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Friday, 4 April 2014

Fussy & Fancy Friday Challenge "Travel"

Hi there, today is the launch of the new Fussy and Fancy Challenge. The theme is "Travel" well you might think that my DT piece doesn't look like "Travel" but there are many forms of travel.  Car, Airplane, Boat, Life, Time??? So my Tag is about just that, travel through time and the memories that you collect on the way.


All Stamps used and the Gelli Plate are from ClaritStamp including the new Word Chain Stamps and New Design Club Stamp. I must say this little Lady here is one of my favourite stamps of all time, She stands out all on her own on any design she appears on, she is so elegant.  I had to sit with her on my desk for weeks not allowing myself to use her until I had caught up with all my DT work that was hard!
So, how did I make this Tag?  Well I took a few pictures to use as a visual tutorial and you will see it was really quick and easy once I had decided on the concept and the layout - yes I did say decided on the layout???
I stamped and cut out three of the "Large Sketched Lady" imagess and placed them onto my Tag with low tack tape before I took my Gelli Print - what you see here is the dregs that I took the print from. Sorry, took the picture after instead of before??
I normally go barging in there, slapping my paints and inks about and then seeing what I can make from the background I have, not this time I decided to PLAN  my design.  I was talking to someone today about my Painting & Decorating course and  I kind of remembered that I am a qualified Interior Designer and when I got to thinking about what I had done on the course I remembered about the Mood Boards we used to do.  You would never think about decorating a room without deciding on the scheme of the room first and the mood that you want to create and then the colour that will match all that and als what the client would want obviously??
This is the print that I got on the Tag
I then stamped the three images in the spaces where my cut outs had been, I stamped them slightly off so that they look shadowed.
So I decided to put this into practice a little bit with my DT work.  The way I normally craft is fine and works for me most of the time but I thought I would see how things go if I have a little plan first.  Especially now that I am doing my Gelli Plate Classes, I started very tentatively and am really enjoying them but I am also learning from the experience and I think this new way of crafting will help with the Classes.  Now I am not saying I will ALWAYs plan???
Then I added the words - seemingly randomly but actually they are where they are to give balance to the Tag.  I then played around with the NDC  Edelweiss stamp and  the Victorian  Watch and Pussy Cat, who can tell me which stamp set the pussycat is off??  If you find it on the ClarityStamp website and comment below I will draw one name of all the people who are right and send you this Tag, of course if you don't want the Tag I could send you some random craft item instead?? But of course it isn't that easy because you will only be put in the hat if you get the right answer AND have entered the Fussy and Fancy Challenge!  xx
 So I knew I wanted to use my lovely Lady stamp and I knew I wanted the Tag to be about a Journey through time, a persons life time and the memories that you gather along the way.  So to me that in itself is about traveling.   You know I sound a lot posher when I am typing than when I am talking!!!
This is the dress and Hat I cut out from one of the Masks I had made. I decided the middle Lady needed a dress on - I was now just looking to balance all the colours out on the Tag.
I coloured in the Hats and the flowers with Distress Markers that I bought at ClarityStamp I love these markers and they are the only pens I use for colouring now.  They are so good to use with your Gelli Plate  prints.
See there she is all dressed up and ready to party - do you like her outfit? 
So we have the Memories, time, Hats that match, now I just needed to do a little White Pen lines around the text because some of the paint below was a little thick for it to stand out properly.  Well it does when you look at it here but not on a photo.
I coloured the flowers with the distress marker too and the clocks, Blue is my favourite colour apart from Red that is, but the two together with a touch of yellow always look balanced to me.
I then put some Stream Adirondack ink on my Claritystamp Mat and blended from the mat onto the edges of my Tag.  Everything looks good framed, don't you think?
There you can see the white on the Word Chain letters now.  Something that you don't really notice but that makes all the difference.
There you go, the finished Tag "A Journey Through Life". I am always honest about weather or not I like what I produce and I will admit I do like this and can't believe I am going to give it away, that's if anyone wants it of course?  But that's OK because I will make a new one,
 I have a Plan as Barbara Gray would say.
So please come along and join in our Fussy & Fancy Friday Challenge and show us your take on "Travel" and if you win you will be a Guest Designer on our next Challenge, and if you don't win you may be picked by our lovely Team Member Jo Rice in the top 5.  Jo is hosting this challenge and has added a great piece of Art work herself along with the rest of our lovely Design Team.
Bye for now,

