some visitors. You can find it here - ARTYK-ulate. One of my favourite cards from last weekend's shows was a card Kirsty made with the Angel stamp that I'm writing about today and the Gelli Plate. Hopefully she will be blogging it soon.

When I saw the Calligraphy Angel stamp I thought it would look beautiful done in Perfect Pearls on double sided adhesive.

I removed one layer of the adhesive sheet's backing paper and used Archival black ink to stamp the angel and sentiment in place. I then covered it with some acetate so that I could work on the reverse.

You add the Perfect Pearls to the reverse by cutting away different areas of the backing paper to reveal the adhesive. I started off with the angel herself and applied Perfect Pearl to her face and wings, Heirloom Gold to her hair and Green Patina to her dress.

Then I cut away a panel at the bottom and applied Green Patina behind the sentiment.

After that I removed the rest of the backing paper and stuck the Sunshine stencil behind her. I pressed Yorkshire Dales gilding flakes onto the adhesive (this has some beautiful green bits in it that look fab with the green Perfect Pearls) before rubbing off the excess and removing the stencil.

Then it was just a case of covering the rest of the adhesive in Heirloom Gold.

It was looking a bit boring down the bottom, as there weren't any gilding flakes down there, so applied some thin red liner tape to the acetate and covered it in gilding flakes. Much better!

Then I just matted it onto some black card and found a co-ordinating sheet of green Kanban card to finish it off.

Stamps Used



Thursday, 7 November 2013

Rise and Shine Seascape

I am all over-excited! Hubby is taking me to the NEC on Saturday and I've never been before. It looks a fab show and hopefully I'll get to meet lots of my crafty friends (that's the best bit). It's going to be a long day but I'm sure it will be worth it - only two more sleeps to wait!

The Rise and Shine Set for Lesson 23 of In The Classroom With Barbara Gray is great fun. You get 5 different toppers for the weather vane so it's versatile too; I think they will be really useful for men's cards.

I chose to use the galleon so I thought it would be appropriate to do a seascape behind it. I used a mixture of my brayer and Ink Dusters to do this.

The ripples on the sea are created by rolling my brayer over some scrunched up paper before applying it to the scene. Once I'd done this I masked off the sea before creating the rising sun and the sky using Mountain Rose and Eggplant Adirondack ink. Then, when I had the basics done, I removed the masks and applied some Mountain Rose over the sea with a brush to create the sun's reflection. 

The roof and land are created by masking off an area and sponging on black Archival ink. The stamping is also done with this.

To finish it off I cut a scrolly frame (bought from the Silhouette Store) with my Cameo. 

Stamps Used
Lesson 23 - Rise and Shine Set


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Rocky Block Card

Deciding which card to blog next is always a tough decision......

.......but as it's such a miserable, grey, wet day outside I thought this one might add some much needed colour.

I get inspiration for my cards from many strange places and this one is no exception. Can you guess what inspired this?

The Rubik's Cube!

I drew around the stencil in a black Micron pen and coloured it in with ProMarkers. To start off with I picked out the Autumn set, as that gave me six co-ordinating colours, but it looked a bit boring. I guess it was the squares that then made me think of the Rubik's Cube and I tried it again in its colours. Much better!

I could never do the Rubik's Cube as a kid but I'm tempted to get one again. YouTube must make it a lot easier to learn!

Products Used
Rocky Block Stencil


Sunday, 3 November 2013

Christmas Countdown Calendar and November's Clarity Samples

What fab shows this weekend! Fab demos from Barbara and gorgeous samples from the DT. I probably say this every time but it never ceases to amaze me how different they all. There's so much inspiration!

I thought I'd blog this one today as I took the photo for today's show. Yes folks, there are only 52 sleep until Christmas!

I love the Cottage Scene stencil - you can give it so many different looks depending on what you put in the empty space. Being a big kid I came up with this idea.

The black part of it is a Gelli print. I used Daler Rowney System 3 Process Black paint with some of their Slow Drying Gel for it. I found the addition of the gel gave me a much blacker print than without it as the paint was wetter.

Once I had the print it was just a case of adding in the design in true Clarity style.

I love the Forest Ridge stamp as it gives you an instant horizon. Then I just added a few characters for some interest and a bit of shading. The snow is done with Weathered Wood Distress ink and the sky is done with Denim Adirondack with a bit of black on top to darken it. The "sleeps until Christmas" is done with white detail embossing powder.

I cut rectangles out for the countdown and stamped them with Clarity numbers. I was initially going to do it from 24, like a traditional advent calendar, but then I thought it would be fun to set it up for today's show and added some more. They are attached with my Cinch but if you don't have one of those you could use some small book rings.

Before I go here's a quick look at the rest of my samples for this month. As always, I will be blogging them throughout the month. I will also finish off last month's as I haven't done my Woodpecker ones yet. Bad Blogger!

Stamps Used in the Christmas Countdown

Stencil Used

Friday, 1 November 2013

Christmas Ornaments

It's time for the launch of a new challenge on the Claritystamp Challenge Blog. This month's theme is "Christmas".

I thought it would be fun to make some tree ornaments. The plain baubles are 99p each from The Range and are perfect for jazzing up. I've seen a lot of them decorated with vinyl by Silhouette Cameo owners but I thought they'd also be ideal for stamping.

Making them is really quick and simple - the design is actually inside them on acetate.

I cut a 78mm circle (after some trial and error this was the size that worked best) with a tab on it out of some heat resistant acetate. As I said before, I used my Cameo for this but you could use a compass to make a template out of card and draw round it.

To get a lovely solid black design I heat embossed the stamped image with Versamark ink and black detail embossing powder. Make sure you dust it with an anti-static bag first so you don't get too many stray flecks of powder. Then brush away as many as you can before heating it.

To get it into the bauble you take off the top and roll up the acetate as tight as you can before posting it through the hole. You may need to use some tweezers to curl the edges back the other way slightly once it opens up. It was the first time I'd embossed on acetate and I was worried that the melted powder would crack off when I did this but it didn't.

Then you can decorate them as simply or as elaborately as you want.

For this simple text one I've just added a black bow (sticking it on with my hot glue gun).

For the nativity scene I added some cut up raffia for straw and some rustic looking gingham ribbon.

For the reindeer I've added some Polar White Flower Soft for snow and some sparkly silver threads.

That's just three ideas but there are so many Clarity stamps that would fit in perfectly. 

I must say "thank you" to all of my FB friends who helped me nag my reluctant husband into getting the Christmas tree down from the loft for the photos last month. See Hubby, it was necessary!

Congratulations to the winner and Top 5 of last month's challenge. I really look forward to seeing all of the entries for this month's. There's a £50 Claritystamp voucher for the winner and it's chosen at random so everyone has a fair chance of winning, regardless of experience.

Stamps Used


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