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Clarity Stamp Challenge "Monochrome"

Hello its me again.  Firstly can I say welcome to my new followers and thank you, the cheques are in the post. xxx

I will be quick tonight because it is getting very late. Oh tell me about it, its been one of those days. Nothing major really but enough for me for now thanks, like when my Dog Max got lost first thing on his walk, I found him on the other side of  a wrought iron fence to the Dog Walk I was on?  Well I thought, unless he did a Houdini or spread some wings I just couldn't work out how he got himself there, at least he waited for me and barked so that I could find him!! I found his escape route and enticed him to come back through it.
So I got home ready for a nice cuppa only to discover that my Fridge and Freezer were playing up, they are the same item but run separately.  I have a really intelligent fridge/freezer actually.  Say if you leave the door open for a certain amount of time, enough for your food to defrost but you don't realise and just shut it again, the freezer refuses to re-freeze the food.  Which is great because it stops you getting food poisoning right? But this only happens on average every six months?? Don't ask!! So of course I can never work out which button you press to put everything right.  The bad news is, I had just filled up the Freezer, the good news, I didn't have to cook tonight! 

So then I see a post saying that our Clarity Challenge Blog just launched this morning???? Oh no I think was it today????  I have sometimes been a little last minute on my challenge DT but I have never MISSED IT ALTOGETHER???? 
So that is what I have been doing today, Oh in between breaking my Son's bed that is, I knelt on it to get the IPad plug out the wall and two slats broke, well one broke the other just flew out of its slot.  Have you ever tried getting them back in???
Still things aren't that bad in comparison to a lot of people, just a little annoying in my little world.  Oh and I was trying to get my DT out and posted for Clarity because Barbara is on Create and Craft TV next Sunday, 6th April. I am looking forward to it, will you be watching?

So I have posted pictures throughout my Blog in between my waffle, it was a tutorial but I hated the first Canvas I did so I painted it all out and started again.  Now that worked out really well for me because I had used grunge paste through some of the Clarity Stencils and stuck some papers down so when I re-undercoated in white I had lots of lovely texture to highlight with my blue.  That's how a lot of Mixed Media Canvases are done anyway.  They get them looking all gorgeous and then paint the whole lot out in white and start to highlight areas to make it look gorgeous again. 
Well I am not quite there yet but I am working on it.

Well obviously I didn't have that much time left to play either but it didn't matter because I had all the lovely new Journal Stamps and Word Chains from Clarity Stamp so all I had to do was engross myself in a good old stamping session.  All these stamps just look great whatever you do with them.

Right I am of to bed.  I hope you like my Canvas for the Clarity Stamp Challenge Blog and I hope you will have a go at something yourself and enter into the Challenge. There is a £50 Clarity Voucher to be won and everyone is in with a chance of being in our top 5.  Also on the Challenge blog is all the lovely artwork from my fellow DT members. 
So bye for now, thank you for dropping by.  I always appreciate you comments. xx Wish me luck with my Blog Timer, it has never worked up to now???

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Guilded Photo Frame

As some of you know I have been making Altered Art / Mixed Media items for a local Art Café for display and sale. I am also thinking about holding workshops there.  One of my items is going to Print!!  Ssshhhhh can't say any more yet - I don't think???
Yesterday I read Barbara Gray's Blog (well I read it EVERY DAY)  she did a tutorial on a card with the Clarity Stamp Guilding Flakes. Barbara then put on an offer for a set of three of her favourites - so I whizzed off to the Clarity Stamp Website to take her up on the offer. which is still on by the way!
Then I rememberd that someone had asked me if I would show a tutorial on a Photo Frame I altered for the Art Café with Guilding Flakes on it and I promised I would.  So here it is. 
 This is the very reason I wanted to stock up too.

Altered frame using Clarity Stamp Sentiments Stamp  and Clarity "Variegated Green"  Guilding Flakes.
This was a basic white wooden frame. Which I undercoated in black
and then dry rubbed in white - using a cloth and chalky paint.
I then decided what was going to go in the middle of it.
Its for as a picture frame but I wanted to fill it with something lovely
in case people just wanted to use it as it is. How many of us have
photo frames hanging around the house with that white shiny label in the middle
and the full intention of one day putting a photo in it??? Oh is it just me then???

There perfect colouring don't you think. The variegated Green has just
the right colouring for this project too. But I make my projects according
to the Colour and feel I want. Shabby chic looks great in creams and browns with a
 hint of Red or Gold.  Gold on its own just gives a richness to a project - Opulent,
- now there's a word I like!  All these are coved in the offer pack. There is a
Glue too that I am going to try. 

You can see here and in the picture above that I have added a little of
the PaperArtsty Paint "Pansy" to get the colour even deeper and more
Vintage looking.
So how did I put the Gilding Flakes on the frame you may ask? Well a lot of people
 will be  screaming  NO at this picture but if you look above you will get a little hint. !!

Yes I used Glue & Seal.  Now I am not saying this is the best way to do it!! But it was the best that I had at hand at the time. ALSO on this project I wanted it to look anything BUT perfect. However, the Glue & Seal worked better than I expected it to so I had to be quite random with my application.I let the Glue & Seal go slightly tacky before I put the Flakes on and then Rubbed them on with my fingers to embed them in the glue.  Then let it all dry completely!

You don't have to be this messy if you don't want to be?? On the Flowers at the top
I brushed the Glue & Seal on bits I wanted to highlight and then used a dry brush to
push the flakes into the deeper parts of the flower.

See the more random the better.  I did actually add some all around
the edges after this photo was taken. Once you feel the glue is dry
and the Gilding Flakes are set, just rub all over the Gilded areas with
the Sponge as normal to "clear the area" and see what you have left underneath.

Then I got out my Archival Ink pad and the Clarity Sentiments Stamp  "Kind Hearts" and stamped round the edges
as you can see here.  I held the stamp in my hand so that I could "move it along" as I stamped it.
You wouldn't want the bits down the edge to keep saying the same thing, so stamp from the beginning
of the verse, then move to the middle for the bit underneath and so on. On the bottom piece I stamped
straight along the bottom three times with the stamp. Still not lined up though.

And here it is - The finished result.  I love this verse as it is but it also makes a brilliant
background stamp because of the type of  text it is. Of course now we have the
Clarity Word Chains too so you try and stop me!!!! You will be finding them all over my work.
So to me every element of this frame has a purpose. If any one thing was missing it just wouldn't work. But the Gilding Flakes take it to another level.  This has been the most popular thing I have made for the Art Café, along with my Rolling Pins,  both by my friends & family,  people in the Café and on here too.  So do any of you fancy doing a Gilded project?.  I have applied this technique to quite a few Tags I have done too. It looks great on MDF. I fancy trying it on some flowers I coloured the other week too. But first I have some lovely Clarity Word Chains to play with. !!
I have been neglecting my Blog again but no point me coming on here if I have nothing to show you, but I will make it a little more regular.  In fact I might have a little challenge coming up soon on my Crafters Only Blog!!! Are you up for it? 
So Bye for now, hope you like my Picture Tutorial. If you have a go I would like to see the results please.  Someone was telling me that she had a go at one of my projects and is now thinking of making them to sell, I was so happy to hear that. I love that people might be inspired by an idea that I have.  But it is worth noting that a lot of my inspiration comes from the products I use and techniques I have learnt, its good to share!!!
If you are at the NEC this week, have a great time. Say Hi to all the lovely people on the Clarity Stand. I can't make it this time but I really enjoyed working on the Clarity Stand at Harrogate and it was lovely to see so many of you, in fact Sunday was a very sociable day.
By for now
Carry on Crafting
Luv Sam xx

Friday, 7 March 2014

New Fussy and Fancy Friday Challenge

Hi there.  Well today is the launch of the new Fussy and Fancy Challenge - the theme is Birthdays.

I am going to keep this short and sweet (yeh she always says that I can hear you thinking)!  But really this time I am, I wrote my blog last night and put lots of pictures on for you, and today? NOTHING!  The Blog post has been stolen, its nowhere to be seen. 
I started with an MDFMan Tag and some Fresco Paint and a sponge.
So Birthdays, I have loads this month, Two Sisters, a Brother, a Niece a Good Friend and an Anniversary this month.  The obvious choice in the end for this Challenge DT piece was to make something I will actually use.
I love painting
I painted the edges randomly in black and white stripes.

Put the strips from the Clarity Lucky Stencil out like a ray of sunshine, hold in place with thumb (or tape) and paint through with the sponge and white chalky Fresco Paint.  Remember you are in my world, nothing has to be perfect, we are looking for random.
There you go, one or two sweeps of the sponge, job done, don't get fussy.
There is my finished result.  Almost as if it is all coming our from the flow of the Dress Form's skirt?

With the Clarity Word Chain, Birthdays, Stamp with Archival Black ink - randomly.   The ink will stick to the white paint but disappear over the black paint which is how I got this look.
My Niece Sarah is 30 years old this month, I can't believe it, I look back at my thirties as if they were just a few years ago and it was actually fjkiakmc  years ago, oops what happened to my keypad there???
See how the ink in between the white lines doesn't show up.  If it does show up you cold always do a little white wash over it. (heavily water down some paint and rub over with a sponge, or paint over with a sponge and wipe off with a wet wipe, but remember everything on here is paint) Or just leave it - not looking for perfect!!!xx
So I then carried on with the words and it looked too messy so I painted the white words on the black back out again. Oh the beauty of using paint!  I stamped the Dress Form image to line up with the words around the area I was putting it.
 So This Tag is for my Lovely Niece, I will slip a little envelop on the back for the Birthday Money, she has just moved into a brand new flat of her own and will need every penny she can get, I too bought a flat of my own in Swindon, Eastcott Hill round about the same age. It was 10 minutes walk from work and 2 minutes walk from my local pub.  
So this Tag/Gift Card is in the style that our Sarah would like, using the absolutely gorgeous ClarityStamp Journal set and Word Chains - I just love playing with these stamps and the Stencils to the Good Luck set too.  I remember when our Sarah was very young  I taught her to Stencil, I had permission to show her and her Sister Rachael how to Stencil their bedroom furniture, a great job they did of it too, wish I had a photo?

So where I had painted the letters back out I placed it with some stamping from this gorgeous grungy diamond stamp from the ClarityStamp Journal Set. I used Brilliance whit ink because it looks lovely and chalky over the paint.
I then started to decorate the bits that were going on top of the Tag. This was a cardboard label shape that I got free in a Magazine.  I roughly painted in white leaving some of the underneath uncovered, dry brushed tiny bits of black on the edges, that's it Aged!  I then stamped the 30 from the ClarityStamp Numbers set and the swirl from the Journal set.
I love Dress Forms and Lady Stamps I could dress them everyday, I used to love my paper dolls as a kid too!!

I had put the swirl stamp over her neck so it looks like she is wearing a necklace.
Mmmm she needs something else, that ribbon on her waist is too thick.

 There that's better obviously she just needed a butterfly and a rose!!!
Then something to give it that personal touch - and so that her Sister can't pinch it because her name is Rachael!!
And just a little splash of colour.
And there you have it, a Gift Tag with a little envelope on the back with some cash in it, and a mini hanging Gift to keep.
Boy I seemed to have taken a lot of photos of this one?
Have a great Day and please join in our Challenge its all about having fun and letting other people see your art. I love to see what other people are making.

About Me

My Photo
Teesside, United Kingdom
I am proud to be on the DT for Claritystamp and for the Fussy and Fancy Challenge Blog. I have also been a member of the SplodgeAway DT have always had an interest in Arts and Craft and studied for six years and gained certificates in Arts and Crafts, Interior Design, and Soft Furnishings, I even did a Painter & Decorators course. I was originally taught everything I know by my Mam and I now have a passion/obsession for crafts as I develop my techniques. I hope one day to be demonstrating and teaching Crafts.